Interviews

Q&A: Amanda J. Evans

As many of you know, I am an avid reader and supporter of new authors, so I am happy to be able to introduce you to Amanda J. Evans author of Finding Forever. While I haven’t yet had a chance to read her book, it is in my to-be-read pile. I think it winked at me. Perhaps I should move it up a few spots.

Here’s a little information about her book that might move Finding Forever into the top spot on your reading list as well:

When Liz wakes up on a beach wearing a tattered wedding dress and her dead husband in her arms, all she wants to do is die along with him. Instead she is unexpectedly rescued, but Charles’ body is left behind. She is determined to go back and recover Charles body to give a proper burial to her beloved.

All is not what it seems, though. The man helping her out thinks she is crazy and an enemy from the past, intent on revenge, hasn’t finished what he started. Liz must find out the truth about the accident and what really happened to her husband. She’ll put her life at risk in order to find and keep love forever.

Finding Forever is the debut novella from Amanda J Evans. A blend of mystery and suspense, mixed with romance and unexpected twists. Finding Forever will prove to you that when you believe in love anything is possible.

Of course, I had a lot to ask – curious minds need answers and Evans was willing to take on my barrage of inquiries. Hopefully, I wasn’t too tough!


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

The genre is women’s fiction in the mystery, suspense category with some romance too.

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

There are some swear words from male characters but no explicit content.

Question: What is your favourite quote?

My favorite quote from the book is from Charles and it’s when he says, “Love comes at you like a bolt of lightning. You don’t see it, but once it touches you, you won’t ever want to let it go. It’s a feeling deep inside that you can’t explain. It makes you smile, make you want to dance and do silly things, and just the thought of losing it causes your whole world to become dark. Love is precious and those that are lucky enough to find it should always treasure it.”

Question: What advice do you have for new writers?

Don’t compare yourself to others. Every writer has their own distinctive voice and you have to find this. Trust in your talent and don’t ever give up. If you have a need inside you to write, give in to it. If you can’t think of anything but writing, do it. Nothing is perfect the first time round, but write it anyway. Listen to the voice inside you that screams for release and let it flow onto the page. Believe in yourself and don’t worry about sales. Follow your passion first, and everything else will follow.

Question: Where do you write?

I have my own office at home, but I often write in the car. I write with pen and paper so anywhere will do. I usually write in spurts whenever I get some spare time, so if I have to pick my daughter up from school, I’ll bring my notebook and pen and get some pages written. I also tend to arrive early for things, and have my notebook and pen in my handbag so I can get something done while I wait.

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

My characters speak to me. I often say that when I write it’s like the characters dictate their stories to me. I see everything that is happening like a movie in my mind.

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

There are two pieces of advice that I tend to ignore. One is to publish something new every month. I just can’t do that. Writing takes time and even if I could have a first draft done in a month, there is no way I could have editing, beta reading, and everything else that comes with a book, done in a month. The other piece of advice that I ignore is planning. I don’t plan my books. I just sit down, pick up my pen and go for it. I never know what is going to happen and I love the excitement of this. I tried planning for NaNoWriMo about 5 years ago. I spent two weeks planning the novel I was going to write. My female main character, etc, and then when I started writing it completely changed. My main character was male and his father ended up having a major role, when I thought he would just be a secondary character. After that, I decided to write, the way I write, and do what works best for me.

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

I have to say, I don’t really mind once there is a complete story. I hate books where the story ends abruptly with no conclusion at all. When writing I try to write novel length but if the story is told completely in a novella, then I don’t mind.

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

No.

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

I love pasta and Chinese food. I might have mentioned both in my upcoming book Save Her Soul.

Question: Do you have a writing motto?

I don’t really. If I did though, it would be pick up the pen and trust in yourself. Just do it.

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

If I could go back to the 29th of October 1990 and prevent the death of my father I would. If I were going to the future I would go to the 18th of July 2027, ten years from now. I’d be celebrating my 50th birthday and I’d love to see where my writing career has taken me.


I love these answers. I was, however, a little sad to see there weren’t any Easter eggs to be found. That is one of my favourite reading games, but that’s another story. Thank youm Amanda J. Evans for taking the time to chat with me.


