charlie_cochrane: (jury of one)
When I posted the last snippet from Dreams of a Hero, I featured Miles waking from a nightmare. Several people wanted to know about the dream. Here it is:

The shield was tall and heavy, but the bearer was taller still. This gave little advantage when it meant he could get such a clear view of the advancing lines of troops. Miles adjusted his stance for comfort, staring oncoming death in the eye. “Which one is he?”
“The small one, that’s what they say.” Roger held the spear straight, never wavering even in the heat of impending battle. “Word is he’ll be leading the cavalry, away from where his father’s stationed.”
“Can’t have two firebrands together in case the whole world catches flame?” Miles managed a rueful smile. “They say he’s handsome, the son.”
“And spoken for.” The smile was returned.
“I only said he was rumoured to be handsome, not that I wanted him to carry me off to his tent.” Miles adjusted his stance again, eliminating any chink in the shield wall.
“You might be grateful if that were your fate, come nightfall.” Roger shivered. “I pray we’ll survive to joke about this. Now comes the deluge.”
“Deluge? Don’t you mean the conflagration, with the son of fire at its head? And with Hades’ gates wide open in his wake.”
The company turned slightly, as the horses came charging over the plain of Chaeronea.

You can find loads of other excellent excerpts via the Rainbow snippets group.
charlie_cochrane: (dreams)
Carina Press have begun to introduce a catalogue wide price revision. This is good news, because Dreams of a Hero is available at a new price. Very good value!
charlie_cochrane: (Default)
Many thanks to Kay (who lives not three miles from Cochrane Towers and is great fun to meet up with for tea and cakes) for hosting me today. I really enjoyed answering her questions.
charlie_cochrane: (Default)
Books and Tales Blogspot says, "For such a short piece, there is a great sense of place and a depth of character."

And Mrs Condit reads Books reckoned,"DREAMS OF A HERO is a wonderful example of how Ms Cochran grabs the reader and pulls him into the story as more of a participant than an observer."
charlie_cochrane: (dreams)
Am blogging over at Carina about how some places remind you of home - except when they're entirely different. Do come and share your thoughts!

PS Dreams of a Hero number 1 at Carina. Can't stop grinning.
charlie_cochrane: (dreams)
I'm delighted to say that Dreams of a Hero is now available from Carina.

Mild-mannered and unassuming, Miles is on a journey he never expected. After a visit to Greece with his partner, Roger, he begins to experience vivid dreams in which he travels back in history and takes on the role of avenging hero.

Roger notices Miles's newfound bravery during his waking hours and is concerned that his lover is changing into someone he doesn't recognize.

When they discover a gay-friendly café is being plagued by violent thugs, Miles is uncharacteristically determined to take action, no matter the cost. Roger argues it would be both dangerous and pointless to intervene, but Miles insists he's been called to fight an army, and now he's found one.

Excerpt:

The shield was tall and heavy, but the bearer was taller still. This gave little advantage when it meant he could get such a clear view of the advancing lines of troops. Miles adjusted his stance for comfort, staring oncoming death in the eye. “Which one is he?”
“The small one, that’s what they say.” Roger held the spear straight, never wavering even in the heat of impending battle. “Word is he’ll be leading the cavalry, away from where his father’s stationed.”
“Can’t have two firebrands together in case the whole world catches flame?” Miles managed a rueful smile. “They say he’s handsome, the son.”
“And spoken for.” The smile was returned.
“I only said he was rumoured to be handsome, not that I wanted him to carry me off to his tent.” Miles adjusted his stance again, eliminating any chink in the shield wall.
“You might be grateful if that were your fate, come nightfall.” Roger shivered. “I pray we’ll survive to joke about this. Now comes the deluge.”
“Deluge? Don’t you mean the conflagration, with the son of fire at its head? And with Hades’ gates wide open in his wake.”
The company turned slightly, as the horses came charging over the plain of Chaeronea.

Miles woke with a start.

charlie_cochrane: (dreams)
I really appreciate when a reviewer gets to the heart of a story, which is what the review at Fresh Meat has done.

"I liked the characterization of the them as individuals rather than as symbols of gayness; secondarily, I liked how the story showed that romance doesn’t have to end after the Declaration."
charlie_cochrane: (Default)
Christmas countdown continues. All parcels and cards to foreign parts posted, about half the decorations up and tree to be purchased tomorrow. Late night shopping in Romsey this evening, which usually means the opportunity to listen to madrigals in a thirteenth century hunting lodge. I’ll need strapping down with duck tape unless I stop bouncing off the walls with excitement.

