Author Spotlight Wrap Up

I’ve had fun with my Author Spotlight series. I’ve made some good friends, learned a lot, and have discovered some interesting books.

I announced the series just over four months ago, and have had some fabulous entries since then. If you missed any, here’s the full list:

What’s Next?

Finishing the series doesn’t mean I’m going to stop doing spotlights entirely, they just won’t be a regular thing. I’d like to take more time with each spotlight in the future to really personalize them. One thing I don’t want to change, though, is asking “different” questions.

A lot of the authors I profiled mentioned that my questions were new and different. They weren’t things they’d been asked before, and I’m really happy about that. It’s what I was trying to do. I hope they didn’t get boring for the readers, either.

While I’m comfortable ending the series, I have to admit, it means the pressure’s on for coming up with blog content. The spotlights meant I had plenty of content to publish, and now I’ll have to come up with stuff regularly on my own again. As such, I may not post as often for a while, until I get back into that flow. I hope you don’t mind.

Anyway, if you enjoyed the spotlights, drop me a comment and let me know. If you’ve got suggestions, leave those in the comments as well. I hope you enjoy the rest of your week.

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Author Spotlight: Edd Sowder

Welcome — or welcome back — to my last Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

This spotlight is special. I’ve got the spotlight turned on Edd Sowder, Vice President of Burning Willow Press, my publisher. He’s finding time to write again, among his MANY other duties and projects, and yet still managed to find some time to answer some questions both on paper and in his video interview (at the bottom of the page).

Burning Willow Press Banner

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we go to learn more about it and you?

Cover of Crossroads in the Dark 3Okay, since I am the publisher and not sure when this will be produced, I will tell you the one I am finalizing currently with the author. I am currently working on finishing Crossroads in the Dark III: Monsters Under Your Bed which is an anthology based on what scares you, me, them, it, each other, whatever. Real monsters, make believe monsters, like the boogeyman or the politician. We are in pre-production of book 3 of The Human Undead War trilogy by Jonathan Ondrashek as well called A Kingdom’s Fall. Look for it to be released in September with CRITD III. [NOTE: Edd’s video spotlight includes an updated discussion of what’s coming out next]

Continue reading “Author Spotlight: Edd Sowder”

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Author Spotlight: S. L. Perrine

Welcome — or welcome back — to another Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

Today the spotlight is on award-winning author of many genres, S. L. Perrine.

SL Perrine Banner

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we go to learn more about it and you?

Advertisement for Turning The StoneMy next book Is Turning the Stone. It’s the 2nd book in The Blood Rites Trilogy, published by Vamptasy and CHBB Publishing.  It releases in January of 2018. To find out more information you can check out my website www.slperrine.com  I always post my release dates and news about upcoming releases.

How well would you fit in one of your books?

It depends on the book. The Crawford Witch Chronicles is set in this time period. So, I could fit in that series well enough. I’m also a witch, so maybe they’d let me join their coven.

The rest, not so much. I’m not a fighter, nor am I a dragon, and I don’t think I kick anyone’s ass in this lifetime. My body is to fragile lol

Do your characters talk to you?

Yes, almost all the time. When I’m not writing they speak to me and tell me what they want to do next. While I’m writing they speak to me when they change their mind about what they want to do next. It’s a horrid cycle, but it keeps things interesting.

Can you read other things when you’re working on a book, or do you have to stick with writing?

I read other things. Sometimes I read in the genre I’m writing just to keep the tone of my writing even. Sometimes I don’t, and it makes me veer off. For instance, I’m moving out of writing YA, but I love to read it. I have to coax myself into getting bolder with my writing while I read a new YA novel. It’s a little frustrating, but at least I’m not getting inappropriate while writing a YA novel, while reading an erotica. That was funny. My characters suddenly wanted to rip each other’s clothes off.

What is one question you’ve always wanted to be asked in an interview?

I’ve never considered that I hadn’t been asked the proper questions in an interview. I think I’ve been asked an array of questions, just depends on the interview.

Ms. Perrine took some extra time out of her busy schedule to answer a few follow up questions via Skype. Check out her video interview for some fun additional information about her.

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Photo of S. L. PerrineThank you, Ms. Perrine for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. If you want to know more about S. L. Perrine, she can be found on numerous websites:

Her books are on Amazon.

 

I’ve only got one spotlight left before I wrap up this series! Subscribe to my blog so you don’t miss it.

