The Kassul - Cover Art

I've posted a few illustrations from Maria Owens in the past - a Taygrit & Ouhlktoo which she did for my novel, Warrior's Fury - but recently she was able to do a digital painting for me to use as the cover for the short story I've recently been working on, The Kassul...

Cover Designed by Maria Owens

Pretty cool, right? Maria is a fantastic illustrator and concept artist, and I was so glad to be able to work with her to get this cover put together.

And, unbeknownst to me, she did the painting in such a way that I'd be able to use it for a full book cover if it ever went to print!

Illustration by Maria Owens


If you'd like to read an excerpt from this upcoming ebook, go ahead and click on 'The Kassul' tab in the menu bar above ;P :]

P.S. Warrior's Fury is now available for the Kindle! ;) Check it out on the sidebar >
P.P.S. I'm sure you've already noticed the new background for my blog . . . but I thought I'd mention it anyway ;P ;)


Flyers and a Book Festival

Heyo All! :D

Check out these flyers that a very good friend of mine helped me design!

There's 500 half-sheet flyers in that first picture . . . . 'Why so many' do you ask? To which I respond with the reason for the second half of the title for this post ;P :]

This Saturday I will be selling (and/or signing) copies of Warrior's Fury from a booth at a book festival in Downtown Portland (from 11am to 5pm) . . . It's the 5th Annual NW Book Festival at Pioneer Courthouse Square and we're looking forward to seeing a lot of people and sharing our appreciation for great books!

Click HERE To Find Out More

Thank you, and I hope everyone has a great week :D


Marks in the Sky

A cool breeze relieved the dry dustiness of the air between the two largest barns on the lands belonging to Jray`Ov.

The breeze also threw hay-dust into Jray`Ov’s face. Closing his eyes, Jray waved his arm for someone to take his place and took a few steps to the side as he attempted to rub the dust from his eyes.

Ah, the wonderful things that one gets to experience in a day’s work on a farm, he thought ruefully.

“Are you all right, seyr?”

“Yes, yes, of course, just keep at it.” Jray waved back at the men still unloading the wagon as he blinked the last of the irritant from his eyes. “I’d much rather have the livestock’s grain stored and out of the way before it comes time for the harvest of our own grain.”

Jray nodded to the man that handed him a flask of water before returning to help the others. They had nearly finished stacking half of the bales beneath the cover hanging out of the side of the barn that housed the few dozen beasts that Jray raised for various purposes.

Taking a swig from the flask, Jray pressed his other hand against the small of his back as he turned to survey the small hayfield that he kept up for the livestock. The field lay on the west side of the barns and was sectioned off from the rest of his farmland by a six-foot rock wall that had originally been the beginnings of an ancient fort that had long been forgotten.

As he stared at the wall – slightly higher in some places than others – he wondered if the walls were indeed intended to be used by the Othrarians who had constructed them.

Thinking of the inhabitants of the neighboring kingdom, Jray was reminded of the recent rumors he had heard of contentions rising between Kroal’Ishlon, king of Othrar, and Fi’Siondo, the king of Rowltho.

Supposedly armies were amassing over some unreasonable request made by the envoy of Kroal’Ishlon to Fi’Siondo. Jray had never met his king, but - though nothing he had heard of Fi’Siondo gave him any desire to do so – he hadn’t sounded like the kind of man to begin a feud lightly.

It had been years since Jray had actually made it a point to keep in contact with anyone who was informed on the state of the kingdom and its stance with its neighbors, but he had heard plenty of rumors about tension growing in the villages and cities residing along the length of the Border River that separated Rowltho and Othrar. Supposedly part of it had to do with Othrarian accusations against merchants from Rowlthoan who were – according to the Othrarians, the rumor spreaders would stress – charging an excessive amount for the foodstuffs that they peddled.

That actual tension between the kingdoms could develop over greedy merchants and food Jray found hard to believe, so he doubted the rumors’ accuracy.

Should actually send a letter asking some questions and see what’s starting the rumors, he thought, lifting his wide-brimmed hat from his head to run his hand through his sweaty, tangled hair.

“Look, Grandfather!”

Jray turned and looked down to find Ze’Donoa, his grandson, holding up an insect for his inspection. The boy’s bright green eyes were wide with expectation.

Smiling, Jray nodded and tousled the boy’s thick, curly hair.

Suddenly the hair on the back of Jray’s neck stood on end as another gust of wind, stronger this time, blew in from the north-west.

A barely discernable whistle itched at Jray’s hearing, and he tilted his head in an attempt to pinpoint its cause. He jolted back at the succession of thunderclaps that struck overhead and looked up to find streaks of wispy cloud-like streaks of glowing color – their ends pointing north-west and south-east – in the otherwise clear sky.

Every muscle in his body tensing as he felt the light wash of Power prickle his skin, Jray clenched his jaw.

“What was that, Grandfather?” Ze’Donoa asked taking hold of his hand. “What are those strange clouds in the sky?”

Nayrl Flash-marks. A group of dosh are making their way with great haste to Reglan’Rowltho or another city along the Border River,” Jray whispered turning his head to look in the direction which the dissipating trails of pure nayrl indicated the dosh were headed.

“Something must have happened,” one of the men atop the wagon said, causing a chorus of whispers to rise from the rest of the group standing around the wagon.

“Some dosh are known for their tendency to do whatever they please,” Jray said in a louder voice, turning to look at his servants. “Let’s not assume they are moving in force until we know it is fact.”

A dozen more thunder claps drowned out Jray’s last word, and he glanced up just in time to see a small figure burst off in the same direction as the other dosh must have gone, leaving a glowing trail among the other shimmering Flash-marks.

Seyr Jray’Ov!” Someone called from up the path leading to the village.

Jray walked out from between the barns to meet the young man who was frantically waving his arms as he dashed up the path.

“The Othrarian army has struck at several cities along the Border!” the man huffed as he slumped to a stop, dazed fear in his wide eyes. “We are at war. . .”


Art from Friends, Part 4

Recently I was able to attain some more concept paintings (digital) from +Maria Owens, a friend of mine who is far better at art than I...

This is the result of my describing an Ouhlktoo to her:

She originally did a sketch similar to this on paper as I described the creature's head to her . . . then she came back to me a couple of weeks later with this digital version xD

Then she moved into a full creature sketch :]
I think she captured the potentially sinister nature of the Ouhlktoo perfectly. And I can totally see a creature sixteen feet tall having a wingspan of that size (anyone who knows bird anatomy and stuff like that feel free to correct my ignorance ;) . . . also, I really like the way she got the antlers to fit on its head - I've tried to sketch this thing dozens of times and could never quite get it to look right, even with some references to work from :P :]

I am amazed, impressed, and inspired by her attention to anatomy even though it's just a made up critter :)
And then she surprised me with a really epic, full size, rendered version!!! xD


Great stuff, right? Much gratitude to +Maria Owens  for her generous contribution to my odd ideas ;P :]