Here’s a contemplative post that devolves into offensive humor, but at least there’s a book update

This Rollercoaster We Call Life

Thank you all for your patience and understanding over the last few chaotic months. Some of you reached out to me to express your sympathies over the passing of my brother last month, and I greatly appreciate it. Nothing will bring Rocky back, and nothing can make this easier on the many who loved him. Still, sometimes it helps to remember that we’re all in the same boat. Some die young. Some are dealt injustices that others never deal with. The rest of us are left to pick up the pieces and try to put the puzzle back together. Life is rarely fair, nor does it make sense most of the time, and it refuses to cave to our wills in terms of planning. Sometimes, bad things just happen and we are reminded how small we are in the world when we realize we are powerless.

Oddly enough, going through a lot of dark times in my life is what drives me to write such dark themes. I am obsessed with the fact that a life can drastically change in a millisecond due to decision-making (good or bad) or situations outside our control. I am an extreme optimist now, but there was a moment in my pre-teens when I tied a noose around my neck and took a step off a chair that I intended to be fatal. Thank the gods the suicide attempt failed (and this was as a result of extreme bullying in the early 2000s, so no need to be concerned now), but the fact remains: the same person who once decided life wasn’t worth living loves it now. That doesn’t mean I’m immune to negativity, of course; hell, losing two people I love dearly over the last year has put me through the roughest patch I’ve had in a while. But still: this idea that life can be both stunningly beautiful and outrageously cruel is one I often mimic in my books because it fascinates me. The unpredictability of life is what makes it worth living, even when things like loss, depression, and fear threaten our happiness.

Book News

I’m bringing all this up now to link it back to book news–which I know is what you’ve all been waiting for. I’m currently self-quarantining due to suffering some symptoms of the coronavirus, so it’s giving me a lot of time to game and plan. While putting an absurd amount of time in Farming Simulator 2019 (74 hours in a week, DON’T JUDGE ME), I’ve been outlining Of Monsters and Mutiny (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 3) and linking all sorts of pre-planned situations together. I re-read Stemming the Tide a few weeks ago and fell in love with it all over again. I love being inside Calder’s head. He’s so disturbed and traumatized that it’s interesting to explore. This is the second time I’ve explored severe PTSD in a main character; for those of you who are fans of mine only through the Six Elements series and/or universe, if you like my attention-to-detail when it comes to character psyche, I recommend trying my New World series (dystopian war thriller). That series is dedicated to the development of PTSD in an assassin who fights it off in her own head as she fights against an authoritarian American government. Whether she’s successful or not and how much it costs her is something you’d have to read the books to find out, but the New World series ending is my favorite I’ve ever written, so I’m biased. Ha.

Anyway, just know that Of Monsters and Mutiny is in the development stages. My releases may come out less often now, but I promise I’ll never become George R. R. Martin. 😛 Besides, like I said in my last post, I’m dedicating this book to Rocky, so it’ll be out before you know it. My brother loved hearing about Calder’s badassery and seeing him in artwork.

Seeking Cover Artists!

Speaking of artwork, I’ve had a hard time reaching my cover artist these past few months, so I’m on the hunt for dark fantasy artists whose art style is similar to that on the covers of Rise of a Necromancer and the Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy. If you are an artist or know an artist who is interested in developing book covers with me, send contact information, commission prices, and links to art portfolios to rosiescottbooks@gmail.com. I do have timing requirements and other things we can discuss, but I’m super easy to work with and go above and beyond to support my artists. This offer will remain even if I get into contact with my existing artist–I often have too many requests for his schedule, so I’m always on the lookout for artists I can hire on a semi-regular basis (a few times per year). It should be noted that I will not only work with artists getting started in the industry, I kind of prefer it. I’d rather give work to a skilled unknown who needs experience, as long as that person is talented, honest, and professional. No cover design experience necessary–only the artwork is required, as I have a graphic designer who does the rest. 🙂

Follow Me on Instagram (Or…You Know, Don’t)

Last but not least, just tonight I started posting on Instagram if any of you are interested in following me there. Honestly, I joined the site years ago to get my daily fix of sparkly car porn and never planned on posting, but I thought, “Why the hell not?” I figure I’ll mostly be posting cats, memes, cats, book-related things, cats, vidya games, cats, and maybe the occasional travel photo if I ever can go anywhere again. *Shakes fist at sky and yells, “CORONAVIRUUUSSS!!!”*

I will not be posting anything political, but my sense of humor is so dark and inappropriate that I can’t promise not to offend anyone. In fact, I promise to be a good girl and cross a few lines. Within my first five posts, I’ve already insulted babies. That’s bound to offend somebody, but babies are sooo overrated.

