This is an announcement I once thought I would make three years ago. Then, two years ago. Then last year.
But better late than never, right? So here it is:
I have finished the first draft of the second novel in the projected Dark Age trilogy. I typed FIN at the conclusion of the final chapter in this long story.
After a lot of thought, I have changed the title of the book to The Children of the Seventh Son. This captures the story, as it has evolved, far better than The Triumph of the Sky. But if you like that title—and it is awesome—fear not. It is now the title of the third book in the trilogy.
I have not done a full word count, but a good estimate places Children at about 100,000 words.
What’s it about?
The Children of the Seventh Son continues the story of Javor, the reluctant hero from The Bones of the Earth. The end that that book brought Javor to Constantinople, capital of the Eastern Roman Empire at the end of the sixth century CE.
Children starts five years after the end of Bones, which places it (times it?) at about the year 600 CE. As history buffs may know, this was the beginning of an especially tumultuous time for the Eastern Roman Empire.
Wait: The “Roman Empire” after 453 CE?
Most us know the civilization based around Constantinople as the Byzantine Empire. That’s a term that began to be applied in the 1500s, to distinguish it from the Roman Empire of Augustus, Marcus Aurelius, Diocletian and other pagan emperors before 453 CE. However, the people who lived there at that time referred to themselves as Romans, and their country as the Roman Empire or Romania (yes!), even though they were mostly Christian and mostly spoke Greek.
Back to the story
The Children of the Seventh Son comprises seven parts, one for each of Javor’s children. The autistic hero has been busy in the years since the end of the first book. With his Kobold-given gold, he has bought a fine house, in the Roman domus style. He has married Calanthe, the daughter of a wealthy merchant and owner of a fleet of ships, Mauritius Macedonius.
At the end of his first adventure, Javor returns to Constantinople aboard one of his father-in-law’s ships, to find that Calanthe has given birth to his first child, a girl named Andrina.
As the book progresses, you’ll meet the rest of Javor’s children, his new family, and others:
- parents-in-law Mauritius and Anna Macedonius
- house servants (he does not believe in slavery)
- Gaetan, the head servant
- Martha, Calanthe’s nurse and now nurse to her children
- Lydia, wet-nurse
- Kyriake, the maid
- Michael, the cook
- Honorius, the groom
- Radek, another Sklavene like Javor, who has joined the Legions
- Gracian, a new second-in-command at the Abbey of St. Mary Chalkoprateia.
And some of your favourite characters from Bones return:
- Malleus, the Hammer of Rome, and now head of the Gnostic Order
- Tiana, now living with Javor as his “aunt”
- Hrech, Javor’s only friend from his village
- Vorona, the wise woman from Javor’s village
- even Elli, the first girl he ever loved
- and of course, Danisa, daughter of the King of the Mountain Hall and Queen Kriemhild of the Huns. Teaser: just as she was in Bones, she’s going to be a lot of trouble in Children.
It’s still going to be some time before I can release this book.
First, I have to do at least one complete re-write to smooth out the descriptions, flesh out some details I can already think of, look for inconsistencies in names and continuity, and rearrange some chapters.
Then of course, it has to go to an editor. I can already think of a couple of very professional, reliable people who I hope will be willing to take this on.
And, of course, I’ll need a cover.
Then, there will have to be a thorough, professional proofreading.
Somewhere in there, I will send a preliminary edition to beta-readers for their reactions to the story. These readers will include my Alpha Team, so if you want to be included in that, join up
Alpha Team members will also get a bonus: a free story about young Javor during his time as a novice monk in the Abbey of St. Mary Chalkoprateia. So get off the fence: jump here for your free e-story now.
And stay in touch! Email me firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or comments.
Tell your friends
Know avid readers? People who like historical fiction? Send them a link to this page, cc’ing me, and I’ll send you another free bonus story about Javor.
Keep those comments coming!