“From the Ashes of Ruin” Blurb Blitz Blog Tour

BBT_TourBanner_FromTheAshesOfRuin

Goddess Fish Promotions is sponsoring a blog tour for my series, From the Ashes of Ruin. The tour began on February 1st, and will last until February 19th. We are currently in the 2nd week of the tour. It is primarily a Blurb Blitz Tour, meaning that every stop will have a blurb and excerpt from one of the books. The Blog Schedule is listed below. The books in the series so far include: Drasmyr (The Prequel), The Children of Lubrochius (Bk.I), and The Sceptre of Morgulan (Bk.II). Also, make sure you check out the sponsor of the whole tour–Goddess Fish Promotions–it wouldn’t have been possible without them.

Also, I will be awarding one randomly chosen commenter on the tour (for those who comment on the tour sites—NOT atoasttodragons and NOT my web-site) a $15 Amazon Gift Card.

    Blog Schedule

February 1: Room With Books
February 1: Linda Nightingale…Wordsmith
February 2: Edgar’s Books
February 3: Kit ‘N Kabookle
February 3: Writer Wonderland
February 4: fuonlyknew
February 5: Blog of Jacey Holbrand
February 5: Beyond Romance

February 8: LizaOConnor
February 9: The Snarkology
February 10: Cover2Cover
February 11: Hope. Dreams. Life… Love
February 12: Two Ends of the Pen

February 15: Dina Rae’s Write Stuff
February 16: Laurie’s Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews
February 17: Natural Bri – review
February 18: With Love for Books – review
February 18: Who She Reads
February 19: Where the Story Comes First
February 19: Around the World in Books

“From the Ashes of Ruin” Blog Tour

BBT_TourBanner_FromTheAshesOfRuin

Goddess Fish Promotions is sponsoring a blog tour for my series, From the Ashes of Ruin. The tour begins today, February 1st, and will last until February 19th. It will be primarily a Blurb Blitz Tour, meaning that every stop will have a blurb and excerpt from one of the books. The Blog Schedule is listed below. The books in the series so far include: Drasmyr (The Prequel), The Children of Lubrochius (Bk.I), and The Sceptre of Morgulan (Bk.II). Also, make sure you check out the sponsor of the whole tour–Goddess Fish Promotions–it wouldn’t have been possible without them.

Also, I will be awarding one randomly chosen commenter on the tour (for those who comment on the tour sites—NOT atoasttodragons and NOT my web-site) a $15 Amazon Gift Card.

February 1: Room With Books
February 1: Linda Nightingale…Wordsmith
February 2: Edgar’s Books
February 3: Kit ‘N Kabookle
February 3: Writer Wonderland
February 4: fuonlyknew
February 5: Blog of Jacey Holbrand
February 5: Beyond Romance
February 8: LizaOConnor
February 9: The Snarkology
February 10: Cover2Cover
February 11: Hope. Dreams. Life… Love
February 12: Two Ends of the Pen
February 15: Dina Rae’s Write Stuff
February 16: Laurie’s Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews
February 17: Natural Bri – review
February 18: With Love for Books – review
February 18: Who She Reads
February 19: Where the Story Comes First
February 19: Around the World in Books

Fantasy and Demons

BBT_TourBanner_FromTheAshesOfRuin

A ways back, I wrote an article for my newsletter (sign up here, if you are interested in receiving future mailings of my newsletter) dealing with demons. It was a light-hearted foray into a potentially serious subject. I say ‘serious’ because I’m not entirely certain if real-life demons are fiction or reality. Those familiar with my life story might know that I suffer from a psychological disorder and a delusion that revolves around demons. So, forgive me if I take them more seriously than you might be inclined to.

 

Anyway, most of the different religious sects across the globe believe (or at least through much of their history did believe) in demons. They developed various rites to exorcise demons from possessed people (that is drive them out). I’ve never studied demon lore and I have no idea how to perform such an exorcism. I just want to point out that there may be a ‘demon phenomenon’ whose underlying reality is markedly different from what the religious believe it to be.

 

According to the religious a demon is a spirit or entity that can harass or even possess (that is, take over) a regular human being. When this happens, a priest or even witch doctor is needed to drive the demon out. However, in this modern age the whole concept of a demon seems kind of archaic, a throwback to primitive times. Nowadays, most psychiatrists and medical doctors would attribute demonic activity to psychological disorders. Even things like uncontrolled telekinesis and other such phenomena could be explained if we allow that the brain is hideously complex; it might be responsible for such activity at an unconscious level.

 

Anyway, back to my original point. I am a fantasy author. And I write about demons. However, I will be the first to admit that I did not do massive amounts of research on the subject of ‘real’ demons existing here on Earth. What I “know” of demons I’ve gathered from a miscellany of sources throughout my younger reading years: I’ve been influenced by AD&D, my Catholic upbringing, and other sources, but I never seriously studied the subject under the auspices of the aforementioned Catholic Church. So, basically, I may have made mistakes in my so-called demonic lore.

 

And I have no intention of trying to fix those.

