I think it can be pretty much guaranteed that no fantasy novel is going to thrive when it is marketed as “labor and industrial relations.” Certainly my Thunder King didn’t.
‘The Thunder King’: Rescued!
No one was able to tell me how my fantasy novel wound up as labor and industrial relations. Nothing in it about collective bargaining, overtime, or automation. Like a book by some guy that no one ever heard of doesn’t have enough trouble finding buyers.
I just checked. The Thunder King is not exactly burning up the track today, but it is doing much better than it was as “labor & industrial relations.”
Paleontologists working in China have found the fossils of a giant rhinoceros that may well have been the largest land mammal ever–16 feet high at the shoulder, 26 feet long, and weighing in at 24 tons (https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/scientists-found-ancient-fossilized-rhino-144318178.html).
They’re calling it a Paraceratherium, but I prefer the old name, Baluchitherium. Roy Chapman Andrews found one during his Gobi Desert expeditions in the 1920s. Specimens have also been found throughout Asia, with hints its range may have reached into eastern Europe. (Some call it the Indricothere. This can get confusing.)
This one’s four times the size of a full-grown elephant, and supposedly lived some 26 million years ago. Some of you won’t be buying that, but let it go for now. Whatever its age, there it is–a hornless rhino like a walking building.
I’ve always loved this creature. This is the great beast King Ryons rode to the rescue of the city of Obann.
Can you imagine seeing one of these? It was as big as a fair-sized dinosaur. There must be a limit to how big a mammal can grow–but have we seen that limit yet?
Rejoice in the works of the Lord!
You need a place to hide, if you’re gonna see this.
This is the creature King Ryons and Cavall encountered on the plains in The Thunder King (No. 3 in the Bell Mountain series). No one had ever seen one before, and lived to tell about it. Ryons called it the Death Dog.
The Death Dog from ‘The Thunder King’
The video is from Tim Haines’ TV special, Walking With Prehistoric Beasts. He re-created the extinct Hyaenodon as a super-predator, and inspired this scene in my book.
For more information on all the books in the series, just go to the home page and click “Books.”
G’day, mates! Byron the Quokka here.
I’m about to go into Violet Crepuscular’s house for my writing lesson, but before I do, here’s the Bell Mountain trivia question that I promised you. Question No. 8:
What is the name of the Thunder King’s fortress?
A lot of the quokkas think these questions are too easy. Well, it can’t be helped! The questions are designed for humans, after all. I can safely say no human ever beat a quokka in a game of Clue. Same goes for Bell Mountain trivia.
And if you haven’t read any of Lee’s Bell Mountain books yet–well, blimey, what’re you waiting for???
These are somebody’s idea of “the Top Ten Prehistorical Mammal Predators.” I didn’t actually count them, but I suspect they listed more than ten.
How many of these have appeared in Obann?
Andrewsarchus, Hyaenodon, Smilodon, Entelodont–plus a lot of critters not featured in this video. The books in which those four appear are Bell Mountain, The Cellar Beneath the Cellar, The Thunder King, and The Last Banquet. I do have fun, writing them up–and I hope it’s fun for the readers, too.
Note I have resisted the temptation to invent animals, like giant hamsters or talking clams. I deserve extra sales for that, don’t you think?
All my life, the Baluchitherium has been the largest land mammal ever. (Don’t let that “Paraceratherium” business throw you: they’re always changing the name.) And then they bring up this… this Paleoloxodon thing, this mere elephant–and say, “No, it wasn’t Baluchi-something. It was this new discovery! Hail, Paleoloxodon! Greatest land mammal ever!”
Pshaw. That Baluchitherium in the picture is hardly half the size of the one that carried King Ryons to the rescue of Obann. And the elephant is just plain overgrown. So it had longer and straighter tusks than any modern elephant–go on, ask me if I care! Whereas Baluchitherium was a rhinoceros so freakin’ big, it didn’t need a horn. Didn’t it scatter an entire Heathen army? I’d like to see anyone even try to do that with a Loxobagel. Like anything that’s new is automatically the best. Like naming baseball stadiums after some grubby little sponsor. Once upon a time the Edsel was new! And look how that wound up.
I am not going to rewrite The Thunder King just so I can bring in some boring elephant. And as for paleontological revisionism–boo, yabumya!
It isn’t every day you get to see video of a Baluchitherium, so enjoy it now.
The Great Beast from ‘The Thunder King’
The Thunder King, Book No. 3 of my Bell Mountain series, was born of a dream I had, in which a Baluchitherium–the largest land mammal ever–figured dramatically. With a little extra shaping, that dream became the climax of the book.
Just imagine it… Just imagine!
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.