THE DREAD EMPIRE REVIVED / COFFEE SHOP GOES UNDER
No, there's no link between these two stories, but I'm not posting two entries today, so...
Dread Empire Trilogy From Night Shade Books
Jason and Jeremy at Night Shade granted me, with the author's permission, a kind of dream-come-true: the chance to do an introduction for one of the series that strongly influenced me as a developing writer. Glen Cook's Dread Empire trilogy will be released by Night Shade in July in one volume entitled A Cruel Wind: A Chronicle Of The Dread Empire, and I strongly suggest you preorder. Here's a short excerpt from the next-to-final draft of the intro:
Only a few months later, in Book Gallery, a used bookstore in Gainesville, Florida, something caught my eye in the mass market paperback SF/Fantasy section: the cover of A Shadow of All Night’s Falling. It didn’t look like all the other heroic fantasy covers. I read the description on the back of the book.
"Across the mountains called Dragon's Teeth, beyond the chill reach of the Werewind and the fires of the world's beginning, above the walls of the castle Fangdred it stands: Windtower. From this lonely keep the Star Rider calls forth the war that even wizards dread, fought for a woman's hundred-lifetime love. A woman called Nepanthe, princess to the Stormkings..."
That didn’t sound like the same-old same-old, either. So I read the prologue and it didn’t read like anything I’d read before. There were suggestions of worlds within worlds and plots within plots. It was a true prologue, not one of those fake cliffhanger-type prologues. The prose was spare and tight and not given to melodrama. The idea of the Star Rider was presented in pragmatic and yet mysterious terms. (Ironically enough, the same day in the same bookstore I picked up Edward Whittemore’s Jerusalem Poker, which would be another of my major influences—it too had a stylized cover and an amazing prologue.)
As I read the rest of the novel, I realized Cook was a true original, creating his own unique approach—one that would increasingly be from the eye-level/foot-soldier level, one that could be blunt and bloody, but also included a very sophisticated view of societies and of people. The Western, Middle Eastern, and Far East influence worked well and made the story unique. In short, I loved it.
Eleni's Coffee Shop Closes Down
Some of you may remember this post about lousy service. Some of you even took me to task for it. Well, if you did, you can now also claim I helped shut them down, even though I didn't. They shut down because they had lousy service, a lousy business plan, and lived in an alternate reality.
Yesterday was a day off--slight twinge in shoulder area; best to just let it rest.
Today we're going to go hike seven to ten miles, and also just completed:
6 sets bicep curls (two 30 lb weights)
6 sets forearm curls (two 15 lb weights; each set following each bicep curl set)
6 sets triceps kickbacks (immediately following each forearm curl set, and extending up to catch bottom of bicep each time)
6 sets of bridging for gluts and hamstrings (40 reps each set)
6 sets for abs--modified sit ups with heavy weight ball between knees (12 each set)
Tomorrow, back to the gym.