Character-driven high fantasy in the vein of Janny Wurts and Robin Hobb
'The Wild God's Gambit'
Tip the balance, break the pact.
Halla Williams is represented by @JJBker at Bell Lomax Moreton
Struck by lightning during a storm flight, high-caste fae Ashari hurtles to the ground outside her people's borders. Waking with her memories gone, she is sure only of two things: her voice contains a hidden power and the marsh is her deadly enemy.
The wild god, Abernon, thinks she is just the force for chaos that he needs, but Ashari forges her own destiny by joining a mercenary troop under the enigmatic Captain Westorr.
When a mission to recover a political prisoner means they must venture into the marsh, what they discover there will shake their faith in themselves and set them in the path of warring cities and meddling gods.
If Ashari can’t restrain her burgeoning power, she may tip the balance of wars, both political and divine, into chaos... and the wild god’s gambit might just pay off.
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Halla Williams is a developmental/copyeditor and is the lyricist and singer in an acoustic duo called Telhalla.
From a small Somerset town, Halla studied Drama at Exeter University, then toured as an actor for six years, performing in everything from Shakespeare to comedy musicals to children's theatre.
To put down roots, Halla came back to live in the Bristol area and worked as an English teacher for sixteen years. She left teaching to become an editor and finally finish The Wild God's Gambit.
She loves Bristol's live music scene and sings regularly at the 'famous' open mic at The Oxford pub in Totterdown. She is a huge fan of local band the Dusk Brothers.
Her favourite fantasy authors include Robin Hobb, Janny Wurts, Steven Erikson, Joe Abercrombie, Mercedes Lackey, Kate Elliott, Katharine Kerr, Jen Williams and Sheri S. Tepper.
She has a Facebook page and you can follow her on Twitter.
From concept to novel
These characters have been in my head for many years. When I left English teaching in 2017, I had the time to get them to the page.
As soon as I started writing, Ashari threw a spanner in the works and decided she wasn’t going to waste her powerful voice by actually talking to anyone. That provided quite a challenge as I really enjoy dialogue!
But other characters decided the story wasn’t going to be just about her. Captain Tyril marched herself right into the centre of the story and former courtesan Gerna stole a crucial plotline.
And suddenly I was also writing from the point of view of several others: Jeneia, guardian of the Balance between order and chaos; Crag, the retired soldier called back to duty; the ageless mercenary captain, Westorr; his aide, the diffident Griff; and Bealian – bard, messenger and spy.
So it’s a multi-perspective novel set in a time of both political and magical upheaval. The question of who Ashari decides to be and what she can do is the arc of the whole series.
The story in book one, from chapter three onwards, evolves over only a few weeks and in one general location, so the plot-lines are closely tied together. Even though it's structured around the rescue of a political prisoner, it's really a character-driven novel.
I’m what Brandon Sanderson calls a ‘discovery writer’. I’m starting on book two now because I just have to find out (and tell you) what happens next.
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