Book & Author Details:
Choices by Alexander Patterson
Publication date: December 8th 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Historical, Young Adult
Richard Örlendr died over a thousand years ago. He lived in Norway during the Germanic Iron Age and trusted in the judgement of the gods. That is not to say he did not question them when they gave him a dragon, nor did he blindly follow their orders when they told him to go to war. But, when one god told him to kill another, Richard was unable to rely on their wisdom. He had to turn to the Norns.
The Norns guide fate. They shape it past, present, and future; however, it is not set in stone. A hero can change his fate. A hero can chose his destiny. The Norns can weave a new life, but what happens if the Norns are dead? Do heroes have greater freedom? Or are they locked into their destiny since there is no one left to weave?
I had a dream several years ago. I left a subway station and got mugged. In the surreal fiasco, I was shot. I fell to the ground. A small, blue dragon crawled from my coat pocket. He nudged me with his nose, tears formed at the corners of his eyes. Don’t die, he choked. You have to live. If I died, he would go with me. No one would ever read about his adventures, or doodle him, or even imagine what he looks like. He would never have existed anywhere in the world outside of my own head.
Thankfully, this event was just a dream. I awoke and began writing. After many hours scribbling in notebooks, transposing the chicken-scratch into the computer, and generally spending far too much time developing an imaginary friend than anyone ought to, I finished. Choices was written. If I died, I would at least leave behind an unedited memoir of my blue dragon.
Fortunately, I did not die and I was able to spend another hundred or so hours editing and refining my work until he was something I was ready to share with the world. Next up on my mission to give my little dragon life outside my mind was to find an agent. I received many rejections, but hidden amongst these were acceptances. Yay! I did it! I found an agent! But, they wanted to change who my little, blue dragon was.
I am not saying their ideas were bad, that I am better than they are, or even that changing him would be inherently worse; however, their image of him was not the little, blue dragon who begged me to be given life. Theirs was Smaug, Drogon, or The Golden Dragon. Their idea for a dragon was that of a vicious killing machine. A monster without remorse, sorrow, and dare I say dimensions I find enjoyable.
But that is not who my dragon is. My dragon is not arrogant, or even overly vengeful. And this should not be read as me bragging. I am not, by far, the first to write a dragon like this. Cressida Cowell, Christopher Paolini, Martin Baynton, and many others have dragons that go against the despised-lizard-monster format.
So, I turned down the agents. I decided to self-publish and kept my character wholly mine. I think he would be happier with this decision, if he were real that is. If all goes to plan his story will be read, and he will live in the imagination of others.