Tag Archives: bell mountain series by lee duigon

Beat the Cold

See the source image

Two weeks ago I was trying to beat the heat. Now it’s the cold.

I don’t normally try to work on my book on Sunday, but for once it wasn’t raining, and with more rain forecast for tomorrow, I thought I’d better at least try. Only problem–the cold. I mean, it’s kind of hard when the ink doesn’t want to come out of the pen; and shivering makes my handwriting still worse.

Brilliant idea–put on a sweater, with my winter coat on top of that, and gloves, and take my bike out for a ride up a very long hill. I thought that might warm me up, and I was right, it did. Which gave me almost two hours’ writing time when I got back.

I rely on the Lord to empower me to write my books, and this time, Lord, I’m gonna need a lot of help. I still don’t have the climax of His Mercy Endureth Forever, and there’s lots and lots of wild stuff going on in Obann. Some of the characters have done things I wasn’t expecting. I’m starting to feel like the writers of an Akira Kurosawa movie: they never knew where the director was going to make them go.

Lord Orth, if you only knew what kind of trouble you get me into–!


‘Fiddling with Fantasy while Rome Burns’ (2011)

Image result for images of bell mountain by lee duigon

People were asking me this seven years ago, and I still get asked today: with the world on fire all around you, why are you writing fantasy?

https://leeduigon.com/2011/08/15/fiddling-with-fantasy-while-rome-burns/

If anything, there’s more fire in more places than there was in 2011; and I have to work harder on my fantasy. Is it too simple an answer to say I do it because God has called me to do it?

This is my work. I do it in His service, and I pray it gives Him glory and that He will find a use for it.


Still Working!

See the source image

The sun has come out, unexpectedly, so I have to seize the moment and get out there with my legal pad, to continue my work on Bell Mountain No. 12, His Mercy Endureth Forever. Unlike Agatha Christie, pictured above, I can’t write fiction indoors. As I write, I have to try to inhabit a world that doesn’t, in fact, exist; and I can’t do that if I keep getting robo-calls from “Your Debt Partner” and various resorts that try to convince me that I’ve been there before and really liked it.

We have a black walnut tree in the yard which day and night bombards us with nuts the size of baseballs. Thanks to the incessant rain, the nuts have begun to rot while still on the tree. A lot of them go “splat!” instead of “pow!” when they hit the ground: icky black goo all over the place. But even that is less distracting than the robo-calls.

I still don’t have the climax to this story, still waiting for the Lord to show it to me. I feel like I’m chipping away at a great block of marble to get at the shape that waits inside, with no idea of what that shape will be. Your guess is as good as mine. Suffice it to say that currently hellzapoppin in Obann.

Well, back to work! I hope the nuts keep missing me: a few of them this morning were… adjacent.


It’s Not So Easy to Write a Book

Image result for images of the last banquet by lee duigon

We didn’t make it to the doctor today, but please keep praying for us.

Meanwhile, I’m racing the calendar to get His Mercy Endureth Forever written before it gets too cold outside to write.

I have this weird sense of being powerfully pulled toward the story’s climax without knowing what that climax is. I rely on the Lord to give me the story, and sometimes He doesn’t let me know what I’m going to write until I write it. Without giving anything away, suffice it to say that hellzapoppin in Obann and I have no idea at all, how it’s going to turn out. That makes it somewhat stressful.

I didn’t know how The Fugitive Prince would end until one evening, while walking just a few blocks to get our Chinese food for supper, He gave me the whole thing, all at once–wham! Writing The Thunder King, I had the climax first, before the beginning of the story. And I received the climax of The Last Banquet, all at once, as I walked upstairs to the bedroom. So I never know what to expect or when to expect it.

And so, today, a little more blog, a bite to eat, and back to work. Please, Lord–help me bring the story to my readers; for I write these in your service. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


It’s Finally Sunny Again

Image result for images of the silver trumpet by lee duigon

I’ve lost an awful lot of time due to bad weather, but the sun is finally out again, I can’t ride my bike because of a flat tire (I told the guy not to over-inflate it!), so I’m out there trying to play catch-up on my current book, His Mercy Endureth Forever (Bell Mountain No. 12). As for The Temptation, we’re waiting on Kirk DouPonce’s cover art.

Meanwhile, the story is hurtling toward a climax–and I don’t know what it’s going to be. The Lord will tell me when I’m not expecting it. But poor Obann, what a mess! A savage horde of Hyena Men has invaded the country, and Jack and Ellayne somehow have to smuggle Lord Orth into the city so he can call Obann to repentance before it’s too late. I have no idea whether he’ll succeed.

A brief thought on fantasy-writing in general:

Overcome the temptation to give your characters names that are just too far out for the reader to stomach. If your fantasy novel starts sounding like a Russian novel translated by someone from Venus, you’re doing it wrong. I once read a Lawrence Sanders book in which the hero was named Jack Smack and the heroine, a femme fatale, Clementine Cadiddlehopper or something like that. I found those names detracting from the conviction of the story. So don’t do that.


Oops! Comment Contest Adjustment

Image result for images of embarrassed cat

Well, it turns out Elijah already had all the Bell Mountain books and only wanted to win the contest, so he says thanks, but give the prize to the runner-up. That would be Joshua, who only missed winning by the tiniest of margins.

So, Joshua, let me know which book you want (try not to make it Bell Mountain, I’ve run out of those and have to get more) and provide me with your mailing address.

P.S. to everybody else who would have liked to win: The next comment contest starts… now! Yup, it’s already started. Be the one to post No. 35,000, and win an autographed book. Yes, I know, that’s 2,000 more comments. It only means I’m giving you all plenty of time to get into the game. But don’t everybody just sit around waiting for it to get to 34,500, or it’ll take, like, forever.


And the Winner Is—!

Image result for images of children celebrating

Breaking news! Elijah has won the comment contest: he has posted Comment No. 33,000 on this blog, and has won an autographed copy of one of my books. Elijah, you’ve got to email me (or leave a comment) to tell me which book you want, and give me your address. Try not to ask for Bell Mountain, I’m just about out of those.

Here to present the award is Constable Chumley, from Scurveyshire.

“Ooh, thare freenin’ foal Elijah, mickle grandings feer ye bawntin’ yon comment contest!”


To Be a Writer–Read!

 

At last we have some young people joining this blog, and that makes me happy–because there’s plenty of work for everyone in regaining cultural ground for Christ’s Kingdom, and none of us is going to live long enough to do it all. As is the nature of things, we’ll have to pass a lot of this work on to another generation.

Some of you, I’m sure, will want to be writers someday, if not now. I know what that feels like: I started writing science fiction novels before I started high school. I sold my first book in 1986. I was a casualty of the implosion of the horror market, no one wanted to publish my books anymore, but I kept at it. Had to! A lot of changes–for the better–swept over me, and twenty years later I published Bell Mountain, copyright 2010. Now it’s 2018, and I’m currently writing the 12th book in the series.

So my first tip to any teen or tween who wants to be a writer is, keep at it. The goal of publication is fantastically hard to attain. You wouldn’t believe how many books I wrote that never got published, and never will be. There is no substitute for perseverance.

And my second tip is just as simple: read. Read as much as you possibly can, especially the kind of books you want to write someday.

We learn by watching others do what we want to do. By example, and by imitation. How would you ever learn to walk, if you never saw anybody walking? How would you learn to talk, if you never heard anybody talking? Reading is just as important to anyone who wants to be a writer. Read, read, and read some more, and never, never stop.

We all have dreams of hitting it big while we’re still young. Like Stephen Crane, or F. Scott Fitzgerald. But most of us simply aren’t ready yet. We haven’t seen enough, heard enough, lived enough. An awful lot of living has to go into your writing. And you, as a writer, are always a work in progress, never finished, always room for improvement, always more to learn. I believe God knew I wasn’t ready, no matter how passionately I wanted to be published: and He knew best. If God ever decided to give us everything we ever prayed for, He wouldn’t be doing us a favor. Sometimes, when we think He’s pounding us, He’s really blessing us: and maybe we’ll last long enough to realize it, long after the fact.

Anyway, I wish to encourage young writers. Don’t stop–the Kingdom has work for you to do.


My ‘Bell Mountain’ Interview

Image result for images of bell mountain by lee duigon

It was eight years ago, but I think this is still the best interview I’ve had–largely due to the thoughtful questions asked by Chalcedon’s Andrea Schwartz. Here’s the audio for the whole thing, about 23 minutes long. I apologize, in advance, for my slow way of talking. As for my voice, it’s ideally suited for mime.

https://chalcedon.edu/resources/audio/lee-duigon-bell-mountain-notable-people

At the time, I had three Bell Mountain books in print, with No. 4, The Last Banquet, ready to go to press. Here in 2018, I’m waiting for No. 11, The Temptation, to come out, and writing No. 12, His Mercy Endureth Forever. 

How many more to come?

As many as God gives me to write.


Beat the Heat

Image result for images of lizard basking in sun

If I don’t stop blogging and get out there and start writing, it’ll soon be too hot to write. And then the cold weather will have settled in before I can finish the book–ah, fanabla!

I reckon (as Helki would say) I’m about halfway done with His Mercy Endureth Forever, Book No. 12 of my Bell Mountain series. I have absolutely no idea what the climax is going to be. The Lord will tell me when I least expect it: He likes to surprise me.


%d bloggers like this: