Emma has big problems. She has no family and no home. She wanders the streets of The Warren, scavenging for her next meal and trying to keep warm. Haunted by the memory of a mother she barely recalls, Emma dreams of being a part of a real family. She is helped in her search for belonging by an assortment of eccentric characters: a friendly shopkeeper and his cranky uncle, the nice woman who runs the local mission, a ditzy cat lady, and a good-natured prostitute with a drinking problem.
Her biggest obstacle, however, is that every full moon, she turns into a feral cat! Emma is one of the Were. She and those like her are ruthlessly hunted by the captain of the Were-Guard, whose religious zealotry makes him especially dangerous. When the sinister Bram Fitzwilliam enters the picture to assist the Guard, Emma is in more danger than ever. Before she finds what she’s looking for, Emma must find a strength and courage she never knew she had. Her journey will teach her that dreams don’t always come true the way you want them to, that people aren’t always what they seem, and that real families can be chosen. #DPPub
Today, we’re showcasing Skye Knizley in celebration of her Halloween release of STORMRISE. We’ll learn a little about who she is, what she’s about, and then I’m throwing her into the Hypothetical Hotspot™ where the real fun begins. ::wink::
Skye Knizley currently lives in Connecticut, USA, a small state of confusion where she spends most of her time writing urban fantasy and role-playing game adventures. When she isn’t setting quill to parchment Skye can be found hiking with her Siberian Husky Piper and her spirit guide Sheba, camping in a variety of state parks, motorcycling, ghost hunting or practicing and studying the healing arts of Wicca. Which doesn’t mean she dances naked under a full moon… as far as you know. Besides, you need a stone circle for that and they knocked the last one down to build a six-lane bypass.
Tell me something you want people to know about you: This is important and not something everyone gets; if I tease you, I like you and consider you to be, at a minimum, a close acquaintance. On the other hand of my teasing becomes snarky, mean and doesn’t include a smile, you have managed to annoy me and should back off. In some ways I am still a thirteen year old girl…
Tell us how you live or walk us through a normal day for you: I am certain this will be fascinating… My alarm usually goes off at 6:00am. I let my psychotic Psyberian (yeah I spelled that my way) Husky out and then the first thing I do as an iPhone junky is check my texts and Facebook messages. An hour later I put my hair in a tail, throw on some light makeup and go to the gym for two hours. I do an hour and a half of cardio and a half hour of circuit training. I swing by DnD for a coffee afterwards and head home. By ten I am working on a novel or promoting my current work. I go outside to eat some lunch a few hours later; have to rest my eyes and get some sunlight. Too many of us look like the vampires we write about.
After lunch I work for another couple hours, then I shut everything down and sing, practicing first scales then I do songs ranging from Heart to Queen. Afterwards is a cool down period where I play with my Husky and check the mail. This time of year I burn most of it in my firepit.
Dinner comes around 5:00pm and is usually cooked outside. It tastes better and costs less. If the weather is nice it is eaten outside, too. Once clean-up is done it is back to writing and promoting, with the exceptions of watching my addictions: Castle and Once Upon a Time.
The only days that are really different are certain Wiccan observances and alternating Thursdays and Fridays/ occasional Saturdays. On alternating Thursdays and Fridays I play Dungeons and Dragons or Halo (or the shooter of the month). Yep, I am officially a gamer girl and proud.
On the Fridays I am not playing a game and occasional Saturdays I sing and sometimes play drums for a local bar band. We may not be Halestorm but we’re loud. I’m proud of that, too.
Are you a full-time writer? If not, tell us about your day job: While I make a little cashy money singing, I am a full time novelist.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? If there is a message, I am not aware it exists. Growing up I always hated that we were taught to analyze books and “find the meaning.” I read for fun and my novels are written to entertain. There are no Orwellian messages hidden in them. But if you read one backwards it will undo the universe. Be careful of that.
How much of the book is based off personal experiences? I am not aware of ever encountering a vampire, though I do have unanswered questions about my first grade teacher. That said actually quite a bit of my stories is based on my real life experiences in a variety of ways. When it comes to forensic science, shooting and so on, that is all based on my education. I have a degree in Forensic Science and I try to be vaguely accurate with that in my novels. I also own the firearms my protagonists use and I know how to use them. I have a pet peeve about books that use weapons (or anything else) and the author clearly had no experience with the item, so I go out of my way to learn. If I tell you I can drift a 1966 Mustang around a tight corner, it is cause I know personally it can be done. I just sold it, in fact.
What are your current projects? I have a novel titled Stormrise from Vamptasy Publishing that comes out on Halloween. I am working on the first sequel tentatively titled Stormrage, and have also started a new series about a witch named Aspen. I’m trying to title those based on Credence songs.
Stormrise by Skye Knizley
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated? Yes. The first thing I ever wrote was a very long character background for a character named Rissa for a Dungeons and Dragons game. I spent ages on it using my dad’s beaten up urethane-spattered laptop and made him print copy after copy at his office until I had it just right. I detailed where she was from, who her parents were, her brothers and sisters, why she became a wizard and who her mentor was, everything. I knew her better than I knew myself by the time I was done. And then the game master decided not to run the game after all. He survived my rant afterwards but only barely. I enjoyed creating that character so much, I never stopped writing.
Do you ever experience writer’s block and how do you overcome it? I don’t believe in writer’s block. I believe you can get to a point where you are not sure how to join part A to part C. So I do one of three things: I write part C, with the hope that while I am writing that, part B will come to me, I work on another project and let my subconscious deal with the problem, or if I am really stuck I present part A to my gaming friends and see what they would do if it were a game.
What project are you working on now? I am working on two: Stormrage and Midnight Special.
Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers? I don’t know if it is advice, but I am always happy to share what I have experienced. First, don’t listen to most of the stuff spouted by “experts.” You can read and buy their books, but remember there is no magic bullet to getting published and an expert’s advice is no guarantee you will get that manuscript in front of anyone. Second, edit. And I don’t mean you or your cousin or your mom. Find a good editor whose only interest is being paid to do a good job, pay them and LISTEN TO THEM. A good editor has more experience doing their job than you do and it is their job to make your manuscript the best it can be. If you disagree with a comment, discuss it with them but for Gaia’s sake listen! Lastly, never give up, never stop writing. No one ever got published by surrendering.
The Zombie Apocalypse is a scientific possibility. What’s your plan when it happens? Kill’em all? My friends have said many, many times they are coming to my house when it happens. I have weapons and ammunition, including Hornady Z-Max. I have cases of MRE’s and I have water. I also have no problem executing someone to save others. That may sound scary, and it puts some people off, but once someone is infected and there is no hope? They’re dead already. Say your goodbyes, say a prayer to Gaia and put a bullet in their brainpan before they have to suffer becoming a soulless monster.
So… from there the plan is to sit out the first few days. I and my companions will sit quietly on watch while people panic and are quickly consumed. Again, harsh, I know. But I can’t save everyone. Neither could you. If it is a matter of survival or trying to save someone running around like a chicken with its head cut off, the chicken gets eaten.
Once things have quieted down, we pack everything into trucks and move towards safer territory far away from cities. Cities are where the zombies are…
What happens when you get ‘half scared to death’ twice? You get scared half to death twice. Look, you got scared half to death. Then you got over it. Then you got scared half to death again. This isn’t a mathematical equation and the effects are not cumulative. If you’re lucky, whatever scared you the first time won’t ever scare you again, so you got tougher in the process. Woot! Go you!
When is the world going to end? October 13, 2037 at 6:33am. And fifty-nine seconds. So some clocks may stop at 6:34am. They aren’t as accurate as I am.
Are the good things that come to people who wait, the leftovers of people who went before them? Eww, I have a leftover phobia and that’s just gross. Besides, good things don’t come to people who wait. It is like standing in line for a video game you didn’t preorder. You’re going to be out of luck, bub. Good things come to those who get off their butts and hunt them down.
If electricity comes from electrons, does morality comes from morons? Morons, as we know, orbit neons, the smallest part of a fracktard. As we are taught in high school, a moron is the tiniest but most powerful element of stupidity, so I find it very unlikely that they could create morality. They are far more likely to bond and form a government.
Why do we teach kids that violence is not the answer, but then teach them all about wars that solved America’s problems? I’ve been toying with this question. I could say something funny about stupid people, or refer to fraktards and neons, but I am going to take a leap and be honest and hope no one sets fire to my house.
I was not aware we taught kids that violence is not the answer. It wasn’t what I was taught, nor my friends, their parents, or their grandparents. I will take a wild stab that goes back pretty far. If a parent is teaching their child that violence is never the answer that parent needs a Gibbs slap upside the head. I’m not a sociologist, I am just an opinionated novelist, but that teaching could be part of the bullying problem. Are parents basically teaching children not to defend themselves? That leaves them open to the bullies, who are going to be violent no matter what you do (trust me, I’ve been a victim and I’ve seen it in my career) and limits their options… possibly resulting in the increase in child suicide as a result of bullying. What are they supposed to do when that bully comes after them with an aluminum bat? Use harsh language? “No means no” is all well and good but it’s not nearly as effective as a solid kick to the groin and an elbow to the temple. I know if I was taught not to fight back, I wouldn’t be here answering, writing, and doing what I do.
What we should be teaching is what I, and generations before me, were taught: Appropriate response. That is what our wars were about: The appropriate response at the appropriate time. Violence is rarely the appropriate response. But sometimes it is.
Can we spell creativity however we want? It depends entirely on how you are referring to creativity. If you are trying to use the word “creativity” in a sentence you can hardly spell it “spatula” and get your meaning across.
If, however, you are referring to the act of being creative, absolutely we can spell it however we want. You might think a bunch of car parts welded together in an abstract pattern is just a pile of rusting junk. To someone else, it is creative, mind-blowing art. Go forth and be creative. Just don’t paint your children blue and put white hats on them. That’s creepy.
Why don’t you ever see ads for advertising companies? They’re like ninjas. That’s how good they are. You never even notice those monstrous billboards that say “ADVERTISE HERE.” I have sneaky author perceptions and can see things that are really there.
Releases October 31st from Vamptasy Publishing
Life isn’t easy for Detective Raven Storm. Her best friend was recently killed and dismembered, her latest case ended with her partner in intensive care, and her mother, the vampiric Mistress of the City is playing matchmaker… again. The last thing she wants is another bizarre murder case with a partner she doesn’t know. But that is exactly what she gets when she is handed the enigmatic case of Nathan King, who was found in his car with a gaping hole where his stomach should be.
Soon Raven is unraveling a mystery that leads her deep into the city’s preternatural underworld, and into the arms of a sexy vampire she barely knows, but whose heart she seeks in the darkness…
“Thanks, Ryan,” Raven said. “Did you find anything else of interest in the car?” Finkel shook his head and turned to look back at the vehicle. “Not really. We lifted a couple partials from the door handle, but they probably belong to the victim. Lots of high-speed blood spatter inside, no sign of gunshot residue…it is like he pulled into the garage and his stomach tore open.” Levac nodded, still staring at the contents of the gris-gris bag. “You know, Storm,” he said after a moment, “they’re right.” Raven looked puzzled. “Who’s right? About what?” “The rest of the squad,” he replied. “They were telling me you get all the weird ones. They’re absolutely right.”
You can connect with Skye by liking her on Facebook and becoming a follower on Twitter.
Many of my short stories are nonfiction and inspirational tales. Therefore, I rarely submit pieces for anthologies announced online or through writer’s societies because their editors are usually looking for fictional short stories or poetry. Recently, a random invite happened; someone offered to add one of my stories or essays to their anthology helping Newton, Connecticut. I heard about the massacre in their elementary school and submitted a story that I coauthored. However, the editors rejected my entry because they were compiling adult reading level stories about how it might feel to be a Newton resident.
I appreciated the editors’ candor. However, I was amazed the compilers of that anthology didn’t realize what the children (and adults) of Sandy Hook Elementary might really need to go forward. I thought that town might enjoy rhetoric from kindred spirits. Due to fears and anxieties, I felt that those kids and folks might feel less alienated and alone if they were shown the light at the end of their tunnels. I wanted to find a way to be empower those children while revealing to them a HOPE that things can and do get better. I felt bystanders including health care professionals might enjoy those types of stories, too. After pondering the anthology rejection, I woke up one day as God illuminated my next step. Thinking of three books that I had partial copyrights to, I immediately had the title of an anthology in my mind. I began compiling that book.
By the way, the S.H.E. Anthology is NOT a romance anthology but it was written by all females. In this book, most of the girls recollect traumas, mostly related to death, that they faced while in elementary school. Their stories reveal their path out of mourning along with many minor miracles that they encountered. Their tales of hope and inspiration are true accounts from those children turned authors.
The abbreviation ‘S.H.E’ also refers to Sandy Hook Elementary. Isn’t God the best at setting up coincidences?This book is meant to empower Newton as well as others that read it. Its writers hope that the anthology, also, sheds some new light on grief recovery in the minds of teachers, mental health professionals, and adults handling major life changes.
Speaking of a child in mourning, there’s great insight into being the victim of death and childhood loss. In fact, Stacey’s saga is an intimate look at a ten year old girl’s personal story about the results of her mother’s cancer death. She, also, deals with the aftermath that includes her dad going crazy and committing suicide. Obviously, tragedies, such as the Sandy Hook Massacre, touch home with her. In her book contained in the anthology, the young girl talks candidly and inspirationally about surmounting her PTSD. Her honesty through writing is only surpassed by the miracles and guidance from those around her including God. The book excerpt that follows reveals how God taps into this young girl’s anger and grief to show her hope and HIS love as HE answers her naïve, childhood prayer.
Hail, What’s Next?
Later in another conversation, Cindy told me, “There are a ton of reasons why you need to live. First, you haven’t even seen all the world has to share with you. There are some really beautiful places left to visit.”
“I get two weeks’ vacation in December. We can drive into the mountains and find snow for the holidays.”
Jenny (Cindy’s child) was hospitalized after repeated infections. Her tonsils needed to be removed, and the promised trip was postponed.
“I wish it would snow here!” My response arrived.
“Get real! It rarely snows in Central Florida. If it does, it falls in January and never hits the ground. It melts on the way. It sometimes falls just north of us and stays a few hours but nothing close to snowman weather. We can drive to see snow next winter, but we are not flying anywhere this vacation.”
“I’m going to pray for snow within driving distance of our house. I am going to ask for it now,” My style less angry these days converted to belligerent.
“Pray away! But, it isn’t possible,” She added as the other car passengers giggled. At age seven and nine, they realized I could be unreasonable at times.
The next day, the front page of the local newspaper pictured the hail storm that happened just south of our home. Hail stones piled into drifts so high that it appeared to have snowed in Florida….
Since Stacey didn’t see that version of snow in person, she kept praying for snow. What happened next? You guessed right- more Florida snow in the form of hail and many more miraculous events as God honored the orphan.
Also, in the anthology, the Evans Terrace girls give their account of what happened when 7 or more parents died within a year or 2 of each other in a small subdivision of about 110 homes. People started saying their land was CURSED. The children heard those rumors about their subdivision and were scared to death. Then, when a neighbor lost her dad to a blood clot after surgery, the kids felt the need to help. When one of the girls heard the rumor that the mourning family ran out of milk, she setup a traditional solution or proverbial lemonade stand. That day, other angels or young children arrived; many of those neighbor kids ran door to door selling half glasses of hot lemonade. They raised enough quarters to buy milk and other perishables.
More importantly, they formed a group that became a club and led their neighborhood out of grief. Find out how by reading their full story. In the following except, the girls know no limits to miracles and continue their community service buying beds for two, orphaned toddlers that come to live with their aunt.
‘Tis The Season
One of the boys was just two weeks old and the other was eighteen-month-old when their single mother died in her apartment of an epileptic seizure. These two miracles survived two days with their deceased mother before authorities found them. Their aunt’s family was not well to do but had inherited two cribs for the boys. However, just near Christmas, they needed real beds for these toddlers.
There were donations of new jewelry and Christmas items to raffle. We charged a dollar a ticket. On our little table sat our flyer of community services completed and goals to finish this year.
As one guest read the document, she handed us a five-dollar bill whispering to my mother, “What is their goal?”
“At least one bed,” She responded.
“Well, good luck. They probably won’t even raise enough for a mattress,” this woman added.
“I’ve seen them sell one hundred and seventy one dollars’ worth of lemonade and still have over half the original gallon. I bet they can get this bed,” My mother defended.
“Good luck,” The guest reiterated.
“I believe in miracles,” Mom observed smugly. “ ‘Tis the season!”
The stranger stopped our movement back to our vehicles, “I’ll let you have both beds for two hundred dollars but only if you can pick them up by tomorrow.”
“Sold!” We all screamed as Laura and Mom flinched. The club was sixty dollars from reality.
Did the girls find the cash? Of course! What other minor miracles happened when these angels joined forces with others to make wishes come true? The story gets even more fascinating when these human angles (the girls) meet the young boys that shared days with real angels before authorities found them in their apartment with their dead mother.
You should read more inspirational, side stories in the S.H.E. Anthology; it’s available as a book and eBook through AMAZON, Kindle, and SMASHWORDS. See my profile for more details on how to find books I write, co-author, produce, or compile.
By the way, the compilation’s royalties will help charities involved in grief counseling or with mental health issues- especially for children therapies for the types of traumas witnessing massacres produce. For example, one local group ‘New Hope for Kids’ (Orlando) will get some of the profits from this compilation because the group that started this organization helped Stacey over 20 years ago.
This blogger’s main author page is @ WEEBLY, you can find many nonfiction uplifting books there.
AMAZON author site http://www.amazon.com/Mrs.-Cynthia-Meyers-Hanson/e/B00B28J7L2
What is it with this female? Not being content enough after having a hectic and exciting time solving, The Assassin’s Village murder and mystery in Cyprus, she decided to take a holiday in lush tropical Malaysia with her husband, Steve. (He’s her long-suffering, patient soul-mate and lover.)
The pair checked into their country plantation hotel, luxurious and peaceful, the perfect place to relax and unwind you might think. All is going well until she is asked to take a look at some private memoirs in the possession of the hotel owner, the mysterious Miss Chalcot…
…At first Diana hesitates. After all she is on holiday and both she and Steve deserve a rest…but not for long. Miss Chalcot whets Diana’s appetite for mystery when she hints at past events; skirmishes with insurgent terrorists, illicit love and were certain deaths, murder or misadventure?
Diana meets, Children of The Plantation; a spooky child, a family saga set in 1950’s and 1960’s Malaysia leading to the present , mystery, unrequited love, unexplained deaths, and illicit sex – what more can our heroine ask for?
Children Of The Plantation
Opening the kitchen door, she spotted a vixen standing near the refuse bin. Hermione clapped her hands, and it shot through the hedge at the bottom of the garden.
Hermione’s heart was thudding in her breast as she considered what next to do. Casting a look around, she gave thanks that the clouds scudding overhead made it a dark night. This had to be done in complete privacy.
Giving herself a mental shake, she crossed the damp grass to the shed and picked up a spade. A clod of earth still clung to the sharp blade from where she had been digging in her vegetable patch earlier that afternoon. It seemed such a long time ago now. She paused, still not completely certain she was doing the right thing. Making up her mind, she walked over to the newly turned earth.
Children of The Plantation
The air smelt fresh after the rain shower, and a light breeze blew the mixed garden scents her way while she dug. The hole was to be small but deep, especially as she had just driven the fox off. Satisfied, she stood back and peered down into the soft loamy material, a sorry place for such a pathetic bundle.
Sick at heart, but knowing they had no choice, Hermione laid down her spade and walked back into the kitchen. She picked up the tightly wrapped package and carried it outside; it weighed no more than a couple of pounds as she gently laid it down into the hole.
Covering it with fresh earth, she scattered pebbles around and knelt on the grass. Had there been any other choice? Whatever were they going to tell him when the time came?
About the Book.Children of The Plantation will be first published as an eBook and later as a paperback by Topsails Charter. As a special lead-in price (eBook) and a Thank You to my friends and followers it will be offered to you first for $0.99c for the first month. All I ask is (when you’ve bought your copy) if you have the time to please write me a fair review. Thanks!
About the Author.
Faith Mortimer was born in England. Her father was in the Royal Air Force and from the tender age of five, Faith learned the meaning of travel and living in different parts of our beautiful world. Faith now spends her time between England and Cyprus where she lives with her husband. She’s filled her life with different careers, Registered nurse, entrepreneur and writer. She loves the outdoors, acting and writing. She has written two other bestselling novels and a short story collection. Visit Faith Mortimer’s website http://www.faithmortimerauthor.com/for more information.
September 23rd will be Autumn Equinox, the day when light and dark are in perfect balance. This is also the day when events in the final book in the Portal series, Child of the Portal, begin. It’s the date of the first major character death and the beginning of the end.
Today is Launch day for the Paperback edition of Child of the Portal. Keep reading for a chance to win a copy.
Kate and Lily sat drinking tea in Lily’s kitchen. Winter was starting to set in properly and there was frost on the ground most mornings.
“You’ve had your hair cut,” Lily observed, feeling the need to break the silence that surrounded them in the kitchen.
“Yes. I had it done the other day,” Kate confirmed, her hair still long but trimmed shorter than it had been, falling now only to rest on her shoulders instead of flowing down her back.
“It looks good.” The compliment fell easily from Lily’s lips. She smiled and it radiated the simple sincerity behind her few words. Continue reading →