This episode begins with Arud’s dream from life back home, in a time when life was peaceful, sweet, and warm. Nothing like his world that’s been turned upside-down. Then, even his dream world shifts, butting up against reality when he tries to protect his little sister, Lykke, from his grandmothe, Toov. Somehow, when he strikes his grandmother, she morphs into the frail body of his sister, dead by his own hands. He is supposed to be her protector! Pretty tragic turn of events. He loves his sister and would never hurt her. So why did he dream it? What’s going on inside of him? The answer is soooo much!! He’s dealing with his new powers, new home, missing father, dead mother, and his first crush. It’s a lot for any teenager to take in.

Dreams hold power. What do they mean? How much is real and how much is symbolic? Dreams are a great tool for backstory. A reminder for readers of book one and enough to understand the origins for new readers.

This world is super expansive and it’s important to note the lay of the land. I’ve rebuilt Labrador, Canada into Vithalia, and here’s an excerpt from DREADLANDS: BLOOD MOON chapter one to explain:

“His home was in the Outlands of Vithalia, past the Torngats Mountains and the less travelled Sindri-Urd range. Beyond the Scythe Valley, the Tess Woods where Scalvia’s family hailed, and along the Thiannes River that bordered the Great Expanse to the west.”

Dreadlands: Blood Moon by Jaimie Engle
Art by Debbie Johnson

I wrote it this way to show the characters connection to their respective homes and to introduce new places such as the Great Expanse, which will play a major setting in this book.

The chapter is titled ANEW. Why? Arud wakes up in the castle Healing Wing recovering from his wounds. Here he pieces together which of his dream was reality and which was symbolic. His dad is missing. Truth. But Lykke is fine. Half-truth. She’s with Scalvia, the girl Arud loves. Truth. His home he knew in the Outlands is gone. Truth.

But deep down, he knows one truth absolutely: it’s not over yet.

Follow weekly episodes through Kindle Vella every Tuesday and catch up with the behind-the-scenes podcast, MOON CAST, each Sunday on your favorite podcast player.

Published by Jaimie Engle

Jaimie Engle is an award-winning writer and speaker. She teaches at national conferences, state libraries, and local schools on the art of storytelling. Her awards include the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future (2014), Kirkus Editor’s Choice (2020), and the Publisher’s Weekly Booklife Prize in Fiction and Non-fiction (2020). In 2021, she began screenwriting with two feature films for a new television network in development with Brandon Clarke Films via Darin Chavez of Tricarico Chavez, LLP. Jaimie writes redemption stories in all genres and lives with her husband, son, and hound dog. Follow @theWRITEengle

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