Amanda J. Evans writes paranormal and fantasy novels as well as children’s stories and lives in Oldcastle, Co. Meath, Ireland with her husband and two children. She was published in several journals and anthologies in 2016. Her first novel Finding Forever was published in 2017 and her forthcoming title Save Her Soul will be released in the summer 2017. Amanda has also secured a publishing deal with Handersen Publishing for a children’s book and this will be released in the fall, 2017. Amanda is the author of Surviving Suicide: A Memoir from Those Death Left Behind, published in 2012. You can find out more on her website www.amandajevans.com.


Connect with Amanda Evans

Facebook:http://www.facebook.com/amandajevanswriter

Twitter:http://www.twitter.com/amandajevans

Google+:https://plus.google.com/u/0/117144241706669072531/

LinkedIn:http://ie.linkedin.com/in/amandajevans/

Instagram:https://www.instagram.com/ajevanswriter/

 

Books By Amanda J Evans

Finding Forever – A Romantic Suspense Novella

Amazon US:https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MY9IPZG

Amazon UK:https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01MY9IPZG

Surviving Suicide – A Memoir FromThose Death Left Behind

Amazon US:http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009SLN01S

Amazon UK:http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B009SLN01S

 

 

The 'Write' Information

The First Edition

 

The line was long, but she persevered – it was after all her favourite author. It was still early. Her head jutted out trying to count how many others were before her. It was impossible to tell for sure. If she moved a few inches over she would have a better view, but that wasn’t worth the risk. If she lost her spot now, she’d be devastated. They started to move. She held her breath, hoping she would be among the few to be able to get a signed first edition.

Today, the above paragraph could be considered Historical Fiction. With all the changes in the book industry, the coveted first edition has undergone a drastic makeover itself and sadly, not for the better. Gone are the days when it was prestigious to collect firsts prints, some so in demand that they were limited and numbered. While you may still find a handful of authors producing something collection worthy on their first print, this isn’t the norm for today’s industry.

In a world of mass production, authors are putting out books faster and faster. Errors and misprints are often overlooked by authors when a title is first published. Whether it is one mistake or a hundred, putting out a new edition is how it is corrected. That leaves the question of what to do with the earlier editions.

There is no question that every book costs money to print. In most cases, it isn’t a viable option to recycle or toss away an entire order. Authors today simply can’t afford it. The result – a significantly reduced price to clear out stock to make way for a better version. Depending on what was wrong with the book in the first place, readers should be aware they are buying a less-than-perfect copy. Discounted or not, in most cases these books are still going to be read. These first prints are a dime a dozen. From my experience it makes more sense to pay full price for a better product that can be enjoyed.

In the end draw your own conclusions. If you are offered a first edition for one third of the price make sure you know why it is so cheap. Ask questions, rather than being disappointed. Remember, if you are looking for a copy that one day will be valuable, it will be a hardcover and identified on the inside.

Happy reading. Thanks for visiting and I hope you’ll come back next week for ‘The Write Information’.

Book Reviews, Young Adult

Review: The Impossibility of Tomorrow by Avery Williams

The immortal Seraphina is forced to face the darkness of her past—and risk losing the love of her life—in this second novel in the Incarnation series.

Seraphina has been living for centuries, thanks to a special method of alchemy, but only recently has she really felt alive. She’s finally broken free from her controlling boyfriend, Cyrus, and after years of swapping bodies to preserve her immortality, is happily settled into a life worth sticking with. Because in this life, she has Noah.

But Noah might not be as trustworthy as he seems. After he delivers an ominous message that could only come from Cyrus, Sera is worried that her new friends and family will find out her secret. And as her suspicions extend beyond Noah, Sera is forced to wonder about her new friends as well: Could her old coven be disguising themselves right under her nose?

Will Sera have to move to another body—and take another life—or can she find a way to keep what she’s got, forever?

–back cover of The Impossibility of Tomorrow by Avery Williams

With sequels, it feels like it is hit or miss. This sequel was wonderful, and the only complaint that I really have is that there currently isn’t another book out. I need this story to continue!

The first book ended on a cliffhanger and the second picks up later in that scene. The book started out so intense that I didn’t want to put it down from the very start. I devoured the first few chapters. This book had some seriously creepy parts. I was so attached to Sera and Noah that not knowing who Cyrus was driving me crazy, but in the type of way where I could not put the book down.

