Posts Tagged ‘paranormal fiction’

Check out a brand new series on the Lachesis Publishing blog called AUTHOR TO AUTHOR:

David Lee Summers interviews best-selling science fiction and horror author Gini Koch, author of the hugely popular cross-genre science-fiction/paranormal/romance/comedy ALIEN series.

DLS: You’ve written under several pseudonyms including Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, A.E. Stanton, and J.C. Koch. You’re clearly not hiding your identity when you use a pseudonym. What do you see as their purpose? Authors often build brands around their names. Do you build a new brand identity for each pseudonym or do you see these as subsidiaries of the Gini Koch brand?

GK: I write under pen names because my voice changes. I believe that your name is your promise to your readers. As Gini Koch, I write fast, fresh, and funny fiction. So, if you pick up something from Gini Koch, you expect to laugh a couple of times at least. But being funny is hard work and I don’t feel like doing that all the time. So my other pen names allow me to write in any way I want, changing my voice along the way, which is a lot more fun for me.

I write horror as J.C. Koch, I write SF/F/Paranormal as Anita Ensal and Jemma Chase, and I write novels set in the Old West and dystopian future fiction with an Old West flair as A.E. Stanton. G.J. Koch is the closest to Gini Koch – that’s the name I write the Alexander Outland series under. I think G.J. is a little funnier than Gini, but that’s kind of for readers to decide.

I look at the other pen names as subsidiaries, yes, because they’re all me, and they’re all coming from my mind. Most of the time these days I byline anything from the other names as Gini Koch writing as (say) J.C. Koch. It lets my readers know it’s me, but me writing in “that” voice, so they know more what to expect.

DLS: Who was your greatest writer influence/inspiration when you started?  What are some books of theirs you would recommend?

GK: I firmly feel that anything you’ve ever read will influence you – good, bad, or indifferent. However, I’d say that the writer who influenced me the most when I started writing was Terry Pratchett, and I’d recommend any and all of his Discworld novels.

Other influences would be O. Henry, Arthur Conan Doyle, Madeleine L’Engle, Dave Barry, P.J. O’Rourke, Clifford D. Simak, Robert Silverberg, and, possibly most of all, Robert Benchley. I’m sure the moment I send this I’ll remember other authors who were inspirations, but these will do for now.

DLS: The Alien/Katherine “Kitty” Kat series is now up to fourteen books with the release of Alien Nation.  Obviously sales factor into keeping a series going, but did you write the early novels with the idea that this could be a long-running series?  Will the series run indefinitely or is there a plan for it to end after a certain number of books?  Do you have an ending in mind if the series should come to a conclusion?

GK: I see almost all story ideas as series, and some of them I can see running for a really long time. When I’m writing an Alien novel, I normally “see” the next few books ahead. So, for example, when I was writing Book 5/Alien Diplomacy, I could “see” Alien vs. Alien, Alien in the House, and Alien Research. I might not know what’s going into which book, particularly smaller subplots and supporting characters, but I know where the series overall is going.

I don’t know that I can honestly say that I planned for such a long-running series, though I’m thrilled that’s been the case. In the first few books, I was aiming for Book 10/Universal Alien. All the books were, for me, aiming for that novel. Once that was done, now all the books are aiming for Book 20. So, hopefully we’ll get there. I’m currently contracted through Book 17, so here’s hoping!

DLS: You’re not only a prolific novelist, but a prolific short story writer.  Aside from writing to a shorter length, do you approach the two forms differently?  If so, how?  Do you think all writers should hone both skill sets?  Why or why not?

GK: I actually do approach short stories differently from novels. I’m an extreme linear writer. I start with the title, then the first line, and when I get to the end…I stop. I don’t outline novels because if I did, if I knew everything that was going to happen, then I wouldn’t bother writing it, I’d already know and have lost interest. So, if something surprises you in one of my novels, good, because it surprised me, first.

For short stories, however, I outline those in my head. I see what I want happening, and then I write. Usually the story changes a bit from my internal outline, but I know what’s going to happen. For whatever reason, knowing how a short will end doesn’t ruin the surprise for me. This is probably because I’m a natural novelist – it’s easy for me to write novel length. But short stories are much harder for me, so I plan them out much more. So far, it seems to be working.

