The Ages of Man

I was fossicking around in my collection of books looking for sources relating to research on a new idea for a story when I happened across a thin book: Hesiod’s Theogony and Works and Days. It may be thin in size but definitely not in its telling. I bought it some years back now and remembered how much I enjoyed it. As I flicked through the pages an idea began to form, not for a story (have plenty of those) but as an added feature to my blog.

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Where’s the horse?

Homer The Iliad   Book 24 Scene: Hektor’s funeral, he’s just been cremated. This passage is taken from the last page, part of the final paragraph. 1950 version translated by E.V. Rieu, 2003 amendments Peter Jones. 

‘…They took the bones, wrapped them in soft purple clothing and put them in the golden coffin. This coffin they immediately lowered into a hollow grave which they covered with a close-set layer of large stones. They hurriedly piled up earth over it to mark the grave-mound, posting guards all round in case the Greeks launched a premature attack. When they had piled up the mound, they returned into the city and reassembled for a magnificent funeral feast in the palace of Priam their Olympian-bred ruler.

Such were the funeral rites of horse-taming Hektor.’

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Doh! It NOT Homer as in Simpsons

Homer, the poet of the legendary tales, of The Iliad and The Odyssey is one of the reasons I wanted to write. I first read The Iliad and was completely enthralled by the richness of the characters, the storyline and narrative. Being an oratorical piece, it took some time to get into the flow of the story, but then the imagery took over. Just reading the description of Akhilles shield was magical.  I would love to share it all with you but it is quite long, but here is some of it:

‘He made earth, sky and sea, the tireless sun, the full moon and all the constellations with which the skies are crowned, the Pleiades, the Hyades, great Orion and the Bear, also called the waggon. This is the only constellation never to bathe in Ocean Stream, but always wheels around in the same place and looks across at Orion the Hunter with a wary eye.’

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Calling all agents

For all the agents out there trawling blogs and e-books looking for your next big client, take heed for I am coming your way. I have two completed manuscripts with a third still in progress that form part of a trilogy. If you are a Historical Fantasy fan with a penchant for Greek mythology then look no further.  

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Spoken V Written

I was thinking about purchasing the software program ‘Dragonspeak’. I first came across it while at a specialist and during the appointment he dictated his findings. I thought how cool would that be for the days when the pain was too great to type.  As I said, was thinking. I then started to wonder at the application of it. Continue reading

Spinning heads

I have just spent the last 4-5 hours researching Literary Agents and I am exhausted. Reading their submission guidelines and agent profiles is enough to make your head spin! I’ve tried to narrow my search to agents who are more inclined to read Historical Fantasy. I even checked out best-selling Historical Fantasy’s and to be honest, what I found was a lot of Historical/Fantasy/Romance. Thankfully, I did find a few notable authors such as George R.R. Martin, who has a strong following. Continue reading

Character lists

A close friend of mine gave me a great suggestion on keeping tabs on the characters in my story. She heard about a Fantasy author who uses this strategy as most Fantasy stories have a lot of characters. It is a great tool.

Each of my characters has their own folder. In it I have included: physical appearance, age, occupation, marital status, the pages they appear on and what they do/say. This a good process to follow who is who, what happens and tie up loose ends. It’s also about being consistent in your story and plot. I found it constructive as it allowed me to find sections in the story that needed extra work or tightening up. Plus sometimes you forget what you have written and this save time in re-reading the manuscript. Its like having your own personal Cliff Notes.

Even if you don’t have many characters, it’s a valuable process. Besides, anything that helps improve your story is worth doing.


I was watching Castle on DVD, and yes, I am a fan. I like the quirkiness and  pace of the stories. I flicked over to the bonus features and watched a ’round-table’ discussion between creator, producer, graphic novelist and author Michael Connelly. The creator asked Mr Connelly what he does about distractions. That same day I wrote about this in the previous post. Coincidence?

I believe in coincidences. They happen for a reason. Some are obvious and others need deciphering. The Collins dictionary defines it: ‘a chance occurrence of events remarkable either for being simultaneous or for apparently being connected.’ 

So what is the connection between my watching a segment where a best-selling author talks about the same subject matter as I have written? One: he confirmed that distractions happen, just work through them; two: everyone has them; and three: I was meant to watch it at that time.

By the way, I have just joined the Goodreads community. You will see the widget on the right beneath the others.