Second Life

By eugena On September 27th, 2013

Hi Everyone out there, a belated Happy Merrik Anniversary!  Of course, as you detailed-orientated fans know, this is the V1 Anniversary, pre-Sword Masters era of V2 and V3 (Final) of the book.  It’s still Novem, so I think we can celebrate all month long on this one.

I can hardly believe that some of the biggest planning in Rise of the New Masters revolved around the Anointing protagonist Zsastar.  Let’s just say at this point, defeat has changed him.  Is he willing to lead a new life and pay the price for it?  And who exactly are the real allies to whom?

Following Zsastar’s defeat, on the antagonist side, readers will meet the First General, King Malik’s only female general.  And she is not to be trifled with.  Through her dark magic, one hero is lost and other held captive.  Yet perhaps the greater question is how to undo the binding restrictions on the leader of the Sword Masters and give Merrik’s lost people a chance to return home.

As much as I love to write in the dramatic fight scenes, I also enjoy writing the relationships between the characters.  I am rather fond of the dynamic of one character with his or her undying devotion to the other character.  In The Rise of the New Masters, this gets explored in several sets, including Talissa and The Regina as to the past.  In Shinigami, this is the Shinigami and her dragon during the Second Life.  Spoilers end here.  Hope to do some more work over the weekend.  Back to writing about my favorite God of Death.

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The Audience Voted

By eugena On September 30th, 2012

Thanks to a few of my friends on Facebook, I have decided that “Sword Masters” would remained spelled as such, not switched to the one word “Swordmasters.”

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The Choice Is Yours

By eugena On October 1st, 2011

Being an American, I’m fully acquainted with apathy. Maybe not in all parts of America, but it has been a golden standard in parts I have lived in.

In the past two weeks, I have been asked what my published novel, The Age of Merrik: The Anointing is about. In one way, it is difficult for me to summarize. I used it as a writing process to further hone my skills (they are far superior to what they were when it was published). In addition, I wrote three versions of it. Yet I really have to stop and think of a short summary of the published edition.

The protagonist, Merrik, is a young ruler of a kingdom (Tyera). After an eight year absence, The General, the Son of King Malik (a ruthless king) has returned to finish destroying Merrik’s homeland. He and his forces use Tyera as a base to enslave the neighboring kingdom (Rikan). He challenges Merrik and although Merrik is up to the challenge, he finds that most of his subjects have become apathetic and willing to accept The General without question (and falling for his lies). Merrik eventually fails the challenge and his rule is usurped. Only when his people and the people of Rikan are willing to fight for their freedom do they have the chance to receive it again.

Political Undertones

Political Marriages – A big theme of mine. Very big in my new novel WIP King’s Romance (working title). Merrik agrees to keep his enagement to Brianna for cultural reasons, but says she will merely “bear . . . [his] children quickly” and be banished from the hearts of the people.

Political Sucession – A cycle of rise, fall, and rise to leadership. Merrik, The General, Merrik. The inheritance of Sethane (Malik’s Kingdom) is assumed to be left to The General, though most of this importance is viewed in other books. Skye, former Swordmaster of Rikan, gave up her freedom to hand what land would become Nemea to Zaelen (Zaedrif’s Father) and to save him from Malik.

Deceit – The General on Liana, Liana on everyone else. The General on Brianna (also in a romantic fashion).

Role of Women – Brianna sees her role as simply being with the leader. That the leader will “make” her. Both Eleya and Elisha show their abilities and importance, each making themselves by their own worth. The Swordmaster leader is female. Merrik acknowledges their worth. The General uses Brianna as she is willing, but only because this is what she expects of herself. The General greatly respects women due to his love for his mother, *****spoiler***** Skye.

Relationship

Naivety – John and Miriam. Ken’rid’s crush on Eleya. Brianna’s belief in The General.

One-Sided – Jonas’ love for Brianna. Casseya’s love for Merrik. The General’s preoccupation with Eleya.

Cultural Chain – Merrik agreeing to still marry Brianna (“the vow”). Skye giving herself to Malik to save Zaelen, simply due to visions she had about Zaelen’s future.

Betrayal – Brianna’s betrayal of Merrik (love). Liana’s betrayal of Rikan (country). Zaedrif’s prior betrayal of everyone including Eleya (both).

What is a Family? – Merrik was adopted. He has a strong bond to those parents.

Death and Rebirth – Perhaps my biggest general category of theme.

The Swordmasters as a whole are dying. Eleya should have died in the beginning but appears later. The price of this rebirth appears to be her memories and her power. Through her rebirth, she gains power. Eleya (in Rikan as “Merris”) is often appears as sickly and personifies death. “Life” returns as Merris becomes Eleya again.

