Archive for the ‘christian fantasy’ Tag

Looking Back and Going Forward….   2 comments

Greetings, all! Been awhile since I posted something that wasn’t a review of a book or movie, so time to change that. And I want to start with giving an update on the final book to The Heart of Light Trilogy, and an apology on the lengthy delay in releasing it. It’s hard to believe that it’s been 2 years since Crown of Ravens was published. In that time, I’ve furthered my career in graphic designing, and just this year started taking courses so I can move into web development and design. I never forgot about the series and writing in general, but it’s one of those things that starts to get put in the back seat when you’re dealing with life and trying to support yourself. It gets harder and harder to make time when so much is needed for the more pressing issues, and every day you’re racing to catch up and cram as much as you can into that short space so you don’t fall behind. And with the audience for my books not being large, it was easier to put off the third book for “later”.

I’ll be honest, I never did much with marketing my books. I take full blame on that one. 😛 When I first published the series, I had to make the art myself, and while I was confident in the story itself (my mom and I did double-time on the editing) I wasn’t as confident in the cover art. If there’s one thing I pride myself in, it’s knowing a good cover. And while I will never knock my old work (it was pretty advanced for what I knew back then) I am brutally honest. It had some serious flaws, and trying to market a book with a cover you know is not put together very well is scary.

Last year was when my skills with making graphic art got to a point that I knew I could finally, FINALLY, give these stories the spectacular artwork I had always coveted in other books, and that they deserved.

I was already in a competition where the contestants needed to choose one of their older works and redo them. I looked through some of my older artworks, and the one for Crown of Ravens caught my eye. Right there, I decided to go for it. And behold, what I got was the art I had always dreamed of seeing on one of my books. I was even able to make the crown itself, a feat all on its own that I was unable to do before. (And yes, I was kicking myself for writing it as black. Gold sure would have easier. 😛 )

So Crown of Ravens was taken care of. It had a gorgeous cover, but now we come to The Dark Wolf. That book will always be my baby because it was my first, and from the start, I was never happy with the cover it got. Don’t get me wrong, I take pride in what I was able to make back then. I had ZERO experience making that stuff, and at the time, I had only a couple tutorials on Youtube to get me going. So it was big thing for me to even make a cover on my own. But again, I knew it had flaws, and it wasn’t the best work to represent the story. The first cover for Crown of Ravens had its own problems, but even that looked visually more appealing. As the years went by and I continued learning graphic art and design, The Dark Wolf went through 4 different cover variations as my skills gradually increased (I feel so sorry for putting it through that 😦 ). Last year was when the cover switching finally ended with the creation of the fifth and final work with a brand new piece of art.

Before

After

 

Before

After

I got both covers prepped and put together, then uploaded them to Amazon. Honestly, I did get a little thrill when the covers appeared on Amazon. 🙂 It was the art I had always dreamed of having for a story of mine. And at last, I finally had it. I did try to market it, but again I got sidetracked, and that was put on the back shelf. My workload was growing, and when I decided to take the leap into web development, that just added to my already full plate.

It was actually one of my friends who recently read my books that gave me the shot of encouragement and motivation I needed. And I realized I had to go back. I needed to finish what I started, not just for the dear readers out there, but also for myself and for the story that got me started on this journey through life. It was that first book, The Dark Wolf, that led me here. Now, I need to give it and the readers out there the ending they deserve.

RReddVar's Profile Picture

Now you’re probably asking, “The update, man! Where are things with that third book (you dang slow author you)!”
Okay, enough suspense here. 😛 Currently, I’m still on the first draft but have managed to reach the halfway point on it. And I have already plotted out the remaining chapters, so no time will be wasted with wondering where the story should go. While a 2017 release is not likely at this point, 2018 is. I can’t give an exact date, but I’m looking at publishing the third book in either summer or fall of next year, depending on my schedule. Regardless, I want to let all of you know that the third book will be published, and the series resolved. And once again, I apologize for the LONG delay. The last chapter of The Heart of Light Trilogy is coming, folks. May have taken awhile, but it is coming, so hang in there.

