It’s been a long and circuitous route to publication. My first book, Harbinger’s End began as a thirty-page short story called “Orb of Prophecy” that I wrote for my campers in my second year as an overnight counselor at Camp Shalom north of Toronto. It was the spring of 1993, and as I had already developed a reputation as one of the official camp storytellers the previous summer, I decided to get really creative with my campers’ bedtime routine. But what to write for a cabin full of preteen boys?
I’m an avid collector of movie soundtracks, so one night for inspiration I popped in a CD from a fantasy movie (lousy movie, terrific music). As the music ebbed and flowed in time to the scenes from the movie, I began to wonder what it would sound like if I wrote a fantasy adventure story that moved to the music. What a great way to put the kids to bed! “Orb of Prophecy” was born.
The story was meant to be read over four nights (this is a great way to bribe campers into good behavior — if you work at an overnight camp, I’d highly recommend trying it), and in the summer of 1993 it was an instant hit. Before long, I was coming around to every cabin in the unit. The following summer, I visited nearly every cabin in camp.
From 1993 to 1996, I wrote one new “musical adventure story” every year, each set to a different movie soundtrack, and each for a different age group. Perhaps one day I’ll turn those other stories into full-length books, too.
I started exploring “Orb of Prophecy” without music in the school year of 1993-1994 to see where the narrative would take me. I was now in university, and I became fast friends with a circle of like-minded folks who shared my interests in sci-fi / fantasy, medieval history, reading and writing. We spent many hours reading and critiquing each other's work.
In the years following my graduation in 1998, I would periodically return to "Orb of Prophecy" to tweak, edit, revise and rewrite. Harbinger’s End now bears very little resemblance to the original short story I wrote eighteen years ago, but the spirit of “Orb of Prophecy” remains at its core. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!