Author Spotlight – Kevin James Breaux

Kevin James Breaux is a PRG member

 

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Welcome!

Please introduce yourself.

My name is Kevin James Breaux and I am an award-winning author and artist.

 

1. When did you start writing?

Honestly, I started writing in middle school. My best friend had this weird summer job that he was at like 6 days a week from 8am to 8pm. I know, where were the child labor laws??? So I was bored and started writing stories.

I started trying to write books in college and then in 2007/2008, I sold my first short story which allowed me to officially join the Horror Writers of America. So, professionally ten years.

 

2. What motivates you to write?

I need a proper outlet for my creativity. I went to art school. I can draw, paint, sculpt, and take a damn fine photo…but nothing allows me to truly reach my creative heights like writing does. And I get super inspired by Television and Movies. Good ones…

 

3. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre?

I am a multi-genre author. I write, mostly, in Fantasy and Horror and those subgenres like Dark Fantasy, Epic Fantasy and Urban Fantasy. I always have elements of Romance in my works. And sometimes they can edge toward erotic. One of my current books, THE LIFEBLOOD OF ILL-FATED WOMEN is a Viking Age Dark Fantasy with elements of Romance and Horror. It is a Norse Mythology Action-Adventure with Historical Fiction. See what I mean?

I choose these genres because they are the genres I enjoy seeing what other artists and authors are creating in. I have always loved fantasy art and role-playing games and video games. Naturally, I went to those directions first. They say “write what you know”. I think I am well-versed in those fantasy and urban fantasy worlds from all the RPG books I have read growing up.

 

4. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?

I have been published in print, in ebooks, and on the web. I have been published by small press, traditional press, and independently. I really want to land a series at a big publisher like TOR or PYR or DAW. I’d love to see one of my books made into a movie. But then I’d REALLY want to cast it myself. (no Tom Cruise whammies!)
Oh, and someday I would like to write some comics or a graphic novel. (IDW and Dark Horse Comics, I think you hear me knocking…)

 

5. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

Nope. Never.

 

6. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

Really look at the publishing world and business how it is NOW. Not how it was years ago with the first Harry Potter or Twilight books. Not how it was with 50 Shades… Look now. Find some authors who are at the mid-range and ask them how hard they work and what kind of living they make. People still have a misgivings about writing making you rich and famous. It doesn’t. It’s a labor of love. So you really need to love it to want to invest the 60+ hours a week to do it. And I’d suggest getting a book written, edited a dozen times, and published…before setting up author pages on social media. There really is no need to rush that.

 

7. Please, tell us about your work.

 

Well, I have two series out right now. Here is some information on the first books in both of those series.

You can find them, and more, on my author listing at Amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/Kevin-James-Breaux/e/B0036L79FO

www.kevinbreaux.com

 

 

ONE SMOKING HOT FAIRY TAIL – Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance/Action-Adventure
www.onesmokinghotfairytail.com

This is book one in a series. Book two comes out this month.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29854598-one-smoking-hot-fairy-tail

Buyer’s link: http://a.co/7tunMB3

America’s population is slowly dying due to an epidemic, and Alexander, an ancient, immortal shaman, has medicine that can heal people. It has one small side effect—Alexander’s able to control the minds of anyone taking the drug, nicknamed “dust.”

Alexander plans to take over the country once dust is released to the general public, crushing anyone who stands in the way. He needs just a little bit more of a certain magical ingredient to make the medication work properly: fairy wings.

An intelligent, stunning fairy, Sabrina was also America’s sweetheart—until a video of a crime she was involved in surfaces, nearly destroying her. A year later, she’s finally ready to step back into the spotlight. Together with her bodyguard, Mira, a water spirit in human form, Sabrina’s prepared to start over.

Things are starting to look up until she meets Alexander in a club and goes from social outcast to tortured captive in the blink of an eye. Will she be able to escape the evil shaman and his mind-controlled slaves in time to save herself and everyone she cares about?

Sabrina, a lovely fairy has it all: fame, fortune, and beauty—until her boyfriend Cade, a rebel vampire, films their involvement in a crime as well as the passionate lovemaking that follows.

But Cade loses his camera and the video is posted online, ruining Sabrina’s life. After a year of nursing her wounds, she resurfaces only to find herself hunted for her wings.

The lives of all unearthly beings are at stake—fairies, windigos, mummies, and elemental spirits, caught up in a frightening flood of events that threaten their discovery. Sabrina and Moselle, a sex-starved mummy and the daughter of a wealthy businessman, find themselves in the middle of the conflict, forced to take drastic action to protect their identities and lives.

In trying to save themselves can they also prevent the United States from falling into the hands of an evil mind with horrible intentions?

 

Book Two in the series:

Buyer’s link

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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THE LIFEBLOOD OF ILL-FATED WOMEN – Dark Fantasy/Horror/Thriller/Romance
www.lbifw.com

Book one in a series. Book two comes out in 2018.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1995218578

Buyer’s link: http://a.co/giFvEPd

Astrid the White isn’t an average princess. She has always stayed by the side of her father, King Kol, and learned warfare and weaponry from the best Vikings in the land. When she awakens in the city of Birka and hears the sounds of war, she rushes proudly into the fray. She is more than capable of taking down any enemy wishing to disturb the peace.

This enemy, however, isn’t what she expected. Before Astrid even gets outside the walls, a golden light knocks her out.

She comes to in the snow, in full battle armor. Astrid first suspects that this is a challenge from her father—or even the gods themselves. By acting correctly, she can gain the favor of Odin, the Allfather.

Astrid wants to complete the test, but it becomes more and more difficult as she explores this new part of the world and encounters both monsters and monstrous men. As creatures from the darkest legends reveal themselves, Astrid will discover that her journey isn’t about acting correctly or passing Odin’s test. It’s about pure survival. Before she can even think about finding Birka, she will have to defend herself against the demons of this new world.

For Astrid, there is no greater honor than dying as a true Viking warrior and ascending to Valhalla. She anticipates it in every battle and is always eager for the next fight. When she hears the sounds of war outside her father’s stronghold of Birka, she answers the call. But a golden light envelops her, and she is suddenly gone.

If that light had taken her to Valhalla, she would have been at peace.

Instead, this golden light dumps her into a snowy, awful, godforsaken land. Astrid has no idea where she is or how she got here. She begins to suspect that she is in Hel, the underworld of Norse mythology. As Astrid searches for her home and family, a farmer, Warren, comes to her aid. Astrid doesn’t trust him at first, but she will have to rely on Warren and other companions when her destiny reveals itself.

 

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!

 

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Featured Author – Interview – The return of Renee Scattergood

Welcome back!

You were a guest on ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest’ before, where we learned about writing in your life and your projects.

Let’s see what you can tell us today:

 

1. Are you still writing in the same genre as you did before, and if not, why did you switch – or would you ever think to change genres?

Yes, I am, but I’m dabbling more with other speculative fiction genres as well. All dark, of course. I think my stories will always have that element of darkness to them.

 

2. Please, tell us a little about your writing process.

All my stories begin with a character. Most of the time it’s the main character, but with Shadow Stalker, Kado was the first character I created and the world and everything else was built around him even though he wasn’t the main character. Once I have a character in mind, I just place them in situations in my mind and I let the world and everything else come together in my imagination around that character.

Once it’s cemented in my mind, I begin writing down the ideas in no particular order. From there, I plan basic details about other characters, the plot and the world. I don’t go into too much detail because I like to let most of the details develop with the story. From there I create a simple world map and timeline so I get everything in order and other minute details (such as distance and direction) right.

Then I start creating the scenes, write an outline from that and begin writing. The actual writing has many step, and I suppose you can say some of those steps would count as editing, but for me it’s still writing. My first draft is nothing more than a skeleton. It reads more like screenplay. When the first draft is finished, I go back and fill in details. That’s where I change the telling to showing and bring the story to life.

3. What is important to know for young, new authors and writers?

No matter what, don’t ever give up. Even when it seems hopeless, just keep writing. No one who has ever kept at it has ever failed. It might take years, but eventually you’ll get there.

 

4. Your experience in the writing world, do you think it has already taken you where you wanted to go?

I’m still in the middle of my journey. Honestly, it’s a journey I hope never ends. When I reach one goal, I’ll set another so I always have something to strive for. Right now, I’m aiming to reach a point where my income from book sales is enough to support my family. From there… who knows?

 

5. In your opinion, are you a writer or an author – and what is the difference for you?

I’m both. A writer is someone who writes. It’s that simple. An author is someone who has written and published a story, essay, article, etc. So, really, even someone who has a blog is an author. I’ve always had a hard time understanding why people complicate those terms.

 

6. Please, tell us about your projects again. Was there progress since the last interview or are there even completely new projects?

Well, my Shadow Stalker serial is ending soon. The last episode will be released in September and the Bundle will be released in November. I’ve begun work on my next serial, which will be about the origin of the shadow stalkers. The episodes in that one will be shorter (about 3k to 4k words), but I’ll be releasing a new one every two weeks. Each season will have 22 episodes and at the end of each year, I’ll release a bundle of all the episodes from that season.

I’m also publishing short stories more regularly now and working on my first novel series.

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!

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Full Title: Shadow Stalker: Awakened (Episode 20)

Release Date: 21 June 2017

Description:

Appolia is once again under siege. Auren returns to find the Galvadi are using extremely inhumane tactics to demoralise the Coalition. She needs to help the Coalition before everything is lost. If Auren can use her newfound abilities to find the Galvadi’s greatest weakness, they might stand a chance in bringing the Galvadi down once and for all.

 

Buy links:

http://reneescattergood.com/books/shadow-stalker-awakened-episode-20/

 

For those who have not read the serial: Get Shadow Stalker Part 1 (Episode 1 – 6) and Shadow Stalker Part 2 (Episodes 7 – 12) Free: http://reneescattergood.com/get-my-free-books/

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Bio:

Renee Scattergood lives in Australia with her husband, Nathan, and daughter, Taiya. She has always been a fan of fantasy and was inspired to become a story-teller by George Lucas, but didn’t start considering writing down her stories until she reached her late twenties. Now she enjoys writing dark fantasy and paranormal thrillers.

She is currently publishing her monthly Shadow Stalker serial, and she has published a prequel novella to the series called, Demon Hunt. She is also working on a new series of novels, A God’s Deception.

Aside from writing, she loves reading (fantasy, of course), watching movies with her family, and doing crafts and science experiments with her daughter. Visit her site for more information and a free copy of Shadow Stalker Part 1 (Episodes 1 – 6): http://reneescattergood.com

 

Contact URLs:

Website/Blog: http://reneescattergood.com/
Renee’s Author Spotlight: http://reneesauthorspotlight.blogspot.com.au/
Renee’s Shadow Stalkers: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/16rTPYCAwDq5cpyxHfphx0-x6ka9C7DWoJsdgYa2CyAw/viewform
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00NTJY1W2
Smashwords Author Page: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/rscatts
BookBub Author Page: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/renee-scattergood
Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8507658.Renee_Scattergood
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/reneescatts
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ReneeScatts
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/100671337443224225702/posts

Newsletter:

Get a Free Book: http://www.subscribepage.com/ReneeWrites

 

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Excerpt #1:

Makari stirred the contents of the pot that held our evening meal. “Now is probably not the best time for exploring.”

“No. I know. I was just thinking that maybe one of these tunnels might lead to the camp.”

“They might, but we have no idea which ones, and we’re more likely to get lost.”

I was only partially listening to them. One of the tunnels seemed to stand out more than the others. It seemed brighter even though I knew it couldn’t have been. And voices whispered in my mind as if encouraging me to go there. “I can find the way, but it will take several hours of hiking.”

“You’ve been in these mountains?” Makari asked.

“Well, Kado and I did come up here a few times, but not this mountain specifically. We went further north.” I sighed. Now was just as good a time as any to tell him. “My powers have returned. I drank the water from the Black Lake and after that something happened. I can access the shadow world again, but it’s different now. Everything feels different.”

“Different how?”

I shook my head. “I can’t explain it.”

 

 

Excerpt #2:

“You’re sure you know what you’re doing?” Jade asked, nervously.

This had been her idea and now that she realized how narrow and dark the tunnels were, she didn’t feel as confident.

“Yes. I’m absolutely sure.”

It wasn’t long before we came to the first fork. I paused to examine both tunnels. Even with the torch light, one tunnel stood out brighter than the other. The voices seemed louder now too as I headed down the left tunnel. I was on the right path. Every time we came to a fork, it was the same.

“We seem to be going down. You’re positive this is the way?” Makari asked.

“Yes.” I closed my eyes a moment and I could see the tunnel laid out before me in my mind. “It starts going up again a short distance from here, but it’s going to be a pretty steep incline.”

After another twenty minutes of walking, I paused at the bottom of the incline.

Makari seemed stunned. “How are you doing this?”

“I have no idea. It’s as though something is guiding me.”

“I hope it’s something that wants to help and not something that wants to get us lost or killed,” Jade said.

 

Excerpt #3:

I didn’t have time to reflect on what just happened. Makari was still in danger. I moved closer to him, right on the edge of the veil. I felt the tingling of the beryllonium’s effects. Strangely, I suddenly felt stronger. I needed to get Makari back into the shadow world before that trooper came to his senses and returned. If I could wrap myself in the veil, maybe I could do the same for him.

In my mind, I imagined the veil like a blanket. I pushed it out and manipulated it so that it surrounded Makari.

He sat up, looking around. Are you doing this, Auren?

Yes, I sent back.

When he regained some of his strength he shifted and joined me in the shadow world. We returned to the cavern.

“What did you do? How did you do that?” Makari asked.

“I’m not sure. Somehow, I was able to affect the trooper’s thoughts. I convinced him that you weren’t a threat and he left. Then I wrapped you in the veil to nullify the beryllonium’s effects.”

Makari shook his head slowly then gazed at me. “Could you do that again?”

Author Spotlight – Kimberly Forrest

Kimberly Forrest is a PRG member

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Welcome! 

Please introduce yourself. 

My name is Kimberly Forrest and I am an independently published author of paranormal romance.

 

  1. When did you start writing?

I started writing in my early teens; mostly short stories that I would occasionally share with my best friends.  Later, I started writing fan-fiction for shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Charmed.  I wrote my first full length novel with intention to publish in 2002.  It was a historical romance that I sent out to every publishing house I could find that accepted the genre and received a stack of rejection letters in return. My work wasn’t “competitive enough” or “not the right fit”… So I set it aside and moved on with my life.  When self-publishing became a thing, I decided to go ahead and try it.  I published the novel, but because of my busy schedule, I really didn’t have the time, or frankly, the knowledge to properly promote or market the book, so it just sat there.  Which brings us to 2016… I had a great idea for a book and my muse wouldn’t leave me alone.  I was determined to write it, publish it, and this time, DO something to promote it.  I just released the third book in the series and while my sales numbers aren’t huge, I’m not going to give up.  I try different things, I learn a little more, I keep writing.

 

  1. What motivates you to write?

My muse is a nag… seriously, she won’t let me sleep.  I have to write. 

 

  1. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre?

Currently I write paranormal romance.  I have always been fascinated with the genre – books, movies, television shows.  I like a dependable hero, a strong (yet still sweet) heroine, and a happily ever after within the shadows of a secret world. 

 

  1. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?

My current goal is for my writing to find its target audience.  I want my books in the hands of people who will love reading my work as much as I love writing it.

As for my dream… Well, Best Seller List, of course 🙂 

 

  1. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

After I wrote my historical romance and received so many rejections… well, that kind of killed my creative energy.  I dwelled on it – I was fixating.  I needed to step away.  I stepped away for way too long.  Currently, if I get blocked, I still step away, but with a plan – I take a weekend off to read a good book (or two), watch movies on Netflix, clear my head and then I plant myself back in front of my computer come Monday morning even if it’s just to read through what I’ve already written and make changes. 

 

  1. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

My advice would be to keep writing.  When you’re not writing, be thinking about what you might write the next day.  Pay attention to constructive criticism only.  Do Not Listen to negative feedback.  Never change your voice to please that one person.  Be happy with what you are doing and do it for that reason only – it’s the only reason that matters. 

 

  1. Please, tell us about your work.

I just released the third book in the Malsum Pass series, entitled For Her, on Amazon.  Each book within the series is a standalone paranormal romance but I feel they are best enjoyed if they are read in order.  The series revolves around a shifter town hidden away in the mountains of Vermont… A wolf pack in desperate need of females, a cranky bear shifter that wants to be left alone, and a couple of runaway felines looking for a fresh start.  I love these books.  I love these characters.  I have so many plans for them and I know this series will continue. 

 

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!

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Connect with Kimberly:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/KimberlyForrestAuthor/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

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Kimberly’s books:
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Malsum Pass http://a.co/bQxfw9L    Until You http://a.co/1ktFlqK             For Her  http://a.co/2UBYwiu

Author Spotlight – Wendy Unsworth

Welcome! 

Please introduce yourself. 

Hello and thank you so much for inviting me here today.

My name is Wendy Unsworth. I am originally from Lincolnshire in the north east of England but I haven’t lived there since my twenties. A lifelong love and curiosity about travel has taken me and my family to many places and for thirteen years we lived in Central and East  Africa. We returned to England and spent some years in Cornwall and made our home in a cottage that was built in 1750. There are good and bad points in living in such an old property, but mostly good! These days I spend my time between Scotland  and the wilds of Portugal as we have family in both of those countries.

 

  1. When did you start writing?

Reading interviews such as these, it’s interesting to note that most authors tend to say that they have dabbled with writing  for as long as they can remember and I’m no different. I always kept diaries and journals as a child and in my early teens wrote a story several notebooks long about a man accused of robbery in eighteenth century  England. He’s forced to flee the country to avoid the hangman’s noose and has several adventures before proving his innocence.

I don’t know what finally happened to those notebooks but suffice to say the historical accuracy was based on old films about pirates and highwaymen and therefore wildly inaccurate! I do so love a well crafted and well researched historical book and admire those who research and capture a particular period so well that they can transport their readers. Mine was not in any way like that,  but it was good writing practice!

 

  1. What motivates you to write?

Oh! Tricky. I suppose it’s creativity that needs to find some kind of form. I love to knit and sew, make home furnishings and create lovely and dramatic gardens. Writing books is at the heart of that love, creating with words. The best part of writing though is that you can actually do it in your head, while you’re washing up or driving or knitting or sewing – creative multi-tasking!

 

  1. What genre do you write in and what made you choose this particular genre?

I choose to write in the genres I most love to read, for my own pleasure and for reading aloud to children.

The stories I write are about testing my characters, about what they can come up with when the chips are down. They’re about murder and family secrets, good and bad people. They probably cross some lines between murder mystery and psychological thriller and although I know genres are supposed to be a little more fixed than that, my characters don’t seem to be able to comply.

As a complete change, I also have a series of chapter books for children which are both magical and mad cap. 

 

  1. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?

My goal is my next book. My W.I.P. is always my big dream and I can’t wait to finish it. As far as longer term dreams, to write books that can give real pleasure. I hope that others can find genuine enjoyment in the stories I tell. To have someone say, Wow! That is such a good story, I really connected with it; that means a lot.

 

  1. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

Oh every day! Seriously though, my daily writing sessions seem to stop-start, that is, I find flow and then get stuck, find it again for a while and then get stuck again. It’s just that way with me.

Since discovering Scrivener that problem has been a little easier to overcome. I split my latest project (manuscript) into documents on a cork board.  For my WIP at the moment, Dirty Work, the action is split into days (Day one, Day Two…) and those days are split into action and POV changes.

When I get stuck I try to unstick myself but if some point is really holding me back I just flip to another document and pick up the action elsewhere in the book. It means I can give myself a break from the sticking point and also that I am still getting some words on the page which is good for morale. 

 

  1. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

I would say, keep your chin up!

Do not listen to naysayers who quote impossible odds at you. If you want to write, write.

If you want to sell the books you write, inform yourself. Read the many blog posts and articles out there; authors are generous in sharing what does and does not work for them.

As far as social media is concerned be okay with the fact that you can’t do everything.

Love books and read them. 

 

  1. Please, tell us about your work.

Thank you. I would love to tell you a little bit about my work so far.

My Berriwood books are a series based around the fictional community of Berriwood. It’s a small Cornish village where people tend to know one another and nothing much ever happens. It’s ordinary people living ordinary lives, until…

There is always an until’!

 

Here they are with a little bit of blurb about each:

 

The Palaver Tree. (Book 1)

 

Gabriel Cole is a brilliant man. He’s clever; a tireless campaigner for his own charitable foundation. He’s good looking and charming and he takes care of everyone he meets. Ask anyone.

Ask Ellie who travels all the way to Africa to work for him.

Ask Tiffany who plans to marry him.

Ask Promise who loves him or Diane who admires him.

But don’t ask Pax… she knows something.

 

From a quaint Cornish village to the dust and heat of Africa. If good people would talk to one another, the truth could be told.

 

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Beneathwood  (Book 2)

This time the action stays close to home:-

 

Beryl Carroll has lived in the Cornish village of Berriwood for so long that it’s easy to forget she wasn’t born there.

It’s easy… and it’s better.

She fled to the village, a young girl, in search of Gordon, her lost love and in an attempt to escape her sister and her mother and the terrible thing they had all done.

She should have told Gordon what happened, he had a right to know. But what if he couldn’t forgive her? What if he sent her away?

Time has healed, it has banished the past to a few, secret memories but when the couple move into to Beneathwood, the rambling old house on the edge of the village, strange things begin to happen and Beryl has the feeling that the truth is back, welcome or not..

 

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Dirty Work (Book 3)

 

Appearances can be deceptive.

Take the Duke twins. Pete lost his IT job almost two years ago; he is best known in his native village of Berriwood for his tendency to be found propped up against a bar somewhere… or under it. It has been a tough time for Caroline, Pete’s wife,  but at last, it seems he is turning things around.

Nathan is the success story of the family, the darling of the local amateur dramatic society who gave it all up for his high flying directorship based in London. But his wife, Marcie hates the lonely days while he works  away  and forgetting her birthday is the last straw.

 

When Nathan invites Caroline and Pete to a surprise birthday dinner for Marcie, to make amends, Caroline has her reservations. She knows  if anyone is going to spoil the party it would be Pete; he has done it plenty of times before.  What she doesn’t  anticipate is that her husband  won’t even be there and that one of the four will very soon be dead…

 

This is my newest work in the series, available on Amazon for pre-order from May 17th 2017 and due to be published on June 16th 2017. 

 

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!

 

I am so grateful to have been invited to your lovely blog. Thank you for having me

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Connect with Wendy:

 

Website – http://wendyunsworth.wordpress.com

Twitter – https://twitter.com/WendyUnsworth

Facebook – www.facebook.com/WendyUnsworthAuthor

 

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Wendy’s Books:

 

The Palaver Tree.   http://getBook.at/Palaver

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beneathwood.       http://getBook.at/Beneathwood

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dirty work:             AVAILABLE ON PRE-ORDER MAY 15 2017!!

 

Author Spotlight – Bob Van Laerhoven

Welcome!

 

Please introduce yourself.

I am a Belgian/Flemish professional author – and have been for 23 years – who has published more than 35 books in Holland and in Belgium, and who has been translated in English, French, Italian, and Russian. I specialize in the cross-over between literature and the suspense novel. With “Baudelaire’s Revenge,” (Pegasus Books) I won the Hercule Poirot Prize for best suspense novel of the year in the LowLands in 2007 and the USA Best Book Award 2014 in the category mystery/suspense. My short story collection “Dangerous Obsessions” was voted “best short story collection of 2015” by the San Diego Book Review.

 

  1. When did you start writing?

I published my first book in 1971, at the tender age of eighteen. In retrospect, I realize that it was way too early, but, bubbling with youthful bravado, I took the first chance I got. Because I was so young, reviewers were lenient with me, and the novel became a modest success in Belgium. I plunged head-on in writing and tried to accomplish an oeuvre with a consistent theme: the bottomless pit of aggression in humans, and the consequences of war. Also in real life, I did what I could to understand the shadows in the human soul. From 1990 to 2003, I visited, as a travel writer, conflict zones all over the world (Somalia, Bosnia, Liberia, Iraq, Iran, Burma(Myanmar),Burundi, Sudan, and so on). I was in the Bosnian town of Tuzla when the first survivors of the mass-murder in the Muslim-enclave of Srebrenica  arrived, and the sight of these wretched, exhausted, malnourished, and hopeless people made a lasting impact on me. I wrote a book about the massacre – more than 7000 Muslims killed – that the Serbian General Mladic’s troops inflicted upon the local population: “Srebrenica. A Testimony Of Mass Murder.”

 

 

 

  1. What motivates you to write?

Up till now, my motivation was the desire to understand who we are, and why we are such strange creatures, capable to create so much beauty, but also to commit such horrendous acts.  I would have liked to write about the light in our soul, but Fate chose me to pursue the nature of darkness. I consoled myself with the fact that there is no light without darkness. Still, after more than 35 books, traditionally published, I feel that I have reached a cross-road. I’m currently working on “The Feuerhand Files,” a novel set in Berlin in 1921, and I feel in the marrow of my bones that it will be my last cross-over novel between literature and the suspense genre. It will be my final attempt to dissect the nature of our innate violence.

 

 

  1. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre?

I write in the cross-over genre between literature and the suspense novels. In other words: I write literature with a certain degree of suspense. I didn’t choose that particular genre. It chose me. My first ten novels in Flanders and Holland were literary, but even then reviewers noticed a tendency to incorporate “thriller-effects” in them. When I was 42, I felt that my literary pen had become blunt, and, in order to satisfy my ongoing need to write, I decided to write a hard-boiled thriller series. The series, with the South-African/Flemish half-breed commissioner Peter Declerq and the Brussels inspector Samantha “Sammy” Duchène, started as a pure thriller series, but, along the way, the old elements of style and elegance that I tried to portray in my literary work, sneaked also in this “new direction.” Gradually, the Declerq-Duchène series evolved again in the direction of literature, but it still retained a healthy dose of suspense via a thrilling plot and a polished style. Afterwards came the even more literary mystery-novels like “Baudelaire’s Revenge,” and “Return to Hiroshima, “Black Water,” “The Woman Who Loved Dante,” “Alejandro’s Lie,” “The Shadow Of The Mole,”etc…

 

  1. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?

Coming from a working class family, I dreamed of becoming a famous writer. I’m glad that, rather soon in my, eh, “career,” I understood that a famous writer isn’t necessarily a good writer. So, I changed my goal and wanted to become the best writer that I can be. Instead of trying to be better than other authors, I tried to be the best “me.” I’m still trying, and I still find it a goal very much worth fighting for. I should like to end my writing years with my memoires, having lived a rather unusual life for a novelist.  I don’t know if I have the skills to do that, but I do know that the string of cross-over novels, wherein the individual is set against societies in uproar and unrest, has now dried up in me. When “The Firehand Files” is finished, I’ll start making notes for my memoires. It may take years, it may take forever, Fate will have its will.

