Ramona Mainstrom is one fantastic writer covering several genres and bringing forward a multitude of books. This interesting author gave me some of her time earlier this year. I gathered a list of questions and she was kind enough to answer them, below is the interaction. This is not a interview to skip over!


Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m a full-time author and solo parent of two kids, ages 7 & 8. I enjoy acting and singing. I’m often dancing around the house and enjoy puttering around the garden with my neighbour.

What genre (s) do you write in?

Fantasy (Urban, Epic, and Dark), Thriller, and Horror.

For most, they began writing at a young age, taking writing more seriously later in life. Is this a sentiment that can apply to you? What was it like for you?

I was discouraged from writing or reading for pleasure, so becoming a writer wasn’t an option in my reality for a while. It was rough. I don’t know how to explain how having a part of your Self forbidden.

I was a story-teller as a child and as soon as I learned how to write words, I started writing stories. In high school, I wrote short stories, poems, scripts and started a few longer stories.

I didn’t consider writing as a career option until I was an adult and only because of peer pressure. Friends got a hold of some of my scenes and short stories and insisted I finish them. That’s how I started writing the Touch of Insanity series, but Eyes of the Hunter was the first stand alone book I completed.

How much time do you spend writing?

No clue. I’m a bit of a workaholic, but I’m also a multi-tasker. So, I’ll be at my desk for hours, but I’ll be writing a book, answering messages, homeschooling my kids, doing groceries online, and editing a different book.

 I just flow. If I start to stress about when, how long, or how many words, it kills the joy and creativity. I don’t put pressure on myself for deadlines or word counts. I need writing to be enjoyable. I need the words to flow naturally, so I let it happen when and how it wants while I go about taking care of the rest of my day.

What has been the most eye-opening part of publishing for you?

At the beginning, it was learning how traditional publishing works. It was very discouraging. Being an indie author taught me so much, but I think it also made me a better client once I was with a publisher.

Do you have a favorite character that you have written? If so, who? And what makes them so special.

Hands down; Santa in Sleigh Ride. Taking this epitome of kindness and generosity and giving him a hard edge made him more lovable to me. He’s avenging the benign creatures under his care who were injured or killed by dark forces. He’s racing, for not just his own life, but to preserve the beauty of Christmas and everyone who works with him.

Pitting him against the older, harsher Christmas representations in a death race let me show a dark and ruthless side of Santa. There’s a point in the story where his co-pilot, Jack Frost says, “People will get hurt” and Santa replies, “I’m counting on it.”

That gives me the chills. Every. Time. Santa is going to mess folk up to protect his people and keep the spirit of Christmas alive. He’s selling his soul for others to have that magic.

Do you ever write traits or characters inspired by people you know?

Always! It’s how I keep my characters real. Would so-and-so do this? How would they react? What’s their speech pattern like?

Where do your ideas come from?

Everything. Everywhere. There are a million stories in my world every day. People are lovely inspirations. Beautiful, complex, predictable yet chaotically unpredictable in all their messy glory.

 Real life is a non-stop Plot Bunny that just keeps popping out babies. For years, I was told I should write about my life because it’s so wild. But, as fiction because no one would believe it really happened. So I’ve started using bits of my personal life into my stories. The Crossroad is actually a journal entry from my life. It was intended to be part of a non-fiction series, but . . . Well, a good paranormal story is fun to read.

 And, my other big inspiration is dreams. My dreams and nightmares are detailed and emotion-filled. They stay with me long after I wake and often inspire my stories. The Greatest of Books is a story based on my dreams.

What is your current writing about?

I’m currently releasing the Touch of Insanity series. It’s a 10 book fantasy series about a Half-Elf named Kharee, who was created to heal a goddess who is going mad and is spreading insanity via her connection to the people of the world, Besamie. Unfortunately, her parents withheld the ability for her to actually use her powers until they knew she’d grown up to be a decent, sane person.

The series follows Kharee as she discovers her powers, her mission, and her own truth. I’ve tried to keep the story as PG as possible, but she goes through some dark and gruesome experiences as she wades through the madness. For example, there are winged monsters called karpa that impregnate their prey and werewolves which are called Hydan Kin in their world, named after Hydan Speargood, the Elven Mage-Master who first contracted the magical disease. Oh, and of course a vampire lord, because no dark fantasy is complete without one.

I’ve been releasing a new book every 20th. Book 4, Each According Their Worth, releases on April 20th and I’m hoping to have a completed collection of all 10 books in one out in time for Christmas. If readers want to know when each book releases, they can sign up for Books2Read notifications .

It’s been very exciting to write and I’m so proud of the finish products.

Do you have any new series planned?

After the Touch of Insanity series, Three Furies Press will be releasing the Harper series. It’s a paranormal thriller about a psychic named Hannah Harper who has PTSD. She’s very quirky. Edges frighten her, so everything in her home is rounded. Going out is challenging because there are edges everywhere. She gets dragged into an investigation of serial killings and finds the guy, but ends up as his next target. As the series progresses, they discover the killer from the first book isn’t the only threat they have to worry about. I’m very excited about this series because it sneaks from “okay this is a paranormal story” to “OhEmGee! This is mind-bending paranormal and I’m scared now”. Or, it will be if I do it right.

What has being signed to a publisher meant for you as a writer, since many self-publish nowadays?

It was surprisingly cathartic. I’d given up on the idea of being picked up by a publisher and was content self-publishing. I really respect the women running Three Furies Press, so when I saw they were accepting submission and I actually had something in a genre they publish, I just had to submit Gifted, the first book of the Harper series.

Reading that I’d been accepted . . . I cried. Happy, ugly cry because people I respect  found value in my work.

What are you reading now?

I’m currently reading really interesting urban fantasy by Yvette Bostic, called Call of the Elements, which is the first book of her Magister’s Bane series. It’s really good.

About Rosa

Rosa Marchisella is a prolific author and the creator of the animated series, Zomb-Eh? Rosa also writes non-fiction under the name Rosa Arcade. She has written and co-authored over 50 publications, stories, screenplays, and scripts. Her poetry has been featured in anthologies and websites. Her other written works include 200+ articles, marketing and media projects, as well as promotional and educational tools.

Social Media Links

Website:                     www.RosaMarchisella.com

Facebook:                  www.facebook.com/iamrosa.fanpage

BookBub:                   www.bookbub.com/authors/rosa-marchisella

Books2Read:             https://books2read.com/ap/8Z2MY8/Rosa-Marchisella


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I’ve credited this author in the past with helping me along my own career. Teaching me things that I should’ve known, but wasn’t aware. For example, until she got a hold of my own book, Maxwell Demon, I had no idea I was writing in the horror genre because the things I was writing didn’t scare me. Silly, I know. She gave me one of my earliest attempts of podcasting when I was a fresh-face.

Beyond all that she has helped me learn along the way she is a great writer and editor. She is usually a busy person, but she gave me some of her time and I got some answers to some things I had been wondering over the years.


For those that may not be familiar with you or your work, what can you tell us about yourself?

I’m the author of Heart Song and the Nepherium Novella Series and founder of Sunshine Editing.

You have been a part of the writing business for a long time now, how did that begin for you?

A very long time ago. I’ve always been fascinated with writing, but never really took it seriously until I was an adult and had children of my own, though I don’t write children’s books. Still, writing, in essence, has always been apart of me. Whether it’s poetry, songwriting, fan fic, or just my own imaginative musings, it’s engrained in my soul.

Is there anything about the business that gets you excited? Perhaps the convention going or meeting new people? Maybe just writing the story?

Always the new idea, first. That’s the most exciting of all. Then, the writing. That’s the delicious part. Finally, publishing. There’s just something about freeing my stories into the world for others to enjoy that gets my heart pumping a little harder.

I am always interested in how fellow parents manage work and family, what is the balancing act like for you? How do you find the time?

What balancing act? I don’t know of this. Please tell me more…

Seriously though, I have what about two to three hours in the very early morning I keep to myself for just writing. Lately, with all the virus stuff going around, that’s been a bit difficult, plus I wanted to revamp my brand and my business, so I took a little break off writing to get that finished. But mostly, the first few hours in the morning is what I use for the writing part. Once the kids are up, the show is over for the most part.

Being a mom of special needs kiddos, even older ones, still comes with its fair share of challenges, and one of them is being needed for EVERYTHING. I’m trying to teach them to be somewhat autonomous, but it has yet to really stick. For example, just responding to this interview, I have been interrupted THREE times. But it’s not always bad.

I just invested in desktop so that while the kids are working on their schoolwork (my youngest has to use my laptop), I can still get some work done and maximize the time I have available. Sometimes, that means I get a few extra hours to work, and so long as I have YouTube (I don’t get the obsession with Minecraft vids) or the Xbox running for them after their school stuff is done, I am at peace and can work.

Essentially, at the end of it all, it’s taking every moment I can and using it to my full advantage. It doesn’t always work the way I hope, but that’s okay. Flexibility is the key here. And always knowing I can come back when they are watching a show or playing a game helps as well.

Every author has their favorite program or must-have for their desk to help them either organize or just get in ‘the zone’. Do you have anything like that?

Yes, and no. It really depends on the mood. Here lately, I’ve been more productive with the peace of the mornings. But sometimes, I play either a favorite music list of Pandora or Spotify. Sometimes, I even have my favorite game playing in the background. GuildWars2 has incredible music, btw.

Coffee is definitely a must. I can’t do anything without it.

I’ve recently been using outlines to keep my stories on track and avoid the numerous rewrites to fill in plot holes that I used to do. So far so good. The program I use is Plottr, and once it’s finished on there, I import it to Word and copy and paste into my document for writing on a chapter by chapter basis. A lot of steps for sure, but it’s something that I recently learned really works for me.

I can’t think of anything else off the top of my head, even though I know there is more.

Have you ever resuscitated a project you had shelved? What helped it work better the second time around?

I’m glad you asked! Yes! I had a story called Dark Ones, and it had it’s own cover and had spent over 1 grand having it edited only to realize that the story was just NOT right. So, I shelved it and had recently come back to it. I outlined (using the program I mentioned before) and fixed any issues within the original story and now it’s a lot better than it was. Maybe not perfect, just yet. But so much better. I’m loving it even more! It’s even got a brand new title: Darkness Rising.

Catchy, no?

Are you writing anything new? Can you tell us about it?

