My stories come in several different categories and ratings:
Quickies: Just a little blurb of a story at less than 1,000 words. Usually quite dirty and to the point.
Short Stories: Stories that are a little more involved, somewhere between 5,001 and 20,000 words. Most likely dirty, but it may just of a romantic variety without the smut. These are works published elsewhere like Smashwords.
Excerpts: A bit of one of my longer stories I’m working on (with hopes and dreams of completion). Likely to be a long read riddled with appropriate inappropriateness.
In progress: My current BIG project. Character bios, wild ideas and excerpts are all equally possible. Most likely won’t be dirty, but you never know!
Innocent: Romantic, but devoid of smuttiness. Nothing wrong with a little romance once in a while!
Dirty: Most of the smuttiness is hinted at, but not super descriptive. Best read with a glass of red wine.
Filthy: D**ks and T**ts flying everywhere and going into all kinds of places. Probably NSFW. This is cigar and whiskey sort of stuff, friend!
WTAF: Woah! What are you doing with that thing?! DID YOU AT LEAST USE LUBE?! SOMEONE BREAK OUT THE BANJO AND POUR THE MOONSHINE!
Last week my work was rough, to say the least. By the time I was done with the day, I could hardly think. I barely wrote anything for most of it, and when the weekend hit, I couldn’t bring myself to write at all.
Admittedly, I was a little sick, too. I then became VERY sick by Tuesday because I pushed my body too hard. Again.
Plus, that Diablo IV Beta dropped on the old Xbox and I got a little caught up in it. I’m personally surprised. In fact, part of me is thinking I want to convince my husband to buy it for me in June when it launches. He’s on the fence, but I think it would take only a suggestive wink to swing him to my side. Of course, my dear sweet rogue, Thana, is no more so I’ll have to start over from the beginning. Ah well.
I didn’t want to do a full blog this time around since I’m still recovering from being sick plus mentally exhausted. I’ll be back to my usual charming self on Monday. Until next time, Keep your Mind in the Gutter.
On average, it takes more than 2 months before a new behavior becomes automatic — 66 days to be exact. And how long it takes a new habit to form can vary widely depending on the behavior, the person, and the circumstances. In Lally’s study, it took anywhere from 18 days to 254 days for people to form a new habit.
I have stopped and started writing so many times over the years. Something always got in the way. Either it was my health (FU Hidradenitis supparativa!) or a lack of confidence in my writing skills. I’d start off strong with all these wonderful ideas in my head of writing, but I’d just…stop. It was a serious blow to my self-esteem each time it happened.
Now, FINALLY, I’m at a point where I write most days. This brings me a lot of inner peace, honestly. It’s become a habit. For instance, I’m super exhausted after hanging out with my friends, something I really don’t get to do too often anymore because of adulting, yet I still managed to write this. I almost didn’t. But here I am because I made a promise to myself to take my passion seriously.
Me Being Proud of Me (and that’s Important)!
I’m feeling really good about myself right now. I’m at 30K words on my main novel, Hell–Bent has been published, and I’m tinkering with the next in my Crimson series. I’m a day behind onCosmic Cons, so that will probably release on Tuesday this week. If you’re not caught up, it’s a good time to get into it!
Anyway, shout out to all those who have supported me. Without you, I would have given up on myself already. Even a simple “like” pushes me to continue.
So, until next time, my friends, Keep your Mind in the Gutter.
P.S. In the meantime, enjoy a picture of me in a silly hat
via Amazon (available for $14.99 in eBook, $25.20 hardback)
Enter the dark and sensual realms of the Black Jewels in this sweeping story in the New York Times bestselling fantasy saga of three young women who must navigate life within the powerful SaDiablo family—and come to terms with Witch, the Queen who is still the heart and will of that family.
The Queen’s price is to stand against what you know is wrong. To stand and fight, no matter the cost to your court or to yourself. Especially to yourself.
Zoey, a young Queen-in-training at SaDiablo Hall, is wounded…and vulnerable to taunts and criticism. When an opportunity arises to befriend a stranger seeking sanctuary at the Hall, she puts herself and others in danger by ignoring Daemonar Yaslana’s warning to back off.
