Natasha Ewendt's Blog

January 12, 2015

Today’s Author Spotlight interview is with Tami Cox.

1. If a movie was made of your life, what would the title be and why?
Eat, Pray, Write. They are the three things I love to do most in this life, and I’m miserable to be around when I’m not allowed to do those three things.

2. If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why?
I’d call it Gary, because I have a four-year-old grandson who makes me watch way too many episodes of Spongebob Square Pants. Sorry, I really don’t have much of an answer for this question, but I’d love a snail who would grant my every wish.

3. If you could have a super hero for a partner, who would it be and why?
It would definitely be Superman. I have loved Superman my entire life. When I was in the third grade our school bus broke down on the way home in the afternoon. I cried and cried. The sweet bus driver kept trying to comfort and reassure me that everything would be alright and we would get home safely. I finally confessed to her that I was crying because I was going to miss Superman—he came on television each afternoon at three o’clock. I still love Superman.

4. What is the meaning of life? (And you can't say 42!)
It might sound very cliché, but life is about growth, forgiveness, compassion, and improvement. We need to learn from our mistakes and trials along the way—leaving the past behind us and not letting it identify who we are now, always forgive ourselves and others—after all, we are all only human beings, grow and become a better person each day. But mostly, life is about making this journey better for our fellowman.

5. Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming release.
My newest work is a triology: The Blue Moon Over Martinsburg Series. The first novel, Blue Moon Over Martinsburg is a coming of age story for a young girl, Molly Snyder, who travels to Martinsburg, West Virginia in the 197-'s and falls in love with the quintessential country boy--Boone O'Toole. Throughout the series, Boone develops a serious cocaine and alcohol addiction. Boone's bad behavior and many other obstacles along the way keep this young couple apart, but they struggle against all odds to be together. One reader's review says it all: "I was hooked from the moment I started reading! I felt like I was actually in the story." And another told me: "These were books I had a hard time putting down and when I couldn't read, their love story was replaying in my mind."
The novels--Blue Moon Over Martinsburg, Boone & Molly (2), and The Country Boy (3) are full of old fashioned values, southern charm, and warm loving characters that you won't soon forget. I promise this story will make you fall in love with this heartwarming couple

6. What genre/s do you write in and why?
Currently, I write in the genre of chic lit or romance. My reasons for choosing this genre are simply that is where my passion for the story of Boone and Molly led me. I love their story. But, with that said, I don’t want to box myself in to being only a romance writer. I have written non-fiction in the past. My novel, Spirits of Gettysburg; Tales of a Ghost Tour Guide (written under the name of Tami Rasel) came out in 2009. It would fall in the genre of supernatural. I also have a comedic short story, The Bravest Damn Irishman in Baltimore that has been published in a couple different anthologies—most recently, Eleven Eleven, and has won several awards. But, I have to admit, romance is my favorite.

7. Do you have secret to overcoming writer’s block?
I don’t have a secret. I’ve started several novels that I might have had what would be considered writer’s block. But, I feel that I just didn’t have a real interest or passion for writing that novel or article, and so I abandoned it. When I am excited about what I’m writing, I can’t stop writing. When I have little interest in what I’m writing, then I get writer’s block.

8. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Yes, the message is throughout the trilogy of Blue Moon Over Martinsburg. That message is exactly how destructive drugs and alcohol can be. I also work as a Drug and Alcohol Counselor and Prevention Educator in York County, Pennsylvania. I have seen how drugs destroy children, destroy families, and destroy communities. The reader can see how Boone’s deep love for Molly deteriorates for his true love—cocaine and alcohol, he is willing to put her life in danger over it. They also see how someone’s addiction affects everyone around them—family, friends, neighbors…

9. Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors?
I get asked that a lot. I have so many folks that will say they want to write a book, and ask me “how do I get a book published?” They worry more about getting published then actually writing the book. My advice—write the book first, don’t worry about getting published. That will come in time. For now, just worry about writing and write! My other advice would be—go to school, get the skills and tools of a writer.

10. What is the best link for people to buy your book from?
http://www.amazon.com/Blue-Moon-Over-...
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/blue-...
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...
http://www.booksamillion.com/p/Blue-M...

The Country Boy (Blue Moon Over Martinsburg Book 3) by Tami CoxTami Cox (Rasel) was born in Baltimore, Maryland but spent many summers in Martinsburg, West Virginia. She is the mother of three children and one grandson she describes as the love of her life. Tami’s first novel, The Spirits of Gettysburg: Tales of a Ghost Tour Guide, got its inspiration by the fact that Tami was a Ghost Tour Guide in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania (the most haunted place on earth) for thirteen years—she was paid to scare people! Tami has a BA in professional writing from York College of Pennsylvania.

This Freshest Hell by Natasha EwendtNatasha Ewendt is the author of This Freshest Hell, a vampire novel released in 2013 by Lacuna Publishing. Also a journalist and copyeditor, she is reluctantly addicted to coffee and The Walking Dead.
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Published on January 12, 2015 23:02 • 201 views

January 4, 2015

Today’s Author Spotlight interview is with Carole Gill.

1. If a movie was made of your life, what would be the title and why?

Against the Odds. My childhood was idyllic. I had wonderful parents and could not have been happier. When I turned 25 my father suddenly died and that’s when the nightmare began. I chose to marry the wrong man; in fact I did this post about him.

http://carolegillauthor.blogspot.co.u...

After leaving him I took care of my mother for the last 12 years of her life. She was, by that time, totally disabled. It was difficult and I did it alone.

It was after she died that I turned back to writing and I haven’t stopped. I met my second husband who more than made up for the first. As a matter of fact, he is my cheerleader and my best friend.

The past was difficult, still we learn from it and as the saying goes, what doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger.


2. If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why?

Most Revered Snail and It-Is-A-Pleasure-To-Know-You-Snail.

I would feed it whatever snails eat and keep it from harm. Of course that would be conditional to the regularity of the magic wishes being granted.

3. If you could have a super hero for a partner, who would it be and why?
I’d say Superman. I loved him as a child. I thought Lois Lane and Lana Lang were lucky he even spoke to them. We’d leap tall buildings at a single bound.
BTW I could not (as a child), understand why Superman didn’t fight in WW2. Seriously!

When I understood, I knew I had matured. I liked him also because of his flaws, his susceptibility to Kryptonite—Lex Luther is fun to hate, too. Yes, without doubt, Superman. Batman might be fun but only if he kept his mask on (wink)!

4. What is the meaning of life? (And you can't say 42!)

The meaning of life is to take what comes your way, to try and cope as best you can. We have plans that often aren’t fulfilled for one reason or another. Fate might come into it—circumstance cannot always be avoided or changed—still, whatever comes your way must be dealt with. I do think people need to be compassionate too. We don’t exist purely for ourselves in my opinion. We’re part of a much larger picture. I hate intolerance of any kind and I especially dislike lack of compassion for others.

5. Tell us a bit about your latest release.

My latest novel is historically based horror. It is the first in a brand new series, The Blood and Passion Series.

It's expansive, beginning at the court of Marie Antoinette, travelling onto harems and freak shows that offer the public vampires and werewolves. There are blood clubs where humans go to be fed on, thereby gaining a sexual thrill. There are also vampire brothels which the rich and famous go to as well as another clientele in more mundane brothels.

There is, too, a great pestilence that threatens to wipe out all vampires. This plague has troubled our fanged friends since time began. It is frightening and vampires succumb easily, although some seem to be immune.

Book 1 concludes aboard a ship bound for America. The next in the series, Anat, Blood Princess, Book 2 I am writing now.

6. What genre/s do you write in and why?

Horror. It’s always been horror, although some of my short fiction has been sci-fi. I write horror because sadly it’s all around me. It’s on the news, in the newspapers, too. Crime is all over the place because people are.

I don’t write slasher stuff because, for me it’s too real. I prefer the supernatural – it’s more like ‘safe’ horror.

7. Do you have a secret to overcoming writer’s block?

Absolutely! It is your brain telling you to think about what you’re doing. Whatever you are writing, you might have to change direction somewhat. I think it’s a failsafe mechanism. The worst thing you can do is to press on without thinking about where you want to go.

Taking a break from a particular piece helps too. Start something else, and then go back to it.

8. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Yes. I want them to know horror is a broad genre and there is room for all sorts of horror fiction. I want them to know I do write paranormal romance along with the horror, but it’s dark paranormal romance. Still, Justine: Into the Blood is the most romantic of my vampire novels.

9. Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors?

Just to know that writing changes as you go along. It did for me. What I thought was good years ago, I don’t like now. The most important advice I ever received was not to wait for inspiration. Writing is a discipline. The inspiration comes as you carry on.

Often people say they don’t have time to write. I can understand that. But how long does a 200 world flash fiction piece take? Even if you have ten minutes, try to fill those ten minutes by writing a short piece of fiction. When there is more time, write more! Develop it regularity too. It will be to your benefit.

10. What is the best link for people to buy your book from?

Justine: Into the Blood is on sale at Amazon, ebook and print.

http://www.amazon.com/Justine-Into-Bl...

The award-winning, Blackstone Vampires Series consisting of four novels can be bought singly for $2.99 or as a boxed set in The Blackstone Vampires Omnibus (all four novels for $3.99)!

http://www.amazon.com/Blackstone-Vamp...
Carole Gill’s House of Horrors is a 100k word collection of my short stories. It is for the seriously twisted horror fan. One story inspired Circus of Horrors which will be released in January J

http://www.amazon.com/House-Horrors-C...

All my books are published Creativia and are available in print and ebook

Carole GillCarole Gill is a horror writer living in Yorkshire with her second husband (the normal one) and two lunatic Parson Russell Terriers. She is the author of The Blackstone Vampire Series (four novels), Carole Gill’s House of Horrors as well as Justine: Into the Blood, Book 1 in the Blood and Passion Series.

This Freshest Hell by Natasha EwendtNatasha Ewendt is the author of This Freshest Hell, a vampire novel released in 2013 by Lacuna Publishing. Also a journalist and copyeditor, she is reluctantly addicted to coffee and The Walking Dead.
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Published on January 04, 2015 22:37 • 99 views

December 16, 2014

Today’s Author Spotlight interview is with Kay Glass.

1. If a movie was made of your life, what would be the title and why?
No Good Deed Goes Unpunished! *LOL* We've had a few times where we've tried to help others and it's come back to bite us, which has led to us being a bit more cautious in who we lend a hand to!

2. If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why?
Be Careful What You Wish For! Just as a reminder that sometimes caution is better!

3. If you could have a super hero for a partner, who would it be and why?
Um, I honestly have no clue! I don't know much about super heroes. Mystique from X-Men is pretty awesome... does that count!?

4. What is the meaning of life? (And you can't say 42!)
To me the meaning of life is finding happiness, some small joy, in the world around you, the life you live. And also helping bring that joy to someone else.

5. Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming release.
Survival Paranoia is the second in the Survival series. It takes place during the same time period as Survival Instinct, the first in the series, but told from a different perspective. This one follows Lorna, a 17-year-old survivalist who was locked in an asylum because everyone thought she was paranoid for preparing for the zombie apocalypse.

6. What genre/s do you write in and why?
I mainly write paranormal stories, although I also write erotica. I like writing stories that speak to me, and taking everyday life but making it just a bit different.

7. Do you have secret to overcoming writer’s block?
Book covers! Book covers save me 9 times out of 10! When I'm suffering writer's block I love to sit down and work on covers for stories I'm currently working on, or future stories that are turning in the back of my mind.

8. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Everyone's life is different, and everyone finds their own way of dealing with it. While survivalists may seem crazy or extreme to some, to others they are just the ones who have a plan for if the world falls down around our ears!

9. Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors?
The key to writing, for me, is reading! You have to know what sells and why. It's not just because a certain genre is popular- it's much more than that. It's writing a story that reaches out and grabs the reader, holds their attention. And the second step is to write! Grocery lists, poetry, journal entries, short stories, blog posts.... the list is endless for where to begin, but you have to start somewhere!

10. What is the best link for people to buy your book from?
Survival Paranoia is available on Amazon at the moment! Amazon.com: Survival Paranoia (Survival series Book 2) eBook: Kay Glass: Kindle Store

Kay Glass is the author of the Survival series, the Just One Bite series, and numerous short stories. She lives in Delaware with her husband, two children, five cats, and a dog.

Natasha Ewendt is the author of This Freshest Hell, a vampire novel released in 2013 by Lacuna Publishing. Also a journalist and copyeditor, she is reluctantly addicted to coffee and The Walking Dead.
Just One Bite Part One by Kay Glass
This Freshest Hell by Natasha Ewendt
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Published on December 16, 2014 20:50 • 136 views

December 3, 2014

1. If a movie was made of your life, what would be the title and why?

I think I would call a movie made about my life ‘Flying with Broken Wings’ because after having had a difficult childhood and years of an abusive marriage I have at times felt broken and unable to achieve what I want. Fortunately I have drawn on my inner strength which I didn’t know I had and escaped and reconciled with my past and have moved on the bigger and better things like becoming a published writer. I would like to see it as a movie of hope for those who are struggling with life.

2. If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why?

If I had a magic snail I would call her ‘Shellie’ – because she has a shell and also because I would always be getting her to ‘shell’ out some good things for me.

3. If you could have a super hero for a partner, who would it be and why?

I would choose Superman. He seems the least tortured superhero, with an easy acceptance of who he is and what he can do. He is also a writer, if only a journalist, so he could relate to me.

4. What is the meaning of life? (And you can’t say 42!)

So first of all I had to look up where the 42 came into it. I seem to have missed something along the way. Well now I know about 42 and think it would be convenient to distil life down to a number, be it 42 or otherwise.

I suppose the meaning of life depends on your core values and beliefs. For me, I’m not religious, but believe in a higher being, God if you like, I don’t think it matters what you call this being. For if there were no higher being there would be no meaning or purpose of us striving for a better life.

