Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Q & A with Meg Anne

Mother of Shadows 
The Chosen #1
by Meg Anne 

Helena’s life had always been quiet. In fact, she liked it that way. When her childhood friend returns home and tells her that she is the prophesied ruler of the Chosen, those blessed with the gift of magic, her quiet life goes up in flames. Suddenly Helena finds herself surrounded by a circle of protectors, each having sworn their loyalty to her since her birth. All except for one: her Mate. It’s not enough that she learn how to use her magic and undergo a trial to prove her worthiness; in order to claim her title, Helena must also find the man who carries the other half of her soul. Exiled due to a past he had no part in, Von is the last man the Chosen expect Helena to select. Despite their protests, his soul calls to hers and there’s no denying that he was made for her. But the prophecy stands and all isn’t as it seems. There’s an enemy lurking within plain sight who will stop at nothing to destroy her. 

Kindle Edition, 257 pages
Published August 1st 2017 by Author Friends With Benefits (first published 2017)

Find it on Goodreads
Buy it on Amazon
Read It & Reap:  January 23, 2018

Meg Anne has always had stories running on a loop in her head. They started off as daydreams about how the evil queen (aka Mom) had her slaving away doing chores; and more recently shifted into creating backgrounds about the people stuck beside her during rush hour. The stories have been there, they were just waiting for her to tell them.

Like any true SoCal native, Meg enjoys staying inside curled up with a good book and her cat Henry... or maybe that's just her; sunburns hurt! You can convince Meg to buy just about anything if it's covered in glitter or rhinestones, or make her laugh by sharing your favorite bad joke. She also accepts bribes in the form of baked goods and Mexican food.

Connect with Meg Anne

Q & A with Meg Anne

Tell us a little bit about your main characters. 
The two main characters in Mother of Shadows are Helena and Von. Helena is fated to be one of the most powerful rulers her people have ever seen. Unfortunately, she has to learn how to use her magic first and it has a tendency to take over whenever Helena experiences strong emotions. With no background or experience to guide her, she has to trust her gut, even against the advice of others. Her belief in the innate goodness of others is both her biggest strength and greatest vulnerability. Von is the other half of her soul. For all that is good and whole in her is damaged within him. His past is a dark one, but through his relationship with her, he finds new purpose and redemption.

In your opinion, what makes a good, strong lead character? 
Someone complex and flawed. A character whose voice is so well defined that you don't even need to see their name before the dialogue to know that they are talking. 

What or who do you see as influences on your writing style? 
It's hard to identify any one thing, but I would say that my playful sense of humor weaves its way in to my writing. In almost every scene there is some element of levity to balance what else is happening. I think in life being able to laugh at yourself and the things that are out of our control is hope we cope with them, and its the same for my characters. 

Do you ever research real events, legends, or myths to get ideas? 
I haven't done any specific research to date, but I do have a story with tarot cards simmering in the back of my mind, so I could see some research going into that one. 

What is the best writing advice you have been given? 
BICHOK - Butt in chair, hands on keyboard. Seriously, just making yourself do it is a huge step in the right direction. Also - When you get writer's block it's because you are trying to make you character's do something they do not want to do. Take a step back and approach it from a different angle. 

If you could have any superpower, what would you choose and why? 
I would like to visit other people's dreams and/or have the ability to help others have good dreams (or if they were an A hole maybe some bad ones, haha). I think that would be pretty awesome.

What do you do to unwind and relax? 
Besides reading and playing with my cat Henry, I am a huge videogame nerd. I like to get lost in other worlds for awhile, so whatever venue be it book, show or game gets me there is alright with me.

What book are you reading now? 
I am in the middle of two at the moment because I listen to audiobooks in the car in addition to whatever I'm reading when I'm at home. So I'm listening to Cassandra Clare's "Lord of Shadows" and reading Montana Ash's "Paladin."

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Q & A with Yvonne Blackwood

The Adventures of Nosey Charlie Book 1001
by Yvonne Blackwood 

Meet Nosey Charlie, a spunky little squirrel who grew up in the country. He became an orphan and moved to the city to live with his aunt, uncle, and his cousin, Pete. Charlie desperately wants to know everything about the people and strange objects in the city, and he doesn’t understand that he can’t always go wherever he likes. 

Mama Leticia (his aunt) tries to teach Charlie to be careful, and asks Cousin Pete to keep on eye on him. But Charlie is too nosey, and curiosity gets the better of him. He goes where he shouldn’t—checking out garbage bags in the park—and this time poor Cousin Pete gets hurt.

The Nosey Charlie adventures will make you laugh and cry, and sometimes cheer Charlie along as he explores his new environment and finds himself in desperate situations. 

Kindle Edition, 24 pages
Published March 14th 2017 by QUILLORATION ENTERPRISE

Find it on Goodreads
Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Read It & Reap:  January 21, 2018

Yvonne Blackwood is an author, columnist, speaker, world traveler, and retired banker. She has published three adult books―the very successful Into Africa a Personal Journey which ranked # 2 best-selling book under Ghana on Amazon.com in 2002; the hilarious Will That Be Cash or Cuffs? and Into Africa, the Return. Inspired several years ago to write children’s books, she recently published Nosey Charlie Comes To Town, and Nosey Charlie Goes To Court, part of a series of Nosey Charlie Adventures. A third book, Nosey Charlie Chokes On A Wiener is soon to be released. Yvonne is an award winning short story writer and she has written numerous articles for several newspapers including the Toronto Star, and InTouch magazine.

Connect with Yvonne
                                     Q & A with Yvonne Blackwood 

                                            Tell us a little bit about your main characters.
The main character in Nosey Charlie Comes To Town and all stories in the Nosey Charlie Adventure series is a little black squirrel named Charlie. He was raised in the country, however, when his parents died, he moved to live in a big city with his Aunt Letitia, Uncle Harold, and his cousin, Pete. Charlie is three months younger than Pete, therefore they should make good companions for each other. While Pete―born and raised in the city―is well acclimatized to city living and all that it entails, Charlie is just bubbling with excitement to learn all he can about his new environment. He is overly nosey and tends to forget warnings from his aunt to stay away from certain places and things. Because of his nosiness, Charlie gets into trouble often and causes his relatives much anxiety, but somehow he seems to survive unscathed!

Who designs the covers for your books and what is that process like for you as an author?
I hired an illustrator to do all the drawings for the books. I provide him with a mock-up of the stories and precise instructions on the scenes I want him to draw. Based on the drawings he provides I select one that is indicative of the theme of the story, and to it the illustrator adds the title and my name. Because I have used Createspace to publish the books so far, I have selected one of their templates that works well with the cover drawing, therefore all covers have a consistency.

Describe your ideal writing spot.
I use one of the bedrooms in my house as my office. It is set up comfortably with my desk, computer, printer, lamp, bookshelf, filing cabinet, and all the accoutrements one needs for writing. A window is to the left of my desk and I can look out on mother nature when I need a bit of distraction. The evening sun streams in from around three o’clock. Of course, being an art-lover, there are great paintings on all walls.

What is the best advice you have been given?
This is a difficult question to answer because after attending many writing workshops, seminars, and classes, I have received a lot of advice. In addition, I write both adult and children’s books. Here are a few that mainly pertain to children’s books since that is the focus at the moment: Do not talk down to children readers; always build a character bible for your main character; a great way to evoke vivid images in readers’ minds is to infuse prose that engages the senses.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to become a nurse until I attended high school and had to dissect a frog during biology class! I promptly switched my plans from nursing to becoming someone who worked in commerce.

Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks?
I prefer paperbacks; they are flexible and easier to handle, and I can still curl up in bed with them.

If you could have any supernatural power, what would you choose and why?
 I would choose the power to be able to read people’s minds. That way, I would know what they are thinking and how genuine they are.

What book are you reading now?
 I am one of those people who read more than one book at a time. I started reading Secret Daughter some time ago but have not finished it. In the mean time I’m reading The Audacity of Hope. It will be interesting to see which one I complete first.

Friday, 4 August 2017

Q & A with S.T. Sanchez

by S.T. Sanchez 

Lilly is a sunwalker—a vampire born from human parents, able to walk in the daylight. She lives life as human, hiding her true identity from all those around her. One evening, she comes to the rescue of her best friend, Lex, as a vampire is about to make a meal out of her. Lilly is drawn to him, despite her desire to loathe him for almost murdering Lex, as he is the first of her kind she has ever met. As the vampire, Tread, begins to open Lilly's eyes to a world she has never known, Lilly must decide where she belongs. After she is betrayed by the person she loves most, Lilly is forced to submerge herself entirely in the vampire world, only to discover that Tread has a secret so shocking it could destroy them all. 

449 pages
Published May 27th 2017

Find Sunwalker on Goodreads
Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Sarah Sanchez was born in Dallas, TX. She graduated from the University of North Texas with a BA of Arts in Spanish. She loves to write fantasy. She is married and has three wonderful children. She loves hiking and spending time outdoors when she is not writing.

Connect with S.T. Sanchez
Goodreads  * Facebook  *  Blog  *  Email

Q & A with S.T. Sanchez

Tell us a little bit about your main characters. 
There are two main characters the story revolves around, Lilly and Tread.

Lilly is a Sunwalker, a vampire that has human parents, but can walk in the sunlight. She lives her life pretending to be human, in a world that hunts down and kills vampires. She has been loved and has human friends.

Tread is the first vampire Lilly meets. He is also a Sunwalker, but his upbringing was completely different. He was abandoned and considered a demon. He was raised in the vampire world, and despises humans.

After they meet he is curious about her lifestyle and they explore each other’s worlds, which gets them into some trouble. At the same time, it really broadens both their initial views of vampires and humans.

Who designs the covers for your books and what is that process like for you as an author?
I have an amazingly talented cover designer. Her name is Courtney Johansson. Her contact info is Cjohanssonedits@gmail.com. She is also an editor. So, I use her for both. I sent her a juvenile mockup of an idea I was having and she took my original idea and just wowed me. She sent me several amazing covers. It was really hard to decided. I can’t wait to see what she comes up with for Nightwalker, the sequel to Sunwalker.

Describe your ideal writing spot.
I should probably get a desk and sit in a chair and write, but I don’t. I sit on my bed with my laptop, some tunes and maybe a piece of chocolate or too. I can really write pretty much anywhere, but I need music in the background. It really helps inspire me.

 What is the best advice you have been given?
It sounds cliché but never give up. Keep writing. Keep trying. I didn’t publish the first story I wrote. Maybe you will maybe you won’t. Keep at it, until you love the story.

 As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I really wanted to be an animator. I drew crazy characters, which may someday appear in my books. As I got older I still enjoyed sketching but found I had other interests too.

 Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks?
I know the world is moving towards ebooks. I will read an ebook, but there is nothing like holding a book in your hand. I love to feel the weight of it, and visually see how much further I have to go. Sometimes I will slow down, if I can see I don’t have much left. If a book is good I don’t typically want it to end.

 If you could have any supernatural power, what would you choose and why?
I’ve actually thought about this quiet a bit, since I was little, before the big super hero craze. I have always wanted the same power. Although it would be totally cool to fly, I would love to be able to speak every language. There is something about knowing a second language. Some things just get lost in translation. There is such beauty in language and I hate to lose any.

 What book are you reading now?
I just started Dracula. It is the original vampire story, and I figured I should have that one under my belt. I am only a few pages in, but I am intrigued so far.

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Q & A with India R. Adams

Forever #1
by India R. Adams

To say I know where this story begins is to say I  remember what lifetime started it all…and why. What I do know is this lifetime is hard and cruel…maybe like the rest. That is until I meet him–the light that shines and guides me. To where, I don’t know, but my soul chooses to follow regardless. I believe my soul has done this before. I believe I will follow him…forever.

"The toll on my spirit had slowly broken me down—day by day, night by night, drink by drink, hit by hit—to the limp, fragile, lost girl that Dereck Hamilton . . . carried away."

A destructive home life silently destroys Serenity, a 16-year-old girl, until her broken spirit is given a gift in the form of an old journal that sends her a visitor in the night. The cloaked woman teaches Serenity that the lingering feeling of missing a part of her soul may not be a figment of her imagination, and with these words, Serenity’s journey, of this lifetime, begins.

"Away from the sun I close my eyes
and release myself into the unknown
I hope she is there
I hope she is there…" 

Kindle Edition, 340 pages
Published July 26th 2016

Find it on Goodreads
Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Read It & Reap:  November 14, 2017

India R. Adams is an author/singer/songwriter who has written YA and NA novels, and the music for the Forever series.

Being a survivor of abuse, has inspired India to let others know they have nothing to be ashamed of. She put her many years of professional theater background to the test and has written fictional stories with a shadow of her personal experiences. She says, “I’m simply finding ways to empower perfect imperfections.”

Another cause India feels needs change, is Sexual Slavery. She has joined forces with jewelers to design beautiful ways to raise money for non-profit organizations.

