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What? Lil’ ole me?

I found out today that “Perfect & Other Stories” made the Amazon bestseller list.

WOW. Mind blown.

Ice cream just now sounds appropriate!

Thank you so much for your support, kind readers. Companions, thank you for walking this road with me.

 

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Interview with bestselling fantasy Author KateMarie Collins

Today, I welcome KateMarie Collins! Thank you for sharing some of your time with us!LCS_7677

What is your latest book/book about to be released? Release date? Can you give us a teaser?

My last release was ‘Fin’s Magic’, back in March of 2014. I’m currently working on ‘Wielder of Tiren’ Book 3 of The Raven Chronicles. With luck, it’ll come out sometime next year! 

 EXCERPT:

That’s when it happened.

            The lead bounty hunter threw his fist back hard, knocking Alaric to the ground. Fin fumbled with her quiver, sending out the silent healing energy to her friend. Around her, the other three drew their weapons and prepared to meet the charging foes.

            By the time she got an arrow nocked, they were too close. Fin retreated a few feet, watching the fighting closely. Her bow was ready, but she needed to get a clear shot.

            Close combat always unnerved her. The stench of blood turned her stomach. Gwen was holding her own against the one named Charlie, and winning handily. When the first body dropped, Fin relaxed just a little. There weren’t many out there who could beat Trystian or Emile in one-on-one combat, because the two men didn’t believe in mercy. Just an expedient death.

            An arrow buzzed past her ear, the fletching scratching her cheek. Spinning on her heels, she watched it sail past the man charging at her. He leaped to tackle her as she tried to raise her bow. Instinct kicked in, and she did the only thing she could think of to stop him.

            She willed his heart to stop beating.

            An anguished wail tore from her throat. Pain forced her to her knees and caused her to drop her bow. The body of her would-be assailant fell with a heavy thud in front of her. Fin grasped at her left arm, desperate to breathe through the searing agony rippling down her bicep. She’d killed him. Justified or not, she’d taken a life.

            “Fin? Are you okay?” Alaric’s voice broke through the shock. She opened her eyes.

            He knelt in front of her. A single hand gently brushed her hair from her face. Concern for her was clearly visible in his brown eyes.

            “I…I killed him.” She could barely whisper the words.

 

 

What other books/stories have you written?

In total, I have eight titles available right now. They are:

    ‘Daughter of Hauk’ Book 1 of The Raven Chronicles (ebook, audio, and print)

    ‘Son of Corse’ Book 2 of The Raven Chronicles (ebook and print)

    ‘Mark of the Successor’ (ebook and print)

    ‘Fin’s Magic’ (ebook)

    ‘Kick the Can’ (ebook)

    ‘A Stab At The Dark’ (ebook)

    ‘Looking at the Light’ (ebook)

    ‘Challenges Met’ (print)

 Do you publish in e-book, print, or both?

If the book is long enough, it gets a print version. That’s a tricky one, really. Because no one wants to pay $10 for a book that’s under 5k words!

Where can readers find your books?

 All of my titles are available on Amazon. A select few are available on Barnes & Noble and Smashwords. 

 Do you write in a particular genre or genres? What grabs you about this genre/these genres?

 I love writing fantasy. It’s the concept of creating brand new worlds that work outside of the boundaries of our modern one, playing god, and being able to examine certain moral and ethical questions beyond what our society dictates. I love the escape fantasy gives to both me as an author and me as a reader.

 What do you think are the biggest challenges for the type of writing you do?

Finding my readers. I’m not saying that it’s hard to get noticed in other genres, but fantasy has its’ own readership. And they love certain authors. It’s getting them to read something new that can be hard. I know, as a fantasy reader, I tend to devour certain authors and am hesitant to read new ones. 

 What inspires you?

 My daughters. I want them to grow up thinking they can conquer the world, have the courage to chase the dreams that are hard to achieve. The best way for me to teach them that it’s worth taking the risk was to show them how.

What do you think is the hardest thing about being published? Are there things you know now that you wish you’d known about earlier in this journey?

Marketing was a big obstacle for me at first. I grew up with a mindset that you didn’t talk about things you did. It was bad manners to brag. But, as an author, I’m the best spokesperson for my books. I know them the best, have the motivation for each character in my head. Authors really are the best promoters, but we’re often the worst at it.

What advice would you give aspiring writers?

Be polite, and don’t give up. It takes time. You won’t reach best seller status overnight, and you don’t want to burn bridges along the way. One rude email really does come into play when your contract comes up for renewal.

How did you get started writing?

I’ve always loved to write, but I lacked the self confidence to know what I had was anything beyond the ability to b.s. my way through an essay in high school. We’d been playing in a long, ongoing Dungeons & Dragons game (yes, I’m that much of a geek!) for over two years when it ended very badly. Everyone was either executed or imprisoned. I didn’t like the end, so I wrote a short story to change it. It scared the daylights out of me, because it was good. It was the first thing I’d written in decades that I liked! The few handful of friends I shared it with all wanted to know what happened next. Once the Muse got unlocked, she didn’t shut up! Three and a half months later, the first draft of ‘Daughter of Hauk’ was complete. That initial short story email is in it, too.

Anything else you’ld like to tell our readers?

Reviews really do help authors, so please write one for any book you read! Authors love to read them, and they do help sell books.

How can readers contact you?

 I can be found here:

       Twitter:  @DaughterHauk

       FaceBook:  http://www.facebook.com/pages/KateMarie-Collins/217255151699492

        Blog: http://www.katemariecollins.wordpress.com


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Good crazy week and fame

Darned good, actually. It’s not every week you have a book published and get a contract for your latest! Crazy ebullient week!

Which brings me to the topic of fame, however modest it may be. A publisher sends you a contract for your book. You squee and happy dance. Then your book is released. You do your promos. You keep writing. Rinse, repeat. And bit by bit, people start to recognize you.

This is when you start thanking the Powers That Be for the invention of social media. The need to meet people face to face is no longer a requirement of a modern author’s life. We meet people all the time without leaving home. BUT we still need to interact with them–these are our followers. They help pay our bills.

One of my friends has a gold standard when it comes to public recognition and building a good reputation. “DBAD,” she said. “Don’t be a dick.”

She’s absolutely right. None of us is such a special little snowflake that a misspoken word from us can’t melt us away.

So let your responses smile; be gracious and modest. If someone gives you a negative review, it’s ok. A “I’m sorry that the book didn’t appeal to you, but hopefully the next one will” is a kind way of recognizing their feelings and encouraging them to stick with you. And for those who liked your work, “Thank you” is enough. Let them all know when your next piece is coming out.

Thank everyone for their feedback, good and bad. Hey, they read your book. You grabbed their attention. That’s saying something, isn’t it?

 

 

 


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Book release: Canoples Tackles Space Pirates

CITSP coverK.C. Sprayberry (170x207) (170x207)Book Release: Canoples Investigations Tackles Space Pirates

 

Hello, this is Sally Wild from Inside Galaxy. I’m here on Canoples Station interviewing the infamous Canoples Investigations crew. We’ve heard it from our very special confidential informants that BD Bradford and his group of malcontents are turning this station on its ear again. Those children just don’t learn. But wait. I do believe one of our victims…uh interviewees…is on his way over.

Sally primps, glances at the crowd, and wrinkles her nose at the rest of Canoples Investigations. She taps a purple fingernail against the table and speaks into her vid-recorder again.

Sally: I tell you, devoted Inside Galaxy viewers, these “children” certainly have no manners. I’ve heard BD Bradford is the worst of them. He is always in trouble, according to my confidential informants, Lisa Tulane and Jake Tigley. Now, we’re waiting on BD to show up, and I have to say he’s already showing how he doesn’t respect his elders. He’s almost three minutes late.

A ruckus around the table has Sally looking all directions. She gasps and sits up straighter in the chair.

Sally: Here he comes. The infamous BD Bradford. This boy is horrible. He has long hair, and you can see his cocky attitude just by the way he walks. BD, over here!

BD: Yeah. I see you. What do you want to talk about? I have to warn you that I can’t talk about anything related to tomorrow’s trial.

Sally: Yes, I’ve heard that from your friends. What are you hiding?

BD: Me? Man, I can’t lie to save my life. And I can’t hide anything. What you see is what you get.

Sally: What kind of punishment did you get for illegally piloting a shuttle to Jupiter, disobeying Security when you were told to return to the station, and terrorizing those poor pirates?

BD: (laughing so hard his face is red) Poor pirates? Sally, you have it all wrong. Those pirates attacked Canoples Station. They forced one shuttle down and took the passengers and pilot hostage. Then they shot down another shuttle and took another hostage. They’re par—never mind. That’s classified information.

Sally: What? You can’t hide anything from me. I have my sources. I’ll find out what you’re hiding.

BD: Sorry. Can’t tell you. Classified information and all that.

Sally: Have you spoken with a psych about the horrible experience of having your father point a blaster at you? That must have absolutely terrifying. Didn’t it scare you?

BD: Sorry, that’s classified too. Now, if you want to talk about the travel bag episode, I can talk about that. (snickers) And about Chuckles, the illegal re-kat.

Sally: Re-kats are boring. I want to talk about the space pirates. I want to know how devastated you are because your father turned out to be a criminal. Those are interesting topics. My viewers hate re-kats.

BD: They’ve probably met Chuckles. Sorry, I can’t talk about the rest of those things. I told you that twice already. That’s classified until after the trial, and you know that. The chief was with me when he gave you permission to approach us, and he told you that you couldn’t talk about the space pirates.

Cassie: BD! They made that new pizza. The first one is ours!

BD: Later, Sally. This will be great.

Sally: Wait! I’m not finished.

BD: I’m done, with you. Nobody gets between BD Bradford and the best Gut Buster Pizza in the galaxy!

Sally: He ran off. I don’t believe it. BD Bradford and his friends are nothing but a lot of Pluto gas. None of them will tell the truth about anything. Well, you saw for yourself, viewers, Canoples Station’s Security is incompetent. Canoples Investigations are a bunch of spoiled, out of control teens, and no one is interested in stopping them. Honestly, the Twelve Stations Council has to take over here and fix this problem. Those children desperately need a dose of happy candy and months with a psych to fix their problem.

 

Sally pulls the vid-recorder closer. “I hear someone actually wrote a book about the exploits of these “children.” And they’re telling people about it now. I even hear that’s the next advertisement. Well, lovely Inside Galaxy viewers, you have to watch that nastiness, but do you have to buy the book?

 

Canoples Investigations Tackles Space Pirates

Available now!

 

Excerpt:

Five flitters arrow around the massive tetra-flex porthole giving everyone a view of Jupiter and her moons. These are ships capable of seating two to four people for station-to-planet hops. The largest thing in sight, Io, is in synchronous orbit between the station and Jupiter.

 

 

Blurb:

The biggest worry on BD Bradford’s mind is scoring enough creds to snatch a copy of the latest vid-game. He’s set on getting his girl to stop glaring at him, until Space Pirates make their presence known. Thrown into a day without end, BD and his team can’t do anything right, until faced with an impossible situation.

 

Book Trailer:

 

http://youtu.be/i-bO1nraJ30

 

 

Bio:

 

Born and raised in Southern California’s Los Angeles basin, K.C. Sprayberry spent years traveling the United States and Europe while in the Air Force before settling in Northwest Georgia. A new empty nester with her husband of more than twenty years, she spends her days figuring out new ways to torment her characters and coming up with new tales from the South and beyond.

She’s a multi-genre author who comes up with ideas from the strangest sources. Some of her short stories have appeared in anthologies, others in magazines. Three of her books (Softly Say Goodbye, Who Am I?, and Mama’s Advice) are Amazon best sellers. Her other books are: Take Chances, Where U @, The Wrong One, Pony Dreams, Evil Eyes, Inits, and Starlight. Additionally, she has shorts available on Amazon: Grace, Secret From the Flames, Family Curse … Times Two, and The Ghost Catcher.

Author Links:

 

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/KC-Sprayberry/331150236901202

Twitter: https://twitter.com/kcsowriter

Blog: http://outofcontrolcharacters.blogspot.com/

Website: www.kcsprayberry.com

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5011219.K_C_Sprayberry

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005DI1YOU

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+KcSprayberry/posts

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/kcsprayberry/boards/

Authorgraph: http://www.authorgraph.com/authors/kcsowriter

Book Links:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Canoples-Investigation-Tackles-Space-Pirates-ebook/dp/B00MOIOJM6/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1407941425&sr=1-1&keywords=canoples+investigations+tackles+space+pirates

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/canoples-investigation-tackles-space-pirates-kc-sprayberry/1120132536?ean=2940150335349

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/458915

CreateSpace: https://www.createspace.com/4910024

 

 

 

#CITSP re-kat blitz http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00MOIOJM6 @SolsticeShadows #scifi #adventure

 

#CITSP space pirate tango http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00MOIOJM6 @SolsticeShadows #scifi #adventure

 

#CITSP Gut Buster chow down http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00MOIOJM6 @SolsticeShadows #scifi #adventure

 

#CITSP The chase is on! http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00MOIOJM6 @SolsticeShadows #scifi #adventure


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Interview With Author KC Sprayberry

It is my very great pleasure to host author KC Sprayberry. She is best known for her contemporary Young Adult fiction, and her genres and themes range broadly, providing both engrossing entertainment and penetrating insights.

Thank you for joining me today. I understand you have a title ready to go. What is your latest book about to be released? Release date?

Canoples Investigations Tackles Space Pirates releases August 13, 2014.

Can you give us a teaser?

Excerpt:
Five flitters arrow around the massive tetra-flex porthole giving everyone a view of Jupiter and her moons. These are ships capable of seating two to four people for station-to-planet hops. The largest thing in sight, Io, is in synchronous orbit between the station and Jupiter.

What other books/stories have you written?

Books: Softly Say Goodbye, Take Chances, Where U @, The Wrong One, Pony Dreams, Inits, Evil Eyes, and Starlight.

