Spotlight: D James Larsen’s Artifact of Creation – The Awakening

2ndcover_4Author, D James Larsen, has graciously shared the first chapter of his Short Stories Series Book #1 with us. Read below… You can find Artifact of Creation- The Awakening on Amazon.

What people are saying about the Artifact of Creation:
– A New Precedence In Sci-Fi Fantasy Literature
– An Infectious Tale of Fate & Destiny
– A New Author With Promise

A hidden power born of ancient bloodlines. One Journey One Fate One Destiny…

After his home is invaded by mercenaries, Asher is forced to run for his life with the Artifact of Creation. Alone, desperate, and afraid Asher must learn to harness the power of the Awakening, an ancient magic born from the bloodlines of mankind’s predecessor race.

Will Asher be able to unleash the Awakening and save his family?

What are the mysterious Artifacts of Creation and why do mercenaries seek to obtain these fabled relics?

Download now, and find out in this gripping science fiction fantasy anthology.

 

Chapter 1
Asher shoved his tool into the dry ground, splitting the hard soil in preparation for the spring planting season. Beads of sweat dripped off of his face and onto his dirtied shirt. He and his grandfather had labored through the course of the day, clearing new land to expand the area to plant more food. Their village had grown considerably over the last few months, most of which were refugees from the Federation Wars near the southern border. There were many more mouths to feed and barely enough cleared land to sustain them.

“I believe we did a good day’s work laddy,” His grandfather said. “Let’s call it a day.”

Asher shoved the tool into the dirt, more than ready to be done. His stomach rumbled for want of food, his body ached and his skin was burned from the heat of the day.

He brushed by his grandfather and sat on a nearby stomp of wood. His grandfather followed after Asher, concerned by his grandson’s sudden change of behavior.

“What’s wrong laddy?” His grandfather asked. His joints cracked and creaked as he sat beside Asher. Asher shrugged in response, he was lost in thought.

Below the field that they tended to, Asher could hear the sound of blacksmiths clinking metal amid the buzz of conversations that took place from the people in his town. He watched farmers tend to their livestock, taking special care for them in order to sustain the village. Asher loved the town he grew up in but he no longer wanted the simple life that his small town offered. Often times he would spend his wishing he could find a more meaningful purpose for his life. He could not tell where the need to leave the comforts and security of home originated. Perhaps it was the stories his mother would tell about the distant lands she and his father had seen while they served together in the Federation Wars. Or perhaps it was the tale his grandfather recounted about searching out an ancient artifact that was a fabled myth, told as stories meant for amusement by travelers that would pass through his small town. Asher loved the stories when he was younger, but as the years of his childhood left and he matured into a young adult, he doubted the validity of his grandfather’s stories. Asher was drawn to the realism surrounding the stories his mother told.

Asher sighed and looked to the sky as he often did, and watched scuffs of clouds float by. The white of the clouds were intermixed with hues of oranges and purples, the colors were reflections from the setting sun in the late afternoon. On the horizon, Asher could see the glistening waters of the ocean. It reminded him of how vast the world was, it only furthered his desire to search out a new life for himself.

“I suppose I don’t feel like I belong here.” Asher finally said after a few moments of silence had passed. “I want my life to have more meaning then just…” He trailed off feeling ashamed for what he was about to say.

“Then what laddy?” His grandfather asked. “You can tell me it’s alright.” He rested his callused hand on Asher’s shoulder with a smile of reassurance. Asher let his gaze fall.

“I want something more meaningful in my life then just clearing trees and planting seeds.” He turned to his grandfather. “Perhaps I should enlist in the Federation Wars. I could be a pilot on a Federation Airship like my father was.”

His grandfather sighed. “Asher we each have our place in the world. Those soldiers would not be able to fight in battle without the food we provide for them. Your place is here in Shady Vale working beside me and helping your mother.”

“But that’s not fair. Father, mother and even you had a life beyond the Vale. How can you expect anything different from me?” Asher saw that his words had an effect on his grandfather. His grandfather now seemed lost in thought as he considered the weight of Asher’s words. “Grandfather you left the Vale to seek out the artifact. You followed ‘him’ … the one you called Gaphii’el …. because he asked you too. You know I could not do anything less than what you or my father have done. Or were the tales you told, simply bed time stories for my sister and I?”

Asher’s words were heated, and to his grandfather, they felt full of accusation. His grandfather left the stump of wood he sat at and paced in front of Asher, trying to decide what words of wisdom he could offer his grandson. “Asher, those stories I told you and your sister are true. Asher you must understand, I did not seek out the artifact because I felt some desire to explore a new life, I left because I was convinced of the growing evil that Gaphii’el had spoke to me about. Your father and mother had no desire to be soldiers either, they were asked to. Your father and mother, even myself, did not go looking for danger, we went because we did not have a choice.” Asher looked at his grandfather, and then let his head drop to his arms that were folded about his knees. He saw little point in arguing with his grandfather, his words did not change who he was or what he felt.

