#Author feature – James Tallett

August 9, 2011

Featured Authors

I know, I know, you’re all here in anticipation of the book, and you wish the stuffy old author would get out of the way and talk abouthis novel. But first, a little about me and how I got into this funny old business of writing.

I’m not really a writer by trade – my day job is financial and strategic planning and project management. It’s a really long way of saying I make a living using Excel and Powerpoint to bore the pants off others.

As for writing and how I got into that, well, back when I was a college student (8 years ago this summer) I was sitting outside on the family porch chatting to my mum about books, and she made a comment along the lines of “You’re a good writer, you read a lot of fantasy books, you should try your hand at it.” As far as I’m aware, she didn’t immediately follow it with Jeremy Clarkson’s famous “How hard can it be?”, but it would have been quite appropriate.

Fastfoward six years, and I’ve just finished writing Tarranau, and it’s a lightweight tome of 165k words. A week later, it’s been through its first round of edits and is a bit slimmer, but still chunky.

You see, this is the part that you never hear about when you start writing – edits, layouts, formatting, cover work, ISBN, etc. all take time. Lots of time. In my case, two years. Sure I could have sped things up some, but it was still a long, long time. Even now, for my next novel, I expect editing and formatting to take a year.

But when those two years were over, I had a wonderful looking book in my hands, and I knew it was a good one as well. And so I put it on sale, like you’re supposed to do with books. It’s still not light, at 144k words, but I think the quality has dramatically improved from where it was when it started.

Which is what editing is supposed to do after all. It’s amazing how many times I’ll type a sentence and think “Mmm, that sounds good”, take one look at it under edits, and bin it for crap. But that’s the life of writing. Everything can be improved and refined. It’s the same reason they never ship the first pulp you get from grapes – it needs refining to become wine.

However, now that I have a little wine, I’ve decided to offer a contest to go with it. There’s a $100 Amazon gift card at the end, and all you have to is follow the easy steps through this link. I have contests like these about once a month. They’re my way of giving back to the most involved readers.  (Update: I am sad to announce that the contest has been cancelled.)

They also let me connect with people, which is a wonderful experience. A story isn’t a complete story until it’s been through the hands of the writer and the reader. I’ve put a strong framework into place, but until the reader’s mind fills in all the little details and scenes and fleshes the world out, it doesn’t truly come alive.

That’s why readers are so much fun as an author – they bring the world alive again for us as well. After 8 years poking around the inside of The Four Part Land, I can see every mound of terrain and the daily lives of the people so well it’s like wandering around my local town – it’s all so normal I don’t notice the extraordinary. Questions and comments from those who see the world for the first time bring back the magic for me.

I have greatly enjoyed the time spent building the world of The Four Part Land, and I hope you’ll join me in sweeping back the curtain and enjoying these new tales of epic fantasy. I look forward to hearing from you all soon.

The Book

The Four Part Land simmers with discontent, as old rivalries and ancient grudges bubble to the surface. The great kingdoms plot and scheme against one another, looking to use treachery to gain an advantage in the upcoming conflict. Some will succeed, and some will fail, but each kingdom dares against all comers. Into this cauldron of malice is thrust a young mage named Tarranau. Exiled from his home, ripped from his friends and family, he is forced to undertake a perilous journey across The Four Part Land, in answer to a goal he does not yet understand. Along the way he finds unexpected friends and implacable enemies, and has his eyes opened to a world more sinister than any he had imagined.

The reviews are already in and cheering this newcomer to the fantasy realm:

Tarranau is the first book of a series by debut novelist, James Tallett. Epic fantasy is not a genre I read often, but I found the author did a good job of creating a story line that drew me in and kept me turning the page until the very end. His descriptions were eloquent and rich, and his characters entertaining. I very much look forward to his forthcoming books and continuing my journey through The Four Part Land.  Amazon.com Review

Print – Amazon USA
eBook – Kindle USAKindle UKBarnes and NobleSmashwords

Clicking on the links will take you to directly to the product page on the chosen store. All of them are set to allow sampling of the first 40% of the story

The Author

James Tallett is the author of a series of fantasy novels set in The Four Part Land. The first of these, Tarranau, will be published by Deepwood Publishing in Summer 2011.

He created the Splintered Lands anthology project, a shared world fantasy anthology. Quickly recruiting five different writers, over the course of several months James guided the birth of the Splintered Lands, a land full of kingdoms born anew, struggling to pull themselves out of a magical and natural apocalypse.

James is the founder of Deepwood Publishing, a small fantasy and science fiction imprint, focused around anthologies and short stories. Currently he’s working on three projects there with fifteen authors and counting.

When he’s not writing, he’s marketing his writing through Deepwood Inc., a social media marketing firm specializing in supporting authors. And most of his advice he gives away for free!

During the days that James isn’t working on his writing, he’s putting the polishing touches on his MBA (specializing in entrepreneurship). He’s hoping to put it to good use in business soon enough (once he gets the ever elusive job of his dreams).

James loves skiing and the outdoors, and if you can’t find him on the weekends, it’s because he’s skiing. And Fridays. And Mondays. And any other day he can squeeze it in.

Outside of being addicted to going down snow at highway speeds, James combines his passion for hiking and travel with his writing by putting places he adores into his novels.






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About Elizabeth Marcellin

Author of Element Keepers fantasy Novels

View all posts by Elizabeth Marcellin


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