Showing posts with label assassin. Show all posts
Showing posts with label assassin. Show all posts

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Defining Assassins

Since we’ll be discussing assassins and The Queen’s Blade, I thought it fitting to talk about what an assassin is, exactly. Let’s first take a look at the dictionary definitions:

Oxford Dictionaries: “A person who murders an important person for political or religious reasons.”

Merriam-Webster: “A person who commits murder; especially:  one who murders a politically important person either for hire or from fanatical motives.”

As far as I’m concerned, the word ‘assassin’ refers to anyone who is paid to kill another person. However, most of history’s famous assassins were not, in fact, paid to kill, but committed murder for personal reasons, be they political or otherwise. This confuses me – surely if you are not paid to kill, you are nothing but a common murderer? Yet these people go down in history, romanticised as assassins. For example, why is JW Booth an assassin just because he killed a president rather than Joe Soap on the street? It makes no sense to me.

In my opinion, someone who is paid to kill someone else is an assassin. If you are not paid to kill, you’re a murderer. Real assassins don’t have a personal agenda or anything to gain from the kill either, other than the payment. Blade, the master assassin in my fantasy series, The Queen’s Blade, would certainly agree with my definition. In fact, assassins in the series undergo intensive training and have strict rules to adhere to.

What do you think the dictionary and accepted definition of an assassin should be?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Queen's Blade series

So, still no news from the UK publishers - about a month to go, apparently, until I can expect a response. Right now I'm editing the Broken World series, which I haven't looked at for a couple of years, and boy, does it need a lot of editing. Every time I look at one of my books, it needs more editing. It's never ending. Demon Lord, which was published in 2006, needs a stack of editing, and, since I want to publish it as an ebook soon, along with the sequel, Dark God, I have to get it right. A writer's work is never done - no rest for the wicked and all that.

So, The Queen's Blade is about an assassin, whose tragic past has moulded him into, essentially, a drunken, lying, hard-nosed sociopath - well, I expect most killers have to be sociopaths, I think it comes with the territory. Blade, however, is a loveable sociopath, not only because he's kind of handsome, but he has this way about him... hard to describe, but he's an interesting person, and, while he tries very hard to be obnoxious, somehow it never works for him. He's also inclined to help people, although he'll never admit to doing it. He's also a eunuch, sadly for him, which is part of the reason for his bitterness.

When I started The Queen's Blade, it was supposed to be about Queen Minna-Satu of Jashimari, and her tragic story of sacrifice to save her people from the cruel and savage King Shandor of the Cotti. In the second chapter, however, guess who made his entrance? I was intrigued. Blade certainly didn't fit my idea of a hero, but he was fascinating, and, as it turned out, the key to the whole series, to say nothing of the fact that his actions - killing people - affected how everything turned out. So I followed his story, and learnt all the details of his life. Amazing stuff. He's now my favourite hero, although I love all my heroes and heroines, Blade takes first prize. Strange for someone like him to be so endearing, but there it is.

To quote Blade in a comment he made to his wife Chiana in Lord Protector, the last book of the series: "How proud you must be, to have a lying, drunken killer for a husband." Well, that about sums him up, and yet, there's so much more to him. There are currently 6 books in the series, including the prequel God Touched. The first book is The Queen's Blade, followed by The Invisible Assassin, then Knight of the Veil, Master of the Dance, and Lord Protector. There may be more, too. So, that's The Queen's Blade series.