Since I’ve started writing, one question I get all the time is where do the ideas come from? I never really have a good answer. They just pop into my brain. But this got me thinking, where the hell do they come from? So, I decided to do some research.
I’ve managed to find some information, mostly theories since how the brain works isn’t an area easily proved. One article struck home with me. It wrote that creative people tend to link unusual things together. I sat back and tried to determine if this applied to any of my ideas. I think it might.
In my book, The Keepers, they operate a wormhole in the basement of a casino. To me, this didn’t seem like an unusual match up since a casino has a high level of energy and so does a wormhole. But, when people think wormholes, is a casino a natural progression of thought? Perhaps not. So next time you need to think creatively, try matching up some unusual thoughts and see where it leads.
Hello! My name is Joleene Naylor. I’m the author of the Amaranthine vampire series. I’d like to thank Donna for allowing us to come by today as part of the blog tour for my newest release, Children of Shadows. Since Jorick and Verchiel have both had interviews on the tour, I thought it might be fun to interview the protagonist of the series, Katelina.
Joleene:Would you like to tell us a little bit about yourself?
Katelina: I suppose. Hi. I’m Katelina. I’m twenty-five. I used to work for the newspaper until I met Jorick. He brought me into the secret world of vampires and darkness, and nothing has been the same since.
Joleene:You don’t regret that, do you?
Katelina: No, of course not. It’s not like I was really going anywhere, and I wouldn’t want to miss Jorick. If I have to deal with the blood and the nightmares to be with him, then it’s worth it.
Joleene:Have you told him that?
Katelina: Um, sort of. Look, don’t start pushing commitment crap at me, all right? He knows I love him. I know he loves me. Let’s leave it there for right now.
Joleene: And that’s why we’re on book six and you’re *still* human. Most normal protagonists would have been turned by now.
Katelina: Excuse me if I’m not normal. I’ll get turned when the time is right. There’s no need to rush into things.
Joleene:No, because you *always* think things through. *sarcasm*
Katelina: Sometimes I’m a little… rash. But looks who’s talking? You used to kill everyone off right and left, and now you’re sorry for it.
Joleene: This isn’t about me, and for your information we’re due for some deaths, so you’d better behave or it might be you. Anyway, what is it about Jorick that makes him worth all that?
Katelina: Seriously? He’s gorgeous – long black hair, dark eyes, perfect pale skin – he’s sexy, smart, strong – a total alpha vampire – he’s romantic and he has just enough of a tragic past to be hot but not enough to be whiny or broken. Oh, and he actually apologizes when he’s in the wrong. Some of the time, at least.
Joleene:He has his bad traits, too.
Katelina: Well, yeah. Sometimes he’s aggravating. And stubborn. And he has this habit of trying to protect people by withholding information. That’s pretty annoying. And he thinks that just because he’s five hundred years old he knows more than anyone else. Not to mention he’s convinced he’s the only thing that stands between the world and complete chaos. Oh, and he’s nosey-
Joleene:Moving on, would you like to tell everyone a little about the newest book?
Katelina: Should I just read what you wrote up for me to say? ‘Children of Shadows opens with the beach vacation Jorick has promised me for the last four books. It ends too soon with a trip to Munich, Germany, where we’re supposed to testify to the head of all the vampires in the world. Things spiral from bad to worse when an extinct cult resurfaces and starts attacking vampire citadels. Ume, a mysterious vampiress who claims to know one of our traveling companions, offers the help of her secret organization, but can we even trust her? And if the Children of Shadows target Munich, will we survive?’
Joleene: I knew if I let you really sum it up you’d take too long. What’s your favorite part of the story?
Katelina: The first chapter, when we’re still on the island. Everything after that-
Joleene: *cough* is action packed and exciting? What event in the book do you think is the most defining for you as a character?
Katelina: I think the first night in Finland shows how much my perceptions, not only of vampires, but of the whole vampire thing, have changed. If that had happened in the first book there’s no way I’d have gone along with it.
Joleene:Before we go, tell the readers why they might want to check out your story.
Katelina: If they’re looking for a more realistic view of what dating a vampire is, then they should try out the series. Or if they don’t mind some gore with their romance. Or if they’re just looking for an exciting read. They don’t have to start with book 1 – though it’s a series, each book is written so that they can pick up wherever they want and still know what’s going on.
Joleene: Thanks so much for cooperating (for a change), thanks to Donna, and thank you for reading. Be sure to enter the blog tour giveaway for a chance at an Amazon gift card among other cool prizes.
Joleene Naylor is the author of Amaranthine, a paranormal series where vampires live in the shadows and don’t sparkle. In her spare time she is a freelance artist, book cover designer and photographer. You can find information on all of her pursuits at her website http://JoleeneNaylor.com . She also maintains blogs full of odd ramblings and hopes to win the lottery. Until she does, she and her husband live near Bolivar Missouri with their miniature zoo and a couch coated in cat fur.
The sixth installment of the Amaranthine series pulsates with the dark blood of vampire lore.
The Children of Shadows, a vampire cult not seen for hundreds of years, resurfaces to wage war on the vampire guilds. Led by a familiar face, the cult wreaks havoc while Katelina and Jorick are trapped in Munich. Ume, a mysterious vampiress, claims to know Verchiel and offers the help of her secret organization. But can they trust her?
As mysteries are solved, new ones appear. Why have the Children of Shadows returned, and is it really a former ally that leads them, or a look-alike?
Legends rise and secrets are revealed in a world where vampires walk, drenched in blood and shadows.
1. As always, I start with a fluff of wool, a barbed needle made for felting and a foam pad.2. Start poking wool into basic shape.
3. Make base of head on top.
4. Add more wool and start building a shape. You can see in this picture I started adding some more wool for the cheeks and the lower legs.5. Felt a roll of wool separately. This will be the arms. 6. After it’s firm, cut it in half. 7. Poke half the side in so that it’s profile looks like the one on the right when turned. 8. Poke the loose wool into the body. 9. Build up the face more.10. Add more cheek fullness. 11. Poke in a continuous line to make mouth and nose definition 12. Make a pointed tube like this. This will eventually be the ears. 13. Cut it in half lengthwise. 14. Split in half. 15. Flip over so that what was the inside of the tube is facing upward. Poke at the center. This will help hollow the ears out. 16. Poke in and pinch near the tops. Then place this on the head and poke on.17. Add on bottom paws with the same technique as arms. The loose wool from that will help form the lower legs. Add more wool to fill out. 18. Add beads for eyes by sewing them on.
19. Cover the eyes with wool and then shape them.
Add a hint of pink on the nose and some tan around the eyes and mouth. Here is the finished bunny below.
Who doesn’t love a shifter? Well, there might be quite a few people, but for our purposes today, we’ll just pretend everyone loves shifters!
But the question is, who’s the furriest, I mean fairest of them all? With so many great characters, it’s hard to narrow it down to just one. My personal front runners would be Simon, from Written in Red by Anne Bishop, and Curran, from the Kate Daniels Series by Ilona Andrews. But my absolute favorite can’t be named. Problem is, you don’t actually find out he’s a shifter until late in the series, and I hate spoilers!
So, if we have it narrowed down to Simon and Curran, it’s a really tough call. Simon is a wolf. Wolves are just cool and you’ve got the whole pack thing going for them. Curran is a lion though. Lions are the top of the food chain in the animal kingdom. If I had to pick one, and it can’t be my mystery character, I think Curran wins this one by a shifter hair.
And of course, this would be a really lame hop if it didn’t have some giveaways! I’m giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Card in honor of Curran. (You know, King of the Jungle, cash is king?) Make sure you check out the rest of the sites below for more giveaways!
With the coming release of my book, Redemption, I thought this would be the perfect time for a visit with one of my editors, Sharon Stogner. This is the second time I’ve worked with Sharon and won’t be the last.
Could you give the readers a general explanation of the specific type of editing you do?
Sharon: There are four general types of editing: content, line, copy, and proof reading. The first three can blend into each other. Proof reading should be the final step and only happen when no other changes/rewrites are going to be done. Every time you change something, you run the risk of introducing more mistakes. Don’t proof until you are ready to turn that sucker in.
I can do all four types, but for the best possible result, you need to make each step separate, which is what happens in the big five publishing houses. To save money, writers will combine some of the steps and you can get away with that to an extent, but only doing one round of edits isn’t going to give you a quality piece of work. At the minimum, you need two rounds of editing, plus a final proofing. I would also suggest using someone different to do a beta read. I explain the differences between the types of editing on my website.
New writers need to understand editing is subjective. One writer will think Joe Editor is brilliant, but another writer will think Joe Editor is an idiot. You have to find an editor you trust, and unfortunately, this is a trial and error process.
Why did you decide to get into this line of work?
Sharon: A few years ago, I started beta reading for some of my favorite authors and I loved it! It is like solving a puzzle. I make sure all the pieces are in the right order and fit together seamlessly. I have a natural talent for the line editing process. If there is a plot hole or inconsistency, I will find it. The authors I helped encouraged me to become a freelance editor. They found my contribution valuable enough that they were willing to pay for the service.
You also run a successful blog, which entails covering a lot of book events and conventions. How do you keep up with everything? Do you think you would be able to juggle both if it wasn’t a passion of yours?
Sharon: I was running I Smell Sheep with my partner Katie Dalton and doing beta work at the same time so switching over to freelance editing wasn’t that hard. There is a lot more pressure now. When you edit for free, no one can complain.When they pay for it, they have the right to judge my work. I absolutely love doing both so I have to split my time between the two. It is a practice in controlled chaos.
There are a lot of good books out there, but what do you think it takes to make a great book? Where do you think a lot of books fall short?
Sharon: Ack! That is a tough question, since what constitutes a good book is subjective. But there are books that have mass appeal and success. Editing (all four types) is what gives a book a chance to succeed. A poorly edited book will be put down after one chapter by most readers/reviewers, and a publisher won’t even read past the first page. After editing, I think voice is what makes a great book. If you can make a reader experience your story, not just read it, then it will be successful. If a reader has to trip over long descriptions, awkward sentences and a choppy plot, they will be too busy trying to understand and won’t be able to immerse themselves in the story you have created.
Are you working on anything exciting right now?
Sharon: Always. I love connecting readers to authors who will rock their world, through I Smell Sheep. I get a rush from finding a new author and being able to help them become successful. I just finished editing some stories for some of my favorite authors (like Donna Augustine!) and I can’t wait for the readers to get a hold of the stories. They are amazing!
What are your future plans for your editing business and blog?
Sharon: Just continue to earn the respect and trust of everyone who works with me and improving what I do on both fronts.