Xardan Ta'Caran

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About Xardan Ta'Caran

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    The Knight of the Black Era
  • Birthday April 19

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  • Location
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Interests
    Fantasy. Reading, writing, and everything in between.

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  1. I realize I'm late to the party, but thought I'd throw my two cents in here. I'll be honest and let everyone here in on a secret. I'm not the idea man for the novel I helped write. My co author is the one who has all of the original ideas and he has an incredible imagination that I can't even hold a candle to, but I can say that a lot of the ideas we've had (or he's had in most cases) have come from real life situations or inspiration from other novels. One of us will hear of something or read something and think "what if this was different in 'x' way," which leads to a whole new storyline. I can say that most of my originality (which isn't much) comes from seeing what other authors are doing and trying to decide if I think I could do it better (or differently). Most times I can't come up with something better, but I am good at coming up with something markedly different from what they came up with, which leads to fun new situations. But to be honest, my expertise mostly lies in building on what already exists. If someone gives me an idea, I'm good at taking it and making it bloom into something much greater than the original idea. My co author gives me his ideas and I help make them "real" by adding back story and reasoning behind all of it. To that end, it's probably no surprise that the bulk of my solo "writing" has been mostly in the fan fiction area of things (and there hasn't been much of that to be honest).
  2. Several of the names I used when I was writing a novel came from WoW. I just ran around looking at character names in the big cities and wrote down the ones I liked best.
  3. I'm not sure if he's interested in doing something for you, but @Koh did the cover art for my book and did a FANTASTIC job.
  4. I hope nobody minds, but this one really resonated with me considering the recent events. It was actually written by my sister. Also, I'm not sure if bringing in current events like this will cause issues, so rather than getting angry or upset, let me know that this bothers you and it will be removed post haste. Thanks!
  5. I'm also not sure how your magic system works, but just based on what I've read it seems that your magic is based a LOT around electricity. Could the other side use EMP type technology in their arrow heads that upon impact shut off all of the ammunition in a certain area? I do realize it would make the effect very localized, but if they knew what they were doing they could create a large crossbow (even a ballista would work) and launch their EMP arrowhead into the center of the enemy lines at least temporarily giving themselves an advantage.
  6. I'll chime in here and say that creating a good magic system with proper checks and balances is difficult to say the least.It took my co author and I close to 10 years to finally come up with a magic system that we thought was workable enough to publish. Once you have your magic system in place (even as a rough draft), let me know. I'm not so great at helping design from the ground up, but once there is a design, my specialty is in enhancing what's already there and finding the "plot holes" that typically come along with a rough draft. I'd be happy to help, but definitely go to the other guys while it's still in the design phase.
  7. I know that my co-author and I just use Word documents saved in Dropbox for all of the above. Different sub folders lead to the different things we need (like the rough drafts of books, short stories we've written, character details, lore details, etc). I know it's not the best option for everyone, but if you have a bunch of Word documents broken into all of the sub categories, Dropbox is free and pretty easy to use. Plus it adds the benefit of being usable on almost every device (although depending on what device you're using, you may need to find a different word processing software). Hopefully this helps at least a little bit, but I'm also abundantly aware that there are a great deal of different software out there that may work better. Just giving you one small option that works for the two of us. Good luck!
  8. Thank you @1st of Lunch! I'm happy to get feedback from others who love to read and/or write. We did gear this book towards the YA group, so we wanted to keep it as clean as we could. That way there are as few chances as possible for someone to tell their tween-teenager not to read it. Also, I have heard that the ending was not appreciated by multiple people. I don't think we'll do that in future books, but this one is a little too late to adjust. ;-)
  9. The free promotion has now ended. Hope you all got a copy before it did! Thanks everyone!
  10. Hey everyone, I forgot to post this earlier this week, but wanted to throw this out there for anyone who has been interested. My ebook is free for today and possibly tomorrow (I can't remember which day we kicked it off, but it was a 5 day promotion starting... I think the day before Christmas). Feel free to go download it, read it, then leave your review on Amazon so I can have more of them. Good, bad, or ugly, we want as many people to read and review the book as we can get! https://www.amazon.com/Knight-Strolm-Knighthood-Khesyc-Book-ebook/dp/B07VQ8T9TZ/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=knight+of+strolm&qid=1577457973&sr=8-1 Thanks!
  11. I was on the other side of the coin from you @Govir, but I think that's because I only listened to the audiobook and it was being performed by a woman, so I automatically associated both of them to the female side of things. I do have to say that I'm also with you @Singer the Ooklalala. Once I get a mental picture, it's set and I can't change it no matter how much I try. Good to know it's not just me! ;-)
  12. I actually just finished Starsight myself not an hour ago and I'll tell you guys the truth: the use of they/them was VERY noticeable to me and was constant. I was listening to the novel on Audible and actually had a difficult time differentiating between when they were referring to a singular "they" and when they were referring to a group of "they." There were some times where they referred to "they" as Morriumur while Spensa was busy talking to the entire flight. It got a little (and sometimes a lot) muddled in my brain. But I can say that as someone who was hoping for some kind of gender distinction throughout the book, I'm 99% sure there never is one. Diones are always referred to as "they" specifically because there's no such thing as male or female in their race. Only red and blue.
  13. That's what I thought the answer would be, but better safe than sorry. Thanks!
  14. Is there somewhere we should be sending our Q&A audio or video files? I recorded the whole thing, but I figured there have got to be at least 10 or 15 people who did the same and I'm not sure if sending mine somewhere would do any good. Anyone know for sure?
  15. Gotcha. Just wanted to verify. This sounds like an incredible start to a story. I look forward to hearing more, but I don't think you've gone too overpowered with your character. He could be incredibly intriguing and I look forward to reading more about him!