Tag Archives: romance

Genres The World Doesn’t Need Right Now

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Romance…and Stuff

The world doesn’t need another steamy romance novel.  I’m sorry, we really don’t.  The average citizen can hardly escape from our pornified culture of objectification, use, and abuse.  We don’t need false representations of love coming from our literature too.  We don’t need our conception of romantic love to be warped even further.  Pushing the culture’s agenda for “love” will help no one, not even yourself.

The world doesn’t need another paranormal-fantasy romance novel.  It’s a worn out idea–curious, innocent young women falling for hot vampire men.  Or vice versa.  I’m not impressed.  Create something new.

The problem with self-publishing (which I am a part of!) is that so many people just add to all the crap that’s already there.  If you’re going to produce crap, at least make your own pile.


LGBTQ/Diverse genres.  I’m seeing such a push for these genres in publishing companies, and the reason why is because they are underrepresented.  Well, not to come across as a hater, but maybe they are underrepresented for a reason.  They don’t appeal to everyone; in a way, they shouldn’t.  That’s fine.  The marginalized people deserve a voice, but that doesn’t mean that they should rise above everyone else just because they are marginalized or considered the minority.

Mystery.  EVERYONE WRITES MYSTERY.  How many who-dun-its can we produce?  If you’re going to write in this genre, you better make sure you stand out!  There’s a lot of competition.

What genres are you growing bored of?  Are any of them timeless?  What are your favorite genres?

Is Epic Fantasy Dead?

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You know, Epic Fantasy?  Like Lord of the Rings material?  Is there still a place for this in the world?

More and more, I feel like I see Romance, Mystery-Thrills, and Science Fiction on the rise…but not so much fantasy.  Sure, there’s Urban Fantasy, maybe some “Paranormal” Fantasy that mixes some hot romance in there.  But the ORIGINAL fantasy?  The O.G. of Fantasy?  Where’s that at?

People don’t seem to have much time for fantasy.  Especially in the United States, where NOBODY has any time, we seem to prefer those heart-pounding standalone novels.  Mystery-thrillers that pack a punch.  Steamy romances that appeal to our guilty pleasures (eww).  Or a combination of the two in the form of a sexy vampire (why are these so popular?).

My theory is that epic fantasy novels a) involve too much imagination for the modern American or b) are too long, because there are very few standalone fantasy novels.

But isn’t the imagination and creativity worth it?  Isn’t the sense of journey, the sense of companionship built between the characters and the reader worth it?

I personally love fantasy, and I’d love to see it come back full-throttle.  I’m not just talking about my own series; I’m saying I’d love to inspire people to literally get OUT of this world and write about something beautiful.  Where did this all go?

As always, I want to know, What do you think?


COVER RELEASE: The Darkness Within

As promised, I’m about to reveal the cover of my newest installment in Elithius.

Skillfully crafted by the ever-patient and steadfast Elizabeth M, I present to you the cover of Elithius, Book Two: The Darkness Within!!!!!!!


Front Cover Elithius 2

How cool is that????

I must say, Elizabeth really topped herself this time.  This cover is amazing.  As I said yesterday, it perfectly captures the feel of Book Two.

The darkness challenging light.

Light fighting back.

Look at John’s face.  Look at the determination.  The sense of battle.  The motion of the entire picture.

This cover is obviously something epic in and of itself but, without a story, it would lack meaning.  So, what is Book Two about?

John Hedekira and his friends must venture into the Gray Lands in order to rescue John’s sister, Cassie.  Upon entering the Gray Lands, they make new friends…and new enemies.  Before they know it, they are thrown into the middle of a raging war, in which loyalties and friendships will be tested, darker and more heinous powers will challenge them…and souls will be ripped apart.

The adventures of John and his friends have only begun.

If none of that makes sense, then you probably haven’t read Book One.

Which is okay, because there’s still plenty of time for you to read Book One before Book Two comes out.

If you’re interested in Elithius…and I mean genuinely interested…check out the story here.  I promise you, you won’t be disappointed.  It won’t be a waste of your money or your time.

And did you know it’s National Buy A Book Day????

Cheers to a new book coming out!  I’m so excited about this, and I hope all of you are too!

My Newest Book is Still Free—Limited Time Only!

Red Volume 5

Well, the title says it all!  Thanks so much to all of you that have already downloaded my newest book, Volume 5: Kiilda.  The support you’re showing me is increasingly touching.  I couldn’t do this without you.

Click here to get your free eBook copy of Volume 5!

Volume 5 is the newest book in my series, The Golden Lands.  The Golden Lands (TGL) is a fantasy series, inspired by anime.  Anyone that enjoys a fast-paced, action-filled read can enjoy it.

