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Interview with Daniel Polansky - August 16, 2011

Please welcome Daniel Polansky to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge interviews.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Daniel:  I can write anywhere. I’ve written on Punjabi trains and in communes in Estonia. Of course, none of the writing is any good, but it does get done.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Daniel:  A brief smattering of people I think are great: Thomas Wolfe, VS Naipul, Rebecca West. In terms of folk I’ve cribbed from, dues go out to Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser? (Plotters make outlines, etc. Pantsers fly by the seat of their pants.)

Daniel:  With LOW TOWN it was the latter, but with subsequent work I’ve made it more of a priority to have some idea how a book will end before starting it.

TQ:  Describe Low Town / The Straight Razor Cure in 140 characters or less.

Daniel Low Town primarily concerns the misadventures of The Warden, a small time drug lord whose iniquities are interrupted upon discovering the body of a murdered child. In a bout of ill-considered self-righteousness, he decides to hunt down the killer. Trouble ensues. I’m not great at counting characters...

TQ:  What inspired you to write Low Town / The Straight Razor Cure?

Daniel:  Poverty.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for Low Town / The Straight Razor Cure?

Daniel:  I didn’t really do any research specific to Low Town -- it was more about crafting something from the morass of random things I’d already learned.

TQ:  Who was the easiest character to write and why? Hardest and why?

Daniel:  When I write I don’t really find myself dividing the narrative in that way, so I don’t really think I have an answer.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in the book?

Daniel:  My favorite scene is at the end when the entire narrative is revealed to be an elaborate dream. In retrospect I guess that was sort of a spoiler.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the series?

Daniel:  It’s going to be a trilogy.

TQ:  What's next?

Daniel:  For me? I’m going to buy another cup of coffee and get back to working on Low Town’s sequel. For anyone reading this, sprint out to your nearest book store and get a copy of my book. If you’re reading this late at night, break in, take a copy, and leave exact change on the register.
Visit my website, DanielPolansky.com, and leave a comment using the Facebook plugin on the lower left of the page so I know who you are. The first 7 chapters are on the website, along with two book trailers, a contest...all kinds of fun stuff. I’m on Facebook (facebook.com/DanielPolanskyAuthor), Twitter (@DanielPolansky), Google+ (+DanielPolansky), and GoodReads (goodreads.com/DanielPolansky), so there are lots of ways to connect.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Daniel:  Thanks for having me!


Daniel has written a short piece as well to share with all of you today:

Slums of the Shire

     Occasionally you'll be with a group of people and they'll get to talking about their favorite historical epochs, nostalgic for lives they never led. One person will talk up their childhood love of the Wild West, another reveal a penchant for Victorian England. This last one just has a thing for corsets, but it's better not to call them on it.

     When my turn rolls round I take a sip of whatever we're drinking and look at my shoes. “The mid 90's were pretty good,” I say lamely. “Slower internet and everything, but at least we had penicillin.”

     Perhaps it's my being a history buff, but the past sucked. For about a millennium and a half after the fall of the Roman Empire, Europe just seems like a real shit place to reside. Lots of rooting in filth until you die at thirty a half mile from where you born. Nominally the nobles had it better, but still, your fever would have been treated with the application of leaches and your pretty young bride had like a one in two chance of surviving child birth.

     This probably is why I don't understand fantasy—that is to say that collection of high medieval tropes collected by Tolkien and gleefully reproduced by two generations of descendants.

     Take elves for instance—though perfectly capable of imagining a world where higher intelligence evolved in a species separate from humanity, my powers of make believe fail when positing that the relation between said species would be anything beyond unceasing warfare. Even a cursory glance at human history reveals our collective willingness to commit genocide on fellow homo sapiens—how much quicker would we have been to eradicate a separate species competing for identical resources? If elves existed, our ancestors would have hunted them down to extinction and erected a monument to the accomplishment.

     But I digress.

     Even when nestled comfortably in a quest to kill a dragon or overthrow a dark lord or what have you, strange thoughts plague me. What does the shady side of Gondor look like? How many platinum coins would a dime bag set me back? What is the point of hobbits? They're just short, fat people. People are plenty fat as it is.

     Low Town is sort of my attempt to answer some of those questions (not the last one). It's the story of the Warden, a former intelligence agent and current drug dealer, whose gradual slide into self-destruction is briefly checked by the discovery of a dead body in the neighborhood he runs. An ill-timed bout of conscience rattles the easy cage of venality he's built for himself, and leads him on a collision course with the life he'd left behind. The Warden is a guy trying to survive the next few days, and not particularly squeamish as to what that requires—the sort of person more likely to populate a classic crime novel than to be found stocking the fantasy section of your local Borders (RIP).

     More broadly, Low Town is an attempt to meld the best aspects of noir with a low fantasy setting—a meeting of tastes which I think complement each other nicely. The spare language and fast pace of good noir offers a pleasant counterpoint to the sprawling—one might even say bloated—length of much modern fantasy. On a somewhat broader level, the tendency of fantasy to focus on world shaking events often renders it irrelevant to the average reader, whose life relatively rarely devolves into single combat against vaguely satanic analogs. By contrast, noir is concerned with the individual, with greed and lust, sins all of us can comprehend to some degree. Low Town centers on the conceit that a world with magic wouldn't be altogether different from a world without it. People are still (on the whole) selfish, stupid creatures, focused almost exclusively on the immediate satisfaction of their basic desires, only now some of them can shoot fire out of their hands.

     That's the idea at least. It comes out today (August 16th) in the US and Canada, and on Thursday (August 18th) in the UK and Commonwealth. I hope you check it out and see if I've succeeded, or if I'm just a pretentious clown. Or both.


About Low Town

In the USA/Canada:

Low Town
Low Town 1
(Knopf Doubleday, August 16 2011)

Drug dealers, hustlers, brothels, dirty politics, corrupt cops . . . and sorcery. Welcome to Low Town.

In the forgotten back alleys and flophouses that lie in the shadows of Rigus, the finest city of the Thirteen Lands, you will find Low Town. It is an ugly place, and its cham­pion is an ugly man. Disgraced intelligence agent. Forgotten war hero. Independent drug dealer. After a fall from grace five years ago, a man known as the Warden leads a life of crime, addicted to cheap violence and expensive drugs. Every day is a constant hustle to find new customers and protect his turf from low-life competition like Tancred the Harelip and Ling Chi, the enigmatic crime lord of the heathens.

The Warden’s life of drugged iniquity is shaken by his dis­covery of a murdered child down a dead-end street . . . set­ting him on a collision course with the life he left behind. As a former agent with Black House—the secret police—he knows better than anyone that murder in Low Town is an everyday thing, the kind of crime that doesn’t get investi­gated. To protect his home, he will take part in a dangerous game of deception between underworld bosses and the psy­chotic head of Black House, but the truth is far darker than he imagines. In Low Town, no one can be trusted.

Daniel Polansky has crafted a thrilling novel steeped in noir sensibilities and relentless action, and set in an original world of stunning imagination, leading to a gut-wrenching, unforeseeable conclusion. Low Town is an attention-grabbing debut that will leave readers riveted . . . and hun­gry for more.




In the UK/Commonwealth:

The Straight Razor Cure
Low Town 1
(Hodder & Stoughton, August 18, 2011)

Welcome to Low Town. Here, the criminal is king. The streets are filled with the screeching of fish hags, the cries of swindled merchants, the inviting murmurs of working girls. Here, people can disappear, and the lacklustre efforts of the guard ensure they are never found.

Warden is an ex-soldier who has seen the worst men have to offer; now a narcotics dealer with a rich, bloody past and a way of inviting danger. You`d struggle to find someone with a soul as dark and troubled as his.

But then a missing child, murdered and horribly mutilated, is discovered in an alley.

And then another.

With a mind as sharp as a blade and an old but powerful friend in the city, he`s the only man with a hope of finding the killer.

If the killer doesn`t find him first.




About Daniel

Photo by Dan Stack
Daniel Polansky was born near Baltimore, Maryland.  LOW TOWN is his first novel.

Daniel's Links:

Website
Facebook
Google+
Goodreads
Twitter

Interview with Patricia Eimer and Giveaway - August 9, 2011

Please welcome Patricia Eimer to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge Interviews.

TQ:   What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Patricia:  I can and will write anywhere. And I do mean anywhere. Back before I ever dreamed of getting published I was writing short stories and fanfiction to send out to my friends either via email or through online forums. I had an idea for a story come in and actually left my own bridal shower so I could scribble away on an idea I'd had for a Doctor Who fanfic. It's not like it mattered really. My mother in law was hosting it for my in-laws and they didn't even notice I was gone. Then again, she did refuse to hold me a baby shower a few years later so maybe she did notice...

