Something New: “Tales of Synthina”

It’s time for something new. I’ve been writing mystery and crime screenplays for the last four years and now it’s time to switch gears, to jump into another genre of fiction and explore. Since the time that I was young lad, I’ve enjoyed science-fiction and fantasy role playing. I loved to follow the adventures of a wandering swordsmen, barbarians, knights, and wizards. To take on the persona of a nomad with no home except for the place where I decide to lay my head for the night. To be a skilled fighter or magician that travels across distant lands and meets exciting new people from different cultures, while gaining knowledge and insight of the world as I wander and search, sometimes for monetary gain, but sometimes only for a better understanding of the world.

ToS-Dave Law2
Tales of Synthina poster art by Dave Law

Tales of Synthina follows a wandering female magician as she travels over high mountain passes in the north and sprawling desert sands in the south in a fantasy world called Califia. Synthina is a strong woman, not physically strong like an Amazonian warrior woman, but more strong in intellect. She has the uncanny ability to penetrate the cold exterior of men and women alike and navigate through a tumultuous and dangerous land independently. She is extremely skilled in magic, but her powers have waned since she was outcast from the Uplands, a northern land inhabited by other female magicians. However, the only way to regain her full magical powers, and re-unite with the one that she lost and loves, is by returning to the Uplands and confronting the dark and twisted headmistress, Amarisa.

ToS-Matt Dean OA
Tales of Synthina trading cards by Matt Dean a.k.a KIPTOE

Tales of Synthina is inspired by those pulp science-fiction and fantasy paperback novels from the 1960’s, 70’s, and 80’s. Two series of novels that influenced Tales of Synthina are Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Lythande and Ursula K. Le Guin’s A Wizard of Earthsea. These novels follow the adventures of a wandering magician and wizard as they travel over the land of Thieves World and Earthsea  to confront sinister magical opponents, shadowy supernatural beings, and tyrannical dragons. The writing in these fantasy novels does not concern themselves with over-loaded plots involving epic battles and political intrigue, but are more character driven. The main character in each of these novels suffers from an inner turmoil that they must keep secret, and by keeping their pain a secret, they suffer even further. It’s classic drama told in a fantasy landscape.

ToS Paperback Inspiration
Tales of Synthina was inspired by these pulp paperback novels

Synthina has a secret as well. She wanders the world of Califia, keeping her secret close to her chest, until she comes to the realization that she cannot escape her inner pain without returning to the Uplands and confronting what she fears. While I read Bradley and Le Guin’s work, I find that female fantasy authors provide readers with more emotional insight to their characters. Their stories involve less sword-swinging, goblin-slaying, or high-adventure than other fantasy novels written by their male counterparts. Bradley and Le Guin’s stories are rooted in the emotional push and pull of their character’s fears and desires. This empathetic way of writing grounds the fantasy genre and makes it more relatable to any and all kinds of readers, regardless of whether or not they’re a connoisseur of pulp science-fiction and fantasy.

Tales of Synthina is written as an episodic online miniseries. I’ve organized a small, but very creative team of individuals to develop this project. I recently launched a kickstarter campaign in order to raise the necessary funds needed to begin this unique fantasy story. Please, drop by our Tales of Synthina Kickstarter and have a look at what we’re creating. And donate too, if you feel so inclined. We have some beautiful one-of-a-kind collectible rewards, and your contribution will help us create something extraordinary.

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