Posts Tagged With: author

Interview with Author Sharnel Williams

Today, I’m pleased to introduce Sharnel Williams. She has been featured on this blog in the past, but since her original interview, she has greatly expanded her list of accomplishments. Sharnel’s story has inspired many people and she is a role model to many women. I hope you will enjoy this interview.

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Hi, Sharnel. Welcome back to Authors to Watch. Can you please tell us a little about yourself?

Born & raised in Newark, NJ, I’m a wife, mother, writer, radio host and entrepreneur.

I understand you are hosting a Women Empowerment Luncheon. How did you get the idea to host this event?

I knew it was time to tell my story. One day I posted on Facebook to be a part of someone’s Women Empowerment Conference. I receive a couple of inboxes and they were telling me to have my own. Then the rest was history.

What types of events do you have planned as part of this event?

It would be 10 motivational speakers including myself. This is my first, so I’m going to keep it simple. I’m still learning. Food-Entertainment-Raffle-Gift bags.

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How do you think this event will help and empower women?

It will help in many ways. If one speaker can inspire one person, we have done our job.

Where can my readers go to learn more about the luncheon or to buy tickets?

Website: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/you-are-not-alone-presents-women-empowerment-luncheon-registration-29131287465?aff=es2

What inspired you to begin your writing and publishing career?

It was different for me. My son passed away from leukemia 2 days after his 12th birthday. That’s when my writing started. Yes, I was a late bloomer.

Can you tell us about your published books?

I have several books published. I would love for everyone to support my work. You can go to my website and learn more about me and my books: www.authorsharnel.com

Can you tell us a little about your publishing company, Shar-Shey Publishing?

Yes. Let’s start with the name. Shar, come from Shakil my son and Sharnel. Shey, come from I had a stillborn fullterm in 1992 and I named her Varshey. I started my company because I wanted people who couldn’t afford them high price companies, to be able to get their stories out with an affordable company. www.sharsheypublishingcompany.com

As an author, publisher, and speaker, how do you use your story to inspire others to achieve their dreams?

I look back at my life, never thought about writing a book. Never knew my son was going to pass away at an early age, from cancer. I inspire others by my accomplishments. Meaning, you are going to get Tested in life. You must follow your goals and keep walking straight. Things happen for a reason.

What’s next for you, Sharnel? Do you have any upcoming books, events, or projects to tell us about?

Yes. My son has a memorial park in Newark, NJ @ Branch Brook Park. Every year we have an event around August, it’s free to the public.  We give back to the kids.

I want to thank everyone who has supported me and continue supporting me. God is Good!

To learn more about Sharnel Williams, you can visit the following links:

 

Categories: author feature, author interview, author of the week, authors to watch, interview | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Interview with Shannon Muir

Today’s guest is blogger and author, Shannon Muir. Welcome, Shannon! Can you tell us a little about yourself? 

I’m a writer who has worked in a variety of mediums, from prose to poetry to animation scriptwriting. My favorite genres are science fiction, fantasy, and mystery – both to read and write – though I have written about some other subject matters. Also, I’m known for running two blogs that focus on writers, INFINITE HOUSE OF BOOKS at http://www.house-of-books.com that features author interviews and guest posts, while DISCOVER WORDS at http://www.discoverwords.com leans more toward excerpts and cover reveals. INFINITE HOUSE OF BOOKS has been around for about three years now, and DISCOVER WORDS for around two, though after a rather catastrophic incident with my provider both blogs have to be rebuilt, so I appreciate patience with any readers who come to visit. I’ve also held production positions on animated series that continue to remain fan favorites such as INVADER ZIM and EXTREME GHOSTBUSTERS., as well as worked as part of the team that launched the now-closed NEOPETS spinoff virtual world PETPET PARK.

I grew up with my father reading my sister and I THE HOBBIT and THE LORD OF THE RINGS as bedtime stories; Bilbo Baggins is absolutely still my favorite literary character of all time. Favorite books also included all of L. Frank Baum’s OZ novels and C.S. Lewis’ NARNIA books. I also grew up reading Encyclopedia Brown and every single Nancy Drew story I could get my hands on. Those early loves I believe still reflect in all I do.

When did you begin writing?

