The 'Write' Information

Do You Believe in Magic?

How many books have you read where the strongest magic is love?

“I don’t want realism. I want magic!”
― Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

If you are like me, it’s a lot. Whether it’s Harry Potter or even some of my own titles, love can steal the show. It is as strong and powerful as any main character and can foil a villain without violence. But is that notion real or fantasy?

I’d like to share with you a story:

It was anything but a typical Mother’s Day. My husband had been diagnosed with terminal cancer the November prior. He didn’t go out much and I hadn’t expected a gift, but there was one. A tiny rose plant sat on my desk, little red buds ready to explode into blossoms. He told me a cut flower would wither and die but this plant would last forever.

The following January he passed away. The plant sat on my desk, a reminder of his love. I went through another tragedy soon after when my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer and I began home care. He passed away the following January. My rose bush bloomed a single white rose.

You might think nothing of a flower, but the roses had always been red until that day. Now on special occasions such as mother’s day or my birthday I receive a present – flowers in all different colours from the same plant. I’ve seen pink, white, yellow, orange, peach and starburst. To me it’s the very definition of magical.

So, when someone asks if I believe in the magic of love, I will always answer, “Yes, I do.” Until next time, Happy Reading.

Until next time. Happy Reading.

Interviews

Q&A: Greg Alldredge

I’m excited to have the chance to take a peek into the world of another new-to-me author. Today we are talking with Greg Alldredge about his novel,  Lights in the Night.

Plagued by nightmares, Trevor’s drawn to Texas by unknown forces. What are those lights? Join Trevor and the quirky town residents as he searches for answers and tries to fill the void in his heart.

To start things off I asked Alldredge to tell us a bit about himself. Here’s what he had to say:

I guess I said it best on my author page, I’ve had several careers over the past 50+ years. Currently, I am a theatre teacher and a writer, this is probably where I will continue to work until I die. Growing up, I was bitten by the travel bug. Since my parents were not independently wealthy, I joined the Navy to see the world. I spent twenty years in the Navy I met and married my wife we adopted our son and we traveled extensively, I also acted professionally from time to time. Once I retired from the Navy I went into the medical manufacturing industry that was great it put my son through college. I came to Texas to retire, I failed at retirement. I began teaching because several people said I would be good at it. After five years teaching in Texas, we decided to travel overseas and teach. While in China I found an outstanding opportunity to write. I had tried and failed to write books in the past, either by location or maturity this time I was able to complete what I started.

I’ve been provided with the first three paragraphs of Lights in the Night to share with readers.

Let’s take a look inside this Sci-Fi Novel:

Everyone in town called ‘Old Sits’ the crazy old hermit. One of those men that by choice decided to live a life of solitude in the open desert.

Yet, this particular night, he was on a mission. Like a forward observer, equipped with surveillance equipment more suitable to the NSA or catching cheating spouses. Dressed in a ghillie suit, camouflage netting covering his entrenched position. Armed with a high-power camera, hyperbolic microphone and a four-inch tripod mounted telescope all targeted at the distance southern mountain range under observation.

Any rational observer would recognize someone who was spying on someone or something. He chose to position himself here, in this very location watching the same chunk of real-estate for the last four months. Every night from before moonrise to first light, eating cold spam sandwiches and drinking vodka, waiting for anything to happen.

It’s time to delve into the Q. & A.

This my favourite part. My questions are crafted to give a reader a clear look at how an author writes, what drives them, and what can be expected in their books.


Question: What genre would you say the book falls into?

I always say you must know your genre to know your audience. My book as science-fiction with a bit of humour. Of course if you find it funny it’s humour with a bit of science-fiction. I do feel every good book should have some mystery and suspense thrown in. If you know the end of the story, that’s half the reason for finishing the book. No one is surprised when the Titanic sinks.

Question: Are there any trigger warnings and/or explicit content readers should know about?

Not really, if it were a film it would be rated R for drug use. It’s not excessive drug use, the language is not harsh and there is very little sex. Oh my God, I just made it so a good portion of the world will not read my book. Hopefully, you read it even with my last sentence.

Question: Do you have any upcoming events?

My current events all revolve around finishing classes towards my master of theatre education from the University of Houston. After that, I must travel back to China and begin teaching a new school year. Any events between now and June I will have to schedule via the Internet.

Question: What is next for you? Do you have anything in the works?

Currently, I am working on the second book in the series. It has a working title of Darkness at Midday.

Question: Do you have any special mentions? (Editor, cover art etc…)

I must mention my wife, Connie. She is my editor, my muse, my sounding board, my proof-reader, and just about everything else. I’ll never understand why she has put up with me for the last 30+ years.

Question: What was your favourite book when you were growing up?

Funny thing is I didn’t read a lot until I got out of high school. I guess my favourite book in high school was by Alistair MacLean Where Eagles Dare. I was more of an action adventure reader. I didn’t begin reading a lot of science fiction until I was in the Navy and an early adult.

Question: If you could meet any character from any book, who would it be? Why?

Crystal; I think she could teach me a lot about yoga.

Question: When did you realize you were meant to be a writer?

That is a loaded question, I’m not 100% sure I should be a writer now. Lights in the Night was my third attempt at writing a book. The first two failed. Either time, space, or both has changed enough to allow me the motivation to finish this book. Now I feel the dam has been broken, I am finding it hard to not write. I guess it will be up to my readers to decide if I am meant to be a writer or not.

Question: If your life was a book, what would be the tagline?

Will he ever stop moving?

Question: What advice would you give new writers?

Just do it. There will always be excuses why not to write. There will be times you start, and times you never finish, but you’re never really done until you die.

Question: What has been the worst mistake you have made in your writing career?

Not finishing my first two books. Even if they never saw the light of day it would’ve been a start. I know I needed to mature before I could finish a book. It would’ve been nice to have started writing before the Internet became so popular and changed the way publishing happens.

Question: What is the best moment you have had with a fan?

I posted a saying on Facebook. A former student replied saying “I don’t know if you meant that for me, but I really needed it today.” There are times I think we overlook the simple things, and the effects they can have on those around us. I never want to forget the simple things.


Lights in the Night is in my TBR pile – watch for my future review! If you’re interested you can follow the following links to find out more about this author. 

www.amazon.com/dp/B071ND2SMF

www.facebook.com/G.Alldredge

www.greg-alldredge.com

Thank you, Greg Alldredge and all my readers for your time!

Recipes

A Meal to Satisfy Emond’s Fielders

Wheel of Time Series

The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan, in all it’s 14-book glory, is one of my absolute favorite series. Some consider it to be overly detailed in certain ways, but I love the world-building and hunger for more. This sprawling fantasy series has similarities to our own world, but uses magic and has less technology than we currently do. Jordan pulls from Taoism, Arthurian legends, messianic stories, folklore, and mythologies to weave a fascinating tale of prophecy, change and good versus evil. He is incredibly detailed in building culture, history, geography, food, customs, and more.  

As a foodie and a superfan (I’ve read the series at least 10 times), I wanted to make something that could work in the setting of Randland (the name fans have given to Robert Jordan’s world). While looking for recipes to make for the week, I came across a recipe for Onion Herb Socca, Kurdish Stew with Fruit and Split Peas, and Peach Cobbler.

Onion Herb Socca

The Onion-Herb Socca I discovered in The Blender Girl by Tess Masters. Simple and easy to make, this recipe is basically a flat-bread made with chickpea flour, water, salt and pepper, olive oil, onion, thyme, parsley, and garlic. This is perfect to put chutney on, to accompany stews and chilis, or to just eat the entire thing on its own. It is super delicious and savory.

Given the nature of the cookbook, of course, a blender is used. 1 cup chickpea flour, 1 cup of water, a teaspoon each of salt and pepper, and 2 tbsp of olive oil were blended and left to stand for an hour. The cookbook said to let it sit until it looked like buttermilk, a minimum of 30 minutes. While it rested, I chopped ¾ cup of an onion and sauteed it with a couple teaspoons of minced garlic and a little olive oil in a pan. Then, I mixed it with 2 tbsp of parsley and 2 tbsp of thyme, though these herbs can be changed to fit your taste.

