Friday, April 25, 2014


My theme for A to Z this year is a wildly different, but very exciting, HERE'S TO YOU all month long. 26 posts to be precise. The most difficult part was narrowing down the 26. All of you deserve your own post. What you will find here is a post by the featured blogger, with traveling music chosen by me that complements said post, and two links. One will link back to the original post and the other to the main page. This year's A to Z is all about making new friends!

The post was actually titled To The Victor Goes The... and it was written by Susan Gourley/Kelley over at Susan Says. Not that you asked, but I had Susan written down in three, maybe four, different letters of this Alphabet Challenge. I kept moving her around in an effort to fit "everyone" in. Turns out with 26 letters there is no fitting "everyone" in.

Susan says this about herself in the ME section of her blog:  "I write fantasy using my real name, Susan Gourley and romance under the pen name, Susan Kelley.  I've been writing for nearly ten years and have three romance series and so far two fantasy series published or being published.  I read as much as I can across many genres including YA, suspense, thrillers and of course fantasy and romance." I will add that she is a retired teacher, posts on a variety of topics that are frequently writing related (though not always), active commenter, and loyal supporter. I consider myself lucky to have found her blog and I hope you feel the same.

Cue the traveling music:

To The Victor Goes The... by Susan Gourley/Kelley

I remember a line in the movie, The Dark Knight, where Batman says you either die a hero or live long enough to become the villain. Or something like that. I've always loved that idea for a novel plot.

In my upcoming release, First Dragon, war is spreading across the land of Morbunda. Long ago in the history of Morbunda, a war was fought that resulted in great loss of human life and the apparent annihilation of all dragons. It took generations for civilization to recover. Now war is coming to Morbunda again, and this time the aggressors are the former heroes of the first war. Just like Batman said would happen!

In most fantasy novels, war is part of the plot line. In the best novels, each side in the war believes they are fighting for what is right and best unless they're purely evil. I hope the readers of First Dragon see the issues driving both sides of the new war.  And I hope lots of people read First Dragon when it's released this Friday from Crescent Moon Press.

Do you agree with Batman? Do you think wars happen in cycles? Have you read any good fantasy novels where you couldn't really tell who the good guys are and who the bad guys are?

Susan consistently asks the thought-provoking questions. She makes me think about my characters in my writing and my life. Thank you Susan!


  1. Susan is an excellent choice! And I remember that post. She does an awesome job at the IWSG site as well.

  2. Susan GK is a regular commenter on my blog and I visit her site frequently. I don't know about the veracity of Batman's statement, but it's a great line. Wars do seem somewhat cyclic and each side usually has some good reasons to go to war--at least in their own eyes. But of course if both sides agreed then there'd be no war.

    Wrote By Rote
    An A to Z Co-host blog

  3. I love that thought: today's heroes are tomorrow's agressors.

    Another interesting blogger I need to start visiting regularly.

  4. A great choice, I follow Susan and have for a while. In the comic book world, yes, Batman is right. In a real world, a lot of trauma would have to happen to turn someone who is a hero into someone who is the opposite. Power is what make the aggressors out of old heroes, it's too hard to give up that power, so they have war. . .

  5. First time visiting here. Love the photo of the dog in the tree! oh dear ...
    In America war has become pretty much perpetual unfortunately.

    I think the Game of Thrones series plays that trick on the reader where you can't really tell who the good guys and bad guys are. As Martin explores each character he turns villains into people who are misunderstood and the good guys falling into terrible error.

  6. Love that line from Batman. And Susan writes a great blog. Been enjoying her world building posts for the A to Z. :)

  7. Well, I think that a person whose soul is grounded in the One Eternal Truth will never go from Hero to Aggressor. But, in "this world", yeah, it's more than just a little possible. What's the line? "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."

    I don't think it MUST be that way but, unfortunately, too often, it is.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  8. There is a pattern to war, and peace. It's an endless pendulum, sadly.

  9. I would agree that war goes in cycles. It would be nice if we could all live in peace, but unfortunately, that is not the case.

  10. I enjoyed this post, Robin. I already follow and enjoy Susan's blog. She's a wonderful writer.

  11. I recently found out I have lived long enough to be the villain. Trying hard doesn't seem to count. But, we pick ourselves up, think about joy when happiness alludes us. I wrote about this in a novel that helped me understand the necessity for joy. War and Peace must be flip sides of the same coin.

  12. I am so humbled to be featured on your blog, Robin. You say the kindest things and thank you to every one who added their own kind thoughts. I've so enjoyed meeting new bloggers through your theme. A few made me cry and some made me laugh. Loved the song today too.

  13. I learn a lot from Susan, too!

  14. Susan is awesome and always has something nice to say in the comments section. Great choice, Robin :)

  15. There is a time for everything, including war. And yes, I do think it comes in cycles. Now I need to go and visit Susan's blog and get to know more about her.

  16. Yes, I think war comes in cycles. I also think that in good books, as in real life, most people are neither clearly good nor clearly evil.

    I'm not sure I've met Susan yet, so I'll go pay a visit. Thanks, Robin.

    Take care,

  17. Mmm... I love the idea of that story. How even heroes are fallible and how even though they've fallen, they probably still think they're in the right. :-D

  18. Susan ~ It was a pleasure featuring you here today. I am so glad you liked the song that I chose for your post!!!

    Everyone ~ Thank you for stopping by, reading, and leaving excellent comments. I know that the Challenge is wearing on everyone, so I appreciate your tenacity!!!

  19. Susan is fantastic. I've know her for a few years now. I actually featured on of her books last year in the A-Z as in this year's. She an amazing writer with a great imagination!

    Her post on world building were EXCELLENT, because she really does make you THINK!


You can now add YouTube videos in your comments by copy/pasting the link. AND/OR you can insert an image by surrounding the code with this: [im]code[/im]. In the case of images, make sure that your code is short and simple ending with something like .jpg. If you want to use a pic from someplace like Google Images, click on the image, then click on View Image. That is the code you want!

Dazzle Me!