Posts Tagged ‘Blog Tour’
So, once again, the enabler of this blog tour thing…ahem, I meant, the person who invited me to participate in this blog hop is the lovely and talented J.M. Frey, Lambda Literary Award nominated author of Triptych. Check her out here.
Now that the introductions have been made, the way this works is that I answer a few questions about myself. These are short and fun. Hope you enjoy! And make sure to check out the amazing authors linked at the end of the post.
1 – If you could time travel and steal somebody else’s novel/short story/film for yourself, what would it be?
The first book in Anne McCaffrey‘s Pern series, Dragonflight. It’s not currently my favorite book of all time, but it certainly was at one point, and it–and the following series–affected my life profoundly, and my writing. To have been able to start in that world and take it through the worldbuilding she did, would have been an amazing experience, I think.
2 – What writing sin do you actively have to struggle against in your own work?
In first drafts, I tend to use too many adverbs, echo the same reactions over and over (shrug, smile, etc.), and fail to indicate who is speaking in long passages of dialogue. Thankfully, those are pretty easy to spot in editing.
3 – Pick three writers, past or present, that you would want to have dinner with. Why those writers?
Mary Shelley, Brandon Sanderson, Carol Berg. Thankfully, two of those are still alive, and I might just get lucky enough one day…
As for why, Mary Shelley not only wrote the original science fiction novel, Frankenstein, but she was a woman writing something completely original–and heaven knows how that might have been received, woman or no–more than a hundred years ago. Anyone close to the industry knows that women writing science fiction and fantasy are STILL fighting for acceptance and equal standing among our peers. What must it have been like for her?
Brandon Sanderson is a name everyone reading this probably already knows. He’s an amazing fantasy writer and he doesn’t need me to sing his praises. But what fascinates me about him and what I’d love to talk to him about is his worldbuilding. He writes the most original worlds I’ve ever read, barring perhaps Elizabeth Bear. It’s not that they’re so mindboggling foreign that we can’t even relate, it’s that they take a world like ours, and they make something about it amazingly different, in a way that’s mindboggling and changes everything. To be able to invent worlds like that…
Carol Berg writes the most amazing characters I’ve ever read. And then she combines them into situations and relationships that could just tear your heart out or make you dance in the streets, depending on what page you’re on. I’m a character-centric writer, so for me, that’s magic.
So, quick and painless, more or less. Be sure to check out these other authors, and their amazing writing.
Gabrielle Harbowy: Editor and author extraordinaire. Co-editor with Ed Greenwood of the When the Hero Comes Home, When the Villain Comes Home, and When The Hero Comes Home 2. Also my co-author in a short story in Carbide Tipped Pens, coming soon from Tor.
Yeah, I know, I’ve got books out already, right? Well, what I don’t have, and never have had, is an agent. And this shiny new manuscript isn’t selling itself. So, I’m thrilled to have been chosen (well, by a bot) to enter The Writer’s Voice contest. Here is my entry for my YA Fantasy, THE PRINCE’S BROTHER:
One world believes fourteen-year-old Kas is a king, and the only one who can end the civil war that has raged for a decade.
An alternate world believes he’s a powerful magician, and the only one who can save them from an enemy they can’t fight.
Kas thinks he’s just a simple farmer, with a knack for growing the best apples in the region.
Kas’ brother is the only one who knows the truth, and these dangerous secrets are what forced him to kidnap Kas ten years ago and hide him on a farm in the shadow of the World’s End. But an unexpected attack leaves Kas trapped in the alternate world and his brother a hostage to an insane king who will stop at nothing to prevent Kas from learning how to wield the magic that will change the very nature of the worlds—and topple the king from his stolen throne.
Desperate to save his brother, Kas rushes to confront his enemy, wielding only his ignorance, with the help of a dubious ally. If he is to succeed, and survive, he’ll have to discover the truth about his magic, his heritage, and the ancient secret tying the two worlds together before millions of people, and the brother who sacrificed everything for him, are destroyed.
THE PRINCE’S BROTHER is the first in a planned trilogy and is complete at 65,000 words.
The novels of my first trilogy, FIGHTING GRAVITY, CASCADE EFFECT, and IMPACT VELOCITY were published by Dragon Moon Press in 2012, 2013, and 2014 respectively. I sold these novels directly to the publisher and have not worked with an agent yet.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
First 250 words:
I started a war when I was four years old.
My memories of that night are fuzzy, quiet, warm except where the crisp autumn air nipped my nose. They smell like my brother, the nursery, and horses.
I woke to hushed voices and soft hands changing my sleeping shirt for warm breeches, thick socks and shirts, and the coat Ver had given me at the turn of the weather.
I came slowly to awareness that it was the nurse dressing me in the light only of the moon coming through the window. Her hair was the color of chestnuts during the day, warm and heavy it would fall over me like a blanket when she held me on her lap. In the moonlight it was washed in silver and her cheeks sparkled with liquid diamonds. I thought she must have turned into a moon spirit when I was asleep. I would ask Ver about it. But they were being so very quiet, and I was still too drowsy-content to wonder enough to break the waiting silence.
As she dressed me I watched Ver going round the room, pulling things from drawers and wardrobes, stuffing them into a travel sack, a frown I had never seen on my brother’s face before drawing shadows on his brow in the moonlight. The feel of him, normally steady and gentle was sharp-edged and sour. I thought he sounded like yelling, though he hadn’t said anything.
The nurse pushed my feet into my new pair of boots and picked me up.
