Please welcome author Toneye Eyenot to my blog. His novella, The Scarlett Curse – The Sacred Blade Of Profanity book I, was released in June.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Toneye. Eye lurk by myself in the Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia. Eye have one son, all grown up now and takin’ on the world haha. Apart from writing, eye am also the vokiller of two extreme Metal bands, and play bass in a Punk band. My favourite colour is black, a terrible coffee addict, eye am nocturnal and have a rabid werewolf obsession.
What or who inspired you to start writing?
My inspiration came from a band eye was in, back in ’88. The bloke who started the band was the guitarist and songwriter, and his lyrics were just brilliant. After the band split, eye had thoughts of starting my own band, and began writing song lyrics. That continued over the years, until 2011, when one too many people insisted eye should write a book. That’s when eye went from being a poet/lyricist to becoming an author.
How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?
A lot. Eye have a very dark side that shows in most of my writing. My book series is a dark fantasy/horror, which was born from a song eye had written with my Death Metal band, Chaotic Impurity. It’s a loosely based concept. The Sacred Blade Of Profanity is a song about ritual sacrifice, and an enchanted blade. The series eye am writing goes by the same title, and book one, The Scarlett Curse takes the concept of The Blade, giving it a background and history, along with a world of characters affected both directly and indirectly by its influence. Eye have always identified with the wolf since a young age, and the topic of werewolves is a recurring theme in my writing. In my short stories, eye tend to go to the extremes of horror, toying with my own sanity, and entertaining the demons within.
Please tell us about your current release.
The Scarlett Curse – The Sacred Blade Of Profanity book I, is released through J Ellington Ashton Press. It’s a novella of Dark Fantasy/Horror. This blurb pretty much sums up the plot… “Another time…Place…Indeed, another reality akin to our own. The fates of many have fallen and will yet fall under the ethereal eye and insatiable bloodlust of The Sacred Blade Of Profanity. Scarlett’s centuries long struggle with The Blade Of Power begins to take its toll. Thousands have perished at the hands of Scarlett and The Sacred Blade, as will many thousands more in the centuries to follow…Or perhaps not? An innocent child, who unwittingly holds the secret to The Blades’ demise, just may change everything… But who will suffer most?”
What inspired you to write this book?
It’s more a question of who? A friend eye met on Facebook, named Scarlett, was the person who convinced me to write a book after reading some of my poetry. Eye have had people tell me over the years that eye should, but Scarlett went a step further, and started throwing ideas around and got me excited to start. Eye chose the song mentioned earlier, to base the story around, and asked Scarlett if eye could name the main character after her. The rest is “herstory” haha.
Did you base any of your characters on real people?
Well, Scarlett for one. The name at least. To the best of my knowledge, the real Scarlett doesn’t run around stabbing people with a possessed dagger. At least eye don’t think so. As for the rest? Yes and no. A lot of the characters in the story remind me of people, but that was once eye had already written them in. Eye think, when eye created these characters, eye may have subconsciously had real people in mind, but it wasn’t intentional. As the characters develop throughout the series, eye have come to identify with them as people eye know. One character who came into the story in book 2, Goatus Of Torment, was at the request of an old friend who goes by the same name. He asked me to write him into the story, so eye have. Eye also just recently had a short story released in Blood Moon Rising anthology, which portrays myself and my band mates as a pack of werewolves, collecting people for the Great Hunt; an annual event we partake in when the Blood Moon, or “Hunter’s Full Moon” is in the sky.
Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?
Eye am currently writing book 3 of The Sacred Blade Of Profanity series. The Scarlett Curse is an introductory novella to the series, and book 2 is a prequel, which covers the events in the week leading up to the opening scene in The Scarlett curse. The Sacred Blade Of Profanity is over 8,000 years old, and crafted in sorcery, so in book 3 eye am documenting the devastation The Blade has caused in books 1 & 2 and continues to cause, as well as delving deep into the past to uncover its history, and the war that has been going on for millennia between two rival sorcerer factions. There is also an 11 year old mute girl who possesses a mirror, found by her father in the forest, which was crafted around the same time as The Sacred Blade by a lineage of sorcerers known as the Harrilluin. The Mirror houses otherworldly beings, known as the Prii, who have been teaching the girl since she was two, the magik of the Harrilluin, preparing her for the inevitable clash with The Sacred Blade Of Profanity. Also, eye have just been given my editorial debut with J Ellington Ashton Press. Eye am heading an anthology about yep, you guessed it… Werewolves haha!
Do you write full-time? If so, what is your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
Eye don’t write full time, to a set schedule. Eye am not a big fan of routine. My mind is chaos and eye write when the mood takes me. Eye try to write something every day, but some days, it just isn’t there. Writer’s block can be a real bitch haha. If eye can’t come up with anything to write, eye catch up on reading. Eye have accumulated a bit of a backlog, with all the awesome stuff that’s being released lately. My Kindle is groaning under the weight hahaha.
What is the best and worst advice you ever received? (regarding writing or publishing)
The best advice eye can think of addresses the problem of writers block. My Metal/Horror brother, Jim Goforth is a writing machine. He always has several projects running at once. Writer’s block isn’t a problem for him. If he gets stuck on a story, he moves to another, and comes back fresh to continue. Eye took his advice, and now also also have several projects in the works. The days where eye can’t find the inspiration to write have become fewer and more far between. As far as bad advice goes, eye don’t think eye have been given any, or if eye have, eye must’ve seen it as such and disregarded it, hence not remembering.
What is the best thing about being a writer? The worst?
For me, the best thing about being a writer, is getting all the disturbing thoughts out of my head. “Feeding the demon”, so to speak. It’s also great when those disturbing thoughts make their way into stories, and are well received by readers. The worst thing about being a writer, is when those thoughts refuse to translate into stories. Oh, and my coffee/cigarette consumption greatly increases when eye write.
What fuels you as an author to continue to write?
Coffee!!! Hahaha no, seriously though, eye have a creative mind and a vivid imagination. Writing is cathartic. Eye use my bands as a medium for release, and that has saved me from myself over the years. Right now, all three bands are in varying stages of inconsistency. Band members coming and going, and not a whole lot being done in that arena. If eye didn’t have writing as a creative release, eye would probably go mad.
Which of your characters is your favorite? Do you dislike any of them?
Dera Harke, the young mute girl in The Scarlett Curse is my favourite character to write. She has powers that she is just beginning to discover are more than mere games The Prii play with her. She sees them as her dear friends (she doesn’t have friends in the ‘real’ world), but in reality, The Prii are her teachers and mentors, as well as her friends. Nobody but Dera can see or hear them. Dera and Scarlett are brought together in a tragic twist of fate, and for a while there, it looks as though Dera and Scarlett will become a team of sorts. Fate plays another cruel hand however, and Dera is left to her own devices, with only the Mirror and her beloved Prii for company. Right now, in book 3, Dera has been thrust back 1700 years into the past, and has to find a way to return to the Here and Now, but everything that has come to pass has taken its toll on her. She’s barely clinging to life at the moment. My most despised character is Joshua Melkerin. He is the elusive target of Scarlett and The Blade. He’s an unscrupulous bastard who has his fingers in every dirty pot. As the story begins, he is in the marketplace of Mills Wall, with Scarlett ready to strike, but by fluke, manages to evade her. You find that he has 4 children in his basement, who he has kidnapped to be sold to a gang of bandits led by Jahl-Rin. He’s an infinitely more despicable character than Joshua on the surface. He’s a murderer, child trafficker, cannibal, rapist, kidnapper, and so much more. As much as eye hate him, eye hate Melkerin more. Jahl-Rin gives no illusions about who and what he is, while Joshua is secretive about his transgressions, and maintains an outward image of an upstanding member of society. That kind of thing is sickening.
What was the most difficult thing/scene to write in this story?
When children are killed. One of the children in Joshua’s basement falls ill, and Joshua kills him and buries him in his vegetable garden out back. He doesn’t want the other kids acquiring the illness, as he has been contracted to have 4 healthy children for Jahl-Rin. Just the callousness of Joshua, as he performs the deed is what disturbed me most. He’s more concerned with finding a replacement, than the fact he now has a dead child on his hands. When Dera kills her mother as well. That part still gives me chills just thinking about it.
Did the story turn out the way you planned from the beginning? If not, what change happened that you didn’t expect?
Apart from a few surprises, like new characters with new side stories, the overall plot is still pretty true to my original plans for the story. One thing that wasn’t planned, and eye just couldn’t help myself haha, is in book 3. A character named Marnard Gray has just escaped the clutches of Jahl-Rin, sparking a massacre in the town where he was held captive. As he leaves his home for the first time, he comes across a stranger in the plains at night, and kills him, taking his clothes and belongings. He wakes up in the forest, surrounded by wolves, and finds the items he had taken from the corpse, give the wearer the ability to transform into a wolf. Eye don’t want to turn this into a werewolf novel, so eye will be keeping this aspect minimal in the overall story.
If you could be one of the characters from any of your books, who would it be and why?
Tummel, the Harrilluin sorcerer. He’s a happy fellow, who uses laughter as his power source, but he’s also very dangerous, as Jahl-Rin finds out hehe. He travels through different worlds and realms, flawlessly playing the role of an inhabitant of that realm. Nothing seems to ruffle him.
If you could jump in to any book, and live in that world, which would it be?
Tales Of Power, Journey To Ixtlan… any of Carlos Castaneda’s books. The world of Don Juan Matus and his party of sorcerers. A world of ancient Toltec sorcery that eye have been immersed in for years. A lot of my inspiration, both in writing and in life, come from the works of Castaneda. My favourite all time quote and my mantra when things get too heavy… “We make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same” ~ Don Juan Matus.
Do you have a specific snack that you have with you when you write?
COFFEE!!! Eye also drink lots of coffee. Sometimes eye might even have some coffee with it. Oh, and coffee. Eye ALWAYS have coffee!
What book are you reading right now?
A brutal horror novel called Circle Jerk, by Catt Dahman. Eye am enjoying it immensely!
Secretly and with great stealth, Scarlett drew her silver, razor sharp
dagger. The handle, encrusted with amethyst and moonstone,
nestled perfectly in her comfortable yet strong grip.
It would seem as if its ancient architect had her very hand in
mind when fashioning such Beauty and Power.
The Sacred Blade Of Profanity had, indeed, harnessed vast
landscapes of Power in the course of its immeasurable existence. It
had been in her possession now for longer than she remembered. Its
very nature transcended time and space, and in what seems like
many centuries… many lifetimes, Scarlett would forever marvel at its
unique ability to carry its possessor, unaffected by the cruelty
of time. For as long as she kept the Blade by her flesh, Scarlett was,
by all accounts, somewhat immortal.
“What do you intend to do with that?” A booming, authoritative
voice behind her startled Scarlett. It also gained the attention of
everybody in the crowded section of market, where her intended prey
stood anxiously by a stall of hats. His nervous disposition was
inflicted upon him by the close proximity of the Sacred Blade,
and by Scarlett’s single-minded intent to end his existence in this
world. The old man could not fathom why he was suddenly overcome
with such dread, as he tried on, in the most awkward and clumsy
way, nearly every item of headwear.
Joshua Melkerin was never one to wear a hat. His head was
simply too large, and an odd, hat unfriendly shape. At this moment,
however, Joshua had the overwhelming urge to hide his face… to
conceal his identity.
He was certain that nobody was aware of his most recent
debauchery. Nor was anyone aware of how long he had been carrying
his secret around with him. But The Sacred Blade Of Profanity knew.
Oh, it knew too well—and it craved Joshua’s profanity as
the wolf does the lamb.
Scarlett, bearer of The Sacred Blade Of Profanity for nigh on three hundred years, untouched by linear time, unhindered by the confines of space, nevertheless has grown weary. The ancient dagger, crafted in sorcery over eight thousand years ago, requires the blood of the profane to sustain its power. Scarlett has killed scores over the centuries and will continue for as long as she possesses The Blade.
Her chance meeting with young Dera, an 11 year old mute from the outskirts of town, throws both of their worlds into chaos, as Scarlett returns to the busy town of Mills Wall, to complete a failed attempt on her most elusive target to date. Could this child be the downfall of Scarlett? The demise of The Sacred Blade Of Profanity? Dark and troubled times are all that is foreseeable for both Scarlett and the mysterious little girl. Indeed for all of Mills Wall.
About the Author
Toneye Eyenot is an author with a long background in the Australian Heavy Music scene. He began writing lyrics back in 1990 and has built a rather large repertoire of songs over the last 25 years. In 2011, he was encouraged to write a novel, which he began in earnest. With a shaky start and over a 3 year period, Eyenot managed to squeeze out a novella of a mere 15,000 words. Completed in August of 2014, The Scarlett Curse was accepted for publishing with J. Ellington Ashton Press and is now on sale in Kindle and on paperback through Amazon, Book Depository and Barnes & Noble. In the meantime, his inspiration has kicked in and Toneye has gone on to complete the follow up to The Scarlett Curse, which has more than doubled in size from its predecessor, just shy of 40k words. In a few short months, he also has works appearing in various published, as well as awaiting publication anthologies and a 3rd instalment of The Scarlett Curse is well underway. More of The Scarlett Curse (The Sacred Blade Of Profanity Series), more anthologies of poetry, short stories and flash fiction. Horror and Dark Fiction to satisfy your reading bloodlust. Also, the re-working of a childrens story he wrote when six years old is in the cards for Toneye Eyenot in 2015.
You can find out more about Toneye on his webpage or follow him on Facebook or Twitter.
You can purchase Scarlett Curse: Sacred Blade Profanity on Amazon.