Today’s Featured Author – Jenn Bregman

Today I welcome author Jenn Bregman to my blog. Her legal thriller, The TimeKeepers, will be released on May 4th. You can pre-order your copy on Amazon.

Interview

Where were you born and where do you call home?

Williston, North Dakota.  I bet you’ve never had that response before!  We moved around a lot when I was a kid — places like North Dakota, Minnesota, Oregon and Illinois, and then finally landed in Denver when I was in junior high school.  I loved the variety of moving and I loved trying to understand how each place was different, or the same.  At this point, though, I consider myself to be “tri-coastal,” and equally at home in Los Angeles, New York City, and Denver.

What or who inspired you to start writing?

My Dad.  He was an avid reader and great writer. He was an economist who could tell a financial “story” like no one else. He never really edited my work in the traditional sense, rather he would ask questions to force me to come up with my own answers.  Questions such as: “Are you satisfied with that adverb?  Does it say exactly what you want to say or can you find a better choice?”  You know, exhausting questions. 🙂

Have you started your next project?  If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?

I’m about 1/3 into the sequel and can’t wait to work on it every day.  It’s the continuation of Sarah and Sam’s relationship, set in New York City, with a blood-tingling plot.  It is years afterwards.  They have changed and so has their relationship.  Spicy.

Do you write full-time?  If so, what is your work day like?  If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?

I write 4-5 hours per day.  Any more, and I’m just not efficient.  I have my tush in the chair at 5:00 a.m. and then can work until, at least, 7:00 before the rest of the house gets up.  After that, I fit in another 2-3 hour chunk depending on the demands of the day.  Having that almost sacrosanct two hour period first thing in the morning, though, is critical.

Please tell us about your current release?

The TimeKeepers is a fast-paced legal thriller that plunges headlong into the depraved underbelly of big money, big law, conspiracy, and murder.  Attorney Sarah Brockman is young, idealistic, and naïve.  Having left Big Law in search of work that would make a difference, she finds herself barely scraping by running her own personal injury firm working for clients who can’t pay and pursuing causes she can’t win.  Then a random horrific car crash shatters everything and she’s staring into the darkest shadows of Big Law greed and murder.  Facing off against a cunning and deranged adversary, Sarah must navigate a kaleidoscopic landscape of characters including a sharp-witted socialite, a felon and occasional crackhead, and a shameless Mexican raconteur — all while kindling a tender romance with her boyishly handsome new love, Sam, who’s been following the same trail . . . but from the other end, and the wrong side of the law.  As invisible strings pull her ever closer to the core of the conspiracy, she wonders if the strings are being pulled for good or for bad?  And will she be on the side that wins?

How did you come up with the title?

Most lawyers bill their clients by the hour, usually in six minute increments.  As a lawyer, you must carefully keep track of your time every day, noting what matter you are working on, for how long, and for which client.  It is laborious; everyone hates it, but it is a necessary part of the practice of law.  On some days, all you feel like is a “timekeeper.”

Which of your characters is your favorite?  Do you dislike any of them?

I love almost all of my characters, or at least parts of them, for different reasons.  There is only one character in the book who I wholly detest.

What is the most difficult thing/scene to write in this story?

You will know it when you read it.  It was critical to understanding the story and a certain character in it, but it was almost impossible to write.

Tell us a random fact about you that we never would have guessed?

I LOVE cheese. 🙂

Book Blurb

Attorney Sarah Brockman is young, idealistic, and naïve. Having left Big Law in search of work that would make a difference, she finds herself barely scraping by running her own personal injury law firm working for clients who can’t pay and pursuing causes she can’t win. Then a random horrific car crash shatters everything. Now she’s staring into the darkest shadows of the very system she’s dedicated her life to upholding, filled with corrupt judges, dirty cops and attorneys, offshore banking, massive fraud, and twists and turns through the highways and byways of Southern California, Mexico and the Cook Islands.

Facing off against a cunning and deranged adversary, Sarah is aided by a sharp-witted socialite, a felon and occasional crackhead, and a shameless Mexican raconteur. All while kindling a tender romance with Sam, her boyishly handsome new love, who has been following the same trail but from the other end – and the wrong side of the law.

Sarah feels invisible strings pulling her ever closer to the core of the conspiracy. But if she’s just a pawn in someone else’s game, are the strings being pulled for good or for bad? Or, even, both? And will she be on the side that wins?

About the Author

Jenn Bregman is a white-collar criminal defense lawyer who has practiced in both Los Angeles and New York City, where she worked on some of the most notorious cases of our time.  A veteran of Big Law and member of Mensa, she is a graduate of the University of Denver and UCLA Law School and has been published in the UCLA Law Review and Los Angeles Lawyer magazine.  A marathoner who loves pugs and hiking giant mountains, she lives in Los Angeles with her husband, and their, oh so busy, five year old twin boys.

