🖤 Write, read, review, repeat 🖤

Category: Author Interviews (Page 2 of 10)

Author Interview: Jenna O’Malley

Check out this author spotlight for Jenna O’Malley!

You can find all her links furthest down the page, and don’t forget to check out her books!

1. Hi! Welcome to my humble blog of all things bookish! I would like for us to start by getting to know you. Give us a short bio, please!

Hello, lovelies! My name is Jenna O’Malley, the Soul Writer. I’m a Cat Mom, wife, teacher, indie author, book vlogger, podcaster, gamer… a bard of many pens, I suppose. I write stories that address every day and contemporary issues while blending in some of the nerdiest references.

2. To get to know you just a little bit better, I’d like to ask you some this or that questions. Answer 5 (or more!) of these and explain why you chose this or that, or maybe an entirely different alternative!

Winter, spring, summer or autumn?
AUTUMN—thank goodness, I can start baking!

Cat or dog?
Cat… Mom! lol

Tea or coffee?
Coffee in the morning, tea in the evening.

Morning or evening?
I’m a morning person, for better and worse.

Library or museums?
It depends on what I’m researching, but probably museums in Europe.

Hunter or gatherer?
Gatherer.

Mountains or beaches?
Beaches, even though I live in the mountains. I love visiting Mother Ocean.

Plotter or pantser?
Plantster: I do a little bit of both.

Standalone or series?
Series for writing fiction, but I’ve read some wonderful stand alone.

Book or ebook?
I prefer to hold a book; it’s a tactile and textures thing for me with the experience.

3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?

I tend to read fantasy novels to unhealthy levels, and the same can be said for paranormal romance. Give me a series with a leading set of characters that absolutely wreck my heart, lol.

4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings!

My debut series, The Arsinoëphorus Alliance, launched on Valentine’s Day 2021 with Book 1: Bound by Fate and Blood. Book 2 comes out on September 6, 2021. I have a teaching memoir and a second series in the works.

5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it!

The Arsinoëphorus Alliance (Book 2): Bound by Oath and Heart comes out on September 6, 2021! It picks up a few months after Book 1 ends, so we’re in Fall 1665. Ian and Nephtyri remain the “main couple” for the plot’s throughline, but we really come to know Bjorn and Rochelle on a much deeper level. Please read the blurb below:

Fractured by betrayal at Sancta Terra, the Arsinoëphorus Alliance scatters. The five, remaining Elders split Ian and Nephtyri, not realizing their sunwalker has a new secret to hide. Though the couple can visit one another in dreams, a life apart tests their bond early. A quest to find Ian a weapon to match his powers binds him to his adikous naiha and reveals not all mythical creatures are lost.

Rochelle adapts to a lesser role as Shifei under the pressure of Bjorn’s presence in his halls at Amaranth. With the help of Aryeh and other Elders from afar, they plot to save the Alliance without their new Uran Shifei-ra’s guidance. Suspicious of their actions, Nephtyri heightens the search to free her lost grandmother from the Hunters’ captivity. Allegiances are stressed as the dead walk and the living fight to thrive.

6. What real-life inspiration do you draw from, and what are your primary fictional sources of inspiration (books, authors, films, music, etc.)? Name a few!

I draw a lot of inspiration from my husband and daily life. At the same time, I’ve read a lot of J. R. Ward, Anne Sexton, Tolkien, Shakespeare, and Robert Jordan. I think the poetics and sarcasm of the mix definitely wore off.

7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down!

I teach full-time virtually, too. With the beginning of the school year, my schedule is changing quickly. I’m trying to write a minimum of 1,000 words a day to my current draft WIP and edit one chapter from a previous book. Marketing consumes my life for hours each day.

8. If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice as you started out on the path to becoming an author, what would it be?

First and foremost, I’d tell my inner critic to take a hike sooner. I’d also focus on slowing down a little more and refining my pre and post production process, and she should, too.

9. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links!

www.jennathesoulwriter.com

www.facebook.com/jennathesoulwriter

www.instagram.com/jennathesoulwriter

Author Interview: H. L. Burke

Check out this author spotlight for H. L. Burke!

You can find all her links furthest down the page, and don’t forget to check out her books!

1. Hi! Welcome to my humble blog of all things bookish! I would like for us to start by getting to know you. Give us a short bio, please!

I’m having an identity crisis since I usually start off by saying I’m a mother and military wife, but my husband has retired from the Marines now, so I’m like, “Dang it, can’t use that any more.” Still a mother though my daughters are semi-feral. I’ve moved around a lot in my adult life (see Marines), but we’ve recently settled in Oregon where we have two dogs and a spoiled brat cat who thinks he’s a baby. I write eclectic fantasy in multiple subgenres.

2. To get to know you just a little bit better, I’d like to ask you some this or that questions. Answer 5 (or more!) of these and explain why you chose this or that, or maybe an entirely different alternative!

