Q & A with Leeland Artra

Please give a warm welcome to my next victim! —-Leeland Artra!

*****

Leeland-Author-180What would your bio say?

Here lies a great liar. Oh wait you said bio not eulogy. Well my bio is mostly that I couldn’t make up my mind. I started with college, tried the Navy, tried consulting, tried door to door sales, tried working for large corps, tried working for little corps, and am still trying. Yet through all that I loved fantasy and sci-fi. I read books all the time and also enjoy doing some fantasy roleplaying games. And now I have added author to the long list of jobs. Except Author seems a really good fit for my personality, I think I will be doing this for a long time to come.

When did you start writing and why?

I started writing stories in the early 1980s. Most of them were for roleplaying modules of my own design. I wrote a lot of side plots for games I was the game-master for. Later I wrote stories for friends based on little known side plots of our lives (all of it fiction of course). None of these were ever published and most were under a thousand words. I got serious about writing professionally in 2012. I took a series of stories I had written and weaved them all together to make my debut trilogy Golden Threads Trilogy which started with Thread Slivers (a bestseller), will continue with Thread Strands and will end (yes the trilogy will have a real ending, I like those) with Thread Skein.

If you are a parent how does being a parent affect your writing and writing habits? Or does it?

Oh that is funny. If you’re a parent it affects everything. And, yes I’m a parent I have a marvelously busy six year old son and an adult daughter. My daughter thinks it’s cool. My son thinks it’s annoying because I spend so much time working on the books, and marketing them. At six the world should and does revolve around playtime and how long until the next playtime. Some of the stuff my son does ends up echoed in the books. I hope when he is older he’ll be proud of me and the works I have done.

Who is your favorite author and why?

This seems to be a favorite question and most authors I know claim to be unable to nail it down to one. I’ll go out on a limb and say I have a long list of authors I love and would recommend to someone based on what genre they love. For fantasy I have to say I love Roger Zelazny. For Sci-Fi that is a hard toss between Philip Jose Farmer and Timothy Zahn. If you want more current writers then I love Lindsay Buroker, Lois McMaster Bujold, Mercedes Lackey, and Trudi Canavan. Why I like all of these authors is easy, they spin great stories that I can dive into and lose hours at a time. The worlds they create, the characters all have meaning and stick with me.

What do you hope to accomplish with your writing?

I am writing the kind of books I love to read. I want to be able to go back in a few years and read my own books and be in love with the worlds and characters again like drinking fine aged liquor. I wanted to see if I liked writing professionally, if I could do it, and if it was a feasible career change for me. So far all it all looks positive. If I can get on a few thousand people’s favorite authors lists I will call this a win-win!

Traditional or Self publishing? Why?

Right now I am going with self-publishing (aka indie author). My main reason is I want to know how all of the publishing industry works. I need to learn all the channels, distributions, methods, marketing, and how much it all costs in time and money. Why? So I can be a knowledgeable negotiator should a traditional publisher choose to pick up my books. My first book has already passed the golden “publisher pay attention” sales figures. The question is will my second, third, and forth books do the same. If so I might get some very covernice offers. Based on what I am learning about the marketing and production costs in time, effort, worry, and money I might take up the offer. It’s not a sure thing in any direction, I might be a one hit wonder, or I might actually be a regular bestselling author. All I can do right now is make sure I’m doing my very best on all aspects and measure the results.

Talk about your journey into the wide world of publishing.

It has been a very interesting journey. I spent 20 years building up the worlds and story materials. In 2012 I spent about four months reading everything I could about how to be a good author. I also spent a few months learning the marketing aspects while pulling together the initial manuscript. I had to find editors, artists, typesetters, and much more. It was all very interesting. As a result the second book I believe is going to be even better. Writing the story was very hard, but editing that and getting it turned into the book was even harder.

Tell us about your book (s).

My unique spin on things is that at some point in our future a rather unexpected event takes place causing the races of our galaxy to merge and work with races of another galaxy in a massive effort to save some of their cultures. Ours was a galaxy of science and technology, the other was one of what we would call magic (but really it is just a different kind of technology based on a radiant power source capable of being used at a distance). The result was a new world that had entirely unexpected issues, causing a degradation back to an Elizabethan level of knowledge and technology for all the races involved. Yet some science and technology from both prior galaxies still exists and is still known. So in 20,000 years from today we end up roughly at the beginning of book one. A young strong female mercenary warrior named Ticca gets hired by a young not-so-strong junior mage named Lebuin and the two of them cause a lot of headaches for all involved. Yet they are joined by some unusual individuals and manage to learn enough to stay alive and maybe even stop a rather large disaster.

What inspired you to write these books (or in this genre)?

These books are using ideas I came up with in the 1980s and have been slowly building and correcting as I learned more over the years. I wanted a rich full world for my games and stories and I built one that could be both fantastic and yet hauntingly familiar. As I love sci-fi as much as fiction I wanted to mix them together. With that said I have a 20,000 year time line of high science, high magic, and a mix of both to play with for all of my future books. I think I can find plenty of stories in that time to keep my fans and myself very happy.

Chapter-13Tell us why we should love or hate your main character?

You should love Ticca because she is at heart a farm girl that wanted to be more. She worked very hard and earned the right to carry her dagger. She is smart and resourceful, and her naivety takes a lot of hard knocks in the first book. I think most readers start out hating Lebuin, he is a real pompous idiot, pampered and self-indulgent. But, he grows and learns about the real world. By the end I think most fans will like him too. Duke, well, Duke is Duke as one reviewer pointed out he is a pretty finished character, always has been in this world. But, the sci-fi series I’m writing about his origins we’ll get to see why he is the way he is. Dohma, is your typical honest policeman that got made into a king and he is learning a lot of lessons about that. So I feel a lot of sympathy for him personally. There are dozens of other characters I’d be happy to chat about given the time.

Do(es) your book(s) have a soundtrack?

Oh that a serious spoiler alert! Who told you? Even the beta readers don’t know this yet! Oh wait, this is probably a general question you ask. Do many books have a sound track? I thought I was being clever. Yes, there is some musical aspects to the second and third books which is being done professionally. I won’t say more at this time! I need my marketing thunder if you don’t mind. The first book has a fabulous trailer you can watch on Ganxy at http://bit.ly/X1TtFJ

*****

Thank you so much for taking the time out to answer some questions so we can better get to know you! 🙂 You can follow Leeland on his website or Facebook.

 

And you can pick up this book at any one of these fine places!

Thread Slivers eBook available via Viewbook.at:  http://bit.ly/Ym1TUy

Thread Slivers print available via Viewbook.at: http://bit.ly/12PRjZX

Thread Slivers on Ganxy: http://bit.ly/X1TtFJ

Thread Slivers preview link on Amazon: http://amzn.to/Y1RrjB

Thread Slivers on Goodreads: http://bit.ly/Yye0QY

Golden Threads Trilogy on Facebook: http://on.fb.me/UQV9Sz

Mailing list: http://eepurl.com/woxIX

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COVER REVEAL!!! Dragon Twins

Hi everyone! I am super excited to be able to share with you what my lovely designer Miranda Stork over at Moon Rose Publishing  has cooked up for the second novel in the Stan Brookshire series. I cannot thank this woman enough!

Release date is June 30th, 2013!

Please make sure you like the Facebook page to find out more details and to enter giveaways I will be having on various blogs leading up to its release!

The Blurb

Separated at birth…reunited by murder.

Behind the gates of an exclusive Lake City neighborhood, prominent businessman Don Chu’s housekeeper has been brutally murdered and his teenage daughter taken. The high-profile case has the Mayor himself sending the case across Detective Stan Brookshire’s desk. He barely has time to digest the details of the two sinister crimes before he’s called to yet another disturbing scene.

This time, at the other end of the city, another murder and attempted kidnapping ring out with a similarity too convenient for coincidence. As the clues fall into place and the evidence mounts, Stan starts to see a pattern emerge. A DNA match, and the two cases now become one. With the help of an unexpected young ally, Stan begins his search for a victim that may still be alive. It’s a race against the clock and across the globe that will test his skills to the absolute limit. Two murders. Two kidnappings. Twice the danger. 

The Excerpt

A loud noise startled Jade from her slight doze. As she straightened up in her chair, she glanced at the clock on her bedside table across the room that held her textbooks. Eleven thirty-five.

 Leaning back at her desk, she reached over and felt the bowl of soup Wei-Lee, the family housekeeper, had brought. It had been piping hot but now it was tepid. She estimated she was out less than half an hour. 

 Another crash came from the direction of the kitchen. What on earth was Wei-Lee doing at this time of night to make that much noise?

 Jade started to get up when the door to her room flew open and two almost identical Asian men burst into her room. Grabbing her before she could make a sound, her feet lashed out and knocked the books to the floor as they dragged her toward the door.

 “You’re coming with us,” one of the men said in a thick, Chinese accent. “You can either come quietly or we’ll drag you out.”

 “There’s no way I’m letting you take me anywhere!” she yelled, struggling against them. Their grip loosened and this time she racked her nails across one man’s cheek. Crying out in pain, he released her arm to protect his face.

 She ran out of the bedroom and down the stairs hoping to find Wei-Lee or something to defend herself. Jade heard them running after her. Chancing a glance over her shoulder, she saw they were right behind her as she raced through the house trying to get to the kitchen.

 She was almost there when a man stepped out of the doorway, into her path. He was Asian but what caught her attention was the knife in his hand. Red liquid dripped from it onto the tile floor. She managed to duck around him and into the kitchen where she was halted at the sight of Wei-Lee. She lay dead in a slowly spreading pool of blood.

 A hand grabbed her shoulder and tried to spin her around. Her reflexes drove her forward, jumping over the housekeeper’s body she dove for the cordless phone to dial 911. She managed to dial two digits before the phone was knocked out of her hand and it went flying across the floor.

 Rough hands grabbed her and tore her clothing as she tried to get away. It was useless. They were too strong. It was too much for her. The sight of the dead housekeeper, the men in her house…the blood. There was so much blood.

 A hand reached up and put a cloth over her mouth, she fought against it but it was no use. She had no strength left. As her world faded to darkness the last thing she heard was, “Do not hurt her. Ling will not be happy if she is harmed.”

*****

And the moment you have been waiting for ….

The Cover

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BLOG TOUR: For Everly

EverlyTourBanner3I am so excited to be helping out with this tour! I simply love Raine… (in case you’ve forgotten she did an interview with me a while back…)

*****

Here’s an excerpt from her new novel — For Everly.

Thirty minutes later, she finally arrived at the restaurant. Between traffic and the unfamiliar area of town, it took her longer than she expected to get there. She thought she had given herself extra time, but she was still five minutes late. When she pulled up, she found herself at a valet stand. Rolling down her window, she flagged the valet who eyed her car as though it had just broken down at his feet. He approached with notable reluctance.

Waving at the twenty-dollar valet fee posted on a nearby folding sign, she asked, “Is there self-parking?”

“No, ma’am,” he replied stiffly.

She swallowed and nodded, getting out of her car so he could park it. She only had twenty dollars in cash, and she had intended to pay for her lunch with it. She knew the bank account was low until she got paid again on Friday, but she’d have to risk debiting her meal. Why hadn’t she thought to set some parameters when Cole suggested the restaurant?

Her headache ballooned as she hurried through the front door of the restaurant and looked around without spotting Cole. Frowning, she approached the maître d.

“Miss Wallace?” he greeted her.

Surprised, she nodded.

“Welcome. Mr. Parker is waiting at your table. It would be my pleasure to escort you there. May I take your coat?”

Damn. She probably couldn’t even afford the free bread at this place.

Giving the maître d a wan smile, she shrugged out of her coat, putting her gloves in the pockets and wrapping her scarf around one of her purse straps. She was sure she was imagining it, but she swore the maître d held her Target-brand garment a few inches away from his body as he turned to hand it off to whoever guarded the coat room.

Shifting uncomfortably when he gave her a quick once-over and lingered disapprovingly on her jeans, she took a deep breath and For Everly Cover 1followed him into the dining room. There wasn’t anything she could do about how she was dressed, was there?

Lord, what a hot mess this was.

As she spotted Cole across the dining room at a table with a beautiful view of the outside terrace, another thought occurred to her. How should she greet him? Should she shake his hand since this was a business meeting? Go in for the awkward hug since she was good friends with his brother?

Bow because he looked like a god in his simple black V-neck sweater and gray pants?

She caught his gaze when she was still about ten feet from the table. A variety of expressions crossed his features, so many that she couldn’t read them all. She definitely caught irritation, though, and was puzzled when he ended up smiling.

OhGodOhGodOhGod…

He stood up. The maître d deposited her with a slight bow, so she ruled out that form of greeting. Then it was just her and Cole.

“Hello, Everly,” he said, his voice as smooth as a buttered biscuit.

“Hi.”

Had that been her voice that came out all breathy? She prayed it hadn’t sounded as ridiculous as she thought.

She started to lift her right hand for a shake, then realized he was tilting in for the awkward hug. To avoid hitting him in the crotch, she adjusted her trajectory. He smoothly used his left hand to continue her forward motion so that her hand ended up encircling his neck.

Then before she knew what was happening, her lips were pressed against his.

*****
AUTHOR BIO AND LINKS:

rainetRaine Thomas is the award-winning author of a bestselling series of YA fantasy/romance novels about the Estilorian plane, including the Daughters of Saraqael trilogy and the Firstborn trilogy. Her latest book is a New Adult Contemporary Romance titled For Everly. She is a proud member of Romance Writers of America and is a contributing blogger to The Writer’s Voice. When she isn’t planning weddings, writing, or glued to social networking sites, she can usually be found on one of Florida’s beautiful beaches with her husband and daughter or crossing the border to visit with her Canadian friends and relatives.

Ways readers can connect with Raine:

Twitter (http://twitter/Raine_Thomas)
Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/rainethomas)
Goodreads (http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5053436.Raine_Thomas)
Pinterest (http://pinterest.com/raine_thomas/)
Linkedin (http://www.linkedin.com/pub/raine-thomas/53/111/bb3)
Website (http://rainethomas.com)
Blog (http://RaineThomas.com/blog/)

COUNTDOWN WIDGET:

RAFFLECOPTER CODE:

Giveaway includes a signed paperback, a custom necklace and bracelet, and a $25 Amazon gift card!! Be sure to check that out folks! 🙂

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Grab your copy of For Everly Today!!

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00D0TB1CE/?tag=iamboo-20
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/
2940016443065
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17835522-for-everly

Blog Highlight: Pen Possessed

Heres a beautiful Mom of one, Chelsea Falin, who blogs about her books and reviews others! 🙂

A little about Ms. Chelsea, in her own words:

“I was born on June 4th, 1990 at Tampa General Hospital, in Tampa, Florida. My earliest childhood years were spent in the small suburban town of Dade City, which is located in the west-central portion of the state. My happiest memories are centered here in my home town, where I attended both Pasco Elementary and Pasco Middle Schools. To say that I was sad to leave my itty bitty home town is an understatement, but the time came when I was 12. I moved a lot during my childhood, and this move was not all that drastic. I simply relocated to the neighboring town of Zephyrhills. Zephyrhills is a lot larger than Dade City as far as the sheer amount of people living there goes. To put it into perspective for you, Dade City has a population of just over 6,000 people, while Zephyrhills has nearly 11,000. It was a lot different than I was used to, and to be honest, the two years I spent living in Zephyrhills were some of the toughest in my childhood. My family and I were consistently hungry, broke, and lacking necessities. We also lived in a crime-prone portion of Zhills, and we suffered multiple break-ins. We didn’t really have anything, so I’m not sure what it was the burglars were looking for. During these two years, however, I grew closer to my family than I could ever imagine. I attended Raymond B. Stewart Middle School, and moved on to attend Zephyrhills High School. At the end of my freshman year, my family and I made the drastic and life-altering move to southern New Jersey.

I was almost 16 when I moved to New Jersey, and for the first year, we moved a lot. We lived in Somers Point and Pleasantville, before semi-settling in the Pinelands area. We spent a year between Tuckerton and West Creek, where I attended Pinelands Regional Junior High School. We changed locations yet again only a year later, and moved to the itty bitty southern NJ town of Port Norris. Port Norris was both an exciting time in my life, and a terrible one. Port Norris was small even compared to my hometown, with a population barely over 1,000 people. There were two bordering towns- Shell Pile and Bivalve, which had a combined population of 50 between the two. I used to love riding my bike through all three towns, and I would disappear for hours at a time. The town was relatively safe, just as long as I stayed in our half of Port Norris. Being 16 and then 17, I had a lot more freedom. We were still relatively poor, but we made due much better than we had before. Unfortunately, I ended up making some rather normal bad teenage decisions. It was the usual spiel. I got in with the wrong crowd, experimented with drinking and recreational drugs, and snuck out of the house a few times. To be honest, my decisions weren’t as bad as they could have been. I was actually a pretty good kid- I just made a few rebellious decisions. Even during these times, I was the thinking intellectual my mother made me out to be. I declined casual, unprotected sex; I never had a drink and got behind the wheel, nor did I get in the car with anyone who had been drinking; the only drugs I experimented with were weed and a few low-milligram pain killers. Am I embarrassed? No. Experimentation is an important aspect of growing up, and my experimenting was done in moderation.

One night, however, I got caught. My cousin was up visiting from Florida, and the two of us snuck out of my home one night to go to a guy’s house. The guy part of the deal was for her, but we smoked a little pot and had a little beer. I feel asleep in a corner of the guy’s living room floor, and as such, we were not able to sneak home before my mom woke up. To say that ‘hell broke loose’ is an understatement. After a full blown ‘cuss out’ session from my usually sugary sweet momma, I was sent back to Florida with that selfsame cousin. They were living in Ocala at the time, and Ocala is a huge city. My cousin and I went wild for a little while. My Aunt pretty much let us do whatever we wanted to. Top priority was searching for a job, and I enrolled in a community college to get my GED. That never happened, however, because I soon decided my spurt of rebelliousness had ran it’s course. I came to my senses, but when I tried to convince my cousin to come to hers, all failed. I called my real father (my parents had divorced when I was four) and asked him to come get me immediately. He did, and I went to live with him in Brooksville, Florida. I loved where my dad lived. Growing up, I had spent every other weekend, every other major holiday, and one to two straight months staying with him- first, on my grandma’s farm, and then on his and my step moms property…”

You can find Ms. Chelseas blog here —–>www.CFalinHammond.wordpress.com

FREEBIE SATURDAY~Atkinson’s Administration

atkinsons admin large
Book Info:
Title: Atkinson’s Administration (Book 1 in series)
Author: John Paul Bernet (aka JP Bernett)
Page count: 214
Published: March 7th 2012
Blurb:
The reaper has walked among us ever since time began. Our meaning of time is different; three score years and ten give or take the over or under run of sand in the reapers time piece. That is what the ancient philosophers would have us believe.
But now the bells are chiming us into the 21st century and there is a problem. The real reaper system has had a spanner thrown into its works; the repercussions of this could and will end the world as we know it. Can mortals battle with ancient Gods or is this the apocalypse that revelations predicted.“Have you ever wondered what that feeling is when you are falling in your sleep and you wake just before you hit the ground? Well, that is me twanging the cord that one day I will cut in my realm and you will die in yours”.
Atkinson
Author Link:
Coordinator:
Fae Books

Q & A with Judy Walters

Please welcome my next victim! Another mother who writes about one womans journey to motherhood.

*****

a3bd96_84a73d6dd002703bc39f78a80cf6ba3e.jpg_srz_268_398_75_22_0.50_1.20_0.00What would your bio say?

Judy Mollen Walters is a Stay-at-Home Mother to two teenage girls who were conceived through infertility treatment, which led her to write her debut novel, Child of Mine, the story of an infertile midwife searching for her biological parents and a way to create her family. Judy spent eight years working as an editor in nonfiction publishing before becoming a Stay-at-Home Mother.

When did you start writing and why?

I started writing stories when I was eight years old, but none of them was any good! I was an English major in college and was always fascinated by the book publishing process.  I began writing in earnest when my younger daughter turned three and ideas for novels would haunt me unless I wrote them.

If you are a parent how does being a parent affect your writing and writing habits? Or does it?

I can only write when no one is in my house, and that is a challenge! I usually start writing soon after I get up in the morning, when I am most energetic, my high schooler has left for school, and my husband is at work. My older daughter is in college so she is away most of the time. 😦

I am always looking to write characters who have parenting issues or challenges – whether, like my midwife, they are desperate wanna-be parents, unable to get pregnant, or like in my upcoming novel about a rabbi whose wife has died, forcing him to raise his two teenage children alone.  “They” say write what you know, so I try to, and parenting is what I know!

Who is your favorite author and why?

Don’t make me pick! 🙂

What do you hope to accomplish with your writing?a3bd96_3cb90d3da86c246e6315c0ad24fe6972.png_srz_318_463_75_22_0.50_1.20_0.00

I want to tell good stories that transport my readers as well as make them think.

 Traditional or Self publishing? Why?

I don’t like the word “or.”  I see so many authors who make this a devisive issue, and I don’t think it needs to be.  There are pros and cons to each path. I’ve actually hybrid published Child of Mine (hybrid is my own made-up term, maybe it will catch on!). I have an agent (Erica Silverman of Trident Media Group) and she tried to secure a traditional deal for me, but after a while, we decided to epublish my book through Trident Media, which now has its own ebook division.

Talk about your journey into the wide world of publishing

It’s a loooooong story….When my younger daughter was three (she is now fifteen) I came up with an idea for a novel. I wasn’t trying to write a novel, but the idea wouldn’t leave me alone, so I decided to write it.  It was terrible! I put it aside and didn’t think about writing for a couple of years.  Then another idea popped into my head and I wrote that. It was slightly better but still not very good.  I wrote another one; I started looking for agents.  I couldn’t get one, so I wrote another book!  After nine months, I got two agent offers in twenty four hours. I thought This is it. I accepted one of the offers based on the name and reputation of the agency and agent, had a written, signed contract with the agency, and began the revisions she requested.  Three months later, I sent her the revisions. She wrote me a one line email, “I am not the agent for you,” and walked away.  I began revising as I queried some more. Nine months later, I got an offer from my current agent.  We couldn’t sell that manuscript. I started writing Child of Mine during that time; we tried to sell Child, but at the same time, the ebook market began to explode. The agency she works for, Trident Media Group, opened an ebook division and we decided to publish it that way, instead.

 Tell us about your book (s)

What lengths would you go to in order to become a mother? Midwife Katie Cohen-Langer delivers babies for a living, but despite years of intensive infertility treatments and growing desperation, she can’t have her own child.

As families grow under Katie’s careful watch, her husband wants to move on to adoption. But Katie, who was adopted as a newborn, can’t bear the thought of never having a biological connection to anyone.

So she sets off on a journey to the other side of the country, along with her emotionally unstable sister, to find her biological relatives.

What she discovers about her roots –and about the parents who adopted her — rocks her world in a way she never could have expected. And even as she deals with what she finds, she still needs to figure out a way to become a mother.

What inspired you to write these books (or in this genre)?

I believe strongly in writing what you know. I have a great fascination with pregnancy, birth, and family building so I loved writing about a midwife delivering babies. I went through infertility treatment to have my two children; it felt natural to write about that aspect of the story, too.

Tell us why we should love or hate your main character?

You should love her!  She is a strong, independent woman going through the roughest time in her life.

Do(es) your book(s) have a soundtrack?

Um, no. 🙂

*****

Thanks so much Judy for spending some time with us! You can keep up with Judy on her website and blog! And you can find her books at anywhere you can purchase an ebook!

Blog Highlight: Night Writer

Here we have a mom and a lover of vampires Ms Kristin King! Blogging out about everything indie and being a Mom to her boys!

A wee bit about Madam Kristin;

“Kristin King first saw a vampire in a coffee table book of Hollywood monsters and has been hooked on paranormal creatures ever since. Inspired by her husband, adored by her golden lab, embraced by Jesus, and well-grounded by her four sons, Kristin can be found on Facebook (KristinKingAuthor), Twitter, and Pinterest where she enjoys hearing from readers, writers and other publishing professionals. Kristin’s home is wherever the army stations her husband, fellow author Ryan King (http://www.amazon.com/Ryan-King/), and her roots are in Kentucky.

Current projects include the Begotten Bloods Series, an untitled zombie romance, and an untitled dystopian adventure.”

You can find Kristins blog here —–>https://kristinkingauthor.wordpress.com