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Author Spotlight: K. J. Taylor

Welcome — or welcome back — to another Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

Today the spotlight is on Australian archivist, K. J. Taylor.

KJ Taylor Banner

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we go to learn more about it and you?

I’ve got two upcoming trilogies, one of which will start coming out this year, and the other of which will come out at the tail end of 2018. My closest new release is a novel called The Last Guard, which was originally published in 2015, but the publisher closed its doors and I’ve now found a new publisher who will be re-releasing it. You can read more about it on kjtaylor.com. Once it’s available again in December 2017, I’ll add links to places you can buy it!

Has anyone ever made a suggestion for one of your stories that you liked so much, you altered said story to include it?

Yes! In fact it’s happened twice now. The first time around I was talking to a friend/fan about a character of mine. I told her how I was going to have him form a touching bond with a troubled teenage girl. The friend immediately insisted that the two of them should fall in love despite the 20 year age difference, and I eventually did just that… except I wrote it as extremely messed up and unhealthy, complete with substance abuse, a spot of domestic violence and an accidental pregnancy. My friend was not at all pleased! The second time it happened was with a fan who had been reading ahead in a series of mine – I shared the manuscripts with him as I was writing. He told me he wanted a certain thing to happen. At first I was reluctant, but I ultimately realised that he had spotted something I hadn’t: that I’d been unconsciously foreshadowing this thing right from the beginning. So I went ahead with it, and was very glad I did.

What is the quickest you’ve ever written a book?  Longest?

I once wrote an entire 100,000 word novel in four days. No, I’m not joking. Four days. I was a complete wreck afterwards, mind you. I could barely remember my own name. The longest would probably be… maybe a year? When it takes me that long it’s generally because I’ve abandoned the manuscript and not come back to it until a while later. With some of them I never went back, and those books are likely to remain unfinished. Oh well. It happens.

What do you want your tombstone to say?

“The World Is Made Of Stories, And Mine Has Been Told”

Do you know how all of your characters look and sound?

Definitely! It helps that I draw pictures of them, and have recorded myself reading a lot of my books aloud. When I read, I’m always careful to give each character their own voice. And by that I don’t mean a goofy accent or something; I alter the tone, pitch and speed of my voice depending on who’s speaking. It’s a lot of fun!

Can you read other things when you’re working on a book, or do you have to stick with writing?

Honestly, these days I read very little fiction and mostly stick with non-fiction.When you spend three days a week writing novels and short stories and the rest of the week thinking about writing them, after a while fictional stories become something you need to take a break from during Me Time. It’s like working in a chocolate factory; after a while you’d really prefer to just have a salad.

The Books of the Cymria Saga

Do you have a favorite book/story among the one’s you’ve written? Why is it so special to you?

Tough question! (That’s why I picked it, actually. I wanted a challenge). There are a few books and stories of mine I’m particularly proud of, but if I had to pick a favourite it would have to be the final book of my Cymrian Saga series (given that the series is 18 books long and covers about 500 years, I decided it had earned the right to be caleld a Saga). The Last Guard is book 7 in that series, so we’ve got a way to go yet! The final book is called The Touch of Light, and I’m proud of it for a few reasons. One is that it’s the book where everything (well, most things) is finally resolved, and my favourite characters get the closure they deserve. It’s also the book where I finally said goodbye to that world after over a decade of writing in it, so there was a bittersweet feeling as I wrote the last few pages. A major theme of the story is homecoming – finally forgetting your troubles and returning to the place where you belong, able to rest now since there’s nothing more that needs to be done, and peace has come. That was how writing it felt.

What is one question you’ve always wanted to be asked in an interview?

Honestly, I love being asked specific questions about the actual content of my books rather than generic stuff like “where do you get your ideas?” and “what advice do you have for aspiring authors?”. You can only answer questions like that so many times before you run out of interesting answers. I much prefer to be interviewed by someone who’s read my books and has questions like “what was the name of [character’s] mother?” or “What did [character] mean when he said [dialogue quote]?”. That’s when I really get engaged and am answering questions for reasons other than to be polite!

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Photo of KJ TaylorThank you, Ms. Taylor for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. If you’d like to know more about K. J. Taylor, you can check out her websiteFacebook page, and Twitter. Her books are on Amazon.

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Author Spotlight: Susan Schwartz

Welcome — or welcome back — to another Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

Today the spotlight is on author and nurse, Susan Schwartz.

