Newsletter August 6, 2020

Posted on August 6, 2020Comments Off on Newsletter August 6, 2020
The Lampworks Lamplighter – August 6
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The Lampworks Lamplighter
Character Development

Characters come to life in different ways during story development. Some characters tell me their stories as I write them, much as Gilwyr did in Sellenria. An orphan, raised by the Kir Leth with their unique color-based language, and trained as an assassin. I could hear her cocky, quirky voice from the first scene. As I wrote her in different situations, I realized that she would be hiding some insecurities. She was neither Kir Leth nor Human but caught between the two. It was fortunate that she had good friends who helped her see that as a strength instead of a weakness. She is summed up well in the line with which she starts the sequel I am writing: “The sky ship drew a sword across the night, as blue as chance.”

Resche, in Knots, evolved during revisions. In the first draft, he was more of a rogue who would manipulate people to gain his ends. He wasn’t a very sympathetic main character, one to whom I couldn’t relate. On the second pass, he developed some twitchy obsessions with patterns that suited him more to the story. I also understood that he was compassionate, but expressed it in an oblique way that kept others from seeing it directly. In the end, he had a stronger voice and a better character arc.

I keep a story vignette that I call MC Tavern, in which my main characters from other stories happen upon a mysterious bar on a side street, where they can meet and have a drink together. Each character describes the locale and the clientele from their own point of view. Each notices different things, describes people in very different ways, uses their own vocabulary. It’s useful to make sure each one has a distinct voice and viewpoint. This vignette shows signs of taking on a life of its own and spawning an entirely new story.

If you’ve enjoyed some of our stories, please stop by Amazon or Goodreads and leave a review. Those reviews help us to reach new readers and keep our fan base growing.

Until next time…

-Chuck and Dan

Knots — A Novel of Fractal Magic

M. Resche is trapped in a land that is not his own, where mages move tiles the size of nations in a vast Game. The magic of the land is topomancy, the power of extra-dimensional knots, fractals, and tessellations. And Resche… Well, he’s an art thief, wth some special skills that border on obsessions. (That’s not his real name, of course, nor is any other that he’s likely to give you.) To get home, he has to pit his skill against the mages.

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What We’re Reading

The Lost Future of Pepperharrow

Natasha Pulley

After enjoying The Watchmaker of Filigree Street, I had to read the sequel. It did not disappoint. Thaniel and Keita travel to Meiji-era Japan, to witness the struggle of the newly-opened nation with the forces of colonialization. Keita’s clairvoyance, strange electrical experiments on the cliffs of Yokohama, and ghosts in the Embassy are a fantastical plot layered on the rich tapestry of a Japan just emerging from feudalism.

The Bedlam Stacks

Natasha Pulley

I was pulled into the previous book so much that I had to continue. Before the events of the first two books, Merrick Tremayne is sent to Peru to attempt to smuggle cuttings that produce quinine out of the country, to break their stranglehold on this life-saving drug. Among the remains of the Incan culture and the Spanish conquest, Merrick finds old legends, stone men, and an impossibly old priest with a secret that involves generations of Merrick’s own family.

To Be Taught, If Fortunate

Becky Chambers

This is a beautifully-told tale of an exploration ship sent out to find new habitable worlds that Earth could settle, who continue long after their mission has been forgotten back home. There isn’t much plot, what there is is more of a meditation on why we explore the universe.

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Writing in the Sand

Britain cut itself off for years. Now it’s colonising alien worlds… illegally.

The year is 2075. Britain has isolated itself from the other nations of planet Earth for decades. But now a first attempt at illegally colonising a forbidden alien world has gone horribly wrong, threatening to ignite an interstellar war. When Harper Mulgrew and her fellow survivors discover a terrifying message in the sand of Proxima B, they must defend themselves from hostile natives and a traitor within as they struggle to establish Britain’s presence in a new star system.

A Rift in Time

“Cryptography says they’ve cracked the last of the journals!” a voice proclaimed, coming over the com.

An overjoyed Amy ran to retrieve Rebecca’s excavated journals and started poring over her friend’s narrative, only to find her initial relief turn into major frustration.

Lady Rebekah needed her help and Amy still had no way to get to her.

Will the journals reveal the solution that will save the ancient kingdom or will she lose her friend forever?

The Nibiru Effect

A Time Travel Adventure

A teenager unwittingly embarks on an adventure through time and space. To get home, he must survive a dinosaur-infested land, battle mythical creatures, and stop an evil woman from altering the past. Can he succeed, or will the world as we know it cease to exist?

Angel of Earth

Seraphina was born into a life that she didn’t belong in. Bouncing from foster home to foster home due to her mother being too ill to care for her and her father being MIA was hard, to say the least.

But when a stranger shows up at her mother’s deathbed, claiming to be her father, Seraphina’s world is rocked. Even more so when she discovers that her father doesn’t exactly call the Earth plane home. Not only was her father an immortal being, but that made her half as well, and destined for greatness.

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New York 14882 United States