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Threatened? The author explains about Pirates

The Veiled Threat Book Cover The Veiled Threat
(The Veiled Duchess #1)
Sophia Menesini
Genres: Fantasy, LGBTQ+, New Adult, Romance
Independently published
Publication date: June 30th 2019

Captain Shea Lara is the current leader of The Veiled Duchess. The most feared pirate ship in all of Neried. And now, after completing her former mentor’s final score, she’s retiring. Everything seems to be coming to an end… Until a mysterious stranger drags her back into the fold with an offer for a score she can’t refuse. All she has to do is kidnap the crowned princess of the northern Queendom, Princess Joana of Arethusa. The prize is just within reach. But sparks fly as the two women collide. And an obscured threat that could upturn Shea’s entire world storms on the horizon. She’ll face it alone unless she can allow herself the support she needs from old and new allies alike. Something’s coming and Shea is at the center of it.

Sophia tells us:

  • Can you tell your readers something about why you chose this particular topic to write about? What appealed to you about it? Why do you think it is different and your approach is unique?

I came up with the idea for Shea Lara in a DnD session. I’d never played before, I was there kind of by chance, and they handed me a character sheet and I just started writing about who I’d want to be in a fantasy world. I always loved pirates growing up, Pirates of the Caribbean was one of my favorites. The girl was a king, the guy was the damsel, and Jack was amazing. So I thought if I could be anyone I’d be a pirate. And Shea was born. I worked on the concept, evolved her into a story and Nereid was created soon after. I don’t know if my approach is unique, I tend to have a concept about a character and then I create a world around them.

  • Did you need to self-publish on e-books before a publisher took you up?

I self-published. I’ve never worked with a publishing firm, I’ve never really wanted to. I knew that I wanted to get my story out there and I didn’t want to go the traditional route, waiting on someone else to do the work for me. I thought I’m capable, I’m passionate about this. I’m going to do this. So I did.

  • Would you recommend self-publishing and building an audience before approaching a publisher? If so, what benefits do you see that it might have for the aspiring novelist?

Personally, I’ve never thought about it, if traditional publishing was to become an option for me in the future I don’t know if I would take it. I’ve done a lot as a self-publisher and it’s a lot of work but at the end of the day the reward is mine and the story is mine. I think if traditional publishing works for you, you should do it, but people should know it’s not the only route and it doesn’t validate your work. You validate your work by working hard and persevering.

  • What do you read when you are ill in bed?

When I’m at home, sick, and I need something comforting I pull out my old Percy Jackson books. I loved the first series growing up and it’s just sentimental. The stories are familiar, the epics, the characters and I love anything to do with mythology.

  • What is your favorite genre?

I’m a fantasy nerd. I write fantasy and I read it. I love historical fiction and high fantasy are my absolute favorites. I don’t tend to branch beyond that, I’ve tried but I’m not an everyday Brooklyn girl. I get too much reality in my own life. So any kind of book that features a mystical land or dystopian universe that expands imagination, it’s on my shelf.

  • If you could recommend a living author – who would it be? A dead author?

The living author would have to be Aimee Carter. I’m such a fan of her Goddess Test series, she’s a fantastic writer. And dead, J.R.R. Tolkien. Huge fan of the hobbit growing up and I am a very detailed oriented writing so LOTR was a huge inspiration to me.

  • In your opinion who is the funniest author now writing?

Rick Riordan cracks me up in any of his series, he has got humor down pact. And all of his characters are so wonderfully relatable and Percy’s inner dialogues are my own half the time.

  • Have you ever tried to imitate another author’s style? And if so, why?

I took a lot of pointers from Tolkien, and other writers in the fantasy interwoven with mythologies. Tolkien’s descriptions were something I really loved and I wanted to create a cinematic feel to my story as if you could see it happening in your mind’s eye. Rick Riordan, Aimee Carter, L.J. Smith are all masters at creating a kind of mythology of their own incorporating the original aspects and making incredible folklore. I definitely drew inspiration from their models for the world of Nereid.

  • What have you done with the things you wrote when in school?

I have all of them! I have all my childhood journals, my old fanfictions, my scripts for television shows, my “book” I wrote when I was 12 and they’re completely cringe-worthy but I love them and will keep them forever. I never know if maybe I’ll try and revive them again.

  • Do you have any pets? I do!
    • If so, what are they? Two Chihuahuas and a Cat.
    • And what are they called? Ziggy, Zeppelin, and Bowie.
    • Do they help you write? No, they’re complete distractions. But I usually make one of them sit on my lap at my desk anyway.
    • What is the funniest thing they have done while you are writing? I remember one time Ziggy and Zeppelin my two Chihuahuas were begging for attention but I had to get this chapter done so I made them wait. But Bowie strolls into my office and sees his brothers trying to get my attention and how it’s not working and so he does what they cannot. He jumps onto my desk and lays himself across my keyboard much to his brother’s dissatisfaction. And I’m ashamed to say, he got the cuddles first.
  • What, in your life, are you most proud of doing?

This book. It’s been a real reward. I worked so hard to get it out there. I am a college student, newly married, I don’t have the money to spend 2 grand on a professional editor and to keep sending out printed manuscripts to publishers. So I found an illustrator at my college for my book map and she did an amazing job, I had a good friend who’s an incredible English major and wants to be an editor, edit my book for free. And I do all the social media, marketing, I built my own website. I do it all. And occasionally there’s a review about a typo or spacing problem. And as soon as I get it, I fix it and republish. And I do this again and again because it’s worth it and because of my hard work I now can afford a professional editor who’s reviewing The Veiled Threat and my sequel right now. And those reviews about the stray typo are never about the story itself and that’s what matters. My story is out there, and being told, and loved and I am extremely proud.

  • If you could be any fictional character, which would you be? And why?

Claire Fraser from the Outlander series. I am so sorry my dear husband, maybe I can take him with me. It would be really cool to travel through time, I’m a history major and Scotland in the eighteenth century is of particular interest to me. Plus Jamie Fraser, need I say more?

  • If you could choose to live in another country/town – which would you choose? And why?

Edinburgh, Scotland. It’s my favorite place in the world, I’ve been four times and I’d love to live there permanently someday or even in the Scottish highlands. I think Scotland is the most beautiful place on earth. It’s rich with history and magic and lore. It’s an inspiration in itself.

  • What would you take on a desert island to read if you could only take 3 books?

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan, The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien, and Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.

Author Bio

Goodreads Amazon

Sophia Menesini lives in Martinez, CA with her husband, and their two small Chihuahuas, Ziggy and Zeppelin. The Veiled Threat is her first novel and the first book in The Veiled Duchess Series. Sophia is an avid tea connoisseur and lover of Scotland with an unconventional memory for obscure Disney and Broadway song lyrics.

You can find my blog, updates, and other entertainment at my website: www.sophiamenesini.com. https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19257386.Sophia_Menesini

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And we learn about The Threat

The Veiled Threat Book Cover The Veiled Threat
(The Veiled Duchess #1)
Sophia Menesini
Genres: Fantasy, LGBTQ+, New Adult, Romance
Publication date: June 30th 2019

The Veiled Threat
Sophia Menesini
(The Veiled Duchess #1)
Publication date: June 30th 2019
Genres: FantasyLGBTQ+New AdultRomance

Goodreads Amazon

Captain Shea Lara is the current leader of The Veiled Duchess. The most feared pirate ship in all of Neried. And now, after completing her former mentor’s final score, she’s retiring. Everything seems to be coming to an end… Until a mysterious stranger drags her back into the fold with an offer for a score she can’t refuse. All she has to do is kidnap the crowned princess of the northern Queendom, Princess Joana of Arethusa. The prize is just within reach. But sparks fly as the two women collide. And an obscured threat that could upturn Shea’s entire world storms on the horizon. She’ll face it alone unless she can allow herself the support she needs from old and new allies alike. Something’s coming and Shea is at the center of it.

 

  1. Can you tell your readers something about why you chose this particular topic to write about? What appealed to you about it? Why do you think it is different and your approach is unique?

I came up with the idea for Shea Lara in a DnD session. I’d never played before, I was there kind of by chance, and they handed me a character sheet and I just started writing about who I’d want to be in a fantasy world. I always loved pirates growing up, Pirates of the Caribbean was one of my favorites. The girl was a king, the guy was the damsel, and Jack was amazing. So I thought if I could be anyone I’d be a pirate. And Shea was born. I worked on the concept, evolved her into a story and Nereid was created soon after. I don’t know if my approach is unique, I tend to have a concept about a character and then I create a world around them.

  • Did you need to self-publish on e-books before a publisher took you up?

I self-published. I’ve never worked with a publishing firm, I’ve never really wanted to. I knew that I wanted to get my story out there and I didn’t want to go the traditional route, waiting on someone else to do the work for me. I thought I’m capable, I’m passionate about this. I’m going to do this. So I did.

  • Would you recommend self-publishing and building an audience before approaching a publisher? If so, what benefits do you see that it might have for the aspiring novelist?

Personally, I’ve never thought about it, if traditional publishing was to become an option for me in the future I don’t know if I would take it. I’ve done a lot as a self-publisher and it’s a lot of work but at the end of the day the reward is mine and the story is mine. I think if traditional publishing works for you, you should do it, but people should know it’s not the only route and it doesn’t validate your work. You validate your work by working hard and persevering.

  • What do you read when you are ill in bed?

When I’m at home, sick, and I need something comforting I pull out my old Percy Jackson books. I loved the first series growing up and it’s just sentimental. The stories are familiar, the epics, the characters and I love anything to do with mythology.

  • What is your favorite genre?

I’m a fantasy nerd. I write fantasy and I read it. I love historical fiction and high fantasy are my absolute favorites. I don’t tend to branch beyond that, I’ve tried but I’m not an everyday Brooklyn girl. I get too much reality in my own life. So any kind of book that features a mystical land or dystopian universe that expands imagination, it’s on my shelf.

  • If you could recommend a living author – who would it be? A dead author?

The living author would have to be Aimee Carter. I’m such a fan of her Goddess Test series, she’s a fantastic writer. And dead, J.R.R. Tolkien. Huge fan of the hobbit growing up and I am a very detailed oriented writing so LOTR was a huge inspiration to me.

  • In your opinion who is the funniest author now writing?

Rick Riordan cracks me up in any of his series, he has got humor down pact. And all of his characters are so wonderfully relatable and Percy’s inner dialogues are my own half the time.

  • Have you ever tried to imitate another author’s style? And if so, why?

I took a lot of pointers from Tolkien, and other writers in the fantasy interwoven with mythologies. Tolkien’s descriptions were something I really loved and I wanted to create a cinematic feel to my story as if you could see it happening in your mind’s eye. Rick Riordan, Aimee Carter, L.J. Smith are all masters at creating a kind of mythology of their own incorporating the original aspects and making incredible folklore. I definitely drew inspiration from their models for the world of Nereid.

  • What have you done with the things you wrote when in school?

I have all of them! I have all my childhood journals, my old fanfictions, my scripts for television shows, my “book” I wrote when I was 12 and they’re completely cringe-worthy but I love them and will keep them forever. I never know if maybe I’ll try and revive them again.

  • Do you have any pets?I do!
    • If so, what are they? Two Chihuahuas and a Cat.
    • And what are they called? Ziggy, Zeppelin, and Bowie.
    • Do they help you write? No, they’re complete distractions. But I usually make one of them sit on my lap at my desk anyway.
    • What is the funniest thing they have done while you are writing? I remember one time Ziggy and Zeppelin my two Chihuahuas were begging for attention but I had to get this chapter done so I made them wait. But Bowie strolls into my office and sees his brothers trying to get my attention and how it’s not working and so he does what they cannot. He jumps onto my desk and lays himself across my keyboard much to his brother’s dissatisfaction. And I’m ashamed to say, he got the cuddles first.
  • What, in your life, are you most proud of doing?

This book. It’s been a real reward. I worked so hard to get it out there. I am a college student, newly married, I don’t have the money to spend 2 grand on a professional editor and to keep sending out printed manuscripts to publishers. So I found an illustrator at my college for my book map and she did an amazing job, I had a good friend who’s an incredible English major and wants to be an editor, edit my book for free. And I do all the social media, marketing, I built my own website. I do it all. And occasionally there’s a review about a typo or spacing problem. And as soon as I get it, I fix it and republish. And I do this again and again because it’s worth it and because of my hard work I now can afford a professional editor who’s reviewing The Veiled Threat and my sequel right now. And those reviews about the stray typo are never about the story itself and that’s what matters. My story is out there, and being told, and loved and I am extremely proud.

  • If you could be any fictional character, which would you be? And why?

Claire Fraser from the Outlander series. I am so sorry my dear husband, maybe I can take him with me. It would be really cool to travel through time, I’m a history major and Scotland in the eighteenth century is of particular interest to me. Plus Jamie Fraser, need I say more?

  • If you could choose to live in another country/town – which would you choose? And why?

Edinburgh, Scotland. It’s my favorite place in the world, I’ve been four times and I’d love to live there permanently someday or even in the Scottish highlands. I think Scotland is the most beautiful place on earth. It’s rich with history and magic and lore. It’s an inspiration in itself.

  • What would you take on a desert island to read if you could only take 3 books?

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan, The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien, and Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.

Author Bio

Sophia Menesini lives in Martinez, CA with her husband, and their two small Chihuahuas, Ziggy and Zeppelin. The Veiled Threat is her first novel and the first book in The Veiled Duchess Series. Sophia is an avid tea connoisseur and lover of Scotland with an unconventional memory for obscure Disney and Broadway song lyrics.

You can find my blog, updates, and other entertainment at my website: www.sophiamenesini.com

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Why was she stolen? The Author explains

Stolen Princess Book Cover Stolen Princess
(Royal Conquest Saga #1)
Nikki Jefford
Genres: Fairy Tales, Fantasy, New Adult, Retelling
Amazon Digital Services LLC
Publication date: November 11th 2018

She sacrificed herself to save her family from poverty… The ball was only the beginning. It wasn’t enough to kill my mate, heir to the throne. My obsessive Fae brother-in-law wants the crown. And he wants me ruling by his side. I thought I was done with romance until a certain pompous elf reappeared in my life at the illustrious Monster Ball. A little teasing led to bruised lips and captured hearts. No one wants Jhaeros and me to be together, not even my favorite sister, Melarue. But she’s a teenager just coming into her elemental powers and discovering boys—the wrong kind—the type I want to shoot arrows through. My royal in-laws are playing a treacherous game, and my brother-in-law is determined to get what he wants. But this elf princess no longer has a master. I don’t want a crown. I want freedom, family, and the love of a lifetime. But love might be the one thing that destroys us all. **This book will now include the prequel novella Enemies and Lovers.

If you could recommend a living author – who would it be? A dead author?

Just one? I am a huge Sarah J. Maas fan. Her storytelling and characters steal me away in every single one of her books. For a deceased author, I’d go with Jane Austen. I love her humor and all the family scandal that goes along with her novels.

In your opinion who is the funniest author now writing?

Currently, Rainbow Rowell is cracking me up with her Simon Snow series. Listening to Wayward Son in bed on audiobook my entire body was shaking with laughter (while my husband was trying to get to sleep).

What have you done with the things you wrote when in school?

All my spiral notebooks and three ringed binders stuffed with stories used to be stored in boxes beneath the stairs of my mom’s house in Alaska. She recently dumped them off at my current address in Washington State. Now they’re shoved in my closets. I’d never take the time to reread them, but I haven’t been able to bring myself to throw them into the recycle bin.

Do you have any pets?

I have a Westie named Cosmo. He will be 14 years old soon and has been my sweet little writing (and reading) buddy all along. With writing being such an isolated endeavor, having his company is a huge comfort. Luckily, he can’t reach my keyboard the way a cat can. He does like to sleep behind the wheels of my chair, so I have to watch out that I don’t back up and roll over him.

Which of your books are you most proud of?

I’m super stoked about my current series: Royal Conquest (Stolen Princess). It’s outlandish, unpredictable, steamy, and laugh-out-loud funny. Watching readers become hyper over how much they enjoyed the characters gives me an overwhelming sense of satisfaction and pride. Fans fuel the flames and keep the series going!

Do you have an unusual hobby?

I enjoy motorcycling. This is my husband’s passion. I never expected to take any part of it until six years ago when we were living on a remote island with a max speed of 40 MPH. I was getting bored with island life and figured that if I was ever going to learn, that was the best place to do it. It really revved up our relationship and gave us something fun to do on (sunny) weekends.

If you could choose to live in another country/town – which would you choose? And why?

I wish I knew! One thing is certain, my husband and I dream of living someplace sunny and warm most of the year. I was born and raised in Alaska for the first thirty years of my life. My husband grew up near Paris, which has Seattle’s similar overcast and rain. Somehow, we ended up in the Pacific Northwest with rain, rain, gray, gray, gray. Not ideal for motorcycling or healthy dose of vitamin D!

About the Author

Nikki Jefford is an award-winning, bestselling author of paranormal romance, urban fantasy, and quirky combinations in-between.

She is a third-generation Alaskan now living in the Pacific Northwest with her Westie, Cosmo, and her French husband, who she wouldn’t trade in for anyone–not even Spike or Mr. Darcy!

When she’s not writing, she’s reading, walking, or out riding her motorcycle, a Honda CB500F, (so long as it’s sunny and warm)!

To get in on the fun and adventure, visit Nikki at her website for release alerts, updates, exclusive giveaways, and a free story when you subscribe to her newsletter: http://nikkijefford.com/

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Emily speaks

All of Me Book Cover All of Me
Emily Duvall
Independently published
10 Jun 2019

Maren Cole survived adolescence by relying on her intellect, but has never felt more different as an adult. The diagnosis she received as a person with Autism makes functioning in a fast-paced city with bright lights and big sounds a challenge. Forget about dating. Forget marriage. She would like to survive a conversation. Independence has never been more isolating or confusing and is complicated by a situation that puts her directly in the path of arrogant lawyer Caleb Allan.Caleb isn’t interested in anyone except himself and his legal career. The one person he doesn’t need to spend time with is the awkward Maren Cole, but their interactions are unavoidable when she has the potential to push his career ahead. Forced to confront the fact that she’s unlike anyone he’s ever met, Caleb knows falling for her will destroy his work. He may also lose his heart to a woman who may never fully love him back.

Emily Duvall tells us about her book ‘All of Me’.

  • Can you tell your readers something about why you chose this particular topic to write about? What appealed to you about it? Why do you think it is different and your approach is unique?

One question I get from people is, “What qualifies you to write about someone on the spectrum?” I am open about the answer, in that, one of my children was diagnosed with Autism. There is a cohort of children in our country with diagnosis that are aging into their early and mid-twenties. Initially, Maren was a lot younger and the book would have been a young adult story, but as her story came into focus, what I really wanted to write was about someone older than a teenager, and what dating, love, and independence might look like for them.

As a side note, this is the first time the romance genre is opening-up and accepting heroines like Maren and for that reason, the timing felt right. Ten years ago, there was no room for someone like Maren and her family in romance books.

  • How long do you think about a topic before deciding to write about it? Do you have a set of notes or a note book where you write down topics that appeal before making a decision as to which topic this time?

The topic doesn’t take long to come up with but making sure the idea can stretch to an 80,000 word novel is a different beast. I have started stories, and, right around the 10,000 word mark I give the storyline and the potential for conflict more thought. Often, the story is scratched because there’s no way it can be turned into a full-length novel. I usually end up combining ideas from 3-4 stories to create one book. I have a notebook in my purse for writing down ideas because potential stories are everywhere!

  • How long does it take to research a topic before you write? And for this book?

Usually, I don’t know how much research I need until I begin writing. As the plot unfolds and the characters find themselves in situations or dialogue that requires some type of specific knowledge, I write those questions down in a spreadsheet. Once the first draft is finished, and I cannot continue until I have these questions answered, then I reach out to someone who can answer them (I like to give all questions at once). Sometimes I look up other fiction books from authors who have had characters with similar problems and read their books or I check out nonfiction books at the library. It doesn’t take too long, once I know what I’m looking for. All of Me took about two months’ worth of research before I could get all my questions answered.

  • What resources do you use? In general and for the last book that you wrote?
  • How helpful do you find authority figures such as the police, medics etc when you say you want to write about them? Is there a good way to approach them in your experience?
  • If you need specialist knowledge to write a book, how do you obtain it? For instance, do you interview people? Go to the location? Use Google Earth? Apps?

I interview people as much as possible, especially about a topic that all the Googling in the world wouldn’t give me the information I need. Sometimes I get rejected if I ask for an interview, but most of the time, people are willing to answer questions over email or meet. I offer to put their name in the acknowledgements as a thank you. Many writers shy away from this step and I encourage them not to. Sometimes, it can feel like cold-calling, except it’s cold-emailing, I’ll search for the type of business/specialist I need, and write an email explaining who I am and if anyone would take the time to answer some of my questions.

If I need specific information about a setting, I try to write about places I have been, although Google Earth can be useful if I need to get a snapshot of a street or downtown that I want to use to mimic in the story. There is no real substitute for writing a story set in a place I’ve experienced, which is why, most of my books are set in Washington D.C., Maryland, and Virginia since I live in this area.

  •  How many times have you been rejected before your first novel was accepted or before this book was accepted?

I have been rejected more times than I can remember. This industry is tough! I decided to self-publish this book because I had other projects I wanted to give my attention to and waiting for an agent to accept the work can takes months, and then even years to get the book on the market. Sometimes, the best call for a book is the one that makes the most sense to you as a writer. There are more “No’s” in this industry than “Yes” so I made the choice to publish and move forward.

  • Did you need to self-publish on e-books before a publisher took you up?
  • Would you recommend self-publishing and building an audience before approaching a publisher? If so, what benefits do you see that it might have for the aspiring novelist?

There are so many avenues to publishing these days that writers should do what is best for them. Self-publishing is a great way to build your audience and that matters, if, later on you submit a novel to an agent or a publishing  house, they can see that  you have a following and that you are active in your writing career.

  • Does writing provide sufficient income to live on? And how long did it take before this happened?

Most writers I know, even ones that are best-selling authors, have other careers. The authors that do make the big figures are rare.

  • What is your favourite genre?

While the romance genre is my favorite to read, I am also a big fan of the YA genre and books with suspense.

  • If you could recommend a living author – who would it be? A dead author?

I love books by K.A. Tucker and Lauren Layne. They write romance and I just connect with their writing styles. My writing improves after I read their books.

As for a dead author, I would say L.M. Montgomery and her beloved Anne of Green Gables stories. I’ve always been drawn to those stories. They’re timeless.

  • Which author had the most influence on your writing? Your writing style? Your writing genre?

It’s been ages since I read my first romance book, but it came out of the early 90’s. Her name is Judith McNaught. I used to read every one of her books. Every now and then, I re-read some of her works because they not only take me back to a time that I discovered that genre, but because the tension between her hero and heroine is real and raw, and I need a reminder as to what that should look like. She wrote during the beginning of the “boom” in the romance genre and her books, along with authors like Nora Roberts and LaVyrle Spencer, were on my bookshelf when I was supposed to be reading books for high school. I think the books a person connects with initially can set the standard for expectations for other books in that genre. 

  • Which of your books are you most proud of?

I must say, All of Me. It’s the first book that was different from my others. It was the biggest challenge to write because the characters both struggle with so much. Halfway through my first draft I remember turning off my computer. I asked myself, “How will there be room for love in this story because they’re both self centered?” I almost threw in the towel because in a romance, the romance MUST come first. That is the golden rule of a love story. Two characters like Maren and Caleb Allan are going to have a difficult time falling in love.

  • What, in your life, are you most proud of doing?

I am most proud of being a mother and being a wife.

  • Do you have an unusual hobby?

I’m currently working on making ‘latte art.’ I got this awesome coffee/latte maker for Christmas and I’m elevating the art of drinking coffee to make those fancy leaves or hearts in the coffee. So far—no success. The foam just looks like a blob.

  • If you could be any fictional character, which would you be? And why?

I would like to be a character in one of Liane Moriarty’s books. There’s a delicious amount of drama that doesn’t happen in the day-to-day life of an author.

  • If you could choose to live in another country/town – which would you choose? And why?

Recently, I visited London for the first time. I absolutely loved it! The city was incredible with the history and the architecture. I loved getting lost in the city and finding a café. I was a fan of the gated parks. I think there is a story with those, I just haven’t thought of one yet.  In the U.S. we don’t have gated parks in the cities like the ones there. I was tempted to jump the fence and pretend I was a local.

  • What would you take on a desert island to read if you could only take 3 books?

Such an unfair question! I could narrow my choice down to ten, *maybe.*

Do you people watch to find characters for your books? How do you do this? What is the funniest thing you have seen that you have incorporated into a book? Or do you add some traits from your family and friends into your characters?

Oh yes. I do love to people watch. Sometimes I’ll see a look, a fashion style, or just their interaction with other people and some inspiration will hit. Oftentimes, a friend will tell me a story about something that happened at work or to a friend, and I’ll have a moment where I think, that would be a great story (or make for a great character trait/situation).

Author Bio

Where to begin? Emily has many favorite things. She loves coffee, books, and taking photos of the two together.

#Writer 💖 Story spinner 📚 Runs on coffee ☕
Award Winning #Author of contemporary & romantic suspense

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Why Awake?

Awakening: Rise as the Fall Unfolds Book Cover Awakening: Rise as the Fall Unfolds
An 8th Dimension Novel Book 3
Carissa Andrews
Genres: Science Fiction, Thriller, Urban Fantasy
Independently published
Publication date: November 12th 2019

The final five angels have been located and averting the apocalypse means somehow recreating the birth of Christ.  Morgan never expected total annihilation would come down to the actions of five misfit angels. But as each one’s hidden angelic power unfolds, so does the sinister truth… the entire Jesus storyline has been wiped from the collective consciousness, leaving a tear in the fabric of reality. The final five need to figure out how their gifts are meant to fit together in order to set things right. However, coming to terms with the responsibility resting on their shoulders doesn’t come easy. To make matters worse, the demons have found them and unless they get on the same page quickly, the darkness will consume them all. But how can they make things right when the thing that’s missing happened more than 2000 years ago? One thing’s for sure. If they fail, existence ceases. If you love books like Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s American Gods or Good Omens, Joe Hill’s Nos4A2, or Stephen King’s (Richard Bachman) Blaze, then you’ll love Awakening!

“Can you tell your readers something about why you chose this particular genre to write about? What appealed to you about it? Why do you think it is different and your approach is unique?”

When I originally went to college, I had big plans to become an archaeologist or anthropologist. I have always been fascinated by the idea of mythology, spirituality, and religion. But more than that, I have always loved the paranormal and supernatural side as well. I grew up in a very eclectic, open minded family who embraced dichotomous thinking—which basically means holding two seemingly opposing viewpoints as true at the same time. For example, being Christian, but believing other religions or spiritual traditions hold similar truths. Magical mindsets and energy work have always played a role in my life. In fact, in 2002, I started my journey to become a reiki master. I have also dived deep into comparative religion because the concept is deeply fascinating to me.

Then, on the other side (remember the dichotomous thinking), I love science. Physics, astronomy, biology, chemistry—you name it. So, being this strange person with seemingly opposing beliefs, I find I can look at subjects more… subjectively.

Awakening originally came to me as a way to make sense of the world after the 2016 election. I’m not gonna lie—it seriously felt light we were fighting a war of light and dark and the dark was winning. So, my question to myself was… what if there were angels buried in the subconsciousness of humans walking the Earth? What would that look like? How would that play out?

However, I couldn’t quite wrap my head around their mission. What would they fight for? How would they fix things? Then, at our local writers group’s Christmas party last year, we got an interesting writing prompt. There were actually something like seven of them, but the one I chose was: write something about the Jesus story from a totally different perspective.

Now, I have to place a caveat here – I am actually very eclectic spiritually because of my background. I don’t identify as one religion or another anymore. I just don’t feel it’s necessary. So, as a sciencey, fantasy jumbled up mess I am, I took an idea I’d had in the back of my mind for a long time about the Jesus story. It relied on the question of—what if Jesus didn’t exist? What if in the future, darkness had taken over and his light never shone on the world? (Okay, historically, there are actual questions about true existence, but there is no denying his story exists—and has had a huge impact on the world.)

But more than that, what if someone from the future could go back and make things happen? How could you tell this story where it seems both believable—and completely crazy at the same time? I mean, that’s what science fiction and fantasy are meant to do, right? Play with the bigger questions of who we are, why we’re here, and the stories we tell ourselves… right?

To my knowledge, no one has written a story quite like Awakening. It’s part urban fantasy – part alternative history – part science fiction. But what I am most pleased about with this book is that it must have placed its timing perfectly (I may have written it, but I swear the stories have their own timing). Both Christians and non-Christians alike love the story and the way the story was able to tread the wire between motivation and blasphemy.

About the Author:

Carissa Andrews is a freelance writer, award-winning graphic designer, indie author coach, and internationally bestselling author from Crosslake Minnesota. She is the President of the Lakes Area Writers Alliance, a 501c3 nonprofit for writers in central Minnesota, as well as the owner of Author Revolution, LLC – an organization geared toward helping new authors navigate the waters of indie publishing. For 2020, Carissa has her sights set on becoming a NYT or USA Today Bestselling Author with her upcoming series, The Windhaven Witches. You can learn more about Carissa, her services, and her upcoming novels by visiting her websites: www.carissaandrews.comwww.authorrevolution.org, or authorrevolution.teachable.com

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