Friday, June 28, 2013

Author Interview | Jordan Link

Hello my lovelies!
Today, Friday of all Fridays, I have something special! *drumroll* Ladies and gents, meet Jordan Link!
 
Welcome Jordan to BB&MB! I became very excited to interview you after the first few pages of The Sacrificed!
Wings vs the Wingless. I loved the concept and it didn't fail to captivate. How did the idea for this book come about? *leans in curiously* 
I go through a certain train of thought when I’m trying to decide what to write. First, I pinpoint the genre, which is usually fantasy. Then I decide whether or not it’s going to be dystopian. Dystopian is a favorite of mine, and I decided to use it in The Sacrificed. Lastly, I just let my mind roam.
Emerald, at the beginning, acted just like hybrids do. Scared, she wants to be one or the other but can't seem to relate to either. Was she one of those characters that just started taking and wouldn't shut up until you gave her you're full attention? Have you ever be told that she is somewhat like Hawk Girl? 
Emerald, unlike some of my other characters, was actually rather quiet in my mind. In a bizarre way, her situation can be related to horror movies vs. real life. In movies, the main character screams as loudly as they can when they feel lost. In real life, people grow silent and introverted. I’ve never been told that she was like Hawk Girl, but I can see that now!
Let’s talk about the names. Emerald, Dusk, Zoe. Where did you give up with these names? *quirks left eyebrow* These characters make them so sound exotic, in my opinion. 
The Sacrificed
Love, love, LOVE the cover! I can just imagine dusk flying
over with Emerald!
I always try to relate a character’s name to their personality and appearance. Emerald is unique, and most gems are different in some way. Her eyes also take on an emerald shade. Dusk is soft-spoken, and has a pale/ashen appearance. Zoe’s name was completely different at the start of the manuscript, but I had to change it because of its resemblance to another popular character’s name.
As a young child, did you know you wanted to be writer or was it something that tickled at the back of your brain until you gave it your full attention? 
I suppose I always knew. I read books constantly, and the next book in the series was what I looked forward to. In eighth grade, I wrote my first manuscript, but it was arguably the worst prose ever written.
If there is something that always attracts me, is the thought of people flying with or without wings. *smiles like a dork* Think Angel from X-men and Max from the James Patterson series. Is this the same for you? Why or why not? 
I like the freedom that flying entails. Also, people with advantages over others make for a good dystopian tale. I read Maximum Ride after I finished The Sacrificed, and was relieved that there was little likeness between them. That’s another reason why I write fantasy—there’s a lot of room for variety!
 
You sit down to write. Do you just go off the top of your head and make everything flow or do you go by notes and outlines? 
I do a little bit of both. I plot the main points of the story, the ‘twists’ and the foreshadowing. Then, I fill in the gaps and make ends meet.
 
What were your favorite scenes to write? *whispers conspiratorially* Mine would have to be the flying scenes. 
Jordan LinkI loved the scenes involving Emerald and Dusk, including the flying ones. Their relationship was tense from the beginning, and based on a reader’s perspective Dusk may or may not have not been the one for Emerald. I also enjoyed writing the scenes between Emerald and Zoe, the council assassin. Emerald, a ‘broken bird’ in many ways, placed her trust in the hands of the only person who could hurt her directly.     
 
I love to listen to music while reading. The band that I thought was perfect while I read was Young the Giant. *bobs head to music only she can hear* Was there a song or playlist that helped when writing The Sacrificed? If so, can you share a song or two? 
I’m going to be one of the only authors to say this, but I find music incredibly distracting while writing. I used to listen to the pop violinist Lindsey Sterling during literary jaunts, but I found that the beat of the music rarely matched the tone of the scene. But the scene was still influenced, which was unfortunate.
Thank you so much for stopping by! It was a great pleasure getting to know the mind behind The Sacrifice! 
 
Follow Jordan Link: Goodreads | Twitter | Blog 
 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Broken (Afflictions of the Evolved #2) by Shawnda Currie


Hello readers!
I have missed you all! But now that I am back  I have another awesome book to share with you! But before I get to that, sorry I have been MIA. For any of you who have been following movies, you know that some HUGE blockbusters have been hitting the big screen. Recently my theatre did 11,000 people in one day! 0_o Crazy huh? Anyways my personal favorite currently, Monsters University!
.... ok back to books!


Broken (Afflictions of the Evolved #2) 
by Shawnda Currie


Read from June 10 to 18, 2013, read count: 1
Ebook
Review: Bobbi
Rating: 3/5 birdies

Broken was a great follow up to Altered Revelations of the Evolved by Shawnda Currie! It takes place directly after Altered ends, which I really enjoy in a series because as a reader, I feel like I do not miss anything in between. I always wonder what occurs during that time. Where did the characters go, what did they do. Broken solves that issue!

 Now your most likely thinking, if this were so great of sequel to Altered, then why did I rate it only three birdies. Well, between both Altered and Broken, I enjoyed Altered more. Now I am not saying I didn't enjoy Broken, because I most certainly did! But as a reader, so far Altered is my favorite of the series. I just didn't think Broken deserved the same rating. 

Lacey tends to be over jealous when it comes to Taylor, and while yes I understand why her character might react that way, and in part she has good reason to, it was a little much to the point where it was semi-annoying. However, the relationship aspect between Taylor and Lacey is adorable and makes up for ANY semi-annoying jealously!! Being a sucker that I am for for love stories, I love their chemistry between the two. I look forward to reading the third book!

If you are looking for a quick read, something that is short and easy to get through, with a little romance give this series a chance. It is very entertaining to read :]




Shawnda Currie pictured to the right; lives in Ontario with her husband, 2 sons and 2 cats. She hopes to write an adult novel about the revenge of a scorned woman!


3/5 birdies

Monday, June 24, 2013

Interview with Fleur Gaskin, Author of Arabelle's Shadows!

Interview with Fleur Gaskin!
Interviewer: Hannah

Hey! Hannah is back with that author interview she promised--this time with author Fleur Gaskin! Fleur just released her debut novel Arabelle's Shadows last year, and we've partnered up to do an interview, review, and giveaway!

The Arabelle's Shadows giveaway is still ongoing, but only for three more days, so you'd better hurry if you'd like to enter for the chance to win one of three copies!  Get 'em while they're nice and fresh!:D

In the meantime, it's interview taiiime!

1. Tell us a little about yourself, Fleur.

I grew up in Wellington, New Zealand. I began studying philosophy and psychology at university, but a year in I was feeling trapped so when I got the opportunity to model I jumped at the chance. I was fortunate enough to travel all over the world as a model. I never made a lot of money, but I have books full of beautiful photos and a plethora of life experience. 

After 6 years of modelling I moved to China with my boyfriend (who is now my fiancé.) These days we live in Shanghai with our 2 cats and my own vile Shadows are very much under control.

2. What inspired you to write Arabelle's Shadows?

In the beginning I wanted to show the world what modelling is really like for an average model. There is a lot of injustice in the industry and the models are often taken advantage of in one way or the other. I also had a lot of fun stories to tell.

Then as I started to write Arabelle's Shadows I found that modelling wasn't the story I needed to tell. I wanted to express the journey of depression. How it begins, how depression slowly takes over your mind. What it's like when depression takes complete control and the fact that, if you've been depressed for a long time, those negative thought patterns never really go away. I am hoping that people who read Arabelle's Shadows will come away with more understanding about what depression is, and of it's effects.

3. You were also international model, just like your protagonist Arabelle. Does this, in a way, make your novel semi-autobiographical? 

Yes, Arabelle's Shadows is semi-autobiographical. I wanted to tell the truth. For me the truth is so much more powerful, more fascinating. But this story involves more people than just me and I wanted all the other characters to be unidentifiable. Making Arabelle's Shadows fiction also gave me the freedom to express the emotions of the events without having to worry about times, dates, and minor details. 

4. What gave you the idea to use the Shadows to personify Arabelle's fears?

When I was depressed I always felt like I was at war with my depression. Though my thoughts were very powerful and incredibly painful, a tiny piece of my soul knew that those thoughts weren't true. That's how you can survive depression, by separating yourself from the thoughts, from the disease. It's much easier to fight something you can put a name on, something you can picture. I wish that I'd thought of the Shadows when I was depressed. Then I would've been separate from my thoughts and I could've blamed them, I could've said to my mum, "The Shadows say that I'm a horrible person and that I should hurt myself." Instead I kept all those thoughts inside because I was ashamed of what I was thinking. 

5. Arabelle's Shadows it your debut novel; do you plan on writing more in the future?

Yes I have a new novel that I'm working on at the moment? It is still in the formative stages, as in it's still being created in my head. I'm getting marries at the end of July so I'm hoping that in August I'll have time to actually start writing something down. I'm excited about this book. It's going to be different from Arabelle's Shadows and hopefully much easier to write!

6. What do you do in your down time?

I like being at home with my cats. I cook dinner and I love baking. I like riding my bike around Shanghai. But most of my down time is spent pondering people and trying to understand why they do what they do.

7. Do you have a favorite book or author?

My favorite books have to be the Harry Potter series. I wish I could say something more original, I certainly do read a wide variety of books, but Harry Potter is my favourite. I love the way when you are reading them you leave your own reality and step into Harry's world. You can see the magical creatures, hear the mermaids singing, taste the butterbeer. I also love the theme of good vs evil and that each character has strengths and flaws.

8. Excellent choice! How 'bout a favorite TV show?

The West Wing. The writing is brilliant. You have to pay attention to be able to understand everything that's going on. I learned so much about how government works. It also gives me hope that there are some people in places of power who are working hard to make the world a better place.

9. When did you start writing?

I always wanted to write books. When I was 12 I decided that I'd become the world's youngest novelist. I never ended up writing that book and then I forgot about writing for a time, though I started writing a diary. I was inspired to start writing novels when I was a 22-year-old model living in Paris. I'd just finished reading Wuthering Heights and it suddenly came to me that I could also write stories that evoke emotions in other people.

10. What would you say was your favorite thing about writing Arabelle's Shadows?

Finishing it! I was a very difficult novel to write because it was based on my life. Thinking about my darkest days over and over against was not pleasant. 

11. True dat. A lot of authors have certain times or places they like to write. Do you have any yourself?

I go to a café called Wagas. It has everything I need. It has good food and drinks, you can't smoke there, comfortable chairs, Wi-Fi and it's not too noisy. Most importantly, it's safe enough for me to leave my stuff on the table and go to the toilet. Sometimes I stay at home to write, but I'm much more likely to procrastinate if I'm at home.

12. Do you ever get writer's block? If so, do you have any special tricks to get past it?

Yes I get writer's block. It used to really bother me. I thought I was being lazy, procrastinating for hours. Now I understand that it just means that I need to take a break and let my subconscious work through whatever problems I'm having. When the time is right the solution will simply appear and then you can move on.

13. What advice would you give aspiring writers?

Keep writing and writing, then edit and edit some more. Ask for feedback from anyone who is willing to read your work but don't be disappointed if they don't instantly love it. Take their negative criticisms and use them to improve your writing and make it even better.

14. Anything you'd like to say to your readers?

I really was a fighting elf in the Lord of the Rings movies. You can't see me though, I was one of the shortish elvish extras so I generally played dead.

Why, I dare say, what an excellent note to end this lovely interview on! How can you go wrong with Lord of the Rings? Thank you so much for the interview, Fleur, and congratulations on your marriage next month!

I recently finished Arabelle's Shadows, and I'll be posting my review in due time (couple days, tops), so watch out for it! Again, if you'd like to enter the giveaway, click on THIS LINK. June 27 is the last day to enter!

If you happen to miss the date, or you don't win, don't worry--Arabelle's Shadows is still available on various online shopping sites, including Amazon. If you're interested, drop a comment and I can send you some links about where to purchase a copy of Arabelle's Shadows.

G'day, mates! 'Til next time!:D

-Hannah

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

So I have some good news and...

Hey all!
 
As you can surmise from the title, I have some good news and of course with good news you always have some bad news.
 