Just Darkness Rising! Since my accident, I can’t focus enough to work on multiple projects anymore. So, that’s it. I can’t share an excerpt just yet, but I can tell you a little about it!

The story centers around Georgianna Peterson who knows demons exist, but no one believes her. On Halloween, she’s attacked by another demon and saved by her best friend and the handsome asshole, Detective Elijah Delapsus. From there, she’s thrust into a world of daemons, magical worlds, and uncovering a secret that changes everything, including discovering what she truly is.

In the indie-world there is a struggle for many on what marketing strategy works best with the conclusion being it differs from author to author. What has worked best for you?

I’ll let you know when I find out. So far, being organic has shown much more interest and progression than mass, spammy posts that I was taught by a fellow author and had lived by for years with little to no result. I think being truly connected and showing that I’m a real person is what the readers really crave.

When not writing and editing for authors is there anything you enjoy doing when you have downtime?

Playing video games like GuildWars2, Skyrim, and Fallout, or watching shows like The Blacklist, Little Big Lies, and Vikings. I love doing my own nails and experimenting with new designs and taking long bubble baths. Showing myself just a little bit of that attention keeps me focused and centered.

Check her out more here:

Website
Twitter
Facebook
Goodreads
Instagram

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John Hartness is an award-winning author and publisher. As a brilliant and hard-working man I was surprised that he found the time to indulge my questions, but he did! This Fallstaff Books publisher has not only answered my questions, but gave me an inner look into his company and his life with every question he has answered for me. Known for his comedy horror books Bubba the Monster Hunter works and the Quincy Harker books his talents have brought him hardcore readerships and fans, even including well-known names.


I first learned of you as an author, but quickly learn thereafter you are the publisher at Falstaff. What came first for you? Where you an author first or a publisher that then continued as a writer?

I started out writing. I published my first novel, The Chosen, in 2009, followed by Hard Day’s Knight later that year. I self-published and worked with an indie press, Bell Bridge Books, until 2016, when I founded Falstaff Books. I still publish The Black Knight Chronicles through Bell Bridge, Tantor Audio publishes the audiobooks of several of my titles, and the rest come out currently through Falstaff. So I still write, something in the neighborhood of 3-4 novels and 4-6 novellas each year.

A shift is beginning within the indie world of more virtual attendance and appearances due to social distancing, how has it affected you? What are you doing different now, work wise, to keep moving forward?

At Falstaff, we typically appear at over twenty conventions in a year, so losing the entire spring and summer so far has been a big blow to our business. We’ve lost six conventions so far, and I expect more to follow. So I’ve shifted a lot of our focus to YouTube, creating author interview shows, doing video and audio readings, and as much other content as we can generate. I feel like YouTube and video is a largely unexplored space for authors, and the people who can plant their flag there first will have a marked advantage.

You have written so many things as a novelist and promoted so many of your Falstaff authors’ work, do you have anything new coming out? Any new work coming out of Falstaff?

I pretty much always have something new coming out. I released Snatched: Grandma Annie and the Cooter of Doom, a comedy horror parody novella on May 1. I’ll be releasing a new Bubba the Monster Hunter novella later in May. I have a new Black Knight Chronicles novel coming later this year, and there will be a new Quincy Harker novel coming in July.

As for Falstaff, we have new releases pretty much every week, if not multiple releases in a week. So people should pop over to our website at www.falstaffbooks.com and sign up for our newsletter to get notifications of all our new releases. Or they can join our Facebook Group, The Misfit Toys of Fiction.

One of the first things visitors can see when they go to your website is a really interesting quote; “Quincy Harker – demon killer, monster hunter & kin to Dracula. Yeah, this is who I want protecting the world! I love these books.” Whoopi Goldberg Academy Award Winner. I remember when you spoke about that happening on social media. How has life been after such a large endorsement? Has it changed at all?

It sells a few books when people see Whoopi’s name on the cover, and it makes for a great conversation starter, but nothing huge like a Netflix deal or anything. It’s very gratifying and surreal when someone like Whoopi, who I’ve grown up watching on stage and screen, reaches out to you out of the blue and endorses your work. That was a really cool moment.

On your blog you did something I have not seen done very much; you shared many chapters from a story entitled Raptor. What inspired you to share so much? What can you tell us about this story?

Raptor was a divergence from the norm for me. It is a military sci-fi novel, near-future, and the tone and style are pretty different from what I usually do. So I knew the book was a risk. So I put parts of it up on my blog to keep me accountable for continuing the book. Plus, I knew I wasn’t going to try to shop it around to other presses, and since I own the publishing company, I don’t have to worry about my publisher getting pissy about me sharing too much.

From YouTube to publishing and so much in between how did you get started? What was that moment like for you when you realized you were about to be published novelist?

I wrote my first novel just to see if I could write a novel, honestly. I’d been writing feature articles for websites for several years, and blogging, and I wanted to experiment with long-form storytelling. So I wrote a book. Then I put it in a drawer for about a year, and I studied the process of getting a book published. I still made plenty of mistakes, but since I self-published that book, there wasn’t really that moment of “I did it!” Now, when I sold The Black Knight Chronicles to Bell Bridge, that was pretty awesome. It was a vindication of the several years of hard work I’d put in up to that point, that someone saw something in me and my work that was worth the investment of time and effort.

Many writers are also heavy readers, when they have free time, to help them develop range and stay active with literature, is that something you do as well?

Of course. I read all the time. I joke that whatever I’m currently reading is “what’s on submission,” but that’s not true. I read all the time. I’m not as voracious as some folks, but I usually go through about a book every week. Writers who tell me they don’t read worry me. I don’t believe you can stay abreast of current trends and styles if you don’t read, and read current literature. How would you know that prologues are out of favor in urban fantasy right now if you don’t read urban fantasy? How would you know that head-hopping POVs is out of favor in high fantasy right now if the only high fantasy you read is 30+ years old? You have to read to stay current, and to stay creative.

One last question, a literary pilgrimage, ever thought of doing one?

No, it’s never occurred to me. I like to go places, but there’s no place that my books make me want to go, or that I feel like I need to go because Shakespeare wrote there, or because Anne Rice lived there. That’s cool if people get inspiration from trips like that, rock on. Take inspiration anywhere you can find it. Just not my thing personally.

Check him out more here:

Website: www.falstaffbooks.com
Website: https://johnhartness.com

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I got the chance to interview the award-winning podcaster of Just Joshing. He happens to have a book coming out tomorrow called Cloud Diver. I welcome to the website Joshua Pantalleresco. Armed with a some questions. I asked him about podcasting, what fuels him, how he handles aspects of being an author, and more. I gained an insight into how his world.


Let’s begin with the writing side of your career. How did you get into the writing career?

By accident. I had an assignment in my 8th grade class. At the time I was in London, Ontario, Canada and there was this contest called the Lawson Literary Contest. I finished third writing that story and fell in love with the process. I’ve been making stuff up ever since.

Was writing a book something you always wanted to do or something that just began for you?

I wanted to be sure i could write a book, so that’s what I focused on in high school. I finished my first novel at 17.

As a published author, how do you handle reviews and criticism?

I cry in the corner at first. I mean, sometimes reviews hurt, especially if they are truth filled. Sometimes the criticism is constructive and brutal, and you have to take it in the chest.  When it’s not constructive I just ignore it.  I mean, if they care enough to try and tear you down, I kind of feel you already won.

Being that you’re a freelancer, is there any company or writer that you have wanted to work with, but haven’t gotten the chance yet?

In the world of comics I want to work with Beth Wagner on something someday.  It almost happened.  K. Lynn Smith, Colette Turner, Justin Shauf and Riley Rossmo are on my list too.
Writing wise? Adam Dreece. I think we could create beautiful chaos together.

To you, want makes for a pleasant story?

When I’m invested in the characters. You can write about anything you want, but unless there is that connection to the story and the character, it doesn’t work. Once I buy in to the characters, I’m in for the long haul.

Is there anything you can share with us about your upcoming book?

I had a blast doing it. I’m writing about unicorns that fart rainbows and zombie monsters. I write about serious stuff too, but it’s an adventure.  And Johnny, my main character, doesn’t like adventure one bit. 

What helped keep you motivated throughout the creation of this story?

I had so much fun writing Johnny and Gunblade.  Gunblade was a perfect straight woman for Johnny to roll off of.  He’s such a coward that I just enjoyed figuring out what kind of trouble I could get him into.

Was the book inspired by anything?

Another accident. My life is filled with them.  I was part of this writing group in Calgary called IFWA.  IFWA does a monthly critique and I volunteered…without a story.  So I wrote the first chapter in two days.  Beyond that, I’m fascinated that we record absolutely everything to share to the world.  It will paint a different history than the one we know.  We suspect Tutankhamen was who he said he was.  We don’t know for sure.  With us it will be different.  How will we be judged going forward?

You’re not only a writer but also a podcaster. When did podcasting enter your life?

By accident. I have been doing interviews for over twenty years. I had the pleasure of interviewing Robert J. Sawyer. Rob and I had a pretty good conversation that I was recording on the phone. When it was over, someone came up to Rob and asked what he was doing.  He replied, “That he was being interviewed for my podcast.” I didn’t have a podcast at the time, but something clicked. I just shrugged and said why not, and started interviewing people for the podcast.  I’m in my fifth year and just came out with my 363rd episode.

Between writing and podcasting, you must be a very busy person. What’s a typical day look like for you?

Depends. Right now my days are about working on material because my book is about to be launched.  I usually wake up and look for things to pitch to. Once that is done, I write something. A column for First Comics, an assignment, or maybe another bit of my novel. In my evenings I’ll interview people for the podcast. Every other night, I work on the podcast for release. That’s pretty much my routine. 

The Cloud Diver Pre-Order: https://www.amazon.ca/Cloud-Diver-Level-1-ebook/dp/B0881HR54T
Newsletter: https://mailchi.mp/7d0583a98ffc/dangerousjustjoshing
Podcast: https://jpantalleresco.podomatic.com
Twitter/IG: @jpantalleresco


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In the world of independent publishing, self, and hybrid we know of a great deal of authors that are considered ‘success stories’. They’re the ‘bigwigs’, but what they all are is very hardworking writers that haven’t stopped since they began. They’re the group that are making a living, successfully, as writers in the industry. One of these very inspirational people is named Armand Rosamilia.

