Council Bluffs native and author Lee Rice inside the Council Bluffs Public Library on Friday. Rice’s latest book, “Eve of Snows: Sundering of the Gods Book One,” earned him an Epic Fantasy Fanatics Readers’ Choice Award.

Council Bluffs native and author Lee Rice has been writing since he could put a crayon in his hand.

All of the years studying English literature at the University of Northern Iowa and screenwriting at the University of California in Los Angeles led him to his latest book, “Eve of Snows: Sundering of the Gods Book One,” which earned him an Epic Fantasy Fanatics Readers’ Choice Award.

After writing several novels, Rice said this was the first contest he entered. Readers voted for their favorite book, then the books were judged by other readers. Judges and authors alike had to submit applications to take part.

Once the book was submitted, Rice said, there was plenty of sitting and waiting to hear back from the committee. After some anticipation, he said seeing his book win the Readers’ Choice Award was special, but hard to put into words.

“Readers can love a hundred books but, like in Highlander, in the end, there can be only one,” Rice said.

“Eve of Snows: Sundering of the Gods, Book One,” is the first of Rice’s Sundering of the Gods series.

Rice said he would recommend this title for anyone who enjoys epic fantasy books.

“A recent review from BookLife recommended it for folks who love George R.R. Martin’s ‘A Song of Ice and Fire Series’ and R. Scott Bakker’s ‘The Prince of Nowhere Series,’” he said.

Rice said it took the book took years of “tinkering” until he felt it was right. He used a unique writing process along the way.

Typically authors write in a “pantser” style — writing steadily with no outline — or “outliner” style — outlining the novel beforehand. However, Rice said neither of these forms fit him in his writing process.

“Some years ago I coined the term ‘waypoint writer’ on a writers’ forum. I know key points in the book before I ever begin writing ... the ending is the big one,” he said.

Rice said George R.R. Martin had spoken of a similar writing style in which “Game of Thrones” used multiple characters’ points of view.

Rice took inspiration from ideas for his latest novel from some of his earlier ideas in school.

“‘Eve of Snows’ came to fruition as backstory to further stories that I tinkered with in high school and college and the years after,” he said. “It really sets the stage for the exploration of an entire world.”

His novels can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo or Apple.

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