I never intended to write a fantasy trilogy, of which The Gifting is the first book. But one night I had a dream of a man trying to fight certain death and being pursued by nameless enemies through trees and darkness. When I woke up, the man was just about to be hanged and I was absolutely desperate to know what happened next.
So I wrote that initial chapter which turned out to be Chapter Three, and the whole project snowballed from there. I was sucked in to the magical world of Gathandria with its city of light and glass, and to the contrasting rural poverty of the Lammas Lands, where Simon my main character in my dream begins his journey.
I’ve always had very vivid dreams, especially as a child. I would usually dream of adventures, often involving cowboys and Indians as those were the films my father and I most often watched. How I loved James Stewart and John Wayne – ah, they don’t make them like that any more … Often I would dream these adventures in nightly episodes, so where I’d left my dream one night would be picked up and carried on to the next adventure the next night, and so on. Sometimes these series would go on for about a week or so, and I can even remember some of them now, well over thirty years later.
Later on, I remember having a dream during a time when I was under a lot of pressure at work and needed to make several decisions about my working life that I wasn’t sure I was able to make. I kept dreaming about being chased by something terrifying I was frightened of facing. A friend of mine advised me to take control in the dream and turn and confront whatever it was. I had no idea we could do that with dreams, but when I next had this particular nightmare, I did exactly what she said: I turned round, feeling terrified but knowing I had to do it, and then the shadows pursuing me vanished into nothing at all and I was left simply standing in grass and sunlight. It was very life-enhancing and shortly afterward I changed my job and went into a career I was much happier with. It gave me a very deep sense of being in control and having a choice.
Dreams are indeed powerful things. Even now, mine tend to focus on danger and adventure, and I’m usually a man within them. My 1960s/70s childhood obviously taught me men have more exciting lives, and not even the 21st century equalities can wipe those influences away! Our subconscious is a strange and astonishing part of our lives, that’s for sure.
The interpretation of our dreams can be a fascinating pastime and there are countless books and articles giving advice to help us on our way. Happy dreaming!
About the Author: Anne is the author of six published novels, including her fantasy series, The Gathandrian Trilogy, published by Bluewood Publishing and featuring scribe and mind-reader Simon Hartstongue. More information on the trilogy is available at: www.gathandria.com and the first of these novels is The Gifting. In addition, her short stories are regularly published by Riptide Publishing, Amber Allure Press and Untreed Reads. Her website can be found at www.AnneBrooke.com.
The mind-dwellers of Gathandria are under deadly siege. For two year-cycles they have suffered: their people decimated, their beautiful city in ruins. Their once peaceful life has descended into chaos and misery. Legends tell of the Lost One who will return at such a time to save them from their mortal enemy – the mind-executioner. This enemy knows their ways well, for he was once an elder of the city. Time is running out. Johan and Isabella take up the quest, journeying to the Lammas Lands searching for their distant cousin and lowly scribe, Simon Hartstongue. The elders dare to hope that he is whom they seek. Not everyone shares this hope; there is one amongst them who is bound to the enemy, shielding their secret thoughts from mind links while seeking to betray Simon.
Powerful lessons are learned as they travel through the mystical kingdoms of the Mountains, the Air, the Desert and the Waters. Deadly attacks threaten total annihilation and devastating sorrow strikes. Story-telling weaves a tenuous net of protection around them, but the enemy has absolute power with the stolen mind-cane in his possession. To his surprise Simon hears its song. Desperately he tries to understand and embrace his gifting, as he struggles to comprehend his inheritance. A strong and pure mind is needed in the battle to defeat the enemy. If you are branded a coward, a murderer and an outcast, how can you be a saviour? Doubt creeps into the Gathandrians’ minds. Is Simon truly the One?