HH Com 422

The Empire's Edge is a 52,000 word fantasy romance. (low on the word count)

King Amande has problems.

GENERAL TEMSIK, a Cochet military leader, has arranged the need to invade Amande's kingdom in pursuit of the mountain wyrm—an endangered flying serpent central to the Cochet worship of the god Sylphanon. Fifty years before, the southlanders cordoned off what belonged to the Cochet by divine right, and Temsik means to retake it for the glory that will make him emperor.

Amande recruits CAPTAIN JEREN VASSAL to lead the soldiers of Skylein Post in covert operations to meet the invading Cochet and stop them at the border. Already at war for territory along his southern border, if the Six Noble Houses discover his inattention, they will dethrone him. The king insists that to take leadership of the large post, the captain must be married—to a daughter of his supporters in the Houselands.

Moreover, someone at Skylein Post is spreading rumors among the gentry that Amande's ruling hand is weak. Sworn to secrecy by her king, LADY LEAH INDASELY must uncover the source of sedition while maintaining the ruse that her arranged marriage to Captain Vassal is genuine. She is to complete her assignment and return to the Houselands—but will she want to? Will Jeren and his men be able to stop the invasion and still keep the king's secret?

Romance, intrigue, duplicitous leaders, and a dragon species that holds the fate of nations in its continued survival—these all coalesce at THE EMPIRE'S EDGE.

Too many characters, too much description, not enough focus.


shannon said...

You need to pick a main character. Leah sounds intriguing. Why have they given her this assignment? This land of yours has the typical patriachal marriage structure [yawn], so I find it strange they would get her to endanger herself in any way. Perhaps you just aren't explaining/conveying very well.

You need to give this more focus, and picking and sticking with a main character in the hook will help a great deal. Making it a more personal story for this character will help get reader's interest. A general description about general's and religion and gaining power and sedition and war etc is just too much, doesn't sound particulary original (there's only so many ways you can write it), and if you're describing it as a romance, where is it?

M. Takhallus. said...

There's no such thing as a 52k fantasy. here's why: in a contemporary, real world novel you can get by with describing a location as "A Starbucks on the upper west side frequented by wanna-be poets," let's say. In a fantasy you have to spend 5,000 words conveying the same degree of information because you can't just drop in familiar references like "Starbucks" or "upper west side." You have to go into the whole long description of the Kingdom of Buttitchtonia.

52k is about how many words Tolkien spent just describing geography. There's a reason fantasy novels run so long.

Annie said...

Work on the names - King Amanda? Skyline Post? Do they make chili?

(Yes, I know, but that's how someone's going to read them.)

December Quinn said...

Unless it's a category romance or an erotic romance, you're at least 20k words too short here. Romance agents and editors look for 70k as a BARE minumum--most want at least 80k.

There are some ebook publishers who do shorter novels as well.

Anonymous said...

The writer is urged to make an in-depth study of Renaissance Italy politics, followed by an equally detailed study of post-Napoleonic politics. Both will convince the writer to simplify and focus.

Twill said...

Sounds interesting to me, but I've been looking for books with convincing medeival "politics" aspects. See Tamora Pierce's "Trickster" books for friendly YA examples.