Cat or dog?
I love my border collie, but I’m totally a cat person. I just always have been. There’s something that goes either very wrong or very right in my brain when I see a cat and I just lose all sense of composure. Most cats tolerate me, so there’s that.

Tea or coffee?
Both depending on the time of day. Definitely coffee in the morning. Tea usually in the afternoon and herbal tea in the evening … by herbal tea, I mean fruit tea, by fruit tea I mean grape juice … by grape juice I mean wine.

Hunter or gatherer?
Gatherer. I always roll the gathering professions in RPGs because I like picking up shiny things.

Mountains or beaches?
Mountains. Marines tend to station themselves near bodies of waters (something about amphibious landings), so as a wife of a recently retired Marine, I have lived next to oceans more often than not for most of my adult life (San Diego, Iwakuni, Pensacola, Oceanside over the first 12 or 13 years of our marriage) so I’m a little “over” beaches. I also like trees which are more likely to be around mountains.
Plotter or pantser? I’m kind of a hybrid and I like to stay very flexible. Generally speaking, I think about a book for a while then when I feel I have a grasp at it, I write down a scene by scene synopsis as fast as I can before I forget any of it … but I always give myself permission to change things up or flip the script at any point if something isn’t working in my original plan.

Pen and paper or computer/phone?
I am a fast typer so computer, which is the only way I can keep up with myself, but NOT phone. I am terrible at using a tiny phone screen to write. I don’t even prefer to text if I have to say more than a few words. It takes even longer than writing it out long hand. I HAVE done it a few times (when my phone was all I had available and I had inspiration I just couldn’t leave for later), but it’s never my preference. Most of the time I’d rather do pen and paper over phone.

Standalone or series?
As a writer who has somehow gotten herself caught up in writing a superhero series that has expanded to include two different spinoffs, hints at a multiverse, and potential for a lot of more stories within the world, it’s kind of ironic that I do really prefer standalones. If it’s not my husband, my kids, or my cat, I kind of have commitment issues, I guess, and I get bored easily so if I look up a book and find it is volume one in an ongoing series, I get cold feet. Like do I really want to commit to all that? I also love writing standalones because they are “one and done” and I can move onto something else without feeling guilt about abandoning them … that said, as mentioned, currently writing series that seems to never end, so I guess I do like both in certain circumstances.

3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?

Cats. I am honestly very into quirky stuff, so I’m not so much looking for tropes as opposed to trope twisters or something “unique.” The quickest way to draw me in is to give me something I haven’t seen before … or to put a cat on it. I like cats.

4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings!

I mentioned that I was eclectic, right? By that I mean “easily distracted by shinies.”

Because of this my portfolio is super varied. I have romantic fantasy, epic fantasy, Steampunk, Gaslamp, YA fantasy, Middle Grade Fantasy, Fairy Tale, and now superheroes. The superheroes have been my focus for a little shy of two years now. I have seven books in that series, and I just finished another book (which will be out October 9th) in a YA spinoff in the same superhero universe. The theme for the overall series is “supervillain rehabilitation” so it features supervillains who are in the process of trying to leave the life and turn themselves into heroes.
The main series has a more traditional superhero plot with a healthy side of romance, but the YA spinoff revolves mainly around 16-year-old Jake who was raised in his uncle’s supervillain gang but upon capture by superheroes is sent to a camp for at risk superpowered kids instead of prison. There he starts making friends for the first time in his life, learns about the true meaning of family, and struggles with his loyalty to his gang.

5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it!

The last book I released was actually book 5 in the Supervillain Rehabilitation Project series, and almost all the details about it would spoil things that happen in books 1 through 4, so I’ll just tell you a little about the series. The SVR series takes place in a world where superheroes have their own government agency and teams that go up against supervillains. An idealistic heroine named Prism wants to restart her late father’s legacy project (the Supervillain Rehabilitation Project) and she does this by recruiting Fade, her father’s former student who relapsed into supervillainy after her father’s death, to join her team of heroes. The series grows from there with new villains added along the way and with new challenges to the team.  Series link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B089VYG9W5

6. What real-life inspiration do you draw from, and what are your primary fictional sources of inspiration (books, authors, films, music, etc.)? Name a few!

Nothing consistent. Ideas are not a problem with me. I get those going about my day to day life all the time. I have a book that was written because it was cold one night and so I lay awake thinking what would it be like to always be cold, what if a person couldn’t make their own heat and had to steal it from others, what if they could freeze people at a touch. I have at least two books that were written because a friend sent me a funny picture or meme. I have others that were based on vending machines, random historical facts, and stuff my kids said.
I try not to draw direct inspiration from other works of fiction because I like complete ownership of ideas, but I know that brains don’t exactly work that way. I’m sure everything I absorb goes into my head where it gets mixed up and blended and mixed around so things that seem to pop out of no where probably had roots in things I’ve read, watched, experienced and they’ve just become unrecognizable. The fact that I’m writing superheroes right now probably has a lot to do with how much MCU content I’ve absorbed in the last decade or so.