This writer, for as long as I have known of him, hasn’t paused. Working hard online and offline continuing his career. Over these years he’s interviewed me many times, inviting me to show up regularly every year since I first heard of him. He’s captured powerful moments in my career. With all that he’s done not once had I gotten to interview him in return and that’s how this interview began.


Armand, you’ve interviewed me so many times I’m thrilled you’re letting me interview you this time. From what I know, you’re a bigwig in the indie world for your zombie fiction. How did that come about? Why zombies?

Bigwig? You’re going to make me blush. Writing about zombies started as me wanting to write a zombie story, just one story, and then move on to something else in horror. I wanted to write a lot of different things horror-related. I ended up writing a short story with a female lead, Darlene Bobich. Figured I was done. Then a publisher posted they were looking for an extreme zombie novella. The idea for Highway To Hell was born, and that eventually lead into the Dying Days series (with Darlene Bobich as the lead). It’s been nearly ten years, nine main books and just as many side books in the Dying Days world… and it really put me on the map for zombie fiction.

Are you working on anything new? Future plans?

Always working on something new. I have 14 open projects on my whiteboard right now. Crime thrillers. Horror. Contemporary fiction. Noir crime fiction. Nonfiction. All in various stages and many with deadlines I need to get to, so I can add more to the list.

What inspires you when you want to write? Is there anything specific that helps the words flow?

Yes. Fear. Fear of having to go back into retail management, which I did for over twenty years and hated every second of. I’m blessed to be going on my eighth year of writing full-time and making a living at this, but I haven’t gotten comfortable enough to not look over my shoulder at what could’ve been my life.

What’s difficult for you when it comes to writing?

Some days finding the time to actually write. There is so much promotion and learning about selling books and the business changes so frequently. I feel I have to keep up. I also have two podcasts and own the group they’re on, so that is a full-time job in itself. The writing itself is the easy part.

You’ve been podcasting for a long time, how did you get into that?

I was on AM and then FM radio for a couple of years. I saw the writing on the wall. People were listening to more podcasts. I felt I had more control over content and what I could do. I started Arm Cast Podcast in 2014 and have over 300 episodes so far. I interview cool authors (such as yourself!) and get to pick their brains. I’ve also been co-hosting The Mando Method Podcast with Chuck Buda for four years. We talk about writing and publishing.

What do you like most about podcasting and interviewing other people?

Selfishly, it’s all about me. I want to know the author’s tricks. How they deal with the changes in publishing. Who they like working with and who I should steer away from. I can also see where I stand in the specific genres by whether or not I have read them or whoever they are reading. It keeps me honest in that I have to stay on my game.

Most writers declare they cannot begin work without a cup of coffee, but for you what is it? What fuels your work machine? Any habits you’d like to share? Mediation, perhaps?

Umm… coffee. Lots and lots of coffee, in fact. I am a huge fan of three kinds: Dunkin’, Death Wish and Reapers Brew. I figured out I drink over 1,400 cups a year. Why did I figure this out? Because I had a nice burst of high-octane coffee in my system. It helps me to keep going and focus.

Your wife and you have a wonderful dynamic duo of creativity, how do you separate work and home life?

When work is over we might talk a bit about our jobs but it’s usually during dinner or dinner prep. We then don’t dwell on it, especially if either of us has had a bad day. With the quarantine, she’s now working from home. She’s set up in the bedroom and I have my office. We meet in the kitchen for lunch every day and catch up on what’s going on at work, and about six each night we stop working and spend the evening together without work stuff. She is my biggest supporter. She handles the money, the contracts and keeps me in line when I spend too much time doing non-writing things.

When you were younger did you want to become a writer or did this develop later on?

When I was twelve I started reading Dean Koontz. That was it for me. I wanted to become a writer and never looked back, although it took another thirty years for me to make enough to do this for a living. I’d love to someday meet Mr. Koontz, shake his hand and tell him what an inspiration he was to me and still is.

I really could ask you a million questions, but I’ll ask a very common interview question, do you have any advice for aspiring authors?

Read. A lot. Not just in your genre, either. You can learn from reading in other genres, especially nonfiction. Watch the sentence structure. Characterization. All of it. I am not a fan of romance but when my wife watches Hallmark movies I follow along to see the beats in the story. I drive her nuts when I announce ‘end of act one’ or something like that. I can appreciate the writing in any genre and try to incorporate it into the way I look at writing and my work. If I only read horror books my work would suffer.

Check him out more here:

Project Entertainment Network: https://projectentertainmentnetwork.com/

Website: http://armandrosamilia.com






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Bachman: When did you realize you were a writer?

Sowder: Well, I wrote my first story when I was 12, but didn’t really get into writing till I was 15. That was when I started the Executioner Trilogy. I’ve been writing ever since.

Bachman: While running a publishing company, how do you find time to write?

Sowder: I have special time set aside each night to handle stuff for my press and then write. I also have a day job that takes up 40 hours a week so this is the only way I can get things done.

Bachman: What can you tell us about your publishing company Burning Willow Press, for those that may be interested?

Sowder: My publishing company is named Burning Willow Press, We are very interested in publishing science fiction, horror, and fantasy and we are open for submissions. Our website iswww.burningwillowpressllc.com

Bachman: Can you share a little morsel about your latest release?

Sowder: My latest release as an author is “Pain-Killer: A Miss Hyde Novella Volume 2” and I have to say there is a scene in it that I really love but don’t think I should share since it’s more for an 18+ audience. But here is a small piece from another section:

Sowder: I sat down on a bar stool and spun towards the bartender, who was already staring at me in anticipation of my drink order. He wasn’t the regular bartender that was there when I came with Lauren. He was brand spanking new and you could tell. His chocolate brown eyes were still shining with excitement. That would disappear within the week.

“What can I get ya’?” he asked as I watched his eyes sparkle. His face was gorgeous, all harsh lines until you reached a full mouth. It was just full enough to still be considered manly. His chin even had a small dimple that I wouldn’t have noticed if I wasn’t staring at him so intently.

“Dealer’s choice. Just no beer.” As soon as I said the word beer I felt my face scrunch up in disgust, causing my brows to furrow. He nodded and went to work on my drink, but I didn’t watch him make it. I turned away to watch the dancers some more and got bored quickly, knowing that if I had just watched the bartender I would be having a better time. I swiveled on the bar stool to look at him again and as soon as my eyes met his he was sliding a drink in a martini glass over to me, it’s pink liquid barely moving as he slid a napkin underneath it with caution.

“And a cosmopolitan for the lady. If you haven’t had them before you’ll love it. Some women even say they feel like Carrie from Sex and the City when they do.” His lips widened into a smile and I couldn’t help but smile politely back. My fingers slipped over the thin stem of the glass and I lifted it into the air, making a highly informal dedication out of it.

“To Carrie, then.”

Bachman: Where do you find your most inspiration coming from for stories?

Sowder: Everywhere, mostly. I did do a recent post for Gabrielle Faust’s blog where I talked about about what inspired me and my work, focusing on the Miss Hyde Novellas and the Executioner Trilogy. The Miss Hyde Novellas were inspired by my love for Stevenson’s work and I wanted to give it a twist. I think I did just that.

Bachman: If you could work with a dream team, consisting of anyone dead or alive, who would it be and why?

Sowder: I would love to work with Laurel K. Hamilton and Stephen King, mostly Stephen King. I’ve been compared to him on more than one occasion so it would be inter sting to see what we could come up with.

Bachman: What has been your favorite memory in your writing/publishing career so far?

Sowder: My favorite memory? Well, there is nothing like the thrill of holding your first published book in your hands. When “Follow the Ashes” came out and I got my copies I was thrilled and

didn’t want to put it down.

Bachman: I read that you’ve been compared to Anne Rice! How do that feel?

Sowder: That feels amazing! As an author and one that does write vampires it is a huge honor.

Bachman: In the spirit of Halloween, have you had anything frightful happen to you? Either at an event or something that inspired a story share please, with us.

Sowder: I will not go into too much detail, but a short story that I just finished and submitted to an anthology is inspired by a true life event. Hoping that “The Deliverance of Desiree Tanner” will help others like writing it helped me.

Bachman: I recently came across a video that you did that talked about how you caught the writing bug at a young age, for a middle school assignment, that’s amazing! Are there any other things you wrote about at a young age that never made it to publishing?

Sowder: Pretty much the only thing that hasn’t seen the light of day was that original story “Mommy Dearest” that I spoke about in that video. It was read aloud in class, but that’s about it. I have thought about resurrecting it.

Bachman: Where can we see you in the final months of 2015?

Sowder: I don’t have any events planned for the rest of the year, but you never know. I am trying to schedule book signings and interviews so you may see me out and about. For new on me you can subscribe to my newsletter at www.ksowderauthor.com

Bachman: Anything you’d like to promote?

Sowder: Well, All of my work of course, plus BWP releases. We have some amazing stuff out and some more amazing things coming in the next year!

Make sure to check out Burning Willow Press’ Release Party event! October 31st, 2015 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm. Go to the event location.

Some links contained in the above interview may no longer work properly. Images may have been lost over the years as well for some interviews and older content.

This is an older interview being re-posted.


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Bachman: Being a publisher is a very important part of the industry, whether traditional or independent, when did you know that this was what you wanted to do?

Bonson: A tough question to start with – I hope these get easier! It’s a long story – but I looked in the past at a music publishing business and record company, etc. So there had always been a side to me that was interested in promoting unknown works.

It wasn’t until I tried to get my first book, ‘One Hit Wonders,’ published that I realised how difficult the process can be. I then looked at it with my engineering/continuous improvement background and thought that there must be a better way forward. I don’t want to give away too many of our secrets, but we operate a nice middle ground between self-publishing and a full publisher – yet utilise a lot of forward thing printing and publishing technologies.

Bachman: What has been your most favoured moment as being a publisher?

Bonson: Reading reviews from people with no connection to the company or the authors – and seeing how they enjoy our work.

Bachman: What have been some lessons you’ve learned along the way?

Bonson: Large chain bookshops aren’t interested in small, independent publishers or unknown authors – so it’s always about trying to do something innovative to draw the readers in, and there are some plans we have for the 12 months that will be quite different to what is out there currently.

Bachman: Is there anything that you’d do different if you were given the chance?

Set aside some additional funds for advertising. It’s one area I really underestimated, but so far we’re doing very well on social media and word of mouth – but it’s a part of the business I know we could do better.