 
Me thinking of everything I have to do for this new job!
Some updates first: our blogger, Hannah, is on a month long Internet free hiatus. She may or may not pop up here and there but for the most part she will be out there*gestures to the world*. Exploring the wild, learning how to...do something new. I don't really know. She'll have some posts scheduled and ready for your viewing pleasure so keep an eye out for those. Have fun Hannah!
Catherine, Nitza, and Bobbi also seem to be getting super busy but we'll all try our best
 
Now for the good news: I got a job! Yes! I'll be doing paperwork. And oh what a lot of paperwork! *sighs* I'll learning a ton of new things but I'll know I'll be fine.

The bad news: Yep these next few weeks are going to be crazy as I am learning the ropes of the business. You know what that means. Less time to read and blog! That's why I've been MIA for a while now. I'm working on scheduling my posts so they can be ready for you when the time comes. I'll try to be on as much as I can but it might not be much. At least not for a little while whilst it all gets organized.
 
In the meantime I want to hold a giveaway for all you awesome people who are still hanging in there with us and checking out our blog often. You rock!
Details:
  • 3 winners.
  • International
  • Any Ebook of your choice.
 
 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Arabelle's Shadows GIVEAWAY

GIVEAWAY: Arabelle's Shadows
Author: Fleur Gaskin
Published: November 2012
Genre: Women's Fiction

'Tis another giveaway, lovelies! This time, we have a dramatic novel about overcoming the overbearing personal demons of depression and loneliness. The author, Fleur Gaskin, has agreed to give away 3 ebook copies of her debut novel.

Everything in Arabelle's life is coming together. She has confidence, great friends, and she's even dating Naak, a wealthy Thai socialite. But there are too many models in Bangkok. Arabelle's broke, she can't find an agent in New York, and Naak isn't as wonderful as he first appears. Slowly the Shadows creep back into Arabelle's mind, bringing with them thoughts of hopelessness and despair. The vile Shadows know something Arabelle's refusing to remember and, if she's not careful, they'll use it to destroy her. Based on a true story, Arabelle's Shadows takes us on a journey through the struggles of growing up, not quite making it as an international model, and attempting to overcome a crushing depression.

Just drop your name and email address in the comments to enter! The giveaway will last two weeks, thus ending at 11:59pm on June 27. Be sure to enter before then!

I also have an interview with Fleur Gaskin coming up, and I will be reviewing Arabelle's Shadows as well. Looking forward to it!:)

-Hannah

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Author Interview | Teresa Orts

Hi all! *waves*
I had the very great pleasure of interviewing Teresa Orts, author of The Year of the Great Seventh recently and she shared some pretty incredible things with me. Trust me you'll want to read this one!

Teresa Orts*In a very bad French accent* Bonjour, Teresa! How are you? Velcome to my blog! I am so happy to have you here vit me! Think I might have mixed up my accents!

*back to my regular accent* Teresa, I have to be honest when I first read the synopsis I became soooooo curious. Let me tell you why, it was VERY mysterious. I've read a ton of books with the Greek mythology interwoven through its pages but not too many Egyptian (if any!) so the interest level skyrocketed! What made you want to write about Egyptian lore?

I’m glad you asked! In this book everything happened by chance. One night out of nowhere, I started typing a short story that turned into this novel. Well, the Egyptian theme idea came to me by chance, too. After I wrote the first 2 chapters, which then was just a short story, I didn’t know where the novel was going to go. I was walking around Central Park and I bumped into Cleopatra’s needle, the obelisk behind the Metropolitan Museum. It piqued my curiosity! Why have a piece of ancient Egypt in the middle of New York City? Then I started researching the origin, and that’s how the idea came about.

I had a History teacher who made me fall in love with History because of the way he explained it and told it. My favorite lessons were always the Ancient Civilizations. *smiles, remembering the good old days* Like Sophie, are you a history buff? Should we take a guess as to which lessons were your favorties?

Ahhahah! There’s got to be something about history teachers. I had one in high school that was the best teacher I ever had. On top of that, every girl in my high school had a crush on him.

He promised to take his ten best students on a trip to visit some of the monuments we had studied, and believe me, there was a lot of competition to get one of those ten spots. I pretty much ignored all my other classes to get one of the ten best grades in the class. I still remember the trip!

When you're not writing spectacular stories, what do you do?

I have quite a few things going on at the moment. I work full-time, have a seven-month-old baby, and exercise often. When I have spare time, I like to hang out with my husband or go out for dinner with friends.

Recently I spoke to the main characters of The Year of the Great Seventh, Nate and Sophie, and the are some cool beans! Are they modeled after anyone or are they pure imagination? (You can find that interview HERE)

Well, they are not anybody specific. Instead, each is a combination of people I have met through the years.

The Year of the Great SeventhIf you could meet any author (dead or alive) who would you fangirl over? *giggles*

When I was a teenager, I was obsessed with a Spanish writer, Lucia Etxebarria. I used to think of her as my revolutionary “Godmother.” I’d love to meet her one day. Unfortunately, I don’t think any of her work has been translated into English.

There really wasn't much of a love triangle. Is there a reason as to why this was so? I'm happy though that there really was no one else messing everything up.

I didn’t plot out the novel ahead of time. Instead, I just wrote each chapter without knowing what would happen next. I didn’t consciously try to avoid a love triangle; I guess I just got to the end and realized that there wasn’t one.

*leans in curiously* Have you ever been to a red carpet event? If you have, was it as you described it in the book?

Glad you asked this question! I have a really cool friend who works for one of the major film distribution companies in London, and she often gives me premiere tickets. Not only that, I get to go to the after-parties and hang out with the actors. I’ve been elbow-to-elbow with Tom Cruise, Antonio Banderas, Sacha Baron-Cohen (could keep going for a while.) The downside is that I’m a chicken! When I’m standing next to them, I never have the courage to introduce myself.

Back to the novel. Throughout my life, a lot of strange things had happened to me, but this one is definitely in the top three. I was doing a girls’ road trip from L.A. to Las Vegas with two of my BFF’s. When we landed in L.A., I was about to start writing the premiere chapter in the novel, and since I hadn’t been to any premieres in L.A., I wanted to check one out. My plan was to take some photos of the red carpet and the fans. I asked at the hotel if there were any happening that night, and they told me that one of the Twilight movie premieres was happening that evening.

I asked my friends if we could stop by to take some photos, and off we went. We got there about an hour before the premiere, and there were about a gazillion girls. I started taking photos of the fans when one of the movie executives came to us and asked if we wanted to go in. We said yes, and he handed us the three tickets. He escorted us through the crowd, removed the velvet rope, and led us into the theatre. Why us, when there were hundreds of people outside – some of whom had even been sleeping in the street – I’ll never know.

Getting back to your question. The premiere chapter is based on that night.

*whispers conspiratorially* A little bird tells me that you have a baby at home and have been able to finish The Year of the Great Seventh. How did you manage that? Did you have a specified time to write or just sat down to jot it all down when your muse started whispering to you?

When the baby arrived, I had lots of drafts, so it was just putting it all together. You spend a lot of time at home in your PJ’s when you have a newborn! I guess it was the perfect way to kill the downtime.

What can we look forward to seeing from you? More Egyptian lore? Or maybe something about werewolves? *chuckles* Or maybe some werewolves mixed with some Egyptian lore!

I’d love to see Egyptian vampires! lol! No, no vampires or werewolves on the horizon. I have already drafted some chapters for the sequel, and it will still have a fantasy element, but I see Nate and Sophie departing from the Egyptian theme. I don’t want to spoil it too much, so I guess you’ll just have to wait and see.

Quick! The Year of the Great Seventh is going to be made into a movie! Who is going to play Nate and Sophie?

I’ve been asked this many times, and my answer continues being the same. When I imagine Nate and Sophie, I can’t think of any actors. I guess in my head they are two unknown actors.

Thank you so much for being here on my blog, Teresa! 

Make sure to keep an eye out for my review of The Year of the Great Seventh next month!


Eva Pohler Giveaway!

Ahoy!
Today I have a great giveaway you can all enter! So easy a baby could do it! 
Hosted by the awesomesauce Eva Pohler.

What you can win:
  • $30 Amazon gift card
  •  $20 Itunes card
  • free audiobook edition of The Gatekeeper's Sons

Good luck!