I do feel that, as an author, you should learn to write in as many lengths and genres and styles as you can manage. It increases your odds of selling. But this is an artistic pursuit, and everyone does their art their own way, which is as it should be.

DLS: What do you see as the role of social media in an author’s marketing repertoire? What social media platforms do you prefer?

GK: Right now social media is where it’s at. It’s free, but it costs your time, which is not free. However, it’s a great way to meet and interact with readers and fans, and, frankly, as with having a website and a blog, being on Facebook and/or Twitter are kind of the baseline.

I like Facebook and Twitter a lot, am still basically useless at Instagram, though I keep on trying here and there, and I love Pinterest, but boy, is that the time suck if you’re not careful. But it’s so much fun, too. And I can show off my covers, do boards where I show who I think the characters look like or could play them in that movie/TV show that, sadly currently, only exists in my mind, share jokes, and then some.

DLS: In addition to social media, you put a lot of effort into getting out to conventions and festivals, and you often have an amazing dealer’s table set up.  You’re an author with a big publisher and books in the stores. Why do you go the extra mile to have this kind of presence?

GK: Because you don’t stay an author with a big publisher and books in stores unless you’re out there, pressing the flesh, so to speak. My personal viewpoint is that until you’re a household name – as in, if you go to any grocery store and say your name, people would know who you are even if they don’t read – you’d better be working. And part of the work that goes into being a successful author is going to live events, meeting readers, connecting with fans, speaking, sharing your personality, and so forth.

I happen to enjoy people – unlike what seems like three-quarters of the authors out there, I’m not an introvert – and I enjoy going to events. I love running the yap, I love meeting people, I love sharing my books with new readers and discussing plot points and characters with existing fans, and so on. So going to live events is work that I truly enjoy. But even if I hated it, I’d still do it, because it dramatically affects my sales and my readership, always in a positive way.

DLS: Tell us a little about Alien Nation. What else can we look forward to in the coming months from Gini Koch (or any of your other “secret” identities for that matter)?

Well, Alien Nation is about what happens when word of how well Earth’s repelled interstellar bad guys spreads, and many alien races head for our planet, looking for help from the person who’s been saving the day for a long time now – Kitty. In addition to the usual hijinks for Kitty & Company, we also see the end of some major villains, which was nice for me and the characters. Well, not those villains, but everyone else.

Alien Education/Book 15, releases May 2, and Aliens Abroad/Book 16, releases in December. I’m also planning to have The Alien Collection, which will be a collection of all my Alien series short stories, both previously published and some new, out this year, as well as a collection of my short horror stories, writing as J.C. Koch. I’ll be in several anthologies – Unidentified Funny Objects 6 from UFO Press, Submerged and All Hail Our Robot Overlords! both from Zombies Need Brains, and, finally, the long-delayed MECH: Age of Steel, again writing as J.C. Koch, from Ragnarok. Alexander Outland: Space Pirate, writing as G.J. Koch, gets a mass market re-release in June, which is pretty exciting. I’ll also have an audio release, The Legend of Belladonna Part One: Natural Born Outlaws, writing as A.E. Stanton, coming from Graphic Audio. So, lots ahead for 2017 and beyond!

Gini Koch writes the fast, fresh and funny Alien/Katherine “Kitty” Katt series for DAW Books, the Necropolis Enforcement Files series, and the Martian Alliance Chronicles series. Touched by an Alien, Book 1 in the Alien series, was named by Booklist as one of the Top Ten Adult SF/F novels of 2010. Alien in the House, Book 7 in her long-running Alien series, won the RT Book Reviews Reviewer’s Choice Award as the Best Futuristic Romance of 2013. Alien Nation, released in December 2016 and won the Preditors and Editors Readers’ Poll for Best SF/F Novel of 2016. Book 15, Alien Education, will release in May 2017, with Book 16, Aliens Abroad, coming December 2017.

As G.J. Koch she writes the Alexander Outland series and she’s made the most of multiple personality disorder by writing under a variety of other pen names as well, including Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, A.E. Stanton, and J.C. Koch.

Gini also has stories featured in a variety of excellent anthologies, available now and upcoming, writing as Gini Koch, Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, and J.C. Koch. Writing as A.E. Stanton, she will have an audio release, Natural Born Outlaws: The Legend of Belladonna Part 1, coming from Graphic Audio in 2017.

Gini is an in-demand speaker who panels regularly at San Diego Comic-Con, Phoenix Comicon, and the Tucson Festival of Books, among others. She’s also been part of the faculty for the San Diego State University Writers Conference, Jambalaya Con, the Desert Dreams Writers Conference, and the James River Writers Conference, among others.

Prior to becoming a full time author, Gini spent over 25 years in marketing and advertising, first in small- to mid-sized direct marketing firms in Los Angeles, and then with IBM, and she was a social media maven before it was cool.

Reach her here: www.ginikoch.com, faceboook, and twitter

David Lee Summers. David is the author of more than thirty sci-fi and horror fiction novels and short stories including his latest horror novel THE ASTRONOMER’S CRYPT for Lachesis Publishing. Connect with David Lee Summers. online via facebook and twitter, and check out his web site.

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Image: www.teenink.com

Poetry was my first love and I think it was poetry that first drew me to storytelling. I wrote a poem in my junior high English class called, The Darkest Knight, and it’s the earliest thing I remember penning.

I was always a reader (but I must say I abhorred the Accelerated Reader Program in junior high). I liked to read at my own pace and see the story in my head. Pretty soon, I wanted to be telling the story FROM my head, the way I wanted it told. This is where my fascination with telling stories was cultivated.

Now, my inspiration is much different than when I was a young boy. Naturally, having grown up (for the lighter or darker), I have been influenced by my worldly experiences: the painful, the happy, the shadowed, the tragic and certainly the adventurous. My stories are colored by the incidents that colored me, as are the tales of many writers. I believe those stories are not just black and white anymore (something I discovered writing my first published novel, Focused Insanity, not like the kind of black and white stories you craft when you are a kid. My stories have become more grave even though I enjoy weaving humor in every story I write. But they tend to walk the jagged line between light and dark, which is, in my opinion, where the writer truly lives. That is certainly where my character, Jersey “The Brawler” Romero, lives in my second published novel Ghosts of Glory.

Clive BarkerImage: from girlboxer1970.com

I know I have grown as a writer because my purpose isn’t just to tell an entertaining story, it is to convey something—a deeper meaning. A message. Now, whether that story is inspired by my life is another matter, but some grain of truth, some tiny piece of me, always makes it into one of my books.

I think Clive Barker said it best: “My fiction is my confession . . . ”

Morgan Chalfant is a native of Hill City, Kansas. He received his Bachelor’s degree in writing and his Master’s degree in literature from Fort Hays State University, where he now teaches writing.

You can purchase Ghosts of Glory by Morgan Chalfant at  Lachesis Publishing, Amazon, Kobo, and Barnes and Noble.

Connect with Morgan Chalfant on facebook, tumblr, and twitter.

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OUR QUESTION OF THE WEEK IS: WHAT IS YOUR GO-TO JUNK FOOD SNACK?

This week we’ve been featuring the work of Lachesis Publishing author Jessica PenotJessica Penot is the author of the paranormal The Accidental Witch, and the horror novel, Circe. Her books are scary and delve into the world of witchcraft but also the psychology of the human mind. But her characters also have more light-hearted “weaknesses”. The Accidental Witch features a heroine who has a love of junk food. Phaedra, the heroine, is often munching on cookies and Cheetos and drinking Diet Coke. So what do you love to munch on when you’re stressed out or wanting something to crunch?

YOU COULD WIN AN E-BOOK COPY OF Jessica Penot‘s spooky and clever paranormal The Accidental Witch. Leave your answer here.

SPECIAL DEAL OF THE WEEK! You can buy Jessica Penot’s THE ACCIDENTAL WITCH right here at Lachesis Publishing for only .99 cents. You can also get it for this week only at .99 cents (or less) at Barnes and Noble, Amazon, and Kobo.

Connect with Jessica Penot online on her web site and on facebook and twitter.

Like our Lachesis Publishing page on facebook. Follow Lachesis Publishing on twitter.

As the author of Circe and The Accidental Witch, I have integrated many similar thematic elements into my work.  The biggest thing my books have in common is that they are about psychologists that are pulled into supernatural situations.  This is because I am a practicing therapist with a master’s degree in clinical psychology. Although my career hasn’t been as straight forward as my protagonists, I draw much of my character inspiration from my work.

Searcy State Hospital, in Alabama, now closed.

In The Accidental Witch, my heroine is a psychologist working at a small inpatient psychiatric facility in rural Alabama. I wrote this book while I was working at Crestwood Behavioral Health in Huntsville, Alabama. Many of the situations Phaedra finds herself in are inspired by situations I found myself in at Crestwood. Although I am careful to keep the confidentiality of all my patients safe, I do use my experiences in my practice to inspire me. In Circe, my protagonist is Eric Black, A psychologist working at a haunted state psychiatric hospital in Southern Alabama. I drew my inspiration for Circe from working at Searcy State Hospital outside of Mobile, Alabama. The Hospital shares the same tortured history as the hospital in Circe and its haunted past continues to fascinate me to this day.

Tree of Life Behavorial Health (Alabama)

Recently,I opened my own clinic in Alabama. Tree of Life Behavioral Health has been my dream for a very long time.  It is a small clinic that offers sliding scale services for patients that can’t otherwise afford mental health care.  I base what the patient pays on what they can afford and am able to help the very patient population that Phaedra had to use magic to help in The Accidental Witch.  I work with another counselor and with my husband, our physician, and every day we feel we are able to make a difference in people’s lives.  Even my husband has said that there is no way you can work in this environment and not be inspired. I deeply love what I do and I can’t deny that Tree of Life Behavioral Health will probably appear somewhere in one of my next books.  Phaedra may even find her way into opening a practice of her own in my next book in that series and that practice may resemble the work I am doing now. My work is my inspiration and Tree of Life is the best inspiration I have had yet.

Image from The Tree of Life Behavorial Health Alabama website

Find out more about Tree of Life Behavioral from the website or on facebook.  

Jessica Penot is the author of the paranormal The Accidental Witch, and the horror novel, Circe. Her books are scary and delve into the world of witchcraft but also the psychology of the human mind.

SPECIAL DEAL OF THE WEEK! You can buy Jessica Penot’s THE ACCIDENTAL WITCH right here at Lachesis Publishing for only .99 cents. You can also get it for this week only at .99 cents (or less) at Barnes and Noble, Amazon, and Kobo.

Connect with Jessica Penot online on her web site and on facebook and twitter.

Like our Lachesis Publishing page on facebook. Follow Lachesis Publishing on twitter.

 

Jessica Penot is our Q and A guest today.  She is the author of the paranormal The Accidental Witch. Jessica has also written a horror novel for Lachesis Publishing called Circe. Her books are scary and delve into the world of witchcraft but also the psychology of the human mind.

When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer and why?

I have wanted to be a writer as long as I can remember.  When I was a little girl I lived in my imagination and stories and books were my great escape.  There was nothing else in the world I could have wanted to be more than a story teller.

 Describe your favorite place to write? 

I don’t get to pick a favorite place to write.  I am a working mother of three children and any place or time I can write is my favorite place.

www.thinkgeek.com

What would I find on your desk at this very moment?

I have a Tardis mug filled with green tea, my serenity rock, a lot of pens and pencils, my iphone, and an owl bowl filled with Hershey’s kisses.

What is your tea/coffee beverage of choice when you’re writing?

I love cinnamon spice green tea.

 What do you love to read?

I go through author and book phases.  Right now I’m loving Simone St. James, but if you had asked me a year ago I may have said that Bernard Cornwell was my favorite author.  I always love Christopher Moore and A. Lee Martinez and I’m always waiting for their next books!

 What is some good advice you can give to an emerging writer?

Finding a good agent is the best advice I can give any author. It makes all the difference.

What do you do after you finish a book? Do you celebrate or take a nap?

I’m a napper. I always prefer a nap. That might change when my kids are older, but right now, I dream of sleeping when I sleep.

You have written a horror and a paranormal for Lachesis. What draws you to the dark side?

