The Saulzar Contest – Stretch Goal #1

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Friends,

Thanks so much for your help getting the word out. So far, it’s working pretty well. The Facebook post has reached 1,200 people, which is way more than I’ve ever had before. Keep sharing it!

The big news is that my Amazon Rank is trending up, and it’s reached #58,000 as of today (It hit #55,0000 on Wednesday).

rank1

 

That’s pretty awesome, and I really appreciate it. It’s humbling to have people spend money on something I created, though I do believe it’s good reading!

To really keep this going, we need to aim for the top 100. To get there, let’s start with a goal of reaching the top 10,000. I think we can do it with a couple dozen sales.

To entice you, I’m adding to the Contest prizes. If we reach the top 10,000, I’ll add an original, red-inked copy of the manuscript to the prize drawing. There’s only one in the entire world, so who knows, maybe it’ll be a sought-after collectible one day!

Only one of these now has my comments and edits on it!

Only one of these now has my comments and edits on it!

For contest details, go here!

The contest runs until December 31, but buying the book today helps boost that ranking.

Thank you!

 

The Contest – Help promote the Saulzar Codex

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The Saulzar Codex is done, but the work of getting the word out is just starting.

I need your help.

I’m giving away signed copies of the paperback to 1 out of every 3 people that can complete 30 points worth of tasks.

Stretch Goal Prize: If we hit #10,000 in Amazon Rank, I’ll include a signed, red-inked, printed copy of the Saulzar Codex manuscript.

Grand Prize:  one lucky winner will have their name/likeness included in a future story!

The deadline is December 31st. The tasks are below.

You don’t have to complete 30 points worth of tasks to help out and earn my eternal gratitude. Anything you can do will help!

Background
The Saulzar Codex is a fantasy novel that I released in 12 chapters over the course of the last year. If you like Game of Thrones, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, or Conan the Barbarian, you’ll enjoy this book a lot. If you don’t like those things, well, you can still help!

Here’s the blurb from Amazon:

Saulzar is a mighty warrior that wishes for nothing more than a simple life with companions that he loves. But what happens when his life becomes entangled in forces far greater than he can imagine? Can he pay the price to keep the bonds of friendship alive? Or will the lure of power and a sword of legend teach him the true cost of revenge?

Follow Saulzar from his thieving youth in the bustling city of Sol and into the shadow of empire, where he seeks a focus for his wrath. He is a barbarian unchained, and the world will tremble when he finds a release from his rage.

How Can You Help?

Quick and Easy Tasks (1 point each)
1) Like my Author Page on Facebook
2) Follow Saulzar on Twitter
3) Follow me on twitter

Pretty Easy Tasks (2 points each)
1) Like and share the pinned status on the Aaron Brander facebook page. It’s the one that starts “The complete Saulzar Codex is now available for purchase on the Kindle for $6.99. You get all 12 of the previously released chapters and 2 bonus stories!”
Or follow this link. 

2) Retweet and Favorite this tweet from me.
3) Retweet and Favorite this tweet from Saulzar.
4) Forward this contest to your friends.

Tasks that take time (5 points)
1) Read the book and share your thoughts on facebook with a link to buy the book. Tag the Aaron Brander author page in the post please!
2) Read the book and share your thoughts on twitter. Include a link to buy the book and @therealsaulzar

Tasks that cost money (10 points)
1) Buy the book! You won’t be disappointed – it’s good!

Super Helpful Tasks (15 points)
1) Read the book and rate it on Amazon. If you share my last name, you shouldn’t post a review. Sorry, Amazon frowns on that.

Bonus Tasks (1 point each)
1) Like and Share future posts from my facebook page
2) Retweet and Favorite posts from TheRealSaulzar on Twitter
3) Retweet and Favorite posts from brandera33 on Twitter
4) Email me (aaron@branderphoto.com) with typos – 2 points per verified typo.
Please include Amazon location number, chapter name, and the full sentence with the error.

The Contest
You don’t have to enter the contest in order to help. Just doing some of the items above is super helpful, so thank you!

Each task has a point value. If you can reach 30 points, you are eligible to win a free signed book. 1 out of 3 people that reach 30 points will win.

The grand prize winner will get their name / likeness into a later story. I may need to adjust your name a bit to fit the culture, but you’ll know it’s you. We will discuss your character to make sure it’s the right fit.

The contest runs from now until December 31st. I’ll draw the winners in the new year.

Verification
In order to win, you need to verify your 30 points for me. Here’s how:

Once you have 30 points, send me an email.
Tell me which items you completed so it’s easy for me to check.
Add all the values up so I know how many points you earned.

For most of the tasks, just telling me your name and twitter handle are sufficient for me to verify. Other tasks take a bit more:

 ** Forward this contest to your friends – BCC me on the email you send (aaron@branderphoto.com)

** Buy the book!  – Take a screenshot of the book in your Kindle Library. (There are lots of ways to take screenshots. I like using jingproject.com.

Just a note, this is only a Kindle book right now, but there are lots of ways to buy and read a Kindle book without owning a Kindle. Read how here.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read this and helping me get the word out. Any little bit helps!

Aaron Brander

The Complete Saulzar Codex

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It’s finally here! Get the complete Saulzar Codex at Amazon for $6.99.

CODEX

Saulzar is a mighty warrior that wishes for nothing more than a simple life with companions that he loves. But what happens when his life becomes entangled in forces far greater than he can imagine? Can he pay the price to keep the bonds of friendship alive? Or will the lure of power and a sword of legend teach him the true cost of revenge?

Follow Saulzar from his thieving youth in the bustling city of Sol and into the shadow of empire, where he seeks a focus for his wrath. He is a barbarian unchained, and the world will tremble when he finds a release from his rage.

The Saulzar Codex contains the original twelve chapters of the story, plus two bonus tales. It is approximately 300 pages.

It is just the beginning of Saulzar’s epic tale.

The Saulzar Codex

A Fall from Grace
#1 A Price to Pay – Saulzar battles his grief and the vengeful spirit of Flynn.
#2 The Bonds of Friendship – Saulzar and Janus seek the vessel of Herna.
#3 The Illusion of Control – Saulzar and The Wolves must assassinate the Warlord of Komarna.
#4 A Release from Rage – Saulzar completes his task as Kubetsai-jo, but suffers a great loss.

A Lesson in Honor
#5 The Cost of Revenge – A young Saulzar battles the criminal empire known as the Arah.
#6 The Lure of Power – A young Saulzar seeks to join the Durrant Heil.
#7 A Sword of Legend – Saulzar battles the undead to obtain the sword he is destined to wield.
#8 The Love of a Woman – Saulzar fights for the hand of the beautiful Jafina.

A Spark of Hope
#9 To Lead a Pack – Saulzar leaves humanity behind and joins with a wolf-pack.
#10 The Shadow of Empire – Saulzar’s wolves terrorize the Genai at the behest of the emperor.
#11 A Barbarian Unchained – Guided by Omen Taru, Saulzar seeks vengeance.
#12 A Focus for His Wrath – Saulzar seeks to balance the scales of injustice.

Bonus Stories
A Baptism in Blood – Saulzar’s family is attacked by wolves. Survival was just the beginning.
The Warrior – The email that started the series.

The Saulzar Codex is just a prequel to a much larger novel. If you enjoy this story, please leave a review on Amazon and share it with your friends. The more reviews and shares it receives, the more likely that more will be written.

Help me entertain you! Thank you!

Follow Saulzar on Twitter: @TheRealSaulzar 
Follow the author on Twitter: @brandera33

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brandera

A Focus for His Wrath – Saulzar Codex #12

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I’m happy to announce that A Focus for His Wrath is available! It is the twelfth and final chapter in the Saulzar Codex – a series of short stories focusing on Saulzar, a fierce warrior battling to overcome his own past. You can learn more about the project here.

I’d love for you to stop by and pick it up. It’s a short story at 12,000 words and is priced at $0.99.

How about some free reading? Here’s the same sample you’ll find on the Amazon website:

12_Focus for Wrath cover

The falling rain did nothing to lighten his mood. He trudged down the muddy road, the Poi River to his right, a broken past of failure and death behind him. He yearned for the wild and free days he spent with Mane and Dane, with the pack of wolves he had cultivated and led.
But they were gone. Slaughtered in a stunning betrayal that haunted his steps.
Dark thoughts swirled in his mind, stirred by all that could have been and would never now be. He thought of Omen Taru, his master from the Durrant Heil, whose last act was to try and redeem him. He wondered at the bright spark in his soul that the sword made; the sword Omen Taru bade him take.
“Balance,” Omen Taru had said.
But there was no balance. No hope to his desperation, no goal to his aimlessness.
The rain poured down, dripping off his long hair, rolling down his face. He did not care. He moved south because he knew he should, but with no hope of redemption, restitution, or revenge. He was a ship cast upon the ocean without a rudder.
A shrill scream reached him through his haze of downcast thoughts. He looked up and squinted into the rain. He was surprised that he was not alone on the road. A horse pounded north towards him. He jumped out of its way and noticed a look of terror upon the rider’s face.
The scream came again. Motion blurred in the rain a hundred paces down the road. The sword at his side pulsed, and he wondered again at its geas. His legs stretched into a fast walk, transitioned to a jog, then a dead sprint. The katana flashed into his hand, and a blinding need to deliver justice swelled through his arms.
As he closed, the shapes became clear. A wagon with a broken wheel. A dying horse. Two bloody and twisted corpses. Two armed bandits dragging a screaming young woman off the road. A third man wringing his hands in anticipation.
Justice was needed. The sword demanded it. Saulzar would deliver it.
He roared his intention, and the first bandit received a thrust different than he had thought to deliver. The katana snapped a rib, sliced his heart in half, then burst in a bloody spray out his back. Saulzar twisted the blade and tore it loose.
The two men had dropped the girl and were drawing their swords. Saulzar pivoted from the dying bandit and closed with the nearer enemy. His sword snapped down and the man’s weapon and hand fell to the ground. Saulzar drove his shoulder into the man’s chest, knocking him down, then spun left and met the strike from the final bandit.
The man’s fear drove his sword in a frenzy, forcing Saulzar back a step. The man’s eyes widened in triumph, for he saw the retreat as weakness and not the trap it was. Saulzar continued to step slowly back, catching the frenzied strokes on his katana and effortlessly redirecting them to the side. The man pushed forward, strikes coming fast and furious, victory shining in his eyes.
The man stumbled, his feet tangled on his comrade’s separated sword hand. Saulzar struck, too fast for the man to counter, the katana’s blade piercing his left eye and punching through the back of his skull.
“Justice,” Saulzar whispered.
He snapped the sword back and free of the man’s skull. The head bowed as it followed the sword, as if accepting the veracity of the judgment, then its dead knees buckled and slumped to the ground.
The living bandit whimpered as he cradled his bloody stump of an arm. He tried to stand, but stumbled and fell to his knees, both arms reaching out to stop his fall. The wounded arm ground into the mud, and the man screamed in pain.

You’ll find A Focus for His Wrath in Kindle format from the Amazon store  If you don’t already have a Kindle or a Kindle app, I highly recommend it to you. Here are a couple of ways to get started:

Read on a device you own for FREE

Buy a Kindle

Let me know what you think of it by leaving an Amazon review or a comment on this post.

Thanks!

Twitter: @brandera33 @TheRealSaulzar

Getting Strong!

I’ve always considered myself an athlete. When competitive sports stopped in college, I still went to the gym often to work out. But, I’ve never really had a goal with it. It lifted because I thought I should.

In March, we moved and I started my own company. Working at home and not living near a YMCA meant that it was no longer convenient to go to the gym. I figured I was doing alright by playing some golf and occasionally taking a run. But by the end of the summer, I knew that was wrong.

My back had really started to hurt. I had dealt with a bulging disk about ten years ago, but since then it had mostly been fine. My knee was hurting too, and walking up the stairs with a handful of groceries was tiring.

Things were not going well.

Two things happened at about the same time. First, a new chiropractor said my knee and back were structurally sound. The problem was an angry IT band. My hip was out of place a bit, one of the muscles there had completely turned off, and the IT band was compensating.

Second, my company released a website called Matfinder. To help promote it, I started following a bunch of fitness blogs so that I could find content to share on Twitter. I noticed that a lot of the posts were about power lifting and the benefits of strength training.

I decided I wanted to get strong. Why?

Why Every Man Should Be Strong – alright, count me in. But how? Barbells? Certainly not the random weight lifting plan I’ve used before. Ok, so heavy weights it is.

I asked my wife if she wanted to get involved after reading this and this. Also, those posts made me certain that we needed to start with deadlifts, squats, overhead presses, and pullups. Take the time to at least read the first one. It’s amazing stuff.

We set a goal to deadlift twice our bodyweight by the time we leave for Macchu Picchu on May 1st. For me, that’s a 400 pound deadlift!
We started on September 8th, 2014. The current workout we’re doing is:

Inverted Rows, 3 sets of 8-10.
This is to get ready for pull-ups, since neither of us can do them yet. We’re following this post to work our way up.

Deadlift, 3 sets of 10

Overhead Press, 3 sets of 10

Back Squat, 3 sets of 10

Each Monday is 10 pounds heavier than the previous Monday. Wednesday is the same as Monday, and Friday is 5 pounds heavier than Wednesday to try and bridge the gap. I’m sticking with this until I’m over 200 pounds, then I may start throwing in some different plans (10 reps, 6 reps, 3 reps or a day of just 5 rep for heavy weight, etc).

But, the main goal is to get to a 400 pound deadlift by May 1st. Adding 10 pounds a week will get me there by April. It will happen.

That’s it. By myself, it’s 30-45 minutes. The first day I tried this, I started at 45 pounds for the first set (just the bar), 65 for the second, and 85 pounds for the third. The next day, I was sore throughout my entire body, which was great. I knew the lifts were working more than just a couple of muscles.

Yesterday, I did a chin-up for the first time since middle school. My pull-up got my head up to the bar, so it’s almost there! My deadlift and squat was 145, 165, 185. Overhead Press is a killer, and I’m slowly working my way from from 110,115,120.

The effects were immediate. My back and knee pain dropped significantly that day. In fact, the first day I did this I wasn’t sure that I’d be able to because my knee and back hurt so bad. I made sure to warm-up and stretch a lot before I started, but the next day I felt amazing.

It’s stayed that way since. I no longer get sore after workouts, but I can feel the muscle building, and muscle creation has been quite evident for both my wife and I since we started. It’s kind of amazing to see after having accepted that getting older meant not being as strong as you used to be.

That’s a farce. You can get stronger. You should get stronger! Now go make it happen!

How about some pretty pictures? And perhaps in the future, I’ll show some body composition pictures. These come from FitNotes.

Screenshot (10-18AM, Oct 21, 2014)

Screenshot (10-18AM, Oct 21, 2014)

Screenshot_2014-10-21-10-12-49

A Barbarian Unchained – Saulzar Codex #11

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I’m happy to announce that A Barbarian Unchained is available! It is the eleventh chapter in the Saulzar Codex – a series of short stories focusing on Saulzar, a fierce warrior battling to overcome his own past. You can learn more about the project here.

I’d love for you to stop by and pick it up. It’s a short story at 8,000 words and is priced at $0.99.

How about some free reading? Here’s the same sample you’ll find on the Amazon website:

ABarbarianUnchained

Full winter had come to the northern lands, and with it the blessed return of deep night. With a furtive glance along the quiet alley, he slipped from the hovel. He was dressed in layers of warm, faded clothing, a fox fur hat, and a large hood that cast his face in deeper shadow. In his right hand he clutched a knife, honed to a keen edge during his days of fretful healing.
He slipped through the shadows, moving slowly as much for stealth as from months of forced inactivity. His left side and right thigh burned with a dull ache, but the pain fueled his efforts, an iron core his weakened body leaned upon.
The wind carried voices to him, and torchlight could be seen around the market square. Townsfolk had returned to Budria not long after his betrayal. Their hustle and bustle filtered through the walls and ground to reach his hiding place. He cared nothing for them and wished only to be quit of their cursed city.
Breathless minutes passed as he snuck through the city, avoiding its inhabitants until the wall loomed before him. He crouched in the doorway of a quiet, stone building in sight of the wall. His breath hitched at a sharp pain in his thigh, but he closed his eyes and willed it away.
“Saulzar,” Omen Taru hissed, “it’s too soon. You aren’t ready.”
Saulzar turned to regard the shadowed face of his old master. He saw concern in his eyes.
“Stay if you wish. But I leave. Tonight.”
Omen Taru reached out a hand and grasped at Saulzar’s shoulder, but he shook it off and stood. His eyes ranged the ramparts and noted the sentries before he crossed the dark road to the wall. He pocketed his knife, grasped a stone, noted the absence of ice that made his assault so difficult before, and hauled himself up. The climb was simple, but for the pain in his stiff shoulder.

You’ll find A Barbarian Unchained in Kindle format from the Amazon store  If you don’t already have a Kindle or a Kindle app, I highly recommend it to you. Here are a couple of ways to get started:

Read on a device you own for FREE

Buy a Kindle

Let me know what you think of it by leaving an Amazon review or a comment on this post.

Thanks!

Twitter: @brandera33 @TheRealSaulzar

The Shadow of Empire – Saulzar Codex #10

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I’m happy to announce that The Shadow of Empire is available! It is the ninth chapter in the Saulzar Codex – a series of short stories focusing on Saulzar, a fierce warrior battling to overcome his own past. You can learn more about the project here.

I’d love for you to stop by and pick it up. It’s a short story at 9,000 words and is priced at $0.99.

How about some free reading? Here’s the same sample you’ll find on the Amazon website:

TheShadowOfEmpire

The frozen wind whipped across the tundra, the snow beaten to a froth in the air, obscuring the herd of reindeer from his vision. He shut his eyes against the onslaught. When the wind died and the snow cleared, the midnight sun illuminated the herd, still moving away from him.
He had followed them for the better part of a week. He would show himself and walk towards them, arms stretched wide and open. The reindeer would turn and look, then continue their migration. It was a delicate dance as Saulzar slowly persuaded the thousand-strong herd to move west.
West to the cliffs.
He stepped out from behind his boulder and walked with confidence towards the herd again. A large buck turned towards him and huffed, his front foot stamped. Saulzar did not slow. He spread his arms wide. The wind stirred, and the snow bear pelt that he wore billowed out behind him. His eyes burned with a savage intellect as they focused on the buck.
The buck stamped again and turned away. It moved south, away from the cliffs.
Saulzar gestured with his left arm. From beneath the snow, a wolf stood. It shook off the snow that had buried it, revealing a tawny hide. Dane loped forward along the edge of the herd, sending the reindeer skittering back north.
Saulzar gestured with his right arm, and Mane revealed himself from his hiding place in the snow. The reindeer were alarmed. The bucks in the herd tried to move them all south once again, but three more wolves stood. To the north, another three wolves. They closed in on the pack, all the while Saulzar walked slowly forward, the noose tightening on the reindeer.
They were thousands against seven, but the ghostly appearance of the wolves had unnerved them. They were unthinking prey, surrounded by deadly predators, yet did not consider using their weight and numbers to run over the wolves.
It was the big buck that turned and stood its ground. It stared down Saulzar, fear and anger warred in its dark eyes. Bellows of vapor puffed from its nostrils. It grunted and stamped the ground. Saulzar stalked on, flung the snow bear cape back from his arms to reveal a musculature like corded iron, and roared at the reindeer.

You’ll find The Shadow of Empire in Kindle format from the Amazon store  If you don’t already have a Kindle or a Kindle app, I highly recommend it to you. Here are a couple of ways to get started:

Read on a device you own for FREE

Buy a Kindle

Let me know what you think of it by leaving an Amazon review or a comment on this post.

Thanks!

Twitter: @brandera33 @TheRealSaulzar

To Lead a Pack – Saulzar Codex #9

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I’m happy to announce that To Lead a Pack is available! It is the ninth chapter in the Saulzar Codex – a series of short stories focusing on Saulzar, a fierce warrior battling to overcome his own past. You can learn more about the project here.

I’d love for you to stop by and pick it up. It’s a short story at 7,000 words and is priced at $0.99.

How about some free reading? Here’s the same sample you’ll find on the Amazon website:

ToLeadAPackcover

The thick clouds parted and a shaft of moonlight speared down to silhouette his prey in its silvery light. Saulzar crept forward, silent and wary. His hair was matted and greasy, his clothes torn to tattered shreds, his feet bare.
And he was hungry, so very hungry.
The rabbit sniffed the air. Its large ears twitched right.
“Damn him,” Saulzar breathed. Mane, the youngest wolf, had made a sound. Saulzar tensed, waiting for Mane to spring the trap.
A shadow erupted into motion. The rabbit screamed. Saulzar sprinted.
His heart beat loudly in his ears as he flowed across the field. Mane pushed the rabbit left, angling towards Saulzar.
It was fast, much faster than Saulzar would ever be, yet Mane closed on it in bounding strides.
Saulzar gambled and angled farther left. He took ten long strides and turned back to his right. Mane closed on the rabbit which zigged and zagged in the moonlight. Mane was close to the prize, his mouth open and ready for the lunge. Then Dane darted into the fray from her hiding spot.
“That’s my girl,” Saulzar said.
Dane flushed the rabbit left, directly at Saulzar. With two wolves in hot pursuit, the rabbit did not fathom that the human was a threat. Saulzar slowed and crouched, ready to dart in and catch it.
The rabbit screamed and died as teeth closed around its neck. Batai had lunged at the last moment to claim the prize.
Again.
Saulzar slumped down to the ground next to the big wolf, breath coming in ragged gasps, strength ebbing. He would have to settle for scraps as Batai feasted.

You’ll find To Lead a Pack in Kindle format from the Amazon store  If you don’t already have a Kindle or a Kindle app, I highly recommend it to you. Here are a couple of ways to get started:

Read on a device you own for FREE

Buy a Kindle

Let me know what you think of it by leaving an Amazon review or a comment on this post.

Thanks!

Twitter: @brandera33 @TheRealSaulzar

The Love of a Woman – Saulzar Codex #8

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I’m happy to announce that The Love of a Woman is available! It is the eighth chapter in the Saulzar Codex – a series of short stories focusing on Saulzar, a fierce warrior battling to overcome his own past. You can learn more about the project here.

I’d love for you to stop by and pick it up. It’s a short story at 9,000 words and is priced at $0.99.

How about some free reading? Here’s the same sample you’ll find on the Amazon website:

A storm built far to the south upon the Hadean Sea. Saulzar was perched upon the step of a building and gazed across the Harbor of Emish, past the sleek trading vessels, the lumbering warships, and the multitude of fishing boats to watch its towering black clouds. He could imagine the power within the storm, the fierce wind, driving rain, and dangerous lightning. He could imagine it because he felt the same upwelling of power and danger whenever he unsheathed the sword that was strapped to his side.

That power frightened and intrigued him. He kept it in its sheath as often as he could, and had succeeded in doing so on most occasions. He shuddered at the devastation he had wrought when its naked blade glinted in the sun before bathing in blood.

The storm held his attention until a ray of the setting sun struck one of the many gilded, fluted towers of the city, its reflection shining into his eyes. He shook himself from his reverie and stood, ready to find food. He walked down the stone steps of the massive Temple of Saba, along the busy docks, and back into the heart of the city. Crowds flowed around him, giving him wide berth. He was as different from the people around him as a wolf from a lamb. He was hard and muscular where they were soft. His hair was wild and unkempt where they were perfumed and adorned. His eyes burned with a savage intelligence, their eyes dim with the luxuries of civilization.

He ignored them as he strode through the market, following his nose towards the best smells, hunting for food. A flash of tanned skin caught his eye. A hint of jasmine upon the air. A shimmer of black hair and a face that haunted his dreams.

His hunger was forgotten as he stalked into the crowd after a whisper of a dream. Could she be here, in Emish? Now the crowds hindered him, old women stepped in front of him, he bumped into traders, was blocked by priests. He waded through and around the crowd, an elusive creature of beauty just out of sight. Another glimpse of her hair, a snatch of her voice upon the wind. It was her, he was sure of it.

She disappeared into the theatre.

He bulled his way up the stairs and to the entrance, only to be pushed back by ushers checking for tickets. He growled at them and tried to step past, but they were insistent that he join the queue and purchase a ticket of his own. Saulzar stared into the darkness beyond them and swore he could see the sweep of her dress as she turned up a staircase.

He sullenly joined the queue and waited for his turn to shake out three copper coins for a ticket. He showed it to the ushers with a sense of triumph disproportionate to his victory and swept past them into the ornate lobby. Saulzar joined the flow of well-dressed, affluent patrons.

He felt terribly out of place.

His hardened leather pants and vest were crusty and dirty. His hair was unwashed. He smelled of the wild. A dainty woman in blue, flowing robes with painted eyes and a flowery, overpowering smell sidled away from him as they ascended a staircase together. Saulzar grinned at her and she flinched and stumbled against the railing.

Saulzar laughed.

You’ll find The Love of a Woman in Kindle format from the Amazon store  If you don’t already have a Kindle or a Kindle app, I highly recommend it to you. Here are a couple of ways to get started:

Read on a device you own for FREE

Buy a Kindle

Let me know what you think of it by leaving an Amazon review or a comment on this post.

Thanks!

Twitter: @brandera33 @TheRealSaulzar

A Sword of Legend – Saulzar Codex #7

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I’m happy to announce that A Sword of Legend is available! It is the seventh chapter in the Saulzar Codex – a series of short stories focusing on Saulzar, a fierce warrior battling to overcome his own past. You can learn more about the project here.

I’d love for you to stop by and pick it up. It’s a short story at 10,000 words and is priced at $0.99.

How about some free reading? Here’s the same sample you’ll find on the Amazon website:

Sword-cover1

It was mid-afternoon, and the dusty road shimmered and danced in the heat. Tanaba struggled along, unused to much physical labor. He specialized in debate and philosophy within the Durrant Heil and had spent the day so engaged in the town of Eppon on the eastern edge of the Po river plain. The locals had been receptive and engaged, so Tanaba was pleased.

Saulzar had spent the day in meditation. He rarely debated, for he was not loquacious, nor overly learned in the dogma of the Durrant Heil. He knew the precepts and understood their application within his life, but the application of discipline in the martial arts was his focus. He often accompanied his brother monks beyond the temple walls.

“Why I must suffer beneath this burden is beyond me,” Tanaba mumbled under his breath.

“There is no suffering in hard work as a consequence of integrity. Do you not say so yourself?” Saulzar asked.

“I should not have given our donkey away.”

The heavy pack on his back was full of blue dyed wool which would be cut and sewn into new robes for the monks. An order that valued austerity rarely made new clothing before it was well past time.

“It was the right thing to do,” Saulzar said.

“I’m sure it was. So, I will blame bandits for my current condition. Had they not robbed that farmer, I would not have to shoulder this load.”

“That, and the donkey snapped at you yesterday.”

“And I’m sure the donkey is well pleased to be rid of me too,” Tanaba laughed.

The two men shared a companionable silence as the town faded behind them, the only sound in the still air was Tanaba’s heavy breathing, until it was interrupted by Saulzar.

“Best take a break here.”

“It’s alright. I can go a bit longer before we stop.”

“You speak true, but others think differently.”

Tanaba looked up to see two rugged men standing in the road. One had a broadsword in his right hand, the other rested a long-handled axe on his shoulder. Their clothes were ragged and dusty, their faces covered in grime.

“Good day,” Tanaba said. “Can we be of assistance?”

“Ya, you can. Give us those bags.”

“I have some food we can share out, but the contents of these bags are marked for a different destination.”

“That so? My friends and I don’t agree.”

“Friends? Oh, yes, I see,” Tanaba said.

Three other men had crawled from the side of the road behind them, equally dirty and rough, various weapons unsheathed.

“There is no need for violence. Take food and wine and we’ll be on our way,” Saulzar said as he slipped his pack off with one hand, a wooden staff held in the other.

“We’ll take all that wine, as well as whatever else you have, and in return, we’ll let you live,” the axe-wielder said.

Saulzar looked behind him to see the three others closing in.

“I’m afraid I don’t agree with your demands.”

“Saulzar!” Tanaba hissed. “Give it. We’ll find cloth another way.”

Tanaba was right, and Saulzar knew it. The Durrant Heil held to precepts that included austerity and humility, so it was best to relinquish the material goods and avoid the fight. That was the wise thing to do, and wisdom was another of the precepts. Yet Saulzar clung to a savage nature born of the icy wastes of Genai. Though tempered by the teachings of the Durrant Heil, he struggled to contain it.

“Final chance to walk away unharmed,” Saulzar said.

You’ll find A Sword of Legend in Kindle format from the Amazon store  If you don’t already have a Kindle or a Kindle app, I highly recommend it to you. Here are a couple of ways to get started:

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Let me know what you think of it by leaving an Amazon review or a comment on this post.

Thanks!

Twitter: @brandera33 @TheRealSaulzar

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