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Penn Scripter - Unexpected Paranormal Romance
Paranormal romance and fantasy romance are two different kinds of literature; how do you distinguish one from another?
Paranormal Romance VS Fantasy Romance: How The Two Differ
...and why we write Unexpected Paranormal Romance. (How we're different)
HUGE Books are a thing.
When we opened the print proof package for The Demon of Reginhart, it was in an unassuming manila envelope. Then, I (Stephanie) reached in and pulled out the massive 500 page tome.
I knew it would be big and I was so glad we went with the 6X9 size. But it's pretty hefty and to this day, I still look for places where we could have cut or trimmed or shortened and honestly, I'm just not that good of a writer to be able to do that.
But, I'm fairly proud of it and love seeing it on the book shelf.
The Demon of Reginhart Is in Good Company Being a Long Novel
When we were writing our premier novel, we didn’t think about anyone taking a big gulp at reading 487 pages. In fact, in terms of books that are extra long and worth reading, we’re in great company.
Here are a few greats and their page counts:
Don Quixote, by Miguel de Cervantes (976 pp.)
War and Peace, by Leo Tolstoy (1,296 pp.)
The Brothers Karamazov, by Fyodor Dostoyevsky (824 pp.)
In Search of Lost Time, by Marcel Proust (4,215 pp.)
The Lord of the Rings, by J. R. R. Tolkien (1,178 pp.)
Shogun, by James Clavell (1,192 pp.)
The Stand, by Stephen King (823/1,152 pp.)
The Pillars of the Earth, by Ken Follett (816 pp.)
All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr (531 pages)
American Gods, by Neil Gaiman (635 pages)
Winter’s Tale, by Mark Helprin (748 pages)
Lonesome Dove, by Larry McMurtry (864 pages)
The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt (784 pages)
Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon (640 pages)
All great books. All super long. All super worth it, including The Demon of Reginhart, of course!
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Until next time...
Penn Scripter set up shop a year ago this July 31st! Within that time, we’ve completed The Demon of Reginhart and are working on The Transformation of Charlie.
Not bad for 12 months’ worth of work. Wouldn’t you agree?
While we are working on The Transformation of Charlie, working title TOC, here’s a little something related to one of our important characters, from The Demon of Reginhart, Selkie.
In the story, he’s a demon steed. However, here’s the legend behind this character. Take note, being horse lovers, we made our Selkie an equine instead of a person. A demon horse at that.
The Origin of the Selkie
The Irish legend of the Selkie is based on the concept of a mermaid. Selkies – also called seal people, sea people or mermaids – and tells of people who are half fish, and half human. In the water, they are seals, but on land, they shed their skin and take on human form. For some reason, they are irresistible to ordinary humans, who are apt to fall in love with them.
Popular on islands and rural coastal communities, the legend of selkie has endured over the age, and though less, there are still supposed sightings even in relatively modern times. Selkies are often spotted by those living in remote coastal areas. Legend has it that to come ashore, selkies must first shed their skin or tail. And if a person manages to find that skin and hide it away, the seal person cannot return to the sea. Irish folklore is littered with tales of men and women (usually men) finding a selkie skin and hiding it, then marrying the selkie woman.
Many famous stories revolve around selkies in Ireland. One is that of Thady Rua O’Dowd, a clan chieftain who was tasked with finding himself a bride upon rising to clan leadership.
Out walking on the beach to clear his head, Thady stumbled upon a beautiful maiden combing her hair. Though unclothed, she had a magical cape or coat next to her. Of course, all in Ireland knew of the sea people, the selkies, and Thady was no different. He quickly snatched up her selkie cloak to hide away, professing his love at first sight for her. Without her fishtail, the selkie, called Eve, had no choice but to return his love and marry him. Together, they ruled the lands and raised their seven children, but Eve always longed for the sea.
Legend has it that though the selkie cloak was well hidden, one of their children spotted Thady checking on it and told his mother of the “bag of gold.” When Thady was away from home, Eve checked the spot her child told her about – and lo and behold, discovered her fishtail. With the return of her fishtail, Eve could not resist the temptation of the sea.
She left to go back to the ocean with her children. But she could not take them all. Instead, she turned five of them into rocks, swimming off into the waves with the remaining children under each arm.
We’re not sure about turning children into rocks, but that’s how the legend goes.
So, look to read more about our Selkie in The Demon of Reginhart!
I sat on two flat rocks and a plank forming a bench just outside the gates of the fortress that was home to Marcus, the barrier between Asmara, the mage, and Tiecus, the demon. For want of a better description, the two reside within the body of Marcus. He can stay in the physical forefront or either allow or can be forced by one or the other two to come forth and take form.
Today, taking my life in my hands, I would interview Tiecus, the demon. Marcus has assured me that Tiecus had fed well earlier and that his blood lust was temporarily satiated. I could only hope.
The barrier of green foliage soon began to draw back away from the opening that it covered, and Marcus appeared. He took off his hat and bowed to me. “Greetings, Creator.”
I half-stood. He towered over my five-foot-eight stature, and as I looked up into his golden eyes, I could easily see why Platt had warmed to him early on. He was masculine but his carriage was charming. The tattoos that covered his arms, all that I could see of his body, almost appeared to have a life of their own, seeming to shift slightly with his movement.
“It’s lovely to see you, Marcus. I thought I’d be talking to Tiecus today.”
“Stand back, Creator, and he will appear.”
I backed behind the bench, and what I observed took my breath away.
Marcus removed his large hat and appeared to grow even larger than he had been before. I considered he went from about six-foot-seven to well over seven feet. His form began to ripple.
I blinked, and the demon stood before me. He was terrifying.
His eyes were mere slits in his ugly face. They transposed from yellow to red and back again, and they had the shape of ones I’d seen on alligators. His jagged, sharp teeth forced his face into an almost perpetual but horrifying smile filled with malice. Small spikes protruded from his face, and horns wrapped around it. His body was muscled but was part human and part animal of some kind.
He glared at me, and a long, forked tongue shot out and licked what was more of a gaping hole than a nose. His voice reminded me of tires rolling over gravel on a rocky road. He whispered, “Creator…”
I backed a bit away.
He held out a clawed hand. “No fear. No hurt.”
I relaxed a bit and sat on the bench. “You really have learned the meaning of ‘no’, haven’t you?”
He crouched in front of me like a wolf getting ready to attack its prey. “It is opposite of after word.”
Spoken language was a difficult thing to the young demon and though his words were crude, I knew what he meant. He understood that no fear meant trust me. No hurt was closer to I will not hurt you.
“Tiecus, how do you feel about your current situation, being controlled in part by Marcus?”
He thought for a while before he spoke. “Allowed under Bright-Eye. Hunger calm. Companionship.”
“You still call the sun Bright-Eye, has anyone tried to teach you more about language?” I asked.
Meaning, Tiecus relied on Marcus to bridge the gap between the demon’s emotions and thought to make a coherent sentence from his sparse words. Something he could only do because they were all inside the same body and shared their inner selves with each other.
“Then you are willing to live inside Marcus with Asmara?”
Tiecus growled, circled once and lay on the grass knoll.
“What do you think of Platt?”
His tongue again snaked out and ran around his jagged teeth. “Beautiful. Magic.”
“Can you tell me about why you dislike Asmara, the mage, so much?”
Tiecus blinked then closed his eyes. “You know answers. Sleep now. Gut full.”
I watched, again amazed as the demon fell into a deep sleep, and Marcus slowly appeared replacing the grotesque body with his dangerously attractive one.
Marcus shook his head, leaped to his feet, and replaced his hat. He smiled. “If you write a sequel to The Demon of Reginhart, please free me from these bothersome two.”
I shook my head. “You know I won’t do that, Marcus. Together you are more interesting!”
He bowed deeply, turned, and walked into his fortress, and left my world a bit less colorful.
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Just so you know, here’s the blurb about the book:
A war rages within the world, while an even greater war seethes within a single man.
In a world riddled with demons, magic and Kings, Marcus, a single man, stands in the middle of them. Only Marcus is not an ordinary man. He is the only being preventing the demon, Tiecus, and the mage, Asmara, from destroying each other. They live within him, against his wishes, but to eliminate one will result in annihilating the three of them.
Sent to protect a small port village by King Valder, Marcus finds himself in an unexpected war. After Tiecus fails to control his blood lust, almost killing Platt, a local girl, Marcus is prepared to fight for his life. Only everything changes when the girl agrees to live with him in the tower to save the villagers from Tiecus’ wrath. Protecting this village in the impending war will require the combined cooperation of the mage and the demon living within Marcus.
One woman’s love could unite them and change the tide of war.
The answer to Marcus’s struggles, his pain, could be the love of a single, unusual woman. As strangers living together within his tower, the pending war brings them all closer. Perhaps Platt is what Marcus needs to become whole and no longer in a constant struggle for control.
The fate of them all rests on the outcome of this war, one Marcus is not certain any of them will survive.
Penn Scripter is the nom de plume for the writing team of S.N. and Carol McKibben. This mother-daughter combo writes unexpected paranormal romance. Separately, they each have a healthy list of novels.
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