Bachman: As a publisher, it must be difficult to juggle things, how do you keep so motivated and organized?

Bonson: It’s very difficult, especially as I still roles within the motor industry to juggle around and family, hobbies, etc. The motivation is seeing the look on an new authors face when they see their book in print for the first time – it’s a fantastic sight and an amazing feeling to know that you’ve been part of that moment.

Bachman: I read your biography on www.stanhopebooks.com; your publishing company’s website that you’re a fan of not only the arts but cars as well is there a specific type of car that’s your favourite more than any other?

Bonson: Too many nice cars that’s the issue. From a racing car perspective, I’d have to say the 1967 Lotus-Ford 49 Formula One car. Elegant design, amazing engineering and with an evocative green and yellow colour scheme.

Bonson: Road cars – too many to list, but let’s include the DeLorean DMC-12, Ford Mustang BOSS, any Jaguar

Bachman: I also discovered you’re not only a publisher, but also a writer, is there any works of yours you’d like to tell us about as a writer?

Bonson: My writing so far has been non-fictional – focused on my love of motor racing history and pulling together facts, figures, stories that weren’t available in one source anywhere else.

I’ve written plays in the past and am now working on a short story, to be included in a book we’re publishing later this year for a charity, so it will be interesting to see what people think of my fiction work. There are other fictional books I have planned, but there’s a lot of work that needs to go into them from a research perspective first.

Bachman: Where do you find inspiration for your stories?

Bonson: For the short story coming up, the inspiration was very simple, as I put myself into the role of the main character (I used to be an actor, before becoming involved in engineering). For the other stories I’m working on, it’s difficult to give the inspiration as it would say too much about what they are, but when they come out it will self-explanatory where the inspiration has come from.

Bachman: Is there anything you’d like readers to know about you and your company?

Bonson: We are very small, very independent and always looking to find new outlets, new readers and new authors. We cover hardback, paperback, e-book and audio book formats, alongside a diverse range of subjects.

Bachman: Finally, is there anything you’d like to take the time to promote?

Bonson: Everything that we are about! Most importantly our website – www.stanhopebooks.com and our Facebook page – facebook.com/stanhopebooks. Can I also thank you for the opportunity to publicise our company and out authors.

Bachman: You’re more than welcome! Thank you for allowing me some of your time.

Links:

http://www.stanhopebooks.com

https://www.facebook.com/StanhopeBooks

Some links contained in the above interview may no longer work properly. Images may have been lost over the years as well for some interviews and older content.

This is an older interview being re-posted.


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Bachman: What’s your favorite book you’ve written so far and why?

Bond: Honestly, it would be my Harvest Saga series. I love the world in that book. It’s dystopian and so much fun to write because it’s one of my favorite genres to read. And it’s more complex than it seems.

Bachman: What keeps you inspired?

Bond: I seem to have caught the writing bug and it won’t let me rest! I’m always thinking of new plots and characters. But I’d have to say that my family, friends and fans keep me going. It would be pretty disheartening not to have support. But when someone drops a note on my timeline or in a message that says they read and loved my book and they ask when the next is coming out….that’s the best feeling. It keeps me going.

Bachman: What inspired your latest story?

Bond: Crazy Love is set in a time where a second US Civil War has broken out. It’s not a story about the war itself, but rather of one widow’s attempt at survival and of her grief. But more than that, it’s a story about second chances. We all need those.

It was inspired by my home state of WV and the fact that we all feel depression and grief at times. But we can’t let it overwhelm us or take us down. We fight.

Bachman: Anything you can share about this story?

Bond: Excerpt: “Some days I wonder if I’m not better off dead,” I vowed, clenching my teeth tight. The muscles in my arms burned like wildfire and sweat beaded and dripped off my face. I gave the enormous iron monster another shove for good measure. It wouldn’t budge. Stubborn thing.

Backing away, I gave it the stink eye as I caught my breath and let my body rest for a minute. My loud and overly dramatic groan filled the moth-ball scented air around me. Damn it. I’d have to ask Joey for help. And, if there was one thing I hated, it was bothering Joey. He already did so much to help me out since…

I turned and looked at Andrew. He wore a tight white t-shirt and a shit-eating grin, reclining in the plush upholstered fire-engine red chair that had been Mrs. Maddox’s favorite. It was God-awful—gaudy and matched absolutely nothing in the house, but hey, when you live to be ninety-something, you earn the right to a ridiculous chair, and just about anything else you want to wear, have or do.

Pushing my fingers into my curly brown hair, sweat coated my skin. I growled at him. It was all his fault. “This is all your fault.”

That arrogant smirk fell off his face quick. “None of this is my fault,” he protested, sitting forward with elbows on his knees. The full lips of his mouth dropped open.

Bullshit. “It totally is and you know it.”

He huffed and then ran the fingers of both hands through his now-hanging head. “Are we going to go through this again?”

“No. Not this morning. We have to hurry. Now, disappear while I go run and get Joey.”

I looked back at the cast iron beast and sighed. When I looked back toward Andrew, he was gone. He followed direction better as a ghost than he ever did when he was alive.