That’s all for now. Stay tuned, stay safe, and wash your hands often, you dirty bastards.

-Rosie Scott

And the times grew darker…

My last post informed you guys of huge changes to my writing/release schedule. While I didn’t outright say it at the time (since it’s more personal), I decided to write less not only because my efforts are vastly higher than returns, but also because I wanted more time with family and friends. I admit I’ve neglected plenty of relationships in order to live up to fan expectations for a rapid release schedule. Considering the realization that this lifestyle garners no additional fan support, the trade-off no longer seemed worth it.

Thank goodness I made this decision when I did. My one and only brother Rocky passed away this past Sunday at the too-young age of 35 under unexpected and tragic circumstances. Though his ADD kept him too distracted to read books, Rocky was one of my greatest supporters. He saw firsthand how I’d hole away to write books as a child and couldn’t seem to believe I’d “made it.” Rocky was always so excited to see my yet-to-be-released cover art and tried his best to keep up with all the Six Elements characters even though he didn’t read the books (Cerin seemed to be his favorite, followed by Calder; Rocky was a sucker for necromancers and werewolves, though a reptilian badass seemed to fit the bill nicely for him). Rocky was four years older than me and threw himself headfirst into the gothic phase of the late ’90s and early 2000s (he remained gothic until his final moments even long after others had moved on). It was this obsession with darkness and the macabre that affected me as a young girl. Rocky and I shared a lot of the same interests (horror, dark fantasy, necromancy, guns & bladed weaponry, gore, villains/anti-heroes, etc.), and not only is that likely why I’m still so involved with these things today, but it also explains how involved Rocky was with my books despite not reading them. He loved the themes I explored, how dark and gory things could get, and he was so proud of me for working as hard as I did. When Of Monsters and Mutiny is released, I will dedicate it to Rocky. May he be immortalized in memory through the written art of dark fantasy that he so loved.

As I’ve talked about before, I suffered a major familial loss before this in July 2019 that I’m still working through (Thomas, as noted in Origin of the Tainted Bloodline‘s dedication), and I expect to lose my remaining grandparents this year (rapidly declining health and mental faculties). My recent hiatus is allowing me to take the time I need with my family to mourn and figure out how we move on from here. I appreciate your patience as I try to get my life in order so I can once more focus on books. You guys know I keep my promises, and I’ve promised Rocky a book. Of Monsters and Mutiny will come eventually, but I have to focus on healing and family first.

-Rosie Scott

Changes are a’coming… (January Update)

First things first: if you missed Stemming the Tide‘s release, check out its new release post or buy it here.

It’s taken me longer than usual to get this update out to you guys, and for good reason; I’ve fought with myself over how to approach this or whether to inform you at all. I try to stick to the positive when it comes to my posts here, but sometimes negative things affect my art/work and need to be said (like my depression posts late last year).

Long story short:

I’m reducing my workload to a fraction of what it’s been since late-2017. This means less books and longer times between releases.

What does this mean for fans?

I will forever be a writer. Though my workload will decrease dramatically (from 100 hours per week to 40 or less), I will still write. Sometimes for this name, sometimes for my pen-name, sometimes for myself. I will still release books, but I’m not going to force myself to stick to a rapid release schedule. This means that instead of three to five books a year, you might see one or two. Nothing has changed with the content of my art; I’m still developing Six Elements novels set in multiple eras and will work on books in other speculative fiction genres that have been in the pipeline for years. They’ll simply release less often.

Brutally honest explanation for these major changes:

Since late-2017 (coinciding with the releases of Books 1-3 of the Six Elements series), I have worked around 100 hours per week writing, editing, researching, marketing, and promoting. This is…insane. To be frank, the effort I’ve put into these books far surpasses the success I’ve seen or the support from readers, and after nearly three years of working like this, I can no longer justify working myself to death for such little returns. Over the years I’ve asked politely for reviews or other means of helping to promote my books in ways I cannot do myself; unfortunately, though the Six Elements series has had thousands of readers, only a few dozen review. I cannot resort to begging, nor should I have to, and because I refuse to resort to common shady tactics in the indie publishing industry (like paying to get reviews or coverage), my books have a harder time reaching readers. Instead, I advertise, which eats thousands of dollars out of my profits per year. Basically, I am working 2.5 times the amount of most full-time workers for less than minimum wage with expenses, and I just can’t do it anymore.

Those few of you who do support me publicly are the sole reason I’ve worked so hard for as long as I have. You guys are amazing, and every single reader who enjoys my work owes a lot to you and your support; without it, I would have released less or not at all like I’m resorting to doing now.

I love writing, but due to a lack of support and high costs to maintain my modest success for a high workload, I resent publishing. I could either work myself to death until I burn out and quit, or I could slow down massively, write only when I want to, and maintain a presence in the writing world, even if it’s much smaller than before. I’m taking the lesser of two evils. I would rather be happy than rich, and this way those of you who love my work will still get some of it rather than none at all.

I hope you understand how this lifestyle has become unsustainable for me. It’s time to dial back my workload to meet the level of the success and support it garners. I will still use this website as my main hub of communication, and my newsletter will still send out excerpts and new releases. Nothing is changing but my workload and future release schedule.

In the meantime, I’m taking a much needed gaming break before delving into Of Monsters and Mutiny (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 3). I previously planned for a Quarter 2 2020 release date after moving it up from Quarter 3. Will this change with the new schedule? I don’t know yet, but I’ll keep you updated here as always.

-Rosie Scott

 

Stemming the Tide (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 2) Released!

They may have lost their ship and cargo after audaciously challenging the pirates that rule the sea, but Calder Cerberius, Koby Bacia, and their crew of misfits refuse to surrender. The pirate leader’s right-hand man, Cale Woodburn, plans to establish a stranglehold in the wildlands and steal its precious local resource: ferris, the herbal drug shapeshifting beastmen rely on to prevent the agony of transformations from breaking their minds. Calder and Koby’s crew pursue Cale across the seas to regain control of the lucrative ferris trade and save the wildlands from ruin.

Indigenous tribes of beastmen rise up to defend their homeland. Shapeshifters on both sides transform into beasts of the land, sea, and sky to brawl to the death. A run-in with an ancient sea creature of apocalyptic size gives Calder the idea to spark a massive rebellion against the pirates using dangerous and unconventional means, but other mercenaries will only agree to come to his aid once he defeats the deranged Cale Woodburn and restores peace to the wildlands. When Calder finally catches up with Cale, two mentally unstable captains will clash in beast form until only one emerges the victor from a pool of blood.


WOOHOO!

Stemming the Tide (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 2) is available here! It is $4.99 Kindle/$18.99 paperback (and considering one of you already bought a paperback before the Kindle release, you’ll have your copy before I do since author copies take forever to ship. I’m jealous!).

I hope you guys are having a great holiday season! May beastman battles and misfit shenanigans make it even better. As I do with all releases, I’m updating my website with all applicable lore/timeline/art from Stemming the Tide. Two of my all-time favorite Calder quotes come from this book, so his character profile has been updated with those as well.

Of Monsters and Mutiny (Book 3) is in the development stages. The epic cover (showcasing a particular ancient sea beast prevalent in the trilogy) is already complete and hanging on the wall of my gaming room inspiring me as I write. I can’t wait for you guys to see it. In the meantime, I have yet to mop up my drool from ogling this cover, so I’m at risk of floating away in a flood of my own making. Considering I survive, I’ll get to writing soon.

I hope you guys love Stemming the Tide. As always, I’d be appreciative if you left a review when you’re done. I’m relying only on reviews to promote this trilogy until it’s complete since advertising eats through all profits on books with few ratings until it becomes entirely unaffordable to publish. This is a hard business to gain traction in! I’m grateful to those of you who show your support and spread the word to others you think might enjoy my books. You guys are undeniably awesome.

Considering Stemming the Tide is releasing earlier than expected, I’ve moved Of Monsters and Mutiny‘s prospective release date up from Quarter 3 2020 to Quarter 2 (April-June) as reflected on my Upcoming Book Releases page. Stay tuned for writing and research updates! 🙂

-Rosie Scott

 

P.S. For those of you who somehow haven’t gotten your copy of Fire (The Six Elements Book 1) or Rise of a Necromancer yet, I have a huge promo going on right now to start your new year off right. Both books are temporarily 75% off and you can pick them up for just $0.99 each, so now’s the time!

