Powers of the Windemere Lands: Amazing Armies

Might & Magic Army

Moving on to the land powers of Windemere, this category is easier to divide and explain than sea and air.  The reason is because they get involved in a lot more events and they’ve been around for longer than the other two.  Sky travel is fairly new and naval battles came after people had been fighting on the land.  So there has been a longer time to fine tune the various systems and establish similarities between them.  For example, there is a similar hierarchy in every army even if the titles and duties differ.

Another reason an army will come up more often than the others is because of the protagonist connections.  Many warriors were soldiers or guards, so they have that kind of training.  There is the fairly common ‘savant’ hero who appears after training alone or with an elder.  Yet, that elder might be a former soldier and you get a sense of the military system by how they operate and talk.  As long as they have a personality that is.  Even if a hero isn’t from that world, fantasy authors always use guards for something when a city is introduced.  It could be as innocuous as talking to the guy at the gate or more complicated like getting arrested for a bar fight.  The army, which tends to include guards who could be considered the reserves, is around in some fashion when the navy or air forces might never come up.

In Windemere specifically, most armies are similar and differ mostly on tactics, weapons, and special forces.  A reason for this is because there have been numerous global events that caused a global unification of military might.  So the various races learned from each other and adopted ideas that they liked.  Barbarians still charge in screaming, but now they have javelin throwers and use a squad system in some battles.  Dwarves open a battle the same way, but many of them use an armored wall technique or boulders that they can send down a hill.  These tactics aren’t all that is used, but it shows that the races have learned from each other.  In fact, the armies that use basic and straightforward strategies tend to be those of warlords or anyone trying to conquer.  I guess after so many events nearly wiped every one out, the races of Windemere have a great love of defense.  Although there is one group that goes against that, but they’re tomorrow.

Now, I did mention special forces, which is a big variable.  These would include your casters, battle priests, paladins, griffin riders, shock troops, and whatever else would be more than your average soldier.  Many times these are area or racial specific.  For example, halfling armies tend to have a small squad of thieves who sneak around to take weapons from enemies and sabotage things.  They are the only people who do this because it suits their natural abilities.  As far as area, you don’t have to look further than the Gaian griffin riders.  Without the mountain, they wouldn’t have those because the griffins wouldn’t have anywhere to stay.

So, armies definitely have an influence and role in Windemere stories.  Nearly every civilized race and society has one.  There is one exception to this.  The elves don’t have their own army.  One can find them in the military of other kingdoms and even species if they live there.  The reason for this is because the elves have no central government, so they wouldn’t have their own military.  It’s a small wrinkle in the world that nobody really pays attention to.  It all comes from them starting as a demon-corrupted species that conquered the world.  They refuse to create their own central government out of fear of being a threat once again.  In fact, one could say the Hejinn (first elves) are the ones responsible for the current army systems.

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Meet Anne Goodwin, Author

Rachel Poli

It’s my pleasure to welcome Anne Goodwin to my blog!

Anne Goodwin, AuthorPlease tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m a book blogger and author of over seventy published short stories and two novels in the genre of literary-commercial / accessible literary fiction. I’m interested in themes of identity, mental health and how the past influences the present, but mostly I aim to write fiction that people will want to read. My first novel, Sugar and Snails, about a woman who has kept her past identity secret for thirty years was shortlisted for the Polari First Book Prize. My second, Underneath, about a man who thinks he can resolve a relationship crisis by keeping a woman captive in a cellar, is published this week.

How long have you been writing for?

I’ve been secretly scribbling since early childhood, but have been writing seriously – by which I mean editing in…

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A Perfect 10 With Darlene Foster

This gallery contains 7 photos.

Originally posted on Don Massenzio's Blog:
Today, I’m very excited to feature Darlene Foster as she sits down for this weeks edition of a Perfect 10. Please enjoy. If you want to check out past interviews, you can find…

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So, You’re A Writer Funnies

Kathy Bates in Misery

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Woody and Buzz from Toy Story

Pirates of the Caribbean

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Goal Post: Editing the Days Away

Ritual of the Lost Lamb is doing well with sales, but it is going slower than the previous ones.  The Top 100 lists are rough too.  I’m writing this Friday night, so maybe I’ll have posted about getting on some for Men’s Adventures and Women’s Adventures before this goes live.  I’m on a bunch of Top 100 New Releases, which is good.  The roughness is that I’m seeing books can hold multiple spots if they come in Audio, Kindle, and Paperback/Hardcover form.  Looks like only Beginning of a Hero is allowed on the Sword & Sorcery list too. No idea why since I put them in the search terms, but things look so chaotic at times.  People can list their books as anything, so I’m wondering if the lists should be taken as seriously as before.  Still, it would be nice to get all 15 books on a Top 100 list by the time it’s over.  More a mark of pride than anything else.

The big writing project this week was final edits The Life & Times of Ichabod Brooks, which is going smoothly.  I only have Zaria’s Kiss and The Vixen of Errenshar left, so I’m guessing I’ll be done by Tuesday.  It’s going smoothly, so I don’t have much to report there.  Don’t want to get into anything big before Memorial Day weekend, so I’ll settle for getting July blog posts done and tinkering with a few things.  Best to keep it low key since the previous week was busy outside of the writing stuff.

There was a lot of non-writing stuff going on too.  Monday is a blur for some reason, but Tuesday was my son’s Invention Convention.  He got to present ‘Max the Cooking Robot’, so I had to be there.  For some reason, I don’t have a picture of Max on my phone or computer.  They’re probably still on the camera.  My wife tried to make it too, but traffic foiled that plan.  She made it for the part where I was about to leave with the project, so at least she got to say hi to his teacher.  Prior to this post going live, we’ll be seeing his gymnastics show, so it’s a big week for him.  Not counting the dentist appointment that ended with the mention of an orthodontist.  Saw it coming from a mile away though, but I still hear the bank accounts weeping.

My own issue isn’t helping.  Tonight, I do a home test for sleep apnea.  Bring the sensor back on Monday and then we’ll see if I need a special mouth brace thingy.  The dentist said something looked off, so I saw a specialist.  I’m sure this is where some people go to the comments to declare their cures, opinions, and whatnot.  We all know this is what we do when medical stuff comes up on the Internet.  Well, the sleep apnea seems to stem from something else that will probably get laughter:

My tongue is too big for my mouth.

*Pauses for laughter and jokes*

I got an odd question about Protecting Bedlam, which will be hitting the blog from June to September.  Guess people can just avoid me on those days if they have no interest since this series is a really hard sell.  Anyway, the question was if I’ll be changing things as the political landscape changes.  Honestly, I don’t need to because I quickly went off most of the source material pretty quickly.  There were some ‘in’ jokes, but I eventually tried to make the villains and supporting cast have better personalities than ‘me bad guy who want power and money’.  Basically, I started giving them quirks like the villains in previous books.  With any luck, some people might like this story and check out the other 2 for $2, so it isn’t like I have anything to lose here.  As it stands, I’m finding it tough to rationalize working on Derailing Bedlam since I can’t get the series to move.  We’ll see what happens in a month or two.

Speaking of future projects, I’m still stumped on where to go.  By mid-June, I’ll have edited the final Legends of Windemere books.  So, I need to decide on the next project by that time.  Do I work on the stand alone book that connects to the end of the big series?  Maybe, but I don’t know when I could release that without causing an issue with potential spoilers.  Would it be okay to release that in March/April if the finale came out in December?  There’s also the need to start in on another series.  If I put Bedlam in the corner then I’ll be setting my sights on The War of Nyt, which shows the rise of the Dawn Fangs in Windemere.  Vampires still seem to be a touchy subject, but it’s the series that is closest to being written.  That and this isn’t your typical vampire story.  Whole civil war between the two species and how it came to be that the Dawn Fangs decided to live peacefully among the other creatures.  For anyone who has read The Mercenary Prince, you might be wondering about that considering how powerful they are.

So, those are the three choices right now.  Legends Stand Alone, next Bedlam story, or start in on the vampires.  Hard to decide for some reason.  How do other people choose the next project?  Am I lost because it isn’t like I’m leaving Windemere behind since many of my other series are in the same world?  When do I start reviving Super Earth and will it simply replace Bedlam as my non-fantasy side project?  Just how many questions will I write until I get on with things?  Is one more pushing it?


