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Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2013 Winner


The 2013 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars winner for June is Ecko Rising (Ecko 1) by Danie Ware with 34% of the votes cast just beating Sea Change which has 29% of the votes. Ecko Rising was published by Titan Books in the US  on June11, 2013.  The cover is by Martin Stiff of Amazing15




Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2013 Winner





The Final Results:

Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2013 Winner





The June Debut Covers
Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2013 Winner





Thank you to everyone who voted, Tweeted, and participated. The 2013 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will continue soon with voting on the July 2013 Debut covers.

Interview with Danie Ware, author of Ecko Rising - June 11, 2013



Please welcome Danie Ware to The Qwillery as part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge Guest Blogs. Ecko Rising is published today in the US by Titan Books.  Happy Publication to Danie!  You may read Danie's Guest Blog - Why I stopped writing, and how I started again: a blog post for anyone who's ever thrown in the towel - here.








TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery.

Danie:  Thank you very much – it’s very good to be here!



TQ:  When and why did you start writing?

Danie:  I’ve been writing since I was a cub, since I could put my chubby mitt round a pencil. I think if you read enough, imagine enough, the words reach critical mass – and all of the ones you’ve put in have to fine some way of getting out again. Throughout my twenties, I churned out reams and reams of epic fantasy, short stories and an ongoing and colossal novel that was, predictably completely unpublishable. Some of the core concepts are still with me, though, and have gone on to become Ecko Rising.



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

Danie:  Semi-colons. Oh, was that not what you meant? I like writing combat. I've done a dozen years in Dark Age and Mediaeval re-enactment, fought on battlefields throughout the UK, taken on guys twice my size – occasionally even beaten some of them! I’ve fought as a member of a unit, and I’ve commanded other warriors on the field. I remember how it feels and smells. My battering days are probably behind me, but I still get a huge kick out of writing it!



TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Danie:  A little of both – I always have an MSExcel, chapter-by-chapter plot, but sometimes the characters just decide they don’t want to got that way right now and then it’s seat of the pants time! Ecko being who and what he is - he’s particularly guilty of this! There are advantages to both methods, though – sometimes too much plotting can leave a narrative blocky and predictable, and sometimes to much pantsing just comes out as pure chaos.



TQ:  What is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

Danie:  Simple answer – time. I’m a single parent with an energetic eight year old son (who has a whole agenda of his own), plus I work for London retailer Forbidden Planet, organising their social media and events… sometimes, simply scheduling my days to just fit the writing in, is the hardest thing in the world. I try and do at least something every day, keep the narrative alive and the characters talking to each other. And to me!



TQ:  Describe Ecko Rising in 140 characters or less. 

Danie:  Sardonic fantasy, with a healthy dusting of sex, violence and sarcasm. It's a new take on an old friend!



TQ:  What inspired you to write Ecko Rising?

Danie:  My friends – both old and new. All the fiction I wrote during my twenties was involving my friends and inspired by them, inspired by the re-enactment mentioned above, and by the massive creativity we all shared. Coming back to the craft nearly ten years later, it was a daunting thing to pick up again – and it was the support of the people around me that gave me the confidence to do so.



TQ:  What sort of research did you do for Ecko Rising?

Danie:  What is this research of which you speak? During our re-enactment years, the living history and authentic kit and combat methods were simply around us all the time – call that research by osmosis, if you like. W really lived it! A lot of Ecko’s kit and technical crafting came from the creative committees of our youth; it was very much a team effort. Research done deliberately and personally adds up to geographical and medical data, a lot about horses, and a LOT about bamboo.



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

Danie:  Ecko himself is both the easiest and the hardest – because I have to be angry, I have to have a particular savage sense of humour and edged wit. Assuming I can get into the zone (cycling’s always good), then the character is the perfect outlet – he’s a cathartic release of all that built-up rage. If I’m not angry, I usually write someone else for a bit!



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

Danie:  It’s very hard to choose! I think my favourite scenes are the early ones, where Ecko raids Grey’s base, and then when he first wakes up in the Wanderer. Going though eyes and brain, what he saw and how he made sense of it all (or doesn’t) was a fantastic, downhill rush of aggression and bafflement and humour. I also have a lot of fun writing Redlock and Triqueta – they’re my downtime, if you like!



TQ:  What's next?

Danie:  Ecko Burning, the sequel to this one, is out in the UK in October, and I’m halfway through the first draft of the third of the series. After that, we shall see!



TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery

Danie:  Thank you for having me!






About Ecko Rising

Ecko Rising
Ecko 1
Titan, Books June 11, 2013
Trade Paperback and eBook, 480 pages
US Debut

In a futuristic London where technological body modification is the norm, Ecko stands alone as a testament to the extreme capabilities of his society. Driven half mad by the systems running his body, Ecko is a criminal for hire. No job is too dangerous or insane.

When a mission goes wrong and Ecko finds himself catapulted across dimensions into a peaceful and unadvanced society living in fear of 'magic', he must confront his own percepions of reality and his place within it.

A thrilling debut, Ecko Rising explores the massive range of the sci-fi and fantasy genres, and the possible implications of pitting them against one another. Author Danie Ware creates an immersive and richly imagined world that readers will be eager to explore in the first book in this exciting new trilogy.






This is the UK cover for Ecko Burning:







About Danie

Ware is the publicist and event organiser for cult entertainment retailer Forbidden Planet. She has worked closely with a wide-range of genre authors and has been immersed in the science-fiction and fantasy community for the past decade. An early adopter of blogging, social media and a familiar face at conventions, she appears on panels as an expert on genre marketing and retailing. (Text from Bookish.)

Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook




Guest Blog by Danie Ware, author of Ecko Rising - May 14, 2013


Please welcome Danie Ware to The Qwillery as part of the 2013 Debut Author Challenge Guest Blogs. Ecko Rising will be published on June 11, 2013 in the US by Titan Books.







Why I stopped writing, and how I started again: a blog post for anyone who's ever thrown in the towel.


You know how it goes: -

Put bum on seat; put fingers on keyboard (variations in choice of tools may apply).

But there comes a day when you don't. When your life catches you up and your day job becomes your career. When your family runs you ragged and you end each day worn out, nose in a wine glass. Maybe you get bored, or lack feedback, or just run out of steam... maybe you lose your confidence. Be it a sudden spasm of choice or a gradual slide into apathy, the day comes when you realise you've quit... and it bites at you like the Black Dog himself.

I wrote fantasy from a teenager, reams and years - wonder and pretentiousness that filled a forest of pages. Stories, songs, lexicons, characters, you-name-it - dear Gods, some of them even had apostrophes in their names. I'm a Literature graduate, for my sins, and somewhere in my head, I thought I was going to craft the Ultimate Masterpiece, going to write something that people would be studying in English fifty years hence...

Yeah, right.

A dream of that magnitude is ludicrous, unsustainable - I ran out of energy, and time. My life caught me up. I had a job, and a mortgage, and a baby. My imagination was a lost thing, buried under work and money and an inability to sleep.

And I quit. All of that massive creative ambition, and I stopped. I didn't even mean to. I lost my confidence, had no idea how to string sentences together. Don't get me wrong - I wanted to write, the urge never went away, but for eight years my imagination was a silent thing, forgotten and unvoiced. If you've ever been there, you know what a grey place that is.

But this is one story with a happy ending.

Today, Twitter is the homeplace of the author - published or self-published, #amwriting abounds. In 2008, there were only a few of us - twitter was not yet a celebrity playground, and the bonds between friends were strong. And somewhere between that, and attending the first SF Con I'd been to in more than a decade, there lurked an epiphany - that writing was not about some uber-worlds-shattering masterpiece, not about some lofty text that would be held up to scrutiny by teenagers in forthcoming years...

...it was about a little bit of what I'd once loved, for my friends.

In a tangled fit of courage and terror, I put a couple of hesitant chapters of what is now 'Ecko Rising' live on googlepages, and asked what people thought. And I’ve no shame in admitting that the positive reaction reduced me to tears - as if that long-walled-away part of myself was slowly unfolding back to life. The rest, as they say, is history. A dream finally come true – long after I’d given up on it.

I guess it comes to this...

'Put bum on seat; put fingers on keyboard' means write for yourself, everything else will come. Don't write for other people. Don't write to reinvent the world in your image. Don't set goals too high to reach, or you'll fall every time. Instead, write because you love it, write because you have to, write because you can. Write whatever burns in your imagination. Write what comes naturally to you, however strange it may seem. Write in your own voice, your own imagery. Blow traditions, blow previous examples, genre boundaries if you want to - it's yours to do with whatever the heck you please.

And when you have written enough, and you've realised that you can, put it out there - and let people see it. Let them help you.

Ecko is all about doing what's impossible.

Go for it.





About Ecko Rising

Ecko Rising
Ecko 1
Titan, Books June 11, 2013
Trade Paperback and eBook, 480 pages
US Debut

In a futuristic London where technological body modification is the norm, Ecko stands alone as a testament to the extreme capabilities of his society. Driven half mad by the systems running his body, Ecko is a criminal for hire. No job is too dangerous or insane.

When a mission goes wrong and Ecko finds himself catapulted across dimensions into a peaceful and unadvanced society living in fear of 'magic', he must confront his own percepions of reality and his place within it.

A thrilling debut, Ecko Rising explores the massive range of the sci-fi and fantasy genres, and the possible implications of pitting them against one another. Author Danie Ware creates an immersive and richly imagined world that readers will be eager to explore in the first book in this exciting new trilogy.







About Danie

Ware is the publicist and event organiser for cult entertainment retailer Forbidden Planet. She has worked closely with a wide-range of genre authors and has been immersed in the science-fiction and fantasy community for the past decade. An early adopter of blogging, social media and a familiar face at conventions, she appears on panels as an expert on genre marketing and retailing. (Text from Bookish.)

Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook




Interview with Danie Ware and Giveaway of Ecko EndgameDebut Author Challenge Cover Wars - June 2013 WinnerInterview with Danie Ware, author of Ecko Rising - June 11, 2013Guest Blog by Danie Ware, author of Ecko Rising - May 14, 2013

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