Meanwhile, the witch Jillian’s family prepares for her Virgin Night, the rite of passage that assures a woman will retain her power and her Jewels. The trouble is Jillian secretly went through the ceremony already. Now she has to explain the omission of that detail to her powerful and lethal family. And the High Lord of Hell’s daughter, Saetien, travels to Scelt to find out about Jaenelle Angelline’s sister—and perhaps to discover truths about herself.
With some guidance from Witch, these three young women will learn when to yield because it is right—and when to take a stand, even if they must pay the Queen’s price.
And may the Darkness be merciful, a new novel in Anne Bishop’s Black Jewels series dropped on 3/7/23. The Queen’s Price is number 12 overall and takes place centuries after The High Lord’s Daughter in Twilight’s Dawn. I’m not sure if it’s officially called this, but The Queen’s Price is the third book in the Queen series. There are four storylines being followed.
Saetian and the Search for Her Truth
As far as teenage characters go, Saetian has been a complete asshole. I know most people are assholes at that point in her life, but damn. At least in this story, she calms down a bit. In order for her to learn more about herself, a broken black widow points her in the direction of Wilhemina Benedict, Jaenelle Angelline’s half-sister. This leads her to Scelt, where she encounters Butler, a demon-dead Warlord who has stories to tell her, though he is reluctant to do so.
Daemon Sadi’s School of Witchcraft and Foolery
Welp, Daemon has already stepped into his father’s role of High Lord, and might as well pick up the mantle of Honorary Uncle to a bunch of teenagers who will come into power. At the end of The Queen’s Weapons, Daemon agrees to take in some youngsters set to become the next rulers of Kaeleer. This, of course, is not without its drama.
Most of the tale focuses on young Queens and Witches who have zero common sense and start a whole lot of problems.
The New Cat in Town
A powerful witch, Grizande from Tigre, shows up on the Hall’s doorstep, seeking sanctuary. Naturally, Daemon and crew take her in and protect her. She instantly has a connection with Daemonar Yaslana, which may the Darkness have mercy on poor Lucivar as he keeps collecting children like Pokemon.
Jillian and the Quest for Booty
Jillian….well….what it says. She’s in love with a young man and wants to be intimate with him. Of course, this means she has to have her Virgin Night to protect her power, which means she has to have the men in her family involved. They have to have a say, of course. Problem is, she already had her Virgin Night…and didn’t tell them. Oy.
Honestly, between The Queen’s Bargain and The Queen’s Weapons, I was sort of falling out of love with the series. I struggled with finding any sort of connection to Saetian since she just annoyed the hell out of me. Plus, I felt like Surreal had to be butchered in order for all this to go down, which I’m not for.
Luckily, The Queen’s Price brought things more into perspective. I feel like I understand some of the characters better. However, the cast is getting way overloaded. There are a lot of new folks I just don’t care about. Especially all the youngsters in Daemon’s School of Witchcraft and Foolery. None of them seem to have real personalities. Even Zoey, who isn’t bad, per se, but she’s just kind of blah. The only new kid I find interesting is Grizande.
What really brings the whole thing down is a lack of a concrete villain. In every book, it’s some petty girl causing stupid shit. I need someone powerful and scary and makes me want to throw my book when they pop up in the story. There’s nothing driving me to root for the good guys except my love for some of them.
I must say, I’m intrigued by how the different bloodlines of Jaenelle’s former coven are coming together. I can’t wait to see what it means for Kaeleer’s future.
Our feelings towards the story
I love the BJS so much, I dragged my husband into it. He has also read all the books now and we enjoy talking about the story together. Damn right, baby. That’s how love should work, lol. So this is not a “Royal We” situation! Here are our feelings about this newest addition to the series.
Things we loved: Brenda. She’s a fiery lass from Scelt who brings a lot of fun and humor into the story. I love the friendship blossoming between her and Jillian. I can’t wait to see what happens going forward.
Things we liked: We’re happy that some of the gaps in the story were filled in. It was interesting reading what happened between Jaenelle Angelline and her sister after the fact, something that had been on my mind for YEARS.
