Having made the decision to self-publish Ice Warriors, I’ve created a Facebook page through which to share news/updates/promotions/etc. Check it out and check back often for updates!
Those of you following my blog for a while will be aware of the fact I’ve been working on the first book in a planned series… a novel I hope to get published.
At its core, I think Ice Warriors is a save-the-world story. When I discussed it with a friend, we talked about how it was a story that started with failure. The main characters had tried to save the world… but it went wrong. Something happened, something that had a long-lasting effect for the next decade as seven went on their way and assumed it was all over.
I envision book one as being almost a setup… an introduction to the characters and the world. It’s set on Earth (Midgard in Norse mythology) and follows the journey of nine people with extraordinary powers.
There’s a lot more to the book than that. While it’s primarily a fantasy/mythology-based series, it does touch on a few other genres as well.
I have one last read-through to do, to make sure there are no glaring errors or inconsistencies, and then I plan to start submitting it to publishers. However, I do know how difficult it can be to find errors in your own work, so I have a question:
Would anyone like to provide me with some early feedback (constructive criticism is helpful – I want to know what does and doesn’t work)? If you provide me with a contact e-mail, I can send you a copy of the book. (I can probably convert it to PDF… otherwise, it’ll be in .rtf or .doc format).
If you’re willing to help out, that’s awesome! Otherwise, I’ll just keep updating you all through here… but if anyone does help me out, I’ll make sure you get a mention in the acknowledgements.
So, yay! Or maybe not. It’s halfway through November and I’m a little over halfway through the required 25,000 words (27,675, to be exact). Not quite at my personal target, but I’m getting there. Or so I keep telling myself.
As promised, here are two new front covers. I’ve included the two because they’re a bit smaller in size… but still pretty cool.
They’re good, right? Of course, while I’ve been writing the novel, I’ve realised it’s more like a dystopian setting. And the people don’t live on the ground. Apparently, a couple of hundred years ago, they built these massive towers and the houses are on top of the towers. In the sky. So… yeah. Literal sky people. And they have an airbus (apparently a cross between a bus and a plane) that gets them from place to place.
What else have I learned about my society through what I’ve written so far? Well, the women far outnumber the men. The Council control whose pairings are approved. And birth mothers don’t take care of their children. Instead, older members of the community (mainly women, called Soul-Mothers) take on and raise the children.
This world was a lot less complicated when it was in my head.
So. Ice Warriors. Yes. I’m still working on it. Unfortunately, my first draft wasn’t very good, so I had to rewrite pretty much all of it. I’m finally on part three… and I have a big notebook, all sparkly on the front, where I’ve been working on the… technically second draft of the novel. And typing it up is meant to be the third draft. But I’m so far behind, I haven’t even finished typing up the first part. And I need some good riddles. The ones I’ve found don’t work.
Inevitably, I’ve found that when I’m sitting there, notebook and pen in hand, I get asked what the story I’m writing is about. And this has happened continually. The problem? Brevity is the soul of wit. But Ice Warriors doesn’t fit neatly into one sentence. Or even two. The last time someone asked me? This is what I came up with:
“It’s a mix between Norse mythology and fantasy.”
Now… that doesn’t tell anyone anything about the story. But if I tried to explain all of the details, I guarantee I’d get a whole load of blank looks. So here are the possible plot points I could pick out:
- Nine former friends come together to save the nine realms.
- Nine former friends are seeking out keys.
- One young woman, who’s trapped in an ice palace filled with corruption, needs to find a way out.
- People are being killed. The deaths mirror murders that happened two decades ago.
- All of the evil in the world is trapped, but something wants to free it.
- Norse gods and humans collide to save the worlds.
All of those are true. But only using one of those doesn’t capture the pure complication that writing Ice Warriors has turned out to be.
In Norse mythology, Fenrir is a giant wolf who was tricked into a contest of strength with a simple ribbon he couldn’t break and that ended up trapping him.
In the world of Ice Warriors, Fenrir is chained up in a mountain on the hidden, apparently deserted island of Atlantis. Like his father, he has the ability to shape-shift, but only into a human form.
Fenrir is supposed to play a fairly big role in Ragnarok, the Norse end of the world. While many myths portray him as evil, there are just as many that portray him as having a really rough deal of it. In Ice Warriors, I feel (personally) that Fenrir is going to be quite an intriguing character to write. I’ll have to let other people judge whether or not they think he’s as intriguing to read about.
I quite like this cover, though I really do like all the covers people created for me, to be honest. This one was actually provided with a full cover, too, including the spine for the book.
There’s a particular scene in the Prologue of book one that I think this cover fits really well with. I like the colours on here and I also really like the use of the keys.
Narfi is one of Loki’s sons and twin brother to Vali. In Norse mythology, Vali is turned into a wolf and forced to attack and kill his brother, after which Loki is bound under a serpent with his entrails. (I know. Pretty disturbing, right?)
In Ice Warriors, Narfi is trapped as a spirit in the ice palace, along with his chained father and his mother. Mainly skilled as a warrior, Narfi also has some magic ability due to his father being a powerful mage.
Personality-wise, Narfi is honourable and noble. He does have a mischievous streak, but there’s nothing cruel in it. He was originally meant to be a main character in book one, but his part has fallen back a bit… though he still has an important role to play.
You can probably tell, due to the different styles, but I was fortunate to get three separate artists who were able to show different portrayals of Narfi. Personally, I think they’re all especially cool and each one demonstrates a particular aspect to his character. In mythology and in the series, he’s probably quite a tragic character.
Although not actually an ice warrior, Loki (the Norse god of mischief) is still a central part to the series… and his children are quite important, too, but you’ll meet some of them a bit later on.
Loki’s first appearance is when he’s chained up in the ice palace… at least in the version I’m currently working on. The person who drew the above picture was also inspired to draw a second one based on the profile I provided for Loki:
Pretty cool, huh? Loki and Thor weren’t raised as brothers in the Ice Warriors universe, but they were blood brothers and fought side by side on more than one occasion.
Loki is supposed to play a pivotal role in Ragnarok (the Norse end of the world), but to do that, he has to be freed from his bonds.
So… Ariadne and Shaia are twins. Part of the original seven Ice Warriors, they actually live in the UK. Shaia’s just on the outskirts of London, but I don’t think Ariadne has somewhere in particular she lives.
Shaia has brittle bone disease, which means that, even as an adult, people are protective of her, to the point where it can be somewhat stifling. She works as a co-editor at a magazine and seems fairly well-adjusted. Her power, which is the ability to sense if someone’s telling the truth (or believes that what they say is the truth), is quite helpful to her in the job she does.
Ariadne is… very different. She’s a character who’s completely out of my comfort zone, but because of that, I’ve found her to be the most interesting.
Ariadne is actually a prostitute and the first scene I wrote with her in, she came out with some comments that shocked even me. I realised she was an empath early on and can manipulate the emotions of others to perform ‘tricks’.
Unfortunately, having no way of protecting herself from the often negative emotions battering her, Ariadne spends most of her time in a haze, due to drugs, alcohol, or a combination of both.