I’m in Grimdark Magazine!

Trudi CanavanUncategorized

Earlier this year Adrian from Grimdark Magazine invited me to submit a story. I’ve had a few short story ideas waiting for the time or incentive to write them, so I picked one that I thought might suit. It’s a blend of an idea that came to me at an exhibition of miniature paintings, with a fragment of a personal experience twisted (a lot) to find the essence of the tale. The main character is definitely on the grey side, having a shady past and social circle. The setting was originally intended to be a place in my current series that doesn’t exist any more. All that together became “Eye of the Beholder”.

Follow the link above to purchase the magazine. If you do, thank you! And I hope you enjoy my contribution!

You can find it here:

New Website!

Trudi CanavanUncategorized

Over the last three months this website was taken off a dusty old shelf, trimmed, given a buff and polish, and readied to welcome in the 2020s. Most of the design and updating was done by Chris of Cool Cat Web Design, and though I cut back the content it was a huge job converting what remained. He’s done a fantastic job and has been lovely to work with.

You’ll find the usual information about my books here including extracts and some extra material, as well as short stories and novellas. My old VERY long FAQs page has been divided into ‘Book’ and ‘General’ categories for ease of viewing, and my writing advice page has been updated (it was written in the pre-ebook age!). Once again you can contact me, via a form.

In this blog part of the site I will post occasional news. The mileposts of book writing and publishing tend to be spaced wide apart until the book is released, when there’s a flurry of publicity, and that’s probably a good indication of how often I’ll post, too. I’m not intending to write regular articles, though I might repost some old posts I think are still relevant.

I hope you enjoy my new shiny website. If you’re new, have a look around. There’s a LOT of content here – nothing like polishing up all the pages of text to remind me how much content there is! And if you find a mistake, let me know.

Maker’s Curse is Delivered!

Trudi CanavanUncategorized

Last Tuesday I delivered Maker’s Curse, book four of the Millenniums Rule series, to the publisher. Which was before the deadline – I was actually early for once! Of course, there’s lots more work to do before it becomes a edited, polished book with a great cover. Publication will be in May 2020.

News & Plans

Trudi Canavanappearances, website update

Last week I finished polishing the first draft of Maker’s Curse and sent it off to my lovely beta readers. I have a couple of weeks to catch up on a few matters before tackling their corrections. That includes a few announcements, and making some plans for this website.

First, the announcements.

Once again, I’ll be going to Speculate, a speculative fiction writers festival here in Melbourne, on the 16th of March. Last year’s inaugural festival was fantastic and I’m looking forward to taking part again.

And I’ve been invited to Pyrkon in May 2020. That’s the release month of Maker’s Curse in english and it’s very likely to be out a few other languages as well, so I’ll probably also do some appearances in other countries in Europe during the same trip.

Now the plans:

Orbit passed full responsibility of this website back to me in the middle of last year. I’ve always been in control of and paid for the hosting, and composed the blog posts, but for a while they did the design and most of the updating like adding book covers and such.

What with social media being the first place people seek information these days, I have wondered if this site is redundant now and I should delete it. I had to shut down comments ages ago because I was getting an overwhelming amount of spam comments, and once GDPR came in I removed all forms and today I removed all past blog posts. Since I didn’t design the site and couldn’t find out if it is GDPR compliant, it’s going to have to be replaced and I don’t have time to do it right now.

However, having a website does have two big plusses for visitors: it has (as far as I can tell) no ads, and you don’t have to sign up to anything to access it. It’s handy for me, too, as it’s easier and faster to answer common questions by giving someone a link to a FAQ page, and I can provide up-to-date publicity information.

So when the editing of Maker’s Curse is done, I will be replacing the current site with something new. Maybe something very basic, maybe a whole blog, but something new.

Thief’s Magic Inspiration: Handcrafts

Trudi Canavanon writing

One of the ideas behind the Millennium’s Rule trilogy was “what if creativity generated magic?”.

Rulers often commission fancy palaces and beautiful artworks, to display their wealth and good taste. What if another reason was to make them more powerful, magically?

It would mean magic would be a byproduct of human civilisation.

It would mean the amount of magic available in any place would be variable.

It meant I could incorporate another of my passions: art and handcrafts, into my stories. 

In Thief’s Magic, Tyen visits a printer, where he sees books being made. A few years ago I did a bookbinding workshop, and since then have tried many binding techniques. Making books gave me the idea for Vella, a book that was conscious, could collect and store knowledge, and communicate to the reader.

Rielle is a painter. Initially I intended to show her drawing and painting to demonstate the difference ways male and female artists are regarded in her world, and for her own sharpened sense of observation to communicate information to the reader. But the scene where she grinds paint while she thinks about what has happened to her wrote itself, a perfect metaphor for her circling thoughts. Though I have never made my own paints, I researched methods and ingredients in order to make that scene more authentic. In her world and culture, old water-based painting methods are used, but having her meet someone who has developed the first oil paints, gave me two catalysts for change and conflict.

At the time of writing this I was working on book two, Angel of Storms. Two other creative disciplines found their way into the character’s lives and setting: tapestry weaving and calligraphy. One was planned, the other unplanned. I’m looking forward to seeing what other creative pursuits manifest in this series, and in what way. In Successor’s Promise one of my earliest hobbies – pottery – is featured and one of my newest – mosaics.

I am certainly not the first writer to incorporate art and craft into a book. It was Lloyd Alexanders Chronicles of Prydain¬†that inspired me to try pottery as a child, a handcraft that I practised for five or six years and revisited as both a teen and an adult. The Harry Potter and Sookie Stackhouse books feature knitting, Juliet Marillier’s Daughter of the Forest features spinning, weaving and sewing, Glenda Larke’s Water Giver series describes a kind of painting done on water with magical effects.

In this day and age these creative skills seem like frivolous indulgences, but in the past – in the kinds of eras fantasy worlds are usually set – making and decorating objects was and essential part of life for most people. If not for their own survival, then for their income. I’d like to see more than just blacksmithing mentioned in fantasy settings, because it is often the small details that make a world seem real and believable.