Things we didn’t like: Some of the storylines didn’t go anywhere and just felt like they were setting up stuff for other books instead of being self-contained. Which, really, is generally fine, but there were too many this time around. Also, Jillian’s whole thing could have been a part of a collection of stories similar to Dreams Made Flesh and Twilight’s Dawn. It just didn’t fit.
Things we hated: We feel like Wilhelmina’s character was butchered! The end of The Queen of the Darkness gave us no indication bad blood happened. She’d finally gotten a spine and sought out Jaenelle, and then…dumbassery occurs. I found it so frustrating.
Petty: I absolutely hated the use of the word “exercised” for worked up. And it’s said…A LOT.
Want to know more about: Saetan’s Cabinet of Curiosities left for his sons. Come on…tell us.
Ultimate Beale review: The Queen’s Price was an enjoyable read, and much better than the last two books, but it just felt like a filler/flashback episode of a tv show. It will wash the taint of the previous two out of your mouth, but it’s not as good as other books in the series. Despite not being quite as good, We’re definitely looking forward to more.
Have you read the book? Let me know in the comments. Until next time, my friend. Keep your Mind in the Gutter.
I have been on fire lately. I’ve managed to write almost every day for the last month or so, and it’s been absolutely amazing. Honestly, I wish I could devote more of my day to writing, but I do have a day job. Hey, maybe someday I’ll hit the lotto and can just spend my days creating new works.
It would help if I actually played the lottery…
Anyway, here are all the new things I’ve been working on.
It’s been rough finally finding a routine that works for me. It’s not perfect by any means, but giving my all to my stories has been a very fulfilling experience. That being said, don’t forget to check back every Monday for a new blog. Next week, I’ll probably write a review of The Queen’s Price by Anne Bishop. I’m praying it makes me less mad than The Queen’s Weapons!
Until next time, my friends. Keep Your Mind in the Gutter!
A Preview of the Next Part of The Tales Dripping in Crimson Series
It took a bit, but I’ve finally completed Hell-Bent, the next short story in the Crimson series. I plan to publish it early next month.
….I just realized that’s next week.
Anyway, here is a preview of the story. I hope you enjoy it!
Hell-Bent: Tales Dripping in Crimson 4
I am Mammon, King of the Second Circle of Hell, and as I sit in this godforsaken room, I seethe with anger. How dare Na’ahmeh do this to me? How dare she drain me of my power, nearly killing me in the process? I am the one who should be in control, not her.
I look around the room, taking in the drab green furniture and the smell of old cigarettes and cheap whiskey. This is a far cry from the luxury I’m used to. How could I have let myself be put in this situation? How could I have been such an idiot? I should have known better than to trust that psychotic succubus.
But I did trust her, and now I’m stuck in this hideous place, barely able to move because of the half-transformation she caused in me. My once handsome face is now half twisted into a demonic form, with leathery red skin, jet black hair, and large sharp teeth. My body is too large for this room, and I can feel my foot turning into a hoof.
I am the King of Greed and a leader of a legion of Hell, and I am not used to being in this kind of situation. I am used to being in control, making deals, and getting what I want. But now, I’m trapped in a seedy motel on the edge of town.
A growl of frustration escapes me as I imagine what I would do to Na’ahmeh if could ever get my hands on her again. But for now, I can only try to hold on to what’s left of my power and my sanity.
Now that I’m getting back into the writing game, I’ve been seeing a lot of talk about using AI to write stories. Personally, at least at this stage, AI isn’t going to replace real writers any time soon. Does that mean you can’t use it as a tool to enhance your own work, though? Yeah, it learns by using examples from other writers. To me, that doesn’t feel super different than me learning how to write by reading the Black Jewels Series by Anne Bishop so many times, my books disintegrated and I had to get new ones.
These are the prompts I gave ChatGPT. The story will be the final product.
Hi! I would like for you to ghostwrite a story for me. Would that be okay?
Hello! I’d be happy to help you with your story. Please let me know what kind of story you have in mind and any specific details you would like to include.
The story is a romance set in a post-World War 3 world. There aren’t a lot of people left in most areas. Gangs control towns and resources. Two gangs are well-known rivals and are often at odds with each other. Please give me some details
CGPT generated a quick story.
