Good day to everyone and thank you to Romance That’s ‘Out Of This World’ for having me.
I’m here to share a bit about my world building process for Return of the Legacy and the Portals of Destiny series. A brief background on the story should help kick off the process.
Centuries ago, magical beings on Earth opened portals in time and space to flee persecution. One magical bloodline sealed the portals to protect the new worlds and shield Earth from magic returning. That bloodline, now almost extinguished, consists of the portal sentinel descendents, the Makir. Targeted for assignation by an evil mage in the world of Tir Thar, the current Makir are unaware of the gift they carry. Two magical families are key to ensuring the mage won’t break through the portals, claim all powers as his own, and enslave those who survive.
The concept for one of the families came from a pack of tarot cards that I own. The images on the cards don’t directly relate to magic but four cards struck my interest and wouldn’t let go. Those four cards created an image in my mind for the main character, Briallen, her three brothers, and the beginning of their existence in one of the magical worlds, Tir Thar.
Having the series premise and an image of Briallen, I considered her skills, her personality, and how she views herself. Then I developed a counterpart who would be strong enough to partner with her but not overpower her as she grew beyond her preconceived views. Enter, Logan Mackenzie, a man now the head of his small family and driven to find a murder who is targeting his lineage on present day Earth.
While this is only book one, but I spent a great deal of time working out details for the series: the magical beings, their social structure, the magical rules that govern both Logan and his three cousins as well as Briallen’s family, a list of the kingdoms in Tir Thar as well as those in the world of Loci. Lists and charts file my Portals file. I also outlined a brief history of what happened after the world of Tir Thar was established, and more details on Brennagmore, the kingdom from which Briallen’s family originated. Then I expanded the scenario for why the mage pursues them. What evolved was a grimoire of sorts detailing lineage, kingdoms, powers, and people. Even small vignettes evolved for bits of the backstory to highlight the de-evolution of magic in Brennagmore.
And because magical beings fled Earth to create new worlds, I drew maps so I could keep track of how I wanted to represent the different kingdoms. My original maps didn’t make it into Return of the Legacy. However two maps will appear in a spin-off tale of the portals due out in April, Dragon Rider’s Gift. The dragon riders make a brief appearance in Return of the Legacy and they have their own battle against Brennagmore’s mage. I plan a map for the second book in the portals series, as it will continue in the same world of Loci as book one.
Because magic fled from Earth, the new worlds bear a loose similarity to the geography and history left behind. In some worlds this is radically different. In others, the twists of time parallel Earth’s history at points. Names and titles may or may not conform to real life. The Scottish Isle of Mull in Return of the Legacy exists, though not quite as depicted in the story. The Laird MacKinnon as well as Margaret, the Maid of Norway, are also part of Scottish history with some liberties taken for their existence in the dimension of Loci. Duart Castle, Glengorm Castle (unlike Glengoram in the story), Staffa and Fingal’s Cave, and the Balliscate standing stones are available for view at their own sites on the Internet or on my website. They inspire a magic all their own.
This sounds like a lot of work and it was but, for me, it was worthwhile. Once completed, these scenarios, the people, their lives, and the worlds all have substance and texture to add to the stories. Then the real work began. If only all those lists and documents could just fold themselves into a story. In spite of all that work, only small segments were woven into Return of the Legacy. Granted, the details make the world very clear in my mind and since the series arc is already fixed in a five book series, many of the details and research will be added in later books. So very little is wasted.
At this point in my career, I write only fantasy and paranormal stories. For me, the key is to make scenes and actions vivid. To make magic stand apart from the reader’s expectation it needs sensory details of sight, smell, touch, and emotional response that are unique and diverge from the magic rules readers might expect. Those factors are added to world building files as well.
For each book I write I create a Details Sheet. This is basically a one-page list of all the characters by name, significant items like age, hair and eye color, powers, setting names and key items. This is a subset of the large research file I have on the worlds behind the portals. Drafting the story typically adds even more details as the flow of text stimulates additional creativity. The Details Sheet allows me to keep track of everything. I also have this cheat sheet to pull out when I start subsequent books.
