Author: Trudie Collins
Page count: 363
Price: $15.00 – paperback, $4.99 – Kindle
Trudie is a happily married mother of 1 teenager. She was born in England but managed to escape and is now settled in Sydney, Australia, where she works for one of the big four banks. In her spare time she writes fantasy books. She has now self-published a series of 5 novels, through Amazon, called Tor’s Quest.
Tell us about your book:
The king is dead, leaving no clear successor. Prince Tor and his brothers must take part in a quest, the winner of which will earn the right to take over the throne. Clues have been left to direct the competitors to each location, providing hints as to who or what they need to take with them on each stage of their journey. What started off as an adventure, a chance to make new friends and catch-up with old acquaintances, has turned into a deadly nightmare. Tor is only half way through the quest, but already he has lost companions and witnessed the death of one of his brothers, making him realise how serious the quest has become.
In a world full of witches, wizards, mythical creatures and monsters, Tor and his team must use all of their wits, skills and magical ability to solve the remaining puzzles before any more of them die.
When the latest clue requires them to seek “a guide from another world”, finding the person is the easy part; persuading them to risk their life for a group of strangers will be a much bigger challenge.
The Guide starts part way through the quest and is as much about the characters and how they interact with each other and work together to overcome the obstacles they are faced with as it is about the quest itself. It is not the usual ‘good v evil that ends in a big battle’ type of fantasy novel.
How long did it take to write the book?
9-10 months (including proof reading and editing).
I have written one book a year for the last 5 years but did not publish them until the entire series was completed.
What inspired you to write the book?
I enjoyed writing while at school. In one subject we had to write a mini-novel and students took it in turns to read out what they had done in that lesson. After a few weeks there were a lot of requests to have mine read out. One student even did a book review on it for their English project. When I first moved to Australia, I caught the train to the city each day and needed something to occupy myself for an hour each way and, as I had been thinking about writing a fantasy book for a while, I decided it would be the perfect opportunity. I had been noting down ideas for a while so some of the prep work had already been done.
Talk about the writing process. Did you have a writing routine? Did you do any research, and if so, what did that involve?
Before I started to write, I decided on how many chapters I wanted the book to have and the rough length of each. I then set myself a goal of writing one chapter a week, and managed to stick to it (almost). Some weeks I ended up writing during my lunch hours and my son’s gym class in order to catch up. Before starting to write, I knew how I wanted each book in the series to end and I had already noted down a list of ideas so I then just had to slot them into the right places. I would have dreams about the storyline or things would come to me in a shower, so I would have to keep a pad and pen nearby to jot down notes as soon as I could. As far as research goes, I had to do very little, which is one of the advantages of writing fantasy books. I used the internet (mainly Wikipedia) to help me come up with some of the character names, looking at the scientific names for various animals and taking parts of them or rearranging them slightly into something that was easier to pronounce. I also had to double check some of my facts, like the construction of the Eifel tower, and dictionary.com proved invaluable for finding alternative ways of saying things.
What do you hope your readers come away with after reading your book?
My main hope is that they like it enough to read the rest of the series. As long as the readers find that the time they spend reading my books is a relaxing and enjoyable experience that allows them to escape reality for a while I am happy.
Where can we go to buy your book?
The entire series is available in paperback and kindle versions on Amazon
Any other links or info you’d like to share?
website is www.torsquest.com
Excerpt from book:
Dying is becoming rather inconvenient was his last thought as the sword was slowly pulled from his limp body, allowing him to slip to the ground.
His attacker, wiping the bloody sword on the immaculately tailored trousers of the still twitching corpse, grinned. He looked at his feet, then at the nearly new black leather boots on his victim, trying to decide if they were his size. He didn’t catch the slight movement out of the corner of his eye, nor hear the soft whistle the arrow emitted as it flew through the air. He didn’t feel his spinal cord sever as the arrow found its target. By the time he hit the floor he was already dead.
The archer rushed over, placing his hand on his murdered friend’s neck. Feeling no pulse, he let out a sigh.
“Oh Patrick, not again,” he whispered. “When are you going to learn to take better care of your body?” He slowly stood up, muscles aching. It had been a long, strenuous, fight. He needed a warm, relaxing bath and a cold tankard of ale, but that wasn’t likely to happen any time soon.
He turned round, hearing singing in the corridor behind him. The old man was still dancing and throwing a crystal ball into the air and catching it. They had won. He should have been happy, but all he could feel was regret. Was this much loss of life really worth it?
It was dark outside by the time he joined the others by the camp fire, unceremoniously dropping Patrick’s body behind him.
“I see Patrick didn’t make it again,” a gruff voice commented from the other side of the fire.” “He’s going to be mad in the morning. That was his favourite shirt.”