I gained a few new followers after skepticArcher posted her most recent piece, so I thought I’d take a moment to talk about the series the characters are from.
Dragonoak is a world I’ve been thinking about for a long time and have actively been working on for the past fifteen months. The main storyline is a trilogy, and the end of the second book is currently in sight. The story follows Rowan Northwood, a young necromancer who finds herself ostracised by the village she spent much of her life serving, under the guise of a healer. When a wandering knight passes through, Rowan sees an opportunity and takes it: she steals away in the night, entirely unaware that Sir Ightham herself is in exile. By the time they’re joined by a pane – a towering, horned-and-clawed race that are the epitome of absolute loveliness – and are busy sneaking across borders, it becomes evident that something’s up.
Dragonoak has a lot of high-fantasy, low-magic elements that I’ve always enjoyed – dragons, knights, kings and queens and their castles – but is primarily a character-driven story. While writing this series, it’s always been incredibly important to me that I create a world without the limitations of this one, or the limitations that cripple so many fantasy and sci-fi world-builds. I’ve done my best to create a place where women can be knights with out anyone remarking that she’s pretty good—for a woman, where nobody bats an eyelid at queer characters, where the cast is diverse and blood-relations aren’t automatically more important than families that have been forged in other ways.
The narrative path I’ve taken focuses on queer women of all sorts. No one’s punished for being gay—I’m not saying that horrible things don’t happen to most of the cast, but it’s definitely not a punishment for ladies smooching each other! This project has come a long way from its early stages (a short story I expected to be over in 30,000 words) and I’ve been helped along at every step by a wonderful group of betas and friends.
For now, please look at these fantastic pictures that have been done, and visit the artists’ blogs!
p.s. there are also pirates.
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