(All rewards are sent out at the beginning of the month after the payment has been processed *shrug* sorry guys, it looks like that how the site works.)Who I am: The name is Amber Dalcourt and I've been obsessed with storytelling since I was old enough to start telling stories. It shouldn't come as any surprise really. My grand-dad on my father's side was a storyteller whose stories were included in a book sharing french Canadian folklore. My dad is a storyteller whose short stories were featured in magazines. It was only natural that I would want to weave a world all of my own. I'd hate to blame genetics, but it's hard to argue against it at this point.
I am an author, many times over, predominantly of the short story variety (also shouldn't come as a surprise). For a time, I dabbled in ghost writing for non-fiction ebooks and blogs. After a while, telling other people's stories wasn't enough and I set to work on the Awakening series.
What I'm Making: As my profile states, I have written two books for the series but felt that I just didn't start in the right place. With Awakening: Prodigy is a series of 3 books as we follow 3 young heroes on the path of becoming Demon Hunters. The book is set in a post-apocalyptic future with strong fantasy and science fiction themes. A sample piece of book 1 is offered below.
The 3rd draft of book 1 is complete, halfway through book 2, and I'm almost done book 3's 2nd draft.
I've got all of the reader feedback i need for book 1, but I want to complete books 2 & 3, before tackling my final draft because I want this grouping of books to share a similar tone/feel. Then it's off to the editors.
I want to offer something more to my readers and fans!
What I'll be doing with the funds: The book will be self-published but that doesn't mean I'm cutting corners. I have hired a professional cover artist (complete) and I will be hiring a copy editor, and two proofreaders. My expenses are covered via my day job, and rolling profits from existing works. This patreon account is set up specifically so I can offer readers more ways to experience the adventure such as: behind the scenes insights and step-by-step work processes, why I chose to add or cut something from the book, etc. But most of all, as an avid supporter of the arts, I want to commission talented artists to do some slick illustrations, sequential art, and i want to get some work rolling on a few games that i would like to make free for fans.
Sample from Awakening: Prodigy
Her smile faded. "What scares you more. Me or my core?" It was an oddly honest question.
"N-neither?" It was true. His fear lay in uncertainty of what she did to an already dangerous training program. He had set it to a low-risk setting, with an incremental increase in difficulty over time. His plan served two goals. The first, would reveal Astral's latent talents, and possibly the reason she survived where expert Hunters met an early death. The second would sell his point on the advantages of joining his squad. A win, win scenario, or so he thought.
"Well, that's disappointing," Astral sulked. "Clearly you don't understand the situation you've put yourself in."
His eyes narrowed. He opened his mouth, ready to reveal every gory detail about his plan when the elevator melted away, leaving the pair of them in the dimly lit space. "Oh....." was all his brain managed to express as he realized how off-course his plan had gone.
He spun around, denying that the only safe place in the program had been erased. He felt around, risking a few steps into the dim space beyond, finding nothing. It denied the rules of physics. It denied reality! Wide-eyed, he spun to confront the fourteen-year-old girl who had vanished from sight.
He peered into the darkness, searching for the girl. He'd have to keep her safe. If she thought that the program was a game, she'd be in for a nasty surprise.
He dashed behind a pillar, back against it. He kept his body lose, ready to spring into action as the first sign of trouble. The dim lights were set evenly across the remnants of a half millennia old parking garage. Even as he listened for the sounds of Astral's frightened screams, it wasn't the shadows that he feared.
He dashed from the pillar to a nearby rusted car, ducking down behind it, and peered through the broken window. There was no sign of her. Of course, she would know to stay quiet. Noise of any sort would draw the demons to their prey.
"I'm bored," Astral's voice boomed on the security speakers. Seth's nerves frayed. "Don't make me do something you might regret. Didn't you say something about wanting to learn to survive the killing fields? Do you know what good hiding does?"
There was an odd scratching sound nearby. Seth focused in on the new element introduced to the game. It sounded small, like a mouse gnawing away at something metallic. He couldn't place the sound in the listing of demons he had encountered through the program. Did she raise the difficulty level to something higher than he had used? It sounded like it was gnawing at the underside of the car. He backed away from the vehicle, slowly hoping to avoid making noise that would cause the program to spring into action.
A hollow metal object fell from beneath the car, likely dislodged by the creature gnawing at the metal supports. Insects swarmed over the car. In the dim light, all Seth could make out was millions of black insect bodies surging toward him. What sort of monstrosity did Astral revive from within the program?
"Eeeewe! I hate bug spawn!" Astral taunted. "Their regenerative abilities are... annoying." The insects swarmed together, towering over him as a single living mass. "Oh, I wouldn't stand there. Spawn often feed on their host and until they mature. They're going to look for protein. Here's a hint: that's you."
He ran. He was without a weapon, but he knew where to go to reach a weapon cache. The insect swarm skittered after him, devouring the car in seconds. "Pro tip: spawn have this unique ability to integrate unprocessed materials into their biological being."
'That means...' He heard the change in the sound, just before the air behind him shifted. He rolled out of reach as the insect swarm came down heavily on a nearby car he had to abandon as a quick refuge. It did little to slow the insects, even with it consuming the vehicle. He gasped, glimpsing their metal bodies catching the light.
"Hrm..." Seth's heart sank at the sound of Astral's voice. He dodged a spray of insects as they smashed themselves against a pillar. "I see that they haven't updated their database. The spawn aren't behaving quite right. Let me fix that."
"Please, NO!" Seth shouted, dashing behind a van, knowing it would do little to protect him from the swarm. He would have to make a mad dash for the security booth and activate the barriers. Hopefully, the metal shielding would buy him enough time to access the weapon stores. He'd be fine as soon as he had something to defend himself with. The swarm pursuing him slowed as the teenage predator initialized updates to the program.
He hoped that she wouldn't attempt to bar his access to the weapons. "Now that's better. You see, not only do spawn reuse materials for things like armor, but they can also make weapons. Look at those tiny little knives." Seth whimpered, dashing out of range of the insects as they tore into the van. "Oh quit your whining! At least they don't have lasers. I hate it when they eat lasers. It's really dangerous!"
He slid across the small space that was left to the security booth, his salvation. He slammed the reinforced glass door shut behind him. He locked it and slammed on the button that would raise the metal shields, sealing off the parking garage from the rest of the building.
He rushed to the back of the booth, to a door that had rusted in place, leaving a small gap to squeeze through. He sucked in as much of himself as he could and began to push himself through. He was half way in when he was tapped on the shoulder.
"Just stop that," Astral sputter. "It's embarrassing."