 

If there is any truth to demon lore, I don’t want to inadvertently give a recipe for someone to try to summon a demon in real life. Hence, the lore in my novels is basically misinformation. I’ve heard this or that where wizards would use salt (I incorporated that bit a little in my latest book) or some other detail, but all the details and information are summoned mostly from my imagination. If you try a ritual detailed in my book, be assured: it won’t work—even if demons are real and not figments of the imaginations of disturbed people; you need more than a circle cut in stone to summon them. Also, in my book, all the demonologists are evil, and the rituals described are likewise evil. After all, in my mythical fantasy universe summoning demons requires a blood sacrifice. Don’t do that in real life. If it’s an animal, it’s unnecessary, cruel and very uncool. If it’s a human, it’s murder, no ifs, ands, or buts. Not that I’d really expect someone to re-enact something they read in a fantasy book. But I had to write about something today; so, I chose this.

 

That’s all I wanted to say today.

 

From the Ashes of Ruin” Blurb Blitz Blog Tour

BBT_TourBanner_FromTheAshesOfRuin

Goddess Fish Promotions will be sponsoring a blog tour for my series, From the Ashes of Ruin, during the first half of February. The tour will begin on February 1st and will last until February 19th. It will be primarily a Blurb Blitz Tour, meaning that every stop will have a blurb and excerpt from one of the books. The Blog Schedule will be listed shortly. There’s still a lot of open slots, so if you are interested, please contact Goddess Fish Promotions. The books in the series so far include: Drasmyr (The Prequel), The Children of Lubrochius (Bk.I), and The Sceptre of Morgulan (Bk.II). Also, make sure you check out the sponsor of the whole tour–Goddess Fish Promotions–it wouldn’t have been possible without them.

Also, I will be awarding one randomly chosen commenter on the tour (for those who comment on the tour sites—NOT atoasttodragons and NOT my web-site) a $15 Amazon Gift Card.

Atlantis: Fact or Fiction?

This post has little to do with fantasy literature, per se. At least not directly. The connection is that the story of Atlantis is kind of fantastical.

 

The story of Atlantis comes to us from Plato, specifically from his dialogue The Timaeus. I never studied that one in college. I’ve read bits and pieces of it—mostly the stuff about the demi-urge and such. Anyway, within the dialogue we are given the legend of Atlantis in which Plato tells of an ancient advanced civilization that was wiped out in a cataclysm of some sort—earthquakes and floods, basically—which not only destroyed the Atlantean civilization in its entirety, but devastated the Athenian nation as well. Plato provides a number of details about the Atlantean civilization which I will not go into here. I will say, having read several books on the subject now, that I believe the Atlantean Legend is based on a real nation-state that once existed. Exactly where it was, though, I have no idea. It could have been somewhere in the Mediterranean, somewhere along the North African coast, somewhere along the Spanish coast, somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic, or even in Antartica.

 

However, I would like to distinguish here between Plato’s Atlantis and the New Age Atlantis. Plato’s Atlantis is the Atlantis of which he wrote. It may have been a technologically advanced nation, but only a technologically advanced nation relative to its time. Perhaps Plato’s Atlanteans mapped South and North America; perhaps they knew of Antartica; but they did NOT fly around in planes, nor did they develop a space program based on crystals or something like that. Why do I say this? Because according to the Platonic Legend, the Atlanteans were at war with the Athenians, and the Athenians won said war. If the Atlanteans were so advanced they were flying around in planes, they would have mopped the floor with the primitive Athenians. And they didn’t. They lost. No super-technology for you.

 

The New Age Atlantis is the term I would use to refer to some ancient culture that may have existed in ages past with technology on par with or perhaps even exceeding our own. Plato’s Atlantis provides no support to such a theory. Such an Atlantis may have existed, but we must look elsewhere for evidence (we only refer to it as Atlantis for romantic reasons for surely it was called something else during its times). Things like the Nazca lines in South America, or those tiny golden airplanes that were found, again in South America. A New Age Atlantis would require a global catastrophe to wipe out and reset the humans of this planet back to the beginnings of the Stone Age. Such an event is possible but, at first blush, appears kind of loony. That said, perhaps I’ve watched one too many episodes of Ancient Aliens, because I’ve grown convinced that there was either a New Age Atlantis-like civilization in our past or we actually were being visited by aliens as far back as our prehistory. The evidence presented on Ancient Aliens is (sometimes) quite compelling.

Announcement: Upcoming Blurb Blitz Virtual Tour for “From the Ashes of Ruin”

As of November 2015, I released my latest novel, The Sceptre of Morgulan, for general consumption. It is the second book in my series, From the Ashes of Ruin. In honor of the release, I am doing a Blurb Blitz Virtual Tour for the entire series so far, including the prequel. There will be excerpts and blurbs from each book. That’s right; you’ll get tantalizing excerpts not only from The Sceptre of Morgulan but also from The Children of Lubrochius and Drasmyr. Once again, Goddess Fish Promotions is organizing and handling the tour (They do a great job). The tour will run three weeks from Monday, February 1st through Friday, February 19th (M-F only, I believe). We will post a schedule when more information becomes available. Also, note that an Amazon Gift Card will be awarded to a randomly selected commenter on the tour (Note: comments on matthewdryan.com do NOT count, NOR do comments on my blog).

