Saturday, April 29, 2017

A Series of Minis - story #1


The Object



A gut-wrenching flash of memory flooded Louis’ head; powerful enough that it forced him to reach for the wall of the nearest building, or risk collapsing onto the sidewalk.



The throng of pedestrians ambling by gave him a wide berth, most picking up their pace.  Some carried looks of worry on their faces, as if he were a free freak show right there on the street.  A few showed pity, while others still wore expressions of wonder.



The flash of memory turned to visions of haunting eyes.  Eyes he hadn’t looked upon since childhood.  A childhood he had tried unsuccessfully to forget.



Even now the cascading ash filled his memory, along with the echoing cries, and whispers of the gas chambers; all as fresh as the breakfast from just a few hours earlier.



He straightened himself, looking back over his shoulder for the cause of the attack.  There, standing not twenty feet away, waiting patiently and oblivious to Louis’ presence, was the man he could never, ever forget.



He slowly turned and took several tentative steps, testing the strength of his legs.  Once assured he could, he retraced his steps, heading toward his nightmare rather than fleeing.



Questions assailed him, too rapid for his mind to give even the hint of answers.  More memories interspersed with the questions.  Sights and sounds he hadn’t cared to remember continued to invade his consciousness.



Family, friends and loved ones long dead began to haunt his thoughts.  He easily called to mind the long, cruel years he and his family had endured so long ago.  Some directly from the hands of the man he was moving towards.



How would he deal with it now?  Would these images set him back?  Or would he have the strength to push on?  He wasn’t sure.

As he neared the man from his past, the light changed, allowing the haunting form a short respite from the words Louis now felt an urge to vomit out.



Though at least ten to fifteen years his senior, the man seemed spry and easily kept a rapid, even pace.  Louis was content to follow a few yards behind.



How many years had Louis been hoping that such a moment would occur?  Although he’d never dreamt it would ever happen.  His hand slid inside his outer coat pocket, fingers grasping the cool, metal object resting inside; squeezing it tightly for comfort.



He trailed the man several blocks until he entered a corner deli.  Louis easily slid into the interior of the building, eyes quickly adjusting to the dim lighting, despite his age.  He watched the man from a distance as he ordered, received his food, and took a seat in a corner booth.



Louis waited patiently, wondering how to approach, when the man’s gaze fell on his face, eyes ever so slightly widening for a split second before passing on.



Was that a knowing look in the man’s eyes?  Recognition of who he was?  Had he remembered Louis?



Before he could run out in fear, Louis settled himself and made his way to the man’s table.  As he stopped before the memory from his past, he looked steadily into the man’s upturned face, locking onto his eyes.



Surely, he saw recognition in his tormentor’s eyes.



“Can I help you?” a feeble, shaky voice asked.



Louis remained silent, still grasping the object which gave him comfort and strength.



The man looked impatiently toward his quiet guest, slowly chewing a bite from his sandwich.



“Well,” he said after swallowing the mouthful of food.



Louis found his voice, stronger than he’d expected it to be, under the circumstance.



“Are you Deidrick? Deidrick Bonhoffer?”



The grizzled hands holding onto the sandwich shook almost imperceptibly as he replied to the query.



“You must have me mistaken for someone else, friend.”



Louis shook his head, grey hair falling across his forehead.  He was positive, now that he’d heard the voice, that this man was who he thought him to be.



“No,” he challenged.  “I don’t think I have.  I could never forget those eyes, or that voice.”



Both men remained silent for a short time.  The noise from the deli crowd filled the gap.



“My name,” Louis went on, “is Louis Roth.  You might remember me better as Leibke Rothman, number 270145.”



As he finished speaking he slid up the sleeve of his jacket, revealing a series of numbers tattooed on his inner left forearm.



The man dropped the remains of his forgotten sandwich onto the paper plate sitting on the table before him.  As he read and reread the numbers inscribed on the arm held out in front of his now visibly shaken face, Louis returned his right hand into his jacket pocket, grasping the object of his strength once again.



The man turned his gaze upward to catch Louis’ expression.  What did he see?  Was it anger?  Fear? Loathing?  Louis surely felt all those emotions, and more.  But, above all, he felt peace.



As Deidrick sat in stunned silenced, tears slowly running down his cheeks, Louis pulled out a chair opposite him and sat down.  He let out a deep breath, unsure now what to say.  He had rehearsed his well thought out lines many times, but being face to face with this visage was so much different than speaking into a mirror.



Finally, Louis found the words and spoke.



“I have wanted so many times through the years to speak to you, wondering time and again if it would ever happen.  Now that it’s here, I’m unsure how to proceed.”



Deidrick opened his mouth but was cut off when Louis held up his left hand.



“Please,” Louis interjected, “before my courage runs out.”  He exhaled slowly.  “The pain and suffering I endured, though a lifetime ago, can never be undone.  The lost family and friends cannot be regained.  Memories cannot be forgotten.”



He slowly pulled his right hand from concealment, grasping a dull metal object; fingers clenched tightly.



Deidrick’s gaze travelled from Louis’ eyes down to his outstretched hand, face showing visible concern now.



“I want to do so much more for all I endured at yours and other’s hands, but God has shown me the true path to freedom.”



Opening his hand, the metal object dropped out, dangling from a chain wrapped securely around withered fingers.  As the cross swung pendulum-like, Louis asserted, “I forgive you.”


The words fell from his mouth like the tears from his tormentor’s eyes.  As soon as the words were swallowed by a second silence, Louis stood and left the deli, completely engulfed in peace.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Interview with Amy J Hamilton

Here is my latest interview.  Amy J Hamilton asked me to stop by for a quick Q&A session on her blog, Greetings from another planet.  Hope you enjoy it.

http://barkingmaddj.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/gather-round-im-having-chat-with-nathan.html

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

A Work in Progress

I will be posting some short stories that will eventually be put together in a book titled, A Series of Minis.  I decided to try them out here, as they get near completion, to get some feedback.  The first one will be posted later this week, so keep an eye out, and remember, feedback is appreciated.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Author Interviews #3

Here's the newest in author interviews.  It's a good one, check it out and support our Indie Authors.

https://alexrcarver.wordpress.com/2017/04/24/an-interview-with-peri-june/comment-page-1/#comment-210

Friday, April 21, 2017

Author Interviews #2

For all you out there who enjoy author interviews, here's another group of great reads!

https://aislinnkearns.com/2017/04/18/author-interview-carole-p-roman/

https://thehouseofbeck.com/2017/04/18/author-interview-kay-macleod/

https://miketurnerauthorblog.wordpress.com/2017/04/21/author-interview-with-amy-j-hamilton/


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Author Talk with Alex Carver


Hello and welcome to Author Talk, where I get the chance to cross examine an amazing Indie Author.  Today we have Alex R Carver, the author of Where There’s A Will.  Thanks for stopping by my humble little blog.  Why don’t you take the stand and raise your right hand.  Now, before we get started with the third degree, how ‘bout you confess some of your deepest, darkest secrets.  Or you could just tell us a little bit about yourself.
 After working in the clerical, warehouse and retail industries over the years, without gaining much satisfaction, I have quit to follow my dream and become a full-time writer. Where There's A Will is the first book in the Inspector Stone Mysteries series; An Eye For An Eye, the second book, will be out in September, and Written In Blood, a thriller about a serial killer, is released on April 1st.
When not writing, I'm either playing a game or being distracted by Molly the Yorkie, who is greedy for both attention and whatever food is to be found.

Now that the jury is seated, let the inquisition begin.
1.       When did you first realize that you could throw random letters together and have people want to read it?  I’m thinking it was the first time you filled out a police report.  Right?  Right?

I was too young to be filling out a police report, the first time I wrote a story I was about 10 and I was asked to come up with something for an English lesson, it was supposed to be a short thing, only a couple of pages, but it ended up filling an exercise book.

2.       What was the first thing you wrote about?  And when did you write it?

It was the story I wrote for English class, I wrote a kids’ adventure story in the vein of The Famous Five about some friends encountering a band of thieves.

3.       In what genres do you prefer to write?  Which ones have you published in?

Generally, I write crime/mystery stories, though I also have a couple of sci-fi novels on paper and a kids adventure novel that I hope will turn into a series.

4.       When you start a project, do you have an outline you go by, or do you prefer to wing and see how it goes?  If you’ve used both methods, which one worked better for you?  Me, I’m a wing man myself!

I’ve used both methods, it all depends on the story, and I couldn’t say one has worked better than the other for me. I think it comes down to my mood and the story, some require more time spent on planning, and others almost insist that I just dive in and see where it’s going.

5.       Do you have a favorite spot where you prefer to write?  I hope it’s not the bathroom, cause that might make the readers uncomfortable.

I tend to write on the armchair in the living room, it’s comfy but not very conducive to writing, I’d like a desk and a proper space but it’s not on the cards at the moment.

Oh, well, that’s a good place to write, too.

6.       When is the best time for you to write?  Probably when you’re all alone and there’s no witnesses, right?  I prefer to do it in secret, too.

I write at all hours of the day. I’ve been known to wake up at 3am and to sit or lie in bed with my laptop and punch out a thousand words or more.

7.       So, where do your marvelous ideas or inspirations come from? Do you mind if I record you here?  I need some fresh evidence.  Haha! Just kidding.

My ideas come from all around me, I don’t always know their exact point of origin, all of a sudden I have a new idea I have to jot down in the hope of finding the time to work on it in the future. Middle of the night seems to be a good time for me to be inspired though.

8.       Who would you say is your favorite character that you’ve created?  Why?

Hmmm, that’s a toughie, I like Melissa Turner from Written In Blood, she’s a young constable who’s determined to do the right thing even in the face of her superior who she thinks is wrong. Then there’s Louisa Orchard from the Inspector Stone Mysteries, she’s a journalist with ethics who is prepared to throw away a job with a paper for the sake of what she considered the right thing - I sense a theme here, lol.

9.       And what about your least favorite character?  Why don’t you like them? You know, you could change how they are, then maybe you’d care a little more about them.

This is a whole lot easier, it’s Sgt Mitchell from Written In Blood: he’s stubborn, prejudiced, unwilling to admit when he might be wrong, not very good at his job, and he lets his emotions get in the way of doing his job.

I know I could have changed him but it’s fairly important to the story that he’s that way so once I set up his character he was kind of stuck that way.

10.   Sorry about that, I get a little carried away sometimes.  I’ll move it along.  How long did it take to finish your latest project?

That’s not all that easy to say. I had a couple of years without either the internet or a computer and I wrote 10 novels in long hand during that period, now I’m working on taking those handwritten drafts and preparing them for publishing. I’m averaging about 4-6 months for getting them typed up and edited.

11.   How about a little insight into your main character?  Is there anything particularly special about them?

My main character is of course Inspector Stone, and I wouldn’t say there’s anything particularly special about him, he’s a detective doing the best he can to do a good job and do a right job. He’s often fighting his superior’s desire for a quick result because he wants to get the right result and ensure justice is served.

12.   What was the hardest thing about writing your latest project?

An Eye For An Eye is more violent than the other books in the Inspector Stone Mysteries, it also has a much darker tone, and when I first wrote it I was concerned that people who like the series wouldn’t like this entry, but the violence and the tone are necessary because it sets up the character of Nathan Stone for the rest of the series.

13.   Where can the readers of my blog, and I use the plural form very optimistically, pick up a copy of your work?  Would you prefer through Amazon, or can they stalk you and pick it up using a little B & E while you’re out?  I’d be happy to give out your address, so long as you have a few signed copies lying around.  It’d be simple for my CI. 

Amazon is obviously the main place, you can get it either for your Kindle or in paperback, but it’s also available on B&N, iTunes and most other ebook retailers (there may be a slight delay on these as I transition from one distributor to another)

No address?  Oh well, I tried guys.  But it ain’t gonna happen.  Mr. Carver wants to keep the scene of the crime a secret; even from you, the loyal fans.

14.   Since you refuse to cough up your personal info, how about sharing some stuff so they can get a good profile going?  Maybe you’d be more at ease telling us about your favorite writer?  And how about your favorite book of all time?

Some really tough questions here, I read lots of authors and books and picking favourites is such a hard thing to do. If I’m pushed, though, I’d have to pick Anne McCaffrey; her books are not 5* material in my opinion, so people may find my decision odd, but her books are wonderfully accessible and a pleasure to read.

15.   Do you have a favorite TV show or movie?

I’m a big fan of Game of Thrones, so many good characters and scenes.

16.   Do you have any book in particular that you would recommend to my readers (more pluralistic optimism on my part)?

I can think of loads that I feel people should read, but I’m always reluctant to recommend a book in case it’s not the kind of thing someone likes to read.

17.   One last question, if you don’t mind.  Or even if you do.  It’s my line of questioning, after all.  If your book were made into a movie, who would you pull out of the line up to be in the cast?

I’m going to have to pass on this question, I’m just not up enough on actors and actresses to know who would be good for the roles, my brain stumbles when it’s confronted by these kind of questions.

Well, OK.  I can always give you a few options later if you like.  Thanks again to Alex R Carver for submitting to my interrogation.  Don’t forget to pick up your copies at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B06Y1XGZ6Y And follow them through social media at https://twitter.com/arcarver87
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15944488.Alex_R_Carver https://alexrcarver.wordpress.com/


Join me next time on Author Talk, when I interview another Indie Author.  Or, as they might say, make them extremely uncomfortable with my personal questions and comments.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Ember's interview with Eddie

Better late than never.  Here's Ember Winters' uncut,uncensored interview with Eddie.

E: Thank you so much for joining us today! Please introduce yourself!

Hey, Ember. And thank you for finally giving me my due. It’s not often that the real reason people read books get some attention. Yeah, sure, the author has the job of putting our words down, but we all know that it’s us characters that truly run the show. Am I right?

E: Tell us who you are and what you do!

I’ve always been called Eddie, and nothing else. Well, that’s not completely true, I suppose. My dad always had some rather choice names for me whenever I messed up. Or if he was high or drunk; or both on some occasions. But I don’t really want to go into that right now. I’ll save that for another time. And as for what I do? I kill people. Not for a living, mind you. It’s more of a therapeutic thing for me. It kinda helps push the monsters back into the shadows, for a time, anyway.

E: Are you the main character in the story or a supporting role?

Well, as much as it pains me to say it, I share the lead with my nemesis, Detective Collins. Although I think Nathan gave way too many chapters to Ken. He should have focused a little more on me. After all, if it weren’t for me, there really wouldn’t be much of a story. I mean, it IS a crime novel. If I didn’t do my part, there’d be no need for Ken.

E:How old are you?

That isn’t discussed in the book. Just one more of my points about Nathan not focusing enough on me. But that’s neither here nor there. I’m somewhere in the neighborhood of thirty years old. Can’t be completely certain, as I haven’t seen a bio on me anywhere in Nathan’s notes. Not like he has for Ken, that’s for sure. I drive the story, but does he try, even a little, to focus on me? Hardly.
Sorry, when it comes to Ken, I just can’t seem to let go of my anger. I’ll try to stay focused.

E: Tell us about your story. What is it about and what role do you play?

As I mentioned before, it’s a crime novel. Ken, excuse me, Detective Collins, is just finishing up his rookie year in the Homicide Division of the Foley Police Department, when his world comes crashing down on him. Not only has his dad’s illness returned, but Ken begins having some physical and emotional issues. And thanks to his meddling Christian partner, Senior Detective John Filcher, he starts thinking about his eternal security.
As for me, I’ve been locked away for years, watching and waiting for a chance to escape and exact some revenge. Ken is the main reason I’ve been out of the limelight for so long, and I’ve grown tired of seeing him get to be free and live whatever kind of life he’s wanted. Needless to say, I’ve planned for a long time to get back at him. I’ve wanted nothing more than to knock him off his feet and see how well he adapts to having his world turned upside down and inside out. And that’s just what I do. After I get free from my imprisonment, I set my plan in motion, and I start killing prostitutes. That goes back to the therapeutic thing I was talking about earlier.
Anyway, Ken and John must catch me if they want the killings to end. I certainly won’t stop on my own. Along the way, I eliminate some undercover cops, and an operative of the Governor’s ‘Special Crimes Division’.

E: Can you tell us about one of your most distinguishable features?

That would probably be my eyes. There’s nothing really distinguishable about them, per se, other than the coldness locked inside them. You aren’t likely to get a caring glance or see love in them. You certainly wouldn’t find them too pleasant if you were on the receiving end of my cold glare. Not unless you want to feel a chill run down your spine. John can tell you about that, if you ever interview him.

E: Do you have any birthmarks or tattoos?

No. I have considered getting a tattoo, but I’m too afraid of needles.

E: Would you ever want to hang out with your author? If so, what would you do together?

I wouldn’t have a problem hanging out with Nathan, but I can’t say the same thing for him. I don’t think he’d enjoy any of the fun I could show him. He’s too much of a goody two-shoes. At least he is since he found God.

E: If you could have a super power, what would it be, and why?

Hmm. Most definitely invisibility. Imagine what I could get away with if no one could see me!

E: What is your biggest pet peeve when dealing with others?

People! Do you really want to go there? Ok. A lot of people don’t show the real them. They wear a mask to hide their true identity. They act one way to your face, but become someone totally different when the chance arises. At least I let my victims know up front what kind of person I am. I’m a straight shooter, figuratively, and literally, as you’ll see when you read the book.

E: What would I love the most about you?

Probably nothing. I’m a cold and calloused individual, for the most part. Comes from the upbringing, I would say. I don’t know how anybody could be different than I am, if they had to grow up as me.


E: What would I hate most about you?


Pretty much everything. See the previous answer for clarification.

E: Do you think the author portrayed you accurately?

No. I think he took a little too much artistic license in portraying me and my emotions. Maybe if he spent a day alone with me, and he managed to survive, then he might be able to better articulate the depth of my anger and cold-heartedness.

E: What is your idea of a perfect day?

Perfect day? Is there such a thing? Not where I come from. But just for the sake of an interesting interview, I’ll say that the perfect day would be being able to do whatever I wanted, without the fear of consequences. Who wouldn’t want that kind of freedom? I bet if you took a poll right now, most of your fans would agree with me. Go ahead, I’ll wait…
…See? What’d I tell you? Never underestimate the depravity of the average person. That’s what I always say.

E: What is your greatest fear?

That’s an easy one. Getting locked away again, for good. The first time was bad enough, but I don’t think even I could deal with another extended stay in solitary confinement. In there, I have no way to release those sadistic little monsters running around in my head. They’re enough to drive a guy crazy. Or do you think I’m already there? You can be honest with me. I can take it.
May I ask you a question, Ember? If you’re crazy, do you think you know you are, or does someone need to tell you? And if they told you, would it even matter? You don’t have to answer if you don’t want to. Just thought I’d ask.

E: Someone is secretly in love with you. Who is it and how do you feel about that?

Samantha Adamson. That would be absolutely perfect. It would go so far into helping mess Ken’s life up. He’s so smitten with her, I think it would actually destroy him. Of course, I’ve thought more than once about doing away with her, just to see Ken’s reaction. Did I? Well, you’ll just have to read the book to find out.

E: When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Normal. My life was too much of a wreck to even think about dreaming of growing up. Now Ken, he had plenty of time to think about having a normal life and dream about what he would be when he grew up. I’ve had plenty of envy over him where that is concerned. I guess maybe I did dream of having a life like his. He’s always been pretty much carefree and happy-go-lucky; even considering some of the hard times he did have early on in life.

E: If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, what would you do today?

As much as I could get away with before getting caught! Oh, you want something specific? Well, I’ve thought about taking out someone famous. Who wouldn’t matter, as long as they were high profile. Even now, just thinking about it, I can imagine my knife blade sliding into their skin; the blood pooling around the handle. Can you smell their fear? Feel their quivering skin beneath your touch? Can you see their soul leaving their body? Stick with me and I can show you so much more.

E: What is the one food you can’t live without?

I haven’t been in control of much of my life, so I’ve never really thought about it before.

E: If they turned the book into a movie, who would be cast to play you?

Who would be cast? Probably some two-bit character actor not worth the industry minimum. Who should be cast? Pacino, De Niro or Hopkins would be my choice. Unfortunately, they’re all too old. Apart from that, it wouldn’t really matter. I’m probably dead, or they wouldn’t be making a movie. Would they?
You’ve had enough? Okay, well, thanks for your time. And thanks again for talking with the only one deserving the honor. I’ll be watching…I mean, I’ll see you around.


Now that you've heard from Eddie, why not grab a copy of Written in Blood and get a little deeper understanding of Eddie and how he ticks?

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Book Trailer

Here's a link for the book trailer of Written in Blood.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAIIvqKIZNA

A review of 'Baqash'

Here is a brief review of Baqash, written by Indie Author CE Wilson.

Synopsis:

Sarah sat at the feet of her friend Joseph. He was an old wizened man with wispy tufts of gray hair. He leaned forward in the rocking chair and whispered to her, “be prepared.” “Be prepared for what,” she wondered. Sarah took off her ball-cap and ran her fingers through her chopped at red hair. Her parents were taken away from her, she and many of the faithful absconded into this 1890’s house, and the future looked bleaker than the past. As for the past? The world-wide earthquake took that away first. And then hail and fire destroyed hope. A burning star fell from the sky, broke upon impact, and poisoned a third of all drinkable water. What grieved her heart most was that the stars in the sky were taken away. At night you could go out and never see a single one because of the dust and ash that was cast into the heavens. When was the last time she’d seen a clear sky? Amidst all of this she had a dream, a dream of the man she would marry. One simple question plagued her: “How am I supposed to find him?”

My rating: 4 Stars

A brief review:

For anyone who enjoys reading end times fiction, look no further. This one is for you. With a story that moves along, characters who are well written and not paper cutouts, and an intriguing storyline that will keep you reading, Baqash comes highly recommended. Looking forward to reading more from CE Wilson as his series continues.

Follow this link to grab your copy:

https://www.amazon.com/Baqash-C-E-Wilson-ebook/dp/B01LZM6CUH/

Other works by CE Wilson:

October Falling: Baqash Origins

https://www.amazon.com/October-Falling-C-E-Wilson-ebook/dp/B01N66ST4X/

Worldview vs Biblical view pt 8

     How do you look at things; through a worldview or a Biblical view?   The world these days seems to be a self-serve, self-centered place.  Everybody wants to look out for number one.  The world says that you have to be on top of everyone else to be important. You have to be the big cheese, the head honcho.  Being number one is what matters most, because everyone is out to serve the top dog.  We all want to be served, but few want to be the ones to serve.
     The Bible tells us that anywhere "self-seeking exists...evil" will be found (James 3:16).  God says that serving others is what it's all about.  Jesus was all about service.  He wanted to take care of everyone He came in contact with during His earthly ministry.  He tells us that nothing should be done "through selfish ambition" but in "lowliness of mind" and that we should all "esteem others" better than ourselves (Philippians 2:3).
     Jesus also tells us that even He "did not come to be served, but to serve" (Mark 10:45).  If the King of all kings, God's One and Only Son, can serve others, shouldn't we, as "joint-heirs with Christ" be willing to do the same (Romans 8:17).
     Take time to pray and ask God to give you a willing heart to serve.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Ember Winters interview

So, the day finally arrived.  Ember Winters interviewed Eddie, my antagonist from Written in Blood.  He is definitely as cold blooded a character as you'll ever meet.  He has only one thing on his mind, and it isn't to walk hand in hand into the sunset with the girl of his dreams.  Not by a long shot.  He lives for the thrill of the kill, and the more the merrier.  The bloodier the better.  But, his ultimate goal is to ruin the life of the man he blames for all his troubles.


I checked out his ramblings earlier, you won't be disappointed.  Stop by her blog and see how things went, then drop by Amazon and pick up your copy of Written in Blood to get a better feel for Eddie.

https://emberrainewintersbookblog.wordpress.com/2017/04/11/coffee-with-characters-eddie-from-written-in-blood/

Author Interviews

Here are the links to some great author interviews.  Drop by and check them out, you just might discover your next favorite author!

https://www.authorrljackson.com/2017/04/11/author-spotlight-michael-turner/

https://miketurnerauthorblog.wordpress.com/2017/04/07/an-interview-with-author-peri-june/

https://thehouseofbeck.com/2017/04/10/author-interview-amy-j-hamilton/

http://barkingmaddj.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/author-interview-gather-round-and-meet.html

https://aislinnkearns.com/2017/04/11/author-interview-r-l-jackson/

Happy reading and thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Author Talk with Kay MacLeod


Hello and welcome to the inaugural edition of Author Talk, where I get to chat up some truly awesome Indie Authors. Today, I’ll be talking with Kay MacLeod, the author of Heirs of Power. Thanks for stopping by my humble little blog to do this interview. Why don’t you pull up a chair and grab a mug of fresh tea. I believe that’s your preferred drink.  Before we get started, how ‘bout you tell us a little bit about yourself.


Hi everyone!

Confession time, I’m a fantasy addict! For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved the concept of magical worlds. I was the kid with dragons doodled around the edge of her school work, the one with her head constantly buried in a book. As a teen, I shunned partying to play Magic the Gathering and DM Dungeons and Dragons games.

Through the years, I’ve always made up stories and took characters on amazing adventures, in the privacy of my own mind. Now I want to share them with other people.

I live with my husband and cat in Nottinghamshire in England. When I’m not writing (or planning something I’m writing) I’m usually working, reading, playing bass for my church’s worship team, playing computer games (World of Warcraft, Dragon Age, Pokemon, Minecraft) or drinking tea. (Thanks Nathan!)


Now that we have the easy stuff out of the way, let the real fun begin. Buckle up and enjoy the ride.

1. When did you first realize that you had a knack for story-telling? Was it the first time you got into trouble for spinning an unbelievable yarn just to get out of trouble?


Of course not! I don’t get caught ;)


No? Huh, I would have laid odds that’s what it was.


It’s difficult to pick a first time, I’ve always loved stories, whether that’s reading them, playing games, or making them up. And most nights when I was a kid I entertained myself in my head when I was in bed, creating worlds and characters. I’d draw them in the day and write snippets of their adventures, I’ve still got folders full of art, family trees and random pages of writing from throughout my school days.


2. What was the first thing you wrote about? And when did you write it?


The first real stories I crafted were towards the end of primary school, so I was probably about ten when I started, and I was big into Brian Jacques Redwall series. I created a similar world with a medieval-style setting populated with anthropomorphic animals, but with magic, and giant insects as the antagonists. The main characters were squirrels and they were trying to overcome the divide between greys and reds to fight back against the bugs, and then an albino mage shows up… I may go back to it and do something with it one day, young me put a lot of work into it!


3. In what genres do you prefer to write? Which ones have you published in?


Fantasy and fantasy! I also prefer fantasy games, books, art, and anything else that has a genre :D (I’m a little bit obsessed.)


4. When you start a project, do you have an outline you go by, or is it more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of thing? If you’ve used both methods, which one worked better for you? Me, I’m the pants flying guy myself!


I must plan! I’m so much more productive with my time if I know exactly where I’m heading. And I think fantasy has to be well-designed for it to be immersive, if you don’t know your own world and your character’s capabilities, readers are going to feel lost. I use Evernote for keeping track of my planning, it’s so useful for all those character profiles, dialogue ideas and chapter outlines, and you can add pictures for maps and descriptions. Kudos to you for being able to write on the fly though, I don’t just have a story outline- I do one for every chapter! (Not saying I always stick to it…)


5. Do you have a favorite spot where you prefer to write?


I usually write at my desk, in my nice, comfy chair, no sounds, no distractions. Except when my cat decides to lay over my left arm, he does it so often that sometimes I catch myself only using my right hand to type even when he isn’t there.


6. When is the best time for you to write? Probably when you’re all alone and there’s no one staring over your shoulder, right? Me, too.


I definitely prefer to be on my own. Though I’m fine with my husband being in the office because he will be at his own computer and not staring over my shoulder haha! I can write pretty much any time of the day, but I do get surges of inspiration late at night sometimes and can’t help but keep going until the early hours of the morning.


7. So, where do your marvelous ideas or inspirations come from? Hang on a sec, let me grab a pen, I need some ideas for my next book.


I wish I knew… They just come to me all the time, I was once sat in the back of a car and randomly had an idea for an entire world, I have dreams that have evolved into characters, I sometimes burst out laughing in public because some banter appeared in my head. I spend more time in other worlds than this one, I suppose. If I’ve walked past you without saying hi (I do this a lot), I swear that I’m just oblivious to reality and not ignoring you!


I’ll try not to feel ignored if it ever happens.  (But I was really hoping for something I could use in my next book).  Oh well, on with the next question.


8. Who would you say is your favorite character that you’ve created? Why?


Anyone that’s read any of my interviews or talked to me about my work will know how crazy I am about Asher Grey. And yes, I love his cool power (he can switch the positions of two objects if he’s touching one and can see the other, including people) and his straight-talking snarky attitude, but I adore that there’s so much more to him. Asher has less magic than most of the other characters, but instead of letting that hold him back, he uses what he has in creative and ingenious ways to get ahead. It’s fun for me as a writer to design clever tricks for him pull off, but I also admire him for his dedication in working to be better than people that are naturally much stronger than him. I think it’s a good lesson for people to know that even if they aren’t the most talented at something at the beginning, with discipline and practice, they can be.


He sounds simply marvellous.


9. And what about your least favorite character? Why them?


I won’t say a name, because it’s a bit of a spoiler if I do, but there was a character that wasn’t ever supposed to be part of the group or even involved after the first chapters that they meet him in. But then I changed a few bits later on in the series and there was a gap where I’d shifted another person’s allegiance. So, this guy got the job, and it’s like he just invited himself along, no planning, no development and suddenly I have to figure out the rest of his story around the structure I already have. He’s a decent guy though, it’s nothing personal ;)


Hm. You know, you really shouldn’t be so rough on him, you created them after all.


10. Sorry about that, I get a little carried away sometimes. Moving on. How long did it take to finish your latest project?


I started planning Heirs of Power from about 16/11/14 for a month and then finished the first draft on approximately 24/09/15 (oh yeah, I track as much as I plan) but I had a month off in the middle because my husband was in a motorcycle accident, he’s fine now though, just with a bionic thumb! After the usual rewrites, beta reading, editing, and learning how to do everything because it was my first book, it was eventually released 31/10/16.


A bionic thumb!  That would be awesome.


11. How about a little insight into your main character? Is there anything particularly special about them?


The main character is Kitty Fairlow, she’s been gifted with the spirit of The Archer, and has a magic bow that creates arrows when it’s drawn (no ‘hey, Legolas, where did you get all those arrows from?’ here!) she can see about twice as far as a normal human and her other senses are enhanced too, and she’s got great dexterity and reactions.

Kitty’s not your typical main character, she’s more of a reserved, caring peacemaker and she tries not to cause conflict. I was so used to seeing leads that are in your face and beautiful and sassy, and those guys are great, but I figured it was time for something different. Kitty is a bit awkward and na├»ve, doesn’t always think things through, and she struggles with being in big groups of people. But she really wants to do her best to protect her world and to help others, even if that means she needs to make sacrifices.

She may be a sweetheart, but Kitty is a lot of fun too, with such opposing personalities, her and Asher bounce off each other brilliantly. Their conversations are easily some of the best bits in the whole book, I love writing their banter. 


12. Speaking of easy, what was the hardest thing about writing your latest project?


The writing was the easiest part! It was my first voyage into publishing a book, so I had so much to learn, I know I still do and probably always will, but figuring everything out from scratch seemed like a never-ending task. Luckily, I have some great support around me and had a lot of help and encouragement throughout. I’m hoping the next one will be easier now I sort of know what I’m doing :)


13. Where can the readers of my blog, and I use the plural form very optimistically, pick up a copy of your work? Would you prefer through Amazon, or can they just drop by your house for a signed copy? I’d be happy to give out your address. Really, it’s no problem at all. No? That’s a very emphatic headshake.  Oh well, sorry folks.  I tried, but Kay wants her address to remain a secret from her loyal fans.


Only because I’m one of those people that writes in her pyjamas, it’s not good when someone comes to your house at 3pm and you’re in bedclothes and your hair’s a mess and they want you to sign a book. Unfortunately, this isn’t a theoretical situation, this happened with one of my neighbours- sorry Mick…

So yeah, Amazon’s good! Here’s the link:

https://www.amazon.com/Heirs-Power-Constellation-Saga-1/dp/1537258281/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1491563092&sr=8-1&keywords=heirs+of+power


14. Since you won’t give out your address, how about some other kind of personal stuff? Maybe you’d be more at ease telling us who your favorite writer is? And how about your favorite book of all time? Please tell me it’s one of mine! Please, please!!


How am I supposed to pick a favourite? There’s so much good stuff. As you’ve probably noticed, I enjoy fantasy, so I mainly read that. When forced into a decision, I generally say Adrian Tchaikovsky’s Shadows of The Apt series is my favourite, but I love Terry Pratchett’s Discworld too. Indie-wise, I’d go with Susan Kaye Quinn’s Mindjack series and The Emperor’s Edge books by Lindsay Buroker. I don’t think narrowing it down to four authors is too bad, right?


Hey, I don’t blame you, my favorite book of all time isn’t even one of mine.


15. Do you have a favorite TV show or movie? What is it?


I don’t really watch much TV, if I do it’s something to put on in the background while I’m doing housework or eating. It’s generally comedy, like Impractical Jokers or Futurama. If I’m watching films, it’s on a date night with my husband, we go to see all the superhero movies. To be honest, I’m much more of a gamer. I’d rather get lost in a good RPG than stick the TV on any day!


16. Do you have any book in particular that you would recommend to my followers (more optimism on my part)?


Well, there’s this epic fantasy novel called Heirs of Power… If you’ve already read that, I’d recommend any of the ones from my favourite author question, the two indies always have their first book free, so there’s no reason not to check them out!


17. One last question, if you don’t mind. Or even if you do. It is my blog, after all. If your book were made into a movie, who would you pick to be the cast? And please don’t you dare mention LEO!


But…I have a character called Leo ;) and he would be played by Nick Robinson. Kitty would be Daisy Ridley. And I’m terrible at actors so I’m not sure about the rest haha. I have got pictures of people that I think look like them all on my Constellation Saga Pinterest board, and for all I know they could be well-known actors, go take a look!


Well, I guess I can live with that. Thanks again to Kay for taking the time to join us (me) today. Don’t forget to pick up your copies at:


https://www.amazon.com/Heirs-Power-Constellation-Saga-1/dp/1537258281/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1491565455&sr=8-1&keywords=heirs+of+power . And follow her through social media at:


Website- http://kaymacleodbooks.com/


Goodreads-https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15975307.Kay_MacLeod


Amazon US-https://www.amazon.com/Kay-MacLeod/e/B01MDSNQ0A/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1


Amazon UK-https://www.amazon.co.uk/Kay-MacLeod/e/B01MDSNQ0A/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1486248511&sr=8-1


Facebook-https://www.facebook.com/KayMacLeodFantasy/


Twitter- https://twitter.com/KayMacLeodBooks


Pinterest- https://uk.pinterest.com/KayMacLeodBooks/


YouTube- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCx_CW8jslVSowv2FpZjx9Kw



Join me next time when I browbeat…uh…interview, another wonderful Indie writer on Author Talk.


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Friday, March 31, 2017

Spring Forward Book Attack

Day one is complete.  On with day 2!  Looking forward to another great day of downloads for everyone involved!



Stop by to pick up copies of some great reads by some amazing authors.  ($0.99 and Free downloads)

Monday, March 27, 2017

Coming soon:


Spring Book Festival

Don't forget to drop on by the Spring Book Festival for some great reads and hot deals @
http://navigatingindieworld.com/


Interview with Ember Raine Winters




Ember Raine Winters recently asked for an interview with Eddie, the main antagonist from my debut novel, Written in Blood.  Unbeknownst to me, Eddie hijacked my email and easily agreed to spend some time talking with the author of the Pride and Honor, and Born series of books.  I don't have all the information about what went on during the interview, but Ember has promised me that all went well and that the interview was good.  I will have to trust her judgment and we will all find out when it goes live on her blog,  on April 11.  Once it's out, I will post the info with the link.  Stay tuned!


World view vs Biblical view pt7

     Is your viewpoint worldly or Biblical?  People in general tend to think that being a good person qualifies them for Heaven.  The world says, "I'm a good person, therefore, God won't send me to hell."  They think that God is responsible for where they will spend eternity, and not the life choices that they have made.  They think that it's only the truly "wicked" people of the world that are condemned.  They think that if they do their best, if they are "good", and if they keep some of the commandments, they will make it to Heaven. They also rationalize their behavior and try to compare themselves to others.  They think that if they aren't as bad as the guy down the street who sells drugs to kids, or aren't like murderers and rapists, or they aren't wicked, then they will be ok for eternity.
     Unfortunately for them, God has other ideas about "good" and "wicked" people.  First of all, "good" won't cut it with God.  Secondly, keeping some of the commandments is not enough.  The Bible says that, "Whoever shall keep the whole law and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all" (James 2:10).
     To God, one sin is just as bad as five hundred sins.  One sin is just as bad as the next sin; other than the sin of blasphemy.  Therefore, you must strive to remain sinless in all areas, not just the ones you think are the "bad" ones.  You won't be able to be sinless, even though you are redeemed, but you must strive towards that mark.  Jesus left us the example to follow on how to live.
     The world is right about on area of their thinking though.  God doesn't want to send you to hell, but that's a choice you make when you choose to reject Jesus as your Savior.  The Bible says that God is not "willing that any should perish, but...come to repentance" (2 Peter 3:9).  Which means that God wants you to choose Jesus.
     God's Word clearly tells us that all will be "judged according to their works," and that "anyone not found written in the Book of Life," will be "cast into the lake of fire" (Revelation 20:12, 15).
     Choose life, not death.  It's a choice we all must make.
     Take time to pray to God and choose life.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Free

My book, Written in Blood, will be free to download through Amazon during the "Spring Forward Book Attack" March 31-April 2

https://www.amazon.com/Written-Blood-Foley-Chronicles-District-ebook/dp/B01IMXO7DW/

Grab a copy, enjoy, and feel free to drop a review on Amazon!

Thanks in advance to all those who help Support Indie Authors during this promo!

Support Indie Authors

Coming soon!

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Don't miss the chance to grab your free and discounted copies from some amazing authors!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

World view vs Biblical view pt6

     What's your point of view, worldly or Biblical?  We all know how hard it is to love, or even like some people. We have a tendency to shy away from certain types of people: those that we perceive as "unclean" or "dirty"; the homeless; ones that we classify as "different" or "strange".
     The world says that you don't have to love all people.  We can pick and choose who is worthy of our love and friendship.  Besides, nobody wants to try to love someone who we know hates us; they don't deserve our love.
     But God sees it the opposite way.  God says it doesn't matter who they are or what they look like or where they come from or even if they've done you wrong, you have to love them.  God plainly tells us in His Word that "you shall love your neighbor as yourself" (Leviticus 19:18).  It doesn't matter who they are, where they're from, what they do; everyone is your neighbor.  Even those that don't like you.
     It's easy to love those that love you and look out for you and your well being.  But loving those that don't love you is a whole lot harder.  God says that "if you love those that love you...And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you?  For even sinners do the same"  (Luke 6:32-33).
     The Bible goes even further to tell us to "love", to "bless", to "do good", and to "pray for them" (Matthew 5:44).  And why should we do these things?  Because Jesus says that as "you have done it unto the least of these...ye have done it unto me"  (Matthew 5:40).  And isn't that the main thing?  Doing all that we do for the "glory of God" (1 Corinthians 10:31).
     Take time to pray to God and ask for His help in loving your neighbors.