Diamondsong: A Concerto in Ten Parts
Part I: Escape
Welcome to E.D.E. Bell’s sparkly new project: Diamondsong
Diamondsong is an epic fantasy tale about power and identity, released as a series of ten novellas. Who’s next on my list of magic creatures written in an unconventional manner? Fairies! But of course, unlike any fairies you have previously met. You would expect no less.
** If you aren't sure, then before you leave, click that reminder ♥ near the top right **
An overview of Diamondsong from the author
What are your thoughts on fantasy?
I love fantasy. I believe that the essence of fantasy is the melding of two vital elements: 1) escapism through imagination and 2) exploring our own social constructs through the lens of these fantasy cultures. From themes of war and industrialization in early fantasy to emerging themes of cultural satire, fantasy to me is a safe place to think about our world while at the same time escaping it. Through several successful series, fantasy has become associated with both idealistic young adult plots as well as dark and violent storylines. I like to capture that idealism but without hinging it on graphic violence, something I believe is consistent with fantasy’s roots. And while I often brand what I do “unconventional fantasy” — I think that’s actually redundant. What’s great about fantasy is the ability to push boundaries among friends. Boundaries about ourselves, about what we read, and about the genre itself. I love to challenge as much as I love to entertain. I’ve learned a lot through my last four novels, and I’m hoping that with Diamondsong, I can create something really special that you will enjoy.
What’s Diamondsong about?
Quirky, original, and heartfelt, the backdrop of Diamondsong is two dominant species living separately in the world of Ada-ji, with signs that a long-standing truce is starting to crumble.
- The Ja-lal: an industrious, mountain-dwelling species with advanced construction and a well-defined organizational structure
- The Fo-ror: a flying, forest-dwelling species with a focus on natural living and a tradition-based hierarchy
Diamondsong is primarily about one fe’pyr (woman), Dime, who finds that though she has grown up amongst the Ja-lal, she has inherent ties to the Fo-ror. With her future set for her as an infant, who then, is she meant to be now?
Why might I like Diamondsong?
- It’s a good story! Well, I hope so. I worked super hard on it and took no shortcuts on developing the characters and the plot.
- Novella-size installations are great if you feel you don’t have enough time to read, or always have too much on your list. I won’t take too long getting them out; I promise. (I'm excited to share them!)
- Diamondsong is inclusive fantasy, including a range of characters by age, class, and gender (including non-binary and trans), and orientation (including bi/pan, ace, aro).
- Some people like the word feminist and some people prefer equalist, but either way, no gender is treated as lesser, sexualized, or relegated to stereotypes in my writing or my life.
- Diamondsong includes non-violence themes and is friendly to people who are either vegans and/or believe in non-violence philosophies. (Note to non-vegans: most of my readers are non-vegans. Don't be nervous; just enjoy a different angle on fantasy. You can handle it!)
- There’s something for everyone. The story has elements to appeal to fantasy readers as well as lovers of contemporary character-driven fiction. My readers are very diverse across age, gender, and politics. (I am extremely proud of having a diverse and eclectic reader base. I like you all.)
How is Diamondsong different than the Shkode trilogy?
- Instead of highlighting the issues of sexism, ableism, racism, homophobia, and cultural prejudice that laced Shkode, Diamondsong explores next-tier social constructs, such as class structure, speciesism, and the holding and exercising of power. I am hoping this will result in a more subtle, yet even more interesting context to the storyline.
- The story is told through one character's view, not from a wide variety of viewpoints like Shkode.
- Instead of a world where vegans struggle, Ada-ji is a fundamentally vegan world. No big deal.
- I'm experimenting with several other elements but I want you to be able to enjoy it untainted by my preview. : )
- Well, I’m hopefully still getting better at writing. And you dig it.
Can you explain the ten parts?
- The story will be released as a series of ten novellas. We're experimenting with this for several reasons.
- This campaign only provides Part I of the series. It is truly "kickstarting" the project in the classic sense, as the pre-orders will help pay for the heavy up-front costs.
- They are paperbacks for now. Yes, I love hardcovers so yes this rends my soul. But they are also a big investment, so let's see if we can get there at a later date.
- The plan for the story is set - the whole story is outlined (though I hope to keep improving it as we go along) so you don't need to worry that this is open-ended. We have a solid record of delivering, so don't worry about that.
- However, our plan for the release is less set because we first need to see how this campaign goes. What I can say is that as a backer of Part I, you will be kept up-to-date and always given the first opportunity to order follow-on installations.
- If you have questions, ask in the comments!
Who are you again?
- Oh, I’m a lot of things. Mostly, I love fantasy fiction. I great up as a musician and poet, went to electrical engineering school, got married, had three kids, spent time as a data analyst, a strategist, and a manager, became a fiction writer, started a publishing company, and am now leaving my day job and my career to do a better job crafting this unique fiction. I was born in Cleveland and raised in Michigan. I spent eight years in Northern Virginia and ten in Dayton, Ohio. Now I’m just north of Detroit where I’m writing and running a small publisher. I’m a vegan and animal rights advocate. I like eating and smelling like garlic. I use a lot of hot sauce. I prefer Carménère. I’m an INFJ—like, a total Blue Ajah, except one of the ones that leaves the tower and goes off and does her own thing. I’m a Kickstarter “Superbacker” on my personal account because I feel strongly about supporting the arts and especially indie creativity. Mostly, I just love writing, and I love the fantasy community, and I want you to read and enjoy what I do.
- Here’s a statement from me about the project. Because of my anxiety, I have a very difficult time making videos. But I want you to know I'm a real person who is excited about sharing this project with you - and would love for you to join me. So I improv'd this time and added a tiara. That works, right?
If successful, the campaign funds will pay for:
- Cover art (I’d like to fund a custom illustration but we’ll have to see)
- A custom fantasy map for the series (I view this as critical. Fantasy without a map - no way! I'll make the cover none-more-black and include a map if I have to.)
- Design and publication
- Marketing and promotion
The minimum goal does not cover expected costs, but it provides enough that we can proceed with the project. Editing and illustrations are expensive and so there are no stretch goals at this point. If we get closer to covering our costs, we will add stretch goals at that point. Wow, we’d love to see that happen and would respond with appropriate enthusiasm.
Bell has previously written four novels: the standalone novel, Spireseeker, and the Shkode trilogy. Spireseeker is an epic journey full of talking animals, gender-bending elves, and magical creatures. Though with the flaws of a first novel, it has a loyal following who appreciate its heart and passion and honestly just that it’s totally bizarre. The Shkode trilogy is about one world that was split into two worlds, one now run by humans and the other by dragons. As time has passed, each now thinks the other is a myth. The split world is unstable, and a series of natural disasters is starting to tear each apart. People and dragons struggle to discover a lost magic to perhaps save their worlds, but are mired by their own personal and societal struggles. Quirky, serious, and funny all at once—with pregnant wizards and dragon politics, The Shkode trilogy is the story of a split world struggling to reunite. Beautiful, signed hardcovers of each catalogue book are available through this campaign, or you can purchase the e-books from major retailers including Amazon.
Reviews for The Shkode Trilogy:
“Great world building and interesting mix of traditional and non traditional fantasy.” —Jason Anarchy, writer, game designer
"A wonderfully delightful and deeply imaginative tale of struggle and the quest for knowledge, set in a well-developed and complex high fantasy setting." —G.S. Jennsen, author of Science-Fiction saga Aurora Rhapsody
"I love Bell's sensitive and insightful exploration of compassion, connection, and relationships. The Banished Craft provides layers of thought-provoking ideas as well as good old-fashioned escapism." —Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, bestselling author of The 30-Day Vegan Challenge
“A boundlessly imagined, expertly crafted tale about compassion, connections, and war, seamlessly anchored in refreshingly progressive themes and well-developed characters. The Fettered Flame is one of the most complex and intelligent fantasies I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading.” —Beth Teliho, author of award-winning supernatural mystery, Order of Seven
“An epic fantasy for lovers of dragons, magic, and generally awesome characters. The Fettered Flame is a breath of fresh air. It effortlessly weaves timely themes of inclusion and diversity around a traditional core and will capture not only your imagination, but also your heart.” —Tia, book reviewer for fanzine: nerds of a feather, flock together
“E.D.E. Bell ends the trilogy on a high and deeply compassionate note, with a cast of characters who delve into the very fabric of what makes us human. For lovers of fantasy—or anyone who enjoys an imaginative, well-crafted tale—this book is sure to dazzle and entertain.” ―Mark Hawthorne, author of A Vegan Ethic: Embracing a Life of Compassion Toward All
“The Scattered Bond wraps up the trilogy in a satisfying manner, with a dramatic climax and a solid conclusion to the various threads of the story.” ―Camille Gooderham Campbell, managing editor, Every Day Fiction
Still not sure?
We really appreciate you giving this project a look. Could we ask you to mark a reminder on this project (top right of the page), and follow E.D.E. Bell on social media:
We tried to keep the reward levels simple, but we’d love for you to add additional books—the additional sales help us invest in this project. And signed hardcovers make great gifts! Add the following amounts to your pledge to add these items (shipping is included). We will again use Backerkit to manage your Kickstarter surveys as well as add on selections. If you aren't familiar with Backerkit, don't worry - we think it makes the process easy and you'll be walked through everything.
If you have a large order and want to reduce shipping costs, please contact us through Kickstarter messages or at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll work out a unique reward.
That's it! Thanks so much for your time and support. ♥
Risks and challenges
Risks are very low. Atthis Arts, LLC has delivered on eight successful Kickstarter campaigns. The plot line for all ten installments of Diamondsong is complete (and will be continuously improved as things develop), and Part I: Escape has been drafted and is ready for the editing process.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (32 days)