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Happy Release Day to The One Who Sees Me

Today, The One Who Sees Me is available on all outlets: amazon and Barnes and Noble. The story follows Faru’s life. She is a teenager at the outset sold in exchange for a new wife for King Cyning. She meets her new master, Lord Cegrol, and begins life in his household. Life has its ups and downs–the kind everyone faces. However, it seems every time life smooths out, something else comes her way to upset her. Throughout the story she learns about The Existing One. He talks to her her master and others in the household believe The Existing One is the One True God. Faru isn’t so sure. She understands that the gods may listen and care about lords and ladies, but would a god care about a servant girl? That is harder to accept. Follow her journey as she learns who The Existing One is and what He is like. Will she learn to trust Him? Will her life ever smooth out?

Blurb:
Teenage slave girl Faru’s life has been turned upside down when she discovers she’s been traded to a new master, forcing her to leave all she‘s ever known. Upon her arrival, Faru meets a friend, Cailean, who helps her adjust to life in the strange location. Life settles into a new pattern, and romance blossoms between the young friends. But as soon as they plan to get married, another proposal comes about – one that cannot be ignored. Being a slave means not always marrying who you love.
On a daring journey to heal her heart, Faru encounters the Existing One. Will she trust Him and do His bidding even if what He requests is so hard?
Follow Faru’s tale in author Kandi J Wyatt’s retelling of a Biblical story found in the Old Testament book of Genesis, showing that when things don’t make sense, God will guide the way.

Enjoy this excerpt from chapter two:

FARU HAD RETURNED to her duties in the kitchen. Each day she
oversaw the plating and delivery of the queen’s evening meal. It was with
a jolt of surprise that she heard her mistress’s voice call out her name.

“Thank the gods, Faru,” the tall, fair queen exclaimed. “I’ve found
you.”

“Milady?” Faru drug the word out a bit with apprehension. In all
her life in the castle, she had never seen the queen concern herself with
dinner preparations; she doubted today was any different.

Even in the surroundings of the hot, sweaty kitchen, the queen seemed
to preside with the dignity of her position. She moved with a lithe grace
that Faru had always admired. Yet, underneath that poise, Faru saw an
uneasiness that was unusual.

“Faru, come with me,” the queen commanded, in a voice that was
not to be questioned.

The prep cook just shrugged and called to another servant to take
Faru’s place. Faru turned and followed her mistress, a fear beginning
to settle in her stomach. She knew better than to ask any questions.

The queen’s steps tapped a staccato on the stone floor. Her skirts
swished as they brushed past servants, potted plants, and other decorations
in the hallways. From past experience, Faru knew that her mistress’s
anger was much like a volcano. It could erupt at any moment, and it
didn’t matter who was at the receiving end of her wrath.

As they rounded a corner, a drapery swished past the queen. With
precise movements, she ripped it down. Dreading what she was about
to do, Faru opened her mouth.

“Your majesty?”

With a frustrated sigh, the queen turned around, her blonde hair
swinging behind her.

“Faru.” Her voice came out soft compared to her movements. “It is
nothing that you did.”

Faru raised a delicate eyebrow, her dark eyes pleading for more
information.

“No, young one. It was my lord.”

Faru nodded understanding. The royals were known for their spats.
The queen pulled Faru into an alcove where they were out of the
way of castle life. She laid a shaky hand on her servant. Faru’s initial
reaction was to move away, but the tenderness in her mistress’s touch
surprised her.

“When I first came to Suden, it was your grandfather who took
care of me. He watched over me like my father had. Because of your
grandfather’s kindness to me, I gave your father his position among
my servants, and then you have been my personal servant.”

Faru stood quietly, shocked at the queens actions. Never had she seen
her mistress in such a state. Her emotions must have been showing on her
face, for her mistress seemed to draw herself together and straightened to
her full height.

“I may have to live with his decisions,” she said, as if talking to herself,
“but I will not lower my position by groveling at his feet.” With a visible
effort, she continued, “Faru, you have been traded to a foreigner in
exchange for his cousin.” The contempt showed through the queen’s voice
as she said the word cousin. “She will come be my newest rival, and you
shall go serve the foreigner.”

With that, she headed out of the nook and motioned for Faru to
follow. Taking a deep breath, Faru tried to gather in what she had just
learned and at the same time walk humbly behind her mistress. They
passed through the stone hallways without seeing the light and shadows
playing along the walls, hangings, and suits of armor. It wasn’t until the
hallway opened into a wide atrium that the words the queen had spoken
finally made sense to Faru.

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The Circle of Life (of a Book)

Cue the music from The Lion King. Okay, that’s good. When we think of the circle of life, we think of generations, of handing the baton on to the next runners. Each age has their own unique abilities and histories. Where siblings share part of their stories, the parents and grandparents have a different back story. This is true with books as well. Books in a series are like siblings–each starting in the same place and sharing a story, although the paths taken may be slightly different. Books that are singletons are like the parents or grandparents or children and grandchildren–they have their own story but have similarities to the others.

