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Simple Wisdom from Gandalf

"'Where did you go, if I may ask?' said Thorin to Gandalf as they rode along. 'To look ahead,' said he. 'And what brought you back in the nick of time?' 'Looking behind,' said he."

As I was thinking about what I might write for the newsletter this week, this quote from Gandalf came to mind. Like so many others, I've been both looking ahead with anticipation toward the holidays, but also thoughtfully looking behind as the year nears its end. What has been accomplished that I can be proud of, and what setbacks have kept me from doing more? No doubt all of us have fallen short of our dreams in some areas, yet we may have found unexpected blessings in others.

Joining newsletters with Renee and Joshua has certainly been one of those blessings for me. Through it I have found new friends, as well as fans, and have been challenged to branch out and try new things I hadn't thought of before. I would say overall it has been a successful year, and all of you have been part of that success! So thank you for sticking with us each week, and for encouraging us to keep writing, blogging, and reaching for those coveted review stars that help us entice more readers.

The new year is always a good time to make a fresh start, and I'm already thinking about what I might do differently for 2017's newsletters. But before I change things up, I'd really love to know what you think I've been doing well, and also how I can make my editions of the newsletter more interesting to you, the readers. I would be extremely grateful if you would take a few minutes to answer this short 4 question poll. Consider this my end-of-the-year review!

Next week's newsletter will be a special Christmas edition, featuring a rare treat you won't want to miss! 



 
Tired of the same old fantasy creatures? Medieval legend is full of bizarre beasts that can make for great inspiration for your fantasy story.
The Alerion is lord over all other birds. Bigger than an eagle, it has razor-sharp, fire-colored wings. However, this bird is also exceedingly rare. There is only one pair in the world at one time.

The female of the pair lays two eggs when she is sixty years old, which take sixty days to hatch. Once the young emerge, the adult pair are escorted by a host of other birds to the sea, where they plunge into the waters and drown. The accompanying birds then return to the nest to care of the Alerions' young until they can fly on their own. 

How would you write such noble creatures into a story? And what does a bird do with razor-sharp wings?
Shadow Stalker Part 3 (Episodes 13-18) is now available!

Things go from bad to worse when the Galvadi Empire develops a new technology to use against the shadow stalkers. Kado and Makari are more determined than ever to keep Auren away from their enemies, but Auren takes matters into her own hands. Download Episode 3 to find out what happens next...
Looking for a Christmas gift idea?

Get autographed copies of any book in the Wind Rider Chronicles at a discount over Amazon.

A limited number are available. A bonus bookmark and gift wrap are included.
The Oxford comma--you knew I'd have to bring it up eventually, right? Without it there is often room for ambiguity--sometimes adding unintended humor. For example, “A notorious gambler, Charlie Sheen owed money to his ex-wives, Billy Bob Thornton and Hugh Grant.” In this sentence, a simple comma would prevent Billy Bob and Hugh from being noted as Charlie Sheen's ex-wives! In journalism the comma is often dropped as a way of saving printing space. However, for all other types of writing the Chicago Manual of Style recommends its usage.
Adventure awaits: Lyndsey Harper's debut Dark Fantasy novel, The Fell is now available for pre-order in e-book and paperback!
Get inspired by Fantasy Art Wednesday, where fun fantasy artwork is combined with a writing prompt to get your creative juices flowing!

This passage through the mountains is slow and treacherous–not a journey for the weak or faint of heart. But hidden amidst the icy peaks is a stronghold; a refuge from the frigid winds and driving snow. You had heard rumors of its existence before. Vague, conflicting rumors of unknown origin. You’re not sure how it came to be built in this remote mountain range, or who lives there. Are they welcoming to travelers? Or would you be better off facing the elements and pressing on to make your own shelter for the night? You stare up at the castle’s looming form, trying to discern if there is a friendly air about this place, or a forbodding one. In a few hours, the daylight will fade–you must make a choice. You sigh deeply as your feet move forward on their own. Even though you are still uncertain, your mind and body are already resolved…

Artwork: “Hidden Castle” by Will Roberts

Learn More About the Weekly Fantasy Fix Authors!
Joshua Robertson is a dark fantasy author who enjoys challenging the concept of good and evil.

His bestselling novel, Melkorka, is one of three books currently available in the Thrice Nine Legends saga. 

Click to learn more about Joshua...
Allison D. Reid is a Christian Fantasy author with a fondness for Medieval history.  Her first published series, the Wind Rider Chronicles, embraces traditional fantasy elements but is also infused with deeper spiritual themes. The first book, Journey to Aviad, is now free in ebook format everywhere.

Listen to a live interview with Allison!
Renee Scattergood writes Dark fantasy and is currently publishing a serial called, Shadow Stalker. She is also working on the first novel in her series, A God's Deception. The first novel in the series is due out late 2016 or early 2017.

Read more about Renee.
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