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Peterborough author publishes first book in fantasy series

  • Celia Jarest's new book is the first volume in a planned trilogy

    Celia Jarest's new book is the first volume in a planned trilogy

  • Peterborough author Celia Jarest, author of "The Medallion Chronicles: Bloodlines," a fantasy novel published this month

    Peterborough author Celia Jarest, author of "The Medallion Chronicles: Bloodlines," a fantasy novel published this month

  • Celia Jarest's new book is the first volume in a planned trilogy
  • Peterborough author Celia Jarest, author of "The Medallion Chronicles: Bloodlines," a fantasy novel published this month

The war of the Gods has spilled over onto the planet known as Yugerith. The tyrant Goddess Zathiria rules over Yugerith with ruthless pride and a craving for servitude, and the only way to end this war and return Yugerith to the inhabitants is to return Dalgot’s Medallion to him. When a young woman unsuspectingly finds the Medallion, she is soon flung into a world filled with wizards, magic, dragons, and adventures that she never thought possible.”

That’s the teaser Peterborough author Celia Jarest wrote describing her first novel, “The Medallion Chronicles: Bloodlines,” published this month by WheelMan Press. The book is the first of a trilogy that the 23-year-old author is writing, fitting the creative work in mostly on weekends, since she commutes daily from Peterborough to Boston, where she works as a animal lab technician at Boston University.

“It’s an epic fantasy,” Jarest said of the book in a recent phone interview. “I love reading fantasy. I love writing it. It’s an awesome realm for a reader to get lost in.”

Jarest was raised in Peterborough and attended Peterborough Elementary School, South Meadow School and ConVal High School.

“I started writing in diaries and journals as I grew up,” she said. “By sophomore year in high school, I really started putting together stories. I read Philip Pullman’s “His Dark Materials” trilogy and thought ‘I want to tell a story like that.’ That’s really when I decided to write.”

Jarest took creative writing classes at ConVal and then went on to Becker College, in Leicester, Mass., where she enrolled in a two-year veterinary technician program.

“In college, they had classes in mythology, creative writing, short stories, poetry. I took as much as I could,” she said.

“The Medallion Chronicles” went through many changes as Jarest slowly worked on her writing.

“I started the book when I was a sophomore in high school and finished it junior year in college,” she said. “It’s gone through different plots, different characters. Now I want other people to read it.”

After graduating from Becker in 2010 and finding a job in Boston, Jarest sent her manuscript to a number of traditional publishers, with no luck.

“I looked into self-publishing, but it seemed to be a rip-off,” she said. “So I just plugged away. Eventually I did a Google search for small publishing houses. The smaller companies are a little more willing to make an investment with new authors.”

She discovered WheelMan Press, a fairly new firm based in Georgia, last August.

“They said they were looking for new authors and it ended up being an amazing match. I sent a summary. They asked for the manuscript. Then they signed me on. They do a variety of genres and their forte is trying to discover new authors.”

“The Medallion Chronicles: Bloodlines” is available in both paperback and Kindle editions on Amazon.com, Jarest said.

Because she spends two hours each weekday driving back and forth to Boston, Jarest has limited time to write.

“On the weekends is when I generally do a lot. I sit down and crank out everything I can,” she said.

The second book in the Medallion series is about half done.

“I hope to finish it in the summer,” Jarest said. “The third book is all notes. But I know how I want it to end.”

Dave Anderson can be reached at 924-7172, ext. 233 or danderson@ledgertranscript.com. He’s on Twitter at @DaveAndersonMLT.

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