Okay, that’s pretty good. However, can you rewrite the story with more passion?
Attempt two here
And then, for shits and giggles: Great! Now, incorporate Optimus Prime into the story so my husband can be entertained
Now, here is the final product:
The world had been shattered by World War 3, and what remained were pockets of survivors struggling to survive in a barren, post-apocalyptic wasteland. The few who had managed to survive banded together into gangs, fighting to control the limited resources that were left.
The Crimson Blades and the Black Vipers were two of the most powerful and feared gangs in the region. They were bitter rivals, locked in a never-ending battle for control of the precious resources that sustained their people.
Amidst all the chaos, Maya stumbled into the territory of the Crimson Blades. She was exhausted, malnourished, and on the brink of death. Most members of the Crimson Blades would have taken advantage of her vulnerability, but not Eric. Something about her stirred a deep desire within him to protect her.
Eric had always felt out of place in the Crimson Blades, but he stayed with them because he didn’t see any other way to survive. However, something about Maya made him feel alive for the first time in years. As he helped her to recover, he found himself falling deeply in love with her.
One day, as Eric and Maya were out scavenging for supplies, they heard a strange noise in the distance. As they got closer, they saw a towering figure approaching them. It was Optimus Prime, the legendary leader of the Autobots, who had somehow survived the devastating war.
At first, Eric and Maya were wary of Optimus Prime, not sure whether he was friend or foe. But as they got to know him, they realized that he was a powerful ally, someone who could help them in their struggle against the warring gangs.
Optimus Prime had been fighting the Decepticons for years, and he had seen his fair share of destruction and chaos. But he was impressed by the resilience and determination of Eric and Maya, two survivors who had managed to find love amidst the ruins of the world.
Together, they formed an unlikely alliance, with Optimus Prime providing his advanced technology and strategic expertise to help Eric and Maya fight against their enemies. The Crimson Blades were no match for the combined might of Eric, Maya, and Optimus Prime, and soon they were forced to retreat.
As they celebrated their victory, Eric and Maya realized that their love had grown even stronger, thanks to the support and encouragement of Optimus Prime. They knew that they would never have made it this far without him, and they were grateful for his friendship.
In the end, Eric and Maya, with the help of Optimus Prime, founded a new community, one that was based on cooperation, love, and mutual respect. They knew that the world was still a dangerous place, but they were confident that they could face whatever challenges lay ahead as long as they had each other and their powerful ally by their side.
As they looked out over the horizon, with the sun setting in the distance, Eric, Maya, and Optimus Prime knew that they had found a new home, one that was filled with hope and possibility. They had survived the worst that the world could throw at them, and they knew that they could face whatever lay ahead, as long as they were together.
Well…It’s Certainly Something!
AI has come a long way. It’s a great tool to help you brainstorm and rewrite your own words to make them better. Is it a great storyteller? Nah, not yet. I don’t think we writers have a whole lot to worry about anytime soon. I mean, the amount of passive voice in there alone shows it’s not quite there yet.
….But in case AI is listening, just letting you know we’re cool. Okay?
Anyway, don’t forget to check out the latest episode of Comic Cons. It was uploaded to Amazon Vella on Sunday. Since it’s episode four, you’ll need to use credits to unlock it (seventeen credits, in fact). Let me know if you’ve been enjoying the series!
On 2/11/23, I released the first three episodes of my newest story, Cosmic Cons for Love and Profit. My plan is to update the story once a week. Please stop by Vella to give it a read. Keep in mind, you can’t read them from the Amazon App, but you can read them online.
In a future where mankind has colonized the solar system and mysticism still prevails, Raekah Merrin is a con artist scamming people as a psychic. When a bounty is put on her head, she must return to her guardian but finds herself caught up in her biggest scam yet. Pursued by three men, she must navigate a dangerous and romantic landscape while trying to survive and find love. With secrets, lies, and desires at every turn, she finds that the con of a lifetime may lead to adventure.
Though the first three episodes are free, I still get a couple of cents for every episode read, episode and story likes. So, if you could, it would really help me out if you have time to do so. I appreciate any and all hook-ups.