News:

I have cover art for Dreams of a Hero (February short story release from Carina). See here. Isn’t it handsome? I spoke about my inspiration for the story in an earlier post, and promised a snippet:

The shield was tall and heavy, but the bearer was taller still. This gave little advantage when it meant he could get such a clear view of the advancing lines of troops. Miles adjusted his stance for comfort, staring oncoming death in the eye. “Which one is he?”
“The small one, that’s what they say.” Roger held the spear straight, never wavering even in the heat of impending battle. “Word is he’ll be leading the cavalry, away from where his father’s stationed.”
“Can’t have two firebrands together in case the whole world catches flame?” Miles managed a rueful smile. “They say he’s handsome, the son.”
“And spoken for.” The smile was returned.
“I only said he was rumoured to be handsome, not that I wanted him to carry me off to his tent.” Miles adjusted his stance again, eliminating any chink in the shield wall.
“You might be grateful if that were your fate, come nightfall.” Roger shivered. “I pray we’ll survive to joke about this. Now comes the deluge.”
“Deluge? Don’t you mean the conflagration, with the son of fire at its head? And with Hades’ gates wide open in his wake.”
The company turned slightly, as the horses came charging over the plain of Chaeronea.

Miles woke with a start. He’d been awake—or dreamed he was awake—yet couldn’t move, his limbs still asleep or pinned by unseen forces. Just as he’d lain in his dream, pinned by the weight of a horse’s haunches. He couldn’t remember if he’d forced himself out of sleep, or whether he’d woken naturally and shed both the dream of being paralysed and the dream of battle within it.
Roger lay at his side, just as he’d been lying in the dream. Only now he was alive, his face as calm and peaceful as a baby’s as he enjoyed a sleep which was clearly less distressing than his partner’s had been. Miles tentatively touched his chest, to double-check that he was still breathing. This nightmare had been all too real. Roger stirred, turning and drawing Miles closer to him. He was half aroused, as always when he woke, but they’d got beyond the point of that arousal always needing to be acted on. Morning routine, evidence that life went on as normal no matter how vivid death had seemed.
“Good night’s sleep?” Roger’s blurry, early morning voice was reassuring.
“Not really. I slept, but it’s not done me any good.” Miles felt more tired than if he’d lain tossing and turning into the wee hours.
“What’s up?” Roger’s voice sharpened into concern. “Something’s happened.”
“Just a dream, that’s all. I should never have gone to sleep reading your book and on a full stomach.” Miles turned uneasily, the sheets drenched in sweat that wasn’t just caused by the warmth of the night.
“A full stomach doesn’t give you nightmares normally. Are you sure it wasn’t the three glasses of ouzo?” Roger was wide-awake now.
“They were very small glasses.” Miles found himself able to joke, now that the constriction on his chest was easing. “I dreamed we were in Chaeronea, you and me. Facing King Philip and Alexander.”
“In the Athenian army?”
“Not just them. Among the Theban elite. You and I, spear and sword together in the line.” Miles had never had the ability to paint pictures with words, not like his partner. He wished he could depict how vivid it had been, the brightness of the light, the smell of blood and fear.
“The Sacred Band?” Roger’s voice softened, the dreamy edge matching the slightly soppy look on his face. “Lucky you. They’ve never graced my dreams.”

I’m doing various blog swops in December – have some of my fellow MLR authors dropping in to share their Christmas thoughts and tell me about their December story releases.

I hope you’re following the Speak Its Name advent calendar. If not, why not? There have been some cracking posts; I only hope mine lives up to the standard achieved so far. Don’t ask when it’ll be posted as I’m not allowed to tell.

Inspiration:

The Cochrane Christmas decorations (so far).



charlie_cochrane: (dreams)
Just the blurb - will post an excerpt on Friday, in the newsletter.

Mild-mannered and unassuming, Miles is on a journey he never expected. After a visit to Greece with his partner, Roger, he begins to experience vivid dreams in which he travels back in history and takes on the role of avenging hero.
Roger notices Miles's newfound bravery during his waking hours and is concerned that his lover is changing into someone he doesn't recognize.
When they discover a gay-friendly café is being plagued by violent thugs, Miles is uncharacteristically determined to take action, no matter the cost. Roger argues it would be both dangerous and pointless to intervene, but Miles insists he's been called to fight an army, and now he's found one.


If you want to know what inspired the story, go to Matt Alber's web site and listen to the track Beotia.
charlie_cochrane: (Default)
Am delighted with the cover art for Dreams of a Hero, the story I've got out from Carina in February. Isn't it pretty?

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