Song of the Elves

Epic fantasy novels and short stories by David Charles Shepherd

Welcome To Song of the Elves...

David Shepherd is the author of the Summerlands epic fantasy trilogy. This is his blog where you can read about the trials and tribulations of writing, keep up to date with new and current releases and hear about the influences that day to day life has on his works.

Getting in the mood

Posted By on February 9, 2018

‘I’m throwing off the shadow of a better man,’ croons Eldritch, the velvet line a soothing antidote to my worn out wiper blade scratching hopelessly at the windscreen. Nothing like a slice of Classic Sisters to put me in the mood for writing.
I’ll soon post a teaser of The Restless and the Godless, my second tale of Rhoderica.
Tune in, turn on, burn out…

An old friend

Posted By on February 3, 2018

I’m visiting with an old friend. It’s been a long time since I stayed in Osten Ard. I arrived just in time to say farewell to Duke Isgrimnur. Now Simon and Miri will have to face the new threat from the Norns without their old ally. Thanks Tad – great return to the series.

Return

Posted By on January 31, 2018

Thank you for your patience. I am back writing, working on the completion of the Restless and the Godless, my second Tale of Rhoderica. Watch this space for updates soon.

New Year plans & a farewell

Posted By on February 10, 2016

I’m back – with plans to finish ‘The Restless and the Godless’ in the coming months, before returning to the saga of Song of the Elves.

It’s been a long, hard winter – not least because of the sudden passing of Winifred May Shepherd.

As a child I was surrounded by great tales and encouraged in every way with my writing.

I shall miss my mum, a truly witty, intelligent and supportive friend to the end.

 

Summer inspirations

Posted By on August 31, 2015

Just getting back to work on The Restless and the Godless. The coast and mountains of beautiful Wales have given me inspiration for the next sequence of the tale, as Naythan and Morgan try to cross the ice bridge to Suud-karnia.

Also currently thoroughly enjoying re-reading The Dragon Bone Chair, in anticipation of Tad Williams’s sequel due next year. 30 years on, and everything I loved about it first time around seems even more intensely delightful. The feel of his books continues to be a source of inspiration.

Until next time, up the elves!

Inkitt debut

Posted By on August 7, 2015

Dear Readers,

You can now enjoy The Wolves of Winter Part I for free on Inkitt. Please log on and review my story, which can be found by searching in the fantasy section.

In the meantime, I’m still plugging away at the latest Tale of Rhoderica: The Restless and the Godless. More news on this project soon.

Until then,

Up the Elves!

The Restless and the Godless

Posted By on April 9, 2015

My homage to Alan Le May’s, The Searchers, as envisioned by John Ford and John Wayne, is evolving. Now progressing under the working title of ‘The Restless and the Godless’, the title reflects the character of the two main protagonists.

Naythan is the restless one of the title, newly released from his commission in the army of Rosewall, the king’s forces having met defeat at the hands of Arthur Blackrose (a story for another day, though you can find a potted history within the Tales of Rhoderica section of this website). He is a conundrum of a man, torn by the honour of the trained sword and his unwavering hatred of the Southren. As the story begins, we do not know the source of this hatred, but it finds a target in the form of Neils, half southren-half human adopted son of Old Man Marne. The bitter exchanges at the outset of the tale set a tone for Naythan’s troubled character. As the story unfolds, his interactions with Neils provide a barometer for how far Naythan has succumbed to the darker leanings of his character.

Morgan, Naythan’s nephew and travelling companion, is the godless one of the title. His faith is shredded one day at the start of spring, when the unthinkable befalls his frontier family. Both men will wrestle with their inner demons as they give themselves over to a quest that at times seems futile. The passage of miles and the occasion of dire threat are strangely welcomed by the two partners of the trail, who find a useful companion in the constant fatigue and fear of death, as it affords them no time to dwell on the events of the recent past.

The ‘Reckless and the Godless’ also fills in a period of history of Rhoderica before the adventures of Rulnik and Torbad, the Wolves of Winter, and introduces a landscape to the south of the arena of action outlined in the first three ‘verses’ of the Song of the Elves.

Until next time, ‘up the Restless Ones!’

