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Second Draft Complete!

Yesterday I finished the second draft of my still untitled epic fantasy, codename Cast Beyond. So I need YOUR help picking the best title for this book! Take the survey:

Choose the Best Title


It now stands at 97,000 words. During the second draft, I:

  • deleted 10 scenes
  • added 15 scenes
  • revised 36 scenes

I’ll have more work to do once my critique partners get through it later this summer. I already plan to add back in about four scenes based on their feedback. I’ll also need beta readers this summer, probably in August, if you’re interested.

Here are some teasers about the book so far!

Ekanen is a good soldier, but when his entire battalion is slaughtered by invading enchanters, he can do nothing to stop them. A lone enchanter throws him from the battlefield, leaving him the sole survivor. Now he must reconcile his people’s desire for vengeance with the knowledge that the enchanters aren’t all fighting on the same side.

With no one to trust, he finds himself drawn deeper into the enemy’s plot as he unravels the truth behind the unwarranted attack. Ekanen must find a way to prevent the next world war, a war that will leave the planet Renjian defenseless against the ancient enemy that waits in the depths of space.

Other Important Characters

In her twilight years, the summerborn enchanter Ilienka longs to retire to the mysterious unexplored continent to the north. But when her apprentice intervenes in the coming battle, she finds herself pulled into a conflict the world isn’t prepared for.

Dreaming of freedom, Heiduan and her sister escape from slavery in their homeland. The two winterborn enchanters hope that crossing the rift will save them, but they’re denied passage and exiled to a hostile land. When an enchanter army conscripts them, they find themselves fighting for their freedom again. Only this time the outcome may determine whether the army starts a new world war.


Great geysers shooting pure magic from the core of the planet divide the world into fragments, or continents. Enchanters can cross the thinnest of these rifts, but wider rifts may hide undiscovered lands.

Enchanters born in summer become casters, able to cast spells. Enchanters born in winter become makers, able to craft charms that others or they themselves can use until depleted.

Help me pick the right title for this book!

Traci Loudin needs YOU, beta readers!

Writing a novel is a huge undertaking, and it’s tough to keep everything straight after a couple drafts. After a while, I start to forget whether I foreshadowed that big event, whether a character revealed that crucial piece of information or kept it a secret, and whether their sudden change of heart was TOO out of character.

That’s why I need YOU!

Join the crew!

Join my beta reading crew! Before a software developer releases a new piece of software, they send it over to beta testers for quality control. Likewise, an author’s beta readers help spot all the bugs before the book ever hits shelves. (Digital or not.)

I need your help finding all the discrepancies and inconsistencies in my new epic fantasy novel before I publish it next year.


Why beta reading is awesome

You can shape the future of a published book! And since this is Book One of a planned series, your feedback could directly impact the entire series.

If you survive the entire book, your name will appear in the ebook Acknowledgments and in print in the paperback edition! Check out the Acknowledgments for The Last of the Ageless.


Beta reading details

  • Who: You and me, together we can conquer this beast!
  • What: Book One of a new epic fantasy with steampunk elements
  • When: The entire month of August
  • Where: Bring your own couch
  • Why: For honor and glory!
  • How: I’ll send you chapters each week via Dropbox in a Word doc OR as an ebook
Sign up to read this August!


Or if you still have questions, check out the FAQs:

How is beta reading different from editing?
What will I be reading?
Have you done this before?
What do you need from me?
Do you have any examples of feedback?
What if I have some bad news?
Deadlines? What deadlines?
What’s this about Dropbox or Kindle?
Can I share or discuss the story with other people?

My first podcast interview!

Ever wondered what my voice sounds like? Or how to pronounce my name?

Listen to the Podcast


Charlie Hoover and the Geek Question of the Day + PodcastCharlie Hoover is a well-known name on Google+, where he asks the Geek Question of the Day. And I got to be on the very first episode of his new podcast! At the beginning of each of his podcast episodes, he highlights some community members’ answers to the GQotD. Continue reading