The thing that is missing here is the building of the romance, which I handle in a different process of scene mapping for the book. The Portals of Destiny series adventure has a beginning and conclusion, but Briallen and Logan were chosen specifically for Return of the Legacy because of their unique composition of personality, history, and potential. No other in this cast of the series would do for book one. Fortunately, for all the planning in the world, there is one factor neither the evil mage of Brennagmore nor I can control…and that is the power of love. A different form of magic!
~Kate KH LeMoyne
Thank you so much Kate, that was fascinating. and what a great observation about the power of love being a different form of magic! Now let's find out a bit more about your book.
by KH LeMoyne
Three magical dimensions…Two mystical bloodlines…One undeniable destiny.
Born a magical empath, Logan MacKenzie has spent his life protecting his family from discovery. Evil has found them anyway. What begins as Logan’s search for answers on Earth becomes a race for survival in the magical dimension of Loci.
The battle to save those he cares about will reveal his true lineage—the bloodline of the Makir, one half of a pair of sentinels chosen to guard the mystical portals between dimensions. The price of his acceptance: a love he never imagined possible and a heartbreaking choice.
Her family attacked, her home destroyed, and now stranded on Loci, Briallen of Tir Thar, descendant of a magical race, has only to summon the power within her to return to her own dimension—or so she had hoped. Unfortunately, her powers aren’t cooperating, and the sorcerer bent on her family’s destruction will stop at nothing to possess her.
Raised without knowledge of the portals, the Makir guardians, or her own destiny, Bri takes a leap of faith in an alliance with Logan. Embracing an uncertain power and accepting his goals as hers offers her the only way home. If they fail, the consequences of allowing the portals to fall to evil are unthinkable—the destruction of every magical dimension throughout space.
Warning: This is a fantasy romance, containing magic, love, and courage. The omission of vampires and shapeshifters is intentional.
“Something’s coming.” Logan’s arm halted Bri. One hand gripped her wrist as he reached over his shoulder for the pommel of his sword. “Ever felt the drop in air pressure right before the lash of a huge storm?”
The stillness extended beyond the deadness of the air. The birds were silent. No rustling issued from the underbrush.
She glanced forward and back.
“In front.” His sword slid free without a sound. The blade reflected the moonlight’s silver.
For a second, she thought the edge of his weapon wavered, a blue rim of light from tip to guard. He shifted and it disappeared.
A loud thunderclap reverberated around them. She expected a burnt tree or roiling clouds. Instead, three figures, cloaked head to toe in black, erupted from a fiery hole of red—a heinous fissure in the night air.
The minions spread out and circled them, pinning them to a small stretch of the clearing.
“We can’t outrun them.” Bri twisted and removed her knife, eying the minion at their back. “Stay clear of their hands. Their bones and claws are infectious.”
“The weapons look deadly.”
The minion before her withdrew a moon-shaped sickle. The one she could see from the corner of her eye brandished a thin glowing rapier. The rapier moved closer to Logan. A brief slash stirred chills of cold past her face.
Back to back with Logan she turned, gauging which minion would strike the first blow.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
A former technology specialist, KH LeMoyne now writes romance fulltime with series in urban fantasy, high fantasy, and scifi/futuristic. She lives in Maryland with her wonderful husband and corgi. Much to her dismay, she rarely encounters supernatural beings other than on paper. Visit her website: http://www.khlemoyne.com/ or blog: http://fantasypoweredbylove.com/
Website – www.khlemoyne.com
Purchase locations - Available in ebook & paperback from: Black Opals Books, Amazon, B&N, All Romance/OmniLit, Smashwords
facebook - http://www.facebook.com/kh.lemoyne
twitter – https://twitter.com/#!/khlemoyne or @khlemoyne
The author will be giving away a $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble GC to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour as well as to the host with the most comments (excluding the author's and the host's). Additionally, she'll choose two randomly drawn winners of the Dragon Rider’s Gift eBook (A Portal Tale), due for release May 1, 2012.
Click Banner for other stops on this tour.
'STARQUEST' 'CHILDREN OF THE MIST' (The sequel to Starquest) Dancing With Fate 'Freeread':'A BARGAIN WITH DEATH
Also available on Kindle