Sunday, April 19, 2015

The Blue Rose

Faraban carefully unwrapped the silk to expose a vibrant blue rose nestled within the folds. He held it up and twirled the thornless stem. “An impossible flower for an impossible beauty. The blue rose, a symbol of my house since ancient times."
- from Mayfly Requiem by Courtney M. Privett

The blue rose does not occur in nature. White roses can be dyed blue and a blue color can be obtained through genetic modification, but there are no natural blue roses. Still, there is cultural significance associated with this impossible flower. Some cultures utilize the blue rose as a symbol for royalty, or for fantasy and impossibility. It signifies unattainable love in Chinese folklore.

In the Malora Octet, the blue rose is part of the heraldry of the corrupt Eryaucra dynasty. The flower was selectively bred over centuries and was only grown in the gardens of the Lunamar palace. In Mayfly Requiem, Faraban uses an Eryaucra Blue to propose to his intended bride. The symbol is seen on both his clothing and his banners. It is not as prominent in the Echoes of Oblivion trilogy because Faraban's son, Rastaban, is not fond of tradition and chooses to disregard many of the old symbols. The rose is still present in the kingdom of Ganebra, but it no longer has the significance it did to Faraban.

The blue rose has decided to make a reappearance in Arrow of Entropy, which is why I'm revisiting it now. The metalsmith Catta Metavanya forges a suit of armor for the narrator, Zella Thula. The armor is decorated with scrollwork and blue roses. This causes some distress to the book's deuteragonist, who is quite familiar with the ancient symbolism even though it has been long-forgotten by everyone else. Zella later comes into possession of a blue rose necklace, the design of which was inspired by her armor.

Below is Zella's necklace, which I made this afternoon. Each component of it ends up being significant to her story -- the blue rose, the pair of bees, and the eight larger beads that separate the smaller ones. I'm 20,000 words into writing this book now, so you'll have to wait a little longer to find out just how the blue rose and this necklace play into her life.

Visual reference I made for Zella Thula's necklace (Arrow of Entropy).

Saturday, April 11, 2015


I took a short journey through Yolane Forest today. I moved to Northern California in January and all I have to do is drive fifteen miles and I'm in another world. This is how I always envisioned Bethel's Yolane, so I hope you enjoy the tour.

Yolane was like stepping into a distant past. Massive trees studded the landscape and the permanent cool damp ignored the raging summer that baked the nearby plains. Mist clung to moss, and animals scurried from branch to branch and bush to bush. It was a green world coated in the thick perfume of organic decay and living cypress, and I thought it was wonderful.
-from Arrow of Entropy (first draft)

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Giveaway Time!

I'm running a paperback giveaway contest on Goodreads! Enter to win your signed copy.


    Goodreads Book Giveaway


        The Crystal Lattice by Courtney M. Privett



          The Crystal Lattice

          by Courtney M. Privett


            Giveaway ends April 19, 2015.
            See the giveaway details
            at Goodreads.

      Enter to win

Sunday, April 5, 2015

The Crystal Lattice

After twelve years, countless editing rounds, two complete rewrites, and a file corruption that ate half of one of my rewrites, The Crystal Lattice has finally flown the nest!

You can find the ebook on Amazon and the paperback on Amazon or Createspace. The paperback will be available through other vendors soon, but I'm going to leave the ebook exclusively on Amazon for a couple months while I swear at the ugly formatting.

This book scares me a little. I was a lot younger when I wrote it so the tone is quite different from my later books. It has its dark moments, but over all it's lighter. The Crystal Lattice is a fantasy adventure and a coming-of-age story about a young man with an elemental soul and the heart of a bard.

So, now I can return to something heavier. I'm casually editing the dark and somewhat-claustrophobic Sand into Glass while writing the first draft of Arrow of Entropy. These two encompass the events on either side of the history of The Crystal LatticeSand takes place before Lattice and it's Arden Masiona's rather troublesome backstory. Arrow of Entropy takes place after Lattice, and so far in my head it's a both story of the redemption of at least one previous antagonist and also a love story for the end of the universe. If you ever were curious about Oblivion, you're finally going to meet the Element the rest of the Web fears. All I need to do is write it.

Saturday, April 4, 2015


I'm in love. I fixed some formatting issues and uploaded the final version, so now it's sitting in publishing limbo.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Drifting and Drafting

I'm drifting on the wave of post-book bliss. I finished the first draft of Sand into Glass this afternoon. It took me two years longer to complete it than I expected, but it turned out I needed to trudge through my own personal abyss to figure out how to drag Arden through his.

This book is unusual and I'm not sure how to categorize it. It's a courtroom drama from the defendant's point of view, but it's also an epic fantasy and a dive into the underground caves of mental illness. I went into this book prepared to dig into my own psyche and toss it out naked for the world to see, and I think that is exactly what I am doing.

Now I wait and let the bats settle for a short time while my mind clears. I need to do some rewrites and flesh out the bonier parts, but the story is there and it is finally out of my head. In the meantime, I have some other projects to attend to.

I'm currently waiting to receive my proof copy of The Crystal Lattice. I decided to switch things up and make Lattice first in the Emergence trilogy even though it is chronologically second. I wanted to start out the trilogy with the lighter book and then dig into the dark. I have some additional copyedits to fix on the proof and I need to make sure the formatting is correct, then hopefully I can hit those little "Publish" buttons and release my oldest and most reclusive baby into the world sometime this month.

I'm also starting to take notes for the final book of the trilogy, which is also the final book in the Malora series. This story has been in my head for a couple years but I needed to write everything else first. I'm going to have fun with this one, and I hope you eventually will, too. You'll finally get to meet the elusive Oblivion. Also, several characters who have been fixtures throughout the series finally get what they deserve, especially Rassa. At least, they get what I think they deserve. Arrow of Entropy is going to be a wild ride and it will mark a very definitive ending for my stories of this world.

Emergence is a loose trilogy and not a continuous storyline. Each of the books is told by a different narrator in three different generations of an interconnected family. Tesji is a fiery bard with a knack for embellishment, a love of alliteration, and a hunger for adventure. Arden is the troubled son of an immortal who finally finds himself in a situation he can't escape from. Zella is a light mage with such severe social anxiety that she prefers to remain in the shadows and observe the world from a distance... which directly leads her to a kindred spirit in the form of an ancient Emergent with a lot to atone for.

I hope you enjoy reading this series as much as I've enjoyed writing it. It won't be long now. The Emergents are nearly ready to come out and play.