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Thursday, August 9, 2018

Helen of Sparta Summer Sale!



For the month of August, grab Helen of Sparta for just 1.99!
Don't forget to follow it up with By Helen's Hand, and/or prequel it up with Ariadne and the Beast and Tamer of Horses! If you recently read and loved Circe by Madeline Miller (I sure did!)--Helen should absolutely be on your TBR, too!

Things have been a little bit all over the place for me this summer, between family adventures and authorstuff. Publishing is such a strange beast. Sometimes it feels like you have a tiger by the tail. Sometimes you think you're on your way to the finish line only to get bounced back to start. But as long as I'm writing--I can't even tell you how much I love the writing.

This month, Newsletter Subscribers got a sneak peek of my most recent Mythic Bronze Age Work-in-Progress (I usually share a small snippet of whatever I've been working on that month at the end of every issue of the Amaliad). And I'm going to share the latest newsletter with you all here--to give you a taste of what you're missing if you haven't subscribed yet!

So Klikk Klikk get a peek at what I've been writing, and then make sure you subscribe so you don't miss out on future WiPpets!

I'm not sure yet when this one will be finished--or how long it'll end up being. It's definitely an epilogue to Helen of Sparta and By Helen's Hand, and doubly definitely takes on the Trojan War that I swore I would never write. But assuming I can keep it novella length, maybe I can get it out into the world sooner rather than later. Sooner being completely relative, of course. Because while I only have 6 outlined chapters left to go, it's something I've only been picking at on the side while I'm working on other projects, and there are contract things to negotiate too. So! We'll just have to see how it goes. And I'll of course let you know--one more reason to subscribe to the Amaliad, I suppose!

Happy Thor's Day!


Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years A Sea of Sorrow: A Novel of Odysseus
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Ariadne and the Beast, Plus New Newsletter Subscriber Exclusive!

So I have some excitement to share after all!

Those of you who follow me on twitter and facebook or are keeping up with my Newsletter probably already saw, but I've got a short story release for you later this month: ARIADNE AND THE BEAST!

Pre-Order Now!

Previously only available to AMALIAD subscribers as an exclusive, my short story Ariadne and the Beast, the story of Ariadne, Theseus, and the Minotaur, is now available for pre-order on kindle! YAY! It's set about 30 years before the events of Helen of Sparta and you can grab it for just 1.99. Ariadne releases May 31st, because I love having extra excuses to celebrate my Thor's Days.

Due to its length (short story!) this is an e-only release. But I hope you'll enjoy it all the same!

AND.
Because this is no longer an exclusive goodie for AMALIAD subscribers, I'm giving you all a NEW exclusive in exchange--FOUR never before seen BY HELEN'S HAND chapters that were left on the cutting room floor! I'm calling this little bonus Not Quite Queen of Sparta, and it all fits into the final book somewhere between chapters 33 and 38. They'll be available to all new subscribers going forward AND if you're a current subscriber, the link went out to you today, so check your inbox and happy reading!!

Finally, for those of you not stalking my twitter feed, I watched Troy: Fall of a City and livetweeted it for your entertainment and my... um. well. displeasure? My thoughts and feelings begin here:


I have a few. More than a few. Lots of feelings guys. LOTS. And shut up I know I said I would never write the Trojan War but after that showing...

Well, let's just say I maaaaaaaaaay have changed my mind. Amaliad subscribers will likely learn about what may or may not be coming down the pipe FIRST, and also get sneak peeks behind the curtain of the drafting in process, so if you haven't subscribed and you love my Bronze Age brand--there's really no better time than now!



Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years A Sea of Sorrow: A Novel of Odysseus
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

A Quick Update

Hi, I'm still here.

Yes, one day, I DO still want to write an Antiope and Theseus book. (And a book about Aethra. And a Heracles adventure. And more Polypoetes. And and and!)

No, I'm not writing it right now. (Sadface! Extreme Sadface!)

If you aren't subscribed to The Amaliad to stay up to date on my authorial adventures, you definitely should be! I always include any current sales in my newsletter and Lake Union has sales and promotions for my Helen books and DAUGHTER pretty regularly! Plus you'll hear about new projects there first, too. And! There are giveaways! And Subscriber Exclusive bonuses!

I'm currently catching up on Amalia Dillin projects that fell by the wayside while I was under deadline doing Amalia Carosella work, so you can check out my blog over there, too, for updates if you are morally opposed to newsletters. The biggest thing is that I'm devoting 2018 to writing Orc3 for my Orc Saga fans, and they've been waiting a long time because burnout so I'm trying to keep my focus there now that I have reclaimed my joy in writing again. And once that's done, I'm going to just write for the love of it wherever the creative winds take me, for myself, and try to not let the stress of publishing grind me into dust.

That said, if you loved DAUGHTER OF A THOUSAND YEARS, consider crossing over to my Amalia Dillin Fate of the Gods trilogy! FORGED BY FATE is a triple timeline, historical and contemporary fantasy timeslip, heavy on the mythic, and follows Thor, Adam, and Eve (yes, that Adam and Eve) from Creation into the present.

And of course don't forget to grab A SEA OF SORROW: A NOVEL OF ODYSSEUS, my H-Team adventure! It really is The Odyssey as you've never read it before, and I do not use that expression lightly because it makes me roll my eyes right out of my head whenever someone says it to me.

What else?

Hm. I think that's about it for the moment on my historical fiction side. I hope you'll stay tuned for whatever comes next, be it hist fic or contemporary romance or mythic fantasy, as Amalia Carosella or Amalia Dillin. And in the meantime, thanks so much for reading!!!



Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years A Sea of Sorrow: A Novel of Odysseus
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Thursday, October 19, 2017

The Siren's Song

I have to admit to a little trepidation when I came on board this latest H-Team adventure -- retelling The Odyssey without gods or magic?! The period might have been my wheelhouse, but that particular approach most definitely was not my usual style. Add to that the very careful dance of making sure that my contribution to this collaboration wasn't an inadvertent sequel to By Helen's Hand, and I worried, at first, that maybe I wasn't quite up to the challenge.

But then the sirens called me. I could hear the song. And I knew what I had to write. What I was desperate to write and retell. I knew the sirens wanted to sing through me.

Of course that also required a small amount of reshuffling. The sirens weren't initially part of the general proposed outline of our project, and I'm super grateful for the flexibility of my co-authors in making room to allow me to tell their tale! Because I knew exactly where I wanted to begin. I knew precisely how to approach their story and their history in a world without gods or magic.

Or at least, without the traditional idea of magic. I still had at my disposal the magic of storytelling--the magic of the stories we tell ourselves, and the ways we create our own narratives, spinning heroics and humor out of the mundane or the tragic. And what could possibly be more fitting in a retelling of the story of Odysseus than for my sirens to have rewoven their own history, their own tragedy, into something magical?

Once, we'd had wings.

That was the line upon which I built all the rest. A line that didn't make the cut into the final version of the story, but which became the very foundation of my poor, isolated, sirens and their history. Because in a world without gods or magic, it is the stories people tell themselves that matter most. Personal and family and community narratives were the only history they might know--and that went double for my lonely sirens.

So who were my sirens? How did they come to live upon their rocky, barren island to sing poor sailors to their doom? 


Grab your copy of A SEA OF SORROW: A NOVEL OF ODYSSEUS, and find out!



Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years A Sea of Sorrow: A Novel of Odysseus
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Musing on: Penelope's Suitors

As part of my research for A SEA OF SORROW, of course I found myself rereading The Odyssey -- and I couldn't help but wonder, as I read:
Who *are* these men?
Mnesterophonia Louvre CA7124
Slaughter of the Suitors via Wiki Commons (public domain)

We know some of their names, of course, and even who their fathers are. We know that they seem to have some pretty poor manners, and as guests and suitors they have overstayed their welcome to an extreme degree (though it seems Penelope is in part to blame for not sending them away, herself, perhaps, too.) But. Who are they in the greater scheme of Ithaca's kingdom and community, post Trojan War?

Presumably, Odysseus took a majority of able-bodied men with him to Troy to fight. We know these suitors are the sons of now-old men, noble houses of Ithaca who were part of Odysseus's assembly. The sons of men who are now too old and weak to rule them -- much like Laertes is too old and weak with grief and sorrow to guard Penelope and Telemachus from the suitors, or even to engage in Ithaca's assembly to any degree. Had they been younger men, the fathers of these suitors would have left 20 years earlier with Odysseus to fight, right? And if the suitors had been older men themselves, they also would have left, for the most part, 20 years ago to fight with Odysseus.

So are these Suitors second or third or fourth sons (of second wives, perhaps)? Not quite so young as Telemachus, clearly, who was an infant when Odysseus left, but old enough to see their brothers sail off in his company, and just a shade too young to follow? Old enough to grieve for their brothers who never returned home? Are they acting out, taking back what they lost in some way, by pillaging Odysseus's stores in his absense and courting his wife?

During Telemachus's assembly in book two, Mentor says:
"Think: not one of the people whom he ruled
remembers Odysseus now, that godlike man,
and kindly as a father to his children!" (Fagles, p 100)
Is he accusing the Suitors themselves of not knowing or remembering Odysseus, suggesting that perhaps they were too young to have really engaged with him in any meaningful way? Accusing the old men of the Assembly of forgetting the kindness of their king, or betraying the kindness that Odysseus showed them by not standing against the abuses of the suitors?