You can find out more about Jenn on her website or follow her on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

The TimeKeepers will be released on May 4, 2017 as a softcover book and will be available wherever books are sold (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.). E-book versions will be available via Kindle and Nook.

#NewRelease – A PLACE FOR MY HEART by Ann Marie Bryan

Today, I welcome Christian Fiction author Ann Marie Bryan to my blog. She is on a virtual book tour promoting her book, A Place for my Heart, which came out in March.

Book Blurb

Crushed by heartache and desperate for an escape, he makes a life-changing choice.

When Chandler Peynard staggered into Sabrina Benjamin’s life, he was desperate for an escape route. Battling feelings of isolation, he erects barriers around his heart, often times leaving a trail of broken dreams behind him.

Sabrina’s happily-ever-after was ripped away months ago, but she hadn’t given up on finding love. Still, she was caught off guard by her feelings for Chandler, a man who could hardly be described as a model man of God. As an unexpected bond develops between them, she wants more – A lot more than Chandler is prepared to give, because falling in love and putting down roots are not a part of his plan.

Touched by Sabrina’s kindness and faith, Chandler makes a life-changing choice. However, complication is inevitable when the past he’d long thought was buried, pushes him to confront matters he would have given anything to forget. As he struggles to release himself from his past and embrace the future, he offers Sabrina a place in his heart, but she demands all of it.

In a season that brought so many changes, Chandler longs for peace in his soul and yearns for love. Will he trust God with all of his heart to overcome his past? Will he be able to testify that God’s grace wins every time? Will he find the strength to take a chance at life and love with Sabrina?

About the Author 

Ann Marie Bryan is a dedicated, graceful, multi-talented leader with a passion for excellence. She is the CEO & Founder of Victorious By Design, an organization committed to providing top quality professional writing services, comprehensive personal and professional development programs and exceptional performing arts services to meet the unique needs of individuals and organizations.

A Christian Fiction author, Ann Marie writes to educate, inspire and empower others. She desires to tell great stories with fascinating characters to show the awesome power of God in the lives of people and places. “A Place For My Heart” is the third installment in her bestselling, Encounters of the Heart series.

Ann Marie’s greatest passion is to empower others to succeed by tapping into their God-given potential. She enjoys writing, reading, dancing, teaching, meeting people and traveling. With all the knowledge and experiences that God has so graciously blessed her with, Ann Marie is determined to make her life a ministry for the Lord.

You can find out more about Ann Marie on her website or follow her on Twitter or Facebook.

You can purchase A Place for my Heart on Amazon.

Today’s Featured Author – Marie Lavender

Please welcome Marie Lavender to my blog. She released her book, Upon Your Love, the third book in her Heiresses in Love series, in February. Please enjoy this excerpt.  

Excerpt

The neigh of a horse brought her out of her reverie and she looked over, but her mare stood quietly beside the stream. Adrienne’s instincts nagged at her and she stood up, her ears on alert. The clomp of hoof beats came to her on the swift afternoon breeze. Was the rider coming from the estate or perhaps it was simply a stranger? In any case, a sense of unease grew in the pit of her stomach and she reached down to unearth a small dagger Gabriel had gifted to her two summers ago. She kept it in a sheath around her thigh. Gabe had always said that if she didn’t have a sword on hand, it was best to have something. And she couldn’t agree more.

She clucked her tongue to alert Persephone and led her quickly by the reins under the cover of the trees. The rider was closer now and her mare shifted uneasily, blowing a breath out of her nose. She must have heard the approaching horse as well. “Shh. It’s all right,” Adrienne whispered, stroking her neck. She tied the reins to a tree and waited.

When the rider appeared from the forest, she couldn’t see him clearly. It was a man—that much she was certain—but the lapels of his dark coat and the thicket of limbs brushing her face kept her from placing his identity. He had dark hair and was tall, his body lean and muscled. She watched as he got down from a fine, black stallion and led it to the stream for a rest. The man took a drink from his cupped hands. He wiped the remnants of the water from his chin, and then seemed to search the area nearby. She shivered. Was it possible the man had been tracking her? If that was the case, her dagger would certainly come in handy. Adrienne crouched on alert, spying through her vantage point in the trees. From behind, she observed as the tension eased from his shoulders and he sighed.

A frisson of unease ran through her again. Taking it as a sign, she confirmed he was still faced away before she quietly eased out of her haven. Stepping up behind him, she lifted her dagger to his throat. A smile of grim determination danced over her lips as he stiffened.

“Who are you? Why are you here? Are you following me?”

“What if I was?”

Fine shivers moved along the surface of her skin, caused by the deep timbre of his voice.

“I would have to ask for your reasons, Monsieur.”

“I haven’t come to kidnap you, if that’s what you’re worried about,” he sighed. “I didn’t expect you’d be prepared. I commend the effort, of course.”

She frowned. The compliment threw her for a moment, but she then brushed it off. Surely, he ridiculed her, and thought he could overtake her somehow. She shook her head. He would be gravely disappointed.

“You will state your reasons for your presence and your identity, sir.”

“And if I don’t?”

“You will regret it, of course.”

“Indeed? Do you intend to harm an unarmed man?”

She scoffed. “Unarmed? No, I doubt that. With the way you appeared to be tracking me, I am sure you’re quite armed.”

“Right again. What will you do about it?”

She shrugged. “This is Bellamont land. You’ve clearly trespassed. If I must, I will drag you straight back to the house. You know, I believe the foreman has a Winchester sporting rifle. He can be quite formidable when he puts his mind to the task.”

“I’m sure,” he murmured.

“What say you then?”

“I say, Mademoiselle, that you have no idea who you’re dealing with.”

Before she could open her mouth to take him to task, she felt a blow to her arm and the numbing pain caused her to drop the knife. Everything else happened in a blur. As he turned, he caught her leg, which caused her to collapse. But, before she landed, he grasped her up in his arms. He was too close, she thought. Panic threatened inside of her, but she fought it by degrees. She was a fighter, not some idiot who would succumb to a man’s power. Gabriel had taught her many tricks, as had her father. She forced herself to go limp so that he’d pull her closer. She let her eyes drift closed and pretended to have swooned.

Mon Dieu,” he whispered.

Then she unmanned him with a swift rise of her knee. He coughed out a grunted response, releasing her.

She retreated from him, intent on finding her dagger, but did not see it. The leaves in the grass crunched beneath her hands and knees as she struggled to her feet. She would have to rely on the resources of the forest to save her if he pursued further. Somehow, she doubted he’d be able to. She turned and her mouth dropped open as she looked at her attacker.

His dark hair had fallen over one eye and he was hardly doubled over in pain. No, he scowled at her now and he seemed quite well. She’d missed her target, she realized. His identity shocked her further. She felt quite stupid for not recognizing him, even from behind. But, why had Christian tried to attack her?

 “How…,” she whispered.

“You are not as fast as I, Mademoiselle.” Then he laughed, but there was no mirth in his expression. His eyes seemed darker suddenly. “You little brat,” he bit out. “You almost had me.”

She sucked in a breath and, when she saw him advance, she backed away. But, it effectively put her back right up against a nearby tree. She cursed. Christian closed in, blocking her in with his arms as he braced his hands on the tree trunk. Her breaths came out in harsh pants and her stomach had fallen somewhere at her feet. Dear God, what would he do? She jerked her arms out to break his hold, but his muscles were like the ratlines between the shrouds of a mast in a ship’s rigging. Solid. Struggling with his obvious intimidation of her, she managed, “Why are you trying to kidnap me?”

Some of the arrogance left his face. “I’m not. I thought we already established that.”

“Then why… this?” she asked, weakly. And why couldn’t she breathe? His clean, male scent caused her to feel lightheaded. No, she thought. That just had to be terror.

“I wanted to get you alone so that we could continue our plans. I didn’t mean for you to see me as a threat. I certainly didn’t expect a dagger at my throat.” He reached out and cupped her face, stroking the line of her jaw gently with his thumb.

Adrienne gazed into his nearly black eyes. She thought she saw a hint of admiration and something more, perhaps desire, in his gaze.

“P… plans?” she stammered, annoyed with the hypnotic effect he had on her. And what was that strange, but wonderful scent coming off him? She detected cologne which contained a hint of fresh pine. But then, she’d smelled it before, both in her room and at the Broussard’s engagement party. Even though the fragrance was pleasant, she tried to ignore it.

“Our matchmaking endeavor, chére.”

“Oh. That.”

“Yes, that. Did you forget?”

She cleared her throat. “No, of course not.” Her resolve returned in full force then. She slapped his hand aside and sidestepped him. Stalking away to locate Persephone, she unearthed her mare from the brush in no time. When she returned, he still stood there, watching her. She shivered again.

Mon Dieu, she thought. Why was this happening to her? Why did the man tie her in knots?

Book Blurb

The Hill family saga concludes as loyalties are questioned, faiths will be tested and undying love may come at a terrible cost…

Fara Hill, mother and faithful wife, is torn between her family at home and her urge to be at sea. Soon, she learns some disturbing truths. Was the past a fairy tale instead of reality?

Chloe Hill, loving wife and young mother, questions her faith when her husband sets an ultimatum she cannot meet. Will she be able to keep her marriage from falling apart?

Adrienne Bellamont Hill, born of a valiant captain and a fiery redhead, is untamed to her core and will bow to no man. Then Christian du Plessis enters her life with an offer she can’t refuse. Discovering the man behind the polished gentleman, she is drawn to him in many ways. Holding out for love is a family tradition, but can she resist the temptation of passion?

Christian finds this young woman to be a fascinating challenge, and is torn between keeping his distance from her and succumbing to her charms. A fierce battle of wills ensues as he sees she is much more than he ever imagined.

But danger lurks, threatening to destroy everything…

Can these two strong-willed individuals unite in the cause before time runs out?

About the Author

Marie Lavender lives in the Midwest with her family and three cats. She has been writing for a little over twenty-five years. She has more works in progress than she can count on two hands. Since 2010, Marie has published 22 books in the genres of historical romance, contemporary romance, romantic suspense, paranormal romance, fantasy, science fiction, mystery/thriller, dramatic fiction, literary fiction and poetry. She has also contributed to several multi-author anthologies. Her current series are The Heiresses in Love Series, The Magick Series, The Blood at First Sight Series and The Code of Endhivar Series.

You can find out more about Marie on her website or follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

You can purchase Upon Your Love on Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

#NewRelease – BEYOND THE VEIL by Siddhi Palande

Today, I have author Siddhi Palande on my blog to announce the release of her novella, Beyond the Veil: A Journey of an Indian Girl.

Interview

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I am a former media professional. I have worked with media houses like Times of India, ANI, BookMyShow and Zee. As a PR executive I have handled celebs and movies like Total Recall, The Amazing Spider-Man, Men In Black 3, Resident Evil Retribution etc. I gave up my corporate life to start a family but couldn’t give up my love for writing.

What or who inspired you to start writing?

The inspiration comes from the environment we live in. I sat down to write this novel few months after my father’s demise. He was one individual who has brought out massive change in his surroundings. Turning a dacoit into a householder is only one example. His deeds were good, noble and thought provoking. His speeches gave direction to the unruly youth. And when the thought of writing a novel passed through my mind, I wanted to write something that would change the mindset of many. Being a woman, I had to write a story about women. And when I first heard this story, the initial shock turned into rage and hence began the rant which fills my chapter one.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I never had this moment when I considered myself a writer. As far as I recall I was always writing. I would write poems, stories and plays as a kid. Over a period of time I lost these writings. Post that I started collating my writings in one place. The decisive moment came when I had to choose my career. I have no other skill but writing and hence I picked journalism over other options.

How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?

A writer always leaves behind a part of himself in his works. This being my first novel, I have tried including a tad bit of myself and my experiences.

Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?

I haven’t started on my next project. The offers and stories keep coming ever since people have got the whiff of my debut novel. Some have even asked me to write biographies but I haven’t started work on any as of now. However, I plan to collaborate with my mother for my next novel which will again be a story by the women for the women.

Please tell us about your current release.

This book is a catharsis. I recently lost my father to fate and to quell my emotions I started writing. From a rant it turned into a chapter and from a chapter it became a novella. Based on a true story and facts, this story is about the patriarchal pressure we face in constricted setup of India. Not only women but men too suffer at the hands of society.

What inspired you to write this book?

The story. Actually, in India we have a thing for arrange marriages. It is a system where our parents find a match for us. Add to that we aren’t allowed the courting time. There are many incidences where this matchmaking works out but in some cases marriages end up either with the death of a spouse or divorce. This is something that has happened with an acquaintance. The condition of the girl as well as her parents was pitiable. She fell prey to the age-old tradition of arrange marriage.

How did you come up with the title?

The title “Beyond The Veil – The Journey Of An Indian Girl” has immense meaning hidden. It seems plain but has cultural and spiritual vibes. Veil is something that we use to hide ourselves and in India veil has always had a great significance. We may have done away with the “purdah” system but the mindset hasn’t changed. Moreover, this veil also represents the mask, the poker face. Our personalities are in accordance with the social setup with thrive in. Our true  aspirations, our real persona is hidden behind the veil. Only when we go “Beyond The Veil” do we find the real self. And since this is Janhvi Desai’s journey “Beyond The Veil” hence “The Journey Of An Indian Girl.”

Did you base any of your characters on real people?

This story is a true story and so are my lead characters Janhvi and Ram.

Which of your characters is your favorite? Do you dislike any of them?

Ram is a character I dislike, although he does turn to philosophy and embraces life as is. But he is delusional. He has misunderstood many things in life. Showing off is his way of life. Janhvi on the other hand is a sorted child. She knows what is good for her and what she ought to ignore. She has this never say die attitude and she draws strength from her opposers and destructive situations.

Did the story turn out the way you planned from the beginning? If not, what change happened that you didn’t expect?

The book turned out better than what I had expected. I wanted it to be a life lesson as well as not overly emotional.

If you could jump in to any book, and live in that world, which would it be?

I would love to jump in Harry Potter world or perhaps the Shopaholic series.

Do you have an all time favorite book?

Yes. One book that I have read umpteen times is Danielle Steel’s The Ghost. Every time I read it, it gives me different perspective towards life. It heals me.

What book are you reading right now?

I am re-reading  Eat Pray Love. I love the Eat and Pray part more.

If you could meet two authors, who would you pick and why?

This one is a difficult question but since it is only two then, I would like to meet Danielle Steel because her writing is seamless. It is like a river, it just flows. And Sophie Kinsella because her stories are breathtaking. They have always brought me back from sullen moods. Her stories are colorful as much as poignant.

Book Blurb

A Lawyer by profession, Janhvi Desai has lived her life on the dictates of her family. Assuming that marriage will bring in freshness and freedom she gets married to a Mumbai based engineer, Ram. But once again faces the wrath of the society. Every passing day, Janhvi Desai – Raghuvanshi finds her self-esteem diminishing as her dreams get trampled upon. But while finding the meaning of her being, her relationship with her estranged husband takes a beautiful turn. Between Ram and Janhvi rests a delicate secret and an irrevocable difference. But some relationships thrive despite the difference.

Delve into the dysfunctional world of an Indian girl where patriarchy is villain, free will far removed, where two bruised souls meet and it is only to change the definition of soul mate.

About the Author

A media professional who left the corporate life to be a homemaker but couldn’t give up her love for writing. Post her stint with media, she turned to blogging. From a PR executive to celebrities to a Movie Reviewer and Website Manager, she came a long way in her field. She has worked with celebrities like Kailash Kher, Hard Kaur, Hemant Pandey, and on many international projects like The Amazing Spider-Man, Men In Black 3, Total Recall, Resident Evil Retribution etc as a PR. She worked as a full time Movie Reviewer and Social Media Executive for Bookmyshow.com and yet another well known movie website. She has also worked with Zee Digital as content producer. Independently she has published her articles in international web magazines.

You can find out more about Siddhi Palande on Facebook and Twitter.

You can purchase Beyond the Veil: The Journey of Indian Girl on Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon India and many other online retailers.

Today’s Featured Author – Ey Wade

Today I welcome author Ey Wade to my blog. She released her companion novels Ribbons & Belle and Ismet’s Honor last year.

Interview

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I became a writer because it is the only profession which allows me to talk to the ‘air’ and not be committed for insanity. Knowing me as a writer and author is like cracking an egg’s shell in the air and wondering how far the splatter will spread. Wait, that’s kind of like knowing me as a person. I’m like all over the board and always working on three to five projects at a time. I have no favorite spots to work and my view tends to be pointed at the keyboard. When an idea comes into my head I just flow with it. I haven’t been able to conform my writing to any specific pattern. I am more than often working on one story and the characters from another will just be dying to get my attention and I have to go into their world.

I tend to write in various genres from fiction to picture books. Using pen (same one for the past eleven years) and paper, laptop and as a newly favorite the word program on my cell phone. I have found I can write anywhere with that little contraption and my focus is intent. Has to be with those tiny keys, right? And then I just email to myself and copy past into my manuscript.

Before becoming a self-published author I followed the rules. Wrote outlines, character back stories, did the word counting, queries and everything. I even had an agent once. Unfortunately he was a horrible choice. Directed me away from Ballantine books (wish I would have known who they were then) who wanted The Perfect Solution and straight into the corrupt hands of Publish America. What a crock. After that fiasco I was so humiliated I couldn’t write. Fought and had my rights returned and now, I am back. From there, I published a several novels on my own, signed with a small publishing company for a while and now I’m back on my own as Wade-In Publishing.

How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?

There is always something about me and my experiences buried within the novels.

Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?

The next book to be released is titled Valerie. It is a book filled with tales of women and girls of all ages, races/ethnicity with one commonality- their name is Valerie.

Please tell us about your current release. My 2 latest novels are titled Ismet’s Honor and Ribbons & Belle. Both were released on June 2nd. I call them companion novels. They have some of the same main characters, but are stand alone and not a series.

RIBBONS & BELLE: Is about fertility counselor Tyson Ribbons. He’s secretly in love with embryologist, Anabelle “Belle” Lee. When she comes in for counseling he fights everything within him not to deter her from her plans. Even though he wishes they could start their own relationship.

Annabelle has had a rough marriage and heart breaking experiences with losses during pregnancy, yet she wants children. So, she follows a friend’s advice and decided to try IVF. Things, take an unexpected turn.

ISMET’S HONOR: Sunny Verdi Reyes, has always wanted the “good-life.”
Unfortunately, Sunny broke the heart of her fantasy years earlier and it would take more than wishful thinking to get him back.
At 17, unable to voice his opinion against an unwanted abortion, Ismet Honorable O’Neal ran from the girl who killed his dream of the perfect life and the white picket fence.
Now he spends his time aiding other men in being the voice in the lives of their children.
Years later, he returns and Sunny is waiting.
She’s going to need more than the love in her eyes to repair the fences.

The inspiration to writing Ribbons and Belle came from the controversy of abortions and the vitriol in which the women are attacked. People tend to over look the fact there may be medical reasons that make the ending of a life detrimental for the mother’s health. Ismet’s Honor was born after a beta reader finished Ribbons & Belle and wished there was a story about Sunny. I decided to make it more about the father and what his wishes may have entailed and how abortions also affect the father’s to be.

What kind of research did you do for this book? Ribbons & Belle required some research into the disease that caused Belle to have to make the choice for a late term abortion. I also learned of many support groups concerning rainbow babies and support for mothers losing their wanted child.

Can you tell us a little about the black moment in your book? In Ribbons & Belle, I think the darkest moments are the times Belle has to explain the reasoning behind her unwanted abortion. Three times, with three different reactions from the people she told. With Ismet’s Honor, it was the heart wrenching,anger and despair Ismet directed towards Sunny, once they encountered each other as adults.

Did the story turn out the way you planned from the beginning? If not, what change happened that you didn’t expect? Both novels turned out exactly as I believed they would. Deep, emotional, and an open door to all sorts of conversations.

If you could be one of the characters from any of your books, who would it be and why? In each of my books, I would like to be the one who stands out and speaks up for herself without doubts. The one who would do for her friends and those in need. I would definitely be the character from The Fishing Trip. He avenged the children and women abused by the town.

Do you have an all time favorite book?

The Giver has always been a favorite of mine.

***

You can find more about Ey on her website or follow her on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

You can purchase her books here.

Today’s Featured Author – Victoria Zak

Today I welcome Victoria Zak to my blog. Her novella, Scorched Hearts, is one of 13 stories in the Stroking the Flames anthology.  

Interview

What or who inspired you to start writing?

I started reading J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood and was hooked. I wanted to write my own stories. I wrote my first book in 2014 which was Highland Burn and it started my Guardians of Scotland series.

How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?

Great question. I think there’s quite a bit of myself in my books. Sometimes intentional, sometimes not. At times ideas surface and I have no idea where it came from, but it was there inside waiting to come out. My characters set the tone for personality. (Yes, I hear voices.) lol There’s a lot of my humor in my books. I’ll be reading through my current WIP and just start busting out laughing.

What is the best and worst advice you ever received? (regarding writing or publishing)

Best advice I have ever received was when a good friend of mine, who happens to be an author, told me to write the damn book. So, I did. Two and half years and ten books later, I’m still writing those damn books. lol

What is the best thing about being a writer?

The best part of being a writer is I get to share my stories with wonderful readers. I truly enjoy it when I hear back from a reader telling me how much they liked my books. It keeps me motivated.

The worst? Hmmm, I must say I loathe edits. Lots of pounding my head against my desk.

What fuels you as an author to continue to write?

By far the readers. I have a lovely reader group and they keep me motivated and the characters in my head need their stories told. I get excited when one throws me a curveball.

How do you conceive your plot ideas?

I’ll come up with one or two plot ideas and then start asking a lot of “what if” questions. Then I just start throwing obstacles at the characters to keep them from achieving their goals. Sounds horrible, but so satisfying when they finally get their HEA at the end.

Do you outline your books or just start writing?

I outline the main plot, then start writing. I have a good idea where I want the story to go before I start writing.

Please tell us about your current release.

My current release is a Paranormal Romance novella for the Stoking the Flames anthology, Scorched Hearts. My story takes place in a mountain town, Ember Brooke, basally it’s Mayberry for dragons. My hero Thane, a dragon shifter and hang gliding instructor, finally gets a mate. However, the she-dragon he’s mated to has no idea what’s it’s like to be a dragon.

Raised by humans, Bex a supernatural scientist, has found a way to suppress her dragon for the fear of the unknown. Overworked, Bex goes on vacation, the road leading her to Ember Brooke and straight into Thane’s arms. With her career and heart on the line, Thane desperately courts Bex hoping to convince her that he’s her mate.

OMGeee, this book was so much fun to write. It’s humorous, sexy, and a wee bit adventurous.

What inspired you to write this book?

These characters were from the first book I started to write and never finished. I had fallen in love with the Bex and Thane and finally had a chance to tell their story. I’m so happy I did.

How did you come up with the title?

Well, since it’s a dragon shifter book, I wanted the title to have a sexy, dragon feel to it, because this couple heats-up the pages.

What kind of research did you do for this book?

The hero is hang glider instructor so I had to research hang gliding.

Which of your characters is your favorite? 

Thane was my favorite. He’s a true hero. He fights for love. His buddies, Stone and Jensen are hilarious. I can’t wait to write their stories.

Can you tell us a little about the black moment in your book?

I can’t without giving too much away, but it’s a tear jerker.

If this book is part of a series, what is the next book? Any details you can share?

This book is a start in a new series, however it run parallel to my Scottish Historical Paranormal Romance series, Guardians of Scotland. These characters are descendants of past Dragonkine.

If you could be one of the characters from any of your books, who would it be and why?

I’d be Abigale Brue from Highland Burn. She’s the Princess of Scotland and married to the notorious, bloodthirsty dragon shifter James the black Douglas. She has the kindest heart and the most impressive inner strength.

If you could jump in to any book, and live in that world, which would it be?

J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood world. These vampires are just incredible.

Is there a specific place in the house (or out of the house) that you like to write?

I write in my office most of the time.

Do you have a specific snack that you have with you when you write?

Is coffee a snack?

Do you have an all time favorite book?

Besides J.R. Ward, I loved Suzan Tisdale’s Fredericks Queen. Amazing Scottish Historical story.

Tell us a random fact about you that we never would have guessed.

I’m a two-year breast cancer survivor. I was diagnosed in 2104 right after I published my first book. It hasn’t been an easy road to travel, however I’m grateful to have been able to beat it and continue to write.

Book Blurb

Surrender to the Desire…
Embrace your Destiny…
Soar with the Dragons…
Stoke the flames that 13 of your favorite NY Times, USA Today and International Bestselling authors have ignited with their ALL NEW, NEVER BEFORE PUBLISHED fiery tales of the scorching passion that erupts when a dragon is united with their soul-mate.

Soul Fire by Kelly Abell
Sometimes breaking a curse leads to an unforeseen destiny

Desired Revenge by Solease M. Barner
A throne lost.. Centuries of debt.. A new threat arises that not only jeopardizes her lost kingdom but also her heart. Sometimes vengeance isn’t vengeance once the heart is involved. Will Carmen have her Desired Revenge?

Devon by Kathi S. Barton
Kelly was finally taking the vacation she had been promising herself for years… and escaping her crazy family. But as fate would have it somethings are worse than insane relatives.

On Wings of Time by Linda Boulanger
One man with a dragon’s soul. One woman with the key to unlock his powers. With six hundred years separating them, Fate’s carefully woven web is about to be tested with a kiss and the flip of a coin.

Dragonslayer, Dragon Heart by Isobelle Cate

Heart of a Dragon by L.J. Garland
When an unimaginable evil rains down from the sky, fate demands action from the most unlikely place–a terminally ill woman. But even with a fierce warrior at her side, does a single dragon stand a chance at saving the world?

Promised to A Dragon by Darlene Kuncytes
When you’re promised in marriage to a dragon shifter like a piece of chattel… what will it be – fight or flight?

The Dragon’s Sacrifice by Andi Lawrencovna

Sadie’s Shadow by Julia Mills
Long forgotten secrets, ancient curses and a prophecy she’s been running from for over a century. Fate and Destiny battle for Sadie’s soul but only her Shadow knows the truth…

I Dream of Dragons by Tricia Owens
When a genie in a bottle seduces her inner dragon, a sorceress must decide if the attraction is real or if she is being tricked.

Fire and Ice by Kate Richards
The battle for Crossroads rests in the hands of an ice dragon who has yet to shift and isn’t sure she can. Is his fire enough to set her desire ablaze and free the dragon within?

Curse of the Dragon’s Eye by Kali Willows
When reality is just an ancient curse in disguise, an Egyptian Pharaoh fights for her soul & her flight of dragons

Scorched Hearts by Victoria Zak
One lost heart and another ready for love collides with burning desire. One of them is bound to get SCORCHED.

 

About the Author

Victoria Zak is an internationally bestselling indie published author. She writes Scottish Historical Paranormal Romance and Paranormal Romance. She’s well known for her well-executed stories and thrilling paranormal/highland romance series The Guardians of Scotland.

When she’s not writing in her dragon loving world filled with magic and steamy romance, Victoria lives in the sunshine state with her real-life heroes, her husband and two kids.

You can find out more about Victoria on her website or you can follow her on Twitter or Facebook.

You can purchase Stroking the Flames on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Itunes, and the Kobo Store.

 

Today’s Featured Author – J.P. Willson

Please welcome author J.P. Wilson to my blog. His book, Through the Mind’s Eye: A Journey of Self-discovery, came out last year.

Interview

Tell us a bit about yourself.  

I will never get used to this question, simply put I just never know how to answer. What “bit” does one pick?

Where were you born and where do you call home?

I was born in Burlington, Ontario and I now reside in Vancouver, British Columbia, yet my home is Victoria B. C. for all intents and purposes.

What or who inspired you to start writing?

I have always enjoyed writing from a young age, at eight or nine years I was writing stupid little stories simply for fun.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I still do not consider myself a writer per se. I can write yes, but do I write well? I cannot answer that question only the readers can. I do call myself an author, there is a very fine line for me.

How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?

Easy question, all of me, all, of it as the book is about me, the next book slated for release is all about me. There is a third book in the works that is about another topic yet the premise is how it relates to me. I like me. No seriously, I am a memoir writer first and foremost, the other is creative non-fiction.

Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?

I think I answered part of this question already. The first book being about my initial recovery from alcohol addiction- the second is about living with sobriety and all the ups and downs that go along with that premise.

Do you write full-time? If so, what is your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?

Unfortunately I do not write full-time, maybe one day. I am a certified Red Seal Chef by trade which keeps me fairly busy yet I always make the time to write. Odd as this may sound the writing is an ongoing part of the never ending recovery process, one that is invaluable to me.

What is the best thing about being a writer? The worst?

Best- I think I would have to say the solitude. Worst- I think I would have to the solitude!

Do you outline your books or just start writing?

Typically I will just start writing although there is one book I am working on that has required a fair amount of research-then I just start writing from what I have learned doing this research. Hence the “creative” in the creative non-fiction.

Please tell us about your current release.

Through the Mind’s Eye: A Journey of Self-Discovery is a compilation of my initial recovery process from alcohol addiction, the treatment program and the follow up needed to stay sober.

What inspired you to write this book?

Initially the therapeutic value of daily journalling was all it was, the thought of this being anything else came after many discussions with others, the help I was able to give to them through my own experiences was the final inspiration. I wanted to be able to help others with their own journeys. I had taken counselling courses to this end yet I felt very strongly that the written word was my way of offering that help.

What kind of research did you do for this book?

Having taken the deepest possible look into myself, my soul, my inner-core was all the research needed. This is an incredible task to accomplish with any certainty no what whom you are.

Can you tell us a little about the black moment in your book?

You will have to read the book for that answer, there are many.

What was the most difficult thing/scene to write in this story?

I would have to say chapter nine, in this chapter I get into some serious issues concerning depression, the loss of family etc. For me this was a very hard thing to re-live over and over throughout the editing process. There was a short time after the final edit where I seriously doubted whether I should publish or not. I was about to put myself “out there” for all to see. So vulnerable to the world, was I strong enough within myself to face this was the question.

Did the story turn out the way you planned from the beginning? If not, what change happened that you didn’t expect?

The story has turned so much better than first anticipated, the positivity from the feedback has been absolutely overwhelming for me in so many ways.

Is there a specific place in the house (or out of the house) that you like to write?

Strictly at my desk, perched over the computer, with my coffee.

Do you have a specific snack that you have with you when you write?

Coffee, just coffee.

What book are you reading right now?

Not Dead Yet by Phil Collins and Memoirs of a Pahktun Immigrant by Teresa Schapansky  – memoirs of course…

If you could meet two authors, who would you pick and why?

Stephen King without a doubt, to me he just seems so real, so down to earth. His life has been on public display for so long I feel as if I know him already, I just think we would “hit it off.” To be honest I cannot think of a second right now, another author has just recently compared my writing to that of James Joyce so let’s go with him…. no?

Tell us a random fact about you that we never would have guessed.

As a hobby I was once on an underwater hockey team. Yes that does say “underwater hockey.”

Book Blurb

51cfyohljalDepression, self-loathing, unemployment, and destroyed relationships: the effects of drug and alcohol addiction run so much deeper than the morning-after hangover. However, awareness alone will not save the struggling addict, as J.P. Willson reveals in his fearless examination of substance dependency; recovery means doing the mental and emotional work to look inside oneself and discover a way to live as a sober, fulfilled individual in an often challenging world.

Through the Mind’s Eye: A Journey of Self-Discovery is a thought-provoking and honest examination of the emotional, psychological, and physical ways someone must enact their own healing. As a former alcoholic, Willson courageously shares his own story of addiction, as well the ups and downs he experienced along the road to recovery. Packed with astonishing insights about our culture’s relationship to alcohol, as well as the lies we tell ourselves in order to keep using, this book will change the way you view addiction. Willson has no qualms about telling the reader how difficult recovery is—and how there is no quick cure-all—but his compassionate, candid reflections help foster the knowledge and will to change.

About the Author

joseph-wilsonJ.P. Willson is a writer and chef living on the western coast of Canada. Growing up as the shy, quiet child in a large middle-class family, he has always been an observer, a thinker, and a wonderer. He has worked as a Red Seal chef for twenty-five years, and is highly skilled in his trade. However, despite his accomplishments, his life has not been easy. J.P. struggled with alcoholism for nearly thirty years, which resulted in homelessness, unemployment, loneliness, and spiraling depression. Having done the soul-searching and continuing work required for recovery, J.P. decided to share his experience and knowledge to help others along their own journeys. Through the Mind’s Eye: A Journey of Self-Discovery is his first publication. J.P. is deeply grateful for the love and support of his family, counselors, and friends.

You can purchase Through the Mind’s Eye on Amazon.