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Diversity in the Grimdark

The denizens of my fantasy realm are essentially color and genderblind. I don’t think having a society where this is possible is a further stretch than magic. Nor is having a diverse cast. Think about this: the potato was introduced to Europe in the Age of Exploration, about a century or two after the MiddleContinue reading “Diversity in the Grimdark”

Six Magical & Monstrous Winter Movies to Watch

That fuzzy Omen Punxsutawney Phil has declared we’ve got six more weeks of winter ahead. Whether you believe in groundhog shadow magic or not, February can be a little… blah. So let’s escape together with a movie marathon in the Grimdark. 😈🎬 Note: I’m not including The Thing or The Shining in this lineup, becauseContinue reading “Six Magical & Monstrous Winter Movies to Watch”

Ravens: Portents of Evil, And So Much More

In celebration of my new release Raven Queen, Arise, and Edgar Allan Poe’s 213th birthday week, here are some fun facts about the often-misunderstood raven. Intelligence Ravens are very, very smart. Scientists guess that ravens are some of the smartest animals in the kingdom, next to dolphins and primates. Ravens can remember thousands of locations for stashedContinue reading “Ravens: Portents of Evil, And So Much More”

Violence: The Antihero’s First Resort

I was watching a new movie the other day, and since I don’t want to spoil anything, I’m leaving the movie nameless. The point isn’t the movie anyway, it’s about the hero’s tactics. Or rather, their ultimate goal. You see, these heroes’ goals don’t involve killing the dangerous, maniacal villains that threaten their world anymore.Continue reading “Violence: The Antihero’s First Resort”

Betrayal: Just Another Weapon in the Antihero’s Arsenal

“So many vows…they make you swear and swear. Defend the king. Obey the king. Keep his secrets. Do his bidding. Your life for his. But obey your father. Love your sister. Protect the innocent. Defend the weak. Respect the gods. Obey the laws. It’s too much. No matter what you do, you’re forsaking one vowContinue reading “Betrayal: Just Another Weapon in the Antihero’s Arsenal”

Enter My Grimoire #TBR Giveaway

ICYMI in my Dark Tidings newsletter and out on social media, I’m giving away an eBook copy of Raven Queen, Arise and a $25 Amazon eGift card to one lucky winner this holiday season. There are many ways to enter. The more ways you enter, the more your chances of winning. Click here to useContinue reading “Enter My Grimoire #TBR Giveaway”

Trauma as Power: A Dark Epic Fantasy Trope

Stark Contrast If I had to pick one and only one defining difference between vanilla high fantasy and dark [chocolate—sorry!] high fantasy, it’s in the core modus operandi of the protagonist. Heroes in vanilla fantasy grow to overcome their trauma, or at least succeed despite their inner wounds. Not so in dark fantasy: antiheroes embraceContinue reading “Trauma as Power: A Dark Epic Fantasy Trope”

“I Bought It Because of the Cover”

You’ve all been there. That trip to the bookstore where you wander the stacks, no definite book in mind, but you know you’re in the mood for something…different. Something that doesn’t pull its punches. Something that will live up to everything it promises. Where the gore is gory and the sex is sexy and theContinue reading ““I Bought It Because of the Cover””

Fear is the Anticipation of Evil

Aristotle said, “Fear is pain arising from the anticipation of evil.” One of the reasons dark fantasy gets compared to horror is because of the unrelenting darkness and brutality of its worlds. Where it’s not just a matter of IF something terrible will happen but WHEN. But the most terrifying element of dark fantasy isContinue reading “Fear is the Anticipation of Evil”

Literary Fantasy Weapons that You Don’t Want to Mess With

Most dark fantasy epics or high fantasy have an assortment of magic systems, languages, and even fighting arts. But what about weapons? What could be better than having a sword that could blast through walls, set fire to enemies, and be destined to only you? Nothing really. Yet some weapons in dark fiction can beContinue reading “Literary Fantasy Weapons that You Don’t Want to Mess With”