Today the Dragon Wins

"Today the Dragon Wins" offers information from Fantasy Author and Professional Editor Sandy Lender. You'll also find dragons, wizards, sorcerers, and other fantasy elements necessary for a fabulous story, if you know where to look...

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Sandy Lender is the editor of an international trade publication and the author of the fantasy novels Choices Meant for Gods and Choices Meant for Kings, available from ArcheBooks Publishing, and the series-supporting chapbook, What Choices We Made.

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Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Choices Meant for Gods
began as an outlet for the characters I found creeping about in my brain as an adolescent. Then one day I realized I had to get the tome I'd created published. Imagine my dismay when a friend said, "ah, now you need an agent!"

An agent? But I'm not a rock star.

Enter the 2004 edition of the Writer's Market, a thick (very thick) book of lists of names of people who had no interest in a magazine editor and journalist who had a fantasy novel to sell. I got sick of rejections to my cleverly crafted three- to four-paragraph query letters in a hurry. Time to try something else.

Enter the 2006 Naples Press Club Writers Conference, a meeting of the literary minds where a certain book publisher set up pitch sessions with a handful of hopeful writers, myself included. One twenty-minute, nerve-wracking conversation and ten-page proposal later, I had a publisher reading the 250,000-word manuscript for Choices Meant for Gods. The proverbial "they" said it couldn't be done. No publisher would accept such a lengthy work. I was insane to try.

My contract came a few weeks later. Was I surprised? You better believe it! Was I thankful? More than you'll ever know!

Choices Meant for Gods can be ordered at,, or over the counter at your local Barnes & Noble, Borders, Hastings, etc. in March 2007. I encourage you to pick up this fantastic tale where...

"Not even the gods noticed when Chariss was born with the mark of The Protector. Now she and her wizard guardian seek shelter from a mad sorcerer in a household not just full of secrets and false hope, but watched by the god who will unwittingly reveal her role in an impending war. When an orphan sets aside a lifetime of running and fear to accept the responsibilities of guarding an arrogant deity, can she face the trials in the prophecies she uncovers? And will Nigel Taiman of her latest refuge dare to use his dragon heritage to bind her to his estate or to help her in her duty?"

"Some days, you just want the dragon to win."

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Grammar Guide Department
Pronominal Problems
Or...How to Show Possession with Possessive Pronouns

When to use apostrophes to show possession should come easily to a writer, right? Not always.
When you're cruising along with the fingers flying (think National Novel Writing month) and there's no time for stopping to check that sticky quotation mark key over there under the right pinky, the question of showing possession comes up much later. It comes up when you're editing. It comes up when you have time to sit there and stare at the screen and agonize over it.

And we all know that thinking too long makes it that much more difficult to decide.

Here's the rule: Pronominal possessives don't take an apostrophe. Great! What exactly does that mean? It's referring to those pronouns that are possessive. Think of it as having the apostrophe already "built in." It's implied. For instance hers is a possessive pronoun. You don't add an apostrophe because something that is hers already belongs to her. Clear as mud, eh?

Hers, its, theirs, yours, and ours are possessive pronouns already. Never add apostrophes to them to make them more so.

(Sandy Lender, author of Choices Meant For Gods, has been an editor in the magazine publishing industry for fourteen-plus years.)

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