[Blog Tour] Phantom Embrace by Dianne Duvall ~ Q&A + Review @DianneDuvall @AuthorsTaproom

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I’m so excited to share with you a new release coming from one of my favorite authors! Dianne’s Duvall’s Phantom Embrace will be available at eBook retailers everywhere on June 28th! This is an exciting and captivating novella set in the world of the Immortal Guardians and I can’t wait for you to read it!
review
I already knew how Phantom Embrace would end, since I read the other books in the Immortal Guardians series, but this novella makes the end of Night Unbound so much more bearable.
The relationship between Yuri and Cat was cute and heartbreaking and I kind of hope to hear from those two again in a later Immortal Guardians book, but I’m not sure if it will actual happen. Only time can tell. Make it happen, Dianne!

I can’t wait to read more of the immortal guardians and this world.

~ This novella can – at least in my opinion – be read as a standalone ~

Rating: 4 starsAbout the book

Phantom Embrace 
(Immortal Guardians #5.5)
by Dianne Duvall
ebook, 112 pages
ISBN 1420143530

Across dimensions . . . 

Born with the ability to see spirits, immortal Yuri Sokolov avoids making contact with them, because such has always yielded negative results…until lovely Cat Seddon begins haunting his home and his dreams. As a new threat rises against the Immortal Guardians, Yuri disregards all the rules so he can be with Cat, even though the consequences are substantial.

For centuries, Catherine Seddon has been alone. When her brother is forced to join the Immortal Guardians’ ranks, she haunts the primary home of the powerful warriors to keep an eye on him, and soon finds herself captivated by Yuri. The handsome Russian immortal swiftly banishes her loneliness as friendship grows between them and deepens into love.  But can two people who are unable to touch find a future together?

Previously published in On The Hunt

qandawithdianne

Dianne: Thank you, Emalie, for helping me celebrate the release of my Immortal Guardians novella PHANTOM EMBRACE. I’m so happy to be here at Bookgatherer.

It’s a pleasure having you here!! Now starting with the Q&A…

When did you get the idea to match Cat and Yuri?

Dianne: I have wanted to give Cat her own story ever since I wrote the first book in the series, DARKNESS DAWNS. But I didn’t find the right hero for her until I wrote the fifth book, NIGHT UNBOUND. After I finished that one, I knew Yuri was the perfect hero for her. And I really wanted Yuri to have his own HEA.

I’m quite sure I’m not the only one wondering, but now that Yuri and Cat have found their happily-ever-after will we be seeing them again?

Dianne: You definitely aren’t the only one wondering. Normally I don’t like saying much about future books, but so many have asked me that I’ll say . . . Yes, you’ll see Yuri and Cat again. I just won’t say when or where.

How did you feel when you hit the end of Phantom Embrace?

Dianne: I felt great. Cat’s long years of loneliness ended with her finally getting the HEA I’ve been wanting to give her. And Yuri found the love for which he has been waiting centuries. After all that happened in the last book, that was important to me.

Did you have a favorite song or even a playlist while writing Phantom Embrace that you would like to share with us?

Dianne: I admit to being partial to Disturbed’s Down With the Sickness, since the immortals and vampires in my series gain their superior speed, strength, and heightened senses from a rare symbiotic virus that infects them. But I generally prefer to write in quiet.

Who is your favorite character out of all of your books – yes, I’m aware that’s like picking your favorite child.

Dianne: That is such a hard question to answer! But if I absolutely have to choose a favorite, it’s Seth. Seth is the immensely powerful leader of the Immortal Guardians. He works so hard to provide the other immortals with a warm family environment, and sacrifices so much for them. And Seth has been with me for a very long time. I first created him years ago for A SORCERESS OF HIS OWN (the first book in The Gifted Ones series). His presence in that one (and that of Alyssa, the heroine) fired my imagination and inspired many of the what-ifs that led me to create my Immortal Guardians series. So without Seth, neither of my series would exist . . . which is also why I can’t wait to give him his own book.

 
 
Don’t miss a single Immortal Guardians tale!
Book 1, Darkness Dawnshttp://amzn.to/1GC0nmk
Book 2, Night Reignshttp://amzn.to/1GC0pKP
Book 3, Phantom Shadowshttp://amzn.to/1JnRqUE
Book 3.5, In Still Darknesshttp://amzn.to/1IhSDv9
Book 4, Darkness Rises http://amzn.to/1QTHqq7
Book 5, Night Unboundhttp://amzn.to/1SQdwRk
Book 5.5, Phantom Embracehttp://amzn.to/23p0HGm
Book 6, Shadows Strikehttp://amzn.to/23p143x
About the author

Dianne Duvall is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of the Immortal Guardians paranormal romance series and The Gifted Ones series. Her books have twice been nominated for the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award for Best Vampire Romance and are routinely deemed Top Picks by RT Book Reviews, The Romance Reviews, and/or Night Owl Reviews. Reviewers have called Dianne’s books “utterly addictive” (RT Book Reviews), “fast-paced and humorous” (Publishers Weekly), “extraordinary” (Long and Short Reviews), and “wonderfully imaginative” (The Romance Reviews).

Dianne loves all things creative. When she isn’t writing, Dianne is active in the independent film industry and has even appeared on-screen, crawling out of a moonlit grave and wielding a machete like some of the vampires she has created in her books.

For the latest news on upcoming releases, contests, and more, please visit http://www.DianneDuvall.com. You can also find Dianne online . . .

Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Tsū | YouTube | Pinterest | Goodreads | Google Plus

giveaway
Enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win the following….
1st Prize – $35 Amazon Gift Card
2nd Prize – $20 Amazon Gift Card
3rd Prize – Signed copies of Night Unbound and Shadows Strike+swag

Q&A with Rachel Van Dyken

imagerachel van dykenRachel Van Dyken is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestselling author of regency and contemporary romances. When she’s not writing you can find her drinking coffee at Starbucks and plotting her next book while watching The Bachelor.

She keeps her home in Idaho with her Husband, adorable son, and two snoring boxers! She loves to hear from readers!

q&awithrachelSince your latest release is a new book in the Eagle Elite series, Empire, I wanted to ask you: Which character of the Eagle Elite series is the hardest for you to write?

Rachel: Oh wow thats a good question! I think Phoenix was and still is the hardest to write, not because his character is difficult but because of the baggage he still has–his character is really complex and fascinating, as hard as it is to write him, its extremely fun. 

How did you came up with the idea of the Eagle Elite series?

Rachel: All of that goes to my husband 😉 It’s his fault. He was complaining about how I needed to write a suspense novel and then had told me a story about a mob boss that lived a few miles away from us and had been in hiding for like twenty years—basically nate is the reason I even had the story plotted out in the first place 😉 

Also on the note of the Eagle Elite – and I’m pretty sure you won’t answer this – but do you want to tell us the name of Phoenix’s child? 😉

Rachel: Haha, You guys will get more of that later 😉

What was the every first book you ever wrote (published or not published)? 

Rachel: Every Girl Does It was the very first book I actually had published, before that I wrote a book about angels that was HORRIBLE lol but its how I got my feet wet.

Any advice/tips for newbies?

Rachel: Don’t stop writing. I know it sounds lame, but so many people start out with one book and have this intense desire for it to do amazing (dont we all?) and yet they put all their eggs in one basket or give up if the book doesn’t take off. If writing really is your passion keep DOING it and keep releasing books. Don’t give up. 

I’m currently reading The Consequences Of Revenge and I need to ask: How did you come up with Max? Do you have an inspiration for him in your life or how did he come to be?

Rachel: Max is a hybrid combo of Schmidt from New Girl and Barney from How I met your mother! Haha, two of my favorite shows inspired his character. 

When does your next book come out? Can you tell us a bit about it?

Rachel: My next release is The Matchmakers Replacement–I’m so excited for this book release I can barely stand it! 🙂 There is a huge surprise that will release along with this book 😉 It’s the story of Lex and Gabi, Lex is co-owner of this dating app and company that helps girls find their perfect match. They hate each other and they’ve always been off limits–until now. 

Now some quick questions 😉

TV series or movie?

Rachel: TV Series (Game of Thrones)

Coffee or tea?

Rachel: Coffee, unless I’m in the UK and then tea (they know how to do tea right in the UK)

Chocolate or chips?

Rachel: Chocolate

ebook or physical copy?

Rachel: BOTH 🙂 

Coke or Pepsi?

Rachel: Coke zero! 🙂 

Thanks for being here, Rachel!!!! 🙂

Interview with Helena Hunting, author of Forever Pucked

1. Tell us something about your latest book. Is it your debut? What genre does it belong to? When does it release?

Forever Pucked is the 4th book in The Pucked Series. It’s a return to Alex and Violet—the couple who started the series and they’re about to embark on the road to marriage, which we all know isn’t always easy. The Pucked Series is a sports romantic comedy with a hockey slant—my Canadianness approves of this sport. 😀

2. Is your book part of a series or can it be read as a stand-alone?

Forever Pucked (Book #4) is best read AFTER reading Pucked (book #1 standalone). Pucked Up (Book #2, standalone) and Pucked Over (Book #3, standalone) don’t need to be read prior to Forever Pucked, but they’re both lots of fun, so there’s that to consider. Is that clear as mud?

3. Which character of your book was the hardest to write?

I don’t know that either of them were particularly difficult. I think there were scenes that were maybe a bit challenging to flesh out. I typically write in dual POV which allows me flip between the character who has the most to say at any given time.

4. Any writing goals for 2016?

Definitely. I have more plans for The Pucked Series. I’m also working on an angsty contemporary romance and another romantic comedy unrelated to The Pucked Series, so lots happening there!

5. If you’re not writing, what do you love to do?

Crafts I suppose. We make a lot of crafts up in the Hunting house. Spending time with my family is always awesome. And sleep, I miss that sometimes.

6. Did anyone inspire you to start writing or did you always knew you just had to write?

I wrote stories as soon as I could put the pencil to the paper, so I’ve always loved to write. I studied English in university with no real idea as to what the heck a degree was going to get me, all I knew is that I loved it. I don’t think I read more than a magazine article after four years of reading literary fiction in mass quantities. Through my twenties it was more of just a hobby. I’d start stories but never finish them. After I had my daughter I started to write again, and that’s when it changed for me and became the dream I wanted to pursue. Debra Anastasia is the one who really encouraged me to pursue this as a career. She’s an incredible author and a wonderful friend.

7. Any advice/tips for newbies?

Edit like your life depends on it. Join writing groups and have a solid base of friends and professional alliances in the industry. Network, go to conferences, and most of all, keep writing and seeking critical feedback so you can continue to grow in this incredibly fast paced, ever changing industry.

8. Are you already writing a new book? Can you tell us a little bit about it?

Oh yeah. I have three different projects on the go right now. I have to prioritize them according to level of importance/pressingness of project completion. This makes me sound incredibly organized. I’m not. I’m currently working on a romantic comedy that’s not related to The Pucked Series. I’m excited to do something a little different.