Next post, I’ll be sharing some exciting news about what to expect for the third book. And I promise, I won’t do my usual and post a month later. 😉

(Disclaimer: Image and art used is my work and copyrighted)
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Epic Cover Reveal!   4 comments

And what do you know, another post without having to wait three or four months for it. Wonder if I’ll be able to do it again. 😉
But in the meantime, I wanted to share with all of you the remade covers for The Dark Wolf and Crown of Ravens. 😀
It’s amazing how far I’ve come as an artist, and I really do thank God for granting me the skill to do this stuff without having to hire someone for the job. Now The Heart of Light Trilogy is finally getting the covers it deserves. 🙂

Art below is mine and copyrighted. Full list of stock credits can be found here at my DeviantArt page: rreddvar.deviantart.com

Any who wish to buy the books, feel free to check them out on Amazon. 😉 http://myBook.to/TDW

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crown-of-ravens-2-1

Ready to Rock once more   Leave a comment

I meant to get this up sooner, but again, I didn’t have the time until now.
As those of you who have been following my blog know, I was forced to take down the e-book of my book, The Dark Wolf, due to multiple formatting errors. After a few days of tinkering with it, I got it back up and running, this time error free. I will admit, this whole thing has been a huge learning process and MORE than a good bit of work. But the pain in my eyeballs from staring at the screen too long, and the general frustration when I saw another snag that needed to be corrected was worth it to finally have this DONE. Now, due to the formatting I used, when you go to Amazon and press the ‘Click to View Inside’ it won’t show any page breaks. This is not due to any formatting errors on my part. I recently learned that this feature Amazon has carries a few bugs, so unless you have really complex formatting, the page breaks won’t show. Seeing as how I’m not into making things harder than they need to, I opted to go with the simpler formatting that still delivers great results.
Those page breaks are there and will show with the e-book itself when you purchase it or download the free sample Amazon offers, so don’t worry. I checked with several authors to be sure of this, and each one verified it. So anyway, here’s the link, (again) and when you buy the book, please consider leaving a review on Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HSTAVIM

And on a sidenote, for my next post, I will leave a few helpful tips on how to format your own e-book. God knows, after what I went through, I want to make sure you guys have enough info so you can avoid the pitfalls.

2013 Christian Fantasy List   Leave a comment

I’m happen to be an avid fan of Christian fantasy, so I always have an eye out for any new reads that appear on the horizon. I discovered some interesting series coming out for this year which I intend to get when I’m able to.

Here is a list of the series I have discovered so far. A couple are actually dystopian fiction, but I decided to just lump them in with the rest.

 

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This is the first of three books in the Staff and Sword series. Looks okay, but I’m not a big fan of stories set in a medieval world. Still, the main protagonist is about a man going from drunkard to hero which looks to be an interesting read, so I might go ahead and buy it once I get a little more info.

 

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I have to admit that when I saw this one, I wasn’t too impressed. Seriously, how many King Arthur and Merlin stories do we need? The plot doesn’t look too bad and the cover art is gorgeous, but I can’t muster any enthusiasm for another rehash of Arthur and Merlin.

 

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Okay, for those of you who’ve read the Binding of the Blade series and loved it like me, I believe this series won’t disappoint. Almost five years after the BotB series, L.B. Graham brings out the Wandering series which looks just as good if not better than the BotB. As soon as I’m able to, I will definitely be buying this book.

 

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This is a dystopian fiction series by Jill Williamson. I’m not a fan of dystopian fiction, but the plot was interesting enough to raise my interest that I might actually look into buying the book.

 

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Wow. Now is that a beautiful piece of art work or what? As soon as I saw the cover, it captured my attention immediately. Yes, it is dystopian fiction, but I figured why not check it out and see if it’s worthwhile. The story about where emotion has been genetically removed from people and where one girl is different from the rest, an anomaly, was good enough that I decided it might not be so bad to get once it’s available.

Anyway, that’s all I’ve discovered so far for the year. If you find any other new Christian fantasy or sci-fi series coming out this year, don’t hesitate to let me know as I am always looking for good stuff to read.

Posted March 8, 2013 by J.M. Christian in Christian Fantasy Reviews

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