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we learn more about it and you?

Cover of Centennial AnthologyMy next book coming out is the Virginia Writers Club Anthology 1918 – 2018 celebrating 100 years of writing. It comes out on November 4, 2017. [Note, it is now out and can be found on Amazon.] I have a non-fiction piece in it titled “Using my Karate Chops in Nursing.”

In the Fall of 2018, I have another non-fiction book being released titled “Haunted Charlottesville and Surrounding Counties.” It covers the history and hauntings in and around Charlottesville. These include UVA, Monticello, Michie Tavern, Comyn Hall, the old Albemarle County Jail, and other locations. Other counties include Madison, Nelson, Greene, Orange, and several more. I visited the dwellings, took many tours, and researched the history of the specific venue. I hope that everyone will enjoy reading about the history and the current ghostly situation. It is a book for everyone, including Civil War buffs, travelers looking for an interesting place to stay, and paranormal investigators. There is something for everyone.

Do you have a favorite book/story among the ones you’ve written? Why is it so special to you?

My favorite story is “The Sparkling Floor.” Not only was it my first story ever published, it was also based on my experiences as an OR Nurse. I enjoyed bringing my two worlds together in such a horrifying way.

What genre do you wish you could write?

Sci-Fi. It is so popular these days. While I am a huge Star Trek nerd, I just cannot place the words on paper for some reason. Maybe I will try a Sci-Fi Horror one day.

Can you read other things when you are working on a book, or do you have to stick with writing?

I read about 4 books at one time, I get bored very easily. So when writing, if I get stuck, I tend to pick up my latest books and read a chapter or two in each one just to get my mind off the issue I am having writing. It helps immensely.

Does what you’re writing at any given time feature in your dreams?

No, but I have had my characters wake me up and ask when I am going to finish their story. I have actually gone back to a paranormal romance because the characters were after me to get it done. I have written several chapters and really like the direction the story is going in at present.

Do you support the Oxford Comma?

Yes, I am old school. I like things separated as they should be. The meaning is that much clearer as well, I believe.

If you could have an accent from anywhere in the world, what would it be and why?

I would love a crisp Australian accent. Having visited the country and picking up on the accent for a bit, I really enjoyed being able to talk differently for a little while until I got back to the US, and I started talking normally again.

Did you have a security blanket as a child?

Yes, it was a pink stuffed dinosaur named Dino that my father had brought me from Canada. I still have the little fella today.

Would you rather be invisible or able to read minds?

Read minds, I think that would be interesting to be able to act on another’s thoughts before they even think about it themselves. Hmmmm, sounds like a good horror story.

What are you most nostalgic for from your childhood?

The easier way of life and Saturday morning cartoons.

What is one question you’ve always wanted to be asked in an interview?

I always loved Bugs Bunny as a child, and I loved Gossamer, the red-haired monster. I always wonder who else liked him as well. A close second was Marvin the Martian and his space modulator. My question would be Who is your favorite Bugs Bunny character.

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Susan SchwartzThank you, Ms. Schwartz for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. If you’d like to know more about Susan Schwartz, you can check out her website and Facebook page. Her books are on Amazon.

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Author Spotlight: Debbie Manber Kupfer

Welcome — or welcome back — to another Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

Today the spotlight is on word and logic puzzle constructor and prolific author, Debbie Manber Kupfer.

Debbie Manber Kupfer Banner

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we go to learn more about it and you?

Cover of UmbraeI have two recent releases. In March, Umbrae, the third part of my P.A.W.S. Saga came out (and now I’m working on number four, Londinium). Also I just released my first ever picture book, Esmeralda Grunch and the Red Tulip. I wrote the story originally for a contest and everyone who read it said it needed to be a picture book. Then I was fortunate to meet a talented artist from Sri Lanka, Tina Wijesiri, online and she helped bring my little fairy to life.

You can pick up all my books from my Amazon page and follow me on my blog, Facebook page, Twitter or sign up for my newsletter, P.A.W.S. Post.

Do you have a favorite book/story among the ones you’ve written? Why is it so special to you?

It has to be P.A.W.S. because it’s where it all started. I’d been writing stories all my life and always knew I wanted someday to write a book, but I thought I had all the time in the world. Then in 2011 I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I went through treatment and today thankfully I’m cancer free, but my bout with cancer made me realize my mortality, that maybe I don’t have all the time in the world and that if I really wanted to write that book I had to do it now. So in November 2012 I decided to try NaNoWriMo and in that month I wrote the first draft of P.A.W.S.  And the following June after many rounds of edits it was published. Holding that book in my hands for the first time was an amazing experience.