What’s TGL about? Glad you asked…

The Golden Lands, one of the three worlds of Terra, is supposed to be a place of peace, light, and happiness. But the Golden Lands hasn’t exactly been such a place for John Hedekira, a jaded, hot-headed teenager. His parents disappear when he is thirteen, and he’s left to look after his younger sister and brother. Three years later, John decides that he has had it with the distant, self-pitying dispositions of his siblings, and resolves to shut them out of his life for good…or so he thinks.

But then the fabled monsters of the Dark Lands appear out of nowhere.

They are the living incarnations of Evil itself…and they enter John’s home, kidnapping his siblings and leaving him to bleed to death on the floor of his own house.

But John is not undone so easily. Compelled by his own hatred of the warriors that left him to die, and a sense of duty towards his siblings, John sets out on a quest for vengeance. Joining him is Faith Pinck, a caring, innocent girl who doesn’t yet understand the true motives behind John’s desire to track the evil band of warriors. And in the midst of their adventures as they journey to rescue John’s siblings they begin to uncover a deeper, darker plot that threatens to collide the human world with the world of an unholy, supernatural being.

And here’s the current plot of Volume 5!

Locked in a fight to the death in the subworld of Kiilda, John’s only option is to defeat Kiilda if he ever wants to see his little sister again. Meanwhile, Faith is quickly forming a friendship with Tarsh Landid. But when Castrum Fortress is surrounded by the Brown Bandits, it looks like the only thing that will satisfy them is the former “Ghost of Hedekira”*…whether he’s dead or alive!

*Tarsh Landid

Stay awesome, my dear followers!  (And thank you for your support!)

Dominic (Aul)

Volume 5: Kiilda, is Now Available!!!

Red Volume 5

Well, it’s been done!  Volume 5: Kiilda has been published!!!!

I’m really excited to hear what you think about this volume; I think it’s the best one yet!  It’s very fast paced, with tons of action, but a lot of character development too (and might I add, an ounce of romance!??!?)

Oh yes.

The best way to show some support for an author is to read what he or she writes!  And I’ve made it easy for you!  For the first couple of days, Volume 5 will be FREE as an eBook.  Click here to download your copy!

What’s Volume 5 about?  Here’s the description:

Locked in a fight to the death in the subworld of Kiilda, John’s only option is to defeat Kiilda if he ever wants to see his little sister again. Meanwhile, Faith is quickly forming a friendship with Tarsh Landid. But when Castrum Fortress is surrounded by the Brown Bandits, it looks like the only thing that will satisfy them is the former “Ghost of Hedekira”*…whether he’s dead or alive!

*Tarsh Landid

Don’t miss out!

Thank you for all of your support!  I really couldn’t do this without all of your encouragement.

Stay awesome!

Dominic (Aul)

Satisfying the Urge for Teen Romance


Everyone wants romance.  Everyone wants love.  It’s something so natural, something so human to want these things.  Our desires and our bodies start telling us this since the time we’re eleven, twelve, thirteen.  It’s not a bad thing.  It never has been.

As a Christian, I’m well aware that God created the human body, along with all of the natural and even good desires that our bodies give to us.  In his Theology of the Body, Pope Saint John Paul II described, in a most profound and beautiful way, how the bodies of men and women reflect who they are to themselves, and who they are to each other.  Most importantly, our bodies have “sacramentality”: we have the ability to become a living, visible sign of what is invisible (e.i. we reveal God to ourselves and each other through our bodies, which were made in His image and likeness).

If God is Love, as St. John tells us, and we were made in God’s image and likeness, then we were made in the image and likeness of Love (I believe Christopher West said that).

Now plug all of that into being a teen guy.  I’m made for love.  My body (to a greater degree than a girl’s) is constantly reminding me of the fact that I’m made to love.  And that’s good.  It’s a part of who I am.  God designed me that way.

However, I don’t believe that just because I have these God-given desires, I should fulfill them in the way I most immediately contrive them.  Have I ever had a natural, but pure desire to just walk up and kiss a girl?  Yes, I have.  Have I ever wanted to have sex with a girl? Yes, I have.  Was I just being dirty and lustful? Nope, just heterosexual and masculine.  Have I ever wanted to date a girl? Absolutely.  Am I just a bored teenager? Sorta.  But there’s more to it than that.

Today’s culture does place a lot of pressure on teens.   We are pressured to date.   We are pressured to act like the characters we see in TV shows, movies, etc.  Basically, if you sincerely look at a high school dating relationship, you actually just see two kids trying to act like adults.  And I understand that; I understand where they’re coming from.  They have “adult feelings”.  But they’re not adults.  They’re just kids.  There’s a part of me that wants to jump into dating too.  It’s something extremely exciting.

But especially for me, as a home-schooler, it’s not exactly a “pressure” feeling.  I personally don’t feel pressured to date, and I believe that for most high schoolers, it’s the same way.  Maybe there’s a little bit of pressure.  But it’s more the fact that everyone is dating, the fact that it’s just so natural and normal to date at a young age.  That’s the problem.

