Well, the paperback is now available. This leg of the story, I guess you might say Act II of a three-act arc, was a labor of love, and while the old adage maintains that you’re not supposed to favor one of your own children over another, I must say, I absolutely adore this issue. That’s a difficult thing for me to say, too, because despite marketing’s main goal and purpose being to play up the hype and appeal of your product, I’m a bit modest really when it comes to my own work. But I will allow myself the indulgence of telling you this, with all sincerity: If you pick up these first two issues (the first one currently being free for two more days on the Kindle store), you might find the first one slow-building, but I firmly believe you will not be disappointed by the end of the second issue. I really do feel that strongly about it. I’ve often heard and read the advice “write the book you would like to read”. . . well, Issue #2 is that book. I’m serious when I say I don’t like to brag, but it’s just such a quick-moving, fun 122-page read!
And, just because I wanted a longer post, the following is the introduction from Blue Daunia Issue #2: The Sinister Sleep of Shevara:
For Christmas of 1992, I got my first word-processor. I was 17 at the time, and had big plans for that thing, which is fitting, because it was a big thing, literally. I want to say it was a Smith Corona, but whatever it was, the thing was the size of a small suitcase. It had a built-in printer, a thin green monochrome calculator-style LCD screen, and a 3.5” floppy drive. That last one really excited me, you see… because at last I could rack up volumes of my upcoming masterpieces and save them all on such tiny little storage media.
In the weeks leading up to Christmas that year, I could barely contain my excitement, because I already knew I would be getting this thing, and I had worlds to create! I was very much a fan of comic books back then, and even moreso what they represented to me: vast universes in which a creative, resourceful individual could create characters both mundane and mystical, and in which the stories of these characters and their interactions with each-other could be told in a continuous series. (Incidentally, this is the same reason I love Dungeons & Dragons, but I digress).
More than anything else in the world, at that moment, I wanted my own comic book universe, which I could mold and shape and tinker with to my heart’s desire. But here’s the thing… I cannot, CANNOT, draw. My stick figures sometimes get mistaken for ampersands, if that tells you anything about my artistic abilities. So what was I to do? Well, I could write. Everyone seemed to say so. Sometimes, every now and then, they still do! So that was my angle… I would do a comic book universe in text form, and store every story on those tiny little floppy disks, because surely, those would never, ever get lost or fall prey to the hands of time.
So Christmas rolled around, and I got the gigantic word processor, and I cannot for the life of me think of a single blasted thing I wrote on that thing, except maybe a school essay or book report or some-such. Oh, and the screen could be tilted upward at different angles to better catch the light, because there was no contrast control… but whenever I would tilt the screen forward, it would ease itself on back down again. So I did what I had to do: I got the rifle-like weapon from JetFire of Transformers toy fame and wedged that behind the screen when I lifted it. That sure learnt it!
So, what am I trying to get at, amidst all this rambling? No, I’m actually asking you, because I honestly don’t remember. There was a point at some… point, I’m sure of it.
Oh! Manufactured universes. Fast-forward 25 years, and I’ve finally made myself one! And here it is!
An exotic world not unlike our own, but entirely beholden to the mythology, legends, and pantheon forged by the almighty sea. With a myriad of cultures that run the gamut from backwater to highly advanced, Azaria is a world whose sole provider of technology is as secretive as it is powerful, at times competing with the oceanic pantheon itself for ideological supremacy. But there is something else beneath the shimmering surface, deep within the Hadopelagic Zone… waters so deep that all cultures unite in referring to them as “the Blue Hell”… something darkly intangible and unspoken. Could there be a third force, ancient beyond all recorded knowledge, vying for supremacy?
In her ongoing quest to investigate the disappearance of the brother she barely knew, her adventures aboard her father’s final ship design would lead her crew all across the coastlands of the world of Azaria.
Set sail with the crew of the Blue Daunia on their harrowing oceanic journeys. The swashbuckling monthly serial continues here. Join Daunia and her crew as they traverse a world of towering cliffs and arctic tundras, dense tropical forests, sweeping mountainscapes, cavernous subterranean depths, marble palaces, gothic spires, dusty libraries and raucous drunken inns. In the life of a freelancer, you never know where your next job might take you, or what odds you might face to get it done.
In this second installment, the crew continue their stay in the port town of Illunstrahd, though far from the recreational stint they hoped it would be. Along the trail to solve a few grisly murders, death seems to haunt their every step. Exhausted and uncertain of their fate, they come at last to the ancient temple of the demi-goddess Shevara.