My passion for writing began in my mid-teens. At the age of sixteen, I wrote my first novel, CINDY'S SONG, a YA coming-of-age, where the main character deals with not only the social and peer pressures of that particular decade (early 80's), but the complex and often mind-boggling hierarchy of the teenage social structure. Unfortunately, due to negligence, the completed manuscript was lost during a gypsy period in my life. I hope to one day re-write the novel with a more scifi feel to it.
It was this first completed project that sparked my creative energies, and at twenty-five, I was working on my second novel CHILD OF THE STORM. This was my first venture into the world of science fiction and proved to be a genre I liked writing. When I finished, I began plotting out a sequel STORM RISING, but due to ever changing computer technology, both the manuscript and the outline were lost to corrupt disks and non-compatible word programs.
It would be another five years before I would begin writing more consistently. It was during this time that I became influenced by another genre--urban/dark fantasy. Sparked by shows like Buffy and The X-Files, I followed my imagination down another path, and between my love for science fiction and my new interest, I devised twenty or so novel ideas ranging from epics that could only be told in a series of novels, to short stories.
Starting in 2007, I decided to become serious about writing, and began honing my skills with the goal of becoming a successful, published author. So far, I have written two novels, a military scifi called DRAGONSTONE and an urban/dark fantasy called THE SAINTS OF BELVEDERE ROAD, with the latter in revision. I have several short stories published online, and several more in various stages of completion.
With the ever-changing face of publishing, one must keep up. I plan on self-publishing a series of paranormal novella's that will lead up to several larger books.
A. F. Stewart
on July 22, 2012 :
I was pleasantly surprised reading The Watchtower by Darke Conteur. I expected a reasonably interesting fantasy novel, a short and quick, agreeable read. What I got was a highly crafted, delightfully intricate book, entangled in a dark and a fascinating fantasy world populated with captivating characters.
The book starts with the character of Martin Cunningham, who is looking for a job and getting a bit desperate. This job urgency is what brings him to Terin Global, a not-at-all typical place of employment. Once hired, he slowly gets dragged into a dangerous and strange world.
One of the best aspects of the book is Martin’s point-of-view, which goes from, “okay these guys are quirky” to “I can’t believe this is happening” without ever seeming forced or out of step. As a reader, you identify with Martin and are drawn into the story as he is wrenched from his comfortable beliefs and faced with another reality.
The plot is fast-paced, but never sacrifices continuity or believability in favour of keeping the action moving. The reader receives just enough explanation and back-story to construct the fantasy, without breaking the authenticity of the real world setting. The Watchtower is a first-rate urban fantasy and I highly recommend it.
(reviewed 6 months after purchase)
on Nov. 16, 2011 :
What ages would I recommend it too? – Twelve and up.
Length? – A short evening read.
Characters? – Memorable, several characters.
Setting? – Fantasy, alternate dimensions.
Written approximately? – 2010.
Does the story leave questions in the readers mind? – Ready to read more.
Any issues the author (or a more recent publisher) should cover? No.
Short storyline: Martin, an average unemployed person needs a job. The job he lands in, shows him how to see what most people pass by, unable to recognize what is really going on all around him. Belief really is a relief.
Notes for the reader: Be sure and read all the blog tour posts to better understand, and get to know the characters!
(reviewed 40 days after purchase)