Thursday, April 18, 2013

Shared Notes and Highlights

Feeling a little frustrated with the fact that Amazon took away the "tagging" option for books , I was scrolling through my book listing for Through the Dark Wood when I came upon a little corner of a books listing that I didn't know existed. I had been reading the wonderful reviews readers have given me because that bolsters me when I'm feeling the stress of a slow in sales (like I'm currently experiencing—I believe in part because of the removal of the tagging option). My spirits were raised a bit by the kind and heartfelt words of some of the reviewers, and then I saw the words I am done yelling, Elyon quoted on the page.

That's how I discovered "Shared Notes and Highlights".

According to Amazon they are: "...the thoughts and passages that Kindle readers have shared while reading this book. These are made available to other Kindle readers and optionally to Facebook and Twitter."

Then clicked the "see all" link. There aren't that many for my book, but this is what I saw. (You may need to click on it to view it large enough, or you can go Here to see it on the Amazon page)

The fact that someone made the note "yes." to the quote "I am done yelling, Elyon." brought a tear to my eye. The scene leading up to that moment in the book and that moment itself are very personal and mean a great deal to me. From that note it appears it was meaningful to them as well, and there are few things I could say are that gratifying in regard to publishing my book. The other things noted or highlighted are neat too. It makes me feel like I've accomplished at least some of my goal. I want my writing to move people. I had a local lady that bought a paperback from me tell me yesterday that one of the scenes with little Tearis brought tears to her eyes. I smiled ear to ear.

It's the kind and inspiring feedback I get from people that helps to carry me in the slumps. This week I've been feeling the slump. So, this blog post is as much sharing my slumpiness, as it is a thanks to each person who has bolstered me, and a sweet sharing of the tearful joy I feel after finding "Shared Notes and Highlights".

I'll share one more review I received recently that really lifted me.


5.0 out of 5 stars A book that has left an lasting impression on me, April 11, 2013

This review is from: Through the Dark Wood (Treasures of Darkness - Treasures of Light) (Volume 1) (Paperback)
I am by no means a literary critic, but I love a good story that pulls me in so that I feel invested in the character(s) of the story. I love a book that challenges the characters with situations that makes them grow. Because of that I completely enjoyed getting to know Zam and go on a journey with him through this book.

It's been a few months since I finished the book and I still have these images from the book that pop into my head and cause me rethink/reimagine the event that unfolded. And there are some characters (like Galwen), who, when I think about them, gives me the same feeling that I get when I think of long time friend I've had. There's a warmth and admiration, which is crazy because it's just a character in a book, but it is what it is :)

I wonder how long these images will stay with me. Some books I put down and don't think of again, but others have these metaphors that stalk me. I have a feeling that this book is of the latter.

One of things I miss now-a-days are virtuous characters. I'm not just talking about good people, but something more than good. Jimmy Stewart made an impression on me growing up because a lot of the people he portrayed were simple people with strong values (Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Harvey, It's a wonderful life). I liked reading about Zam because he's someone I could look up to....someone I could respect....someone who is pure and good. I guess I'm partial to stories where you put that type of person in a dark world....not just to see how he responds, but how the world does too.

Can't wait to read book 2.


I so appreciated the reference to Jimmy Stewart. I've always had the same sort of Respect for him this reviewer does, and couldn't have asked for a better comparison.

Thanks to each of you who are walking with me on this road, watching me walk this road and cheering, and those who are just standing by looking and saying, "huh... wouldja look at that."

Have a grand day,


Thursday, April 4, 2013

Sharizeen Cor - Post 4

1400 years before the events of Through the Dark Wood, Sharizeen "Sarie" Cor walked the thriving land of Darlandis. This is the fourth installment of her tale which will have some bearing on the events to follow in the TODTOL universe. If you have not read the first two posts, click HERE.
And, I hadn't realized how much I'd previously included in Post 3. So, it has changed some, you will want to re-read that before continuing on to post 4.

Post 4

Sarie, followed Thresh through the arch, along a path to a dark stone opening into the foot of the great hill. She saw flickering torches far ahead in the dark, narrow corridor. By the time they reached them her eyes had adjusted to the dark. The torches were hung at the opening of a large room the walls of which were made of perfectly smooth black bricks joined so tightly together that their edges could scarcely be seen. Polished to a mirrors shine, Sarie saw herself reflected in them by the light of the torches and was struck by how warlike she appeared. Thresh stood beside her and, though prepared for whatever battles may come his way, his visage held far greater peace than she had ever known.
He admired the look of surprise on her face. “It is a good heart that recognizes its lack of peace. Your fears will be addressed in time.”
She stiffened at the word fears. “I fear nothing, Sir.”
“Only the fool fears nothing, but I believe there is only one thing you fear—possibly two.”
Her eyes flashed with anger and she wanted to lash out. But, there was no lack of kindness when he spoke. Confound this man! Frustrated she said, “You speak with much certainty, Thresh Dannan.”
He bowed his head a little. “Only because I know you are no fool, and there is one thing every man and woman fears.”
She asked more snidely than intended, “And what is that?”
He looked at her consolingly. “Being ever alone in heart.”
The words brought a lump to her throat, and the sadness that nearly overwhelmed her made her angry. Drat being alone! She sighed and clenched her teeth in thought. But, it is good insight. 
Reluctantly she conceded. “You speak true, Sir.”
“I meant no offense by what I said. I simply wish to help you be ready when your battle comes. I fear the Scribe will be more direct than I.”
“My battle?”
Thresh hesitated for the first time. “... Yes. But, you need not fear any actual battles here in Adrel Teng. Truash—the Scribe—will explain far better than I.” He hesitated again. “I… I may have already said more than I am supposed to. I assumed I would know what to say—how to behave—when I met you, but standing here in this room—of all places—your presence is undermining my confidence.”
It was the honesty of his statement that struck her most. This man… is an oddity. There’s no guile in him. She smirked. “What is it about me in this place that so unnerves you?”
Without words Thresh took a torch from its stand, crossed to a darkened corner, and touched the flame to a basin running the length of the wall. The oil inside ignited and a flame quickly flowed to the other corner. It took a moment for Sarie to understand. Along that wall, carved with the uttermost precision, were vignettes taken directly from her past: her as a newborn in her father’s arms moments after her mother died in childbirth; she as a toddler at her father’s side the day he died, struck down by an arrow to the heart from a villain never captured; her at fourteen hiding with Boujh in a cave in the woods after he had rescued her from a slaver who sought to sell her; and the all too recent and familiar scene of Sarie in a heap upon the floor of her quarters in Eerid Freen’s home, weeping at the news of Bough’s death. The scenes went on. One depicted her arrival at the arch where she met Thresh. The detail astonished her—right down to the surcoat cut short for ease of movement and Ryon the castle guard’s cloak. Others continued, but their locations and what they meant were unknown to her. The last had her standing in strength and wearing a crown. 
She was pierced by emotions she usually stifled, and she was shaken. Her heart beat rapidly, and she teetered on the edge of breaking down. How can this be? What can this mean? She was breathing in short shallow bursts. Everything seemed to be closing tight around her. She looked fearfully at Thresh. “What… what is this place?”
He answered solemnly, “This is the court of Cor… beyond the gate of Sarie. This is where it was foretold you would arrive.”
Her mind was swimming. It was too much to take in. She asked the only question she could form. “When?”
Thresh saw the toll this place was taking on her, but answered despite. “Three hundred and seven years ago by Scribe Rendelaire.”
The weight and meaning of his statement was too much. Sarie had never lost consciousness in her life until that day.


To be continued.... in Post 5


I hope you're enjoying the ancient history of Zam's world. In case you missed the post, Zam's first story is finally out in paper back: on Amazon and CreateSpace (same price both locations, but I get to keep more of the profit from CreateSpace). 

Book Two is in regular progress, and I'm looking forward to sharing. 

Thanks for following along this journey with me.