Even though India writes about serious subjects such as domestic violence, sexual abuse, and Human Trafficking, she has a magnificent sense of humor, as do the characters she creates. Perfectly balanced between laughter and tears, her readers see how to empower their own perfect imperfections.

                                                            Connect with India

Q & A with India R. Adams 

Tell us a little bit about your main characters. 
In the first novel of the Forever series, we have Serenity—a more reserved seventeen-year-old (because of the abuse she endures) who is gifted with reading light around one’s body.

Skyler, Serenity’s best friend, is tiny but mighty with lots of fight in her. She is a fav in reader’s heart and mine.

We have Joshua Dukes who seems overbearing at first but truly means well taking care of his Shorties—Serenity and Sky.

There is Dereck Hamilton, Serenity’s love interest and SO MUCH MORE. Just a fabulous young man.

Rocco, the smartass Italian football player who will steal your heart (as he does Sky’s).

And Jolene, the mother hen of the group who watches over them ever so carefully, putting her own needs last, always. I respect her highly.

Who designs the covers for your books and what is that process like for you as an author? 
So far, I only use Procovers but the owner is no longer accepting new clients. Just too busy now. The process with designing a cover has been different for me. With the Forever series, 6 books in total, I knew what I wanted and how they will become the final cover in the 6th cover. There are hints to what is happening within the series in each of the covers. The colors have meanings too. I’m excited for the final cover!

Describe your ideal writing spot. 
Wherever my laptop is, lol!

What is the best advice you have been given?
Believe it or not, the best advice has been to “write”. Just write, and then write some more. You become better just by experimenting… and writing.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A singer. Singing brings me the most personal pleasure outside of my family, writing a very strong second.

Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks? 
Paper. Back. ALWAYS. I love how they smell and feel. I love the sound of flipping a page. Is that weird?

If you could have any supernatural power, what would you choose and why? 
Fly. I want to soar in the beautiful blue sky. My husband jumped out of a plane once. He said it was one of the most liberating experience of his life. Not only did he just jump-out-of-a-plane, lol, but he said it was so peaceful and quiet on the way down. He was so at peace with himself. I’m jealous because I am afraid of heights and may never know what he speaks of.

What book are you reading now? 
My own. Editing is never over with all my books.

Friday, 5 May 2017

Q & A with Jake Remington

By Jake Remington

Bruce Mclean has experienced more tragedy and blessing in his forty-five years than most people would over several lifetimes.

Orphaned at six when his mother died of a heroin overdose, he was fortunate enough to be adopted by a loving and caring couple - but tragedy returned to strike again at twelve, when his adoptive mother died of cancer, and yet again in high school, when his adoptive father was killed in a car accident.

Bruce enters adulthood completely alone in life and haunted by dreams of a mother he barely remembers.

Both exceptional and flawed in many ways, Bruce perseveres and marries a beautiful woman with whom he fathers a daughter. He goes on to build a successful business empire and considerable wealth.

But fate isn’t anywhere near finished with Bruce. Years later, divorced, he makes a lifestyle choice to relocate to a small idyllic mountain town. He is determined to move on to a new phase in his life.

There he meets Tara, a very sexy and very dangerous woman, Bruce is suddenly thrust into a web of sex, lies, deceit, and betrayal that threaten not only his business and wealth, but everything he holds dear.

Like Bruce, Tara is extremely active, and after a few sessions of tearing up the mountain bike trails as well as ravaging each other, Bruce is completely under the spell of this alluring woman.
But all is not what it seems, for Tara is from a different world than Bruce. As an ex-marine and mercenary, she is a very strong female - she is also a psychopath.

Bruce soon finds that to protect his loved ones, he must navigate through the impossible odds stacked against him by those who would seek his destruction, while at the same time dealing with his own inner demons and a tragic past that seems determined to follow him.

Caution: Novel Contains some graphic sexual content.

Kindle Edition: 350 Pages
Published Feb, 2017

Find it on Goodreads
Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Read It & Reap:  October 17, 2017

Jake Remington is a new indie author.

New in terms of being an author – middle aged, Jake is by no means new to this world and has lived a lot of life.

Still young at heart, Jake is an outdoor enthusiast who loves to ski, mountain bike, climb & hike.

Living in a small mountain town in British Columbia is heaven on earth for Jake.

He has worked many years in business in leadership roles and postings have had him living in Indonesia, China, South America and the U.S. as well as traveling all over the world but British Columbia has always been home.

Jake loves reading psychological thrillers particularly of a twisted & sexual nature and as such has taken to writing as a new outlet to explore his darker side.

Be sure to check out Jake’s new novel Wretched which is a multi-dimensional psychological thriller set amidst a backdrop of both the business world and an active mountain lifestyle.

Connect with Jake

Q & A with Jake Remington

Tell us a little bit about your main characters.
Bruce Mclean is the protagonist in Wretched - Bruce has had a tragic past, losing his (single) mother to a heroin overdose when he was just six and again suffering the loss of both his adoptive parents before he graduated from high school.

Heroin addiction will manifest heavily later in Bruce’s adult life and in the novel.

But Bruce is a strong, fiercely intelligent individual and despite the hardships fate throws at him, he builds a life for himself – an interesting and active life – a good life - that is until he meets Tara.

Tara is beautiful, sexy, and athletic – a former Marine and a mercenary Tara does what Tara wants to do.

I wrote Wretched with Bruce as the protagonist and Tara as the antagonist but Tara took on a life of her own. I’m not sure now if Tara might not be the main character – certainly there would be no question in her mind.

Tara is a psychopath – she knows it and embraces it.

Jenn – Jenn is Bruce’s ex-wife – once the love of his life, they grew apart but Bruce still feels they will end up together again in the end – that is until he meets Tara.

Jenn is a surgeon and like Bruce had a difficult start in life, losing her parents in a car accident when she was young – Jenn once joked that Bruce and herself are ‘damaged goods’.

Clare – Clare is Bruce and Jenn’s daughter. Clare is a tortured soul much like Bruce’s deceased mother – she also shares an addictive gene with Bruce’s mother – and the same choice of poison.

To Bruce, it appears Clare has seen much more than her young years would suggest.

Who designs the covers for your books and what is that process like for you as an author?
I’m a self-published author and as such I designed my own cover (Wretched is my first novel).

I wanted the cover to reflect to a certain degree on the story and feel the cover of Wretched does just that – in fact it could easily be a scene from the novel.

Describe your ideal writing spot.
I’m a weird guy.

I don’t take baths (I do shower in case you were concerned) but I love the sound of running water – I find it relaxing.

So, I sit in the tub with the water running but the drain open so the tub does not fill – I wrote all of Wretched this way sitting in the tub with my tablet – water running.

My wife thinks I need psychological help.

What is the best advice you have been given?
 Let it go.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Funny, I don’t have a recollection of wanting to be anything when I was a child.

Now, I’m still no-where near grown up yet and still trying to figure out what I want to be – maybe that’s why I started writing novels.

I just know I don’t want to be grown up.

Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks?
 Paperbacks, as they’re the most mobile and easy to use – beach, hiking, on a flight – whatever.

If you could have any supernatural power, what would you choose and why?
My ten-year-old always asks me this.

He’s reading a series of books right now called Captain Underpants so I guess if being Captain Underpants can be considered a supernatural power, I’ll go with that.

Kind of fits in with the whole not growing up thing as well.

What book are you reading now?
 I’m a really busy guy – I run a company, have a family, and mountain bike, ski & climb.

I’ve always loved to read and always read a little bit every night before bed – when I decided to try writing, something had to give, so I have been using my reading time to write.

I’m currently writing a sequel to Wretched so right now I’m not reading anything – and it’s a huge sacrifice.

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Q & A with Jeff Horton

Heaven's Oasis
by Jeff W Horton

Claire is dead.

She’s been the love of Kevin Foster’s life for as long as he can remember; his soulmate, and his best friend.

Before she dies, Claire, an archaeologist, goes on an expedition to the Middle East and comes across evidence supporting the existence of a biblical, antediluvian site the ancients called Heaven’s Oasis, and that certain ancient artifacts can lead her to it. Claire believes that finding this site will help prove the Bible's veracity, and provide indisputable evidence of God's existence.

Following her unexpected death Claire's expeditions become public knowledge, and the subsequent assaults against her reputation from the scientific community and the media are both brutal and relentless.

Furious at the public ridicule and to prove she was right, Kevin decides to pick up where Claire left off in her search and to finish what she started. He’s willing to sacrifice everything, even his life, to restore her reputation and to honor her memory.

A billionaire arms dealer named Kain Masterson has also been searching for the Oasis, however, intending to keep what he finds for himself. The deadly competition soon becomes a struggle just to stay alive in the race to find the artifacts, follow the clues, and ultimately to find Heaven’s Oasis. 

ebook, 258 pages
Published November 22nd 2016 

Find it on Goodreads
Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Smashwords

Read It & Reap:  February 28, 2017

Jeff W. Horton was an Information technology professional for twenty-five years before deciding to pursue his lifelong dream of being a writer. Since becoming an author and screenwriter of family-friendly fiction, Jeff has written two screenplays and eight published novels in several genres including apocalyptic-fiction, science-fiction, religious fantasy, and romance thrillers. 

When he's not penning his next novel, Jeff enjoys spending time with his family, going to church, and reading. Among his favorite authors are many immediately recognizable names including Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Michael Crichton, Tom Clancy, C.S. Lewis, Ted Dekker, and J.R.R. Tolkien. Jeff Horton is a member of the North Carolina Writers Network.

                                                           Connect with
                                                           Website * Goodreads * Twitter * FacebookAmazon  

Q & A with Jeff Horton

 Tell us a little bit about your main characters.
First, please let me say thanks to and to everyone in the group for this opportunity to tell you a little about my latest novel, Heaven’s Oasis. I’m really excited about this one, because I feel it’s a touching love story, with a lot of suspense and thrills thrown in as well.   I very much appreciate it and I hope that some of you will take a look at Heaven’s Oasis!

The main characters in Heaven’s Oasis are:
Kevin Foster-The protagonist. Kevin is a young man fresh out of high school when he first meets Claire. He’s a kind, hard-working young Christian man, but he’s also a teenager, who’s out with a friend driving up and down the strip at beach talking with girls when he meets Claire. He attends UNC-Chapel Hill and after obtaining a bachelor’s degree, goes on to obtain a PhD and becomes a history professor. Kevin forms a deep, intense bond with Claire while they are undergraduate student, before later marrying her. The two are extremely devoted to one another. Following Claire’s death she is ridiculed in the press for her theories and her work. Determined to honor her memory and discredit those who ridiculed her in death,  Kevin sets out to finish Claire’s research and make the discovery she was certain she would find.

Claire Evans:  Claire is a warm, sensitive, and thoughtful woman. She and Kevin are both scared by the intense bond they form so early on, and end up going separate ways for a short while before coming back together for good. Claire’s interest is in archaeology, and eventually becomes an archaeologist. She makes some amazing discoveries early on and proves to be a rising star in the field, which leads to rivalries and jealousies from among her peers.

Zari Abedini:  Zari is one of Claire’s contacts in the Middle East and a friend. helps Claire with expeditions within Iraq or Iran. She is also a beautiful Persian woman who, several years after Claire’s death, ends up falling in love with Kevin while he’s following in Claire’s footsteps, and helps him complete the work for Claire as well as for Kevin, despite the danger and risk to her life.

Kain Masterson: A billionaire arms dealer, and murderer, Kain Masterson has also been searching for the Oasis believing it holds the fountain of youth, intending to keep it for himself. He and his team of mercenaries hound Claire and then Kevin and Zari after her, as they race to find Heaven’s Oasis.

Who designs the covers for your books and what is that process like for you as an author?
 For me and my publisher it has always been a give and take process. We tend to work well together, batting designs back and forth, until we end up with something we’re both happy with. For me the cover is very important, as it’s the first  a reader sees. As an artist it is important that the cover convey something about the novel, at some level, to the potential reader, so it’s always a struggle for me.

Describe your ideal writing spot.
My favorite writing spot to date is sitting on a balcony or porch at the beach while listening to the ocean waves crashing on the shore. Most of the time, however, I write while sitting in my easy chair in front of the television, though my most productive writing comes when I have something blocking my view, while, you guessed it, listening to a recording of the ocean waves crashing on the shore. : )
What is the best advice you have been given? 
Jeff W. Horton: I’d say that the best advice I’ve been given is this, there really is no right or wrong way to write a novel, everyone’s different. Another piece of very helpful advice was this, write because you enjoy it, because you love it, not just to make money. I imagine that by so doing, you may just end up writing a bestseller!

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? 
Jeff W. Horton: Like a lot of boys growing up in the 1970s I wanted to be an astronaut when I was little. Funny, being a writer was probably the last thing I ever expected to end up doing, but I really enjoy it! Of course with our imaginations, we can go much further than we ever could as an astronaut, so I’m not complaining!

Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks?
I’d say I have to prefer paperback and hardbacks over ebooks. There’s just something about having a physical copy of a book…maybe I’m just a little old-fashioned. I enjoy ebooks, don’t get me wrong, but there’s just something about carrying a book around with me with nothing required but some light to read by and my eyes.

If you could have any supernatural power, what would you choose and why?
Hmmm…that’s a tough one. I suppose I’d just like to be Superman; that about sums it up!  

What book are you reading now?
I’m currently working on my ninth novel so I’ve been really busy, but once I’ve finished it I’ll definitely be picking up another novel to read. I’ve found reading a novel in-between writing one to be both refreshing and helpful! I prefer reading so much to watching movies; the experience is just so much deeper and enjoyable. It certainly would be nice if we could get more young people to re-discover the joy of reading!

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Q & A with Gayvin Powers

Iona Fay: An Irish Fairy Tale 
Iona Fay #1
by Gayvin Powers 

A modern Irish fairy tale. Iona Fay, a realistic 13-year-old from the United States, searches for her missing mother in Ireland, only to discover her mother is lost to the Fairy World. To find her mother, she must forget everything she knows about reality and embrace a world of magic. For Iona, real magic begins with believing in herself. 

For girls and boys ages 8 - 14 (and adults young at heart).

Iona Fay: An Irish Fairy Tale is book #1 in The Adventures of Iona Fay. Iona Fay & the Fire Keepers, book #2, is coming out March 1, 2017.

The Adventures of Iona Fay books are filled with positive and empowering stories, written to inspire self-confidence in middle graders. Throughout the series, young readers go on epic Irish adventures to various fairy realms where Iona discovers more than she imagines about magic, family, friends, and herself. 

Kindle Edition, 184 pages
Published December 13th 2015

Find it on Goodreads
Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Read It & Reap:  August 10, 2017

Gayvin Powers is a writer-in-residence at the Weymouth Center and teaches film and humanities at Sandhills Community College in North Carolina. After earning an MFA from the American Film Institute and BA from the University of Southern California, she was the first writer to win the Ojai Film Society Award. Iona Fay, a modern Irish fairy tale, is the first book in the Iona Fay series and Iona Fay & The Fire Keepers is being released in early 2017. For more information, go to: Gayvin Powers.com and IonaFay.com.

Connect with Gayvin Powers

                                        Q & A with Gayvin Powers 

                                               Tell us a little bit about your main characters.
The main character is Iona Fay, a realistic 13-year-old from the United States, who is searching for her missing mother in Ireland. In order to save her mother, she must embrace a world of magic and learns that real magic begins with believing in herself. Iona is an impulsive teenager who goes after what she wants while on her epic journey. In some cases, her impulsiveness works well for her, and in other situations it appears to be her down fall. Iona is a flawed character, she loves deeply, and, over the course of the series (five books planned), she learns to embrace her positive and challenging qualities while righting what is wrong with magic and the fairy world.

Who designs the covers for your books and what is that process like for you as an author?
Su Jen Buchheim, an illustrator from Los Angeles, is the amazing talent behind the drawings in the first two books of Iona Fay. I give her excerpts from the book and asked her to use for tone, style, setting, and image. Sometimes I send her my own sketches or photos of what I’m envisioning to help clarify what I’m trying to convey. Su Jen is a dream to work with.

Describe your ideal writing spot.
My ideal writing spot is any place in nature where I’m comfortable, cozied up with a blanket and am writing on my laptop. Since nature can’t always be ordered up, I’ll take a blanket, warm spot, and turn on some music to inspire writing. I choose a theme song for each book or script I write – it usually helps me bypass writer’s block.

What is the best advice you have been given?
Write. Just write. When you don’t know what to do, write.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a writer or an actress. Now that I’m older, if I couldn’t be a writer, I’d want to be an astronaut -- would be very cool.

Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks?
I prefer paperback books. I like the feel of the pages in my fingers and to fold back the book as I hunker down into a couch while I’m reading a good part of the story. For me, it’s paperbacks all the way.

If you could have any supernatural power, what would you choose and why?
I do have a super power. If I told you, I’d have to erase your mind with my…well, you know. Ssh!

What book are you reading now?
My mother used to be reading three books at a time; I seem to have gotten that trait from her. Currently, I’m reading Sense & Sensibility & Sea Monsters, Heart of the Sea (from The Gallagher of Ardmore trilogy by Nora Roberts, and the outline for my third book (getting ready to start writing any day now). I’m very excited!