Monday, August 4, 2014

'The Wolf Talk' by Shaun Ellis - A Review

REVIEW OF ‘THE WOLF TALK’ BY SHAUN ELLIS
A Tool for Research on 'Wulfsuna'

            For me, this book began as a casual dip into research on wolf behaviour, intended to supplement a character profile. I anticipated a light read that would provide me with insights into the ways wolves move and communicate, thus enabling me to transpose those elements into the character. I wanted to know how these animals hunted, ate, slept, fought, played and spoke to one another. I wanted to understand pack hierarchy. The book did not disappoint.

            ‘The Wolf Talk’ is indeed a wonderfully light read. You can breeze through the pages and come and go as you please. Shaun’s prose is relaxed and familiar. You could be sat with him in the trees, watching the wolves as he relays all he knows. The subject matter is, however, by no means light. Shaun is informing, without being condescending; he is knowledgeable whilst humble. As per the spiritual connotation for the wolf, Shaun calls them his teachers. His book is not about training wolves, it is about learning from them. Having spent a lifetime engaging with Canids in the wild and in captivity, he has a unique insight. Shaun has lived among these secretive and intelligent creatures, sleeping with them, playing with them and challenging them to retain the status of a Beta wolf within the pack. In one amazing entry he recalls how an alpha male brought him a piece of meat from a kill because, although he had defended his Beta position at the meal itself, he had consumed no flesh. Alpha and Beta wolves feed on the more sumptuous areas of rump and shoulder, consuming the higher protein meat, thereby increasing their intake of nutrients and giving them a mental and physical advantage over lower ranking wolves.

Monday, July 7, 2014

I've been a little busy recently, so my blog has been a rather serene forest. I do bring good news though, so I hope you will forgive the lull. The first book in my 'Wolf Spear Saga' series required a final edit, which has not long been completed. Then, as some of you may have seen, I commissioned Lightweaver Productions to create a book trailer to promote 'Wulfsuna'. If you haven't seen it, you can view it here. Publication is a short way away, which is very exciting though also adds to the nerves! Hopefully I will have an update by the end of summer 2014 for you.


Monday, June 2, 2014

'Meet My Main Character' - a blog hop

Another blog hop! I do love doing these and reading everyone else's 'hops'. It's so interesting to see what other writers are up to and glean an insight into their writing world. This time I've been tagged by a fellow Dark Ages author Matthew Harffy. Matthew is currently writing a series of novels set in Seventh Century Northumbria, the first of these being 'The Serpent Sword'. You can read all about his main character in his blog hop here

As for me, come and meet my main character WULFGAR OF SACHSEN:-

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Antagonist or Protagonist?

ANTAGONIST: An opponent or adversary opposing action of another
PROTAGONIST: Principal character, supporter of a cause, from Greek = First Actor

Recently, whilst working on my WIP, I examined principal character interaction to solve some issues. Something interesting revealed itself. Let me explain (keeping names aside so as not to reveal plot spoilers!). There is an antagonist, one of my hero’s nemeses. He opposes the hero’s actions and becomes an untrustworthy adversary. However, he is opposing the hero because of something he believes in, a ‘cause’ (see ‘Protagonist’ above). Likewise I have a protagonist who, at the beginning of my story, opposes most things and people he comes across, including long-standing friends (see ‘Antagonist’ above).

Monday, April 14, 2014

My Writing Process, a Blog Tour

I was invited by the talented and prolific Simon Turney to take part in this blog tour about writing process. For those of you who are not familiar with Simon, he is the author of the Marius’ Mules series of novels and the Tales of the Empire books (Interregnum et al), plus several other projects. Go take a look. I am certain you will not be disappointed whichever story you begin with. He is passionate about history and writing, eager to share his knowledge and to give support to other writers. He is one of those chaps you pray are beside you in the shield wall, when your Lord cries “To Sweord”. You can view his part in the blog tour here

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Submissions, Self-Doubt and Spitfires!

Kill clichés. I read that somewhere last week. I often read it, somewhere. If, like me, you do not enjoy editing and find it the hardest part of being a writer, I wager you have an insatiable yearning for as much help as you can find on the subject. This is how I came across (many times) the words ‘kill clichés’. Bizarrely, as I sat down to begin this blog piece, a cliché is precisely the first thing that popped into my head. I opened a blank document and there it was, wagging its little tail excitedly and bouncing on the spot. Well, I thought, I’m not writing my novel now, I’m writing a blog piece and it is a sweet little thing. So I’m using it.

Monday, December 30, 2013

As the sun sets on 2013...


            During the longer winter nights, curling up on the sofa under blankets, it’s easy to lapse into quiet contemplation. Nearing the winter solstice, I thought about where my life had led me over the last twelve months, in particular my writing life. Waiting for the slow lengthening of days seems akin to watching an egg-timer; with each grain of sand that falls from top to bottom, a moment has passed. I thought about all the moments I could remember from the year and decided to share some of them.