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Holy crap, I can’t believe it’s only two weeks before I’m officially a Total-E-Bound author and the long short story “Calling the Dragons Home” becomes available. Note on the cover: TEB has a narrow selection of covers for their Lust Bites (long short stories), which means I couldn’t get a personalized one for the story. Hence the modern underwear in the pic. However, Winter Howl will have a more appropriate cover, and I’m looking forward to that.

In other news, I got paid for “Eyekeeper” in the Thrones of Desire anthology, which comes out early September. Especially this year, I’ve done a lot of novel work, which means I haven’t submitted to any anthologies. With anthologies, things go a little more quickly than novels, and I had kind of forgotten what it felt like to be paid for my fiction writing services. It was nice to be reminded that I’m a paid writer.

Here’s the next “Calling the Dragons Home” snippet. It’s less steamy – I’ll save that for next week. For sword-and-sorcery stories, I have to do something I rarely have to do in modern fantasy (rarely, but not never), and that is world-build. I built the State as a repressive regime, as a dystopia of the past rather than the future, and it was kind of fun to have some of the more modern totalitarian terms set to the past. They fit just fine.

But the price of safety is the denial of passions. To have peace, one must forgo the things that make life a pleasurable journey. Things are no longer pleasurable — they are simply pleasant. The rules were applied first by the monks, then by the sisters, then by the Court. But the merchants — who had very little dealings with dragons, magicians, witches, and sorcerers and who had always been imminently practical – eventually took the rules and applied them to such efficacy that their coffers swelled and they wrested power from the nobility, which to this day still only survives by the weight of their names. The Court yielded to the Council, and the Council set the laws of the State to those Edicts of Detan.