The Arbolenx Fan Club

Arbolenx In Tree by Maddie Sheriff
Arbolenx in Tree
by Maddie Sheriff
Baby Arbolenx by Maddie Sheriff
Baby Arbolenx
by Maddie Sheriff

Not long ago, I wrote a Creature Feature on the arbolenx, a feline, sentient creature that inhabits Mundia, the story world of my Vaetra Chronicles series. In Vaetra Unveiled, the first book of the series, a male arbolenx named Ru-Rahl plays a brief and minor role in helping the protagonist Jaylan on his mission.

When I wrote Ru-Rahl into the story, little did I know that his 1,500-word debut scene would become one of the more memorable moments in the story for many of my readers. Every reader who has spoken or written to me about Vaetra Unveiled mentions the arbolenx.

Some readers get really animated about them. Almost literally, in one case. A good friend of mine’s thirteen-year-old daughter did a couple of arbolenx sketches for me (thanks to Madison “Maddie” Sheriff for the sketches at right).

On Facebook, one of my readers suggested more arbolenx scenes in upcoming books. I mentioned that I plan to do some short stories featuring various elements of my story world, including the arbolenx. Her response? “No way, Ru-Rahl and his band should have their OWN series. I’m starting the fan club right now.”

Thus began the unofficial Arbolenx Fan Club. On the same comment thread, two other readers immediately joined in.

I don’t think I could have planned for a reader reaction like the one I received. In fact, I think it’s cool that I didn’t plan it. It was fun to discover that others share my fascination with the idea of a sentient feline with innate magic abilities. After all, I was the very first arbolenx fan.


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  1. It sounds like a serendipitous opportunity to flex your creative muscles for the kiddies who read your books 🙂

  2. Actually, as far as I know, Maddie is the only YA reader I’ve had. The adults seem just as taken with the arbolenx. But that isn’t to say that I won’t do something special for a YA audience, should I acquire one!

    What I’m really waiting for is that phone call from a gaming company. 😉

  3. Okay…so have you submitted your work to Wizards of the Coast? If you haven’t, I would sure try. Your work sounds a lot like what I have read from their press and they have authors like R.A. Salvatore in their stable not to mention Ed Greenwood and more.

    So maybe the reason you haven’t heard from a gaming company is because they don’t know about you. Only you can fix that.

  4. Thanks Michael. I was kidding, sort of. You are so right that it is up to me to take action. For the moment, I’m happy to focus on just helping readers find my book. I wouldn’t feel confident contacting WotC unless the book were already selling fairly well. For one thing, talking to them now wouldn’t put me in a very good negotiating position!

  5. I love cats, so I have a feeling I’ll be joining this fanclub very soon 😉

  6. You’ll be a welcome addition, Vanna. I hope things are going well with your book. Your cover is looking good!