I spent over a year working on the first draft for this novel, and these are the only notes I made on the two main characters.
I confess, I’m terrible with notes, so I often find it easier and more organized to keep all of the information in my head. I don’t create character charts, or worksheets, or blah blah blah, because I make a point of locking everything in my mind.
Which is probably one of the reasons why I don’t fit in with writing communities.
Besides. Most of the time, I just listen to what they have to say anyway.
So, here we are: introducing the two main characters from The Black Magus, my upcoming fantasy romance novel.
Are you as excited as I am?
The book I’m currently reading (Mythago Wood by Robert Holdstock) has a great big picture of the author on the back cover. I showed it to my husband and commented, “It would be absolutely mortifying to see a picture of my face displayed like that.”
One of the things that I really like about writing is the anonymity of it. I can hide behind characters, and reveal my innermost thoughts without revealing anything at all. I strive to be, as the author, completely invisible in my novels.
Of course, with setting up an author’s page on Amazon, they ask for a bio and photos.
I wonder, do readers really care what the author looks like?
Personally, I don’t.
Personally, sometimes I wish that I didn’t know what an author looked like.
I’m contemplating whether or not I ought to include that particular bit of info, and hide safely in my anonymity.
There are a gazillion blogs out there that are all to eager to tell you how to write, but I am not one of them.
My philosophy boils down to: just do it.
Remember, 50 Shades of Grey was a mega fad, despite the rather unnerving tie worn by Mr Grey in the first chapter. Obviously, the world can be forgiving.
So who cares about rules? Just write, rewrite, edit, and nitpick, then let it out into the wild. Maybe something will happen, maybe not. The important part is creating something that you enjoy.
My rating: 2/5
I’ve read other books by Julie Garwood that I enjoyed, so I had expectations for this one. However, if I had randomly found this book in a thrift store and read an excerpt from the middle, I very likely would have skipped it.
The main character is your classic Mary-Sue, who is described as being exceedingly beautiful (but naturally she doesn’t know it), possesses a man’s name, and is very intent on telling everyone and their dog that she isn’t a typical woman, before turning around and doing typical things left and right — like a typical woman.
The writing itself feels amateurish, and there are a surprising number of typos and editing mistakes for something that was originally published in the 80’s. However, lets forgive that, in light of the popularity of Harry Potter and Twilight. Everyone’s got to start somewhere.
The characterization was non-existent. Every single last stinking one of them existed solely to praise the main character. They were props, without even a semblance of a personality between the lot of them — even the main male character who served as The Husband. I’m not even sure how many characters there were, because they were all the same cardboard cutout.
And the main character wasn’t even likable.
Overbearing was the word that kept floating in my head, and I died a little inside every time she opened her mouth or did anything. I kept thinking, “Good God woman! Just get off my back already!” and I wasn’t even the one she was criticizing and bossing around.
The plot was non-existent, and everything that happened was obviously a lead up for gratuitous sex scenes, that weren’t particularly sexy — in fact, the obsession with the man’s tongue practically tickling tonsils kind of left me feeling a little gaggy.
To top it off, there were a lot of modernisms that were just plain hoakie, and I’m not even referring to the frequent use of the word “hot”. Despite the fact that the book is set in 12th century Scotland, I don’t think the author researched anything past the word ‘bliaut.’
While it’s not the worst thing I’ve ever read, I still wouldn’t recommend it.
If you decide to read it anyway, then you’ll understand what I mean when I say that the rocking chair was the corniest thing ever.
I think that the best way to describe Light Eternal is as a Gnostic romance. Or, as my husband so succinctly put it, I studied up on Gnosticism so I could write trashy fanfiction about it.
I like fantasy romance, and most of my ideas revolve around the simplicity of two people in love. One of my biggest disappointments with the romance genre (and fiction in general) is that very few of them start with marriage, which, in my personal experience, is when I would say the real adventure begins. My novels don’t revolve around the question of “Will they get together?” but rather, “What are they willing to do to stay together?”
I also like magic and larger-than-life characters, so with a touch of amusement I would say that I ascribe to the “One-Punch Man” style of storytelling. The conflict isn’t about how they are going to be strong enough to win, but is instead an almost human interest exploration of what life would be like as the strongest, smartest, etc.
Light Eternal also contains a lot of pagan elements, including soul retrievals and spiritual parasites. The story is about gods and goddesses surrounded by a rich mythology, verging on spiritual fiction. Because there is a strong theme of Light versus Dark, there are a lot of Gothic and horror moments as well.
Finally, it is a novella about trauma, mental health, and dissociation. It illustrates the damage that traumatic events can cause, and the struggle to continue on with life afterward.
It is the best fictional Gnostic romance book out there!