Today’s guest, Carol Bond, is a wonderful person, a talented author and an incredible, generous supporter of indies.
Born in Adelaide, South Australia, this mother of three is following her passion for Fantasy writing. She published The Unseen Promise in 2013, after revitalizing the urge to complete the first book in the Tarkeenia Sagas. She is currently working on subsequent manuscripts and is involved in various writing and creative communities.
She is a co-founder of Terra Australis, a group of Australian writers, where she is working with others towards publishing two anthologies of Australian themed short stories. Also, she is working with a UK Author, on a new Fantasy series – titled Un-named.
Carol Bond is writing under the pseudonym of her children’s middle names – Ellen Mae Franklin.
The Unseen Promise – Synopsis
Set on the world Tarkeenia, the story marks the struggle between God and man, magic and indefinable evil.
Roedanth wants his brother back, it doesn’t matter that the boy is dead; the young copper apprentice can’t seem to stop wishing. Tainted by the magic of the Dark God – Drakite, tragedy and pain follows Roedanth, from Crows Nest to the Halls of Coowic, where the Magi live.
Tarkeenia is awash with life – man and beast live side by side. Monsters hunt the shadows looking for a bite to eat. The tip of balance between dark and light, good and evil is tenuous, even on a good day. Flesh eating Specks turn the living into dust, and the world is no longer safe. Murrdocks, are a child’s story, woven tales told to enchant and incite fear. Their King lays dying, and Prince Pec having no choice, must turn myth into reality.
Strangers become friends, out of necessity more than compatibility for survival takes on the order of the day. Uneasy alliances are tainted by betrayal and self gain, and unlikely heroes emerge to salvage what they can from a world on the brink of chaos.
Everyone strives to make do in a world bubbling with wild magic, working to remain true to their Calling, as the lives of man and monster hang in the balance, subject to the whims of Gods. Can Tarkeenia survive the tug and pull of the very spoilt, and the very wicked? Can those lost to the dark find a way back to the light? Is it possible to forget, or to forgive and begin again? All these questions and more are answered as the reader walks Tarkeenia’s many paths.
Carol Bond is Talking about The Unseen Promise and Introducing some Interesting Characters
Tarkeenia is a world I created for my first book, The Unseen Promise. It is as familiar to me, as my home and one that I love with all my heart. I have wandered its many paths, conversing with characters and marveling at the story, as it has over the years, unfolded into a complex journey with many shades of light and dark.
The Unseen Promise is the first book in what has become the Tarkeenia Sagas. I always intended to extend the story into three or four books. I am a chatterbox by nature, so why would my story be any different. When I began writing, it was a way to fill a hole in my life, but I did not expect, that I would end up with a beautifully crafted novel. If not for the support of friends along the way, I fear my manuscript would be collecting dust in some dark corner.
Sitting in front of a screen first time round was a little daunting. I did not choose to become a writer, since raising a family and working was my world before words. Like everyone who writes, I will say I wish I had done this all my life. I began after a move to the country. I am sure that the isolation and quiet was the perfect motivator. I had a character, his dream and a message that I wanted to convey. Word by word and The Unseen Promise took shape and colour.
These past three years, I have rewritten my story several times over, never truly being happy with the beginning of it. Now, on this final run, I believe that I have achieved a complex weave of fascinating scenarios, with characters who, bicker and love, scheme and delight, offering you, the reader an insight to a world on the brink of chaos.
I decided during the writing process to take on a pen name. I have chosen the middle names of my three children, Ellen Mae Franklin.
Allow me to introduce a couple of the characters from The Unseen Promise. They are my friends and a delight. Please, give a warm welcome to Quaverit the Stork Man and Bulbo – the Colliery Officious Pen Pusher.
EMF – It is very good of you both to join us. Please, make yourselves comfortable and we will begin. I would like to ask you Quaverit, to explain to the readers what a Murrdock is.
