For a limited time, I am offering signed copies of The Lowest Realm for $15 when purchased direct from my online store.
Since I am clearing out some stock to make room for future releases, this offer will only be available in Australia (Sorry! Postage is anywhere from $60 – $80 AUD to send internationally. If you really want a signed copy at this price, email me for a quote). I’ll soon be offering bookplates for a cheaper alternative for my wonderful International readers <3
Life on an offshore oil rig is grueling hard work. For Nika the hard work, isolation and discipline is ideal.
On the eve of flying back to the mainland for a two week break, disaster strikes, and Nika is thrown into darkness.
When he awakes in a strange world, with no memory of his past, he finds himself in the presence of monks, who offer to help, on one condition. Nika must deliver an urgent message to the king, and in return, the mysterious monks will help him recall his memories and find a way home.
Instead, Nika is sent on a long journey with his new friend Freyne, and the spoilt Princess Iryna, to fulfill a prophecy that will restore balance to the world.
Nika must adjust to more than just a new world; as his body undergoes a transformation he does not understand, he must also deal with being hunted, forbidden love, mancery, and gods he’s never heard of.
I finally did it! I finally got my butt into gear and set myself up for streaming!
For those who don’t know, I’m a gamer at heart. I draw a lot of inspiration for games like Diablo, Vampire, Borderlands, and even Tomb Raider back in the day. My current addiction is 7 Days to Die, a zombie first person shooter.
I’m glad you asked 😛 I have been dabbling in making videos of my map making, and thought it would be cool if I could actually stream some sessions. Another author I met through Twitter also told me that some writers live stream their writing sprints, which I thought might also be cool. Mind you, my sprints are more of a slow walk through the field of distractions…anyone watching me write will probably be treated to YouTube, random Google searches, and probably some porn too (just kidding…..maybe).
This is all a work in progress, so I’m not going to promise amazing regular content (yet). But I will do my best to keep things interesting, so that those of you who want to, can join me on the journey as I race to meet my 31st July deadline for The Darkest Realm.
That’s all for today. Take care <3
As some might know, I’ve resumed my work on The Darkest Realm. Similar to book 1, the map is a work in progress as I write, as some things need to change as I go. I thought I’d do a post regarding those extra things to consider when making fantasy maps / writing fantasy stories.
When working on a fantasy story and map, we need to consider so much more than just forests and the story; we need to take into account science while we’re at it.
Regardless of your type of fantasy world, it is likely to exist on a planet and have a sun. Therefore, you need to consider seasons, time zones, hemispheres and an equator. Basic rules of physics and astronomy still apply, so we have to consider the planet’s rotation in relation to the sun, etc.. Once you have these penciled in, you can start to consider what biomes would exist.
I use our own Earth as a reference so my climates and biomes are more realistic. For example, I wouldn’t find a scorching desert right next to the southern pole…unless it’s caused by magic!
My characters have just finished crossing the Lorendian Desert, and are entering a savanna, which is roughly where South Africa would be in relation to Australia. So today I’ve been looking up to check seasons and all that good stuff. It turns out that the African savanna tends to have a dry and wet season instead of summer, autumn winter and spring. Good to know.
As my characters head into the south / west hemisphere, I’ll have to flip the seasons around and give them appropriate weather and climate. These things may sound minor, but to me they can be the difference between being totally immersed in an alternate fantasy reality, or being jolted out of the experience thinking ‘Wait a minute, that doesn’t sound right!’
There are some really useful guides online. Gardening and farming guides are good such as the one below. My dad was a farmer for years before retirement, so I learnt to always trust gardeners and farmers when it comes to the true seasons. Also, check out this video on YouTube to see how our Earth experiences seasons and why.
The final thing I want to add in is the use of a calendar. I know that every writer does things differently, so it may not be your cup of tea. But for my fantasy stories, I have a calendar and track every single day of their journey. That way can keep track of the seasons and ensure travel times and speeds are realistic, etc.
My next step for this calendar is to flip seasons as they prepare to head into the northern hemisphere.
One final point to mention. For those who enable long distance travel in their magic systems, remember that if your person is way up in the north and it’s lunch time, if they teleport to the opposite side of the world, chances are it will be dark there.
I hope this helps in your fantasy work!
For those who have pre-ordered The Darkest Realm, I’m super sorry but I need to push back the date. It wouldn’t be fair to my readers to release a messy draft. I want to make sure this story is well ironed out and as edited as possible, and that won’t be possible if I rush. I’m sure you would rather read something amazing than a scribble on a napkin. Don’t worry, I’ll have it out around August to September if all goes well.
A final reminder that I am now streaming on Twitch. I do both gaming and stream my map making, so if you want to see me live and have a chat, follow me on Twitch https://www.twitch.tv/amyalexcampbell.
~ AAC <3
I’m just keeping it short and sweet today. Between uni, assignments, and life in general, I haven’t had the motivation to sit down and write. For the last 6 months or so, I’ve been sitting at the kitchen table to write.
Urgh. There are so many distractions, that I just can’t concentrate. So I’ve finally cleaned out the spare room and made it into a proper office!
I now have a space for writing, cartography, and chilling in general. It’s still a bit of a mess, but meh, mess can be cleaned.
I’ve been working on The Darkest Realm – I know the progress bar on this page doesn’t seem to be moving, but that’s mainly because of edits. One scene just isn’t sounding right, so I’ve been working on fixing it and fixing it. Last night I got to start writing the next scene which is from my sexy new guys POV (I’m so in love with him 😍).
