This page is a work in progress. Like most avid readers, I’m always searching for new books. I also know that I can’t write nearly fast enough to keep up with the average reader’s appetite, so fans of my books will need something to tide them over between release dates. I’ll be updating this page with books I love, but I’m certain there are a lot of great books and great authors I haven’t come across yet. Please add your favorite and why you like them in the comments below. Share the love and let this become a resources for people who like my books to find others they might like as well.
Read about an exciting new collections of stories and enter to win a $15 Amazon gift card below.
The Chaos Story
Here you’ll find nine new short-stories, some which have been from my life, or things that could have happened. One is inspired from the many games of Dungeons and Dragons I’ve played over twenty years while another is from the Call of Cthulhu role-playing game. Some are even some from other authors, who kindly contributed to my collection.
As a treat for fans of my series, I have included six deleted chapters, two from each of the three Newfoundland Vampire novels, which have been all cleaned up and have been made better than ever for your reading pleasure.
I have also included not one, but two chapters from the upcoming fourth book in the Newfoundland Vampire series, War of the Fangs. I’ve filled this collection with tales that will make you laugh, or will scare you, and will hopefully make you think a little about the world around us and the people in it.
- Tell us a little about yourself?
I’m 41, married, no kids, agnostic, a huge geek, a friendly guy and a writer. I’d like to say I write full-time for a living, but that would be a lie; my brother and I co-own a beauty business (where my wife and sister-in-law also work). I love to write, read (comics mainly, I listen to novels these days), play Dungeons and Dragons, play Poker, do Pilates, walk, go to movies, watch Netflix (and a few other TV shows), go to restaurants, travel and occasionally play board games and hang out with friends. I do what I can to look after the environment (plant trees, drive a hybrid, carpool, recycle, use less energy) and try to help those less fortunate than me.
2. What are your biggest literary influences? Favorite authors and why?
I am heavily influenced by a few authors including Anne Rice, Stephen King, Ernest Hemingway and Richard Matheson. Anne Rice (despite her later books turning to crap) did some amazing work with “Interview with the Vampire” and “The Vampire Lestat.” [Jamie’s note: She fired her editor, making an excellent case for why you should never fire your editor.] Even in the later vampire chronicles books she does an amazing job when she writes about a vampire on the hunt. Stephen King is, of course, the master of horror, I think any writer should strive towards some of the masterful writing and the great character building he has done. IF you’ve never read his memoir “Stephen King on Writing” (which also has lots of writing tips), you’re really missing out.
3. What are you reading at the moment? Would you recommend it to readers of this blog? Why?
Right now I’m reading (well technically listening, I love Audible) to Hell House by Richard Matheson. Yes, I would recommend it to your readers; it’s a good horror book so far. While it’s a slow burn at the beginning, it has some really cool/scary scenes, excellent characters and does a great job of making you wonder whether ghosts are real or if it can all be explained by science.
4. Could you tell us a bit about your most recent book?
My latest book is called The Chaos Stories: Tales of Magic, Terror, Passion and Blood, and it’s collection of short-stories and deleted chapters from my “Newfoundland Vampire” series. I’m also part of an author group (look for us on Facebook “Four Phoenixes Publishing”) and have offering from three other writers. The stories range from horror to fantasy, sci-fi and just plain fiction. I don’t shy away from issues and tackle drunk driving in two stories, Trump in another and another features a gay couple, which isn’t an issue for me ,and I write it that way. I also had lots of fun basing two of the stories on the many years I’ve spent role-playing (Dungeons and Dragons and Call of Chthulhu).
5. Tell us a little about your plans for the future. Do you have any other books in the works?
I just submitted a short-story to a local collection coming out next year; hopefully, I make the cut. I have my next book half-written, which is my fourth vampire book (and possibly my last). After book four of The Newfoundland Vampire, I will probably put out another collection of short-stories as I really enjoyed doing this one.
Thank you so much for having me on your blog and being part of my tour, great questions, they were fun!
When he opened his eyes he noticed a red glow to her spine. WTF! Steve was too stunned to speak. The red glow faded as he almost fell off the bed. Angela kissed his neck, snuggling beside him, not noticing his dismay or wide open mouth. Finally he summoned the courage to speak.
“Your spine glowed red. Is there something I need to know about you?”
“Oh come now, you didn’t know? Why do you think I loved your Battlestar shirt so much? Didn’t you notice I look just like Cylon Number Six? Sure you did. Disney wanted to test me out on one of its tech geeks. You got lucky. So, I was good?”
“You’re a Cylon? Does that mean we’re starting a whole new race?”
“No silly,” answered Angela, slapping Steve playfully. “It means the bosses finally granted you a promotion. You’ll be featured as the main exhibit at the new Disney theme park. It’s quite an honor being bestowed upon you. I hope you fully appreciate the confidence Disney has in your work. “
Realizing the full extent of his situation, Steve made a break for the door. Too late. Angela was on him, wielding handcuffs as she slammed him to the floor.
“This is kinky,” commented Angela as she slapped on the bracelets.
Angela dragged Steve by his hair, still naked, to a waiting van outside, where Daffy Duck and Pluto robots drove him away to his new Disney adventure.
About the Author
Charles O’Keefe lives in the beautiful province of Newfoundland, Canada, with his wife and two feline ‘children,’ Jude and Eleanor. He is a part-owner of a beauty wholesale business. He enjoys many hobbies and activities that include reading, gaming, poker, Pilates, Dungeons and Dragons, and of course, fantasizing about vampires. Charles is the author of three books in the Newfoundland Vampire series, but this is his first collection of short-stories. Look for the fourth Newfoundland Vampire book sometime in the near future.
To find out more about Charles or his other books, go to Twitter and Facebook or visit his web site at http://www.charlesokeefe.com
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-chaos-stories-charles-okeefe/1126899838
Celebrating the Long Awaited
The Coming Storm
By the Amazing Author and all around nice guy
The Coming Storm is now available. I read the first book in the series, The Call of Chaos. I’ve been bugging Sean about releasing the next in the series ever since.
I’ve already pre-ordered it myself, but if you haven’t, just click the cover or go here.
More about Sean
I did an interview with Sean several months ago. You can find it here.
Coming out today to celebrate Halloween is I.E. Lester’s debut YA ghost novel, The Stairs Lead Down, a novel to read under the covers while ignoring Trick or Treaters.
What could be worse than moving from London to the middle of nowhere, at the age of 13? New school, new place, new people and a ghost in the kitchen!
Lizzie and Noah discover a portal to the ghost realm and take the Stairs Down to end up in an adventure of a lifetime.
Will the help of two mysterious women – Elizabeth and Magda be enough for them to face the Evil which wouldn’t hesitate to kill? What if this Evil wears the face of someone they have trusted their entire lives?
Book can be purchased at:
- What are your biggest literary influences? Favorite authors and why?
The first author I found whose writing excited me was Isaac Asimov. I was nine years old and on a typical English summer holiday; i.e. sheltering from the rain wherever I could. I found a book with a wonderful cover in a small kiosk store, and for some reason I cannot remember picked it up. What I read on the back fascinated me and I had to buy it. I was very glad that much of the rest of the holiday was as just wet for I had finished the book before we went home. From that moment on I was hooked on Asimov and then on science fiction in general. Horror and fantasy came a few years later.
My tastes have changed over the years. Although I do still read science fiction and horror, with Stephen King, Robert Charles Wilson’s and Kevin J. Anderson’s books never missed, I have expanded to include some more literary and surreal authors albeit with mostly ones with speculative elements. I would count Zoran Živković, Magnus Mills and Max Barry as particular favourites these days, and I find the wait between releases intolerable.
Živković writes darkly whimsical, impossible stories, often with Kafkaesque overtones. His stories are wonderfully European. Not that I have anything against fiction from North America; King, Wilson and Anderson above attest to that. But being a European it is good to read fiction influenced by a different culture.
With Magnus Mills it is his very plain, wonderful effective prose I adore. Oh, and the ordinariness of his plots. He’s written stories about workers building wire fences, driving buses or vans, and people camping in fields. Yet in every story he’s managed to tell there is a strong allegorical element. He seems to always taking a historical event or period or a philosophical, political or social situation and breaking it down into its most simplistic form and retelling that story in a bland setting that is much more layered than you might immediately believe.
Max Barry writes surreal fiction although with a hefty dose of satire. His stories take aim at government, big business (repeatedly) and elitism. It might help that my personal politics are liberal and I appreciate the sentiment. He just doesn’t write enough novels for my liking. It’s usually four years or so between releases.
I have written a novel that I would say was influenced by these three authors; more Mills/Barry than Živković to be exact. It’s a story of higher echelons of the largest multi-national to ever exist becoming further and further detached from the real world and reality.
I haven’t dared send this out yet, fearing it might be too close. One day I might re-read it and judge whether it is mine enough to share with the world. It was wonderfully cathartic to write though.
2. What are you reading at the moment? Would you recommend it to readers of this blog? Why?
I’ve just finished reading Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys literary fiction, science fiction or otherwise. In fact I have been doing that since I finished it at the weekend. It’s set in an immediate future which has seen a plague kill the vast majority of humanity and follows a handful of people in the Great Lakes area linked by an actor who died in the opening scene. But unlike a lot of post-apocalyptic stories (and I have read many), it doesn’t have the kind of good vs evil overarching plot or the desperate struggle to survive in a collapsed world I’ve come to expect in these stories. Station Eleven is a much more gentle story than that. It tells the story of survivors, of their lives in the new world. It’s a wonderful study of human character. I have to read everything else the author has written. She’s brilliant.
3. Tell us something about how you write? i.e. are you a plotter or a pantser? Do you have any weird or necessary writing habits or rituals?
Does locking yourself in a room for hour after hour, day in day out hitting keys on the keyboard rather than going out socializing count as a weird writing habit? Aside from being flippant I do have some necessary writing habits.
I write listening to music. I can’t not have music playing. If I try without every single noise distracts me and I need to go find out what is causing each and every one. Put music on, and it drowns everything else out, and then I can write. And it’s not as though I block out the music. I usually have my foot tapping along. I often sing the lyrics as I’m writing (my wife would dispute the use of the word singing here though), and they don’t seem to confuse my writing flow. I can’t do it with the radio though and definitely not with TV or films. If people are talking, I listen. If they are singing, somehow it works.
As for how I write I’m much closer to a plotter than a pantser. I need to know where I’m going before I start. I keep piles of notebooks into which I scribble down the ideas for a story; a general plot, subplot points, characters, details of the setting, even fully handwritten scenes to use later. Once I have enough in here to get from A to B, through to Q or wherever it ends up, I’ll timeline it and then start writing.
Most of the time it keeps to the basic plot, but I like to allow my characters their head a little. If they don’t like going exactly where I’d initially intended them, I will always listen to their needs and accommodate them as much as I can. It’s harder when the plot spans several possible books as too much detouring from the basic plot makes the end harder to reach. In these cases I try to keep things on a much tighter leash.
4. Could you tell us a bit about your most recent book?
The Stairs Lead Down is a young adult supernatural novel set in my adopted hometown, Ashby de la Zouch. It’s in Leicestershire in the middle of England for anyone who doesn’t know, which I’m sure includes most of the population of the rest of England.
It features two twins, Lizzie and Noah, who, thanks to a weird fluke of their birth, have the ability to see into the ghost realms through portals fixed in place by violent deaths. Through these they can encounter the ghosts of the men and women killed to cause the portals to form. Unfortunately for them there are people in the world who want to use the ghost realms, and those darker places that lie even further out from our reality, for their own dark purposes and see Lizzie and Noah as a means to achieving this.
I am going to admit one huge influence on my stories now. Twenty years ago, like a lot of people, I watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer. From that moment on I like the idea of a strong female character being the hero of a story; especially if that character does not look like she should be capable of fulfilling that role. A second influence has to be David Eddings’ Belgariad series. Although the lead character here is male, he is of a similar age and totally unaware of the power he has. He grows up through the books and comes to accept his unenviable destiny. I wanted to include something of that in my story. Hopefully it comes through without making Lizzie too annoying. My test readers didn’t seem to think so.
Lizzie is fourteen in the novel and small for her age. She would not be most people’s idea of who to send up against a powerful necromancer but, in a world of powers, why should physicality be important?
5. Titles have always been extremely difficult for me. How do you come up with yours?
Titles, for me, help bring the story into focus. I have always had the title fixed before writing the first word of the story proper. They can chance during my notebook phase. One or more of the notebooks have one or two crossed out titles, being replaced with something I find more appealing. My wife has mentioned once or twice that I don’t seem to settle down on a book until I’ve made my title obscure and opaque enough, but I’m not sure I agree. They usually relate to an aspect of the story that, to me at least, is the crux of the idea. One of my first attempts at writing a novel, and the second I actually got to write “The End” for, was called the Day before Tomorrow. Given it’s a story in which time doesn’t pass in the normal sense I felt it apt. “One of your titles” was my wife’s verdict.
I was raised more on titles like “the End of Eternity” or “Childhood’s End” than “the Thing” so I prefer titles that promise something. The Stairs Lead Down is one of my most obvious titles. Its sequel, currently in progress, is called Breath of Imagined Dead.
My personal favourite is a story I started to plot out a few months ago although am some distance from starting as I lack a middle section to the plot that doesn’t read like a Stephen King story. It goes by the title of “Toggle Girl is Magical.”
6. Tell us a little about your plans for the future. Do you have any other books in the works?
I do have other books. I have finished, at least to first draft, eleven novels/novellas covering both adult and young adult fiction: horror, science fiction, fantasy, satire and weird genres.
I have a series of weird novellas featuring a middle-aged, middle-class, middle-Englander called Ben Williamson. I created this character to be an everyman. He’s the person you would sit next to on the train without noticing, the man you wouldn’t remember meeting before. Because it might annoy a former colleague of mine, I made him an accountant.
I basically took my own personality and presence then stripped away everything that would make him (me) stick out in a crowd and replaced these elements with Mr. Average. I’m 6’8”, far too tall, so I made Ben 5’11”. I have no children, uncommon, so he has one. My musical taste can get a little oddball (Tom Waits, King Crimson); Ben likes Fleetwood Mac and AOR. So having set up a bland character living a bland life I then torment him in odd ways.
I have a ya fantasy series; book one of which I rewrote over the summer at the request of a London based publisher. They are currently reviewing the rewrite; something which is making me quite nervous. I did warn my wife I might become intolerable while I wait.
There are two horror novels, one set in the town where I grew up and mostly populated by versions of my childhood friends although the demon is a total invention, and the other set in a version of the village where I live now. I enjoy writing horror. If you’ve had a bad day, coming home to imagine graphic violence being inflicted on people is a wonderful stress release, but unfortunately the feedback I’ve had from agents/publishers tells me horror from new authors isn’t selling so I have put my personal feelings aside and am concentrating on other genres. It’s not a great hardship. I enjoy writing these also.
And then there are the others; a bawdy space opera detective noir story, two surreal satire novels parodying some of the worst aspects of our culture and society, and an alternate history story set in a world where the US didn’t break away from the British Empire and Britain controls the world, albeit with some cracks in this dominance starting to appear. This last book has the title I like most of all my stories, Against the Fall of Empire.
The current work in progress is the sequel to the Stairs Lead Down. I’ve written the first three chapters of it and will be working on its first draft for the next couple of months. After that who knows?
I have about forty notebooks each partly filled with story ideas. I scribble in these when a detail pops into my head that could help flesh a plot out or make a character seem more rounded. I read through these periodically, hoping all the time I can figure out my own handwriting, to determine whether one shouts loudly enough to me that I can resist writing it no longer.
7. What is your dream vacation?
Venice for an entire year. I would love to see the city in every light; see how it changes as the seasons progress. I’ve been to the city multiple times, seeing it in Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter but always for too short a period; not long enough to see how one merges into the next.
Venice I feel is the one place on Earth that inspires me. And this works for science fiction, fantasy and horror. It has elements of all of these genres. No place on Earth is like Venice. It is totally detached from life anywhere else. One of the stories I want to tell is a fantasy retelling of the early days of the Venetian Ghetto. I have the characters. I have the story. I have the feel. I just need to have it shout loudest. Maybe one more trip to Venice and I won’t be able to resist.
8. If you could live in any period in the past or future, which would it be? Why?
My first thoughts when I read this were of the Italian Renaissance or the Age of Enlightenment. I then consider the Industrial Revolution in England in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Each of these periods saw an explosion or new ideas. But in truth I would pick no time in the past.
For one thing I like my creature comforts. Much as though witnessing the great masterpieces of Leonardo or Michelangelo being first unveiled, being in the presence of some of our species’ greatest thinkers (Adam Smith, Voltaire, Immanuel Kant, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, David Hume, and so many others), or seeing the great engineering feats of the Victorians I am a man of my time.
Thinking about the future is fascinating. Who wouldn’t want to see what humanity makes of itself in the next hundred or thousand years? Presuming of course we managed to grow up as a species, stop trying to come up with new ways of killing each other and start taking better care of our planet.
But the idea of moving forward in time to meet future generations is terrifying. I would no more understand the world of a hundred years from now than a man of 1500 would understand our modern world with its ready meals, internet trolls, reality TV and celebrity worship.
I pick these comparisons, one hundred years forward to five hundred back, deliberately. The world is changing at a faster and faster pace. I cannot see this slowing, not unless we kick ourselves back to the Stone Age through acting irresponsibly.
I am a man of 2017. I am comfortable in 2017. I choose to stay in 2017.
Where can we find you online?
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1662559800623207/ (embarrassingly poorly maintained)
Excerpt from The Stairs Lead Down
Lizzie picked up her iPhone to check the time. It was two thirty. She’d woken up half an hour ago and couldn’t sleep. She felt restless and edgy and lying here in the dark wasn’t helping. All she was doing was stressing herself out over every sound and checking the time every two minutes.
What could she do to make herself relax and feel sleepy? Maybe a drink would help. It couldn’t hurt. She pulled the duvet back and swung her legs out of bed. Her feet found her slippers exactly where she’d left them. She never put slippers on in midsummer back in their old house. But back there the ground floor wasn’t entirely stone floored.
She pulled the dressing gown around her shoulders and tiptoed across the floor. She hoped she would remember every creaky floorboard between here and the top of the stairs. The last thing she wanted was to wake up Mum and Dad. She eased the door opened, just enough to allow to slip through albeit sideways, stopping it short of the point where its hinges would complain.
Once clear of the door she turned to make her way towards the stairs. She wasn’t alone. There was someone there with her. Was there a burglar? She was terrified. She opened her mouth to scream. Just in time Noah clicked on the torch on his phone, focusing the light on his face so she knew who it was. He was holding a finger in front of his mouth suggesting quiet.
‘You nearly scared me to death,’ she whispered. ‘What are you doing out here?’
‘Heading for the kitchen. What about you?’
Noah nodded. ‘Come on then; we can talk more when we don’t have to whisper.’
He turned away and gingerly made his way across the landing. She recognised the awkward pattern of his stepping. So she’d not been the only one to learn which floorboard creak and which ones don’t. She took note of where he put his feet. Would she be able to match his steps? She doubted it. He had much longer legs. She’d have to rely on her own safe passage; if she could remember where to tread.
The two of them reached the stairs without disturbing their parents. Through their door she could hear the familiar synchronised snoring. She realised she hadn’t heard it in the last month. Maybe there was one advantage to being in this house rather than their previous. The walls were thicker and blocked out sounds their old house allowed through.
Noah was already half way down the stairs. He wasn’t having to be careful here. The stairs were part of the original house before the modifications. Each step was solid stone. She rushed to keep up with her brother. He was standing at the foot of the stairs eerily illuminated by phone light. He looked weird; like he was in one of those old black and white movies.
When she reached the stone floor of the entrance hall he turned the light off. There was enough moonlight coming through the windows either side of the front door for them to be able to see and when they reached the kitchen they could put the light on.
Lizzie stepped passed her brother and started towards the kitchen. That’s when she saw him. On the platform where the now dead Mother-in-Law’s Tongue had been until this afternoon was a boy about their age, maybe a little younger. Unlike earlier when Noah had stopped her at the last moment, this time she screamed; and louder than she ever had in her life.
Noah gasped, startled by her scream. His cell phone fell to the floor, the screen shattering on the stone. He turned his head to where Lizzie was staring. He saw the boy. His reaction was immediate. He jumped in front of his sister, getting his considerable frame between her and the mysterious boy. Behind him Lizzie screamed again.
Upstairs she saw their parents light switch on. Yellow light illuminated the stairs behind her. For a second it caught her eye. She quickly turned her gaze back to the dead end stairs. No one was there.
Her mother appeared at the top of the stairs. She cried something down. Noah never heard the words. He looked up briefly to see her and Dad rushing down the stairs. He turned back to the blocked stairs and the boy was gone. How could that be? There was nowhere for him to go. He stepped forward and hit his hand on the walls all around the stairs. The boy had vanished. But where?
About the Author
I.E. “Edmund” Lester is a lifelong fan of science fiction and horror. A school trip to a Jacobean Mansion complete with spooky tales of ghostly inhabitants launched a fascination with supernatural horror, although not a belief in the reality (he is still a strong skeptic). A washed-out family holiday confirmed his fate when the cover of an Isaac Asimov collection attracted a nine-year-old eye.
He has spent the subsequent three decades amassing a large library featuring the works of King, Bradbury, Heinlein, Clarke, Lovecraft, Poe and many, many others.
After many years content with being a dedicated reader, Lester finally tried his hand at writing. After dozens of reviews, articles and short stories he has now decided to concentrate on longer forms. His first novel, the Stairs Lead Down, a young adult supernatural story, is released Hallowe’en 2017.
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Magic Forgotten is an Adult Urban Fantasy set in Eastern PA. It is the story of a paraplegic, freelance writer who has withdrawn from the world only to be dragged back out by the appearance of two strangers in his back yard. They are a Sidhe, the old elves of England, and a human wizardess, a captive of the elf, and they are here to take over the world. The writer and the wizardess have to stop the elf from achieving his plans.
Dan awoke with a splitting headache.
This was not surprising considering he was seated at his desk with his head resting on the computer keyboard. The corner of the escape key pressed into his forehead hard enough to leave an impression.
“At least they left the computer.” He mused as he tried to look around at the room. Everything seemed to spin as he moved. He lifted a hand to his forehead as he groaned in pain. His groan stopped as he felt something imbedded in the skin just above his nose, between his eyebrows. He probed with his fingers, trying to judge what it was. Smooth and oval, was all he could tell by touch. As he lowered his hand to look at his fingers for any residue, he noted something on the back of his wrist. Both wrists, he soon saw, had oval green gems the size of a nickel imbedded in the skin, just above the joint where it did not impair movement. As far as he could tell by touch, they matched the stone in his forehead. The sickly green color did little to help Dan’s queasy stomach.
His computer screen caught his attention as he examined his wrist. On the screen was a logo Dan did not immediately recognize, a sign-on for a database he had never entered before, to his knowledge. Looking from his hands to the screen, Dan wondered: had he had been typing under someone else’s control and accessed something he wasn’t supposed to see?
“Oh, shit. Steven King strikes again.”
About the Author
A lifelong Pennsylvania resident, Jack began a love of books sitting amid the mystery of hospitals and medical paraphernalia. Mythology of all cultures and a fascination with martial philosophies led to King Arthur, the knights of the round table and an array of science fiction and fantasy authors that had a strong impact on his life.
Real life got in the way of a writing career to start, but thirty years in the life and medical insurance field led Jack to a job as a stringer for local newspapers and writing for medical and insurance journals. In addition to years in the insurance field Jack also has fifteen years experience as a journalist and freelance writer, and has even won a Keystone Press Award (1998) for his journalistic efforts. Jack has written on a wide variety of subjects and keeps his hand in medical and insurance matters on a daily basis.
In addition to newspaper reporting and magazine articles, Jack has written articles for a variety websites–some under his own name and some as a behind-the-scenes contributor. Jack’s first short fiction piece, a novella, was serialized in an old BBS site in 1992, with the first hard copy magazine story arriving in 1993. Four dinner theater plays written by Jack have been produced and performed for local theater in Eastern Pennsylvania. His novels are now coming to light with the release of There Are Giants In This Valley published by Archebooks Publishing.
With experience as a journalist, short story writer, playwright and novelist, Jack often speaks at writer’s conferences, to writer’s groups and to school gatherings. If you are looking for a speaker on esoteric subjects, Jack probably has something tucked away in a folder for the occasion.
He lives in eastern Pennsylvania with his supportive wife, a squad of feline editors, and an array of edged weapons to inspire his works.
The book is on sale for $0.99.
- Tell us a little about yourself?
I am a novelist, journalist, playwright and a medical underwriter. I served as a stringer on local newspapers- won a Keystone Press Award for my investigative reporting- and worked on a wire service covering the insurance industry as well as served as a contributing editor to a life underwriting journal for eleven years.
2. What made you want to become a writer?
Probably sitting in hospitals as a child and reading a LOT of books (they were cheaper than making models). I began to have my own ideas for stories and started writing them down.
3. What are your biggest literary influences? Favorite authors and why?
Robert Heinlein- who taught me I could do whatever I set my mind to. Also Alan E Norse- who reinforced the idea of keep on keeping on.
4. Do you think people have misconceptions about the speculative fiction? Why do you think it is a worthwhile genre?
People hear Speculative and think we’re all writing some far out ideas that have no relation to reality. While some speculative Fiction is pretty far out, most of it is just projections of current situations and ideas and taking them out to their respective conclusions. A case of “What if?” as much as “Why not?”
5. Could you tell us a bit about your most recent book?
Dan Braden’s life was comfortable, sort of. A motor vehicle accident robbed him of the use of his legs, but his skills at running a wheelchair were second only to his skills as a freelance writer. While working, two strangers appear in his yard – a Sidhe, the long lost elves of Britain, and a human wizardess whose family was enslaved by the Sidhe for their powers. Why visit Dan’s backyard? The Sidhe have returned to rule the Earth. Yet, they made one mistake: the human wizardess, Thook, decided it was time to take back her life. Together Dan and Thook defeat the Sidhe and send him home to Albion. But there’s a new challenge. They must figure out how to stop the impending Elven invasion.
6. Do you have a day job in addition to being a writer? If so, what do you do during the day?
I am a medical underwriter for life insurance. I sit and read medical reports all day and figure out how healthy people are and what the company should charge them for life insurance.
7. Tell us a little about your plans for the future. Do you have any other books in the works?
Magic Forgotten is the beginning of a series so I have the other books in that series to write. Plus I’m writing a YA SF series, a mystery series, and several stand-alone books in a variety of genres. Plus a few short stories here and there.
Travel to Ancient Greece and enter to win a $10 Amazon/Barnes & Noble gift card.
GENRE: Time Travel
Son of the Moon
In Nysa, Alexander the Great and time traveling journalist Ashley find their abducted son Paul being worshiped as “”the son of the moon””. Knowing she can’t change history and that Alexander’s kingdom will be torn apart when he dies, Ashley must make the terrible decision to leave her firstborn son in the sacred valley.
Alexander presses on to India, where he and Ashley are welcomed with feasts – and treachery. They struggle through monsoons, face the might of Porus’s army, and outwit deadly Brahmin rebels. Facing the reality of Alexander’s looming death, Ashley considers the unthinkable – How to save him, and the consequences of cheating the Fates. Book III in the Time for Alexander series”
The last house in the village stood by itself in the midst of a large garden. Wind chimes jingled softly in the night breeze. A cuckoo called. The door opened and a woman beckoned me. I couldn’t stop shaking.
Inside, lamps were lit. Yellow light danced around the walls. On the floor lay richly colored rugs and soft cushions. A low table was set with a warm meal. Light glittered off the brass brazier and the copper bowls. However, there was nobody in the room.
“Please, don’t make me wait any longer,” I whispered. “Just let me see Paul.”
The man clapped his hands and a woman entered the room.
She led a little boy by the hand. I dropped to my knees. The boy stood and stared at me gravely. He was four and a half years old, tall, sturdy, with long, magnificent eyes in a triangular face. He had a proud nose and a wide forehead. His blond hair curled softly and lifted off the back of his neck and temples. He stood perfectly still. I hardly saw him breathe. But a pulse beat in the base of his throat. A pulse I knew so well.
I stretched my arms out to him, my vision blurring with tears. “Come, Paul,” I said in English.
He came into my arms, laying his head gently on my shoulder. His small arms crept around my neck. I held him. I just held him. I hardly dared to breathe. It was akin to seeing a ghost.
I stood up and swung Paul into my arms, holding him on my hip. For a minute I had only one urge, to leave, to take my child and leave.
About the Author
Jennifer Macaire lives in France with her husband, three children, & various dogs & horses. She loves cooking, eating French chocolate, growing herbs and flowering plants on her balcony, and playing golf. She grew up in upstate New York, Samoa, and the Virgin Islands. She graduated from St. Peter and Paul high school in St. Thomas and moved to NYC where she modeled for five years for Elite. She went to France and met her husband at the polo club. All that is true. But she mostly likes to make up stories.
Blog : https://jennifermacaire.wordpress.com/
Facebook page : https://www.facebook.com/TimeforAlexander/
Twitter : @jennnifermacaire
Enter to win a $10 Amazon/Barnes & Noble gift card
Fairchild, Simon Kewin, Christine Rains, Meradeth Houston,
preternatural creatures, ancient serpents, and the Lady of the Lake
lurk in dark waters. Raging storms and magical rainbow fountains.
Water is spectacularly beautiful but also treacherous.
is an anthology of eleven magical tales by Untethered Realms, masters
of fantasy & sci-fi. Take a haunted journey on a riverboat, meet
water sprites borne of pennies, preternatural creatures, ancient
serpents, and the Lady of the Lake who lurks in dark waters.
Experience raging storms and magical rainbow fountains. Water is
spectacularly beautiful but also treacherous. This is the last in the
Elements series. Get them all!
first brave a haunted riverboat and recover a family heirloom. What
she finds might be more than she can handle.
associates face a fearsome, preternatural creature.
everything, the rent is being raised, Evernee’s job barely pays
minimum wage, and she has little hope for better. Inside a puddle is
a different reality. She jumps in, happy to trade her problems for a
life in which worries don’t exist. Or do they?
unexpected revelation about her past. All seems well until a vicious
storm tears through her Texas community, and Angelique learns there
are worse things than a little change.
discovers more than she bargained for.
Death magic blights the land, threatening everyone and everything. To
save what he can from spreading corruption, he turns to the ancient
river serpents, but they’ve grown old and distant and may not hear
his call at all.
the fountain at Hotel Bellagio in Vegas. Can Maizy, a water sprite
who works the fountain’s pink colors, begin to help the three
generations of eccentric women tortured by this tragedy?
hunter can do his job, but the Lady in the Lake has other plans for
fantasy authors comes Spirits in the Water, a supernatural anthology of eleven thrilling tales. Spirits
in the Water is the fourth, long-awaited Elements story collection from the dynamic and inventive Untethered Realms group.
celebrating the release of Spirits in the Water, book 4 and the last
in their Elements series! As part of this celebration, book 1,
Twisted Earths goes FREE!
and chocolate/chocolate covered deliciousness. Steampunk, fantasy,
and paranormal to contemporary fill her growing library of books.
Mother to a rambunctious darling girl aptly nicknamed Chipmunk, life
stays busy. Angela’s favorite quote keeps her moving: “You may
never know what results come of your action, but if you do nothing,
there will be no result.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi. Find out more at
speculative fiction when he should be sleeping. Many cups of dark hot
chocolate power his nighttime imagination. His tales range from
fantasy to horror, and they don’t all end badly. He lives with his
wife, children, and cats in a house with more books than bookshelf
space. Learn more at www.jeffchapmanbooks.com.
dry sense of humor, and is owned by several cats. Lives in a fantasy
world. A fabricator of magic. Makes stuff up and spins tales about
it. Believes in Faerie crossings and never staying in one place for
very long. Speculative Fiction wordsmith. The secret to her stories?
Spread lies, blend in truths, add a pinch of snark and a dash of
tears. Escape into her world. She left the porch light on so you can
find your way down the rabbit hole.
mysteries and don’t be surprised if you meet a few ghosties along
has a secret desire to meet one face to face—but will run screaming
for the hills if she ever does. Gwen adores travel and experiencing
the cultures and foods of different countries. She is always up for
an adventure and anything involving chocolate, not necessarily in
that order. For more about her books go to www.gwengardner.com.
Crowns and a variety of other stories (as Misha Gerrick). She was
born and raised in South Africa, and currently lives on an apple farm
with a small menagerie of animals. You can find her at
real world, just with a big twist—maybe people can time travel or
fly or aliens are real. It makes things a little more interesting.
She is an anthropology professor by day, spending hours in a lab
studying dead people’s DNA. Currently, she resides in Montana,
where she wishes a beach were just a little closer. You can find more
about her recent adventures here: meradethhouston.com.
Isle of Man in the middle of the Irish Sea, but he now lives in the
English countryside with his wife and their daughters. He is the
author of over a hundred published short stories, and his works have
appeared in Analog, Nature, Daily Science Fiction, Abyss & Apex,
and many more. His cyberpunk novel The Genehunter and his
Cloven Land fantasy trilogy were published not so long ago,
and his clockpunky novel Engn is to be published by Curiosity
Quills Press in 2018. Find him at simonkewin.co.uk.
series, The Backworlds, and the urban fantasy series, The
Rifters. Fantasy, science fiction, and the weird beckons to her.
She blames Oregon, a source of endless inspiration. She docents at
Pine Mountain Observatory in the summers as a star guide and enjoys
exploring the quirky corners of Oregon with her husband. Find out
more at mpaxauthor.com.
geek mom. She has four degrees, which help nothing with motherhood,
but make her a great Jeopardy player. When she’s not reading
or writing, she’s playing games with friends or watching cheesy
movies on Syfy Channel. She has one novel and several novellas and
short stories published. Find out more at christinerains.net.
ever read and thinks up more ideas than she can ever write, but that
doesn’t stop this bookworm from trying to complete her goals, even
if it means curbing her TV addiction. A library assistant living in
Virginia, she writes speculative fiction. Her books include the
paranormal horror collection Once upon a Nightmare, the
fantasy short story collection People of Foxwick and Their
Neighbors, and the fantasy series The Fate Challenges. For
more information about her books, visit smarturl.it/CReichWebsite.
a USA Today bestselling author, whose novels span the range
from futuristic to supernatural to contemporary. She thinks of
writing as painting with words and as conjuring magic from the ether.
Catherine hails from Philadelphia and lives in NYC. Find out more at
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
Meet my guest Kate Coe and enter a world of Green Skies, magic, and electricity. She calls it SparkPunk.
In a world of magic, wind, and electricity, Catter Jeck is offered the chance to explore a myth. Travelling from city to city, his search for the centre of the magic catches others in its coils. When the Lord Heir of Meton offers to continue the search in his flying machine, the consequences of their crash – and Toru’s accidental link to a dying Healer – suddenly become of central importance to all of their lives.
- Tell us a little about yourself?
I’m a jack-of-all-trades: I write fantasy, and I have a sparkpunk (Renaissance technology and electricity) novella series and various short stories published. I review books and blog about writing, crafty & geeky stuff and general life at writingandcoe.co.uk. I’ve previously been a librarian, web designer and super-efficient admin, and I wanted to be an archaeologist when I was little – I decided getting muddy wasn’t my favourite occupation and went into books instead. I definitely read too much, and my aim in life is to spend more time baking.
2. What are you reading at the moment? Would you recommend it to readers of this blog? Why?
I’m reading three books for review on SFF World; two of them I wouldn’t recommend (mostly they’re just tedious), but I’m enjoying Djinn City by Saad Z Hossain – I’m only a chapter in, but the main character and writing style has gripped me! I’m also reading The Red Threads of Fortune by Jy Yang which is an interesting twist on standard fantasy with some really nice worldbuilding, and I just finished All Systems Red by Martha Wells, which I would highly recommend – sci-fi with a sarcastic & cynical AI and a fun plot.
3. Tell us something about how you write? i.e. are you a plotter or a pantser? Do you have any weird or necessary writing habits or rituals?
I have always been a pantser, starting from one scene or a snippet of dialogue and letting everything run from there. However, I seem to be slowly edging towards planning; I now sometimes plan outlines! I just can’t do planning for details – I get bored – but I admit that having some idea of where the story might end is useful, even if it doesn’t actually go there. I don’t particularly have any weird rituals or writing habits; I write in a word document from the start, so I don’t collect notebooks, and I can write pretty much anywhere – although my favourite place is at my desk, simply because I have fewer distractions.
4. Could you tell us a bit about your most recent book?
I’m actually on the final few books of the GreenSky series! Empty Skies & Sunlight, which is book 5 in the series, has just been published, and book 6 is waiting in the wings. I’m currently writing book 10, which is a heist-and-run plot and also brings in many of the characters from the rest of the series – so I’ve been enjoying revisiting them all!
5. Do you have a day job in addition to being a writer? If so, what do you do during the day?
I’m a freelance editor, proofreader and formatter for Book Polishers. Sometimes it feels a little too close to my ‘other job’ of writing, but it does all require a very different set of skills. I do admin with a cup of tea first thing in the morning (along with checking social media, which – because I have a lot of writer friends – definitely blurs the line between work and social!) and then fit in whatever work I have scheduled, which could be formatting or proofreading, finishing a novella, or getting a short story ready for a deadline. I always try to go for a walk each day, and I do a second walk with a friend at 5.30pm, which is a nice way to ‘finish’ my work day – although I do often end up writing in the evenings.
6. If you could live in any period in the past or future, which would it be? Why?
I studied Roman history at university, and I’ve still got a major soft spot for the period, so it would definitely be the Roman Republic! I love the mix of personalities and politics, along with the sheer variety of the world. So far none of it has made it into a book, but I do wonder when that’s going to come out in a novel…
7. If you could shift into any animal, which would you chose? Why? If you were going to be permanently changed into an animal? Would you still pick the same one? Why or why not?
Having owned cats, I’d definitely say a cat. Sleep where you want, wail at the humans until they feed you, demand scritches at inopportune times…what could be better? And if it was going to be permanent, exactly the same answer! The only downside of a cat seems to be the lack of opposable thumbs, which makes world domination difficult, but as long as there’s a human around to open the tin of tuna I think it would be a wonderful life.
The room was filled with a sleek, elegant machine. The body of it was wooden with metal finishings, curved and polished, and stood on three short legs to keep it off the floor. Hung above the body, a wide swathe of canvas was swept back in a streamlined arc, pinned with wooden spars. It had an air of speed, even sitting in the shed, gleaming in the blue light.
“Isn’t it beautiful?” Toru said cheerfully as Catter stopped, astonished. “Based on the eagles, with bits of all sorts thrown in. It’s built of hollow metal for the frame, with wood for the rigs and double-thick fabric for the wings.”
“Does it have a name?” Catter asked.
“I just call them the Fliyer. I stopped naming them after the third one. This is the sixth.”
“Six? What happened to them?”
Toru looked embarrassed and then starting laughing. “Uh…the first one I didn’t get the dimensions right, so it wouldn’t fly. Cannibalised that for the second, which I made of wood – I wanted it to be as light as possible. That one did fly but it got hit in a thunderhead. I’d completely forgotten about it, but if something’s in the air, it attracts the spark like the towers do.”
Catter couldn’t think of anything to say.
“I got a huge amount of spark straight through me and the Fliyer, and it came down in flames,” Toru said after a moment with a sigh. “Managed to catch myself but I didn’t catch the Fliyer – it came down on someone’s house. Luckily they were all right, and I rebuilt it, but I still feel guilty.” He managed to shrug it off. “The third one we built of metal, but we didn’t get anything right. That one fell off the cliff.”
“With you in it?” Catter sounded horrified.
“Of course – I did break my leg and a rib or three, but I heal fast. Luckily no one lives underneath the cliff, so that one didn’t land on anyone’s house. Fourth and fifth were modifications – they flew, but we’re constantly changing the design. I think I’ve got everything how it needs to be for this one. Taken it out four times now, and I haven’t had any problems with it. But I’m not sure how she’d cope without a Mage at the helm,” Toru finished. “That’s my next challenge. I want to build one that anyone can fly. This beauty is a lot more stable than my previous models!” He patted in fondly. “So if tomorrow’s all right for weather, we’ll head out in it. I hope you’re not afraid of heights.”
Catter looked at him. “No, Taderah doesn’t bother me…but why are you taking me out in it? I mean, it’s an honour, I’d love to, but…”
“Treloolir is somewhere in the Mountains,” Toru said simply. “The lines point to it, and the map points to it. And the easiest way to see into those mountains is from above. I’ll take you out for a few practise flights, and then we can take a day trip to see if we can see anything from the air.”
About the Author
Kate Coe is an editor, book reviewer and writer of fiction & fantasy. She writes the sparkpunk GreenSky series and blogs at writingandcoe.co.uk. In real life she’s an editor, and fills her spare time in between writing with web design, gaming, geeky cross-stitch and DIY (which may or may not involve destroying things). She also reads far fewer books that she would like to, but possibly more than she really has time for.
You can find her online at:
Comment below on what you think.
finds herself as the first of her kind to walk on the surface in
centuries. This was caused by one of the underworld’s corrupt
leaders, Danil, who uses her in an unholy ritual to set their people
free. Danil’s infectious touch gives Krista the nightmarish disease
known as Mental Damnation.
struggle to make sense of her sudden appearance and how it relates to
Mental Damnation. Her friend back in the underworld, Darkwing,
abandons his gang to begin his search for her.
humans while experiencing inner turmoil from hallucinations caused by
her disease. These visions paint a hellish dream world known as
Dreadweave Pass where the realm’s ruler, a corrupt god known as the
Weaver, is on the hunt for her. Krista’s blood is believed to be a
key component for the Weaver’s retribution against the Heavenly
Kingdoms that once banished him!
from the surface world, Krista and her only friend, Darkwing,
struggle to remain alive. The pair of reptilian street scum live in
their newfound home, the City of Renasence, dictated by a fascist
military known as the Renasence Guard. The two find themselves at
odds when Krista puts her faith in the Five Guardians’ goal of
unification, while Darkwing chooses to stand with a notorious gang,
the Blood Hounds, who are known for their anarchist views
Five Guardians become crazed from an unknown disease – Mental
Damnation. After their infection, the Guardians develop a bizarre
interest in her, claiming they must reap her innocence for their
newfound master, the Weaver.
infected and on a hunt for her, Krista has limited options for
survival: Does she fend for her life in the City of Renascence,
against menacing forces, or risk leaving everything behind and enter
the uncharted realm of the underworld?
his Mental Damnation series. The second book, Dream, reached the
Edmonton Journal’s top five selling fictional books list. He
started writing fantasy stories at a very young age while being home
schooled. It wasn’t until graduating college that he began
professionally pursuing his work with his first release, Reality.
Since then he has continued to write works of fiction ranging from
fantasy to horror.
runs his own graphic design and website development business under
the title Reveal Design. These skills have been transcribed into the
formatting and artwork found within his publications supporting his
fascination of transmedia storytelling.
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
Henna is one of the most powerful sorcerers in the Order of Napthol, and her runes ’s runes tell her that the future of Kavet is balanced on the edge of the knife. The treaties between Kavet and the dragon-like race known as the Osei have become intolerable. The time has come for the royal house to magically challenge Osei dominion. Prince Verte, Henna’ lover, is to serve as the nexus for the powerful but dangerous spell, with Naples–an untested young sorcerer from the Order of Napthol–a volatile but critical support to its creation.
Amid these plans, Dahlia Indathrone’s arrival in the city shouldn’t matter. She has no magic and no royal lineage, and yet, Henna immediately knows Dahlia is important. She just can’t see why.
As their lives intertwine, the four will learn that they are pawns in a larger game, one played by the forces of the Abyss and of the Numen—the infernal and the divine.
A game no mortal can ever hope to win.
The pride of Osei abruptly turned and dove. Serpentine bodies large enough to lift ships from the sea plummeted. They changed shape so close to the ground that the wind from their wings smacked the plaza like a hand, rattling or knocking over the light carts and tables the early morning merchants set up to display their wares. Henna squinted her eyes against the grit that smacked her face as the Osei landed with enough force to shatter their bodies had they been human.
People in the plaza scattered, scrambling away to hide in the shelter of surrounding buildings, but Henna couldn’t make her muscles move as the Osei queen looked around speculatively.
The creature had skin like liquid silver and eyes like barbed steel. As she crossed the plaza directly toward Henna’s frozen form, Henna recognized her. She was the only Osei queen who ever left her own territory to visit another Osei House.
The Queen of the First House, the Royal House of the Osei, was standing in the Kavet marketplace.
Henna felt all the blood drain from her face. Maybe farther. Was she bleeding onto the cobbles? Into the core of the earth?
“You know us,” the queen said. “That is convenient. You will inform the rulers of this land that we require their immediate presence.”
- What are you reading at the moment? Would you recommend it to readers of this blog? Why?
Right now, I’m reading The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss, the second book in the Kingkiller Chronicles. Actually, I’m rereading it, though for the first time.
The first book, The Name of the Wind, was recommended to me by my best friend a couple years ago as his absolute favorite novel. I picked it up cautiously because I’m picky about fantasy novels. I enjoy character-driven stories more than world-driven ones (I’m cautious in fantasy circles about admitting I am not a Tolkien fan), and these two books have absolutely delivered on that promise. The only problem is the long lag between their publication dates (book 1 in 2007, 2 in 2011, a related novella in 2014, and book 3 announced but without a pub date) when I desperately want to read the end.
It’s hard to describe this series. There is an over-arching evil antagonist in a way, as tends to be a theme in high fantasy, but they aren’t really a key threat, at least through the first two books. It isn’t even clear they know Kvothe, the main character, exists. Similarly, while Kvothe comes from a background of poverty and trauma, this isn’t a book about “overcoming” disadvantages. The books are told in flashback, from a point of time where Kvothe is famous–or, more rightly, infamous–and has faked his death and is posing as an innkeeper, so the reader even knows more or less how the story ends.
So what is it about? It’s about Kvothe. I have no idea how to summarize the plot, except to say I am finding it fascinating the second time around too. Part of why I am rereading is to try to see what makes this story so engaging.
2. Do you think people have misconceptions about the speculative fiction? Why do you think it is a worthwhile genre?
One of the novels I sometimes teach in my senior English class is Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. We read it in the context of its original creation, as well as in a more modern one, and one of the things we discuss is the nature of speculative fiction.
Many people think speculative fiction attempts to predict the future, but it doesn’t. Oh, some aspects of technology and the like need to be predicted to try to make a realistic future, but those are the less important parts of the story. Speculative fiction takes a look at the real world, highlighting the good–and, particularly, the bad, the parts that make authors sweat at night and imagine disasters in the future.
Speculative fiction shows us what is possible and creates conversations not about some distant future, but about what is happening right now.
3. Could you tell us a bit about your most recent book?
Of the Divine is the second book in the Mancer trilogy. It’s a prequel/sequel, by which I mean that it looks back 70 years before the events of the first book, but in doing so continues the storyline of a few key characters met in Mancer 1: Of the Abyss, and sets up events for Mancer 3: Of the Mortal Realm.
In Of the Divine, sorcery (which is punishable by death by the time of the first book) is still practiced freely, though its origin–and its costs–are not truly understood. The royal house is desperately trying to free the country of Kavet from the control of the Osei, dragon-like creatures who claim dominion over all the seas and therefore control all trade and travel to and from the island nation. Their efforts make use of magics that have the potential to control even the Osei– or to damage the veils between the mortal realm and the realms beyond, both infernal and divine.
4. What gives you inspiration for your book
Divine’s inspiration comes from many places. After I wrote the first book, I had to stop to wonder how Kavet had become the way it was. Where did the fear of sorcery come from? I had also written partial side-stories that took place in other areas of the world, and couldn’t help but wonder why Kavet was so isolationist and socially conservative compared to the rest of the world.
I also wanted to know more about some of the characters we met in Mancer 1. As I mentioned earlier, character are a central drive for me both as a reader and a writer. One of the characters, Naples, ended up being further inspired by a friend of mine who had a complicated life and has always been unlucky in love.
5. What is the biggest surprise that you experienced after becoming a writer?
I think the biggest surprise for me was that writing is not a solitary profession. I grew up on Stephen King stories, so my first idea of what a professional writer is like came from characters like Jack Torrance from The Shining or Thad Beaumont from The Dark Half. I imagined professional writers scratching away alone like the narrator of “The Raven” reading his books, detached from society.
In truth, good writing relies on others. The further I get in my career, the less I find I work alone. Beta readers are worth their weight in gold. As I tell my students, when you write something, you know exactly what you meant to say. You don’t actually know what the reader hears unless you can find an excellent beta reader who is willing to share every thought that crosses their mind.
And of course, once a novel is published, it doesn’t really come to life unless someone else picks it up. Readers who interact with me on Twitter or Instagram or Facebook make my day; they are the ones who inspire me to keep writing and publishing, despite… well, the answer to the next question.
- Do you have a day job in addition to being a writer? If so, what do you do during the day?
I have a Master of Arts in teaching and am a full-time teacher at a special education private school for students with language-based learning disabilities. Mostly I teach English to high school seniors. I love my job, but like most teaching jobs it means about 80 hours of work a week.
And that still doesn’t answer the question of what I do during the day! My daughter is almost three years old now, so we spend afternoons and much of our weekends doing puzzles, playing, biking, gardening, and otherwise having fun together. My parents and two sisters and my partner’s parents all live in the area, so we also visit them frequently. Then there are silly little needs like grocery shopping and doing dishes and the like… (ah, who needs that?)
Considering all that, it can be challenging (and exhausting!) to squeeze in time to write, but writing has been my passion since I was about my daughter’s age. I could never give it up.
- Tell us a little about your plans for the future. Do you have any other books in the works?
Well, of course the third book in the Mancer trilogy, Of the Mortal Realm, comes out next year. I started the first draft of Mancer 1 in November, 2006 as my first attempt at National Novel Writing Month (a successful one), and it has been quite a journey getting it this far.
After Mortal, I’m not sure where I’m going. I have a few more books in my Young Adult series drafted, which I might go back to at some point. I also have a futuristic science fiction novel I wrote over the last three years, which I think will be good after I dedicate some serious time to revision. I may also stay in the world of the Mancer trilogy with a book I’m currently calling Ice House, which is narrated partly by two of the Osei and takes an in-depth look into their species and their culture, as well as looking into Kavet after the end of Mortal.
I suppose I’ll need to make a decision soon, won’t I?
About the Author
Amelia Atwater-Rhodes wrote her first novel, In the Forests of the Night, when she was 13 years old. Other books in the Den of Shadows series are Demon in My View, Shattered Mirror, Midnight Predator, all ALA Quick Picks for Young Adults. She has also published the five-volume series The Kiesha’ra: Hawksong, a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year and VOYA Best Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror List Selection; Snakecharm; Falcondance; Wolfcry; and Wyvernhail.
Amelia Atwater-Rhodes will be awarding a limited edition print copy of the book *U.S. only* to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.