Water and Blood
by N. K. Carlson
GENRE: YA Fantasy
BLURB: Clashes on a pirate ship, battles on a castle wall, and an ancient secret unfolds. When life or death is at stake, one side must make a sacrifice to win.
After fleeing the Elven capital, Reith and his friends must race across Terrasohnen to warn the dwarves of the Shadow’s long reach. Each new revelation brings even more questions and Reith has so much to learn about Shadows and his mysterious sword. Time is against Reith. Death stalks him in the desert, mountains, and sea, and the ever present darkness looms large over all.
Will they reach the dwarves in time to prevent more death? Or will the Shadow’s destruction be too great, consuming everyone in the kingdoms of Terrasohnen?
“So, if a fight is coming, what then? What does find me mean?” Reith asked.
“I have no idea,” Romulus said. “I have a suspicion that the Voice belongs to a Guardian of Light, or even the God of Light. You have a destiny, Reith.”
“All chosen by the God of Light for one task or another ask that question. It is beyond our wisdom. The God of Light has purposes and plans we can know nothing about. He has written the story of Terrasohnen on the world, and we are following along as best we can, though the ending is hidden from our eyes. But as for your question, I do not believe the God of Light calls someone unless he purposes to accomplish something in and through them.”
“So you think I will be successful in whatever this is?”
“I don’t think it, I believe it. I have faith in the God of Light. I think he or someone speaking for him is speaking to you, so I trust that he will be with you.”
“Easy for you to say,” Reith said, “You’re not the one facing fighting and finding.”
“Perhaps not finding, but certainly fighting.”
They rode on in silence for a few minutes.
“You promised to return the favor,” Reith said. “Tell me about you.”
“I am Romulus, firstborn son of King Koinas, heir to the throne of the elves. My mother died seven winters ago. I am the only remaining child of her and my father. He shall be furious that I have gone, but it is for the best. I was raised in the palace of Sardis and had the greatest tutors in history, mathematics, law, military strategy, astronomy, jousting, archery, and swordplay. As prince, I felt a great concern for my people, that all would be treated with fairness and justice. I have taken an interest in hearing the grievances of my people against one another and against the crown, which I did my best to decide equitably. I know rulers do not choose their monikers, but Romulus the Just has a nice ring to it. I hope to live up to it. And now, I am afraid that the greatest threat to the kingdom and my people is my father, and so I am on this quest beside you, fleeing from his wrath to a foreign land to beg for aid.”
“Sounds bleak,” Reith said, not really knowing what to say to the prince.
“It’s not as bleak as one might think. The God of Light is with us. We saw that at the funeral pyre for Kydar. And when the God of Light is with us, who can oppose us?”
Making Time For Creativity In The Midst of a Busy Life
Author Post by N. K. Carlson
I began writing my series, “The Chronicles of Terrasohnen” while I was in graduate school. Yes, I know that’s one of the least ideal times to start a huge project like a trilogy of novels. But it was the right time for me. It was June 2017 when I began.
In graduate school, I spent a lot of time writing papers and researching. So it was a relaxing experience to write something that wasn’t a research paper. I started during the summer, when I had free time before an internship started in the fall, so I had this natural window of my life where there was additional space for creativity and I took advantage. I finished up my draft in October.
That same month, my wife and I found out we were pregnant, and our first son was born in June 2018. And then I didn’t do much writing for a whole year. Life was busy with a newborn!
I began writing again in the fall of 2019 as I looked toward a job change in the near future. But then the world shut down in early 2020, and I suddenly had a lot of time on my hands.
I decided to expand that initial 2017 draft into two books, and I spent 99 days in 2020 re-writing what became Book 1, “Shadow and Sword.” I did some editing, and began shopping the book around in the fall of 2020, and I signed a contract with my publisher, Creative James Media, in early 2021 for a three book series. At that point, Book 1 was done, but Books 2 and 3 needed to be written within a year each.
In April 2021, we had our second son. Up until this point, other than taking a year off writing for the birth of our first son, my writing routine probably seems pretty ideal. I had time off in a summer to write the initial draft and then the world had the kindness to shut down just when I needed to write another draft.
But now things were different. I had deadlines. And an infant. And a toddler. And a wife. And my sanity to maintain.
I’d like to tell you I was an efficient machine, but I wasn’t. It was a grind to get Books 2 and 3 out. I was dealing with all of the stresses and strains of a young family, including sleepless nights. I changed jobs a couple of times in the middle of there, adding to the stress. I took moments to write wherever I could get them. Sometimes late at night, sometimes early in the morning, sometimes on lunch breaks. Not only did I have a contract, I had a contract with myself. I wanted to finish these books. I needed to finish the books.
So here’s my advice. Ten minutes a day is better than zero minutes a day. Getting into a habit and a routine helped bring those two books together.
And now I am sitting here during launch week of Book 2, “Water and Blood.” Book 3 has been sent off to my publisher, and I’m able to enjoy the ride of this series as you, dear reader, find out what happens to Reith and his friends for the first time.
Everyone can find ten minutes a day to write. It just takes dedication and sacrifice.
Thanks for reading! If you are an aspiring author, I’d love to hear from you!
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
N. K. Carlson is an author living in Texas. Originally from the Chicago area, he graduated from the University of Illinois before studying at Logsdon Seminary, where he graduated with a master of divinity degree. He has published two books.
The Things that Charm Us and the Smelly Gospel (which was co-written with Drew Doss) both came out in 2020.
His love of writing began in elementary school when each student was given a blank white book to fill with a story. In college, he took an interest in blogging and writing novels.
N. K. Carlson will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.