making a move:

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An early christmas presentappeared on my desk a few days ago…. a computer complete with internet connection!

I haven’t blogged in a few months but I have been writing, reading and learning so having logged back on here I realise it’s time to start fresh and taking on board all of your comments hopefully I’ll not only make a better blog but also a better me.

please find me at , I look forward to touching base with all of you again!





NaNoWriMo and Analia

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National Novel Writing Month


I just learnt about this one but i’m in. I’d love to drum up as many Aussies as possible, i think it’s a great idea and potentially loads of fun.

Have a look for me, i’m simply ‘cas’ and a part of the Australian group.

And here’s what i’m working on:

Saphryon is a ms i’ve been working on for a while and when i learnt of the NaNoWriMo i was still in the middle of editing and very much in ‘saphryon’ headspace which i don’t particularly want to get out of.

Analia is a character in Saphryon, she pops up at about page 60, disappears again and then pops back in for a page or two around page 240. Perfect.

Here’s the world from Analia’s point of view.

Her life has order, i’ll be skewed from ours and steeped in fantasy, but there’s a point and there’s a purpose and everyone sticks to that – rigidly. One child from each family dedicates 5 years of their lives, usually shortly after turning 11, to complete ‘tasks’ on the mountain.

The mountain is a combination of castle and battle field perched on the slope of the Misty Mountains, directly below the gateway between the immortal and mortal worlds. Szeins, or tasked, are required to complete all manner of duties from cleaning to cooking, caring for animals, hunting, smithing and so on. Five years of their lives is dedicated and then they’re free to leave or request a paid apprenticeship.

This all works in nicely with the medieval theme of the world in which Analia lives, however the fantasy side that Saphryon is steeped in isn’t as obvious in Analia’s life. Analia doesn’t have to deal with winged and armoured fighting immortals who kill anyone stupid enough to step too close – except their Riders.

However Analia does have to deal with the bullying and torment that has evolved in the place of learning and development that the castle and the Riders used to be all about.

It’s a darkness, like a curse, that’s seeping over the entire mountain, fueled by greed and lies and battles and enveloping Analia’s entire world.

Causing the rift between mortals and immortals to intensify, the mountain itself to fight back and all human existence, within the range of the mountain, to be destroyed…

“I’m a Szein, destined by my birth place in my family and by the realm i live in to serve on the mountain. As a small child I though that meant i’d be herding goats, a laughable idea really. The mountain is a word that literally means danger, and mystery and for many death.

The task with all the prestige around here is that of being a Rider. Few ask for it but the battle to gain enough merit to even dare approach the Riders Blade begins from the moment someone arrives here and it makes the rest of our lives hell.”

Saphryon’s ponderings

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Ever wanted to just drop off the face of the planet?

Yep? Well i know exactly how you feel. I just had my butt kicked in the arena, again, and whilst everyone else is enjoying lunch i’m stealing leftovers from the riders mess, again, and if i don’t hurry up and get my mile long list of tasks done i’m doing to get more than one swift kick and a few harsh words too.

Don’t even get me started on the harsh words, these people practically speak a different language half the time. Which is a blessing in disguise, the old ‘what you don’t know won’t hurt you’ thing. I mean i know they’re calling me some horrible stuff, but exactly what i don’t need to know.

And the few words i do know i wish i didn’t.

What i wish i did know is why? Why me, why now, why here and why like this.

Too many questions really.

And the thing is, i can’t answer any of them and i can’t just disappear. None of us can.

Scrap booking, not editing.

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I spent the whole day scrapbooking yesterday, which was great for clearing through the mountain of photo’s which i’ve been ignoring but not so good for the editing i’ve been trying to do.

I’ve made a decision though, of sorts, i’m going to save the current draft as is, unedited. Then copy the whole thing into a new document and edit towards the sombre ending with a huge romantic streak and see how it goes. if it doesn’t go then i can always delete and go back to the original. The sombre ending isn’t the hard part. The book is quite dark, no warm and fuzzy knight in shiny armour anywhere so even though she likes this guy he beats the crap out of her in battle… opps i’m giving away the story line.

You’ll just have to wait and see if an editor or publisher likes it – then you’ll find out what happens to Saphryon. But from that tid-bit you can see how the dark ending will fit (though you may see my struggle because everyone likes a happy ending – name one book with a sad ending that has sold a billion copies lately?) But it’s there, in the back of my mind would be un understatement, more like itching at my soul, so i know the ending will work and if i can just balance it out with the romance then i might just be happy with it (might).

But we all have to learn to fight for ourselves at some point in time, and even our husbands and wives fail to be knights in shinny armour half the time, so the storyline is not without its pro’s – as dark as they may be.

Saphryon is one of those stories that no matter how crappy your life feels you can connect with Sahpryon and think ‘well at least i’m not…” (trying not to give too much away!) and you know that if Saphryon can succeed and survive and thrive and love and learn then there’s really no excuses why you shouldn’t be smiling right now.



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This is the point where i wish i was already a well know writer with the ability to just call up my editor and say ‘hey i’m playing with this dark ending to my latest work but i’m not sure if it’s going to fit, what do you think?’

Because seriously it’s driving me mad!

So, here’s the long version of my little tantrum.

I’m working on Saphryon and thinking over the themes and the plot and the ending. I’ve jumped on a few message boards/forums and asked about my issue with writing two endings because i’m undecided about whether to have a more warm and fuzzy or cold and prickly type ending. Why? because when i started the book i wanted to defy readers expectations and end on a sombre note.

Then when i was writing the thing i ended up with hugs and kisses.

So i relaxed over the weekend and read something quite unrelated. But just now, as i was waiting for the jug to boil, i’ve begun wondering if i can’t go somewhere in the middle? Saph has a love interest that only really comes into play about the middle of the book but what if that slips in closer to the beginning and even though in many ways the ending will still be sombre what if her and her love interest remain strong so there’s still a warm and fuzzy element?

My problem, and the reason i wish i could just chat to someone who actually knows about these things, is that the market is saturated with romance at the moment (another twilight side-effect i’m sure) which means that i might be killing my works originality by intensifying the romance. So now i don’t know if i should mess with the plot or not?

In short, the question is really something like:

Is there too much romance on bookshelves today? Is romance too typical in a new release novel?

Editing Saphryon

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One of those lovely sunny spring day. Slept in – as you do when it’s your day off, then drove out tot he next little town to get my little girls bike helmet. Raced back to get her to school on time and after all that she didn’t even want to ride this afternoon. Then coffee with a girlfriend then off to the movies. ‘Tomorrow when the war began’ was wonderfully produced – i love the books and the movie didn’t disappoint. So then i had to spend 2 hours running around doing work stuff – the curse of being a manager. Finally caught half an hour to put towards editing and i went nuts with the notes! Had a ball with craft  (my daughters still glueing feathers and pompoms on the dinning table – literally)

So i thought i’d post some of my notes and images here. Be warned i’m not a well known artist so the drawings are really rough versions of my writing, there’s hand inked notes from other characters in the book and scrap booked items that remind me of certain aspects in the book. I hope you enjoy some images of Saphryon.

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