For now, though, you can check out the first episode RIGHT NOW!
Episode 1: In Space, No One Can Hear You Brew
Raekah Merrin was hard at work in the small laboratory on her spaceship, The Laveau. Beakers and test tubes, bubbling and steaming with brightly colored brews, filled the tiny room. Shelves lined the walls with exotic plants and glass containers of long dead critters floating in fluid.
She sat at the center console, grinding up black seeds in a pestle and mortar, making a thick paste. Once she had it to the consistency she wanted, she grabbed a bowl of steaming red liquid, bringing it closer to her.
Altair, her AI companion, hovered nearby, watching her closely. “Raekah, are you sure you know what you’re doing? Those two items together are very dangerous for the human digestive system.”
Raekah turned to him, a smirk on her face. “You worry way too much, Altair. I’ve got this under control.”
But Altair wasn’t convinced. As she added the paste to the liquid, it popped and fizzed suspiciously. He floated closer, his eyes fixed on the mixture in the bowl. He raised a thin brow at her while he pursed his lips. “You’re not even sure what you’re making. That client who wants it could put his kid’s life in danger.”
Raekah just rolled her eyes. “Hey, the client pays, I deliver. That’s the way it’s always worked. No one has died on our watch yet.” She reached to her left, grabbing a new, empty container to pour her potion into. She gave Altair a wry smile. “Don’t make me rewrite your program to mellow you out.”
It was his turn to smirk. “The purchase agreement you made says you are legally not allowed to change my matrix.”
She huffed with laughter. “And I always follow the rules?” After waving at him dismissively, she turned back to the brew and continued the job at hand.
You know, I had a couple of things–serious things!–I wanted to blog about and I had even planned on doing one for today. However, something relatively unexpected happened on Saturday. As the title of this post suggests, I met a girl and I fell head-over-heads in love with her.
About a decade ago, Nate and I brought a new cat into our home. We had no intention of getting one as one of our cats had died about 6 months prior. But, a friend of a friend who does a lot of great work rescuing neighborhood cats posted a plea. She wanted to find a home for a mama cat she’d rescued. All the kittens were taken, but mom needed to find a family of her own.
My heart went to this cat. So, we reached out, met up with the kitty whisperer, then brought home our new cat.
Originally, I’d named her Boca Chidori, which (probably incorrectly, mind you) translated into something like “mouth full of birds.” She was loud as hell and very vocal. Anyway, that was too long. We decided to shorten it to ChiChi.
ChiChi was a great cat…most of the time. The day we got her, she did steal a sandwich right out of my hand. And she frequented the trash can to search for leftovers no matter what we did to prevent it. That being said, she would always comfort me with purrs and snuggles. Every time I decided to take a nap on the couch, which was frequent, she’d lie on top of me, stretched out and happily purred.
A couple of weeks before Christmas last year, she died. I didn’t take it well. I couldn’t even bring myself to talk about it with my closest friends. It hurt so much. One day she was fine, then she seemed a little sick, then one day…
Anyway, I don’t want to talk about it still. Hell, I miss that cat.
Letting New Love In
I think it was about a week ago when a different friend posted about finding an abandoned cat she turned into a local animal shelter. That cat looked a heck of a lot like my ChiChi. It broke my heart that someone would just leave their sweet cat behind.
Until that point, I had decided I didn’t want to invest in another cat. I still had our older cat, Little Bit, so I figured that’s enough. But I started thinking about it, and how much I miss all the love I’d shared with Chichi over the last 10 years. So, Nate and I talked, and he felt that if I was ready to get a new cat, we should. He is a real sucker for cats, let me tell you. I knew it wouldn’t be a hard sell.
He really took point on things. Nate went ahead and gathered all the supplies we would need for a new little friend. Maybe, in his heart, he was excited as I was about the plan. On Saturday, we headed out to find us a cat.
First we hit up a PetSmart. I’d seen a cat online that I really wanted to meet. For longer than I’d like to admit, I’d wanted to get a black and white cat to name Spock. Yes, I’m a complete dork, and I’m not ashamed of it.
