I completed writing my second fantasy novel The Goddess Queen in 2000. I'm a little amazed to realize that was twelve years ago. Now that I'm producing it as an audiobook, I get to assess it after many years of distance. Sometimes I cringe and think "I was way too wordy with that paragraph." Or "Wow, that phrase was redundant." But other times I'm delighted by an exchange of dialogue or how I described a visual detail.
As an artist I am also intrigued by the process of hearing another creative person interpret my fiction as spoken word. I am still not sure how to express what it feels like to hear another person perform my writing. I enjoy it, but I think it goes beyond merely pleasuring my ego. I contemplate the fluidity of artistic expression. A creation in one medium becomes another creation when translated into a new medium.
Art functions on a spectrum of many colors, shapes, and sounds. Think of all the mythological stories that have inspired paintings. Oral and written stories have been expressed in visual forms to expand communication opportunities for thousands of years. The relief sculptures on the walls of countless temples have illustrated myths. Each medium adds something to a story experience.
The creative vision of one artist can continue on through other artists and lead to new ideas and visions and reach more audiences. I imagine it as an oak tree dropping an acorn that a squirrel carries away to a place where a new oak grows, unless of course it gets eaten.
As I listen to the chapters of The Goddess Queen audiobook, I can feel how the epic story of The Rys Chronicles really shoots up and reaches for the sun. Everything has been set in motion. The roots have gone deep and the branches are growing. The relationships among Dreibrand, Shan, and Miranda deepen, and the plot unfurls new leaves as more characters are introduced. Specifically I'm referring to Faychan, the Masterspy of the Kezanada. He's one of my favorite characters in the whole series. I think he injects a lot of intrigue and interest into the story. Despite his sense of humor, he's a cold and calculating man, but in the story he'll be unexpectedly nudged by softer feelings toward humanity. No one really gives him credit for it, but his actions will be critical to the cause of the rebels. A complicated relationship between Faychan and Dreibrand will also evolve throughout the saga.
Although I feel that I've improved as a writer since I created The Goddess Queen, I remain tremendously fond of the novel. The story came together for me in the way I wanted it to. It's packed with action and intrigue and hopefully a few surprises.
Everything in the first novel Union of Renegades comes to fruition in The Goddess Queen. I wish I could have had more happen in the first novel, but like many series, the first part has a lot of heavy lifting to do with establishing characters, setting, and plot. I like to think of Union of Renegades as the regular season and The Goddess Queen as the playoffs. A life and death championship is in play.
Today I published two more chapters of the audiobook:
In Chapter 7 Reports from the Masterspy, Miranda meets the powerful Kezanada named Faychan and attempts to influence his conscience.
In Chapter 8 Dominated, Quylan endures the relentless training of Queen Onja, and the Atrophane prisoner Lord Kwan emerges from his reclusive depression.
Voice talent Andrew Wetmore is doing a lovely job with the reading. You can learn more about him at
Listen to a sample from the novel and access all available episodes at The Goddess Queen fantasy audiobook page.