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Hella Lot of Stairs :-) Tower of Trials Update

Proofreading progress on Tower of Trials,Book 1 of Guardian SpiritDante’s hell had a lot of circles.  Tower of Trials’s proofreading hell has steps–17, which break down to 16 chapters and 1 novella-wide action.  Last night, I took 2 steps, and I start on the 3rd tonight, all in hopes of getting off the blasted stairs by March 1.   *crosses fingers*  If my ADD-half doesn’t collapse from exhaustion, that is.

But, in a way it’s funny, because this 1st book in the Guardian Spirit series features a boatload of stairs as a magical trial.  I’m beginning to understand what I put my characters through now.

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Season of Death, Archer, and–Squirrel!

ADD squirrel time
ADD squirrel time (Pic by werner22brigitte/Pixabay)

I’ve backburnered Season of Death, because by the time I got its first draft done, I realized I really needed to complete and publish the prequel first, which is a novel, which means–squirrel!

Yup, that’s an ADD/dog/Up call out.

Yup, that means, although I finished the first draft of Season of Death, instead of working on the New World series, I’ve been spending my time on a completely different, unrelated series nicknamed Archer (real name is probably Guardian Spirit).

Here’s a somewhat-edited snippet from nicknamed Archer 1 (whose true title is probably Tower or Tower of Trials), from Chapter 1, by me, Jodi Ralston: Continue reading Season of Death, Archer, and–Squirrel!

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What I’m Working On

tombstones-151263_640The answer should be simple.  Something in Jeret’s world.  But a different work called to me, one I plotted before I got sick.  It’s a story set in my reboot of New World.  In fact, it’s a rebooted short story that never quite worked.  Or rather, some of its ideas worked very well, but the rest of it never came together.  Now it has . . . is.

Below is part of the opening.  It’s rough.   My version has some highlighted areas I need to change, like the overuse of “idiot/idiocy” and I’m not sure on the spelling of the name Carester yet–I’m leaning toward making it Carrester.  But basic concepts are there and much of the style and detail.

Well, enough explaining.  Here is a snippet from . . . .

Season of Death

(New World novella-in-progress)

by Jodi Ralston

Jan. 2015

The dead of the ton had their own Season, not every year, but every month.  At night, under the cold light of the waning moon, high society dead came from all around by secret underground routes and held court in secret underground places.  They plotted and bet on “marriages.”  They bandied tongues.  They gossiped.  They chided.  They enthused.  And they did not take kindly to bastards, of any kind, listening at the earth’s upper door.

But twenty-two-year-old Jons Enfield, the illegitimate son of the late Sir Lin Carester, had no more choice in the company he kept than his half-brothers’ cousins had a choice concerning their entrance into the real Marriage Mart.  Though the ladies would not see themselves as forced through a seasonal succession of balls and parties toward one inevitable end, neither would the dead see him as forced toward his.

So on the first night of the full moon’s decrease, he sought out a faded tonnish gravestone, impressive in its faded russet poise.  There he laid out a blanket on the chilled ground that spring was still slighting, set down a picnic basket, and readied himself for an uncomfortable coze, the first for this Season of Death.

It would not take long for the sudden silence to lapse into more practical snubs of ignoring his presence.  So while the respite from the dead’s idiocy lasted, he opened the basket, plucked out a sandwich, and picked up his monologue where he left off last time around.

“You know, at least, the prize at the end of a Living Season is matrimony.”  He bit into his sandwich and continued with his mouth full.  “What do all you idiots end up with, male or female?  Reabsorption into the One God.”  He wiped off his mouth on the sleeve of his overcoat.  “Heh.  Slim pickings, now that he’s dead.  Makes you wonder what you’re haring off toward, doesn’t it?  Eh?”

Apparently, no, it didn’t make the dead wonder.  The returning mutters were still focused on this Season’s “debutants.”  Debutants of death, as he called them.

None of whom were his brother.

Anyway, there it is.  The original setup behind this opening stayed the same–my death-listening character camping out in the graveyard above death’s door.  Some of the names stayed the same, too, in this quoted part and in the rest of the scene.  But the characters changed.  Wen was the original death-listener.  Now it’s Jons, who is not part of the original story at all.  With that change, so changed the main character’s behavior and attitude and purpose.  The original character in the original story was a do-gooder who did his best to save the debs of death.  Jons doesn’t really care about them.  All he cares about at this point in time is his brother and his brother’s fate.

So that’s what I’m working on.  A reboot set in a rebooted world 🙂  I’ll try to post more up-to-date snippets as they develop.

(Credits: picture by OpenClips. Snippet from Season of Death, (C) 2015 Jodi Ralston)

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Thief in the Garden of the Gods Is Available!

I’ve been sick since Dec 24 with the zombie flu (only half joking; the last few days I’ve felt like a couch zombie or maybe a zombie fungus growing on the couch for all I managed to leave it).  So I’ve been remiss in updating this site about some news.

Thief CoverThief in the Garden of the Gods (Kindle link), my fantasy novelette of about 14,000 words, is now up on Amazon Kindle.  Right now it’s only available on Kindle, for the next 90 days, to try out Kindle Unlimited.  It’s 99¢ currently.

Anyway, here’s a description from the Zon page.

Jeret enjoys his role as a warden in the gods’ pleasure gardens, but soon his life takes a turn for the worse when Lady in Black gets away with a plant while he is on duty. He has to go after her to the Land of the Living, which is poisonous to gods and wardens, and retrieve it before the thief uses it in a spell to kill all gods.

Fantasy novelette inspired by ancient Egypt.

By “inspired” I don’t mean it’s set in ancient Egypt.  It’s a made-up world with made-up magic.  But I let my muse play with my personal collection of Egyptian references, and I included Egyptian touches in the work, such as ideas of costumes, gods, afterlife, and religious beliefs.

There is one bit that isn’t Egyptian inspired, but personal.  The flower in the story isn’t Egyptian, but one I love and raised at one point in my life.


That pic isn’t mine.  I wish it was mine.  I wish the flower was mine.  The pic is from Hans/Pixabay, and it’s pretty close to what I pictured the stolen flower to look like.  (I say pretty close for more than one reason.  I’m a little colorblind once colors get dark enough, so I can’t tell if that is purple inside the white or not.)

Anyway, I currently have notes for another story set in this world–just not a sequel.  Yet.  If it turns out according to plan, the next story won’t be Egyptiany but more Greco-Romany (another section of my personal library).  Once I get past my zombie flu, I’ll put some real work into it.

Well, last but not least, before I sign off some handy links.

Kindle Link:  Thief in the Garden of the Gods by Jodi Ralston

Brief description and permalink to my Published Works page.


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Welcome to Jodi Ralston’s author page!

Or WordPress page.  It’s all new to me–and in-progress–and pretty!  Anyway, you will find pages for individual works and a mailing list and more.  Well, you will eventually.  Please bear with me, and thanks!

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