The Writing Process Chain Blog Hop

eranamage:

Here’s one of the author’s I tagged – Laurel Rockefeller.

Originally posted on The Peers of Beinan series on Word Press:

Firstly I am not sure I am doing this right, but here I go.

A few weeks ago an author/blogger I know asked me if I wanted to be involved with the chain blog hop. Basically she posts and tags several people and they tag others they know and so on. We discuss our own writing processes and pass the baton.

The Questions are:


What am I working on?

When a sudden plague of mysterious cancers strikes the southwestern city of Nan-li, it falls to Lady Abbess Cara of house Ten-Ar to investigate, entangling her in a royal trap that may cost her life.

When a sudden plague of mysterious cancers strikes the southwestern city of Nan-li, it falls to Lady Abbess Cara of house Ten-Ar to investigate, entangling her in a royal trap that may cost her life.

The Lost Tales of the Anlei's Legacy Trilogy

Today I just published my first Peers of Beinan Series novella, “The Poisoned Ground,” as a paperback.  Find it in “The Lost Tales of the Anlei’s Legacy Trilogy” for kindle at http://tinyurl.com/ALLost.

In May I plan on releasing Poisoned Ground to kindle as a separate…

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The Writing Process Chain Blog Hop

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Firstly I am not sure I am doing this right, but here I go.

A few weeks ago an author/blogger I know asked me if I wanted to be involved with the chain blog hop. Basically she posts and tags several people and they tag others they know and so on. We discuss our own writing processes and pass the baton.

Here are the questions:

What am I working on? As usual I have several projects on the go.  Mainly Book III of my series – The Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles. Presently it doesn’t have an official title but hopefully will do so soon. So what is this one about? The series is dark adult fantasy/fantasy romance with a touch of erotica set in the world of Erana. The events of Book III follow on from Book II – the Shining Citadel, however the focus is on a slightly different set of characters – namely the trolls. Talfor, the warrior lord from Book II, plus a couple of other Book II characters, including the briefly mentioned Mirandra Var, the Shaman’s daughter, set out to find the ancient ruin far across a distant valley and discover what has happened to their kin. Of course it is not that simple. What they find is not what they expect and the revelations will link back to Book II and the over-arching plot of the series. Archos, Dii and the others feature as more side characters, working on what they’ve found out but will still play an important role and will feature again in later books. 

Apart from trying to finish this novel I am working on several short stories. Hopefully I will have a short fantasy story in the follow up to Wyrd Worlds, plus a poem or two in the summer Indie Collaboration. I’m also co-writing a fantasy story with my good friend Diana to feature in a fantasy anthology later in the year. Co-writing is so much fun, so long as all the writers agree on what is needed. I am so happy to be working with Diana on this project.

There may also be another short anthology of Tales of Erana, but this is only in the planning stage.

How does my work differ from others of its genre? That is a good question. A lot of fantasy has rather sterile characters, or at least the relationships between the characters isn’t explored. My books are fantasy, but more than that the characters are passionate, in some cases volatile, and their interactions offer some light in the largely dark world. Oh and then there’s the sex. My characters are, as I’ve said, passionate and the sexual scenes are part of who they are. These scenes don’t overwhelm the plot but they are an important aspect of the characters. I like to think my books are sensual fantasy. 

Then there are the tropes – turned about. Yes I have elves but they aren’t immortal, they are slaves and generally are treated pretty badly. There are trolls too, but they aren’t ugly, stupid or live under bridges. They are cultured, intelligent and rather mysterious. 

Why do I write what I do? Because there are stories which want to be told. I’ve always written stories or poetry and I love to read. I thought I give something back for all those wonderful books I’ve read.

How does my writing process work? I’m a pantser. I have an overarching plan for the series but individual books tell me what they need as I go. I usually know the ending, if not the finer details and obviously the characters.  I tried to plan, and every time I change the plan. I do have several folders of notes and ideas however, both for past stories and future. Some will get used, many won’t.

The short stories are slightly different, for me at least there is a lot less planning. Two which feature in Tales of Erana came out of lore told in Book II. Usually I think of something when I can’t write it down! Like when I’m in the bath….

A brief mention for the one who tagged me…Jo Barker has been writing short stories for many years as a hobby and has now finally published with The Adventures of the Frog Prince.

Her stories take you on weird and wonderful journeys using a combination of fantasy and strange facts that makes the narrative more engaging.

At the moment she is writing children’s tales but there are plans for other books.

You can join my blog here http://www.jrbarker.info/my-blog/

You can follow me on Twitter

or

Find me on Facebook

I tag - Victoria Zigler is a blind author of children’s fiction and poetry.
She has a very vivid imagination, and spends a lot of time in
fictional worlds; some created by her, others created by other
authors.  When she remembers to spend some time in the real world,
it’s mostly to spend time with her hubby and pets, though sometimes to
indulge in other interests such as doing crafts, listening to music,
watching movies, playing the odd figure game or roleplaying game, and
doing a little cooking and baking.  Victoria was born in the shadow of
the Black Mountains in Wales, UK, has been writing since she knew how,
and became a self-published author in 2012.

Blog: http://ziglernews.blogspot.com

And Laurel A Rockefeller

Laurel A. Rockefeller was born and raised in Lincoln, Nebraska where
she received her bachelor of arts from the University of Nebraska at
Lincoln in writing, psychology, and medieval and Asian history. In
2009 she joined Yahoo Voices where she writes non-fiction articles
covering a broad range of topics. In August, 2012 Laurel launched the
Peers of Beinan medieval science fiction series with book one, “The
Great Succession Crisis,” book one of the Anlei’s Legacy trilogy. In
March 2014 she launched the “Legendary Women of World History” series.
Laurel currently lives in western Pennsylvania with her beloved
cockatiel.


Amazon author page:  http://tinyurl.com/LARAmazon


Blog:  http://peersofbeinan.wordpress.com/

Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/peersofbeinan/

Laurel A. Rockefeller
Author, Peers of Beinan series: http://www.peersofbeinan.com
Author, The Legendary Women of World History series:
http://www.legendarywomenbooks.com/

Check out the newest Peers of Beinan book, “Anlei’s Legacy Trilogy:
the Lost Tales” available now exclusively for kindle
http://www.amazon.com/Anleis-Legacy-Trilogy-Tales-Beinan-ebook/dp/B00INCPOZ8/

 

And here are some other authors who are playing this game. Kyra Halland

http://www.kyrahalland.com/1/post/201…
http://www.kyrahalland.com/1/post/201…

Author Interview Number Forty-Eight – Sarah Makela – Paranormal

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Welcome to Sarah Makela

Please tell us a little about your writing – for example genre, title, etc. My new release is The Witch Who Cried Wolf. It’s a New Adult Paranormal Romance. After a potion gone wrong, Mia Brooks is a witch hiding from werewolves she didn’t know existed. When her brother’s best friend comes home from deployment for the holidays, the emotions she’s suppressed boil to the surface. Not only does Ethan’s view of the supernatural shift when they’re attacked by a werewolf, but his feelings for Mia intensify to the point where he can no longer hide them.

Do you have a favourite character? If so why? Hmm… This is a hard question because like with children, you love them all. Of course, some of the characters, aka the villains, don’t tend to be my favorites, but they have their own reasons for why they do what they do. I do love Ethan though. He’s strong and independent, but he has a definite soft spot for Mia.

Are your characters based on real people? No. When I first started out I toyed with it a little, but I love the characters that come from my imagination the best.

In what formats are your books available? (E-books, print, large print audio) Are you intending to expand these? (If applicable) My books are available in eBook and print at the moment. I’d love to venture into audio,

Do you self-edit? If so why is that the case? Do you believe a book suffers without being professionally edited? I think it’s important to self-edit because as authors we have a good idea of what we wrote (or should at least), so if we can’t get it in shape, then how can we expect an editor polish it for us. I do believe in having books professionally edited because it’s almost impossible for an author to catch all of their own mistakes. To me, it’s better knowing that a reader isn’t going to be turned off by the book due to a multitude of errors that could’ve been caught by an editor.

What experiences can a book provide that a movie or video game cannot? I’ve seen some great movies and played some awesome video games, games that really immerse you in the world. However, I think books provide the reader with a sense of what’s going inside the characters and being able to tag along on the adventure instead of watching it happen to someone else.

What three pieces of advice would you give to new writers? 1.) Keep writing your primary focus. Readers don’t want to wait for the next book, so it’s important be working on the next book. Very few authors make it big on only one, so going overboard with promoting the first one won’t help if you don’t have something else in the works.

2.) Never give up. Sometimes it’s easy to get down and discouraged, but writing is a marathon, not a sprint. If one book doesn’t do well, then a second book flops, don’t think you’re never going to get anywhere and quit. Maybe try a new genre or pursue a new idea. You never know what’s going to catch on. The third (or thirteenth) book could be what rockets you to where you’d like to be.

3.) Always be learning whether it means getting better at your writing craft (which is really important) to figuring out how best to market yourself to tackling the next new thing (writing query letters, self-publishing, audiobooks). It’ll give you a leg up when it matters.

Most authors also like to read, what books do you enjoy? What book(s) have you just finished? I enjoy reading urban fantasy, New Adult contemporary, and New Adult paranormal romance. I’m currently reading Camouflaged by Selena Laurence.

Do you have a favourite movie? I don’t think I have one specific favorite. I really like the movie Lockdown with Guy Pierce. The Avengers is another that I really enjoyed.

Do you have any pets? Yes, I have some cute and cuddly cats that enjoy hogging loads of space on the bed.

Book links, website/blog and author links:

 

The Witch Who Cried Wolf buy links

Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GZ9CSHS

B&N – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-witch-who-cried-wolf-sarah-makela/1117527750?ean=2940148931034

Kobo – http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/the-witch-who-cried-wolf

ARe – https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-thewitchwhocriedwolf-1369494-344.html

iTunes – https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id768396546

SarahMakela_TheWitchWhoCriedWolf300

 

Connect with me!

http://www.sarahmakela.com

http://www.twitter.com/sarahmakela

http://www.facebook.com/authorsarahmakela

http://www.goodreads.com/sarahmakela

Sign up for my newsletter for updates on my new releases.

http://eepurl.com/ed_Dz

Meet H.M. Jones

eranamage:

One of the featured authors on the Fantasy and Paranormal Goodreads group.

Originally posted on A rat's a rat's a rat's a rat...:

As you know, I don’t usually promote authors whose books I haven’t read. So why am I making an exception in this case? Easy. For one, Ms. Jones’ book touches on a topic I, too, have had my both active and passive experiences with, and about which I, too, have written a book: depression. Two, just like me, she has chosen the fantasy angle to approach the topic, to somehow explain what is going on in a depressed mind by means of fantastical representation. And after having read a few of the reviews her book got on Goodreads , I was more than convinced that I needed to promote her work. In fact, I’ve added it to my (admittedly considerable) to-read pile, so will be able to give you a review of my own soon.

Now, let’s ask her a few questions.

Who are you?HM Jones
My author name is H.M. Jones. I’m…

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Author Interview Number Forty-Seven – Mia Hoddell – Paranormal

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Welcome to Mia

Please tell us a little about yourself. I love reading and writing and that’s what I spend most of my time doing now I have a year off before going to university. I took A-levels in History, Drama & Theatre Studies, Photography and English Language (much to the dismay of my teachers who wanted me to major in science and maths). I love anything paranormal, which is mainly the genre I write in besides romance, and I have an overactive imagination that taunts me in the night when I’ve read or watched something scary. Until you get to know me, I’m quite shy but none of my closest friends or family would agree with that statement. Other than that I love escaping to new worlds either in books, movies or the little worlds inside my head!

Please tell us a little about your writing – for example genre, title, etc. I’m the author of Deadly to Love (Elemental Killers 1) which is a YA romance with paranormal aspects. After writing my first trilogy (The Wanderer) I wanted to write something more light-hearted and fun. I knew I wanted to create a romance with a modern twist and stay away from high-school, so I started experimenting with social games on my iPod. It was from some of the messages I received on there that generated the idea for Deadly to Love. I based some of it on real life experiences and the rest was down to my imagination asking “what if the world was alive and fought back?”

At the moment I’m gearing up for the release of the sequel while editing the third book. There will be a total of four books in the series and I’m working on planning the final instalment now.

Who or what are your inspirations/influences? My inspiration and influences change per book. Sometimes they come from real life situations (like with Deadly to Love) and other times they come from other places such as my dreams. You never know when something is going to spark off an idea so I always keep a notepad handy to jot down ideas as they come to me.

Research can be important in world-building, how much do you need to do for your books? Do you enjoy this aspect of creating a novel and what are your favourite resources? Once again it really depends on the novel I am writing. For Deadly to Love a lot of it came from my imagination so besides researching the paranormal aspect and adapting it to fit with my story, there wasn’t a lot of research to do because I created a new island on Earth as the setting and was adapting ideas from real situations.  However, with the new book I am writing now I’ve had to do quite a bit of research on things like: travel, location, weapons, rankings in certain jobs etc. I don’t want to give too much a way on that project right now but because it has a lot of action in it, I have been using the internet and YouTube a lot for maps and videos of self-defence.

In what formats are your books available? (E-books, print, large print audio) Are you intending to expand these? (If applicable) My books are available in both ebook and print. I wouldn’t know where to begin with audiobooks but it may be something I look into in the future.

Do you self-edit? If so why is that the case? Do you believe a book suffers without being professionally edited? No, I made that mistake once and will never do it again. Thankfully, a reviewer let me know quickly so I could correct the book before too much damage was caused. I believed my editing was good enough but I think it’s incredibly hard to self-edit. For me I read what I know is meant to be there rather than what really is and therefore missed a lot. I now edit to a point but when I feel I can do no more I outsource. In the end I think professionally edited books are better as you get another person’s perspective to help not only with the grammar but correct continuity errors in the story and to help the overall flow of the book.

What are your opinions about authors commenting on reviews? In general I don’t. I reply to emails, tweets or Facebook messages if someone tells me they have reviewed my work and it will always be a polite thank you even if the review is not something I agree with. I’m both a blogger and author so I’ve seen both sides. I know how upset authors get when their work doesn’t connect with someone but it’s part of the job at the end of the day. I don’t agree with authors who will get into lengthy and public discussions over a negative review and in my opinion it does more harm to the author’s reputation than the review itself.

The only time I’ve commented on a review was to let someone know that my book had been re-edited and re-released as they had picked up on some grammar mistakes which I was thankful for.

Do you listen to music or watch TV whilst you write? Music is a big must when I’m writing as I find it traps me inside my own little writing bubble and focuses me. I have to have the right music playing to fit the atmosphere of the scene I am writing though because otherwise it’s just a hindrance. Mostly I use film scores as they are perfect for creating moods – it’s what they were designed to do after all – so fit great with images in my head. They also have no lyrics that can distract me by making me sing along (badly) which is a bonus.

What experiences can a book provide that a movie or video game cannot? For me it allows me to escape into another world and actually engage with the characters. I find I just sit staring at a screen with movies (I don’t play video games) and don’t form a bond with the characters. Writing allows me to feel what the characters are feeling, go on a journey with them and experience their story rather than just watch it. I kind of turn into a zombie with a movie but can connect on an emotional level with novels.

What advice would you give new writers? Write whenever you get the chance. There is never, nor will there ever be, a ‘perfect time’ so just get up and do it instead of waiting. Also, develop a thick skin, learn to grow from criticism and ignore everyone who tells you writing is easy – it’s not and it only gets harder after you’ve written a novel!

Most of all though I would say make sure you have fun while writing. If you don’t have fun or pick a subject you are interested in it will be even harder to finish.

What are your best marketing/networking tips? I’d say it would be to keep an active online presence. Nowadays there are so many authors out there that if you stop promoting for even a day you fall off the radar and have to work your way back up. I try and spend at least two hours a day doing some kind of promotional activity for my books.

Most authors also like to read, what books do you enjoy? I love anything paranormal or that includes romance. I like getting lost in new worlds and I’m a sucker for HEAs. For me reading is a feel-good hobby and I refuse to pay for something that isn’t going to end well. A few of my favourite authors are Rachel Vincent, Derek Landy, Julia Golding and Sophie McKenzie. There are a lot of others but those are the books I always re-read.

Can you give us a silly fact about yourself? I have an overactive imagination. I can’t watch or read any forms of horror (even the very mild or stupid) because I won’t sleep for weeks. I end up lying in bed and staring at my door believing something’s going to come through it. Living in an old house with creaky floorboards doesn’t help either, every noise makes me jump!

Book links, website/blog and author links:

 

Deadly to Love (Elemental Killers #1)
by Mia Hoddell

Genre: YA/Romance/Paranormal/Fantasy
ASIN:  B00BDQ3QGA
ISBN: 978-1-291-41025-9

Blurb
The world is dangerous – but love will kill you.

Little did Serena Jackson know that one simple, flirty remark to an anonymous guy online would lead to her world being changed forever.

She doesn’t know him, but inexplicably, is drawn. She knows it is wrong but she agrees to meet.

His real name is Kai. He is beautiful. And immediately Serena feels herself blindly falling for him even though she senses a lie. She knows he is hiding something and it terrifies her.

What she doesn’t realise is that her entire life has been built on secrets and lies. The people she loved left her in the dark for a reason.

She trusted them. She trusts Kai. But as he pulls her straight into the heart of the danger the lies and deadly secrets are revealed. They overwhelm her, and the person she once was no longer exists as she is thrown into a ruthless world of elemental forces. The price of truth is her life—and now the world wants her dead.

Buy Links: Amazon (Kindle) | Amazon (Paperback) | Lulu
For a limited time only, Deadly to Love is 99c / 77p on Kindle!

 

About the Author

Mia Hoddell lives in the UK with her family and two cats. She spends most of her time writing or reading and loves anything paranormal. Mia always had a love of writing but never reading. She was more interested in sports and hated sitting still – despite getting three poems published before the age of sixteen. Finally though, she found some novels that captured her interest and developed a love of reading which is now one of her favourite hobbies.

Mia began with poems before moving on to short stories. Although she enjoyed this, Mia found she had too much to tell with too little space, so later on she created her first series ‘The Wanderer Trilogy’ and from there other ideas have emerged. With a total of nine books planned at this moment, she is busy working on her second series ‘Elemental Killers’ before moving onto the next idea on her ever growing list.

Links:  Blog |Twitter @MiaHoddell | Facebook Page |Goodreads

Deadly to Love Final cover deadly to love banner

 

10 Ways to Navigate Plot Holes, Dead Ends, Blockades, and other Hazards on the Roadway to Writing Success

eranamage:

Interesting post. Plot holes – like pot holes only harder to escape.

Originally posted on Christina L. Rozelle:

Signs

For the past few days, I’ve been navigating the rough roads of a writer trying to meet a deadline-destination with a yet-to-be-completed novel. It was complete, but then I got it back from a few fabulous beta-readers and with their help, I was able to see where I needed to add flesh to bone in a lot of places. This included a new ending, which is where I’m at now. So far, I’ve added 25K words to the story and I forsee it topping out at 100K, which means I have a mere 15K  words to bring it all together.

So, I’m traveling along this awesomely smooth road where the sun is shining, the birds are singing, and things are falling into place, when my engine screeches to a halt and the rest of the cars slam into my backside. I’m sure you know this dreadful moment. When these things crop…

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WordPress Stats: Seeing is Believing

eranamage:

An interesting post and I tend to agree. I get next to nothing from twitter, which does seem to be spamcentral, and facebook is more a personal interaction. Most of the referrals to my blog are via FB.

Originally posted on San Giacomo's Corner:

In a previous post called “ The Blog, the Tweet, and the Facebook Page ,” I mentioned that creating a relationship with other bloggers is a must. I came to that conclusion based upon the behavior of those who followed me on various social media outlets. I also mentioned that I really didn’t push or spend a lot of time on #Facebook. Also, when it comes to blog stats, I usually only checked the “out-clicks” to see how many people were exiting my #blog by going to my Amazon, Nook, or Smashwords.

FB

My Social Network by Luc Legay used under CC License

But I had a jaw-dropping revelation when I looked into my WordPress stats the other day. Facebook was the source for the most referrers, i.e. where someone was when they decided to click into my blog. The second was Search Engines, then Google+ and Twitter. Why are these…

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Author Interview Number Forty-Six – Adriano Bulla

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Welcome to Adriano Bulla.

Please tell us a little about your writing – for example genre, title, etc. I published my first book back in 2005, a collection of poetry, Ybo’ and Other Lies, which has been re-published recently. I never really thought I would write a novel, but it so happened that I did, so, The Road to London came along. I find it hard to define The Road to London in terms of genre, if anything, I find the very idea of genre rather restrictive: she (yes, she is a  lady) is partly romance, partly fiction, partly a coming-of-age novel, partly a supernatural novel, partly psychological partly erotic. When I say supernatural, I do not mean there are werewolves or vampires, she is about the supernatural that is in every one of us.

Where do you find inspiration? I would not say that I ‘find’ inspiration; I’d rather say that inspiration finds me. I am not one of those writers on the lookout for something to trigger my ‘creative juices’, on the contrary. I may sound deranged, but I fully believe that the Muses exist, and they float amongst us waiting for the right time to strike us: I do not feel I have any control on the birth of a novel or a poem; I feel the words coming to me and, yes, using my experience as a person, as a reader and as a writer to work for them and put them down in writing, but I am not part of the ‘decision process’. I believe the Muse chooses whom she thinks is most suitable for what she needs and then, if I have been picked, there is a strange, compelling feeling that I have to write. I do not know what exactly I am writing until it has come to life; I do not set out to plan and devise characters and plot, nor do I say to myself, ‘I shall be writing a novel about…’ None of this. I regard myself not as a writer, but as a ‘scribe’.

Do you have a favourite character? If so why? If I had to choose one, it would have to be the one readers call ‘the Boy’ in The Road to London: he is the protagonist, and has no name. Why? To start with, the whole story is his story, and he is a very troubled boy indeed: most of the story is about him fighting against himself and the world. I think it’s hard in life to come to terms with who you really are, especially if you are regarded as ‘different’ whatever that means: adolescence in particular is such a troubled time in life! It becomes worse if you don’t fit in, you start wondering what is wrong with you, you fall into self-denial, and that is a downward spiral that can have very sad consequences, and leave scars that are not easy to heal, or maybe will never heal. I think many of us have pretended to be what others wanted us to be, well, imagine if the whole world as you know it didn’t want you to be who you really are. In the case of the Boy, he starts lying, first to others, then to himself; he then finds an alternative to his life in his dreams, then in drugs… I have been asked if the Boy is based upon myself, and the answer is easy: no, and yes. I think he is based on everyone who has found that there is no place for him/her in the world s/he lives in, and I simply happen to be one of them. Being an outsider, even in your closest circle of friends is not a nice position to be in. Yet, thinking back, maybe everybody is an outsider.

Do you have a character you dislike? If so why? No, I don’t dislike any characters; none of the characters are perfect, some can be quite cruel, including My Dear, the Boy’s great love (who may exist, or simply be in the Boy’s mind), but I could not dislike a character. On the contrary, having characters whom we don’t understand straight away puts us in the position of trying to understand them. Oddly enough, even if the story is mainly narrated from the point of view of the Boy, his story should not be seen as a judgement on how cruel the other characters have been to him, even those who bully him and beat him up, but an example of how people do things, sometimes things that are wrong, because they do not understand you. There is certainly something amiss in the world, but we cannot blame this on others. And I am guilty of it myself.

Have you ever used a person you don’t/didn’t like as a character then killed them off? No, I haven’t, but if I can twist your question, one of the sweetest characters in The Road to London does die, not because I killed him off, as, not at all, I said, I have little authority on what goes on in my novel. Actually, I cried when he died. But his death brings life. I think it’s sort of easy to ‘kill off’ characters because they are inconvenient or because one does not like them. It’s much harder to see a dear character, in this case maybe the only one with no faults, die, and die in a very tragic way. I won’t say his name, of course. What I can say is that this character is very close to who I, as a person, would like to be.

Research can be important in world-building, how much do you need to do for your books? Do you enjoy this aspect of creating a novel and what are your favourite resources? Not much. I mean I do have a rather extensive vocabulary, so, I don’t need to look words up. Having said this, I have looked up names of particular shades of colours: colours are very important in The Road to London, they have symbolic meanings and in a recent article on the novel in Lit Art Magazine it is suggested that you can read the novel like watching the process of painting a white canvas and adding more and more colours, in the same way as we add traits to our personality as we grow up. In fact, she starts colourless and ends with an explosion of colours. So, because each chapter focuses on a few (usually two) colours, I wanted to be as detailed as possible. My favourite source? The Insomniac’s Dictionary.

Is there a message conveyed within your writing?  Do you feel this is important in a book? Of course there is. I am not going to say what the message is, that would defeat the object, and readers have been discussing it at length, but there is – actually, there are messages, I would venture to say quite deep messages in The Road to London. Whether we choose to write or are coerced, as in my case, books need to have a message: it’s an imperative for me. I would feel I am a cheat if I just wrote to narrate an interesting story, at least this is where I stand. The whole purpose of writing a novel is to share something we feel strongly about, the entertainment, the pleasure etc come as a means to an end, I would disagree with Wilde on this, and I think, in practice, Wilde disagreed with himself (there is a very deep message in The Picture of Dorian Gray for example). It is mainly presenting the messages as a journey of self-discovery on behalf of the reader that requires artistry and even, I would say, a delicate touch, but the messages must be there at the very beginning and heart of the writing to make it meaningful.

Sort these into order of importance: Great characters; great world-building; solid plot; technically perfect. Can you explain why you chose this order? (Yes I know they all are important…) I think the most important one is mastery of writing techniques, I would not say perfection, as I believe perfection does not exist, but being technically equipped to create an effect is necessary to create a good character and to present a plot in an interesting way; without the first, the other two simply cannot be. Between character and plot, for me, it is the depth of the characters that matters most, though I do understand that some novels are plot-driven. I actually, however, believe the whole of Western Literature has made a massive mistake in taking Aristotle’s (misinterpreted) claim about the ‘supremacy of the plot’ in his Poetics as a mantra: the human soul is much, much more interesting than the accidents that Fate may throw our way, in the end, it is not the accidents themselves that make us humans, but our reactions to them.

In what formats are your books available? (E-books, print, large print audio) Are you intending to expand these and if not, what is the reason? It depends on the book, but The Road to London is available in paperback and kindle/ebook. I am not part of the decision-making process when it comes to the format, that is up to the publishers (all three of them), but I would like to see her as audio and large print one day, who knows.

Do you self-edit? If so why is that the case? Do you believe a book suffers without being professionally edited? No, I don’t self-edit; I actually write in pen (rigorously fountain-pen) and then pass my writing on to be typed. Of course, books that do not go through a professional proof-reader may have glitches, mainly typos. I think it depends on the frequency of the typos; I have found typos in novels by Dickens, published by extremely big companies, so, a few will always slip, but when they become annoying, then, well, it’s another matter. There is, however, a point to consider concerning the current situation of the publishing industry: I have read triumphant articles that the number of books sold has been soaring in the last couple of years. What these articles do not keep in mind is that most of the sales are now in kindle, and that the pie is shared by many more books, thus, even traditionally published books cannot always afford to be checked by a professional proof-reader very often.

What are your opinions about authors commenting on reviews? How important are reviews? I don’t think authors should be commenting on reviews of their own books. A review is an opinion, in the end, and once a book is published, by definition, it ‘belongs’ to the public. I suppose some reviews can literally hurt, in other cases, the author may disagree with what the reviewer says, but I believe a writer should step aside from adding interpretations to one’s own book. In the end, you can’t please everybody, and I’m sure readers know that. In my experience, I have found that readers have found angles from which to read The Road to London that I had not considered myself. I read the reviews and I am very often taken by how readers have put their own personal experiences in reading her. And who am I to say they are right or wrong? I must also say that I don’t go much by the ‘star grading system’, what matters is how different perspectives come into the reading of a book.

What are your reviews on authors reviewing other authors? I have nothing against it. As I said, a review is an opinion, so, why shouldn’t writers have an opinion? The point is that when a writer reviews a book s/he does it as a reader: it is not an ultimate verdict on the book, nor should it be read as such. As to the idea that writers may be partial, I must say that there is such thing as an honest review: what I look in a review is not, in fact, how much the reviewer has enjoyed it, and in fact, when I read reviews that simply say, ‘I loved this book,’ in as many words as possible, my reaction is to say, ‘Good for you.’ What I am looking for is information on the book, different perspectives: the better the book the more freedom it will leave to readers to read it from different angles, that is, unless it is the instructions on how to assemble a flat-pack airing cupboard, in which case it would be a disaster, so, if I see readers/ reviewers have different perspectives on the meaning of the book, you can bet that I will feel I want to join in and see what this book has to offer to me, or if I have something to offer to the book. If I see that all reviews say the same thing, then, I’m sorry, but I am no longer interested in mono-dimensional experiences.

Most authors like to read, what have you recently finished reading? Did you enjoy it? I have just finished Matryoshka by Doris Dawn and I really loved it: it is a very, very weird novel, and I love books that dare to be different, especially in conformist world such as ours. It’s a cross-over among a Platonic dialogue, a confessional novel and erotica and it mixes Physics, Mythology, Philosophy of Science and sexually, with good peppery sex in it. The take on Doris’s (here the protagonist) on sexual arousal coming from listening and talking to an intelligent person reminds me of how I am quite similar to that, and how sensuality is not in a set of muscles purchased from a gym and whatever shops sell estrogens to cover up whatever lack of confidence hides beneath it, but from someone’s personality. Very often, lack of confidence is much more sexy than confidence, at least in my opinion.

Book links, website/blog and author links:

Author’s page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7209201.Adriano_Bulla

Book’s Webpage: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18990618-the-road-to-london

Book’s Webpage with excerpt: http://www.gay-literature.com/texts/love/adriano-bulla-road-to-london.html

Book links (1 link- it redirects readers to their Amazon website according to their country) http://myBook.to/TheRoadToLondon

Romance Fantasy that will leave you warm and wanting more.

eranamage:

Yay! My new book got a mention.

Originally posted on Dreaming...:

Romance Fantasy that will leave you warm and wanting more.

Tales of Erana: Myths and Legends

Five short tales of fantasy and fantasy romance set in the dark world of Erana; the world of the Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles. Some are new and the others have been expanded and revised from the original versions.

The Moon on the Water: The tale of the love between a goddess and a warrior and the terrible curse it brought.

The Tale of Treyna the Beloved: When a mortal woman is pursued by two rival gods even the heavens are wrought by magic.

Storm-Born: A lonely magician finds companionship with a creature of the storm but magic demands a price, what price will it be?

The Blue Phial: A lesson in listening to instruction carefully, lest one makes an embarrassing mistake.

The Legend of Oeliana: A story of a nymph and a toad, jealous magic and debts repaid.

12717 words.

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Character Interview Number Fifteen – Daisy the Dragon

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Welcome to Daisy The Dragon

Name(s): “My birth name is Deathclaw, but these days I go by the name Daisy.  Actually, this is the first time I’ve admitted to anyone who didn’t know me before I changed my name what my birth name was.  Please don’t judge me based on my birth name.”

Age: “I’m a pretty young dragon, and only just turned 150 last birthday.”

Describe your appearance in 10 words or less. “I am a large, red dragon.”

Would you kill for those you love? “I try not to kill anything if I can avoid it, but if someone I loved was in danger and the only choice available to me was to kill or watch them be killed, then I would kill for them.  I’d feel very guilty about it afterwards though, despite the fact I’d have saved someone I loved.  At one point I actually came close to killing someone for Luke (the little orphan boy I took in).  Luckily though our little witchlet friend, Paige, found an alternative solution.  If you want to know what happened though, then you’ll have to read ‘A Magical Storm’ (the third book in ‘The Magical Chapters Trilogy’).  Though you should probably read the trilogy in order, which means reading ‘Witchlet’ and ‘The Pineapple Loving Dragon’ first.”

Would you die for those you love? “Absolutely! If my death would save someone I loved then I’d willingly give my life for them.  I’d die for Luke in a heartbeat!”

Do you have any relationships you prize above others? Why? “My friendship with Luke means more to me than any other friendship.  Despite my meeting Paige first, Luke and I have grown very close, and he’s very special to me.  We’re both grateful to one another for being there for each other when nobody else was there, and Luke was the first person to trust me who had no way of defending themselves if I’d been like other dragons.”

Do you have a family? Tell us about them. “Oh, you don’t want to hear about my family.  My family are your typical vicious, man-eating, blood-thirsty dragons.  They’re the reason humans don’t generally trust dragons; if you’ve got any sense then you’ll stay as far away from my family as possible.”

Can you remember something from your childhood which influences your behaviour? How do you think it influences you? “I’ll tell you about how I became Daisy; I’m sure you’ll easily figure out how it influences the kind of dragon I am today.  I was only 20 at the time, and still living with my family.  Since I’d hatched I’d known I wasn’t like my siblings; they loved to kill animals and people, but I always felt sad and only killed as much as was absolutely essential to keep my parents off my back, and always only animals; sheep mostly.  Whenever I killed and ate an animal I felt sick though, and the rest of the time I’d sneak off in to the woods and find fruit and things to eat; I always preferred doing that.  Anyway, this one time my brother, Daggertooth, had followed me without me knowing and he caught me eating fruit.  Of course, he flew right home and told on me, but I didn’t know until I got home and found my parents waiting for me.  They’d caught a little human child and my Father told me to kill the child and proove my brother wrong.  But when I looked in to the little girl’s face I saw the fear in her tear-filled eyes, and I knew I couldn’t do it.  When I refused my Father was furious and banished me from the weyr immediately.  So, I left; snatching up the little girl as I took off, wanting to save her from my Father.  Of course, she was terrified, and when I gently set her down just outside the town she just curled in to a ball and shook with fear.  I flew far enough away so I could see her but she couldn’t see me and watched until she got up the courage to get to her feet and run in to the town, where her family welcomed her back with tears of relief.  Then I went to find a cave in a part of the mountains where I knew I’d be far from my family, and I’ve lived there ever since, eating fruit and plants and things; mostly from the woods nearby, but sometimes I travel a bit further to find some of the more exotic fruits.  Anyway, as the little girl ran in to the town she’d been met by someone who’d called her, Daisy, and seemed very pleased to see her.  I thought it was a pretty name, and decided to use it for myself from then on as another way to distance myself from my family, and to remind myself why I’m a vegetarian.”

Please give us an interesting and unusual fact about yourself. “The most interesting and unusual fact about me is that I’m the only vegetarian dragon in our world.  One day I’d love to find another dragon like me, and hope that if I do it will be a male, but every other dragon I’ve met has been carnivorous.”

Please give us a little information about the world in which you live. “My world is a simple one.  Most of it is taken up with woods and mountains, but there are two small towns – one just a short flight away from my mountain, and one several hours flight from it, at the other side of some more trees.  There are also a few small cottages a little way outside of the town; it’s in one of these that Paige lives.  If you fly far enough beyond the woods on the other side of the second town then you’ll come to the coast, which is where I find the more exotic fruits I like to eat; like pineapples, for example.  You would probably consider it to be a primitive world, since our world has none of those gadgets your world is full of.”

Do you travel in the course of your adventures? If so where? “Mostly I spend my time in the woods or the mountains, and sometimes I fly to the coast – making sure to fly over the trees so the people from the town don’t get scared.  But one time I made the mistake of flying over the town when I was too busy enjoying Luke’s enthusiasm for flying to think of the possible consequences of doing so.  You can read about that in ‘The Pineapple Loving Dragon’ though, so I won’t tell you what happened with that.  It was in the woods between her home and the mountains where I live that I met Paige, and at the base of the mountains where I live that I met Luke.”

Name and describe a food from your world. “The foods in my world are just like the foods in yours.  Of course, we don’t have the option for ordering take-away or buying microwave meals like you have, but we have the same basic ingredients: fruit, vegetables, herbs, and – for those who want them – animals that can be killed for meat, like rabbits, sheep and goats.  The goats also provide our milk, which is sometimes then made in to cheese.  As I’ve mentioned before though, I’m a vegetarian, so I don’t eat any meat, and don’t like to think about killing animals if I can help it.  My favourite food is pineapple; I just can’t get enough of that particular fruit!”

Does your world have magic? If so how is it viewed in your world? “Yes, we have magic.  There are Witches; like my friend, Paige.  Only witches have magic though, and people come to them for healing.  That isn’t all they can do though.  I spoke to Paige about her magic once – out of curiosity – and she told me witches control the five elements: Earth, Air, Fire, Water and Spirit.  Using these five elements a witch can do just about anything: heal, throw fire balls, create storms, or – Paige’s favourite trick – ride the wind to travel faster than almost anything else in our world.  Only a dragon stands any chance of keeping up with a witch who’s riding the wind.  As for how it’s viewed… People seek out witches when they need them, but they’re also a little afraid of witches.  That’s why witches tend to live in cottages among the trees rather than in the town; it makes the rest of the humans more comfortable to have some distance between them and the witches.”

What is the technology level for your world/place of residence? What item would you not be able to live without? “We don’t really have any technology in my world.  Cooking is done on fires, homes are lit with candles and lamps, and if you’re cold you sit near the fire with a blanket wrapped around you.  We don’t have telephones either, so if you want to tell someone something then you have to either go and see them or send a messenger.  There’s not really anything I couldn’t live without.  I’m glad to be able to provide blankets and fires to keep Luke warm, and we need food, of course, but other than each other there’s not really anything more that Luke and I feel we need.”

Does your world have any supernatural/mystical beings? Please tell us about some. “Other than humans and the kinds of animals you’re familiar with, my world contains witches and dragons.  Witches are mostly kind and willing to use their ability to harness the power of the elements to help people, dragons are generally evil creatures who use their enhanced senses to prey on the weak; including humans.  Of course, there are exceptions to both these rules, like myself and Zoey.  Generally it’s older witches people come to for help though, but Paige’s skills set her apart so that people learned of her skill while she was still just a child.  Read ‘Witchlet’ to know more about Paige’s story, and ‘A Magical Storm’ to learn about Zoey.”

Within your civilisation what do you think is the most important discovery/invention? “I think fire is the most important discovery.  So many humans died in Winter before they learned to make fire, which is a sad thing to think about.  Winters can still kill people – especially if they’re harsh Winters – but fewer people die in Winter now that humans have fire to keep them warm.”

 

***

 

Author notes:

Book(s) in which this character appears plus links:

The Magical Chapters Trilogy, book 1: Witchlet – http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/167766

The Magical Chapters Trilogy, book 2: The Pineapple Loving Dragon – http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/260695

The Magical Chapters Trilogy, book 3: A Magical Storm – http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/303746

Author name: Victoria Zigler

Website/Blog/Author pages etc:

Website: http://www.zigler.co.uk

Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/toriz

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/toriz

Blog: http://ziglernews.blogspot.com

Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Victoria-Zigler/424999294215717

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/victoriazigler

 

 

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