I think meaning of life is not just a static idea for all, but one that we each, individually, have to make out of the time and resources we have. We choose a path that has meaning to us, to achieve a goal that has meaning for us – take Mother Teresa, Margaret Thatcher, Angelina Jolie, Gill Hicks – dependant on the hand we have been dealt.

5. Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming release.

My latest release is an erotic romance novel with a touch of suspense and intrigue. Titled Demolition of the Heart and published by Totally Bound Publishers it was released on the 22nd August 2014 and is available in e book and paperback on Totally Bound and Amazon.

Kayla Mackenzie in Demolition of the Heart has come from a background of privilege, but in her short twenty five years life has already dealt her some hard lessons in love, loss and the burden of having a prestigious pioneering family legacy to live up to.
When Wade Faxton mysteriously gains possession of her beloved family home with intention of demolishing it, feisty and impetuous, Kayla tackles him head on with explosive results that put her life and her heart at risk.
Join Wade and Kayla in Demolition of the Heart where against a back drop of revenge, embezzlement and murder they fight for possession of the house, their love and their lives.

6. What genre/s do you write in and why?

Being an eclectic type of person I write in several genres. I love writing romances, erotic and with a twist such as paranormal or suspense. It is of the utmost importance that I have a captivating story to thread through the familiar story of the romance genre. Happy endings always appeal to me.
I also enjoy writing YA novels in either fantasy or social issues. Challenging to write YA books are important to give messages to young people and also enjoyment and entertainment from reading.

7. Do you have secret to overcoming writer’s block?

I don’t usually acknowledge the existence of writer’s block. I have a multitude of ideas to write about so have no problems beginning a new book.

Every now and then though when I am writing I lose momentum. I get the feeling my story has taken a wrong turn. At these times Ire-read what I have written and then leave the computer and go have a coffee, a sit in the garden or even a nanna nap. Sometimes I need to sleep on it overnight. Then I go back to my writing and delete everything back to where I know the story was heading in the right direction then I start again.

8. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Definitely. All my novels have strong female protagonists. They may not have been strong in the beginning but they learn to draw of their own inner strength whether they knew they had it or not.

I like to see each of my heroines grow and mature through life’s experiences and this is the message I want to get out to my readers. You are a woman, you are stronger than you think. You can do it, cope with it and triumph over whatever adversity comes your way.

In the case of my romances – despite being a strong woman who does not need a man to complete her she is delighted when she finds a man to love who deserves her.

9. Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors?

My advice to aspiring writers is: write, write and write. Be prepared to edit and be ruthless with your work. Edit, rewrite, edit and polish. Also believe in yourself – you are a writer.

10. What is the best link for people to buy your book from?

Demolition of the Heart & Deathly Embrace: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_nos...

Blog + Demolition of the Heart & Deathly Embrace: http://cassandrahawkeromance.com/

https://www.totallybound.com/index.ph...

Deathly Embrace from Ai Press: http://www.ai-press.net/deathly-embrace/

About Cassandra Hawke:
Dionie was a closet writer for several years before she got brave enough to share her work with anyone until she joined Eyre Writers Inc, a creative writing group in the seaside town of Port Lincoln and really began to improve.

Her first book was a 100,000 words family saga novel, but after a workshop on 'How to write a Mills and Boon', she embarked on a new direction—writing the romance novel.

After being made redundant from the job she loved in 2011 she became a carer for her frail, vision-impaired mother and turned to fulfilling her dream of becoming a writer.

When Dionie is not writing she enjoys spending time with family and friends, especially her mother, and three wonderful adult children and two adorable grandchildren.

Dionie also enjoys egg decorating and carving, reading of course, painting and cooking when she is not writing.
Cassandra Hawke
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Published on December 03, 2014 22:01 • 129 views

October 28, 2014

Just in time for Halloween - today’s Author Spotlight interview is with Loren Rhoads.

1. If a movie was made of your life, what would be the title and why?
The Morbid the Merrier.
That would be my title, because I used to edit Morbid Curiosity magazine. Curiosity has saved my life time and again.

2. If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why?
Ray Bradbury, because he gave me the best writing advice ever. Hopefully, the snail would be just as wise.

3. If you could have a super hero for a partner, who would it be and why?
Black Widow, because she’s SO cool.

4. What is the meaning of life? (And you can't say 42!)
The meaning of my life is work that I love, friends who have my back, and pushing my own boundaries as often as possible. That probably goes for everyone.

5. Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming release.
As Above, So Below – which I co-wrote with Brian Thomas – is about a succubus who sets her sights on an angel, who possesses her with a mortal ghost in order to teach her about love. Dana Fredsti, author of the upcoming novel Plague World, said: “Fans of paranormal romance, urban fantasies, kick-ass fights, and some pretty damn hot sex, check out As Above, So Below!”

6. What genre/s do you write in and why?
I’ve published morbid personal essays, cemetery travelogues, ghost stories, and science fiction. As Above combines urban fantasy and horror. I don’t like to be constricted by genres.

7. Do you have secret to overcoming writer’s block?
Set a timer and start typing. Don’t stop to think. There’s something about having the time run down that’s very motivational.

8. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Love changes everyone in ways they can’t predict.

9. Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors?
Keep asking for help. Keep getting feedback on your work. Keep improving. Keep submitting. Never give up.

10. What is the best link for people to buy your book from?
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0615...

Loren RhoadsLoren Rhoads is the author of Wish You Were Here: Adventures in Cemetery Travel, the editor of The Haunted Mansion Project: Year Two, and co-author of As Above, So Below. She lives in San Francisco in a haunted house, awaiting the release of her science fiction trilogy The Dangerous Type and a memoir called This Morbid Life.Bottom of Form.

This Freshest Hell by Natasha EwendtNatasha Ewendt is the author of This Freshest Hell, a vampire novel released in 2013 by Lacuna Publishing. Also a journalist and copyeditor, she is reluctantly addicted to coffee and The Walking Dead.
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Published on October 28, 2014 23:42 • 183 views

October 14, 2014

In today’s interview we meet “avatar of creative writing”, slipstream writer Sai Marie Johnson.

1. If a movie was made of your life, what would be the title and why?
My choice title would be Steaming Mirrors, and that is because I have been writing my autobiography and that was the title that fit best.
2. If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why?
Turbo, because my friend has a water snail that is really fast and his name is Turbo. Also if he can grant wishes he needs to be fast acting.
3. If you could have a superhero for a partner, who would it be and why?
Elektra, I have always loved Elektra and the sais are one of my favorite weapons. (Not just cause of my own name either)
4. What is the meaning of life? (And you can't say 42!)
The meaning of life is to love others.
5. Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming release.
My latest release came out June 6th, and is my tenth publication, the last book in my first completed series, and was released on my 30th birthday to mark those milestones. It's titled Simply Scarlet, and is a contemporary erotic romance.
6. What genre/s do you write in and why?
I am a multi-genre author, and the reason why is because I write what I am inspired to write. I prefer horror, fantasy, and the paranormal but I also write poetry, children's stories, and erotica as well. Because of this I don't like to claim a genre, but rather say I am just a writer, an avatar of creative writing.
7. Do you have secret to overcoming writer’s block?
When I experience writer's block I do a couple of things: going outside and getting back in touch with nature is a prime example. I also like to turn to music, and just reevaluate what I need to complete. If that doesn't help I move onto something new I want to write and work on that until my creative wheels start flowing and I can focus on the first story I was completing.
8. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
For the Scarlet Erotique Series there definitely is in every single book, in Simply Scarlet the message is clear: Choose wisely in everything you do because all that glitters is not gold, but that does not mean you should fear moving forward to find out if there is a diamond in the rough at the bottom of a dark hole. People who read the book will understand what I mean by that.
9. Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors?
You are never an aspiring author to begin with. If you write you are a writer, period. You may not be a published writer, and that may be something you aspire to attain but you are still a writer. It is important for anyone starting this journey to keep things in perspective. Don't belittle yourself, or say anything that makes you look unprofessional. Just keep writing, and let the pieces come together by involving yourself in writer's groups, classes, and conventions. That's where you will really learn everything you need to know.
10. What is the best link for people to buy your book from?
http://www.amazon.com/Sai-Marie-Johns...

Sai Marie JohnsonSai Marie is the creative mind behind the Scarlet Erotique Series, The Tales of Valisa, the Dark Priesthood, The Selkie Adventures, and several other stand alone books as well as poetry collections. She has a bachelor's of fine arts degree in creative writing for entertainment and also writes scripts and video game concepts in addition to her novellas, and novels. Sai has been said to have a very unique writing style that draws readers into her tales with an ability to paint a portrait in words. Ms. Johnson is a lover of animals, paranormal romance, mythology and traveling. It is her dream and hope to bring her fans many years of reading enjoyment whilst crafting stories they can love for ages. To connect with Sai Marie visit her on Facebook. http://www.facebook.com/saimariejohnson

This Freshest Hell by Natasha EwendtNatasha Ewendt is the author of This Freshest Hell, a vampire novel released in 2013 by Lacuna Publishing. Also a journalist and copyeditor, she is reluctantly addicted to coffee and The Walking Dead.
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Published on October 14, 2014 23:01 • 159 views • Tags: sai-marie-johnson

October 2, 2014

Looking for a damn good gothic horror short story that gives you a decent frosty chill? Check out RB Chesterton's The Hanged Man. See my review at:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...
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Published on October 02, 2014 00:27 • 81 views

September 16, 2014

Today’s Author Spotlight interview is with popular historic fiction author PJ Parker.

If a movie was made of your life, what would be the title and why?
The movie would be titled 'SELF'. Like many people I have spent most of my life attempting to figure out who I am. Having travelled and lived in many different countries around the world; studied and restudied many histories, cultures, religions and philosophies and all-in-all had my fair share of heart-break and cliff-hangers, I could in no way state that my life has been ordinary. Far from it. And yet I have not been subjected to anything that millions of others haven't also experienced. I have always thought of myself as a pretty honest and average Joe, but that has not stopped people from vilifying, harassing, prejudicing, hunting or attempting to kill me. (L.A. can be a warzone, as it especially was during the 1992 Riots.) It is kind of amazing how much clarify of 'self' you can get as someone nudges the barrel of a shot-gun against the back of your head, or attempts to slice a knife across your throat (ok, sure, to be fair it wasn't really a knife - more of a razer blade that was somehow attached to a scummy toothbrush). Probably the highest level of clarity occurred at around 4:00am on Hollywood Boulevard, when six black and whites screeched around the corner, jumped the curb to surround me, and a dozen officers of the LAPD jumped out and took aim at my head. Yes, amazing clarity. Fortunately, I was one of the good guys.

If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why?
His name would be Percy. That name has an old world feel of genuousness and wisdom, but also a bit of innocent mischief. Me naming him, however, is not a pan-determined viewpoint. I expect that the snail would already have a name and that he would tell me what it is.

If you could have a super hero for a partner, who would it be and why?
I think everyone is a superhero in some form or another. We all have our abilities, but it is up to the individual on whether they use their own special powers for good or evil. I will stick with the white-hat every time.

What is the meaning of life? (And you can't say 42!)
We are all attempting to survive as best we can and find a little happiness in a world and society that is not always as it should be. I expect for me it is most probably 'a sunny day with the friends I love, pizza and a bottle of crisp white wine'.

Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming release.
Currently I am in the marketing phase of my recently released historic fiction Fire on the Water: A Companion to Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. That work delves into what really occurred to Mary Shelley in 1816 to jolt the wretch into existence, but also asks the question: "Could it happen in this day and age?" The work has garnered amazing praise internationally and I am very happy that it has given my readers some small joy.
I have also just completed (what feels like) the 100th revision/polish of my historic fiction AMERICA Túwaqachi: The Saga of an American Family. Based on exhaustive research, this work follows a single family line through 37,000 years of North American history. Starting with the family's Emergence into the New World (the Fourth World) in 35,000 BC, chapter by chapter, era by era, it documents the growth of civilization, the consequence of the merging of the Four Colors and the construction of what would become the United States of America. The story line proceeds right up to the current day 21st Century without shying away from the periods of turmoil and upset, but instead attempting to give the basics on why they occurred. Written as a Boy's own / Girl's own YA adventure, it gives structure to a narrative that has been misunderstood or misrepresented or only known in smaller fragments. I am extremely happy with how it has turned out. Now, to find an agent as this opus definitely needs one.

What genre/s do you write in and why?
My writing tends to fall towards thing that I do not know, or that I know I misunderstand. By default this leads to copious amounts of research so that I can get it all straight inside my own head. And then the words just flow. I had always thought that I would be a writer of science fiction, however, to me, that genre seems like it doesn't really have any limits, and I like limits and structure. With historic fiction the author needs to stay within the (sometimes) tight confines of documented fact, though there is still enough blank space in between for my imagination (and the imagination of my creations) to take hold and make something that is palatable, if not exciting.

Do you have secret to overcoming writer’s block?
This has never been a problem. I already know (or think that I do) what is going to happen in my work before I get anywhere near my laptop. I tend to dream a lot (both asleep and awake) and all my thoughts and research congeal into something of substance. When I eventually do sit down at the keyboard the words literally spew out as fast as I can type. But of course when I get into it the characters take over and lead me down paths that don't make logical sense to me, until I realize what they want me to do. I follow them and they have always taken me to where I knew they should be at the exact right time and for the exact right reason.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
There are many messages, both subliminal and blatant, but these should never get in the way of a good story and how it is told. I am happy if my readers just have a good time with what I have written down, however if the work gets them thinking and questioning then that is even more satisfying. I am a firm believer of 'what is true for you, is true for you'. Each reader will find the message that is right for them.

Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors?
Read. Read a lot. Don't get stuck in one genre. If there was a novel that you hated in school, wait until you are twenty-five and then go back and read it again. If you are halfway through a book and absolutely detest the character and the story, then chuck the book away and start reading another one. Read thrillers, romances, historic fiction, pulp, mysteries, archaeological theses, science, cookbooks, graphic novels, comics, memoirs, Reality Celebrity trash. Read male and female authors. Read books from as many different centuries as you can. Read the Egyptian Book of the Dead. Read.

What is the best link for people to buy your book from?
Fire on the Water: A Companion to Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is available as a book or e-book on all internet book sites or through all major book store chains internationally. Start with ITunes or Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Fire-Water-Comp...
America Túwaqachi: The Saga of an American Family is currently searching for a Literary Agency to call home.

Fire on the Water A Companion to Mary Shelley's Frankenstein by P.J. ParkerPJ says: With a childhood of milking cows, baling hay and day-dreaming in rural Australia, life has nudged me along a circuitous track around the globe through cultures, histories and philosophies that have somehow merged into and defined who I am today. I now live and work in greater New York, consumed by my writing and the hundreds of stories that are demanding escape from my skull. Two of the manuscripts that have made it out so far are the popular historic fictions Fire on the Water: A Companion to Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, and America Túwaqachi: The Saga of an American Family.

This Freshest Hell by Natasha EwendtNatasha Ewendt is the author of This Freshest Hell, a vampire novel released in 2013 by Lacuna Publishing. Also a journalist and copyeditor, she is reluctantly addicted to coffee and The Walking Dead.
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Published on September 16, 2014 20:10 • 682 views

September 2, 2014

Sex is the meaning of life, says self-confessed “genre floozy” Chantal Noordeloos.
Find out all about Chanti’s Shenanigans and more in today’s Author Spotlight interview.

1) If a movie was made of your life, what would be the title and why?
The title would be “Shenanigans”, or maybe “Chanti’s Shenanigans.” It’s a word I’ve claimed as my own *grin* (yes I have, but I’ll share it with anyone who needs it too). On facebook there was this running joke that if you said the word ‘shenanigans’ three times I would show up, like the Bloody Mary of fun. It got a bit exhausting trying to keep up who said shenanigans, so I killed the joke. Once, I saw a description of shenanigans: “Tomfoolery at its best, mischief at its worst.” I loved that so much, and I think this description suits me, because I have a very mischievous soul. I like causing a little bit of trouble.
2) If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why?
A magic snail, I read a story about a magic snail once… I think it was in a book of ‘Very Bad Endings’ or something. All I remember is that it didn’t end well (the title might have suggested that). I think if I would find a magical snail, I would probably ask it what its name was, as magical snails are prone to talking. If it didn’t have a name, I think I would call it Wishy-Washy. Why? Well, because I’m cheesy, and it has the word ‘Wish’ in there somewhere.
3) If you could have a super hero for a partner, who would it be and why?
I would have to go with Emma Frost (Marvel, and I’m not talking the crappy movie version). I would gladly marry that woman, because I love her so much. She’s cunning, sexy, devious and smart. She’s also very self reliant, and these are all qualities I look for in my superhero partners.
4) What is the meaning of life? (And you can't say 42!)
The meaning of life, eh? Well, if I would approach this from the biological perspective, I would have to say: “The meaning of life is procreation.” It’s all about the survival of the species. Our subconscious still works on that level, though we have semi evolved away from this as well, because our lives are a lot more stable than those of our ancestors. This is all very interesting… and yet extremely boring at the same time. See the mischievous side of me would like to be naughty and simplify this, saying that procreation is just a fancy word for sex… because (though not entirely accurate) it’s more fun that way. *smirk* So I’m going for: the meaning of life is sex.
5) Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming release.
Oh, well, I’ve been busy. My last release was the first short story in the ‘Even Hell Has Standards’ series called Pride, which came out at the end of April. It’s a bit of an intense series where I don’t pull any punches, and I deal with the darkness of humanity. I just finished a haunted house novel that I subbed with a publisher, so fingers crossed it will be picked up. Another thing I finished is my Young Adult High Fantasy novel ‘Alleria’, so I’m going to look for an agent for that one, which will be a challenge. I am looking to see if I can break through in the traditional market. Currently I’m working on the next installment for my Coyote series. The first draft is finished, but it needs a good polish before I bring it to the editor. Then we’ll plan a released date for it. Another project is forming too, that I will be a part of, but you’ll have to keep your eye on Horrific Tales Publishing for this one. So… like I said, busy busy.
6) What genre/s do you write in and why?
I am an utter genre floozy. I can’t stick to just one genre, I love them all too much. Horror is my ‘go to’ genre, and I write mostly horror, but Coyote is Steampunk and I also write fantasy. One of my favorite genres has to be Urban Fantasy. The only genre I really don’t write in is Romance. I may be the most tragically unromantic person ever.
7) Do you have a secret to overcoming writer’s block?
Writer’s block… or as I like to call it ‘crippling insecurity’… I deal with it by just sticking to my writing plan. I just write every day, and if I’m not writing I’m editing. If I’m really stuck I’ll do another project in between. Just keeping busy helps, and sometimes I have to force it a little. Whatever I mess up in the first draft I can always get in the edit, so it’s okay.
8) Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Depends on the novel really, but yes, I do like to give my readers messages. I love it when my work makes people think. If I can manage to break a stereotype, get people to experience emotions, or even shock people a little bit, I think my work is done.
9) Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors?
My advice is ‘take it serious’. Go out there, read up on how this writing world works, talk to other authors (who also take writing serious). You want to be professional, and in order to do that, you need to know a bit about how it all works. Always work with editors, don’t think you can self edit. You are too close to your work, and you will miss something that someone with a fresh perspective can pick up on. Have fun with creating as well, but if you want to make writing your profession… treat it as one. That means there will be bits that won’t all be fun and games. You will get very sick of reading your own book over and over and over and over and over (oh, alright, you are getting my point) again. Don’t get upset if you lose faith in your book about ¾ of the way through. We all lose faith around that point, we all think our work is crap during the process (even great writers like Neil Gaiman) and we all feel like great big sham artists. It’s okay… just keep at it.
10) What is the best link for people to buy your book from?
This would be me: http://www.amazon.com/Chantal-Noordel...

Chantal NoordeloosChantal Noordeloos is a wacky writer from the Netherlands, who likes to write in English. She can't stay faithful to one genre, but has mentioned that horror is her 'go to genre', and tends to explore her darker side in writing.

This Freshest Hell by Natasha EwendtNatasha Ewendt is the author of This Freshest Hell, a vampire novel released in 2013 by Lacuna Publishing. Also a journalist and copyeditor, she is reluctantly addicted to coffee and The Walking Dead.
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Published on September 02, 2014 23:50 • 203 views

August 12, 2014

Today’s Author Spotlight interview is with sci-fi/horror author Gary Starta.

1. If a movie was made of your life, what would be the title and why? It’s hard to be a bright light in a dim world. I sometimes feel no matter how much you try to shine those dark forces are going to keep you in the dark! lol
2. If you had a snail that could grant magic wishes what would you call it and why? Blessing in Disguise? I hope we all find that snail! Wish granting is great but as they say be specific and careful because the universe needs a pretty detailed blueprint. Maybe we’re better off without that snail after all.
3. If you could have a super hero for a partner, who would it be and why? Not much into super heroes but I guess it would be someone like Wolverine because he’d be a great body guard and get rid of all those evil minions. It seems we can’t get through life without being attacked!
4. What is the meaning of life? (And you can't say 42!) Nothing is easy or will be easy maybe because we’re not really intended to reach that destination. So leave expectations by the roadside and treat each day like a journey.
5. Tell us a bit about your latest/upcoming release. It’s a zombie book about some unfortunate people who get caught in the accidental release of a virus that reanimates. The people behind the virus are a drug company looking to expand their drug market. I like to call it a dead market. Look for it this year from Evolutionary Press, my first traditional publisher.
6. What genre/s do you write in and why? SCI FI is the main genre and it’s because I love including theory and plausible science into stories. When science fiction becomes fact stories will take on even greater meaning. Besides, SCI FI is the coolest. Who’s going to argue?
7. Do you have secret to overcoming writer’s block? I just wait and give my mind time to reboot. It’s like a computer and will provide ideas and answers when least expected!
8. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? I would like people to find a silver lining in our darkness. That diligence, hope and perseverance will win out over laziness, apathy and negativity.
9. Do you have any advice for other writers or aspiring authors? Keep at it! It’s that ‘P’ word: perseverance.
10. What is the best link for people to buy your book from? Since Dead Market is still in progress, please consider 9 Incarnate, please go to:
http://www.amazon.com/9-Incarnate-Gar...
or my Amazon Author Page at:
http://www.amazon.com/Gary-Starta/e/B...

Gary StartaGary Starta is a former journalist who studied English and Journalism at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. His love for science fiction compelled him to write the Caitlin Diggs series including Demon Inhibitions and 9 Incarnate. He is a lover of cats and you’ll find Celeste/Bastet, the Tonkinese cat, figuring prominently in these books.

This Freshest Hell by Natasha EwendtNatasha Ewendt is the author of This Freshest Hell, a vampire novel released in 2013 by Lacuna Publishing. Also a journalist and copyeditor, she is reluctantly addicted to coffee and The Walking Dead.
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Published on August 12, 2014 23:17 • 160 views

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