What one person would you most like to get your book(s) noticed by?

Neil Gaiman would be nice. I have this fantasy that I get to meet him one day and he tells me how much he liked one of my books!

Do you drink coffee/tea? Do you find you drink more coffee/tea when you’re working on a book?

Tea – I drink about a gallon of tea a day and even more when I’m working on a book. I’m originally from England and like my tea like most Brits do strong with milk added. I also strongly believe that with enough tea and dark chocolate you can do anything.

Do you write in a linear or non-linear fashion?

I’m a non-linear gal. I cannot write a story in order as most folks who have read my books know. I have been known to put flashbacks in my flashbacks! Because of that and because I’m writing a long series I keep a running timeline that I add to whenever my story includes a new significant event. Without that I’d never keep it all straight.

What is one question you’ve always wanted to be asked in an interview?

My favorite dinosaur! – It’s a stegosaurus by the way.

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Debbie Manber KupferThank you, Ms. Kupfer for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. If you’d like to know more about Debbie Manber Kupfer, you can check out her blog, Facebook page, and Twitter. Her books are on Amazon.

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Author Spotlight: Beth Hudson

Welcome — or welcome back — to another Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

Today the spotlight is on fantasy author Beth Hudson.

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we go to learn more about it and you?

Cover of Seeing GreenMy most recent book is a collection of my short stories called “Seeing Green”. It’s available through both Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com. I have an author page on both Amazon and Goodreads, as well as an author website and a Facebook page. My next book is a sequel to my novel “Etched in Fire” called “A Gift of Flame”.

Do you feel you’re influenced by other authors?

I am very influenced by other authors. Every author who has contributed to my world view influences my works by bending me in a slightly different direction than I would have gone otherwise; every story I read shows me something different. When I read anything that really impresses me, I look at what the author has done to create a compelling story, and try to figure out how that would or would not work for my writing. Ideas cross-pollinate and help me create stronger stories.

Do you write in a linear or non-linear fashion?

I write primarily in a linear fashion – I’m a “pantser” a writer who wings the first draft, meaning that I tend to go through chronologically and find out where the story is headed. After that I carefully edit to make sure that my story is as strong as possible. However, there are times when I get a scene from further along in my head, and need to make sure that I either write it then, or at least make notes about it, so that I can write the scene effectively later.

Do you have any unique or quirky writing habits?

I often write to music.

What’s the first thing you’d do if you won the lottery?

I would absolutely travel. I love traveling, and seldom am able to, so if I had the finances, I’d probably be making plans to visit other cities and countries. As it is, I have to rely on traveling to other worlds in my reading.

What is one question you’ve always wanted to be asked in an interview?

Hmmm… probably “Why do you write?” Because the answer to that varies so widely among authors that everyone will probably have a different answer. In my case, it’s a combination of wanting to give others stories that will affect them as strongly as I have been affected by the stories I have read, and an outlet for those stories I have always had in my head, but was not able to effectively share before I developed a strong writing style.

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Photo of Beth HudsonThank you, Ms. Hudson for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. If you’d like to know more about Beth Hudson, you can check out her website, Facebook, and Goodreads page. Her books are on Barnes and Noble and Amazon.

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Author Spotlight: Jean Ecrivain

Welcome — or welcome back — to another Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

Today the spotlight is on Canadian erotica author, Jean Ecrivain. Don’t worry, this post is PG, even if her books aren’t. 🙂

Jean Ecrivan Banner

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we go to learn more about it and you?

Cover of Steamy Shorts 4My most recently published book is Steamy Shorts 4. My most recent books are Steamy Shorts 5 which is getting ready to be published [Note: this is now published], and Well Met in Dragon Light, which I’m currently writing. They’ll all be available on Amazon before Christmas but the best place to find out about them before then is my website https://jeanecrivain.wordpress.com/ . I post my news about sales and information on my new books there. You can also sign up for my newsletter there as well as get links to my Facebook and Amazon pages.

Has anyone ever made a suggestion for one of your stories that you liked so much, you altered said story to include it?

Oh, yes. I’ve never actually altered a story because of a suggestion. But I’m always asking for suggestions for my Steamy Shorts series especially. And several of the stories in that series were written because somebody asked for a particular fantasy. In the intro to Queen Bee, I talk about how someone asked me to do a scene between two males and I couldn’t do it properly because I was too hung up. Queen Bee was written specifically because I didn’t want to leave the request undone. I wanted to do a proper job of that request. So, yes, I take suggestions and requests seriously and I’m always writing what my readers ask for.

Do you write in a linear or non-linear fashion?

Usually a linear fashion. I’m a little bit lazy. I’m always looking for an easier way to write. When I write short pieces like short stories, I usually have only the barest idea of what I’m going to write. The idea being that even if I mess up the investment of time isn’t that bad. Unfortunately, lately I’ve had a couple of serious setbacks with pantsing on short works, so I’m not sure if that was false laziness or not. We’ll have to see. Hen Party ended up way out of hand at almost twice its target length. And I really wasn’t that happy with the result although it was good enough. So I may rethink my process.

However, when I’m writing book length stories, I always plot them first. There’s a number of advantages to being a plotter, one of which is that I can write non-linearly if I wish. But I’ve always preferred to tell the story the way the reader will read it. That is linearly. That way if I decide to make a change, I don’t have to throw out any work. For example, in Well Met in Dragon Life, I decided to add a whole chapter. If I had jumped to write the chapter after and then added a new chapter, I’d have had a major rewrite. However, from time to time, I do suffer from writer’s block. I just don’t want to write the scene I’m working on. In that case, I’ll jump ahead, write a different scene and then come back to the scene I was having problems with. But generally I dislike writing non-linearly.

What’s the first thing you’d do if you won the lottery?

Pay off my debts so I’m not always worrying about money. Then I’d either travel or buy a tiny hobbit house in the woods somewhere.

Since I already live in a cottage town, the only reason to buy a hobbit house is because I’ve always wanted to live in a fantasy house. It used to be a real castle but now I’d like a hobbit hole. Not a nasty, slimy hole but a proper hobbit hole. One that doesn’t need the cleaning that this place does.

As for travel, I’ve always wanted to see the places that gave rise to the fantasy homes I’ve dreamt of. New Zealand and the movie hobbit houses. England, Scotland and Wales for the forests and castles and Doctor Who. Oh, and Harry Potter, of course. France … well, Paris, Toy and I. What can I say?

Maybe I’d just hire a maid service.

Living the dream that’s me.

What is one question you’ve always wanted to be asked in an interview?

The question I’d like to be asked is, “If you could do anything else with your life, what would it be?” Because I’ve done many other things. I still have to do other things to keep the wolf from the door. And the truth is they all suck. The thing that makes me feel most alive, the thing that I most want to do, is write. I’ve always wanted to write. I’ve always dreamed of writing for a living. So the thing I most want to do is to be read. Because if enough people read my books, I can keep writing and publishing my books for a living. And that would make me very happy. And horny. Mustn’t forget that. There is another advantage to writing Erotica, after all.

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Cover of Steamy Shorts 5Thank you, Ms. Ecrivain for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. If you’d like to know more about Jean Ecrivain, you can check out her Facebook and website, and you can find her books on Amazon.

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Author Spotlight: C L Barber

Welcome — or welcome back — to another Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

Today the spotlight is on history teacher and author of the Chronicles of Kilion series, C L Barber.

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we go to learn more about it and you?

Cover of Keeper Of The KeystoneMy current book is Keeper of the Keystone, available on Kindle and paperback from Amazon. I am in the final editing stages of my latest book, the sequel, “Key to Dragon Falls which is due out [in a few days] and which I am very excited about!

How well would you fit in in one of your books?

I think I would fit in well with the three main characters as I think each one has an element of me in them and would be people I would like to spend time with. They also end up in Kilion in a castle which I would love! As a historian, I used lots of ideas of medieval history in my work and created a place I would personally like to visit. 

Would you rather your book(s) be filmed for a movie, or a tv series?

I would rather my book be made into a film but think that with the different characters and scenes, that it would also work really well as a tv series. There are lots of likeable character, colourful places, creatures and scenes that would lend it to the screen. In fact, many of the reviews on Amazon state they think it would make a really good film. Fingers crossed.

Can you read other things when you’re working on a book, or do you have to stick with writing?

I am always reading a book as I run a Facebook book club. However, the genre is very different, reading lots of contemporary work and mysteries at the moment so that I don’t lose my voice for my fantasy novels. I have read very few fantasy novels so that I am not tempted to include ideas from other fantasy writers.

What is the hardest scene you’ve ever written?

I wrote about an attack and murders at the start of my first book. I edited it about 20 times and still am not 100% certain I got it completely right. 

What do you want your tombstone to say?

Mother, wife and someone who made a difference.

Would you rather be invisible, or able to read minds?

I would love to be able to read minds. People are so diverse and to know what they think while they are saying something else would be really interesting. 

What’s the first thing you’d do if you won the lottery?

If I won millions, I’d start an organisation to help people but by surprising people with gifts for what they need. 

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Photo of C L BarberThank you, Ms. Barber for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. Have you heard about the Chronicles of Kilion series? Are you a fan of fantasy books? Leave me a comment and let me know.

If you’d like to know more about C L Barber, you can check out her Facebook and Twitter. You can find her books on Amazon.

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Author Spotlight: Pen W.

Welcome — or welcome back — to another Author Spotlight! If you’re new and want to know more about how the series got started, go check out the introduction post.

Today the spotlight is on Hidradenitis Suppurativa Warrior and prolific writer, Pen W.

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Let’s start with the most important. What’s your most recent/next book, and where can we go to learn more about it and you?

Cover of Eight on a BladeMy most recent book is Eight on a Blade. It is fiction in which eight people with the debilitating skin illness, Hidradenitis Suppurativa take drastic measures to raise awareness. (If you Google the words Hidradenitis Suppurativa, please be advised: images can be graphic). Before Eight on a Blade, I wrote HS Warrior, essays on my personal experiences with Hidradenitis Suppurativa. I am currently working on a sci-fi time travel series. I have actually self-published somewhere around 30 titles. I gave up keeping count.

Do you have a favorite book/story among the one’s you’ve written? Why is it so special to you?

Nero’s Fiddle is my absolute favorite, a post-apocalyptic thriller/sci fi. It’s kind of a Tom Cruise/Bruce Willis action except the heroes are women. It is detailed and descriptive in its portrayal of America after an electromagnetic pulse attack and it has quite a few unexpected plot twists. I also like the Sword of Tilk Trilogy, a young adult fantasy. It was so much fun writing the real world, then writing the fantasy world.

Do you know how all of your characters look and sound?

Before I put pen to paper (or get on the computer) I visualize my characters: how they act, how they dress, talk and move, and how they interact. I run dialogue in my head until I have it memorized then I’m ready to start writing it down.

Can you read other things when you’re working on a book, or do you have to stick with writing?

I stick with the writing, so much that dishes don’t get washed and laundry doesn’t get done until I can pull myself out of the world I am creating to get those things done. Nothing else exists except what I am working on. I don’t read anything because I don’t want what I’m reading to influence what I’m writing.

What is the hardest scene you’ve ever written?

Cover of Nero's FiddleThe running scene in Nero’s Fiddle. It was set in Washington DC. Even though my best friend and I visited DC, I didn’t go the route of the scene because I hadn’t written it yet. I relied on maps – street maps as well as satellite maps – to determine the route.

What do you want your tombstone to say?

No tombstone for me. My ashes will be buried in a bio-urn and I’m coming back as a Japanese Maple tree.

What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?

One reviewer said about Nero’s Fiddle that it was “better than a Saturday night date!” The best compliment I can think of is for someone to tell me, “I didn’t want to put your book down,” or “at the end, I wanted more.” I have been told, “your story made me cry.” Though I don’t intend to make anyone cry, it means that I must be doing something right.

What are you most nostalgic for from your childhood?

My father waking us up about 5:00 on a Sunday morning and driving to the north Georgia mountains. My mother and brother would fall asleep and it would be just me and my dad awake. It was quiet and peaceful. I stayed awake because I didn’t want to miss anything and my Dad depended on me to keep his coffee cup filled from the thermos he brought.

What is one question you’ve always wanted to be asked in an interview?

Where does your inspiration come from/where do you get your ideas? The answer is everywhere and everything. For instance, I wrote Project Moreau from a story I heard on the news. I got the inspiration for Nero’s Fiddle from another book. Inspiration and ideas are everywhere, you just have to be open to them.

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Photo of Pen W.Alright, thanks to Pen for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. Have you read any of her books before? Do you know anyone afflicted with Hidradenitis Suppurativa?

If you’d like to know more about Pen, you can check out Twitter and Facebook. You can find most of her books on Amazon.

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