Indie Author Spotlight…Michael Meyer

Indie Authors Spotlight is a weekly meme that will be held on every SATURDAY in the month. It is hosted by Beckie @Bittersweet Enchantment & CYP @A Bookalicious Story.
————————————
This week’s spotlighted author is Michael Meyer…
About the Author: I have resided in and have visited many places in the world, all of which have contributed in some way to my own published writing. I have literally traveled throughout the world, on numerous occasions. I have lived in Finland, Germany, Thailand, SaudiArabia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, on the island of St. Croix, where DEADLY EYES is set. I gained the wanderlust to see the world, to experience other cultures, at an early age, and this desire has never left me. If anything, it has only gained in intensity as I have aged. I try to travel internationally at least once a year. In the interim, I spend lots of time traveling around both my home state of California and other nearby states.
I spent my early years in the small town of Lone Pine, California, the home of almost every western movie, in addition to a wide variety of other genres, made in the 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s. In fact, Hollywood still films parts of big-time movies there today. My dad, the town’s lifeguard at the time, personally knew John Wayne, Lloyd Bridges, and Lee Marvin, all of whom came to the town’s pool, the Memorial Plunge, at times to cool off after a hectic day of working in the sun. I was even an extra in a movie filmed there in 1957, MONOLITH MONSTERS, a B-cult favorite even today. I was ten years old at the time. Even though I resided in a small town hours from the big city, I was exposed to the excitement of action and heroes at a formative age, and, thus, my interest in writing novels of suspense such as DEADLY EYES was born.
As a recent retiree from a forty-year career as a professor of writing, I now live in Southern California wine country with my wife, Kitty, and our two other cats.
WHAT MOTIVATES ME AS A WRITER?  

Writing is a lonely avocation, just my trusty computer at my side, as I work hard to create people, places, and plots that other people might enjoy reading. Marketing one’s own writing is an extremely lonely business. Unlike having a traditional publisher and all of its clout behind me, I have only myself, and I am a writer, not a salesperson. I find it difficult to toot my own horn, though I know that it is essential in order to get word of the very existence of my work out to the reading public. So what keeps me going? The writing, of course, gives me a lot of enjoyment. I am actually like a reader as I write. I never quite know how things will turn out in the end, not only of the book itself, but also in specific scenes. I thoroughly enjoy working with words, stringing them together in a creative way. Language has always fascinated me. Can you goose a goose? Does a house burn up or burn down? If you are going to come visit me, are you coming or going? Why would you want to swipe your card at a cash register if you already own the card? There is a huge difference between snap to and snap at. The list can go on and on. I love to play with words as I write, and this can be seen in DEADLY EYES.

Marketing my own work, however, is a completely different ballgame. I am a good writer, but I lack a lot in the area of salesmanship. I do seek out as many reviewers, interviewers, and bloggers as I can, and I am very thankful for all of these people, but every hour I spend tooting my own horn could be spent creating, my real forte. So what keeps me plugging away at my lonely avocation of writing? The answer is found in the wonderful reactions that readers have to my work. Their excitement serves to push me forward. I like people, and it makes me happy to see that they, in turn, like what I have created. Here are a few random lines from posted reviews of DEADLY EYES on my Amazon author’s site as examples of what I mean:

“The ride is fast and furious and the outcome will leave you blindsided….I recommend Deadly Eyes to all readers for its fast paced action coupled with the mesmerizing and intense suspense.” – Marilou George, THE KINDLE BOOK REVIEW

“Michael Meyer has done it again, weaving a fascinating tale of murder and intrigue in the tropical paradise of St. Croix that will keep you turning the page to the very end.” – Nick Russell, author of BIG LAKE

” Michael Meyer has another hit on his hands with ‘Deadly Eyes’…. This is another 5-star book by a 5-star writer….  If you have never read Michael Meyer, do yourself a favor and pick up this book or all of his books, you won’t be disappointed.” – D Everetti, author of PUNISHING A GOOD DEED

I think you can see what I mean. It is pretty heady stuff, the type of thing that helps me keep the faith as an Indie writer, a person who is not very good at tooting his own horn but thrills when it is tooted by his readers.

———————————-

Synopsis

James Cuffy, better known as Cuff, is living in paradise with his girlfriend, on the small Caribbean island of St. Croix, where the sky is as blue as Cuff’s eyes, the ocean as pretty as Rosie’s cheeks, where the gentle lapping of the waves is a lullaby, and the swaying of the palm trees is a dance. The sandy beaches are as white as sugar, and the horizon is a world away. St. Croix indeed is paradise, the perfect place for living, laughing, and loving.

