The Dread Wyrm Launch Date Today! (or maybe tomorrow…)




Traitorson three will finally be released in the next few hours.  In Canada, a surprising number of people already have it.  I’m glad for them, but not particularly glad that the mega-chain Chapters Indigo gets my books before my friends at Bakka Phoenix, without whom I’d never have been writing fantasy at all.

And I do not know why the Publishing Drow have elected, in their deep underground publishing centers, to have the US, Canadian and UK versions all come out on different days; none of them the date announced months ago (October 15th).

But anyway, it’s about to be out, and chances are you will have your hands on a copy very soon, or already do.

The glory of digital media is that I can now have a conversation with you about the book.  There are things I’d like you to know…

As of today, my new author website launches.  It’s less ambitious than my first one, but easier to use and more pointed at fantasy.   I mention this first because there are things you may find useful on the new website.

First, the Messenger stories.  There are blogs on this already, but you will enjoy Dread Wyrm more if you have read ‘The Messenger’ one and two.  Save ‘Renaissance’ for nearer the publication of book 4, Plague of Swords.  Or read it now.  Either way, it will only help show you how wide the world is…

Red Kinight 2 chapter heads

OK, Second, there are illustrations, (thanks to Dmitri Bondarenko) and maps (thanks to Steve Sandford).  Look for the resources.  Maps are handy, and not every edition has them,and again, those decisions are made by the Drow without any reference to me.  I also know that the UK editions had chapter head illustrations of many characters in the fashions and armour I had imagined for them, and most US and Canadian readers have never seen them.

Livianopolis smaller

Third, a a few comments.  Dread Wyrm had a complex evolution as a book, and had some very complicated developments to cover.  I will not risk spoilers, but I will give hints.  A major character was slated to die, and in the end, neither my editor nor I wanted her to die.  Her survival transfigured the story and to me made it much better.

The military campaign against Thorn and Thorn’s allies is made complex because war is never simple, and I have to assume that war with hermetical powers would be as complicated as modern, technological war.

And I feel I upped my ‘Arthurian’ game as well.  I spent a very enjoyable chunk of time reading a lot of 13th and 14th century Arthurian ‘fiction ‘ (Chanson de Geste) and I tried to improve the elements of the fantasy to represent not what we might like to see in ‘Arthurian’ but what a Medieval audience would have expected.

Dread Wyrm also, and finally, exposes swathes of the cosmology and meta plots, some of which will not be neatly resolved in this series.  I’ve always loved cosmology, so closely related to Theology and philosophy and other pursuits…  often my favorite part of deigning an RPG.  There’s more on the nitty gritty of how Hermeticism works, and there’s some mystery too.

And yes, there are some fight scenes, including, I hope, the best fight I’ve ever written.

And love…   as complicated as war.  I’m not Jane Austen, but I tried to represent the complexities of relationships being lived in the hothouse world of camps and war…

Some thanks are due:  I had some awesome copy-edit and early reading saupport, to try and make this cleaner than the other books; Nancy Watt (my sister-in law) Joe Harley and Matt Heppe (himself an excellent fantasy writer) all helped a great deal.  I enjoy working with Gollanz and Orbit; even if I call them the publishing Drow and find them sometimes inscrutable and mysterious… and thanks to Bakka Phoenix and the folks there for luring me into writing fantasy in the first place…

Anyway, I hope you like it.  I think it is the most satisfying, cohesive, and elaborate in the series.  Enjoy!


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