Monday, March 27, 2023

Raven, Romba, and Ravai: Malketh and the Undead by Dave Maruszewski,

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What part of the writing process do you dread?

Starting. Just sitting down and committing to t a long period, even if it is for 2 hours, I get anxiety. Once I start going, everything is fine. I don’t know why I stress out about it. I have enough experimental data that I should roughly know the outcome before it begins. Yet, I still stress.

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?

Luckily, I do not. I think that I attribute it to two things. The first is that I am not a full time writer. That takes the stress out of producing, and also it allows me to not be immersed in writing for long periods. The second is that I write in parallel. I like to write multiple things at once. That can create large amounts of dead periods in terms of production, but it also helps when I get stumped. I just pull out another book, article, etc. and work on that.

Tell us about your latest release.

This is the second book in the Raven, Romda and Ravai series. The first story kind of set the three protagonists on an epic journey to fight a legendary villain. They were inexperienced and learned as they went.

Here, the three are returned to the kingdom as somewhat accomplished. Still youthful, they aren’t allowed to run the biggest operations. When a rogue mage comes back to the kingdom, they are sent on a reconnaissance mission to get some basic information. Unfortunately for them, it throws them into the action again.

Magic in the kingdom has been banned, so it is not like they can bring another wizard to go toe-to-toe with the mage. Instead, Raven, Romda and Ravai have to use more practical measures. Not only that, the mage’s specialty of magic is necromancy. So, they will have to take him and an undead army as well.

How do you develop your plot and characters?

For the plot, I usually have a loose skeleton on what I want to accomplish. I take note of things that I like in fiction. For example, I like when there are two villains in the story. It makes the plot more unpredictable. So, I am currently writing a book with 2 villains. After that, I have usually 5-10 themes that I want to address. I use those to resolve plot. Say, I want to talk about nonviolence. I may have a conflict that our characters will try to do without fighting.

Themes will also help with character development. In the nonviolent case, how will each character react? Will they like it? Will it come naturally to it?

Lastly, I am writing a series. I have a direction that I want to take main character. So, I need plot and side character to get them there. I can do this by an ushered–like fashion or just plain antagonize these poor heroes.

If you could apologize to someone in your past, who would it be?

Probably every teacher that I had from about 6th grade until 11th. I actually liked learning. I guess that I loved it a little too much as I saw it as a social experience as well. I just screwed around and talked as much as I could. I should have to teach middle school as my penance.

Raven, Romda and Ravai are settling into their new knightly duties well. With the Dark Beast defeated, their normal tasks almost seem mundane.

Amidst the boredom, Ravai asks, “Why does no one talk about villains from the past?”

Romda reasons, “What would be the point?”

There is a point. Even though villains may have been defeated in the past, they may still be around, waiting in the background ready to resurface once again.

Malketh has returned to the kingdom, but something is different about him this time. He is back with an entire army … an entire army of undead soldiers!

“Whether you want to read this aloud to your little one or let them explore this magical world on their own, parents can rest assured that this second installment in the Raven, Romda, and Ravai series will be a playful, whimsical addition to their bookshelves.” –The Book Review Directory

“… the squires are appealing characters, as is their comical banter.” - Blue Ink Review

A great story for the fantasy loving youth, this adventure will appeal to those who like action and humor in an easy reading environment.

Read an Excerpt

Ravai said with almost a stone face, “We need to get back to shore. I’m not sure that snake is dead.”

The two swam probably twice as fast as they did when they were racing. Both were exhausted when they made it to the shore. They walked onto the small sandy shore, then both plopped down on their backs gasping at any available air.

After Raven finally caught his breath, he said to Ravai, “I have to admit, you handle yourself well in a fight.”

“Yeah,” Ravai agreed. “That was a sweet move with the shield, too. I mean from you.”

Raven responded, “Thanks.”

Ravai looked down at his leg and became alarmed, “Oh no!”

Raven worried and asked, “What?”

Ravai noted, “I lost the dagger! Darn, that was my favorite!”

Raven responded again, “Don’t worry. I’ll buy you a new one for saving me. I have some extra money that I was going to use on a good shield. Apparently, they come in handy.”

Ravai laughed, and graciously declined. “Nah, it’s okay. You can just tell everyone how great I was in the fight.”

Raven said, “Something tells me that you’ll beat me to it.”

From that day on, the two became friends…

Ravai looks at Raven and acknowledges, “I guess that was the first time that we teamed up. Hmm.”

Raven then says to Ravai, “Look, I was talking with Romda. She thinks we can win, and to be honest, I’m starting to believe her.”

Ravai says back to Raven, “Yeah, I just don’t want to lose.”

Raven replies, “This, I know.”

Ravai says, “Not that. I just don’t want to lose … people.”

About the Author
Dave Maruszewski is blessed with a great family. He was originally inspired to write stories by his wife and son.

He strives to develop stories with sound moral values that will be enlightening as well as entertaining to youths and adults. The Raven, Romda and Ravai books are targeted especially for children who shy away from reading. His stories are created from an accumulation of experience from careers/backgrounds as a physicist, engineer, teacher, artist, video game designer and software developer.

In between writing stories and running his own company, Digital Tumult (, Dave enjoys video games, watching internet videos and hanging out with his family.


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  1. Thank you for sharing your interview, bio and book details and for offering a giveaway, I have enjoyed reading about you and your work and I am looking forward to reading Malketh and the Undead and the previous book in the series. Are there more stories to come?

    1. Thank you! Yes, there is. I'm currently writing three. I should have one out within a year, and possibly more.

  2. This sounds like a great read. Excellent cover!

  3. What a cover - draws me right in...

    1. Thank you! Can't take credit for the cover. I had a talented designer/illustrator do that for me :-)

  4. The book sounds intriguing. Love the cover!