I received three stunning images from Roger Garland last week, one for each of the Chronicles of Corin. I already have an over-image for the Chronicles on my website. These new artworks are dazzling and I think will really help the books fly. For The Shattered Crown we have an eagle-prowed ship, a wolf god and a churning ocean, with Oroonin’s all -seeing eye in background. The Glass Crown shows Caer Carranis my city beset by Vaarg the firedrake, with the goddess Elanion’s face carved in stone. The Return of Old Night reveals more of the gods, ice mountains and Laras Lassladden’s fabled waterfall in foreground. All three have Corin’s image in left hand corner.

Revisiting The Shattered Crown has been difficult for me as this book was first written back in 2006, re-written in 2008, spent three years hidden in agent’s cupboard, and then was re-launched yet again under different name. Looking back the writing was naive and simplistic, and the characters a little too cardboard for 21st Century. So after writing Gol – an entirely different fantasy with hard edges and adult scenes, I felt the need to sharpen Corin’s world a touch. Now at last the new (and I very much hope) improved Shattered Crown is nearly there. It will be sold as two eBooks: Oracle and Island, Crown and Prince. The first part will be out mid summer, the second, say September. The Glass Throne should prove easier as this was only first-drafted and the subject matter was already darker than the first book. In GT the characters develop teeth as their fight for survival enters a new stage. The Return of Old Night is my darling. This is going to be a barnstormer and Roger’s spellbinding image really paves the way.

With the Chronicles my lofty aim has always been to fuse the mystery and myth of classic masterworks, eg: Evangeline Walton’s brilliant adaption of Mabinogi, Guy Kay’s classic Tigana, and Jack Vance’s wonderful Lyonesse, with the brutal realism of GRRM and Joe Abercrombie and other contempory fantasy writers. I’ve coarsened the language and added humour as a balance. It’s a heady coctail – just hope I’ve got it right. Time will tell, but enough wittering for now – going to light the fire, sit back, crack open a beer and watch the Hobbit on DVD. Speak soon my friends, JW