Fantasy. The word used to make me cringe. For most of my life I avoided the genre as much as I could. I had these preconceived notions that fantasy was boring, long, and intimidating with a complex magic and society system that would go so far over my head that it may as well have been the moon. It wasn’t until my ex-boyfriend pushed me into joining a Dungeons and Dragons session that I started to change my mind.
Now that session was awful. I hated almost every minute of it. The rules were insane to try and follow. The character limitations sucked. The story was just as boring as I had thought it would be from the start. But my aunt pushed me to give the game another try. To create my own world free of everything that aggravated me the first time and make it something worth looking forward to. I became the dungeon master and I broke most of the rules, obliterated most of the limitations, and went purely by what was the most entertaining to watch unfold.
My players were encouraged to do crazy, outlandish things that should be impossible to do. This campaign went on for two years, and it was most fun I had playing a table top game. We didn’t take the books seriously, we made everything up as we went, and it was beautiful.So, when the opportunity arose to write within the fantasy genre, I decided to give it a shot.
I was going to craft my story with different elements from my D&D campaigns and make it more comical then intense. It was a blast, and within three weeks the bones for Becoming A Hero were laid out. The story follows a man who sells pots and pans for a living with his pet donkey. He falls into a lost kingdom which is cursed by an evil king to hold everyone within the land hostage to his will. My hero has the chance to run away but decides to fight for what was right- not what was easy instead.
I hope, through my work, others find out what I did. Fantasy can be everything, or nothing short, long, easy, complicated, stereotypes and their counterpart. Break free from any preconceived notions and let this amazing genre take you to a beautiful new world.
Fantasy is what you want it to be, so make it fun.
Bachman: What’s your favorite book you’ve written so far and why?
Bond: Honestly, it would be my Harvest Saga series. I love the world in that book. It’s dystopian and so much fun to write because it’s one of my favorite genres to read. And it’s more complex than it seems.
Bachman: What keeps you inspired?
Bond: I seem to have caught the writing bug and it won’t let me rest! I’m always thinking of new plots and characters. But I’d have to say that my family, friends and fans keep me going. It would be pretty disheartening not to have support. But when someone drops a note on my timeline or in a message that says they read and loved my book and they ask when the next is coming out….that’s the best feeling. It keeps me going.
Bachman: What inspired your latest story?
Bond: Crazy Love is set in a time where a second US Civil War has broken out. It’s not a story about the war itself, but rather of one widow’s attempt at survival and of her grief. But more than that, it’s a story about second chances. We all need those.
It was inspired by my home state of WV and the fact that we all feel depression and grief at times. But we can’t let it overwhelm us or take us down. We fight.
Bachman: Anything you can share about this story?
Bond: Excerpt: “Some days I wonder if I’m not better off dead,” I vowed, clenching my teeth tight. The muscles in my arms burned like wildfire and sweat beaded and dripped off my face. I gave the enormous iron monster another shove for good measure. It wouldn’t budge. Stubborn thing.
Backing away, I gave it the stink eye as I caught my breath and let my body rest for a minute. My loud and overly dramatic groan filled the moth-ball scented air around me. Damn it. I’d have to ask Joey for help. And, if there was one thing I hated, it was bothering Joey. He already did so much to help me out since…
I turned and looked at Andrew. He wore a tight white t-shirt and a shit-eating grin, reclining in the plush upholstered fire-engine red chair that had been Mrs. Maddox’s favorite. It was God-awful—gaudy and matched absolutely nothing in the house, but hey, when you live to be ninety-something, you earn the right to a ridiculous chair, and just about anything else you want to wear, have or do.
Pushing my fingers into my curly brown hair, sweat coated my skin. I growled at him. It was all his fault. “This is all your fault.”
That arrogant smirk fell off his face quick. “None of this is my fault,” he protested, sitting forward with elbows on his knees. The full lips of his mouth dropped open.
Bullshit. “It totally is and you know it.”
He huffed and then ran the fingers of both hands through his now-hanging head. “Are we going to go through this again?”
“No. Not this morning. We have to hurry. Now, disappear while I go run and get Joey.”
I looked back at the cast iron beast and sighed. When I looked back toward Andrew, he was gone. He followed direction better as a ghost than he ever did when he was alive.
I would have to suck it up, put my big-girl panties on as Andrew had always said and ask for help. Trudging to Joey’s house in the dark was gonna suck. The winter had been harsh and hadn’t quite let go of the land or the weather yet. Technically, it was spring. I guess the seasons aren’t dependent on those little calendar squares after all. Effing calendar.
I guided myself to Joey’s with the flashlight’s tiny sphere of light. Thank God for the battery stockpile. The path beneath my feet was still worn but in the summer would be covered with briars and weeds. Though we would use it, it wouldn’t be as often. We would both have more than enough work to do on our own plots of land.
