By Timothy Deal
March 3, 2017
Oh hi! Thanks for taking a look at this blog! Good to know we’ve still got readers out there. Here, let me just blow some of this dust away and sweep up these cobwebs.
Yeah, we haven’t been as active around here the last month or two, but we’re still around and we’ve got some fresh content in the works. Of course, the big project currently in development is Bron & Calea #5, written by Children of the Wells co-founder Nathan Marchand. This will be Nate’s second novella for us, but his first foray into the tortured psychosis that is Calea Lisan. Pray for him.
In the meantime, author Greg Meyer will be offering his own take on the former Select in a short story to be released here on the site next week! This story will be a tie-in to The Select’s Bodyguard (Bron & Calea #1) and we hope to make it the first in a new series of short stories & flash fictions connected to each of our novellas. There are always side stories to be told in a shared universe like ours, so we’re looking forward to exploring more of its nooks and crannies this year.
But also, this series will give us the chance to take another look at each of our novellas, or perhaps for some of you, to introduce it for the first time. Our very first novella – not just for the Bron & Calea series but for Children of the Wells as a whole – is The Select’s Bodyguard. It was written by my podcast partner-in-crime, Nick Hayden, and his stylistic fingerprints are all over it. Inner turmoil, brutal danger, subtle ideas, a cast that includes academic elites and memorable commoners, and of course… stubborn, stubborn, strong-willed characters.
Anyone who’s read Nick’s work for the past dozen years or so can tell you he has a fascination with this type of character. From Makalos to Stuart Lem to Strin to Obed and now to Bron and Calea, Nick has a history of taking characters with a stubborn understanding of themselves and putting them through extreme trials to see if they break. Perhaps it’s his way of exploring how the incredibly obstinate person resisting God may need an incredibly painful experience to realize he can’t make it on his own.
Both Bron and Calea are hardcore, determined individuals in The Select’s Bodyguard, but Bron has a certain advantage in earning readers’ favor. Bron’s goal and determination – whether misguided or not – are heroic and honorable. Meanwhile, Calea is completely self-centered and pushes away anyone she deems unworthy of her. While she is clearly hurting on the inside, her hatred of receiving pity leads her to lash out at anyone who might try to get close.
This makes Calea a challenge for Bron, as well as for CotW readers and writers alike: How do you love the unlovable? Trying to understand the unlovable helps. Nick does a fine job in The Select’s Bodyguard of revealing Calea’s life bit by bit while simultaneously keeping a certain distance until the end. If you’ve not read it before, you might have to give it a try to see what I mean.
Along the way, you’ll witness a world in free-fall, beginning with the moments directly following the fateful Cataclysm that changed Lomara forever. Magic was the ecosystem, field of study, and way of life for the citizens of Jalseion, but when that magic disappeared, chaos destroys the city’s perfect order. In the midst of the upheaval, a crippled woman and her devoted bodyguard struggle to find a sliver of hope to grasp onto.
High stakes, deep characterization, and a modern fantasy setting plunged into an apocalypse. If all that interests you, give The Select’s Bodyguard a try!