Sirens Call Publications is pleased to announce the release of the 25th issue of The Sirens Call eZine featuring poetry, fiction, and photography from women in honor of Women in Horror Recognition …
Sojourn: The Wildlands
I was given a copy of Sojourn: The Wildlands by B. D. Messick in return for an honest review.
The story is set in a post-apocalyptic world where everything beyond the small cities, called Enclaves, is wasteland. However, when a person turns eighteen they must travel to a new Enclave, chosen at random, to start their new life.
Rayn is a seventeen year old girl looking at facing her future while dealing with the typical struggles of a teenage girl. Her best friend, Luk, is a little younger than her and his Sojourn to the new Enclave won’t start until a few months after her so she is facing a long trek across the wildlands on her own.However, a couple of days in and her best friend Luk is there to find her. He can’t stand not being with her and they share their first kiss in a run-down camper van.
The story moves forward from there, taking the reader day to day through the struggles the pair face including hunting for food, searching for water and making tough decisions. They have some luck on their way as well as some bad times but come through it together.
I love Rayn as a character. She’s strong and independent. She is the one doing most of the leading throughout their Sojourn although she doesn’t believe it (and knows that without Luk she might not have survived). She has studied well and the time spent with her father before her Sojourn is always coming back in some way in terms of map-reading or shooting. She’s a smart girl.
Their relationship is just budding throughout this book and we watch as she goes from unsure to bashful to confident still in this honeymoon phase.
The book ends on a cliffhanger, leaving the reader to wonder what will happen in the next book. It’s a great read and I would recommend this to anyone who likes YA and post-apocalyptic.
I’m currently working on the fourth novel in a series (of which there will be seven). I have been loosely planning the novels in my notebook but mostly they have come together of their own accord. It’s like something I’ve never experienced before and I love it!
I’ve come to the realisation that my weakness (because we all have them) while writing is the middle. Because I have planned the beginning and know where I want it to end up, I know what I’m doing there. However, because I haven’t been putting in a rigid structure or plan throughout my novel I’ve found two things: that my characters have free reign to tell me what they want to do and that I flounder somewhat.
In one way, I like writing like this. My story goes where it should go and the characters seem to know where to take me from one scene to the next. They seem to have a lot of bright ideas. But one thing that I do find is that on the occasion when I sit down to write and I’m not sure where my characters want to go, I’m a bit lost. Sometimes I find myself slogging through the thousand words just to get it down on paper but not really feeling it. Sometimes I’ll sit for ages just wondering (and of course procrastinating) what should happen next.
Of course there are pros and cons of planning and pantsing but I like to adopt an in-the-middle approach that seems to work generally quite well for me. What I do think I’m good at doing is soldiering on through the times when I find it hard to write. I make myself write because I know that when I hit the next scene my fingers will be flying and the characters will be taking over again.
In other news, I’m taking off this weekend for some time with family and my partner as we head to the Harry Potter studio in London. Of course I’m so excited about it being the huge Harry Potter dork that I am (and currently deciding how many Harry Potter themed clothes it would be acceptable to wear!).
Oh and look out this weekend for a cover reveal from Granville, my new co-written novella which is being released on the 17th. If you want to take part here’s the link to the release party on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/464630770410893/
David Owain Hughes will also be attending the party as of course, he is the co-author! Also look out for Eight Deadly Kisses released by Dark Chapters Press, an anthology written by women with strong female characters. All proceeds go to CAMFED.
Wow! I didn’t expect to come home to such amazing news! I made the longlist for Dark Chapter Press contest. I stand alongside four other fantastic authors and it will only be a few short weeks until I find out whether I made the grade…
Five titles have been selected to progress to the next stage of the competition. These will be whittled down to a shortlist of 3 finalists over the coming weeks.
The five longlisted entries are as follows:
The Man With The Red Tie – Grant Skelton
Tainted – Myles Nielsen
Labyrinth of the Fallen Angel – Alice J. Black
The Daemonic Civil War – Brian Barr
Piece It All Back Together – Feind Gottes
Congratulations to you all for making it to the longlist, and commiserations to the other entrants who leave us at this stage.