Meet Kyra Dune: Web of Light

Web of Light

From time to time I spotlight a fellow indie author.  Why?  Have I read the book and endorse it?  No, spotlighting an indie author is the most cost effective way indie authors have to advertise their stories.  If you follow me at all you will know I am a good spirited person who believes that a simple act of kindness is what will make for a better world.  Besides, Kyra writes about dragons and that can’t be bad.  If you are looking for something new and independent, give her works a try.  Who knows, you may find a new favorite author, and if you do, please pay forward the kind act with a rating or a review.

NEW RELEASE: Web of Light by Kyra Dune
Genre: YA Fantasy
Purchase Link
Book Trailer

When Queen Eanndra calls the leaders of the Territories and their heirs to Star Mountain for a Conclave, none of them expect to have their lives changed forever by the repercussions of a war that ended three hundred years ago.

With the return of the Web of Light, chaos and destruction must surely follow.

Sides will be chosen.
Friendships won and lost.

For within every heart lies the dark seed of betrayal.

Excerpt:

His mother had always warned him to beware of the gods. They were a capricious lot, she had said, with little care for the frailty of mortal life. And if one was calling Seva into the temple, then her life was at risk.
Valdor didn’t hesitate, didn’t take even a moment to think on what might happen, he simply ran. What he hit was not a solid wall, but a sort of thickness. For him, passing the statue was like walking through water with weighted feet. The air pressed against him, trapping the breath in his lungs. And it was cold. So cold what little breath he could manage frosted before his eyes.
He broke free to the other side as Seva entered the temple. After glancing back once at the other heirs, Valdor sprinted across the open space and up the steps to the door. There, he paused. Before him was a wide chamber, almost every inch of which was covered with a mosaic depicting a bloody battle between figures unlike any creatures he had ever seen. It hurt his mind to gaze too long upon any one of them.

Instead, he focused his attention on Seva, who was standing in the only clear spot in the chamber. A twisted rope painted on the floor made a circle around this spot and above it a Gari-Za woman in flowing gray robes sat on a throne of flames. A benevolent smile touched the woman’s lips, but her eyes were cold black orbs.

Seva’s head was tilted back as if she were looking up at the woman, but her eyes were closed. Valdor moved cautiously forward, wincing as his footsteps echoed in the silence. His lips parted and he started to speak her name, but the word wouldn’t come. The feeling in this place was something so foreign to his senses he couldn’t name it. It crawled across his skin and made his ears buzz.

He came to a stop when he reached the rope circle. Fear was an acid taste at the back of his throat. Much as he wanted to reach out for Seva, there was a deep feeling of alarm inside him that would not allow his feet to move forward.
If things had gone on much longer, he might have worked up the nerve to do it, because he was not really as much of a coward as his father had made him believe he was. But he didn’t have to.

Seva’s entire body bucked, her back arching and her neck snapping back. She drew in a gasping breath, then collapsed. Valdor caught her before she hit the floor as her upper body crossed the line to his side. She shivered as if cold, then grew still. Valdor pulled her the rest of the way out of the circle, then lifted her up into his arms. She was light, but he was unused to such labor and staggered under her weight. Still, he managed to carry her out of the temple.
Once they were down the steps and crossing the open space, Seva stirred and her eyelids fluttered open. Valdor gazed down into her bright blue eyes and was lost. Any uncertainty about his feelings toward her evaporated in that moment.

“If I put you down, can you walk?” he asked.

“I…I think so. Yes.” She looked over his shoulder toward the temple. “What happened in there?”

“Don’t you know?” He carefully put her back on her feet

Her eyes met his again as she shook her head. “I remember looking up at the statue and hearing Iza talk about the chosen one. Then everything is a blank. Except…” She laid a steadying hand against his arm. “I don’t know. I feel…something, but it’s…” She sighed. “I’m so tired all of a sudden.”

“Come on.” He slid his arm around her waist. “Let’s get you back to the carriage.”

Author Bio:

Author Pic

Kyra Dune was born in Oklahoma, but spent most of her life travelling with her family. She is the author of eleven fantasy novels, including: Shadow of the Dragon, Elfblood, and Firebrand. As a child, her favorite stories were those that told of ordinary children being whisked away to magical lands. She has yet to find her own secret wardrobe or rabbit hole, but she hasn’t given up the search. You never know what might be waiting over the next rainbow.

Connect With Kyra:

Facebook

Twitter

Blog

Website

Goodreads

Pinterest

Watch My Book Trailers: YouTube
Buy My Books: Amazon

Context & Construct

Banner4thStory

I visited with my sister this weekend and we spoke about my trilogy.  She has a masters degree in creative writing.  She has tried to read my trilogy but states all the other authors and editors do not write the way I write.  That you must hook people quickly into your story.  I understand completely her viewpoint, this is what the majority opinion is.  But I have to ask a simple question.  How creative is this? If we all march to beat of the same drums, aren’t we just robots catering to the machine?  Do you ever feel like you are reading the same story over and over again, with just a few new character names and locales?  Don’t you know what sex is by now?  How many ways can you spin eroticism and vampires?  I’m not knocking these authors or readers, but don’t you want a change of pace?

I am a CPA.  I am analytical, linear and logical.  I have done computer programming which must be controlled by logic with “”If this, then this, else this” type construct.  I literally despise stories without context and logical construction.  I have heard people say,

“I want a quick and fun read.  I do not wish to think.”

If this is true then my stories will not appeal to you.  If you like books like the The Shack or the Life of Pi, then you are seeking a book with a deeper meaning of life and spirituality.  Yes, it has to be entertaining, but don’t you want the ground work established first?  Here is how I constructed my trilogy based on my love for J.R.R. Tolkien’s wonderful and mesmerizing world of Arda and Middle Earth.

Book 1 – Rise of the Fallen, Chapters 1-9 are the history of the universe and Allivar.  Think of the Silmarillion in a compressed form.  A mythology must have an origin narrative. There must be a narrative on the source of evil and the history to create the myths of immortals and heroic mortals. These chapters establish the construction of all that follows and provides subtle clues to the surprising ending of the story.  If you rush through this, you will definitely miss the point of the story.  Sorry, I didn’t spend ten years just to have battle scenes, sex and a pointless battle over a throne.  My story is much deeper than this.

Chapters 10-16 begins the story of the hero in the dawning of the seventh age of Allivar.   Like the Fellowship of the Ring there is the bonding of characters of various races on a journey the Chosen One was selected for, which is to determine if mortals are worthy of life.  If you wish, just jump to Chapter 10 and begin there.  Then maybe one day you will want to go back and have context of the origin of my mythology.

Now this book cannot be more exciting than book two, nor can book two be more exciting than book three.  There must be a crescendo of action and emotions.

Book 2 Bound to Forbidden Lands ratchets the excitement after all the ground work was established in book one.  The Two Towers gave readers the thought that all would be lost, but that the faith in men would rise to counter the acts of evil.   We were left begging for the conclusion with the Return of the King.

Book two introduces romance and the continued rise of evil, an epic coliseum battle, fighting with dark demons and a journey through lands, guarded by dragons and watchers, the hero has been told to avoid.  But he has no other option.  The ending of the story must compel you to read the third story, so it has a cliff hanger unlike any you will ever read. He lives!

Book 3 – Last Stand of the Living is the culmination of the entire mythology with the greatest mythological battle ever to be written, where the fate of the universe will be decided, and where mortal and immortal alike come to battle. Here you will finally understand all that was written in the first nine chapters of book one.  I recall the Return of The King’s influence on the ratcheting of the battle scenes and emotions with the arrival of the Rohirrim and the eventual defeat of Sauron.  Readers who have taken the challenge to read my trilogy are utterly exhausted emotionally in this third story.  For the creator of the universe makes his stand with the seven mortal races.

I can guarantee you this much; you will laugh, you will cry, and you will cheer.  You may even contemplate life as we know it, for it is allegorical to our times.

But I am not done with you yet.  Forthcoming are the Chronicles of Allivar, sixteen stories, equally as intriguing as the trilogy. It introduces a parallel journey of the Armies of Light and the heroes of the six ages.  Here the compressed history is expanded, laying a blueprint for the construct of an equally exciting series.

You see, I have constructed a mythology using a linear approach from origin to the end of time, with proper context so that you don’t end the series wondering what happened to certain characters who dropped out.

You have a choice. Follow the cookie-cutter formulaic stories and construct that the masters and literary gods tell us that must exist, or take a chance on something new, independent, original, and frankly – creative.

My final point is this.  Many people take life way too seriously.  They seek affirmation from others of their worthiness in this lifetime.  They wish to dominate life by determining who is allowed to participate in the private clubs of industry and intellectual institutions.  They control who will be successful and who will not, through regulation, etc.  The publishing industry loves to bully, yes I wrote bully, to tell you another person’s attempt at writing is garbage because they weren’t involved in the editing, distribution and profit-sharing aspects of your creativity.  They belittle every person or story that reaches success independently.  I do not like erotica, but I applaud E.L. James for dispensing, once and for all, that only the publishing Gods know what stories will interest you.

Self-publishing has provided an opportunity for those of us who love to tell stories, even with grammatical errors, to remain independent and reap the potential success of our own risk. This was once referred to as entrepreneurship, not vanity publishing.  Vanity should be described as the envy of others who have not found a way to piggy-back on your imagination.

In the end, it is you the reader who independently defines what stories are good or not.  I am going to keep writing because one day I can tell them to my grandchildren.  Like Tolkien, these are the stories I want to read, but are not being produced by the publishing Gods.  I hope one day you will find my stories appealing enough to tell to your children and others.

To my sister, I have to say this, do not waste another second of your life looking for the accolades and affirmation of others.  Their aim is profit-motivated and honestly, quite vain.  The only one responsible for your happiness is you.  Life is risk and by not taking any risk, for the fear of the opinion of others, including your own family, is not living.  Stephen King said it best in his story, The Shawshank Redemption:

“Get busy living or get busy dying.”

Sketching Your Demon

Charamorg2

Haggarfuse – A Charamorg

As an author and self-publisher, I do it all, including all technology duties.  Recently, one of my reader’s suggested I provide images of my creations.  This would help them visualize the characters and demons.  I truly love to leave such issues to the imagination of the reader, but if a simple sketch can help excite these readers and future readers, then I will take the time.

Let me say that my day job is being an accountant.  Going back as far as I can remember, I have had an active imagination.  I am possibly ADD. Back in my youth, I’d draw monsters on paper and cut them out to play with.  We didn’t have video games – 3,000 TV channels, or other devices of modern technology we now take for granted or feel entitled to.  We read.  We went to see the movies when we could save enough money for the ticket, a soft drink, and one large salty pickle.  Our visual effects of the day now seem lame, but back then they sparked the imagination with a fury. I still vividly recall the monsters of my youth: The Creature of the Black Lagoon, Valley of the Gwangi, Godzilla, King Kong, Frankenstein, Dracula, Alien and most of all – The Exorcist. Then I’d daydream on those nights that sleep evaded me.  I created my own worlds and heroes, and the demons and monsters those heroes fought.  I never wanted to be an accountant, I actually wanted to be an architectural engineer, designing homes and structures.  I wanted to be a creator with this imagination. But with all things, reality crashes in and one must find a method of support.  Accounting has been good for me in this respect.

Above is a rough sketch of one of my creations, demented as it might be.  What you are seeing is Haggarfuse, a Charamorg, an ethereal steward of the damned.  One might consider him to be the devil, the one who rebelled against his maker, who brought havoc upon worlds, an immortal envious of the creator’s perceived preference to mortals .  Here in his damned state he is meant to be fearful so that all the living would easily recognize evil by sight.

It has been thirty years since I took sketching seriously.  This was the result of a couple of hours of effort.  Time, at the age of 54, is very precious to me.  I’ve worked more hours in the last 33 years than I can recall, too many nights and weekends lost,  devoted to complying with the laws of the land dictated by those in power.  I don’t know how many years I have left in this physical realm, but with what I have left, I want to return to that wonderment of my youth.  I want to create.  Not only a epic story of mythological proportion, but to bring the visions of my mind before those that still find wonderment in this world and beyond.

If you are like me in this regards, I invite you to join me on this journey.

“Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.”

Edgar Allan Poe

The Madness of Photoshop

As an independent author and publisher, I have to wear many hats or kilts.  When I made the decision to control my creative universe, I knew I’d have to learn many new technologies for the task.  I invested in Adobe Creative Suite – Master Edition CS5.  Each day I try to learn something new.  Today’s task was to learn the art of combing text and multiple images using Photoshop.  Of course my creation had to be, well, deviously creative and be usable in later blog posts.

