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Magic, Romance, and Fantasy in the Draoithe Saga - June 28, 2024

Ghostly Kingdom Book Cover

Magic, Romance, and Fantasy

in the Draoithe Saga - June 28, 2024

Dear Reader,

Book News First: As you all know, Ruined Lion launched on Juneteenth. I finally finished Ghostly Kingdom's edits last week, so of course, I wanted to publish it. The launch process began on Sunday. It takes time for all the iterations of the story to be live everywhere, but I think most of them are available now.

Sneaky publishing is back in full force! I've gotten two additional stories published wide in June, and I'm hoping to get a few more before summer ends. If you've been waiting, buckle up your seat belt. Summer is here, and I am in zoom mode without the shackles of the day job.

Update: I figured out how to craft the book bundles on Payhip, and it's a lot of work. It's still easier than creating the box sets, so I'm going to attempt building the Kingdom Rising and the Royal Council book bundles and get those ready for sale before the end of summer.

Upcoming: I also want to publish Lost One, Nephilim's Claim, and Devil's Sins. Cross your fingers and wish me luck. If I don't get them done by the first week of August, I'll run out of time and the process goes slow again. But you didn't come here for my future, foggy, always changing plans. You want the good behind-the-scenes stuff.

Behind the Scenes of the Story

fantasy magic in a book

So, let's talk magic, specifically, the magic in romantasy and that found in the dream.

Romantic fantasy is an engaging genre which marries romance with fantasy elements in order to tell captivating and entrancing stories. One of the most important elements in romantic fantasy is magic. Adding fantastical and supernatural abilities into its world and characters, magic is almost a guaranteed aspect of any delightful tale. Over the next few posts, I want to delve into the quintessential element of magic, specifically as it concerns the Draoithe Saga family of stories.

Magic contributes to both the storytelling and character development. From spells, potions, and artifacts to magical creatures and supernatural powers, magical elements in romantic fantasy serve as powerful tools which deepen relationships, provide obstacles for lovers to overcome, and add a sense of wonderment and escape within its narrative. It holds a sometimes prominent near character on its own status and other times magic hangs out in the background in an ever present, but quietly supporting, role.

Haunted Echoes book Cover

Look at Haunted Echoes for example: ... Rorik swore fealty to a young Velosian and agreed to carve out a sanctuary in a new forest preserve in the Leaindeail, so a Forest Lord could meet with a white witch who would scry her pool for him. He could play his part and help Zanzar’s quest to correct the imbalance. (Haunted Echoes, Chapter 2.)

Zanzar Ironwood and Celeste Alba are perfect illustrations of how magic contributes to both the storytelling and the character development. Both are magical creatures. Celeste can cast spells and Zanzar wields an ensorcelled axe. Both play a part in Rorik's place in the dream when the story begins.

Zanzar Ironwood, godless dark Forest Lord

Zanzar Ironwood is a Woodsman, one of a dying breed of immortals who once ruled over vast forests in the Spirit Realm and the Leaindeail as lesser gods. Zanzar recognizes an imbalance in the magic which threatens to not only erase the Velosians, but to destroy the dream. When he learns of a dark prophecy, Unlikely Kings, he puts all his resources to use, altering the outcome and giving his people a chance to survive.

As a major character in the larger Mystic Dark miniseries, he sends the draugr Rorik into the Leaindeail to create an embassy to entertain other immortals and discuss the issues involved with the magic and the prophecy. He also routinely uses Elburn Forest as a place to gain services from other magical beings. His desire to turn the outcome of the Unlikely kings in a direction favorable to the Velosians is one reason Rorik winds up in Elburn Forest as Haunted Echoes begins.

Celeste Alba, White witch

Celeste Alba is the white witch, whom Zanzar Ironwood, the last Lord of Ironwood Forest in the far north of the Spirit Realm, consults while seeking information about Sahari Veiled Sun, a woman who can read Angelic Script and plays a unique role in turning the tide in the favor of the Velosians remaining alive. Celeste uses her magic to scry the future and offers advice about which course Zanzar should take to save the last vestiges of the Velosians and claim his fated mate.

Celeste is only a peripheral character in the Mystic Dark Miniseries, but a need for her magic is one reason Zanzar sends Rorik to Elburn Forest just outside of Chicago, Illinois. She's also the reason Rorik's there when Danika arrives as a popsicle on his doorstep. Celeste trained Rorik in the healing arts, and she also warned him of Danika's coming. But Rorik doesn't understand prophecy well, and he's far too focused on ending his own existence to pay attention to her warning.

Even with only minimal roles to play in Haunted Echoes, Celeste Alba and Zanzar Ironwood showcase the use of both ancient and current magic in the storytelling and the character development. They each reveal aspects concerning Rorik's character, both past and present, which would have been much harder to see without their presence. The magic they wield allows the reader to escape into a world in which magic exists, and the characters are both aware of it and use it to affect the events in the story.

Sit Down With the Author

Book dragon reading a book by firelight in a library

If this is your first time stumbling over the dream, welcome to Ophelia Kee Speaks, my post chronicling all the shenanigans I am involved in while writing the Draoithe Saga. If you've wandered through the dream before, welcome back behind the curtain where the magic happens.

I've been posting about writing the dream for a long time, (off and on for years). About two years ago, I got serious about it. I began posting every week. Then a year ago, I found Substack and started the trend of posting on Fridays with the date. I toyed with adding regular parts to the post, like the behind the scenes writing stuff, sneak peek and deleted scenes, character introductions, and story descriptions. But I've never hit on a format I could always follow.

an author writing

The problem still plagues me, even though I have learned a lot about myself as a writer because of it. I've learned exclusivity doesn't work for me. I've also learned I shouldn't mess with a good flow when it's flowing. The thing is when I'm on fire about a story because it's the one I'm editing or writing, it's hard for me to move my focus to promote other tales which need it. I usually post about the one I'm working on at the moment.

My muse is insane and hops from one project to the next, dragging my focus along with her. I'm not that scatterbrained, but the tiger pounces on every little interesting thing. So my promotion efforts and my works in progress look more like a pinball spinning and bouncing around than any sort of concerted effort in any one direction on my part. Watching it probably irritates many people, which would explain why pinball lost its popularity years ago. The analogy for book sales and promotional effort is in there somewhere. I won't spell it out, but I think you get the point.

Thread book cover

My book promotion starts with the stories themselves. I write the story description, and I also create character introductions. I create art and videos to post on social media and include them in the extras in the miniseries. When the book publishes, I include all the proper front and back matter with QR codes or links. But immediately afterward, it lands here with Ophelia Kee Speaks first. And before someone else screams about how long-form posting is dead, I know. It's why I need short sections. So I can post it in pieces.

You see, story promotion is where the magic happens in the real world. But just like the magic in stories, there must be a framework, some kind of orderliness. It's still a work in progress, but I know where it starts. The Draoithe Saga launches with Thread. Promotion begins with Ophelia Kee Speaks.

Support an Author poster

I wish you a wonderful last weekend in June. As always, when you read, please be kind and leave your honest reviews. They help more than you know. Until next weekend, know you are welcome to the dream...

Be Careful!

Happy Reading,

Ophelia Kee

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Thank you for your support! Welcome to the dream… Sincerely, -OK