Blog Ring of Power Interview with Michelle K. Pickett

BRoP Logo Revised

Today I welcome  author Michelle K. Pickett. You can find the other four parts of the Blog Ring of Power interview with Michelle on the following blogs, so please check them out to get the whole story!

Emily LaBonte Sandra Ulbrich Almazon http://terribruce.net/ T.W. Fendley

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000031_00001]Tell us about your route to success –how did you land your agent/publisher?

I always hesitate to tell my story about how I landed my contract with Spencer Hill Press. It’s a fairy tale—it really is. Not many writers, if any, get contracts the way I did. I submitted the required submission packet to Spencer Hill. Two days later I received an email for a full manuscript. Three days later I was offered a contract. Spencer Hill Press was the only publisher I submitted to. Yeah, I know most authors trying to land a contract who are reading this want to punch me through the computer screen right now.  Receiving a contract from the first publishing house you submit your manuscript to is almost unheard of, and I consider myself very, very blessed.

What tools are must-haves for writers?

Drive, focus, organization, and the ability to say, “No,” when people intrude on your writing time.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Write. You can’t be a write if you don’t write. It’s that simple. You have to write. There is a quote that I like to read when I get the blues. It’s by Junot Diaz, a Pulitzer Prize winning author. “You see, in my view a writer is a writer not because she writes well and easily, because she has amazing talent, because everything she does is golden. In my view a writer is a writer because even when there is no hope, even when nothing you do shows any sign of promise, you keep writing anyway.”

I think that sums it up well. Keep writing.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

My readers amaze me. I’m overwhelmed by their response to PODs. Without them, PODs would just be a file on my computer. Because of them, it is a book. I am so grateful to each one; I can’t begin to express the feelings I have in my heart for them. They are like long lost friends I didn’t know I had. I hope we go on many, many more adventures together! The rock so hard it’s pure awesomeness!

What are your current / future project(s)?

Currently I am working on the first book in a paranormal trilogy. The book is called “Milayna” and I’m really excited about it. I think readers will really enjoy it. I know it is a big genre change from PODs, but I’m hoping the readers of PODs will give it a chance. I really think they’ll enjoy the story.

“The Infected” is also coming out. It is the second, and final, book in the PODs series.

After the “Milayna Trilogy” and “The Infected” I don’t have anything under contract, but I do have some projects in various stages. I have a YA urban fantasy on submission, I’m finishing up edits on a YA contemporary romance and I’m starting a NA contemporary romance.

Is there anything else you’d like to share?

I absolutely love to hear from my readers. Is there anything you’d like to ask me? Comments you’d like to make? Suggestions? Email me! I’d love to hear from you!

Author Bio:

I’m a wife, mother, author, reader, although not always in that order. I write young adult urban Michelle Pickett headshotfantasies, science/fiction, paranormal, and young adult and new adult contemporary romances. Reading was one of my earliest passions, writing soon followed. I began writing seriously during college where I graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in accounting. Why I chose a career that frowns on creativity remains a mystery.Red Bull or Monster Khaos are my coffee of choice. I’m addicted to Reese’s peanut butter cups and peanut butter M&Ms and eat way too many while I write (I’m currently trying to kick this habit). I have an abnormal obsession with hoodies and can’t write without one. I hate to cook, but love to watch cooking shows. I’m a hopeful romantic; I love a swoon-worthy ending that will give me butterflies for days. And books that keep me thinking of them long after I’ve finished the last page.I was born and raised in Flint, Michigan, but now live in a sleepy suburb of Houston, Texas with my extremely supportive, not to mention gorgeous husband, three school-aged kids, a 125 pound “lap dog,” and a very snooty cat.

Follow Michelle:

Websitewww.Michelle-Pickett.com

EmailMichelle@Michelle-Pickett.com

Blog:  www.michelle-pickett.com/blog

Facebook page: www.facebook.com/michellepickettauthor

Goodreads author page: http://goodreads.com/michelle-pickett

Twitterhttp://www.twitter.com/michelle_kp

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/michellepickett

Google+https://plus.google.com/+MichellePickettauthor/posts

Pinteresthttp://about.me/MichellePickett

About.Mehttp://about.me/MichellePickett

BlogLovin’:   http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/5222595

Amazon Author Pagehttp://www.amazon.com/Michelle-K.-Pickett/e/B008QWUA5O/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1392760710&sr=8-2

Book Back Cover Blurb:

Milayna…

From the bestselling author of PODs comes an unforgettable tale of action, intrigue, and following your heart in the midst of betrayal.

It’s hard being good all the time. Everyone needs to be bad once in a while. But for seventeen-year-old Milayna, being good isn’t a choice. It’s a job requirement. And it’s a job she can’t quit. Born a demi-angel, Milayna steps in when danger and demons threaten the people around her, but being half angel isn’t all halos and happiness. Azazel, Hell’s demon, wants Milayna’s power, and he’ll do anything to get it. But he only has until her eighteenth birthday, after which she becomes untouchable.

With the help of other demi-angels, Milayna thwarts the trouble Azazel sends her way. Fighting with her is Chay. He’s a demi-angel who’s sinfully gorgeous, and Milayna falls hard. But is Chay her true love…or her nemesis in disguise?

Because when she learns of a traitor in her group, there’s no one she can trust…not even the one she loves.

Buy/Book Links:

Goodreads:  Milaynahttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17737994-milayna:

Amazon׀Barnes&Noble׀The Book Depository׀ Wal-Mart׀Books-A-Million

 

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Blog Ring of Power Interview with Author Alys Cohen

BRoP Logo Revised

Today I welcome speculative fiction author Alys Cohen. You can find the other four parts of the Blog Ring of Power interview with Alys on the following blogs, so please check them out to get the whole story!

Emily LaBonte Sandra Ulbrich Almazon http://terribruce.net/ T.W. Fendley

Sacred Blood

 

  1. Where do you get your story ideas?

Usually something inspires me out of the blue.  Sacred Blood was sparked by my concern about abuse being portrayed as romantic, and the upcoming dystopian by a news story regarding income equality and my wondering what would happen if…well, I don’t want to give it away.

 

Do you have a specific writing style?

I am a bit dialog-heavy at times, and since my tendency is to use large words and overly-formal speech, I have to be on alert to not slip into purple prose.  Otherwise I don’t really think I have any specific style.

How do you deal with writer’s block?

Most of the time I know where I want a scene to go, so will jump to the other side of the block and start writing the end, and than leap back to the beginning.  I see it as chiseling at the block from both sides.

 How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula?

About thirteen years ago I wrote a female character for a Lord of the Rings role play game (shout out to the old Tolfalas forum!).  We also had a long story going where we claimed chapters and took over when it was our turn.  We could take the story anywhere we wanted, and even kill characters, as long as we stayed pretty much within canon.  I used the same character for both.  Later I redeveloped her for a Harry Potter game.  This character is the foundation for most of my main female protagonists.

I enjoy a variety of characters in my books.  Part of the dullness of Twilight is the homogeny.  Part of the allure of Harry Potter is the diversity.  When I write an initial cast, I do intentionally give them different religious beliefs, different sexualities, mix the races of relationships so some are interracial and some aren’t, and generally try to give it a real-world mix.  Once I have these things figured out, I start writing and let their personalities develop from there.

Plots are similar.  I’ll have the main points.  A, B, C, and so on, and will write those out.  Then I’ll go back and just write and see where the characters take it.  I’ve been surprised by some paths I would never have thought to plan out.

Are you a “plotter” or a “pantser” (do you plan/outline the story ahead of time or write “by the seat of your pants”)?

I think number four sums this up.  I do both.

Do you use critique partners or beta readers? Why or why not?

I am a horrid critique partner, though thanks to one of my betas, Blair Falcon, I think I will be a better one in the future.  To date, I have had more betas, a lot of betas.  I can not know if I’m getting a point across, or if I’m giving enough detail.  I can see the scene in my mind with no description.  Am I getting that image across?  Am I describing enough?  My betas can’t crawl into my brain, and so are the ones who can tell me where more detail is needed.

How much time do you spend on research? What type of research do you do?

Probably half my time is spent researching.  When I set my books in the real world (with a secret supernatural world), then I owe it to my readers to get the roads right, and I like to use real locations, such as restaurants.  This will mean finding out if there is anything that restaurant is known for so I can add those tidbits in.  If they’re having wine with dinner, I’ll consult those who know wine better to find out the best one to compliment the dish.  I’ll use Google Earth to find remote towns and their stores, pull up airline schedules to make sure particular flights exist, and find floor plans for buildings I use.  Sacred Blood has a scene at a trapeze school located on the pier in Santa Monica.  That is a real place, and a friend went and got pictures for me.  Yes, I have people scout locations.  I usually give my books a timeline, and this adds the challenge of finding out if there are any events in their area on a certain day that might affect them.  In Sacred Honor, the sequel to Sacred Blood that is currently in editing, Juliette is driving over the grapevine in Southern California on a certain day.  There was a crash on that road when she would have been on it.  I added in the helicopters that landed because I just don’t feel right removing real events from the real world if I’m going to use this world and dates.

As you might imagine, editing has the additional challenge of verifying a lot of information.  I have several files on my computer with my sources.  Of I want people to give me money for my books, I owe it to these readers to give the best books I can, even if these details will be chalked up to nothing more than figments of my imagination.  But for those readers who enjoy looking for “did not do the research” points, have fun trying to give me a few.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging to write?

Battle scenes.  I spent what felt like years researching how to write them for Sacred Blood, and then I ended up with two chapters of battle!  When so much is going on, how do you decide what to show?

Sex scenes are also difficult, not due to a lack of imagination, but because I can really get into those scenes and can get shy.   Currently I’m writing a spite-fic on fanfiction.net that has some explicit sex scenes through a male point of view.  Pushing my boundaries anonymously is helping me find the boundaries I’ll be comfortably using in the Sacred series.

Follow Alys:Alys Cohen2

Blog: http://alysbcohen.wordpress.com/

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAlysBCohen and https://www.facebook.com/AlysBCohen

Goodreads author page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6889385.Alys_B_Cohen

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AlysBCohen

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Alys-B.-Cohen/e/B00H6UNYZK

Smashwords Author Page: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/alysbcohen

Other: http://alysbcohen.com/

Book Back Cover Blurb:

Abused and frightened, Juliette St. Claire has never

known love or kindness in her eighteen years.

Meeting Tristan LaRocque changes that,

infuriating her cruel boyfriend, Nathaniel Jensen.

But Tristan is powerless to help Juliette when merely trying

could result in her death.

As threats to her life intensify,

Juliette uncovers the mystical secrets

they have both kept from her,

and she must make some tough choices

about the men she thought she knew.

Fiercely passionate and profoundly riveting,

Sacred Blood is an outstanding story

that will leave you rethinking

love, friendship, and everything you hold dear.

Buy/Book Links:

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17238992-sacred-blood

Amazon:  http://amzn.to/1ejuJSv

DAUGHTER OF CHAOS by Jen McConnel — Book Release Blog Tour

 

Daughter of Chaos (Red magic #1)by Jen McConnelPublisher: Month9BooksRelease Date: March 25th 2014
Synopsis:

There comes a time in every witch’s life when she must choose her path. Darlena’s friends have already chosen, so why is it so hard for her to make up her mind? Now, Darlena is out of time. Under pressure from Hecate, the Queen of all witches, Darlena makes a rash decision to choose Red magic, a path no witch in her right mind would dare take. As a Red witch, she will be responsible for chaos and mayhem, drawing her deep into darkness. Will the power of Red magic prove too much for Darlena, or will she learn to control it before it’s too late?

DAUGHTER OF CHAOS is the first in the RED MAGIC paranormal YA trilogy.

 photo addtogoodreadssmall_zpsa2a6cf28.png photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg

 

Click on the banner to follow the Daughter Of Chaos Blog Tour

 

Jen McConnel first began writing poetry as a child. Since then, her words have appeared in a variety of magazines and journals, including Sagewoman, PanGaia, and The Storyteller (where she won the people’s choice 3rd place award for her poem, “Luna”).
She is also a former reviewer for Voices of Youth Advocates (VOYA), and a proud member of SCBWI, NCWN, and SCWW.
A Michigander by birth, she now lives and writes in the beautiful state of North Carolina. She’s a graduate of Western Michigan University, and she also earned her MS in Library Science at Clarion University of Pennsylvania.
When she isn’t crafting worlds of fiction, she teaches writing composition at a community college. Once upon a time, she was a middle school teacher, a librarian, and a bookseller, but those are stories for another time.
Follow Jen on Twitter @Jen_McConnel, and visit www.jenmcconnel.com to learn more.

Win (1) swag pack giveaway (INT)

 

Kelly Hashway Interview — Blog Ring of Power

BRoP Logo Revised

Today I welcome speculative fiction author Kelly Hashway. You can find the other four parts of the Blog Ring of Power interview with Kelly on the following blogs, so please check them out to get the whole story!

Emily LaBonte Sandra Ulbrich Almazon http://terribruce.net/ T.W. Fendley

Kelly Hashaway COVERWhat are the most important elements of good writing?

Even though I’m a former language arts  teacher and I love grammar, I’m going to say voice is even more important. Voice is usually what draws the reader in and keeps them turning the pages. After that, you need well-developed characters and strong writing.

What tools are must-haves for writers?

I think this really depends on the individual writer, but I need my laptop, little notebooks to carry with me everywhere, and a digital voice recorder. That pretty much covers me to jot down ideas at any time. Also, you can never underestimate the power of great CPs. Every writer needs CPs or beta readers to help them improve.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Read, read, and read some more. I learn the most by reading great books. It’s research and it’s fun.

Do you have anything  specific that you want to say to your readers?

Yes, I want to thank everyone who has picked up my books. There are so many great books out there, so I’m honored whenever anyone chooses to read one of mine. I couldn’t do what I do without readers.

What are your current /future project(s)?

I have a YA fantasy called Into the Fire and a middle grade fantasy called Curse of the Granville Fortune releasing this fall.  I’m busy working on books for both of those series.

Author Bio:

Kelly Hashway grew up reading R.L. Stein’s Fear Street novels and writing stories of her own, soKelly Hashaway headshot it was no surprise to her family when she majored in English and later obtained a masters degree in English Secondary Education from East Stroudsburg University. After teaching middle school language arts for seven years, Hashway went back to school and focused specifically on writing. She is now the author of three young adult series, one middle grade series, and several picture books. She also writes contemporary romance under the pen name Ashelyn Drake. When she isn’t writing, Hashway works as a freelance editor for small presses as well as for her own list of clients. In her spare time, she enjoys running, traveling, and volunteering with the PTO. Hashway currently resides in Pennsylvania with her husband, daughter, and two pets.

Follow Kelly:

Blog:  http://kellyhashway.blogspot.com

Facebook page:  http://www.facebook.com/kellyhashway

Goodreads author page:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4528793.Kelly_Hashway

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/kellyhashway

Amazon Author Page:  http://www.amazon.com/Kelly-Hashway/e/B004B3W3CU/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1391601580&sr=8-2-ent

Book Back Cover Blurb:

Having fallen at the hands of Hades, Jodi’s enduring torture like she never imagined. Worse, she has to watch her Ophi friends suffer along with her—the punishment doled out by the very people she’d sentenced to life in Tartarus. Hell. This is one reunion Jodi hoped would never happen, but now she must find a way to free them all.

Except the underworld is nearly impossible to escape.

Jodi’s one chance may rest in raising the human soul she killed when she drank Medusa’s blood.

But splitting her human soul from her Ophi soul means living a double life: One as an Ophi experiencing unspeakable torture and the other as the human she could have been if she never came into her powers. With her two worlds colliding, Jodi will have to make the toughest decision she’s faced yet.

Book Links:

Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18135881-face-of-death

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Kelly-Hashway/e/B004B3W3CU/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1391601580&sr=8-2-ent

BarnesandNoble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/face-of-death-kelly-hashway/1116231027?ean=9781937053925

 

CROWN OF ICE Cover Reveal!!

Today is the day I finally get to share the gorgeous cover for my debut novel, CROWN OF ICE.  I am thrilled to show you the wonderful cover provided by my publisher, Month9Books.

First, here’s the book blurb and other essential info.:

Title: CROWN OF ICE

Author: Vicki L. Weavil

Genre: YA Fantasy, fairytale retelling

Format: Paperback, eBook

Release Date: December 16, 2014

Goodreads link:  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17925759-crown-of-ice

Thyra Winther’s seventeen, the Snow Queen, and immortal, but if she can’t reassemble a shattered enchanted mirror by her eighteenth birthday she’s doomed to spend eternity as a wraith.

Armed with magic granted by a ruthless wizard, Thyra schemes to survive with her mind and body intact. Unencumbered by kindness, she kidnaps local boy Kai Thorsen, whose mathematical skills rival her own. Two logical minds, Thyra calculates, are better than one. With time rapidly melting away she needs all the help she can steal.

A cruel lie ensnares Kai in her plan, but three missing mirror shards and Kai’s childhood friend, Gerda, present more formidable obstacles. Thyra’s willing to do anything – venture into uncharted lands, outwit sorcerers, or battle enchanted beasts — to reconstruct the mirror, yet her most dangerous adversary lies within her breast. Touched by the warmth of a wolf pup’s devotion and the fire of a young man’s desire, the thawing of Thyra’s frozen heart could be her ultimate undoing.

CROWN OF ICE is a YA Fantasy that reinvents Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Snow Queen” from the perspective of a young woman who discovers that the greatest threat to her survival may be her own humanity.

Okay, now time to pull back the curtain….

Snowflake graphic

 

And — Ta Da!

VWeavil_CrownofIce_M9B_eCover_900x1350

 

 

 

Happy Birthday, Hans Christian Andersen!

Hans Christian AndersenToday, April 2nd, marks the day that the great storyteller, Hans Christian Andersen was born.

Andersen was born in 1805 in Odense, on the Danish island of Funen, Denmark,  He was born into a poor family — a fact that may have influenced many of his stories.  Unlike many creators of literary fairy tales, Andersen often used ordinary people as his protagonists, instead of kings, princesses, or other royalty.

Andersen’s mother was a washerwoman, and his father a shoemaker. Hans was a gangly, rather unattractive youth, but his great intelligence and creativity was evident from an early age.

Andersen was able to acquire a good education despite his family’s humble status, an anomaly that has led to speculation that he was actually an illegitimate member of the Danish royal family. However such rumors have never been substantiated.

Andersen did have benefactors who recognized his talent and supported his work. One was Jonas Collin, who — after Andersen’s brief attempt at an acting career — urged the young man to follow a vocation as an author.

Andersen's Fairy Tales CoverAlthough best known today for his fairy tales, Andersen first gained fame as a writer of poetry, plays, and realistic fiction.  Andersen even won a grant from the Danish king — allowing the young author to travel Europe. A novel based on his time in Italy, The Improvisatore, was published in 1835. Andersen began writing  fairy tales in that same year.
It was not until 1845 that  English translations of Andersen’s folktales and stories  gained the attention of foreign audiences. In 1847, Andersen visited British novelist Charles Dickens, and their friendship continued for several years . Many scholars believe that Andersen’s stories  had a strong influence on subsequent British children’s authors, including A. A. Milne and Beatrix Potter.

By the time of his death in 1875, Andersen was revered throughout the world, with the Danish government paying him an annual stipend as a “National Treasure.”  Today, Andersen is best known for his literary fairy tales, such as “The Emperor’s New Clothes, “The Red Shoes, “The Ugly Duckling, and “The Little Mermaid.” His works have been used as the basis for many retellings, plays, films, ballets, and musicals.

Of course, Andersen was also the author of one of my favorite childhood stories — “The Snow Queen.” It was first published December 21,1844 in New Fairy Tales. First Volume. Third Collection. 1845. (Danish: Nye Eventyr. Første Bind. Anden Samling. 1845.)snow_qwe6

You can read an English translation of the original “The Snow Queen” here: http://www.hca.gilead.org.il/snow_que.html

 

cropped-Thyra.jpgMy retelling of “The Snow Queen” – CROWN OF ICE — will be published by Month9Books this December. Find out more at the Goodreads link for my book:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17925759-crown-of-ice

I am indebted to Andersen for the inspiration for my book and wish to pay my respects on this, the 209th year of his birth. I can only hope that my book will live on for even a fraction of the years that Andersen’s brilliant stories have graced our world.

Happy Birthday, Mr. Andersen.  Your genius should always be acknowledged and celebrated!

Blog Ring of Power Interview with Vera Nazarian

BRoP Logo Revised

Today I welcome speculative fiction author Vera Nazarian. You can find the other four parts of the Blog Ring of Power interview with Vera on the following blogs, so please check them out to get the whole story!

Emily LaBonte Sandra Ulbrich Almazon http://terribruce.net/ T.W. Fendley

Vera Nazarian CobwebForest CoverTell us about your route to success – how/when did you decide to self-publish?

These days, in this brave new world of publishing, I think self-publishing is the most prudent way to go. I am excited to be living at a time when we can do so much ourselves, and there are so many opportunities given us. But you must be willing to work extra-hard, which is great for a workaholic like me.

Did you query an agent first? How did you handle the editing, proofreading, cover design, etc.

No agents! (spoken in the voice of Edna from The Incredibles, as she says, “No capes!”) I am a one-woman production factory and marching band. Except for my excellent beta readers I do it all myself.

What are the most important elements of good writing?

Two words – good taste. Learn how to write well by reading the masters, and understanding their style. Then, observe the world around you with clear lenses and understand your own style. Put the two together, and you have the best of all worlds. Your own unique voice, and the tradition of quality from the rich literary tradition of the world.

What tools are must-haves for writers?

The best tool for a writer is the ability to step away from your own prose and look at it objectively, Sometimes this can be easily accomplished by setting it aside and coming back with fresh eyes a few days or weeks later. At other times, it might take another person’s critrical eye to help you see your own imperfections as well as good points. Learn to cultivate your own innter critic and cheerleader, both, in equal measure. And the best way to train your innter critic is to read widely of the kind of literarure which you admire—it is very simple actually.

What are your current / future project(s)?

I am curently at work on a completely different project, The Atlantis Grail, a YA dystopia trilogy in the vein of The Hunger Games and Divergent. Book one, Qualify, is tentatively scheduled for May 2014, followed by Compete (book two) and Win (book three).

Author Bio:

VERA NAZARIAN is a two-time Nebula Award Nominee, award-winning artist, member of Vera Nazarian Author PhotoScience Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, and a writer with a penchant for moral fables and stories of intense wonder, true love, and intricacy.

She is the author of critically acclaimed novels Dreams of the Compass Rose and Lords of Rainbow, as well as the outrageous parodies Mansfield Park and Mummies and Northanger Abbey and Angels and Dragons, and most recently, Pride and Platypus: Mr. Darcy’s Dreadful Secret in her humorous and surprisingly romantic Supernatural Jane Austen Series, and the epic Renaissance fantasy Cobweb Bride Trilogy.

After many years in Los Angeles, Vera lives in a small town in Vermont, and uses her Armenian sense of humor and her Russian sense of suffering to bake conflicted pirozhki and make art.

Her official author website is www.veranazarian.com

Author Contact Information:

Blog:

http://www.veranazarian.com/blog/

Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/nazarian

https://www.facebook.com/VeraNazarian

Goodreads Author page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/186145.Vera_Nazarian

Twitter:

https://twitter.com/Norilana

Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/author/nazarian

Smashwords Author Page:

https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/VeraNazarian

Google+:

https://plus.google.com/111589536460053271045/posts

Back Cover Blurb:

The world is broken… A dark Goddess rises. A mortal maiden must stop her.

COBWEB FOREST (Cobweb Bride Trilogy, Book Three) is the third and final book of the intricate epic fantasy flavored by Renaissance history and the romantic myth of Persephone, about death’s ultimatum to the world.

Percy Ayren, ordinary girl from the small village of Oarclaven, and now Death’s Champion, has delivered the Cobweb Bride to Lord Death–or so she thinks!

But nothing is ever as easy as it seems. Percy and Beltain Chidair, the valiant and honorable Black Knight, discover that even more is at stake than anyone could have imagined, when ancient gods enter the fray.

It is now a season of winter darkness. Gods rise and walk the earth in unrelieved desire, and the Longest Night is without end…

Meanwhile, landmarks continue to disappear throughout the realm. The cruel Sovereign’s dead armies of the Trovadii clad in the colors of pomegranate and blood march north… As the mad Duke Hoarfrost continues to lay siege to the city of Letheburg, it is up to Claere Liguon, the Emperor’s dead daughter and the passionate Vlau Fiomarre who killed her, to take a stand against the enemy.

But Percy still has a difficult task to do, the greatest task of all… For in the end the Cobweb Bride awaits, together with the final answer.

At last all the occult mysteries are revealed in this stunning conclusion to the Cobweb Bride trilogy.

Buy/Book Links:

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18751913-cobweb-forest

Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HMCLO9U/

BarnesandNoble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/cobweb-forest-vera-nazarian/1117938408?ean=2940045552769

Smashwords:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/393372

Apple iTunes:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/cobweb-forest/id793711657?mt=11

Sony:

https://ebookstore.sony.com/ebook/vera-nazarian/cobweb-forest/_/R-400000000000001192000

Is your book in print, ebook or both?

Ebook, Trade Hardcover, and Trade Paperback.

Blog Ring of Power Interview: J. Kathleen Cheney

 

BRoP Logo Revised

Today I am very happy to welcome speculative fiction author J. Kathleen Cheney. You can find the other four parts of the Blog Ring of Power interview with Kathleen on the following blogs, so please check them out to get the whole story!

Emily LaBonte Sandra Ulbrich Almazon http://terribruce.net/ T.W. Fendley

seatofmagicTell us about your route to success –how did you land your agent/publisher?

I landed my agent via a pitch session at the DFW Writers Conference.  I went there because my dream agent, Lucienne Diver, was going to be there. After the world’s worst pitch–seriously, I was a basket case–she asked for a partial, and later, a full.  She rejected the manuscript (The Seat of Magic) because it was too clearly a second book in a series. I wrote back and told her that I was working on Book 1 at the time.  When I finished The Golden City, I sent it directly to her agency, and she liked it enough to take it on if I was willing to edit it some. And a few months later she’d sold it to Penguin. (She is awesome.  Did I say that?)

What are the most important elements of good writing?     

I think having engaging characters and an interesting story trump all the technical elements.  Try to make people fall in love with your main characters.  And your secondary characters, because you never know when they’re going to become the main characters in their own story.

What tools are must-haves for writers?

I think the best tools are other books.  Not just research, but fiction.  Look at the fiction you love and figure out why you love it. That’s your best tool.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

You know how they say to Kill Your Darlings?  If you’re trying for traditional publishing, that’s something you’re going to have to learn to do.  Yes, you can mourn a passage’s loss for a day or two, but then you have to buckle down and make the changes needed.  It gets easier with repetition.

What are your current /future project(s)?

I’m revising Book 3 in the series (The Shores of Spain) and gearing up to work on another      series after that, a second-world fantasy this time.

Author Bio:

J. Kathleen Cheney is a former teacher and has taught mathematics ranging from 7th grade to J. Kathleen CheneyCalculus, with a brief stint as a Gifted and Talented Specialist.  Her short fiction has been published in Jim Baen’s Universe, Writers of the Future, and Fantasy Magazine, among others, and her novella “Iron Shoes” was a 2010 Nebula Award Finalist.  Her novel, “The Golden City” came out from Penguin in 2013.  The sequel, “The Seat of Magic” will come out July, 2014.

Her website can be found at http://www.jkathleencheney.com

Follow J. Kathleen:

Blog:  http://www.jkathleencheney.com

Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/CheneyJKathleen

Goodreads author page:   https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2918424.J_Kathleen_Cheney

Twitter:   https://twitter.com/jkcheney

Amazon Author Page:  http://www.amazon.com/J.-Kathleen-Cheney/e/B005CRD9W2/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

Smashwords Author Page:   https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/jkcheney

Book Back Cover Blurb:

For two years, Oriana Paredes has been a spy among the social elite of the Golden City, reporting back to her people, the sereia, sea folk banned from the city’s shores….

When her employer and only confidante decides to elope, Oriana agrees to accompany her to Paris. But before they can depart, the two women are abducted and left to drown. Trapped beneath the waves, Oriana’s heritage allows her to survive while she is forced to watch her only friend die.

Vowing vengeance, Oriana crosses paths with Duilio Ferreira—a police consultant who has been investigating the disappearance of a string of servants from the city’s wealthiest homes. Duilio also has a secret: He is a seer and his gifts have led him to Oriana.

Bound by their secrets, not trusting each other completely yet having no choice but to work together, Oriana and Duilio must expose a twisted plot of magic so dark that it could cause the very fabric of history to come undone….

Buy/Book Links:

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17707612-the-golden-city

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18693704-the-seat-of-magic

Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0451417747/ref=ox_ya_os_product

http://www.amazon.com/The-Seat-Magic-Novel-Golden/dp/0451417763/ref=pd_sim_b_2

BarnesandNoble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-golden-city-j-kathleen-cheney/1114980111?ean=9780451417749

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-seat-of-magic-j-kathleen-cheney/1117229968?ean=9780451417763

Walmart:  http://www.walmart.com/ip/24056671

Matthew Cox Interview — Blog Ring of Power

BRoP Logo Revised

Today I am very happy to welcome speculative fiction author Matthew Cox, a friend from Agent Query Connect and a wonderful (and prolific!) writer. You can find the other four parts of the Blog Ring of Power interview with Matthew on the following blogs, so please check them out to get the whole story!

Emily LaBonte Sandra Ulbrich Almazon http://terribruce.net/ T.W. Fendley

Matthew Cox COVERHow long have you been  writing?

On and off for about twenty years, though most of that was little things here and there as a hobby. I got what some might call ‘serious’ about writing a little over two years ago.

When and why did you begin writing?

Most of my early writing was devoted to sourcebooks for homebrew roleplaying games, building out the world and such. Since my teens, I’ve always been a big fan of living somewhere other than the real world. As I got older and friends got more distant and had more limited time, my creative outlet needed somewhere to go. I’d been dabble-writing on and off for a long time.

Back in 1999 or so, I put together this behemoth of a fantasy novel that still hasn’t seen the light of day, but I fell into the trap of MMOs which ate all my time. Sometime in 2011, the supervisor I was working with at the day job (Chris Eke) made a comment to me asking if I ever considered writing, based on the way I composed emails to customers. Because of that suggestion, I decided to get back into it. The result was Virtual Immortality which, while I was happy with it, was too long by conventional wisdom to use as a debut novel.

As a result of some (rather often fanatical) advice delivered on the end of sharp sticks, saying that a debut novel must be 100k or less, I set out to write to a target length. Division Zero was the result.

Tell us about your early works—what was the first thing you ever wrote?

The very first thing I ever wrote was a short story I did while still in grade school. I had just finished reading Tom Clancy’s Red Storm Rising and had that sort of cold-war-teetering-on-the-big-one mindset going. (This was, after all, the Eighties.) As a result, I wrote something about a squadron of fighter pilots in Germany at the outset of what would become WWIII. I don’t remember much more than that, I don’t have a copy of it.

When did you first consider yourself a professional writer?

When this happens, I’ll let you know. Despite having six and a half (one is co-authored) novels signed with Curiosity Quills, it still hasn’t sunk in all the way. I guess the true answer to this was as soon as someone who read one of my books told me it that she connected with it on an emotional level. I reached someone. That was awesome.

What books have most influenced your life?

Gibson’s Neuromancer comes to mind (as well as the rest of the Sprawl Trilogy). Also, Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings.

What genre do you write?

Most of my writing thus far has been Sci Fi (with a cyberpunk/paranormal lean). Caller 107 is (by my best estimation) contemporary paranormal, and a few of my more recent short stories have been termed horror.

What is your favorite theme/genre to write about?

I like to explore moral themes, as well as question the definition of reality. Kirsten, the main character of Division Zero is trying to come to terms with her mother’s zealotry and her own hatred of religion and the way humanity always seems to need some ‘subclass’ to demonize. In Virtual Immortality, there is a recurring exploration of what it means to exist.

If you couldn’t be an author, what would your ideal career be?

Assuming I could go back 20 years and go to school again, video game design.

 

Author Bio:

Born in a little town known as South Amboy NJ in 1973, Matthew has been creating science MCox_02_Lightfiction and fantasy worlds for most of his reasoning life. Somewhere between fifteen to eighteen of them spent developing the world in which Division Zero, Virtual Immortality, and The Awakened Series take place. He has several other projects in the works as well as a collaborative science fiction endeavor with author Tony Healey.

Matthew is an avid gamer, a recovered WoW addict, Gamemaster for two custom systems (Chronicles of Eldrinaath [Fantasy] and Divergent Fates [Sci Fi], and a fan of anime, British humour (<- deliberate), and intellectual science fiction that questions the nature of reality, life, and what happens after it.

He is also fond of cats.

Awards:

Prophet of the Badlands (excerpt) – Honorable Mention – Writers of the Future

 

Follow Matthew:

Blog:  www.matthewcoxbooks.com

Facebook pagehttps://www.facebook.com/MatthewSCoxAuthor

Goodreads author page:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7712730.Matthew_S_Cox

Twitter: @mscox_fiction

 

Book Back Cover Blurb:

Most cops get to deal with living criminals, but Agent Kirsten Wren is not most cops.

A gifted psionic with a troubled past, Kirsten possesses a rare combination of abilities that give her a powerful weapon against spirits. In 2418, rampant violence and corporate warfare have left no shortage of angry wraiths in West City. Most exist as little more than fleeting shadows and eerie whispers in the darkness.

Kirsten is shunned by a society that does not understand psionics, feared by those who know what she can do, and alone in a city of millions. Every so often, when a wraith gathers enough strength to become a threat to the living, these same people rely on her to stop it.

Unexplained killings by human-like androids known as dolls leave the Division One police baffled, causing them to punt the case to Division Zero. Kirsten, along with her partner Dorian, wind up in the crosshairs of corporate assassins as they attempt to find out who – or what – is behind the random murders before more people die.

She tries to hold on to the belief that no one is beyond redemption as she pursues a killer desperate to claim at least one more innocent soul – that might just be hers.

Buy Matthew’s book(s) here:

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Division-Zero-1-ebook/dp/B00ITWTRZ0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1394167012&sr=8-1&keywords=division+zero+by+matthew+s.+coxAmazon

BN: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/division-zero-matthew-s-cox/1118876112

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/books/division-zero/-ExQmy4GtkO_jhT912r3YA?MixID=-ExQmy4GtkO_jhT912r3YA&PageNumber=1

Blog Ring of Power Interview with Robert Gray

 

BRoP Logo Revised

Today I welcome to the blog  speculative fiction author Robert Gray. You can find the other four parts of the Blog Ring of Power interview with Robert on the following blogs, so please check them out to get the whole story!

Emily LaBonte Sandra Ulbrich Almazon http://terribruce.net/ T.W. Fendley

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000032_00030]What are the most important elements of good writing?

I change my opinion on this often, but it usually boils down to well-developed characters and a clear narrative voice.

What tools are must-haves for writers?

All you really need is some basic grammar knowledge and the determination to put your butt in a chair for a few hours a day.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

If you’re just starting out, focus on your writing and not your marketing and advertising skills.  Marketing and advertising are important, especially for self-published writers, but more often a book fails because authors didn’t take the time to write it to the best of their ability.  No amount of advertising can sell crap.

What are your current /future project(s)?

I’m finishing the last book in the Nightmare Series, and then I’m going to switch gears to something completely different.

Is there anything else you’d like to share?

I just want to say thanks for having me.  This has been a lot of fun!

Author Bio:

Robert Gray is a writer.  If that job description doesn’t impress you, how about fantasy writer? Robert Gray author photoToo general?  Well, he doesn’t get insulted if you call him a horror writer.  If horror’s not your thing, then scratch out horror and replace it with suspense.  And for the kiddies, you can slap on a YA or MG in front of that title.

Gray lives in Bushkill, Pennsylvania with his wife and two children.

Follow Robert:

Blog: http://robertgrayfiction.blogspot.com/

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/robertgrayauthor

Goodreads author page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5370784.Robert_Gray

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/RGrayFiction

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Robert-Gray/e/B004G7IPW8/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

Book Back Cover Blurb:

So far, Eve’s summer vacation has been uneventful, but when her grandparents—traveling all the way from the monster world known as Gravesville—appear at her doorstep, she learns that the URNS Director has gone missing. Worse, a new director, bent on destroying humans, has taken over URNS. Eve and her family are no longer safe in the human world, and as they race to escape this new threat, Eve stumbles into a trap, which forces her back to Gravesville along with her family and friends. But once there, everything goes adorably wrong, and her best chance to get out of this mess is to seek out The Book of Shivers and the elusive author Sedrick Creach—the only creature who knows the secrets of the Nightmare Books. Unfortunately for Eve, searching for Sedrick and the next book in the series will reveal uncomfortable details about her own murky past. Once again, Eve and her friends find themselves on an incredible adventure—one that involves underground battles with bloodthirsty creatures, a lightning-fueled train, and some unexpected new allies. Hilarious and bone-chilling, this third book continues the story of an unlikely hero trying to save not one, but two worlds … This time around, though, Eve’s not sure she can even save herself.

Buy Robert’s book(s)!

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17666895-eve-hallows-and-the-book-of-shivers

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Eve-Hallows-Book-Shivers-Nightmare-ebook/dp/B00G803LPW/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=1-3&qid=1391012772

BarnesandNoble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/eve-hallows-and-the-book-of-shivers-robert-gray/1117596453?ean=9781493646913