Author Interview: Ryan Troske

The Rising tells the story of Ethan, a teenage boy who — in the wake of a horrific car accident — finds himself endowed with telepathy and telekinesis. What ensues is a series of strange, mysterious events which see Ethan being dragged into the eye of a supernatural war. 

Coffee with Architects of Worlds Afar is happy to announce that Ryan Troske — author of The Rising, book one of the Supernaturals series — is with us to talk about his novel.

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1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a biologist who spends time out on the Bering Sea working with all sorts of fascinating creatures.  Seriously.  I collect, maintain, and distribute data for scientific, management, and regulation compliance purposes in the Gulf of Alaska and the Eastern Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands.  When I’m not tangling with squid and wrestling with sharks, I enjoy watching and playing sports of all kinds, playing guitar, and of course, writing, which I hope to make more than a hobby instead of “that thing I tried one time.”

2. When did you start writing?
I’ve always been the creative type, whether that be through writing, drawing, or music, and have a very active imagination, but I never seriously considered writing a book until a few years ago.  I kind of just randomly decided to give it a shot and went for it.  I came up with a random idea, and it slowly built from there.  So ultimately, I didn’t start writing until a couple years ago.

3. Why did you start writing?
I kind of touched on this above, but I was reading through a series and thought to myself how simple the author made it seem.  That’s not to say the writing wasn’t good or anything, but it was done in such a way that made me feel like I could do it.  Let me explain it another way.  If you don’t know who Bob Ross was, he was an incredible painter known for his show The Joy of Painting.  I’ve spent a lot of time watching reruns with my dad over the years, and it’s just incredible to see the paintings Bob creates in only half an hour.  He makes it look so incredibly easy.  It’s not.  I bought one of his painting sets and tried myself.  Turned out okay, but nothing like Bob’s.  That’s how I felt when reading through this book series, that maybe I could do this.  I flirted with the idea for a couple of days and then decided to give it a shot.   I’m glad I went for it.  It’s been an incredible experience.

4. Do you recall the moment you first conceived the idea for your novel? On a related note, how different is the final product from your original vision?
I was randomly thinking of possible storylines, unsure of how to go about the process since I’d never written a book before.  It didn’t take long for me to come up with a very simple idea: a boy gets into a car accident and ends up developing superpowers.  That was it.  I began to build on this premise and before I knew it, not only did I have a storyline for a full-length novel, but I had material for a 4-book series, with a possible 5th loosely based tie-in.  The final product of book 1 was quite a bit different than the first draft.  For the most part, structure and content remained intact, but I cut out quite a bit of material.  From first draft to final, the word count dropped from 160,000 words to 130,000.  Still long (if you’re like me, you like longer books), but quite a bit shorter than in the beginning.

Cover photo5. Tell us about your book’s title.
I tried to come up with a title that wasn’t immediately obvious, but would make sense following the storyline.  I actually have titles for the rest of the books in the series already, and each not only follows the design mentioned, but they also have hidden meanings that aren’t revealed till later in those books, or in a subsequent book.  I didn’t originally set out to be cryptic in that way, it just sort of happened, but I like the way it’s turned out.

6. Does your story have a moral? What are some of the major themes present in your book?
There’s no real moral necessarily.  Just a fun, action-packed story.  Some of the themes are: coming of age, good vs. evil, knowledge vs. ignorance, loss of innocence, and more.  Simply put, if you like superheroes of any kind, X-men, Percy, Jackson, or other works of similar nature, I think you’ll love this book.

7. Of the characters you’ve created, which one is your favorite?
This is a tough one.  Obviously I like the main character Ethan.  The book is told from his point of view after all.  Plus, there are definitely elements of myself that found their way into Ethan’s character (mainly the humor), which may have been why it was so enjoyable creating and writing him.  There are several other characters that I really enjoy as well (Raven, Blake, Murphy, and Niko to name a few) which seem to be the ones readers rally behind as well.

8. Using five words or less, describe the protagonist in The Rising.
Trusting, innocent, sarcastic, naïve, powerful

9. What does a typical writing session look like for you?
No writing session is the same, but I try to structure them as much as possible.  Whenever I sit down to write, my usual goal is 1500 words.  Sometimes it’s less, sometimes it’s more.  Whatever word count I’ve reached for the day, if I come to a point where I finish off a scene or a chapter, I may call it quits right there and spend some more time brainstorming through the next section or scene before hitting the keyboard again.  When it comes to writing, the less distractions the better, which is generally why I don’t listen to music.  Sometimes a little soothing background noise can help, but, for the most part, I like silence when I work.  I prefer to write late morning or in the afternoon, but if something comes to me during the evening and I have that itch to get it down, I have no problem breaking out the laptop and having at it if time permits.  Generally, I write in my office, or out on the back patio, but I love to hit up the park on a nice day and write as well.

10. How do you feel about outlines? Are you for or against them?
Everyone is different. When I have an idea for a book, I start with something simple: writing it down.  I outline to a degree, but probably not like most go about it.  I write out the basic plot and build upon that, over time adding more specifics and building scenes.  I make tons of notes on my phone of random ideas that come to me throughout the day, building on scenes I already have, or creating completely new ones, adding character traits, dialogue, or whatever else might come to me.

11. What is your favorite book genre?
Not sure I have one favorite. I enjoy a variety of genres from fantasy/sci-fi, to crime and legal thrillers, to mystery and suspense, to horror and thrillers.

12. What are you currently reading?
I just finished the first book in the Jesse Stone mysteries series. I’d seen a few of the TV movies and wanted to see how the books compared.  Looking forward to starting book 2 here shortly.

13. What is your favorite book?
Tough, tough question. I really enjoyed the Count of Monte Cristo.  The full-length version.  Yes, all 1462 pages of it.  It may be long, but it is packed full of adventure, intrigue, romance, and the elegant machinations of Dante as he exacts his terrible, crafty revenge.  I’d recommend it to anyone who wants to get lost in an incredible story.

 14. Any project in the works?
I am currently working to finish up The Recruit (Supernaturals Book 2), as well as the first books in a couple other series I hope to complete: The Outbreak (Survival Book 1), a dystopian/post-apocalyptic journey/thriller; and The Lost Book of Behlkrumór (The Telkuhryn Chronicles book 1), an epic fantasy adventure that will appeal to lovers of The Lord of the Rings, The Chronicles of Narnia, and other similar works.

15. How long does it usually take you to write a book?
Well, considering this was my first book, I don’t have much to base this on. From deciding to write a book, to coming up with a storyline and the completion of the first draft was about a year.  It took about another 2 years before it was published, as I was doing lots of edits and rewrites, contacting agents, trying to figure out how the whole publishing process worked, as well as continuing to work on other books in the making.  A long process which I hope to considerably cut down on from this point out now that I’m familiar with how things work.