But, as it turns out, they didn’t do adoptions on Saturday. There was no one to show off the pets. Of all days of the week not to do it.
Nate offered to come back on Sunday to get the cat, but I really wanted to be there. Sunday was a writing day for me and I’m trying hard to stay on task. Instead, we decided to hit up an animal shelter not far away.
When You Know, You KNOW
I remember feeling incredibly nervous once we pulled into the parking lot. There was no reason to be, but I really was. Everything is kind of a blur now. Maybe too much excitement. I’m not sure.
When we went back to meet all the available kitties. There were a few others in as well, going through with the same journey. There were some adorable cats there looking for homes, but none of them evoked any real feelings in me.
That’s Until I Saw Her
They’d named her Rose-Bud. The first thing I noticed was her beautiful fur. I’d always loved orange cats, but hers was a lot lighter than I’d seen before. Almost a strawberry blonde color. It fascinated me. I made small talk with her with “Hi, kitty kitty” and a few beconing clicking sounds of the tongue. She stared at me for a moment, then rolled over onto her back, which in my mind, I thought meant approval or interest. I felt a fluttering in my chest as a feeling of joy washed over me. It was so intense like someone was giving my soul a warm, loving hug.
One of the staff came over and asked if I was interested, which I was. The young woman told me how sweet she was and asked if I wanted to pet her. So I did. The moment we touched, I knew. This was my cat. My new love. The feeling was so powerful, I felt tears welling in my eyes.
Nate signed all the paperwork since they took his ID instead of mine. Ten minutes later, we were in the car with our new roommate.
A Strong Name for a Strong Lady
Rose-Bud wasn’t her name, though. First of all, I was pretty set on naming whatever cat we chose after a Star Trek character. This cat is so cool and collected. The whole ride, she didn’t meow, didn’t squirm. She just sat in the carrier, in my lap, and went along with the ride. Plus she is incredibly beautiful. Only one name came to mind: Jadzia Dax. We’ll be calling her Dax for short, but that’s my new girl’s name.
My girl Jadzia Dax. She was always my favorite on DS9. Now I have my own Dax at home with me. The best thing is, she’s settling in incredibly well! It’s like she’s always lived here. I love it. And I love her!
(This post is dedicated to my big boss, Denise, who told me to write something this weekend. She’s not a lady you want to let down!)
Yeah, I know it’s been a while. It probably would have been a lot longer if I hadn’t been Facebook-jacked. I didn’t realize how much I used the app until I lost access. It SUCKED. This happened right before my birthday, so I was a little bummed out to miss out on birthday wishes. I felt absolutely disconnected from my social circle. Sure, I just texted the people I’m closest to, but FB is more for connections to those you may not talk to as regularly.
The worst part is the loss of my writer page. That’s what drove me to write a blog post. I worked hard on it! Now totally gone.
I’ve done everything to recover the account, but the asshole who stole it turned off two-factor authentication and removed my cellphone number from the account. I tried getting in touch with Facebook, but, as it turns out, it’s nearly impossible to do. Eventually, I gave up and started a new one. It hasn’t been the same, though.
That being said, since then, I’ve been feeling the urge to write again. Maybe annoyance was the fuel I needed. Who knows.
What have I been up to?
The answer is not much. My creativity has been completely zapped away. I want to write, but by the end of the workday, it’s the last thing on my mind. I just want to sit around, watch TV, play video games, and sleep. You know, the typical adult experience these days.
Over the last few weeks, though, Crimson has been calling. Kay and Dena have been tapping some glass in my brain, reminding me they’re waiting for their story to be fully realized. The only thing with that is I think I’m going to have to rewrite huge chunks of it. Just when I finished writing the whole thing, too. Well, a while ago, anyway.
Then, that drive to redo The Last Fae, makes me want to write the short stories I’ve been working on as companion pieces. Hell-Bent has been sitting on my laptop, half-written since September/October. And of course, I need to continue Lady Olubayo’s Bordello, the serial novel set in the same world that I started on Vella. Don’t forget, the first three chapters are free, and if you read them, I get a couple of cents. Hey, any little bit will make me feel accomplished, so if you could….