9. A word that you use way too often? (Mine are “quite” and “probably”)

Just, already, and all profanity are commonly overused words for me. I know what mine are, so I often have a running list going in the comments in my docs for my editor.

10. Last but not least: What’s your favourite type of candy, if you don’t mind me asking?

I love maple sugar candies. They are so ridiculously delicious. I also love straight up chocolate.

Author Bio:

NYT and USA Today bestselling author of The PUCKED Series, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy. She likes to play Scrabble in her spare but her husband doesn’t like how competitive she is about it so she resorts to Candy Crush instead.

Follow Helena Hunting:

Website | AmazonTwitterFacebookPinterestInstagramGoodreads | NEWSLETTER | PA email contact: helenahuntingpa@gmail.com

Interview with Claudie Arseneault, author of Viral Airwaves

1. Tell us something about your latest book. Is it your debut? What genre does it belong to?ViralAirwavesCover

My latest novel was indeed my debut. Viral Airwaves sits halfway between dystopia and solarpunk (green, hopeful, community centered futures). It follows Henry Schmitt, a lover of noodles and willful denial. One day a bunch of rebels make irruption in his life and he discovers proof the government has intentionally created the Plague that killed thousands. All they have to spread the word, however, is a hot air balloon.

Technically, I also edited and published an anthology of solarpunk dragon short stories, called Wings of Renewal. Amazing sci-fi/fantasy stories with a lot of diversity. And our cover is plain gorgeous. So yeah, I’m really proud of that, too.

2. Is your book part of a series or can it be read as a stand-alone?

Viral Airwaves was created as a standalone novel. You can start with it and be just fine. It’s a complete story in and of itself. It does, however, have a prequel novella! That one is called The White Renegade and is available for free. It follows Seraphin, the rebel leader in Viral Airwaves, and tells an important part of his backstory.

3. When does your book release?

Mystery, haha! More seriously, though … Viral Airwaves and The White Renegade are already out. I don’t know when the next one will come out. I’m aiming for early Fall 2016, but we’ll see how that goes.

4. Which character of your book was the hardest to write?

In Viral Airwaves, definitely Henry. The thing with Henry is … he’s convinced he can’t really amount to anything. In his mind he is not a hero, and he should absolutely not get involved in illegal activities. It took me several drafts to get a good feel of him and make him into an interesting character, and a couple more to really smoothen out the first third of a novel and get him acting.

5. If you’re not writing, what do you love to do?

Gosh I spend so much time writing these days I’m not even sure what to answer. I game a lot to relax. Any kind of games, but RPGs and strategy games are a personal favourite. Oh and board games! I adore board games and we’re always playing one. Anything from quick and simple games (Love Letter, Carcassonne, etc.) to more complex and long boardgames (Agricola, Battlestar Galactica, 7 Wonders). We love them all.

6. Did anyone inspire you to start writing or did you always knew you just had to write?

Someone pushed me. My second boyfriend, a british who also aspired to write and with whom I did a lot of roleplay. He kept telling me my ideas were fantastic, and that I should write a novel out of them (I am!). It got me started, and soon enough I couldn’t stop and knew I HAD to do this.

7. Any advice/tips for newbies?

Don’t be afraid to rewrite. Don’t rush into it at the slightest new idea either, but never discard rewrites. If you have this new idea which would make the story tighter, more intense, and better in so many ways? Except it’d demand that you rewrite it so much of it, you might as well start a new draft from scratch? Consider it. Consider it hard. Chances are, it’ll be worth every minute of your time. Writers never stop learning. Between themes and structure and characters and pacing and prose … there’s just too much to know! Rewrites hammer in your craft while you make your story better. Plus, most of them aren’t a sign you got the story wrong the first time. They’re proof you, as a writer, have evolved and gotten better at large-scale considerations. So put your skills to good use and rewrite that novel!

Also, get a small group of writers on a similar level than you and exchange critiques. You’ll learn a TON from this, too.

8. Are you already writing a new book? Can you tell us a little bit about it?

My next book is the first of a trilogy. It’s a political fantasy rife with LGBTQIAP characters, happening entirely in a single city, Isandor. Although it has a large cast, it centers primarily on three of them: Lord Dathirii, an idealist elven noble who provokes the enclave of wizards from an evil Empire into a dangerous trade war; Hasryan, an assassin who gets accused of the one murder he didn’t commit and is set up as a scapegoat for a decade-long feud; Arathiel, who returns from 140 years out of Isandor, his senses drained by a magical trap and his family and friends dead. All of them (and others) need to confront what home means to them, and how much they’re willing to sacrifice for it.

Also I’m writing an interactive fan fiction of Fire Emblem, a turn-base strategy game I love. Readers will get to vote on some events and character interactions as the story unfolds, and I have cool character art. I just started, so you can check it out at bladeofbegnion.com . 🙂

9. A word that you use way too often? (Mine are “quite” and “probably”)

“Just”. I use it all over my first drafts. I just (hehehe) can’t help myself. It’s okay, though. I know I need to look out for it when I clean up. Otherwise, I think I have more problems with words I can never remember how to spell, despite using them several times over the last years.

10. Last but not least: What’s your favourite type of candy, if you don’t mind me asking?

Oh no I have to choose? That’s cruel. I would say tie between Reese and Coffee Crisps? Especially the bite-sized ones! I always end up eating the entire bag! On the other hand, there’s not a lot that can be the kind of candy mom prepares when Christmas rolls around, but that might be the novelty.

Author Bio: Claudie_AuthorPic_Medium

I’m a young French Canadian writer, living in Quebec City — which, yes, means French is my first language. I started writing back in 2007, and promptly became quite addicted to it. I am strangely fond of squids and hot air balloons, in addition to being a big gamer (both board games and video games). Almost anything geeky or science-related will be right up my alley. Especially virus/bacteria! Invisible killers forever!

Website | Twitter | Goodreads

Interview with R.K. Gold, author of Just Under The Sky

1. Tell us something about your latest book. Is it your debut? What genre does it belong to?1907526_809548675801557_2744477800293039157_n

My latest book Just Under the Sky is a short little novella I wrote when I was still living in Montana. My publisher and I categorize it as magical realism but it definitely floats in the realm of fantasy a couple of times, at least the supernatural. It is my debut work so no matter what it will always be one of my most meaningful pieces. It has received a little praise as well as an award for its many layers. There’s definitely a small messages but by far the most important aspect of the book was that it was an entertaining plot to read.

2. Is your book part of a series or can it be read as a stand-alone?

It’s funny you ask that. I have received quite a few emails and a few messages over various social media platforms asking me to write a prequel. As it is now the book is just standalone but I do have a few ideas to tie it together with some other work and expand the universe.

3. When did your book release?

It came out October 2, 2015. My next book Brinwood is another novella and that comes out in the spring. I swear I don’t just write novellas they just happen to be my most polished work at the moment.

4. Which character of your book was the hardest to write?

For Just Under the Sky the hardest character to write was Zimriah because he completely destroyed everything Jasper had ever been taught about the forest. After living an entire life being told one thing, it can crippling to learn you’ve always been wrong.

5. If you’re not writing, what do you love to do?

Hmm, I love to go to the movies and take my dog for a long walks through the city. And I also try to read about 60 pages a day not including the news. I also like to talk to my dog like he’s Simba from the lion King. I am also a huge wrestling fan. I love the WWE and recently started watching this new program called Lucha Underground.

6. Did anyone inspire you to start writing or did you always knew you just had to write?

Honestly, writing and I have had a weird relationship because I’ve always loved it but it took me 22 years to realize it’s something I should actually pursue. I don’t think I ever would’ve gotten there if it weren’t for two teachers I had in high school. Dr. Sutherland and Mr. Desautels really helped me discover that writing is not something completely unattainable. For every Stephen King or John Grisham there are thousands of individuals earning a living off their books alone without the name recognition. All you have to do is put in the work.

7. Any advice/tips for newbies?

Google is your best friend. Whenever you have a question type it in and you will most likely find an answer. Also read and write daily.

8. Are you already writing a new book? Can you tell us a little bit about it?

Shoot, I have 9 manuscripts done all in different stages of editing. 2016 is the year I sit down and actually polish the work I have in the vault instead of just writing more. I started writing novels in February 2014 and whenever I got like a quarter of the way into edits I would just procrastinate and start writing a new book instead.

9. A word that you use way too often? (Mine are “quite” and “probably”)

Beyond. I use beyond all the time. So at night I say I am beyond tired while I’m cooking I say I am beyond hungry when I am going on a date with my girlfriend I say I am beyond excited.

10. Last but not least: What’s your favourite type of candy, if you don’t mind me asking?

Sugar: sour patch kids
Chocolate: Reeses

Author Bio:2237d0_647d61b6915146379aa2801f97507228.jpg_srz_p_350_414_75_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_jpg_srz

R.K. Gold is an award winning novelist from Buffalo, NY. He graduated from the University of Maryland in 2014 with a bachelors degree in English. When he is not writing he is either walking his plott hound Logan or eating his bodyweight in popcorn at the movie theatre.

Interview with Meghan March, author of Beneath These Scars

1. Could you tell us something about your latest book?

My latest book is Beneath These Scars, a sexy contemporary romance with a healthy dose of romantic suspense set in the fun city of New Orleans, Louisiana. It’s technically the fourth book in the Beneath series, but it can be read as a stand alone. My next book, Dirty Billionaire, will release on December 8, and it is the first book in a new trilogy!

2. Which character of your book (or in general) was the hardest to ever write?

I think the most difficult characters I’ve written so far were Lucas Titan and Yve Santos in Beneath These Scars because they were very, very stubborn. Every time I sat down to write them, sparks flew and they constantly surprised me.

3. If you’re not writing, what do you love to do?

Other than writing, my favorite hobbies include reading (obviously lots of romance!), downhill skiing, boating, and spending time with friends and family, preferably at the beach or on a boat.

4. Any advice / tips for newbies?

It’s not about writing the perfect book, it’s about writing your book. Your first draft will never be great, but you have to have something to edit.

5. Are you already in the process of writing a new book and could you maybe tell us a little bit about it?

I’m always in the process of writing a new book, it seems. I’m currently working on the next book in the Beneath series, which I expect to release in 2016. Stay tuned for more on this!

Author Bio: meghan march

Meghan March has been known to wear camo face paint and tromp around in woods wearing mud-covered boots, all while sporting a perfect manicure. She’s also impulsive, easily entertained, and absolutely unapologetic about the fact that she loves to read and write smut. Her past lives include slinging auto parts, selling lingerie, making custom jewelry, and practicing corporate law. Writing books about dirty talking alpha males and the strong, sassy women who bring them to their knees is by far the most fabulous job she’s ever had. She loves hearing from her readers at meghanmarchbooks@gmail.com.

Visit Meghan’s: Website | Twitter | Facebook


~ My review for Beneath These Scars ~

~ My review for Beneath This Ink ~

 

Interview with Clayton Gerrard, author of The Misadventures of a Life Less Lived

1. Tell us something about your latest book. Is it your debut? What genre does it belong to?

It is my debut novel! The Misadventures of a Life Less Lived is the story of Doug, a secretly-bookish college junior who lies to his friends to maintain their good opinion. Doug wakes one morning to discover his life has spoiled. (He kept it in the fridge which is where one keeps it to maintain a chill lifestyle, but somebody left it out overnight.) As a member of a popular fraternity, having no life is social suicide, so he embarks on a quest to find another life before anyone can discover he’s a temporary loser.

Misadventures is New Adult – Magical Realism, so it has a strong fantasy element. It’s also satirical, absurd, and uproariously funny. It’s being published by REUTS publications. You can read the publishers blog here: http://blog.reuts.com/reuts-signs-satirical-and-snarky-the-misadventures-of-a-life-less-lived/

2. Is your book part of a series or can it be read as a stand-alone?

It’s a standalone. I do have an idea to take some of the characters on another journey later, but the two books won’t be interrelated at all. My intention is that one could read the second without even knowing there was a first and still feel as though he or she had a whole story.

3. When does your book release?

The tentative release date is February 2016, but it’s not a certainty yet. We’re still awfully fresh in the process, but my fingers are crossed that all deadlines are met early.

4. Which character of your book was the hardest to write?

The most difficult character to write would have to be the lead character, Doug. Since my story is satirical, I have a lot of stock characters that weave in and out of the narrative without much greater purpose than to careen Doug off of in a new direction of self-discovery. Since he was my primary focus, and in essence my theme, I had to mold and shape him through each experience without going too far or letting him stagnate. It’s a delicate process to have a character grow and change from page one to the end without forcing the change on him, or not maturing him enough. Because of it, I had to rewrite the ending nearly a dozen times before I reached one I liked. I kept landing Doug too far beyond his original self, and the endings felt trite and campy. However, after several painstaking revisions, he and I finally found the right wrap-up.

5. If you’re not writing, what do you love to do?

Spend time with my puppy. She’s the best part of my life. She takes a lot of my time and attention, but she’s absolutely worth it. Together we go on lots of walks. Good for clearing the writing mind.

6. Did anyone inspire you to start writing or did you always know you just had to write?

I always knew I had to create. I was ever the entertainer as a child, charging my granny a nickel to see a magic show, or building haunted houses with my cousins for our parents to walk through. I’ve done a lot of theater, and in fact have two masters degrees in it. Writing has always been a part of my life. I would pound out gibberish on my mom’s electric typewriter when I was really little, and call it my novel. I’ve had lots of fits and starts, but it wasn’t until I finally learned to love and appreciate myself that I found the ability to stick to a project. And low and behold, my novel is forthcoming. Now I want to do little else.

7. Any advice/tips for newbies?

Attend and pitch at conferences. Lightning struck for me and my publisher. I tremble to think how many email queries I could have sent without ever receiving a single response. It can be daunting, let alone disheartening, to receive rejection, but in my mind, it’s even worse to receive nothing. I can’t help but associate my pitch with myself, and think I’m somehow personally a failure. This couldn’t be further from the truth, but I have a hard time remembering that. I find human interaction a vital piece that is missing from the submissions puzzle. At a conference, face to face with a real person, your material may be requested simply because the person across the table likes you as a person and is willing to take a chance. Of course, your material has to be good too. And, at the same time, you can also gauge if you like them. You wouldn’t want to sign with someone you don’t like just to have an agent/book deal. It’s important the interest, respect and appreciation be mutual.

8. Are you already writing a new book? Can you tell us a little bit about it?

I am writing my next. The working title is A Hero Twain, and it’s the first in a dark, adult fantasy trilogy. It’s still too fresh and tender of an idea to share much more. I will say it’s as different from my first novel as Stephen King is from Douglas Adams. I may be shooting myself in the foot by not furthering the fan base that may come along with Misadventures, but Hero Twain is demanding to be told.

9. A word that you use way too often? (Mine are “quite” and “probably”)

I would have to say that I especially use the word especially a bit too often. Especially when I need a key segue.

10. Last but not least: What’s your favourite type of candy, if you don’t mind me asking?

M&Ms are my favorite. Good, old-fashioned plain M&Ms, but I do prefer them to be in something. Cookies or ice cream benefit greatly from M&Ms.

Bio:

Clayton Gerrard awoke one day and decided he’d be a writer. He was two, and the clacking sounds produced by his mother’s electric typewriter when he randomly mashed the keys were most satisfying. Ever since then, he’s been trying to hone his craft and find his voice, but the more he focused on the former the more the latter eluded him and vice versa. So he gave it all up and spent 10 years in college. Now with more degrees than sense he erroneously believes he has something to say.

When he’s not wrestling with his Magical Realism or Fantasy stories, he enjoys a good craft beer, indie movies, complaining about complainers and judging judgmental people. He believes all of life’s challenges are opportunities for personal growth, but tends to forget that when he’s stuck in traffic or a checkout lane. His friends and family mean the world to him, but he hopes they never read this bio because the bastards would lord it over him forever.

Interview with Jessica Cluess, author of A Shadow Bright And Burning

1. Tell us something about your latest book. Is it your debut? What genre does it belong to?

It is my debut! A Shadow Bright and Burning is a young adult historical fantasy set in the early Victorian era in England. Essentially, it’s about a young girl who joins an all-male group of sorcerers to fight a war against monsters.

2. Is your book part of a series or can it be read as a stand-alone?

It is definitely a series. Books two and three will be coming out in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

3. When does your book release?

Right now, the date is August 30, 2016. It’s not absolutely set in stone, but it’s looking more and more certain.

4. Which character of your book was the hardest to write?

It’s sort of a tie. There’s the protagonist, Henrietta, who was difficult because I have to see everything that happens through her eyes. Finding her natural reaction to things could be challenging. The other hard character was Rook, Henrietta’s childhood best friend. He changes substantially from beginning to end, so keeping up with those shifts was tricky.

5. If you’re not writing, what do you love to do?

I love to hike. Los Angeles is lousy with good spots, so I’m lucky. Also, I’m a huge movie buff.

6. Did anyone inspire you to start writing or did you always knew you just had to write?

I’ve always written, ever since I can remember. Making up stories was a day-to-day part of my life growing up. But I didn’t start thinking about pursuing it professionally until a few years ago.

7. Any advice/tips for newbies?

Very simply, don’t give up! Also, try to be smart about your choices. For example, the first book I tried to sell was an adult urban fantasy, back when the market was oversaturated. The book failed. I decided to try another genre, one that wasn’t as overcrowded, and it worked. So be as savvy as you can.

8. Are you already writing a new book? Can you tell us a little bit about it?

I am! I’m working on the sequel to A Shadow Bright and Burning. I can’t say anything right now, but I’m excited about it.

9. A word that you use way too often? (Mine are “quite” and “probably”)

Just. I just use it in just about everything. Just like this.

10. Last but not least: What’s your favourite type of candy, if you don’t mind me asking?

Cotton candy flavored jellybeans. I’ve loved them since I was little. I can’t get enough.

Author Biop1216467493-4

Jessica Cluess is a writer and general ne’er-do-well. A graduate of Northwestern University, she now lives and works in Los Angeles, where she has served coffee to the rich and famous.

Interview with J.M. Frey, author of The Untold Tale

1. Tell us something about your latest book. Is it your debut? What genre does it belong to? Rotoscoped Cover_JMFrey

My debut novel was the Lambda Award Nominated TRIPTYCH, which was released in 2011. However, THE UNTOLD TALE is my first epic fantasy novel, so it is a bit like a debut. It’s very exciting because there’s a whole different demographic, set of websites, and different marketing techniques used for fantasy books, and I’m really enjoying the creativity of it.

THE UNTOLD TALE is an NA Epic Fantasy. Publisher’s Marketplace called it “Inkheart for Adults”, and I’ve nicknamed it my feminist meta-fantasy novel. This is the official copy:

THE UNTOLD TALE follows Pip, who is pulled against her will into the epic fantasy novel series she’s loved since she was a teenager. However, the world is darker, and far more dangerous than she could have ever predicted, especially when it turns out the hero is a much bigger misogynistic ass than she knew.  Pip knows how to circumnavigate the Hero’s Journey and the pitfalls and loopholes of this particular world – but what will happen to her beloved characters outside of the comfort of the fantasy they were written for?

What I love about this book, though, is that it’s not told from Pip’s perspective. The narrator is the younger brother of the world’s big enchanted-sword wielding power-fantasy hero. And he himself is a representative of the everyman geek. Classic fantasy books have a history of having no respectable place for women in their narratives, and stereotyping men who are clever and use their brains instead of brawn as snivelling, whiney villains. As an adolescent, this made it really hard for me to find anything to relate to in fantasy books. I was brainy and female. Those sorts of characters just did not exist. So when I decided I wanted to write a Swords and Sorcery epic, I wanted to write a compelling, engaging tale where the power-fantasy hero is not the one who saves the day, but the sidelined, ridiculed characters.

2. Is your book part of a series or can it be read as a stand-alone?

This is my first series! THE UNTOLD TALE is Book One of THE ACCIDENTAL TURN series. The series is comprised of three novels and two e-book only novellas. They are: THE UNTOLD TALE (Dec 2015), THE FORGOTTEN TALE (June 2016), THE SILENCED TALE (Dec 2016) and THE GUARRALOUS GHOST OF GWILLFIFESHIRE (winter 2016) and THE WONDROUS WOES OF THE WRITER (summer 2016). The novellas take place around the same time as the series, but are from different perspectives and cover areas of the tale that the books don’t.

There’s also a website and social media for the faux-author of the fake fantasy series I created for the books, The Tales of Kintyre Turn, and it’s been a lot of fun commissioning fan artists to draw fan art of the series, posting as Elgar Reed, the author, and encouraging people to write fanfiction about the non-existent fantasy books.

3. When does your book release?

Just in time for people to buy it for a stocking stuffer! I’ll be released December 8th, 2015.

4. Which character of your book was the hardest to write?

The fantasy hero, Kintyre Turn. He had to be filled with the sort of brawny, jock-like arrogance that geeks like me have come to resent, but at the same time, be more than just a stereotype. He had to have pathos, and he had to be someone whom the reader eventually comes to know in more depth and feels for. That’s one of the reasons I made him such an art-lover. I wanted him to be able to really appreciate beauty in a deep way, beyond hot chicks in chainmail bikinis.

The whole book was difficult, really, because I had to tread that line between creating characters and situations and settings that the reader immediately identifies with and feels at home in. I needed that “Ah, yes, this is fantasy!” feeling. But at the same time, I had to subvert that, tell the story from different perspectives, figure out how to tell a typical Hero’s Journey story that completely deviates and flips the Hero’s Journey while still sending our characters on the Hero’s Journey!

5. If you’re not writing, what do you love to do?

I was an actor before I was ever a writer. I actually went to school for theatre, and did a lot of children’s and community theatre plays when I was younger. After an accident made it too hard for me to dance any more, I switched my focus to voice acting and it is so much fun. It is seriously way cool. Mostly I do it in non-paying radio dramas, or in webseries, but I hope one day to be the English voice of a popular anime character. That would be tres amazing. I have a really nice mic, and a pop guard, and a little home studio that I erect with blankets and poles, like a blanket-fort around my computer.

6. Did anyone inspire you to start writing or did you always knew you just had to write?

I discovered fanfiction in 1991, and immediately started writing fanfiction of my own (for Sailor Moon, DragonballZ, and Dracula: the series). Before that, I had written little plays, like most child actors do.

Once I began writing fanfic, I wrote nearly every day for pretty much a full decade. In 2001, one of my TAs at university suggested I try my hand at original fiction. Between 2002-2007 I wrote this, jeeze, just epic dark fantasy book about vampires and ancient gods and redheaded trickster figures, and knew as soon as it was finished that it was just unpublishable. Not because it was bad, but because it was so big, and sprawling, and … epic.

After that, I just wrote another book, and another one, and another one. The first one after the epic was TRIPTYCH, which I signed independently with Dragon Moon Press in 2009, and after that I decided to just keep writing books. I mean, people clearly wanted more, and I had so many ideas, so I just kept at it. I don’t think there was a day when I wasn’t writing something, even while I was doing my MA thesis. I’ve done NaNoWriMo every year since 2003.

Some of those books are in my morgue, some I am serializing on Wattpad, but most are now with my agent, who is shopping them, or signing them with publishers. I will never have enough time to write all the stories in my head, I think.

7. Any advice/tips for newbies?

This may sound flippant, but my biggest piece of advice is to just finish the book. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Writing makes manuscripts, editing makes novels. So get the darn thing on the page, don’t agonize about each word or sentence, or how poetic it is. You can always go back later and fix it, make it better, make it cleaner. But you can’t craft a book until you have a manuscript, and you don’t have a manuscript unless you put your butt in that seat and write it. (You can do it!! *waves pom poms*)

8. Are you already writing a new book? Can you tell us a little bit about it?

THE ACCIDENTAL TURN SERIES is my first series, and I’m trying to get all the books written before the manuscript for the first one is locked just in case we need to go in and fiddle with it based on something I’ve written in the later books. I wrote THE UNTOLD TALE in 2013, and signed the series in March 2015. Since then I’ve been finishing up the book I was writing when the deal came through (a YA novel that my agent is currently reading), and jumped straight into book two of the series. I literally just finished writing it last week, and once it’s out to my beta readers/critique partners, I am going to plow straight into book three and the last remaining novella. Wish me luck!

I am really enjoying book two, though, because it’s all about what happens after the Happily Ever After, and the story is over, and the Hero has returned. A lot of series spread the Hero’s Journey out through all the books, but I wanted to finish it at the end of the first book, so the rest of the series could be about what happens next. What kind of a life do you live with the experiences you gained as a hero? (I mean, I always wanted to know what Aragorn and Arwen did in their day-to-day life as King and Queen of Gondor; didn’t you? Maybe that’s why I like fanfiction so much. It really does explore what happens in the parts of the narrative we never get to experience.)

9. A word that you use way too often? (Mine are “quite” and “probably”)

In this series? “Obligingly”. Forsyth, my narrator, is such a posh ponce. He’s sort of a mix of Mycroft Holmes (I want him to be played by Mark Gaitiss so bad), and Mr. Darcy, and Q from JAMES BOND, and Lucifer Box (whoops, there’s my second Gaitiss inspiration), and Lt. Data. I know, it’s a weird combination.

10. Last but not least: What’s your favourite type of candy, if you don’t mind me asking?

I might be the only person on the planet with this answer, but I LOVE candy corn! I also love the cola gummies (which is weird because I don’t drink pop) and caramels.

Author Bio  JMFrey_Sears

J.M. Frey is a voice actor, and SF/F author, fanthropologist and professional geek. She’s appeared in podcasts, documentaries, and on television to discuss all things geeky through the lens of academia. She also has an addiction to scarves, Doctor Who, and tea, which may or may not all be related. Her life’s ambitions are to have stepped foot on every continent (only 3 left!), and to perform a duet with John Barrowman.
Her debut novel TRIPTYCH was nominated for two Lambda Literary Awards,  won the San Francisco Book Festival award for SF/F, was nominated for a 2011 CBC Bookie, was named one of The Advocate’s Best Overlooked Books of 2011, and garnered both a starred review and a place among the Best Books of 2011 from Publishers Weekly.
THE UNTOLD TALE, book one of The Accidental Turn Series, debuts December 2015. Dubbed “Inkheart for Adults”, the story follows Pip, a fan girl extraordinaire as she teams up with the overlooked younger brother of a fantasy-epic hero to defeat the one villain the author of her favourite fantasy book series never seemed to be able to get rid of.

Interview with Rhyannon Byrd, author of Wild Wolf Claiming + INTL’ Giveaway!!

wild wolf claiming1. Tell us something about your latest book. What is it about? What genre does it belong to?

Wild Wolf Claiming is a dark, sexy, action-packed paranormal romance about a hot-as-hell Lycan with a tortured past and the sweet, strong human female he not only wants to protect, but is also determined to claim as his. It takes place in the month of December, leading up to Christmas, and the villains are something that we’ve never seen before in the Bloodrunners’ world. That’s probably about as much as I should say, except that the heat factor is high, the sexual tension is intense, and the emotional connection between the characters is hopefully one that will truly reach in and grab a reader’s heart.

2. Is your book part of a series or can it be read as a stand-alone?

This is the 8th book in my Bloodrunners series, so you’ll see a lot of the heroes and heroines from the previous stories—but I do try to make it so that a new reader can jump right in and still follow along. Then, if they enjoy the story, they can always go back to the beginning, with Last Wolf Standing, and work their way through the series.

3. When does your book release?

On December 1st!

4. Which character of your book (or series) was the hardest to write?

I think each character has his/her own difficulties, but that’s what makes them interesting. When I start a book, I usually feel that the hero will be the most challenging that I’ve ever had to write, and it was the same with Elliot Connors. He had such a sad, traumatic background, one that obviously had a tremendous impact on him not only as a boy but also as a man, and yet, I didn’t want his past to overshadow his every thought and emotion. I wanted to show how strong he was, and the lengths he was willing to go to in order to make a relationship with Skye work, and that hopefully comes across in the story. Despite his efforts, he has some major setbacks, but his devotion to his woman is always at the core of his motivations.

5. If you’re not writing, what do you love to do?

My family and I love to go to the theatre, cinema and concerts, and we’re lucky to live in an area of the UK that enables us to get out and see all kinds of awesome events. In the past month alone we’ve seen Hecuba at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Elf the Musical in London, and Spectre on its opening night. In September, we saw the Foo Fighters and Florence + the Machine in concert, Coriolanus with the lovely Tom Hiddleston at our local Picturehouse, Henry V on stage, and also comedian Michael McIntyre on his arena tour. We also love to watch American Football, though we all pull for different teams, and travel as much as we can. Our family vacation this summer was spent in warm, beautiful Sicily, and it’s now one of my most favorite places in the world.

6. Did anyone inspire you to start writing or did you always know you just had to write?

I’ve always had a love of reading and writing, but it wasn’t until I found Anne Rice’s novels in my early twenties that I fell in love with paranormal romance and knew I wanted to try and create my own stories in this fascinating genre. She remains one of the most talented writers I’ve ever read and I still love to get lost in her rich, intoxicating worlds.

7. Any advice/tips for newbies?

I think the most important advice I could give to any new author is to write—write, write, write—and while you’re getting those words down, make sure you’re working on the stories that you completely and absolutely LOVE. It’s easy to look around at what seems to be the “hot new thing” and think that you should dive right in, but if your heart’s not in the story it’s going to show. At the end of the day, writing the stories for the characters that are truly calling to you is where you’ll find your passion and creativity.

8. Are you already writing a new book? Can you tell us a little bit about it?

I have several self-published stories that I’m working on at the moment, as well as the next Bloodrunners book, Wild Wolf Chasing. This is Max Doucet’s story, and much of the timeline overlaps with Wild Wolf Claiming. Max’s heroine, Vivian Jackson, is Skye’s roommate and best friend, and Max and Elliot are Bloodrunning partners. So there’s a lot of crossover between the two books, which makes things tricky, but also a lot of fun.

9. A word that you use way too often? (Mine are “quite” and “probably”)

It would definitely be a curse word! 😉 I’m only allowed to say “F*ck” so many times in my Bloodrunners books, so I have to be careful not to rely too heavily on other words like “damn” and “hell.”

10. Last but not least: What’s your favourite type of candy, if you don’t mind me asking?

Snickers and peanut M&Ms! Omnomnom…

Author Bio:rhyannon byrd

Rhyannon Byrd is the bestselling author of more than thirty contemporary erotic and paranormal romance titles, including the Dangerous Tides series and the Bloodrunners series. After having spent years enjoying the glorious sunshine of the American South and Southwest, Rhyannon now lives in the beautiful county of Warwickshire in England with her husband, kids and lovable Rottweiler. For more information on Rhyannon’s books and the latest news, you can visit her website at www.rhyannonbyrd.com or find her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RhyannonByrd.

Wild Wolf Claiming Links:

★Series Reading Order: http://www.rhyannonbyrd.com/#!bloodrunners/c1d3a

★Pinterest Inspiration Board: https://www.pinterest.com/rhyannonbyrd

★Read an excerpt here: http://www.rhyannonbyrd.com/#!wild-wolf-claiming-excerpt/ivqai

★Pre-Order Links:

Amazon US: http://amzn.com/B00ZPUN78W
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B013L2O8T2
iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/wild-wolf-claiming/id1010693671?mt=11
Nook: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wild-wolf-claiming-rhyannon-byrd/1122220961


Rhyannon was so nice to send me a SIGNED copy of Wild Wolf Claiming plus some swag to give to one of you. Here is what you will get.

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Here is what you will get. I should really stop using the flash when I take photos.

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Look at that signing. Her writing is so beautiful!

All you have to do for a chance to win is click on the rafflecopter link.

And yes, this is open international.

Rafflecopter giveaway

CLOSED!!!!


Check out my review for Wild Wolf Claiming here

Also because this is my blog, here are some other links to my reviews for Rhyannon’s books

Blood Wolf Dawning (Bloodrunners #7)

Touch Of Seduction (Primal Instinct #4)