Tag Archives: feature friday

FEATURE FRIDAY WITH AUTHOR OF BE NOT AFRAID- K.R. MORRISON

19 Oct

FEATURE FRIDAY WITH AUTHOR OF BE NOT AFRAID- K.R. MORRISON

K. R. Morrison author of “Be Not Afraid”

 

What would you like everyone to know about you?

My book is inspired by my faith, not by any fascination with the creatures of the darkness.  In truth, the very idea of vampires petrifies me.  I can’t even re-read my own book!!

What would you like for everyone to know about your book “Be Not Afraid”?

Above all else, the vampires in my book do not sparkle.  They do not have angst.  They are demons, through and through.  And they are…horrifying.

What genre does “Be Not Afraid” fall under?

This book is really a hybrid.  I would call it paranormal suspense/horror, but it has a lot in it that would be considered “inspirational” as well.

How did you come up with the idea for your book?

I’ll bet you won’t get this answer too often:  This creation was spawned from a nightmare I had one night in April of 2010.  I dreamed I was being attacked by a vampire.  Yeesh—it still makes me squirm.  All of my senses were engaged; I could feel everything.  The weirdest sensation was feeling my veins collapse from the blood being drained from them.  Very painful.  When I woke up, although I was totally wide awake, my thoughts segued into what could be thought of as Part 2, and from there the story grew.  My mind was never without it for three weeks; every time the story came to an end, it would start over, adding more and more detail.  Finally I had to write it down.  As I did, those parts on paper went away from inside my head.

How often do you write and normally what is the setting like?

I write in the evenings usually, because I enjoy being outside or doing some sort of physical activity when it’s daylight.  I find it very hard to sit for long periods of time.  As I look around my “setting”, I have to laugh.  For someone who likes things tidy, this area is certainly a departure from normal.  I have my laptop and my manuscript (which I write out first before typing it in) on the dining room table, along with several quilt projects, a small ironing board, DVDs of “Dark Shadows” (both the new movie and the TV series), and sometimes my cat.

Your book is a good versus evil and how do you react day today with this?

There is a lot of evil out there, disguised as “good” or at the very least “harmless”.  We won’t see the forces of darkness for what they are, because they don’t want to show their true colors until they have their victims.  Faith is what helps us discern true good from evil, and keeps us safe through any turmoil as long as we follow the good.

If you were to have lunch with one of your characters from your book which would it be and why?

Saint Therese.  She is my patron saint, and I have always admired how she lived her life.  It is so simple and direct.  I would love to have her by my side to guide me.

How do you think the conversation would go?

I think we’d get along pretty well, although  I would probably embarrass her somewhat.  She was such a quiet, unassuming girl, and I’m, uh, not.  She’d be trying to get me to quiet down, and I would for a bit, but then I’d be “me” again.

Will there be a follow up to “Be Not Afraid”?

I have a prequel/sequel that I’m working on, entitled “Resurgence: The Rise of Judas”.  It already dwarfs the first book, with 655 handwritten pages so far.  In it, we start out in the time of Adam and Eve, hop to the end of the Gospels, then it’s off to 14th-century Carpathia, 17th-century Scotland, 19th-century New Orleans, and then to the present time.  The book takes in the characters of the first story and moves on to their next skirmish with the darkness.  It’s almost done….I think.

So what else is in the future for you?

I’m hoping to write a third book to round out the series. I hadn’t originally planned a third one, but the characters in my present manuscript had a meeting without inviting me, and they decided that little Toby would have some interesting powers that would lead into the final battle.  And I’ve discovered that short stories are a lot of fun to write, so will keep up with that.  I’ve met a lot of fellow writers on Facebook, and I hope to be able to stay in contact with them.

What author, alive or dead, would you like to collaborate on a book with?

I have always loved Robert Louis Stevenson’s work.  It would be terrific to write with him.

What would you like it to be about?

An adventure story, probably suited for kids.  I loved Stevenson’s poetry for children, and it would be great fun to write something like that. 

Friend K.R. Morrison

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FEATURE FRIDAY WITH AUTHOR OF THE HEALING GAME-SUZY MILHOAN

12 Oct

FEATURE FRIDAY WITH AUTHOR OF THE HEALING GAME-SUZY MILHOAN

Suzy Milhoan author of “The Healing Game”

 

What would you like everyone to know about you?

I have been through a lot of tragedy over my lifetime, but I have not given up. I am a survivor and nothing will keep me down. I hope that what I have learned through it can help others who are struggling through the same things. That is the focus of several of my books as I just began my writing career.

What would you like for everyone to know about your book?

It is an inspirational story for others who have lost someone. It displays the progress of my grief from deep depression through my decision to move on and finally becoming happy again. It gives hope to others that if I could come out of what I did, so can they.

What genre does “The Healing Game” fall under?

 It is a memoir that falls under the autobiography genre.

How did you come up with the idea for your book?

I was in school and had to write a creative non-fiction piece and decided to use the subject of losing my husband from colon cancer. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to take myself back into that deep subject, but thought it would help me heal even further, so I did. It was a great piece and did help me further. Later, I decided I would write a book on it to help others who are dealing with a loss and also as a tribute to my husband, Kevin. The responses I have received from the book prove I was successful in doing both.

How often do you write and normally what is the setting like ?

I try to write everyday, but with my schedule that is sometimes hard. My schedule is setup to write a few hours in the morning and a few in the afternoon. With that, I also have time scheduled for reading. I believe reading books in your genre are just as important to learn from others.

As you know, Hotlit Books’ goal is to help authors, so what advice do you offer?

Read just as much as you write. Read successful writers in your genre. Not only will you learn tips from their writing style, but also ideas will pop into your head based on what you read.

 

What past or present author would you like to collaborate on a book and why?

My favorite author is Jodi Picoult. I would love to collaborate with her. I am amazed how she is able to write in multiple voices throughout a book, and then bring them all back together to a successful ending.

Will there be a follow up to “The Healing Game”? 

No, It was a one-time deal.

I read that you are working on “Where’s My Family” are you willing to give us some insight of what it is going to be about?

Sure. This is at the printers right now. It is about a family of rabbits that live under a deck in a burrow. The main character, Johnnie, is a rebel and doesn’t like to listen too well. He ignores what his mother tells him and gets into some trouble. Soon after, the family is trying to find him and they begin to disappear as well. Eventually, they are all reunited as a family in the end.

So what else is in the future for you?

I believe my path for now will be in stories that can help others and children’s books. My passion is to help others through the tragedy I have gone through in my life and also bring joy to children. I may do a series on the bunny family in “Where’s My Family” and I am deciding on which major project to do next right now.

I have always wanted to write about my childhood growing up with domestic violence and also child abuse. My hope is to write about it from the child’s voice so that mother’s could find the extra strength it takes to get out of the situation.

At some point, I believe I will write about my brother, Mike, who suffered from bi-polar and ended his life in suicide. Again, hoping to educate others on bi-polar and the importance for remaining on medication even when the patient feels fine.         

I have read Blindfolded and so sorry for your loss and it is great that you shared it.  How are you coping with it now?

What I have learned through the grieving process I suffered when I lost my husband has helped me cope with losing my brother. I am also able to help my mother. I now recognize the stages she is going through and I am able to talk intelligently to her about how she is feeling. Her greatest compliment to me one day after one of our long talks was when she said, “You just made my day.”

We just made it through my brother’s birthday on September 30th. He would have been 49. We gathered, as a family, at my mother’s to help her keep her mind of it. The 2-year anniversary of his death is October 26th, and I’m sure that will be another tough day.

Friend Suzy!

Feature Friday with Author of Amy “Red” Riding’s Hood -Liz Adams.

28 Sep

Feature Friday with Author of Amy “Red” Riding’s Hood -Liz Adams.

 

 

Tell us about yourself?

Liz Adams

I was born a Chihuahua with a love for chasing other dogs in parks and playing chess and scrabble. Or else that was a dream I had last night. Whichever it is, I know that I discovered my passion for writing erotica in my late teens so I got a minor in Creative Writing along with my major in Music. Or I’m just a super-talented Chihuahua.

Tell us about your book?

My first book is a novella, an erotic version of Alice in Wonderland called Alice’s Sexual Discovery in a Wonderful Land. I’m pleased with how it turned out. Especially since it was a much more challenging task than I had anticipated. It’s hard to care about the characters if they only appear briefly and there’s no time to build a relationship with them. Yet that’s exactly what happens. In Alice in Wonderland, Alice goes from character to character without time to fully appreciate all the goals, motivations, and conflicts each character has. Trying to make the interactions between Alice and those she meets meaningful was very hard to do. But the book’s been getting four and five star reviews, so I couldn’t be happier. In fact, Amazon has paid the recording fees to turn it into an audio book! It should be up on Audible.com very soon now.

 

 

My favorite question that is mostly consistent is do you have to have it quiet or noisy when you are working on your story?

I prefer it noisy, like a café, but writing erotica in a café is not easy. Passers-by might look over my shoulder, for one thing. Which I suppose could lead to some interesting conversations. For another thing, I usually like to have one hand free when I’m writing erotica. In a café, I have to force myself to use both hands typing and I end up squirming in my seat.

What do you think has been the best thing to occur to you after starting to write for others to read?

I recently wrote a touchy blog post that briefly mentioned “rape fantasies” (and how actual rape is completely different from fantasies of non-consensual sex). Though I did get some heated responses from that post, a woman privately thanked me for writing it. She, herself, had fantasies of non-consensual sex and was ashamed for having such thoughts. Knowing it was a normal fantasy to have made her feel better about it. Anytime I can make someone feel better about their sexuality via is a treasure to me.

What book do you think has offered the most influence in your writing?

That’s a tough one. I hate to say it but I feel I learn most from bad writing. When I read bad writing, I ask myself “Why didn’t that work for me?” Answering that question has helped improve my writing tremendously.

If you were to be a character in your book, but not as a lead character, who would you like to be and why? I’d like to be the Cheshire Cat. Like us, he knows what happened in the past, and doesn’t know what will happen in the future. Unlike us, he travels backwards in time. He figures, since hindsight is 20-20, why not travel backwards in time and do everything perfectly.

If one of your books could be turned into a movie which would you prefer it to be and why?

I only have three stories out. The novella Alice’s Sexual Discovery in a Wonderful Land, a short erotic romance story called Amy “Red” Riding’s Hood (an erotic version of Red Riding Hood), and a short story about the most wild sexual experience I had in college called “Squirting Secrets” in the anthology  Campus Sexploits 3:Naughty Tales of Wild Girls in College. Though Amy “Red” Riding’s Hood got voted to be “Book of the Month” for a Goodreads group, I’d have to go with Alice as a movie. I’d love to see that steamy Mad Hatter scene performed in all its wet tea party glory!

Okay so if everyone in the book’s clothes were only one color what color would that be?

The same color as orgasm.

So here is one for you, what book would you like a poster on your wall and what would it show?

I’d love a poster of the cover for Amy “Red” Riding’s Hood. To me it’s sexy as all hell. You can see it here: http://amzn.to/EroticRedRidingHood.

Why did you pick this genre to write and what genres do you like to read?

Actually, I have written in the horror genre before. But I love writing erotica. It’s the only genre where you get to have so much fun editing your book over and over and…yum…over again. I read erotica, of course, but I also like to read thrillers and mysteries.

What are you working on now?

I’m working on a few things. One is an erotic version of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. I’m really excited by this one because in it, Goldie is a thief with the capability of self-defense. So when the three bearish men return, she uses more than just her seductive ways to wiggle in and out of their grasp. I’m also working on a quickie. A short short based off of a fantasy I had at the airport. I’m really loving writing this one, too, because it’s the first time I will have written a story completely from a male perspective. The airport fantasy will attempt to conquer the question of why being dominated by a man is so sexy.

Any tips to other authors on writing?