Stemming the Tide (SST Book 2) Ready for Pre-Order!

They may have lost their ship and cargo after audaciously challenging the pirates that rule the sea, but Calder Cerberius, Koby Bacia, and their crew of misfits refuse to surrender. The pirate leader’s right-hand man, Cale Woodburn, plans to establish a stranglehold in the wildlands and steal its precious local resource: ferris, the herbal drug shapeshifting beastmen rely on to prevent the agony of transformations from breaking their minds. Calder and Koby’s crew pursue Cale across the seas to regain control of the lucrative ferris trade and save the wildlands from ruin.

Indigenous tribes of beastmen rise up to defend their homeland. Shapeshifters on both sides transform into beasts of the land, sea, and sky to brawl to the death. A run-in with an ancient sea creature of apocalyptic size gives Calder the idea to spark a massive rebellion against the pirates using dangerous and unconventional means, but other mercenaries will only agree to come to his aid once he defeats the deranged Cale Woodburn and restores peace to the wildlands. When Calder finally catches up with Cale, two mentally unstable captains will clash in beast form until only one emerges the victor from a pool of blood.


Are you salivating over that cover? Because I know I am. Calder is so f**king badass, I can’t even…

Stemming the Tide (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 2) is available for pre-order here! It is $4.99 Kindle/$18.99 paperback and will be released on December 28, 2019. It continues the misadventures of Calder and Koby as they take on pesky, drug-addicted, shapeshifting pirates. This book’s greatest strengths are its gore scenes and its themes of friendship and brotherhood, which is a duo that aren’t often seen together. But alas, I write unconventionally. As my fans, you likely expect such things.

Book 3 is already titled and in the planning and development stages. After that, I might not be quite done with Calder. Writing this trilogy has done a number to me. Basically, you guys, Calder and Koby’s friendship has become one of my favorite relationships of this universe (right up there with the bond between Kai and Azazel). While the trilogy deals with their adventures before Calder’s inclusion in the Six Elements series, many of you know how much Calder develops in the series because of Koby and his everlasting influence. Without spoilers, let me just say that I feel called to rewrite Water (TSE Book 3) from Calder’s perspective and include way more content (scenes that Kai wouldn’t have seen, etc.). Water is my favorite book of the Six Elements series, and a lot of that has to do with Calder’s growth and accomplishments. Calder’s story affects me deeply on a human level: it’s a story of brotherly love and loss, hardship, darkness, despair, searching for meaning and redemption. And writing this trilogy where I get to show just how much Koby means to him makes me long for a standalone conclusion to Calder’s character arc involving the underground civil war. If you’ve read the Six Elements series, you know where his character goes and how he ends up. What do you think? Would you find new content revolving around the underground civil war interesting from Calder’s perspective? It would be a standalone that would serve as a companion novel to both the Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy and the Six Elements series for obvious reasons.

I have to be honest…as much as I want to know your thoughts, this is a book that I might write regardless because I have to. Calder and Koby mean the world to me.

Well, that’s all for now. Don’t forget to take part in Indiecember if you get the chance. There’s still some time left to review indie books for a chance to win prizes! Otherwise, have an awesome holiday season and I’ll see you guys on the 28th for Stemming the Tide‘s release!

-Rosie Scott

Stemming the Tide (SST Book 2) Complete, Indiecember 2019 Continues!

See? I’m a woman of my word. I wrote the final words of Stemming the Tide (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 2) yesterday after adding another 30,000 since my last update. That’s over 100 pages written in less than two weeks because I am a beast (not quite in the same sense as my broody boy Calder, but I’ll take what I can get). It’s headed to the editing phase, and considering I’m ahead of where I thought I would be in progress, I’m hoping for its release by the end of the year. It’s currently December 13, so you know what that means. *Wink-wink* Sign up to my newsletter to get the pre-order notification (my pre-orders always last about a week) with the blurb and cover reveal. This cover is not one you’ll want to miss. Calder looks f*&king badass. Not like that’s hard for him.* 😉

In the meantime:

  • Check out Stemming the Tide‘s released excerpt
  • Don’t forget to review indie books (including mine even if you’ve already read them long ago!) for a chance at winning tons of prizes in Indiecember 2019! More information about the contest is given in my last post, Indiecember 2019 is on!, and on the official website here. If you have ever respected the hard work and dedication that goes into the planning, development, writing, and fact-checking of a book, I urge you to review the books you read even when contests like this don’t offer you prizes for it. It is so monumentally important to a book’s (and the author’s) success. For those of you who have already supported me in this way, I appreciate it more than you could know. You are the reason I continue to publish.

Gird your loins for the next epic cover/blurb update, my friends. I haven’t been able to stop staring at Book 2’s cover since the artist Nikita Drizhenko finished it a while back. To make matters worse, Book 3’s cover art is also complete and hanging on my wall near my working desk in my gaming room, so I keep staring at that ridiculously gorgeous art. Nikita is sickeningly talented and I’m so fortunate to have him as my cover artist. 😉

-Rosie Scott

*I fought off the urge to insert so many dirty jokes here. Writing from the perspective of a charming and well-endowed pervert has corrupted my mind in the best way possible. But don’t worry, Stemming the Tide has far more than dick jokes (though it has those, too). It includes some of the best creative gore scenes I’ve ever written and a few of my personal favorite character development scenes when it comes to the ever-evolving and super important friendship between Calder and Koby. I love these two together so much, and I hope you do too. 🙂

Indiecember 2019 is on!

Readers:

Indiecember 2019 is officially on! Megan Tennant’s yearly contest starts today, and my books are all participating!

What is Indiecember? It’s a contest for readers to read and review qualified indie books to fill out a bingo board. Readers who fill out the board via various play styles (described here) win prizes consisting of free books, Amazon gift cards, book merchandise/products, and maybe even a Kindle e-reader. 2018’s Indiecember gave away a Kindle Paperwhite as its grand prize.

There are multiple categories these books can help you fill out on the bingo board, and each book can count more than once if you use the Flush Play Style. All you have to do is review them in December with the other indie books you read for the contest. Even if you’ve already read my books and didn’t support them with a review, you can still review them in December and have it count for a chance at all these prizes. For more information, read all about Indiecember here.

There is no purchase necessary, especially if you have Kindle Unlimited and/or decide to review books you’ve already bought and read. This is just a contest that tries to get readers to support indie books with reviews since they are sooo hard to come by (less than 0.5% of readers review, which is disheartening).

If you guys decide to participate in the contest, I hope you have fun and find some great books/authors in the mix!

For a super quick Stemming the Tide (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 2) update, it’s now at 95,000 words (352 pages). I’ve added an amazing 63 pages since my last update a week ago. I’m still on track to release it at some point in January. To get alerted to its cover/blurb reveal and release date, sign up for my newsletter. In the meantime, you can check out its recently released excerpt.

-Rosie Scott

P.S. Do you want to rate books but don’t have the time to review? Amazon now allows you to give a star rating with no review (after turning the “last page” of the Kindle document, click on the star rating you want to give and click “submit”). If you want to support indies this way, you can always go back and rate books you’ve already read to start getting you in the fantastic habit. Unfortunately, this will not count for Indiecember, but it helps us indies regardless.

Stemming the Tide (SST Book 2) Excerpt Released!

Through the ashes of depression and tragedy arises a phoenix of progress! I realized the last time I updated you guys on a word count, Stemming the Tide (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 2) was at 17,000 words (63 pages). I’ve updated since then, but not on writing progress. Apologies! As of 11/22 (at the time of preparing this post), Stemming the Tide is just shy of 78,000 words (about 289 pages). I estimate it’s about 70% complete. I’m still on track to release it by Quarter 1 2020, but I’m shooting for even sooner.

Without further ado, I have an excerpt for you featuring a kick-ass battle between Calder in his lizard form, one of my favorite antagonists of the Six Elements universe that you met in Origins of the Tainted Bloodline (Book 1), and one surprise. You guys know I’m all about those gigantic epic set-pieces and action-oriented chaos, and I think I’ve outdone myself with my plans for this trilogy. 😉 Here’s a taste, and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter so you’re first to see the awesome cover, read the blurb, and get the release date.


***WARNING***

This excerpt contains light spoilers for Origins of the Tainted Bloodline (Book 1) regarding the true nature and identity of one of the trilogy’s antagonists. Only read if you have read Book 1 or do not care about spoilers.


“Nooo!” Hassan’s hoarse scream was that of a broken man. Silver bolts flew through the sky as he attacked Cale with an urgent need for vengeance. Most of the ammo bounced off the wyvern-kin’s scales, but others hit their targets in soft joints and the flesh of wings.

Hassan’s sudden rage fueled my own. I swam to the hull of the barque and clambered up its ornate woodwork with my only working arm, far faster than I had any right to be. Bodies were strewn over the wide quarterdeck between splashes of crimson. Koby and the others removed grappling hooks from the taffrail to free our ship from the clutches of the pirate schooner. Cale’s crew was dead, but the crazed captain remained alive, and his reinforcements overwhelmed us. Ajax’s mercenary cog was heavily damaged from cannon fire, its hull dented and splintered. Rather than continue to destroy the vessel, the pirates re-evaluated their plan and were positioning one of their galleons beside the cog to board and take it. On the far side of the scene, at least a dozen more ships loomed in the north, ready to squelch us from existence with sheer numbers alone.

Escaping this battle was nigh impossible, but right now I did not fear death. I turned when I reached the middle of the quarterdeck and crouched in a trembling power stance with my eyes on Cale as he wavered in the sky with one mangled wing, still fighting off Jaecar’s angry persistent assaults.

I didn’t fear death. Not yet. With the demise of a good friend repeating itself in my head, I refused to fear death until I brought its cold touch upon someone who deserved it more. I lost any fragment of sanity I’d managed to hold onto; my mind floated above my body, giving it permission to go berserk with rage.

I charged forward, ravenous for blood. Cold rains sliced down my scales. Winds howled by my ears. Movement and sound sought to distract me, but my homicidal gaze lingered on target. In a fluid motion, I vaulted up onto the taffrail, using the momentum of my charge and the strength of my haunches to launch off the ship at Cale.

The wyvern-kin turned his attention away from Jaecar as I sprung toward him with only one good arm. I spread my jaw; my shimmering razor-sharp fangs reflected back to me from Cale’s reptilian silver eyes. We crashed in mid-air, my webbed hand gripping his throat. Caught off balance, Cale ducked forward and plunged to the seas, his elongated neck unable to support the weight of my muscular body.

Against a backdrop of blurred skies and wooden vessels, I focused only on the wyvern-kin’s shiny silver head. It was narrower than mine. As we tumbled toward the ocean together, I tilted my head and snapped forward, clamping my jaws on either side of his scaled snout.

Pssh!

Two overgrown lizards crashed once more into the seas, this time in a deadly gnashing embrace. The smooth whipping echoes of a tense underwater struggle accompanied our mutual mauling. As his wings desperately tried to make movement in water, Cale kicked his feet at my torso, his talons dislodging silver-blue scales and exposing strings of torn bleeding muscle. Intending to crush his skull, I clamped down with full force on his snout. The wyvern-kin’s skeleton was evidently stronger than that of a man’s. A muted crack kissed my ears after the slight shifting of his lower mandible as it broke, but it did not crumble. I twisted my bite, tearing fangs through scales and underlying tissues.

Cale jerked back from me, kicking off my torso with his feet. Trailing blood, he folded his wings to his sides and darted for the surface. I gave chase, but my ruined arm inhibited my pace. Cale burst through the water and into the air, sweeping out his wings and flapping them to take off rapidly; a spattering of water and blood flew off him from his brisk motion, sprinkling over the seas.

Lightning seized the skies with a lavender-blue glow; veins of electricity split into branches, seeking to conquer every inch of the heavens. Once more, the ocean was luminous with the storm’s residual light. Great movement drew my gaze to the depths. My heart plummeted to boil in the acid of my gut as I realized my eyes did not deceive me.

Underneath the shadows of battling ship keels, dark glimmering tentacles of tremendous proportions reached out of the ocean’s void, racing toward the surface water as if summoned by our petty spat. The water tickled my scales with a tremor as the seas shook like the beast was so legendary its movement persuaded the tectonic plates of the earth to shift. A chill ran down my spine as I became acutely aware that the sea creature we faced was the same one responsible for the annihilation of navies and the trading stranglehold south of Nahara. Rumors claimed it left few survivors. Rumors claimed this beast had migrated from the waters south of the beastlands, a place dominated by creatures designed by the gods themselves, monstrosities so large and deadly they destroyed well-equipped armies and brought a country to ruin.

Here the rumor was before me, each tentacle gigantic enough to curl around a dwarven galleon like it was merely a toy. As it rose from the depths, I should have rushed to the surface to flee and save my ship and crew. I should have fled or moved or acted at all. Instead, I did nothing. For the rumor itself was before me, and I could do nothing but stare in absolute awe.

For our battle had awakened the beast.


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Indiecember Contest Announcement

Fire (The Six Elements Book 1)

Rise of a Necromancer

Origins of the Tainted Bloodline (Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy Book 1)

The Resistance (The New World Book 1)

 

I’m excited to announce that these four of my books are eligible entries in the Indiecember contest for 2019. What is Indiecember? It’s a contest for readers to read and review qualified indie books to fill out a bingo board. Readers who fill out the board via various play styles (described here) win prizes consisting of free books, Amazon gift cards, book merchandise/products, and maybe even a Kindle e-reader. 2018’s Indiecember gave away a Kindle Paperwhite as its grand prize.

There are multiple categories these books can help you fill out on the bingo board, and each book can count more than once if you use the Flush Play Style. All you have to do is review them in December with the other indie books you read for the contest. Even if you’ve read these books of mine beforehand and didn’t yet support them with a review, you can still review them in December and have it count for a chance at all these prizes. For more information, read all about Indiecember here.

If you guys decide to participate in the contest, I hope you have fun and find some great books/authors in the mix. For a recent in-depth writing update, see the last one from 11/6, Gore Galore & Music Inspirations (Shapeshifting Seas Book 2 Update). Now excuse me…I have to get back to work on Stemming the Tide (Book 2). 😉

-Rosie Scott

Gore Galore & Music Inspirations (Shapeshifting Seas Book 2 Update)

Giblets and Mayhem

We’ll start out this update with a question. Without context, how does the term “decapitated baby” make you feel?

A) Offended

B) Disturbed

C) Intrigued

D) Overjoyed

If you answered:

A: I recommend leaving my website now since we’re not on the same wavelength.

B: Meh…okay, I get it, but you still might not be my type of reader.

C: Welcome back, fans!

D: Either you have a great morbid sense of humor picking this or you’re legitimately disturbed. Either way, you’ll probably like my books, so welcome. *Bows*

In all seriousness, this term is in Stemming the Tide‘s latest action scene involving a brood of afancs, and I’m digging it. Writing as Calder is so much fun. I love writing his rages fueled by pain, his maulings…writing from the first-person perspective of a berserker lizardman is not only extraordinarily unique (when researching other lizardman books to market Origins of the Tainted Bloodline toward, I found 99% erotica and 1% manga, so I’ve apparently delved into a rare subject matter), it also allows me to explore beautifully intense gore.

You guys know I research everything about my books–heavily. Want to know some fun gore-related questions I’ve searched for the Shapeshifting Seas Trilogy thus far? Here you are, you sick bastards:

What do human brains taste like? Consistency of human brains. Does mutilated body fat float in water?

That last question was quite stupid of me to research because I know the answer. Most of my knowledge of anatomy comes from my time studying dietetics (the study of nutrition) in college over a decade ago. Fat is made of oil, and oil floats. But for some reason I double-checked since I was talking about chunks of fat that have separated from the body while underwater. You guys might not care about the details, but I do. My gore has to be accurate, damn it!

Author Interview

Don’t forget to check out my latest author interview just released about a week ago with Worldhoppers’ Guild. I answer some fun questions about my obsession with necromancy, why I focus on disturbed characters, and more. As always, all my author interviews are available at the top of the Author Q & A page.

Music Inspirations

Have you ever listened to a song and it reminded you of something?

That has happened to me multiple times since writing The Six Elements. Songs remind me of my characters often, even if the lyrics don’t always match up. I mentioned in my newsletter upon Rise of a Necromancer‘s release that the song “Blood” from the metal band In This Moment kept rushing through my head while writing the battle scenes. To this day, I cannot listen to that song without picturing Cerin tearing people limb to limb. I’ve listed some songs and what they make me think of below, including specific examples I have from the King Arthur: Legend of the Sword soundtrack (also credited as an inspiration on the Six Elements Details page) that inspired many pivotal moments in the series.

“Blood” by In This Moment: Goes so perfectly with Cerin losing his mind. I mentally pair up each chorus to a battle scene: 1) mercenaries in the forest and/or vampire fight, 2) first fight with Kenady Urien, 3) climax battle.

“Renegade” by Styx: Again, this makes me think of Cerin. Every time. And every time I get so disappointed with myself and say, “Really?”

“Bulletproof Heart” by My Chemical Romance: Makes me think of Cerin and Kai running away from Sera together as criminals. Bonus: Kai takes the “let’s blow a hole in this town” line seriously. 😛

“Firestorm” by Far Too Loud (Karetus remix): I can’t hear this dubstep tune without imagining Kai going nuts with her power. Cities be burning!

“The Wolf and The Hanged Men” by Daniel Pemberton (King Arthur soundtrack): This is Calder’s song, through and through. I created his character when listening to it. The underwater sound of the beginning is the reason I chose him to be a lizard-kin, because I pictured a lizard approaching Kai from the depths. The first half of the song covers the shipwreck and Calder’s reveal, while I imagine their trek through the wildlands for the rest.

“The Politics & The Life” by Daniel Pemberton & Gareth Williams (King Arthur soundtrack): The epic build-up during Kai’s one-woman battle to destroy Narangar’s harbor, the dwarven cannonfire, and the resulting devastating tsunami are all covered here (from Air, Book 4). I still get chills listening to it.

“Tower & Power” by Daniel Pemberton (King Arthur soundtrack): I have a mental movie that plays every time I hear this showcasing the entire Hazarmaveth takeover from Water (Book 3). It covers sneaking in the city while invisible, Azazel setting off the explosions, Kai’s tornado, the beastmen’s arrival, a major character death, and Kai’s resulting rage (ending with the toppling tower). This tune is perfection.

“The Born King” by Daniel Pemberton (King Arthur soundtrack): This is the music that pairs perfectly with the first major character death scene in Air (Book 4) during the Battle of Highland Pass (leading up to the massacre).

“The Legend of Excalibur” by Daniel Pemberton (King Arthur soundtrack): This showcases (Spoiler)’s fall and subsequent death in slow motion before Kai’s resulting rage in Death (Book 6).

Bats are dorks 2: Electric Boogaloo

I tried to make this update interesting even though I didn’t have any cool pictures to show you guys. Want a picture anyway? Okay, I’ll give you one I have saved on my desktop. Remember the Bats are dorks post from a few weeks ago? My love for bats has only deepened since. I had to look up a video to see how bats walk to describe Jaecar’s swagger, and my heart about burst from the little guy’s smile and awkward gait. I used that video and a picture to correctly describe Jaecar’s tail, but the photo’s so cute I can’t get rid of it. So here you are, a bat butt:

Tiny bat on white bckground nervous

Why is this so cute? AGGGH

Depression Update

I confided in you with my last update that I’m suffering a deep depression. This year has been hell for me. I lost someone dear to me after a months-long battle (I dedicated Origins of the Tainted Bloodline to him, in case you didn’t notice). I’ve lost two others in a mental sense to Alzheimer’s. Though some of my health problems have gotten better (due to extensive physical therapy and a surgery this year), there’s another one that has plagued me for over a year now and regularly affects my quality of life. This all compiled with the career struggles I’ve had this year to kick me while I was down. Being an author is extremely hard work. Not only do I put in double the work hours per week than most, but everything is so volatile. Ad spend is through the roof. 99.7% of readers refuse to review, yet just one review from a non-fan could tank a book, series, and thus my career. Tried and true marketing methods stop working. Well-planned but costly promotions fail to deliver results. Most of the time I love what I’m doing, but sometimes I wonder if it’s worth it. Why work this hard when the results don’t match the effort? Suffering from depression makes these negative thoughts ever more prevalent and convincing.

I don’t admit to all this to sound negative or scare you, but to be open, honest, and vulnerable to those of you who love my work. I’m suffering from a lot right now, but I’m fighting so hard to get through it. I’m normally such an optimistic person that I keep thinking I’ll naturally bounce back one of these days. I haven’t yet, but I have forced myself to be more productive. I set a daily writing goal of 1600 words and have surpassed it two out of three days. As you can tell from my enthusiasm above, I love writing so much that I’m hoping it’ll keep my mind distracted until I can heal.

To those of you who reached out to me expressing concern, I appreciate it immensely. I didn’t expect the support, either. I’ve said this before, but I’m always surprised when people reach out since I figure you’re just here for the books. Considering how hard I’ve been working to try to overcome this, I haven’t had the time to respond to your emails yet, but I have read them and they help. Thank you.

Maybe I should be thankful. Fighting mental and physical pain all at once has kept me connected with Calder’s psyche well enough to fully understand him. I could lie and say I’m going through this depression for research. 🙂

-Rosie Scott