Today I’m happy to be a part of Danielle E. Shipley’s blog hop to promote her new novella, The Sun’s Rival. This is Book Five of the Wilderhark Tales — and having read several others in the series, I can tell you they’re a quick, fun, romantic read. So check it out!
Posts Tagged With: blog hop
It’s been awhile since I participated in a Blog Hop, so I figured, no time like the present!
So let’s start off with a big thank you to Andrew Toynbee, who tagged me for this blog hop and wrote some really sweet words about me. You, sir, are a class act.
On to the blog hop!
1) What are you working on?
So I have two projects in the works right now:
- Chasing Nonconformity (sequel to Imminent Danger And How to Fly Straight into It) — I’ve finished the rewrite, and have now set the book aside for a few weeks to give it time to mature (books are like wine/cheese, right?). Once the maturing process is finished, I will go back through the manuscript and rip it apart, in the hopes that the beta readers I eventually give it to won’t be too disgusted when they read it.
- The Elemental Guard — This is a fantasy novel I’ve been working on for a couple of years now, and I am in the process of figuring out how I want to rewrite it. I do technically have a first draft, but it’s suffering from an extreme case of “Not enough happens-itis”. So I’m going to rework the story from the ground up and make it awesome.
2) How does your work differ from others in the genre?
Well, Imminent Danger and Chasing Nonconformity are different from mainstream YA novels in that they’re not entirely focused on a love triangle. I know that’s generalizing a bit, but it’s also a fact that the vast majority of YA novels currently on the market are just obsessed with doom and gloom and tragic love triangles. The Imminent Danger series does not have love triangles, and I don’t think it ever will — well, it might, but the love triangle would be extremely nonviable, and more in there for comic relief than anything else. I also try to put a lot of humor in my stories, because A) I enjoy laughing and making people laugh, and B) whenever I write dark, dramatic things, I get kind of depressed.
3) Why do you write what you write?
I’ve loved fantasy and sci-fi since I was a kid. My parents indoctrinated me young — technically from the moment I was born, actually, as my middle name is Lothlorien (the Elvish woodlands from Lord of the Rings). So I tend to write a lot of fantasy and sci-fi because those are just the kind of stories I enjoy. I’m currently dabbling in a darker, slightly anarchic story, but even that still has some sci-fi/fantasy elements to keep it interesting. For me, I get enough of reality from living in it day to day — when I pick up a book, or sit down to write, I want to go somewhere new!
4) How does your writing process work?
Oh, it’s a complete mess. Sometimes I get an idea and immediately sit down and start banging out words. Sometimes I’ll get an idea, write it down, and then forget about it for years. Sometimes I’ll do elaborate planning for a story, with character backgrounds and histories and so on, and then get bored and never look at it again. My writing process is really just about what’s working for me at the time. Right now, I’m in a “do some high-level planning first, write the first draft from start to finish, and then re-write until you go completely batty and have to take up tai chi as a calming exercise” type phase.
Nailed it! Okay, moving on to part 2 of the blog hop — tagging four authors to follow in my glorious footsteps. I’m not going to give them advanced warning on this because, quite frankly, I don’t have the patience to send out emails and wait for responses. So they’ll just have to deal with the free advertising, and decide for themselves if they want to participate in the blog hop.
Audrey Driscoll — This wonderful lady is the author of one of the best self-published books I’ve ever read, The Friendship of Mortals. It’s haunting, and beautiful, and thought-provoking, and has a dash of Lovecraftian horror that will absolutely blow you away. Also, the book has a fancy new purple cover!
Danielle E. Shipley — Aside from being a sweetheart, Danielle blogs all about writing and fairytales, and occasionally even about writing fairytales (gasp!). She has a great little series of novellas out called The Wilderhark Tales.
Kate Sparks — First of all, Kate reads all my posts and leaves awesome comments, so that alone makes her one of my favorite bloggers! Her blog is also quite excellent — all about writing, publishing, etc. She’s also recently posted a few pictures of Loki and his adventures with a pink pony, which I thoroughly enjoyed.
Celeste DeWolfe — You know her as the talented artist behind all the Imminent Danger fan art I keep posting, but Celeste has many other talents! Her blog is really fun, with a huge variety of topics — ranging from web comics to music to books. And she’s currently posting her first novel, Life of Gaia, on Jukepop Serials (i.e., she posts it chapter by chapter, and you can read for free and leave comments).
Thanks for reading, everyone! Have a fabulous Friday!
Unrelated media of the day:
Two sentence horror stories! It’s a thing! Check out more here: http://imgur.com/gallery/aHrf8
As I so expertly teased in yesterday’s post, today is my turn for Kathi Schwengel’s First of Her Kind blog tour. On a totally related note, Happy Valentine’s Day!!!
Ooooooh shiny. Right. Moving on.
So I have the pleasure of presenting to you today an author interview with Kathi, talking about her new self-published novel First of Her Kind. You probably want to know what the heck it is. Hang on …
Everyone, it seems, wants to dictate what Ciara does with her life: Serve the Goddess, destroy the Goddess, do as you promised your aunt. All Ciara wants is to keep the two magics she possesses from ripping her apart. And that won’t be easy.
Not only are they in complete opposition to each other, blood ties pull her in divergent directions as well. And then there’s Bolin, the man sworn to protect her. There’s no denying the growing attraction between them, but is it Ciara he wants? Or her power?
None of which will matter if Ciara can’t overcome her fear and learn to use her gifts. No one knows the depths of the ancient power she possesses, or what will happen if it manages to escape her control. Will she lose herself entirely? Or be forever trapped between darkness & light?