The lovely, talented, and award-nominated J.M. Frey interviewed me before the release of Cascade Effect. Check it out here. You can also enter the giveaway through the link at the bottom of the post, or here:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
And today I was interviewed by Peter Salomon, author of the fantastic and very popular YA Horror novel, Henry Franks. There’s a giveaway over there, too, for a copy of Fighting Gravity. Because you’ll want to read that before you get to Cascade Effect.
If you’ve been around here very long, you’ll already know Nicole. She was an early and frequent participant in 5MinuteFiction, back when it lived here. But life got busy for me with the release of Fighting Gravity, and I asked for someone to take care of and look after my baby, 5MinuteFiction, and love it like it deserved. Well, Nicole has been doing that for over a year now. In fact, with the release of her new novel, The Trajectory of Dreams, she’s passing the baton as well. But more on that later.
Because now we’ve got a 5MinuteInterview with Nicole, and at the end, there are PRIZES!!
You’ve got a novel out now, The Trajectory of Dreams, give us your novel pitch in 140 characters.
The Trajectory of Dreams is billed as a psychological thriller. Where do you think your interest in things creepy or frightening started?
Rumor has it that my father forced my mother (and me, of course) to see The Exorcist at a drive-in movie theatre when I was about a year old. I don’t remember the experience, but I think it sort of set me up for a lifetime of being warped. I also grew up in a very rural area–it’s just way too quiet, and there’s a cornfield next to the house where I grew up. Bad things happen in quiet cornfields . . . or at least I always imagined it that way. So I guess I blame my hometown (Berwick, PA) for making me the twisted woman I am today.
One of your non-writing related pursuits is promoting locally grown foods and sustainable living. Tell us a little bit about this.
My grandparents were dairy farmers for a lot of years, so I grew up hearing about how hard it is to farm. A lot of people, and I was one of them, never think about the difference between small farmers and commercial growing operations, and we really never think about the chemicals commercial food producers use or about they way they treat their animals. After I moved away from my hometown and finally learned to cook, I started reading about commercial food production, and it wasn’t comforting. It’s more than just food miles or supporting your local economy or keeping smaller farmers afloat–it’s really an issue of biodiversity and food safety on a mass scale. I started gardening (in the heart of South Philly, no less), growing a small portion of my food, and trying to find a greater portion of my food grown by small producers from the immediate area. At the time, it wasn’t easy, so I founded Farm to Philly in 2007, a website devoted to locally grown foods and sustainable living. There are about half a dozen writers or so, and we write about everything from federal and local food policies to local farm markets. It’s been a real thrill to see Philadelphia become a food town devoted to keeping our local artisan food producers afloat and be a part of all that’s happened.
For a year or so, you’ve hosted 5MinuteFiction. How was that experience and what do you think you, and the participants, got out of it?
When I inherited 5 Minute Fiction from you, I didn’t really know what to expect. I’d been submitting entries while it was hosted here, and I think I guest-hosted once or twice, but you never really know what it’s going to be like to take over something so established. It’s been really great to host–I’ve met some amazing people and had fantastic opportunities because of it. I will say that I missed participating, though, which never feels possible–I’m such a worrywart, I’m always camped out over my email in case anyone has trouble submitting! When I was a participant when you hosted, though, and I assume this is true of all participants, it was a rare chance to think fast and make snap decisions without any consequences. There’s a freedom to being forced to just blurt things onto the page without obsessing about it. My writing got sharper, or at least I’d like to think so! Now that the care and feeding of 5 Minute Fiction has passed to Wendy Strain, I hope I have some time to play again!
Many thanks for the interview, Leah!
And now, Prizes! Enter to win a $10 Amazon gift card. So get on that!
So, I was tagged to do this “The Next Big Thing” meme, by one of my favorite author people, J.M. Frey. The way it works, I tag five other authors in turn to participate by answering the questions below.
Naturally, I tagged the following authors:
Now, not all of them could participate, but you should check them out anyway because they’re talented writers, great people, and they all work really hard to give back to the writing community as well.
So, there were questions, right? Here they are with my answers. And check out writers all over the web participating in The Next Big Thing!
What is the working title of your book?
Where did the idea come from for the book?
This one’s the sequel to Fighting Gravity, my debut novel that came out this past spring.
What genre does your book fall under?
Science fiction with a bit of a gay love story on the side.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I haven’t the foggiest. I’m not a very visual person, so even if I knew the names of more than the top five or six actors right now, I’ve never been able to picture any of them as my guys.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Jacob thought marrying the emperor would make him safe; but he’s in more danger than ever, and this time, his worst enemy knows the one secret Jacob’s desperate to keep from the emperor.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Neither. I signed with a small publisher without an agent.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
It took shape over the course of about four months, but if I’m honest, the actual writing time was about three weeks worth of eight hour writing days sprinkled out over those four months.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
If anything, I think my brand of scifi most resembles Anne McCaffrey’s style of light but plausible sci-fi that’s very character centric.
Who or What inspired you to write this book?
The writing fairies? I’m not sure “inspired” is the right word, but my husband was the one who convinced me to actually put it down on paper instead of just storing these stories in my head.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
One thing people really seem to like about the series so far is that it addresses prejudice and social injustice in a story centering on a same sex relationship—where the sexuality of the people involved is a complete non-issue. It’s not only not what you’d expect, but really refreshing to me to get to read about a same-sex couple without their sexual preferences being The Issue.
OK, now that you know what I’ve got going on, check in with J.M. Frey and the other great authors on the tour. And Have Fun!