Monday, October 19, 2009

Back to the new book...

Well, after a three month hiatus due to work and marketing commitments I've finally been back to visit the new book and after a couple of weeks of the re-entry wobblies it's now going well. For those of you who don't know its current working title is 'City of Thieves' and it's another YA crossover fantasy novel. Gone are some of the earlier notions and plot lines and it's feeling cleaner and with a lot more of a direction. The characters are limbering up as I write this so I better get back to it pronto.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Blog virgin

Well, I guess there's a first time for everything and in terms of blogging this is it as far as I'm concerned. Let's hope it's not the last. With the release date of The Stone Crown looming over in the UK and with the author marooned over here in good old Terra Australis it seems like a good way to communicate with readers of the book wherever they may reside.

Anyway, in case you've not yet read The Stone Crown let me tell you a little about how it came about. I'd wanted to write something for young adults for some time and I was looking for an entry point into the Arthurian story, which is very old, much older than most people think and certainly has very little to do with round tables, courtly love and well-polished armour. I wanted to set it in a Dark Ages landscape rather than the retellings that use the 11th and 12th C Romance stories as their basis. I grew up with stories of Guinevere, Lancelot, The Lady of the Lake, and Sir Kay, all of which I loved, but which never quite rang true. I knew that the Dark Ages Arthur was associated with Wales, Cornwall and Scotland - there are over six hundred sites associated with King Arthur in the British Isles alone, let alone Europe - and I started reading around the subject. I stumbled across a book by Alistair Moffat called Arthur and the Lost Kingdoms and another, Arthur the Dragon King by Howard Reid, both of which placed the legendary hero in the Borders of Scotland around the end of the 5th and the beginning of the 6th century AD. Welsh, an old form of it, was spoken throughout Britain and, as I have some Welsh blood and I find the rugged landscapes of Wales and Scotland inspiring, I had found the setting for my novel. Once I had the mental landscape, I simply had to find the characters to populate it. The Stone Crown is written, in part at least, out of my love of landscape and nature but also an abiding interest in good young adult fiction.

I hope that you enjoy it.

For those of you who've read it please join me here to discuss what you liked and didn't like about the novel.