It seems likely that reinforcements came to support the Greeks (generic national identity used loosely, here), so why didn't these suitors travel to Troy to fight at some later point in the war? Or had they not yet quite come of age, even then? Say they were only 5 or 6, and hadn't quite reached manhood before Troy was sacked? But that would make them only 26 to Penelope's mid thirties, at the youngest, assuming she was in her early/mid-teens when she married Odysseus and bore him Telemachus, now nearing 20.

Odysseus mustered 12 ships when he initially sailed to Troy with the army, according to Homer's Catalogue of Ships, and in the Odyssey, Odysseus claims to have begun his journey from Troy with a dozen ships, still. twenty to thirty oars per ship would mean a minimum of 240 to 360 men -- none of which returned home, save Odysseus himself. Could resentment for the loss of so many have fueled the blind eye that these old men turned to their youngest/younger sons who lived? Or simply the desire to spoil them, because they had not been lost when so many others had been?

Honestly, I'm kind of shocked that upon his return Odysseus is allowed to keep his crown, after losing so many men -- hero-kings have been thrown out of power for less, after all -- but perhaps it is the slaughter of the suitors that secures his power in the end. The old men, after all, clearly don't have the strength to stand against him when they cannot stand against their own sons. And with the suitors' deaths, an entire generation of Ithacans, ultimately, is wiped out -- leaving Odysseus with no one to challenge him at all.
***

Don't forget to grab A SEA OF SORROW from Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, and B&N, (or even Amazon UK), or add it on goodreads!
ASOS releases October 17th!


Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years A Sea of Sorrow: A Novel of Odysseus
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Pre-Order A SEA OF SORROW, a new H-Team Adventure! With a story by me!

Coming October 17th, but available to pre-order NOW from Amazon, Kobo, ibooks, and B&N, (including Amazon UK), I've joined the H-Team as we set sail on our next adventure, tackling The Odyssey in our latest collaborative novel!



Odysseus, infamous trickster of Troy, vaunted hero of the Greeks, left behind a wake of chaos and despair during his decade long journey home to Ithaca. Lovers and enemies, witches and monsters--no one who tangled with Odysseus emerged unscathed. Some prayed for his return, others, for his destruction. These are their stories…

A beleaguered queen’s gambit for maintaining power unravels as a son plots vengeance.
A tormented siren battles a goddess’s curse and the forces of nature to survive.
An exiled sorceress defies a lustful captain and his greedy crew.
A blinded shepherd swears revenge on the pirate-king who mutilated him.
A beautiful empress binds a shipwrecked sailor to servitude, only to wonder who is serving whom.
A young suitor dreams of love while a returned king conceives a savage retribution.
Six authors bring to life the epic tale of The Odyssey seen through the eyes of its shattered victims—the monsters, witches, lovers, and warriors whose lives were upended by the antics of the “man of many faces.” You may never look upon this timeless epic—and its iconic ancient hero—in quite the same way again. In the tradition of Madeline Miller’s Song of Achilles, and with the spirit of Lindsey Davis’ The Third Nero and Kate Quinn’s Mistress of Rome, A Sea of Sorrow transports you to the endlessly fascinating world of Homeric Greece.

Consider adding it on Goodreads, too, while you wait for October to roll in!

I've been keeping this project on the super downlow, but subscribers to my newsletter got the sneakiest of peeks into my piece of this novel back in June -- I'll let you all guess from that excerpt which of these perspectives is mine! (And if you want to be one of the first to learn about new projects and get a glimpse behind the curtain of author!me, make sure you're subscribed to The Amaliad, too!)



Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years A Sea of Sorrow: A Novel of Odysseus
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Daughter of a Thousand Years audiobook giveaway!

Available NOW on Amazon!
Offda. It's been a while.

I'm currently in draft mode -- working on three different writing projects simultaneously (LOL GOOD JOB BRAIN), plus some graphic design things that needed to get done (bookmarks for TAMER and DAUGHTER and BHH are coming with me to HNS Portland in June!) so I've been a littttttle bit more scatterbrained about social media-ing than usual.

But somehow it is now almost Easter and I do not know where March went, but the blog has been sadly neglected. Which I *think* means it's time for a small giveaway. (USA only this time, sorry!)

I've got audio editions for DAUGHTER OF A THOUSAND YEARS -- MP3 or Audio CD -- and I think one of you should have your choice. I'll even send along the fancy new bookmarks once they arrive, too. (I'll be ordering them this week!)

The only mandatory entries in the rafflecopter are your contact email (exclusively so I can get in touch if you win) and dropping a comment below about your favorite author swag! (For example, I brought Herc Butt magnets to HNS Denver -- how do we feel about a Hermes Butt magnet for Portland? Do you prefer stickers instead of magnets? Or is there another Butt from #NameThatButt that you'd prefer? Or no butts at all? *gasp!*) 

You can also tweet and follow and subscribe to the Amaliad for extra entries, of course.

Anyway, GO FORTH AND ENTER!


a Rafflecopter giveaway




Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound