We all got together and produced a book called Telling Tales which is published on Lulu.com if you want to take a look. Producing that book was a learning curve and it didn't all go smoothly, but still i am proud to have been a part of it.
I've almost completed my first novella; I didn't want to go straight for a novel without the aid of a safety net :-). It was originally a film script I wrote for Jason Salkey and Patricia tallman; if you ever get a chance to meet them I would take it they're lovely people. Sorry, I digress - the story is sort of a horror story. This is how it starts:
In the mist, a lone Danish warrior strode with his long slightly greying hair flowing free. He looked upon the standing stones that had stood in this land long before his people had trod the ground of this fertile island. Now his people had suffered and he alone was able to hold his mind in the face of the enemy and it was that face he had come to see.
His back was to the grove of trees that marked his destination. He had moved through it until he came out on the far side, looking once again on the open land around. Just in front of him he could see the smaller wooden cousin of the lithic structure he had been gazing on moments before. Where the stone had stood against weather and time, the wooden pillars had not. All that remained to mark the sacred place was a few sturmps that barely stood proud of the land.
Erik moved cautiously towards it. His stride was not the longest of his people, for he was not the largest, but he was fit and strong. As he walked forward he could see the shadowy figure within, and he knew that none of his people had kept their mind once approaching the Evil One; indeed many had lost their lives. He also knew that the Evil One had been an ever growing plague on his people. Erik Redmayne drew his sword and without hesitation or fear he walked forward.
The Evil One grinned, happy to see a new plaything, but he could sense this one was different; he could not reach into this mind; this mind was closed to him. It did not matter, once inside the barrier, this feeble being would have nowhere to hide.
The Evil One spoke to this insignificant fool in the vulgar tongue of the mortals. “So what have you come here for? Is it to mock me in my prison?”
Erik moved closer, “I have come to seal your fate.”
The Evil One laughed, he was amused at the arrogance, of this puny creature. “It will take more than one mortal with a feeble weapon. Surely even one such as you could not have failed to grasp the futility of fighting me alone?”
Erik did not like being mocked, but he decided to parley for the moment and look for a weakness. “I have seen the death you've wrought on my people, even trapped as you are, but I have not been idle. This sword was forged by our finest smith who called on Odin himself to help hone the blade.”
“Odin, really?” Said the Evil One incredulously. “You still cling to the your old Gods, even though they are abandoned by your people?”
“My people have not abandoned them; though others have.”
The Evil One smirked. “Your people; you talk of the petty tribe you led to this place. You brought them here only to get away from the new god your people have turned to?”
Erik just glared, and he knew the Evil One was right. He had led his people away to escape persecution. They had come to farm, and had been drawn to the area by the ancient religious monuments which they held in great respect.
The Evil One continued. “What about the doubt in the hearts of your followers. I've seen it in their minds; your gods are in decline. Even if you were to defeat me, they would still not survive in the hearts of men.”
“Only one of us shall see what comes to pass. I care not for the hearts of others; my gods live in my heart and the power of Odin is in my sword.”
“And do you believe the power of such a sword will protect you?”
Erik stood firm, “I do.”
“Then come closer and let us see how it performs. I will look forward to devouring your flesh and leaving your soul to see what a world I make. You will be trapped here, while I travel in my new realm of darkness.”
“I do not come to trade words with a servant of Loki, I am a Viking and my sword is in my hand.”
Moving forward Erik passed through a barrier; his eyes could not see it but his soul felt it close behind him.