Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Story Snippets 2/25/15

Hello, everyone! In the last month, I've been working on editing my two most recent WIPs. Neither is ready to show to people, but I still want to share what I've been doing. So I thought I'd post some snippets! I was originally just going to post bits of Between Two Worlds, which I've done the most on- I have almost-seven chapters edited, as opposed to only one in Destinies and Decisions. (I'd have more done on D&D, but I had to entirely rewrite the first chapter. Augh, beginnings, why must you torment me so?) But then I decided that I'd go ahead and just post snippets from both, just not as many from Destinies and Decisions as from Between Worlds. Also, some of my D&D snippets may be from my rough draft rather than from what I've edited. Anyway, on with the snippets!

Between Two Worlds
For the past two years, I’ve dreamed of this day. I’ve imagined in detail what will happen: how my neighborhood will look as I walk up the street once more, my joyful recognition as I pick out memories from my surroundings, my excitement as I near my house. I’ve pictured how my parents will greet me, their surprise and relief to see me back, how I’ll tell them everything I’ve done since I last walked out my door. I’ve laughed as I thought of my sister’s reaction, no less joyful than my parents’ but twice as surprised and outraged that I’d gone and had an adventure without her. I’ve thought many times of what it’ll be like to live again in my own home, sleep in my own bed, and return to my favorite activities and haunts.
Yet, despite all that, my dreams are wrong. The street I now walk up is not quite familiar; everything seems to have shrunk and shifted ever so slightly. My joy is cooled and tempered with sorrow, my excitement dulled with longing for something else I cannot have. And my home itself . . . I pause at the end of the driveway and look up at the house. Has it always been so small? So like the other houses around it?
Aedon waits for me around the other side of the church, where we can’t be seen from the door or the parking lot. As I approach, he gives me that easy grin I know so well. “Hello, Lady Kate. Funny that someone I’ve never met would tell me to meet her outside, isn’t it? Maybe she does know me after all.”
“And maybe she doesn’t like answering more of her sister’s awkward questions than is absolutely necessary.” I cross my arms. “What are you doing here?”
A familiar figure stands before me, tall and lithe, a second dagger ready in his left hand. I let out a moan of mixed relief and pain and manage a slight smile. “Botheration, Jarek,” I mutter, “how many times do I owe you my life now?”
“Seven and counting, shadow.” Jarek steps over the soldier’s body and kneels beside me. “You should be more careful.”
Aedon continues to hover over me once I’m settled in the chair. “What happened, Kate?”
“I was attacked.” I struggle to keep my eyes open, suddenly feeling very tired even though it’s not even nine in the morning. “What’s it look like?”
“You sound like me.” Jarek claims the other chair and raises an eyebrow at me. “Maybe that bump on the head did more damage than I thought.”
When we reach the path, we find that the soldiers’ bodies have been cleared away. A faint smell of burned flesh still hangs in the air, sending a stab of guilt into my soul. Two more people, dead because of me.
I know I’ll see them again in my dreams, watch once more as they die- one to my fire, one to Jarek’s knife. I’ll watch and I’ll see all the details I missed in the moment, and I’ll remember all too clearly that they likely bore me no ill will; they were simply doing following orders.
As if reading my thoughts, Aedon whispers soft words, “Don’t go down that path, Lady Kate. Don’t let the guilt eat you. What’s done is done; there’s nothing you can do to change that.”
Tears bead my eyes as we continue down the black asphalt trail. “They’re dead, Aedon. And it’s my fault.”
“I know.” He rubs my shoulder gently. “I know, but remember what Sir Camrick taught us. If you allow guilt to consume you, you’ll have nothing left.”
Destinies and Decisions
Gwen walked over to Rachelle, Skyla, and Ariana and fixed Rachelle with a firm stare. "Stay out of trouble, understand? I want you to still be in one piece when I see you again."
Rachelle made a face. "I already promised Hunter I'd be careful. Besides, I don't get into trouble; it pounces on me."
"Then stay out of trouble's way." For emphasis, Gwen let her stare linger a moment longer.
Bianca slid her rook two squares to the right. "Check."
Jared took the only option he had: moving his king a space forward and to the left. "You know, I'm starting to hate that word."
Bianca moved her queen three spaces to the left. "Then I apologize that I must say it again: check."
Sliding his king back a square, Jared scowled. "If you were really sorry, you wouldn't find so much reason to say it."
"But then I would eventually force you to say it instead, and I'm sure that would be worse." Bianca smiled sweetly as she moved her knight a space to the right and two spaces down. "Also, checkmate."
A few minutes passed before Gwen replied. Did you know you're the only person I've ever heard stammer while mindspeaking?
And just for fun, a little bit of what I've written this month in Monster in the Castle:
Hayden sighed. "Master Silver, we are not going to fake a crisis simply to convince Miss Pansy to ask for a reprieve from her promise. Nor," he added, anticipating Jason's next suggestion, "are we going to cause one."
Jason's expression could've passed for innocence had it not become an amused smirk partway through. "Cause a crisis? Now I know I'm rubbing off on you, highness. That's not a bad idea."
"And not much else besides more questions." Jason made for the door. "Why am I not surprised?"
"I expect it is because we are Leaguesmen, Master Silver." Hayden reached the door first and pulled it open. "Questions are the purpose for our existence; to find their answers, our calling."
Jason snorted. "Leave it to you, highness, to make a rhetorical question into a philosophical statement."
And that's it for the snippets. I hope you enjoyed! How's your writing going? Feel free to leave some of your favorite lines you've recently written in the comments; I'd love to read them!
Thanks for reading!
-Sarah (Leilani Sunblade)  