Shorts: The Ghost Catcher, Family Curse … Times Two, Secret From the Flames, Grace, Mama’s Advice, and Who Am I

Anthologies: Passionate Hearts Anthology (Rediscovered Trust), The Best of Frontier Tales I (Brothers Under the Skin), The Best of Frontier Tales II (Desert Rose Bounty Hunter), Mystery Times Ten 2011 (Falsely Accused), Mystery Times Nine 2012 (The Shame of West Landry), Mystery Times Ten 2013 (An Ordinary House).

Do you publish in e-book, print, or both?

Both. Only Starlight isn’t available in print at the moment. It will be available in print during May 2014.

Where can readers find your books?

Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, and CreateSpace

All of my books are also on my website, with links to Amazon on each cover – http://www.kcsprayberry.com

Do you write in a particular genre or genres? What grabs you about this genre/these genres?

The book tells me what genre it will be in. Currently, most of my books are young adult coming of age, but I’m spreading my wings with romantic suspense, military based mystery/thrillers, and westerns.

What do you think are the biggest challenges for the type of writing you do?

Enough hours in the day to work in everything. My requests for another 72 hours per day are constantly turned down!

What inspires you?

A picture, things my kids get into, a news story, just about anything.

What do you think is the hardest thing about being published? Are there things you know now that you wish you’d known about earlier in this journey?

The hardest thing for me is the next book. Will it be good enough? Will people expect the same types of books I’ve already had published? Will I be able to put together another book?

Absolutely. I wish I’d known to have a web presence before I signed my first contract. That would have been easy to do, by creating my Facebook fan page before the contract was signed, or using Twitter and my blog more often.

What advice would you give aspiring writers?

Don’t quit. If your book is turned down by a publishing company and the editor in chief was so good as to write a note about why they turned your book down, take those words to heart. Go back and do some more editing. Search for the problems they saw.

Also, use beta readers or critique groups. A fresh set of eyes looking over your work helps to find spots where the plot lags, or you’ve forgotten a word, or something just isn’t right.

How did you get started writing?

With a diary I received for my thirteenth birthday, but I’ve always been fascinated by the written word. There have always been stories demanding a release. It wasn’t until I became a stay at home Mom that I let them loose.

Anything else you’d like to tell our readers?

Never give up on your dreams. Those dreams won’t go away because you’ve given up. If anything, they’ll haunt you day in and day out until you accept they are a vital part of your life. Once you reach for your impossible dream, and catch it, take the wild ride. It will be the most amazing time you can ever have.

How can readers contact you?

kcspray01@gmail.com

Thank you!

 


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Shameless plug and writing PTSD

So, the plug. My modest collection of short stories, “Perfect & Others Stories” releases August 13th, to celebrate an important family birthday. Published by Solstice, it is available in e-book format only through Amazon and Smashwords.com. Smashwords even has a free preview, if you’re interested, and you can also pre-order it. Ninety-nine cents for entertaining brain food is a great deal!

On Smashwords, you’ll need to look it up under author’s name (Cynthia Ley). Amazon will post it overnight on the 12th. Anyway, I hope you all enjoy it and I’ld love it if you took a few minutes to write a review. This is my first book. Thanks, guys!

On to the other topic of the day. Do you remember when you were in school and had to write fiction for the first time? And the second? And the third, all the way up through your college years?

So do I–and it still makes me shudder.

Writing was never the issue for me. It was always the second half of the assignment that got me: “…and next session, we’ll all read our stories aloud for the rest of the class.”

Words to make shy people like me want to curl up into a ball the size of a pinhole and disappear. Read? In front of other people? I just knew that God and the universe were going to be pointing fingers and laughing right along with my classmates.

It turned me off of writing fiction for a long, long time. Always good with words and language, I poured those abilities into research writing and excelled. I could even present research to other people without flinching.

But fiction? Something that came just from me? If it terrified me in school, writing fiction on my own was an even more terrifying prospect. Revealing our imagination exposes us to the world, bumps, warts, sinkholes, and all. I told myself I couldn’t do it, period.

Yay for writing PTSD.

It was really avoidance. I cowered behind words of denial. “I can’t” meant “I’m afraid to try.”

I work as an editor for a book publishing company. How many times did I read someone else’s fiction and admire their skill? Or feel challenged in an “I can write better than that!” kind of way. My competitive nature kicked in. Others in the business saw it and encouraged me. If they didn’t like my work, it was ok–both writing and reading are subjective exercises.

So I sat down, a friend having given me a theme with which to play, and wrote. It wasn’t half bad. I shared it with others who are now my crit (i.e. critical/critique) readers. “Keep going,” they said.

I didn’t have to stand in front of the entire class and no one was laughing at me. I was getting useful critiques back on which to hone my craft.

I followed their advice and kept going.

AMAZING.

I no longer vanish into pinholes. I write, review, edit, rewrite, check and double check as often as I need to so I can be sure I have done my best to tell the story the way I want it to be told. I attach it to the submissions form.

Nowadays, the scariest part of writing comes when I take that one last deep breath before clicking “Send.”