I just fell more in love with the characters. Sera becomes even more developed, and in this book I really began to relate to Noah. He seemed so similar to me, and I loved learning some more of his backstory. My only complaint with the characters is that I was not a fan of Reed and Rebecca. I think that they weren’t meant to be all that likable, but I found them annoying most of the time. This was such a small set back though, and I really think that this was a matter of opinion above anything else.

This fast-paced and suspenseful book made a great sequel. If this book sounds interesting to you, make sure to check out The Alchemy of Forever first. Both are great reads.

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.

Articles, Features

Keep Fighting

Trigger Warning: Physical, Emotiona, & Verbal Abuse

My parents divorced shortly before I turned eight. Despite a history of alcoholism and a history of abuse against my father, the court granted my mother primary custody of me. That was the start of 13 years of constant physical, verbal, and emotional abuse at the hands of my mother. I was punched, slapped in the face, and had my hair pulled. I was told numerous times that I would never amount to anything, that I was a failure, and that I would never be good enough. More than once my mother threatened to kill herself in front of both me and my younger sister and told us that it was our fault. As if my mother wasn’t bad enough, I was also dealing with a stepfather who didn’t know how to keep his hands to himself.

At the start of seventh grade, after we moved from Western New York to Greensboro, North Carolina, I found myself not only struggling to deal with the abuse I was suffering at home, but also struggling to come to terms with being a lesbian. I saw others in the LGBTQA+ community being mistreated at school and as a result I feared that my orientation would get out and I too would become a victim of homophobic harassment. So I did my best to hide, going so far as to lie to myself and making a few poor decisions in an attempt to prove to myself and to others that I wasn’t gay. At home I feared my mother’s wrath and as a result would frequently lock myself away in my room. I was also struggling with being so far away from my dad.

As a result of the situation I was in and the things I was struggling with, I ended falling into a deep depression and eventually began self harming. The self harming started more out of a desire to punish myself than anything. I’d heard so many times from my mother that I wasn’t good enough and that I was a screw up that I began to believe it. That combined with my orientation made me believe that there really was something wrong with me, that I was bad, and that I deserved to be punished in some way. When my mother caught me one night, she dragged me into her bathroom to clean me up and lectured me about how much of an embarrassment I was.

I felt like I had no one to turn to and nowhere to go. I felt trapped and I felt lost. The people who did offer to help and who were there for me I ended up pushing away, or I would lie to them and tell them I was fine, including my dad. I put up walls and told myself that I could deal with everything on my own, even when I knew I couldn’t. Truth is, we aren’t built to deal with these sorts of things alone. But I was ashamed, and maybe even in a bit of denial, so instead of asking for help I hid myself away. The only thing that stopped me from self harming and helped me to combat my suicidal thoughts was the idea that by hurting myself I was letting the people who were tearing me down win and I refused to let them be victorious over me.

By the end of eighth grade, despite feeling alone because of homophobia and due to a lack of representation, I managed to accept myself for who I was. I wasn’t ready for anyone, aside from a select few close friends, to know about my orientation, but at least I’d come to accept myself and to accept that there was nothing wrong with me for being a lesbian, and that it wasn’t something that I could change but rather something that I should embrace. A few bad relationships after I learned to accept myself made it hard to embrace sometimes, but now it’s a part of me that I do embrace wholly, something that I celebrate, and one of the only things I’ve actually come to love about myself.

I didn’t come out to my family and the rest of my friends until shortly after I turned 21. That was when I decided that I couldn’t keep sacrificing who I was. I couldn’t keep sacrificing my own happiness for the benefit of others, because I was hurting myself too much while trying to pretend to be someone I wasn’t to appease those I thought wouldn’t accept me. I realized that it was my life, not theirs, and that I needed to live for myself and in such a way that made me happy, not them. Making that choice lifted a huge weight off my shoulders and made me feel a heck of a lot better. Since then, I’ve also started using my writing to try and help combat the lack of LGBTQA+ representation. Of course, that’s getting better now; there’s certainly more representation now than there was 12 years ago when I was learning who I was, but it’s still not nearly enough, and the more representation there is the easier it will be for others to accept themselves and see that they are not alone, and perhaps for those outside the community to see that we are not the monsters and criminals we are sometimes made out to be and learn to be more accepting.

The option to escape was offered to me a number of times. I always knew that I could turn to my dad, that he would be there and that I would always have some place to go. I simply couldn’t work up the courage. I feared what my mother would do or say if I tried to tell her that I was leaving. It wasn’t until a week before I turned 21 that I did manage to find the courage to call my mother one night, while I was visiting my dad over the summer, and tell her that I wouldn’t be returning to Tennessee, where we’d moved after I graduated high school.

It was a difficult phone call to make, partially because I was afraid of my mother’s reaction, but also because I was afraid of such a big change. I’d also gotten so used to the abuse and came to believe the negative things that I’d been told (not only by my mother at that point but also by a few “friends” and a few girlfriends) so much that I wasn’t sure I deserved a life that was better than the one I’d been living.

It took me finally managing to escape from the constant abuse to realize and accept that I did deserve better, and sometimes I still have times when I wonder if maybe I don’t. I still struggle with depression as well as anxiety, and I struggle everyday with my self-esteem. The effects of the emotional and physical abuse that I’ve suffered are still present and though I have begun to heal now, I know it will still take more time. The important thing, not only for me but for anyone who has been through similar situations, or is currently going through a similar situation, and for anyone who struggles with any form of depression or anxiety, is that we all keep fighting. The healing that I have done so far would have been impossible on my own. It was hard, but I knew I needed help and I eventually found the strength to ask for it and I’m glad I did. I’ve also learned to use my writing as an outlet when I feel myself getting down and I’m more willing to reach out to friends, family, and my counselor now. Some days it’s hard; I’ve had relapses and sometimes I still have days when I want to give up, but no matter how hard it gets I will keep fighting.

Book Reviews, Young Adult

Review: Wolf Moon by C.D. Gorri

It is so hard to find a new take werewolves and shifters. But C.D. Gorri does an excellent job in her young adult paranormal novel Wolf Moon. This is an excellent coming of age story that deals with the problems a young girl faces not only becoming a young woman but also a powerful werewolf.

Graze, at the beginning of the novel, is fifteen and living the life of an ordinary normal girl. She faces problems with her home life, at school and dealing with her first crush. As that wasn’t enough, she suddenly finds out she is also a werewolf. That sets her on a new path of self-discovery and learning. By the end of the novel she has transformed into a solid, strong female lead that could potentially carry a reader through multiple further books.

There are some interesting twists in the plot and a romantic triangle that is set up for future books. Any young adult reader will gobble this up and want more. I look forward to future reads about the forthcoming war between witches and werewolves.

Warning: There is a bit of religion used in the book (Catholic) which may not suit all readers. I would advise readers to take that part with a grain of salt if you decide to read the book – this is a work of fiction after all.

A solid 4 out of 5 stars ~ Recommended read for all Young Adult book fans.

Interviews

Interview: Richard Crofton

“It’s during the new moon, when the real monsters come out.”

Paranormal thrillers are near and dear to my heart. It’s like finding five dollars in an old pocket when I discover a new-to-me author in this genre. I’m willing to bet this author is more like finding a twenty.

This week I sat down with Richard Crofton to find out a little more about what makes this 2017 first time author tick and a little more about his book Agents of Shadow (Book I of The Keepers of White Series)


Question: Can you tell us abit about yourself?

Crofton: Originally from Wilmington, Delaware, I currently reside in Florida with my wife and five children. Though I’ve been writing stories for most of my life, I’ve only recently gained the courage to share my work. Holding a Bachelor’s in English and a Master’s in Education, I taught English Language Arts for ten years, but now work as an instructor in the art of Shaolin Kempo Karate. I’m an avid lover of animals, backpacking/camping, bowling, chess games, baseball, and homemade Italian food (also love my Philly cheese steaks!). However, creative writing and martial arts are my two main passions, and I’m grateful to have the opportunity to pursue both avenues.

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

Crofton: My favorite character is the mysterious man who goes by Michael Dawkins. He is mysterious and only plays a minor role in this book, but in the series as a whole he happens to be the main character. He’s my favorite because he represents goodness and hope, as well as strength and defiance against injustice. But he is not without flaws as he struggles with much internal conflict.

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

Crofton: Physically: Michael is in his early thirties and is about six feet tall with short, light brown hair. His most noticeable feature are his piercingly cold, bright, blue eyes. They seem to narrow naturally as if he watches everything like a hawk or peers into one’s very soul. He has a thin frame, but very tone with well-defined muscles. Though he’s not extremely tan, he resides in St. Petersburg, Florida, so he’s not pale either.

Personality: Michael’s character is somewhat balanced between two polar opposites, yet they are opposite sides of the same circle. He can be very gentle and kind, as he has a soft spot for children and animals, and he holds a confidence about him that draws others to look to him as he always seems sure of himself. However, he suffers from an internal rage within him, having dealt with painful losses from his past. There is a secret evil in society that he is determined to defeat, but out of a desire for revenge against that evil. So in short, he is torn between a certain code of honor he is bound to, in which he must act out of love for all humanity and nature, and a need to quench his thirst for vengeance. There is a dangerous power within him that is fueled by his pain and bitterness, and he is constantly keeping it in check.

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

Crofton: The kind and gentle side: The man who called himself Dawkins placed a gentle hand of the girl’s head. “Now you sit here and watch your show. And don’t forget to save some of those precious hugs for Mommy when she comes home.”

The vengeful side: “Yeah. I know the risks I’m taking. But I have to make them pay… for everything. Everything they’ve done… And they will pay… Every last one of them. I owe you that much.”

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

Crofton: It’s a supernatural/paranormal thriller or horror, with a bit of spiritualism.

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

Crofton: This book is for mature, open-minded audiences. It has graphic and violent scenes, sexual content, and demonic rituals. The Agents of Shadow sacrifice virgin women to the demonic forces in order to obtain dark powers.

Question: Do you have any upcoming events?

Crofton: Nothing like any book signings yet. I’m still newly published. But the second book, The Paladin’s Message will soon be available for pre-order, and should be released sometime this summer. Kind of eventful since most of the readers of the first book who talked to me afterwards said they can’t wait for the second book because they’re dying to know what happens next.

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

Crofton: The second and third books in The Keepers of White series are finished and being edited. I’m currently working on the fourth book as well as an anthology of short stories. One of the short stories in the anthology will follow a short adventure by the main character, Michael, from The Keepers of White when he was a teenager. I hope to publish this anthology in between publication of the fourth and fifth novels of The Keepers of White.

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

Crofton: Melissa Rinaldi: a fellow teacher and former coworker was a huge help in getting Agents of Shadow ready for publication as she diligently proofread my manuscript for errors during her free time (free time is highly valued by teachers!).

David Karner: a friend of mine and owner of Thunder Mesa Designs, did an amazing job creating the cover for the book. They say that the two most important aspects that help a book’s sales are the synopsis and the cover, and I therefore am indebted to him for offering his talents.

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…

Crofton: Where I find myself most at peace is when I’m hiking and camping in the forests of the northeast region of the United States, particularly Pennsylvania in the fall. There is something about the scent of the fallen autumn leaves and the crisp, cool air that is both serene and energizing, and there’s nothing like relaxing and keeping warm by the campfire with a few good friends and a couple of beers under a clear, starry sky, listening to the gentle breeze rustle through the dry branches of endless trees.

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

Crofton: Michael would probably take the time to meditate and center himself, lots of soul searching while also trying to silence his inner demons. Michael loves the outdoors, and for the most part is in tune with nature, so it would probably be very therapeutic for him. He would most likely go there alone, and I’m pretty sure he’d have a few beers with him as well.

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

Crofton: This one took me awhile, but I think he’d say something like “Don’t count on me living up to your expectations, and don’t judge me for my actions. Not unless you’ve walked in my shoes. I have special talents and abilities, but make no mistake: I’m not someone you should admire as a hero.”

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

Crofton:He would choose three:

  • Defenders of Wildlife
  • Disabled Veterans
  • Orphaned and underprivileged children’s funds

I would like to take a moment to thank Richard Crofton for being here with me today. If you are looking for more information on this author or his book you can use the following links:

 

https://www.facebook.com/richardcroftonauthor/

https://richardcrofton.wordpress.com/

https://twitter.com/WriterCrofton

https://www.amazon.com/Richard-Crofton/e/B01N4SX2FA/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_ebooks_1

 

 

Literary Magazine

To Haunt or Not

I scoff at my friend. It’s Halloween, and he just dared me to go into the haunted Roxbee Manor and stay there until midnight. Everyone knows that it’s decorated especially for Halloween every year. It’s not really haunted.

I grin at him and head towards the house. Through the wrought iron gates and up the gravel driveway, I feel a slight shiver down my spine as I step onto the porch and the steps groan under me, but I brush it aside. Still, I slip a hand in my pocket to reassure myself that my knife is there. In case I get bored and decide to whittle, I tell myself.

I push the door open and stifle a yell at the sight of the ghastly green figure looming in front of me. Psssh, it’s just a trick with gas and lights. I grit my teeth and walk right through it, and it fades away with a keening wail. Just a trick with gas and lights, I tell myself, feeling smug.

The Roxbee Manor is huge, so I decide I might as well explore. Where to start? Well, if I’m going to do this logically, it makes sense to do the downstairs and then go upstairs. So I close the door most of the way, making sure to wedge a brick in it so it can’t close on me. I’m not an idiot, after all.

Recipes, The 'Write' Information

Family Favourite Blueberry Muffins

It’s spring and that means family gatherings are about to begin for the year. Whether going as a guest or, as is usually the case, being the hostess, there are a certain amount of goodies family and friends expect to see from me. These disappear quickly whenever I make them.

I should mention, I’m a crumble type of gal. I like it on pies, tarts and, of course, muffins. Once you try these, you’ll be converted too.

Here’s what you’ll need:

Muffin batter

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 teaspoons of vanilla

4 teaspoons of baking powder

3 cups of flour

2/3 cup vegetable oil

2/3 cup milk

2 cups fresh blueberries

 

Crumble topping

1/2 cup of butter

3 teaspoons of cinnamon

2/3 cup flour

1 cup sugar

Notes:

Unless you are a seasoned baker or at least mildly confident about baking, I suggest you keep all of the ingredients as listed. That means no substitutions.

I know you might love watching those cooking shows where gorgeous people can eyeball amounts and toss them into a bowl. I don’t want to burst any bubbles, but most of that isn’t real. Amounts are pre-measured before taping. Of course, there are a few exceptions. If you feel the need to try your luck at guessing, try to restrict yourself to certain ingredients. Flour is not one of them.

If you want to play, start with something easy. I suggest vanilla. A smidgen extra or too little of the extract won’t make or break a recipe. Feel free to increase/decrease the amounts of blueberries as well, or try your hand at a different type of berry.

The Fun Part – Cooking

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Lightly grease your muffin trays. I buy tinfoil liners for muffins. It makes clean up much easier.

Start with the batter. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder. Add wet ingredients and mix together. Gently stir in berries. Once combined fill the muffin cups to almost the top.

For the crumble: mix all the ingredients together in a separate bowl using a fork until crumbly. Sprinkle over top of the batter.

Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the centre of one of the muffins.

I hope you enjoy this tasty recipe.

Articles, Features

Holey Foley

I became a wrestling fan back in my teens. Those were the days when the Rockers were still a team and every girl wanted to be Miss Elizabeth. I drifted away for a bit, but picked watching back up during what is known as the attitude era. Then I had two boys – both wrestling fans, especially the oldest who is now 22. What that breaks down to: if you visit my house, there is a good chance wrestling is playing on the television. Between Raw, Smackdown, NXT, and the WWE Network there is always something to watch.

Holy Foley is a realty show based on Mick Foley and his family in their everyday life that airs on the WWE network. Season one just ended. A second season has not yet been announced.

If you are any sort of a wrestling fan, you have to love at least one of Mick Foley’s personas. Personally I like them all. The idea of seeing what his life is like outside of wrestling was appealing. I already knew his rag to riches story that is inspirational to so many of his followers. This was like the icing on the cake – an inside view of what he had actually obtained from all of his hard work.

Mick Foley is married to the lovely Colette and has four children – three sons and a daughter. The show includes all of his family but revolves more around his daughter, Noelle, and her pursuit of a wrestling career.

There have been mixed reviews about the series, but I think it is worth your time to watch. Here’s why…


It is Inspirational!

In an effort to support his daughter in her attempt to fulfil her dream of being a wrestler, Mick begins a healthy living program. If you watch Raw, where Mr. Foley is currently the general manager, you have seen the results. He looks amazing! I have to say it has had an impact on my family as well. We have begun our own quest to be healthier. Although probably not as intense as one for an up and coming wrestler, it is still a change for the better.

Noelle Foley!

I love Noelle. She has a dream and she is chasing it with a smile on her face. I think that could be part of her persona by the way – the girl that always smiles is pure awesomesauce. I was a little sad after the last episode of season one, but I hope she keeps up her training. I would love to see her with the WWE Women’s title around her waist.

Colette Foley!

If we are talking inspirational, I have to mention this former model. She’s gorgeous and strong. Raising four kids with a husband who has long odd hours isn’t easy. I think a lot of people could take a few tips from this lady.


If you have the chance, give the show a try and not just one episode. I think you’ll see all the good things this family has to offer.

If you are wondering if Mick Foley is really as nice as he appears, I can confirm he is. I had the honour of meeting him at Hamilton ComiCon in October 2016. He even has one of my books! I know Mick and Noelle are appearing at Toronto ComiCon this March and I hope to have the chance to meet him again. If you have the chance to talk with either of them in person, grab it – you won’t be sorry. #starsworthmeeting

Thanks for reading & have a nice day!

Interviews

Q&A: Karen Glista

 

If you have been following the latest news in the writer’s circles of social media, you, no doubt, have heard of a growing genre, LITRPG. It’s hot, it’s new, and it’s taking the fantasy & sci-fi genres to new levels. I decided it was time to look into it further. What better way to start than by sitting down and chatting with an author writing in this style.

Karen Glista, a simple story teller from the Great Lake State, a mother, wife, and friend, who loves the outdoors, camping, canoeing, gardening, chickens, online games,  family, and writing. When not doing so, she works as a registered nurse for a major home health agency.


Her book, Embellished is the first in a series.

When eighteen-year-old Travis Kurth lures his sister Bekka to assist him and his friends in an online MMORPG, he has no idea that all their lives are about to change…forever. Ripped from reality by an elemental force of nature, the party of five soon wake in a beautiful, but dangerous, new world called Orian.

Bekka, who is suffering from a genetic disease-the same malady that killed their mother, suddenly finds herself in complete remission but there’s little time to celebrate as one then another of their party falls prey to this unforgiving land.

Rescued from the jaws of death by a battalion of human soldiers under the leadership of Vallas Onisquase, Crown Prince of Adosarath, Bekka quickly discovers that in this antiquated world even refuge comes at a steep price. The arrogant, dangerously handsome Vallas, beguiled by Bekka’s beauty, sets in motion a plan to make her his own, but as fate would have it, the royal entourage falls under attack by a blood-thirsty humanoid faction called Vadarcs.

Abducted, Bekka finds herself deep in Vadarc territory with no chance of rescue. Leashed like an animal, abused, humiliated and placed on an auction block, she is purchased by blood and gold to become the property of Randar Ataurik, a humanoid, tusked, barbarian, Vadarc prince.

Vallas who is completely obsessed with his newly betrothed, demands her return but Randar, in the long-held tradition of Vadarcs, has bound her by blood.

As alliances are formed and the winds of war sweep the land, Bekka finds herself in a deadly triangle caught between two powerful factions. Against unimaginable odds, she struggles to keep herself and those she loves alive.

Embellished is a story of love and heart, second chances, hope, and bolstering courage to face evil, even death, to forge your own destiny.

Embellished is the first book in an epic, paranormal romance trilogy.

Karen Glista Books are available from Amazon  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M5BZVQ1


What genre would you say the book falls into?

Action, YA, paranormal romance.

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

No.

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

Completing Exalted, book 3 in the Chronicles of Orian trilogy, then working on more unfinished first draft novels than I care to mention.

Do you have any special mentions? 

Videos at karenglista.com, patpuppy art.

What was your favourite book when you were growing up?

My Friend Flicka

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

Randar Ataurik, just to gaze into his eyes, hear his voice and feel his presence.

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

A long, long time ago. But like the dreams we all share, life got in the way. Now it’s time.

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

  “It doesn’t take guts to quit!”

What advice would you give new writers?

Believe in yourself, navigate the bumps, and never second-guess your heart.

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

Thinking I didn’t need an editor. Then I got a couple of 4-star reviews who said, “would have been 5 but had minor errors.” So I pulled it and had it edited. Now getting 5-star ratings. Lesson learned.

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

A dear and beloved fan, from another city, arrived in my city and found me on my day job (nursing). She had Embellished x2 and Extolled x2 in hand and she wanted autographs, which took me completely by surprise. She not only wanted books autographed for herself, but for another fan who could not travel. What an honor.


I’d like to thank Karen for taking the time to chat with me today! Embellished is in my TBR pile and I’m positive I’m going to enjoy it.