Everyman

The ethnicity in The Age of Merrik is homogeneous. Mortals possesses equal rights. The only divide is within the divine – the god (Serafin), the demi-god (swordmasters), and the mortal.

A small Merrik/Eleya (as Merris) passage:

[Merrik] had thought of what he wanted to say next. He had considered this since he saw Brianna with The General. He no longer had Cle’an’s wise council, but he felt she was as wise. He needed her advice.

“I’ve thought of this Merris, and I know what I will do after The General is gone. Brianna and I will wed, and she will bear my children quickly. I will banish her, and her children will learn to banish her even from their hearts. They will grow to understand the extent of her betrayal.”

“It could happen, since she is allied to The General. Even the smallest of human hearts can understand this darkness. She would be a mother as only life would command her, not in bond.”

“She would not be like my mother. I know only the family who raised me. My bond is in their hearts, even though they did not see my earliest days.”

“The way it should be.” Merris looked down to her arms, noting that even in this light they were still paler than others’ skin. Other people possessed skin tones all the same, the shade varying only in deep sickness or death.

Chapter 11: A Small Respite

The Choice Is Yours. [Yes, that is a song reference.]

Will the masses let their own Generals conqueror them with their own apathy?

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Some In-Depth Q and A

By eugena On July 5th, 2011

Currently watching SKU…I am one happy otaku.

Hello loyal fans and readers. Today’s been dramatic in the USA…after all, it has been the Anthony verdict. I’m going to refrain from making comments. I am sure I will be having lots of chats about it when I return to law school this fall.

The Age of Merrik, it its initial form was a book I had in my mind many years ago. In one sense, I feel like it has been my entire writing life. When I was still a kid, I wrote that book. In my mind anyway and kept notes on it. Years had passed and I morphed it into its second form, one featuring the Swordmasters, then later into the final form which was edited and published.

The Merrik of long ago focused on a trio — Zira, Zsastar, and Zaedrif. Yes, they are all “Z” for a reason. They were the reason for those three crystals. There was in fact another story entirely for them. That story passed into legend and two of the names were reused as new characters. Zsastar, still The General, now had a father, Malik, and the backstory of Sethane took roots. Zsastar now fought the Swordmasters — save Eleya — whom he still desires to dominate. No, Zsastar does not love. He is not capable. He is immature, but dangerous. He won’t falter to slay anyone — except Eleya. Zaedrif was no longer the teenage child. He became a cunning traitor — though most of his treachery was in fact a motivation I would have for Dark Desires.

Dark Desires and Rise of the New Masters will depart their predecessor and feature many changes, one of which is last names.

Some of the questions I have received:

  • What about John and Miriam?
  • What about Cle’an
  • What’s the deal with the crystals?

I’ve gotten the crystals question quite a lot. So, I’ll give you all a little hint: very important to mind/power transference. Yeah, not really too much of an answer. Eleya did not seem to have much effect with the blue one, but her memory and power had been sealed away by the end of Dark Desires which effects the influence of the crystal. Why did Zaedrif have them at first? Okay, I’ve already spoiled it a bit. He’s really a bad guy, but a bad guy at the end of his life, seeking to earn his redemption. Is he the same person as the Dark Desires baddie? You will all have to wait for that.

John and Miriam will have some sort of reunion. Cle’an will face his past and show his true loyalties. Will those crystals be important again. Yes, you all can bet on that.

I will need to flesh out the past a bit more (Dark Desires). For now, I’m focusing on Megami Pandora and Shinigami Saga.

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The Story of The Age of Merrik: The Anointing

By eugena On February 12th, 2011

** spoiler alert ** This is my first book in The Age of Merrik series. I am currently working on a sequel.

The first chapter is a brief backstory of the General Zsastar/Swordmasters Eleya and Zaedrif conlfict in the city of Rikan.

The story continues to reveal Merrik, the beloved ruler of the neighboring city of Tyera, betrayed by none other than his future wife and many of his followers. Merrik must confront the same General who murdered his father and permanently disfigured his mother. He must align himself with the dying group of warriors, the Swordmasters, in order to save Tyera and Rikan from The General’s plotting and prevent The General from creating a god.

(my goodreads)

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Zine Article: Eleya, Zaedrif, and The Fall of Nemea

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

Eleya has suffered much sorrow in her life. After surviving the destruction of Antham, her home country, she seeks refuge with the Sword Masters and the Wizards of the North. After revealed as the prophesized Regina, Eleya loses all opportunity of a life just for herself. She takes on the mantle of ruler and becomes a powerful figure with the Sword Masters, second only to The Serafin.

Because of Skye’s prophecy regarding Zaedrif and Eleya, she stays in Nemea with Zaedrif and Zibiah. Zaedrif and Eleya grow closer together and eventually become engaged. Zaedrif’s childhood friend, Oroco, is in love with him. Zaedrif cannot let go of his unresolved feelings for Oroco, and this becomes a rift between Zaedrif and Eleya.

Zaedrif abandoned Nemea shortly before its fall, presumably due to his involvement with Oroco. He left Eleya alone to defend it. Nathan of Anthama (who renamed his country in honor of Eleya’s home country) came to Eleya’s rescue and sacrificed himself to save her.

Many Nemeans died in the battle and more became slaves of Malik’s generals.

In The Anointing, both Areya and Cle’an become the voices of the victims of The Fall of Nemea. They both lost loved ones. Edric, Areya’s husband, was the brother of Valerie, Cle’an’s fiancée.

Although Zaedrif dies at the end of The Anointing, his memory lives on in Rise of the New Masters. Eleya must confront her past, including her relationship with Zaedrif.

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Zine Article: Merrik

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

Merrik is the male protagonist of The Age of Merrik. His biological parents are currently unknown, but he was raised by the married rulers of Tyera and Rikan along with their daughter, Elisha.

Merrik’s home life shattered when Zsastar, Son of Malik, and his army attacked Rikan during Shattered Sky. He had enslaved the minds of many Tyeran men, and they turned against their leader, Merrik’s father. Many more people, including Merrik, may have died in the battle, but the sword masters Eleya and Zædrif intervened and defeated Zsastar. Merrik’s father died in the battle, and his mother, Her Ladyship of Rikan, became horribly disfigured.

Eight years after Shattered Sky, Merrik must once again battle Zsastar for the freedom of the peoples of Tyera and Rikan. If he can face the pain of his past, he may become the next sword master.

Merrik’s father’s name (Lord of Tyera) was later revealed to be Matthias

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Fan Q&A: Why Don’t the Swordmasters Die?

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

Fan Q: Why don’t the sword masters die?

Answer: I assure you that they do. There is quite a long list of the dead. Sword masters named in TAOM: TA who die are Nathan of Anthama, Zaelen and Nemara of Nemea (died before TAOM: TA), and (*Spoilers* Zibiah and Zaedrif of Nemea, and Skye is for all practical purposes dead–though Malik would disagree–more discussion on this later when my Reference Library website opens up (when I finish it))and *further spoilers* the problem with Eleya/Merris is explained a bit in TAOM:TA and will be much further explained in TAOM: ROTNM.
Perhaps an easier explanation is to consider The Great Chain of Being.  Humans were lower than angels, which were lower than God.  Non sword masters are like the humans, sword masters are like the angels, and the Serafin is God.  So, what can kill a lowly human cannot kill a sword master (or perhaps certain Malik allies)?  However, since sword masters are not angels, they can die.  Just not as easily as others.

Also, the Regina has a great influence in prolonging the life of the master–including slowing the aging process and being hard to kill in general.  This mainly comes from an early idea from TAOM:TA version one (version three is the published one).

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The Age of Merrik: The Series

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

Information is available on the official website at

www.EMoulton.com/ageofmerrik/series.html

Excerpt from Official Site:

A series of novels in the Sword Master Universe, The Age of Merrik tells the story of Merrik, the young ruler of Tyera destined for greatness. Along his journey, he meets many of the sword masters, including the Sword Master Regina.

With the help of his allies, he may be able to defeat Malik’s forces from controlling the world.

The Age of Merrik: The Anointing contains a special preview of The Age of Merrik: Rise of the New Masters.

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The Age of Merrik: Perspective from 2007

By eugena On February 11th, 2011

For those of you who have read previous versions of The Age of Merrik–which officially reached back as far as 2000–you will be pleased to know that Cle’an plays a more important part. The sword masters (mildly referred to in the 2000 version) have a much fleshed out history and are truly legendary.

Zaedrif’s role has changed throughout the versions. Beginning in the 2005 version, Zaedrif is hailed as the great Prince and Sword Master of Nemea–a land further explained in this final version.

Working on the screenplay adaptation helped me to develop Zibiah, Zaedrif’s sister, and Cle’an’s admiration of Eleya.

The most recent change to the series is the place and function of “The Journey”. It is a place between the mind of the present and the mind of the future where only sword masters may go. Eleya’s position as the Sword Master Regina has become more important and will be more so in Rise of the New Masters.

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