 

Introducing – ‘The Restless Ones’

Posted By on February 11, 2015

Well, it’s been a long time in the making, but my next project is now fully evolved and progressing nicely.

‘The Restless Ones’ is my second Tale of Rhoderica, again set in a time before the Elves came to the continent.

Set after the events of ‘Wolves of Winter’, this tale of hard men in hard times has been inspired by one of the great loves from my childhood – watching Westerns with my dad.

The story is inspired by the events of The Searchers, a wonderful tale of a half-indian and his embittered uncle, attempting to rescue his kidnapped sister from the Cheyenne.

The Searchers first saw light as a newspaper serial and was eventually collected and published as a full novel in 1954. My experience of The Searchers comes not from the Alan Le May novel, but from the 1954 film. My dad first introduce me to the two Johns – Ford and Wayne – through the trilogy of cavalry movies the pair made together. The Searchers was something else – brutal and decisive, yet still holding the fireside warmth typical of Ford movies.

My tale cannot hope to hold a candle to the original, and does not try to imitate. I have taken the seed of a story – the kidnapping and subsequent quest for retrieval – and turned it into a sprawling fantasy. My characters travel through lands to the south of the world readers will be familiar with from Song of the Elves Books 1 to 3. The Southren are the protagonists – a savage race of humanoids from a humid continent lying out of reach across a narrow sea.

I hope to capture the same hope and despair that Le May envisioned and John Ford subsequently brought to the big screen. My dad and I loved John Wayne, but we were a little afraid of his lost soul portrayal of Ethan Edwards – a soldier returning defeated from the civil war. Naythan is my equivalent character, returning from the horrors of the Black Rose Wars (you can read a little of this at my website & I will return to this period of Rhoderica in a further ‘Tale’). He is a study in bitterness – he might be beyond redemption. He certainly has the mettle to get the job done. If anyone can reclaim the lost girl – Naythan can.

More to come in the coming weeks!

Until then, up the Elves!

Introducing – ‘The Restless Ones’

Posted By on February 9, 2015

Well, it’s been a long time in the making, but my next project is now fully evolved and progressing nicely.

‘The Restless Ones’ is my second Tale of Rhoderica, again set in a time before the Elves came to the continent.

Set after the events of ‘Wolves of Winter’, this tale of hard men in hard times has been inspired by one of the great loves from my childhood – watching Westerns with my dad.

The story is inspired by the events of The Searchers, a wonderful tale of a half-indian and his embittered uncle, attempting to rescue his kidnapped sister from the Cheyenne.

The Searchers first saw light as a newspaper serial and was eventually collected and published as a full novel in 1954. My experience of The Searchers comes not from the Alan Le May novel, but from the 1954 film. My dad first introduce me to the two Johns – Ford and Wayne – through the trilogy of cavalry movies the pair made together. The Searchers was something else – brutal and decisive, yet still holding the fireside warmth typical of Ford movies.

My tale cannot hope to hold a candle to the original, and does not try to imitate. I have taken the seed of a story – the kidnapping and subsequent quest for retrieval – and turned it into a sprawling fantasy. My characters travel through lands to the south of the world readers will be familiar with from Song of the Elves Books 1 to 3. The Southren are the protagonists – a savage race of humanoids from a humid continent lying out of reach across a narrow sea.

I hope to capture the same hope and despair that Le May envisioned and John Ford subsequently brought to the big screen. My dad and I loved John Wayne, but we were a little afraid of his lost soul portrayal of Ethan Edwards – a soldier returning defeated from the civil war. Naythan is my equivalent character, returning from the horrors of the Black Rose Wars (you can read a little of this at my website & I will return to this period of Rhoderica in a further ‘Tale’). He is a study in bitterness – he might be beyond redemption. He certainly has the mettle to get the job done. If anyone can reclaim the lost girl – Naythan can.

More to come in the coming weeks!

Until then, up the Elves!

A Shadow Falls now free on kindle

Posted By on January 1, 2015

For the next five days we’re offering for free on the Kindle store.

It’s a great time to get into the saga of the elves if you’ve got a new Kindle for Christmas. Don’t forget to tell your family and friends as well, so that they don’t miss out.