 

Hope to see you on the tour.

The Art of Writing: Brainstorming

So, you want to write your next big novel or short story. The first step (at least it is for me) is to brainstorm your story. Jot down all you can about your story. Start with the characters: the people around which the story revolves. Who is the main character? What characteristics define them? What are their goals? Is there a love interest? Do the same for him or her. Flesh them out. Once you have your characters straight, you can work on the plot of the story. What’s the conflict? What drives the tension? What is the story arc? Every story must have a beginning, middle, and end. Differentiate between such things here while you’re brainstorming. Don’t get upset if it’s still a little muddled, or even if you have more than one exclusive storyline in mind. You’ll straighten it out by the time you’re done. Brainstorming, as we were all taught in school, is just about stirring the pot of ideas. Write down everything you can think of. Every little detail. It doesn’t matter how small, nor does it even matter if it contradicts something you’ve already written down. Just get ideas on paper.

 

When are you done? Well, it depends on the length of the work in question. If it’s just a short story, you’re probably done when you have delineated the main characters and fleshed out the plotline. Then, you can start writing. If it’s a novel, you have to do the same type of work, but the details can be a little less clear. Many novelists change things or add things halfway through their work. Don’t feel boxed in because you’ve already brainstormed a path for your novel. Leave yourself some flexibility; it’s all part of the creative process.

 

Once you are done brainstorming your ideas, the next step is to outline your story. Of course, all of this is moot if you are a “pantser.” That is, a writer that writes by the seat of their pants. They kind of brainstorm as they go along. I used to be like that, but no more. Now I plot things out. Must be my old age, I guess. :)

 

Goodreads Giveaway … Time is Running Out!

In celebration of the recent release of the latest book in my fantasy series (the book is called “The Sceptre of Morgulan,” the series is called “From the Ashes of Ruin.”) I am holding a Goodreads Giveaway. Three hard-cover copies of the book are available, one to each winner of the giveaway. More information can be found on Goodreads; just follow the link below:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Sceptre of Morgulan by Matthew D. Ryan

The Sceptre of Morgulan

by Matthew D. Ryan

Giveaway ends December 30, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Behold: The Updated New Cover for “Drasmyr”

I’ve been wanting to update the cover of my first novel, Drasmyr, for quite some time. I finally got around to it just this past week or so. If you want to let me know what you think about the new cover, contact me on Twitter: @MatthewDRyan1 . If you wish to purchase the novel in ebook form, click here; or in pbook form, click here (It may be a few days before I upload the new cover to lulu, though). Here are the two covers side by side:

Drasmyr, The Novel

The Original Cover.

DrasmyrRevised

The New Cover.

As you can see, I merely added a few things. I liked the original cover, but I always felt it lacked something. With only the building really being visible on it, it was difficult to figure just what the story was about. You could tell it was meant to be sort of creepy, but that’s about it. And also there is the blood-like writing. That effectively sets a tone, but in my view, having seen it listed next to other covers many times on-line, it looked a little sloppy or even amateurish sometimes. Particularly because it didn’t convert well to thumbnail pics. The blood was unclear and served only to confuse the writing making it difficult to read when small.

As far as the new pic is concerned, I am quite pleased. The female vampire adds some body to the pic, and the sinister cloud vampire does the same. Deciding on the correct pic for the cloud vampire was really a struggle. We went through a number of different options. The first designs involved human-like vampires, but eventually we started experimenting with the cloud. We added a face. Blurred the face. Then emphasized the eyes. And the wolf was a nice add on, too. Overall, I think it makes a much better cover.

So, I’m just doing this private Cover Reveal on my own site and nowhere else to reveal it for the first time. You should feel privileged to view it. Oooh. Ahhh. :)

Again, if you want to let me know what you think about the new cover, contact me on Twitter: @MatthewDRyan1 .

 

New Cover Reveal and Goodreads Giveaway!

Upcoming New Cover Reveal: … Sort Of. I’ve had my cover for my first book, Drasmyr, redesigned. It bears some similarities to the original cover, but has had a number of improvements added. I will “Reveal” the modified cover here on my web-site on 12-14-2015. Hope everyone has a chance to look at it and maybe give me some feedback. Thanks, all.

 

The Goodreads Giveaway has begun: In celebration of the release of my latest novel, The Sceptre of Morgulan, I’m holding a giveaway on Goodreads from now through December 30th. The novel is Book II of my series, From the Ashes of Ruin. It was preceded by the prequel Drasmyr, and Book I The Children of Lubrochius. I will be giving away three free hardcover copies of the The Sceptre of Morgulan, one each to the three winners of the giveaway. Winners are determined randomly by Goodreads. For more information and to sign up for the giveaway, follow the link below:

Link: http://wp.me/p3Lbq0-sg

 

Happy Belated Saint Nicholas Day! (It was December 6th, you know.)