GUEST POST: Character Interview (PROGENY by R.T. Kaelin)

Today kicks off the tour of PROGENY by R.T. Kaelin, the first book in the epic fantasy series THE CHILDREN OF THE WHITE LIONS! Tomorrow’s stop will be a review on Ashley from Books From Bleh to Basically Amazing’s blog (and you all know how much I love her, right?)! Come back to A Backwards Story next Thursday for my own review of the novel!

And now, an interview with Nundle from PROGENY!

Nundle, I am honored that you’ve taken time from your studies to talk to those of us following your journey today. When you set off to find the Progeny, did you ever imagine you’d end up where you are now? How has the journey been for you?

First, it is a great pleasure to meet you, Bonnie – what an unusual name!

Your question is a good one, for the simple fact that I truthfully did not know what I was getting myself into when I ran out of the Preceptor’s office. I knew I had to help for the simple reason that I was the only one who knew what a horrible, terrible person my teacher was. By no means did I fully grasp the scope of what I was wandering into, but it was not as if I was learning much at the Academy at Immylla anyway – I have as much chance as touching Strands of Water as I do of growing to be seven feet tall.

The journey itself has been strangely wonderful. Had you told me ten years ago if I would be where I am right at this moment, I would have called you either mad, a liar, or a mad liar. I accept my role in all of this and am anxious to see where things take me. It is giving me an opportunity to make up for some of my past mistakes…

I think we’re all dying to know: Exactly what compelled you to race off into the unknown after discovering the letter to your Preceptor? Did you know you played a part in the prophecy of the Progeny from the very beginning?

The Preceptor was not a very nice fellow. He made my time at the Water Academy horrible. Honestly – who leaves a student in the middle of the sea surrounded by needleteeth sharks?

During my time studying fire at Veduin – or lack thereof considering my inability to touch the Strands of Fire – I spent a great deal of time in the vast library there. I read a thick, dusty book while there, The Complete History of the Oaken Nation, that included a bit of a prophecy from the Goddess Indrida. The words of the prophecy stuck with me – most of her predictions are kept secret and close for fear of what her words might do to shape the events of the world.

The moment I saw the letter to Preceptor Jhaell Myrr, I knew something was wrong. A portion of the prophecy had already come to pass – that was certain. Standing in his office, holding that parchment in my hand, I knew I was staring at something important. I had to do something about it…

Did I know I played a part? No.

Wait…do I?

Leaving everyone you know and love to study at the Arcane Republic, where, as the only Halfling you were repeatedly ridiculed by the Longlegs and Sun Elves most have been a tough transition. How did you cope without sinking into depression and homesickness?

It was not easy.

I struggled for a long time with who I was and what I wanted to be before I left to study at the Strand Academies (Read Merchant – a series of three short stories about Nundle’s past).

By the time I decided that I was going to give up everything I had to go and study, I was determined to make it work. I made a few friends as I studied – there was a wonderful ‘gnome’ named Bulo who was a great companion during my time at Veduin. Most of the time, however, I simply had to rely on my persistence to push through to the end.

The worst part was the food. Goodness… did you know Divines do not eat any sort of meat? I went for turns at a time without a proper roast. That was awful!

Stumbling upon the Red Sentinels and having Sergeant Trell take you on was fortuitous. What was your favorite part about becoming a part of the unit?

At first, it was the lovely meal they gave me. I had been following them for a time and had not eaten well for a few days.

After that, I enjoyed my time with Nathan – ah, Sergeant Trell that is – and learning all about the soldiers and what they were doing. I was quite happy to find a group of Longlegs willing to listen to reason – I think it really speaks well of Nathan’s leadership.

Broedi mentioned that the two of you had further adventures beyond the volume it took to tell the first part of your story. We’re all very worried about everyone’s plight. Can you tell us a little about what lies ahead?

Well…maybe a little.

Broedi and I are off to try to find some answers to a number of questions. I have a feeling something rather surprising awaits both of us on our journey. Especially for me. And others. All of us, really. But especially me.

What has been your favorite part about your adventures? If forced to choose, would you repeat the steps that have brought you where you are today?

My favorite part of the adventure is being at the center of perhaps the most important event in all of Terrene history. Had anyone ever suggested I would be where I was now, I would have called them a liar. My life has been an interesting journey (read more about that in Merchant-three short stories about me in the Terrene Chronicles) and I am anxious to see what comes.

(And now, a random question for R.T. Kaelin, the brains behind THE CHILDREN OF THE WHITE LIONS! How many books will be in the series? How frequently will they most likely publish?)

When I started writing, I outlined four books. As I wrote, the story took on a few more layers. For example – Nundle was a complete accident. I meant for him to exist for one chapter to give a view of Jhaell Myrr. But I loved writing him so much that I had to work him into the story more. The book grew because of it, but I think the story is much better with Nundle.

Now, it looks like the tale will be five books. And I’ve been very intentional as I write book 2 to stick to that goal. As to how frequently they will come out… well, I’m not really sure about that. I’m an indie author – meaning PROGENY is a title that has no big house publisher behind it, no shelf space in any bookstore, no marketing (besides what I do), nothing. I had interest from agents, but they were terrified at the length of the book and wanted me to cut things that would have made the story worse (and have removed things I set up for later books). So, I hired an editor, and published the book on my own to prove it was a viable endeavor.

Sales have gone up every month as word gets out. I suppose I am holding out hope a large publisher will show some interest in the book and publish it in the traditional fashion. If so, then I am guessing they will not want to pick up Book 1 of the series if I’ve already released Book 2. The manuscript is complete and I am editing it now. If I decide to release Book 2 on my own again, the turnaround will be fast. Success will drive my decision.


  1. Love this interview! Nundle is awesome!! (And the shark scene... LOVE!) =D


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