Joey lived over the hill from me. His farm was situated behind Andrew’s
…er, mine, and was nearly the same size and shape.
Andrew’s folks passed last year. Andrew and I were married and since he was their only child, the farm was technically and legally mine now. Although there were no courts to validate my claim on the land and property. I’d just have to treat it like mine and defend it the same.
Twelve-hundred acres of rolling hills, hay and timber. If it wasn’t for Joey, I wouldn’t have survived this long. He was a country boy—a cocky one, but he was efficient and a hell of a lot more knowledgeable than me. And that was what made me cringe as I walked up the wooden steps and onto his front porch. He was a boy, at least in my eyes he was. I considered him a little brother at this point. Unfortunately, sometimes Joey didn’t feel the same way. He was always talking about repopulating the U.S. with me. Cringe. Guys were always horny and it wasn’t like there was a surplus of anything now, let alone women.
I knocked on the door. After a few minutes with no signs of life, I knocked again, louder and for longer.
Finally, I heard him. He opened the door with one green eye opened, the other clenched tight. “Did you finally come to your senses, Shelby? Decide you want some of this?”
I rolled my eyes at him. I knew it was coming.
“Don’t flatter yourself, Romeo. I need your muscles.”
“My man muscle?” he said in a sleep-thickened voice. Joey smirked, finally opening his protesting eye and wagging his sleep-mussed eyebrows. The blonde hair on the left side of his head was matted down against his skull and the rest was sticking straight up like he’d stuck his finger in a light socket.
“Joey, get dressed and get your hind end out here. Old Lady Maddox died.”
That was all it took. Word that someone had kicked the bucket and people began circling like vultures to take what they needed from the belongings left behind. I was the first vulture who had found her. So far, no one else knew she’d died in her sleep and I planned to get that stove out of her house come hell or high water.
The Cases had prepared for every apocalyptic scenario known to man except for one: that they would pass on leaving everything to me. I was an apocalypse unto myself. They would have known how to fix the things I didn’t have a clue about.
Survival skills: one.
Bachman: I’ve seen you participate in several events; anymore we can look forward to seeing you participate in?
Bond: I have an online event planned in March with some of my author friends. It’s called March Into Reading and here is the link: Facebook Event
Here are author events I plan to attend in 2015:
Roanoke Author Invasion, April
UtopYA Con, June
Books & Bourbon, August
Pumpkin Festival, October
Great Lakes Book Bash, October
Rebels & Readers, November
Bachman: What’s your favorite part? Writing or marketing?
Bond: Writing, I’m not the best at marketing and it takes so much time.
Bachman: For fans, is there anything you’d like to announce or surprise them with?
Bond: Well, sure!
*Dark Bishop (serial series I’m writing with my bestie, Rachael Brownell) will release in April. One book per day from April 29-May 3, 2015)
*Reclaim should be available in May. I don’t have a set release date yet, but it’s coming!
*I’m getting ready to write a contemporary serial that is related to SIN…. J
*Planning to write a new paranormal and dystopian later in the year.
Bachman: Is there a book you just can’t put down right now?
Bond: I just finished Mia Sheridan’s Kyland. It is amazing. I might re-read that one. Her books are fantastic and Kyland did not disappoint. That’s a paperback I plan to buy now.
Bachman: What are some of your favorite writers and books?
Bond: Mia Sheridan (Kyland, Archer’s Voice) Elle Casey (Rebel Series) Amy Bartol (Premonition Series) Jo Michaels (I, Zombie) Diana Gabaldon (Outlander) Lila Felix (Anything she writes)
And last but never least, my bestie, Rachael Brownell. I love her Holding On series, Secrets & Lies and Monroe from Take a Gamble is my book boyfriend. Hands off, Ladies!
The edition of this narrative poem I own, lucky has an English translation included. This is how I’ve been able to read it. I found it very interesting to see the story in the original German as well. It was titillating for me to see the words in both languages, German is not a language I am fluent in.
This is a book I’ve read many times and love it more every time I dive in. It’s a ‘go to’ book for me along with any Anne Rice book and any historical book I own. It is one of my favorite books.
I found myself relating to Faust and his want of more knowledge. I love when I can relate to a character in any way, much less the want to know more. This book reminded me of Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy with the settings and traveling to Heaven. Alighieri’s narrative poems are some of my favorite works as well.
The main character’s journey is one of darkness and struggle. I rooted for things to become better for him. Whether they do or not you’ll have to find out for yourself as I rarely do spoilers, I have, but not often.
The English translation is written well and done well, but then again I am just hoping it was translated well.
This review is a part of my 2020 yearlong self-challenge to read and review. I have reread some books for the purpose of reviewing them on my website whereas I have read others for the first time. Check out Book Reviews and Recommendations to find other book reviews, book recommendations, and more information about the books I’m reading, have read, or are sharing.
Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Do you agree with me? Do you disagree? Let’s have a conversation about it.