Tag Archives: Cardin Kataar

Ten Questions for a Fictional Character – Cardin from The Sword of Dragons

Hi everyone!

I wanted to try something new today for all of you.  Every now and then, I’ve read on other bloggers’ sites ‘interviews’ with their characters to help readers learn more about those characters, and it seemed like a really fun idea!  Most recently I read one such interview by one of the writers whose blog I follow, Justina Luther, and it sparked the desire for me to do that same thing :)

I also thought it would be a neat way to bridge books 1 and 2, a way to lead into the 2nd book through dialogue!  Please let me know whether or not you enjoy this.

WarningIf you have not read The Sword of Dragons, this interview will contain spoilers!

This first interview is with Cardin Kataar and is set 1 month after the Battle for Archanon, the climax of book 1.  A combined army from the four kingdoms has been deployed to combat the remaining orc forces, who have retreated far into the Wastelands.


When I finally catch up to Cardin, he and several others have just come through a portal back to Archanon to report to the Allied Council.  I catch him and his team just as they pass through the gates into the outer city.

I beg for a few minutes of his time to ask a few questions, so as to accurately record his thoughts in the history books.  His unit commander, Sira, encourages him to, so long as we finish by the time we reach the castle.

Cardin: “Alright, I’ll answer your questions.”

Historian: “How fares the campaign against the orcs?”

Cardin: “We’ve won every battle, always with few casualties.  But we never thought they would have bred so many.  There are thousands and thousands.”

Historian: “I’ve heard you’ve been on the front line of every battle.  Do you still get scared?”

Cardin: “Do I still…?  No, not scared, terrified!  You never get used to it.  Or I don’t.  I don’t know.  I’m not invincible, though, if that’s what you mean.  I’ve gained amazing power from the Sword of Dragons, but I’m still human.”

Historian: “But you’re more powerful than any Mage could ever hope to be.  How do you feel about having that power now?”

Cardin: “Well, it changes.  Sometimes it’s the most exhilarating experience in the world!  And sometimes…sometimes I can’t even sleep, it scares me so much.  It’s like a giant weight is slowly crushing me, and I’m struggling to hold it up.”

Historian: “How do you cope with that fear?”

Cardin: “I wish I could say with lots of ale, but I try not to drink anymore.  I can’t afford to ever lose control, not with this kind of power.  My friends keep me strong, though.  Reis, Dalin, Sira.  I’ve been lucky enough to fight along side of them ever since this campaign started.”

Historian: “But you aren’t a member of the Warriors’ Guild.  Isn’t that frustrating, for both the commanders and for you?”

Cardin: “No, not at all.  Well…okay, for some of the leaders, yes.  Some far more than others.  But the Allied Council directly assigned me to Sira.  Maybe if I’d been ordered to follow someone else, it would have annoyed me.  But I trust her.”

Historian: “Why do you trust her so much?”

Cardin: “Because she knows me better than anyone.  She knows what I am willing to do.  And what I’m unwilling to do.”

Historian: “Is it true you two are romantically involved?”

I see Cardin and Sira exchange glances, and Cardin’s face visibly turns red.”

Cardin: “We once were.  But what we are now…  Well, I’d rather not talk about that right now.”

Historian: “Fair enough.  Just a couple more questions then.  How long until the campaign against the orcs is finished?”

Cardin: “We’re just getting started, but we’re overtaking them fast, despite their numbers.  Months, certainly.  But I’m starting to think there’s more going on here than we know.  They are too organized.  Someone or something is coordinating them.”

Historian: “A most disturbing thought.  But what of Klaralin’s pendant?  I’ve actually wondered why we haven’t used it to control the orcs ourselves.”

Cardin: “We think the Star Dragons took away its enchantment, and that’s why Klaralin lost control of the orcs.  Its dead and powerless now.”

Historian: “That is unfortunate.  Very well, last question: what do you plan to do once the campaign against the orcs is over?”

Cardin: “I don’t know.  I’m still getting used to the idea that I am the Keeper of the Sword.  I really have no idea where my life will go from here.  In and of itself a scary prospect, but also exhilarating.”

We approach the gates to the inner city now, and to the castle.

Historian: “Thank you for your time, Keeper.  Good luck!”


Thanks for reading everyone, I hope you enjoyed this :)  Please let me know what you think of this experiment.

Are there questions you wish you could ask Cardin?  Or wish you could ask one of the other characters?  Please send them to me, I’d love to write responses to them :D

Thanks for reading,
-Jon Wasik

The Search for Cover Art

Hey everyone!

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I’ve decided to pursue self-publication for my high fantasy novel, The Sword of Dragons.  While in and of itself exciting, it also means something else really cool: it is finally time to find an artist to create the cover art!

For me, this is both terrifying and incredibly awesome!  I’ve never really given a cover title serious thought, as I was so focused on writing the book and then finding an agent or publisher.  I had discussed basics of covers with some friends, but never did I really think about what the cover art would be like.

Now the moment is fast approaching, and it’s time for me to start thinking about it.  And I’m coming up with a blank.  Do I want an iconic scene from the novel depicted?  Do I want something more abstract?

I’ve always heard the saying “Never judge a book by it’s cover” but the fact of the matter is that is always the first thing we see, even in ePublished bookstores.  And in the land of marketing, you have to first catch the readers’ attention before you can actually entice them to read your product.

That is one reason I want the cover to stand out.  I want people browsing Nook or Amazing to go “Woh!” and hone in on the cover.  I want it to be something that stimulates their imagination from the very moment they see it, and compel them to see what the novel is about.

Crimson Drake - http://butterfrog.deviantart.com
Crimson Drake – http://butterfrog.deviantart.com

There are several iconic scenes from The Sword of Dragons that might do the trick, but the question becomes which one would be best?  Is it when the hero, Cardin Kataar, finds the villain already holding the Sword of Dragons?  Or when the villain assaults the ancient city of Archanon with an army of orcs and drakes?  Or when the Star Dragons return?

With this question in mind, I intend to revisit some of these iconic scenes, to picture them in my head as I read them and see what emotion they evoke.

I have also begun the search for an artist.  Since I am going the ePublication route, this will be my greatest up-front cost.  I have a few in mind, but one in particular caught my attention over 4 years ago: Ruth Thompson.

I have a print of this painting hanging above my fire mantle :D
I have a print of this painting hanging above my fire mantle :D

I first met her and saw her artwork at the Phoenix Renaissance festival in 2010, and knew then that her portrayal of dragons was perfect!  She has a way of capturing their beauty and elegance that I’ve never seen before.  So tonight, I sent her an email inquiring about commissioning cover art from her.  Here’s hoping she has the time and is affordable!  To see more of her artwork, check our her website, redrooart.com.  Trust me, seeing them on your screen pales in comparison to seeing them in person!

In the mean time, I also intend to visit a bookstore this week and to browse the Fantasy section, focusing only on cover art.  I know there are many styles out there, and I want to see which appeals to me most.  I want to see which one feels right to me.

Thanks for reading!
-Jon Wasik