Here is the output of that creativity lesson:

HamishHoliday

With Photoshop I will need to learn how to covert images for book covers, marketing materials, book trailers, website, on and on.  Here is what else I use in the Adobe Creative Suite:

InDesign:  eBook formatting and creation.

Dreamweaver: Website creation and maintenance.

AfterEffects: Create Book Trailers.

Adobe Media Encoder:  Convert the raw book trailer to various media formats.

Why go to all this effort?  I have an unquenchable thirst for knowledge and love to learn new and creative tools.  As an author, I wield power over worlds, but I am blown away by artists who can take the author’s vision and create stunning visualizations.  While I was in high school I was on the architectural design club.  I also drew landscapes free hand.  I hope within 2013 that I can devote enough time to sketch the characters, demons, monsters and the landscape of the world of Allivar.  To do this means I will need to learn the art of human and animal form and then learn new skills in the art of digital manipulation.

I am approaching the age of 54, where most people are content with their level of knowledge and fascination.  Many have resolved that life is about spending time at the lake house and golf course, which is fine.  It is my hope to never stopped having a fascination with how things work.  Hopefully along with physical exercise, I will be able to keep pushing all the gifts that life brings.  I prefer not to waste a single moment.

Of Mythology

My trilogy “The Chosen One of Allivar” is difficult to describe in a 30 second elevator speech as many have suggested. So, after long and hard thought, the best way I can describe it is to use a quote from one of my research aids. “Mythology” the visual reference guide by Philip Wilkinson and Neil Philip, which is an excellent read by the way. The header on page 14 pretty much sums it up.

“Myths are sacred stories. They tell of the creation of the world; the emergence of gods and the first men and women; the adventures of heroes and the audacity of tricksters; the nature of the heavens and the Underworld; and what will happen when time comes to an end. Every human culture has its own myths that are passed on from one generation to the next.”

And there you have it. The trilogy is a mythology and nothing more. It is not a stealth Christian story, although Christians, Jews and Muslims may find many similarities to their faith. I am not espousing a new religion, just a story. I recall how JRR Tolkien had presented “The Silmarillion” to his publisher and how they rejected it. “The Silmarillion” is the creation story of Tolkien’s universe and laid the history for the complete comprehension of “The Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit”. In my opinion, to not read his entire works is to miss out on a great mythology. From this knowledge of Tolkien’s world, the great Greek and Roman myths, the canonized and non-canonized stories of the Bible, I began to craft my very own mythology.

The first nine chapters of book one, “Rise of the Fallen”, deals with the development of my universe and sets the stage for the 18 books to follow. The trilogy can be read alone because it has a definite beginning and ending that completes a full circle. The “chronicles” are sixteen stories that will expand upon the mythology and will lead right back into full comprehension of the mythology, but just from a different perspective. I promise those that have read the complete trilogy, they will not be disappointed.

For those who immediately drop the first book before completing the trilogy, all I can say is keep an open mind and continue to its conclusion. For those that do not believe in the Torah, Bible or Koran, read my stories simply as literature. Study them for the great stories and philosophy. I, for one, believe in free will, so exercise your free will to gain as much knowledge as possible. I can promise you this, if you make it to the final battle between good and evil in book three, “Last Stand of the Living” you will be on visual and emotional overload.

To learn more, start your journey here on my website

AllivarText

BurlapMap

AllivarTrilogy

Rise of the Fallen (Published)

Bound to Forbidden Lands (Published)

Last Stand of the Living (Published)

AllivarChroniclesRiseofEvil

The Fall of Helloria (First Edit Phase Feb 2013)

The Fall of Europia (Premise Phase)

The Fall of Jeronia (Premise Phase)

The Fall of Isoria (Premise Phase)

The Fall of Glutonia (Premise Phase)

The Fall of Floria (Premise Phase)

The Fall of Denmaria (Premise Phase)

The Fall of Clempatria (Premise Phase)

The Fall of Borealia (Premise Phase)

AllivarChroniclesResistance

The Age of the Warrior (Premise Phase)

The Age of the Barbarian (Premise Phase)

The Age of the Slayer (Premise Phase)

The Age of the Bloody (Premise Phase)

The Age of the Damned (Premise Phase)

The Age of the Conqueror (Premise Phase)

The Age of Light (Premise Phase)