I put the onion and herb mix at the bottom of a pie pan and poured the flour mix over it and mixed the two together. It baked for 10 minutes at 450 degrees F. The cookbook says it’s best served immediately, but I found it quite delicious even cooled a few hours later.   I don’t think it’s absolutely necessary to use the blender, so next time I make it, I’ll probably do it by hand.

Kurdish Stew with Fruit and Split Peas

I discovered the stew in in The Taste of Persia cookbook by Naomi DuGuid. This combination of cumin, turmeric, ground beef (though you could use lamb or chicken instead), split peas, plums or apricots, tomato paste, potatoes, and broth. It’s an easy recipe for sure, made in under an hour.

It seems Persian recipes, based on the few I’ve done from the book, don’t use a lot of onion. I just heated some oil, added a tablespoon of cumin (the recipe called for 2 tsp cumin and 1 of either Nigella seeds or ground Nigella, a spice I didn’t have and wouldn’t use except in this recipe – it’s similar to cumin, so I just substituted that), a teaspoon of turmeric and heated a minute or two. A pound of beef was added, along with a cup of green lentils, the tablespoon of tomato paste, and ¾ cup of fresh plums. The recipe called for dried plums or apricots, but since I can’t eat sulfites, fresh had to do.

As I’d forgotten to buy split peas at the Farmers’ Market or the Co-op, I had to do a bit of research. It seemed like lentils could be a good fit – unfortunately I had only a cup instead of two as was required in the recipe. Once the beef browned, I added the potatoes and broth. The recipe called for waxy potatoes, which I don’t like, so I used small brown ones from the Farmers’ Market. It also called for up to six cups water or broth. I used four cups broth, and even that made it more like a soup instead of a stew. Substituting lentils, and utilizing only one cup lentils instead of two cups split peas, as well as using fresh instead of dried plums all could have contributed to the extra liquid, even though I used less liquid than it called for. Please take this into consideration if you try it at home!

The recipe called to serve it with herbs and flatbreads, so naturally, I ate it with the Onion-Herb Stocca. If you would want rice with it to soak up some of the juices instead of bread, I’d suggest cooking some rice with a tablespoon of olive oil and a couple strands of saffron.

I can imagine the socca and the stew being served in Altaran or, especially, Andoran inns and taverns paired with beer or cider, with the socca being much more widespread using different herbs for each nation. The Seafarers would likely pair it with a fish stew.

socca and stew.jpg

Peach Cobbler

As for the peach cobbler, which I chose in part because August is Peach Month, and peaches are considered quite poisonous in Randland, it’d be perfect for the Darkfriend to serve to an inebriated guest they would want to poison. It’s easier than peach pie but still delicious. I found it in Vegan with a Vengeance by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and, like all of her recipes that I’ve made, it is simple. Clearly, she writes recipes for those who like good food but don’t have a lot of time to make food.

The filling is made up of 5 cups of peaches, ¾ cup brown sugar, a teaspoon ground cinnamon, two teaspoons of pure vanilla extract, and two tablespoons organic cornstarch. I used peaches that had been jarred by a local canner so it made it even easier. These get mixed together in a 9×13 baking dish. I’d recommend mixing the dry ingredients before mixing in the peaches.

In a separate bowl, I mixed a cup of flour, a teaspoon-and-a-half of baking powder, a teaspoon ground cinnamon, a half-teaspoon ground allspice, ¼ cup light brown sugar, ¼ cup canola oil, ⅔ cup flaxseed milk, and a teaspoon vanilla extract. Once these were thoroughly mixed, I used a spoon to add a dollop of the mix atop the peach mixture, leaving about an inch of space between each.

The recipe called for baking for 30 minutes at 450 degrees. However, I found that the result was that the flour mix on top looked too burned, but that could easily be fixed by adjusting the temperature, time, or even the placement in the oven next time. This was the first time I’ve made cobbler, and despite looking a bit burnt on top, my taste tester (also known as my life partner) ate most of it.

peach cobbler.jpg

Interviews

Q&A: Stan Faryna

Today I’m taking a look into an author whose book, Francesco Augustine Bernadone: A Brief History of Our Tomorrows, I’ve recently reviewed for Books and Quills.