Quaverit – Good gracious! How is it, that a single reader out there doesn’t know a Murrdock when he’s talking to one? My word! Well, I am and proud to call myself, a Stork Man. I hate to mention the down side of what we each are, being half human is shameful. At least, it is for me, magic users and eaters of flesh. No, my animal side is far superior and I must, good looking.
EMF – You have a fabulous name. Could you tell us the correct pronunciation and what it is, you do for a living.
Quaverit – I am the Chamberlain to the Royal Family and you may all pronounce my name as (Qua – vair – it).
EMF – What is so special about being part animal?
Quaverit – Oh! That is such an easy question and I am very happy that you thought to ask me this. It’s my feathers. See how white they are. I have them on the top of my head. (The Stork Man turns his head, this way and that) I also have them on my …. (He flushes with embarrassment and points to his arse) you know, they are sticking out of the whole in my pants. Aren’t they beautiful, you won’t find whiter feathers in all of Tarkeenia.
EMF – What do you do with your days?
Quaverit – I have duties Miss Ellen Mae Franklin, very important duties for the King and Queen of the land. I introduce guests, and make appointments for petitioners. I am constantly, having to redress mistakes the other servants make. As if I don’t have enough to do.
EMF – How would you describe yourself to the readers?
Quaverit – I am elegant if not anything Ellen, and modest too if I must say so. I have long legs and a beautiful long neck. See? But it is my long nose that offers salute to the Stork in me. (He then frowns) The rest of me is pretty much human. I am not overly fond about talking to anyone of that part of me.
EMF – Is there something in your world that you value above all else?
Quaverit – Please, if you haven’t of noticed already (Quaverit fingers the gold medallion around his neck) You see this wondrous pendant, it was given to me by King Tarmet, it’s my badge of office. No-one else has anything that can its brilliance. I like to hang it out front, on top of my blue vest. It is a part of my uniform and I couldn’t be more proud.
EMF – Is there one last piece of information about yourself that you feel the reader should know?
Quaverit – Manners! Yes, it has to be manners. The world just doesn’t run right without manners. Too much pushing and shoving otherwise, I can’t abide those that want what others have.
EMF – Quaverit, I have had an amazing time chatting to you and I can’t wait to see what happens in The Unseen Promise.
My next guest is a mighty man in his own right. Please, welcome Bulbo the dwarf.
Can you tell the reader a little about yourself?
Bulbo – Beggin’ ya pardon Miss I have a very important title for the work I do in the Machobe mines. I used to do some mining me’self but I found the paperwork side of things a serious matter. My title was givin’ to me by Jezub. I am the Colliery Officious Pen Pusher.
EMF – I have heard it said that all dwarves are hungry for gold and what it brings. Is this true?
Bulbo – I would take offense to such a sayin’ if I didn’t think it to be true. We get given all kinds of names, cause of the fact that we like the colour. Some call us Capitalists; some call us Country Bumpkins. I wish I knew what that last one meant. All I can say is that we look for the colour Miss. Gold and silver, and I can’t forget the gems now can I? It’s what we live for: it’s what we love.
EMF – Is it true that Dwarves are masters in the working of metal and the very rare prize – glass – that can be found on Tarkeenia.
Bulbo – (He nods his large head. His bulbous nose tilts up and down with excitement) Oh! Yes indeed we are. (He pulls out a figurine. An exquisite piece in the shape of a rose) See now, it is not very good work. An apprentice’s skill could never equal a master, but on short notice is was all I could get. See how the light catches.
EMF – I love your hat.
Bulbo – You do? It is a tricorne and one of my most treasured possessions, short of my miner’s hat that is. Yellow is my favourite colour and the picture. See if you look carefully at it, is a feathered quill. A badge of my office and title. You see Miss. us dwarves love our titles, but for all that it is worth, we love our gold more.
EMF – You have such a handsome beard Bulbo. Are all dwarven beards long?