TQ:   Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Patricia:  Anyone who can make me laugh or give me something to wonder about. I love MaryJanice Davidson, Nicole Peeler, Gail Carriger, Linda Wisdom and Katie MacAlister for their abilities to write comedy. I’d love to say I’m influenced by some of the real masters of the craft like Shakespeare, JK Rowling, or Stephen King but I’m totally not. Or maybe I am. I keep trying to live up to what they write. It never works but I keep trying.

TQ:   Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Patricia:  Most definitely a pantser. I wouldn’t know how to plot if the technique grew legs, walked up and slapped me across the face.

TQ:   Describe Luck of the Devil in 140 characters or less.

Patricia:  The Family Reunion From Hell.

TQ:   What inspired you to write Luck of the Devil?

Patricia:  I actually saw a young woman in the grocery store, in the middle of the night, arguing into her cellphone with someone about the fact that their family had shown up and she had no idea what to do about it. I ended up following her through the entire store, stalking her almost and listening to her complain to what I always thought was her significant other about the fact that their family had shown up but she was going to be the one doing all the work. That’s when Faith Bettincourt wiggled into my brain and announced “you think she’s got it bad, let me tell you about my family.”

TQ:   What sort of research did you do for Luck of the Devil?

Patricia:  Research? What is this research as you call it? Oh right, that was making my husband take me to Primanti Brothers for food constantly so I could “check out the ambiance.” Man I love this gig.

TQ:   Who was the easiest character to write and why? Hardest and why?

Patricia:  Malachi was the easiest to write. He’s my own personal sort of voice in the story. Somebody once referred to him as a demonic Greek chorus. Everything I ever wanted to say delivered to you in a three foot, demonic form. The hardest character to write was Matt. The character has secrets. Big secrets. And he likes to play things close to the vest. Unfortunately he kept trying to do the same thing with me.

TQ:   Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in the novel?

Patricia:  When Faith convinces Matt to steal the Devil’s Lamborghini. You know when the scene starts that it can’t end well. There’s no way it can end well. But with enough bare flesh you can convince even the smartest guy to do something patently stupid.

TQ:   Who should play Faith Bettincourt if Luck of the Devil is made into a movie?

Patricia:  Reese Witherspoon. Or possible Katie Perry as a blonde. Yeah, definitely Katy Perry as a blonde.

TQ:   Do you and Faith have anything in common?

Patricia:  We both tend to be the nursemaid in our family. The person who just takes care of everything without question. It’s a horrible habit to have because it always leads you into trouble but at the same time it comes from a pure place so it’s a hard habit to break.

TQ:   How many books are planned for Speak of the Devil series?

Patricia:  Right now there’re 3 books planned and I’ve started tinkering with the idea of a spin off related to Faith’s sister Hope.

TQ:   What's next?

Patricia:  Right now Book 2 of Speak of the Devil is with my editor, I’m plotting out Book 3 ( I never write the next book until I’m done edits with the previous one because of all the changes that happens. Ah, plotting why do I fail so much at you?), and starting to work on another series set in a very different world from the one Faith and her family inhabit.

TQ:   Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Patricia:  Thank you for having me.


About Luck of The Devil

Luck of the Devil
Speak of the Devil 1
(Entangled Publishing, August 2, 2011)
Interview with Patricia Eimer and Giveaway - August 9, 2011
Being the youngest daughter of the Devil isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. The days of teenage rebellion and vows of chastity made just to tick off her father are over, and now all Faith Bettincourt wants is a nice, quiet life. Unfortunately, thanks to the unexpected arrival of her demonically-downsized sister, a ditzy succubus roommate, and dear old Dad himself, Faith’s plans for a relaxing vacation spent watching reruns go up in flames.

Now it’s all Faith can do to keep the family reunion from Hell (literally) under wraps, and the angelically-inclined hottie across the hall from realizing there’s something weird about his neighbor. And, thankfully, it’s working. Until an angelic stalker shows up in a bid to steal her powers and take over the world.

Forget watching reruns. With the way things are going, Faith will need the luck of the Devil just to survive until Monday.

Amazon : Barnes & Noble : deisel : BooksOnBoard



About Patricia

Interview with Patricia Eimer and Giveaway - August 9, 2011
Patricia Eimer is a small town girl who was blessed with a large tree in the backyard made for reading in on summer days. Mixed with too much imagination it made her a bratty child but fated her to become a storyteller. She currently lives in Pittsburgh with her two wonderful kids and a husband that learned the gourmet art of frozen pizzas to give her more time to write. When she’s not writing she can be found fencing and arguing about with her dogs about who’s in charge.

Patricia's Links

Website: www.patriciaeimer.com
Entangled Publishing: www.entangledpublishing.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Patricia-Eimer/193204160721040



The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  One commenter will win a Luck of the Devil ebook from Patricia and Entangled Publishing.

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

Love, like or avoid family reunions?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Tuesday, August 16, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.


*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

Interview with Will McIntosh and Giveaway - July 26, 2011

Please welcome Will McIntosh to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge interviews. Will's debut, Soft Apocalypse, was published in April 2011.


TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Will:  I write lying down. I’m stretched on either a couch or bed, propped with pillows. I can write sitting up, but I’m not comfortable that way.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Will:  More of a pantser. Until a few years ago, when I was writing short stories exclusively, I was a total pantser. I still have plenty of short stories that I’ve never finished because I got stuck at some point with no idea how to continue. With novels, I’m closer to the middle. Large sections of the story are complete blank spaces when I start writing, but I like to have some idea what the beginning, middle, and end will look like so I know I’m not going to work on it for six months then realize it’s not going to work. The stakes are so high with novels; to just jump in and have faith that I’ll figure out the story as I go is unnerving. The problem I struggle with is often I just can’t figure out what should happen until I’m actually writing. Often I have to be immersed in the story to see the characters clearly. I’m working on my third novel right now, and the entire last 1/3 is pretty much unknown at this point. I’m not thrilled about that, but it’s just not revealing itself yet.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Will:  Robert Reed, Vonda McIntyre, Kim Stanley Robinson, Dan Simmons, Stephen King, Richard Russo, Pat Conroy, Nick Hornby, Michael Chabon, Johnathan Lethem. I think Stephen King has had a big influence on my writing, because I’ve been reading him since I was a kid, so his influence has permeated all the different periods of my life.

The most direct influence on my writing has been the writers who served as my teachers, first at Clarion, then at Taos Toolbox: James Patrick Kelly, Kelly Link, Walter John Williams, Maureen McHugh, Nalo Hopkinson, Richard Paul Russo, Howard Waldrop. I’m so grateful to them for the guidance and insights they gave me.

TQ:  Describe Soft Apocalypse in 140 characters or less.

Will:  Civilization slowly collapses. People cling to the lives they used to live and try not to notice. Terrible things happen to them.

TQ:  What inspired you to write Soft Apocalypse?

Will:  Reading the news each day. There is such an astonishing disconnect between what scientists are saying about the dangers facing us, and our response to their warnings. I wondered how people who are totally unprepared for a true collapse, who have no skill with weapons, don’t know how to cure meats, and would go into a deep depression without television and the Internet (people like me) would respond.

For the core of the story, I wanted a character who is clinging to some aspect of our world that would seem out of place during the collapse of civilization, something that would underscore his denial of what was really happening. I made it a guy who’s worried about his love life--sort of if Rob Gordon from Nick Hornby’s High Fidelity was working out his relationship issues while having to step over corpses.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do to create the world in the novel?

Will:  My father, a retired Brigadier General who also worked for the New York State Emergency Management Organization, helped me quite a bit with military and emergency response technical details. The collapse itself was based to some extent on James Howard Kunstler’s book, The Long Emergency, along with tons of articles I’ve read on overpopulation, peak oil, global warming in recent years.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Soft Apocalypse?

Will:  Some of my favorite scenes are the ones that readers either love or hate. There’s the art gallery scene, where Jasper is swept up with innocent gallery-goers who are executed by Dada terrorists. When it’s his turn the terrorists see that he’s not from that upscale part of town and they let him go, but only after forcing him to do something horrifying and humiliating that haunts him throughout the rest of the novel.

The Wal-Mart scene is another of my favorites. Jasper’s date, Deirdre, incites a riot over price-hikes by throwing fruit at a manager. The riot escalates, and by the time it’s over, Savannah, Georgia’s Wal Mart is permanently closed.

TQ:  In Soft Apocalypse, who was the most difficult character to write and why? The easiest and why?

Will:  Deirdre, the personality-disordered singer was probably the most difficult. She was the most extreme character--angry, bitter, lacking a core sense of self--so I was often afraid I was letting her spin out of control into a cliché of the Bad Girl. (My wife, for example, thought there were too many instances where Deirdre exposes her breasts, so some of those had to go in the final draft).

The easiest character was Cortez, because I understood what made him tick. He was a tough but insecure guy, the only central character who pretty quickly grasped the new reality they were living in and figured out how to survive, even thrive, in it. When things get truly awful the other characters have to lean heavily on him because they don’t know what the hell to do, because they’ve been clinging to their cell phones and deodorant while he’s been learning how to make jerky out of squirrel meat.

TQ:  What's next?

Will:  My second novel, Hitchers, will be published by Night Shade in early 2012. It’s about a cartoonist who becomes possessed by his dead alcoholic Grandfather. He has plenty of company, because a half million others in his city have also become possessed, including an aging rock star and a woman who may be possessed by the cartoonists’ one true love. The cartoonist is in a race against time to figure out how to evict his grandfather before Grandpa manages to push him out of his own body and into the land of the dead.

I’m at work on my third novel, Faller, and I’m co-writing a Sci Fi thriller screenplay with Ted Kosmatka.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery

Will:  Thanks for having me!


About Soft Apocalypse

Soft Apocalypse
(Night Shade Books,  April 2011)
Interview with Will McIntosh and Giveaway - July 26, 2011
What happens when resources become scarce and society starts to crumble? As the competition for resources pulls America's previously stable society apart, the "New Normal" is a Soft Apocalypse. This is how our world ends; with a whimper instead of a bang.

New social structures and tribal connections spring up across America, as the previous social structures begin to dissolve. Soft Apocalypse follows the journey across the Southeast of a tribe of formerly middle class Americans as they struggle to find a place for themselves and their children in a new, dangerous world that still carries the ghostly echoes of their previous lives.

Amazon : Barnes & Noble : Book Depository
WebScription.Net (for e-books)



About Will

Interview with Will McIntosh and Giveaway - July 26, 2011
Will McIntosh is a Hugo award winner and Nebula finalist whose short stories have appeared in such venues as Asimov’s (where he won the 2010 Reader's Award for short story), Strange Horizons, and Science Fiction and Fantasy: Best of the Year. His first novel, Soft Apocalypse, was released in April from Night Shade Books. It is based on his 2005 short story of the same name, which was nominated for both the British Science Fiction Association and the British Fantasy Society awards. His story “Followed,” which was published in the anthology The Living Dead, has recently been produced as a short film. Will is a psychology professor at Georgia Southern University; in 2008 he became the father of twins.

Will's Website: http://willmcintosh.net/



The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  Two commenters will each win an e-book of Soft Apocalypse generously provided by Night Shade Books.

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

Dystopias or Utopias?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Tuesday, August 2, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

Interview with Teresa Frohock and Giveaway - July 20, 2011

Please welcome Teresa Frohock to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge Interviews.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Teresa:  I write in stages. I start with a coarse first draft that consists of little more than stage direction, then I go back through and add the emotion and the personality traits that belong to the characters. It's kind of like creating a pencil sketch, then filling it in with color. It's a grooming process that doesn't end until the last chapter is written.

Each time I read the manuscript, I eliminate any superfluous phrases or information that doesn't pertain to the mood that I'm trying to convey to the reader. I feel like every sentence has to be there for a reason, and if I'm not carrying the story forward, then I usually wind up taking the sentence or scene away.

I'm never worried, because if I don't include enough information for the reader, my critique group or my agent will ask for more.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Teresa:  Edgar Allan Poe, first, foremost, and forever. I love his writing and his economical use of language. H.P. Lovecraft next, because of his use of mood. I also have been deeply influenced by Patricia McKillip's novels. Her ability to render a fairy tale and make it so pertinent to adults is remarkable.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantster?

Teresa:  I sit on the fence here, but I lean heavily toward plotting. I have to. I can't imagine taking any trip without some kind of road map that outlines the journey.

When I begin a novel, I have to research it, plan my characters through biographies, and create a scene synopsis. I generally have three to five scenes that I know must take place in the novel, then I write chapters to bridge those scenes. I'm plotting the entire time and watching for signs that I have too many characters for the reader to keep up with comfortably or if the story isn't moving in a smooth arc.

When I edit, I watch every sentence I write, because I try to keep my reader in mind. I'm fashioning the story for other people to enjoy, so I have to be very conscious of my own clarity.

TQ:  Describe Miserere in 140 characters or less.

Teresa:  A really good book that you will enjoy. ;-)

Kidding! Ahem. Here we go:

Man betrays lover, flees his sister, and seeks redemption through love and exorcism.

TQ:  What inspired you to write Miserere?

Teresa:  Well, I wanted to write a novel about redemption, and I think things got slightly out of hand. Miserere started as a YA novel, but when I couldn't connect with my young protagonist, I realized that it was really an adult novel. Then I think I went a little crazy.

It was amazing how that subtle shift (from YA to adult themes) freed me to bring out the complexities of adult relationships. The deeper I delved into what made Lucian, Catarina, and Rachael intertwined in their poisoned relationships, the more fascinated I became by the characters. Then it became incredibly difficult to keep Lindsay from looking like a cardboard character.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do to create the world of Miserere?

Teresa:  I researched a lot into the Medieval church and Eastern Orthodox texts. I also studied demonology and Christian and Jewish philosophies on exorcism. All of this was so incredibly fascinating, I wish there was some way I could have gotten all the information into Miserere, but that wouldn't have been interesting to my reader.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Miserere?

Teresa:  The exorcism. I loved writing it. It was like watching a movie in head and translating it to the page.

TQ:  In Miserere, who was the most difficult character to write and why? The easiest and why?

Teresa:  Catarina. I didn't want her to come across as a stock villain, but at the same time, I didn't want to excuse her actions by giving her the proverbial "bad childhood" or abuse-excuse. She's just evil, pure and simple. She is full of envy and hate and she doesn't want to be different. Personally, I'm sick to death of trying to understand a villain's motives. Some people are just born evil.

Catarina is one, but it was very hard to express this on the page.

Lucian, on the other hand, was very easy to write. Lucian spoke to me from day one, and his scenes usually flowed without difficulty. It was really hard being nasty to him, but I overcame that.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the series?

Teresa:  Four books, including Miserere. I have one for each season. Dolorosa will be a Winter's Dream, Bellum Dei will take place in the spring, and the fourth book is untitled as yet, but odds are 3-1 that it will be Latin. Seriously, book 4 of the Katharoi is still in the planning stages, and I have a rough idea of what I want to do, but no synopsis yet. Books 2 and 3 (Dolorosa and Bellum Dei) both have synopses.

TQ:  What's next?

Teresa:  What I'm working on right now is a novel entitled The Garden. It is set on the Iberian Peninsula in the summer of 1348 and is the story of Guillermo Ramírez, a blacksmith conscripted into the King's army, who takes refuge in the ruined garden of an abandoned monastery only to find himself among magical creatures. An ancient daimon has trapped other men in the garden and forces them to build a temple from which she draws strength. She will break the barrier between her land of fey and the world of men unless Guillermo can solve the mystery of his past so he can forge the key that will lock Urraca from humanity forever.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery

Teresa:  And thank you so much for hosting me, Sally! It's been a pleasure.


About Miserere

Miserere: An Autumn Tale
Katharoi 1
(Night Shade Books, July 1 2011)
Exiled exorcist Lucian Negru deserted his lover in Hell in exchange for saving his sister Catarina's soul, but Catarina doesn't want salvation. She wants Lucian to help her fulfill her dark covenant with the Fallen Angels by using his power to open the Hell Gates. Catarina intends to lead the Fallen's hordes out of Hell and into the parallel dimension of Woerld, Heaven's frontline of defense between Earth and Hell.

When Lucian refuses to help his sister, she imprisons and cripples him, but Lucian learns that Rachael, the lover he betrayed and abandoned in Hell, is dying from a demonic possession. Determined to rescue Rachael from the demon he unleashed on her soul, Lucian flees his sister, but Catarina's wrath isn't so easy to escape.

In the end, she will force him once more to choose between losing Rachael or opening the Hell Gates so the Fallen's hordes may overrun Earth, their last obstacle before reaching Heaven's Gates.

Amazon : B&N : Book Depository


Read the first four chapters of Miserere FREE by clicking here. (PDF Format)








About Teresa

Raised in a small town, Teresa Frohock learned to escape to other worlds through the fiction collection of her local library. She eventually moved away from Reidsville and lived in Virginia and South Carolina before returning to North Carolina, where she currently resides with her husband and daughter.

Teresa has long been accused of telling stories, which is a southern colloquialism for lying. Miserere: An Autumn Tale is her debut novel.

Teresa can be found most often at her blog and website http://www.teresafrohock.com/. Every now and then, she heads over to Tumblr and sends out Dark Thoughts http://teresafrohock.tumblr.com/, links to movies and reviews that catch her eye. You can also follow Teresa on Twitter http://twitter.com/TeresaFrohock and join her author page on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Teresa-Frohock/134892453223242.


The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  One commenter will win a copy of Miserere: An Autumn Tale generously provided by Night Shade Books.

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

What is your favorite season?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Wednesday, July 27, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*


Check out some previous interviews with Teresa:

All Things Books

Down at Lucky Town with Alex Bledsoe

Layers of Thought

MuseTracks

The Written Connection

Interview with Stina Leicht and Giveaway - July 15, 2011

Please welcome Stina Leicht to the The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge Interviews.


TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Stina:  My husband likes to call me a "Method Writer." That is, I prefer experiencing things before writing about them. Which means I do silly things like race outside when it snows so I can memorize what it feels like. (For the record, it doesn't snow much where I live.)

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Stina:  Some of my favorite writers are Stephen King, Shirley Jackson, Neil Gaiman, Ray Bradbury, Terry Pratchett, Charles de Lint, and Holly Black. I like to think that Stephen King influenced me in that I'm a writer who likes to delve into the psychology of characters to provide motivation. Always felt that Stephen King did that very, very well.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantster?

Stina:  Pantster. Definitely.

TQ:  Describe Of Blood and Honey in 140 characters or less.

Stina:  "Of Blood and Honey" is set in 1970s Northern Ireland and is one part old school Urban Fantasy and one part gritty Irish Crime novel.

TQ:  What inspired you to write Of Blood and Honey?

Stina:  A nonfiction book called "Those Are Real Bullets: Bloody Sunday, Derry, 1972 by Pringle and Jacobson -- two British reporters who were present when British soldiers fired on unarmed civilians. Thirteen protesters were killed and a fourteenth died of injuries he received that day. One of my favorite things about Science Fiction and Fantasy is that it uses story to address sensitive subjects. After reading that book and watching what was happening in the USA, I felt Americans could and should learn a great deal from the mistakes the British made with the Irish during that time.

TQ:  Why did you set Of Blood and Honey in Ireland?

Stina:  See above.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do to for Of Blood and Honey?

Stina:  I read a great deal about the Troubles and visited the University of Ulster's Conflict Archive online. (http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/) I interviewed people who'd lived in Belfast at that time, or had visited Derry during that era. I've been taking Irish language lessons for four years. (To help with the dialog structure.) Listened to Irish Crime novels written by Irish writers on audiobook. (Also to help with dialog structure.) And I took rally racing lessons.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Of Blood and Honey?

Stina:  Oh, let's see. It's kind of packed with those, really. I like the scenes between Kathleen and Bran. I especially like when Liam meets Oran at the taxi association. The rally race was particularly fun to write. The scene where Mary Kate attempts to fend off Liam with a thermometer made me grin. And the scene where Father Murray goes all Yoda while talking to Liam toward the end is a favorite of mine too. Oh, and I have to include the scene where we first meet Haddock. He's the best bad guy I've ever written, I think, and that scene highlights his complexity.

TQ:  In Of Blood and Honey, who was the most difficult character to write and why? The easiest and why?

Stina:  I thought Haddock was pretty tough at first. Mostly because Americans are taught that cops are to be trusted and Haddock is definitely not one of those. Overcoming that was rough. But once I got through that, he was a breeze. He's a fanatic, you see. For him, the ends justify the means. The easiest character to write? That was Liam, I suppose. He's pretty easy for me to relate to. We're both dyslexic for a start.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the Fey and Fallen series?

Stina:  I prefer the way Terry Pratchett handles a series. Each book can stand on its own, and yet, they're related. So, off the top of my head... I know there's a third book, but beyond that, I don't know. There are other characters -- Liam's sister Moira for example -- that I'd like to expand on. We'll see if I get the chance.

TQ:  What's next?

Stina:  I've started a teen fantasy series set in a world with a Georgian era feel to it. We'll see how that goes. I'll be happy to write more about Liam and Father Murray, but I feel the need to do something else for a little bit. Writing about the Troubles is pretty stressful for me -- particularly since I've never been to Northern Ireland.


About of Blood and Honey

Of Blood and Honey
Of the Fey and the Fallen 1
(Night Shade Books, January 25 2011)
Interview with Stina Leicht and Giveaway - July 15, 2011
Fallen angels and the fey clash against the backdrop of Irish/English conflicts of the 1970s in this stunning debut novel by Stina Leicht.

Liam never knew who his father was. The town of Derry had always assumed that he was the bastard of a protestant--His mother never spoke of him, and Liam assumed he was dead.

But when the war between the fallen, and the fey began to heat up, Liam and his family are pulled into a conflict that they didn't know existed. A centuries old conflict between supernatural forces seems to mirror the political divisions in 1970s era Ireland, and Liam is thrown headlong into both conflicts.

Only the direct intervention of Liam's real father, and a secret catholic order dedicated to fighting "The Fallen" can save Liam... from the mundane and supernatural forces around him, and from the darkness that lurks within him.

Amazon : Barnes&Noble : Book Depository : Borders : Indie Bound


About Stina

Interview with Stina Leicht and Giveaway - July 15, 2011
Stina Leicht was born in Missouri where she attended Catholic school, climbed trees, fought pirates and rescued her sister's dolls from terrible fates. Currently, she lives in central Texas with her husband. She's totally famous for singing too loud to punk music in her car, reading too much, taking photographs almost no one has seen, and making art out of wooden cigar boxes. In the course of her research, she has driven in rally races, taken Irish language lessons and studied Northern Irish politics. She still fights pirates but has traded her trusty wooden stick for a rapier and dagger. Of course, pirate ships being somewhat rare in central Texas, she makes do with a friend's back yard--which is fine since she gets stabbed quite a lot and would only end up tossed into the sea anyway.

Links:

Stina's Website: http://www.csleicht.com/
CAIN (Conflict Archive on the INternet) Web Service - Conflict and Politics in Northern Ireland:  http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/


The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:   One commenter will win a copy of Of Blood and Honey generously provided by Night Shade Books.

How:   Leave a comment answering the following question:

Approximately how many books do you read per month? 

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Friday, July 22, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

Interview with Jonathan Wood - July 5, 2011

Please welcome Jonathan Wood to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge Interviews.


TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Jonathan:  I suppose it's probably where I write. No Hero was written pretty much exclusively on the Long Island Railroad. I'm on it two hours a day, one hour into New York City, and one hour back, and that's the majority of my spare time. (Because Xbox time is not spare time...). It's actually a great place to write for me. I put my headphones on, my head down. There's nobody to distract me, no internet with its infinite pictures of cats doing ridiculous things. I'm not sure when I'd write if I didn't have a commute.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Jonathan:  Early on in my writing, when I just started getting short stories published, I was really heavily influenced by some of the authors associated with the New Weird subgenre. People like China Miéville, Jeff Vandermeer, M. John Harrison, and K. J. Bishop. That's where I learned I could really mix and play with genres. I didn't have to be limited by my perceived perception of them. More recently I've been reading a lot of thrillers, which have really helped me with pacing. I'm a huge fan of James Rollins and Andy McDermott. Those guys really know how to ratchet up the tension. Andy McDermott is, hands-down, the best action scene writer I've come across so far.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a panster?

Jonathan:  I'm an obsessive plotter. I've developed a fairly involved process at this point. First I do visual research, going through images I've collected off the internet for things that seem resonant with the project I have in mind. Then I use those as springboard for writing short, two to three hundred word scenes. Nothing finished, just glimpsed moments that may or may not ever make it to the final novel. But from that process, the story I want to write starts to take shape in my head. That's when I start to plot everything out. I've found a couple of sentences per chapter works best for me. Too much and it gets stale, too little and I spend most of my time trying to work out how to get from a to b.

TQ:  Describe No Hero in 140 characters or less.

Jonathan:  Right now I'm going with: The Lovecraftian urban fantasy that dares to ask, “What would Kurt Russell do?”

TQ:  What inspired you to write No Hero?

Jonathan:  Mostly the failure of my previous novel to find a publisher. I'd written my big weird literary fantasy opus, and though I got an agent from it, publishers weren't so into it. My agent suggested I worked on pacing, and so I wanted to write something quick and fun and fast, and to really push how much action I could get into a novel. It was meant to be more of a writing exercise than anything else. But it took off and gained a life of its own. Beside that, there's a million little influences. Mike Mignola's Hellboy and BPRD comics. A comment a friend made that the urban fantasy and sword and sorcery genres had a lot in common. Kurt Russell movies. That sort of thing.

TQ:  Why did you set No Hero in Oxford, England?

Jonathan:  I tried setting it in a couple of places before I settled on Oxford. I had Arthur Wallace's (the protagonist's) voice in my head for a while and he felt very British, so at first I tried London. But I'm really not very familiar with London and I'm not big on research, so I wasn't sure I could really pull that off. So then I tried New York because I lived there for five years, and it was a big city that I thought readers would enjoy. But Arthur didn't really fit there. So then I finally tried Oxford, another place I'd lived, and the absurdity of all this high-stakes action occurring in such a sleepy little city really worked with the tone I was going for, and it just ended up sticking.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do to create M137 and the world of No Hero?

Jonathan:  As I mentioned I'm not a big researcher. A lot of MI37 is informed by many years of watching movies and television police dramas. Which I would probably be more ashamed of if No Hero was a more serious book, but as I was aiming for a cinematic, summer blockbuster feel, it seemed OK. That said, Google Earth was pretty invaluable in letting me get a sense of some of the locales I'm less familiar with, like Peru, and Didcott Power Station.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in No Hero?

Jonathan:  I'm pretty fond of most of the big action scenes. Trying to one-up Indiana Jones and Tomb Raider with my Peruvian temple scene was fun. Also the little side characters—Winston and Devon especially—were always a blast to write. They gave me the opportunity to worry less about plot and action and just have fun telling jokes. And then there's a couple of scenes towards the end with Kayla, where (I hope) her character really evolves and changes for the reader. I'm pretty proud of those.

TQ:  In No Hero, who was the most difficult character to write and why? The easiest and why?

Jonathan:  I think Arthur Wallace is probably the answer to both of those questions. In some ways his voice is so strong in my head its easy to put him down onto the page. On the other hand, by having the book so firmly locked into his viewpoint, and his stream of consciousness, it can be difficult to get across all I want or need to get across. There are always those, 'how the heck am I going to get him over there?' moments. But it's a fun challenge. Also, sometimes the odd syntax I gave Tabitha gives me fits. Trying to make her understandable but distinct is very tricky, and there's a lot of rewriting involved. I'm always worried I'm going to slip and give her Yoda's voice.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the series?

Jonathan:  I have a two book deal, so right now I'm wrapping up my first draft in the second of the series. Teleporting Russians, zombie dinosaurs, oh my. After that... I have more ideas for Arthur Wallace stories, but a lot will depend on how the first two books perform.

TQ:  What's next?

Jonathan:  Arthur Wallace dominates the immediate future. After that... it'll depend. I have an idea for another series that I'd like to work out properly. I need to do a lot of research on the Tarot for that, but that's about as much as I'm willing to say at this point. More because it's so nebulous than from any desire to tease your readers.

TQ: Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery

Jonathan:  Thanks so much for having me!


About No Hero

No Hero
Arthur Wallace 1
(Night Shade Books, July 1, 2011)

Interview with Jonathan Wood - July 5, 2011
Night Shade books is proud to present the debut novel from Jonathan Wood, NO HERO.

"What would Kurt Russell do?"

Oxford police detective Arthur Wallace asks himself that question a lot. Because Arthur is no hero. He's a good cop, but prefers that action and heroics remain on the screen, safely performed by professionals.

But then, secretive government agency MI37 comes calling, hoping to recruit Arthur in their struggle against the tentacled horrors from another dimension known as the Progeny. But Arthur is NO HERO.

Can an everyman stand against sanity-ripping cosmic horrors?



About Jonathan

Interview with Jonathan Wood - July 5, 2011
Jonathan Wood is an Englishman in New York. No Hero is his debut novel. His short fiction has appeared in a large number of venues, including The Best of Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Chizine, Weird Tales, and the charity anthology Last Drink Bird Head. Most of his short fiction can be found for free at www.cogsandneurons.com. You can follow him on twitter as @thexmedic. Read the first chapter of No Hero for free at www.wix.com/jtxm27/no-hero.

Interview with Jenn Bennett and Giveaway - June 22, 2011

Please welcome Jenn Bennett to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge Interviews.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Jenn:   I have a small audience of good luck charms that sit by my computer: a three-legged pig from Chile, a Chinese Buddha, and a Japanese Momiji message doll. Before I write, I like to double-check that they are are facing me.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Jenn:   Edgar Allan Poe, Lord Byron, Phllip Pullman, Anaïs Nin, William S. Burroughs, Diana Gabaldon, Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman, Grant Morrison. I like rebels, counter-culturalists, madmen and madwomen. And I like subversive storytellers. I'm sure that everything I read influences my writing in one way or another, including magazines and nonfiction and emails from friends. But the biggest influence on KINDLING THE MOON was probably Arturo Pérez-Reverte's THE CLUB DUMAS.

TQ: Are you a plotter or a panster?

Jenn:   Both! I've plotted every detail of a book, and I've started with nothing but a sense of place and a character. Recently, I've been leaning toward pantsing: there's a certain thrill of discovery you get when you're finding your way in the dark. However, at the very least, I prefer to know the goal and conflict of the story before I start writing.

TQ: What inspired you to write Kindling the Moon?

Jenn: I wanted to write a world in which no single group of people (or supernatural creatures) was necessarily bad or evil. Arcadia doesn't fight demons, Buffy-style: they are her friends, lovers, coworkers. Some are good—some, bad. I like gray characters.

I also wanted to write an urban fantasy with an independent lead who performed magic, but I didn't want to make her the average urban fantasy witch or sorcerer; I wanted to do something a little . . . darker. Arcadia has been raised in a occult group that taught her ceremonial magic. She doesn't necessary side with their viewpoints or subscribe to everything they're pushing, but she's smart enough to use what knowledge she's been given to her advantage.

TQ: What sort of research did you do to create the world of Kindling the Moon?

Jenn: Arcadia's world in KINDLING primarily focuses on three supernatural groups: magicians (who are human), Earthbounds (descendants of humans with invoked demon souls), and Æthyric demons (big, bad scary demons who live on another plane). Most of my world-building is the product of an overactive imagination, but I did spend a good deal of time researching classic books about demons, including goetic texts like the Lesser Key of Solomon, De Praestigiis Daemonum, Dictionnaire Infernal . . . you know—breezy, light reading.

The series also includes a worldwide organization of occult orders that train and support ceremonial magicians. Though I took enormous artistic license with my fictional esoteric organization, I connected with a real-life one for inspiration—a local branch of the O.T.O., an Thelemic organization once led by Alister Crowley. Contrary to the general public's preconceived notions of Crowley, I found most of the members to be quite devout, friendly people.

TQ: Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Kindling the Moon?

Jenn: Heavy research aside, I think the greatest strength of the book is the intertwining relationships of three characters: Arcadia (the protagonist), Lon (a local photographer with a large esoteric library), and Jupe, Lon's teenage son. One of my favorite scenes occurs when thirteen-year-old Jupe calls up Arcadia at her bar and asks her on a date. It's one of the more lighthearted scenes in the book and some of my favorite dialogue.

TQ: Who was the most difficult character to write and why? The easiest and why?

Jenn: Lon was the hardest to write. He's a famous photographer, older, and raising a teenager alone. He's also very reserved and a bit damaged. He puts on a front that ranges from hostile to aloof, and he's a terrible communicator. But he's got a legitimate reason for being this way, and Arcadia uncovers some of his secrets throughout the story.The easiest character to write was his son: Jupe is enthusiastic, geeky, cocky, and weirdly charming. He loves comics and monster movies. And despite everything he's been through, he's eternally optimistic. I like that Arcadia is somewhere between these two, personality-wise, and I enjoyed exploring how both of them could influence her (which is further explored in the second book,  SUMMONING THE NIGHT, due to come out in April 2012).

TQ: How many books are planned for the Arcadia Bell series?

Jenn: I'm contracted to Pocket for two, with an option for more. I have four total planned to complete a major story arc, and one day I'd like to do a young adult spinoff from Jupe's point of view.

TQ: Who should play Arcadia Bell if the book becomes a movie?

Jenn: I referred my editor (and the cover artist, Tony Mauro) to Cristina Scabbia for Arcadia's physical appearance. I'm not sure about her acting skills, though—or her Italian accent! Arcadia's parents are French, so maybe Audrey Tautou.

TQ: Is there a playlist for Kindling the Moon and what is it?

Jenn: There's one in my head, and it swerves from classic rock to metal to funk. If that doesn't scare you away, then you can look for it on my website in July.

TQ: What's next?

Jenn: I just finished a quirky young adult paranormal romance which could be described as Sixteen Candles meets The Hobbit in Appalachia. (Did you just do a double-take? Yep, that's about right.) I'm getting ready to start writing another young adult—a supernatural/suspense/romantic noir. After that, I might tackle adult paranormal romance. Whatever I write, I think it will always be offbeat, original, slightly humorous, unconventionally romantic, and it will take place in a dark or surreal setting. I think that's what I do best, and it's definitely what I enjoy.

TQ: Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery

Jenn: It was my absolute pleasure! Thank you for having me. The Qwillery rocks!


About Jenn's Books

Kindling the Moon
Arcadia Bell 1
(Pocket Books, June 28, 2011)
Interview with Jenn Bennett and Giveaway - June 22, 2011
Meet Arcadia Bell: bartender, renegade magician, fugitive from the law. . . .

Being the spawn of two infamous occultists (and alleged murderers) isn't easy, but freewheeling magician Arcadia "Cady" Bell knows how to make the best of a crummy situation. After hiding out for seven years, she's carved an incognito niche for herself slinging drinks at the demon-friendly Tambuku Tiki Lounge.

But she receives an ultimatum when unexpected surveillance footage of her notorious parents surfaces: either prove their innocence or surrender herself. Unfortunately, the only witness to the crimes was an elusive Æthyric demon, and Cady has no idea how to find it. She teams up with Lon Butler, an enigmatic demonologist with a special talent for sexual spells and an arcane library of priceless stolen grimoires. Their research soon escalates into a storm of conflict involving missing police evidence, the decadent Hellfire Club, a ruthless bounty hunter, and a powerful occult society that operates way outside the law. If Cady can't clear her family name soon, she'll be forced to sacrifice her own life . . . and no amount of running will save her this time.


Amazon : B&N : Book Depository : Borders


Summoning the Night (Arcadia Bell 2) is slated for release in April 2012.


About Jenn

Interview with Jenn Bennett and Giveaway - June 22, 2011
Jenn Bennett is an award-winning visual artist-turned-author. Born in Germany, she’s lived and traveled extensively throughout Europe, the U.S., and the Far East. She believes rebellion is an under-appreciated art form, has conjured more demons than you’ve had hot lunches, and likes her fairy tales like she likes her coffee: dark. She currently lives near Atlanta with her film-geek husband and two very bad pugs.

Jenn's Links:

Website:  http://www.jennbennett.net/blog
Twitter:  http://twitter.com/Jenn_Benn
Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/JennBennettauthor


The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  One commenter will win a signed copy of Kindling the Moon from Jenn!

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:
If you visited the Tambuku Tiki Lounge, what beverage would you order from Cady?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)  Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2)  Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3)  Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Wednesday, June 29, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

Interview with Rima L. Jean - June 16, 2011

Please welcome Rima L. Jean to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge Interviews. Rima's debut novel, The Noble Pirates, now will be published in August, but we're going ahead with her interview as originally scheduled.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Rima:  I think I write better when there’s some noise around me, as opposed to dead silence. I like writing at coffee shops or cafes, with people talking and espresso machines whirring.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Rima:  There are so many! I love Agatha Christie; I read so many of her books as a teen that I’m certain her style influenced mine.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a panster?

Rima:  With The Noble Pirates, I was a total panster. I had a general outline in my head, but because it was an online serial, I was more focused on each installment. With my current work, I’m somewhere in between. I’ve written a general outline and have a story arc.

TQ:  Describe The Noble Pirates in 140 characters or less.

Rima:  During a violent storm, Sabrina is pitched back in time to the Golden Age of Piracy – with a book that describes the lives of the pirates she is about to meet. When she falls in love with Howel Davis, a sailor forced into piracy through circumstance, she begins to wonder: Can she use her knowledge to change the past? Is her knowledge a blessing or a curse?

TQ:  What inspired you to write the The Noble Pirates?

Rima:  My desire to bring history to life. I chose pirates as my subject matter because I had just seen Pirates of the Caribbean and wondered what the real pirates’ stories were.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for The Noble Pirates?

Rima:  A lot! I read a ton of books on the subjects of piracy, slavery, etc. Readers can find out more detail regarding my research at http://fictionescape.com/research.

TQ:  Who is your favorite pirate? Why?

Rima:  Howel Davis. Based on my historical research, he really wasn’t a bad guy, and he made it a point to try and steal without causing unnecessary deaths.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) The Noble Pirates?

Rima:  The scene where Howel Davis becomes a pirate, and the speech he makes to justify his actions.

TQ:  Who was the easiest character to write and why? Hardest and why?

Rima:  Sabrina was easiest, because she is a modern woman and I based her thoughts and actions on my own. Bart Roberts the pirate was the hardest, since he is by far the most complicated character in the book.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the series? (ignore this question if no more are planned)

Rima:  One more, I think. I don’t like dragging good stories on and on until it gets old.

TQ:  What's next?

Rima:  Well, there’s the sequel to TNP, Liberi, which I am currently working on. I am also working on a historical young adult book set during the Crusades. It’s a lot of fun.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Rima:  Thank you! Your questions were awesome!


About The Noble Pirates

The Noble Pirates
(Cogito Media, August 29, 2011)
Interview with Rima L. Jean - June 16, 2011
A vacation in the Bahamas goes awry, and a woman from 2009 unexpectedly finds herself in 1718 – amidst pirates. Sabrina is so consumed with her present-day problems that the last thing she expects is to suddenly end up face to face with real pirates. The notorious bad boys of the Golden Age of Piracy, Edward England, Howel Davis, and “Black Bart” Roberts, become Sabrina’s means of survival in the past, and ultimately, her key to returning to the future.

The catch? Sabrina happens to be carrying a book about pirates when she is swept into the past, and that book contains biographies of the very men she meets. She forms relationships with them and learns that, contrary to what she previously thought, they are sailors, servants, and slaves who were pressed into service, victims of social and historical circumstances of the era.

When Sabrina finds herself falling in love with Howel Davis, a sailor who becomes a pirate out of desperation, she begins to wonder: Can she use her knowledge to change the past? Is her knowledge a blessing or a curse?

Amazon : B&N : Book Depository : Borders


About Rima L. Jean
 
Interview with Rima L. Jean - June 16, 2011
Rima L. Jean graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in archaeology and history. She decided that, even though she loved history, it wasn’t exactly what she felt she was meant to do. Rima spent several years floundering, during which time she managed to snag a law degree and an amazing husband. It wasn’t until the birth of her first daughter that she returned to writing — something she had done quite a bit of as a child and teenager.
 
Put simply, writing is what Rima was meant to do.
 
She is the author of a forthcoming book about a woman who accidentally time travels back to the Golden Age of Piracy, The Noble Pirates. Rima loves to take real history and, with the help of some magical realism, transform it into a grand adventure with broad appeal. She is addicted to strong female characters who kick ass, and the strong male characters who fall in love with them.

Rima's Links:

The Noble Pirates Website:  http://www.thenoblepirates.com/
Rima L. Jean Author Website:  http://www.fictionescape.com/
Twitter:  http://twitter.com/FictionChick

Interview with Karina Cooper and Giveaway - May 31, 2011

Please welcome Karina Cooper to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge interviews.


TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Karina:  Well, let's lay this out: there's interesting annoying-quirk, and then there's interesting addict-quirk, and then there's interesting quirk-quirk. The former involves saying each line aloud as I type it. Really, no one can write in a room with me. Can you imagine reading every word aloud as you're clattering your keys? It helps me with dialects, accents and speech-patterns, but nowadays, it's mostly just because I can't get enough of the sound of my own voice. (This is a joke. Which means it's only partially true.) My interesting addict-quirk ties into the concept that every writer has a vice. Some involve booze by one's elbow, some involve cigarettes clenched tightly between two fingers as nicotine enhanced authors type with eight. Mine involves a hot drink: I absolutely must have a hot cup of something -- coffee or tea or chai or hot chocolate -- near at hand. I may not drink it right away (I have a hot plate just for mugs), but it has to be there, at my beck and call. You know, just in case I have this undeniable urge to quaff back some caffeine and replenish what brain cells I may have wrung dry.

And then lastly, there's my interesting quirk-quirk: I never read my sex scenes until I'm doing revisions. When I write them, I write it all in one go, never even so much as read up a line, and hurriedly move on to writing the next scenes. I have no idea how good or bad or muddled or hot or shameless my sex scenes are until I've completed my first draft and am now working on my edits. Sometimes, I'm pleasantly surprised. Sometimes, I find jaw-droppingly embarrassing errors. It's great fun. And I always blush.

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Karina:  My two favorite writers in the whole world are, interestingly enough, British. Perhaps this says something about me. Neil Gaiman and Sir Terry Pratchett both have influenced me as a writer, although I couldn't say either influenced my writing. I look up to both men with equal respect-slash-stalkery, and Mr. Gaiman has miraculously managed to shape who I want to become in this career, all without actually meeting. It's complicated. I'm a little bit ion love with the man, but only in that "far away" sort of way that insures a) his wife will not come after me with a flaming ukulele, and b) if I ever do meet him, he won't have a restraining order in hand.

Cherry Adair and Chuck Wendig are two more writers that I have so much respect for, and both have helped to influence me greatly as a person. I'm not sure I could point to anyone as to who helped influence my writing... I read so much -- so much, y'all -- that I can't think of anyone off hand who shaped my voice more or less than the others.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a panster?

Karina:  I used to be a pantser! But here's my fun little secret that I'm oddly yet abashedly proud of: I have 138 unfinished projects in a folder I call "Grab Bag" but which should probably be called "Crap I'll Never Touch Again". ...Can I share that? (Dear Publishers: I finish books, I swear!) The thing is, until I learned how to plot in a way that actually worked with me (Virgo/Libra, folks, line up to pity the fool), I had the devil of a time completing anything. Within, literally, one day of learning how to plot from Cherry Adair's workshop, I had a full book plotted out. Within three months of that, that book was done, and is now on sale as Blood of the Wicked. Since learning to plot, I have never, ever looked back, and I'm in the process of teaching a friend how to do the same!

TQ:  Describe Blood of the Wicked (Dark Mission 1) in 140 characters or less.

Karina:  Is it bad I had to alt-tab over to Twitter to make sure I got the characters right? Okay, here we go: A hunter is forced to use a woman as bait to complete his mission. A secret witch, she'll do anything to save her brother from death.

TQ:  What inspired you to write the Dark Mission series?

Karina:  Supervolcanoes. Seriously! I was watching the Discovery channel and they had a segment on the supervolcanoes of the world, and as I was watching, I started to feel the gears of creation winding up. Next thing I knew, I was researching subduction zones and mapping out a fictional city built on the ruins of the city we know now. It was eerie. I was also sick out of my mind, but I got over that bit.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for the the Dark Mission novels?

Karina:  I became a geologist! Okay, not really. But I did have to do a lot of research into the various tectonic zones and volcanoes around the Pacific Northwest. I also did a lot of looking into what areas of the world are plagued by what disasters. You don't hear a lot about the rest of the world in the Dark Mission series -- that may or may not come later, ahem-hem -- but I did learn that even places we don't hear about a lot have these epic disasters once every few centuries or so. Did you know that the Pacific Northwest has a truly massive quake -- like the kind that hit Japan -- every 200 to 900 years? It's a pretty random spread of numbers, but look at it this way: The last one was in 1700... 300 years falls firmly between 200 and 900, doesn't it? Something to think about!

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in the Blood of the Wicked?

Karina:  Oh, my. My favorite scene of all in Blood of the Wicked is close-ish to the end. Silas has just learned something that Jessie deliberately didn't tell him and his reaction is so intense and visceral and raw that my stomach twisted up even while I was writing it. They share a kiss that is as vivid in my mind as if I was the one who experienced it (don't worry, my faithful Freud types, I didn't!), and as negative as the whole scene is, I love it to bits.

TQ:  Who was the easiest character to write and why? Hardest and why?

Karina:  The easiest character to write is Silas -- he's really not that complex. He's basically a giant teddy bear with fists of iron. All he really wants is to get the fuck out of the city (pardon my language, darlings, but this is Silas we're talking of) and go somewhere sunny and isolated and nurse his bum knee and fish for the rest of his life. He's tempered by his job as a witch hunter, so his inner squishiness is a little crusty around the edges, but he's still pretty matter-of-fact.

The hardest character to write was... Well. I'll say "the villain". That man is so ridiculously complex. He says up when he means down, can't be buggered to explain anything, and has the worst martyr complex I've ever in my life had to tolerate. Seriously, I loathe him. I mean, I love him, but really. I loathe him.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the Dark Mission series?

Karina:  At the moment, there's three planned -- Blood of the Wicked (available May 31st), Lure of the Wicked (available June 28th, 2011) and then All Things Wicked (which will be available... um... sometime... ish). But the world is so ripe, and the characters so freaking busy sticking their noses into everyone else's business, that there could be more in the future. Who knows? Stay in touch, and I'll announce everything as it happens.

TQ:  What's next?

Karina:  As I mentioned, there's two more Dark Mission books coming out after Blood of the Wicked. However, I'll have another novella out later in the year. It's going to be a Dark Mission one, too, and it might just feature someone you didn't expect to see! I also tend towards a sickness in the head, which means I'm always working on something. Stay close. News is forever streaming through the glistening spam meat that is my Twitter feed!

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery

Karina:  Thank you ever so much for having me! This was fun -- I hope to come back again, if you ever need a wall of text spam to occupy readers. I'm giving like that. ;)

TQ:  You're more than welcome to visit again!


About Karina's Books

Before the Witches
Dark Mission E-novella
(Avon Impulse, May 17, 2011)
Interview with Karina Cooper and Giveaway - May 31, 2011
In America, they didn't care about witches. But all that was about to change.

Katya Zhuvova fled a country that feared her gifts, but her escape to Seattle left her at the mercy of a ruthless man. With no one left to turn to, Katya hatches a desperate escape plan. Undercover Detective Nigel Ferris is determined to bring down a prostitution ring, whatever the cost. In order to the get answers he needs, he attempts to win the trust of one of the prostitutes involved—but one look at the deceptively sultry Katya and the cool, objective cop disappears. Before either can put their plans into place, Mother Nature shrugs: a cataclysm rocks Seattle, and life is turned upside down.

Brought together by chance, Nigel and Katya are in the fight for their lives. Surrounded by death and fear, shattered by immeasurable loss, they have only a bond forged in fire to cling to as they struggle to survive in a world gone straight to hell.

 AmazonBarnes&Noble : Borders


Blood of the Wicked
Dark Mission 1
(Avon, May 31, 2011)
Interview with Karina Cooper and Giveaway - May 31, 2011
When the world went straight to hell, humanity needed a scapegoat to judge, to blame . . . to burn.

As an independent witch living off the grid, Jessie Leigh has spent her life running, trying to blend in among the faceless drudges in the rebuilt city. She thought she was finally safe, but now she's been found in a New Seattle strip club—by a hard-eyed man on a mission to destroy her kind.

A soldier of the Holy Order, Silas Smith believes in the cause: trawling the fringes of society for the murderous witches who threaten what's left of the world. Forced into a twisting web of half-truths and lies, he has to stay close to the most sensuous and electrifying woman he has ever seen and manipulate her into leading him to the witch he has to kill: her brother. Silas doesn't know that Jessie's his enemy, only that he wants her, needs her, even as he lies to her . . . and must protect her until his final breath.

Amazon : Barnes&Noble : Book Depository : Borders


Lure of the Wicked
Dark Mission 2
(Avon, June 28, 2011)
Interview with Karina Cooper and Giveaway - May 31, 2011
Naomi West was plucked from one prison and placed undercover in another: the gilded cage that is Timeless, New Seattle's premier spa and resort, where owner Phinneas Clarke—the most seductive man Naomi has ever met—may be hiding a killer. She's an agent of the Holy Order, trained to hunt the guilty and render justice. But while she's tracking down a rogue agent on a killing spree, Phin is determined to uncover her most damning—and dangerous—secrets. Whatever the cost.

Amazon : Barnes&Noble : Book Depository : Borders









About Karina

Interview with Karina Cooper and Giveaway - May 31, 2011
After weaving happily ever afters for all of her friends in school, Karina Cooper eventually grew up (kind of) and fell in love with writing. Imagine her surprise to find that it counts as A Real Job. One part romance fanatic, one part total dork, and all imagination, she can’t help but write paranormal romance and obsess over urban fantasy.

When she isn't writing, Karina is an airship captain’s wife and Steampunk fashionista. She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with a husband, four cats, one rabbit, the fantasy of a dog and a passel of adopted gamer geeks. She adores hearing from readers, so visit www.karinacooper.com.

Karina's Links

Website
Twitter
Teatime Iniquity (blog)
Facebook
Photos (Flickr)


The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  One commenter will win a signed copy of Blood of the Wicked generously provided by Karina.

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

Whose side are you on, the Holy Order or the Witches?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)  Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2)  Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3)  Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Tuesday, June 7, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

Interview with Anita Clenney and Giveaway - May 18, 2011

Please welcome Anita Clenney to The Qwillery as part of the 2011 Debut Author Challenge Interviews.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting quirk?

