BLOG TOUR: Cradle by Joshua Skye #Interview #Horror

Joshua Skye recently released his novel Cradle, the pseudo-sequel to The Angels of Autumn, and now that he’s embarking upon his blog tour, I wanted to take a few moments to ask him some questions. If you’re not familiar with Joshua, here’s his bio which will give you a few juicy tidbits about him!

joshy4Award winning, bestselling author Joshua Skye was born in Jamestown, New York. Growing up, he split his time between Pennsylvania and Texas. Ultimately he settled in the DFW area with his partner, Ray – of nearly two decades, and their son Syrian. They share their lives with two dogs, Gizmo and Gypsy, and a chinchilla named Bella. Skye’s short fiction has appeared in numerous anthologies including Childhood Nightmares: Under the Bed, and periodicals such as The Sirens Call. He is the author of over ten critically acclaimed novels, among them The Angels of Autumn that takes place in the same nightmarish universe as Cradle.

Welcome Joshua! Let’s delve right into things: who is your favourite character in Cradle?

Radley. Not only am I proud of the full bloom of the character, he’s also the one that I identify with the most. There’s a little of me in Scotty as well, we come from such similar backgrounds.

Tell me, what was the hardest part of writing Cradle?

Characterization is always very difficult for me, but it’s also an aspect of the process that I ultimately am the proudest of. With Cradle, I knew character development was pivotal, absolutely paramount to the grand scheme of things. To bring the horror of the story home, readers had to empathize with my boys. I had to get it right, and thankfully I believe I did.

I’ve already mentioned that Cradle is a pseudo-sequel to the The Angels of Autumn: how are they connected? Is it theme? Setting? Characters?

The setting is of particular import to the entire series, so the two stories take place in Wren County. Angels is set in Wren Township and Cradle is set in Crepuscule’s Cradle. There are characters that span the course, Kincaid in particular. Themes are very significant, and the reader will find them throughout.

If you could tell readers one thing about Cradle that you think would interest them in reading it, what would it be?

I am a horror fan, diehard and unrepentant. If you like genre stories, you’ll like mine. I pull no punches and I love to break the rules.

Let’s switch gears for a moment and delve into what your significant other and family think of your writing career?

Ray and our son, Syrian are very proud of me. It is nice having their support. I wrote Xerxes Canyon for Syrian, though Ray says it’s too dark for him so he hasn’t read it yet. He did read Once Upon a Christmas Evil and was amused by it. I’ve had two bestsellers, and they are particularly proud of me there.

Do you have critique partners or beta readers?

Ray will critique me as I read the stories to him, he very often becomes a muse and will make suggestions and such. I don’t participate in writer’s groups or anything like that, and I am not fond of beta readers. I have tried collaborating with other authors, but the projects never worked out for one reason or another.

Is there one word that you can share with us that best describes you?

Weird.

Switching gears again, is there a writer you idolize? If so who?

Stephen King. He’s amazingly talented and has a wonderful imagination. No one writes characters better than King. The Shining is one of my all-time favorite books, it’s incredibly vivid, scary as hell, and I particularly love that the hotel was itself a sentient character.

What are you passionate about these days?

I’m a huge fan of 80s horror movies, and I’ve started collecting the soundtracks on vinyl. I just received Firestarter as a gift. I love the movie and the music specifically by Tangerine Dream. The group composed for a few movies, and they’re all great. I also love John Carpenter’s music and very much want Christine, Prince of Darkness, and The Fog. There was a movie that came out recently called It Follows that has an amazing soundtrack. I’m looking forward to getting that soon.

Entice us, what future projects are you considering?

First there was The Angels of Autumn, then there was Cradle, and the final chapter in this trilogy will be “A Memoire of Madness” in which I am the main character, a very twisted version of me. I was inspired to do this by the BLOG tour I did for Angels during which I was challenged to write a piece breaking the fourth wall. It’s really morbid, I’m extremely excited about it.

And as a last morsel for readers, tell me about Cradle in 10 words or less…

Radley discovers that in the depths of darkness… evil dwells.

Thank you Joshua for taking the time to answer my questions!

Here’s a little information on Cradle…

JoshuaSkye_Cradle_FrontCover_promotionalIn the deepest vale of Crepuscule’s Cradle, in the cul-de-sac at the end of Direful Hollow Road, is a once grand Folk-Victorian home known as The Habersham House. It’s a place haunted by far more than rot and neglect – evil dwells here, an evil that craves children.

Eight-year-old Scott Michaels-Greene has a fascination for tales of the strange and unusual, especially local folklore. His favorite story is the one about Habersham House; a ruined old place where many curious children have disappeared.

Hours away from Crepuscule’s Cradle, in Philadelphia, author Radley Barrette has just lost the love of his life to a random act of violence. Amongst his endowments from Danny’s estate is an old house in the backwoods of Pennsylvania, Habersham House. Though grief stricken at leaving behind the only home he and Danny had ever known, he knows he cannot remain in the city. Besides, the isolation may be just what he needs to clear his mind of the writer’s block he’s suffering from.

Crepuscule’s Cradle is not as he imagined. The locals are inhospitable. The skeletal forest surrounding it is as unwelcoming as the town. And the house itself – there is something menacing, something angry inhabiting it with him, and it’s hungry. Radley’s world slowly begins to unravel; the fringes of his reality begin to fray. In the midst of his breakdown, a local boy with an unhealthy fascination for Habersham House begins sneaking around and the evil residing within has taken notice.

Blending fantasy with horror, Crepuscule’s Cradle is the darkest of fairy tales. The morbidity of classic folklore and contemporary style weaves a web of slowly encroaching unease. Radley Barrette’ winter bound home is more than a haunted house, and Crepuscule’s Cradle is more than a mere horror tale. It’s a bedtime story that will pull you into its icy embrace, lull you into a disquiet state, and leave you shivering in the dark.

Cradle is available online at:

Amazon: US | UK | Australia | Canada | Germany | Italy | France | Spain | Japan | Mexico | Brazil | India | The Netherlands

Amazon Print: US | UK | Canada | Germany | Italy | France | Spain | Japan | Mexico | Brazil | India

Barnes & Noble (Print & eBook)

Kobo

iTunes

Smashwords

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7 Questions with Cas Peace #BlogTour #TheChallenge

Today on the FlipSide, I’ve got an interview with Cas Peace, author of The Challenge. For those of you unacquainted with Cas, let’s take a moment to get to know her a little bit…

Cas PeaceCas Peace was born in Hampshire UK, in 1957, and has lived there most of her life. Her first career was as a horse-riding instructor, and horses remain very close to her heart. She then spent 13 years working for the British Civil Service before leaving the UK to live in Italy for three years, 1991-1994. She speaks passable but by no means perfect Italian, and loves to return to Italy whenever she can.

Cas’s other great loves are anything to do with animals, especially dogs and horses, (she supports many animal charities) and also singing.

Cas loves folk songs and along with her husband, who plays guitar, has performed in many a Southern England folk club. Sometimes they even asked her back! She writes folk songs to accompany her fantasy novels, and offers them as free downloads from her website.

Linked In | Facebook | YouTube | Blogger |Twitter |Website

Welcome Cas! Now let’s delve into the questions… Using ten words or less, tell me about your work.

The glory, the pitfalls, and the dangers of power.

What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

Originally I’d have said “Light from the East” by Ah*Nee*Mah, as this music almost perfectly captures the spirit and nature of my female main character. But I intend to write an overall theme for the series myself, so I’d love to be able to use that!

Who would you want to direct the story of your life? Is there anyone specific you’d like to play you?

I don’t know very much about movie directors but because Peter Jackson did such a fabulous job on Lord of the Rings, I’d have to choose him. And it would be no good asking me to choose an actress to play me, because I’d choose someone tall, capable, beautiful and confident – not like me at all!

What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

I never intended to become a writer, and certainly not an author, so I didn’t have a clue about the “rules” of writing when I started. And even though I’ve written nine fantasy novels, a non-fiction book, and various short stories, I still wouldn’t know how to plan a novel. So I’m definitely a pantster. I love scribbling out an idea and allowing it to take me over. I enjoy dropping my characters into impossible situations and watching them scramble out of them. Or not. I’m totally driven by my characters – they do what they want! As for the actual act of writing, I didn’t have a word processor when I began, so all nine of my fantasy books were hand written. I still have the scrappy papers with all the crossings out and added passages – what a nightmare! Now, I tend to type what I write. Much easier to cut and paste, or delete unwanted drivel.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

I’d tell me to have more confidence. When I was very young I was quite bold, but somehow that vanished the older I became. I wasn’t bullied at school but I did have several teachers who managed to squash my early confidence, and this made me doubt myself more and more. I find it’s easier now, and having people read and enjoy the books I’ve published has helped the process along. I just wish I’d had the confidence to stand up to those early teachers and make them realize the damage they were doing.

What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

This is tricky because as I said, I never really intended to become a writer. It all happened by accident. But when I did begin to write, I suppose I was influenced by Anne McCaffrey’s Pern series, Stephen Donaldson’s Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, and C S Lewis’ Narnia series.

Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Coffee.
  • Cats or dogs? Dogs (although I love all animals).
  • Snow or sun? Snow – we don’t get much good snow in southern England.
  • Print books or eReader? Print, although I do use a Kindle, too.
  • Nachos or potato chips? Potato chips – what are nachos?
  • Baked or fried? Baked.
  • Candy or chocolate? Chocolate!!
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? Comedy. There’s too much horror in the “real” world.
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Science fiction.
  • Classics or Modern? Got to be both.
  • Old World or New World? There’s beauty everywhere.
  • Sweet or spicy? Sweet
  • Comfort or Speed? I do love a bit of speed!

Thank you Cas! Now let’s take a look at The Challenge… Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!

TheChallengeFriend against friend, lover against lover, ally against ally. Conflict is coming …

Nine months have passed since Brynne Sullyan helped forge an alliance between the realms of Albia and Andaryon. A fragile peace reigns as both sides recover from the events of the previous year. Then mysterious raiders strike Andaryon villages. Attempts are made on the life of Albia’s High King. As Sullyan scrambles to find those responsible, unseen enemies threaten to pull apart everything she has worked for, including her marriage.

The alliance begins to crumble, and Sullyan finds herself caught between two monarchs: the king she’s sworn allegiance to, and the man she loves as a father. To betray either one would break her heart, but if conflict is inevitable, she must make a choice …

***

And there’s a giveaway!!

You could win:

$25/£25 Amazon Gift Card plus the entire Artesans of Albia Ebook Collection: King’s Envoy, King’s Champion, King’s Artesan, The Challenge, The Circle.

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7 Questions with Stuart Conover (@StuartConover)

Today on the FlipSide, I have the distinct pleasure of presenting an interview with author and friend Stuart Conover. For those of you who haven’t gotten acquainted with Stuart yet, here’s a little more information about him…

stubwStuart Conover is a father, husband, rescue dog lover, blogger, published author, geek, entrepreneur, and horror fanatic. He works IT during the day and tries to battle the urge to sleep with a healthy consumption of caffeine.

Twitter | Facebook | Amazon Author Page | Google+ | Website | LinkedIn

Welcome Stuart! Now let’s delve into the questions… Using ten words or less, tell me about your work.

My work revolves around adding new spins to classic concepts.

Well isn’t that intriguing… What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

‘The Catalyst’ by Linkin Park or ‘Endgame’ by Rise Against

Both great songs! Who would you want to direct the story of your life? Is there anyone specific you’d like to play you?

As a geek I love everything by Joss Whedon though I don’t think the story of my life would be his type of film. Though if we’re having exceptions made, absolutely him! To play me? I’d go with Matt Damon just because he can pull off a good smile and a squinty look.

What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

Well I have two writing processes. For short stories I write them out by hand on the train and later on type them up. After they are typed I’ll print it up double spaced and edit by hand, update, and shoot them off! For novels they are completely type up initially. To continue I’ll also add in that I am a pantser for novels or joint work where I value an outline to work off of above everything else. The outline may constantly change as things progress but to keep things in order I find that they are invaluable.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

Start writing sooner and make a point to write every day!

Writing every day is important! What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

‘Dune’ by Frank Herbert

‘Good Omens’ by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

‘The Stand’ by Stephen King

Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Coffee
  • Cats or dogs? Dogs
  • Snow or sun? Sun
  • Print books or eReader? Both
  • Nachos or potato chips? Nachos
  • Baked or fried? Baked
  • Candy or chocolate? Neither
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? Horror
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Science Fiction
  • Classics or Modern? Modern
  • Old World or New World? New World
  • Sweet or spicy? Spicy
  • Comfort or Speed? Comfort

Thank you Stuart! Now let’s take a look at State of Horror: Illinois in which both Stuart and I have stories! Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon.

StateofHorror_ILWHAT IS YOUR STATE OF HORROR?

Come take a unique tour of the state of Illinois. Visit a little known pizza place where the deep-dish pizza is to die for. Spend the night in a haunted house or explore an abandoned resort town. What happens when you disturb the sanctity of an ancient deity? Swim with us in a lake where fish are not the only creatures under the water’s surface. Ghosts, mobsters, and zombies all provide thrills as we explore the Land of Lincoln.

The number 13 is often viewed as an unlucky, even evil number. However , here it is only fitting we traverse the horrors of Illinois through 13 tales to make the heart beat just a little faster. Join us if you dare.

Stories by: Stuart Conover, Eric I. Dean, DJ Tyrer, Della West, Claire C. Riley, Herika R. Raymer, Frank J. Edler, Julianne Snow, A. Lopez, Jr., Armand Rosamilia, Eli Constant, P. David Puffinburger, and Jay Seate

***

stuartconovercover

7 Questions with Bryan Murphy

Today on the FlipSide, I’m pleased to present an interview with author Bryan Murphy. If you’re not quite acquainted with Bryan, here’s a little more information about him…

Author on West Lake3British writer Bryan Murphy is the author of the social science fiction novella Goodbye, Padania, several other e-books and countless poems. He recently retired from a job within the United Nations system and now divides his time among Italy, England, the wider world and cyberspace. He is working on a novel set in Portugal during the world’s coolest revolution in the 1970s. The provisional title is Revolution Number One.

Welcome Bryan. Now let’s delve into the questions… Using ten words or less, tell me about your book.

As racism destroys Italy, Daria tries to give up killing.

What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

“Strange Days” by The Doors. Because the older I get the more I appreciate The Doors, and because Goodbye, Padania is set in the future, which has to be strange to be interesting.

Great song! Who would you want to direct the story of your life? Is there anyone specific you’d like to play you?

Tarantino, to see what he could make of a life without violence.

Halle Berry, to see whether she can really act or not. Seriously? John Hurt, though he’s even smaller than I am.

You know, I’d like to see Halle playing you… What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

I’m an anarchist in the real world, but a dictator in my literary life. I grant my characters a bit of leeway, but not much. They will surely rise up and smash the system one day. However, I am planning to tighten it up before they get the chance.

Working on a full-length novel has changed my writing process. I wrote my short stories or poems, even my novella, on paper. Then I would type the work on to the computer, print it out and revise it (several times) using pen on paper, before keying in the changes to leave a final version on the computer.

With the novel, the first version of each chapter went straight on to the computer. It saved time and sped me towards the goal of a completed first draft.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

Fact: football is fixed. I mean soccer, but it will be true of any type of sport on which vast sums of money can be waged. I used to think that football had one over on, say, “Macbeth”, because in football you did not know the outcome from the beginning.

Advice: get writing; and thicken that skin.

What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

Brave New World, the Spectrum One science fiction anthology, and 1984.

Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Coffee.
  • Cats or dogs? Cool cats.
  • Snow or sun? Sun.
  • Print books or eReader? eReader for fiction; print for non-fiction.
  • Nachos or potato chips? Mexican nachos and UK chips.
  • Baked or fried? Baked.
  • Candy or chocolate? Chocolate, to eat or to drink..
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? Comedy: gotta laugh.
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Science fiction: future is now.
  • Classics or Modern? Modern, preferably contemporary.
  • Old World or New World? New worlds.
  • Sweet or spicy? Spicy.
  • Comfort or Speed? Comfort: it’s one of my favourite deadly drugs.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions Bryan. If you’d like to connect with Bryan, you can find him on Twitter, his website, on Facebook on both his author and personal pages, his Goodreads blog, as well as his Amazon Author Page.

Now let’s take a look at Goodbye, Padania… Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!

Daria_english_newDaria Rigoletti is a troubled young woman from the south of Italy. Seduced by a priest, she never forgets and never forgives. Years later, in 2032, she is in the independent, racist state of Padania, carved out of northern Italy. She has a contract to fulfil, a contract to kill. The look in her target’s eyes stops her, and from then on Daria herself is on the run. She does everything she can to give up killing, but can she really stop? Dark Future, good reading.

7 Questions with Eden Royce

Today on the FlipSide, I’m pleased to feature an interview with author Eden Royce. If you’re not familiar yet with Eden, or her work, let’s take a few moments to get to know her better…

DGEden Royce is a native of Charleston, South Carolina whose great-aunt practiced root, a type of conjure magic. She now wishes she’d listened more closely. Her stories have been published with several presses, including Kerlak/Dark Oak Press, Sirens Call Publications, and Blood Bound Books.

She also reviews books for Hellnotes, a website dedicated to horror in fiction, art and movies and is a contributor to Graveyard Shift Sisters, a blog dedicated to purging the black female horror fan from the margins. She is also the horror submissions editor for Mocha Memoirs Press. Besides writing, she enjoys roller-skating, listening to thunderstorms, and excellent sushi.

Welcome Eden! Now let’s delve into the questions… Using ten words or less, tell me about your book.

The dead are used for energy to fuel a city.

Sounds very interesting! What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

It would be “Death Don’t Have No Mercy” by Reverend Gary Davis. It’s the saddest song I know of and it speaks to the inevitable that we all face. That or the metal song “Monster” by Skillet. It sums up several of the characters.

Unfortunately for my main character Feast, he has to experience more death than most. I imagine a close-up of one of the containment chambers and its uh… inhabitant in the credits.

Who would you want to direct the story of your life? Is there anyone specific you’d like to play you?

I’d choose Jane Campion (“The Piano”) as director. Because I’m classy. :Laughs: Seriously, she has a flair for presenting unique stories and using the camera to show the unsayable.

I wish I could go back in time and get Eartha Kitt to play me; she was amazing. If I had to choose someone now, I’d like Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Doctor Who, Odd Thomas) or Nicole Beharie (Sleepy Hollow).

What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

For short stories, I’m a developmental writer. (Pantser sounds like I pull down people’s pants as a practical joke.) But for a novel, which is what I’m working on now, I have to plan. Especially when the ideas are coming hard and fast and I need to get them all down.

There’s a notebook on my nightstand for when the ideas come in the middle of the night. (And they often do.) I tend to hand write a great deal—especially if I think of a great line and I don’t want to forget it—then transfer over to the computer. In the transferring process, more ideas appear on how to flesh out the story. If I get stuck, I can go back to my notes.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

Stop worrying so much and don’t be so hard on yourself.

Great advice! What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

I have to pick only three? Impossible! Here’s my best try:

The Wood Wife by Terri Winding

Little Plum by Rumer Godden

The Odyssey by Homer

Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Coffee in the morning and when a jolt is needed. Tea all other times.
  • Cats or dogs? Always have, always will.
  • Snow or sun? Snow when I’m snuggled inside with a hot drink. Sun when I have to go out and do things.
  • Print books or eReader? Print. While eReaders have their place, I love turning the pages of a book.
  • Nachos or potato chips? Why is this the hardest question? I’ll say neither and chose fries!
  • Baked or fried? Frying is an acceptable way of preparing almost anything.
  • Candy or chocolate? Chocolate. Fancy chocolate.
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? If you can get all three into one book, I’d be happy.
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Ditto.
  • Classics or Modern? Classic inspiration, modern attitude.
  • Old World or New World? You mean North America versus Europe? I’m a New World girl but because of recent trips I’ve fallen in love with some Old World locales.
  • Sweet or spicy? Spicy. (But not death by mouth fire.)
  • Comfort or Speed? Comfort. I’m getting old.  :Laughs:

Thank you Eden for taking the time to answer my questions!

If you’d like to connect with Eden, you can find her on Twitter, Facebook, her website and her blog, her Facebook Author Page, and her Amazon Author Page.

Now let’s take a quick look at Eden’s novel Containment… Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!

ContainmentFinalFront“Life is different among the dead.”

They are kept in chambers, their energy used to feed the City’s voracious appetite for fuel now that traditional sources are long gone. These grisly fuel cells are kept watch over by Feast, a devil-human hybrid whose recent run-ins with the City leave him questioning its authority.

When he is needed to bring in one of the most dangerous creatures for containment, Feast is faced with a decision that may make him the next power source.

7 Questions with Sharon L. Higa

Today on the FlipSide, I’m pleased to feature an interview with author Sharon L. Higa. If you’re not yet acquainted with Sharon, here’s a little information about her…

Sharon007At six years old, Sharon L. Higa became obsessed with the supernatural, compliments of an older cousin who fascinated her with stories of hauntings and horror.  Travelling the world with her family, the fascination grew, resulting in creating and telling her own stories. She wrote intermittently for a number of years, but it was after she and her husband moved to East Tennessee that her family and friends convinced her to write and publish her works. She is a newly published author with one novella, The Dam and one novel, Number 6, both published by JEA Press. She also has one short story in an anthology, Mental Ward: Echoes of the Past with Sirens Call Publications – with many more stories bubbling on the mental burners.  She now writes full time. She resides with ten cats, one dog and Mark, her patient and loving husband of twenty two years.

Welcome Sharon! Now let’s delve into the questions… Using ten words or less, tell me about your book.

A supernatural thriller that has been described as a grittier…

(Editor’s Note: The Author gave me more than 10 words so I shortened it to be fair to all other authors and besides, it makes it more interesting this way doesn’t it? 🙂)

What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

I would love something specifically created by Danny Elfman to go with the tone of the movie. I’ve loved Oingo Boingo since the first day I heard their music and couldn’t think of anyone I’d feel more honored to help create the proper musical piece for my story.

Who would you want to direct the story of your life? Is there anyone specific you’d like to play you?

George Romero. All my friends have told me time and time again that my life story would have to be claimed as a work of fiction, because no one who didn’t know me would ever believe the comedy/tragedy and sometimes downright horrific events that have really happened to me. As for whom would I like to play me? Kathy Bates. She’s an incredible talent and can do any type/style of story around.

What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

Definitely a Pantser. I get ideas on the fly all the time, that’s why I keep a notebook with me everywhere; in the car, by my bed, the cat room, in the kitchen and yes, even the bathroom! If an idea hits me, I want to be able to catch it right away, in its’ purest concept. Then, I can flesh it out and set it up onto the word processor at a later time.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

Don’t let anything get in the way of your writing. Don’t use excuses – just write.

What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

E.A. Poe story – Murders in the Rue Morgue; Charles L. Grant – Horrors, Shadows, Nightmares anthologies; Tales From The Crypt Comics. That was in my pre-teen years. I love anthologies because a lot of now well- known writers started out with short stories in anthologies – that along with my family and friends encouragement really gave me the boost I needed to start writing my own ‘tales’.

Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Whatever’s available immediately!
  • Cats or dogs? Both
  • Snow or sun? Sun
  • Print books or eReader? Print Books- love the feel of paper and turning pages!
  • Nachos or potato chips? Potato Chips – wavy, of course, for dipping!
  • Baked or fried? Fried. I’m from the South!
  • Candy or chocolate? Chocolate…anything else is a sin!
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? Horror, oh yeah!
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Action (I’m no girly-girl! Hubby says I’m more of a marine than he was!)
  • Classics or Modern? Eclectic! (heeheehee!)
  • Old World or New World? Old World
  • Sweet or spicy? Sweet, dahhling!
  • Comfort or Speed? Comfort – I write in my jammies, what does that tell ya?!

Thank you Sharon for taking the time to answer my questions. If you’d like to connect with Sharon, you can find her on Twitter or Facebook.

Now let’s take a look at Number 6… Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!

#6 Sharon L. Higa Cover FIda Moreno had a good life. Head Curator of the New York Public Library, lots of friends and acquaintances among her co-workers, a nice, cozy apartment close to her work and the simple company of her cat, Tansy.

All that changes in one horrifying moment.

Raped and murdered by someone in the middle of the night, Ida’s soul discorporates from her body at the time of death and witnesses the final moments. She’s angry, and her emotional anger ties her to the killer. It’s now up to her to figure out how to use her ‘new spirit body’ to find out who he is and bring him to justice.

7 Questions with Jim Goforth

Today on the FlipSide, I have the pleasure of featuring an interview with horror writer Jim Goforth. If you’ve yet to come across Jim, here’s a little information to get everyone better acquainted…

IMG10722Jim Goforth is a horror author currently based in Holbrook, Australia. Happily married with two kids and a cat he has been writing tales of horror since the early nineties.

After years of detouring into working with the worldwide extreme metal community and writing reviews for hundreds of bands across the globe with Black Belle Music he has returned to his biggest writing love with first book Plebs published January 17 2014 by J. Ellington Ashton Press.

Two collaborations with a host of other authors are due out later this year and he will also be part on the heavy metal horror themed anthology Axes of Evil due out in April from Chupa Cabra House.

Welcome Jim! Now let’s get to the questions… Using ten words or less, tell me about your book.

Violent. Visceral. Thought-provoking. Fused with heavy metal. Dark. Punchy.

What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

It would have to be something in the vein of Monster Magnet, Tumbleweed or Kyuss, relatively laid back good time metal songs because at the start of the book things are rather carefree and light-hearted, and everyone is in high spirits (with an emphasis on ‘high’, hence the stoner metal sorts of bands that would tie in nicely). A lot of my writing incorporates use of extreme metal genres, but Plebs has references to things not quite as heavy such as Mushroomhead, Dope, Chain Collector, Rob Zombie and so on, so blasting my usual favourite choices of music probably wouldn’t fit in so well.

If it were the death metal undead novel I’m working on at the moment however… 😉

However I’ve always entertained the idea of having an epic track like Satyricon’s ‘In The Mist By The Hills’ opening up some film adaptation of one of my novels. It could well fit the bill for Plebs, it starts out reasonably calmly then all hell is unleashed, similar to the story itself.

Who would you want to direct the story of your life? Is there anyone specific you’d like to play you?

Haha, good question, and not one I have ever considered. Somebody not typically Hollywood would be great in both instances.

I see you dodging the question Jim and I’ll let it slide… this time 😉 What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

My writing process is quite simple. When I have an idea I just sit down and start writing, trying to get as much out as possible in between everything else that goes on with my life on a day to day basis.

Originally I was a hand writer (my book Plebs was hand written in entirety, all 600 odd pages of it), but now I type directly onto my laptop in Word Documents. I also used to type stories in various email addresses and save the works as drafts.

When I’m not physically sitting down to write, but have a story or book going I occasionally craft things in my head while I’m doing other things, however in terms of planning, I am not a meticulous planner.

Very few of my works have ever been planned out from beginning to end, in most instances even I do not exactly know what is going to happen at the conclusion.

I almost always prefer to let my characters go and run into whatever trouble they can, see what sorts of mayhem can unfold.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

Research which publishers to send manuscripts too. Back when I first tried to get a novel published there was no Facebook, no social media sites and things like that, no online databases of which publishers accept what, so consequently I was hitting random publishers with unsolicited manuscripts so of course success was not forthcoming there. Also, make more use of commas and not be so scant with them, but then again, the current version of myself needs to take that advice on-board too.

What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

I would say it is more a case of specific authors inspiring me to write as I do, but for the purpose of the question I would list 1) Darkness, Tell Us by Richard Laymon, 2) Cabal by Clive Barker and either 3) Watchers by Dean Koontz or Walkers by Graham Masterton.

Richard Laymon is my greatest inspiration and influence in my writing, that particular book was the very first of his I ever read back in the early nineties, and I still have the very same copy I originally read.

Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Coffee
  • Cats or dogs? I like all animals, I have no partiality for either of these. I have a cat now, but always had dogs when I was growing up.
  • Snow or sun? I tend to like both winter and summer, though I guess I do have a preference for winter.
  • Print books or eReader? Print books without a doubt. There’s no substitute for holding the physical copy of a book, turning the pages with your own hands.
  • Nachos or potato chips? I love them both but probably eat more potato chips than nachos.
  • Baked or fried? A difficult one. If we’re talking baked goods like cakes and that sort of thing, I’ll go with baked.
  • Candy or chocolate? All the above. Can’t split them. I’m notorious for indulging in a lot of types of both these.
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? I don’t mind the odd comedy now and then for a change of pace, but I have, and always will a horror aficionado, both in terms of movies and books.
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Can’t really get into sci fi, and there are minimal animated things that do much for me.
  • Classics or Modern? That depends on what area we’re referring to. Films, music, art, whatever it may be, I like a wide mix of both
  • Old World or New World?
  • Sweet or spicy? I have an incredible sweet tooth, yet I’m also very fond of spicy things, the hotter the better.
  • Comfort or Speed? Speed

Thank you Jim for taking the time to answer my questions! If you’d like to connect with Jim, you can find him on Twitter, Facebook, his Amazon Author Page, and his blog.

Now let’s take a look at Plebs… Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!

Plebs coverCorey Somerset, Tim Hayworth and Lee Hunter have had one hell of a good night.

And it isn’t over yet.

Celebrating their friend’s birthday with drunken debauchery and intoxicated antics they’ve just stumbled through a mini-wave of mindless vandalism and though they’ve wandered far out of the realms of civilization they are keen to keep the party vibe going.

When they encounter a band of mysterious fugitive women who call a bizarre encampment deep in the woods their residence it appears a strong likelihood that continuing the party is on the cards.

But it won’t come without a price.

The collective of unnerving lawless women are open to the suggestion but not without the threesome completing a request first, a seemingly straight forward barter proposition that will bring the boys face to face with something else that dwells in an unorthodox co-existence with the girls in the wilderness.

These are the Plebs and the shocking violent encounter the trio are unwittingly pitched into with these freakish feral fiends may be their first but it won’t be the last.

As the shiftless young men become inextricably entwined and involved with the agenda driven dangerous women so too do their fates, with them unravelling killer secrets, duplicity, bloodshed and brutality along the way that encompasses not just them but more of their friends, new enemies and old enemies.

A simple night of bad decisions escalates and snowballs into an expedition of terror spanning all the way home and beyond with Corey and his friends engulfed in a nightmare where the lines between man and monster blur.

Depravity, death and destruction reign supreme and it isn’t just the Plebs that want them all torn limb from limb.

7 Questions with Arden Aoide

Today on the FlipSide, I have the pleasure of featuring an interview with Arden Aoide. If you’re not yet acquainted with Arden, or her writing, here’s a little information about her…

ArdenI’m the ringmaster to two mad daughters, three madder cats, and a very patient husband with an infinite sense of humor. My world basically revolves around them, by choice and necessity. I’m also an obstinate insomniac. Actually, I’m a bit obstinate about most adult things, and that influences almost everything I do. I hate rules and regulations. People find me too permissive in my parenting, but only because my goal is to raise kind humans with an edge of anarchy, and not those who know their place. It’s not up to me to choose their place, but only to help them find it.

Welcome Arden! Now let’s get to the questions. Using ten words or less, tell me about your book.

Ancient Hunger is a lavish historical romp, creating ravenous mythologies.

What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

Dark Parts by Perfume Genius because “I will take the dark part of your heart into my heart”. It’s simple, yet beautifully emotive.

Who would you want to direct the story of your life? Is there anyone specific you’d like to play you?

The ghost of Stanley Kubrick. And Kate Winslet circa Titanic.

What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

I plan everything in minute details. Then, to stick it to the man, I don’t follow any of them. I type.  My handwriting is horrible.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

Start writing now.

What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

The Little Prince—Antoine de Saint-Exupery

The Witching Hour—Anne Rice

Stardust—Neil Gaiman

Stardust is such a great book! Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Coffee.
  • Cats or dogs? Cats.
  • Snow or sun? Snow.
  • Print books or eReader? Print.
  • Nachos or potato chips? Nachos.
  • Baked or fried? Fried.
  • Candy or chocolate? Chocolate.
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? Comedy.
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Science Fiction.
  • Classics or Modern? Classics.
  • Old World or New World? Old World.
  • Sweet or spicy? Sweet.
  • Comfort or Speed? Comfort.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions Arden! For those of you who would like to connect with Arden and keep up on all of the news surrounding her and her writing, you can find her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, her website, Goodreads, and her Amazon Author Page.

Now let’s take a look at Ancient Hunger… Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!

AHHe loves her.

He wants to make that clear.

He will love her until the sun swallows the Earth or burns out entirely.

He is very patient.

He only wants to keep her safe.

Even from herself.

Especially from herself.

Because he knows what is best for her.

Because he loves her.

Ancient Hunger is an erotic urban fantasy soaked with the blood of a southern gothic romance.

7 Questions with Shah Wharton

Today I have the distinct pleasure of featuring an interview with Shah Wharton, author of Finding Esta. If you’re not quite yet acquainted with Shah, here’s a little bit of an introduction into her world…

Assorted Pics 696Horror, paranormal mystery, dark fantasy, and sci-fi are Shah’s favourite genre, although she also enjoys dark comedy, some romance, and an occasional young adult fantasy.

She also writes poetry (two published in anthologies), short stories (one published), and she ghost writes as a freelancer.

Shah is a psychology graduate, trained in hypnotherapy and counseling, and enjoys theatre, movies, varied music, travel, and fine dining.

Her father taught her to appreciate the written word, and you’ll usually find her immersed in story, while slurping tea and cuddling up to her little family.

Shah lives with her huge German Shepherd and husband in Dubai, but originates from the West Midlands area of the United Kingdom and misses the cold, the rain and her extended family every day.

Welcome Shah! Now let’s delve into the questions… Using ten words or less, tell me about your book.

Um. Something like, “Psychic journalist loses herself in Cornish supernatural underworld.”

I’d say that’s pretty spot on Shah! What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

Love this question! Off the top of my head – R.E.M.’s version of ‘Mad World.’

Great song choice! What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

I’m a panster who longs to be a plotter. Of course, bipolar disorder does have a huge say in how things progress with my writing process. If I’m a little manic, I can write so much more and juggle so many ideas all at once, so notes aren’t even needed. But when I switch to a much lower mood, those ideas became like sludge and I find it difficult to get much done.

I’m still very much learning my craft and it changes all the time, but one thing seems unchangeable–I write the first draft without a plan, directly onto my MAC, and add layers with little notes scattered about. I have never been organised, unlike my family. I try, but it’s just not how my head works.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

Don’t rush. Be the turtle not the rabbit. This is another issue with my moods. The low mood Shah is cautious and slow, but the manic me is like a bull out of the gate.

I published Finding Esta December 2012, but s changed so much since then because every time I re-read it, I improved it. It wasn’t ready then, I think it is now, hence marketing it as a second edition. I’m trying to convince Amazon to email those who already bought it, to inform them there’s an update. If that’s you, go update the file. 🙂

If not, it’s discounted at Amazon right now at £1.99. I have no choice about this discount and no idea when it will end. Sigh!

Another tip is to really think about which publishing route you would like to take. I chose to self-publish, partly through lack of confidence but plenty of ignorance, and partly because it seemed the easier route. WRONG! It’s a lot of hard work, and it takes commitment. Essentially, unless you have a lot of money to throw at it, you are on your own. Self-publishing the first of the Supes Series means I have also scuppered my chances of publishing the rest of this series through a publisher.

I now wish I’d taken my time, and my chances, but hey ho. I can always try my luck at publishing something else in the future.

Also, I highly recommend you work with critique groups and beta readers. Julianne was a superb better reader for me on the original version of this book. It’s been a long process, hey Julianne? 🙂  I’m still trying to build those relationships, and envy those who already have consistent support with their writing and craft improvement. This is a big issue for me out here in Dubai. I feel cut off from resources, like critique circles, book clubs, writing groups. Thank heaven for the online writing community!

Writing a book is a long process regardless of how you undertake it and it only serves the book in the best way to take you time and ensure you do it to the best of your abilities. And if you find areas to improve, even after it’s published, do it! What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Most of Charlaine Harris’s True Blood. Stephen King’s On Writing. There are loads more, but these popped into my head, first.

Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Tea
  • Cats or dogs? Dogs
  • Snow or sun? Snow
  • Print books or eReader? eReader
  • Nachos or potato chips? Pot Chips
  • Baked or fried? Baked
  • Candy or chocolate? Dark Chocolates
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? Horror
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Action & Sci-Fi
  • Classics or Modern? Both
  • Old World or New World? Both
  • Sweet or spicy? Spicy
  • Comfort or Speed? Comfort

Great questions Julianne! Thanks for letting me visit me at your blog. 🙂

You’re very welcome Shah! If you’d like to connect with Shah, you can find her on Twitter, Google+, her Amazon Author Page, Facebook, or her blog.

Now let’s take a look at Finding Esta… Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!

Finding-Esta-hardcover-3D

For Luna, each day is not about living and succeeding, but about survival.

Luna has never been popular, in fact, even her parents loath her. She can hardly blame them; her psychic issues do make her a little odd and her only friends — Flo and Ada — are Shadows who exist inside her troubled mind. Although the normal world is all she’s known, it’s a place where she’s never belonged, nor been understood.

For Luna, each day is not about living and succeeding, but about survival. That is, until her work as a journalist leads her to investigate the disappearance of baby Esta, snatched from her home over twenty years earlier. Soon, our psychic heroine stumbles upon a series of revelations in a clandestine realm of vampires, weres, and magical alien-supernaturals. Revelations that make her oddities appear perfectly banal in comparison, and obliterate every preconceived idea of the normal world.
Her hunger for truth drives her forward. Yet, the constant physical changes, the undefined blood in her veins, the heightened power of psychic gifts she’s always hated, and an ache to finally belong somewhere, to someone, all force her to make discoveries about herself she could never have imagined.Ignorance may be bliss, but the truth will set Luna free, if only she can face it.

7 Questions with Clarissa Johal

Today on the FlipSide, I have the pleasure of featuring an interview with author Clarissa Johal. If you’re not quite acquainted with Clarissa, let’s take a moment to get to know her better…

Clarissa Johal headshotClarissa Johal has worked as a veterinary assistant, zoo-keeper aide and vegetarian chef. Writing has always been her passion. When she’s not listening to the ghosts in her head, she’s dancing or taking photographs of gargoyles. She shares her life with her husband, two daughters and every stray animal that darkens the doorstep. One day, she expects that a wayward troll will wander into her yard, but that hasn’t happened yet.

Welcome Clarissa! Now let’s delve into the questions… Using ten words or less, tell me about your book.

I’ll leave you with my tagline for STRUCK.

The shadows hadn’t been waiting. The shadows had been invited.

Very intriguing! What song would you want to play during the opening credits of your book were it made into a movie? Why?

Nothing Else Matters by Apocalyptica. It has that dark, gothic feel and the music is beautiful. It’s a nice blend of longing and fury.

Who would you want to direct the story of your life? Is there anyone specific you’d like to play you?

Tim Burton is my favorite director, hands-down. Johnny Depp could play me…haha. Okay, that came out wrong. I would like Meryl Streep to play me. She’s a wonderful actress.

Oh I love Meryl! What is your writing process? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you prefer to hand write your works or type them directly into your word processor?

Initially, I’m a panster. I will do a straight write-through from beginning to end to “channel” my characters and story. Then, I go back and do the research and editing. And I have to use my computer Word program—my handwriting is awful, even I can’t read it.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself: something you wish you knew then that you know now?

I would tell myself to focus on a writing career earlier! I started working in the veterinary field, which I loved, and wrote on the side for many years. It didn’t occur to me that writing could become a career until after my daughter was born. I wanted to be able to stay home with her and started writing my first book, PRADEE. Though I’ve changed genres since then (fantasy to paranormal and gothic horror) I’m SO happy I pursued writing.

What are the three books that really inspired you to become a writer?

There were so many of them. The first that come to mind are; Mythago Wood by Robert Holdstock, Krampus: The Yule Lord by BROM and The Shining by Stephen King

Now it’s time for the Rapid. Fire. Questions.

  • Coffee or tea? Coffee—always coffee. Gevalia French roast to be exact
  • Cats or dogs? I love both, but cats especially. I like their independence.
  • Snow or sun? Snow. I don’t like hot weather.
  • Print books or eReader? Both, it depends on how impatient I’m feeling.
  • Nachos or potato chips? Neither
  • Baked or fried? Baked
  • Candy or chocolate? Neither. Well…unless it’s Red Hot Tamales.
  • Comedy, Romance, or Horror? Horror
  • Action, Science Fiction, or Animated? Science fiction
  • Classics or Modern? Both
  • Old World or New World? I’m a European history geek, so we’ll go with Old World.
  • Sweet or spicy? Spicy food.
  • Comfort or Speed? Speed. I like to get things done, plus I’m a stickler for deadlines.

Thank you Clarissa! If you’d like to keep up with what Clarissa is up to, you can find her on Twitter, Facebook, her Amazon Author Page, her website, or her blog.

Now let’s take a look at STRUCK… Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!

STRUCK book cover

The shadows hadn’t been waiting. The shadows had been invited.

After a painful breakup, Gwynneth Reese moves in with her best friend and takes a job at a retirement home. She grows especially close to one resident, who dies alone the night of a terrific storm. On the way home from paying her last respects, Gwynneth is caught in another storm and is struck by lightning. She wakes in the hospital with a vague memory of being rescued by a mysterious stranger. Following her release from the hospital, the stranger visits her at will and offers Gwynneth a gift–one that will stay the hands of death. Gwynneth is uncertain whether Julian is a savior or something more sinister… for as he shares more and more of this gift, his price becomes more and more deadly.