Just then, a terrible roaring sound echoed above them in the sky. Asher and his grandfather looked to the source of the sound. A great airship flew overhead. Its outline was a massive silhouette of dark metal, it was large enough to block out the light of the sun, it cast a shadow upon all of Shady Vale. Wind funneled from its thrusters as it made a gradual descent and rested upon the outskirts of the Vale. Men and women from the town, abandoned their chores to investigate the airship after it landed.

The cargo door of the airship opened and armed men, dressed in grey armor, marched out of the ship. The soldiers quickly circled about the ship and held their weapons pointed at the town’s people. Orders were shouted for the people to keep their distance. Among the soldiers was a masked man with a long trailing cape. The masked man descended from the airship, his cape billowing in the wind.

by D James Larsen, All Rights Reserved

You can learn more about this author on FACEBOOK TWITTER @DJamesLarsen

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It’s Our Big Day! – Celebrate With Us!

Our Release Party is here at last. And there’s FREE CAKE!!

Our FVP Featured Authors are so excited to share our New Release Anthology, Free-flowing Storieswith you! Please attend our party and reading event on Thursday, December 18th 7-9pm at The Black Dog Arts Cafe’ in Snoqulamie, WA. 8062 Railroad Ave. SE, 98065, 425-831-DOGS (3647)

You can Meet our Authors, and we’ll be Reading Snippets from the Anthology, but mostly this is an evening of fun and celebration. Please come and Be Merry With Us!…and did I mention the FREE CAKE!!!!!   (while supplies last.)

Our books will also be available at the party signed by the authors. Or you can celebrate with us from afar and Get Yours Online HERE!

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Stephen J. Matlock – Night of Stars – Anthology Sneak Peek V

As you may know, FVP’s new Anthology, Free-flowing Stories, will be released online and at our sale on Dec. 6th.

Here’s a teaser and a snippet from the fifth story:

StephenMatlock_pix_2012NIGHT OF STARS  by Stephen J. Matlock

Henry Valentine is twelve years old in 1951, on the brink of manhood, and his town is celebrating their Founder’s Day in the county park. Right alongside are the people who serve the community of Windmill, Texas—the maids and sweepers and cleaners and butlers. As in all things when two communities live side by side, there are official and unofficial contests. Henry’s dog comes to the defense of a kid no one will support, and Henry must deal with the growing awareness that the sidelines are no place for a man to be.

“Wake up, Henry. We have to get ready.”

Henry Valentine opened his eyes at the light tap on his shoulder by his mother, Alice. She was leaning over him, the look on her face as usual one of slight exasperation at her twelve-year-old son, no longer a child and not quite a man, and nearly ungovernable as to his curiosity.

He threw off the sheet covering him—it had been an awfully hot summer night, and the sheet was mostly for the comfort of privacy. “I couldn’t sleep a wink, Mother.”

“Henry! You’re already dressed?”

“I got up early this morning and took care of everything. I even took a shower without you telling me to.”

The clink of a chain alerted Henry that Ralph was awake as well. “C’mon, boy. It’s time to get going.”

Ralph raised himself slowly, all ten years of his life showing in his movements. White dusted his muzzle and his legs. He was a mutt picked from a litter on a farm outside town back when Henry was two. And while he was officially the family dog, everyone knew—most of all Henry—that Ralph was Henry’s dog, and he slept in Henry’s room at night. The doghouse was more for show, anyway. The two girls used it as a playhouse now.

….

“I’m all set. Can we go now? I want to be there on time!”

His mother wrinkled her lips. “Henry, it’s not yet five o’clock in the morning. And you can’t wear your best clothes right up. We have to save that for later, for your speech for the congressman. Get out of that shirt and those pants.” She sighed. “Looks like I’ll need to iron your shirt with everything else we have to do this morning before we leave.”

She turned to the door and, without looking at Henry, continued, “Now get into your summer jeans. Find something with as few holes as you can. At least look like you have a mother who takes care of you. Breakfast is ready downstairs, and then we pack.”

◦ ◦ ◦

The gateway to the Los Cruces County Fair opened before them….

Want more? You can get the Anthology December 6th, December 13th & December 18th at our events. We’ll have a link to Amazon for online purchase as soon as it is released.

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Kennedy J. Quinn – Dark Descensions – Anthology Sneak Peek II

As you may know, FVP’s new Anthology, Free-flowing Stories, will be released online and at our sale on Dec. 6th.

Here’s a teaser and a snippet from the second story:

Kennedy j Quinn portrait bw anthologyDARK DESCENSIONS  by Kennedy J. Quinn

There comes a time in all of our lives when enough is too much. In this prequel to SECRET ORDER OF THE OVERWORLD the young Glendra is shaken from enlightened vision to fury. She influences the direction of the Sisterhood, mixing Darkness and Light into a complex brew that boils into the future of the Overworld. 