7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down!

It’s change a bit since my husband’s retirement. I actually picked up a full time day job recently, since he’s home to deal with the kids and even cooking and cleaning (he’s actually a better house husband than I ever was a housewife. I hate cleaning with a passion. I’m like the reverse of that meme where authors clean their houses to avoid writing. I will write whole books to avoid washing the baseboards).
My day job is work from home, so I usually am doing that until about 4pm then I’ll log off, help my husband with cooking dinner if he needs assistance (a lot of times he’s already got it done), then I’ll sit and write a thousand words before I give myself permission to play video games (currently got myself back into World of Warcraft: Burning Crusades. I have a gnome mage named Pryzzm and she just earned her epic flying mount. Super epic.). It takes me between a half hour and an hour to write 1000 words. If it is going well, I’ll keep going and write more. Other days I’ve just got enough energy to squeak over 1000 words and then go hide in the Outlands on my mage.

8. If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice as you started out on the path to becoming an author, what would it be?

I wouldn’t. It would ruin the fun. Like I’m kind of an impulsive person who just jumps into things without a lot of preplanning (I call my learning style “push all the buttons and see what happens.”), so yeah I made mistakes along the way, but I wouldn’t want to deprive myself of the experience of making those mistakes.

9. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links!

twitter.com/hlburkewriter (for random snarkiness and occasional book snippets)
facebook.com/hlburkewriter (for longer form random snarkiness, occasional book snippets, and #dailydragon posts where I share my favorite dragon related finds)
my website (and mailing list) for news and deals www.hlburkeauthor.com
my instagram for #TheodoretheDragon awesomness instagram.com/burkesdragons
and my reader group if you want to be the first to hear about beta and ARC reading opportunities as well as my day to day struggles and weekly live videos. https://www.facebook.com/groups/hlburkereaders/

Author Interview: T. D. Fox

Check out this author spotlight for T. D. Fox!

You can find all her links furthest down the page, and don’t forget to check out her books!

1. Hi! Welcome to my humble blog of all things bookish! I would like for us to start by getting to know you. Give us a short bio, please!

A world-romper from the Pacific Northwest, T.D. Fox supplements a hyperactive imagination with real life shenanigans to add pizzazz to her storytelling endeavors.

Armed with a bachelor’s degree in Intercultural Studies, her favorite stories to write usually involve a clash of worldviews, an unflinching reevaluation of one’s own internal compass, and an embrace of the compelling unease that arises when vastly different worlds collide. When not recklessly exploring inner-city alleyways during midnight thunderstorms in the States, she can be found exploring rainforests without enough bug spray somewhere along the equator.

2. To get to know you just a little bit better, I’d like to ask you some this or that questions. Answer 5 (or more!) of these and explain why you chose this or that, or maybe an entirely different alternative!

Cat or dog?
Big dog wins over cat, but cat wins over little dog 😉

Tea or coffee?
Coffee!

Morning or evening?
Evening, 100%

Library or museums?
Library

Hunter or gatherer?
Hunter! I grew up hunting with my dad in the wilds of Eastern Oregon 😊 Nothing quite like waking up at 4am to watch the sun rise through a silent forest with a 30.06 over your shoulder

Witches or wizards?
Wizards

Ninjas or pirates?
Ooh, that’s a tough one – ninjas

Mountains or beaches?
Mountains

Plotter or pantser?
Planster 😂 I might have a threadbare plot, but the characters always run away with it and warp the story into whatever they want. I’ve learned to hold it loosely haha. 

Pen and paper or computer/phone?
Computer/phone – I have whole scenes typed into the tiny notepad on my dinosaur phone, lol

Standalone or series?
Series! I love to hangout with my characters for as long as I can

Book or ebook?
Hmm, another tough one. Books smell better, but ebook since I like to read in bed with the lights off lol

Hero or anti-hero?
Anti-hero, definitely. 😉

3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?

Enemies to lovers, always; enemies to friends, enemies to allies… seeing a trend? Lol Any time characters have to fight their preconceived worldviews or biases, or learn that their perspective needs to change – I’m a sucker for that; I think it’s my Intercultural Studies degree showing.

4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings!

I write urban science-fiction/fantasy! Basically, out-of-this-world fantasy stuff happening in this world, within the boundaries of what we know but pushing them, hard. It’s really fun.

My current project is something I’m more excited about than pretty much any project I’ve worked on so far! (Even The Walls of Orion, shh, don’t tell my readers who love that series best). This one is a four-part saga about a girl working for a counter-terrorism agency who has to strike a deal with a terrorist in order to stop a genocide from happening. Set in a world of humans and Shadow Walkers–ice people ready to rebel against a society dominated by humans for too many millenia–this series explores prejudice, war and revolution, and how far a good person should be willing to go for the good of those under the boot of oppression. The Shadow Walkers saga will have action, romance, suspense, a wide cast of characters, and in-depth world building rich with folklore and pseudo-scientific magical elements woven together.

5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it!

My most release is the concluding sequel to my The Walls of Orion duology, titled City of Loons. For those who haven’t read the first book, I don’t want to spoil anything, so here is the back-cover blurb for book one!

Orion City has been on lockdown for ten years. Courtney Spencer, a disillusioned barista doomed to live a “normal” life in a quarantined fishbowl, is certain she’ll never see over the Wall again.

Until one rainy evening, Courtney unintentionally befriends W, an eccentric customer who leaves a switchblade in the tip jar. The unexpected acquaintance soon opens the door to a frightening string of questions that flips everything she knows upside down. Stumbling into a world of secrets, lies, and disturbing truths, Courtney grapples with a burning temptation to look again at the Wall. Surrounded by citizens trained to ignore its looming shadow, Courtney no longer can.
Intrigued and terrified to expand her world, Courtney finds herself toeing a knife’s edge between the law and justice, learning quickly that the two are not always compatible.
She wants to cling to her morals. She also wants to stay alive. But most of all, she wants to see a certain customer again, despite everything in her whispering W is dangerous. 
In a gritty urban clash of hope and fear, passion and survival, The Walls of Orion explores the edges of light, dark, and the gray in between.

Ironically, I began writing The Walls of Orion in 2016, and finished April 2019, almost an exact year before my country, city, and friends got plunged into a very real pandemic lockdown.  

Luckily I haven’t had to live in a city with a two hundred foot concrete wall around it and indefinite curfews, but my real life experience of quarantine while polishing up the final drafts of this heartchild for publishing certainly felt surreal after the last four years of extensive research on, “How would a mysterious pandemic be handled on a city level? A national level?”

Imagine my surprise, (on top of all the other emotions that come with a pandemic) when in the middle of finalizing my story’s publication, real life beat me to the punch. Find The Walls of Orion on Amazon or Barnes & Noble, I always try to keep it cheap! 😊 https://www.amazon.com/dp/1952112427

6. What real-life inspiration do you draw from, and what are your primary fictional sources of inspiration (books, authors, films, music, etc.)? Name a few!

I’m the most inspired by music. I have playlists for every story I write, and often every character (some with more songs than others!) For example, my Walls of Orion playlist has hundreds of songs on Spotify:

Whereas my Shadow Walkers saga has so many songs that inspire me that I’ve had to split them up into playlists for all of the characters. One character alone (Nyal) has over 600 songs just for him! :O

7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down!

I need to get a better writing routine, honestly, because I am such a sporadic and spontaneous person in general it’s very hard to nail myself down into a daily schedule. I work several day jobs to keep the bills paid, so I have to squeeze writing sessions between shifts or onto my days off. I’m trying to stick to a goal of writing a certain amount of words a week (although I haven’t met that for a little while in the craziness of launching my duology). My favorite and most productive times to write are when I can get away to a coffee shop, plug in my headphones and just sit down and tune out the world. I get my best writing done also when I accidentally pull all-nights because my characters keep talking to me when I’m trying to sleep 😂 Though I don’t recommend letting your characters bully you with inspiration in the wee hours of the morning very often; it’s bad for your health, long term.

8. If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice as you started out on the path to becoming an author, what would it be?

Oh, man. I think the most important thing I would tell myself is: enjoy the process. Enjoy what you’re doing, and don’t let yourself forget why you started in the first place. When editing overwhelms you, or you feel insecure looking at other authors taking off and thinking you’ll never reach their level, come back to your own characters and remember why you want to write their story. I love writing. If I’m stuck on a desert island somewhere, I will be entertained, because I will be telling myself stories until the day I die. This is the most important thing to remember.

Do what you love, and it doesn’t matter how much “success” you may or may not find in the material sense. I may not ever get to #1 on the big charts, but I love seeing my readers’ faces light up as they fall in love with my characters as much as I did—that’s why I write. I’m invigorated by the idea of sharing the worlds I’ve made, and seeing someone be inspired by them.

9. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links!

I’d love to connect! 😊 Sign up for my newsletter at www.tdfoxbooks.com and get exclusive short stories, sneak peeks of my upcoming novels, art, and be the first to know when a new story drops! I’d seriously love so much to connect with you!

Also you can follow me on social media:

Instagram –      @tdfoxauthor

Twitter –     @tdfoxauthor

Facebook –     T.D. Fox

www.tdfoxbooks.com

Author Interview: Paul Mouchet

Check out this author spotlight for Paul Mouchet!

You can find all his links furthest down the page, and don’t forget to check out his books!

1. Hi! Welcome to my humble blog of all things bookish! I would like for us to start by getting to know you. Give us a short bio, please!

Paul Mouchet hails from a small town, just outside of Ottawa, Ontario where he lives with his lovely wife Candice and his rambunctious golden retriever Gizmo. He is a retired IT consultant, turned computer game developer and novelist.  When he’s not in front of his computer, he enjoys the outdoors, movies, books and all things fantastical.

2. To get to know you just a little bit better, I’d like to ask you some this or that questions. Answer 5 (or more!) of these and explain why you chose this or that, or maybe an entirely different alternative!

Winter, spring, summer or autumn? Autumn
Cat or dog? Dog
Tea or coffee? Both
Morning or evening? Morning
Library or museums? Museums – if I go to the library, I make a nest and they kick me out.
Hunter or gatherer? Hunter
Witches or wizards? Wizards
Ninjas or pirates? Pirate Ninjas

Mountains or beaches? Mountains
Plotter or pantser? Pantser
Pen and paper or computer/phone? Computer – never phone
Standalone or series? Series
Book or ebook? eBook
Hero or anti-hero? Redeemed hero.

3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?

Noblebright. There is too much darkness in the world, where the good are too easily trodden upon. I like it when good triumphs over evil, the heroes are worthy, and the happily ever after.

4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings!

I write Epic/Noblebright/YA. In my current series, Priest of Titan, a teen girl sets out on a noble quest, only to find out that life is far more complicated than she had ever realized. I had started releasing this series in November of 2020. I had published the first four books by March 2021, but I wasn’t happy with them. In May 2021 I pulled them all off the shelves and I’ve been completely rewriting them. Call of Titan, the first book in the series, was rereleased in July 2021.

5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it!

Book 2 in the Priest of Titan series, Hand of Titan, released on Aug 31,2021 and Book 3, Hammer of Titan will follow in October. Book 4, Eyes of Titan is not yet scheduled, but I’m expecting it to be available in December.

  • Call of Titan: https://books2read.com/u/b6OAG6
  • Hand of Titan: https://books2read.com/u/bPxP2J
  • Hammer of Titan: https://books2read.com/u/mZrrj5

6. What real-life inspiration do you draw from, and what are your primary fictional sources of inspiration (books, authors, films, music, etc.)? Name a few!

My real-life inspiration are my dogs Buddy and Gizmo. Buddy passed away in the spring of 2020, but I’ll carry him with me for the rest of my life. He was the inspiration for Lump, the lovable protector golden retriever wolfdog. Gizmo, is Runt, the oversized dire wolf pup.

As far as fictional inspiration, I would probably say Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and A Song of Ice and Fire. Harry Potter is still my favorite YA tale.

I’ve got to say, I like it when the young reluctant hero comes into his own and becomes an inspiration to those around him/her (even if the hero is flawed.) Lord of the Rings is still my favorite example of world building. Tolkien led me into his world and made me fall in love with it. What I liked most about A Song of Ice and Fire was the intrigue and the simple fact that, sooner or later, the people we love will die. Martin killed off a few more characters than I’d have liked, but it brought a good dose of reality to the fantasy.

7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down!

In general, I’m up before 6am. While the coffee is brewing I catch up on my social media. Once I get a coffee in front of me, I start writing. I typically go until noon and then my brain shuts down. If I’m feeling energetic, I’ll reread what I wrote in the afternoon, but usually I concentrate on the business side of things – marketing, advertising, and educating myself. I have a lot to learn still.

8. If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice as you started out on the path to becoming an author, what would it be?

Spend more time learning the craft before rushing to publish, and hire a developmental editor sooner rather than later.

9. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links!

https://paulmouchet.ca

https://www.facebook.com/groups/944377969011690

https://www.facebook.com/PaulMouchetAuthor

https://twitter.com/PaulMouchet

Author Interview: Jordan J. Scavone

Check out this author spotlight for Jordan J. Scavone!

You can find all his links furthest down the page, and don’t forget to check out his books!

1. Hi! Welcome to my humble blog of all things bookish! I would like for us to start by getting to know you. Give us a short bio, please!

I am a children’s and young adult author with five picture books and one urban fantasy novel out! I’m a dad to a one-year-old, an early childhood educator, and have my M.A. in Children’s Literature. I take the world of children’s lit very seriously and firmly believe that kids are much smarter than we give them credit for and that kids’ books are for everyone!

2. To get to know you just a little bit better, I’d like to ask you some this or that questions. Answer 5 (or more!) of these and explain why you chose this or that, or maybe an entirely different alternative!

Winter, spring, summer or autumn?
Autumn! I’m a pale ginger boy so the sun and I do not get along. Much like Humpty Dumpty I love to “have a great fall.”

Tea or coffee?
Coffee all day. The darker the better. Also cream and sugar.

Morning or evening?
Morning. I’m up by 8 everyday, and for the past 15 months I’ve been up at 6 everyday.

Library or museums?
Can’t it be both?

Plotter or pantser?
Planster! I have elements from both in me. I like to outline, but I also have no control over my characters.

Standalone or series?
Yeah.

Hero or anti-hero?
I’m more of a traditionalist and love the hero. There is definitely a place for the anti-hero, and when they’re done right they are amazing. Not a fan of being edgy to just be edgy.

3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?

I like the familiar trope that has been turned on its head. I want the ruthless and evil baddie, but I also want to know why they’re like that. I’ll take the destined star-crossed lovers, but make them feel real. The old man mentor? Great, but make them unique. Tropes and cliché are popular for a reason, just put your own spin on them.

4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings!

I mostly do children’s lit. Picture books are my bread and butter, but I’ve recently been branching out into some of the bigger kid books. My urban fantasy novel is YA (the audiobook just released!) and there is currently an all-ages graphic novel funding on Kickstarter!

5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it!

NIGHT WARRIOR – The Audiobook is my most recent release and is the audiobook adaptation of my urban fantasy novel. It’s about a wannabe fantasy author, who, after magical shenanigans, has to deal with her book characters entering our world!
https://www.amazon.com/Night-Warrior-Jordan-J-Scavone/dp/B086BK63R8

My debut all-ages graphic novel series, POPPY BLACK, is also currently funding on Kickstarter!
That one is about Poppy who is a believer in the world of fairies, and Beauden who is a skeptic. However, when Beauden gets transported into a fairy world, it falls to Poppy to try and save him!
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/jordanjscavone/poppy-black-all-ages-graphic-novel

6. What real-life inspiration do you draw from, and what are your primary fictional sources of inspiration (books, authors, films, music, etc.)? Name a few!

The kids in my classroom are a huge inspiration for me, and several of my children’s books feature fictitious versions of them as the main characters! Two of them even appear in my author photos for those books! Besides that, a lot of my inspiration comes from fairytales, folklore, and the world of superheroes.

7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down!

Routine? I’m not sure I’m familiar with the word…When I’m actually writing I tend to do it in bursts. I often have a huge bottle of water, or a cup of coffee, put headphones on, and just blast music as loud as a I can. Sometimes I’ll do short bursts where I write for several minutes only, and other bursts last for several hours. One day I’ll actually get a routine down, but that day isn’t today.

8. If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice as you started out on the path to becoming an author, what would it be?

I would let myself know that it’s going to happen. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, and people actually are going to like what you write. Something that is still hard for me to accept, but I’m getting better!

9. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links!

https://www.jordanjscavone.com/

https://www.facebook.com/MightEBook

@RealJScavone on Twitter and Instagram!

Author Interview: J. W. Kiefer

Check out this author spotlight for J. W. Kiefer!

You can find all his links furthest down the page, and don’t forget to check out his books!

1. Hi! Welcome to my humble blog of all things bookish! I would like for us to start by getting to know you. Give us a short bio, please!

I am a father, minister, novelist, script writer and blogger who hails from the Southern Tier of Western New York State. I have a degree in Theology and Church management as well as a degree in liberal arts. I am also a reserve Green Lantern; and when duty calls, can be found assisting the rest of the core in interstellar matters. An avid vocalist and worship leader, I love to belt out Disney tunes, especially when it is most awkward and embarrassing for my children. As well as being an anime and comic book addict, my other pursuits include knitting, canning, watching paint peel, and observing the occasional pot hoping to see it boil.

2. To get to know you just a little bit better, I’d like to ask you some this or that questions. Answer 5 of these and explain why you chose this or that, or maybe an entirely different alternative!

Ninjas or pirates?
Ninja, obviously. Who wouldn’t want top learn the mystical arts of the greatest assassins the world has ever known? Plus, being an avid Anime fan, I love Naruto. All kidding aside, I actual love the history of Japan and the rise and fall of the Samurai. One of my main characters in book one is called the Shogun and is a samurai from ancient Japan.

I love studying about Iga and Koga where the ninja clans came into prominence.  I am working on a prequal book to my current series The Justice Cycle that takes place in ancient Japan. This has given me an excuse to indulge in my fascination of Japanese and ninja or shinobi history.

Mountains or beaches?
Always the mountains. I actual am not a huge fan of the beach. As Anakin put it, “I don’t like sand. It’s all coarse, and rough, and irritating. And it gets everywhere.” Plus, I am a big guy currently and I hate taking my shirt off in public. I feel the less of my pasty pale body people see, the better it is for everyone. Seriously, I am a blonde, so I look like an albino sasquatch. Honestly, I lived in Florida for about 15 years, and I did love the peacefulness of the ocean at night but missed the solitude of the mountains. The mountains, however, have always held a beautiful fascination for me. Most fairy tales happen in either forests or mountains. It is a place where mortals commune with god’s and where the mystery of the heavens kiss the knowable mortal realm. For me, the mountains still hold that kind of magic and mystery. I actually climbed Mount Evan in Colorado a few years ago and plan on making mountain climbing a hobby.

Plotter or pantser?
Pantser. I actually tried plotting my current WIP and found that after a month of struggling, I actually hated life and writing. I mean it, I just hated every minute of it. One good thing that came from it, is that I did a whole heck of a lot of world building. My world is now very fleshed out and I really needed to do that to move forward, so some good came of it. For me, a basic idea forms and I come up with a begging and a tentative end and then I let the characters and the world show me what happens in the middle. I found that this works well for me even if I write slow at times.

Pen and paper or computer/phone?
Absolutely computer. I can’t read my own handwriting so free hand is a pointless exercise in futility for me. That doesn’t mean I don’t jot things down so I don’t forget them at times, but if I try to write the whole book free hand, I would not be able to read any of it. I have tried dictation writing and it just doesn’t work for me. I must put my music on, sit down at my computer and just write. It is the only way that works for me. I am pretty sure I would not have been a writer before the creation of the typewriter. Couldn’t do it.

Hero or anti-hero?
Ok, I am a hero. At least, I hope I am. Like most people, I think antiheroes can be fascinating, but I don’t aspire to be one. I hate the current trend I find in comics, film, and novels of this nihilistic idea that everyone is just grey. Or rather, that we glorify in our greyness instead of trying to become better. Sure, I am not perfect, but I try to shore up my weaknesses and become the best me I can be. I love characters like Superman and Captain America. They represent the idea that we can be better. They are the mentors and heroes the others look up to. Without them, we have nothing to aspire to. Just look at the Watchmen world. That is exactly what they had, and I don’t know about you, but it wasn’t a world I wanted to live in. I have no desire to be a bad boy antihero, but I do have a desire to be someone who lays down his life for others. I guess that is also the Christian in me coming out. Jesus was the ultimate warrior, but he was also a true hero with no dark side. In fact, this is one part of my main characters story arc that I will show as the series goes on. Will he simply be nothing more than an executioner for the universe or will he evolve and become something more.

3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?
I love the hero’s journey. I also love the villain redemption arc. These two are my favourite tropes. Honestly, I tend to gravitate towards characters or stories that involve sacrifice for others. Therefore, I generally read fantasy. In the real-world people sacrifice their lives everyday for others, but we don’t really see it. Such people as doctors, police, soldiers, fire fighters, direct care, teachers, pastors and first responders are always there in the shadows giving of themselves were no one sees. In fantasy we can bring those concepts out in exciting fashion. For instance, I love Samwise Gamgee. Without him, the whole War of the Ring would have been lost. He was the most underrated and underestimated member of the fellowship, but his willingness to put others before himself made him the person who could do what no one else truly could. I love characters like him and wherever I find a Sam Gamgee, I am happy.

4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings!
I am currently working on book two of the Justice Cycle: Famine. The justice Cycle is a paranormal urban fantasy series that begins in Western New York State and then moves out to encompass the greater world. The tentative release date for the project is April of 2022. The Justice Cycle is a projected 5 book series that will also include two prequals and a book of short stories. The tentative titles are:

  1. Death
  2. Famine
  3. Wrath
  4. Plague
  5. War

Prequals: The Shogun, and The Musketeer

As of yet untitled book of short stories. I am also working on a book, blog and youtube channel called “Parent’s Guide to the Universe.” It is very much in its infancy, but hopefully will be available some time next year as well. I hope to also release a children’s book series called “Two Monkeys”. The first book, “There are Two Monkey’s on My Head” is done and I am looking to have it published traditionally. 

5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it!
My first novel The Justice Cycle Book One: Death is my most recent release. It is the first book in a planned five book series that will also have two prequal books and a book of short stories. It is available on paperback, digital and Kindle Unlimited.

The elevator pitch is: In the normally tranquil city of Binghamton in upstate New York women are turning up dead. Murder is something every town experiences, but here in the country, two in as many days is frightening. Police detectives Jared Caddrett and Dana Campbell are tasked with finding the killer, but when a mysterious FBI agent from the big city shows up, they begin to realize that something far more sinister has come to their little town. As the war between the spirits of Justice and Injustice threaten to invade the earthly realm and angels and demons battle, what began as a simple murder investigation will lead the two detectives into the unseen world that exists in the shadows, thrusting them into a supernatural war that has been raging for millennia.

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/DEATH-J-W-Kiefer/dp/B08YRXLVT7/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=j+w+kiefer&qid=1629221045&sr=8-1

Website: JWKiefer.com

6. What real-life inspiration do you draw from, and what are your primary fictional sources of inspiration (books, authors, films, music, etc.)? Name a few!
Well, I grew up in a Christian home and my father and grandfather were both pastors. From a young age I experienced many supernatural events in the church, in other people’s lives and in my own. I often tell people that my childhood was kind of like the kids in the Sixth Sense only with demons and angels instead of dead people. For me the war in the unseen world was very real and still is. My personal experiences with the supernatural is the source of inspiration I draw from the most.

I was also very much inspired by superhero comics as well. I love to write about heroes, and they were my inspiration. In fact, I tried to get in comics long before I decided to take up novel writing.  

I would also have to say that authors like JRR Tolkien, CS Lewis, RA Salvatore and many others have inspired my work. My editor commented that my style seemed like a mixture of Tolkien and Lewis, and she could see their influence on my writing. People who have read RA Slavatore’s Forgotten Realm series will also see a lot of influence form his characters as well. Drizzt, Artimus and Jarlaxel heavily influenced characters in my world such as the Musketeer.

7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down!
I sit down, put music on and just start typing. The music and my writing desk are keys to me being able to get into a routine. My day job, or night job since I am an overnight vampire, is quiet and I have some down time and people are always asking me why I don’t make use of that time to write. Well, I can’t. I need my music and I need my isolation, or I can’t lose myself in the creative process. I have tried, believe you me and it never works. Other then that, I have set word count or chapter goals I set for each month. This way I can project what needs to be done and in what time frame. I try my best to stay on track, but my crazy schedule doesn’t always allow it. Other than that, I like to listen to music and imagine. I wrote the last scene in my mind just the other day while listening to music and driving to work. Music really is the key for me. It helps my imagination soar giving the scenes in my head more emotional depth.

8. If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice as you started out on the path to becoming an author, what would it be?
Make sure to write every day. I know this is a given, but you would be surprised at how many of us don’t do it. Most of us creative types are horrible procrastinators. Even though we want to write, we allow every little shiny object to distract us. If I could go back and do one thing over, it would be that. If I had mastered the discipline of writing everyday when I was young, I would already have tons of books out instead of just one. I am forty-six years old, and I have been writing since I was fifteen and I just now mustered up the discipline to finish my first novel. Yes, as Tolkien so eloquently put it, life happens; but If I had just wrote even fifteen minutes a day since I was fifteen just imagine what I could have accomplished by now. Anyway, living in our regrets is a waste of time. All we can do is use the time we have left as wisely as we can. (Thanks for that Gandalf.)

9. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links!

Website: JWKiefer.com

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/J-W-Kiefer/e/B08YX1CXNJ

Author Interview: Mickey Wren

Check out this author spotlight for Mickey Wren!

You can find all his links furthest down the page, and don’t forget to check out his books!

1. Hi! Welcome to my humble blog of all things bookish! I would like for us to start by getting to know you. Give us a short bio, please! 

Mickey Wren was born Andrew Michael Levin in Philadelphia, PA.  The third of four in his family, he’s always been very eclectic.  In high school, he found a way to get across to people what he was thinking by writing song lyrics and singing acapella for friends and family.  In college, he got into short stories and fiction, and began to write the Runic Warriors stories.  Also, spending time through his life as a member of the Army National Guard and trying to keep afloat, his writing took a backseat for a while.  At the end of 2014, he rediscovered the Runic Warriors project and it grew exponentially into the Novella series available today under his official pen name, Mickey Wren.

2. To get to know you just a little bit better, I’d like to ask you some this or that questions. Answer 5 (or more!) of these and explain why you chose this or that, or maybe an entirely different alternative!

Winter, spring, summer or autumn? 
Spring, I don’t like extremes and spring is very relaxed

Tea or coffee?  coffee

Pen and paper or computer/phone?
Pen and paper first, then computer

Standalone or series?
Series, more of a challenge

Book or ebook? 
Book, feels better to hold it in my hands.

Hero or anti-hero? 
Hero, keep it simple

3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?

Sci-fi fantasy or a good mystery

4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings! 

The Runic Warriors is a sci-fi/fantasy series that was partially inspired by the Power Rangers

5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it! 

Book 5 of the series is called Massive Attack.  It finishes as much as I started 20 years ago.

6. What real-life inspiration do you draw from, and what are your primary fictional sources of inspiration (books, authors, films, music, etc.)? Name a few! 

I sprinkle bits about my life throughout the series.  There’s stuff related to Norse Mythology and Runic Magick, as well as aspects to the stories that are similar to the Power Rangers or even Voltron.

7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down! 

I tend to write out everything, pen to paper, then I take that to my computer and type out what I’ve written.

8. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links! 
I’m all over social media, either under my real name Andrew M Levin, or my pen name, Mickey Wren.

https://www.facebook.com/Runicwarriorsseries/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBRP5-MjoNuk2nF6NSO1C5w

« Older posts Newer posts »

© 2021 Catrin Russell

Theme by Anders NorénUp ↑

This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.