16. In your opinion, what makes a story ‘good’?
You could ask a hundred people this question and get a hundred different answers. For me, I like to be able to insert myself into the story, if only as a spectator.  But if I can lose myself in the pages then the author is doing something right and I’m enjoying the story.  When characters become more than lives on a page, to the point where you feel connected with them in some way; and you feel a part of scenes and action sequences, you’re in for an enjoyable ride.

17. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Read, read, read. Write, write, write.  The old cliché is true: practice makes perfect.

And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Books or movies?
It depends what it is.  But in most cases, I’d go for the book.  No movie can capture a story quite as well as your own imagination.

2. Dogs or cats?
Without a doubt, dogs.

3. Summer or winter?
Well, there’s baseball in the summer, and hockey and football in the winter, sooo, I love both.

4. Cake or ice-cream?
Mix them!  But if I had to pick just one: ice cream.

5. Ebook or physical book?
I love the convenience of my Kindle. My job requires traveling and I have a limited space to store luggage once I’m on the boat, so a Kindle sure beats lugging around a handful of thick paperbacks.  Especially if I’ll be gone for several months and will need more than a few books anyway.  That being said, however, I’d rather have an actual book to read.  There’s just something about the feel of the pages in your hands that beats any Ereader out there.

6. Nights out or nights in?
Depends what I’m in the mood for.  Or who I’m with.  Love to go out for sporting events, restaurants, movies, or other things, but sometimes a night in playing games, watching a movie, or sitting down with a good book is a great way to spend an evening.

7. Having telepathy or having telekinesis?
Funny question considering the main character in my book has both of these powers. I’d have to go with telekinesis.  Though it would be cool to read minds, it would also feel like an invasion of privacy.

8. Being able to travel to the past or being able to travel to the future?
Past. Could witness some of the most famous events/times in history.

9. Making a phone call or sending a text?
I’m a texting fiend.

10. Staying in a hotel or going camping?
All about that free breakfast, ha.  I do love camping and roughing it, however.

11. Losing all of your money or losing every picture you’ve ever taken and every picture that has ever been taken of you?
Money.  Pictures are memories.  They’re priceless.

12. Being Spider-Man for a day or being Batman for a day?
Two words: Bat Mobile.  Besides, Batman is way cooler that Spidey.

13. Reading or writing?
How can you have one without the other? I, for one, can’t.  Yes, they’re related, but they’re also completely different.  To experience or create. . .

14. Bungee jumping or going on the slingshot ride?
Bungee jumping.

15. Being able to speak and understand every language known to humankind or being able to speak and understand every language known to animals?
Animals.  Who wouldn’t want to be a real life Dr. Dolittle?  Man’s best friend could literally be your best friend.

16. Staying awake for forty-eight hours (continuous) or walking for twenty-four hours (also continuous)?
Up for 48 hours.  Done that before, back in my college days during finals.  Okay, so I didn’t have the best study habits.  Must’ve done something right, though.  Graduated with honors with a 3.56.  Not too shabby.

17. Drinking a glass of expired, curdled milk or eating a bowl of cold, slimy worms? (Note: the worms would be dead, though not cooked.)
They’d probably slide down a bit easier than chunky milk (gross).  Just pretend it’s spaghetti.  Slimy, guts-filled spaghetti.

18. Losing your ability to speak or losing your ability to hear?
I’m a lover of music, and do a little writing of my own (been playing guitar for 14 years now), but there is so much beauty to see in this world: faced of loved ones, nature, and much much more. Nope, there is no way to answer this one.  I refuse.

19. To never again eat a piece of chocolate or to never again drink a cup of coffee?
I don’t drink it anyway, so pass the chocolate.

20. Finding yourself trapped in the universe of The Walking Dead or finding yourself trapped in a slasher film?
The Walking Dead. One of my favorite shows.  Who hasn’t wondered how they’d fair in a zombie apocalypse?  Those Walkers better look out.

Thank you for joining us, Ryan!
Readers: want to connect with Ryan? You can find him on Twitter, Goodreads, and Facebook. To get a copy of The Rising, click here. Have any questions you’d like to ask Ryan? If so, please direct all inquiries to TroskeTitles@gmail.com.

Author Interview: Mary Feliciani

Allow me to present Mary Feliciani. She’s the author of the following titles:

  • The Magic Leaf
  • Humanitarians, Visionaries, Heroes, and You
  • Big and Small in the Mirror

(We’ll learn more about each book later on in the interview.)

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1. Tell us about yourself.
I am a Canadian independent author and publisher of children’s books. I attended the University of Toronto at the Mississauga campus and still live in Mississauga, Ontario. After receiving a Bachelor of Science from UTM, and then a Bachelor of Education from the University of Toronto, I became an elementary school teacher.

I have two passions; writing about topics that interest me such as bullying, and the other is travelling and photography. I literally have thousands of travel photos.

  • Could you elaborate on why writing is as important as it is to you?

Writing is a way to connect, to say things you might not be able to say in person, or ever have the opportunity to discuss. It’s both cathartic and introspective. It forces you to search corners of your mind that you might not get to in any other way.

  • How about travelling? Why does it hold such a privileged position in your life?

Travelling isn’t just about adventure. It fosters an appreciation of other cultures and facilitates the recognition that every country has been influenced by other countries. You not only see the differences, you see the similarities. Travelling also gives you the opportunity to see the natural beauty of the world, without the imaginary borders.

2. When did you start writing?
I wrote the manuscript for The Magic Leaf  as a young adult while I was still in university. Then I became busy with life: career, family and friends. But I never forgot that first manuscript. Years later, in 2006, I decided to return to writing and published my first book The Magic Leaf. That was followed by the title,  Humanitarians, Visionaries, Heroes, and You, in 2012. My most recent book is Big and Small in the Mirror, published in 2015.

Here are the synopses for my book titles:

Capture cover Magic Leaf

The Magic Leaf book is about a small-town boy who learns the value of friendship. A medieval, Italian town named Roseto serves as the backdrop. The beautiful and colourful illustrations – all done in paper collage style – depict different parts of the town and journey. Although the story unfolds in a different time and place, the message is universal and timeless.

 

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Humanitarians, Visionaries, Heroes, and You  is a collection of seven inspiring mini-biographies. I  use the voices of Mattie Stepanek, Martin Lurther King Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, the Dalai Lama, Mother Teresa, Terry Fox, Craig Kielburger, and my own reflections to encourage the reader to join a growing movement towards social responsibility and global citizenship.

 

Big and Small in the Mirror coverIn Big and Small in the Mirror,  friends Carlo and Marco learn the effects of bullying on their self-images and that positive relationships help them grow.

I provide discussion questions at the end of the book to help parents and teachers facilitate a discussion about bullying, and to put the story in perspective.

 

3. Tell us a little bit about your books’ titles.
Titles are very important to me. They should be a summary or an accumulation of what is in the book without giving everything away. I also want the titles of my books to be clever and arouse the curiosity of the reader. For the 3 books that I have discussed so far, there was never a doubt about what the titles would be. But for my next book I had 3 working titles. I told one of my friends about the title options I was considering and she helped me chose one of the three.

4. What does a typical writing session look like for you?
Stories live inside my head for a long time before I sit down to write. I am rarely looking at a blank page, although, I do leave parts of the story blank – those that I haven’t figure out yet – and return to them at a later date.

I write in blocks of time when I am ready to write and prefer mornings. Story ideas will come to me at any time and any place; you can’t schedule for them. It is not unusual for me to jot down an idea or even just one sentence that I want to use in the future. I use scrap paper or anything that I can find to make notes. In recent years my iPad has come in handy. I do give myself a timeline, but things get more complicated when I am ready to work with an illustrator or book designer; they have their own schedules.

5. Do your stories contain morals?
All my books are about a moral, a lesson learned, or a deeper meaning. Friendship, fairness, compassion, peace and non-violence are themes I focus on in my writing. I start with the meaning of the story and then work backwards to see how I can achieve my goal. It is the themes themselves that inspire me to write.

“I only write when I feel like writing. I only feel like writing when I have something to say. And there isn’t any use in saying anything unless it’s the truth; the way you see it.”

These themes are the truth to me.

And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Books or movies?
Most of my life I preferred movies. If a book is turned into a movie, the book has come to life. If the movie version isn’t well done, I prefer just reading the book.

2. Dogs or cats?
Most dogs are warm and friendly. I had a golden retriever who was loved by the whole neighbourhood.

3. Summer or winter?
I was born in winter and I live in Canada, so I don’t mind the winters. Winter can be picturesque. I enjoy living in a country that has four distinct seasons; fall and spring are beautiful too.

4. Cake or ice-cream?
Ice-cream on cake sounds good. I definitely have a sweet tooth.

5. Car or motorcycle?
Cars are much safer.

6. Ebook or physical book?
When I first started writing, I liked reading physical books better and so published my own books in print only. Today my latest book was published as an ebook only.

There are advantages to ebooks from a reader’s perspective. You will never be without a book to read. You just go online and choose another ebook. From an author’s perspective, there are advantages as well. You don’t have to store books or print them. If you don’t have to print them, there are an infinite number of copies to sell.

7. Nights out or nights in?
Overall, I would have to choose nights in.

8. Living in the city or living in the country?
I live in the suburbs. It has to be the best of both worlds.

9. Having telepathy or having telekinesis?
I would choose telepathy. I would want to connect with people not move objects.

10. Making a phone call or sending a text?
If it is someone I know, I would want to hear their voice.

11. Travelling by car or travelling by airplane?
I have alternated between the two to make travelling more interesting. But depending on where you want to go, airplane might be the only choice.

12. Staying in a hotel or going camping?
I love to travel and part of the experience is the hotel.

13. Losing all of your money or losing every picture you’ve ever taken and every picture that has ever been taken of you?
This would be a very difficult choice for me because you said all your money. I love taking photos of family and my travels. I am usually behind the camera. My pictures are more important to me than money.

14. To find true love or to win the lottery?
I would want to test the notion that you can’t buy love.

15. Being Spider-Man for a day or being Batman for a day?
I remember watching Batman the TV series as a kid. I would want to be Batgirl or even Catwoman.

16. Reading or writing?
I read when I want to take a break from writing.

17. Being able to speak and understand every language known to humankind
or being able to speak and understand every language known to animals?

Being able to speak every human language would fit in nicely with travelling and seeing the world.

18. To never again eat a piece of chocolate or to never again drink a cup of coffee?
Belgium chocolate coffee creamer is one of my favourite creamers. That might do the trick.

19. Being two inches tall or being two stories tall?
I would have to choose being two stories tall. I wouldn’t want to be trampled on by all the other people that chose that option.

Thank you for joining us, Mary!
Readers: want to connect with Mary? She invites all who are interested to follow her on Amazon and Goodreads. Also, be sure to check out her website. Please send inquiries to m.f.publishing@rogers.com.

Author Interview: Jessica Wolf

I am delighted to announce that Jessica Wolf — author of The Shipmaster’s Daughter — is with us today. Before we get to the actual interview, let’s take a look at her novel’s description.

13315657_1726945164245050_3039294464104785400_nAmerica—it’s not just a word for Luciana Renaldi. It’s hope. After leaving her beloved Italy behind for good, Luciana knows there are good things on the horizon for her family. There has to be. But to her horror that hope is shattered when her ship and her family are sunken at sea. She washes up on the shores of an unknown land, barely breathing, and is taken in by a strange man with strange ways. As her feelings for the man begin to grow, her newfound dreams begin to clash. Should she stay? Or should she pursue her dream of making her own way?

Widower Reed Hargrave doesn’t care for much. Not his appearance, not his reputation, not even his dilapidated house. All he cares for is his daughter and his solitude. So when a young woman is found on the shore near his house, he is hard-pressed to let her stay for longer than necessary. Why, then, does he continuously create new ways to keep her around every time he opens his mouth?

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1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I was born in Dallas, Texas in the middle of a heat wave. (My dad tells a story about how he drove my mother to the hospital in a car without air conditioning with trash bags covering the seats because he was worried about the mess. Typical dad stuff.) I spend a lot of my free time writing and reading, but I also enjoy taking long walks and road trips.

2. When did you start writing?
I have been writing all of my life. There has never really been a time I wasn’t writing (except for a brief period in middle school). In ninth grade I really made the decision to actually write with the intention to publish.

3. Do you recall the moment you first conceived the idea for your novel? On a related note, how different is the final product (the book) from your original vision?
The Shipmaster’s Daughter is two years in the making, so no, I don’t remember the moment I came up with the story idea. Really, I think it’s a blend of stories I’d tried to write in the past that didn’t pan out. For example, the main house Yellow Brook comes from an idea about a woman trying to find lost treasure in a house of the same name. And, as for the final product compared to the original version, I’d say for the most part it’s the same. A few things were tweeked here and there, but the body of the story and the flow of the story is the same.

4. Of the characters you’ve created, which one is your favorite?
I have a very soft spot in my heart for Sam. He’s a minor character and not in the novel a whole lot, but I really, really enjoyed writing him. There’s just something about his sweet nature and love for Luciana that makes me smile.

5. Using five words or less, describe the protagonist in The Shipmaster’s Daughter.
Spirited, independent, brave, determined.

6. What does a typical writing session look like for you?
I prefer to write in the evening, alone, in my room, or wherever my laptop may be plugged in. In the past I used to write at least 2,000 words a day. It was a good, easy goal I could reach within a short period of time. Right now, with my job and freshman year of college starting up, I try to write 1,000 words a day.

7. How do you feel about outlines? Are you for or against them?
Oy! What a question! I like outlines—but only to an extent. I want to know the general idea of where the story is going—who everyone is, what the many problem is—then let the plot and characters take care of the rest. I don’t need every paragraph outlined.

8. Let’s talk about your favorite book genres.

  • Which do you prefer to read in?

I love thriller/mysteries, but I love historical fiction as well.

  • Which do you prefer to write in?

Historical fiction.

9. What are you currently reading?
I am currently reading “Love on the Line” by Deeanne Gist.

10. What is your favorite book?
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde. When I first read it I fell in love! I’m a big sucker for the classics, (Jane Eyre ftw!) so TPoDG had me hooked instantly. I love the way Wilde took a genius spin on moral “Beauty isn’t everything.”

11. Any project in the works?
I’m currently writing A Blinding Love, a Regency novel about a blind woman.

12. How long does it usually take you to write a book?
A long time.

13. In your opinion, what makes a story ‘good’?
Vibrant characters.

14. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Go for it! Whatever is holding you back, just forget it. Put pen to paper and write.

And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Books or movies?
Books, duh.

2. Summer or winter?
Winter.

3. Ebook or physical book?
Physcial (but I love ebooks too!)

4. Nights out or nights in?
Nights in.

5. Living in the city or living in the country?
Living in the city.

6. Being able to travel to the past or being able to travel to the future?
Travel to the past!

7. Travelling by car or travelling by airplane?
Airplane!

8. Losing all of your money or losing every picture you’ve ever taken and every picture that has ever been taken of you?
Losing all my money.

9. To find true love or to win the lottery?
Find true love.

10. Reading or writing?
Writing.

11. To speak using ONLY rap lyrics (from songs released in the 21st century) or to speak using ONLY quotes from Austen’s books?
Only quotes from Austen’s books! (Imagine hearing that at Chick-Fil-A. haha)

12. Bungee jumping or going on the slingshot ride?
Bungee jumping.

13. Being able to speak and understand every language known to humankind or being able to speak and understand every language known to animals?
THE LANGUAGE ANIMALS!

14. Drinking a glass of expired, curdled milk or eating a bowl of cold, slimy worms? (Note: the worms would be dead, though not cooked.)
Worms, definitely worms because How to Eat Fried Worms has always made me wonder what they taste like.

15. Spending half a day locked in a coffin (there would be a hole for air, of course) or spending two days trapped at the bottom of a well?
Bottom of a well.

16. Have every day be Saturday or have every day be Fourth of July?
Every day be Saturday.(As long as the Fourth still happens.)

Thank you for joining us, Jessica!
Readers: want to connect with Jessica? You can find her on Twitter, Goodreads, and Facebook.

Author Interview: Morgan Sales

In the virtual studio today is Morgan Sales, author of Halcyon Rebirth. Before we meet him, I propose we familiarize ourselves with his novel. Without further ado, here’s Halcyon Rebirth‘s description: 

Gabriel Jones never believed in the occult, or in demons, or witchcraft, or ghosts, or for that matter the bogyman. He makes a rather poor living as struggling writer and journalist. When money becomes tight he agrees to take a commission to write an article or two about occultism in the more rural areas of Britain. The writer heads to the sleepy village of Stonebank along with his less sceptical friend Anji. “Just a day or two. Dig up a bit of local history and get some nice photos.” That was the plan. Plans change. Halcyon Rebirth takes Gabriel on a journey of self-discovery and revelation, unearthing the darkness beneath the mundane veneer of rural life. He will never be the same man again.

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1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I was born, grew up and still live in the town on Mansfield in the East Midlands region of England.  For Robin hood fans (assuming such creatures exist) the town is about fourteen miles north of Nottingham and we even received a mention in the 1938 film ‘The Adventures of Robin Hood’ staring Errol Flynn.  The fact that I have to go back almost eighty years to find something even remotely noteworthy should give you some idea of just what a bustling metropolis Mansfield is.  I went to a local school and wasn’t really much a fan of the entire concept of education back then. I behaved and kept my head down but didn’t really go above and beyond.  I did however enjoy creative writing and created the character of Gabriel for a piece of GCSE coursework. A character who would occasionally jump to the front of my mind over the coming years.  At some point my outlook must have changed because I ended up trundling off to university and achieved an upper second in Computer and Network Engineering.  Yes, computer and Network Engineering, not an English based discipline and not creative writing of any sort. Up to this point I wasn’t much of a reader let alone any sort of writer (not that I claim to be any sort of writer now).  The was the point in my life however where I started to read a lot more.  I was at university in the city of Sheffield but lived twenty-five miles away in Mansfield. This meant fifty miles worth of bus journey every day. That’s when I started reading, reading a lot. The character of Gabriel still surfacing in my mind with bits of story attached.  I left university and took up ICT (computer) teaching as a living. This brings me nicely on to question two.

2. When did you start writing?
A friend and I were sitting on a pub back yard, drinking and whiling away an afternoon in the sun. He’d been writing for fun for years; never finishing anything but just scribbling as a pastime.  By this point I’d formulated a few scenes and plot points for Gabriel but still had no clue as to a full story.  I told my friend as much, he gave me some advice: “Just start writing. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have it planned out. Just see where it takes you.” I’m paraphrasing a little but that was the gist.  So I took it from there; I put pen to paper, well, finger to keyboard and the character of Gabriel Jones (originally Gabriel Lancaster) was born.

3. Why did you start writing?
In short, for fun. I never really expected to finish the book, the damn thing took me seven years of on and (mostly) off writing.  I wrote as a creative outlet.

4. Do you recall the moment you first conceived the idea for your novel?
As I said earlier, it grew from a very abstract idea over many years.  The more fleshed-out concept didn’t really come about until I sat and started writing. I didn’t even decide upon the final ending until a few months before finishing.  Originally I was seriously considering killing off one of the major characters.

5. Tell us a little bit about your book’s title. How did you arrive at this title?
That’s a good question which I don’t really have a good answer for; to this day I’m not sure that Halcyon Rebirth was a great title and I’m not sure if it does my sales a whole lot of good.  It just seemed to fit in the end, possibly because I simply got used to it.

  • Were there other titles which you were considering?

Halcyon Genesis was one.  The friend I mentioned earlier read it as a work in progress. He joked about the number of pub scenes and jovially suggested I retitle it ‘Gabriel Jones: Confessions of an Alcoholic.

6. Does your story have a moral?
I don’t know if you’d call it a moral or not but I wanted to include the idea that we as humans are capable of just as much evil as any supernatural conjuring.  I summed it up in a reoccurring line in the book: “Some monsters are men, and some men are monsters.”  The same concept is present in the novella but the line is absent.

7. Of the characters you’ve created, which one is your favorite?
Gabriel has to be my favorite; I think because I’ve been carrying him around in my head for so long.  There was also a character from a novel I currently have shelved, he was intended to be a throwaway character who existed to move the plot along and get killed in the process. I wrote a scene in a spit and sawdust pub where he verbally eviscerated and terrified a massive thug who was trying to extort money from him. After that I couldn’t bring myself to kill him so altered the plot a little to keep him alive.

8. Using five words or less, describe the protagonist in Halcyon Rebirth.
Gabriel’s character does develop somewhat through Halcyon Rebirth. In chronological order I’d say cocky, conflicted, terrified, determined, confident.

9. Let’s talk about what a typical writing session looks like for you.

  • Do you listen to music as you write?

No, I like things nice and quiet.

  • What is your preferred writing time?

It’s largely dependent on my mood but I tend to favour mornings and evenings.

  • Do you prefer writing outside or indoors?

When the weather’s nice I like to write outdoors, especially at night.  If I don’t have to get up the following day I’ll happily sit out with an oil lamp, well into the small hours.

  • Do you like to write in public places, or do you seek out isolation?

I prefer isolation for the most part, people mean noise.  Though my partner also writes sometimes and I do enjoy sitting with her and bouncing ideas off her.

  • Do you set daily goals for yourself (in terms of word count)?

When I first started writing I tried this and I know it works well for some people.  For me however, it doesn’t work, I end up just writing fluff. I’d rather write ten good words than a thousand bad ones.

10. How do you feel about outlines? Are you for or against them?
For me they work well for short essay style writing such as blog posts.  My latest blog post was pretty much just a stream of consciousness and I have to admit that it reads far worse than some previous posts that I outlined (at least in my head) first.  As far as creative writing goes, I find that outlining a limited section of the plot tends to help me write a lot I don’t tend to do this for the entire book though.

11. Which genre do you prefer to read in?
I love a good ghost story.  I also like Sci-fi and I love Bill Bryson’s writing.

  • Which genre do you prefer to write in?

I enjoy writing paranormal with a human edge.

12. What are you currently reading?
I’m currently reading Crystal Deception by Doug J. Cooper and The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill Bryson.  It’s taking me a while to get through them because I read a lot less when I’m part way through a writing project.

13. What is your favorite book?
I think I have two.  One is Bill Bryson’s Notes from a Big country. I love his friendly, funny and sarcastic writing style.  The other is probably I, Claudius.  I love how Graves was able to take such care over historical accuracies while still providing such an engaging plot and characters.  Granted it’s largely fictional but the edge of authenticity still made me feel oddly connected to a man who died around two thousand years ago.

14. Any project in the works?
I currently have two. A partly complete and currently shelved sequel to Halcyon Rebirth named Halcyon Moonrise. Gabriel is back as a major secondary character, but there is a new protagonist.  It’d probably be classed as urban fantasy.  It has vampires and is set predominantly in London.  The other work will either end up as a long novella or short novel.  This one is paranormal historical fiction and gives an account of what happened to the lost colony of Roanoke. It’s a bit Lovecraft-inspired. I’m quiet enjoying weaving a totally fictional tale that intersects with real events and real historical figures.

15. How long does it usually take you to write a book?
Halcyon Rebirth took years, literally years. I think that’s partly because I wasn’t writing to complete it. I was writing just to write.  I didn’t touch it for much of that time, including a full two-year period. My novella, The Haunting of a Lord, took substantially less than a year.

16. In your opinion, what makes a story ‘good’?
Engaging characters who you care about. Or ones who at least elicit some emotional reaction from the reader.  Events don’t mean a damn if they’re not happening to people you can relate to.

17. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Keep writing, take criticism on board but don’t take it as gospel.  The same goes for writing tips. I have seen some fantastic writing tips over the years.  I’ve also seen some that are total nonsense.

And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Dogs or cats?
Dogs (these days, I was converted.)

2. Ebook or physical book?
Ebook (You can’t beat a library that fits in your pocket.)

3. Nights out or nights in?
In, every time.

4. Being able to travel to the past or being able to travel to the future?
Future

5. Staying in a hotel or going camping?
Camping in a caravan, I don’t do tents though.

6. Working in a group or working alone?
Group

7. To find true love or to win the lottery?
True love.

8. Reading or writing?
Writing

9. To speak using ONLY rap lyrics (from songs released in the 21st century) or to speak using ONLY quotes from Austen’s books?
Austen

10. Being able to speak and understand every language known to humankind or being able to speak and understand every language known to animals?
Animals; I want to know what the dog is thinking.

11. Having your car break down on an extremely busy expressway or along an abandoned road in the middle of nowhere?
Abandoned road

12. Misunderstanding everything that is told to you or being misunderstood every time that you speak?
Misunderstood every time I speak.

13. Spending half a day locked in a coffin (there would be a hole for air, of course) or spending two days trapped at the bottom of a well?
Coffin

14. Being two inches tall or being two stories tall?
Two stories tall.

15. Finding yourself trapped in the universe of The Walking Dead or finding yourself trapped in a slasher film?
The Walking Dead. I’d hunt Carl down and feed him to the zombies, it’d improve that show no end.

Thank you for joining us, Morgan!
Readers: want to connect with Morgan? You can find him on Twitter, Goodreads, and Facebook. Also, be sure to check out his blog and author website.

Author Interview: Jason Hubbard

Coffee with Architects of Worlds Afar welcomes Jason Hubbard. He’s the author of The Taming of Adam — a work of fantasy that’s chronicled in three parts.

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1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
I was born and raised in a little place called Johnstown, PA.  Believe it or not, not all Pennsylvanians are Amish!  I moved to fabulous Las Vegas in 2000 because I wanted to see Wayne Newton at least once in my life, and I stayed for the endless amount of booze available in the grocery stores.  I am a writer, after all.  When I’m not looking at the water show at the Bellagio, I’m at home playing video games and seeing people make fools of themselves on Youtube.  I have a trio of novels available digitally called “The Taming of Adam.”

2. Why did you start writing?
After seeing “The Shining,” I took a red crayon and wrote “Redrum” all over the house.  My parents nodded at each other and said, “Yup, he’s a writer, all right.”  They then strapped me into a chair and forced me to read “War and Peace” until I grasped the concepts of narration and story structure.  I’ve been writing “War and Peace” ever since.

But seriously, I read a lot of Stephen King books (and a few others’) in school, and one day I thought to myself, I can’t sing, can’t dance, can’t play football without getting pancaked, but I still want to entertain.  Maybe I should write a book like Stephen King!  I began at age 14 on a kind of horror/fantasy hybrid.  I left it unfinished because I knew it wasn’t very good.

3. Do you recall the moment you first conceived the idea for The Taming of Adam?
I had already written two books, “The Seeing Glass” and “The Sands of Carsiss” when I had this strange vision: Harry Potter putting a burrito into a microwave.  No joke!  It seems silly since Harry could just nuke the thing with a fire spell.  On the other hand, there’s nothing preventing him from using a microwave oven (at his Muggle home, at least).  The image intrigued me, so I decided to make a story of magic in a modern world.  The result was “The Taming of Adam Part 1: The Path to Envale.”

4. Tell us a little bit about your story’s title.
I once met a nice English bard who gave me a copy of his play, “The Taming of the Shrew.”  I decided to change it a little and make it my own, “The Taming of Adam.”  Okay, so I didn’t actually meet him, but I hope he won’t mind.  The story is one of redemption, where the main character, Adam Taylor, starts off as a real jerk but gets an attitude adjustment after he flips his lid somewhere down the line.  The title is my silent assurance to the reader that Adam may start as a terrible person, but he does eventually get “tamed” … hopefully without a bullwhip.

5. Does The Taming of Adam have a moral?
Yeah, don’t be a jerk and brush your teeth.  LOL.  Actually, I know this is going to sound awful because it already sounds awful in my head, but “The Taming of Adam” was partially inspired by the Columbine school shooting of 1999.  I’m not saying that the main character is as terrible as the real-life shooters, but I sometimes wonder why those kids did what they did, what they were feeling, and why they believed that life was no longer worth living.  The book offers no easy answers, but the inspiration is clearly there.

6. Using five words or less, describe your protagonist in The Taming of Adam.
Smart and sassy yet flawed.  He eats too many burritos, after all …

7. What does a typical writing session look like for you?
Every day after work, I climb to the pinnacle of Mt. Charleston, and on my laptop I write one brilliant word after another as the hawks around me catch snakes and the scorpions jab at my sun-kissed hide.  Sometimes the ghost of Elvis visits me and sings “Love Me Tender,” which is more inspiring than anything else on this earth.

Well, either that or I hang out in my room and peck away at my keyboard while my downstairs neighbors yell at me to keep the noise down.  Honestly, I don’t have a lot of time since I work full-time, but I’m trying my best on my latest work.

8. What is your favorite book genre?
Oh boy, I’m going to sound full of myself, but my favorite genre is fantasy.  High fantasy, dark fantasy, urban fantasy—I love them all as long as the imagination lifts off the page and doesn’t make me roll my eyes.  But I have noticed the genre is chockfull of clichés: The Great Hero, The Chosen One, The Villain Who Wants to Rule the World, The Magical Thingamajig That Makes Everything Right in One Fell Swoop.  These clichés are so overused, and they can limit the suspense.  I myself have succumbed to using a few clichés, but at least I’ll never include a Chosen One in my stories.  If I do, I’ll lose a bet … and I don’t feel like dancing naked on Fremont Street, thank you!

9. What is your favorite book?
Besides “Curious George Runs for President”?  I really, really liked J. L. Bryan’s “Songs of Magic” series.  I really shouldn’t because it’s a series for young adults, and it’s about fairies and silly puns.  But it’s also about rock n roll and being rebellious while also conforming to The Man (an impossible contradiction).  And simply put, it’s silly, hilarious, and romantic.  Reading this series made me feel like a teenager again (usually something I’d only wish on my worst enemy).  It’s too bad it’s as of now unfinished …

10. Any projects in the works?
I am currently writing “The Legend of the Three Roses.”  I once had an idea that was awfully ambitious, with several groups of characters running all over the place trying to get to the same thing.  I narrowed the scope and tightened the focus, so it’s now about a boy and a girl, like all good stories!  I also hope to achieve world peace, but I guess that can hold for a while.

11. Of the characters you’ve created, which one is your favorite?
Superdog!  He can do his business on several fire hydrants in a single stream!  He can bury bones atop Mt. Kilimanjaro!  He can catch ten bank robbers in a day and be back home in time for “Lassie” on TV Land!

Actually, in “The Legend of the Three Roses,” there’s a female character, Callie, whom Dungeons & Dragons players would call a “rogue type.”  She wears light leather armor, is proficient in sword- and knife-play, and can cut purses like no tomorrow.  So she’s a cool character who is competent in her “profession,” yet she’s also fun-loving and silly.  Nice when she needs to be, a smartass when she wants to be.  She starts out as an antihero who does some rotten things to the book’s main character, but by the end she becomes something a little more: A kindred spirit.

And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Losing all of your money or losing every picture you’ve ever taken and every picture that has ever been taken of you?
If I lost every picture of me, I could still buy all new ones!  Here’s me skydiving!  Jumping off the Grand Canyon!  On a date with Gwen Stefani!  Did I ever mention I was ambitious?

2. Being Spider-Man for a day or being Batman for a day?
Spider-man is extremely shy outside of the mask, but when in the mask he feels free to say the silliest and stupidest things to criminals.  Batman can keep his billions of dollars, I’d rather mock bad guys like a 7-year-old on Xbox Live!

3. Reading or writing?
Writing, since it’s more rewarding.  But if you only write and never read, you may as well spend all your time playing Pokemon Go.

4. Being able to speak and understand every language known to humankind or being able to speak and understand every language known to animals?
As much as I would love to hear every Chihuahua on my block talk about what they’d like to do to my ugly face, I’d rather hear the same thing in many different languages from human beings.

5. Being drawn into a tornado or being drawn into a whirlpool?
I’d rather die in bed at the ripe age of 101 with a copy of “War of Peace” … but I guess a tornado would be more fun.

6. Going without internet access for a week or going without watching any movies/television shows for a week?
Going without movie and TV shows … because Youtube videos don’t count as either.  Ha!

7. To never speak again or to never eat solid food again?
To never speak again.  I could always write!

8. Staying awake for forty-eight hours (continuous) or walking for twenty-four hours (also continuous)?
After all that walking, I’d be able to crack walnuts with my thighs alone.  Sounds good to me!

9. To never read another book or to never watch another film?
“Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” has nothing on some the graphic novels I own.  I’d rather keep reading!

10. To never again eat a piece of chocolate or to never again drink a cup of coffee?
I love chocolate … but coffee is my sweet nectar!

11. Have every day be Saturday or have every day be St. Patrick’s Day?
Saturday.  If every day were St. Paddy’s, I don’t think my liver would take it.

Thank you for joining us, Jason!
Readers: want to connect with Jason? You can find him on Twitter, Goodreads, Facebook, and YouTube. Also, be sure to check out his author page on Amazon.

Author Interview: Kayla Krantz

Dead by Morning tells the story of Luna Ketz, a pessimistic teen who finds herself trapped in a web of lies and murders during her senior year of high school. With us today is the author of Dead by Morning, Kayla Krantz.

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1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m a psychological horror/thriller writer originally from Detroit, Michigan. A few years back, I moved across the country to Texas where I currently live with my husband and son. I love to read and write. When I get free time, I like to go for walks in the woods. I’m a stay-at-home Mom so watching my son is my living. My favorite author is Stephen King—he’s actually the reason I began writing. I have a soft spot for Edgar Allen Poe and Shakespeare as well.

2. When did you start writing?
I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I first started writing short stories when I was four, and I had a habit of it all throughout elementary school. I didn’t finish my first novel until I was fifteen, however.

3. Why did you start writing?
I never chose to be a writer; I think it chose me. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always written something down. I wrote my first short story when I was four years old, and I’d write pieces all throughout elementary school that my principal always wanted to read. As I got older, my stories just got more elaborate. I think it was around middle school that I realized just how much joy it brought me. Stephen King has always been a huge influence on the way I think and the way I write.

4. Do you recall the moment you first conceived the idea for your novel?
I first started working on Dead by Morning back in middle school. I never exactly had an “aha” moment where the idea came to me, but rather I had ideas every now and then that I jotted down. I didn’t think most of them would even be in the same book. I think the final push for the story came from a reoccurring dream that I started having around ninth grade. That factor seemed to tie the rest of my ideas together, and Dead by Morning was born.

Of course it went through a lot of work after that. I changed the POV many times, rewriting the entire book a total of nine times before I was satisfied with it. With each draft there were major changes such as character names and relationships. For example, when I first started this story, Luna was named Emma and Chance was Jacob. After many revisions, I found names that suited the personalities of the characters much better.

Content-wise, the story only got darker with time. With each new draft, I grew bolder with the details that I included in the book, and with the final draft, I no longer worried about possibly offending readers and focused instead on strengthening the story.

5. Tell us a little bit about your book’s title.
I went through a string of titles, unable to decide on one that fit the tone. I considered “DreamWorld,” “Chance,” and “The Other Dimension,” but none of them worked. I was watching a “Family Guy” episode and one of them said. “We’ll all be Dead by Morning.” And I just thought, “Dead by Morning” that’s perfect!

6. Does your story have a moral?
The moral of Dead by Morning is that no one is perfect. Every one strives to achieve the things they feel are the most important. There’s a battle of good and evil inside of everyone, but which voice the person chooses to listen to is entirely up to them. They can desire to live their life, as Luna does, or set out to ruin others, like Chance.

7. Of the characters you’ve created, which one is your favorite?
Chance was my favorite character to write but really he goes hand-in-hand with Luna’s creation.

Creating the characters in Dead by Morning was a fun process from beginning to end. A handful of them, Max, Violet, and Amy, were based on real people, but Luna and Chance were created completely out of thin air. The interesting thing about my protagonist and antagonist is that they were made to be two halves of one mind.

Luna, my protagonist, loves to study and do her thing. She isn’t worried what others think of her, and she likes to follow the guides and rules set up by those around her to be a model citizen because she wants to be respected by her peers. Chance, the antagonist, is the complete opposite. He’s a rebel, destructive, and carefree. He’s manipulative, and gets what he wants only because he has nerve enough to break all the rules Luna spends her life carefully sticking to. He does what he can to not be alone, because deep down, he fears what his life will be.

While Luna is innocent, Chance is evil.

Together, Luna and Chance not only form two halves of a whole, they show the confliction of the need for good and bad that occurs inside everyone—protagonist and antagonist alike. They were created in this manner to show that not all people have black and white thinking. Good people have evil thoughts and those who are deemed evil may have good thoughts. Dead by Morning shows that who a person truly is depends solely on the voice that they choose to follow.

8. Using five words or less, describe the protagonist in Dead by Morning.
Not afraid of a challenge.

9. What does a typical writing session look like for you?
I usually write whenever I find the time for it, but I find that my mind is clearest in the dead of mind, around two or three in the morning. I like to listen to set playlists when I write. I usually have a list of songs that help me work on plot and character for each story. For Dead by Morning, for example, my playlist consisted of a lot of Eminem.

I like to stick to myself when I write because people are distracting…especially when they keep talking to me when I’m in the middle of an idea. Being in isolation helps me focus on my thoughts. I don’t have typical daily goals, I’m usually happy even if I get a sentence down, but during Camp NaNoWriMo, I try to write about 1500 to 2000 words a day.

All of my first drafts must be written on paper. I cannot STAND to write on a computer. There’s just something about staring at a blank computer screen that’s so disheartening. I love the scribble of a pen or pencil on paper. It really brings me into the moment, making me feel more connected to my writing, if that makes sense.

10. How do you feel about outlines? Are you for or against them?
When I start a new piece, I usually jot down on my ideas in a loose type of outline similar to the steps of the “hero’s journey.” When I actually get to writing, I stick to it and sometimes, I diverge. It all depends on what directions the characters decide to go! I feel as if outlines are a good place to begin but sticking with them can actually inhibit a work.

11. What is your favorite book genre?
I like to write about what makes the mind tick. Psychological fiction has always held my interest because I like to see what drives people to be evil and why others are able to resist this. I like to get inside the mind of the villain of a piece to see the story through their eyes. When I write, I generally go to whatever genre my ideas are in. For example, Dead by Morning is psychological fiction, however, my side project, The Council, is fantasy.

12. What are you currently reading? 
Currently, I’m reading Evol by Jess Wygle. I like to read books about obsession because that’s the main topic of Dead by Morning so I like to see the way other authors explore it.

13. What is your favorite book?
My favorite book would have to be The Dark Half by Stephen King. I love the whole psychological aspect of the good versus evil battle inside the main character. I think this is a dear idea to me because it goes along with the ideas I put forth in my own book—the idea that good people may have evil inside of them and evil people may have some good.

14. Any project in the works?
My next project is a fantasy about witches entitled The Council which I actually just completed as of August 1st. In this story, Lilith Lace is a crippled witch from Ignis Coven, the witches of fire. In the Land of Five, she struggles to find out her true identity as a new threat emerges to the land—The Elementals. The only problem, she can’t decide if she must stand against them or with them.

15. How long does it usually take you to write a book?
From start to finish, it typically takes me about six to seven months to write a book and another month or so to edit and wrap up potential plot holes as well as ironing out character traits.

16. In your opinion, what makes a story ‘good’?
A story is good when it has believable characters in an engaging plot. I think stories are good when authors take the reins off their minds and allow their characters to breathe and develop in their created world rather than forcing them to work the way they want.

17. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
My advice to aspiring authors out there would be to never give up! It’s a hard business, and on most days you’ll want to bury your head in your pillows and stay there, but there is light at the end of the tunnel if you have the determination and willingness to put in the effort it takes to get there.

And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Books or movies?
Books of course!

2. Dogs or cats?
Cats

3. Summer or winter?
Winter

4. Ebook or physical book?
Physical Book

5. Nights out or nights in?
Nights in.

6. Living in the city or living in the country?
Living in the country.

7. Reading or writing?
Writing

8. Being able to speak and understand every language known to humankind or being able to speak and understand every language known to animals?
Every language known to animals.

9. Going without internet access for a week or going without watching any movies/television shows for a week?
Going without movies/television for a week.

10. To never speak again or to never eat solid food again?
Never speak again.

11. To never read another book or to never watch another film?
Never watch another film.

12. To never again eat a piece of chocolate or to never again drink a cup of coffee?
Never again drink coffee.

13. Finding yourself trapped in the universe of The Walking Dead or finding yourself trapped in a slasher film?
In a slasher film.

Thank you for joining us, Kayla!
Readers: want to connect with Kayla? You can find her on Twitter, Goodreads, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Also, be sure to check out her author website, blog, and her bio page. Interested in purchasing a copy of Dead by Morning? Click here.

Author Interview: Bryce Gibson

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Allow me to introduce Bryce Gibson. His newest novel, Perennials, just recently hit the virtual shelves. (Fans of mysteries/thrillers will want to stick around for this interview!)

author photo1. Tell us a little bit about yourself. 
I have lived in South Carolina my entire life. I grew up on a farm, got a degree in Media Arts from the University of South Carolina, worked in retail management for fifteen years, and am now back to working on the family farm. In my spare time, I love reading, writing, watching horror movies, and gardening.

2. Do you recall the moment you first conceived the idea for your novel?
I got the idea for Perennials when I was working in my yard. The initial idea was this–a teenager named Dusty Miller falls in love with a girl named Nandina Bush. Then, probably not even a minute later, I had this idea–what if there is a serial killler that is targeting people that share their names with plants? The rest of the novel grew from there.

3. How different is the final product (the book) from your original vision?
The biggest difference is that the main story arc went from taking place over an entire summer to just a few days with flashbacks and backstory thrown in.

4. Let’s discuss what a typical writing session looks like for you.

  • Do you listen to music as you write?

I’ve tried listening to music when I write, but it doesn’t work for me. I prefer the quiet.

  • What is your preferred writing time?

I write best in the early morning. When I try to write at night, it keeps me awake. The characters and story are too fresh in my mind; as I try to sleep, the story won’t stop running through my head.

  • Do you have a specific location that you go to when you want to write?

I almost always write in my home office that overlooks my backyard.

  • Do you set daily goals for yourself (in terms of word count)?

Sometimes, especially when I’ve set deadlines for myself, I set word count goals. I’m able to meet them most of the time, but not always. If I don’t, I try not to beat myself up over it. It all works out in the end.

5. What are you currently reading?
I read a lot of different genres.  Right now I’m reading a children’s book, The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate.

6. What is on your to-be-read shelf?
My to-be-read is too many to list! lol.

7. Any project in the works?
I’m about to start working on a new YA novel that is tentatively titled The Reading Buddy. It is a stalker/obsession story set on a hops farm in South Carolina. It will have a lot of werewolf folklore thrown in. I’m looking forward to writing it.

And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Ebook or physical book?
Definitely a physical book.

2. Being able to travel to the past or being able to travel to the future?
I would much rather travel to the past.

3. To find true love or to win the lottery?
True love.

4. Being able to speak and understand every language known to humankind or being able to speak and understand every language known to animals?
I’m with the animals 100% on this one.

5. Being drawn into a tornado or being drawn into a whirlpool?
I’m terrified of tornadoes, but if I had to choose one of the two, I would go with them. Also, I don’t know how to swim, so a whirlpool sounds like a horrible idea.

6. Going without internet access for a week or going without watching any movies/television shows for a week?
Sadly, I know that I would rather go without watching movies or TV shows for a week.

7. Losing your ability to speak or losing your ability to hear?
I would much rather lose my ability to speak.

8. To never read another book or to never watch another film?
This is too close to answer.

9. Finding yourself caught in the middle of a hurricane or finding yourself caught in the middle of a snowstorm? (Note: in both scenarios, you’d be outdoors and have no access to shelter.)
I find hurricanes to be both fascinating and scary. If I had to choose, I’d go with the hurricane.

10. To never again eat a piece of chocolate or to never again drink a cup of coffee?
I think I could easily go without chocolate, but coffee…not so much.

11. Finding yourself trapped in the universe of The Walking Dead or finding yourself trapped in a slasher film?
I care zip about The Walking Dead. Throw me in a slasher flick any day.

Thank you for joining us, Bryce!
Readers: want to connect with Bryce? You can find him on Twitter, Goodreads,  Facebook, and Instagram. Also, be sure to check out his author website and blog.

About the book

Perennials front coverTitle: Perennials

Author: Bryce Gibson

Genre: Mysteries & Thrillers

Summer in South Carolina – a time of ripe peaches, crackling bonfires, trips to the lake, and the rural legend of a creature known as the Lizard Man.

This year, a very real monster is lurking about.

The victims all have one thing in common – they share their names with plants. Soon it becomes apparent that seventeen-year-olds Dusty Miller and Nandina Bush may be next on the killer’s list.

That was when I realized that the red I saw in the driveway wasn’t blood. It was a scattering of rose petals.

Deep down, I knew, right at that very moment, that what all of us had been afraid of for the past several months had already happened.

I knew that the serial killer had finally made his way to Crow County.” – Dusty Miller