Damson's Distress Pre-order!
Damson's Distress Vol 1 is now available for pre-order at Papercranebooks.com. The publisher asked me to write a summary for the book. This is what happened:
Sir Damson Aelhelm, a young lord in the royal court of Marridon, who grew up under the careful auspices of his father in Ballentyne Valley, was never very well-liked by his noble peers. He was shunned in the halls of the Academy for being a lower lord, for growing up tall and fair, and his kindly manner, innocence and handsomeness did him no service amongst those who who had only affluence to claim for their qualities. Time passed on, and Damson's father passed on likewise, leaving him the sole heir of the Aelhelm estate, and while he could have endured as a lord of moderate fortune all the rest of his days, Damson decided that he liked the idea of being a knight. He turned his attention toward the king's arena, and after triumphing over the resident knights, he became the king's champion and earned His Majesty's favour --- until Damson had the misfortune of overhearing the king's plot to kill his intended queen. Confronting the king saw Damson thrown off a cliff for his efforts, and as he plummeted to the sea, he wondered how he might rescue the queen. how he might save the kingdom--
"Oh, I am tired to death of this summary," Danaco exclaimed. "It says absolutely nothing about my giant, my ship, or my hair. And how it does go on! Bartleby, have you ever seen so insipid a
summary? I say you must have written this."
The rumpled old man fixed his spectacles, turned up his nose, and frowned at the back of the book. "Hogwash," he rasped. "I should never have written anything half so tiresome. It hardly says anything about our history at all. It goes on about the knight for half a mile. The dullard isn't half so interesting as this nonsense professes. Did I write it indeed!" He let out a dry laugh, and his jowls joggled. "Ha! More like Rannig wrote it."
Rannig rubbed his chin and looked mindful. "I don't think I wrote that, Bartleby."
"Oh, no? Certainly sounds like something you should write. It is full of adjectives that have no business being where they are, and there is even a misused dash. Certainly not something I would write."
"Perhaps the knight wrote it himself," Danaco mused. "He does have talent for poetics when he tries."
The old man humphed. "If he did, at least some semblance of knowledge seeped into that brain of
The knight looked charily about and stepped closer to the old man. "I am standing just beside you, sir," said Damson, distressed. "Merely because the author has not written that I am not present in this scene does not mean that I am not here, sir. Pardon me, sir-- I do not mean to interpose, sir-- but I can hear you, sir."
"Of course you can hear me, sir knight," said the old man. "And of course I intended you to hear me."
"You see, Damson, here we are blaming you for this hideous thing by way of a summary," said Danaco.
"But I assure you, sir, I did not write it," Damson implored.
"If you did not fashion this paragraph which says nothing about us then who did?"
"Yes, well," Bartleby hemmed, readjusting his spectacles, "you must have fed the author some autobiographical hokum. This is still your fault."
Damson looked vexed and hung his head.
"Aw, don't ye worry, Broken Knight," said Rannig, putting his enormous hand on Damson's shoulder. "Everyone'll read the book and see that the story isn't really about ye."
"Thank you, sir giant," said Damson, in a deplorable hue, his shoulders withering "I am beginning to feel better already."
Rannig gave the knight's back a hardy slap, which made him fall forward, and Danaco stood in defiance of the summary, looking all the grandeur he felt. "Come, open the book," said he, addressing the reader. "You must own that you are curious now, and well you should be with a giant, a knight, and a curmudgeonly old librarian. And a captain," with a gallant bow, "and a pretty one at that." He brandished his long black mane and flexed his arms, making his muscles ripple and contract. "I am exquisite. There is reason enough for you to open the book. How is that for a summary? Will that do for you? Very well, then. Rannig?"
"Aye, boss?" said the giant.
"To the ship. We must take out places and be prepared to receive Damson when he falls from the cliff."
The giant lifted the knight from the ground and carried him off, while the captain and the old man followed, preparing for their entrances in the story, Danaco whipping his sword about and practicing his steps, and the librarian arguing with himself over which category this book belonged to, while Damson, dangling from the giant's shoulder, wondered how he ever met his odd friends and what he should ever do without them.