"The Voice of the Land" Book one of the 'Warriors of the Land" trilogy.

Forthcoming from Artema Press in March.

Could a world be sentient? Cavan's natives think so and are prepared to defend their belief.

When one of Victor Grantham's clones commits suicide, he sends another to the world to discover why.

Bred to be a killing machine, Steven Carogan discovers a world that will transform him, both physically and mentally.

On Earth, there are those who believe Cavan and its resources belongs to them. The Cavalana believe otherwise, but how will they persuade Carogan to break through years of indoctrination to prove it?

Beta reader's comments: Truly extraordinary, in concept and execution.

In this science fiction novel by Susan Elizabeth Curnow, a clone created for
no other purpose than to serve his ruthless master finds more than insight into
the suicide of his friend and fellow clone when he is sent to the world of

It may be the answer to all he's ever longed for if he can avoid the imminent
danger of insanity and death--and accept that the land is a sentient entity he
has been chosen to serve once gifted with the blood that gains him so much more than a powerful pair of wings.


Working every day leaves me zombied out and I have a hard time getting into writing mode.
One advantage of this, however, is that I go into thinking mode. And thinking means researching. Which sometimes I find a pain and other times I enjoy.

Today was *really* discovering about the motivation behind Vicadia's actions. I mean, I always had a plot and ideas, but sometimes they need a boost to make them work.

An example of 'stuff': Imagine it scrawled across a notebook with copious side notes and lots of oohs and aaahs..

What is the significance of the number eight?

It is the shape of infinity/Biblically it means salvation/resurrection/new beginnings.
First cubic number 2x2x2
Fibonacci number - a perfect cube/ a cube has eight vertices.
Particle physics - 8 fold way
Nuclear physics - second magic number - binding energy. Large isotopes with magic numbers of nucleous are said to exist in an island of stability.

Oh, and don't forget eight bits thingy on computers...

Castel del Monte means "fortress of the mountains" and resembles a mandelbrot set, which in turn tends toward infinity. There is the presence of the golden ratio in the main portal. The castel is a fractal model.
The castel is also a town in Puglia, S Italy.

Do people really think writing fantasy is easy? It's a lot of fun, but, easy? Hmms. Tries to remember her physics...

Today's image comes from wikipedia.




I've never fully been able to answer the question: Why do you want to be
published? Not to my own satisfaction anyway. Not when it is such a  heartbreaking industry in general. I am guessing it is simply the need to share what I write. If it were merely an ego boost, to have folk say, boy, she's good,  I would be shouting from the treetops about how wonderful I am and that if you  don't read my next book well, you really aren't on my radar.

The thing is, it is the content which matters, not necessarily the person who
wrote it. And yes, it does have to be good. It has to capture the imagination on
several visceral levels. It has to be well-written enough that a reader doesn't
stop to think about the writing so much as 'fall' into the story. It has to have
characters you can't live without or characters you want to kill. It has to have
a voice you recognize, a world you can live in for a short time, and sometimes
an escape from reality in whatever genre you choose.

If you ask readers why they read, including myself, most times they will say
it is to escape 'real life'. It's just a quieter method than TV or movies or
computer games.

The best books are those where inside your mind you are there. Totally and
utterly wrapped within so that your mind sees the characters instantly and knows where they are. Where you cry when they are hurt and laugh when they find joy and yell out loud at the 'enemy'.

I've found that in many books, and if I were to answer that question above, I
hope you can find it in mine. Because it was all those books I've read
that made me want to write and share, so that you might, for just a brief time,
fall into another world, another place, other minds.

Live. Laugh. Love.

Today's photo - somewhere in the Rockies - Susan Curnow

She looks like she should be dancing.

I said in a previous post what inspired me to write "The Warriors of the Land", but it was also pictures of bat skeletons. They vary a lot but really, underneath that furry exterior, they aren't so different from us. If their evolutionary path wandered away from ours, it still remains pretty close. Their wings for example are merely the extension of hands. They've been around since the dinosaurs and you can successfully combine their blood with ours. At least, it has been done for medical research. Another question I asked when researching was, can they walk upright? Well, yes, some of them can, kind of. Mr. Desmodus, our wonderful vampire bat, does so when feeding, the delightful creature. He's about the ugliest thing you've ever seen, too. There are some cute ones, though. Take the Indonesian fruit bat with his six foot wingspan and his bright eyes, and mop of fuzzy red hair, and the teeny tiny little pipistrelle, which weighs less than a ten cent piece. A bat for every location and situation. Neither are they 'blind' as myth suggests. They are very clever with their echo-location however.

So, since science fiction is very often about the 'what-if' factor I took the premise of, what if you combined the two, and, why would you want to? Which produced about twenty four thousand words on why I thought someone should. *G*

Yes, all right, I have a  weird imagination, but a couple of things (subjects) tickled me here. How close bats were on the evolutionary scale to humans, and genetic manipulation. Such a touchy subject that one. Fiddling about with genes; creating the 'perfect' human, or mix and matching to create some kind of hybrid. What is scientifically possible and impossible.

Throw in some 'rights'. I mean, who does have the right to own a world? Humans are very arrogant, and they don't change, well, not an awful lot. That could be because we are the most efficient killers out there, or one of them. We are at the top of the chain and to stay there we don't always do nice things.

No such thing as 'can't' in my book. But if you want to find out why someone decided to play with genes, you will just have to read "Warriors". In "The Voice of the Land" I take a physically perfect clone and throw him to the wolv...er bats. Indoctrinated from birth to obey his makers, he must make a decision. And that decision might alter the whole human race.

Today's photo comes from the Natural History Collection.