I wrote my first novel at the age of 10, though the quality might be dubious. Around the same time period in school, the class was writing poems and the best of the class would be chosen to be displayed in the mall; I wrote a couplet about a journey through a toy store. My poem turned out to be one of the ones selected, but that didn’t really make an impact at the time. It would be my sixth grade teacher, Naomi Yap, who would make the most difference. Every week we had twenty spelling words, and she would challenge us to write stories in class that had to use all twenty words, and the next week the best ones would be read to the class. Mine would repeatedly end up being read to the class, and this really made an impact; she also chose one of those stories to display at the mall that year. An interesting aside, I did a set of stories about a boy and a girl and their cat who regularly went to a magic fantasy land called Zim where they assumed alternate identities and had fantastic adventures; little did I know that many years later I would be a Production Coordinator on a cult favorite called INVADER ZIM that – other than the name -bears absolutely no relation!

During my teen years, I turned my attention to learning about animated scriptwriting, but didn’t completely give up on prose writing. I wrote another novel at seventeen, a book on teenage pregnancy in a small town, which I even attempted to send to New York agents. I did go on to get a degree in English-Creative-Writing as well as Radio-TV, but found out after I entered that genre fiction such as I preferred to write was frowned upon, so I actually did all my writing workshops in poetry. This experience dissuaded me from continuing to write prose for a while. For years I focused solely on writing for the animation medium and didn’t pick up the prose bug again around 2004, when I stumbled on a call for submissions to an anthology called ARIA KALSAN; someone had already developed a world and wanted people to write stories based on the “bible”; since that is similar to how live-action and animation television series are done it felt a natural segue to try my hand after such a long time. I began writing regularly again after taking the National Novel Writing Month challenge in 2005 (see http://www.nanowrimo.org for more on this), which I have completed successfully for ten years as of 2014. I’ve made a lot of those manuscripts available via self-publishing, because while they are personal passion products for me with interesting characters and settings, they don’t reflect my primary love of genre fiction which is what I am starting to pursue in earnest. With Pro Se Press, and other outlets, that is finally coming to fruition all these years later.

Can you tell us about your most recent release?

“Ghost of the Airwaves” focuses on a radio actress who starred alongside her husband on a popular radio drama. He’s killed and the police are sure the case is closed. However, a mysterious letter that comes through her mail slot from the “Ghost of the Airwaves” lets her know that the police missed some crucial information. When the police don’t seem to take things seriously enough, the radio actress decides she’s going to take things into her own hands  and be sure that everyone involved with her husband’s death is found.

How did you get the idea for the book?

Book is really becoming more of a generic term, it seems. “Ghost of the Airwaves” is what is known as a digital single, which in other words is a short story packaged on its own with a cover. Pro Se Press does a lot of this, but I’ve come to realize other publishers are seeing as a reasonable market as well.

I decided I wanted to tell this story after the fun I had doing another story for Pro Se Press in an anthology called NEWSHOUNDS. That story, “Pretty as a Picture,” involved a group of people working for a newspaper who use the press in 1950s America to fight injustice in their city; those characters had all been pre-developed by Pro Se Press and documented in a “bible” and we wrote stories about them. As much as I loved doing that story, I also wanted to show what I could do on my own.

At the time, Pro Se Press also put out a magazine and “Ghost of the Airwaves” was originally written and submitted to the magazine to get more exposure for myself as a writer as well as within the genre. As it turned out, they discontinued the magazine soon after submission but everyone who had submitted would be considered for the digital single line called Single Shots. It’s taken a year for this manuscript to come to the top of that pile.

So that’s why the story happened to begin with, but there’s also the part of the question as to why I chose the golden age of radio specifically. Basically, the core of this story starts with a television script that I wrote in college called FROM THE FATAL HEART. In college, I received a double major in Radio-TV and English-Creative Writing, and also worked as a DJ on the college stations, so I drew in part from experience. In that script, a modern day request-and-dedication DJ thinks his wife committed suicide but comes to learn it was a carefully orchestrated murder; the script ended up getting national recognition as a finalist for a competition run by a national radio-television honor society. Years later, I still love that story, but in hindsight found the male lead to be very passive in deciding the course of his fate. I wondered what would happen if I made the lead a woman, made her a more active participant in finding the solution, changed the time period, but kept the same basic premise. By choosing an earlier time period, radio dramas were ruling the airwaves and the DJ as we know that role today didn’t even exist. I didn’t have any idea how the story would turn out when I started, but am very pleased with the result.