Just write. Don’t worry about how good or how bad it is. Finish what you’re writing and let the amazing beta-readers (like Xavier) guide you on how to fix it. Also, if you get bored writing a scene, introduce something that would make the scene more interesting for you. If you’re bored writing it, the reader will be bored reading it. If you are super-excited writing it, you’re going in the right direction.

 

Links to the Books:

Campus Sexploits 3: Naughty Tales of Wild Girls in College
http://amzn.to/WildGirlsinCollege

 

Amy Red Riding’s Hood
http://amzn.to.EroticRedRidingHood

Alice’s Sexual Discovery in a Wonderful Land
http://amzn.to/AlicesSexualDiscovery

To be a FEATURE FRIDAY author contact www.hotlitbooks.org.

 

Feature Friday with Author of Fancy Gap, C. David Gelly.

14 Sep

Feature Friday with author of Fancy Gap, C. David Gelly.

What would you like everyone to know about you?

Eternal optimist—lover of life—sets goals & gets them done! Ignores “you can’t do that because!”

What would you like for everyone to know about your book?

First but foremost it’s a work of fiction! First word hit the parchment last October 1, 2011.

How did you come up with the idea for your book?

The legendary fog (cloud deck) that settles in over Fancy Gap on a regular basis is mystical and the notion that a book could be crafted from that planted the seed.

How often do you get out into the woods, to just walk around and enjoy the mountain air. 

Run at noontime just about every day and ride my road bike on the Blue Ridge Parkway on weekends.

How have the folks of Fancy Gap and the surrounding area taken to this book?

Actually much better than I anticipated. The majority, especially the younger set sees it as a very exciting moment. Yet there are a few…but that is simply expected with any novel. I also have a Billboard on Highway 52 halfway between Fancy Gap & Hillsville. So the locals know all about it! 

How often do you write and normally what is the setting like (I write with music in the background or some kind of noise and like and prefer to sit on the back deck with the sun shining)?

When I write it usually is before breakfast. I knock out a 1,000 words at a time. I also write on long flights to Europe or Hawaii.

Which of your characters would you like to solve a mystery with?

Quinn & Louisa are the obvious answers. Yet Levi the Carroll County detective would be a hoot to work with.

Who would be the lead detective?

Levi Blackburn.

This is one of five novels, so how do you know that there will only be five?

Orchard Gap is the next Gap going down the Blue Ridge Parkway. This will be an agro-terrorism mystery/thriller.

Any tips to other authors on writing?

Listen…this isn’t easy. Any author must be committed to the project. Know your audience. Know what will keep them glued to your novel. Keep throwing out bait and reel them into the next chapter. Through in a surprise or two throughout the novel. In Fancy Gap the search was for the little girl. I included a dwarf into the mix. Readers loved it!

I wanted to finish my questions regarding your poem “The Clock of Life”, which of course, is not part of your book, but once I read it I enjoyed it.  Plus these are my questions, so I can deviate.

Do you think that a clock can be wound more than once, if you look at from the standpoint of either new found love or if in the sense of repair?

The clock of love can be wound more than once. The clock of life but once.

"The Clock of Life" 

The Clock of Life is wound but once 
And no man has the power 
To tell just when the hands will stop 
At late or early hour. 
Now is the only time we own 
Love, live, toil with will, 
Do not wait until tomorrow, 
For the Clock may then be still.

 

Much thanks!!! I have included an interview that was recently published.

 

Fog shrouds mountain in mystery

Fancy Gap’s mist inspired an author to set his thriller in the Carroll community.

By Christopher Brooke, Reporter

Friday, August 10, 2012 at 6:00 am (Updated: August 10, 6:00 am)

FANCY GAP  — David Gelly saw possibilities in the famous fog of Fancy Gap — as a shroud of mystery for the setting in his fictional murder thriller.
He’s often driven up U.S. 52 from Winston-Salem, N.C., to his getaway in the mountains, having to slash through fog where he couldn’t see two feet ahead.
Like many drivers who have ended up in the multi-vehicle pileups on Interstate 77 or those who struggled to stay out of accidents in the area, the weather made an impression on Gelly.
To write “Fancy Gap,” Gelly combined his experience as a corporate security supervisor with his love of writing and his interest in the local culture of the Blue Ridge Mountains to pen this tale of a loathsome crime.

“For travelers along the Blue Ridge Parkway at Fancy Gap, the fog often hangs like an azure dream over the rolling green hills,” the book’s blurb says. “But when a madman abducts two children and disappears into the wisps with the young brother and sister, the landscape becomes a nightmare for the children’s parents and local residents.”

“On the bucket list: I said one day I want to write this novel,” he explained.
Staples of Carroll County and Blue Ridge Mountain living appear in the piece, including the Devil’s Den Nature Preserve and the Hillsville Labor Day Gun Show and Flea Market, Buffalo Mountain, the Beaver Dam Trail and vintages from a well-known local winery.
“For travelers along the Blue Ridge Parkway at Fancy Gap, the fog often hangs like an azure dream over the rolling green hills,” the book’s blurb says. “But when a madman abducts two children and disappears into the wisps with the young brother and sister, the landscape becomes a nightmare for the children’s parents and local residents.”
The inspiration came to him in October to write this story. After that, Gelly got up at 4 a.m. each Saturday and sat in his chateau with its panoramic views through the bay windows of the Piedmont. He continues typing until there were 1,000 more words on the page.
“It was a great use of my time instead of going to the bar,” he joked.

READ AN EXCERPT

While the places have their basis in fact, few characters in the book do, Gelly stressed. Any similarity to real people is a coincidence.
Quinn McSpain, the novel’s hero, is a 60-something widower, living like a hermit in his adopted mountain home and still mourning the loss of his spouse.
He meets workaholic FBI agent Louisa Hawke at a retirement party in Arlington, but the couple’s budding romance gets interrupted by a crime that horrifies the mountain community.
Gelly’s previous writing flowed in the non-fiction vein, as the author of many articles for the Twin City Track Club monthly newsletter.
Gelly has directed considerable energy over the years to his running, participating in 50 marathons. His outdoor activities continue, only now he’s hiking, biking and kayaking in the mountains.
Gelly provided security during his time in the U.S. Army, before going on to work for the IRS and then entering the private sector, including working for Sara Lee while it still manufactured clothing in Hillsville and Galax.
That meant he would travel here on occasion to talk about security matters. “I always thought Carroll County was a pretty place.”
No case he investigated in corporate security resembled the plot in the book. However, Gelly did help resolve a prominent scheme where a cotton buyer working to fill Sara Lee’s demand for the textile fiber took kickbacks from suppliers. David H. Mauney III was found guilty of conspiracy, mail fraud and money laundering in federal court in Greensboro.
An estimated $1.2 million was involved and the ringleader went to prison for 6.5 years.
Gelly stands on the verge of retirement himself, at which time he plans to fully immerse himself in the continuing adventures of McSpain and Hawke in the other five planned novels in the “Gap series.”
“Next year, when I retire, I won’t be bound by work,” he explained.

This is the first in a series of six “Gap” novels by David Gelly. Others planned for the series include Orchard Gap, Volunteer Gap, Willis Gap, Squirrel Gap and Low Gap. Fancy Gap is available on Amazon.com and comes in paperback for $14.99 plus shipping or $5.99 for a downloadable version. For more, see Gelly’s blog, www.makedustoreatdust.com.

Friend C. David Gelly

 

 

5 Reasons Why INDIE WRITERS Rock!

11 Sep

Why INDIE WRITERS Rock!

 

1. They have no publishing house-this may seem like a ridiculous idea of why INDIE WRITERS rock but they work even harder because they don’t have a big fat check to sit and write with. They either write to live or they live to write. 

2. Mistakes are made in every industry. With a writer, a writer that is “traditionally” published this is what an editor is for. With an INDIE WRITER you see their mistakes. This makes them human, humble.

3. Approachable. Meanwhile the big names you can’t say hi to on Facebook or get to know what they do day in and day out. An INDIE WRITER will say hello and “Friend” you. They will get to know their readers. They in fact depend on them.

4. An INDIE WRITER inspires us all. If a flunked out English major can write a best seller we all can. 

5. They are constantly improving their craft. With a “traditionally” published author they have editors, publisher and marketers that work with them to continually help them. With an INDIE WRITER you can watch them evolve into a beautiful writer with help from their readers, friends, and others who are in their inner circle. 

 

Support your INDIE WRITER and download a book today at www.hotlitbooks.org!

Feature Friday with Author of The Super Spies and The Cat Lady Killer, Lisa Orchard.

7 Sep

Feature Friday with Author of The Super Spies and The Cat Lady Killer

Lisa Orchard.

.

What would you like everyone to know about you?

I would like everyone to know that I write awesome Young Adult Novels. My goal for my stories is to be entertaining while at the same time teach the young reader some valuable lessons.

 

What would you like for everyone to know about your book

 

I would like everyone to know that it’s a story of three teens that play an innocent game of Truth or Dare. The game turns dangerous when they find the dead body of the “Cat Lady”. It’s a suspenseful thriller filled with twists and turns. But it goes much deeper than the average thriller, it delves into the relationships of the three girls and there’s also life lessons embedded in the story.

 

How did you come up with the idea for your book?

 

From some of my own exploits as a teen. When I was younger I wanted to be a detective too, much like the main character Sarah. Of course, I never investigated a murder but my friends and I did investigate a case of vandalism in our neighborhood. We never solved the crime, but that summer was one of the best summers of my childhood.

 

How many cats do you have?

 

We have two cats, Mickey and Baby

 

How often do you write and normally what is the setting like (I write with music in the background or some kind of noise)?

 

I write most mornings. That’s when my sons are most active and play together. Since they’re occupied I’m able to get some writing done. The background noise is usually my kids playing Transformers or Toy Story.  Then in the afternoon I take the kids out for an activity, like the beach or the zoo, anything that’ll keep them away from the TV.

This will be the first year that both boys will be in school full time.  So, I plan on getting a lot of writing done. I’m working on the third Super Spies book and a coming of age Young Adult Novel.

 

On average, how many times do you reread your books, before sending it for publishing?

Oh…that’s a tough question. I would have to guess at least 5-10 times. And that’s just a guess it’s probably more. I’m always looking for ways to improve my stories, either by making scenes scarier or making my dialogue spicier, that kind of thing.

 

Which character from your book would you like to partner with as a detective and why?

That’s a tough question, because I like the main character Sarah because she’s so smart and confident in her beliefs but Jackie makes the adventure fun. She’s quite spontaneous. Hmmm…I guess I’ll have to pick Sarah because she is so determined and focused.

How do you think the conversations would go?

 

I think they would probably go with Sarah coming up with some crazy scheme to find the villain and me being older and wiser (wink) would find flaws with her ideas. J Then there would be a heated debate with her conceding to my point of view…but very reluctantly.   Jackie would be the peacemaker and Lacey would pick my side because she’s not as adventurous as Sarah.

 

So it is easy to say that if not writing you would like to be a detective?

 

LOL! Is it that obvious? I love fighting for the underdog, so yeah I guess I would love to be a detective.

What was the hardest part about writing this story?

 

Hmmm…I would have to say keeping the dialogue consistent. In real life teenagers have a tendency to copy each other. But in a book they can’t because their dialogue is part of their character development. So if Sarah has a favorite phrase, Jackie can’t use it even though in real life she would.

 

What motivates you to write a story?

 

Another good question! I would have to say when I come across a particular message that I want to communicate to readers I make up a story that illustrates that message. I try to be entertaining while at the same time, teach something.

 

Any tips to other authors on writing?

 

Yes, I would say keep writing and don’t let the rejection letters get you down. Everyone gets them. If I could be so bold as to offer advice to aspiring writers I would say don’t be afraid to ask an agent/publisher what they didn’t like about your manuscript. That’s what I did and I got that golden nugget that I needed to change the no to a yes. 

If you would like to be part of our Feature Friday program contact us at www.hotlitbooks.org.

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