Archive for the ‘Queen Titania’s Court’ Category

Today we welcome author Charles Yallowitz and his character, master vampire Clyde, from the series War of Nytefall.

An imposing gentleman pauses at the top of the staircase. He is garbed all in black, a short sleeved shirt and trousers, except for a flowing crimson cape that does not appear quite attached to his shirt. Wisps of crimson rise from his skin, creating an aura of sinister power. Darting eyes take in the glittering assembly of fey creatures, assessing their might compared to his own. He nods a brief appreciation of the sumptuous ballroom and its furnishings. It would be good to “acquire” something expensive back for Mab, his consort. It also gives him something to think about besides the discomfort at having to behave like a diplomat instead of a vampiric warlord.

Character Questions

Are you an insider or an outsider in your homeland? That’s a more complicated question than I realized because I’m technically both. As a vampire, I’m an outsider in the eyes of most of civilization. People are afraid I’ll eat them, which is understandable. Yet, I’m also an insider since vampires have their own shadow society. Well, I’m kind of an outsider in there too since I’m a Dawn Fang. Guess I’m only an insider when it comes to the kingdom of Nytefall, which I rule over. That’s rather sad.

Has your homeland known long periods of war or of peace? What has this meant for people living there? Let’s say my homeland is Nytefall for the purpose of this question. We’ve only known war because everyone has wanted to kill Dawn Fangs since they emerged. The other vampires want us dead because they fear being replaced at the top of the food chain. Those who follow the Sun God want us destroyed since that’s their thing. You have vampire hunters, various monsters, rogue Dawn Fangs, and other enemies as well. All my people have known is war, which is why we hold out hope that we can know peace one day. That’s the reason we fight or hide. It’s all to achieve the goal of perfect unity with our mortal neighbors. Yeah . . . That sounded regal and leader-like. I think I’m getting the hang of this ruler gig.

Author Questions

Fantasy has many genres. How did you choose yours? In the case of War of Nytefall, it was by accident that it became vampire fantasy. Originally, I had my main fantasy series and a separate vampire series on Earth. As I began sorting through my story ideas, more of them were being swallowed by my fantasy world of Windemere. The adventures of Clyde were moved over as an experiment to see if the Dawn Fang vampires functioned better in a fantasy setting. Magic filled in all of the plot holes I had been suffering with for years. I had to give up motorcycles, chainsaws, and modern skyscrapers, but the series was finally solid.

Why do you write? I write because it’s what I enjoy doing. It helps me relax and gives me a chance to escape reality for a while. My hope is to create something that will give readers the same sense of escapism that I feel when I’m writing. When I was younger, I thought my stories could help make the world a less stressful place. Now, I’d be happy to bring a smile to even one person who is having a bad day.

War of Nytefall: Savagery

For the first time in over a century, Clyde will know what it means to feel powerless and weak. Headless bodies appearing across Windemere is only the beginning as Clyde faces the terrifying vampire hunter, Alastyre.  Able to match the Dawn Fang leader in power and ferocity, this new menace shows no signs of weakness or mercy.  With both friends and enemies getting dragged into the battle, Clyde will have to find a way to become stronger.  For that, he will have to accept an ancient challenge and pray that those he cares about and trusts can hold Alastyre at bay. Which monster of Windemere will claim the top of the food chain?

Author Charles Yallowitz

To Purchase

More about the series

About Charles E. Yallowitz Charles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn’t working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. Truthfully, his tales of adventure are much more interesting than his real life, so skip the bio and dive into the action.

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

Sam Schenk is visiting today, with their character Greg Able, from the contemporary witchy fantasy, A Gap in the Veil.

Character Questions

Is there somewhere that people are completely forbidden to go? Well…you can’t cross the highway without an overpass! The police office… It’s bad manners to try and hop onto a fire truck? Sneaking into Parliament seems to be a bad idea. Down the sewers… I guess that’s not forbidden, but eesh… Those pipes have seen better days! No, but seriously, most of the grounds here in New Zealand are pretty laid back. Unless you look like you’re up to no good, most people will give you a wave and a smile.

What kind of house do you live in? It’s an unusual kind of house. It was probably a villa at some point, built around the 1930s. It’s got a long pathway to get up, so I think there must have been a need for wheelchair access at some point. It’s got two stories, a bedroom and bathroom downstairs, and three bedrooms and the rest of the facilities on the ground floor. It doesn’t really have much yard space because it’s got a major road beside it. It’s a bit run down, gotta say. I really should do some maintenance on it at some point, maybe when I get back from my trip.