Of all your characters, which one is your favorite? Why? 

Since the NEWSHOUNDS characters were created by Pro Se Press, I’m going to focus this answer on GHOST OF THE AIRWAVES. Actually, my favorite character is the person who turns out to be the “Ghost of the Airwaves,” but fully as to why would be giving away too much. Let’s just say I like the challenges that come with writing this character and I’d love to do so again. However, sales and word of mouth will be what it takes to see if further adventures come out. The story is written in such a way that while it does resolve, further tales could be told if the demand existed.

What was the most challenging aspect of writing your book?

Because it is set in a historical time period, I needed to be sure I had all my facts straight. I looked up the history of radio dramas for the time period I wanted, to see what kind of shows were popular that my lead character might be involved in. Also, the radio drama was a “story within a story,” so I needed to know all the characters being played in the radio drama and how they related to one another both in front of the microphones and away from them.

What is your primary goal as an author?

My primary goal would be to tell stories with believable character regardless of the time, place, or situation. If a reader can’t get into the story and care about the characters propelling it, the rest doesn’t carry much weight at all. Some stories I do might strive to make people think, but generally the primary intent is to entertain.

What projects are you currently working on?

I’m waiting for final editing stages on several more stories with Pro Se Press that are slated for other anthologies, so there is definitely more to come in this vein of storytelling. I also have a story pending with Emby Press, whose tales lean more toward the paranormal and horror, that I hope will come out this year; it is part of an anthology regarding superheroes, so that’s closer to the tales I write than most of what they publish.

However, I also have some self-published titles that are of a different genre. Most of them came about over the last ten years of doing National Novel Writing Month and succeeding every year. For any readers not familiar with this challenge at http://nanowrimo.org, people challenge themselves to write a 50,000 word (or more) first draft of a novel in November. I’ve done this over and over successfully for a decade, though my two attempts at the more flexible Camp version actually didn’t work out. Basically, over the years, I created many books in several series that while I find myself passionate about them, I know they are just too niche for publishers. Over the next two years, I plan to return to the remaining first drafts that need a fresh eye and editing and complete both these series. After that, other than a one-off project I’m planning called DYING WITH HER NAME IN LIGHTS – featuring murder mysteries in the entertainment field, but not necessarily as intense in action as stories like those for Pro Se need to be – I’m not planning to do much more on the self-publishing side of things unless a story comes along that I absolutely feels must be told but that it isn’t worth the effort of burdening down publishers over.

What advice would you offer to new or aspiring authors?

Be open to trying new things; you may find in time that there are things you can do that previously seemed out of range. I certainly never saw myself writing the kinds of stories I’ve been doing such as “Ghost of the Airwaves” and “Pretty as a Picture,” though I enjoy reading and watching entertainment in the same vein. Kevin Paul Shaw Broden – who at times is my writing partner and who I will be married to – is even more into it than I am, and in fact is how I discovered Pro Se Press. He was reading a book called YESTERYEAR by Tommy Hancock (who also happens to be Editor in Chief of Pro Se Press, but I didn’t know it then), and I asked to take a look at it; it intrigued me but I still didn’t think I could do it. Then I found out that every so often, Pro Se Press put out open calls for submissions and Kevin showed me a list. A couple things were on that list, but the one that really stood out to me was NEWSHOUNDS. Suddenly, seeing that anthology idea about ordinary people using the power of the pen to write wrongs as something I could relate to, my repetitive “I can’t” turned into “I can”. I tried but was unsure if I’d be accepted, and as it turned out so did Kevin, not to mention the cover is also his art. The advice I’d give out of that that story is this: don’t ever close your mind to possibility and invest in your passion for the long haul.

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About the Author:

SHANNON MUIR’s most recent genre fiction release is the Single Shot “Ghost of the Airwaves,” a New Pulp digital single tale, preceded by her debut genre fiction story “Pretty as a Picture” in the anthology NEWSHOUNDS from Pro Se Productions. Prior to venturing into the world of New Pulp, Muir is best known to genre readers as co-writer of the long-running webcomic FLYING GLORY AND THE HOUNDS OF GLORY with her partner, Kevin Paul Shaw Broden (featured in Pro Se’s anthology THE BLACK FEDORA, his own story in NEWSHOUNDS, and the self-published REVENGE OF THE MASKED GHOST). She tends to gravitate towards writing stories with females in leading or influential roles, which can prove a challenge in the time periods that pulp stories are set in. Muir aspires to bring different perspective to a classic time period by taking on this viewpoint. Muir also has credits in new adult contemporary fiction, as well as published textbooks on the animation industry, a field in which she’s held writing and production positions as part of her nearly twenty year career focused in family entertainment. She currently resides in Glendale, California.

Connect with Shannon Muir:

Blog: http://www.muirwords.com

Website: http://www.shannon-muir.com

Twitter: @Shannon_Muir

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Shannon-Muir/e/B004G28H0I/

Smashwords Author Page: http://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/shannonmuir

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1154259.Shannon_Muir

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“Ghost of the Airwaves”:  From Pro Se Productions’ Single Shot line comes a tale of mystery and murder set against the backdrop of the Golden Age of Radio! Through this stand alone digital single, Author Shannon Muir introduces the world to Ghost of the Airwaves!

Ghost of the Airwaves is the suspenseful tale of radio actress Abigail Hanson, whose husband died under mysterious circumstances. Everyone believes the culprit is caught until a mysterious typed letter from “Ghost of the Airwaves” comes through her mail slot. Abigail becomes determined to find out who killed her husband and uses her own observant eye to help coax the police along. But, as she delves deeper into the mystery, Abigail may learn she should have stayed behind the microphone…to stay alive!

Ghost of the Airwaves by Shannon Muir, featuring fantastic cover art and logo design by Jeff Hayes and digital formatting by Russ Anderson. A Pro Se Single Shot digital single from Pro Se Productions!

“Ghost of the Airwaves” is available on Kindle and Smashwords 


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NEWSHOUNDS: News For All, Justice for the Innocent and Weak! That is the Masthead of The Partisan and the mission of its keepers in Pro Se Productions’ action packed tribute to the printed press- NEWSHOUNDS! Dogged reporters, crusty editors, copyboys and cub photographers with dreams of grandeur. Pressmen who know the city lives and breathes by what they print. Characters like Editor ‘Red Dillinger, reporters Viv Bailey and Ted Boland, photographer Margie Haviland, and more all work for The Partisan, a 1950s paper partial to the common man, to righting the wrongs done against the housewives and the blue collars! And this gaggle of hard bitten, hard fighting men and women are known near and far to those who love them and those who wish to see them dead! Do No Wrong in Their City unless you want it covered by the Newshounds! Started in 1930 to stand up for the little person and to protect the rights of the rightless. The Partisan has always been the paper that focused on both accurate news reporting and standing up for the common citizen against crime and corruption of all types. This led to a style of writing both factual and fiery that the paper is known for. Authors Kevin Paul Shaw Broden, Shannon Muir, and J. Walt Layne bring life to the chaotic adventures of a larger than life newspaper staff in this three story collection. Only two types of people work at The Partisan- Those truly interested in standing up for truth and justice and what’s right…and those with a death wish or nowhere else to go. Either way, they make great stories for Pro Se Productions’ NEWSHOUNDS!

Buy NEWSHOUNDS in Print at Amazon

Buy NEWSHOUNDS on Kindle and Smashwords

Categories: anthology, author feature, author interview, digital singles, historical fiction, new pulp, short story | Tags: , , , , , ,

Interview with DM Yates

Today’s guest is DM Yates. Her published works include Always, The Lone Hero, Gingerbread Castle, and Stepping Stones to Love, Honour and Respect. She’s also a contributor to Strange Portals, a fantasy/horror anthology which is currently free on Smashwords, Nook, and Kindle.

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Welcome, Donna. Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I’m one of those creative people who must always be creating something. I find I’m happiest when I’m involved in projects.

When did you begin writing?

According to my twin brother, I started writing stories and poetry as soon as I learned the alphabet and I could hold a pencil.

Can you tell us about your story (or stories) in the anthology, Strange Portals? What inspired you to write it?

I love fantasy and sci-fi, but I rarely write short stories. ‘The Best Gift I Can Give’ is about a ballet dancer who has become quite arrogant about her ability. She idolizes her mother who died not long after she was born. She has a benefactor who pays for whatever she wants, including her lessons but he’s decided the best gift he can give her is to cut off her money. She has to get a job and can no longer afford expensive clothes. Along her journey, she makes friends for the first time in her life, and she eventually discovers who she really is, what her heritage is.

Please tell us about your other published work.

I write in fantasy/new age/spiritual/romance genres so my works vary. ‘Always’ is the story of two eternal beings and their circle of friends who come to Earth to gain lessons and accomplish missions. Simon (Einarr) is the main character who is 36-years-old. His best friend’s 16-year-old niece April is sure that she and Simon are meant to marry. Simon walks a fine line between avoiding her and insulting the family. This book is a roller coaster of emotions and sets the stage for a series of stories.

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‘The Lone Hero’ is pure fantasy with romance sprinkled in. Einarr is born on the dragon home world of Aberforth with a specific mission – to end the dragon war. He’ll spend most of his life accomplishing this task. The 2nd in this series will be out soon. ‘Laurence of Dragon Fame’ is set in the 13th century and Einarr now must save the dragons from extinction on Earth.

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‘Stepping Stones to Love Honor and Respect’ is a collection of my poetry ranging in several subject matters.

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‘Gingerbread Castle’ is a children’s holiday rhyme book about a secret fun place in dreamland.

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What projects are you currently working on?

I’m working on several more books about Einarr and his friends, along with rewrites for ‘Laurence of Dragon Fame.’

Do you have a book recommendation to share with us?

I love most books so it’s hard to share just one, but I certainly think readers would love your book. I know I did. Also our ‘Strange Portals’ anthology. Every story in there was amazing, including yours. It would give the reader a variety of short stories, each unique.

What advice would you offer to new or aspiring authors?

Write, write, write. When it comes time to publish, take the jump but be sure that your book has been well edited.

About DM Yates:dm yates author fixed

DM Yates grew up in Ashtabula, Ohio. She started writing stories and poetry as soon as she learned to read and write. She attended BYU Idaho, BYU Hawaii, and BYU in Provo, Utah.

Although writing and poetry are her passions, she didn’t take it seriously to publish until her later years.

She is the Author of the fantasy/new age/spiritual romance stories, starting with ‘Always.’ The second in the series, ‘The Lone Hero’ was published in Dec 2013 and continues the tale of Einarr.

Her poetry book, Stepping Stones to Love Honor and Respect is a collection of poems dealing with various topics, such as love, honor, respect, spirituality, new age, pain, and Earth.

Her first children’s book was also published in Dec 2013. ‘Gingerbread Castle’ is a children’s holiday illustrated rhyme book for children ages 6 – 8-yrs old.

DM Yates is an independent self-published author.

Connect with DM Yates:

Buy DM Yates’ books:

 

Categories: author feature, author interview, children's books, christmas books, fantasy, Fantasy Anthology, holiday book, paranormal, paranormal romance, poetry, romance, science fiction, short stories, short story, strange portals | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Interview with Rami Ungar

Today’s guest is Rami Ungar. Rami is the author of two of the short stories featured in Strange Portals, a fantasy horror anthology that is currently free on Smashwords, Nook and Kindle.

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Welcome, Rami. Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I’m a senior at Ohio State University double majoring in History and English and graduating this spring (woo-hoo!). I specialize in horror, but I also dabble in science fiction and thriller. I’ve had this thing for scaring people since I was young. Someone scared me pretty bad, so now I’ve got the bug for it! Unfortunately, scaring people at any time of day is considered bad manners, so except for special occasions I usually save the scaring for my stories. I like to think I’m good at it, but you’ll have to ask my critics.

When did you begin writing?

I think I was five or six. I’ve always enjoyed books, but reading Harry Potter made me want to write stories like it. And I did, I tried to write my own Harry Potter Up until I was ten I wrote on and off, jumping between wanting to be a rock star, a mad scientist, a superhero, etc. I finally figured out that I wanted to write and be a novelist. A couple years later I decided to specialize in horror and it’s stayed that way since.

Can you tell us about your story (or stories) in the anthology, Strange Portals? What inspired you to write it?

I’m lucky to have two stories in the anthology, one or two more than I expected! One is Buried Alive, which is about a girl who is thrown into a coffin with her mother and the strange things that happen to her once she’s inside. The other is called Travelers of the Loneliest Roads, which is about a hitchhiker who gets picked up by a mysterious limo in the middle of the desert and what happens afterward.

I don’t remember what inspired them exactly, but I’ve had them written for over a year. I tried getting them published in other places, but other places didn’t want them. Before I sent them to Joleene, I decided to look them over and see what could be done to make them better. I guess it worked, because Joleene said she enjoyed them and I’m really grateful that they’re both in the anthology.

Please tell us about your other published work.

I’ve got three books out right now. Reborn City is a science-fiction novel, about a street gang in a dystopian city-state, and a Muslim girl named Zahara who is forced to join them despite some gang members’ hatred of Muslims, a shadowy government conspiracy, and her own reservations. It’s a story about overcoming adversity when no one expects you to.

Snake is a thriller, about a man who becomes a serial killer and starts hunting down members of the mafia in order to save the love of his life. It’s pretty dark, but that’s the way I like it. And there’s The Quiet Game, a collection of short stories that have gotten some good feedback. I’m really proud of all of them, and I hope that more people decide to read all three books in the future.

What projects are you currently working on?

Well, I’m working on a novel that doubles as my senior thesis. It’s called Rose, and it’s a traditional horror novel. I’m close to finishing the first draft, so I hope to get that out by the end of the year. I’m also editing the sequel to Reborn City, and I plan to rewrite another thriller I’ve written called Laura Horn. And if I can get enough short stories written, I might put out another collection. Just hope I find the time!

Do you have a book recommendation to share with us?

Battle Royale by Koushun Takami. I can’t recommend it enough. It’s my favorite novel. The language is beautiful and flowing, and nearly every character receives some character development. Plus the plot will keep you guessing right up until the end. I loved it, and if anyone has ever had any problems with the Hunger Games books, they might enjoy this novel immensely.

What advice would you offer to new or aspiring authors?

Have a good group of supportive people around you. Obviously reading and writing are very important, and every writer who is serious about writing should do that, but having a circle of people around you who can help you is very important. At least half of what I’ve been able to do has been accomplished because of the people around me, most of them writers but quite a few people who aren’t writers, have been there to help me, point out what needs to be fixed, and brought me this far. If you’ve got your own circle of friends to help you, you’ll go farther than you ever could on your own.

Author Bio:

CIMG2864Rami Ungar is a student at Ohio Sate University who is studying History and English. For Rami, scaring people and writing are two of his greatest talents, so merging them is like a marriage of two great loves. His influences include Stephen King, Anne Rice, and James Patterson. When not writing, Rami enjoys reading, watching TV, and sneaking up on people when they least expect it.

In addition to blogging and writing and publishing horror fiction, Rami is also a writer and administrator for the blog Self-Published Authors Helping Other Authors and works at Ohio State University’s Student Financial Aid office. His bucket list includes getting a bed made from a coffin, a hearse converted into his personal Scare-mobile, and running down the street in an actual Dalek suit yelling “Exterminate! Exterminate!”

But before he can get to any of that, he has to do his homework.

Connect with Rami: 

Blog: https://ramiungarthewriter.wordpress.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RamiUngarWriter

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ramiungarwriter

Buying links:

Reborn City: Amazon or Smashwords

Snake: Amazon or Smashwords

The Quiet Game: Amazon or Smashwords

 

Categories: author feature, author interview, horror, strange portals | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Interview with Adan Ramie

Today, I’m featuring Adan Ramie, an author whose work has appeared in several publications including the horror/fantasy anthology Strange Portals.

strange portals

FREE on Smashwords, Kindle and Nook

Welcome, Adan! Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I’m a parent, a writer, and a student, and am lucky to have a really wonderful better half who supports me in all those facets of my ultra-busy life. I live in a small town in Texas near where I was born.

When did you begin writing?

When I was a small child, I spent a lot of time alone (not that much has changed…), so I resorted to telling myself stories. I started writing as soon as I was old enough to put a sentence on paper. I stopped a few times in my life, sometimes for years at a time, but I always came back to it. It’s what I love. It’s like a drug, or a disease, or a wonderful gift that keeps on giving – and taking.

Can you tell us about your story (or stories) in the anthology, Strange Portals? What inspired you to write it?

I actually have two stories in Strange Portals, “Against the Evil Eye” and “Paparazzi.” The first was born as I struggled through the horrors of post-partum depression; I read a lot, researched the phenomenon, and did everything I could to keep my head above water. It’s about a woman, her abusive husband, and her otherworldly children. The second was in response to a writing prompt, and is about a fan who would pay the ultimate price to be just like her favorite star.

Please tell us about your other published work.

I have stories in several different publications, like This Dark Matter, Skin to Skin, and the Beyond the Nightlight anthology. Most of my stories are dark; some are horror, others are thriller, and still others defy genre. Then, I also have some that are light-hearted, funny, or even sweet. You can see a delightfully diverse sample of my work on my blog, because I post a lot of flash and short fiction there.

What projects are you currently working on?

Right now, I’m working on a thriller about two girls in love and on the run from a psychopath. I’m hoping to have it ready for publication this year. Also in the works are a novel about a teenage girl searching for her mother’s killer, and a novella about what happens when you take two chefs-in-training and put them on a tour bus with a rock star. (All three are LGBT stories, but I like to think that isn’t always the focal point of the plot.)

Do you have a book recommendation to share with us?

Recently I really enjoyed Champion Standing by Mark Gardner, Otherworlders by Angela Cavanaugh, and Atlanta Burns by Chuck Wendig. (Coincidentally, I also reviewed each of them on my blog.)

What advice would you offer to new or aspiring authors?

Just write. When people tell you to stop, write harder. When you hit a brick wall, throw words at it. When you get a demoralizing critique from your writer’s group, use it as the mortar to help re-brick your story. And when those stories are finished, submit them. Also, coffee is your friend. (Unless it’s not, then I don’t know what to tell you.)

Where can my readers go to buy your books?

My free eBook of short stories, Darkness Undone: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/461614

I have a story featured in:

Beyond the Nightlight: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00QNHZJDM?btkr=1

Strange Portals: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/499789

Author Bio:

adanAdan Ramie is the author of several short stories published in magazines like Skin to Skin and Paper Tape Magazine, and anthologies such as Beyond the Nightlight and Strange Portals. She is also the author of an eBook of short stories called Darkness Undone. Currently, she is hard at work polishing a manuscript that is slated for release in 2015. In her spare time, you can catch her gorging on true crime TV, reading anything she can get her hands on, or spending time with her amazingly supportive partner and rambunctious children.

Connect with Adan Ramie:

Blog: http://adanramieblog.wordpress.com

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

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

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Adan-Ramie/e/B00QX7ERJ4

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8422359.Adan_Ramie

Categories: author feature, author interview, horror, short stories, short story, strange portals | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Meet Author Medeas Wray

Medeas Wray started writing eons ago, tucking books of weird fiction, paranormal, lad lit, ghost-story, urban, speculative and the oddly humorous into the back of a drawer until the lure of self-publishing in the Kindle store (and other places) came along.

I’ve been writing for almost as long as I can remember. In my teens I was a total book-worm. I would read at least three books a week and would have vain stabs at writing fiction myself. I was attracted to the more surreal kind of literature, stuff like the Gormenghast trilogy by Mervyn Peake, books by Franz Kafka, Edgar Allen Poe, HP Lovecraft, Michael Moorcock, Clive Barker and Terry Pratchett – the more fantastical the better – though I only managed to complete one short-story, simply called The Hand, about a boy called Stephen whose right hand was always doing things it shouldn’t. The story ends with the hand in question eventually becoming a successful burlesque artist enabling the three of them (Stephen and both his hands) to live happily ever after – though where that story is now, I have no idea. Perhaps it will turn up one day.

My first writing job was working for a local newspaper when I was still at school, writing a small column that gave readers handy household tips – heady stuff! After college, I worked (inevitably) as a copywriter in advertising for many years and made small forays into journalism along the way, with columns in fledgling magazines, that erred on the side of humour. They amused me anyway. I also worked in video and film as a documentary writer and researcher, as a marketing executive, information writer, proof-reader and editor.

My fiction reflects my preoccupations, my love of books, films, art and music, a life spent in cities and a particular penchant for the weird. It can be a fiction that’s hard to classify, crossing genres as in Down To Zero where crime-thriller meets the paranormal in a near-future London. It’s not sci-fi, the world is much as we know it though there does get to be a global acceptance of the existence of the paranormal by government authorities, police and forensics departments etc by the end of that book. So that’s new. Then there’s the quirky humour of The Big Crunch, a dark twisted, twisting story of urban nightmares, identity bleaching and vigilante justice that’s set in Leeds in 2002. And then there’s Jabberworky & The Other Odd Story, an anthology showcasing a humorous medieval yarn told in six chapters, a day-time ghost-story entitled ‘The Couple In Front’ set in present-day Normandy that recently won StoryBucks Mystery Short Story Contest (July 2014) – find it at http://www.storybucks.com/qa-medeas-wray

– there’s also a story of magic and mystery featuring a lone pizza-deliverer who goes to a strange house one moonlit night and comes away with more than he bargained for.

I’m currently working on a follow-up to Down To Zero to be called The Off-Comers (more paranormal encounters in a near-future world). Wrestling with it, in actual fact. Excerpts from The Off-Comers can be found at WritersCafe at http://www.writerscafe.org/medeaswray and I’m hoping to complete it later this year. I can’t say when at this moment in time.

I’m still very new to the e-publishing world. The Big Crunch was the first novel-length book I completed and though I know it’s flawed and raw in places, I’m particularly fond of it, maybe because it’s the first work I produced. The ideas I had for it came from living in Leeds during a time when there was a general decline in many areas, a long, slow recession and in the background there was Leeds United, a once-great football team that had lost its way and was sinking to the bottom of the league tables. (It wasn’t that I was a big football fan, I just felt this was an interesting back-cloth to my story – a sense of pervading decline at the heart of the metropolis.)

Police corruption, inner-city blight, crime, identity-bleaching, all the urban nightmares big and small are present in this novel though it’s imbued with humour (I hope) and a sense of optimism, eventually. And the good news is that as we speak (20th January 2015), The Big Crunch is at no. 63 in the Crime Fiction>Vigilante Justice category in the Kindle Store which I’m particularly pleased about. It’s not faring too badly in the category known as LadLit either. Though labelled LadLit, it’s not just for men and I hope female readers enjoy it too, a story of recklessness and redemption, love, loss and striving for significance in this infinitesimally large universe we inhabit.

I’m very pleased with the cover design, created for me by Anna Cleary, a gifted graphic artist. It brings together some of the themes of the book. The main character Malkie is a video games inventor and graphic designer who has recently got into astronomy. After a lifetime of not knowing anything much about anything much, he’s started to read up on Big Bang, go right back to the beginning as his life starts to unfurl. The cover depicts video games and fast drives, urban landscapes and no-go areas and the stars themselves there in the distance, looking beautiful and cold out there in the vast universe: clues to what the book’s about. You can find it at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Big-Crunch-Medeas-Wray-ebook/dp/B00JMSPAFQ/ref=sr at Amazon UK (for Kindle) or Amazon.com and at Kobo at http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/the-big-crunch-3

Find Medeas Wray on Amazon Kindle at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Medeas-Wray/e/B00K5ZO1LE/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

On Twitter @medeaswray.

You can also find me at http://www.medeaswray.com to discover news and find samples of my writing there (and of course, give me feed-back if you want to.)

THE BIG CRUNCH

950. The Big Crunch final cover v2 (1)

Place: Leeds,England . Year: 2002 as Leeds United start to slide down the premier league tables and Malkie’s life goes into free-fall down to a failing marriage, computer crashes, a mysteriously totalled car and the other self-inflicted complication. He’s a video games inventor and graphic artist who’s after the big prize, the Macgregor contract, along with Ian, his geeky assistant, Leeds United supporter and ex-hacker who has a couple of murky associates and a flat at the low-rent end of the neighbourhood where Malkie mis-spends a few of his nights.

Newly into astronomy, habitually into alcohol Malkie struggles with his demons as Ian starts coming into his own, drawing on old skills and new levels of resourcefulness to help out a friend and ensure the continued success of Malkie’s company – and his own future – despite the mayhem and mishaps going on around him.

Darkly comic, moving in places and full of twists and turns, The Big Crunch is a distinctly contemporary debut novel encompassing vigilante justice, identity bleaching, drug-taking and excess, kidnapping and more, a page-turning read that keeps the reader guessing.

Categories: author feature, guest post | Tags: , , , ,

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