Ben Spencer Writes I (or is it IV?): A New Hope

Hello all.

After years of struggling to settle on the best way to develop a consistent author platform, I’ve decided to have a go at a monthly (or bi-monthly? Yeah, probably bi-montly) blog post. I’ll then share the link to the blog post on various social media outlets, where my tens of followers can read their fill.

As I’m not much for giving writing advice or engaging in soul-baring confessionals, my monthly blog post is going to touch on the same four or five topics each time. I’ll provide a writing update, divulge an interesting piece of Deer King trivia, offer the odd historical insight, recommend a book (yes, please!), recommend a song (oh no!), and then…well, that’s probably it, but no promises.

So, here we go.

Writing Update: I’m 24K words into Last of the Baronites: Novella Three of The Deer King series. I should finish up in late July or early August, and hopefully have it out in the world by late August. I’m 40K words into my novel-in-progress (does it have a title? Yes it does, but I’m keeping it to myself for now. I’m very happy with the title). Hope to wrap it up by Summer 2020. It’s contemporary fantasy, with what I believe is a novel conceit. Quite a bit different from The Deer King.

The Deer King Trivia: Edward Drey was the first Harrolander to reach Tsadanali. He forged a peace with the Torquecan people (in the name of King Charles Penrose) shortly after one of his soldiers murdered the Torquecan ruler Chineyaco in 11 A.D. The peace lasted until his death.

Odd Historical Insight: The first U.S. president to have his photograph taken was John Quincy Adams, in 1843. (It might have been William Henry Harrison in 1841, but we’ll stick with popular legend). Adams, who left the presidency in 1829, was elected to the House of Representatives in 1830, and served there until his death in the Capital Building in 1848, two days after suffering a stroke in the House chamber. He spent his latter years as a representative railing against slavery, receiving numerous death threats. As a seven-year old boy he watched cannon fire from the Battle of Bunker Hill from a hilltop ten miles away, and then lived to the eve of the Civil War. A character loosely based on a young John Quincy Adams features heavily in Last of the Baronites. Here’s the picture:

Image result for first photograph of a president

Book Recommendation: Daniel Polansky’s A City Dreaming. It bothers me to no end that Polansky’s genius isn’t shouted from the rooftops of every bookstore in the country. This particular book is a genre mashup that blows the top off what imaginative literature is capable of. So very good.

Music Recommendation: “City Looks Pretty” by Courtney Barnett. Amazing lyricist, amazing songwriter. My favorite song off her latest record. Have a listen if you’re so inclined. “City Looks Pretty”

Alright, that’s it. Until next time…