The Guardians of Altana – Finished!

I have waited for this day for years. Back when I was thirteen I started my first novel after being introduced to Twilight, Vampire Academy, The Shadowhunters, and all the cheesy, cliched series that writhed and withered in pop culture since those golden Millennial years of the late 2000s-early 2010s.It was shitty. Very angsty. Dystopian at best, teen vampire romance at worst. But it was a start. That year (somewhere around 2010), I began my journey of writing shitty, angsty stories.
Hey, we all had to start somewhere.
But that horrible teen vampire romance was the start of the series that would be finished and published this very day. What started as a vampire hunter looking for her vampire boyfriend, hoping to redeem him and reverse his curse, had evolved after another influential moment.
In 2016, I had a dream that a princess, estranged from her betrothed, would find him once again–changed, twisted, cursed. That princess in the beginning would seek a way to cure her fianc√©. These two stories were the beginning of The Shadow Curse.
Ara changed since 2016. First, she pined after her lost fianc√©, just like the vampire hunter from my first written story. It took rewriting The Shadow Curse three times for me to realize that Ara and Aescion weren’t a happily-ever-after couple–that Aescion, so twisted by the curse of the Void god, would need to pave his own way, and Ara would find love with someone who suffered through the hell of a literal apocalypse with her.
Initially, I had wanted Raethin and Aescion to fight over Ara. Who doesn’t love a good love-triangle? Except, I realized I was tired of those. It’s such a huge trope.
Somewhere in the second rewrite of The Shadow Curse, I discovered Cirith and Zira. Two missing pieces to the major story plot that had a gaping hole right in the center of it.
But finally, I had all the right characters in place.
The Shadow Curse doesn’t show heavily the weight of Cirith’s and Zira’s roles–not until you reach The Forgotten Gate. It’s there that I hope the reader can realize that this series is not just about Ara finding her way in a new world, discovering a new love, and redefining her own self. Rather, one discovers that there were threads of lies the gods spun among each other, twisting the strings of fate tightly around each other’s souls.
The gods are flawed. They’ve fallen short to protect their people. The ones who made the sacrifices to save their realms did not choose their fate–it was thrust upon them by those higher than even them.
I think that final lesson I wanted to relay in the last strands of the Guardians of Altana’s story is that we are all small. Tiny. That there are greater pains, greater joys, greater experiences, off in the far reaches of existence. That gods and angels too endure pain, seek after pleasure and joy, and all fall short.
Anyway, enough philosophizing.
I wanted to recount my thoughts to you, my readers (or whoever just stumbled upon this page) as I closed the last chapters of my journey of this series.
I spent most of the last ten years writing as a hobby. I enjoyed it, and plenty of friends and critics online (primarily Wattpad) said that I did a good enough job at it. My mother before she passed read my handwritten stories, demanding that I pursue that dream. And so I did. These guardians have helped me grow as a writer and taught me to be an author. I imparted pieces of my soul in each character, hoping that these seeds would grow into something I could be proud of one day.
So let’s celebrate–for the five years writing this series and the one year I spent finishing and publishing it!
Here’s to many more years of writing and publishing to come. I promise, I haven’t finished yet.

Binge the series