I would have to suck it up, put my big-girl panties on as Andrew had always said and ask for help. Trudging to Joey’s house in the dark was gonna suck. The winter had been harsh and hadn’t quite let go of the land or the weather yet. Technically, it was spring. I guess the seasons aren’t dependent on those little calendar squares after all. Effing calendar.

I guided myself to Joey’s with the flashlight’s tiny sphere of light. Thank God for the battery stockpile. The path beneath my feet was still worn but in the summer would be covered with briars and weeds. Though we would use it, it wouldn’t be as often. We would both have more than enough work to do on our own plots of land.

Joey lived over the hill from me. His farm was situated behind Andrew’s
…er, mine, and was nearly the same size and shape.

Andrew’s folks passed last year. Andrew and I were married and since he was their only child, the farm was technically and legally mine now. Although there were no courts to validate my claim on the land and property. I’d just have to treat it like mine and defend it the same.

Twelve-hundred acres of rolling hills, hay and timber. If it wasn’t for Joey, I wouldn’t have survived this long. He was a country boy—a cocky one, but he was efficient and a hell of a lot more knowledgeable than me. And that was what made me cringe as I walked up the wooden steps and onto his front porch. He was a boy, at least in my eyes he was. I considered him a little brother at this point. Unfortunately, sometimes Joey didn’t feel the same way. He was always talking about repopulating the U.S. with me. Cringe. Guys were always horny and it wasn’t like there was a surplus of anything now, let alone women.

I knocked on the door. After a few minutes with no signs of life, I knocked again, louder and for longer.

Finally, I heard him. He opened the door with one green eye opened, the other clenched tight. “Did you finally come to your senses, Shelby? Decide you want some of this?”

I rolled my eyes at him. I knew it was coming.

“Don’t flatter yourself, Romeo. I need your muscles.”

“My man muscle?” he said in a sleep-thickened voice. Joey smirked, finally opening his protesting eye and wagging his sleep-mussed eyebrows. The blonde hair on the left side of his head was matted down against his skull and the rest was sticking straight up like he’d stuck his finger in a light socket.

“Joey, get dressed and get your hind end out here. Old Lady Maddox died.”

That was all it took. Word that someone had kicked the bucket and people began circling like vultures to take what they needed from the belongings left behind. I was the first vulture who had found her. So far, no one else knew she’d died in her sleep and I planned to get that stove out of her house come hell or high water.

The Cases had prepared for every apocalyptic scenario known to man except for one: that they would pass on leaving everything to me. I was an apocalypse unto myself. They would have known how to fix the things I didn’t have a clue about.

Survival skills: one.

Shelby: zero.

Bachman: I’ve seen you participate in several events; anymore we can look forward to seeing you participate in?

Bond: I have an online event planned in March with some of my author friends. It’s called March Into Reading and here is the link: Facebook Event

Here are author events I plan to attend in 2015:
Roanoke Author Invasion, April
UtopYA Con, June
Books & Bourbon, August
Pumpkin Festival, October
Great Lakes Book Bash, October
Rebels & Readers, November

Bachman: What’s your favorite part? Writing or marketing?

Bond: Writing, I’m not the best at marketing and it takes so much time.

Bachman: For fans, is there anything you’d like to announce or surprise them with?

Bond: Well, sure!

*Dark Bishop (serial series I’m writing with my bestie, Rachael Brownell) will release in April. One book per day from April 29-May 3, 2015)

*Reclaim should be available in May. I don’t have a set release date yet, but it’s coming!

*I’m getting ready to write a contemporary serial that is related to SIN…. J

*Planning to write a new paranormal and dystopian later in the year.

Bachman: Is there a book you just can’t put down right now?

Bond: I just finished Mia Sheridan’s Kyland. It is amazing. I might re-read that one. Her books are fantastic and Kyland did not disappoint. That’s a paperback I plan to buy now.

Bachman: What are some of your favorite writers and books?

Bond: Mia Sheridan (Kyland, Archer’s Voice)
Elle Casey (Rebel Series)
Amy Bartol (Premonition Series)
Jo Michaels (I, Zombie)
Diana Gabaldon (Outlander)
Lila Felix (Anything she writes)

And last but never least, my bestie, Rachael Brownell. I love her Holding On series, Secrets & Lies and Monroe from Take a Gamble is my book boyfriend. Hands off, Ladies!

Purchase Links:
Crazy Love – Amazon

Find her on the net:
Amazon Profile
Website
Facebook
Twitter
Goodreads
Tumblr
Pinterest

Some links contained in the above interview may no longer work properly. Images may have been lost over the years as well for some interviews and older content.

This is an older interview being re-posted.


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Some time ago I interviews many individuals in the publishing business; from authors to publishers. Originally titled 15 for 15, they’re finding a new home under The Word, here on the site. These interviews and guest bloggers will be found under Brief Words. Why Brief Words? Most in the business are very busy and for a brief moment of their day they give or gave me some of their time, sharing themselves with the world right here on my website (often giving exclusives).

Right now some of these posts are listed under The Word, but these selected guest appearances will be migrating to their new location. These wonderful contributors have giving over their time to share their stories and thoughts.

With that, allow me to introduce Brief Words. I hope you enjoy the content to come. If you are apart of the industry and would like to take part, please contact me via email: writerbachman@gmail.com

Interesting Reads and Related Content