Welcome to the
The Tyrant King
The Peasant Queen II
Tour Host: Lady Amber's Tours
Krystal's peaceful life as queen of Fayterra is shattered when a stranger arrives with a connection to Jareth that threatens to change everything. Soon her loved ones are threatened, her people are under attack, and Krystal must face a devastating loss. As the future becomes bleaker and the mystery continues to unravel, Krystal's enemies will learn just how far she will go to defend the people she loves.
Currently blissful working mother of 5. Married to a fantastic, amazing, supportive man. I love to read, I love to write and I love taking pictures (though my skill is debatable lol).
The Peasant Queen:
Krystal had no luck with the window in her room. It had either rusted or been sealed shut. Nor could she find anything in the room that could be used as a weapon. If she wanted out of this chamber, she’d have to rely on her wits.
Her lovely gown quickly became a hindrance as did the infrequent arrival of castle servants. The blonde maid returned with a tray of fine food that Krystal found she could not stomach. The blonde left again and returned awhile later with fresh water to drink and a full pitcher for her basin. Finally Krystal moved to the bed to wait for things to settle down.
The day must have caught up with her, for the next thing she knew, someone was shaking her awake. “Princess Krystal,” said the voice. “The king requests your presence in his study.”
For a brief moment, Krystal thought she must be dreaming. It sounded so strange. She sat up and looked into the eyes of the dark haired maid. “What does he want?”
“It is not my place to question,” the maid said. “I have been sent to bring you to him.”
Krystal looked at the candle the maid held. “How late is it?”
She moved to light the room. “It’s just after sunset. I am to have you in his study by the time he finishes dinner.”
She sat up. “Can’t you just tell him I’m not up for another round of shouting?”
The maid stared at her in astonishment. “You truly raised your voice to him?”
Krystal shrugged, trying to seem unconcerned. The maid’s reaction embarrassed her. “I lost my temper. I don’t think it’s any secret to your king that I don’t care for his company.”
“He is not my king.” The maid put her hand over her mouth, looking horrified. “I did not mean to say that. Please forgive me.”
“I didn’t hear anything,” said Krystal and the maid rewarded her with a smile.
“What is your name?”
“I am Miraya, Highness.”
Krystal rolled her eyes. “Please don’t call me that. I don’t know what King Gregory hopes to accomplish by naming me a princess.”
“It’s difficult to know what scheme is in his head,” agreed Miraya. “Though one thing is certain. It is clear though that he has a specific plan in mind for you.”
“That’s hardly reassuring.”
Miraya brought Krystal her dinner tray. “Please eat. It will help you feel better.”
“I don’t see how food can help,” said Krystal.
The maid smiled thinly. “I wish I could do more, but in this kingdom, King Gregory’s word is law. Most Fayterrans support him. They prefer a seasoned warrior to an untried boy.”
“What do you mean?”
“I thought you knew,” Miraya said. “Prince Jareth is the rightful heir to the throne of Fayterra. King Gregory stole it from him.”
“Isn’t Jareth his nephew? Why would he do such a thing?”
“His reasons are his own. Please, Princess. I must ask you to eat. He will be expecting you soon.” Miraya moved about the room, straightening as she went.
Krystal ate and watched her. “Why do you stay here? Why not leave?”
“I wish I could,” she said. “The king prefers to keep me here. He’s made sure I’ll stay.”
“I wish I could tell you, but even talking about it brings risk.” She put down the pillow she’d been fluffing. “I can tell you this. It entertains King Gregory to cause suffering. He enjoyed tormenting Prince Jareth, and now I am his target.”
Krystal put down her roll. “And now perhaps I am as well.” She stood up. “Let’s get this over with. The anticipation is driving me mad.”
The Pleasures and Pitfalls of Writing a Novel
First of all, the things that draw me to a new project are not unusual. The wonderful scent of a new idea, the incredible rush of creating new characters. The drama that ensues with the overall conflict and then the lesser conflicts I dream up along the way. Oh, my. I’m getting a little buzzed just thinking about it.
I have a Facebook friend, also a writer, who describes those new ideas in the best way. She calls them “shiny” because they can distract us from whatever we’re working on at the time. Because a new idea does not sit quietly and wait its turn to be seen. It jumps up on the bench, towers over the crowd, and shouts and waves until someone throws a spotlight on it.
And, right now, I’m sitting on a few killer ideas. One is a comedy. One is dystopian. One is sci-fi, more of a departure from my standard fantasy writing than anything I’ve ever done. Another is simply contemporary YA, but utterly compelling. These sparkling gems surround me and make me want to hide away in my writing cave all day long and never, ever come out.
But now we move to the pitfalls of writing a novel. The first is time. One cannot (and I have given it more than a try) simply have time to do something. We MUST make time. I recently put together a novel in 8 days. Unfortunately, it wasn’t one of mine. That last day my word count teetered incredibly close to 20k. That’s amazing. Astounding.
I’m still recovering. Seriously.
I put my entire life on hold to write that book because I had a deadline. It was the single hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life. But I proved I could do it.
And I hope to never do it again.
Another pitfall is writer’s block. I personally don’t believe in writer’s block, not in the sense that most people think of it. If I get blocked creatively I can’t do anything creative—write, sew, bake—nothing. But, earlier this year, I had to change an editing deadline because I got blocked on a particular story. The characters stopped speaking to me. They all went out of turn, so I was reduced to writing scenes rather than the book in order as I normally do (it’s how my brain works). I’m still just getting details from them in tiny bits, not the general info dump that normally happens when I write.
You’ve heard it, I’m sure: Writer’s block is what happens when your imaginary friends stop speaking to you. But that’s not a real block because I can move on to another story and write on it for a while. A real block happens when the stress of my real life builds up to the point where I’m not doing anything—sleeping, eating, writing, etc.
That was May. This is now.
No matter how well you budget your time, real life is going to intrude on your writing time. Prioritizing is a good way to help that—and also realizing that you can forgive yourself a missed deadline, or a wimpy chapter—because you can make it up later.
Another pitfall of writing is falling in love with your first draft. When I shopped my first manuscript around to publishers I quickly realized the book was too long. One publisher asked me, “Can you trim it down?” I had no idea if I could or not. But I tried. Not just to be published but also to challenge myself. I said as much when I sent the book back to them. Whether they published it or not I appreciated the opportunity to learn something about my writing and about myself.
But I had to learn that no book is perfect. And that there’s a difference between being flexible and being a chump.
To sum up, writing a novel is hard. Really, really hard. We only do it because we are driven to do it. I’ve reached a point where I can’t be anything else but a writer. But the rewards—a good review, some kid saying your book resonates and they love it—you can’t beat that.
Many thanks to Cheri for being here today and for her fabulous guest post all about the pleasures and pitfalls of writing - a fabulous insight into the world of another writer!
See you soon