 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Seeds of a Daisy by Alison Caiola

Title: The Seeds of a Daisy
Author: Alison Caiola
Published: December 2012
Genre: Chick Lit, Womens Fiction
Reviewer: Hannah

Synopsis:

From the outside looking in, Lily Lockwood, popular star of the hit TV show St. Joe's, has it all. Recently nominated for an Emmy, her star is definitely on the rise. She shares her gorgeous Malibu beachfront home with her even more gorgeous actor boyfriend. Perfect, right? Not so much!

Within a matter of just a few days, it all falls apart. The wind is knocked out of her when she finds out that her boyfriend, on location shooting a western, is riding horses all day and his curvy co-star all night. Before Lily can catch her breath, she gets word that her mother, best-selling author daisy Lockwood, is in intensive care after a near-fatal accident. Lily flies across the country to be by her side. The girl, who has a hard time deciding if her Chai Latte should be Grande or Venti, is now faced with making crucial life and death decisions.

While rifling through Daisy's papers, she comes across shocking information about her mother that threatens to shake her very foundation. Lily embarks on a journey of self-discovery and closure as she seeks to unlock the mysteries of her mother's past.

Review:

Firstly, I'd like to thank the author for sending me a copy to read and review. 'Twas very kind of you:)

Secondly, I'd like to say that there are SPOILERS in this review. Yes. There are indeed. Don't say I didn't warn you.

I thought the events detailed in The Seeds of a Daisy unfolded not unlike that of a soap opera. We have the braindead mother on the verge of death in the hospital, our heroine has suspicions of her boyfriend cheating on her with his costar, she finds out at some point that she's pregnant, [MAJOR SPOILER ALERT] at one point she discovers that she has a half-brother she never knew about, and that her mother had a secret relationship with a man years ago....To be honest, it was a tad too much for me to swallow.

To be sure, I liked how The Seeds of a Daisy really gives you insight into the life of a movie star, how the paparazzi and fandom can really get to a celebrity. A lot of people probably don't quite realize that celebrities aren't some mystical, all-powerful force--they live their lives to the best of their abilities, just like everyone else.

This story was well-written. Some things about it ticked me off (for example, how Lily and Robbie's relationship started and ended; it was too quick--just days after meeting each other, they have sex and even have pet names like "Lil" for each other--and then Robbie immediately ditches her when the long-lost brother David throws a hissy fit, even after demonstrating time after time what a "reliable" and "loyal" guy he is.), but even so, I enjoyed how the ending wasn't all, "And they all lived happily ever after." I hate those endings, as they are usually undeserved. Luckily, Seeds of a Daisy did not do that:)

However, I feel like there's something missing from the story, something to give it that extra oomph, to really push it above and beyond. It needs that zing, that spark of originality. I don't quite know what that spark is--when it comes down to it, for any book you read, it's all up to the author to figure it out for him/herself--but I know that this story could be much better than it was if it had had it.

-Hannah

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Blog Tour | Water & Storm Country (The Country Saga, #3) by David Estes

Water & Storm Country (The Country Saga, #3)
by David Estes
Source: ARC Blog Tour Copy
Format: 380 pages
Published: June 6th 2013
 
Goodreads Synopsis:
Huck Jones, the son of the admiral of the Soaker fleet, has a legacy to live up to. Haunted by the distorted memories of his mother's untimely death, he must face his demons and the man who raised him as he strives to take the courageous step forward into manhood. When he's transferred to the worst-performing ship in the fleet, everything he believes is called into question when he meets a lowly brown-skinned bilge rat girl. Huck walks a deadly rope...

Meanwhile, Sadie, destined to be a Rider in the Stormer army, seeks to avenge her brother's death at the hands of the Soakers. Trained hard by her mother, an experienced Rider, Sadie knows strength and determination more than most. Her father, a Man of Wisdom, has shown his cowardice more times than she can count. As her world and family fall apart, she must cast aside her anger and focus on the wisdom she's always brushed off as foolishness.

Amidst everything, a Plague ravages all, discriminating against no one.

When four worlds collide, lines will be drawn, sides will be chosen, victory will be sought. Death will be wrought. The mysteries of the Cure for the deadly Plague will be uncovered. Who will survive? And what will those who do learn about themselves and the ones they love?
 
 
My Thoughts:
 If there were any doubts as to who is my favorite Indie Author, there aren't any now! Estes keeps on amazing, from page to page!
 
Dear Indie Authors of the world, David Estes has raised the bar on SPECTACULAR books! This book is just barely there (such a small distance) of winning my favorite Estes book. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Sadie and Huck! Such incredible characters that you can see grow so much from chapter to chapter! Strong Sadie who knows what its takes to be a great warrior and the ever Just Huck who sees things so differently then anyone on the Big Blue. I will admit that when I first started reading I cringed at the thought that there would be something romantic between the two ( because one is very young) but as the pages flew by I was happy to note that that wasn't the case. I was also very happy to see that some characters I had been long awaiting, were present ( no! I won't tell you who it is!) and kicking up a storm as I knew they would be!
 
Read it and tell me that you were not eating up the story so fast your fingers got tired quick from flipping pages so fast! I dare you! There is something to be said about a book that does this to you. You know it's going to be a great read because only a couple pages in and your already seeing it all in your head! Estes doesn't fail to do this every single time!
 
So there's this part involving Huck, a character we heard so much about and finally get to meet, and a scrubbing brush! I couldn't stop laughing when I read this scene! One of my top favorite scenes of this book and probably of the series!
 
I'm pretty sure this is goes without saying but you really MUST MUST MUST read the Country series! They are fantastic!
  
 About David Estes
David Estes was born in El Paso, Texas but moved to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania when he was very young. He grew up in Pittsburgh and then went to Penn State for college. Eventually he moved to Sydney, Australia where he met his wife and soul mate, Adele, who he's now been happily married to for more than two years.
A reader all his life, David began writing novels for the children's and YA markets in 2010, and has completed 14 novels, 12 of which have been published. In June of 2012, David became a fulltime writer and is now travelling the world with Adele while he writes books, and she writes and takes photographs.
David gleans inspiration from all sorts of crazy places, like watching random people do entertaining things, dreams (which he jots copious notes about immediately after waking up), and even from thin air sometimes!
David's a writer with OCD, a love of dancing and singing (but only when no one is looking or listening), a mad-skilled ping-pong player, an obsessive Goodreads group member, and prefers writing at the swimming pool to writing at a table. He loves responding to e-mails, Facebook messages, Tweets, blog comments, and Goodreads comments from his readers, all of whom he considers to be his friends.
Stalk David! 
Purchase Water & Storm Country!
 
GIVEAWAY:
2 Things!
1. It's IINTERNATIONAL
2. There will be 2 WINNERS!
Good luck! 
 
 

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Interview with Alison Caiola, Author of The Seeds of a Daisy

Interview with Alison Caiola!

Hannah is back yet again with another author interview! Oh, happy day! This time, I am interviewing the lovely and magnificent Alison Caiola! Just yesterday we finished up a giveaway for her novel The Seeds of a Daisy. Now it's interview time!:D

Alison is a P.R. Exec in Hollywood, as well as a producer and writer, and even the occasional director, and she has been for many years. Let's see what she has to tell us about that:)

1) How long have you been in the show business?

Ever since the late 1980's I've been involved in show business, working at studios, writing screenplays, TV shows and as a public relations executive. My son JD Daniels has been an actor since he was a child so I was also involved with him in his acting career as well.

2) Was Seeds of a Daisy a one-time thing or do you plan to publish more of your writing?

I am currently writing the sequel The Seeds of a Lily and will also start the prequel The Seeds of a Rose. I also have other ideas for novels that are not in this "Seeds" series. I am also writing and producing a new TV series entitled The Tyme Chronicles

3) Which of your characters would you say you relate to most?

Initially I related more to Daisy and her personality. But there are circumstances in both Lily and Daisy's lives that were inspired by real life events. Everyone asks me, so I will tell you, the incident during the Hollywood party absolutely DID happen to me. 

4) What do you do when you aren't writing or producing?

I currently live amongst vineyards on the North Folk of Long Island, so I enjoy going into vineyards, tasting wine and listening to music. 

I also love being on the water, sailing or motor boating, it doesn't matter. Put me on a lake, a bay, or the ocean and I'm happy. I love to travel, but since I am working on the TV series and have been on a book signing tour, I haven't been able to travel as much as I would like. I adore spending time with my wonderful friends and family in NY and California. If you put us in a room, there's always going to be lots of laughter.


I am also a wedding officiant and I custom create wedding ceremonies for couples and perform their weddings. It is so enjoyable and wonderful to be part of one of the most important days in a couple's life together. Since I am a writer I custom craft the ceremony so that it is really unique to each couple.

5) Have you always been interested in writing?

Since I was a young girl I've been a voracious reader. It was always my dream to be a writer. I started writing when I was in high school and have been writing ever since.

6) If you continue to write novels, do you think you would branch out into different genres or styles of writing?

I find that I gravitate to writing women's fiction and chick lit, however my TV series The Tyme Chronicles, is an action-adventure with storylines that have to do with organized crime and terrorism. I am amazed how much I enjoy writing that genre. Of course I infuse the action adventure with buddy movie humor, family drama, and romance.

I think in the future, along with my women's fiction, I am going to jump into the mystery and adventure genres.

7) What was your main inspiration for creating characters like Lily and Daisy?

All the years I spent working in Hollywood, also my son was an actor, as was my boyfriend of many years, so I was able to have a behind the scenes vantage point to what goes on in the industry. I always knew that I would write a story with an entertainment industry backdrop. When my mother became ill, I went home to take care of her. I spent a year with her, much of that time in hospitals and dealing with doctors and nurses. So after she passed away, I decided that I would add a medical component to the story. 

8) What is your usual process for creating a story? Do you have any special tricks for writer's block?

I start writing the story in my head. I think of the story when I'm driving, in the shower, anytime of the day that I have some quiet moments. After I have the story in my head, I sit down and actually start writing.

I always know what the beginning, middle, and end will be. The exciting part is when I'm in front of the computer and ideas sometimes flow at lightning speed and circumstances and incidents are created that I never even thought of before. 

I've never had writer's block per se, but there was a time that I stopped writing The Seeds of a Daisy for eight months. It was involving Daisy's condition that I found particularly painful to write. But I did go back to it, and muscled through the pain. It was cathartic and I must say, I'm very pleased with how it turned out. 

9) Do you have any particular books or authors that inspire you?

There have been so many authors that have inspired me through the years. I was an English major in college so many of them are historic, like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, William Yeats, and Elizabeth Barrett Browning. Modern writers that are inspirational are Anita Diamant, Amy Tan, and Nora Ephron to name a few. 

10) What do you do to relax?

I love to watch movies, TV, and Netflix. On winter days I love watching marathon TV shows from the first episode to the last. I adore sailing, boating, going to vineyards, spending quality time with my friends and family. I also try to find time to meditate, but sometimes it's difficult.

11) Any upcoming projects you can tell us about?

Yes, of course, besides my TV/Web series The Tyme Chronicles, I am currently writing The Seeds of a Rose, all about Daisy and her childhood and coming of age story. I'm also writing The Seeds of a Lily, which picks up where The Seeds of a Daisy ended. We get to see Lily grow and change AND get into more escapades, romantic, funny, and dramatic. Many of the characters from the first book will return. Expect some exciting twists and turns.

12) Is there anything you'd like to say to your readers?

I do hope they enjoy my stories and characters. It's important to me that my characters are multi-dimensional. For example, Lily is likable, but like all of us, is broken at times. We are not whole all the time. We all have problems that we work through and circumstances that make life sometimes wonderful and sometimes unbearable. Even in the saddest, most trying time, you can find humor. 

Thank you so much, Alison! It's great of you to stop by answer a few questions:)

If you'd like to pick up a copy of The Seeds of a Daisy, Alison has provided links, which I've placed further down in the post. Doooo iiiittt....

-Hannah

The Seeds of a Daisy is available at:

CreateSpace | Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Official Website

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