Bulbo – My beard is the same as any other dwarves I s’pose. Mine is red, a very lucky colour by dwarven standards, see if I stand in the light how it shines. I plait it and then tuck it into my pants belt, like this. (He shoves a few stubby fingers into the front of his pants, adjusting his beard with pride) My eyebrows. They’re the same colour, thick and bushy just the way I like ‘em.
EMF – Is it true that all dwarves love a good scrum?
Bulbo – Aw don’t get us wrong please, we are a greedy people, that much is true but a good fight is the perfect way to solve immediate disputes. Sometimes there ain’t no time to get it sorted in the right order of things. There’s nothin’ wrong with a fist or two, a bit of beard pulled and the odd shin kickin’. Believe me Miss. a scrum here or there is a welcome diversion to the dark.
EMF – Just one last question Bulbo. Can you tell us something about yourself that readers might find interesting?
Bulbo – Well, I don’t mind a bit of knitting every once and awhile. When all the filings done and I am ready to put my feet up. I like to sit by the fire and clack away. I’m considered a fine knitter where I come from.
EMF – Thank you both for joining me in celebration of the new fantasy book The Unseen Promise. I wish you much joy and keep safe in that world of yours.
I would like to conclude my Guest Post with a thank you to the reader and I hope that upon buying a copy of The Unseen Promise you will continue to support my other works, under the pen name of Ellen Mae Franklin.
10 Quick-Fire Questions with Carol Bond
1) What did you last wish for?
I last wished to live in Spain. In fact, I keep wishing for, this to happen I believe one day it will happen. I kind of get all dreamy about it when I start thinking on it.
2) Best world to live in – real or imaginary?
If I take a real good look at this world, I would happily say an imaginary one. Of my choosing of course, for if I was to have to live in Tarkeenia it could be just as dangerous as this one.
3) Best companion – human or monster?
Is there a difference? Sometimes I think we have a monster in each of us. There are good monsters and there are very evil monsters. I will for the fun of it choose a monster. I have one in my book called – Kitty. I do so love her spirit and ferocity. Yes… it would be Kitty.
4) What scares you most?
Egad! There is so much that I am a fraidy cat of. But, I will pick spiders. I don’t even like pictures of them.
5) What would you rely on to keep you safe – magic or your own sanity?
Magic would be so very nice to have, keeping me safe against so many things, but the question is – would it keep you from a broken heart or hurt feelings. From madness of a failing mind, I don’t think so. My answer to this question is I would choose my sanity thank you.
6) In the battle between good and evil, should the former always win?
Definitely not! Evil triumphing over the powers of good as a writer brings me a certain element of excitement. I revel in my nasties, and that’s not to say that I do not strike out in favour of the heroes. But, to have evil win is a done deal for me.
7) The main reason why so many people are unhappy is because of their selfishness or their desire to one-up their fellow human beings?
Both – there is not a black and white answer to this question. Human nature is as unpredictable as it is a foregone conclusion. We are all capable of both ends of the scale. Being one-up on our fellow human beings can stem from so many different reasons, one of them being selfish, or insecure. Perhaps jealously play a part in the chemistry of it all. I think people are unhappy because they all want more. Wishing to covet what another has is fairly, common isn’t it. Sad but true!
8) The best books always convey a message. Is that what makes them great?
No! I just love a good tale. That’s not to say that this question isn’t true. Mine conveys a message.
9) The perfect relationship – is it eternal agreement or ebbing and flowing like the tides?
I like a working partnership in a relationship. A best friend who I can bounce off of and love to be with. So, ebbing and flowing like the tides suits me, just as long as we don’t get caught up in any storm activity.
10) Writing, to you – is it a need or a hobby?
Neither! Writing for me is a love and a joy in creating. If I had to choose it would be need but it is not a compulsion.
Would you like to contact Carol, do you have questions about her book? You can do so using the following links: