A Few Nice Words

For anyone who might have missed it, my Small Gods series was on a blog tour for a bit. A few of the people who hosted did reviews of the books, so I thought I would gather them together in one place. Thanks to everyone who participated, to Jennifer Marston at Neverland Blog Tours for organizing, and to Ella Medler for being Ella Medler.


WHEN-SHADOWS-FALL-PBOOK005It rained fire the day the Small Gods fled.

A hundred hundred seasons have turned since the Goddess banished the Small Gods to the sky, leaving the land to mankind alone.

For Prince Teryk, life behind the castle walls is boring and uneventful until he stumbles upon an arcane scroll in a long-forgotten chamber. The parchment speaks of Small Gods, the fall of man, and the kingdom’s savior—the firstborn child of the rightful king. It’s his opportunity to prove himself to his father, the king, and assure his place in history. All he needs to do is find the man from across the sea—a man who can’t possibly exist—and save mankind.

But ancient magic has been put in motion by a mysterious cult determined to see the Small Gods reborn. Powerful forces clash, uncaring for the lives of mortals in their struggle to prevent the return of the banished ones, or aid in their rebirth.

Named in a prophecy or not, what chance does a cocky prince who barely understands the task laid before him stand in a battle with the gods?









DC_LARGE“You have brought to me Vesisdenperos, the sculptor. The one born to ensure the return of the Small Gods.”

When shadows fall, the darkness comes…

A disgraced Goddess Mother wanders blind and alone, praying for her agony to end. When a helpful apostle finds her, could it truly be salvation, or does worse torment lie ahead?

A sister struggles to understand a prophecy that may not be meant for her while her brother fights for his life. If the firstborn child of the rightful king dies, will it spell the end for everyone?

Darkness and shadow creep across the land in the form of a fierce clay golem animated by its sculptor’s blood. It seeks a mythical creature whose sacrifice portends the return of ancient evil banished from the world long ago. With its return will come the fall of man.

As the game unfolds, the Small Gods watch from the sky, waiting for their time to come and their chance to rise again. They wait for the fall of shadows, the coming of the darkness.

They wait for night to descend.

The quest for the revival of the Small Gods continues.






The Same Old Argument


I had a visit with a friend over the weekend who is making a big splash in the world of Big 5 publishing. Here’s a few differences I noticed between that route and self/small press publishing.

Originally posted on Guild Of Dreams:

By Bruce Blake


I did something unusual this weekend…I had a Saturday off. If you heard angels singing, now you know why.

While it’s not typical for me to have a day off from the ole day job on a Saturday, it wasn’t a surprise. Mainly, it didn’t surprise me because I asked for the day off. Those guys sure  know how to reward good work.

038575440XI took the day off because a friend of mine who is a traditionally published author was doing a book signing at a local book store. My friend–Jordan Stratford, author of the fantastic Wollstonecraft Detective Agency books for young readers–has a very interesting story that we can all feel jealous of (check it out here), but that’s not the subject of today’s post. No, today’s post is inspired by the conversation Jordan and I had regarding the differences between…

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Interview with Peter V. Brett, Author of The Warded Man (The Demon Cycle)


I don’t normally reblog posts that I haven’t written, but when Amanda said she had a Guild of Dreams post featuring an interview with Peter V. Brett, author of the Demon Cycle books, how could I not?
Enjoy this interview with a best-selling author!

Originally posted on Guild Of Dreams:

by A.M. Justice

51hu1K5f9LLAbout eight years ago, my husband came home from work and announced that his coworker Peter had given notice so he could become a full-time fantasy author. Curious and skeptical, I bought the coworker’s book, thinking, “Let’s see what this guy’s got.” I quickly learned he had the right stuff. From the opening lines about a community gathering together in the wake of a strange fire, New York Times Bestseller The Warded Man hooked me, and I’ve been a loyal follower of Arlen, Lessa, Roger, Renna, Ahmann, and Inevera since. My copy of The Skull Throne, Book Four of The Demon Cycle, published by Del Rey, will be delivered to my Kindle today, and I look forward to reading it on an upcoming family vacation.

I admire Peter’s tight prose, inventive storytelling, and nuanced characterizations. Arlen is one of my all-time favorite fantasy heroes, and…

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Finding Easter Eggs

imagesNo, this isn’t a post about a bunny hiding chocolate for the kids to find, though that is one of my favourite times of the year (I kinda like chocolate). It’s about a different kind of Easter Eggs…the ones Yahoo dictionary defines as ” a hidden message or feature, as in a video game or DVD.” Or a book.

Most of us have probably seen them pop up here and there. The first one I remember noticing in a book was when I was reading Stephen King’s excellent novella The Body (later made into the movie Stand By Me). In it, the boys sneak past a junkyard that has the meanest dog in town, until years later when a certain Saint Bernard got rabies. I’ve paraphrased, but I’d already read Cujo, so I caught the reference immediately.

The thing is, not all Easter eggs are immediately obvious to all readers, and that’s not terribly fair. It’s like when you know a good joke that you aren’t willing to share with everyone.

Since I’ve added a few Easter eggs in some of my books, I thought I’d let everyone in on the joke.

The first one I want to reveal has actually occurred in two of my books. You BLOOD3Lrgsee, I love my children a great deal, so I try to sneak their names in wherever I can. My son’s name is Erik, my daughter is named Anya.

Do you recognize where they’ve slipped in?

The first time it happened was in my Khirro’s Journey trilogy. The name of the kingdom from which Khirro hails is Erechania.

WHEN-SHADOWS-FALL-PBOOK005The next time is in my current epic fantasy series, the Books of the Small Gods. Two the main characters derive their names from my kids…Prince Teryk and Princess Danya.

I’ll be doling out more of my own Easter eggs over the next few weeks, so keep checking back. In the meantime, I found a great site where people list Easter eggs they’ve found in books, movies, video games, etc. Go check out eEggs.com to see if they have some you spotted.

What are some Easter eggs you’ve come across in your reading/viewing/playing? Do you like finding them?



If All Were Equal


Chantal Boudreau looks into the problem of gender bias that plagues fantasy fiction (and our wolrd at large). Great read, so take the time to have a look.

Originally posted on Guild Of Dreams:

fisherby Chantal Boudreau
When someone mentions female characters in fantasy, some stereotypes come to mind. There is the damsel in distress, the plucky princess, the matronly queen or the bawdy tavern wench, just for a few examples. These seem to show up everywhere, unfortunate tropes who sometimes serve as sidekicks and who often give the male hero extra purpose to their cause, but don’t have much purpose in their own right.
Then there’s the flip-side – the “strong female” character: the man-hating amazon, the stoic and noble female warrior who is an exception to the norm, the experienced sorceress or priestess who often proves self-sacrificing. While they may have a prominent role in the story, they tend to be loners and atypical of the women in that particular fantasy culture. Most of the women in the story other than that one outstanding character fall into the traditional medieval female roles:…

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When Shadows Fall, by Bruce Blake – 99c Promo Blitz


Three days only…grab a copy of When Shadows Fall for only 99 cents!

Originally posted on ellamedler:


If you like epic fantasy, the kind that feels like reality, you want this book. This is a world the likes of which you cannot even imagine. No problem, Bruce Blake has already done that part for you. Honestly, you want this book. And you want it now, while it’s on this incredible deal.


What’s that? You don’t know if it’s for you?

Read an excerpt:

It rained fire the day the Small Gods fled.

Balls of flame fell from the sky, shattering homes and skulls alike, burning gardens and turning forests to ash, setting alight both farmers’ fields and farmers’ lives with disregard. Much later, it would be said the Goddess banished them for their wicked ways, but on that day, the Small Gods were naught but men and women afraid for their lives. In the eyes of history and legend, the width of the line between…

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Excuses, Excuses – Part 1

In the year and a bit I’ve been working at my day job, it has been fairly common knowledge that I am a writer, but it wasn’t until my recent announcement of my Small Gods series being released through Paper Gold Publishing that my co-workers really sat up and started paying attention. Since then, I’ve had numerous requests for books and many conversations about writing and being a writer. One particularly interesting conversation happened a couple of days ago when I was speaking with my boss. During this interchange, he commented on how knowing someone who is a published author (and getting to know them before it really hits  home that they are such) actually changes how he thinks about authors at large, gives him the insight that writers are just real people like anyone else.

With this in mind, we come to today’s entry. In my last post, I mentioned that I had been away for a while after an intense year. I left it purposely vague because I tend to be a private person when it comes to personal issues, but I’ve decided it’s time to lift the proverbial veil. Time for all to know that Bruce the writer is a real person. To accomplish this, let’s take a look back a little over two years ago.

Those of you who are dedicated blog followers may remember my These Are the Days of Miracles and Wonder post from back in October of 2012. As a reminder, or to fill in those who might have missed out, I lost my job, which at first glance seemed horrible, as it would to most people. Then, after a couple of hours to reflect on my situation, it began to seem like the best opportunity of my life (and perhaps the worst decision ever made by my former employer if everything I’ve heard is true). Like anything else, the year that followed had some very high highs an some very low lows.

First, the good. In the year I was off work, I published 5 books plus 4 parts to an erotica serial co-written with my wife (have a look at my stuff here). During that time, I actually sold some books and made some money; more than the average writer makes in a year, to be honest (but nowhere near as much as I made at my job). Being able to sit and write or edit–do something that contributed to publishing and fed my creative needs–gave me joy beyond words. That, and taking daily walks with my wife, being able to get my daughter ready for school every morning,  being available when my family needed me. This was the dream I always wanted to live. Hours spent with the people I love, or sipping a mocha in a coffee shop with my laptop open in front of me. Life couldn’t be any better, right?

The thing about dreams is that you always eventually wake up.

Sound cynical? Come back soon for part 2 an find out more.

It’s Been a While/Paper Gold Publishing

I can’t believe it’s been 6 months since the last time I wrote in my blog (bad writer…bad!), and even then, the last time I lazily reblogged one of Steven Montano’s entries from the Guild of Dreams blog. I’d like to think that there are still a few of you out there wondering where I’ve been, what’s been going on. In case there are, here is the answer:


That’s not really true. After a very intense year, the time had come to take a little time away, to concentrate on my family and myself for a while. Yes, it was selfish  of me, but it needs to be done once in a while. The important thing is that it’s done…time to get back to work.

I’d like to tell you this is completely my own impetus, that my innate drive sparked back to life and is driving me back to it, but it would be wholly unfair of me to take the credit. No, this phoenix-like rising from the ashes (overly dramatic, you say?) was spurred to life by an email I received a couple of weeks ago. This magical correspondence came from my editor, the irrepressible Ella Medler. It seems that while I was lazing about ignoring my blog, Ella was busily doing all the work necessary to start her very own publishing company.

And her email was to invite me to be her first author in the newly created Paper Gold Publishing stable. After a couple or three years of struggling on my own, I now feel as though I have a banner_draft_1partner.

Ella and Paper Gold have just released WHEN SHADOWS FALL (The First Book of the Small Gods) and will be releasing the second book in the

WHEN SHADOWS FALL (The First Book of the Small Gods)
WHEN SHADOWS FALL (The First Book of the Small Gods)

series, THE DARKNESS COMES, shortly.

I could go on about how happy this makes me for a few hours, but I will leave that for another time. For now, go check out Paper Gold Publishing (they are open to submissions), and Ella’s announcement on her blog. As for me, expect to see more of me on Facebook and Twitter, as well as showing up here a lot more often. In fact, I think it might be time to redecorate the old place, spruce it up and give it some life.

Make sure you pop back and have a look soon.


Cheesy Fantasy Movies, Part 1


Great post from Steven Montano. What are your favourite cheesy fantasy movies?

Originally posted on Guild Of Dreams:

The Lord of the Rings trilogy is pretty awesome.  Game of Thrones, perhaps even better.  For fans of epic fantasy, these efforts represent the culmination of what we love about the genre, everything that pulls us in whenever we pick up a new novel or sit down to play Dungeons & Dragons with our friends — the drama, the politics, the darkness, the sense of danger and wonder and excitement and the discovery of worlds that can only exist in the imagination.

But not every effort to bring epic fantasy to the screen have been nearly so successful.  In fact, it’s safe to say that most of them were pretty awful…and yet we love them anyway.

It’s hard to say why epic fantasy translates so poorly to film, but it seems that much of what feels so sweeping and serious in the personalized experience of reading a novel comes across as a bit…

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