Author Interview Divine Scales Tour

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I’m interviewing Jennifer Blackstream, author of fantasy romance “Divine Scales”. My questions are bolded, the author’s responses are in regular font.

What’s the hardest part of being an author?

Writing even when you don’t feel like it. Writing is a lot like exercising sometimes. You need a routine, otherwise days can go by with no progress.


Can you give us a short synopsis of Divine Scales?

It’s a retelling of the Little Mermaid, so the storyline is pretty well known. I changed a few things to give it my own spin. Marcela’s lost some of her voice, but not all of it, it hurts her to walk, but it’s because she’s never worn shoes, not because of magic, and she is more responsible than her original counterpart. Also, her sudden infatuation with Patricio is due to a curse laid on the angel prince by a witch, not just love at first sight.


How many hours per day do you spend writing?

I don’t really time myself. My daily writing goal is 2k (2,000 words). Sometimes that takes an hour, sometimes it takes four!


Name your top five favorite books.

Anita Blake series by Laurell K. Hamilton

Dresden series by Jim Butcher

Discworld series by Terry Pratchett

Aisling Grey series by Katie MacAlister

Merry Gentry series by Laurell K. Hamilton


What are you working on now?

I’m working on Book One in my new series (a spin-off from the Blood Prince series tentatively entitled Lords and Ladies). Working title is All for a Rose and it’s a retelling of Beauty and the Beast.

About Divine Scales

DivineScales 500x750Title: Divine Scales

Author: Jennifer Blackstream

Genre: Fantasy Romance

A warrior with a hunger for sin . . .

Driven by a terrible hunger for the black souls of evil men, Patricio, divine executioner of the gods, patrols the kingdom with blood on his hands and ice in his heart. The families of his victims sing his praises–the result of a witch’s cruel curse that condemns him to be forever surrounded by false adulation. When the curse sours the first hint at romance Patricio has had since becoming the king’s heir, his rage is all consuming. Disgusted, he leaves the mermaid in the sea and returns to the palace…only to be shocked when she bargains for the legs to follow him.

A mermaid out of her element . . .

Marcela’s world has been turned upside-down–literally. Once a proud member of her father King Triton’s royal guard, she’s now the victim of an angel’s curse. Enchanted into false adoration bordering on obsession, she traded her tail–and her voice–to the sea witch for the legs she needed to pursue the object of her desire. In a cruel twist of fate, the very magic that gave her the means to pursue her passion also broke the spell that caused it. Now she’s in the angel’s arms, but how can either of them trust the desire churning inside them when so much magic has muddied the waters?

Trust isn’t easy when nothing is as it seems . . .

A mermaid with legs and no singing voice. An angel with a curse. A witch with a chip on her shoulder. The world is full of magic and mayhem, and for an angel and a mermaid, it will take more than a kiss to balance…the Divine Scales.

Author Bio

Jennifer Blackstream is a psychology enthusiast with both a B.A. and M.A. in Psychology. Her fascination with the human mind is most appeased through the study of mythology and folklore as well as any novel by Sir Terry Pratchett.

Jennifer enjoys listening to Alice Cooper, trying new recipes (to which she will add garlic whether it calls for it or not), watching television with her family, and playing with her woefully intelligent young son. She lives in Ohio.

Jennifer spends most of her time drinking coffee from her X-Men mug and desperately trying to get all her ideas written down before her son can find that all magical button on her laptop to make her latest work vanish.

To learn more about Jennifer Blackstream and her novels, visit her website at http://www.jenniferblackstream.com.

Links

BOOK ONE

Buy Before Midnight on AllRomance

Buy Before Midnight on  Kobo

Buy Before Midnight on Barnes and Noble

Buy Before Midnight on Amazon

BOOK TWO

Buy One Bite on AllRomance

Buy One Bite on  Kobo

Buy One Bite on Barnes and Noble

Buy One Bite on Amazon

BOOK THREE

Buy Golden Stair on AllRomance

Buy Golden Stair on  Kobo

Buy Golden Stair on Barnes and Noble

Buy Golden Stair on Amazon

BOOK FOUR

Buy Divine Scales on AllRomance

Buy Divine Scales on  Kobo

Buy Divine Scales on Barnes and Noble

Buy Divine Scales on Amazon

Author Interview Winter Wolf Release

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Today is the release for WINTER WOLF, a paranormal/urban fantasy by author R.J. Blain. The cover looks amazing, and the author gave me some of the most thorough interview responses ever, so I’m thrilled! My questions are bolded, author’s responses are in regular font.

What’s the hardest part of being an author?

This is such a hard question, because all of it is challenging. When writing the draft, I want to tell a good story. When I edit, I want to turn the good story (hopefully good story…) into a great one. I want to make my characters interesting, enjoyable, and touch readers. I want people to walk away with something—even if it is amusement over some of their antics.

But a lot needs to be done to accomplish that. Winter Wolf is 124,000 words long. That is, for the curious, 686 thousand characters. It’s a staggering amount of work checking over every single one of those characters for mistakes. My advance reviewer copies had seven mistakes caught after they went out. (I might have wept and kicked my feet.)

There are more buried in those words, ones I may never catch. It is painful, spending hundreds of hours over months working on a novel for there to be errors—despite the amount of time I spend ruthlessly hunting them down.

It’s true what they say about authors being too close to their work. I often do not see many errors because I know what the words are supposed to be, not what they are. That’s why I have so many editors.

But they miss things too. Ultimately, it is my responsibility to find every mistake and fix it. It’s a pretty notable burden… but one I want to carry. I want every book I write to be better than the last one. Not everyone will like my books or my style. That’s impossible. But I want those who do like it to have something they truly enjoy, free of errors. (I chase impossible dreams.)

Can you give us a short synopsis of Winter Wolf?

I get asked this question a lot, and I keep trying to find a new, interesting way to answer it—that isn’t just copy pasting from the back of the book. It’s a bit of a game with me.In the case of Winter Wolf, I can get away with this game because it’s such a diverse novel. I like twisty, knotted intrigues and action-packed thrillers. I like stories that make readers think. I like dragging readers along for the roller coaster ride. Winter Wolf isn’t as… challenging of a novel as I normally write.

Winter Wolf is the story of a woman who is forced to turn her cowardice into courage, to turn her prejudices into supporting alliances, and heal the pain of abandonment into strong familial ties, no matter what the cost to her.

It is the story of a woman who is forced to set aside everything she values, risking it all for the chance of saving the family she had abandoned years ago.

It is the story of a wizard who must use all of her powers to try to save a race on the brink of extinction due to a plague without a cure—and live despite the fact there are those who would kill her for simply existing.

What inspired you to write this book?

Where do I begin with this? There are so many factors in what made me want to write this book. I am really interest in infectious illnesses. (I know, it’s a weird, morbid thing to be interested in…)

I love turning the mundane into the magical. I enjoy thrillers. I enjoy reading about characters like Nicole, people who are forced to find their limits and boundaries for the sake of others.

Nicole was so hard for me to write because she’s so very different from me—and I’m glad. Writing her forced me to look at the world a different way, and I really came away with a lot from the experience… even when there were times I felt hopeless about whether or not I could actually write the book. I had to lean on my editors a lot for her characterization. I also had to talk to a lot of people who share traits with her, to learn and understand what type of person she really was.

I still don’t know if I did her justice.

There are so many ‘what if’ questions I pursued in this book I’m not even sure I could pick out which one was the most important and relevant.

I came away regretting that Nicole, while an important player in the Witch & Wolf world, isn’t going to be the star of the next novel. That story belongs to someone else. That’s one thing that is hard for me about the Witch & Wolf stories—most books are from a new character’s point of view, although the other characters join forces as the story progresses.

Blood Diamond features many of the major players from both Inquisitor and Winter Wolf. I’m really excited to start working on it sometime in 2015. (I’m crossing my fingers I can have it ready for publication by November of 2015.)

My traitorous fingers doubt me, though, as they’re determined to have the release date be 2105.

How many hours per day do you spend writing?

14+ hours, 5 or 6 days a week. I will take a few days off here and there to make up for the crazy schedule. Sometimes, I will take a week or two off at one time when I need a break. Writing is hard work, and once I get involved with a novel, I don’t like stopping. I like being in the flow of a book, so days off break that flow. Sometimes I end up not taking a single day off for an entire month or two, especially if I am near deadline time.

The end result is often a short temper and tears. My friends are often very gracious, especially near the time for a new release.

Which reminds me, I need to buy them all a cake. (Because I can’t bake.)

Name your top five favourite books.

Elantris by Brandon Sanderson

Fool’s Assassin by Robin Hobb (I shamelessly confess to crying multiple times during this book.)

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L’Engle

This is where I stopped and had a complete and total brain malfunction. Because it amuses me, I am going to write the first thing that popped into my head.

“A book about those people who did that thing.” (The book is actually called “Resenting the Hero” and the author is… Moore. Something Moore. And I can’t remember the author’s first name. I’m so sorry. But it’s a really funny, witty, exciting book!)

I’m cheating with this, and listing two complete series. I also confess math is hard… 1, 2, 3, 5… something like that.

The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher

The Mercy Thompson Series by Patricia Briggs

Now, as for why I love these books? The characters intrigue me—especially in the case of Fool’s Assassin. They make me laugh or cry with the characters. Most laugh, though. I’m not much of a weeper… except in the case of Fool’s Assassin.

They make me care for these characters. What else can I love more? Not much. I lovingly recommend these titles and series to fantasy lovers.

What are you working on now?

I’m currently working on my Requiem for the Rift King series; it is my epic fantasy series, featuring the story of Kalen, the Rift King. It is also the story of Breton, Kalen’s Guardian and adopted father. The series is the story of kingdoms at war, and a threat that can—and will—destroy them all if they can’t put their petty fighting aside. The skreed don’t care for the world of men, and in their hunger and desire to simply return home, they’ll do anything—even the genocide of an entire race.

Storm Surge, the second volume, will hopefully be released sometime in early 2015. I’m also hoping to finish The Tides of War, book three of the series, sometime in late 2015 or 2016.

There are so many novels I want to write and simply not enough time to write them all!!

About the Book

Winter Wolf Cover Art by RJ BlainTitle: Winter Wolf

Author: R.J. Blain

Genre: paranormal / supernatural suspense / thriller / murder mystery / urban fantasy

The Hunted Wizard

When Nicole dabbled in the occult, she lost it all: Her voice, her family, and her name. Now on the run from the Inquisition, she must prove to herself—and the world—that not all wizards are too dangerous to let live.

The savage murder of a bookstore employee throws Nicole into the middle of Inquisition business, like it or not. Driven by her inability to save the young man’s life, she decides to hunt the killer on her own. Using forbidden magic to investigate the past, she learns that the murderer is in fact a disease that could kill the entire werewolf race.

Forced to choose between saving lives and preserving her own, Nicole embraces the magic that sent her into exile. Without werewolves, the power of the Inquisition would dwindle, and she could live without being hunted.

Nicole’s only hope for success lies in the hands of the werewolves she hates and the Inquisition she fears, but finding someone to trust is only the beginning of her problems. There are those who want to ensure that the werewolves go extinct and that the Inquisition falls.

But, if she fails to find a cure, her family—including her twin sister—will perish…

Author Bio

RJ Blain author profile pictureRJ Blain suffers from a Moleskine journal obsession, a pen fixation, and a terrible tendency to pun without warning.

When she isn’t playing pretend, she likes to think she’s a cartographer and a sumi-e painter. In reality, she herds cats and a husband. She is currently on a quest for a new warrior fish.

In her spare time, she daydreams about being a spy. Should that fail, her contingency plan involves tying her best of enemies to spinning wheels and quoting James Bond villains until she is satisfied.

Favorite Books & Series

In no particular order:

Anne McCaffrey’s Pern
Mercedes Lackey’s Valdemar & Gryphon Series
Jim Butcher’s Codex Alera & The Dresden Files
Brandon Sanderson’s Elantris
Patricia Briggs’ Alpha and Omega, Dragon Bones, & The Mercy Thompson series
Madeline L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time

Links

Google+
Twitter
Facebook
rjblain.com
witchandwolf.com

Available At:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Winter-Wolf-Witch-Book-ebook/dp/B00N1BXDMW/

iTunes Store: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id912946393

Author Interview Godwin’s Law Tour

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I’m interviewing Bernard Maestas, author of thriller “Godwin’s Law”. My questions are bolded, author’s responses are in regular font.

What’s the hardest part of being an author?

Answering this question, haha!

In all seriousness, the hardest things are probably rejection and writer’s block. Anything artistic requires thick skin but having your manuscript rejected by hundreds of agents and publishers can be absolutely heartbreaking. Two unpublished novels, in particular, that I wrote, almost ended my career because I was so devastated by their failure.

When I’m actually on a roll, writing itself comes easily, but I face these long and painful bouts of being completely stifled creatively.

The marketing and promotion aspects of the job are decidedly tough for me, too. I’m not really good at that sort of stuff. The social media aspect of it doesn’t come easily to me either but I love connecting with my fans and readers, so that certainly makes up for it.

 

Can you give us a short synopsis of Godwin’s Law?


Godwin’s Law features the return of wisecracking mercenaries Ted and Alex from Say That to my Face, the first book in my Internet Tough Guys series. Ted Reagan, computer hacker and MIT graduate, is the brains. Alex Kirwan, ex-French Foreign Legion commando and parkour traceur, is the brawn. Together, they are soldiers of fortune, fighting for themselves under the banner of their own company, Reagan Kirwan International. This book is their first mission of their new company, a seemingly simple job of extracting a young woman from a dangerous international cult and delivering her back to her family. Surprisingly, the cult is not willing to let her go easily and throws all of their paramilitary resources behind getting her back. The answer to what makes her so valuable to them is beyond belief!

What inspired you to write this book?


There were quite a few things that inspired me in roundabout ways. The Empire Strikes Back gave me the idea start-to-finish chase while the song “Not Gonna Get Us” by TATU always played in my head when I envisioned the movie trailer for this story.

More directly, the heroine, Gwen, was inspired by someone I knew. I needed some way to channel my thoughts of that person and this story came to mind, heavily adapted and exaggerated, of course.

 

How many hours per day do you spend writing?


When I’m on a roll, I can go for twelve hours or more just banging away. But, I suffer serious and frequent bouts of writer’s block and go weeks or months without writing. I wrote my last book in a week (eight days, to be exact) but I’ve only done two in 2014.

 

Name your top five favourite books.

Easy. In order from number one, Catcher in the Rye, Great Gatsby, Macbeth (does that count?), Ender’s Game, and Moby Dick. I love to read, I go through about a book a week, and there are many that I really love, but these are the ones that have stood the test of time for me. I read them all when I was young and still love them to this day.

What are you working on now?


I just finished a noir crime thriller/mystery called Concrete Smile that was a blend of two of my unpublished novels with an idea that’s been festering in my brain for about thirteen years. It came out better than I could have hoped!

Now, I’m working on a really cool (I think) fantasy novel under the working title of OneiroKnights. I’ve also got the outlines for the next two Internet Tough Guys novels ready to go but I felt like I needed a break from thrillers having just written the third in the series, You Think This is a Game?, and Concrete Smile. OneiroKnights is actually two fantasy novel ideas I had compressed into one super-story!

About Godwin’s Law

godwin_coverTitle: Godwin’s Law

Author: Bernard Maestas

Genre: Thriller

Gwen Kane, estranged daughter of a Forbes millionaire and the bearer of a horrifying secret is lured into a dangerous international cult. It falls to Alex Kirwan and Ted Reagan to rescue her. What should be easy money for the mercenary team of a freerunning ex-commando and his computer hacking partner proves to be anything but as they find themselves doggedly pursued across Europe, Canada and the United States by highly trained forces with resources vastly disproportionate to the recapture of one missing acolyte.

Will Alex and Ted unravel the mystery of Gwen’s importance in time to survive?
Will Gwen pierce the seemingly impenetrable armor around Alex’s heart?

Will Alex and Ted get paid?”

Author Bio

Bernard Maestas lives in paradise. A police officer patrolling the mean streets of Hawaii, he has a background in contract security and military and civilian law enforcement. When not saving the world, one speeding ticket at a time, and not distracted by video games or the internet, he is usually hard at work on his next book.

Links

www.bernardmaestas.wix.com/bernardmaestas

www.facebook.com/BernardMaestasOfficial

www.twitter.com/bernardmaestas

Amazon (Kindle): Amazon (Kindle)
Amazon (paperback): Amazon (paperback)
Barnes & Noble: B&N
Smashwords: Smashwords

Author Interview The Music Book Tour

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I’m hosting an interview today with Dave O’Leary, author of literary fiction “The Music Book”. My answers are in bold, questions are in regular font. Enjoy.

1. What’s the hardest part of being an author?

The hardest part is writing. That’s the joy, too, of course. Sometimes the words flash and soar, but it’s a struggle to face that empty page even when you know what you want to say, but to quote Bukowski, “It’s the only good fight there is.”

2. Can you give us a short synopsis of The Music Book?

Playing music has been a huge part of Rob’s life.

But so has doubt, the worry of forgetting which chord comes next, the fear of playing the wrong few notes, a lifetime full of maybes where nothing is certain except for the past and its memories of lost love, the fading music of old bands. He also battles tinnitus and brief spells of deafness, and that brings another fear, the loss of sound, which is a kind of death, a shutting out of the world.

There is the memory of a particular show years ago where he screwed up the intro of a song, but even so, even with the embarrassment of such mistakes, he’s always been glad that he wasn’t a critic, that he was putting his own voice out into the world and not simply responding to the creative doings of others.

And yet, that’s exactly what he ends up doing when life leaves him with no band and but a few friends. He borders on obsession with lost love and becomes a critic inserting himself into the story, writing about music as he feels it, as he experiences it because what “experience is there that exists outside your head?”

Being a critic then becomes an effort to keep music in his life, to store up on sounds and figure out what music means to him, what it all adds up to, and if somehow two plus two can equal five when the music is just so, when the melodies soar and a female vocalist echoes what he feels and fears, “I don’t want to disappear.”

After Rob sees his ex love out with her new boyfriend, he is saved by a singer who can’t feel anything and a police officer who befriends him. There is the stray cat, Soju, a needed respite from loneliness, a reminder to live in the present tense. And there are bartender Katie, painter Elena, and tattoo artist Genny, women who offer Rob a possible chance at love.

And there are bands. There is music. Rob is swallowed up by it and realizes one thing: The only thing that matters is the sound that emanates from the stage.

Will love come? Will hearing go?

Will two plus two equal five or will the equation, will life, balance itself in some other way?

3. How many hours per day do you spend writing?

When I’m in the midst of finishing a book, I’ll spend between two and four hours a night writing. Sometimes it can be more if the mood is right, but four is typically the maximum limit. One thing I don’t do is go for a specific word count. That would put me in a position at times of forcing it if I had to think of trying to reach a certain number of words. It would be stressful to think in such terms. It’d hang over me and get in the way of the writing. I’ve had days where I only got one paragraph done, but the paragraph was damn near perfect so who cares? That’s how I judge when to stop on a particular night. It’s a matter not so much of how much you get down, but rather how good it is.

4. Name your top five favorite books.

How about the ten or most influential? These are the books that made me want to read and then write.

1. Old Yeller / Rascal – I read these in third grade I think, maybe fourth. I’m not sure. These two books implanted within me the desire to read.

2. Lord of the Rings – I marveled at these when I first encountered them in middle school and continued to do so all through high school. These books made me want to write, made me want to create whole worlds of my own.

3. No One Here Gets Out Alive – Like many, I went through the “I Want to Be Jim Morrison” phase. I wanted to live like that. The book enhanced my love of the Doors and also of music in general, and of music writing. I owe something to this for the style of my own music writing.

4. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man – As I said, Tolkien made me want to write. This book made me want to write literature.

5. To the Lighthouse – I referred to this book twice above. First, it’s something I was required to read for a college course, but even so, it stuck with me. Imagine that. One can study English in college and find some books that mean something, that settle somewhere deep inside you and reside there for years if not for a whole life. Also, it’s one of those books that just has some beautiful writing. That middle section called “Time Passes” is a remarkable piece of writing. Woolf made me want to write beautifully, not just basic prose, but something more, almost poetic.

6. You Get So Alone at Times That It Just Makes Sense / Love is a Dog From Hell – And speaking of poetic writing, I know Bukowski is a far cry in style from Woolf, but I love his poetry. It’s narrative in a way, beautiful for its non-beauty. His writing reminds me that sometimes you have to remove the artifice and cut right to it.

7. Last Orders – I discovered Graham Swift in college when I had to read Waterland for a Contemporary British Literature class and immediately started reading more of his work, and then in 1997, two years after I graduated, he came out with this gem. It’s such a beautiful book, so deserving of the Booker Prize that it won. It contains what in my mind is one of the most moving passages of literature I’ve ever read (a woman’s goodbye to her grown daughter) and also a chapter that’s only two words long, only two words, and yet, it still works completely, makes me laugh every time I read it. If I was ranking in order of my favorites, this book would be number one or number two.

8. The Captain is Out to Lunch and the Sailors Have Taken Over the Ship – Again, Bukowski, but here we have him keeping a journal very late in his life. It’s honest, touching, funny. He never takes himself too seriously. I carried this book with me for a couple years during my time overseas, so much so that the cover came off.

9. Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World – My introduction to Murakami. I love the duality of the book. The real world is the “Hard-Boiled Wonderland” and the subconscious is the “End of the World.” A few years after college, I gave up writing because I knew I wasn’t ready. I needed more life experience, and I needed to read more great books, books worthy of a top ten list. When I read this at the age of 35, this and The Captain is Out to Lunch, that desire to write came back full force. That was a good year of reading for me.

10. The Road – I love the simplicity of the prose, the sparseness, and yet this book is anything but simple. It’s deceptive that way. What a great piece of writing. With Last Orders, it’s my number one or two.

5. What are you working on now?

I have a few short stories that are based around holidays although they aren’t holiday stories in any traditional holiday sense. The main one of these is called Condoms on Christmas. It was first published in the Monarch Review in May of 2012, and I’ve begun reworking it a bit. As I’ve done such, the story has grown so much that it might turn into a short novel. It could end up being its own thing or it could be like part two of Jumpa Lahiri’s Unaccustomed Earth. The first part of that book is five unrelated stories, and part two is one story in three parts and is about one third the length of the book. Condoms on Christmas might be like that, the longest story in a collection of short stories. We’ll see. As for what it’s about, it isn’t really a Christmas story, of course. Such holidays just give heightened awareness to the feelings of being alone and the reasons we do and don’t let people into our lives. It’ll weave in and out of the differing perspectives of five people on a single Christmas day. There’s desperation, joy, sex, booze, loneliness, and redemption. Most of all there’s possibility. That’s one of the things about holidays. They remind us of all that was and that we’ve lost, but they also remind us of all that is possible.

The other thing I’m doing now is bringing the bands from the book into the studio of a Seattle-based record label called Critical Sun. Whet we do is then record a session in which I interview the band and they play a few songs. These interviews are being released as podcasts, and the first few are already online here: https://soundcloud.com/criticalsun/sets/the-music-book-interviews

We’ve also put together a CD of the music in the book. There are physical CDs that will be available online soon, but for now there is a page where all the music can be downloaded. The cool thing about the CD is that it is a benefit for a charity called the Wishlist Foundation, which is a Pearl Jam fan nonprofit, grassroots 501(c)(3) fan organization dedicated to supporting Pearl Jam’s charitable and philanthropic efforts

The CD’s download page is here: https://themusicbook.bandcamp.com/album/the-music-book-a-benefit-for-the-wishlist-foundation

About The Book

coverTitle: The Music Book

Author: Dave O’Leary

Genre: Literary Fiction

What does music mean? Can it be more than the sum of its notes and melodies? Can it truly change you? Rob, a musician turned reluctant music critic, poses these questions as everything important in his life appears to be fading—memories of lost love, songs from his old bands, even his hearing. He delves into the music of others to find solace and purpose, and discovers that the chords and repeated phrases echo themes that have emerged in his own life. The music sustains him, but can it revive him?

The Music Book is a story of loss, of fear and loneliness, of a mutable past. But most of all it’s about music as a force, as energy, as a creator of possibility. What might come from the sound of an A chord played just so? Rob listens. And among other things, he finds surprising companionship with a cat; another chance at love; and the courage to step on a stage again and finally, fully comprehend the power of sound.

Author Bio

DaveO'Leary_photo_webDave O’Leary is a writer and musician living in Seattle. His second novel, The Music Book (Booktrope, November 2014), is a collection of the writings O’Leary has done about Seattle bands for both Northwest Music Scene (http://www.northwestmusicscene.com/author/davemusic/) and the now defunct Seattle Subsonic. It is a fictional narrative wrapped around and within the actual music, a story about live music in Seattle and, more broadly, about the power of music in our lives. A CD of the music experienced in the book will be released by Seattle indie label, Critical Sun Recordings.

His first book, Horse Bite (Infinitum), was published in 2011.

Photo by Stacy Albright. http://www.stacyalbrightimages.com

 

Links

The Music Book on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-Music-Book-Dave-OLeary/dp/1620154625
Author’s Website: http://www.daveoleary.net/
Author’s Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/dolearyauthor

Author Interview Neverland Academy

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I’m interviewing Daelynn Quinn today, author of YA contemporary “Neverland Academy”. My questions are bolded, author’s responses are in regular font. Enjoy the interview.

1) What’s the hardest part of being an author?

Negative reviews can be hard for anybody. You really have to have a tough skin if you want to put your work out there for others to read. And one negative review can negate dozens of five-star reviews to a sensitive author, such as myself. That being said, there are strategies I use to pick myself up and keep writing. Every author gets negative reviews—even the bestselling authors who are household names. So although they are the hardest part for myself, I use them to my advantage, to improve my future work.

2) Can you give us a short synopsis of Neverland Academy?

It was the worst day of Daphne’s life. Not only had her parents moved her from Atlanta to the middle of nowhere, but her boyfriend broke up with her in the middle of a crowded club and her parents grounded her for a month for sneaking out and stealing the BMW. All in one night! If she were back home in Atlanta it would be no problem. She could always find ways of getting around her punishments. But this was rural Georgia. And there was nowhere to go but woods and farmland. That is, until Finn showed up at her window.

Finn was the invincible mascot of Neverland Academy where Daphne’s brothers attended. For the five years since he’d been expelled from the all-boys boarding school, he lived in the old slave tunnels under the former antebellum plantation home. He and his band of outcast boys lived for pulling pranks on the school’s professors, and especially the headmaster, Byron Trappe, who had a personal vendetta against Finn.

Daphne grew to love life under the academy. But there was one problem. She was falling for Finn. Hard. She knew he didn’t want a relationship or anything that resembled growing up. But when the wall she built between them begins to crumble before her eyes, will she stay at the academy and face impending heartbreak? Or will she leave her heart behind and escape the dangers of criminal life, including a perilous encounter with the vengeful headmaster?

3) How many hours per day do you spend writing?

On a good day I’d write about two to three hours. Most days it can be closer to one or two, depending on my other responsibilities. I wish I had more time!

4) Name your top five favorite books.

Only five? Haha. Okay, The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins, The Eyes of the Dragon by Stephen King, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, and Beowulf. Seriously, only five?

5) What are you working on now?

I’m so excited about my new series, tentatively titled 13509. Here is a brief synopsis:

This isn’t your ordinary vampire novel. And this isn’t a sparkly love story, either.

Audrey was born #13509 in a dairy factory farm. For twelve years she’d never seen the light of day until the morning of her scheduled insemination, when Alistair and the Human Liberation League break into the farm and release her, along with fifty other girls headed for a future of mechanical rape and forced lactation. Outside the confines of the factory farm, Audrey meets a new sense of freedom, tinged with danger and oppression from a world overrun by vampires with an unusual hunger for processed human flesh.

The peaceful vampire Alistair takes Audrey in as his pet, a reminder of the daughter he lost decades earlier. But soon trouble begins to stir. In order to keep her safe, he sends her off to a farm sanctuary, where she is forced to socialize with a group of humans who were also rescued from abusive prisons. Angry and heartbroken, Audrey has no choice but to befriend her new peers. But when the sanctuary owner dies inexplicably, they face a terrifying dilemma: be shipped off to a feedlot and suffer the abuse of factory farms once again, or escape into the wild, a place equally as dangerous.

About The Book

23148669Title: Neverland Academy

Author: Daelynn Quinn

Genre: YA

It was the worst day of Daphne’s life. Not only had her parents moved her from Atlanta to the middle of nowhere, but her boyfriend broke up with her in the middle of a crowded club and her parents grounded her for a month for sneaking out and stealing the BMW. All in one night! If she were back home in Atlanta it would be no problem. She could always find ways of getting around her punishments. But this was rural Georgia. And there was nowhere to go but woods and farmland. That is, until Finn showed up at her window.

Finn was the invincible mascot of Neverland Academy where Daphne’s brothers attended. For the five years since he’d been expelled from the all-boys boarding school, he lived in the old slave tunnels under the former antebellum plantation home. He and his band of outcast boys lived for pulling pranks on the school’s professors, and especially the headmaster, Byron Trappe, who had a personal vendetta against Finn.

Daphne grew to love life under the academy. But there was one problem. She was falling for Finn. Hard. She knew he didn’t want a relationship or anything that resembled growing up. But when the wall she built between them begins to crumble before her eyes, will she stay at the academy and face impending heartbreak? Or will she leave her heart behind and escape the dangers of criminal life, including a perilous encounter with the vengeful headmaster?

Author Bio

Daelynn Quinn was born and raised in southern Maryland where she spent her youth exploring and falling in love with nature in the woods behind her house. She graduated the University of Northern Colorado with a degree in dietetics, which she promptly abandoned to pursue writing. Daelynn’s writing is fast-paced and laced with current issues that concern her. Her first dystopian trilogy, Fall of Venus, focused on climate change and the role we as humans play in it. Her YA novel, Neverland Academy, delves into child abuse and negligence. Daelynn is excited to be commencing a new series, which will tear into the animal exploitation industries. While she is not reading or writing, Daelynn enjoys brainstorming while mowing her lawn, cooking healthy meals her kids refuse to eat, and watching old episodes of Mr. Bean with her three boys.

Links

www.daelynnquinn.com
daelynnquinn.wordpress.com
Facebook
Twitter
Youtube

Author Interview Vanished From Dust Tour

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I’m interviewing Shea Norwood, author of the tour for YA paranormal “Vanished from Dust”. My questions are bolded, author’s responses are in regular font.

What’s the hardest part of being an author?

Finding time to write!

Can you give us a short synopsis of Vanished from Dust?

Vanished from Dust is a completely fresh concept with an original plot. In the beginning, readers are drawn into the mystery of Eric’s phantoms and in later chapters submerged into a thrilling ride as Eric and his friend fight to survive the phantom world.

What inspired you to write this book?

I actually started Vanished from Dust over a decade ago, but lost interest in the direction of the plot so it was put aside and forgotten. I rediscovered it after sorting through some old boxes and rewrote all the parts that didn’t work. The concept for the story began when I wondered what it would be like to be trapped on the other side of the mirror and is loosely based off my hometown.

How many hours per day do you spend writing?

Unfortunately, not as many hours as I’d like at the moment! I’m completing a second Masters degree in a few weeks so school has taken up the majority of my writing time. I’ll be spending at least 2-3 hours a day in the near future.

 

Name your top five favourite books.

  1. The Dark Tower Series by Stephen King
  2. I am Number 4 Series by Pittacus Lore
  3. The Hunger Games Series by Suzanne Collins
  4. 11/22/63 by Stephen King
  5. Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea by Jules Verne

About The Book

Vanished from Dust New AmazonTitle: Vanished From Dust

Author: Shea Norwood

Genre: YA Paranormal Mystery

This book is the first in a series.

A CHILL RUNS THROUGH HIS SKIN AS THE PHANTOM APPEARS.

HE SEES THEM EVERYWHERE . . .

Eric Stark is not insane. Or at least he doesn’t think so. He wishes everyone in Dust, Texas, felt the same way. But that’s not going to happen since the whole town thinks he’s crazy. Why didn’t he keep his mouth shut?

No one understands. Eric is alone as he battles his sanity in a town of tormenters. Suddenly a new friendship emerges after the new kid, Kyle Barrett, moves to town.

Eric reluctantly reveals his secret. Is it a curse or a gift? He isn’t certain, but with Kyle by his side he finds the courage to seek the truth.

They soon realize that something sinister is descending on the residents of Dust.

Is it caused by Eric’s phantoms or is it something else? Is it connected to the mysterious death of hundreds of townspeople over sixty years ago? One thing is certain—only Eric and Kyle can save them.

They set out on a heart-pounding adventure and find themselves transported to a disturbed and deserted version of their small southern town. They quickly discover that this new world has mysteries of its own to uncover. What they find could prove more than they bargained for, and it only leads to more questions. Eric and Kyle must face a horrifying fact—they may never get out alive.

“We’re gonna die here,” Kyle muttered.

“I don’t believe that,” Eric said. “And neither do you.”

Will they survive their encounter with these dark and mysterious beings?

Will they find a way back home?

Or will they be lost forever?

The Vanished from Dust series is perfect for anyone who craves a hair-raising thriller packed with mystery and suspense. This paranormal story for young adults can be compared to Stand by Me, mixed with Odd Thomas, and a twist of The Dark Tower.

Author Bio

Profile PicShea Norwood is a West Texas native that currently lives in the DFW area with his wife and son. He’s an avid reader and enjoys the craft of writing. The fictional town of Dust is loosely based on a small town south of Odessa, TX.

 

Links

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1mVJSre

FB: http://on.fb.me/1pxjF3Q

Twitter: @sheanorwood

Author Interview A Personal Guide to Self-Healing, Cancer and Love

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I’m interviewing Regina Chouza, author of non-fiction book “A Personal Guide to Self-Healing, Cancer and Love”. My questions are bolded, Regina’s responses are in regular font.

What’s the hardest part of being an author?

For me spending all that time alone at my computer can be quite challenging. I enjoy working in social environments, but I also love writing and publishing my work. On some level it’s helped build my social networks because I take Facebook breaks to chat and then go back to writing.

Can you give us a short synopsis of A Personal Guide to Self-Healing, Cancer & Love?

A Personal Guide to Self-Healing, Cancer & Love is a practical guide to self-healing for families who are dealing with cancer. It provides a fresh perspective on some of the challenges faced when someone we love is diagnosed. We often start by asking why it happened or what it means. Inevitably our biology, lifestyle habits and emotional wellbeing all play a part. I also believe that difficult experiences can teach us life lessons. Cancer is no exception. Some may feel regret over the choices they have made, prompting a major wakeup call. This book is based on my family’s experience with cancer and the perspective I have gained since then on my own healing journey.

The rest of the book explores Energy Healing as a complementary therapy to cancer care. Energy Healing is a broad term that can be used to include a variety of techniques including guided meditations, breathing exercises, journaling and even hands-on-healing such as Reiki. My theory is the Energy Healing addresses the mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of disease while medical intervention treats the physical body. Energy Healing can also benefit the whole family.

What inspired you to write this book?

My dad was diagnosed when I was 16 and it had a profound effect on my family. You stop taking people for granted. It puts things in perspective, but then there is also this tremendous loss of control. And so many factors to think about, so many questions. Why did it happen to us, etc.?

Then a couple years ago I discovered energy healing, psychology and meditation. It dawned on me that we, as a family, had barely scratched the surface when it came to healing and stress relief. My dad’s doctors were fantastic and we were very lucky to have them. But it wasn’t enough. I wrote this book because I wanted to share the techniques I learned during a two-year accreditation in Energy Healing. It’s about Healing as a complementary therapy to medical care.

How many hours per day do you spend writing?

Not enough!

I tend to write in bursts and then I’ll go and do something else for a few weeks. When I’m in writing mode, I try to spend at least 4-8 hours a day on a particular project. Then I go back to reading, anything from historical fiction and sci-fi to spiritual healing books. Right now I’m reading Deepak Chopra’s Buddha. It’s good seeing a historical figure brought to life that way.

And of course, my Diary of a Psychic Healer blog is always active. I spend a few hours every week blogging about energy healing, intuition and any classes or books that I have come across.

Name your top five favourite books.

I loved David Copperfield by Dickens, Cider House Rules by John Irving, all the Harry Potter books, and A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle. I’m still looking for that 5th book to blow me away.

About The Book

Self-Healing, Cancer and Love - Cover JPEGTitle:  A Personal Guide to Self-Healing, Cancer & Love

Author: Regina Chouza

Available on Amazon

Kindle Freebie Dates: 19-20 October 2014

It is human nature to ask ‘Why did this happen to me?’ Though there may be medical explanations for illnesses, a scientific answer will not help us make sense of the pain and suffering that comes with these experiences.”

This book provides a fresh perspective on the challenges faced when we or someone we love is diagnosed with cancer. We often start by asking why it happened and what it means. Inevitably our biology, lifestyle habits and emotional wellbeing all play a part. For true healing to occur, we need to make changes on many levels. The author goes on to explore Energy Healing as a friendly booster for tired souls, equipping the reader with simple tools that can be used daily to facilitate their personal healing journey. The pages turn quickly, infused with love, courage and optimism.

Author Bio

It all started in 2009, when Regina discovered the College of Psychic Studies in London. Could anyone learn to channel healing and shift his or her life in a new direction? Of course! Since then Regina has left a successful career in marketing to become a qualified Healer, Reiki Master and talk radio host. Her first book, “A Personal Guide to Self-Healing, Cancer and Love”, is available on Amazon worldwide.

Visit her blog at www.diaryofapsychichealer.com

Links