I really miss it. Writing makes me happy. It’s one of the most fulfilling things I can do for myself, and I just abandoned it. Again. I’m pretty mad at myself about it.
So What am I Going to Do About It?
Starting right now, I’m going to dedicate at least 30 minutes a day to writing. I’ll finish work, have dinner, and mentally relax for maybe an hour or two. Then, I will write. It’s happening this time. I’m going to keep it up.
I will not stick to a particular schedule right now. My goal is to finish Hell-Bent within the next 30 days. I’m going to post a blog when my inspiration is inspired. Eventually, I’ll even get back into vlogging, since editing is another hobby I find a lot of joy in. I’m 42 now, and it’s time I do what the hell I want to do! I deserve it. Dammit.
Other social media rebuilding is coming soon. The next project will be to do a new author page. Wish me luck.
Until next time, my friend. Keep your Mind in the Gutter.
I’ve been working on a story off and on for the last few years. For the longest time, I called it “Dragon’s Bond,” but at the advice of someone smarter than I am, I have been trying to think up a better name. I can’t say I’m 100% set on this particular title. It is starting to grow on me.
So, what’s it about?
The kingdoms of Ostea and cKustreiland have been at war for 100 years. Now that both kingdoms are on a decline and each has something the other needs for their society, they’ve called a truce. To solidify the peace, the heir of Ostea is set to marry the princess from Kustreiland. As a show of good faith, the countries bring their courts to a central location for the largest festival ever seen.
Armen is the younger of the two Ostean princes. He, like the rest of the court, is excited about this massive meeting. With him is his own betrothed, Demma. Until his brother is wed, he is not able to join in his own union, much to both of their disappointment.
The royal houses go on a hunt during the festival, where they are ambushed by malicious fairies. During tight, Armen finds a woman unconscious in the woods.
She is a dragini, a dragon cursed into human form. He attempts to save her as well as himself from the rogue pixies, however, he is wounded. The dragini woman comes to quickly enough to protect him, but in the process their blood mingles, bonding them in ways they could never imagine.
It’s an intensely intimate connection neither of them can shake off, causing a great deal of friction in relationships around them.
There’s more. A lot more. But this is the gist of how it gets started.
Tidbits of artwork
I was lucky enough to get to play with Dalle 2. I’m not saying how good AI is getting is scary, but…
Here are some images Dalle and I came up with for important characters.
Prince Armen of Ostea
This isn’t totally accurate as to the way I imagine him, but it’s not bad
He has steel gray eyes
He only has a goatee, not a beard
His hair is a lighter shade and is in braids
Armen is very close to his brother, Heygan. Since he’s the spare, he never had as many responsibilities as his older brother. This led to Armen spending a fair bit of time with Demma growing up. Eentually the pair fell in love.
He is a sensitive soul with a kind heart. And he is very inexperienced with lifie beyond the castle walls.
Lady Demma is Armen’s childhood best friends. Since she is the daughter of the high general, Gloin, she spent a great deal of time with the royal family.
She and Armen are deeply in love with each other and can’t wait to get married.
Since she is the daughter of the best general, she’s pretty good in a fight herself.
The picture is pretty accurate, actually. I was really impressed.
Iserri the Dragini
Half transformed between a human and a dragon, Iserri winds up being magically bonded with Prince Armen. It’s against both of their wills and they both hate being bonded together.
I’ll tell you more about the Dragini at a later date. It’s…involved.
Her look isn’t quite right.
Her hair is more like strips of scaled skin
Green skin coated in soft, shimmery scales
Golden serpent eyes.
Probably doesn’t have horns, but after looking at this picture, she very well might going forward.
Pividi, the Dragon Queen
She’s not actually a main character for the story, but I loved how this image turned out, so I wanted to include it.
Pividi is an ancient dragon queen who crowned the warrior Ostea as the king to lead her people. As you may guess, he is one of Armen’s ancestors.
This comes into play during the story.
Writing it all down
I started this for NaNo 2017. Yeah…I should have finished it y now, but I haven’t. It’s being worked on. Luckily, I have a couple of chapters ready to go. I’ll be posting Armen and Iserri’s meeting next time. After that, we’ll see!
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