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Sianna Okaat

Sianna Okaat

Sianna Okaat is a lover of literature and fantasy.

Veni, Vidi, Vici.

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Beginnings of Graves

Book 1 - Where Villains Triumph Over Bleeding Heroes

A tale of a dark girl who fought for power. A lost boy who sought adventure and found hidden depths. A human whose blood has an unspeakable destiny.

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Fantasy Epic Fantasy
Copenhagen, Denmark
150,000 words
25% complete
8 publishers interested

Synopsis

In a land where rot and misery rule side by side, darkness born beyond the limitless light stirs.

Behind the walls of an ancient alma mater a dark girl embarks upon a quest through a range of obsidian mountains to gather the power she hungers for.

In a forest of dead pines a boy with feathers dangling from his ears is hauled into the depths of his continent he never thought to see.

Amongst mountains that reflect the starry sky a soldier awaits the storm that is written on the wind, the death of his companions.

Lost amidst visions and curses, a girl with sunshine in her hair and blood on her trembling hands finds herself on the wrong side of the history she was meant to unfold.

As lives collide in an ancient dance of tragedies and adventure, as secrets pile and unravel in a hurricane of death and betrayal, as their luck gets spent and the number of lives they have left comes to zero they must find a tomb beneath miles of stone lest their demons find it first. Lest the demons devour them whole.

From a debut author Sianna Okaat comes a tale of witchcraft and occultism, a story of gloom and poison to immerse its readers in the darkest journey of all.

A journey alongside shadows long gone. A journey towards a sealed grave.

A path of darkness eternal.

Outline

BEGINNING: 

The story is set in a world where Gods are real and so is the threat of humans upon all forms of life. Five Eons ago, during a bloody conquest of the globe, humans are faced with a threat of  new, god-like creatures they have never seen before. 

They discover a blood-thirsty race of witches waiting for them on the continent of Rhene. 

Now, a dark witch wishes to find a sword buried under endless mountains of Obsidian, for upon it is engraved a map of the ancient catacombs where something has awoken. 

Rynaezel sets out in her search for it, unaware that it will start a chain of events ultimately leading to a secret her kind has chosen to forget. 

MIDDLE: 

In a village by obsidian mountains, there lives a boy with raven hair and eyes like morning mists. A boy with nightmares that make his blood run black, and a living that promises no future for him.

Until a girl in robes of night appears out of darkness and drowns his world in blood and demons. 

POST-MIDDLE: 

With a curse on her shoulders and a weight on her back, a witch is running from her past into the nightmare of her future. Her task is simple, yet the creatures it will bring are far from concepts of simplicity. 

Find the sword. 

Kill the boy. 

Help the darkness claim the girl. 

But, as she will come to see, there are forces out there even greater than the one behind her. 

PRE-END: 

Amidst giants of obsidian, a human soldier is making his way through a land of witches hungry for his flesh. He bears a burden heavier than that of his companions. 
The knowledge of their inevitable death and his treacherous survival. 
He bears in his heart a love for a traitor and in his hands a nameless axe. Yet he knows not that what he set off to find will find him first. 

END: 

A tomb with no corpse. A ghost with a past of greatness. A bond of darkness and wrath. 

What will the collision of their lives promise this world? 

Audience

This book is not for everyone. There's your honest truth. There are plenty of people out there who will hate the very idea of it. But such is the deal with every manuscript out there. 

This book, however, is meant for a large audience, one that already loves books similar to this one and will welcome Beginnings of Graves as well. 

My manuscript targets the ages of 13-25, which would make it young adult/epic fantasy. It would usually appeal to women. According to marketing charts,com "Among US women 18 and older who have read at least one book in the past year, 84% say they have read a fiction book." Women make up half go the US population, which is a huge audience of about 125.9 million (according to wikipedia). 

Additionally, according to Time Magazine, YA book sales soared in 2014, exponentially increasing and bypassing the marketing sales of non-fiction books. 