“A disabled, recently unemployed man is desperately searching for hard cash in a brutal, post-apocalyptic MMO game about zombies, greed and survival. All of which strongly reminds us of Shakespeare’s midsummer qualm, the course of true love never did run smooth. This epic, near-future science fiction and fantasy at its best – it asks us big questions about what it means to be human.

Stan gives us glimpses of the future that are as interesting as anything being said by Michio Kaku, Ray Kurweil, Marc Andreessen, and Jeff Bezos.

RIP Dollar and Euro! Viva la #Bitcoin!”

— Liam deTroch, Generation Z blogger

 

Mr. Faryna does an excellent job in describing the human condition, no matter how painful it may be. In short — This story is truly a must-read.

— Ms. H of Mom’s Minute Video Game Show

Stan Faryna was gracious enough to take the time out of his busy schedule to answer a few of my questions:

Question: What genre would you say the book falls into?

Answer: Primarily, Science Fiction and Fantasy. Some have suggested, Literary Fiction. Others have said it is a multi-genre work with elements of classic literature, fantasy, action and adventure, romance, futurism, apocalyptic, dark dystopia, and litRPG.    

Question: Are there any trigger warnings and/or explicit content readers should know about?

Answer: There is a shocking and horrible scene near the beginning of the story. It’s a gruesome metaphor of the real world and game world in which the story takes place. Maybe, our world too.

Question: What is your favourite Quote?

Answer: “Love never fails.”

Question: What advice do you have for new writers?

Answer: Write the words that travail the longer darkness and distance. Like starlight. Be the light in a dark place. Be truthful. Love strongly. Do try to write something good, excellent and praiseworthy.

Question: Where do you write?

Answer: Wherever I am – assuming I can plug in my laptop. The mundane and peculiar rituals of writers can become traps and prisons. I might have some, but I don’t want to admit it. I don’t want to give them power over me.

Question: Are your characters real to you? Do you speak to them?

Answer: Reading a fanfiction piece related to my novella, Grimdark Fantasy author M.L. Spencer commented to me in a private message that I really love my characters.

Is there something more real and worthwhile than love?

Question: What piece of advice from other authors do you hear the most but choose to ignore?

Answer: Just write.

No human activity is useful to us for its own sake. Neither art nor writing or any talent. If it does not serve a higher authority and virtue, it’s all just more dust in the wind.

Question: Which do you prefer Novels or Novellas and why?

Answer: I like them both. I imagine, however, that the Novella has a better shot with the much-diminished attention of modern people.

Question: Are there any Easter eggs in your book(s)?

Answer: There are lots of Easter eggs in my novellas!

The red dumpster in the beginning is a big one but I can’t explain it without spoiling a larger story.

Question: What’s your favourite food? Have you ever mentioned it in your book(s)?

Answer: I like good and healthy food. I like good cooking. I mention a smoothie recommended for cancer patients.

Question: Do you have a writing Motto?

Answer: Nudi nudum Christum sequi.

To nakedly follow the naked Christ.

Question: If you could change the date to any year past or future, what date would you change it to and why?

Answer: Are you asking me if I could time travel, where would I go?

I was born for this time so I have no regrets. The grass is not greener…

But if I could travel in time, there would be many stops in my adventures. First stop would be when Jesus speaks his sermon on the Mount.


I’d like to thank Stan Faryna for his time!  In my review, I recommend this story to anyone looking for something thought-provoking. If you are interested, it’s here on Books & Quills Magazine.  

If you are looking for more information, here are all the links you need:

Book on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071S75DWB

Author’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/Faryna

Author’s Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/stan.faryna

Facebook Fanpage: https://www.facebook.com/Faryna.FanPage

Author’s blog: https://stanfaryna.blog

 

Articles

The New Magical Book Club for Potter Fans

It was the book series that enchanted a generation. With movies, memorabilia, several theme parks, and more, the wizarding world has been a phenomenon that grips the imagination and doesn’t let go. If you, like so many other “Potterheads,” have been looking for an excuse to read the books over again we have good news!  In honor of the twentieth anniversary of the publication of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Pottermore is hosting an official Wizarding World Book Club.

That’s right! You can read along with thousands of fans, new and old alike, and experience the magic all over.  Simply go to Pottermore.com and sign up.  From there, you can read along with your fellow witches and wizards from all over the world and participate in discussions about the books over twitter.  