  1. Finish editing Ichabod Brooks stories.
  2. Schedule July posts to clear June for editing.
  3. Test Ichabod Brooks blurbs.  I swear I’ll do it this time.
  4. Return sleep apnea tester on Monday.
  5. Keep reading One Punch Man manga.
  6. Maybe watch Season 9 of Supernatural.  Then again, I pulled out Great Teacher Onizuka already.  (Feel free to look up or ask about any of the things you’ve never heard of here.)
  7. See if I remember how to cook Baked Ziti and try not to whimper too much when I cook the Chicken Cheese Enchiladas.  Had shredding recently cooked chicken sucks a lot.  Though I’ll probably do the smart thing and do the cooking part beforehand.
  8. Think about the next project.
  9. If all else is done then tinker with the Super Earth stuff.  At the very least, I should get beyond the ‘I choose this notepad to work with’ stage.  Seriously, that was all I got to last time I tried.

Pictures of Max sent:

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Ritual of the Lost Lamb Rankings

Quina from FFIX

This post is really just for myself and having some ‘documentation’.  Legends of Windemere: Ritual of the Lost Lamb has hit a Top 100 list just like it’s older siblings.  At least for a little bit.  Still can’t figure out why only the first book is allowed on the Sword & Sorcery list:

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Powers of the Windemere Sea: Magnificent Mappers

Map of Narnia

There is a third group that is specific to the sea that is neither navy nor pirate.  They might be found with those other two groups, but they are unique because of their goals.  Even if you find them among outsiders, these ocean-traveling sailors and adventurers tend to stand out.  Many believe they have been cursed by a wanderlust that directs them to the open sea.  Others simply think they want the glory of discovering a new land since the group appeared only after the Great Cataclysm.  No matter what, people have a lot of respect for the Mappers.

The name pretty much says it all.  These are people who don’t care about riches, glory, fighting, or defending a nation.  All they want to do is map out the oceans, which are vast and always changing.  While they do have a handful of land-based members, the Mappers prefer the sea.  Each one has their own reason for this, which is what lends itself to the wanderlust curse idea.  Yet, there really aren’t many detailed maps of the ocean.  You have the bigger pieces of land, but there are believed to be thousands of islands that were moved or created by the Great Cataclysm.  This is why many Mappers claim that they are simply rediscovering the information that was lost.  Still, there are those who want to find legendary lands and map them.  Rumor has it that a special sect of Mappers even want to get to the the four moons of Windemere.

Unlike pirates and navy members, there isn’t much uniform to the skills of a Mapper outside of cartography and map-reading.  They might have different tools, various levels of seamanship, and previous specialties.  For example, a former forest tracker might use her skills to become a Mapper and be able to go it alone in some areas because of their combat training.  Another might have magic while a third is also a priest.  It is fairly rare that one finds a Mapper who doesn’t have a second job or come from an unconnected background since this is more calling than career.  Those that are a Mapper from youth to old age end up gathering an assortment of skills.  Like forest trackers, they are prized guides when one is adventuring, but the downside is you never know what else you’re getting.  It doesn’t help that these people will only gloat about their mapping skills and not share what else they can do unless they trust you.

So, why are these people considered the third power of the Windemere seas?  The answer is fairly simple.  The other two groups would be in a lot of trouble without the Mappers doing what they do.  Pirates and navies buy maps and navigation gear when they are traveling into unknown areas.  Sometimes, they will keep a Mapper on the crew to help with traveling quickly and put the other sailors at ease.  There is less fear of getting lost when these professionals are around, which is something they take pride in.  Another service is that Mappers are always happy to train others in map reading and whatever navigation tricks they have.  The veterans have special tools and styles, which go to a chosen apprentice.  Yet, the basics are always on the table if they are given a chance to travel into a place they haven’t been to before.

One curious thing about Mappers is that they rarely interact with each other.  There are only two reasons that they work together.  One is a yearly gathering to compare notes and see if anybody has undone your previous work.  This meeting bans all writing implements and memorization charms, but does allow map trading.  Every Mapper has a collection that they are always looking to increase.  Now, the other type of gathering is when several join forces to make a single crew.  This happens when a special circumstance is discovered and multiple Mappers are after the same mystery.  While some may want to race, most will work together on something that could be seen as a once-in-a-lifetime event.  These outings can be chaotic though because you have conflicting personalities and there’s always a poor captain that they hire to help.

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