The young Glendra stood, her face flushed with emotion.  She held high a small piece of Catalyst in her hand, and a wide gap opened in the hearth in the midst of the flames. The room caught its breath as Glendra rushed forward, charging into the back of the man’s chair and knocking him to the stone floor. “Bind him!” she screamed.

Three of the youngest Sisters awaiting her cue subdued and bound him in seconds. Before the others could stop her, Glendra kicked him repeatedly, rolling him into the gap in the fire created by the black block she held. He fell into the hole, tumbling as if down a stairwell. The gap snapped away, back into crackling flames. He had disappeared from the Overworld into the realm Underneath, where none of them could follow even if they dared.

“Glendra, you…” Kestra’s admonishment dropped off into the silent awe of the women surrounding her. All eyes were fastened on Glendra’s as she turned toward them. They had become shining inky black—even where the whites had been. They were darker than the robes she wore. The flickering flames reflected on their eerie surface and chilled them all to their ceremonial bones….

Want more? You can get the Anthology December 6th, December 13th & December 18th at our events. We’ll have a link to Amazon for online purchase as soon as it is released.

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Kathleen Gabriel – Can’t Stop Singing -Anthology Sneak Peek I

As you may know, FVP’s new Anthology, Free-flowing Stories, will be released online and at our sale on Dec. 6th.

Here’s a teaser and a snippet from the first story:

Kathy author photo anthologyCAN’T STOP SINGING  by Kathleen Gabriel

Here’s what happens when those songs that get stuck in your head go bad.

Songs came to her.

Songs came to her without preface or forewarning.

Sometimes it was an eight-bar phrase, and nothing more.

Sometimes it was the same eight-bar phrase, over and over.

An earworm, her psychiatrist called it. Everybody gets them. If it worries you, we can increase your anti-anxiety meds.

Snort. Yeah, right.

Songs kept coming to her. They would start up while she was singing something else, startling her into stopping to listen—to find out what the new song had to say.

But they were never new. She listened and recognized them, every one of them. Some she had not heard or thought of in years. Bare melody, sometimes a simple harmony came along for the ride. A bit of a song, a few bars of a chorus, a snip of a verse.

But all were other people’s songs. Just like in college, when she’d failed composition three times and failed to get her bachelor of music degree because of it; there were no original songs in her head.

Gradually the orchestration improved—percussion, bass lines, harmonies, secondary themes—until it was as complete as any expert recording.

Then the music lengthened. It would still start anywhere in the piece, but longer bits came to her. Instead of eight bars she would hear an entire verse, or the chorus.

After four months, she no longer needed a stereo. But she still could not choose what to listen to, in what order, or when.

Concertos came. Operettas. Symphony movements. Elvis at his best with symphonic backup. The Moody Blues. The Grateful Dead. Frank Sinatra did it his way.

….

The songs kept coming, and she saw them as an opportunity to practice singing. The songs became louder and more insistent and she had to sing, she could not refuse.

People on the train were amused, but when she didn’t respond to their questions, they shrank away from her.

Customers and co-workers complained. Her boss told her to stop.

She tried to stop singing, but all she could do was to lower her volume, and not very much. The music was loud, and she had to participate.

She tried to control the dancing. That, too, was difficult.

The muzak in the store where she worked was just loud enough to keep the shoppers in a friendly, positive, purchasing sort of mood. The music in her head was louder. One day while making photocopies at the customer service counter she sang a hip-bumping New Orleans tune, throwing her head back and letting it all out….

Want more? You can get the Anthology December 6th, December 13th & December 18th at our events. We’ll have a link to Amazon for online purchase as soon as it is released.Anthology 2014 final cover treats

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Free-flowing Stories – Upcoming Release – FVP’s First Anthology!

At last, our first FreeValley Publishing Anthology is complete! Release date is December 6th!

These short stories represent works from all of our Featured Authors. The Anthology is a substantial and varied collection. It’s a great way to get a sumptuous sample of our each of our author’s writing, and it makes a great gift!

It will be available online and from our authors at 3 different events in December:

  • December 6th – Si View Holiday Bazaar – Si View Community Center in North Bend.
  • December 13th – Gifts for Geeks – AFK Elixirs & Eatery in Renton
  • December 18th – Anthology Reading Event – The Black Dog in Snoqualmie

More details on these events will follow soon. We can’t wait to share our stories with you!

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An Itchy Hand, Short Stories – Book Review

This review is shared with us by Bronwyn Elsmore of Flaxroots Productions who features books of New Zealand – that is, written by Kiwi Authors. Thanks!

Flaxroots

An Itchy Hand, Short Stories by Jean McDavitt as reviewed by Jemma Richardson

Itchy Hand Review

SEE MORE…

You can purchase this book HERE.

If you’d like to share a review or spotlight your book on FVP’s home page, please send a request to Sheri J Kennedy at freevalleypublishing@gmail.com.