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The King's Scrolls Blog Tour

Hey'a, everyone! I'm super excited to be a part of the blog tour of The King's Scrolls, the second book in Jaye L. Knight's Ilyon Chronicles. I loved Resistance, the first in the series, and I'm sure that The King's Scrolls will be even better. (It has dragons! Dragons!) For this tour post, I'll be interviewing Jaye- but first, a little about the book and author.

About the Book

Following the harrowing events that brought them to Landale Forest, Jace and Kyrin have settled comfortably into their new lives and the mission of protecting those under the emperor’s persecution. The fast approach of winter brings with it the anticipation of a quiet few months ahead. That is until the arrival of four mysterious, dragon-riding cretes who seek aid in a mission of great importance—not only to their own people, but to all followers of Elôm.

Hidden in the vast mining valley north of Valcré, a faithful crete has spent years sharing his knowledge with the destitute miners and their families and is known to possess what may be Arcacia’s last surviving copies of the King’s Scrolls—the Word of Elôm. Joining the cretes, those in Landale must find the crete teacher and bring him to safety, but it is a race against time. Should Daican’s men find him first, execution and the destruction of the Scrolls is certain.

When disaster strikes, all seems lost. Could Elôm have a plan even in the enemy’s triumph? 

Available on Amazon!

Buy Now

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About the Author

Jaye L. Knight is a homeschool graduated indie author with a passion for writing Christian fantasy and clean new adult fiction. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.

You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Etsy. 

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Can you tell us a little bit about yourself, like your hobbies, how you got into writing, your favorite books (besides your own), or just anything else you’d like to share?

Jaye: I’m a single country girl in my mid-twenties and hail from the Northwoods of Wisconsin, which is often called the Frozen Tundra this time of year. Ick. Yeah, winter and I don’t have a fond relationship. But I do love cheese and the Green Bay Packers! I’m a full-time writer and make a bit of jewelry and sell on Etsy on the side. That takes up much of my time, but I do like to read, go hiking, and sew historical clothing and costumes. I started writing when I was eight and then decided I actually wanted to be an author when I was about thirteen, thanks to reading The Lord of the Rings. The trilogy is my all-time favorite as far as books go. Movies too. I also absolutely love the Books of the Infinite series by R.J. Larson. And Chasing the Lion by Nancy Kimball. Those are my top three favorite picks. I’m currently reading through The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson and have totally fallen in love with Kaladin, the main character, so that has already made my favorite books list. Besides writing, I really love history, hence my historical clothing I make. I love to take part in historical reenactments. I also love music. I’m a huge fan of Skillet, Building 429, Ashes Remain, Jeremy Camp, and Aaron Shust. Oh yeah, and I collect old oil lamps. I’m a bit obsessed with them. :) 
What was your favorite part of writing The King’s Scrolls? What was the hardest part?