 

  1. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

No, I never experienced a complete writer’s block, but some books were harder to write than others, and sometimes I stopped after hundred, or more, pages, feeling that the soul of the novel just wasn’t there. But even then, I “recycled” some of the chapters of these unfinished novels to short stories that did well over here, and even international. For instance, I published the short story “Checkmate in Chimbote” in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, and that was originally a part of an unfinished novel…

 

  1. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

Write write write…Edit edit edit….Edit again Edit again Edit again. Don’t sell your soul for profit; try to find it in your themes, your style, and your passion.

 

  1. Please, tell us about your work.

I haven’t fulfilled my dreams (yet), and, like every artist, I suppose, I had hoped for more and better. But I covered a long distance from the working class boy of eighteen without a formal education to the author I have become, who still tries to hone his craft, and who had some nice successes along the way. Nearing 64, I look back more often than I used to, and when I count my successes and my failures, I realize that I have been a lucky man. Now comes the time to end all these years of writing in beauty, in acceptance, and with grace….

 

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!

________________________________________________________________________

Contact Bob:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=NMz1poUVmUw 

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/baudelaires-revenge-bob-van-laerhoven/1116879856?ean=9781605987002 

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/baudelaires-revenge-bob-van-laerhoven/1116879856?ean=9781605985893 (Nook)

https://niume.com/profile/45450#!/posts (Niume)

https://www.facebook.com/bob.vanlaerhoven (FB)

http://www.thebingbing.com/bobvanlaerhoven  (BingBing) 

https://twitter.com/bobvanlaerhoven  (Twitter)

________________________________________________________________________

Some Bob’s Books:

https://www.amazon.com/Baudelaires-Revenge-Bob-Van-Laerhoven/dp/160598700X/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1389641492&sr=1-1

 

https://www.amazon.com/Baudelaires-Revenge-%D0%9C%D0%B5%D1%81%D1%82%D1%8C-%D0%91%D0%BE%D0%B4%D0%BB%D0%B5%D1%80%D0%B0-Russian/dp/1681143089/ref=sr_1_cc_2?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1489524243&sr=1-2-catcorr&keywords=Bob+Van+Laerhoven

https://www.amazon.com/Dangerous-Obsessions-Bob-Van-Laerhoven-ebook/dp/B00VU96036  (Kindle edition)

 

https://www.amazon.com/Dangerous-Obsessions-Bob-Van-Laerhoven/dp/168114087X/ref=sr_1_cc_3?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1489524243&sr=1-3-catcorr&keywords=Bob+Van+Laerhoven (paperback)

Author Spotlight – Hugh Roberts

img_4261Welcome!

 

Please introduce yourself.

Hello. My name is Hugh W. Roberts. I live in the city of Swansea, in South Wales, in the United Kingdom.

 

  1. When did you start writing?

Around the age of 12 although, for as long as I can remember. I’ve always wanted to write. Being dyslexic stopped me from writing for many years. Back then, it was a condition not recognised, so there was little if any help for those who were dyslexic. 

 

  1. What motivates you to write?

Life! I love to people watch. New characters are born in my head and a new short story developes. Writing prompts/challenges also motivate me to write. I love a challenge, although some have beaten me in producing a short story. As an early bird, rather than a night owl, I do most of my writing in the mornings.  

 

  1. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre?

As a writer of short stories, I write in many genres but, if I had to choose a favourite, Science fiction would be the genre I enjoy writing the most. I particularly enjoy time-travel. In fact, it fascinates me and I’d love to have the ability to time travel. Time Traveller would be my ideal occupation (after author, of course). 

 

  1. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?

I fulfilled my dream of becoming a publish author when I published my first book, Glimpses, in December 2016. My next goal is to write and publish the next volume of short stories for Glimpses. I’m hoping to publish them in December 2017. My biggest dream is to now have one (or more) of my short stories made into a movie or T.V. show. 

 

  1. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

Writer’s block has never affected me. I always seem to be full of ideas. In times when the idea cupboard is running low, I’ll turn to writing prompts/challenges. Looking at photographs also helps get my creative writing juices flowing. 

 

  1. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

Believe in yourself and your writing. We all get self-doubt, but never let it, or anybody, stop you from writing. If you are a blogger, then ensure you connect with other writers and authors by reading and commenting on their blogs. I’ve built up many great online friendships through blogging. Many bloggers offer free help and advice on writing and publishing books, so get on out there and make some friends in the writing and blogging world. If you don’t have a blog, but want to write and publish a book, start writing a blog straight away. 

 

  1. Please, tell us about your work.

I started blogging in February 2014. I wrote and published many of my short stories on my blog, but I also use the blog to write about everyday life, music, bloggings tips, and for my photography. I always wanted to be a storyteller and blogging gave me the chance to write and publish my work for the outside world. Most of my short stories come with twists and turns that many readers never guess are coming. My current book, Glimpses, contains short stories covering the genres of science fiction, LGBT, drama, supernatural, horror, thriller, comedy and fantasy. Hopefully there is something for everyone in the book.

  

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!


Connect with Hugh Roberts:

 

Blog

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Pinterest

Goodreads

Google+ 

LinkedIn

 


Hugh Roberts’ book:

glimpses-kdp-cover

 

http://hyperurl.co/42ou22

Author Spotlight – Mackenzie Flohr

authorphotoWelcome!

 

Please introduce yourself. 

Thank you for the invitation! I’m happy to be here. My name is Mackenzie Flohr and I am a fantasy author through BHC Press.

 

  1. When did you start writing? 

I have always dreamed of writing a book and being an author, but seeing it actually get published? That part I wasn’t sure would ever happen. It’s one thing to start a book, but it’s another thing to actually finish it!

My parents nurtured a love for the creative arts from a very young age. From the time I could hold a pencil, I was already creating pictorial interpretations of classic stories, and by the age of nine, a childhood friend and I were authors and reviewers of our own picture books.

 

  1. What motivates you to write? 

What motivates me is being told I won’t succeed. I know that sounds odd, but I’ll elaborate. Back in 2006, I was at the airport in Orlando waiting for the plane to arrive to take my Dad and I back to Cleveland, OH. I was working on a scene, which happens in a later book in the series. There was a young girl who looked about my age with her Dad sitting across from us. They asked what I was writing about, so I mentioned a little bit about it. Afterward, my Dad smiled and told them that I was writing a fantasy series, and that I would never finish it. I was shocked, embarrassed and hurt by the outburst. Even as I am recalling that moment now, it still angers me! But that’s where he went wrong. Not only did I write it, not only did I finish it, I found a company to PUBLISH it!

 

  1. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre? 

Fantasy. I admit I have a strong fascination, or maybe even obsession, with swords and sword fighting. I also admire the elaborate fashion from that time. And of course, who doesn’t like a wee bit of magic?

 

  1. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you? 

I really hope someday The Rite of Wands will become popular enough to either inspire a movie trilogy or a television series by the BBC. In particular, I’d like to see Matt Smith in the role of Mierta McKinnon and David Tennant in the role of Orlynd O’Brien.

 

  1. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it? 

As author Rachel Caine said during a writing panel at Wizard World Chicago in 2015, there is no such thing as writer’s block. There is nothing preventing you from writing, YOU are preventing yourself from writing by allowing this ‘block’ become an excuse.

That being said, I usually look for what inspires me to help rejuvenate my muse. When I writing the first book of The Rite of Wands, for example, I would often play the video game Bloodborne because my series kind of has a bit of that same hopeless atmosphere minus the beasts. I would also watch something with actor Matt Smith in it because my MC was written for him. That particular habit has become so effective that people often joke and say Matt Smith IS my muse.

 

  1. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors? 

Writing is A LOT harder than it looks. If someone tells you that writing is easy, don’t believe them. It’s one thing to write a story, it’s another thing to actually finish it. There are so many people out there who falsely believe they will write the next bestseller on the first try. But don’t let that discourage you. Don’t give up, keep pressing on, and if someone tells you can’t do something, don’t believe it. As one of my dear friends has said, sometimes in order for something to happen, you have to give to the universe, and the universe in turn, gives back.

 

  1. Please, tell us about your work.  

The Rite of Wands is the first in a new YA fantasy series, coming out on March 10th in both paperback and eBook through BHC Press/Indigo. It will appeal to fans of The Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and even Doctor Who (specifically fans of the Eleventh Doctor).

 

Here’s a little teaser: 

One boy…one Rite… And a world of deadly secrets that could change the course of history—forever 

And so begins the tale of Mierta McKinnon. When a horrible fate reveals itself during his Rite of Wands ceremony, he must find a way to change not only his destiny but also the land of Iverna’s. 

Forbidden from revealing the future he foresees to anyone, he is granted a wand and his magical powers, but still must master the realm of magic in order to save himself and those he loves. 

But Mierta is not the only one with secrets…especially when it’s impossible to know who to trust.

 

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!


Keep in touch with Mackenzie Flohr:

 

Website: http://www.mackenzieflohr.com

WordPress: https://mackenzieflohrblog.wordpress.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MackenzieFlohrAuthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/mackenzieflohr

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16247559.Mackenzie_Flohr

 


Mackenzie Flohr’s publisher’s page and book:

 

bhc_press_final_blue_small_no_tm

 

 

 

 

riteofwandscoverPublisher’s Page:

http://www.bhcauthors.com/Author_Mackenzie_Flohr.html