TVTT Citizen Edition - A Citizen's Perspective

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Author: Almira ni'Caldazare
Published: November 3 2020 - Tar Valon Times Blog Link

This is Almira ni'Caldazare and I’m one of this month’s Citizen’s TVT Takeover series writers. I am a TarValon.Net Resident Citizen, a Wheel of Time Re-reader, and a published author.

A school librarian first introduced me to the Wheel of Time in 2006. I read the first book in two days and flew through the first ten before a month was out. I read the remaining books in college and have come back for re-reads every few years. There is so much texture and detail in the Wheel Of Time that specifics get lost.

I originally joined TarValon.Net in March 2013. I was not active for a long stretch, and then spent some time lurking on the edges for a while. I wanted to see what the site was all about before I started posting myself. I was not always an active member but I always came back. The library on TarValon.Net is what really drew me in. Reading the precise summaries helped refresh my memory before jumping in for another re-read. I have gotten more active recently because I have more downtime. I should be using the time to write but everyone needs a break now and then.

I’ve written Pete the Parakeet for early readers. That might just be another way of saying children’s book. I wrote the book during my first time away from home. I come from a big family and lived nearby parents, siblings, aunts, uncles and cousins until I stared a graduate program. I missed my family and felt dreadfully homesick. Thoughts of home went hand-in-hand with missing my pet. I wrote Pete the Parakeet hoping that children would know the same joy I did when they get their first pet. I was planning on self-publishing but I am lucky enough to have two aunts in the publishing industry. They told me which publishers were open for submissions.

I planned on writing more children’s books but the story morphed and changed as I wrote it. A writer can make story boards and character charts all day but it’s the flow of the plot that decides the story. I just rolled with it and followed my instincts until I ended up with chapter books.

I titled my next writing adventure: Path to Kingdoms (available at Barnes and Nobel and Amazon). It was on Amazon’s top middle-grade novels when it first came out. The novel tells the story of a teenage girl and her family. Path to Kingdoms starts in a quiet suburban home but the quiet does not last for long. The daughter and mother argue about the future. Neither of them notice the mysterious portal opening up in the garage until monsters emerge. The strange beasts attack the mother and drag the father through the portal. They hold him captive in another world until his daughter comes for him. She is walking into a trap but there is only one way to save her father. She follows through the portal and starts a journey of her own.

The last novel I wrote is also for middle-grade readers. It just came out in May of 2020 and is only available from Barnes and Nobel or Walmart. The novel, Rivers and Oceans takes place on the Island of Alta. The Island is a peaceful place. Magic was real once, but no one worries about remembering now. The people on the Island have all they need. But then the ships arrive! The ships bring terror and battle. The invaders have weapons unlike anything the Islanders have ever seen! The invaders have magic! But the invaders aren’t the only ones. Three Islanders learn that they have powers in the heat of battle. The three friends have to learn to use their magic, avoid getting caught by the invaders and save their island before it’s too late.

I’m working on another middle reader book but this is a hobby and a therapy so I take my time.

I want to say that Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson helped inspire me to write but the truth is that I marvel every time I read their work. I know that I can never world-build like Robert Jordan or intertwine worlds like Sanderson. But that is part of why I keep reading them.

No one could become a better batter at baseball if they only practice with sub-par pitchers. The only way to get better is to practice with the best. I read Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson because I want to practice with the best and get better.