This is very good, and caused me to subscribe here and to your blog. I completely agree with your take on the publishing industry. I haven't tried publishing yet myself ... am still on my first draft ... but mine is set in the 11th-12th centuries and an agent I pitched already said publishers only want "x" time period and it's not that. They only want books of a narrow time period that has previously sold well, as if readers want to read only over and over of one period in time. It's infuriating and I'm looking forward to your efforts to experiment with new (old) ways. Good luck!
I really enjoyed chapter one, Mark. I am looking forward to the next chapter.
I'm loving this so far! And it takes me back to the archaeological excavation I participated in on Lindisfarne (Holy Island) a few years ago in search of the original monastery raided by those vikings (we didn't have any luck, but made some interesting finds nonetheless...) A fascinating setting for a novel!