I’ve only read the first couple of chapters from the Amazon.com sneak preview thingy, but I definitely enjoy what I read. Thus, without further ado, I present to you my Unbelievably Awesome Author Interview with Miss Kathi Schwengel:
What up, KLS. We shall begin, as most things do, at the beginning. How did you come up with the idea for First of Her Kind?
It all started with the line: “There was nothing for it, in another turn of the glass Meriol would be dead.” I had nothing else to go on. I took that line and ran with it. Characters introduced themselves, and away we went.
Considering the line produced an entire book, you must have run far indeed. Would you consider yourself a casual sprinter, or more a marathon runner? No, that’s a silly question. Let’s stay on topic, shall we? Honestly. So let’s talk about your protagonist, the delightfully fiery and strong-willed Ciara. Did you base her off of anyone in particular?
No one in particular. She’s probably a blend of a lot of women.
Fair enough. Most women are. Well, no, actually, women aren’t usually a blend of other women … not unless they’re the bride of Frakenstein!!! Is Ciara the bride of Frankenstein? No response? Highly suspicious. Moving on. What was your favourite scene to write?
Honestly, the last scene where Haracht (the torturer) and Bolin are together. I can’t say too much about it, don’t want to give any spoilers, but there were a lot of little elements that all came together in that one.
Hmm … the torturer and the strong, silent protector, together at last? Talk about an unconventional love story. Although now it occurs to me that you simply meant they were together in the same location, not together emotionally. Sigh. All right. So, if you could visit one location in your novel, which would you choose?
I would visit Donovan’s fortress. It is a fascinating place, built long before he took it over.
Ooooh, a fortress. Is that like a castle? Castles are awesome. Except they’re often haunted, so watch out for wee ghosties. Now, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty. How did you find the self-publishing process? Any horror stories? Any lessons learned?
For me, the process wasn’t as bad as I’d heard it could be. I think part of that has to do with me being a control freak and loving having my fingers in every bit of it. That’s not for everyone, so I know for some authors, it’s very scary. Formatting for Kindle. *shudder* That would be the worst part. MS Word is a great program, but it apparently likes to hide little gremlins everywhere that only come out when you hit that ‘publish’ button. Then it’s back to trying to eradicate the little buggers and resubmitting. Lesson learned? Have a very clean file, then clean it again, then proofread it line by line in excruciating detail on a hard copy, then clean it again. The one thing I would do different next time (which will likely be for book two) is to offer some ARCs for review before the release.
That sounds like a painful and bloody process, especially with the little bugger eradication. But hey, it’s published now! All the trials and turmoil were worth it in the end. And now that it’s published, you’re probably clavicle-deep in marketing. How has the book marketing gone thus far? What are you marketing plans for the future?
Marketing is a crazy beast that demands feeding every day. Lots of Blog stops, lots of tweets and FB postings to remind people the book is out there — without beating them over the head with it. It really does take a chunk of time that, unfortunately, takes away from writing time.
Yeah, beating potential customers over the head probably isn’t the best way to drum up business. Especially since head injuries and prolonged periods of reading don’t usually work well together. Well, best of luck with the marketing! And speaking of … not marketing … it’s Valentine’s Day! If you could go on a date with one character from your novel, who would you choose, and why?
Definitely Bolin. Hands down. Okay, so he can come off a bit cold, a bit of an arrogant ass at times, but he’s a hotty. And he has an awesome horse. There is nothing in this world like a good looking man who knows how to sit an equally good looking horse. A Valentine’s Day ride with him would be awesome. *sigh*
So you must have a crush on that guy from the Old Spice commercial. No response again??? Your silence is telling, madam.
Thanks for stopping by, Kathi!!!
Unrelated image of the day:
Courtesy of my friend Rhiannon, here is super cool image of her cat, Sirius. And yes, I am aware that Sirius the cat was named after Sirius Black, the dog animagus.
Unrelated note of the day:
I’m officially off on my vacation starting tomorrow. So adios, farewell, and see y’all in ten days!
Book prep for a cruise, you ask? What exactly am I prepping? Am I booking something, or am I prepping a book? Ahhhh!
Okay. First of all, calm down. You really need to stop panicking every time you read a blog post.
Secondly, I am, of course, talking about prepping a book to bring along on my Super Special Awesome Caribbean Cruise. I’m going with my mother and brother, starting in New Orleans, headed down the coast of Mexico to Cozumel, Belize City, etc. It’s going to be epic. But I digress.
When we booked the cruise back in January, my master plan was to have the sequel to Imminent Danger — whimsically entitled Chasing Nonconformity — finished and printed for mother to peruse at her leisure on our relaxing jaunt around the Caribbean. As of today, I still have the second half of the story to re-write. So that’s not going to work.
So instead I said to myself: “Michelle,” I said, “Why not print out another book you’ve written and make your mother read that instead? Surely she has nothing better to do on her vacation than read your latest questionable attempt at literature.”
Und hence, I present to you photographs of the printed-out version of The Elemental Guard, the YA fantasy novel (think Harry Potter meets Avatar the Last Airbender) I wrote a year or two ago. You will notice that the manuscript is stupidly thick. This is because I checked the single-sided box instead of the double-sided box on the Staples website, and they obliged me accordingly. Observe:
In unrelated news …
I will be hosting an author interview with Kathi Schwengel tomorrow (Valentine’s Day!), as part of her blog hop for her new book, First of Her Kind. Stay tuned for that!
And then I’m gone on my cruise until next Sunday, so that’s why you won’t be hearing from me. Frantic calls to the police regarding my disappearance from the blogosphere are therefore appreciated, but unnecessary.
Unrelated video of the day:
Hugh Grant’s finest moment in film history: