Monthly Archives: November 2013

Author Interview: Abby Vandiver

Today’s interview some early due to the holiday. Abby Vandiver is a fantasy and science fiction writer whose first book has had quite a few good reviews. You can learn more about Abby at Goodreads here: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7155622.Abby_L_Vandiver

And a very happy Thanksgiving to everyone! I’ll be back next week; I’m headed to California this evening to visit family.

abby

1. What led to you writing your first book?

It was in 1997 and I had just lost my job and was really depressed. I had moved my eighty year old mother in and along with my two teenage children I worried about what I was going to do. But, instead of looking for a job, I said, “I’m going to write a book.” I don’t know what came over me. I can’t even remember where the idea for the first book came from. The book got lost somehow, and didn’t resurface until 2011 when my daughter found it in her garage. As a legacy to my mother, who passed away in 1998, I dusted it off and got it published.

2. You describe “In the Beginning” as a cross between historical and science fiction. Why is that?

To make my sci-fi story more believable I used actual scientific facts. In the Beginning tells makes its case using real events from NASA, ancient mysteries, and the history of species development on Earth.

3. What kind of research did you do on this book?

I did tons of research on this book. Remember, I wrote it in 1997 and the Internet wasn’t what it is today. I can remember spending hours in the local library looking through books on travel, evolution, space missions, Mars and languages. I learned so much. And I do get that from readers, they often mentioned that it’s evident that a lot of research went into the book. But I enjoyed every minute of it.

4. Tell me about the book.

Well, as we talked about, it is a mystery/sci-fi that mixes fact with fiction. Overall, it gives a different point of view of what happened “in the beginning.” But within its pages it deals with depression, family, faith, the environment, and man’s need to dominate. The book is not action packed or fast paced, but it’ll make you laugh and make you think. You’ll find yourself researching what you find in the book to see if it’s true. And I guarantee that you won’t find another book anywhere with it’s same premise.

5. Who is your favorite writer, and why?

I am my favorite writer. Can I say that? I went to school for so very long, (I have three degrees) and I really had lost the joy reading brought because everything I read I was later tested on. Once, I published my book I did start to read for enjoyment again but I haven’t found any one author that I could say is my favorite.

6. What are you working on next?

I’m working on two things. One is a sequel to In the Beginning. It is called The Westbury End Book Club and will be out late this year. The other book will be the first in a series of books based loosely on my family. The title of that book is 1203.

7. What did you learn in publishing your book?

Oh my goodness, that editing is so hard. It’s harder than writing the book. You go over your book so many times and still there is something that needs correcting or changing. I decided that on my next two books, I am going to get everything right the first time and not have to go back and edit one word!

8. Have you done any promoting? If so, what?

I try to promote at every opportunity I get. Sort of like people are with their pets and children, they tell everyone about them and show lots of pictures. I was in the hospital recently for two weeks, had two different surgeries, but everytime someone new came in my room, doctor, nurse, food service, I told them about my book! And then the usual, social media platforms. Right now I have a special on my eBook at Amazon for $.99. I also plan on doing giveaways, getting reviews and doing interviews. By the way, thank you very much for doing this interview with me.

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Book Review: First to Kill by Andrew Peterson

first

Title:  First to Kill

Author: Andrew Peterson

Genre:  Action/Thriller

Publisher: Thomas and Mercer

I enjoy thrillers now and then. I came upon this book because the series came as highly rated on Amazon, so I figured I’d check it out. This series features Nathan McBride, an ex-Marine sniper who now takes odd jobs, after a brutal torture session that left him scarred, both mentally and physically. He works with his buddy Harvey, another ex-soldier.

Peterson pays a great deal of attention to small details, including types of weapons, types of camouflage and ghillie suits, and has obviously either been in the military or done extensive research. It was because of these details that I really enjoyed the book. There are some really violent moments (and a few torture sessions, ugh) but things moved along quickly enough that I didn’t find the violence overbearing. I have to say as a gamer, I appreciated the sniper battles in particular, since that’s one of my favorite things.

Nathan McBride may be a hard man and able to commit some pretty callous acts in the name of the mission, but he has enough heart and soul to make him likeable. The book also dealt with his troubled relationship with his father, a U.S. Senator. There was realism in the inter-agency politics that I appreciated, having also worked with government contracts.

So for those who enjoy military action on domestic soil and a lot of action, I’d definitely recommend this series.

Especially if you like snipers.

Author Interview: Jenelle Schmidt

Today’s interview is with Jenelle Schmidt, a YA fantasy writer who has been in the business for several years but recently got into indie publishing. You can find out more about Jenelle on Goodreads here:

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3636.Jenelle_Leanne_Schmidt

jenelle

1. I see that you developed a love of writing from having stories read to you. How
do you think your love of books has influenced you as a person?

This is an excellent question. I believe my love of books has made me far more
introspective and thoughtful. I know it has inspired my imagination and sparked
a lot of creativity in me that otherwise might have remained dormant. And, of
course, it inspired me to write, to create my own worlds and characters. Books
are so much a part of who I am, it’s hard to figure out where their influence
ends and I begin sometimes.

2. You’ve been epublishing longer than many others! How did you first decide to
indie publish, and what was it like?

Actually, I only just recently got into e-publishing. But I did publish my
first book under a different title a good 9 years ago. When I first really got
serious about publishing about 6 years ago, I spent a long time re-writing and
editing (and having other editors besides myself look at my ms) my first book.
I armed myself with the 2007 Guide to Literary Agents and started sending out
queries. Over the course of time I sent out maybe twenty or thirty query
letters to agents.

I received all of 3 or 4 responses. One was actually a request for the first
five pages of my book, which the agent then declared (kindly and gently) was,
“Sadly not what she was hoping for.”

After much time waiting and never receiving any sort of response, I finally
decided that I could spend the rest of my life writing query letters (which I
hated) or I could spend the rest of my life writing books (which I loved). In
the end, it wasn’t a difficult decision. I am blessed with the ability to not
have to depend on my writing for a living, as my husband has a wonderful job
and my other “title” is “stay-at-home-mom.”

So far, self-publishing has been a lot of fun. It’s scary, and a lot of really
hard work, but it’s all work I enjoy, and I have much more control over my
finished product than I would if I had an agent or a traditional publisher. It
has also given me the opportunity to create a publishing/marketing company with
my siblings – and I wouldn’t trade that experience for any amount of advance a
traditional company might offer.

3. What about YA fantasy appeals to you?

I have always loved fantasy, but it’s hard to find adult fantasy that is really
“clean” (no sleeping around, swearing, etc). So, I like to hang out
in the YA fantasy section, where I can get all the extraordinary worlds, heroic
characters, mythical creatures, quests, magic, and spell-binding plotlines
without having to slog through anything objectionable.

I also grew up with my dad reading out loud to myself and my brothers, and the
idea of fantasy that can be read together by the entire family has always
appealed to me. There’s just something so cozy and fun and wholesome about a
family reading together, and I when my dad challenged me to write something he
could read aloud to my younger siblings, the idea caught my imagination and
away we went! I would love to be able to share that experience with other
families.

4. Tell me about your latest book.

My latest book is also the only book I have released so far, though the prequel
will be released in the next couple of months – we’re just waiting on the cover
art to be finalized.

King’s Warrior: book one of the Minstrel’s Song – is about a princess whose
country is about to be invaded by an unknown enemy. Her father sends her off on
a quest to find a man who can help them, one who defended their land in the
past. Finding him, however, proves to be the easiest part of her quest.

If I had to sum it up in just a few words, I would say this book has it all: a
quest, a mysterious warrior, dragons, kings, wizards, magic, adventure,
sword-fights, and a teeny tiny bit of romance.

5. Who is your favorite writer and why?

My favorite writer was my Grandma Gwen Walker. She wrote a book called “He
Whistles for the Cricket” and I grew up reading it over and over again. It
is a charming, beautiful little book about a girl and her dog living in the
Midwestern United States in the 1940s. It makes me laugh and cry every time I
read it.

Two Christmases ago, I got it typed up and published for her – as a present to
my family, though she is not alive to see it. It is my favorite book of all
time, and probably much of the reason I became an author myself. I think just
knowing that someone I knew had written an entire book was an inspiration to
me. I started writing my own stories as soon as I could hold a pencil and write
real words. I don’t know if I would have even dreamed of writing books if she
hadn’t written one first.

6. What are you working on next?

There are so many things that I am working on right now it’s amazing I’m still
sane! Second Son is ready to go, and then I need to start work editing book
three of The Minstrel’s Song (a series of 4 books). All the books in this
series are complete and in various stages of the editing process.

This summer I finished writing my fifth book, a completely new
story/world/character-set, and just started work on the sequel to that book.

I also have a sci-fi series that is in the beginning stages of development, and
a few other ideas percolating. Really, the biggest difficulty right now is
time, as I am also stay-at-home mom of two beautiful little girls ages 5 years
and 18 months. I’m not lacking for projects or ideas! It’s a wonderful problem
to have.

7. Do you promote? If so, what has been the most successful for you?

I do, though I need to get better about this. So far, what we’ve done has
included: goodreads giveaways, kindle select free-promotions, author
interviews, read-to-review giveaways, trying to get my book into libraries, and
a book signing at Barnes and Noble.

I’m not sure which has been the most successful. They’ve all been very good
experiences and have taught me a lot about the process of marketing and
promoting. I think having a variety of avenues to promote in is valuable. We
are looking into new avenues to pursue and trying to figure out which ones will
be the most useful – but we aren’t really “experts” yet… though we
do hope to become experts in this field eventually.

8. Any other advice for writers?

The advice I tend to give is pretty basic. The best advice I ever got about
writing was from my dad, who told me, “If you want to be a writer, you
need to be writing.”

It seems so simple, but it’s true. Write! Something, anything, even just a
little bit, every day.

The other bit of advice is to read. Never stop reading. Become an expert in
your genre. Read outside your genre. Learn what works by reading other authors.

Thanks so much for having me over for an interview!

Buzz Buzz!

bee

So it seems like the cover reveal for my soon to be published fantasy novel Journey to Landaran went really well! A total of 25 blogs posted it, I received a bunch of new Twitter followers, over 75 “To Read” additions over at Goodreads and the Amazon gift card and ARC giveaway currently stands at 427 entries and counting!

One of the hardest things for any writer, and particularly for indie writers, is to create a buzz for their book. How do you get that word of mouth thing going? How can you get people excited to read what you have written?

In my experience, I think genre and the demographics of your audience does play a role in what kinds of activities you should do to promote your books. If you have a heavy science fiction and comic books crowd, then you’d probably benefit from setting up a table at a local sci fi convention. If you are after the academic and educational crowd, try speaking at libraries or colleges.

And if your audience is younger or your genre is YA, especially with paranormal elements, blog tours are a way to go.

I knew my first book wouldn’t appeal to the YA audience. The writing is denser and the flow of the book is a little slow. Also, there are a lot of thematic undercurrents to the book which would appeal more to the main sci fi/fantasy reader, particularly male and academic. It’s a ‘smart’ book–it makes you think. I don’t envision a lot of teenagers getting into it, so I didn’t even try to market it that way.

This new book, however, is different. Descriptions are paired down and the pace is faster. The protagonists are younger. Romance is only hinted at in the first book, but you’ll see more of it blossoming in the next couple of books in the series. The magic is based on psychic abilities more than traditional spells and witchcraft. Technically it’s a science fantasy.

I knew it appealed to the YA reader the instant I first described the book to my pre-teen daughter (then eleven at the time). She’s now 13 and she’s been hopping up and down wanting to read this one. She wasn’t really all that into my Heart of the Witch book.

So I branded the book with a cover more appealing to YA readers, and I set up the cover reveal with a YA blog.

And people are talking. The cover is getting positive feedback, and what’s more, people are interested in reading about these twins and their powers.

I’ll be doing another blog tour with Candace when the book comes out in February. Meanwhile I have beta readers reading the book (my daughter’s one of them), and I’m sending out ARCs to various reviewers. I’ll see what people think!

And hopefully that’ll create even more buzz.

(Remember, you still have a couple weeks to sign up for the giveaway!  Details can be found here:  http://www.candacesbookblog.com/2013/11/cover-reveal-giveaway-journey-to.html )

Author Interview: Martyn Stanley

Just a reminder! I’m offering a Giveaway for a $20 Amazon Gift Card and ARCs of my upcoming novel, Journey to Landaran. Check out the cover reveal and details here: http://www.candacesbookblog.com/2013/11/cover-reveal-giveaway-journey-to.html

And it’s Thursday, and once again I’m interviewing an indie author. Today I have Martyn Stanley, a fantasy writer with a series about dragons. Psst, and by the way, I was lucky enough to see a couple of the new cover designs he’s considering for the series. They’re looking really good.

Find out more about Martyn here:

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6545672.Martyn_Stanley

martyn

1. What first motivated you to write?

I’ve always loved writing and making up stories. I think it comes from a love of playing video games, I’ve always loved reading and watching films too, but the magic of a good game is that you control the destiny of the protagonist. I some games, you have an incredible degree of freedom over what happens to your protagonist, but you still have to stay within the confines of the game mechanics. Writing was a way to be creative without any constraints. Of course that was the theory, what I’ve found since is that yes, if you’re writing fantasy, you don’t have any rules except those which you make yourself. Of course if you DO make rules you have to make sure you stick to them. You still can’t ‘god-mode’ as we used to call it on the Star Wars Exodus Roleplaying forum. The way your characters deal with adversity has to be plausible. People don’t like god-like characters either, the only possible exception is when you’ve taken a long time, to explain ‘how’ they became the powerful characters they are, and the challenges and trials they’ve faced to get there.

2. So you like dragons, it seems. What about them appeal to you?

Dragons are fascinating characters. You have a great deal of flexibility with dragons, they can be benevolent, savage, sentient, good, evil, whatever you want. What I didn’t want to do was to write dragons as being the friendly helpful, creatures some fantasy authors choose to portray them as. Not because this is wrong, but because in my rather dark fantasy world I need them to express realistically what dragons might be like. The anatomy and size of dragons, compared to calorie intake required and the fact that they breath fire means they need to be supernatural in nature, so my dragons are essentially living, breathing magic. Why would beings so powerful really want to help humans? Or elves for that matter? If you look at any cases historically of powerful creatures or cultures meeting weak ones, the weak tend to be subdued. I also have a special reason for using dragons, and that reason is the main villain which I introduce at the end of book three. I won’t spoil it, but I like to think big. When I was writing on the Star Wars Exodus RP forum, I wrote a several thousand year old vampiric Sith Lord with a star ship that was forty kilometres long. My Sith Lord travelled to other dimensions, murdered people from the far side of the galaxy with a thought and on one occasion force-threw an entire planet… I think I’ve calmed down a bit since then though – the wisdom of age is catching up with me!

3. The blurb for your first book sounds like pretty standard fantasy fare. What makes it different?

When I started writing it, that’s literally all that it was. A fairly token, off the shelf fantasy adventure. A single character really changed the book though, Brael of House Krazic. He’s a dark elf wizard, warrior who has a reputation for being incredibly good at magic. When we meet him in book one he is cursed though, so he can neither access magic, nor talk about ‘the truth’. This might be a bit of a spoiler, so stop reading now if you don’t like spoilers, but ‘the truth’ is really what the series became about. It all boils down to essentially prior to Brael Truthseeker’s revelations, all Toreans more or less considered the religions of Torea to be true and the afterlife which they keep talking about being real. Brael has almost accidentally proven that there are no gods and no afterlife. Which is why he was cursed and banished, because of the social and political unrest this caused. When the truth finally gets revealed, none of the characters accept it easily, nor do they cope with it. It forces them to re-evaluate their world-view and moral compass. They find coping with loss a lot harder once ‘the truth’ has been laid bare. No longer can they relax and think their fallen comrades are feasting with Ishar in Kirkfell, they find reality very harsh and they start to feel bitter about having their faith taken from them.

4. Tell me about your latest book.

My latest book is ‘Deathsworn Arc 3 : The Temple of the Mad God’. I’m really excited about this book, I’ve introduced some really interesting new characters, and started to allow the companions to gel as a group more, bound together by ‘the truth’ and the terrible ordeals they go through in the first two books. It’s also the book where I finally introduce the main villain of the series, ironically, considering the series is very atheist in nature, the main villain is similar to a god, but again – if there really was a being with god-like power in charge, would this being be benevolent? It’s an interesting philosophical question, and when you read about the horrific punishments some of the main stream religion’s gods have doled out to humanity according to their relevant holy books, it’s very hard to believe that a god would be a loving benevolent being, rather an a vengeful, proud, almost vain god who demanded worship and sacrifice, under the threat of either death or eternal torment in a lake of fire.

5. Who is your favorite writer and why?

Terry Pratchett is a firm favourite. His ability to blend real-world culture and history with folklore and satire is incredible. I really admire him as a person too, his fight against early on-set Alzheimer’s and his determination to carry on working and to raising awareness and support for fellow sufferers is inspiring. I’m also fond of several others, but I’ve read more Pratchett than anyone, and if he releases a Discworld novel, I tend to read it cover to cover in about two days.

6. What are you working on next?

My next project is ‘Deathsworn Arc 4 : Emergence’. I have it largely planned out, but it’s going to be harder to get right than any of the previous books as I have to split the protagonists up. I have some great scenes ready for it though, I plan to visit Maerun, Eldenizar – the main city of the elves, and Durth Orza the capital city of the dark elves as well as the ‘Deathsworn Shrine’ itself, though I have talked about what ‘deathsworn’ means in book 3. I am very, very excited about book four, but I still don’t quite know how it ends.

7. What have you learned so far about publishing?

Publishing is easy. It’s so easy a child could do it. Writing good, solid work is easy. Getting a mainstream publisher to pick it up is as hard as ever. I still think the main reason a person can have to write is purely for the passion of it. If you have a story to tell, write it for yourself. You can’t pick a popular genre that sells well adn churn out cookie-cutter stories in the hope of making it as an author. You have to write for YOU, write what YOU want to write and have a strong idea, a point, something which you feel strongly about. You can’t guarantee you’ll sell a single copy, so don’t try to please anyone but yourself. That doesn’t mean ignore quality. I really wish I felt my writing was up to the grand task I’ve set myself of writing this series, I don’t mind admitting I can get better, no I need to get better. Of course like all things, the only way to get good at writing is to write more and more and ask for criticism, then take it on board, swallow your pride and try to improve, then write more.

8. Any tips for other writers?

Nothing more than what I’ve already said. It’s a harsh game the literary world, there are more title on the virtual shelf now than ever. Don’t write to make money, write for yourself. It’s better to be loved by a few than liked by many. I would never have written ‘The Deathsworn Arc’ if I wanted to please everyone, as fundamentalist believers of any religion could take offence at it. I’m an atheist, and I believe the world can be a better place without religion. However I also acknowledge that a loss of religion would leave a gap in society which at the moment there is nothing else to fill it with. Losing our faith is also hard, accepting that there is no afterlife is not an easy option or cop-out, or a ‘smug’ thing to do. It is hard, not just for you, I couldn’t care less what happens to me, but I look at my children and hate the fact that their lives are finite. I can only hope they’ll be long and fulfilled lives and that they’ll both have children themselves one day. This sounds like a rather bleak view, and it is, but not accepting this reality, having spent a long time studying comparative religion and all disciplines of science, I cannot accept the existence of a creator god, I feel to do so would be compromising my intellectual integrity.

I should also suggest Terry Pratchett is partly responsible for my interest in science and atheism. His ‘Science of the
Discworld’ series is one of the reasons I ended up reading Dawkins and starting a degree in science! So Terry Pratchett has a lot to answer for!

Cover Reveal! Journey to Landaran

Landaran ebook final 700

It’s here at last!!  I’m pleased to announce I have a cover reveal blog tour going on today through Saturday over at Candace’s Book Blog to promote the upcoming release of Journey to Landaran, scheduled for February of 2014. She’ll also be helping me with a full blog tour when the book comes out.

You can find the post here: http://www.candacesbookblog.com/2013/11/cover-reveal-giveaway-journey-to.html#comment-form

I have set up a giveaway for a $20 Amazon Gift Card, 2 print ARCs (advanced readers copies) of the book for US residents, and 2 eBook ARCs available internationally. Go sign up!

I’d also love for people to go add the book to their To Read list over at Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18758917-journey-to-landaran

You can also pre-order it on Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/375610

I’m so excited!  I think this book will have a much greater appeal than my first. I mean twins with powers! You can’t go wrong with that.

Author Interview: F.F. McCulligan

First I want to do a tiny self-promotion and announce that the ARCs (advanced reader copies) of my soon to be published novel Journey to Landaran are now available!  I would love to send out copies in your choice of e-format for feedback. Look for a full cover reveal coming in a couple weeks, courtesy of http://www.candacesbookblog.com .

And second, it’s Thursday, which means it’s time for another of my indie author interviews! This week I have F.F. McCulligan, fantasy writer out with his first book. You can find more about him on Goodreads here:

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7027291.F_F_McCulligan

haven

1. What led to your writing a fantasy novel?

I think when you make a mixture of (1)plenty of solitude, (2) a staggering life
experience and (3) too much time on your hands, you usually wind up with a
fantasy novel, don’t you? I did. Maybe it’s not as common of a problem as I
thought… My whole life led to me writing my book, though. The bedtime stories
I had growing up, the influences of my brother and my childhood friends, my
experiences in the wilderness and at college, my time spent teaching youths and
most of all getting fired from a job ultimately led to me writing this
sentence: “The worst part about living in Darkwell was the smoke.” It
turned out to be the first sentence of a 452 page manuscript which two and a
half years later I published as The
Cost of Haven: Book 1 of The Great Cities.
I was unemployed, devastated
about losing my job, and had a lot of tumultuous thoughts, one of the
healthiest ways to work through it was to write.

2. The description of the book sounds like sword and sorcery. Would you
categorize the book this way?

Yes and no. I would categorize it more as just Sword. One critique I often have
of fantasy is that the prevalence of magic leads to plot holes and
inconsistencies. For example, in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry is
trained extensively and at great expense to Voldemort to be able to win the
tri-wizard tournament only so that when he touches the cup at the end of the
labyrinth he will be transported to the graveyard where Voldemort and the Death
Eaters plan to kill him. If Voldemort can turn an object into a portkey and
teleport Harry against his will by having him touch it, why not make his
doorknob into a portkey and skip the whole tournament debacle? So I take issue
with sorcery, especially when it lacks any apparent limitations. Another
critique of overpowered magic is that it has the potential to de-emphasize the
importance of the human spirit, sacrifice, friendship and physical prowess. If
there is a magical solution to every problem, then why send in the swordsman?
This is problematic in a book about a swordsman.

3. Tell me the juicy details about your first book.

The Cost of Haven is fast-paced and gritty, in a world of bleak desperation
where humanity is at the brink of collapse.

PROTAGONISTS

Deagan Wingrat: “I’ve bled on his majesty’s
battlefields. I’ve slept out in his majesty’s rain.”

Deagan is a battle-hardened knight from the squalid city of Darkwell who is
unbelted and disgraced. That which he used to fight for: his honor and his oath
are lost, so he must question his entire life as he learns to stand under a new
banner: one of love, friendship, and revenge.

Kellen Wayfield:“Well I don’t know how to do
this, Rory, it’s just that… it seems the old well has dried up so to
speak…”

Kellen is a miscreant and a former thief with hints of a background in piracy,
but his friendship with Deagan and Rory is utterly pure. Due to the encroaching
forces of evil, Kellen’s merchant caravans have become very limited in where
they can travel and he goes out of business. When opportunity knocks, Kellen
does not hesitate to profit from it as he swindles and complains his way
through a dangerous adventure to save a neighboring city.

Rory, Kellen’s Butler:
“No you don’t
understand!” he took a step forward. “I am a butler.”

Rory is devoted to his identity and lifestyle as a butler even though his
constant physical training has given him the physique of a spartan warrior. He
is humble and modest and devoted to serving Kellen, even though his master’s
coffers are empty and he will no longer be paid. Rory has to dig deep to find
that he is more than a mere serving man, he is a hero.

Royal Guard Androth:
Androth’s black mask
turned to stare into the other man’s face… the muscles under that armor were
poised to draw a weapon and kill him.

Androth is a mysterious black armored knight, a master of arms, and sworn to
silence. The Royal Guards of Haven are secretive and deadly. Read the book to
find out what lies behind the black mask…

DEATH WORLD: the death world is a crucial element to the story. In this world,
death is not the ending, and events taking place in the death world during the
climax of the story greatly effect its outcome.

DRAGONS: My dragons are intelligent and can breathe fire. They come in many
colors and sizes, but are mostly four legged, two winged, long necked,
crocodile headed lizards. There are dragon riders, but there are only a few of
them left. Dragons are not all powerful or invincible. They are well armored
and hard to beat for sure, but they have no magic or godlike powers. They are
similar to wolves in social structure and they have their own language which is
all but incomprehensible to humans while they can understand human speech quite
well. They need to be trained like horses or dogs and they form strong bonds with
their riders. In Cost of Haven, we don’t meet any wild dragon packs… but they
may be out there.

SARCOPHS: The undead are called sarcophs by the learned, Dead Men by the
masses, and Rotters by those who have faced them in battle. They are risen corpses
that have various levels of mobility and prowess depending on the state of the
corpse when it rose. They do eat human flesh. If you come back as a sarcoph, it
is game over for you in the death world. No second chances at an afterlife.

4. Who is your favorite writer and why?

This is a weird question because I would assume every single person would say
J.R.R. Tolkien.

5. What are you working on next?

I’m writing the sequel to the Cost of Haven of course! I hope to get it out
there sometime next year.

6. What efforts have you made to get reviews of notice for your book?

One of my main efforts has been just simply writing in public with a little
sign next to me and a few copies of my book for sale. Here is a link to my blog post about it
called Street Writer.

7. What was your greatest challenge?

After writing the book, I had no idea what to do next.

8. What advice do you have for other writers?

Writing a book is an artistic venture, but publishing a book is a business
venture. Don’t publish something you don’t love or don’t believe in.