I'm both a fantasy writer and a professor of medieval history, having loved fantasy since I discovered Tolkien in ninth grade. That and a long trip to Europe with my family in high school--including lots of climbing around castles--got me interested in real medieval history. The two different facets work together surprisingly well--including that both are tough ways to make a living! For one thing, real medieval history can come up with much better plots than anything I could create.
Real medieval people were rather grim by our standards: ruthless, violent, always thinking about death, and with no religious tolerance--and those were the good guys! My own fantasy tends to be lighter, though it always ends up being about sacrifice, mortality, redemption, and similarly knee-slapping topics.
The characters and situations for my first published novel, "A Bad Spell in Yurt," came to me literally in a dream. I'd been trying intermittently for over 20 years to get a novel published, but this one worked! And it became a national "top 10" best-seller in the fantasy/science fiction genre. (Ought to have more dreams like that...)
The "Yurt" series is six books long; they can be enjoyed in any order, but there is still an overall story arc. The books in the series are (in order) "A Bad Spell in Yurt," "The Wood Nymph and the Cranky Saint," "Mage Quest," "The Witch and the Cathedral," "Daughter of Magic," and "Is this Apocalypse Necessary?" My first novella, "The Lost Girls and the Kobold," falls chronologically between "Wood Nymph" and "Mage Quest." The second novella, "Below the Wizards' Tower," happens between "Mage Quest" and "The Witch and the Cathedral." The most recent novella, "A Long Way 'Til November," takes place between "Daughter of Magic" and "Is This Apocalypse Necessary?" (all three novellas are available as an omnibus in one volume, called "Third Time's a Charm"). The overall story of the series is now wrapped up, but I've started a new series, "Yurt, the Next Generation," with a first book called "The Starlight Raven," and the sequel, "An Autumn Haunting."
Of my other novels, "Count Scar" is the closest I've gotten to real medieval history. It's set in a thinly-disguised version of southern France in the thirteenth century. My husband, Robert Bouchard, and I co-wrote it. "The Sign of the Rose" is a retelling of a story originally written around 1200, in medieval France; it has romance elements but also has real medieval social history. "Voima" was my chance to revel in the Nordic myths I've always loved, while making up new myths of my own (no Odin or Siegfried here). I've recently given it a new cover and a new title, "Shadow of the Wanderers." For some reason "Yurt" fans have never taken to it, but it may be my favorite book.
More information about my novels is available on my website, www.Daimbert.com. Recently I've started making my out-of-print books available in print once again as well as in ebook format. I like a physical book in my hands myself, but for everyone who enjoys the convenience of reading onscreen, enjoy!