Hello everyone! Firstly, I’d like to thank my wonderful hostess for allowing me this opportunity to talk to you. Now, who am I? My name is Antonia Tiranth, I’m fairly new to the published scene, my first book The Quickening made its debut on February 2nd and has already sold over 200 copies. My second book, The Gathering, will be released on July 20th from Lyrical Press and continues the tale begun The Quickening.
When I started writing The Gathering I ran into a small problem. For the first book, I set the tale in my own hometown, something I knew well. But for the second, I wanted to set it in England and I have never been there! So what did I do? I turned to a writer’s most valuable tool…RESEARCH. Yes, it’s not just about sitting down and writing whatever comes into your head. Sometimes, especially with stories set in real world settings, you need to do your homework. In college, my first fiction writing professor drilled into my head “Write What You Know.” Unfortunately, he seemed to be in the camp of thought that if you don’t know it, don’t even try to write it. But with careful research you can write about places you’ve only seen in pictures. I even talked with an online friend who lived in London. One of our conversations went something like this:
Me: So, does it always rain in London?
Him : If you try to say that, then anyone who has been here will laugh at you.
Research is not only needed for locations but for other things as well, if you’re female you need to research how to write from a male perspective. If you are straight, you might need to research how to write from the gay/lesbian perspective. The internet can be very helpful and there is a huge library of writing references available. My own collection of such books is growing by the month. So don’t be discouraged if you are thinking about writing a story set in the Middle East but have never been out of your little town in the US. Grab a computer and have at it!
So here’s a little taste of The Gathering::
The sleek black limo rolled to a stop in front of the giant granite steps, and I opened the car door, not waiting to be assisted. I left my bags, knowing they would be brought in, likely to my old rooms. Once a room was claimed, it remained yours to use whenever you wished.
I hurried up the steps and into the manor house. With little conscious effort I walked the path to Calidan’s rooms. The hallway approaching his bed chambers was lined with sobbing Rikashi of all three remaining clans. Whatever troubles were brewing, sorrow was quelling it for the moment, at least here.
I paused at the closed double doors that led to his bedroom, needing a moment to make certain I was in control of myself. Before I could knock, the door swung inward on silent hinges. A golden-haired female stood on the other side.
“You must be Shirak,” she said with a sad smile. At my nod, she stepped aside. “He’s been asking for you. He hasn’t much time left.”
“There is nothing you can do for him?” I asked, assuming she was a Surion.
She shook her head. “All my powers cannot rescue a body ravaged by time, youngling. Go see him now.”
I nodded again and stepped into the bed chamber. It smelled of cinnamon, Earl Grey tea, and death. I did not think I would ever be able to drink Earl Grey again.
My feet made no sound on the thick carpet as I moved forward. Calidan’s son, Severick, rose from a chair in the corner, glaring at me as he left the room. I shook my head; that one had never liked me.
Calidan lay on an impressive gilded four-poster bed, his eyes closed, and for a moment I feared I was too late. But then I saw the slow rise and fall of his chest, and I could hear his labored breathing as I moved closer.
“Calidan?” I called, keeping my voice low.
His eyes fluttered open, and a smile touched his lips. He lifted a hand and waved me forward. I knelt at the edge of the bed, taking that hand carefully in mine. “Lazing about in bed when there is work to be done, sir?”
A rolling exhalation of breath was all the chuckle he could manage. The old Rikashi’s mouth worked up and down, but his voice would not work.
“Do not try to talk. You need to rest so you can get well. You said when I left I was not finished with my training.”
He shook his head. Whatever he needed to tell me was important enough for him to make an attempt while on his death bed. I reached for his mind and found it as feeble as his body looked. I could only pluck a few words from his fading thoughts—tariel, jewel, protect.
Another frown pulled the corners of my mouth. “I do not understand, Calidan.”
Calidan sucked in a rasping breath, letting it out with the words he tried to speak. “Jewel…duty…protect.” His hand went to his throat, tugging at a chain there. “Yours now, Shirak.” He placed something warm in my hand and with a sigh, closed his eyes again.
I looked at the amulet nestled on my palm. It was a beautiful star shaped gem. A myriad of colors sparkled within its depths. It seemed to pulse with a light of its own.
“Calidan, I cannot accept this.”
“Yours to protect.” The words rang in my mind and the amulet flashed. A wave of dizziness took me briefly. A tone, sharp but not unpleasant, sounded in my ears. Faces flashed in my mind, twelve of them. Five were male. Five were female. The final two faces were blurred and difficult to make out. To my surprise, Aerandir’s face was one of the visible ones. My own face flashed last in my mind, the image lingering before fading. It was over as quickly as it had begun.
“What in the hell was that?” I murmured, staring at the amulet.
If you wish to get in touch with me I can be found in several places on the internet:
Twitter - http://twitter.com/AntoniaTiranth
Blog – www.antoniatiranth.blogspot.com
Facebook – www.facebook.com/tiranth
Feel free to friend me or drop by for a visit!
And the trailer for The Gathering: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dxQivdyJbSc