The Broken Lance - Update
As you may remember, I have been working
on my latest novel, The Broken Lance, for several years. I completed the final revision and sent it to my book doctor
(she doesn't want her name mention as she is not taking on any new clients) and former senior editor senior editor at Harper-Collins,
for evaluation in April. Below is part of the evaluation letter she sent back with the manuscript. She considers this to be
my best work yet.
an incredible pleasure it was to read and review The Broken Lance. I keep thinking back to when we first worked together and
how far your writing has come since then. Your knowledge of history is incredible, as always, and you’ve now mastered
setting, description, and character voice! The Broken Lance is so rich and compelling that I didn’t want it to end!
Marcellus is a wonderful hero, Elyne a colorful and sassy heroine, and all of your secondary characters and villains are strong
I found the pacing excellent
and found myself flying through the pages because the writing and storytelling are just fantastic. Your dialogue is also authentic,
interesting, and unique. I was also amazed at your ability to take so many characters and keep them distinguishable from each
other for the reader—not an easy task! I applaud that you’ve been able to keep so many subplots and characters
that most of my comments are in the manuscript itself—small edits, comments, questions, etc.—but I wanted to list
just a few overall thoughts here as well. Everything here has also been noted in the manuscript, but I want you to have my
bigger suggestions accessible. This was a tough evaluation, I must be honest, because I truly think the manuscript is in excellent
shape. I can’t give you tons of overall notes due to the fact that I couldn’t find many major issues! So please
go through the manuscript carefully and review my specific page notes and edits (you’ll see I caught all the grammatical
issues that I could, which were few). Congratulations on a rich, compelling, and mesmerizing novel. You’ve done an excellent
I still have work to do on the novel. Because it consists of 173,000 plus words, I will be turning
this into a duo-logy. To publish it as one volume, the publisher, Sunbury Press, would have had to charge $30.00. That
is too pricey, most people won't pay that for a trade paperback copy. The first book will still be titled, The Broken
Lance and the second, The Peacekeeper. I will have to write a new ending for the first novel and a new opening
for the second. So there is more work ahead of me. I hope to complete the rewrites by the end of the year. Once again I will
have members of the Spokane Novelist Group critique the new segments."
Until I complete and submit the
final rewrite of the two novel, my research and writing of my next novel, Return to Britannia (working title) will
be place on hold. The above will consume what spare time I have.
Ancient Roman Wooden Tables Found in London
discovered during an excavation in London include the oldest hand-written document ever found in Britain, archaeologists have
The Museum of London Archaeology (MOLA) said
it had deciphered a document, from 8 January AD 57, found at the Dig at Bloomberg's new headquarters.
The first ever reference to London, financial documents and evidence of schooling have also been translated.
Over 700 artefacts from the dig will go on display when the
According to MOLA, the tablets reveal the first years of the capital "in the words of the people
who lived, worked, traded with and administered the new city".
Director Sophie Jackson said the findings had "far exceeded all expectations" and would allow archaeologists
"to get closer to the first Roman Britons".
For more details see enclosed link. link: First Roman Britons
Why the average ancient Roman worker was dead by 30
A groundbreaking study of 2,000
ancient Roman skeletons has shown how many of the ancient city's inhabitants were riddled with arthritis, suffered broken
bones and were generally dead before 30.
The harsh realities of life in imperial Rome were revealed by a
multi-disciplinary study carried out by an Italian team of osteopaths, historians and anthropologists which used modern scanning
techniques to analyze a huge sample of skeletons recently unearthed in the suburbs of the Eternal City.
skeletons were exhumed over the last 15 years in the course of construction work on a new high speed rail line between Rome
and Naples and show the brutal reality of life for the majority of ancient Romans.
“The bones are the
earthly remains of poor, working-class Romans, taken from commoners' graves, and display high incidences of broken and fractured
bones, chronic arthritis and high incidences of bone cancer,” medical historian Valentina Gazzaniga told The Local.
“What's interesting is that the average age of death across the sample group was just 30, yet the skeletons still
display severe damage wrought by the extremely difficult working conditions of the day.”
details, see enclosed link. Reality of life in ancient Rome
Book Signing Schedule
Although I don't start
book signings again until September, a tentative schedule is now listed. Again I will be signing copies of The Sign of
the Eagle Trilogy at Barnes and Noble Booksellers and Hastings Books, Music and Videos. I will be staying primarily in
Washington State this time with only one trip down to San Jose, California where I will once again sign at Barnes & Noble,
Blossom Hill. May add a couple more stores to the list including Yokes Family Grocery Store which is a local Spokane, Washington
Thoughts About Books
a Personal Note
Liz on Annie
Southern Pacific GS4 Daylight on Track
Summer is once again upon us. Enclosed a picture of my wife, Liz, riding her mare, Annie, a registered Dun-paint, and
one of my G-scale model trains which will be running again the rest of the summer. May all of you have a great summer!
That's all until next time. Salve atque Vale! Hail and Farewell!