Author Questions

Fantasy has many genres. How did you choose yours? I go where the wind takes me — sometimes there will be something interesting about the real world, but more often I try to distance my characters from the real world as much as possible. This is the first time I’ve tried to write something set in a real place, and I have to say, it was a lot of fun. I’m planning a short story based around a stream near where I live at the moment — I think it might have opened a floodgate!

Are writing contests a fun change of pace for you, or do they distract you? I wish I could say I had pace! Yes, they’re distracting, but any fun distraction which leads to writing is a good one. I love doing character exploration and playing with words and concepts! Unfortunately, my weakness is in the polishing, and contests don’t really allow for a practice of that smooth finish.

A Gap in the Veil

As a mechanic, Greg can fix just about anything — except his broken heart. He finds solace in witchcraft, solving problems for ghosts instead of looking closer to home. When a visiting musician dials up the charm after a gig in town, Greg’s life looks to be taking a turn for the better. His plans to keep things simple between them are complicated by the awakening of a spirit bent on corruption. Greg must make choices between moving on or taking the fight to a whole new level and save Wellington from a past it had almost forgotten.

To purchase

About Sam Schenk

I was born in Canada, raised in Texas, and matured in New Zealand, where I’ve lived for the past 20 years. I’m a business analyst by day, a mum, writer, and gamer by night.

I love speculative fiction, particularly dystopia, transhumanism, and anything that normalises the rainbow and outside the normal curve of humanity. I’m a sci-fi and fantasy nerd, and love anything that explores life outside of the modern-day.

My first publication came out on March 1st, A Gap in the Veil, in association with Contemporary Witchy Fiction. It’s been amazing to be part of the New Zealand speculative fiction gang, and meeting some amazing writers. I’m looking at producing another part to the collection in the same universe, which will be middle grade.

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

David Lee Summers presents his novel, Owl Dance. This Weird Western Steampunk novel is first in his Clockwork Legion series.

As the dance ended, a small owl swooped into the room and landed on the back of Queen Titania’s throne. A moment later, a woman wearing a black skirt and vest with a white shirt entered the ballroom and looked around. “Where have you led me now,” she said. “We were just taking a walk by the Rio Grande.” Her eyes widened as she took in all those in attendance. The woman looked one of the fae up and down, then another. The queen stood and cleared her throat. Behind her, the little owl danced from one foot to the other and chirped. Seeing the Queen in her royal regalia, the woman straightened, then curtsied. “You’re highness, I’m sorry to intrude. My name is Fatemeh Karimi.” She indicated the owl. “It seems my friend led me here… wherever here is.”

Character Questions

Are you an insider or an outsider in your homeland? I’m originally from a country called Persia and I left because a dear friend who practiced my same religion had been executed by an angry mob. I now live in the southwest of a country called America, but even here, I feel like an outsider. I’m a healer, but there are those who call me a witch because I’m from a far off land and because I like owls.

Who is your closest friend? My closest friend now is a man named Ramon Morales. Until recently, he was sheriff of a small town called Socorro in New Mexico Territory, but he left his job after an angry mob tried to kill me, believing I was a witch. He believes in justice, a value I share. He also has a sense of wonder and enjoys meeting new people and seeing new places, which I adore. However, when he saved me, he made some powerful enemies. I fear they may be looking for him even now.

Author Questions

Fantasy has many genres. How did you choose yours? I grew up watching The Wild Wild West on television and loving it’s blend of the mythic wild west and strange inventions and magic. As an adult, my friend David B. Riley introduced me to weird westerns through his magazine, Trails: Intriguing Stories of the Wild West. He asked me to submit a story and I thought this was a wonderful opportunity to create something as magical for me as The Wild Wild West had been.

Is there somewhere you go to search for inspiration? Much of he Clockwork Legion series takes its inspiration from where I work and live in Southern New Mexico and Arizona and those people I see on a daily basis. My first inspiration for the series came from walking around my neighborhood. Pat Garrett, the man who shot Billy the Kid, is buried in a cemetery in my neighborhood as are other notable people from the wild west. When I started the series, burrowing owls lived near the cemetery and I realized they were very social creatures, but I also knew local lore associated them with witchcraft. It was easy to start putting pieces together. I live in Billy the Kid country. I regularly drive through land where Geronimo and Wyatt Earp rode. Inspiration for wild west fantasy is all around me.

Owl Dance

The year is 1876. Sheriff Ramon Morales of Socorro, New Mexico, meets a beguiling woman named Fatemeh Karimi, who is looking to make a new start after escaping the oppression of her homeland. When an ancient life form called Legion comes to Earth, they are pulled into a series of events that will change the history of the world as we know it. In their journeys, Ramon and Fatemeh encounter mad inventors, dangerous outlaws and pirates. Their resources are Ramon’s fast draw and Fatemeh’s uncanny ability to communicate with owls. The question is, will that be enough to save them when airships from Czarist Russia invade the United States?

To Purchase

About the Author

David Lee Summers lives in Southern New Mexico at the cusp of the western and final frontiers. He’s written novels about space pirates, vampire mercenaries, mad scientists in the old west, and astronomer ghosts. He’s edited thrilling anthologies of space adventure that imagine what worlds discovered by NASA’s Kepler mission might be like. When he’s not writing or editing, David explores the universe for real at Kitt Peak National Observatory. To learn more about David or his books visit his website at http://www.davidleesummers.com

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

Everyone please welcome Astrid Brandon and her character Thurid Sevriens, from the fantasy/mystery series, Mysteries of the Astral. This is an own-voices tale for young adults.

Character Questions

Are you an insider or an outsider in your homeland? I’d say outsider. Being autistic in America, I feel so… unwanted sometimes, y’know? And now that I have these weird powers, great! I’m even more of an outsider.

Who is your closest friend? Before I met Avery, Murtagh was my best friend. Still is. I have multiple besties. Them, Erzulie, and now Avery. Don’t make me choose!

Author Questions

Is there something you wish you had done differently with your craft? I wish I had gone through my manuscript at least one more time before I published it. It’s good, but after months have passed, I wish I had sat down with it one more time.

Why do you write? I write because I look at myself now as a 22-year-old with different neurodivergencies and queer labels and I say, “I wish I had representation growing up.” I didn’t know much about the aro/ace communities, or non-binary communities, or autistic and ADHD communities until I was almost an adult. And there are so many people who feel the same way. I want late middle-schoolers to high-schoolers to read my book and go, “That’s me! I don’t feel that way either.” Or, “I do that thing too!”

Investigation in Nottingham

Autistic Thurid Sevriens has trouble comprehending her grandmother’s aversion to her fascination with Avery Norcova, a deceased actor whose kindness and talent while alive made him loved by millions, to point of his spirit living on long past his physical death. After Thurid gets in another fight with her grandmother, Avery’s spirit has had enough.

Taking Thurid under his wing in the astral plane, Avery takes her to medieval Nottingham, England, a place they could avoid the stresses of day to day life, far from the abuses of reality. But after the town sheriff’s mother is found dead, Thurid realizes that there might be more dangers than originally thought.

As if the dangers of the Astral Plane weren’t enough, the waking world holds its own perils. Far more dangerous than a non-supportive grandmother that hounds Thurid daily life, are magical powers and those who want to abuse them. With magical powers of her own beginning to emerge and danger around every corner, doubt begins to grow in her mind of who she truly, is both in body and in soul.

To purchase

Astrid R. Brandon was born in southeastern Virginia (1999–present). They grew up in Chesapeake and are currently working on getting a bachelor’s degree in Asian Studies with a minor in Japanese. Currently they live with their parents and their two cats. They hope to one day be a translator for the government and to help rescue cats and kittens. As a writer and someone who is actually autistic, they hope to be able to share their experiences and enlighten the world about what autism actually is.

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

Please join me in welcoming novelist Alma Alexander. Her featured character is Aris the Gleeman, from her anthology, Fractured Fairy Tales.

Aris stood just inside the door of the great hall, clutching his harp against his ribs, half concealed by the gleeman’s motley cloak. He watched a woman glittering with diamonds sink into a deep curtsey as she was presented; then what was obviously a family, a proud father cuffing the youngest son into a proper bow when the moment came. They, and others, came away from their presentations, and Aris could see the glow on their faces. They belonged here. They clearly did. Aris himself? It was the old story. He ran from magic, and magic always chased him back, and caught him. He had no idea how the invitation to this ball had come to him — but it was the sort of invitation one did not refuse, especially not a travelling gleeman who was in no way noble, titled, aristocratic at all. He was just the bringer of news, the singer of songs, he was only…

He caught someone’s eye; there was a definite beckoning motion. Aris gripped the the harp tighter, took a deep breath, and then stepped forward into the summons, starting down to where the Queen waited.

He was Aris. Aris the gleeman. That would have to be enough.

Character Questions

Are you an insider or an outsider in your homeland? I am Aris the Gleeman. In my world, a gleeman is actually both — they are a permanent outsider in the sense that they spend their lives travelling and they are always in some different place — but they are also the quintessential insider because they find their place in every hamlet, village, town they visit, and people welcome them for the news and tales they bring. To put it briefly, a gleeman is an outsider’s insider. They find ways to belong where they find themselves. In one sense, they are the center — you might ask whether all the rest of the world is an outsider or insider in the gleeman’s sphere, not the other way around…

In your homeland, is magic feared or respected? It EXISTS. It’s there to be found. I distrust it and am always wary of it — but it treats me like a cat treats someone who dislikes cats — it’s always near me, weaving between my feet and tripping me up, being a nuisance, no matter how hard I try to fend it off. I’d say fear and respect go hand in hand, two sides of the same coin; whether magic is feared or respected depends on whether the person wielding it is. And then, of course, it’s MAGIC. And it’s just obnoxious sometimes.

Author Questions

Fantasy has many genres. How did you choose yours? I have seldom “chosen” anything in my writing — I listen to the calls, and that is what I write. I am not “commercial” at all. As for different fantasy subgenres — well — first of all, as I am fond of saying, ALL fiction is fantasy by default (because it’s all untrue and made up which is the definition of fantasy, no?) so everyone’s writing it, whether they want to or not. I’ve written in plenty of subgenres — historical fantasy, epic/high fantasy, humor, YA, contemporary fantasy, paranormal…. there are always stories. And the STORIES choose which subgenre they will end up “marrying”.

Why do you write? Because I have to. Because I can. Because that’s who I am. Because there is nothing else in the world that I have ever really wanted to do.

Fractured Fairy Tales

Welcome to the land where tales are told. There is a path unfolding in front of you, paved with words, leading into secret places — the dangerous, the remembered, the familiar, the unknown. Here you will find witches and princesses, monsters and familiars, coins made of silver and swords made of shadow, lost girls and travelling troubadours, promises made and broken, loss and laughter. The book you are holding is a key to the gate of that realm. Open the door. Go through.

“I have a wonderful occupation;

I dream for a living.”

Alma Alexander’s life so far has prepared her very well for her chosen career. She was born in a country which no longer exists on the maps, has lived and worked in seven countries on four continents (and in cyberspace!), has climbed mountains, dived in coral reefs, flown small planes, swum with dolphins, touched two-thousand-year-old tiles in a gate out of Babylon. She is a novelist, anthologist and short story writer who currently shares her life between the Pacific Northwest of the USA (where she lives with two obligatory writer’s cats) and the wonderful fantasy worlds of her own imagination. You can find out more about Alma and her books on her website, at her Amazon author page, on Twitter, her Facebook page, or at her Patreon page.

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

Author C. S. Boyack joins us today with the current installment in his fun and adventurous urban fantasy series, The Hat. The main character is a musician, Lizzie St. Laurent, with her partner, a magical hat.

“Would you look at that? All those lightning bugs, flowers, and crap.” The hat took the shape of a women’s straw sun hat with an ivory ribbon that dangled down the back. His partner, Lizzie St. Laurent, wore a knee-length white dress with a pair of modest heels.

“We were both invited here. They know about you, so stop talking directly to my mind. I’m thinking one drink and we’re out of here.”

“Cool. Maybe we can pick up something, then go out to the country. I have a hunch where some graveyard ghouls could be hanging out. You’re packing, aren’t you?”

“I have a pistol in my purse. The other one is in the car.”

Character Questions

Who is your closest friend? (Lizzie) “I have a lot of friends. I mean, I guess I’m closer to Tanith than anyone else. She’s my drummer in our band. She goes by Sweet-T when we’re on stage.” (Hat) “I’m a hat. I can’t really talk to anyone without freaking them out. It’s basically me and Lizzie against the forces of darkness.”

In your homeland, is magic feared or respected? (Lizzie) “It’s completely unknown. It exists, but it’s better if people remain unaware. The hat and I even know a witch, but she’s pretty reclusive.” (Hat) “Are you kidding me? It scares the hell out of people. Back in the day they used to burn magical folks at the stake. I ought to know. I was there.”

Author Questions

Fantasy has many genres. How did you choose yours? I cover a lot of speculative fields. For The Hat Series, I wanted an urban fantasy or magical realism. People can relate to our world, then I peppered it with the fantastic elements. It’s also dark humor. It’s helpful to have the modern world to poke fun at.

Is there somewhere you go to search for inspiration? The short answer is no. I get inspiration from everything. It could be something out my window, online, or the nightly news. I actively browse Pinterest every night before bed and get a lot of ideas from it.

Lunar Boogie

Lizzie and the hat are back in action, only this time they’re up against the most tragic monster of all, a werewolf. This adventure is more like hunting an animal, and the werewolf is unlikely to come to any of their musical performances. This puts Lizzie out in the dark corners and wooded areas of the city. It may be more beneficial to get the monster to hunt Lizzie than to stalk him on his own turf. All she has to do is be quicker on the trigger than the wolf is on his feet. At the same time, the police think they’re after a serial killer. Lizzie tries to keep them alive while also keeping them out of her way. As the body count rises, so do the pressures. It doesn’t help that people are blaming Lizzie and the hat for the killings. This involves an urban myth about them that the locals call Hellpox. Pull on your boogie shoes and join the hunt. Designed as an afternoon read, this one is tons of supernatural fun.

Purchase now or find out more about the series!

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

As June creeps closer, I’m hard at work on setting up for Queen Titania’s Court. But I feel like a harried wedding planner, trying to get all the guests and decorations in order.

More authors are taking part this year. That makes me very happy. Still, it takes a bit of scurrying around and sometimes a few follow-ups to collect the information I need from each of them. Then I have to set up the posts in advance. I’ll do several passes to make sure they all have the same format and that every link works.

However, when they’re all done and scheduled, and the book event starts to unroll, it’s going to be a blast!

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook,Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

That’s right, I finished the third draft of Renegade of Opshar. It still needs minor tweaking, but I’m happy with how it came out.

Of course, the next steps are many. I need to get it off for proofreading. I need to stop dithering and choose the cover art. Then I will make the title images, and put them all together. Next will be setups for the e-book, through Bowker and Amazon and Draft2Digital. Even with all that, it looks like I will be able to make it to a June 1st release. Huzzah!

While I’m working on those things, I also have a lot to do on Queen Titania’s Court. Gathering everyone’s introductions, and their questions, and their cover images. Making decisions about which author appears when, and getting to work on actual posts.

So, I’m going to be a busy bee for the next couple of weeks. But it will be a lot of fun.

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web site, Facebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

I FOUND THE MISSING E-MAILS!! Somehow they were being shunted into a hidden folder. The fairies must have done it. Yeah, that’s my story.

Now that I’ve recovered them, I made a new folder just for things related to Queen Titania’s Court, and set up a “rule” to sort all those e-mails into it. There were a lot more replies than I had realized, so now I’m hastily going through and letting everyone know I didn’t ignore them. I hope to get that set in the next few days, because Queen Titania’s Court is supposed to start in a couple of weeks. Yikes!

So, once again, if you know someone who had reached out about Queen Titania’s Court and not heard back, please let them know to try again.

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my web siteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

Read Full Post »

Some e-mails, that is. I know I’ve seen at least two responses from people asking about Queen Titania’s Court. The thing is, I looked at them on my cel phone. When I went back to my desktop computer, the messages had vanished. I want to follow up on this, but I can’t find those original messages. Just this morning, I combed through over 1,000 deleted e-mails both on the cell phone and the computer, to see if they somehow got swiped-right into the trash. No such luck.

So if you or someone you know reached out about Queen Titania, please ask them to try again. I really do want this to happen! (But if your initials are A. L, you are the one I didn’t lose, so you’re all good.)

In other news, I’ve mostly got the names reassigned for The Renegade, although not a new title, yet. I’ve completed a book map to help me find where the weak spots are as far as plot action. I know where I need to deepen the character motivations and amp up the emotion.

The obstacle to starting the second draft is that I’ve received my annual review at work and it was unexpectedly negative. Like, “needs improvement” in every category, where every previous review noted that I exceeded expectations. This year has been rough for everyone, but I thought I had a good working relationship with my supervisor and I’m really discouraged by this review.

So I’ve been in touch with my union representative and have advised the principal that I’ll be protesting the evaluation. But I’m just going to have to allow myself to be depressed and distracted for the next week or so.

Hope it’s all been going better for you!

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »