DebisZoo

Fantasy worlds. Magical inhabitants. Timeless battles between Good and Evil.

About debiszoo

Although I live in beautiful New Mexico, which is an excellent place to live, I find the world at large to be a trying place in which to exist. Therefore, I work hard to remove my readers from this world and transport them to one where good overcomes evil, and evil is punished; good is either inherent or learned, and good is always rewarded; and love—for a human, a cat, or a dragon—always wins. I revel in, angst over and would enjoy living the worlds I build, although I would need to learn to wield a weapon and dress a deer. And finally, I wish only to ensure that my worlds of fantasy keep the worries of life from seeping into them. I cannot; however, say the same for evil mages and misled trolls. I retired from writing for the federal government, where I took federal laws and turned them into plans and procedures understandable by the human brain. I have one wonderful husband, two amazing kids, and seven great cats. I also enjoy oil painting and crochet, probably in that order, on those infrequent occasions when I'm not writing.

Revisiting Dragons and Witches

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Dragon Rings (The Ring-Witches of Nesht Book 1) by [Binder, Debi Ennis]

I’d like to invite you into the magical, sometimes frightening beginnings of the realm of Ring-witches and dragons–the world of Nesht.

Meet Mayra, a powerful Ring-Witch who has been raised an adventurer as a reever, the king’s formidable enforcers. After many years, she finds herself seeking new adventures on her horizon. But for the present, she is second in command of an investigation into mysterious and deadly attacks on the kingdom. Where she runs into Wolfe, who is she soon learns, a Ring-Witch in hiding, and also an effective assassin. The dark and austere man wants to complete one last job before returning to his homeland. Their immediate attraction doesn’t startle them nearly as much as figuring out that both of them have been hearing and seeing things that should be the stuff of nightmares, yet couldn’t possibly be, not when there is evidence of their reality. When at last the two witches come face-to-face with the creator of those mysterious and frightening messages, their lives are set on a course that will alter the futures of every human upon their world.

Gaulte, a powerful, tragic black dragon, has been magically captured, along with all of the males of his Aerie, and used by evil humans to kill and ravage seemingly without cause. Other of their kind have taken all of the Aerie females and nestlings as hostage. He survives on dreams of revenge until he links minds with an astonishingly feisty creature–but how could this–dear gods, it is a female human! How can it–she possibly help? And yet, she does! She risks her own life to help him. It takes the magic of witches to free Gaulte and his kind. It will take the blood of the other humans to satisfy his revenge if the witches aren’t able to help him free his family.

As a reward for freeing the dragons, Gaulte begins teaching the witches the many ways that their kind and dragons belong together, how they can help each other. Even he doesn’t know that such proximity will alter the magic of dragons and witches alike and finally fulfill an ancient prophecy that tells how the mingling of their powers will create superior beings, enhanced, but not necessarily nobler. And only one dragon and one human have a will strong enough to ensure that doesn’t happen.

The adventures of Gaulte, Mayra, Wolfe, and the other witches and dragons start in “Dragon Rings” and end in “Dragon’s Revenge” (due out later this year).

You can find “Dragon Rings” here: https://www.amazon.com/Dragon-Rings-Ring-Witches-Nesht-Book-ebook/dp/B075H39PVD/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

Trying to Write in the Modern World

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Sometimes I wish I had a typewriter again. Or a moveable type printing press of my own that I could hook up to Amazon and be on my way. At this time, I’m not a fan of Word! We were having mini wars and major battles galore! And Word was winning! I’m working on Chapter 13 of “Dragon’s Revenge” and was at a standstill. So I bought another license for Word 10, and it wouldn’t download and work, no matter what. I bought another, installed it, it works and now I’m trying to get my money back. Edit😐 But at least I get to jump back into Chapter 13. The dragons are waiting!

That was a post in My Books on FaceBook, a month or so ago. I happen to glance at it again, and decided I needed to expound upon it. It was written in the throes of passion–well, in the clutches of being really angry and panicky. How can I write and keep up that wonderful flow, if my word processor won’t keep up with me? In case you aren’t aware, I got rid of my beautiful laptop a few months earlier, replacing it with a basic model of another make. My other lappie was sleek and silver, this one is black😐.

So no, I don’t really want a typewriter. What I want is a pink lappie. With dark pink accents. I want it to have a satin finish, and for the backlit keyboard to be dark, dark fuschia. That would be so cool! Color is so important to humans, but I personally think it’s more so to those who create. It calms and excites, stirs those creative juices and ramps me up to where I’m raring to create and write! In fact, it’s second only to music for changing my mood, enabling me to jump back into a world I created, find the realm that needs my attention, make my way to the people and situations I left behind and GO! By the way, I do change my music depending upon the scene. Examples: a romantic scene needs Stevie Nicks or Sarah McLachlan; something exciting and medieval definitely needs Blackmore”s Night. And Kitaro! And Verdi…oh, I have to stop. Time to go listen to something that will help me rescue a lot of irate dragons from a cave, where they’re being held by humans, and have my witches make it out in one piece!

 

The Computer Formerly Known as Sami

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I had a nice laptop, it was silver, with nice silver and gray keys, and that should have been my first warning. It was slick, with lots of bells and whistles (yes, the second warning), and it hated me. That should always be a signal. We as writers develop relationships with our computers and get to know them fairly well. They have good days and bad days, but if it’s a nice, well-working system. most of those days are good. Not so my late, departed lappie. Yes, she was a 2-year-old lappie, a sweet little–well, never mind.

The Warnings. The first one I mentioned was the keypad, gray on silver. Within a week, I couldn’t read those backlit little–um, keys, to save me. So I bought a nice, pink keyboard skin and that helped until the keys started sticking. I swear I could pound on them before they’d magically advance–8 keys at a time. The second issue–it was simply too much computer for me. I didn’t need all that memory and speed, there wasn’t even a game on it that I used. I wrote on it. That’s it. So when it started kicking me off the Internet, or completely off the thing, I didn’t know where to turn. I took it to a popular store with a popular “Squad” and they mulled it over a while, and finally told me something to the effect that there was a conflict with the network manager. So each time I started the computer, I would right mouse click the main button down there in the lower left corner, go to Device Manager, down to Network Connections, and delete a whole bunch of drivers, then restart the system so it could find my WiFi. You can’t make this stuff up. That’s how I knew it hated me.  So, sadly, I began looking for another system.  I found a basic one that Google assures me is good for writers. I sent my old faithful to my brother for him to happily take apart and revamp. I don’t care what he does with it, as long as he doesn’t sleep in the same room with it.

As I write this, I am having to resave everything at least three times. Nothing works. But earlier today, we decided that our current Internet company was to blame for a lot of our problems and next week we’re changing companies, after over 15 years with the current one. I don’t know what they changed, but it was a BAD decision.

So, if not for the sticky keys, the fact that I couldn’t see the keyboard, and that it kicked me off for no reason, I guess I could have kept the other one and saved myself $350. Or maybe it was cursed. The gods know I cursed at it enough for it to get an attitude.

 

Writing – It’s More than a Pursuit

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​Fantasy writers are unique in that they take a flat piece of paper, build a world on it, then populate that world all the way down to the size of the points on an elf’s ears. Swear words, pets, fashion, politics, and what’s for dinner–we create it all. It’s a true work of love! 

My favorite task in starting a new book or series is the naming of characters. That involves a series of steps (for me, anyway). First of all, I must decide where my world will be based, e.g., language, customs, mythology, etc. Usually I use the Celtic world, followed by Germanic or Japanese. The latter surprises some people, but I lived in Japan twice in my life, for several years. In my “Ring-Witch of Nesht” series, the codes the dragons live by are based on bushido, the codes of morals developed by the samurai. I tweaked the Eight Virtues of the Samurai until they were dragon-centric, and became the Eight Virtues of the Great White Dragon. Such fun! They are like a religion to the dragons, and the dominant dragon, Gaulte, has realized that his Clan might not be able to live by those rules and live with witches, as well. How will the others of his Clan handle that?

