#SPFBO Guest Post: Finding Fairy Tales by A M Justice

I’m super excited to share this guest post I wrote for Lynn’s Books. Lynn is the SPFBO judge who will be reviewing A Wizard’s Forge, and she gave me some space on her blog to talk about how “Rapunzel” made its way into the narrative. Thanks, Lynn!

Books and travelling with Lynn

Today, I’m really pleased to welcome to my blog the author of A Wizard’s Forge: Amanda Justice.  Amanda has written a post about the inspiration for her book A Wizard’s Forge which will be one of my upcoming reads for the Self Published Fantasy Blog Off.  A Wizard’s Forge is a deconstructed version of Rapunzel.  If you know anything about my blog you’ll know I love fairytale retellings so excitement am I to read this post: 

Rapunzel4‘Sometimes inspiration is like a beacon, drawing the author toward her goal. Other times, the influence is a sleeper agent that infiltrates the subconscious and adds unexpected layers to the narrative. My SPFBO 2018 entry, A Wizard’s Forge, is a retelling of “Rapunzel,” but not necessarily one I set out to write.

Because we’re usually introduced to fairy tales as children, and we hear or read them over and over, they tend to…

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Guest Post: Gender-Equal Fantasy – On Writing Fantasy Without Patriarchy by E.J. Beaton

E..J. Beaton beautifully articulates the rationale for and approach to writing epic fantasy where genders share power equally. I share the same philosophy about gender-neutral fantasy worlds and the possibilities they create for readers and writers alike.

The Fantasy Inn

I began writing epic fantasy (also known as high fantasy), the kind of fantasy fiction set in an entirely imagined world, partly because I am a woman. That might seem strange, in a genre historically known for stories about male heroes and patriarchal dynasties. Women were often constrained by their roles as love interests or victims in the fantasy novels I had read. Yet epic poetry and literature called strongly to me, and the prospect of making it my own glinted like a spear-tip on the horizon.

I wanted to see a person like me as the lead character in a story. I wanted to see a woman driving and shaping the narrative, not merely fitting into it as a complement to the hero’s journey. I had read and loved The Lord of the Rings, but I longed for a story where someone like Arwen could be the ultimate queen…

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Sound Check Part 2: How My Audiobook Came Together

This past June, I described how I waded into the audiobook pool and went about auditioning and selecting a narrator for A Wizard's Forge. This past week I returned notes and corrections on the last six chapters, and I gotta say, I'm thrilled. So, without further ado, let me introduce you to her. Leah Casey … Continue reading Sound Check Part 2: How My Audiobook Came Together

SPFBO Book Reviews: Darkmage by M.L. Spencer, and Finder of the Lucky Devil, by Megan Mackie

A Wizard's Forge is entered in the 2018 Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off (SPFBO), and while I await news of its fate on Lynn's Books, I've started reading books by my fellow travelers on this journey. Here are my reviews of the first two I've read since the start of this year's SPFBO. I reviewed The Ill-Kept … Continue reading SPFBO Book Reviews: Darkmage by M.L. Spencer, and Finder of the Lucky Devil, by Megan Mackie

Let the #SPFBO 2018 begin : my process

The SPFBO starts today (Aug 1, 2018). A Wizard’s Forge is being judged over at Lynn’s Book Blog, and in today’s post she explained how it’s all going to go down.

Books and travelling with Lynn

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Today sees the start of the fourth Self Published Fantasy Blog Off (#SPFBO).  The competition involves 300 self published books, distributed between 10 blogs.  Each blog will eventually choose 1 finalist leaving 10 finalists for the second phase.  Each blog will then read and score the finalists which will hopefully result in one book with the highest score winning the competition.  More details can be found here and if you scroll down you can see the list of books and how they’ve been distributed.

I’ve taken part as a judge in the past 3 competitions but this year I might shake my format up a little.  Previously I’ve divided my books into six batches of 5 books and then chosen 1 book from each batch – this has then given me six semi finalists to choose between.  In the past I’ve usually aimed to read at least 20% of the…

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Author Spotlight: Soundtracks by A.M. Justice – Guest Post

Today on RockStarlit Book Asylum, the spotlight is on Prince Ashel of A Wizard’s Forge. Even though Ashel cedes the narrative center stage to Vic, he is a born frontman. Many thanks to Rock Star Timy for letting him shine!

RockStarlit BookAsylum

When I gave a call to a few grimdarklings friends to write submit articles and any other materials they see fit for my blog, one of them asked what topics I’d like to see. I gave him a few, music in fantasy among others. Amanda, like a hawk sensing its prey, swept in and took the opportunity. Which made me pretty happy, because, well, you know, I’m a music addict, so finally someone combined my two love: books and music! Amanda gives us a glimpse how she uses music during her story. This article is rather interesting, so hopefully you’ll like it as much as I do! And now I give the spotlight to her:


A.M. Justice  I’m a Brooklyn-based author, lover of science and wit, sporadic scuba diver, and once and future tango dancer. My characters live only in my head, but they’re real, and I put them through hell.

Music…

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News Update: A Wizard’s Forge Passes First Hurdle in the 2018 SPFBO

The Self-Published Fantasy Blog Off (SPFBO) is an annual competition run by Mark Lawrence (author of Prince of Thorns and Red Sister, among others) since 2015. Each year, Mark takes a maximum of 300 entries (first come, first served; this year the 300 slots disappeared in about a day and a half) and distributes them among … Continue reading News Update: A Wizard’s Forge Passes First Hurdle in the 2018 SPFBO

Separating Immigrant Children from Parents

A lot of bloggers have offered opinions on the immigrant children crisis lately. D. Wallace Peach’s thoughts beautifully echo my own.

Myths of the Mirror

This child was not removed from her mother at the border, but her cries demonstrate the stress these children are under even without being separated from their parents. Time Magazine cover.

This isn’t a political blog. and yet there are times when it’s vital to speak out and use whatever platforms we have available. This is such a time.

The US is in the midst of a moral crisis as the Trump Administration continues a border policy that results in the systematic abuse of immigrant children. Many Americans, of both parties and of all faiths and walks of life, are horrified, and we are doing what we can to support these children and their families by sharing our outrage, time, talent, and treasure.

There are some people who insist that these children are just fine. And physically, that may be true. But that comment conveys a lack of understanding about…

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