The Experience So Far

The club is already underway, at about half-way through the first book.  Every week, themes and questions are posted on Pottermore for readers to explore. Live discussions then take place over Twitter @wwbookclub.  It has been such an amazing experience connecting with fans about this beloved series again.  Not only that, but each theme has articles and insights written by JK Rowling on their respective pages on Pottermore, which fill in some of the blanks and deepen our understanding of the wizarding world.

The only drawback to this, for me at least, has been the platform on which the discussions take place.  Twitter is not very conducive to lengthy debates or passionate ranting, both of which superfans are prone to doing.  Having to limit your very real and intense feelings about Harry Potter to only 140 characters is quite the challenge.  However, it has allowed for a large, diverse group of fans to all geek-out together and that, alone, has been magical.  

What’s to Come

The Wizarding World Book Club intends to continue reading each and every book in the series, providing more themes and insights for fans to explore together.  Starting in October, two new books about the Wizarding World will be released in tandem with the British Library’s Harry Potter Exhibition.  Harry Potter: A History of Magic – The Book of the Exhibition will explore subjects that were taught at Hogwarts, and Harry Potter – A Journey Through a History of Magic will explore many other elements of the HP universe.  Later in the fall, the illustrated version of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban will come out just in time for you to get it for the book club. It’s going to be a magical year!  


Are you in the Wizarding World Book Club?  Let us know what you think of it, and share your favorite Harry Potter book!  

The 'Write' Information

Finding Inspiration to Overcome Writer’s Block – July

How do you deal with writer’s block? That’s probably the most frequently asked question of any author and their least favorite to answer. I decided to tackle finding an answer in 2017 by drawing inspiration other forms of art. Once a month, I’ll be trying something different and discussing the results.

For July, I trudged out of my comfort zone for a paint night at a local artist’s studio. The Brier’s Edge in Brantford, Ontario offers both group and private lessons for what seems to be any artistic endeavor a person might want to take on. I decided to attempt a painting.

Some people might not think a simple painting to be a big challenge – I assure you, for me it was. Anyone who knows something about me knows I can’t draw. I’m the stick figure lady, and even those are lopsided. I can’t even make a straight line. The artist, Susan, had her work cut out for her. I’m sure she wished for a stiff drink a few times during the two-hour session.

The best part about the experience was that the finished product was a combination of the artist and myself. She showed me things and helped me. There wasn’t a stick figure or wavy line in sight. While I’m not ready to try painting on my own, I feel that artistically I have grown from the experience and would recommend paint nights to everyone.

Are you wondering about the results of my experiment? I couldn’t help but be inspired by such a talented artist! Expect to see some new announcements in the near future. This evening was a success!

I’m looking forward to finding a new adventure in August. I hope you’ll join me for those results next month!

Thanks for reading The Write Information.

Book Reviews, Diversity

Review: My City Sister by Akpa Arinzechukwu

Recently, I stumbled upon Writivism and the associated article for the 2017 Kofi Addo Prize for Creative Nonfiction Long List. This is an annual prize for nonfiction works. Initially specific to emerging African writers living in Ghana, it has widened to include writers born, raised, or living elsewhere in Africa. The shortlisted writers are then invited to a literary fest where the winner is chosen. My hope was to find pieces written by these shortlisted authors. Unfortunately, the only one I could find for my Kindle is a piece written by Akpa Arinzechukwu.

This short story piece is titled My City Sister and while I doubt it was the piece submitted for the prize, it was interesting to read anyway. The piece has too much of a fiction feel to it. The twelve pages of story centers on a young man entering the city where his sister lives for the first time. He’s a rural man, likely pretty young, and it is about how the city impacts him in ways he can’t imagine.

The worst thing about it is the attitude the main character has as he enters the city. It immediately made him unlikeable. The best thing about it is that it was written well enough that I was very engaged and wanted to find out what happened to this pompous character.  

It’s very much a story of how the city changes the main character, so we don’t see much character development except for his. He and his sister are prominent, but she is seen only through his eyes and is limited in interactions. Any change we see in her is really a change in how he perceives her. The thing is though – the city changes him against his will because of his experiences there. He’s still pompous, but far less judgmental than in the beginning.

Unfortunately, it feels a bit contrived for the storyline. Young man, very immature, goes to the city and is miraculously changed for the “better.” Maybe it’s because I’m not an avid short story fan but I am always wanting more. I’ve seen short story authors who are amazing at world-building. Many of the ones I’ve read are more about character development. This one is interesting to me in the sense that it’s set somewhere I’m very unfamiliar with, but uses a story that is incredibly common. The author definitely could have fleshed out certain areas better.

Yet, I’m glad I read it. It was easy to read, it was easy to understand his motivations and his transformation, and it stylistically written well. I’d be interested in seeing what else he has written.

Articles

Camp NaNo Tips & Tricks: Part 2

Camp NaNoWriMo is nearly coming to an end.

If you’re on target, near the finish line, or you’ve already won Camp NaNoWriMo, congratulations! That’s a huge accomplishment and a reason to feel a tremendous amount of pride. Pat yourself on the back. Go on, you deserve it.

However, if you’re anything like me, Pantser and Procrastinator Extraordinaire–a dangerous combination–you are currently flailing, running around in circles, rocking back and forth, hyperventilating, completely avoiding the topic, or masterfully doing all of the above.

There are only a few days left. I know, it’s madness. Breathe in. Breathe out. Okay? Okay.


First of all, remember: You have more words now than what you started with.

Regardless of whether or not you reach your goal, you’re a winner just for trying. I know, I know. It sounds cheesy. But it’s true. The fact that you challenged yourself

Think of it this way: all words are just a combination of 26 letters, yet they elicit vivid imagery, raw emotions, and lasting changes. Basically, they’re magic.

You’re a wizard, [insert name here].


Don’t Forget: All words have worth.

Not to say you won’t have to do a substantial amount of editing or completely rewrite certain passages.

I tend to think of these type of words as fertilizer. Quite frankly, a lot of what I write is sh*t. But it makes great fertilizer. I keep a folder in my Scrivener projects where I can dump–never delete–these kinds of words. Once in a while, I’m able to pull something from them, if only a concept or a sentence.

Ray Bradbury’s philosophy is that quantity produces quality.

Think about it this way: Assume 90% of your writing sucks, but only 7% is acceptable and another 3% is utterly breathtaking prose. If you write 50,000 words, you will have written 3,500 words worth of perfectly good writing, and 1,500 words worth of magic.

Keep writing. The more you write, the better the chances you’ll write something extraordinary.

Check in with us.

We’d love to see how your Camp Project is going! Drop us a line in the comments. We also cordially invite you to our Writer’s Haven, an online chat community. We write, talk, vent, give and ask for advice. All are welcome at any time!

Interviews

Author Q&A: Mercedes Prunty

Yes! I’ve found another fantasy author to check out and this one has a bit of horror mixed in. I was looking forward to reading Junia – The Magic Of The Element Souls before the interview. If it’s half of what I think it will be, It’s going to be a huge success.

First, let’s find out about the author. I asked Prunty to share a bit about how the writer came to be:

I am a mother, wife, author and blogger. I mainly write in the genres of Horror and Fantasy, ever since I was young I have had a love and interest in zombie horror mainly due to the video game ‘Resident Evil’ and later in life the video game ‘The last of us’ and now the television series ‘The walking dead’. I love the suspense and the thrills of the scare those types of books can give you. (I own all the resident evil novelizations and the walking dead comics). I also love Fantasy, my all-time favourite fantasy story is another video game (Yes I’m a geek) ‘Final Fantasy X’ which inspired my story ‘Junia’.

Now for the book: Junia – The Magic of the Element Souls

Welcome to the magical world of Junia, a place where everything is made up of souls from the green grass you walk on to the lake made of lava, everything in Junia is alive.

Some people just don’t know it yet.

Mira the princess of Cosima wakes one night to an attack on her home, the culprit, a Grand Dark Witch who plans on taking over the throne and the whole of Junia and doesn’t care for who she kills in the process. To save her Kingdom Mira must venture out into a world she doesn’t really know or understand, to collect all the Element Souls, to then awaken the final Element Soul who will be powerful enough to defeat the Grand Dark Witch but not all the people she meets wish to help her on her journey. For the royal family is disregarded as traitors to the religion of Junia and to the Element Souls themselves.

And with a chance to find love will she lose it all to keep it or will Mira abide by her royal duties and save her Kingdom first? Or will she lose everything by the hand of an ancient evil?’

Already hooked? The idea of everything being alive and made from souls grabbed me right away. It also brought a bit of a chuckle – don’t step on the lava (the floor is lava). That’s my geek side showing! Right below is the Amazon link!

Amazon UK: Junia: The Magic of the Element Souls

Amazon: Junia: The Magic of the Element Souls
Still not sold?

 

Let’s try a short excerpt from Junia:

I didn’t sleep that night, how could I? It was most probably the last night I would ever see Thane almost alive. We both sat in the main hall of the temple, talking and watching the souls sing as they floated past us. Nuelle had thought it best we all stayed in the temple as it was the safest place to be, even though Lumi had managed to get in and attack me.

I wondered how Andromeda was feeling now, knowing that I had defeated her main warrior. My mother had warned me that she might use my father to make me weaker and I was guessing she would do something horrific to make me weaker now I had taken out Lumi but I hoped that seeing my father in the void meant he had managed to get away from her and settle into Spirit.’

 

Time for the best part – at least my favourite–the Q & A:

Question: Who is your favourite character in your book and why?

Answer: Nuelle is my favourite character, she is wise beyond her years and when I wrote her I envisioned a beautiful silver haired girl who could control the element of souls. She comes across as a little strange and blunt with words but she has a big heart and wants the best for Junia.

Question: Please describe him/her/they a) physically b) their personality.

Answer: Nuelle has silver hair and is suspected to be around 16 years old but in all honesty she is as old as Junia itself, she was born to watch over Spirit. Personality wise she is strong, a natural leader and doesn’t like to mince her words.

Question: Could I have a couple of quotes from your book of dialogue that shows that personality?

Answer: “Yes”, she answered plainly her eyes holding no emotion, “Thane was not originally your soul guardian”.

“A true Queen can see the beauty in everything, even the things she doesn’t fully understand…That was where you’re so called ancestors failed, they had no vision”, she said.

Question: What genre would you say the book falls into?

Answer: Fantasy (Young adult fantasy)

Question: Are there any trigger warnings and/or explicit content I should know about?

Answer: Not really, there is a lot of death but that’s because the world of Junia is built of souls.

Question: Do you have any upcoming events?

Answer: Not at the moment but I should be attending a book festival in my local town later in the year but the date is yet to be confirmed.

Question: What is next for you? Do you have anything in the works?

Answer: I have about six projects on the go, a novella I’m writing to put in a competition, the final in my horror series ‘Alone’, a Sci-Fi type of story and another horror… I have so many files and folders I’ve lost count of all my Work in Progresses, I just pick the one I’m in the mood for writing and write.

Question: Do you have any special mentions you would like to share? (Editor, cover art etc…)

Answer: I tend to do it all on my own, money is very tight at the moment but if I had to give a special mention it would be to my husband Jamie who puts up with my tapping of the keys every night so I can write.

Question: If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be? Please describe the place rather than just a name. The weather, the time of day, the ground, the surroundings, foliage, etc…

Answer: Golden Gate bridge in San Francisco, I would love the see the mist roll in and cover the bridge giving it the spooky image I have seen so many times on the start of ‘Charmed’ my favourite television series. I guess the mist would either come in the morning or late afternoon when temperatures change but I’m no expert haha.

Question: If the character from above were in that place what would they be doing?

Answer: Probably fighting a monster of sorts or collecting lost souls.

Question: If your character was allowed one chance to say anything to your readers, what would he/she say?

Answer: ‘Don’t fear death for your soul will be recycled to bring new life to a baby or to something else living in the world.’

Question: If your character could donate to any charity, which one would he/she choose?

Answer: As there is a huge battle and most of the temples in Junia get destroyed she would most probably donate to the ‘Temple build’ fund. The temples are of the upmost importance in Junia and without them there are no elements, no magic and ultimately no Junia.


Thank you for your time, Mercedes Prunty. I’ll be reading Junia soon and posting my review.