Dragon’s Future released sixteen days ago. It doesn’t seem possible that it was that long ago. On Saturday, I had the privilege to hold my first book in my hand. The place in life for Dragon’s Future is the first born. He will have four siblings and their story will intertwine–same author and back story, same editor, cover artist and proofreader. So, sit back and watch the cycle of Dragon’s Future.

Just before I was able to hold Dragon’s Future in my hands, I took another step in the publishing world–I hit submit to layout of another book. This book has its own story, a different section of the publishing company, and in essence is the child or even grandchild of Dragon’s Future. This new book will be published under Booktrope’s Vox Dei imprint. Say hello to The One Who Sees Me.

My fascination with the story of The One Who Sees Me goes back to 1998 when I was struggling with a shadowed memory of abuse when I was a child. I was trying to heal from the shock of realizing I had hidden all those memories. I reached out to a friend, who suggested I read Kay Arthur’s Lord, Heal My Hurts. Kay loves to look into the names of God. She shared the name The One Who Sees Me. God reveals this name for Himself when a young servant girl finds herself in a very unenviable position. She runs away and meets The One Who Sees Me. She realizes that God sees everything! This was such a comfort at that time in my life. It helped me realize that although God didn’t plan the abuse, He had a plan for it to be turned into good if I would let Him.

Fast forward to 2007. I had finished writing what would become The Dragon Courage series and was dabbling in drawing. I had joined the artists’ social media site DeviantArt and made some virtual friends. One of whom was a missionary and pastor’s kid based in Asia. She created a challenge. She wanted to see how many of the women of the Bible she could write poetry about. She challenged other artists to apply their talents to do the same. I submitted my Christmas play from the point of view of Mary, the mother of Jesus, at the foot of the cross looking back on his life, and a monologue by Mary, sister of Martha and Lazarus. I wanted to add The One Who Sees Me as a drawing of an eye with a silhouette of a pregnant woman. I never got around to drawing it. However, in November of 2014 I wrote the story. It will be available for purchase on October 3, 2015, less than a year from its writing.

Hence, the circle of life has been closed. I know that many more books may yet grace my family, but the firstborns will be the ones that will be held in awe and wonder. The story teller will say, “Gather round as I tell you the tale of a book.”

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Author interview and Facebook party

Today on my publisher’s blog they posted an interview with me. It answers questions about my favorite hot cup to drink, what I do in my spare time, and gives a peak into my next book, The One Who Sees Me!

Tomorrow, I will be a guest author on a Facebook party. What is a Facebook party? It is a time to interact with authors and enter to win great prizes–usually books! I’ll be giving away an e-book of Dragon’s Future and a prize package of goodies. All you have to do is comment on a picture anytime from 12:30 pm-11:30 pm EST, on Friday, July 24. The party is in celebration of a re-release of a young adult mystery called Shadow Dancer.

Check out the guest interview here and the Facebook party, here.

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Fantasy at it’s best

What is fantasy? According to the book Children’s Literature Briefly by Tunell and Jacobs, there are six main motifs or elements to fantasy writing. The first and most important is magic or a violation of the physical laws of nature. From there a book can contain any of the other five: another world; good versus evil; heroism often with the hero leaving his home, going through various trials, and returning a more mature person; special character types; and fantastical objects. If a story contains all six, it is either a fairy tale or an example of modern high fantasy.

Janet Ursel‘s Disenchanted comes close to being an example of modern high fantasy. She has most of the elements of fantasy, from magicians, sorcerers, and witches to another world or even universe, to a definite good versus evil. Her hero goes through many trials where he becomes a much more mature character. There aren’t any special character types–everyone is some form of human–and there are no fantastical objects that I can remember. Here are my thoughts.

Disenchanted+by+Janet+UrselThree nations, three generations, three religions, two worlds collide in Disenchanted by Janet Ursel. At first I wondered what in the world all the different characters and story lines had to do with each other. As the story moved along, though my thoughts of a disjointed story changed to awe at the author who had pulled it all together. It was like looking at a tapestry up close and personal. All you can see are the individual threads. When you back away, you see the pattern. About three-fourths of the way through the book, I saw the pattern. Janet Ursel is a master weaver. Instead of threads, she uses words. Instead of a tapestry, she weaves a complex story of revenge, redemption, and love set in a different world. The epilogue introduces you to travelers who have arrived on a new world and are ready to set out to colonize it. Chapter one jumps ahead four hundred years. The story spans thirty-two years following the life of Blayn Goodwin. Welcome to a world of witches and magicians, wizards and wizardesses, black arts masters and kings. It is a world where multiple gods rule. The people are never sure if the gods will be satisfied or answer their prayers. Blayn finds a god he calls the sky god. His encounter on the beach reminded me of C.S. Lewis’ “joy”. Blayn searches until he is able to find the true name of this god who produces joy, peace, and confidence. When Blayn does find the truth, he must decide how much to give up to serve his new master. It has all the elements of fantasy: magic, heroism, a mentor, fantastical objects, other world and good versus evil. Come, welcome to Coventree, and join Blayn on his journey.

Go check it out! (Just click on the photo to go to amazon.) It is one of the best reads I have had this year.