This is very exciting, Visions of Zarua has just been released today by Suzanne Rogerson, who is a reader of this site. She has very kindly agreed to write a post on the background to the novel and the process she used in producing the book. (Thomas Brooke)
Two wizards, 350 years apart. Together they must save the realm of Paltria from Zarua’s dark past.
An ancient darkness haunts the realm of Paltria.
Apprentice wizard Paddren is plagued by visions of a city on the brink of annihilation. When his master Kalesh dies in mysterious circumstances, the Royal Order of Wizards refuses to investigate.
Helped by his childhood friend, the skilled tracker Varnia, and her lover Leyoch, Paddren vows to find the killer.
The investigation leads Paddren down a sinister path of assassins, secret sects and creatures conjured by blood magic. But he is guided by a connection with a wizard from centuries ago – a wizard whose history holds the key to the horror at the heart of the abandoned city of Zarua. Can Paddren decipher his visions in time to save the Paltrian people from the dark menace of Zarua’s past?
Visions of Zarua now from amazon.com amazon.co.uk kobo itunes nook
Background to Visions of Zarua, by Suzanne Rogerson.
The process of finishing Visions of Zarua has taken over ten years. I started when my son was a baby, scribbling away during his nap times. Then I put it aside and wrote another novel while attending evening classes and correspondence courses. A couple of years ago I decided I’d learnt enough to revisit that first draft.
Originally I intended to tell the story in two books. The first would’ve been Paddren’s story as he tried to decipher his nightmarish visions. Each chapter started with a diary extract from the past that tied in with his visions. The second book would’ve been a prequel novella telling Jago’s story of what happened in Zarua 350 years before Paddren’s began.
Somehow things weren’t working, so I used the Writers Workshop critique service.
The editor gave lots of helpful suggestions, including combining the two timelines into one book.
I removed the diary entries and instead integrated Jago’s story throughout, slotting it into the book every third chapter – starting at chapter 4. The new format has really brought both Paddren and Jago’s stories alive. I’ve loved writing Jago’s chapters using the first person viewpoint, which also helps set his scenes apart from Paddren’s.
Rewriting and editing this novel has been such a big part of my life that it’s hard to let go. I feel like a nervous mother watching her toddler go off to nursery for the first time.
It’s overwhelming to realise my childhood dream; it still doesn’t seem real.
And now that my first book is finally out there, I can’t wait to get my next book finished.
Biography of Suzanne Rogerson
Suzanne lives in Middlesex, England, with her hugely encouraging husband and two children.
She wrote her first novel at the age of twelve. She discovered the fantasy genre in her late teens and has never looked back. Giving up work to raise a family gave her the impetus to take her attempts at novel writing beyond the first draft, and she is lucky enough to have a husband who supports her dream – even if he does occasionally hint that she might think about getting a proper job one day.
Suzanne loves gardening and has a Hebe (shrub) fetish. She enjoys cooking with ingredients from the garden, and regularly feeds unsuspecting guests vegetable-based cakes.
She collects books, loves going for walks and picnics with the children and sharing with them her love of nature and photography.
Suzanne is interested in history and enjoys wandering around castles. But most of she likes to escape with a great film, or soak in a hot bubble bath with an ice cream and a book.