This book is perfect for fans of Throne of Glass, Red Queen, The Mortal Instruments, Beautiful Creatures, A Court of Thorns and Roses, Falling Kingdoms and etc.

ToG alone has 270,000+ reviews, not even including the readers who have not rated the book on Goodreads. Therefore, as you can see, YA is a continuously growing market with millions of readers worldwide. 

Author

I am a debut author. Yes, yada yada yada, I've heard it all, trust me.
Novice, unprofessional, zero percent experience. However, I must say that I am what the politically correct ones call 'fresh blood', and perhaps that is a greater strength than that of the words '# 1NEWYORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR'.
I can be shaped to be great, can be molded, cleaned, perfected. I have no strings attached.
And I have talent.
Perhaps, dearest reader, that is all you should be looking for.
_______________________

In terms of awards, I am only just beginning to participate in writing competitions online (like the recent competition hosted by Legendary Women Inc). However, in the past, I have been published in my school's literary magazin (Labyrinth).
I have also got 8/8 for my IB Personal Project, for which I have started writing Beginnings of Graves. I have received amazing feedback from people who were grading my work and from there, decided to continue writing the manuscript.
_______________________

Find me:
Wattpad (Sianna Okaat)
Website (www.siannaokaat.tumblr.com)

Promotion

Wattpad. 

The biggest social media available for aspiring writers. I have already created an account and began to build my audience. My goal is to get featured, which can be done after six months of continuous updates as well as attract followers by getting to know other authors and engaging myself in the writing society. I post regular each Sunday, uploading one chapter a week.  

I can send messages to my followers informing them of my publishizer.com, asking for support. In the future, after I promote my book on various book display forums (like Clubs on Wattpad) I want to start an electronic newsletter, which would engage my followers and build my audience. I will start with www.ConstantContact.com, which I have found to be a great website for sending newsletters. 

Also, I will participate in various writing competitions online in order to attempt to win some of them, therefore getting my name out there! I follow this curated list of competitions (https://www.dystopianstories.c...) in order to keep up with various pages online posting contests. 

Additionally, I want to start spreading my name over Tumblr as well, where there are countless aspiring writers like me. There are multiple blogs where you can submit a post for a more popular account to post it later, which would expose it to a larger audience, therefore attracting viewers and followers to my work. 


Competition

Throne of Glass (Sarah J. Maas)

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Red Queen (Victoria Aveyard) 

This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace.

City of Bones (Cassandra Clare) 

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder― much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons.

Beautiful Creatures (Kami Garcia) 

Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she's struggling to conceal her power, and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.

Nevernight (Jay Kristoff) 

In a land where three suns almost never set, a fledgling killer joins a school of assassins, seeking vengeance against the powers who destroyed her family.

All of the above are well-acclaimed stories by New York Times bestselling authors. 

My book is my book. It is not any of the ones stated above nor will it ever be. It contains my ideas, my characters, my writing. The only it shares in common with those great manuscripts is its genre. 


Samples

CAVEAT EMPTOR or MAY HE BEWARE

There is little and less I can tell you of righteousness.
And such you will come to understand through the length of this manuscript.
Yet there is much and more I can tell you of heroes and villains. The just and the heinous, the brave and the selfish or however you wish to call the ancient pair of rivals. Your narrators and I have come into possession of an opinion not many will be willing to share with a gang of heartless murderers and a lonesome soul with words for weapons.
But I feel that before plunging him into the events of this tale, I must first tell the reader what caused the spark that started this fire.
Here, dearest tenderhearted, is the simplest of truths: your enshrined heroes are naught but one big, fat sham. The world is filled to its very brim with villainous creatures cloaked in falsehoods of selflessness and generosity. All with shreds of muscle for hearts and ice-cold tears for blood.
The saints you pray to at night? All villains. The governors you deem so ethical? Villains all. The innocent neighbor with a beautiful rose garden? Would jam a thorn through your eye. The kitten you cuddle with before bed? Oh, the vicious creature has claws.
We all do. Some less than others, but each being has its share of rot inside. Do not be fooled by gentle smiles and kind words, look instead into their eyes and seek the specs of darkness that made them, feel the heart beating beneath their chest and know that it, too, is painted black.
Here, those with conservative views on the primitive concept of good and evil will argue. And such they can do until the grave takes them and only earthworms remain to hear their relentless bickering, for the question of heroes and villains will forever remain unanswered in a world where all try so very hard to strip themselves of their abysmal sins and have their faces painted gold on sacred icons.
This tale, however, does not deceive the dearest reader with false notions of love eternal, kindness bottomless and peace everlasting won by those with selflessness boundless.
This is a story of villains clad in obsidian armor, where their enemies lay defeated and backstabbed with daggers that match the night’s infernal shades. This is a tale of the wind that blew away the moon and hid the stars in the seven corners of the world, a legend of treacherous swords, of nightmares made flesh and daydreams turned to ashes blowing over graves.
Of magic and swords and curses.
Of hearts and powers and monsters.
And with that, dearest tender-hearted, let me introduce you to a world that is feared by many and enjoyed by few, let me drown you in its rivers of crimson and show you the land where rot and treachery forever triumph.
Yet first, it must be said once more that this is not a tale of war, not a tale of love and, most importantly, not a tale of morals. Should you be looking for such—look elsewhere, for this is a tale of a dark girl who fought for power. A lost boy who sought adventure and found a life of dread. A witch that was sunshine with a great curse. A human that was blood with an unspeakable destiny.
And should this manuscript seep through the pages that bind it, should it crawl through you like a blight and plant more seeds of darkness in your frail mind…
You cannot say that you have not been warned.

CHAPTER 14

The sound of her thundering heart was so loud in her ears it must have been heard over miles. She’s been running for so long it felt like days have passed without her noticing anything past the exhaustion that clawed at every inch of her body, begging her to stop and rest and sleep for days on end.

But she had to keep going.

Something was driving her forward, something that was better off left behind.
The darkness of the midnight woods around her was alive. Branches clawed at her as she hurried past, stumbling, tripping, falling onto the hard, lifeless ground. She scrambled up, digging her broken nails into the earth to push off, to stand up when the voice of reason in her head was screaming for her to stay on the ground, to never stand up again.

Go, go, go, hurryyyy… another voice whispered, and she bolted past the dead trees hungry for her blood. The shadows between them hissed at her, toying with the edge of her cloak, transforming the bare bushes on her path into frightening, haunting figures. She did not dare look down, did not dare glance anywhere but forward.

The word was the only thing that still kept her going. Without rest, without food, without drink, only the endless darkness of the forest and the shadowy silhouettes of heinous trees. She was bleeding all over. The thin scratches on her hands and legs, the ripped skin on her knees and palms. The drip, drip, drip of small drops on the harsh earth.

She did not know how many solis turns had past. Sometimes she rarely noticed the change between the light of the bright and the darkness of the night. All she saw were the trees, the endless trees.

But it wasn’t them she was running from.

The trees were thinning, providing less and less bark for her to push off as she ran, scrambling for anything, anything to help her gain speed. Her mud-covered feet tangled up beneath her, throwing her off-balance and to the ground. She bit her tongue to hold back a scream and tasted copper.

She. Wouldn’t. Stop.

The weight on her back threatened to snap her in two as she heaved herself to her feet. The bast basket swayed, tipping her body to the side. Her breaths were so frequent, so desperate, so unbelievably loud amidst the eerie silence of the dark, bare woods.

Drip, drip, drip.

Her feet began to move again, to cover the impossible, inhumane distance before her.

But that wasn’t what she was thinking about. She did not care about the pain, about her safety in the dark wood, about the voice in her head. All she thought about was the sinister, cold something she was running from. She felt the deep shadows behind her. They’ve been following her for so long, running at the same pace, keeping the same distance. But they were always there when she looked back. The deepest shadows she’s ever seen, cold radiating from them with the smell of sealed graves. It was ever-present. A tightening noose round her throat.

Was it really what she was running from?

She’s asked herself many a time, but the answer was always the same. I do not know.

Drip, drip, drip.

Her throat burned as if it was made of embers. She could feel her feet growing clumsier, tangling and stumbling over roots, giving up the weight of her body.

She was so close.

Her vision swam. Everything tilted—the woods, the ground, the barely-visible stars above, her hands clawing at empty air for support. She staggered as colors blended in front of her and a sharp branch ripped open the skin on her shoulder. She could have sworn she heard the darkness behind her chuckle.
She wanted to drop everything, wanted to free her back from the weight strapped onto it, wanted to throw herself to the earth and close her eyes for a brimful turn, wanted to scream until it left her painless and hollow.

She felt the exhaustion grow in her like a blight. Her pace slowed, her muscles slacked, turning to water. Her vision never cleared, going instead more blurry until all she could see was a canvas of gray and black.

Until something yellow flickered in the distance.

She crumpled her dirty hands into fists, rubbing furiously at her drooping eyes. A light. It was a light. She drew in a shaky breath, not letting the relief win her over.

She. Wouldn’t. Stop.

Her feet were barely moving by the time she saw another light appear from the trees in the distance, then another and another, until they shone together like a bright bonfire, inviting her to the heat and joy. She dragged her weight from one tree to the next, taking deep breaths, grinding her teeth against each other until her jaw was hard as stone.

Go, go, go, hurryyyy… she felt the ghastly, sinister something in the woods shift as they neared the village, revealing itself to her a little more. It’s shadowy claws left marks on the trees behind her, cutting through the dead bark, leaving small trails of ruin behind them. They shone like deadly moons across a dark sky, giving off a low, vicious shine. She shook her head, pushing the thoughts away, but they just kept coming back.

Was that a glint of teeth in the darkness?

She light grew, welcoming her, calling her name. But all she heard was the hiss of shadows behind her.

She neared the first stone cottage in the village, pushing against the trees that made up the forest line. If her body could spare the water, she would cry. Her feet moved as if they were submerged in water, bringing her closer still to the haven, away from the claws that waited in the darkness.

She was so close.

The minuscule window let out a warm glow, spilling yellow onto the hardened, ashen earth of the forest. She could hear joyful voices coming from inside, children laughing, the clanking of pots again each other as women cooked the evening meal. Her stomach let out a pained, hollow sound, she hugged her hands around it.

She slipped past the window, making her way to the front door of the cottage, her feet were silent as they made their way to the threshold. The door was made of brown wood with squiggles of colorful chalk decorating it below the iron handle. The house looked good enough, and, as far as she could judge, there were children inside.

She put a hand against the cool stone wall, taking a moment to breathe before she looked around her, casting a glance down the small, uneven street of the village. A stone cottage stood in the end of it, three crooked steps leading to a chipped brown door.

Her hands worked with the straps on her waist, untying them, clumsily struggling with the tight knots. She let the basket slide from her back, placing it as carefully as she could on the ground. Her hands shook as she lifted the leather-bound lid.
Now, she did cry. The tears fought past the exhaustion, past the lack of all her needs. They came to her in silence, a rush of heat to her face and water streaming down her cheeks, each tear a ripple in the mask of restrained wrapped around her features. She tasted bitter loss in the back of her throat.

She sat above the basket, peering into its vast darkness, trying to fight the urge to grip it and run, defying everything she was meant for. Night pressed around her; the earth received her tears in quiet understanding. Even without the load on her back, her burden did not feel lighter, it was still weighing her down. Still keeping her in the same position, her eyes glued to the welcoming dark of the bast basket.

And still the cruel voice did not relent, whispers like daggers in her mind, You must. Hurry.

Her feet no longer hurt, her cuts no longer mattered. No matter the cost, no matter the deed, she knew with dread and pride in her heart that she had not failed.

She moved back towards the woods, just out of sight of the village. The sinister something felt miles away as she hid from the villagers entirely behind a vast, old oak with bare branches.

Drip, drip, drip.

She slept like the dead in their graves, unaware of the shadows watching her.

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