Once I’ve placed my characters into a suitable culture I get to start developing them, including what they look like, their strengths and weaknesses, are they rich, do they fight, do magic, or something else, and so on. And then their names. I’ve been accused of trying to make them hard to say, impossible to remember, and just plain weird. A character’s name may change several times before I find a fit. I say them aloud, talk to them, give them a voice…in short, they’re now a person. More fun! 

Now each major character is ready to climb into my head and take over. Seriously, sometimes it’s difficult to make them behave. So, we start working on the story. And that’s a story for another day!

Editing and Killing off Characters. . .

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“Summerbird’s Quest” is undergoing edit now (by me–eek!), and what an undertaking it is! I admit it’s difficult to take a knife blade to one’s own work, but every time I find something to fix, I seem to come up with another thing to fix that I think will make it better. And…you guessed it, I return still later and put it back the way it was! Has anyone come up with suggestions for developing a way to pretend that what you’re reading isn’t yours? How do you untangle yourself from your own characters and plots?

I know Faulkner is credited with saying, “In writing, you must kill your darlings,” but these guys are hitting back! I admit I’ve never brought anyone back to life (or unexpectedly killed them) after deciding their fate, but some of these characters are making me pull out my hair!

Ooh—I just told a fib! In “Dragon Rings” I went back and killed off someone after making them a minor character and had to make some major revisions for a couple of chapters to address her loss. She was a kid. It was kinda sad. Well, back to the editing grindstone.

If anyone out there wants to help—you get your name in the acknowledgments and a free e-book. And you get to make suggestions!

Summerbird Rises – Book 1 of An Act of Entreaty by Debi Ennis Binder

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“Summerbird Rises” by Debi Ennis Binder

“Summerbird Rises” begins the tale of Summerbird Asii, an inept young seer, who has spent her young life hiding her fractured magic. In a land where laws strictly prohibit magic, she has a flair for dull, common-sense and useless futures—unless her client is going to die very soon. Unless she wants is to be jailed or even executed, she is forced to let destiny continue on. When a tiny griffin appears in Summerbird's home, needing a favor, things will never be the same for her. His request is simple—rescue several highborn Fey—the inhabitants of mystical Emythor—whose magic has been compromised. How? Perhaps by an evil mage who really doesn’t want her to interfere with his plans. Has Summerbird a choice? You don’t…but first, do you want to learn your magic? Follow the young seer as she learns who–and what–she really is, and why her Grandfather left her in a non-magical world with a well-used green-crystal ball, and the words, “This is your legacy. Forget anything you see in it.”

$1.99

Dragon Rings – Book 1 of The Ring-Witches of Nesht by Debi Ennis Binder

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Dragon Rings – Book 1 of the Ring-Witches of Nesht

Something dark and terrible is attacking the lands of Nesht, bringing death and ruin in the night and then vanishing back into the cold mists of the mountains. Ring-Witches, Mayra and Wolfe, are investigating, but now something is seeking them out. Large and powerful, it is capable of bringing scorching, mind-rending pain to the two Witches, and then despairingly apologizing for it. When Mayra finds a huge, bloodstained talon, she finally knows what is trying to connect with them…a Dragon…but why?  “Dragon Rings” is the first in a series of tales that starts with the restoration of an ancient affinity between Ring-Witches and dragons. Mayra and Wolfe, powerful witches, must overcome unknown enemies and betrayal from within to save the great black dragon, Gaulte, and the males of his Clan from slavery at the hands of their evil captors. But freeing the dragons is just the beginning, for Mayra and Wolfe and their small but fierce assembly of witches learn that there are some things worth more than a life, and causes that even dragons will die for.

$2.99

 

 

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