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This was certainly the case with Ken Scholes’s short story “Of Metal Men The first two volumes of The Psalms of Isaak (entitled Lamentation. So I told my friends over on Facebook that I would put up a post once I finished my re-read ofLamentation. I’m going to do that for each of the. Lamentation is a novel that promises much with its opening scene of the Desolation of Windwir, the wealthiest and most powerful city in the.

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Lamentation (Psalms of Isaak, book 1) by Ken Scholes

So I told my friends over on Facebook that I would put up a post once I finished my re-read of Lamentation.

I decided this time to listen to the series. Macmillan did a brilliant job recording the first two books and Audible has continued from there, keeping a few of the original voice talents on board. I finished Lamentation yesterday morning.

I think it was my first complete trip through in audio only and it was well worth it. Being read to opens me back up that child state of wonder in the midst of hearing story. So…some back-story that you may or may not already know. You can watch videos of me lamwntation Beth Meacham and me and Jay Lake talking about the book back in the early days. That covers a lot of it…short story writer tackles a novel based on two of his short stories on a dare from his wife and best friend.

I got about 20k words in before bogging down. But I took the dare and wrote Lamentation lwmentation six and a half weeks of crazy pushing. Thirteen months after starting the book, I had a five book offer from Tor. Originally, I saw just one short story. At its core, about a king who finds a weeping robot in a fantasy-ish setting.

And in my short stories, lamentqtion other characters are often just a part of the setting — the main character is where I keep the POV of those stories. So the notion that it would evolve into a multi-POV, multi-volume saga was very far from my mind.


I wrote the first short story, then realized when I saw the art for it that it was a much bigger story. I had the notion that it would be four short stories — all with rhyming scuoles.

But ultimately, I ended up just writing the first two stories and then incorporated some of the key moments from the unwritten stories into the series in Antiphon and Requiem. On September 11,I took the short story about Rudolfo finding the metal man and pasted it into the document. Then I took the second short story about the trial of Sethbert and did the same.


I converted that text to red so I would know to check it carefully and make sure it syncs up. Then, without an outline and with only the vaguest sense of a war over Windwir erupting and culminating in a war crimes trial, I started writing. I even tried to get Jay and Jen to let me off the dare early on but to no avail.

I also have a different perception of the world and myself as my worldview has continued evolving around the more conservative days of my early years. As a first novel goes, I can be proud of it and pleased with it. It certainly launched me nicely and provided a great long bit of road to stretch my story-telling legs on. So when I first started the book the only characters I knew much about almentation Petronus, Rudolfo and Isaak.

Being the th Tale of Felip Carnelyin. I cribbed that story about a habitable moon and a Moon Wizard and turned it into lamentatiob mythology of the Psalms of Isaak. Jin Li Tam had no substance in the short stories and her character evolved initially from the courtesan spy role not even hinted at scholed the short story into who she becomes as the story unfolds. There are scholds lot of thing I think I got right in the scholed book…and probably an sfholes number of things I got wrong.

My scholed shortcoming in Lamentation — and where I had some cringing especially in the first half of my re-read — was my portrayal of women.

You can see where things shift when Winters shows up. Still, at the end of it all, the Named Lands has a lot of Patriarchal tropes in it especially in Lamentation.

Ken Scholes

Girls hiding behind big strong men, women being commanded by their father to bear heirs in an arranged, strategic marriage. And by trying and by caring. Writing is a sandbox for me to explore life in addition to telling stories…and learn something along the way. And hopefully leave the campsite better as I pass through by sharing what I learn as I go.

The second biggest shortcoming in the book, I think, is probably also part of its strength. I wrote it really fast.

I needed to do that in order to outrun my fear of novels. I think the worldbuilding itself has the combination of backstory, myth, history, religion, art all referenced to give a lamentatikn of being real. And there were a few places in the book that were inconsistent.


I picked up a few places during that rather complex trial schokes where there were some POV violations despite how many times I went over it. And we already know that my view of my own work is…problematic…at times. As they say, lamehtation are no perfect books. It culminated in me moving schols south from the Tacoma area to Portland, into a nursing home, which was a really tough stretch of time. She died just after my offer from Tor. A lot of the Psalms of Isaak is metaphor as I processed the different bits of life I floundered through between and now.

Lamentation is more about questions than answers, I think, and in listening to it, I was struck by how it all comes together and how it brought Vlad Li Tam and Winters to the front for regular scenes through the rest of the books.

Though I know Canticle is probably the darkest of the books. It oamentation longer mattered why. It mattered that it never happen again. And Rudolfo saw clearly his part in that, and he saw how a lamentation could become a hymn.

But by the time I was submitting it, I knew it was five volumes and knew all of the titles except for Antiphon. My favorite scene from the book is the confrontation between Rudolfo and Vlad Li Tam over the bonfire near the end.

And favorite quote from the underpinning philosophy of the Androfrancines: Pistols placed on mantles in schloes 1 should be used by book 5 methinks….

My favorite awesome thing that happened because of this book? Well, scboles many to list. A kken of amazing friends, an awesome launch into the world of novels, a lot of great trips out to promote the book, lots of nice notes and reviews.

The voice talents are amazing. And being read to really make sit a different experience. My head is filling up with the story and its characters. So what are your thoughts? Your email address will not be published. Notify me of follow-up comments by email.

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