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Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Danielle Thorne – with a New Release

20369789_10155653858318184_1989254358358916171_o.jpgToday I’d like to introduce Danielle Thorne, my fellow CIR author. Danielle sent me a traditional photo to post here, however I kinda liked this one better given the theme of her new book!

Danielle has this to say about herself:

Danielle Thorne is the author of classic romance and adventure in several genres. She loves Jane Austen, travel, pirates, beaches, cookies, antiques, cats, dogs, and long naps. She does not like phone calls or sushi. A graduate of Ricks College and BYU-Idaho, Danielle saw early work published by Every Day Fiction, Arts and Prose Magazine, Mississippi Crow, The Nantahala Review, StorySouth, and… you get the idea. Besides writing, she’s edited for both Solstice and Desert Breeze Publishing. Her growing blog, The Balanced Writer, focuses on writing, life, and the pursuit of peace and happiness.

Currently, Danielle freelances as a non-fiction author and copywriter, while waiting to hear from readers like you through her website. During free time, which means when Netflix is down, she combs through feedback and offers virtual hugs for reviews.

Netflix? … ah, yeah, I get it {duh}. Now, I’m going to get you to tell us about your new release, but before that, three quick questions. Firstly, what three things would you say are the most important for an aspiring author to keep in mind as they being their writing journey?

I think the most important thing an aspiring author needs to understand is that it’s easy to become bogged down by all the information out there. The three most important habits to practice, in my opinion, are scheduling writing hours with no interference, finding a peer group (online groups are accessible and fun), and reading. Read, read, read, read. Read your target genre, study the classics, read non-fiction, and study articles about writing, editing, and publishing. A writer today must wear several different hats, so it’s important to immerse yourself in the culture. Don’t try to do everything at once though. Just take writing like life—one day at a time.

So true–the information overload can be mind-boggling sometimes and we need to take a step back and remember to simply read and write! Next question, what was the inspiration for your latest book?

My new release, A Pirate at Pembroke, is a historical romance with a Jane Austen-inspired pirate theme–a reflection of some of my favorite interests and hobbies. It’s about a young woman who’s embraced the expectations of her age, but with a few misgivings.

In a nutshell:  Sophie Crestwood is never going to catch a husband, and she isn’t even sure she wants one. Her father is a gossip, her mother always has her nose in a book, and little Jack has shamefully been dismissed from boarding school. Worst of all, a pirate moves next door into Pembroke Hall.  When Sophie’s sent to a matchmaking party at a neighboring estate, the pirate from Pembroke arrives and distracts everyone from the summer festivities. Unguarded, her feelings about the mysterious Captain Murdock bloom into a trusted friendship that Sophie fears may come to mean more than anyone would ever suspect.  Keeping company with a reputed pirate is one thing but falling in love with him could ruin the eccentric Crestwood family for good.

I started thinking about this storyline after watching the BBC’s latest version of Jane Eyre some years ago. I never grew particularly fond of Mr. Rochester, and I wondered if a mysterious, dark stranger living in a dilapidated old manor couldn’t be a little more charming and selfless. Thus, the pirate from Pembroke was born.

Oh, I’ve always liked pirates! Must check this one out myself! Now, last question, where are your books set? And have you been there, or spent significant time there?

Most of my books are set in Regency England and the West Indies, with a few stories set in my own stomping grounds, the American deep South. I’ve had the opportunity to travel all through the Caribbean and learn about the islands, history, and Age of Sail. Studying British history for my line of non-fiction young adults has impacted my writing and experience, too. Life is exciting when we’re always learning. It’s been a wonderful adventure.

That it is! So … where can we find you and this new book of yours?

Readers can find me on my website, and from there they’ll find all the usual links to social media. Or they can go directly to Amazon.

 

 

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Keith Guernsey

KeithToday I’d like to introduce Keith Guernsey, my fellow CIR author.

Keith Guernsey is retired after a forty year career in sales and sales management with several fortune 500 companies. He currently lives on Lake Lanier with his wife Susan and four-footed son Harley. Mr Guernsey spent a good portion of his youth playing sports, active in both football and hockey. In 1995 Keith was diagnosed with a life-threatening brain tumor (called an Acoustic Neuroma) and he underwent a ten hour operation at the world-renowned Brigham and Women’s hospital where it was successfully removed. While recovering, he met and married Susan. Together they faced his next challenge. In 1997 his neuroma returned. He was to undergo yet another, more complex, operation which resulted in a complete cure, however side effects of this second more invasive procedure caused prolonged inactivity and led to severe weight gain of over 100 lbs. Today Mr. Guernsey is very proud of the fact that he has been able to overcome his physical challenges, losing over one hundred and thirty five pounds, and has found the time to write two successful books (“Confessions of a Beantown Sports Junkie and “Fathers and Sons-Sports and Life”). 

Wow, Keith, how wonderful is it that you’ve been able to reinvent yourself! So, before you tell us about your books, I’ve got three quick questions for you. What inspired you to become an author, and how old were you at the time?

My late father was the inspiration … I was 44 at the time.

Parents are often our inspiration, aren’t they? Next question, what three things would you say are the most important for an aspiring author to keep in mind as they being their writing journey?

Be persistent, consistent and don’t get discouraged!

Do you read the reviews that others leave for your books?

Yes but just the good ones! Just kidding –I feel very fortunate that both my books have all 4’s and 5’s!

That’s a bonus! Four and five star reviews are worth their weight in … well, stars I suppose! Now, how about we learn a bit about your books.

“Fathers & Sons…” is a story of an uncommon love and devotion between fathers and sons. It is a story of my recovery from two rounds of life-threatening brain surgeries to play on three championship softball teams in two states. It is also an ode to my late, great father Gordon who was always the best sports parent ever! It includes a chapter on the most controversial sports topic of our time; Deflategate. “Fathers…” is also a sequel to “Confessions of a Beantown Sports Junkie.”

And where can we find your books, Keith?

Both of my books are available as eBooks or in paperback format, and can be found on Amazon.

 

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author William David Ellis – with a New Release

 

david's author photoToday I’d like to introduce William David Ellis, my fellow CIR author. David, would you like to tell us a bit about yourself?

I am 59 years old, married to an English Teacher which helps a lot, until it doesn’t. My name is David Ellis, apparently my pen name is William David Ellis, I live on a farm in East Texas, and raise honeybees and blackberries, have two German Shepherds and belong to an interesting ethnicity called redneck. For those of you in the underland?, downunder? Big island continent that has kangaroos?, well a redneck is Crocodile Dundee from Texas.  He carries a larger knife, and we don’t have crocs here we have pineywoods rooters, large feral pigs that will destroy a crop in a single night.

Well, I always did like those movies, especially that line, “you call that a knife?”  Ha ha ha. So, give us an idea about the content of your books, because as you know, this is Clean Indie Reads we’re talking about.

Do my books have fowl language, ahh hmm, well I don’t recall any poultry listings, or any references too ducks or geese or any of that sort. However.. if it was mentioned in the Bible, ( you guys read that in underland right?) it is fair game.. like when my roman soldier finds out the demonized high priest of Carthage is planning on sacrificing the children of Carthage to conjure a huge flesh-eating dragon, well he does not say, oh my, or isn’t that awful, or goodness gracious, he says the D word. And when his troops are being burnt by the same fire breathing dragon he says it again.. other than the D word used extremely sparingly, no there is no foul or fowl language. Sex scenes, hardly my wife reads and edits my writing and would laugh at any attempt I made to write something provocative… I am not a soft porn person either conjuring emotions that are not meet in existing relationships, so no to sex scenes or even emotional foreplay that would substitute for sex scenes, as to violence.. this is a book about battles, and fiery dragons, and suffering, but it does not glorify violence. They do work hard at trying to kill the dragon, and the dragon does eat a few folks so… take that into consideration.

Sounds like it’s a good thing your wife is your beta reader. As is my husband 🙂 Now before we learn about this new release of yours, we’ve got three questions to get through. What inspired you to become an author, and how old were you at the time? 

My mother read Edgar Rice Burroughs to my brother and me when we were in kindergarten, I cut my teeth on Walt Whitman books, the classics of Jules Verne, etc,, so I was a reader before I could talk, and my first word was ,”book” I actually attempted to write a book in the third grade, then skipped several years and published in the sixth grade, school publication, then started writing again in college, and over the last 30 years wrote several short stories, a few newspaper columns, and started seven or eight different books that are in various stages of remission.

Ha ha ha, I do like your sense of humour, David! next question–If you could tell your younger self something you know now, with respect to your writing career, what would it be?

Learn grammar, be prepared to work, it is very very hard especially the first novel, kinda like your first child, there is an extremely steep learning curve!   

Yes, that hill is a steep one alrighty! One last question for you. What three things would you say are the most important for an aspiring author to keep in mind as they being their writing journey?

Learn the craft–read books about writing.

Write, write write, a writers block is in your head, not in your fingers, type when you do not feel like, even if you have nothing to say. You have to jump start some manuscripts some mornings, but if you start writing, even if it is not very good, you will slip into the flow and then you can come back and delete the first few sentences, but if you do not absolutely force yourself to put something on the screen you will wait for a flow that never comes, you have to drill a hole before you hit water.

Don’t worry about being a planner of a pantser, most writers are a bit of both.

Now, about this new book of yours … what was the inspiration for your latest book?

I was reading about the possibility of some dinosaurs having survived till the present day, and came across a little quote by the Roman Historian Livy, who said a roman legion was attacked by a fire breathing dragon.. and then one thing lead to another..pow a book is born!

Sounds very interesting, indeed! So, here’s the link to the listing on Amazon (oh, and I love the cover by the way!).

And if you want to follow David on Amazon, here’s the link to his author profile.

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Rachael Eliker – with a New Release

1Today I’d like to introduce Rachael Eliker, my fellow CIR author.

Rachael Eliker is an avid reader and author with eclectic tastes, a life-long horse fanatic, and self-taught home renovator (a skill which has been tested on every home she’s ever owned). She forces herself to nurture her love/hate relationship with running by jogging along lonely stretches of country road with her cowardly dog who would leave her for dead should anything ever happen. Married to her very own absentminded rocket scientist, together they have more kids than most people can comprehend. When she’s not writing, she enjoys mucking stalls, riding her geriatric horse, milking their ornery Jersey cow, and wondering what life would be like as a celebrity if she wasn’t content being an introvert.

We may be on different continents Rachael, but we are kindred souls … well, perhaps I should say that my “kids” are all “fur-kids” but the rest rings true!  Now, Rachael has a brand new book out, but before I tell you about it, let’s have Rachael answer three questions for us.

First question, what three things would you say are the most important for an aspiring author to keep in mind as they begin their writing journey?

Seek and gracefully accept critiques from peers because who else knows the growing pains of writing better than fellow authors? Secondly, know when to say ‘thanks’ to a critique but leave it because it would change your story in a way that doesn’t speak to you as the creator…every time I beta read for another author, I try to make it abundantly clear that my notes are merely suggestions, so take ‘em or leave ‘em. For me, especially as a newer author, it’s sometimes hard to turn down suggestions. In the end, it’s your work and your story to be told! And, READ, READ, READ. I feel like I have grown exponentially as an author, not only as I’ve spent time writing but that I’ve studied my craft by reading what other authors have put out there.

Words of wisdom there folks … listen up! Second question, what was the inspiration for your latest book?

As with all of my writing, a touch of the fiction story is rooted in truth. Though I am not a world-famous singer/songwriter like Ruby (except when driving in the car…), I do happen to be married to a brilliant-yet-absentminded rocket scientist who some days seems to barely have a shred of common sense. The inspiration for the story stemmed from there, wondering what life would be like if I were someone capable of performing on stage. Of course, it’s always fun to imagine from behind the comfort of a computer screen without risk of stage fright.

I’m always amazed watching television talent shows … there are a lot of talented people out there. Now, for one last question, how much time per week would you spend writing? Or are you a full-time author?

At the moment, I am often found in the middle of a flurry of young children who like to have attention and be fed once in a while (weird, huh?). So, if I had the time to be a full-time author, I guarantee I’d be able to fill forty hours a week without a hint of writer’s block (Agatha Christy always said the best time to write a book is when you’re doing the dishes and I have TONS of practice with dishes), at the moment, writing is more of a creative release I enjoy. As I’ve progressed as a writer, I have found that if I schedule the time, the time is there. On average, I write for about an hour to two every day, outside of keeping up with a personal blog. Does writing silly Facebook posts count, too?

I’m impressed! The energy of youth … ahhhh …  Now, tell us about your books.

I write the way I read: there isn’t much that I don’t enjoy! So far, I’ve dabbled in Young Adult with a competitive horse-riding/fantasy (that was a fun one to write!) series and another suspenseful dystopian series. The latest release is a fun romantic comedy. No matter what I write (there are so many ideas bouncing around in my head that I have to keep a list so I don’t forget), all of my books are clean. You could recommend them to anyone from your middle-school niece to your grandma without fear of making anyone blush.

You can find all of Rachael’s book on her Amazon author page. And here’s a link to the newest book.

And here’s Rachael’s newest book – which looks fantastic!

Thanks for joining me here today Rachael — it’s been a pleasure having you.

 

 

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Guy Worthey – with a New Release

!cid_6F5B2032-4B68-4F64-8526-70A0DD7013A7Today I’d like to introduce fellow CIR author Guy Worthey, with a new release – Ace Carroway Around the World.

Wyoming native Guy Worthey traded spurs and lassos for telescopes and computers when he decided on astrophysics for a day job. Whenever he temporarily escapes the gravitational pull of stars and galaxies, he writes fiction. He lives in Washington state with his violinist wife Diane. He likes cats and dogs and plays keyboards and bass guitar. His favorite food is called creamed eggs on toast, but chocolate milk is a close second.

You’re obviously into Steam Punk, Guy, so you must get to New Zealand one day. Oamaru claims to be the Steampunk capital of the world I’ve been there, and I don’t doubt the claim is true! Now, before we learn about your books, I have a few short questions.

If you could tell your younger self something you know now, with respect to your writing career, what would it be?

In two words, it would be, “Write more!”
I didn’t publish my first book until I was fifty-two years old, and I really should not have waited so long. I was and continue to be an introvert, like the majority of writers. As a youth, I did write some short stories and submitted them to Analog, a periodical devoted to science fact and fiction. I was rejected, of course, but give me that time machine and I’d head back in time and do some serious pep-talking because writing is fun. It’s fun even if nobody publishes it, but publishing is a terrific hoot.

What are the best and worst things about being an author?

Best: writing.      Worst: editing.   I bet all the authors say that. On the interface with the outside world, however, I’m really torn by the childish need to seek approval and the introvert’s instinct to just hide. So, on that axis, the best thing is the good review and the worst thing is the bad review.  Finally, on the axis of coffee:   Best: coffee.   Worst: coffee runs out.

Where is the best place in the world to write?

By a window overlooking the storm-lashed seaside cliffs of Scotland. I imagine. I’ve never done that, actually. I do have a window, though, and I try to sit by it even if it is far, far from Scotland. In terms of tools, I enjoy typing on a keyboard to write, to minimize writer’s cramp. When reading, however, I prefer the traditional technology of ink on paper pages held together with binding.

Do you write from your own experiences, or do you simply sit down and make stuff up?

I make stuff up! I mean, obviously there is personal experience involved. I rely on my observations of human nature for characters, my travels for geographical inspiration, and my science side for the technical aspects of writing. But by and large most aspects of the Ace Carroway stories are things I have dreamt up. I sometimes start with particular cinematic scenes I want my characters to inhabit, and other times I start with a pair of characters who are clearly on a collision course. I do a fair amount of character building exercises, such as pretend interviews with my characters. I find characters to be the most interesting and most slippery part of writing.

Ha ha ha! Of course! I like the idea of interviewing your characters … must try that myself!

Now, tell us about your books.

I’ve just released the second in a series of adventures written for teens called Ace Carroway Around the World.

In terms of content rating, it’s harmless. There are a couple of mild cuss words spoken by the grumpy narrator. In terms of plot, well, check this out:

In 1921, in the quiet seaside town of Hyannis, shipbuilder Grant Carroway dies in a hail of bullets. Cynical cop Drew Lucy investigates the case.  When Grant’s know-it-all daughter Cecilia barges into the crime scene, Lucy puts her at the top of the suspect list. Nine times out of ten, murder’s a family affair.
Pilot Cecilia “Ace” Carroway thinks the hit was masterminded by a Great War tyrant she remembers killing. Is the shadowy Darko Dor still alive?
It sounds farfetched to Drew Lucy until he finds himself dodging bullets and grenades. He’d better get wise quick, or somebody else is going to die.
Buy this book if you like: Narrow escapes. 1920s slang. Cool female pilots. Noir detectives. Murder investigations. Explosions. Clipped sentences. Hired thugs. Jazz.
 A623DC8F-B45F-442B-94F5-CD32889B47ACThanks for joining me here today, Guy, it’s been fun. Oh, and before I forget, you can find Guy’s books on his website, or at Amazon, of course!

 

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Nix Whittaker

author photo smallToday I’d like to introduce you to my fellow CIR author, Nix Whittaker. Nix is an English teacher who lives in the heart of the North Island of New Zealand. She lives with her cats and her dog in the shadow of an active volcano where she writes in her spare time.

Nix started as a reader to help improve her spelling as she is dyslexic but was hooked by the marvellous worlds of Mercedes Lackey and Terry Pratchett. As time passed and she read out the library, she was forced to write to feed her ferocious need to read. Now her books are influenced by Patricia Briggs and Anne Bishop as she is still very much a reader and so writes books she would like to read herself. 

It’s awesome to have you here with us today, Nix. And I’m looking forward to introducing everyone to your books. But before I do that, I’m going to get you to answer three questions.

First, what inspired you to become an author, and how old were you at the time?

I have dyslexia. My teacher suggested that I read some books to help with my spelling. I don’t think she knew I was dyslexia. The reading didn’t help with my spelling but I was hooked and that first year I gulped down a good section of the library. When another teacher years later suggested I read more books to improve my spelling I realised then that my teachers didn’t know I was dyslexic because I was reading about a hundred books a year at that stage. When I ran out of books to read I started writing my own books. I still have my first book I wrote when I was nine. Written in an old diary and my own hand drawn cover. It was about a princess of the moon who could travel through portals to earth.

That’s so inspiring, Nix. I have other friends who have battled with dyslexia and it just goes to show what perseverance can do! Next question, what was the inspiration for your latest book?

My latest series is set on another planet with humans who are altered to survive and placed in rigid castes. Four: Warrior, Scribe, Rustic and Serenity. I got the idea for the story a long time ago. From the four winds I created a religion for a fantasy world. I’ve tried writing in this fantasy world a few times but it always falls flat so this time I thought I would shoot it into the future. I get to play with race and eugenics in a way that is interesting. Our preconceived ideas of what makes up our own culture and how it can be manipulated. I have the earthers arriving on the new planet and the altered humans reacting in fear. I’m living in an adopted country and it interesting to see how people perceive outsiders or people who don’t fit into a mould.

Sounds fascinating! So, last question, are you indie published, traditionally published, or hybrid? And what are your thoughts on the whole indie vs. traditional topic?

I’m Indie published. I started down that path because a friend published their own book and I caught the bug. Now with more experience I’m glad I went down this path. I do wish I had gone slower and got everything edited rather than rush but other than that I love it. I taught myself how to do all the aspects, still learning to be honest. It got me into creating book covers. I make more from selling book covers than I do selling my print books. Indie and Hybrid seems the way to go. With people finding their success first with Indie and then going into traditional. I think all these paths are great paths. The one thing I don’t like about our industry is the ones who take advantage of authors, the vanity press. To see people so keen to be published that they will spend their life savings and never really sell anything. It breaks my heart to see it.

I hear you, but the more information that is out there, the less often people will fall into the vanity press traps.

So, now, let’s find out  a bit more about your books, and where we can find them.

I have two series: The glyph warriors and the Wyvern Chronicles.

Hero is a man (Glyph Warrior Book 1)The Glyph Warrior’s series is about a genius who discovers some ancient language that allows her to hack the human body and give it super powers with tattoos. It is set in the future where everyone is living inside domed cities to keep safe from the extreme weather of climate change.

 

Blazing Blunderbuss (Wyvern Chronicles Book 1)Wyvern Chronicles is a steampunk series. I came up with the idea of this series when I was thinking about the possibility of dragons. Dragons with four legs, a tail and wings just couldn’t evolve on Earth so that had me thinking of where they would come from. So I have shapeshifting universe hopping dragons.

 

My books are romance but everything is fade to black. I’d probably call my books PG 13 because there is innuendo and there are action scenes.

Great! Now, where can we find them?

You can check out my website — or my author page at Amazon.

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Laura Vosika – with a New Release

Hi Laura! How nice to have you here today, and with a New Release! So, Laura, please tell us a bit about yourself.

!cid_FAEDB4CF-55B9-4C7F-87C6-ECB56FB680C7Hello, I’m Laura Vosika, author of the beloved series, The Blue Bells Chronicles.

I run Gabriel’s Horn Press,  am active in poetry as a member of the League of Minnesota Poets, and routinely perform at local open mics as both poet and musician. I have appeared in The Star Tribune, on Minnesota Public Radio, WCCO, and Channel 12, and hosted Books and Brews with Laura Vosika on AM 950.

I currently live in Minneapolis with 5 of my 9 children, three cats and an Irish Wolfhound much like the Laird’s great hunting hounds.

Thanks for the introduction – sure sounds like a busy life so I can’t imagine when you find the time to write! I can’t wait for you to tell us about your books, but first, please answer three questions to tell us a bit more about you.

Where are your books set. Have you been there or spent significant time there?

The Blue Bells Chronicles is set primarily in Scotland–both modern and medieval–but also partly in Midwest America. I live in the Midwest and am quite familiar with the concert halls, but as to Scotland, I have made five trips there, mapping out routes to as many of the places in my novels as I can possibly get to in two or three weeks.

Five trips isn’t as significant as I’d like, but it has taught me a lot and really brought the land, the history, and the heritage to life in a way we just can’t fully get from internet research.

Take, for instance, midges–a question I wouldn’t think to ask in my research and something that just rarely comes up otherwise.

Or take the chill–in Minnesota, I’ve been known to be out without a jacket when it hits 40 degrees. On my first trip to Scotland, the temperature was hovering around 60–and I was in 5 to 7 layers every day, bar one, because it’s windy and near water.

Although I spent my earliest years in Germany, visiting castles all over Europe, it was also good to get back and experience castles as an adult.

Oh, I love Scotland. I’ve only been there once, but it was magical. We visited the area around Glencoe which is famous for the massacre in 1692. I’m sure everywhere you went would have been rich with history. So, do you write from your own experiences or do you simply sit down and make stuff up?

Well, the music parts have a lot to do with my own experiences. I have my degree in music, I played trombone semi-professionally for years and am quite familiar with the pieces Shawn plays, having played them myself for a long time. I’m quite familiar with orchestral life, rehearsals, concert halls, playing in a big band, and more. Like Niall, I also play harp and make a point of playing medieval music on it, to hear what he would have been familiar with.

As to time travel–I have no experience with that–for better or worse. I have no experience with being a medieval warrior. Still, I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s strictly made up. Shawn and Niall’s stories are very much the stories of human nature (Shawn’s initial character, his search for redemption, his and Niall’s initial scathing assessments of each other, their growth and change), and also of Scotland’s actual history.

As an example–in Westering Home, Book Four of The Blue Bells Chronicles, Niall fights in Ireland with the Bruce. There, he experiences the miraculous birth of the army laundress’s child, on a battlefield as the much larger enemy army looks down on Bruce’s. Despite knowing all his men may die facing this much larger force, Bruce has refused to abandon her. This is a story that has come down to us, reported by John Barbour in The Brus. 

What makes you happiest as an author?

The connections I’ve made with others as a result of my writing have made me the happiest. There is my writers’ group, Night Writers. These people, past and present members, have been a very important and wonderful and meaningful part of my life.

There are readers and fellow authors I’ve connected with and become friends with. Among those was my friend Elaine. When I announced on my author page I’d be in Scotland, she invited me to her home–in Dollar, Scotland, in the glen below Castle Campbell. I was privileged to know her and call her a friend and I never would have, had I not written the books. 

In the end, knowing that we’ve touched each others’ lives in a positive way is what makes all of us happiest, I think.

So very true–I feel the same way when someone tells me they enjoyed my books or that they were swept into a new and different world by reading them. So, speaking of writing, you have a new release. So, can you tell us a little about your books?

The Blue Bells Chronicles is a tale of time travel, action and adventure, romance and redemption, ranging across modern and medieval Scotland.

Shawn Kleiner is a modern musician, self-centered and arrogant. He has it all, fame, fortune, and women, until the night his girlfriend has enough and leaves him in a medieval Scottish tower. He wakes up in the wrong century.

The series follows the story of Shawn and his medieval twin, Highlander Niall Campbell, in the months and years surrounding the battle of Bannockburn. It is ultimately a story of love and redemption, told against a backdrops of American orchestral musicians and the times of Robert the Bruce and James Douglas.

!cid_A8F02711-4364-4B08-A74E-63776F1D556E

 

This is the cover for Laura’s latest book, book five of the Blue Bells Chronicles – The Battle is O’er

and all Laura’s books can be found on her Amazon author page.

https://www.amazon.com/Laura-Vosika/e/B002PD3ZBQ

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Dana K. Ray – with a New Release

Dana K RayToday I’d like to introduce you to my fellow CIR author, Dana K. Ray.

Dana K. Ray is always watching “movies” in her head. They are real, vivid and colorful. She is able to change them around and when she gets the chance, she writes them down. A full time Children’s Minister, she lives in the Midwest along with her somewhat neglected husband and four kids due to her writing. She loves to connect with her readers!

Now that we know a little about you Dana, I’ll get you to answer a few questions, then tell everyone how to find you and your books at the end.

So, tell us, what inspired you to become an author?

I’ve always wanted to write. Stories have played like movies in my head since as far back as I can remember. I won my first poetry contest in fifth grade. A simple poem I wrote in 1976, the theme: The Bicentennial.

One of our famous presidents was Lincoln,

He did us lots of good thinkin’

All though he was tall,

He was loved by all and

He kept the southern states from leavin’!

Wow, and I won first place. Amazing, huh? My prize…a book about boys track. Yes, the ultimate punishment, they thought Dana was a boy. Ugh. Not the first time someone thought I was a boy, but I graciously accepted my book, taped my poem in it and have cherished it since. Occasionally I pull it from the shelf, look at it and am reminded of my call to write.

Jump ahead to the 1990’s when computers came out. That’s when I got to finally start putting my stories down on paper. Twenty years later, they have become published books. My first two books are published by a traditional publisher. My last two, and newest, There’s No Reasoning with Love, are self-published. I love the freedom self-publishing gives! No more arguing about a cover design.

Thanks for that. I can definitely relate to the desire to be indie-published, along with all the control you have! Now tell me, do you read reviews that others leave for your books?

I really try not to, but occasionally get sucked in. When they love my books, it’s like floating on a cloud. When they don’t care for my books it can be like a dagger in your heart. So to keep it balanced, I constantly remind myself that not everyone will like what I write and that’s okay. That’s why there are so many authors, books and genres.

I do hate the reviewer who has to be downright mean. I haven’t experience one like this, but my author friends have. There’s no reason to be nasty if you don’t like a book.

Being considerate in a review is appreciated, because writing a book is exposing a part of your life to the public that is very personal. The novel and characters become part of you.

Yes, wouldn’t it be wonderful if everyone could just be nice?  But we can still learn from the harsh reviews even so. And lastly, how much time per week do you spend writing? Or are you a full-time writer?

I have a full time day job as a Children’s Minister. I write to keep my sanity. It truly is my stress release and my outlet. I love working with kids all day, but I need my adult conversation which is usually with my characters.

Absolution, The first book in The Luciano Series got me through the times I stayed home with my own children as preschoolers. Which is actually kinda funny. When my kids took naps I wrote a mystery with a murder or two.

A Second Chance was my first romance novel, written when the kids were in school. Both were published over twenty years later, beginning in 2016.

My newest release, There’s No Reasoning with Love I started writing last year. I have no set time to write or couldn’t even tell you how many hours a week I spend writing. My laptop goes almost everywhere with me and I write whenever I can.

A couple months ago I took my first writing retreat. Well, it was two days and one night at a condo on the lake. By myself with no Internet. I did finish the cover to There’s No Reasoning with Love and I finished writing Everlasting, book 3 in The Luciano Series.

If you always wanted to write a book, do it! There’s nothing more rewarding than holding your finished, published book in your hand!

Thanks so much for joining me here today, and taking time from what sounds like quite a busy schedule!  So … you’ve got us all interested about your new book. Where can we find it and keep in contact with you?

Theres_No_Reasoning_Cover_for_Kindle

You can find me and all my books on my own website.

Or you can visit me on my Amazon author page.

Or I’d love to see you on Facebook too.

Thanks for having me here today!

Dana 🙂

 

 

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Tara Meyers – with a New Release

author photoToday I’d like to introduce you to my fellow CIR author, Tara Meyers. Welcome Tara, would you like to tell us a bit about yourself?

At nineteen, I was recruited into a secret government program, where my memory was erased .. wait — that’s the outline for a potential book. Sorry, my real biography isn’t quite as interesting, but I’ll give it a shot! I live in the Pacific Northwest, and when I’m not writing, I’m out beach combing with my dogs for sea glass, or hiking in the rugged Cascade Mountains. It’s the perfect backdrop to fuel my creative genius. *rubs hands together evilly* You’ll find all my adult romantic suspense and cozy mysteries here, and on my OTHER profile (secret identity ;)) Tara Ellis, I keep my middle grade and young adult books. Check them out, You might like those, too!

I also write middle grade mystery and young adult scifi under the pen name of Tara Ellis

Wow, you had me going there for a moment! So, before we learn any more about your books, I’ll get you to answer three questions for me.

What inspired you to become an author, and how old were you at the time?

This is perhaps the easiest question for me! At an extremely young age, I used reading as a form of escapism. (A healthy form!) No matter what was going on in my life, I could retreat to a feel-good world with Trixie Beldon and her friends, or into a slightly more mature escapade with Nancy Drew or the Hardy Boys. At an older age (5th grade) I got into Lois Duncan and then even Stephen King, but it was the Trixie Beldon series that held the greatest influence over me. I think I was about six when I first decided I wanted to be a writer. I was reading the little golden reader books before pre-school, and I could never get enough. For me, the ability to create that safe haven for someone, to escape to a place that feels good and they want to keep going back to share the exciting and fun stories is amazing.

If you could tell your younger self something you know now, with respect to your writing career, what would it be?

To not give up so easily! I got very discouraged after an unsuccessful try at getting traditionally published, and I really wish that I had stuck with it.

Yeah, wouldn’t we all!  If we could have only known then what we know now …  Anyway, last question. As a science fiction writer, how hard was it to come up with your alternate world?

I had a blast creating my world. Actually, why I loved it so much is because in The Forgotten Origins Trilogy, it takes place in our “real” world, except that it isn’t what we were lead to believe. I used several different historical references and writings to create an alternate reality. When you start digging into these ancient texts, it’s really quite intriguing. So, it wasn’t hard for me to come up with my “reality”. 😉

Sounds like a lot of fun!

Now, you have a brand new release!  Why don’t you tell us about it.

You Can Lead a Horse to Murder 3D Promo

There’s a killer in Sanctuary, and the prime suspect is a horse!

When spirited Ember Burns is led back home to open her own veterinary practice, her first client lands her in the middle of a mystery. It starts as a desire for Ember to clear her name, and turns into a personal entanglement in a rapidly unfolding story of lies and deceit.

The small mountain town of Sanctuary has always had its secrets. Who can be trusted? It’s been ten years since Ember lived there but roots run deep. Discerning friend from foe isn’t an easy task. Relying on her intelligence and instinct, Ember tries to piece the clues together as the town gears up for its centennial celebration.

From the quaint historic shops, to the rugged mountains surrounding them, Ember works to unveil the true culprit before they get away with murder.

This is a fun cozy mystery with a traditional whodunit story. There are two minor cuss words, no graphic violence and no sex. I would rate a light PG.

You can grab the book on Amazon by clicking here

Or see all Tara’s books here.

Meet fellow Clean Indie Reads author Katharine E Hamilton – with a New Release

Author PhotoToday I’d like to introduce you to my fellow CIR author, Katharine E Hamilton.

Katharine began writing in 2008, publishing both children’s and fantasy books, then in 2017, Katharine decided to venture towards romance and released the first novel in a collection of sweet, clean romances: The Lighthearted Collection. Chicago’s Best reached Best Seller status in its first week of publication and rested comfortably in the Top 100 for Amazon for three steady weeks, claimed a Reader’s Choice Award, and ended as a finalist in the American Book Festival’s Best Book Awards for 2017. Montgomery House, the second in the collection, released in August 2017 and rested comfortably alongside its predecessor. Both were released in audiobook format in late 2017 and early 2018. Beautiful Fury is the third novel to release in The Lighthearted Collection, and Katharine hopes her readers enjoy it as much as the previous novels in the collection.

Katharine has contributed to charitable Indie anthologies and helped other aspiring writers journey their way through the publication process. She loves everything to do with writing and loves that she is able to continue sharing heartwarming stories to a wide array of readers.

Katharine graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor’s degree in History. She lives on a ranch in south Texas with her husband, Brad, and two year old son, Everett. She can frequently be found sitting on her front porch swing with her lap top creating a new story, staying up too late reading a good book, or quite possibly watching Finding Dory for the billionth time with her son.  

Now that we know a bit about Katharine, we’ll get her to answer a few questions, then she can tell us about her new release.

What three things would you say are the most important for an aspiring author to keep in mind as they begin their writing journey?

  1. Finish your story. Don’t bog yourself down thinking about editing, formatting, marketing, etc. FINISH it first. Then you can send it to an editor and start the process. But finish the manuscript.
  2. Follow your gut. Trust your own imagination and creativity. It’s okay to bounce ideas off people, but hold true to your original vision. It’s YOUR story. Tell it like you want. When you receive feedback from beta readers, then think about changes. Otherwise, go with the flow of your own imagination.
  3. Do not be afraid or intimidated to reach out to other authors for guidance or help. We are a community. We are the ones who understand a 1* review, writer’s block, and the importance of the Oxford comma… we celebrate successes together and we are there for when you need encouragement.

Do you read the reviews that others leave for your books?

Sometimes. I would like to say I read every review, but I’m pretty terrible at checking in on Goodreads. I try to keep track of new ones on Amazon, but I think if we (authors) focus too much on reviews we can get sidetracked. Some people are going to love your work and some are going to hate it, and I think if we stalk the reviews we receive, self-doubt can begin to creep into our writing. It’s best to write because you love it, and if someone enjoys it, wonderful. EVERY review is appreciated though. Though we may not check them all the time, they are appreciated because they help us in other ways besides feedback. So keep reviewing! We love them. And just the fact we receive a review makes our day because it means people are reading our books.

What makes you happiest as an author?

Finishing a story. There’s no better feeling as an author than holding the first copy of your book in your hands. It’s a mixture of wonder, fear, excitement, and joy all rolled into one crazy experience. I love hearing from readers as well. I love hearing their thoughts on my work, especially which stories they relate with most, or the characters they love. Our characters become our friends… in a weird way… so we love hearing what people think or enjoy about them.

It’s been great having you here today, Katharine, and that’s great advice we can all benefit from–just get on with our writing and not let self-doubt bog us down!

So, you’ve got a new release, the third book in your Lighthearted collection. Where can readers find it?

Beautiful Fury

All my books can be found on Amazon by clicking here.  Or you can find me on my website.