Procrastination is not a vice of mine. I hate having anything hanging over my head. So rather than wait a week or so to start my second revision, and with long summer days with little to do in hand, I undertook to go through Beneath the Lanterns a third time. I am happy to report that I found nothing terribly wrong, and managed to eliminate 1,000 words in the process. In short, I consider the story done. It will have to be proof read, my likely many typos corrected, and then offered to my beta readers for input and corrections. If all goes well, I should be able to publish the book by mid-September. I have a map done, but I have yet to tackle the cover painting. (The one above is actually Barsoom)
That being the case, I offer you the first draft of the blurb for Beneath the Lanterns.
The historian Kel Cam enjoyed a pleasant life living in Azera, the capital city of the Azere Empire. In the dark days, he taught classes at the University. In the bright days he traveled the steppes to Blue Order communities seeking ancient texts and the clues they offered concerning the long dead, and still mysterious, Elder Civilization. That life, however, changed when Ren Loh, the fourth daughter of the Empress of the Jasmyne Empire arrived in Azera. Rather drastically.
Beneath the Lanterns is an old fashioned novel of adventure, travel, and romance set in a richly imagined world. A world of steppes, forests, and valleys littered with the ruins of an advanced civilization that mysteriously disappeared long ago. A world where the bright days, under the Yellow Lantern are 16 days of daylight, and the equally long dark days are illuminated by the cool light of the Blue Lantern.
You are invited to explore the wide lands beneath the Lanterns in the good company of Kel Cam, Ren Loh and other, richly drawn characters in this complete, lighthearted adventure novel.
I don’t like blurbs that outline the story’s plot. I don’t want to know what’s going to happen, so my blurbs are always rather vague. As it says in the blurb, I wanted to write a nice, lighthearted adventure story. If I have to live with a story in my head for a year, I want it to be a pleasant and enjoyable story. I write to bring a little happiness into the world, if I can. I was thinking today, after finishing it, that it sort of recalls the old Hope and Crosby Road pictures. Not quite as comic, but in spirit. I suppose I could have called it The Road to Lankara.