Jaye: In this book, I got to involve Kyrin’s older brothers, Marcus and Liam, a lot more. They were introduced in Resistance, but didn’t really have a part in it. That all changes in The King’s Scrolls. I LOVE sibling interaction. So I think that was my favorite part of this book. The hardest part was definitely some of the emotional scenes. This book is sadder than Resistance. It has a purpose, but it was still hard to write at times. 

How much do you plan out your novels? Have your characters or plot ever surprised you? If they have, can you tell us about it? 

Jaye: I’m definitely not an outliner, so I don’t do any really in-depth planning before I begin writing. I do take a ton of notes though, and through them I usually get a pretty good idea of all the major plot points I want to hit. Then I just fill in the rest as I go. I get surprised by my characters and plots all the time. Do you have any idea how many of them have gone and fallen in love with each other without my say so? Quite a few of them. I can’t complain though. I love it when my characters have minds of their own. One of those particular characters is one introduced in the book named Talas. I didn’t really know anything about him, but he completely took over the moment he stepped into the scene, and I adore him for it. 

Ooh, I'm excited to find out about him! If you could meet one of your characters and spend a day with him or her in the world of Ilyon, who would you choose and where would you go?

Jaye: Ah! This is always so hard to answer. I think I’d have to go with Jace, since he’s my favoritest (typo intended) of all the characters I’ve ever written. I’d love to go out hiking with him and learn some of the knowledge he has for the forest. However, aside from Jace, my obvious choice, I’d probably choose either Kaden or Talas. Kaden reminds of my brothers in ways, so it would be fun to hang out with him. And Talas, well, he’s Talas! He’s so friendly and fun. I couldn’t not want to just hang out with him. Plus he has an awesome dragon so we could go flying! :D And I’d love for him to take me to see the crete cities in Dorland since they’re built in the trees and I’ve always dreamed of living in a treehouse.   

Wow, that sounds really awesome! When reading Resistance, I noticed a few interesting parallels to the book of Daniel. Were these intentional? Are there similar parallels in The King’s Scrolls? 

Jaye: It was not intentional, but definitely not a surprise since I was studying Daniel around the time I was writing Resistance. I would say there are Biblical parallels throughout Ilyon Chronicles. In The King’s Scrolls, I have a character named Timothy who was heavily inspired by Timothy in the Bible, which was intentional. I’ve had a fascinating with Timothy for quite a while, so it was fun to weave that into the story.

Thanks for the interview, Jaye! I'm definitely more excited than ever to read The King's Scrolls, and I'm sure my readers are too!

Some other exciting news: for the length of the tour, Jaye is running a giveaway for an Epic Winter prize pack. Including books, music, tea, and more, this prize sounds pretty awesome. Also, for those who still need to read the first book in the Ilyon Chronicles series, the Kindle version of Resistance is on sale for 99 cents!


 Share in the excitement of the release and enter to win a themed Epic Winter giveaway! Prize pack includes an autographed copy of The King’s Scrolls, a CD by Future World Music (some of Jaye’s favorite writing music), a dragon bookmark, a stone hawk pendant (much like the ones mentioned in the book), and a few packages of Twining’s Winter Spice tea to sip while you read! (Giveaway is open to US residents only. Cannot be shipped internationally.)

Resistance Kindle Sale
Haven’t begun the adventure into Ilyon? From February 17th - 23rd, get Resistance , the award-winning first book of Ilyon Chronicles for your Kindle on sale for only 99 cents! Check it out on Amazon!

Finally, don't forget to check out the other blog tour stops! Today's other stops will include To Be A PersonLeah’s Bookshelf, The Destiny of OneReflection, One Servant's Heart, and Venturing to Other Worlds. For the full list, check the blog tour page at Jaye's site.

Thanks for stopping by to celebrate the release of The King's Scrolls with me! Happy reading!
-Sarah (Leilani Sunblade)