Now roughly half a year into its existence, a Fayetteville shop that keeps in stock sought-after collectible novels and first editions has begun holding book signings on its grounds. The bookstore is located next to the Manlius Town Hall on Brooklea Drive.
June 11: Joe Melnik, author of “Ascension of Light”
One such event last month at Doyle’s Books brought in local resident Joe Melnik, the author of a recently released tale of good versus evil entitled “Ascension of Light.”
Though geared toward young adults, the 35-chapter work of fantasy fiction can be enjoyed by all generations, said Melnik, who lives in East Syracuse. At over 300 pages, it follows the journeys of a young hunter named Raine and his experiences with the Endless, a gathering of immortal, mythical beings struggling for power in their world.
The first in a series called “Chronicles of the Endless,” the self-published book is also the 51-year-old’s debut work as an author.
At an earlier age, he had developed an interest in reading the “Lord of the Rings” books and the “Dragonlance” novels as well as the epics of Robert Jordan, citing those examples and other literature as his outlets whenever he was punished and sent to his bedroom as a child.
Melnik’s forays into writing his own stories started out as a hobby to unwind with when he wasn’t busy watching after his three kids or logging hours for the Bank of New York Mellon, where he’s worked full-time in management for the past 16 years.
On New Year’s Day in 2017, he announced to his family that his goal would be to finish and publish his first book by the time he turned 50.
From there, he embarked on a “grueling” but “worthwhile” road that involved typing away hundreds of words at a time late in the night and early in the morning as well as the shipping of the manuscript back and forth with an editor in Colorado until he felt ready to put it out to the world.
Along the way, he determined a fitting font size for the text and proper spacing while having his wife and friends proofread.
Calling it a “simple” read but “complex” in its plot, Melnik said he decided to self-publish “Ascension of Light” to keep his vision for the storyline intact.
Inspired in ways by the 1986 British adventure film “Highlander” and illustrated by Lowville artist Doug Hoch, “Ascension of Light” can be ordered through the website chroniclesoftheendless.com.
Melnik said that he’s currently in the later stages of writing the second book in the series, set to be called “The Dark Tide.”