But the sandy beaches and the turquoise sea can provide no cover from the deadly eyes of the unknown stalker pursuing Cuff. Murder leads to murder as he attempts to untangle the terrible web in which he has suddenly become entangled. The twists and turns are relentless, the roads of the fast action leading in all directions, but time is running out, and Cuff, his faithful Rosie at his side, knows it.

——————————-

Want to know more? Check out the links!

TRAILER: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWLBtVDUdC4

BOOK LINK: http://www.amazon.com/Deadly-Eyes-ebook/dp/B007IO3O22/ref=lp_B005E7M8CW_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1335801699&sr=1-1

Amazon author’s site: http://www.amazon.com/Michael-Meyer/e/B005E7M8CW/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

Goodreads author: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/674626.Mike_Meyer

Facebook writers’s site: https://www.facebook.com/MichaelMeyersWritingLife/app_191387770912394

Pinterest writer’s site: http://pinterest.com/temmike/#

 


Indie Author Spotlight…Richard Due

Indie Authors Spotlight is a weekly meme that will be held on every SATURDAY in the month.
It is hosted by Beckie @Bittersweet Enchantment & CYP @A Bookalicious Story.
————————————
This week’s spotlighted author on Aside from Writing is Richard Due…
“Tales, unlike stories, never lie. You see, a tale is an account of things in their due order, often divulged secretly, or as gossip. Would you like to hear one?” —Lord Autumn
Uncle Ebb was so good at telling his tales of the Moon Realm that sometimes it sounded like he’d been there himself. As children, Lily and Jasper listened raptly to his bedtime tales of a place where nine moons swirled around one another, each inhabited by strange and wondrous beings: magical lunamancers; undersea merfolk; wise birds; winged dragons; and Lily’s favorite, the heroic, leonine Rinn.
There was only one rule: don’t tell a soul.
But now, years later, Uncle Ebb is missing. Lily has learned the secret behind the tales, and soon Jasper will too. But there’s one big problem. You see, something terrible has happened in the Moon Realm. . . .
Featuring twenty-two stunning full-color illustrations by Carolyn Arcabascio.
Volume One of the fantasy adventure series The Moon Realm.
————————————–
Want to know more? Check out the links!
Buying Links:
Amazon (Kindle & Kindle Fire): http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005JFMKB8
iTunes iBookstore (iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch): http://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/richard-due/id462821815?mt=11
Author and Illustrator Bio:
Richard Due (pronounced “Dewey”) first imagined the Moon Realm while telling bedtime tales to his children. He makes his home in Southern Maryland, where he and his wife have owned and operated Second Looks Books since 1991. The Moon Coin is the first novel in the Moon Realm series. Visit TheMoonRealm.com for more information.
Author Image:
Carolyn Arcabascio hails from Massachusetts, where she lives and works as an illustrator while pursuing her lifelong exploration of words, images, and the magical places where they meet. Visit her website at www.carolynarcabascio.com
Illustrator Image:
——————————————
Q&A on The Moon Coin
1. Your book sounds like a genre-bending read – where did your inspiration for it come from?
The Moon Coin is, at its core, traditional epic fantasy, such as The Chronicles of Narnia or the Lord of the Rings. But each moon in the Moon Realm brings something very different. The first two books in the series center around the moons Barreth and Dain. Barreth is inhabited with the Rinn, which are creatures a little larger than Earth’s draft horses, only the Rinn are more lion-like. Whereas Dain is a moon inhabited by people not unlike us, only with magic, albeit a faded, weak magic. The next two books in the series take place mostly on the Moon Dik Dek, which is a mer-world, covered by ocean, and the moon Mintar, which is encased with an unnatural snow and inhabited by giants.
Having these different moons gives me wonderful challenges. There is always something new coming around the next moon. There’s even one moon, the inhabitant of which are secretive about everything, which is pure steampunk. I can’t wait to get working on that one.
As for the origin of the story, I was racking my brain one night, trying to tell my daughter a new bedtime tale. I was exhausted, physically and mentally, and kept stumbling into that wonderland between dreams and sleep. My daughter kept elbowing me: “Wake up, Daddy, you’re not making any sense!” But I kept drifting off. And then, all in one jolt, I brought back with me The Moon Realm. About nine books worth.
2. Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.
If you love being immersed in intoxicating new worlds, weaving through story lines full of narrative puzzles, meeting invigorating characters, and enjoy nail-biting reveals, then my book is definitely for you—because it’s got all that and more.
3. Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?
The Moon Coin is the first book in the Moon Realm Series. Book two, The Dragondain, is written, edited, and currently with the illustrator, Carolyn Arcabascio, for preliminary sketchwork. The eBook will be out the first week of September, and a paperbound version will follow a month or so later. I’m really excited about getting book two out into the world, because I write these books in pairs. The Moon Coin is part one, The Dragondain is part two. Writing the ending to a book two is always going to be easy because book twos will always have a really big finish. I pretty much just have to keep my fingers on the keyboard and hope my head doesn’t explode from the excitement. Writing the endings to part ones is far trickier. I work very, very hard to make sure the reader gets a satisfying end to those. My beta-readers played a significant role in getting the ending of The Moon Coin just right.
4. What inspired you to want to become a writer?
I have to write. I’ve found that I’m really only happy, only really at peace, when I’m trying to balance a narrative juggernaut in my brain. If I try and clear my mind, empty my thoughts, relax, let go—that’s when the tension and anxiety builds. I need a health dose of mayhem ricocheting through my head into order to chill out. I always have. Writing is the only salve I’ve found.
5. What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?
Read the genre you want to write until your eyeballs fall out. Then put them back in and read some more. Repeat.

Indie Author Spotlight…Tyler Mills

Indie Authors Spotlight is a weekly meme that will be held on every SATURDAY in the month. It is hosted by Beckie @Bittersweet Enchantment & CYP @A Bookalicious Story.
————————————
This week’s spotlighted author is G. Tyler Mills…
About the Author – I was born in Charleston, South Carolina and grew up in north Alabama. I’m a graduate of the University of North Alabama. I’m married to an amazing wife. We share out little boy and two great dogs.
About the Book – I began to write this novel when my wife and I found out we would be having our first child. I had wanted to write for some time, but I wanted something driven by a compelling emotion. I discovered the feelings gained when having a child can be an overwhelming joy and I knew this was an emotion I wanted to guide my character. The feelings I immediately felt would cause me to do anything for this child and I knew it was a something that many have felt. I chose this relationship to be the motivation for the actions of my protagonist.
———————-
Charles is an average man. He has a loving family and is solid in his own beliefs. But his faith is soon tested with the loss of his son and Charles becomes a man driven by the need for answers. He needs to know what happened to his child and is prepared to do anything to find out. As simple actions by multiple individuals begin to unfold, a tragedy is formed and Charles is caught in the middle. Throughout it all he knows he is not alone. He knows God is with him. As Charles begins to see signs of what he believes to be the truth behind his son’s disappearance, he’s unsure if these come from God or if they are just coincidences. Is it his vengeance that propels him or is he just doing God’s plan? His faith will either see him through this catastrophe or cause him to lose all he has left.

——————————-

Want to know more? Check out the links!

gtylermills.com

twitter.com/gtylermills


Indie Author Spotlight…Julie Rainey

Indie Authors Spotlight is a weekly meme that will be held on every SATURDAY in the month. It is hosted by Beckie @Bittersweet Enchantment & CYP @A Bookalicious Story.
————————————
This week’s spotlighted author is Julie Rainey…
About the Author: This is me, a full time mom and part time novelist. Lover of rock music, science, space and the vast unknown that awaits us in the universe. I have a wonderful husband and two beautiful children who support me immensely. I live in rural Missouri near a town no one has ever heard of, unless you’re studying to be an engineer and love to drink on St. Pats, then you know where Rolla is.  Actually I think the college once held the record for most alcohol consumed in one evening. My favorite author and book series has to be Orson Scott Card and the Ender Wiggins Saga. Second favorite is Gregory Maguire and Wicked, awesome writing. Science fictionhas been a love of mine for some time, almost as long as my love of reading.
———————————-

 Eighteen years after two caring strangers decide to take her in, Anne must face the harsh reality that everything in her life has been a complete and utter fabrication. With the help of her friend and Protector, she sets out on a journey back home, to planet she never even knew existed. Will she be able to defeat the terrifying evil that awaits her and uncover the truth about what’s really happening there before it’s too late?

——————————-

Want to know more? Check out the links!

Where to Buy: http://www.amazon.com/Lost-Princess-Journey-Home-ebook/dp/B007ODWT2S/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

Author Websites: http://jraineylostprincess.weebly.com   and    www.facebook.com/lostpricess

ReVamped by Ada Adams

A simple mission turned deadly.

Nineteen-year-old vampire Dawn has led a sheltered life within the confines of her father’s presidential headquarters. Upon being sent on a mission to revamp four goofy misfits into guardians of a peaceful little town of Angel Creek, Dawn believes that all her dreams have finally come true. What starts off as a simple task, turns into something unexpected, changing Dawn’s life forever and leading the action-loving, thrill-seeking vampire teen on a path of mystery, danger and intrigue.

When a human girl is kidnapped by a group of rogue vamps, Dawn discovers that there is more going on in Angel Creek than meets the eye. And it all connects to Ethan, the cute newcomer who seems too perfect to be true, Sebastian, the mysterious vampire with a turbulent past, and even Dawn herself. Dawn must not only succeed in revamping the troubled recruits, but must also prevent the vampire race from being overtaken by a malevolent villain who has a strange and obsessive fascination with her. As threat escalates, romance blooms, and ghosts from her past begin to surface, Dawn is sure of only one thing: her life will never be the same.

Angel Creek Chronicles – Book One – Available now at Amazon (click on the Book Cover for link)

—————————————

“Many people sing in the shower. I write scenes in my head and act them out.”

At the age of five, Ada read her first chapter book—Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren. Ever since that moment, she developed an intense passion for stories and characters found within the pages of literature.

In her career as an actress and a writer, Ada currently spends most of her days immersed in imaginary worlds. Much like the characters she enjoys playing and writing about, Ada is a martial artist with a Black Belt in Shotokan Karate. She is also a big proponent of lifelong learning, and has attained a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology (it aids in creating characters with unique quirks!) as well as a Master’s of Science in Education.

Ada strives to bring a fresh voice and perspective to fiction. She has been writing creatively for many years, and is an editor of a global fashion/literary magazine called VEUX. ReVamped is her debut novel.

She lives in Toronto, Canada, and enjoys adventurous nature hikes with her adorable puppies Cara and Oreo.

 —————————————–

meme…Indie Author Spotlight – Melissa Mickelsen

Indie Authors Spotlight is a BRAND NEW weekly meme that will be held on every SATURDAY in the month. It is hosted by Beckie @Bittersweet Enchantment & CYP @A Bookalicious Story.
————————————
This week’s spotlighted author is Melissa Mickelsen…

Melissa Mickelsen was born and raised in Georgia. She currently lives in Germany with her Air Force husband and two cats. Melissa loves hiking in the mountains, eating strawberries, reading, reading, more reading, and really good barbecue. Nightingale is her debut novel.

She began writing in high school and has published a few short stories in online magazines. After graduating from the University of Georgia in 2007 with a degree in Art History, Melissa worked in various jobs, such as a mental health technician at a large hospital and as a serials assistant in a medical library, before pursuing a master’s degree in technical communication and information design from Southern Polytechnic State University.

Although she does not write full time, that is a goal for the future. Nightingale, published by Hadley Rille Books, is hopefully the first of many. The novel tells the story of a young girl, taken from her family and held enslaved by the man that killed them. She is forced to kill, to become an assassin called the Nightingale. Though the girl is young, she has the strength of steel and vows revenge. It might be easier if the vaunted General Astin Talros, the king’s most trusted Weapon, did not haunt her trail.

 —————————————–
In a land of vast, dark forests and clustered cities, cardeai and anthelai live in uneasy proximity. Forced deep into the wilds, the anthelai are feared and hated. They are not people in the eyes of others. They are seen as monsters, demons, and servants of the dark god Enas, master of the hell-like Plains of Centura.  Halfbloods, the children of the two species, are extremely rare. The blood does not mix easy, but when it does the result belongs to neither side. Outcast, anathema, pariah.

Carfuinel, an anthehome in the far north, has seen two such beings in its long existence. The first died in infancy, but the second, a stronger-willed creature, survived. Shielded from the animosity of others by her parents, the child thrived. Until the day when everything changed forever.

The half-anthela, half-cardea girl, after having seen her home and family destroyed, vows revenge on the man responsible. The odds are weighed heavily against her. She is young and brash, and trapped by the power of a small green stone that binds to her the whims of her tormentor. He transforms her into a most deadly assassin, hoping that her demon-like presence at his side will pave the way for the domination of a kingdom. But the girl, now called the Nightingale, has a steely strength that refuses to crack.

She has lost her home, family, freedom, and even her name. But she is stronger than anyone realizes, and she will not break easily. Her captor, and even all of the cardeai kingdom of Caesia, would do well to remember that.

——————————-

Want to know more? Check out the links!

Twitter https://twitter.com/#!/mmickelsen

Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Nightingale/157095704391800

http://melissamickelsen.com/

Indie Author Spotlight…Sara Zaske

Indie Authors Spotlight is a BRAND NEW weekly meme that will be held on every SATURDAY in the month. It is hosted by Beckie @Bittersweet Enchantment & CYP @A Bookalicious Story.
————————————
The Author…This week’s spotlighted author is Sara Zaske.
Sara Zaske has lived a variety of places including eight years in Oakland, California where The First is set. A former journalist, she currently works as a freelance editor and writer in Berlin, Germany. She also hosts the book blog: YA Fantastic Book Review [link: http://sarazaske.wordpress.com] Occasionally, she still dreams of California.
 —————————————–
The Interview

Your book sounds like a genre-bending read – where did your inspiration for it come from?

I wondered how ticked off dryads, mythical tree spirits, might be if I dropped them into the the modern world. But dryads in Greek myths are kind of wussy, always running away from lustful gods and turning into things, so I took it up a notch and made up my own more powerful group of magical people who are closely connected to nature.

The genre smash is my attempt at better defining the book. The term urban fantasy doesn’t tell you much: all it means is there’s a magical element, and it takes place in city. By eco-thriller, I mean that the book centers around the theme of environmental responsibility and then, I threw in a lot of action and life-threatening peril in the story–you know, to make it fun.

Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.

Magic, romance, friendship, wild animals, environmental destruction–all under the golden glow of the California sunshine–what more could you want?

Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?

I am revising my first novel (Yes, ironically, The First is my second novel). It’s about a girl with an uncontrollable fire talent who gets abducted by a dragon.

Then I have a really scary ghost story in my mind that I need to get on paper, so I can stop thinking about it. It’s kind of creeping me out.

What inspired you to want to become a writer?

Fairy tales. My mother read to me every night, but after she left and turned off the light, I’d still want more stories, so I started making up my own.

What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?

Seek out and learn to use criticism. Find people–not relatives, spouses or good friends–who will read your work and tell you honestly what they think. My writing group continues to help me really grow as a writer.

Which authors have influenced you most and how?

Two of my current heroes are Ursula Leguin and Margaret Atwood.

I love the way Ursula LeGuin uses fantasy and science fiction elements to get at larger issues in the “real world.” Plus she’s simply a great story teller. Margaret Atwood has a fantastic, sharp sense of humor, and she’s not afraid to write in any genre.

I can only walk in their shadows, but I strive to be like them by incorporating important issues in my stories while placing a premium on humor and story telling.

Give us a glimpse into a typical day in your day starting when you wake up till you lie down again.

Oh no, it’s too boring. Just cut to the montage of a typical working mom juggling caring for kids, editing for clients, housework, writing, errands, etc. Life is full. Some days I don’t get to actually sit down at the computer and write–fiction anyway. But I make a conscious effort to write in my head during every spare moment. That way when I do get screen time, I know what I want to say. It does make me a bit dreamy sometimes though, and I’ve been known to get on the wrong train and go several stops without noticing.

Finish the sentence- one book I wish I had written is….

The Girl who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne Valente. Not that The First is like this book. It’s not. But I love fairy tales and Valente does something very unique in her book. I envy that fact that she got to spend her days writing in that imaginative world.

——————————————————–

The Book 

young adult urban fantasy/eco-thriller, The First, follows 15-year-old Cassie Craig as she discovers that the strangest girl in her class is more than just a little weird. She’s part of a group of people who were here on earth long before us. Powerful people. And they aren’t exactly happy with the way we’ve been treating their planet.

The First is available for a free download on Earth Day weekend, April 21-23! Available on Amazon – so don’t hang around – grab your copy today!! 

[link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007UZ72K4]

——————————-

Want to know more? Check out the links!

Book Links: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007UZ72K4

Website: http://sarazaske.wordpress.com