Saturday, September 16, 2017

Unity Book Tour, Author Interview Exchange

As part of the UNITY BOOK TOUR, bringing three publishers and their authors together from around the world, we have this fun author interview exchange! I get to interview an author from another publisher and that author interviews me! So, I'd like to introduce you to Jacob Devlin! A fellow myth and fairytale fan, it seems! He's with Blaze Publishing, which is based in the U.S.
He's going to tell us a bit about himself and if you want a chance to win a copy of his book, just leave a comment here.

And be sure to head over to Jacob’s blog where I'm being interviewed!

Author Jacob Devlin

So hi. What’s your name and what do you write?
Hi! My name is Jacob Devlin. I write YA/upper MG fantasy books, usually with some sort of fairy tale or mythical twist involved.

When did you start writing and why?
I've enjoyed writing ever since I was little, but I got serious about it in grad school and wrote as a creative outlet for some of the emotions I was feeling when I lost a friend to brain cancer. What I found was that I was so "in my element" writing novels that I didn't want to stop, ever. The body and soul just required it.

What were the biggest challenges about becoming a published author?
To quote Captain America . . . patience! Querying, and the wait time that followed, was so ridonculously demoralizing. I was prepared for rejection. The real torture was waiting for the rejection letters that didn't even come. Sometimes I'd be holding out hope for a particular agent, a few months would go by, and I'd be like, "just tell me it's hot juicy garbage so I can move on already!" But the reality is that they don't have time to write rejections for everybody. So you have to learn to identify that moment where it's time to boot up and move on.

Shout out your publisher and tell us how they helped you on your creative journey.
Blaze Publishing has been great working with me through my first trilogy. They've forced my characters to grow, and strangely, I've felt myself growing with them.

Where can we find out more about them? 
I'd check out their website (!

What are you working on right now?
I'm between drafts of THE HUMMINGBIRD, the final book of my fairy tale fantasy trilogy. While I wait for revisions, I'm working on a totally separate project involving a dragon, a reality TV adventurist, and a train wreck!

Who is your most favourite character you’ve written and why do they speak to you so much?
While it's always incredibly hard to answer this question, I'm always going to have a huge soft spot for Pietro, the Peter Pan of my story. The trilogy takes some dark turns, but Pietro brings the charm and comic relief. He's also fiercely loyal to his loved ones and is exactly the kind of friend you'd want beside you for a road trip or war against an evil queen!

Do world events and politics influence your writing?
Up to this point, I've opted to leave a lot of today's politics out, because don't we need an escape sometimes? That's not to say I'll never draw from the political environment or current events, but I choose to leave that separate right now.

How important are places you have visited and where you live to your writing?
I have the travel bug, and my characters do too! I loved writing about an actual Renaissance Faire I went to in Maryland, where I discovered fried mac-and-cheese on a stick, and Renaissance jail! I love working different places into my writing.

Share with us your favourite line from your most recent release.
There's a simple piece of dialogue directed at Prince Liam: "The white knight has a shadow after all." His series arc is pretty turbulent and this is where his demons start kicking in.

Tell us five things that you love in life.
1. Breakfast for dinner! Especially Apple Jacks.
2. Comfortable shoes.
3. Movie theaters.
4. Traveling! Sightseeing, eating local food, exploring.
5. Music.

Tell us five things that you hate in life.
1. Those fake-out voicemail greetings. (Hello? What? Yeah? PSYCH LEAVE A MESSAGE LOL HA) STOP. IT!
2. Scorpions. Hell's rejects.
3. Losing at Scattergories.
4. Cancer.
5. Jerkish, entitled behavior.

What book started your love of reading?
I can't remember NOT having a love of reading. I was really into the Bailey School Kids in my elementary school days! A Wrinkle In Time and Harry Potter followed closely after that.

Tell us about your most recent release.
It's part of a series in which your favorite fairy tale characters and their families come together to fight off an evil queen and face their demons along the way! In the most recent installment, the main characters have to fight their way out of Wonderland. Along the way they're meeting the Hatter, the Cheshire Cat, the Hearts, all with their own new twists!

Where can we buy it?
You can order it through your local Barnes and Noble, Blaze Publishing's website, or Amazon!
Where can we find you on social media?
Twitter/IG: @jacob_devlin

Saturday, September 2, 2017

I Was A Horrifying Zombie (Sandemonium 2017)

   So, a week later, I finally get around to writing about Sandemonium. It was August 26, so, sorry if you missed it, because it was a blast.
   What is Sandemonium? It is a small, local, friendly, and fantastic fandom convention in Sandpoint, Idaho, a convenient 45 minutes from where I live. The atmosphere is warm and the vendors are always great. From local authors to artists, game-makers to librarians, they've got something to fascinate. This year, the table behind me was Board2Death a game development company with their own role-playing card game (they had their artist there, who had done all the art for the cards). And there was Sack Lunch Comics and Little Vampires
   I experienced pretty good sales, I thought, for such a small event. I got my picture taken with Darth Vader!

   And there was an author reading, in which I participated (read from Ambulatory Cadavers). I also got to meet Kevin Penelerick, with whom I've been acquainted online, ever since he helped me find  networking opportunities after Ambulatory Cadavers was released (he also writes zombie fiction under another name). He read his children's book, Guppy Butter, which is a horrifyingly delightful tale of tragedy and fish. Seriously twisted (I loved it).
   And there was the cosplay contest. Since I won the amateur department last year, and I sewed my entire costume (sans tights and shoes), I had to enter the professional department, against two fabulous D&D characters.
   All of the costumes were really fun and fantastic! From the pirates to the Skyrim character to the soldiers and Pacman.
   The moral of the story? Cons are fun. Although I did miss out on the panels. They had panels on cosplay and writing and self publishing and gaming. Not much boffering this year, but hey. Also, violin covers of rock songs seemed to be the main soundtrack. In my formal Regency get-up, I wanted to dance, but sadly refrained.
    The best part, really, is talking to readers, potential and returning. When you're sitting at a table labeled 'author,' people will walk up to you and start talking about their own writing, and that is the best thing. There's a little pressure, of course, because I want my success to inspire others. And, I guess it must, without my even having to say anything. Otherwise no-one would stop and tell me that they write, read me their excerpts, and discuss the creative process. It's encouraging and I do my best to be encouraging. I want them to get what I get out of our conversations: inspiration to keep going, to keep writing, and keep connecting.
   Writing brings people together, and that, I think, is the true moral of the story.

   p.s. I wore that make-up all day. Couldn't itch my nose for fear of ruining it.