Anita:  Oh, I have so many…let’s see. I absolutely love mirrors. My husband thinks I’m insane. J  They’re not for looking at myself, but for the sheer art of them. It’s really the frames I love. I have several that are inexpensive, but look like they belong in a castle. Too bad I live in a small rambler. J

TQ:  Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Anita:  Diana Gabaldon is one of my favorites. I love her Outlander series. I love Janet Evanovich and the Stephanie Plum series, Elizabeth Peters and her Amelia Peabody series, just to name a few. I don’t know that any of them influenced me in more than a general way. I only found Diana Gabaldon’s books about a year ago. Thank goodness I did. I adore her writing.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a panster?

Anita:  Some of each. I love the brainstorming process. That’s my favorite part, designing characters and worlds and layering them with mysteries and surprises. I don’t really outline, rather, I make a lot of notes, but I do know where the story is going before I start writing.

TQ:  What inspired you to write Awaken the Highland Warrior?

Anita:  The part about demons disguised as humans started with a dream. At the same time I had been considering writing a story about a warrior who was found buried but not dead. I love mysterious things.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do for Awaken the Highland Warrior?

Anita:  It didn’t require as much as it would have if it were historical. I did have to make sure Faelan’s history was accurate.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in the book?

Anita:  I love all the scenes. In fact, I had to cut some scenes because the book was too long. One of my favorite is the opening, when she first finds Faelan. Part of that scene is posted in an excerpt here. I love the mystery and suspense of that scene.

TQ:  Who would you cast to play Bree and Faelan if Awaken The Highland Warrior was made into a movie?

Anita:  I think Bridget Regan of Legend of the Seeker would make a good Bree. For Faelan, I’m not sure. Gerard Butler could probably do the part justice, but he doesn’t look a lot like Faelan.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the Highland Warriors series? Will there be any short stories or novellas set in Highland Warriors' world?

Anita:  There are three books planned for now. Possibly more. I love this series! No novellas that I know of.

TQ:  What’s next?

Anita:  I’ve turned in the second book, Embrace the Highland Warrior, which is due out November 2011. I’m working on the third book now. It’s due out Fall 2012 and will answer a lot of questions for the series. It will also have some surprises. Here’s a blurb for each.

When the powerful demon that left Shay for dead discovers her empty grave, he comes seeking retribution, believing she possesses an ancient book he has sought for centuries. Knowing she can’t fight the demon alone, Shay returns to her clan and the Scottish Warrior who betrayed her…the only man she’s ever loved, where she discovers that betrayal isn’t always what it seems. Sometimes it’s far worse.

A talisman belonging to Tavis Connor’s brother is the only weapon powerful enough to kill the demon hell-bent on stealing the clan’s Book of Battles so he can destroy the world. But the talisman has been locked in a time vault with Tavis’s brother and won’t open for 150 years. In desperation, the Scottish warrior breaks the clan’s sacred rules and uses another time vault to travel forward so he can protect the book and rescue his brother, or if he’s dead, finish his quest. But when Tavis finally wakes in modern-day New York, he discovers he’s the one in need of help. Anna MacKinley has been searching for her clan’s Book of Battles which has been missing for 150 years, but instead she finds a warrior with no memories who claims he’s come to save the world.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery

Anita:  You’re very welcome! Thanks for having me. I would love for readers to visit my website and look around. Join my newsletter for upcoming news and giveaways! My publisher will give away a copy of Awaken the Highland Warrior to one commenter.


About Anita' Books

Awaken the Highland Warrior
(May 1, 2011)
Interview with Anita Clenney and Giveaway - May 18, 2011Historian Bree Kirkland has always been in love with the past, but when she accidentally wakes an ancient Scottish warrior who's spent the past 150 years sleeping in her backyard, her present is suddenly fraught with danger. Faelan has awakened from the time vault ravenous--in more ways than one. He grieves for his lost family, wondering who sent the woman to wake him. If she's a demon, Faelan will have to kill her. If she's innocent, she's unleashed the gates of hell in her backyard. Either way they must rely on each other to save their future.




Amazon : B&N : Book Depository : Borders
 
 
 
 
 Excerpt:

      Bree’s fingers tightened around the metal disk as she ran through the graveyard, zigzagging past leaning headstones. Her lantern swayed, throwing shadows on the crypt looming before her, its stone walls the color of bones. Thick vines crept over it, sealing in cracks left by time, while gnarled branches from the twisted oak hovered like outstretched arms. Protecting… or threatening?

     An owl screeched overhead as she scurried up the crumbling steps, wishing night hadn’t fallen, when shadows twisted into monsters and spirits came out to play. The burial vault lay open near the back of the crypt, waiting. Blood rushed past her ears, a sound like all the angels’ wings beating in unison. She moved closer and peered at the chest inside. It was ornate, made of metal and wood, with green gemstones embedded in each corner. It looked ancient, like it belonged in a museum or a pyramid, or perhaps Solomon’s Temple. The beauty of it struck her again, as it had when she’d first discovered it.

     She set the lantern on the edge of the burial vault and studied the markings on the chest. Swirls and shapes like writing shifted in the amber glow. Stretching out a finger, she touched the surface. Warm? She yanked her hand back and hit the lantern. It crashed to the floor, throwing the top of the crypt into darkness. Dropping to her knees, she scrambled for the light. A sound cut through the silence, scraping, like fingernails against stone. She grabbed the lantern, not daring to blink, then remembered the wind outside and the claw-like branches of the old tree.

     She placed the lantern securely on the vault cover she’d pushed onto the alcove and unfolded her hand. The metal disk she held was three inches in diameter and appeared to be made from the same metal as the chest, not silver, not gold. One side had deep grooves; the other was etched with symbols. With trembling fingers, she lined up the disk with the matching grooves on top of the chest and pushed. There was a series of clicks as the notched edges retracted.

     A voice rushed through her head. What lies within cannot be, until time has passed with the key.

     Bree whirled, but she was alone. Only stone walls stood watch, their secrets hidden for centuries. It was sleep deprivation, not ghosts.

     She pulled in a slow, steadying breath and tried to turn the disk. Nothing. Again, this time counterclockwise, and it began to move under her hand. She jerked her fingers back. A loud pop sounded and colors flashed… blue, orange, and green, swirling for seconds, and then they were gone. Great, hallucinations to go with the voices in her head.

     Her body trembled as she gripped the lid. This was it. All her dreams held on a single pinpoint of time. If this ended up another wild goose chase, she was done. No more treasure hunts, no more mysteries, no more playing Indiana Jones. She’d settle down to a nice, ordinary, boring life. She counted.

     One.

     Two.

     Three.

     She heaved open the chest.

     Terror clawed its way to her throat, killing her scream.

     The man inhaled one harsh breath and his eyes flew open, locking on Bree. A battle cry worthy of Braveheart echoed off the walls. Bree jumped back as metal flashed and a rush of air kissed her face. Petrified, she watched him crawl out of the burial vault, a wicked-looking dagger in his hand. Her scream tore loose as she turned and fled.

     Fingers grazed her shoulder, and she glanced back. The last thing she saw before her feet tangled with the shovel was the dead man reaching for her.


Embrace the Highland Warrior (Book 2) will be published in November 2011.


About Anita

Interview with Anita Clenney and Giveaway - May 18, 2011
Anita Clenney grew up an avid reader, devouring Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books before moving on to mysteries and romance. After working as a secretary, a Realtor, teacher’s assistant, booking agent for Aztec Fire Dancers, and a brief stint in a pickle factory (picture Lucy and Ethel--lasted half a day)…she realized she'd missed the fork in the road that led to her destiny. Now she spends her days writing mysteries and paranormal romantic suspense about Secret Warriors, Ancient Evil and Destined Love. Anita lives in suburban Virginia, outside Washington DC, with her husband and two kids. You can learn more about her writing at http://www.anitaclenney.com/


Anita's Links

Website
Twitter
Facebook
Goodreads


The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  A Mass Market paperback copy of Awaken The Highland Warrior generously provided by Sourcebooks and a Mass Market paperback copy of Awaken the Highland Warrior provided by The Qwillery. That means that there will be two winners each receiving 1 book!

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

What's sleeping in your backyard?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)  Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2)  Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3)  Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Wednesday, May 25, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*
Interview with Daniel Polansky - August 16, 2011Interview with Patricia Eimer and Giveaway - August 9, 2011Interview with Will McIntosh and Giveaway - July 26, 2011Interview with Teresa Frohock and Giveaway - July 20, 2011Interview with Stina Leicht and Giveaway - July 15, 2011Interview with Jonathan Wood - July 5, 2011Interview with Jenn Bennett and Giveaway - June 22, 2011Interview with Rima L. Jean - June 16, 2011Interview with Karina Cooper and Giveaway - May 31, 2011Interview with Anita Clenney and Giveaway - May 18, 2011

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