This is Henna wondering if I am edible, and, yes, it was before I dyed my hair :)

Okay, I have some questions. Since I have a new novel coming out in April, I admit to still floundering around with the promotion/marketing thingy. Although I do take it very seriously, I still refuse the 'buy my book mentality', so here are some questions for you:

When searching for a new e-book or physical book to read, how do you go about it? Is it purely by word of mouth? Great cover and blurb, or price? Or a combination.

What kind of giveaways most draw you to pick up a new read?

Shiny things, a free book, or... insert what makes you wish to buy from a particular author.

How often do you actually go to an author's website to read about them?

Even if the author is little known - a newbie - what is it that draws you to try their writing?

Thank you in advance. I really appreciate your input.

Today's photo, Henna, Jelmer and me - Richard Curnow

The theme of this anthology is mythical Celtic creatures.  It is open
for submissions until the last day of February, 2013.

Thus far, we have the following contributors:
•Henry Szabranski, author of  "The Unforgiven Dead"
•C.N. Lesley, author of "The Seventh Child" and "The Hurdy Gurdy Man"
R.J. Marie, author of "Now Shall the Battle be Won"
•Susan Elizabeth Curnow, author of "Undine"
•Crash Froelich, author of "Beware the Morrigan, my child"
May-Lin Iversen Demetriou, author of "The Thief"

The word count for submissions should range from 2-5K.  You may write in
any style of fantasy except children's stories and erotica. If your story
gravitates toward horror, please make it more intellectual than gory.  

So, there is still room for more stories if you are so inclined. Please contact Artema Press if you wish to be send a story for consideration. This is a high-quality anthology, so only send your best :)

I am delighted to say that I will have two more books published this year. The first is the "Magic Creatures from Celtic Mists", an anthology in which my story 'Undine' is within. That will be in April.  I will post the cover and a list of fellow authors as soon as I know them. Suffice it to say, there are some stunning stories within.

Around May, the first of a science fiction trilogy will be released, which already has the blurb here on my website under 'Warriors of the Land", and that will be "The Voice of the Land". Many more details about that to come along. The trilogy is not a conventional trilogy where one story follows upon another but is set five hundred years apart, to follow the development of several species. So each book is a stand alone.

I had fun doing research for this one, learning about genetics and bats. Closest I can compare it to is Martha Wells' 'Raksura' stories, although this is sci fi and not fantasy. Or you could simply call it 'speculative'.

The blurb for the first book is thus:

Could a world be sentient? Cavan's natives think so and are prepared to
defend their belief.

When one of Victor Grantham's clones commits suicide, he sends another
to the world to discover why.

Bred to be a killing machine, Steven Carogan discovers a world that
will transform him, both physically and mentally.

On Earth, there are those who believe Cavan and its resources belongs
to them. The Cavalana believe otherwise, but how will they persuade Carogan to break through years of indoctrination to prove it?

Very excited about both of these books!

The flower epitomizes Hawaii. That glorious abundance of green things, flowers and an amazingly deep turquoise sea. It was a wonderful trip. To go from negative temperatures to the balmy winds of Oahu. From dressing like an Inuit to wearing shorts and sleeveless t-shirts and the occasional sarong. My goodness yes, I did wear a skirt and I didn't even feel uncomfortable doing so.

Our hotel was excellent. Hale Koa was built for the US military to have R & R and many take advantage of it. Yes, of course we went to a Luhau and we went to pearl Harbour, but otherwise she just toured, drinking in the scenery and drinking mai tai's on the beach listening to music and watching people dance. Very relaxing, although my body insisted on waking between 5 and 6 a.m every morning. Which just gave me more time to enjoy everything.

No, I didn't like the abundance of people, but then, I never have. I hated the streams of folk at Pearl Harbor simply because somehow it took some of the dignity away from the memorial, but, of course, everyone had as much right to be there as I had. And they should see it as a reminder of what war can do. Uncanny to see a rusting ship resting on the bottom of the harbor, and,yes, the oil does truly still rise. Almost like the spirit of those who were trapped below.
Tearful moments at the Luhau because of course, a military place, the announcer decides to do a tribute to fallen soldiers and there are Laurel and I holding a candle with tears streaming down our faces, but, it was all good.
Best parts were simply watching the crashing waves and listening to such happy birds singing in paradise. Plus meeting the author, Kate Elliott for a coffee. Such a nice lady.

Would I go back? Heck yeah, but probably to one of the smaller islands with less hustle and bustle. I barely touched a computer, which was actually a good thing. We had very limited access and I couldn't handle Laurel's Mac in any case. Horrors, it didn't have a mouse and very sensitive touch system. and I am such a creature of habit.

Nice, though to forget about stuff for a while, which was the whole point. Did miss my dh like crazy, and the animals. My horse just about ate me, the cat is sucky as hell and Makoiyi was just so pleased to be back where he belongs.
Will get back to the writing thing later, I promise. I am still basking in my
tan :)

Tomorrow, I am going here:

<a href=" photo of <a href="http://www.tripadvisor.ca/Hotel_Review-g60982-d120709-Reviews-Hale_Koa_Hotel-Honolulu_Oahu_Hawaii.html">Hale
Koa Hotel</a> is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Therefore I will probably not be blogging, although I may go on the internet now and then :)

One of my best friends decided that I should go. So I am. Let us hope the beautiful Hawaiian sunsets will give me plenty of inspiration and that I come back rested and roaring to write!

Behave yourselves while I am away




Well. As I said the other day, I entered Nathan Bransford's competition for a bit of fun.

Here: http://blog.nathanbransford.com/

So please go along and vote for your favourite, because there are many to choose from.

Today's picture is Castel del Monte, the castle which inspired "Vicadia" and thus the opening paragraph. credit for the picture goes to Heritage Sites