This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
Destiny. I have always been fascinated by it. The driving inspiration in my debut novel, Nicholas: The Fantastic Origin of Santa Claus, was the intrigue of a normal boy who would inspire the ageless legends of Santa Claus. There was no way a young orphan would ever think his life would eventually bless and enrich the lives of children for over a millennium after his time on Earth. Another element of literature I find captivating is the idea that there’s more to every story—elements that never found their way to the page because it didn’t serve the overall arc of the author’s story, but in themselves can tell a whole other story.
When I was in third grade, we read in class the book, The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka, and my imagination danced in delight with the notion that there can be so much more to a story than simply what appears at face value. While this has captivated my interest in books like Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Geoffrey McGuire, it has pushed me to try and see if there is more to every tale told, even stories we are entirely familiar with. One day, I do believe I will find an iconic villain and interpret their motivations into an original story that will build sympathy for a character that audiences have historically hated. Disney reinvented Maleficent, the villain from Sleeping Beauty, and did that exact same thing.
This novel, however, is not the interpretation of a villain. This is seeing a fable and seeking the story behind it. This is finding a historical figure and finding the destiny on his shoulders. Most people, typically, when I told them I was working on a screenplay about Good King Wenceslas made a perplexed expression. “Why does that name sound so familiar?” they’d ask. I’d remind them of the carol, and most would instantly recognize the tune of the song. Very, very few would ever know the lyrics. Somehow, Good King Wenceslas has found a way into our ethos, but has faded from contemporary relevance. I think that’s lamentable and having examined the historical man behind the classic carol, it has become my mission to share his story and revive him back to social relevance. Is this fictional? Yes. Is it factual? Yes. Is it fable? A bit. If my story was not a culmination of all those, well, I would feel it wasn’t a story worth telling.
I took the Wenceslas story as I interpreted the historical documents and legends about the man and wrote a screenplay, which placed as a finalist in competition. As of the writing of this manuscript, the screenplay remains available for purchase and production by Hollywood. The screenwriting award became fuel for my motivational gas tank, and so I felt the inner desire to embark on letting my fingers dance upon the keyboard again to lay out the life and times of the first king of Bohemia, one remembered in legend and song as Wenceslas the Good.
Good King Wenceslas
Good King Wenceslas looked out
on the feast of Stephen,
when the snow lay round about,
deep and crisp and even.
Brightly shone the moon that night,
though the frost was cruel,
when a poor man came in sight,
gathering winter fuel.
Hither, page, and stand by me.
If thou know it telling:
yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?
Sire, he lives a good league hence,
underneath the mountain,
right against the forest fence
by Saint Agnes fountain.
Bring me flesh, and bring me wine.
Bring me pine logs hither.
Thou and I will see him dine
when we bear the thither.
Page and monarch, forth they went,
forth they went together
through the rude wind’s wild lament
and the bitter weather.
Sire, the night is darker now,
and the wind blows stronger.
Fails my heart, I know not how.
I can go no longer.
Mark my footsteps my good page,
tread thou in them boldly:
Thou shalt find the winter’s rage
freeze thy blood less coldly.
In his master’s step he trod,
where the snow lay dented.
Heat was in the very sod
which the saint had printed.
Therefore, Christian men, be sure,
wealth or rank possessing,
ye who now will bless the poor
shall yourselves find blessing.
CookieMonster911: The story overall was an adventure that is appealing to any age. The way the characters develop adds a more human characteristic to the novel. The writing style itself is amazing because you can learn every character's thoughts and emotions. The awkward love triangle and jerk moments adds to the ...
Hawkebat: Playing both Kotor I & II and Swtor I found the story line interesting and it held me until chapter 35 Very good story and plot flow until then, very few technical errors. I felt that the main character was a bit under and over powered, as it fought for balance. The last few chapters felt too f...
Flik: Hi! ^.^ huge fan of yours on ff.net! When I saw the note about this contest on The Way We Smile, I couldn't help but rush over here, create an account, and vote! XD Seriously love this story and would recommend it to anyone! :D best FT fanfiction out there. Amazing story, amazing concept that wa...
Bri Hoffer: I couldn't put it down!! The characters are all incredibly likable, and it's so descriptive you can see, smell, and feel thier surroundings. Great story, and very well written. I cannot wait for follow up stories. there were a few grammatical errors, but nothing that I could move right over.
nirrmitshah: A truely touching story where you'd be at the edge of your seat for the most time. even though the starting might seem rushed, the story was extremely interesting and entertaining. I think certain parts could be added detailing the Mynds's culture. As well as more details on the Jhanthru history....
Shweta Somwanshi: I just chose to read this out of nowhere and now I can't stop. Hats off to the author who made the reader swoon away with words so beautifully! I loved how I was able to imagine everything so explicitly because the writing was simple and easily comprehensive with a touch of complexity somewhere b...
Mourn8220House: When first reading "Avarice," I thought it would be another fairytale but I was taken back the author's approach and choice of ending. There is little to be said for the story and overall plot besides the sudden twists and speculation, other than that I do not want to ruin a fantastic tale, you m...
ArgyrisMetaxas: Thrilling story which builds layer ontop of layer. A few mis spellings every few chapters. What I found special was that it took a modern day problem and took it to its logical conclusion and plays this realism with gritting precision. I'm always on edge ready to shout from adrenaline. This is gr...
ernbelle: When I first started this story I was a little unsettled by all of the information that appears in the prologue, and wasn't sure if I would continue. However, I am very glad I did. The plot was very well thought out and really interesting. There were not any page breaks or markers to acknowledge ...