I clicked over to the Amazon listing for The Elder King today, and was delighted to see that I already have 6 reader reviews, all glowing.
Thanks to everyone who took the trouble write a review. It
does matter, and it is appreciated.
It occurs to me that I could appeal to madness of crowds, and ask for promotional tips.
What methods would you suggest for a writer with not too much money to draw attention to his work?
We all know, of course, that the better the advice, the less
likely I am to take it. Because really useful promotional techniques generally
involve a degree of chest-puffing, arm-waving, and horn-tooting that’s simply
beyond my capacity.
As previously mentioned, I will be lecturing in the Barefoot Student Union Building, Union University, Jackson, Tennessee, Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. My subject will be, “When Christianity Came to the Vikings.”
More information here, if you’re in the neighborhood.
I mentioned a while back that we’re going to bring out another paperback edition of The Year of the Warrior. Baen Books continues to publish the e-book version, but we’ll be doing it in dead tree. Our talented friend Jeremiah Humphries has come up with a cover I’ve approved, and I’m over the moon with it.
We don’t have a definite date for the book release yet, but you can be sure we’ll let you know.
I’m very gratified that the good folks over at Grim’s Hall, one of my favorite blogs, have decided to host a multi-part discussion of my novel Wolf Time. It’s been a long time since I wrote that book, but there are some who think it holds up, and even has things to say today. Parts of it, I like to think, are prescient.
So here we are, post-election, looking at an outcome neither of us expected. I’m not about to do an end zone dance — this election wasn’t exactly a triumph for conservatism. Frankly, I expect the new president will do a lot more that will please you than you expect at this point.
But now seems to me a good time for a thought experiment.
I owe you an update. You know I’m done with my graduate work. That’s kind of an annoyance, in a way, because I’d gotten used to using school as an all-purpose excuse. “Gee, I’d like to help you move on Saturday, but golly, I’ve just got so much homework to do!”
Hard on the heels of that consummation, I was asked to do another edit on the Viking book I translated. I did that, and then when I had sent it in I re-considered and asked to have it back for one more pass. Because I like to do these things right. I have an idea that this translation will be a large part of the footprint I leave behind in this life.
Yesterday they sent me a draft cover for the book (to be called Viking Legacy, by Torgrim Titlestad). I’d share it with you, but I don’t have permission to. And it’ll probably change anyway. But I felt a quiet swelling of pride in my chest when I saw it. It’ll be good. Watch for it. This fall. Sometime.
Looks like I’ll be having some more translation work to do in the future too. I’m going to have to work out how to balance that with my novel writing.
I have been working on the next novel too, though. The problem is that this one’s a toughy. Of all the books in the Erling series, this will be the hardest to plot. It involves the lowest point in Erling’s life, and by extension in Father Ailill’s. I’ve got to figure out how to keep this one from combining the optimistic sparkle of Dostoevsky with the cheery fun of Game of Thrones.
Last night one of the characters did something I didn’t see coming. I’m still working out (while time is paused in his world) how Ailill will react.
I have in my hands the latest issue of a handsome publication called Fungi: A Magazine of Fantasy and Weird Fiction. It includes a “spotlight” section devoted to Your Humble Servant, which includes:
-“Lars Walker Biography”
-“Lars Walker Bibliography”
-“Laxdaela Saga,” a critical essay by me which first appeared on this blog
-“Song of a Grumphy Dwarf,” a poem by me, also originally published here (though they leave off the last verse for some reason, which kind of spoils it in my opinion)
-“Harbard,” my favorite of my own short stories, first published in “Amazing Stories.”
The bibliography was penned by our friend Dale Nelson, who also recommended me to Fungi’s publisher, Pierre Comtois.
I’ve been keeping a secret from you. We plan, God willing, to release a new novel of mine within the near future. This is a draft of the cover, with a lovely painting by our friend Jeremiah Humphries, and cover design by our own Phil Wade.
How is this possible, you ask, when I keep complaining of having no writing time because of graduate school? Well, this is a book that’s been pretty much finished for some time, except for a couple plot problems. I took my brief study hiatus this summer to work on those holes, and now I think she’s ready for launch.
The novel, entitled (obviously) Death’s Doors, is sort of a sequel to Wolf Time, but not what you’d call a close sequel. The location is the same, the town of Epsom, Minnesota, but a few years later, and with only a couple of the same characters showing up. In the world of Death’s Doors, assisted suicide has become a constitutional right. The main character, Tom Galloway, is trying to keep his depressed daughter from exercising that right, with no help from the authorities. On top of that pressure, a stranger drops into his life — the Viking nobleman Jarl Haakon (whom you may remember from The Year of the Warrior), who has passed through a door in time.
What we’re asking of you, at this point, is just your opinion on the cover above. Phil isn’t sure he’s satisfied, and would appreciate your input.
This is an absolute ripping yarn, as ripping a yarn as you are likely to find, and unlike some TV series, it’s steeped in solid historical detail. Do want a fun sense of how Vikings lived in 1000 A.D.? Read Lars’ Erling novels.
This one is the fourth, but the first two are combined into one book, The Year of the Warrior. Next comes West Oversea, which you can learn about by searching this blog. And here, Hailstone Mountain (The Erling Skjalgsson Saga) brings us the courageous, noble Erling Skjalgsson stepping into the battle of his life.
First, he appears to be wasting away without reason. Father Ailill discerns he has been poisoned by magic and must find the magician to break the spell. Erling isn’t willing to risk everyone’s life on a quest to save his own, so his family and friends fear he will die, but when Lemming’s daughter disappears, they suspect she has been kidnapped by the minions of old magical people who kill select people in order to live forever. Whereas he would not fight for his life, Erling will fight against this abomination. That is what kicks everything off, and Lars doesn’t spend a chapter here and there describing the life cycle of trees. Each adventure builds to the next.
Lars’ heroes are epic sized, but they are also realistically drawn. They deal with honor, slavery, and bigotry just as their historic counterparts did. One of the moving threads in this book has German priests refusing to work with a pagan magician who has joined their team. They could not condone the work of the devil in this man (a fair idea), and yet their motives were also of the devil. Sometimes, Ailill is no better. Continue reading Hailstone Mountain by Lars Walker→