This is the official blog of Scott Swift. Here I will be discussing my stories, the writing process, ideas, etc.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Opening Day at the Blog!


It has been almost a year since I published the first of the Traveling Salesman's Darktime Tales, so I thought it appropriate that I start my much requested blog at this time.  I hope to make this a place where my readers can engage me in discussion, learn a bit about the writing process, and talk about the characters found in my stories. 

For those of you who don't know, The Traveling Salesman's Darktime Tales are a series of children's stories, books, ebooks and audio books meant for kids 8 and up.  They are based on bedtime stories I told my own children for years about a mystical, magical Traveling Salesman who is also a wizard of sorts.  He sells magical items (which sometimes come with warnings), travels around, has adventures helping townspeople, fighting werewolves, witches, dragons and all sorts of magical creatures.

The stories are exciting and engaging, but not too intense for younger kids. While they do include some violence, you'll never find any gore or horror.  For example, in my latest book, "The Innkeeper's Vampire", I never once use the word "blood" and no one is actually bitten.  My wonderful test readers (a group of about a dozen kids) don't seem to mind, and their parents really appreciate it.

The salesman himself is never given a name, nor is he described physically.  I know what he looks like to me, but to each reader he's different, and that's part of his magic. He could be of any race, any background, and for the most part the stories could be taking place anywhere in the world.  I deliberately write the stories this way so kids can determine for themselves who he is, what he looks like, etc.  He has a history, and I leave clues about his life away from his travels throughout.

The stories range in length from about 1,500 words (for the younger kids) up to around 15,000 words (for everyone else).  The audio books (yes, that's me reading them!) run from just over 10 minutes to almost 40 minutes.  I like having a mix of lengths like this because it gives kids an opportunity to read a story in a night or two, although my more recent stories are trending a bit longer (can't help it, that's just the way they come out!). 

I thoroughly enjoy bringing these tales to kids all over the world, and sincerely hope that you and your family will join me on this exciting adventure!

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