So why not?  Why not date?  I’m already aware of how I should keep my desires in check.  I “Socrates-know-myself”.   So why not just date and take it slow?

I am not good enough to date.  I am not pure enough to give myself to a girl, even if we are just “taking it slow”.  And I probably wouldn’t be able to control my desires enough to take it slow.  I’m not trying to condemn any of the teens out there that are dating, but I’d be willing to guess that most teens shouldn’t be dating for these same reasons.

So what’s the answer?  Repression?  Just bottle up your desires?

No.  Of course not.

First of all, meet chastity: chastity is the virtue by which we exercise self control and make sacrifices for the good of the person that we love.  Basically, chastity and pulling out selfishness by the root and focusing all our attention on the ultimate, not the immediate, happiness of the person that we claim to love.  And it’s loving someone as a person, not as an object.  It’s understanding that that person has had a past, that they’re right in front of us in the present, and that they will have a future based upon how we treat them.  Chastity is “placing yourself under the demands of real love” (Jason Evert).  Now be honest with yourself: chastity is an awesome virtue.

But there’s another thing that we should be focusing on.  Something, or Someone, that deserves our love, all of our desires, right here, right now.  He’s also the Person that will help us to become the master of our God-given desires so that we sinful, little humans, will actually be able to love one another in the way that He designed.

Jesus is amazing.  Don’t roll your eyes just yet.  I mean He’s literally amazing.  He’s been waiting for you since the eternity before you were born.  He’s been with you since you came into existence.  And He wants to be with you for every second of your life both now and forever.  He’s that Friend that walks with you, that listens to you, that hears you, that lifts you up, that knows you, that understands you, and that wants you more than you could possibly ever know.

Jesus can satisfy that urge for a teen romance.  There’s nothing wrong with that urge to begin with.  But, if we’re honest with ourselves, the chaste decision, the decision that places us under the demands of real love, would be the decision to wait to date.  Because we’re not good enough yet.  We’re not strong enough yet.  We’re not in control yet.  We’d end up hurting the people that we’re actually trying to love.  We’d “miss the mark” (which, by the way, is another definition for sin).

Jesus can take all of those God-given desires and order them.  He can make it so that our desires fit our place in life.  I’ll be honest; I’m not old enough to date.  I don’t have a job.  I don’t have a car.  I don’t have enough time.  I’m a student.  I’m young.  I’m dumb.  And I’m selfish.  I still have pure desires from time to time to give of myself to girls and to date them.  But right now, the Person who can satisfy me, and will always be able to no matter where I am right now, is Jesus.

Recently, I was spending some time in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament (I’m a Catholic, so I believe that Jesus is literally right there in front of me).  And I felt that He gave me this piece of advice, and so I wrote it down.  I feel like me reasons for how Jesus can satisfy the urge for a teen romance haven’t been so convincing thus far.  Maybe you really just need to try it in order to understand it.  But here’s what I feel like Jesus was telling me to understand:

There was never meant to be just one. There was always meant to be Two. It will always be you and Him. It always has been. Whether it’s Him through another person, this will never change. It is you and Him, walking this path of life, walking alone by the sea, the whole world before you. And you are content. Because He is your friend. And you have “found the one that you love”. You are His, and He is yours.

I’m just a kid.  I’ve got to focus on being what I am in life.  And I am a kid.  We might feel like we should be in a relationship because everyone else is, or our desires tell us to.  But no matter where we are, we are always supposed to be in a deep, profound relationship with God.  So, because of where I am in life, I can devote myself entirely to God.  It’s not like Jesus is the “fall back plan”.  “Oh well, I can’t date, so I guess I should just focus on Jesus.”  It doesn’t work that way.  Jesus isn’t the “fall back plan”.  He is and always will be THE plan.  And He wants me right now.

“For you see, in the end, it is between you and God.  It was never about you and them [other people] anyway.” -Mother Teresa

See that picture at the top of this post?  That’s you and Jesus.  It always has been.  It always will be, whether you like it or not.  Whether you believe it or not.  Now, at some point in your life, you might be walking with Jesus, and He’ll be at your side through another person.  And you’ll love Him through that other person.  That’s what dating and marriage should be like (I mean, all relationships too.  But especially dating and marriage).  But either way, all of this, everything, is about you and Him.

So, if you’re like me, why don’t you give yourself to Him right now?  Why don’t you let Him purify your desires so that you can actually love the person you want to date?  Why don’t you love the Person that has always loved you, that will always want you?

“To fall in love with God is the greatest romance; to seek him the greatest adventure; to find him, the greatest human achievement.”

Well, what do you guys think?  I apologize if some of my explanations were incomplete.  If you have any questions, or you think I was wrong about something, please comment.

Stay awesome!