It is my pleasure to share a guest post by prolific author Gail Z. Martin (whose alter-ego's books I also greatly enjoy!) who answers my question...
ELF: What is one of your hobbies and how has it enriched your writing?
GZM: I’ve always loved history and ghost stories, from the time I was a little kid. I really enjoy learning about history, watching the History Channel, and visiting historic locations. I’ve also read every book I could find on regional ghost stories, real-life encounters and hauntings, and anything to do with the supernatural or paranormal.
Fast forward, and those elements seep through into all my books, regardless of the genre. Assassin’s Honor is epic fantasy, and so it draws heavily on history—castles, sword fighting, kings and medieval society. It’s also got lots of magic, ghosts, and supernatural elements, along with humor and lots of action. That’s my favorite kind of story.
I’ve learned so much from visiting living history museums like Old Sturbridge Village, Mystic Seaport, Colonial Williamsburg, and many more, as well as visiting more historic homes, old forts, and museums than I can count. When I’ve visited abroad, I’m always going on ghost tours, wandering through castles and catacombs, and taking in every monument and mummy. I’ve gathered books on ghosts, medieval warfare, history, magic, and so many other topics that I use all the time in my writing, and love reading as a hobby.
I also love to read fiction that has a supernatural, magical, or historical element, and I read epic fantasy, urban fantasy, paranormal mystery, steampunk/alternate history, paranormal romance, and more. That’s taught me a lot about how to construct a story, what works and what doesn’t, and how to create good characters.
All of those things—ghost stories, history, travel, museums and reading—might count as hobbies, but they have shaped what I know and how I write. Maybe for you it’s knitting or horses or skydiving—it doesn’t matter what your passion is, use it to build stories you love to tell!
by Gail Z. Martin
GENRE: Epic Fantasy
Buddy flick epic fantasy! Joel Breckenridge and Garrett Kennard are King's Shadows, elite assassins serving the crown of Landria. When a shadowy itinerant holy man starts captivates the nobility with treasonous whispers, Ridge and Rett go rogue to stop the threat, save the kingdom and protect the king--while landing on the 'Most Wanted' list themselves.
Breaking glass and the crack of gunfire were Ridge’s signal to move, as Destwiler’s skull exploded from the matchlock’s shot, spattering the crate of weapons with blood and bone. The boy screamed in terror, a thin, shrill sound.
Ridge spun around, grabbing two throwing knives from the top of the stash in the box and had them hilt-deep in each guard’s ribs before their swords cleared their scabbards. He dropped the heavy crossbar to lock the door to the office, and dodged back to the box of weapons, reclaiming his own array of swords and knives before teasing out a long fuse from the bottom of the crate. Then he strode over to Destwiler’s corpse and pulled the key and its strap around what was left of the man’s head.
Ridge removed the warrant from inside his vest and read out the charges as required by law. “Roan Destwiler. By order of King Kristoph of Landria, you stand condemned of crimes against the kingdom and the throne too numerous to note, but most grievously the kidnapping of Kelvin, son of Thad, Lord of Wendover. You are sentenced to death, summary execution, without notice or reprieve.”
He rolled the warrant up and tucked it into Destwiler’s bloody vest, a formality. Ridge bent down to search Destwiler’s pockets, curling his lip at the still-warm blood that soaked the shoulders and sleeves of the man’s coat. He found a parchment note tucked beneath the vest and took it to read later.
Buy on Audio, ebook, paperback or free on Kindle Unlimited here: http://a.co/d/aLiSoFi
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Gail Z. Martin writes epic fantasy, urban fantasy and steampunk for Solaris Books, Orbit Books, Falstaff Books, SOL Publishing and Darkwind Press. Vengeance is the second in the new Darkhurst epic fantasy series. Also new is The Dark Road, the second in the Jonmarc Vahanian Adventures series, and Assassin’s Honor (coming, October 2018), the first in the new Assassins of Landria series.
Her Deadly Curiosities urban fantasy series set in Charleston, SC has a new novel, Tangled Web, and two new collections, Trifles & Folly, and Trifles & Folly 2.
Other work includes the Chronicles Of The Necromancer series, the Fallen Kings Cycle, the Ascendant Kingdoms series, and the alternate history novel Iron & Blood and the Storm & Fury collection (co-authored with Larry N. Martin) She is also the co-author (with Larry) of the Mark Wojcik monster hunter series (Spells, Salt and Steel) and the upcoming Wasteland Marshals series and the Cauldron/Secret Council series from Falstaff Books.
As Morgan Brice, she writes urban fantasy MM paranormal romance. New and upcoming books include Witchbane, Burn, Dark Rivers, Badlands, and Lucky Town.
Find her at at her website, on Twitter @GailZMartin, on Facebook, at her blog and on Goodreads. She is also the organizer of the #HoldOnToTheLight campaign www.HoldOnToTheLight.com. Join her email update and never miss a new release—plus get great free stories just for signing up! http://eepurl.com/dd5XLj
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The tour dates can be found here