Still taking me a while to fully plan Between the Lines. Since I am writing a Maori character, it is only right that I buddy up with some people and have a chat so I don’t write anything that is insensitive, accidentally racist, or just plain wrong. My neighbor is a New Zealander, and has kindly offered to introduce me to some of his friends. It will just take time, that’s all.
Thankyou to those people who have been visiting this site a lot in the last few weeks. I see you, and I really appreciate you taking time out of your day to visit 🙂 Thanks also to those who recently purchased / read Beneath the Grandstand too 💜
That’s all from me for now. If you haven’t already, please sign up to the newsletter. I’m waiting until I get a decent number if subscribers before I start with content. As per my promise, it will only ever be used for upcoming launches and exciting big news, so don’t worry about it being spammy 🙂
Take care everyone! Much love, AAC 💜
First of all, Happy Easter! I hope you all had a safe long weekend and didn’t eat too much chocolate 🙂
I’ve been in a bit if a slump lately and haven’t written anything for a couple of months. I’m hesitant to call it writer’s block, because I know I’ve written myself into a wall and haven’t planned this chapter very well. (See my post on this here)
So what do I do when this happens? I think about the scene and play with it in my mind until I have some sort of visual. I also find images help inspire me to get out of the slump.
Currently, Nika, Freyne, and their friends are in the Lorendian Desert, traveling across the Great Causeway. I have totally stuffed up the chapter, so I have been working on rewording parts to make it work. Instead, I have to scrap the entire chapter and start it again.
Here are some random photos I found online that have helped to spark the creative juices. This set includes different types of desert.
This set contains different stone bridges. The Causeway is one long raised bridge across the desert, with regular shelters to protect those who cross.
And of course, the Fens! The character who lives here is awesome, and I can’t wait to introduce you to him!
I’m also hung up on the name for one of my cities that my characters will soon be visiting. If you have any suggestions, leave it in the comments below!
Anywho, here’s hoping I can crawl out of my funk and get this finished in time for the June release!
Take care all <3
I thought I would share another quick update just so you know where I’m up to.
It has been a crazy few weeks. Our car was written off (not our fault, thank god everyone is ok) which meant the stress of dealing with insurance and getting a new car. As of tomorrow we’ll have a nice Kia Cerato to hopefully last us a few years.
My mental health has not been good. I have PTSD from an accident just over 10 years ago, and although I wasn’t in this one, it did bring up a lot of painful memories, flashbacks and graphic imagery. PTSD sucks, and has its own stigma surrounding it. I have a great support system though, whom I love and appreciate. It’s ok to not be ok 💜
This week we are having a rain event here in Sydney / NSW, and today we are seeing lots of flooding in areas. The last time it flooded was in Feb 2020 – I posted about it HERE. During that time we had a visitor, Riley Tortopolous, who was washed up onto the road. Hubby brought him home, and I set him up in a quarantine tank to ensure he was unharmed. Once the flood waters receded, we released Riley back into his pond. I think of him often – such a gorgeous little guy!
I have the next week and a bit off work, and hope to get some serious writing done. You’ve all been so patient, waiting for the next story, and I thank you so so much 💜
Now, I’m going to eat my pizza, and get some writing done!!
I came across a new feature of WordPress that allows me to convert my posts into podcasts. This is so cool from an accessibility stand point. So now people can listen to a robot ramble on and on instead of having to read it!
To celebrate this awesome (new?) thing, I have converted chapter one of Beneath the Grandstand – for free! Click the play button below to listen.
I’ll update my site to have its very own podcast page. Meanwhile, you can also subscribe to it on whichever platform you choose to listen on:
Today was the big day!
I dragged my butt out of bed at 4:30am, packed Davo’s car, and we headed off to market. Thankfully the roads are somewhat abandoned at 5:30 in the morning, so we were making good time.
Until I sent us the wrong way and we ended up on the M4 motorway heading towards Penrith!!
Thankfully we were able to get off at Wallgrove rd and back track, and made it to the market with plenty of time to spare.
I was most impressed by how well this market is run. There were signs out already, directing us where to go, and the staff were most helpful and organised. In no time, we had our space and were able to set up. I hired a marquee just in case it rained, and soon had our little stall ready to rock.
We went a little QR code crazy seeing as they are cool again, then sat back and waited.
Sadly, there wasn’t nearly as much foot traffic as usual. Of the 138 pre-booked sites, only 55 turned up. The threat of rain was enough to warn off most stall holders and even visitors, not to mention Covid. The day ended up being hot as buggery and not a drop of rain. It was lovely that a few people dropped in to say hi and have a chat, but sadly we didn’t get the chance to meet many others.
This occasion has been a great learning experience. We now know the busiest days of the year, and have agreed that we need more signage to help pull customers in. No one could see our bundle deals from the walkway, so we’re looking into big signs that say ‘Meet the Author’ and ‘Meet the Director’. We also want a sign to say ‘support independent artists’.
For those who are worried about planning events and having no one show: there is always a possibility that you won’t get a single visitor or sale. Take a friend with you and turn the whole thing into something positive. There is nothing wrong with not drawing a single customer; this means you now have valuable market research data, and can analyse it to better target your audience.
We learnt today that the two main demographics were mostly non-English speaking folk, who were there to buy antiques and bargains, not queer books and films. We came at the wrong time of the year and didn’t stand out enough.
I’ll be uploading some hot specials to my store over the next couple of days. so keep your eyes tuned and don’t miss out!
Now that Covid restrictions are lessening here in Sydney, my film director friend and I have decided that it’s time to host a meet and greet. Due to Fair Day being cancelled this year, we’ve had to look outside the box for ideas.
We’ve decided to book a stall at the Blacktown Drive-in Market!
To visit the Facebook event page, click HERE.