I’ve always loved the dark side. I’ve been watching horror movies since I was a very little girl and Anne Rice was my favorite author by the time I was ten. I always loved old haunted mansions and fairy tales with a dark twist. I can’t say why, but it seems like these have always been my passions. Even when I was very young, I preferred nightmares to good dreams.

Your amazing paranormal The Accidental Witch is rich with lore and spooky stuff but you balance that so well with such a loveable heroine. Where did the idea for this book come from and how did you approach the research?

I wrote The Accidental Witch when I was working on the inpatient psychiatric floor at Crestwood Behavioral Health.  I was always wishing there was some kind of magic I could use to help my patients. In Alabama, there aren’t many mental health resources and I would dream of any kind of dark art that could conjure some resource to help my people.  Sadly, such magic didn’t exist, but for Phaedra (the heroine) it did.

What are you working on next? 

I am currently working on a middle grade series, The Monster Hunter’s Manual, for Our Street Books and finishing the sequel to The Accidental Witch.

Connect with Jessica Penot online on her web site and on facebook and twitter.

Like our Lachesis Publishing page on facebook. Follow Lachesis Publishing on twitter.

 

It’s a question people often ask me.

“Do you get scared when you write your horror novels?

I think the answer might surprise you, so I’ll set the stage in order to clearly depict the first time I was actually frightened while writing one of my books. It was a few years back, and I was working on the book entitled, Cursed Casino. I was writing at night, in my bedroom, and the only light shining was a weak set of yellow bulbs connected to a large Hemingway-styled ceiling fan.

The scene I was crafting had to do with a ghost child who could manifest herself as an innocent child or a rotting horrific creature. And at the moment, she was revealing the more frightening side of herself to an unfortunate soul.

As I wrote the series of events that began to unfold, the small hairs on my arms started to stand up, and I had a vague sensation of being watched. My fingers stopped typing quickly and stalled as I nervously glanced around my bedroom.

Every shadow seemed darker at that moment, and I could hear my breathing echo throughout the now-quiet room. It dawned on me that the “scare-er” was now becoming the “scared” and the thought actually made me giggle nervously.

Eventually, I was able to return to the story but not after checking the bedroom very carefully to ensure that nothing was lurking under the bed or in the closet.

I’ve come to realize that while crafting a novel is a form of art and expression, it can also open your mind to thoughts and feelings that are most akin to the type of book being written. For example, if you are crafting a love story (as I was in The Awakening Book 1 Bloodmane Chronicles), a writer might feel romantic or sensual while describing rich love scenes or erotic sexual moments.

The same holds true for horror. While my novels often include elements of romance, sex, and mystery—there is also a frightening, darker side that seeps into my brain when the story is unfolding. In a way, tapping into the dark recesses of your mind, helps to “set the scene” and keep the creative juices flowing. But sometimes, it can be an impediment and stop me in my tracks.

So the next time you’re reading a book that has you on edge and frightened, don’t be surprised if the person who wrote those words had similar feelings somewhere during the course of writing the book.

Photo of Sara Brooke courtesy Eugenio Wilman

You can get The Awakening: Book 1 Bloodmane Chronicles at Lachesis Publishing, as well as amazon.com, barnes and noble, kobo, and iTunes.

Sara Brooke is an Amazon bestselling author of horror, paranormal romance, and suspense fiction.

A lifelong avid reader of all things scary, Sara’s childhood dream was to write books that make readers sleep with their lights on. She hopes that isn’t too troubling for the thousands of readers worldwide who have purchased her books.

Sara resides in beautiful South Florida. 

You can Like Sara’s facebook page  – called, The Bloodmane Chronicles . Connect with Sara on facebook, on twitter @SaraBrook8, and on her website. Sara welcomes feedback and questions from readers.

 

Today’s Sneak Peek is from the paranormal (with romantic elements) The Awakening: Book 1 The Bloodmane Chronicles by Lachesis Publishing author Sara Brooke. The Awakening is a compelling and riveting book about a librarian who discovers she has the ability to perform exorcisms on people who are possessed by demons.

WHAT IT’S ABOUT:

Everything she knows . . .

Renda Bloodmane is a quiet librarian, who lives a quiet life, in a small quiet town in Florida. Her days consist of going to work (which she loves) and watching old Hollywood movies with her dog Jane (which she also loves). Her life is just fine, if a tad on the dull side. So, when her best friend from college, Bobbie Trillo, invites her to visit her family in Georgia, Renda decides a vacation is in order. Bobbie has moved back in with her mother and brother after her parents’ divorce. Things aren’t going well for her mother, and Bobbie needs Renda’s friendship and support.

Everything she believes . . .

Renda soon discovers that there is a lot more going on in the Trillo household than meets the eye. The moment she sets foot in the Trillo home, Renda starts seeing ghosts everywhere she turns. But one very unique ghost stands out from the rest. A sinfully attractive man named Cole, who died more than one hundred years ago, begins to haunt Renda’s every thought. He warns her there is evil in the house and it’s attacking Bobbie’s mother. Only Renda can stop the demon from taking over and destroying the entire family.

Will never be the same . . .

Renda can’t believe she’s seeing dead people. She can’t believe she’s attracted to a dead man. And most of all, she can’t believe that she’s the chosen one who has to fight a centuries-old powerful demon. But there is more to Renda Bloodmane than even she realizes. Her quiet, ordered life is about to change and there’s nothing she can do to stop it.

EXCERPT:

As I slowly opened my eyes, I could hear various noises outside my door. There seemed to be several people talking―some with strange British accents that sounded clipped and distinct. Looking over at Jane, I could see that she was awake as well and was literally sitting at the door with her back to me. She looked over her shoulder at me as if to say, “Come on. We’ve got to see what’s out there!”

So I decided to be brave and find out.

Sitting up, I slid my feet into my favorite green slippers and slowly shuffled to the door. Jane hadn’t moved and remained in her upright position. She didn’t greet me as I walked up, nor did she turn her head for a gentle petting.

When I opened the door, she raced out and disappeared into the darkness. I whispered her name, trying to get her to come back, but it was impossible to see where she’d gone.

I was immediately distracted in my effort to find her, because the hallway was now filled with a strange yellow glow and it helped my eyes adjust to a very unusual sight.

There, in the middle of the hallway, was a large group of people, but there was something wrong with them.

One woman was leaning over the railing, rocking back and forth and singing songs to herself, while a trail of vomit leaked out of the side of her pale mouth and traveled down her neck, staining her old fashioned white blouse.

A man was slowly walking down the hallway, dragging an ax behind him, but he was missing one of his arms.

Two children played together in the center of the hallway, but they were both badly burned.

And there were many more people, but they all looked injured or . . . dead.

My mind raced and threatened to shut down altogether. In the midst of the chaos, small white orbs traveled up and down the hallway. Once in a while, an orb would stop and then grow until it became one of the ghosts. Other times, an orb would simply flit around back and forth until it connected with a wall and disappeared.

“It’s a strange sight, isn’t it?”

The voice came from behind me and nearly caused my heart to stop.

It was Cole.

Turning around, I answered as calmly as I could, “Um, yes. What is all this?”

Cole stood there amidst all of the strange people, yet despite his handsome profile, seemed to fit in perfectly. Perhaps it was the fact that he was pale like the others or that he was wearing clothing not of this era. But unlike the others, he made my heart race from fear and something else―was it attraction? I couldn’t be sure. It didn’t matter. He was as weird as the rest of them, and I needed to be on my guard.

“You can see us,” he said quietly. “It seems you’re able to bridge the gap between our worlds.”

“Are all of you . . . dead? Are you ghosts or something?”

LIKE WHAT YOU’VE READ SO FAR?

You can get The Awakening at Lachesis Publishing, as well as amazon.com, barnes and noble, kobo, and iTunes.

Sara Brooke is an Amazon bestselling author of horror, paranormal romance, and suspense fiction.

A lifelong avid reader of all things scary, Sara’s childhood dream was to write books that make readers sleep with their lights on. She hopes that isn’t too troubling for the thousands of readers worldwide who have purchased her books.

Sara resides in beautiful South Florida. 

You can Like Sara’s facebook page  – called, The Bloodmane Chronicles . Connect with Sara on facebook and on her website. Sara welcomes feedback and questions from readers.

Jessica Penot is our guest author today. Last week we posted a Sneak Peek of her new paranormal, The Accidental Witch. Jessica has also written a horror novel for Lachesis Publishing called Circe. Her books are scary and delve into the world of witchcraft but also the psychology of the human mind.

When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer and why?

I have wanted to be a writer as long as I can remember.  When I was a little girl I lived in my imagination and stories and books were my great escape.  There was nothing else in the world I could have wanted to be more than a story teller.

 Describe your favorite place to write? 

I don’t get to pick a favorite place to write.  I am a working mother of three children and any place or time I can write is my favorite place.

What would I find on your desk at this very moment?

I have a Tardis mug filled with green tea, my serenity rock, a lot of pens and pencils, my iphone, and an owl bowl filled with Hershey’s kisses.

What is your tea/coffee beverage of choice when you’re writing?

I love cinnamon spice green tea.

 What do you love to read?

I go through author and book phases.  Right now I’m loving Simone St. James, but if you had asked me a year ago I may have said that Bernard Cornwell was my favorite author.  I always love Christopher Moore and A. Lee Martinez and I’m always waiting for their next books!

 What is some good advice you can give to an emerging writer?

Finding a good agent is the best advice I can give any author. It makes all the difference.

What do you do after you finish a book? Do you celebrate or take a nap?

I’m a napper. I always prefer a nap. That might change when my kids are older, but right now, I dream of sleeping when I sleep.

You have written a horror and a paranormal for Lachesis. What draws you to the dark side?

I’ve always loved the dark side. I’ve been watching horror movies since I was a very little girl and Anne Rice was my favorite author by the time I was ten. I always loved old haunted mansions and fairy tales with a dark twist. I can’t say why, but it seems like these have always been my passions. Even when I was very young, I preferred nightmares to good dreams.

Your amazing paranormal The Accidental Witch is rich with lore and spooky stuff but you balance that so well with such a loveable heroine. Where did the idea for this book come from and how did you approach the research?

I wrote The Accidental Witch when I was working on the inpatient psychiatric floor at Crestwood Behavioral Health.  I was always wishing there was some kind of magic I could use to help my patients. In Alabama, there aren’t many mental health resources and I would dream of any kind of dark art that could conjure some resource to help my people.  Sadly, such magic didn’t exist, but for Phaedra (the heroine) it did.

What are you working on next? 

I am currently working on a middle grade series, The Monster Hunter’s Manual, for Our Street Books and finishing the sequel to The Accidental Witch.

Connect with Jessica Penot online on her web site and on facebook and twitter.

Like our Lachesis Publishing page on facebook. Follow Lachesis Publishing on twitter.

 

 

 

Jessica Penot is here today to share what inspires her writing. Jessica is the author of the The Accidental Witch (paranormal with romantic elements) with Lachesis Publishing .

This is what New York Times bestselling author Larissa Ione has to say about The Accidental Witch: “A delightful blend of dark and scary, and fun and snarky, The Accidental Witch was fabulous! Jessica Penot’s writing is so engaging and genuine, it was like hanging out with a good friend. Highly recommended!”

Jessica has also written a horror novel for Lachesis Publishing called Circe. Her books are scary and delve into the world of witchcraft but also the psychology of the human mind.

Here’s Jessica . . .

I was talking  to a sixth grade class a few weeks ago and one of the children asked me this question. This question is always the hardest for me because I find inspiration in everything.  I’m sure the children thought my answer was crazy because sometimes the most insane things inspire me.

One day I had just swept my porch and I wandered outside to get the mail. It was a cool day and my porch was meticulously clean and almost sterile looking. In the middle of the porch, directly in front of the door, I found a perfectly smooth, white stone. I picked up the stone and wrote one of my first horror short stories, The Stone Queen. It was published in Cthulhu Sex Magazine. It has always been little things like that stone that inspire me. A gentle breeze on a hot summer day can whisper of old ghosts. A strangely shaped shadow can inspire untold horrors.

Places often give birth to some of my best stories. The Chateau Larcher in France inspired my recent children’s book, The Monster Hunter’s Manual. Circe was inspired by Searcy State Hospital in Southern Alabama. The Accidental Witch was partly inspired by The Moody Brick in Northern Alabama. Sometimes my work inspires me.  As a counselor, I meet so many amazing people with lives that are rich in tragedy and beauty. Their faces are carefully hidden in many of my books and stories. In the end, it doesn’t take much to inspire me. The world is always amazing to me and every minute is another chance to find something beautiful and worth writing about.

You can buy The Accidental Witch right here at Lachesis Publishing

and on Amazon Kindle and where other books are sold.

Connect with Jessica online on her web site and on facebook and twitter.

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Today’s Q and A is with Lachesis author J.D. Spikes. JD is a paranormal romance author and a YA paranormal author. J.D. has two titles with Lachesis: A paranormal romance story in the Sisters of Spirit anthology and the YA paranormal The Possession.

When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer and why? It may sound hokey, Joanna, but I believe I was born to write! I was that child who, since books were not allowed at the table during meals, would read whatever was handy. The cereal box, the bread wrapper. When we played, indoor or out, we made up stories as we went along. It was a great training ground.

Describe your favourite place to write? Anywhere there is time and writing instruments – be they computer, pen and pad, whatever. I am in the midst of setting up an office in my home, and I’m really excited about that. You can also find me on my porch when weather allows.

What would I find on your desk at this very moment? Generally it’s organized chaos, but being that it’s a new desk/table, it’s actually pretty neat right now, with pens and pads, a few folders, a picture of my family, and a can of ginger ale.

What is your favourite beverage of choice when you’re writing? Depends on the time of day. Morning, definitely coffee. I have a huge mug that says What deadline? on it in a mocking script LOL. I drink a lot of water during the day, and tend to switch to a cup of decaf coffee or herbal tea in the evening. Occasionally a glass of wine after dinner. The ginger ale is a rare treat.

What do you love to read? I have very eclectic reading tastes. Basically if it looks good and sounds good, I’ll read it. My first love is romance. I’m a sucker for a good time travel. I’ve even forayed into urban fantasy and inspirational. And don’t forget nonfiction. I’m currently reading Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife by Mary Roach.

What is some good advice you can give to an emerging writer? Write. And read. And write. And learn the business as well as the craft.  The two best things you can do are to educate yourself and find a writing group you are comfortable with and join it. Writers ‘get’ writers. The support of fellow authors who understand the highs and lows of the writing life are a treasure. Priceless in this often solitary profession.

What do you do after you finish a book? Do you celebrate or take a nap? Both, but I’m not saying in what order LOL!

You’ve written a short story for us in an anthology called Sisters of Spirit. Tell us about it? That was truly a joyful experience. My novella, Shaman’s Shell, was one of four stories, but the heroines were four best friends, so our characters appeared in each other’s stories. While beachcombing together as the anthology opens, each woman finds an object that leads to her destiny. In Shaman’s Shell, research librarian Clara O’Keefe unearths a turtle shell with what appears to be a Native American artifact inside. She decides to try to discover its identity before turning it over to the island museum. But local Wampanoag archeologist Nathan Kestrel, aware of her find, has other ideas. At the end of the anthology, the four friends reunite, bringing their journeys full circle. We were amazed at how well our styles and voices fit, making it an anthology that seemed more like one book. (This photo happens to have us sitting in the order of our names on the cover).

You’ve also written a paranormal YA romance for us called The Possession – tell us about it? Yes, I have. I write for young adults as JD Spikes and The Possession (Book 1 Secret Journals) is my first published. It’s getting great reviews and seems to be garnering the attention of a lot of librarians, which is awesome. It’s a ghost story, set in an isolated lighthouse on the Maine coast. When Daphne Wentworth meets Zach Philbrook in the lighthouse’s old cemetery, it’s enough to wake the dead. Can they solve the mystery of the ghostly couple’s centuries old unrest before it’s too late?

What do you love about writing in the paranormal realm? When it comes to paranormal and supernatural occurrences, I’m a skeptical believer, from the school of ‘rule everything else out first’. I love the challenge of trying to craft a story so credible, that even the biggest skeptic will suspend their disbelief and just go with it, thinking, “Yeah, I can buy that. So what happens next? Will they find a way out?”

What are you working on next? I’m currently working on two projects. On the adult side, I’m editing Book 2 of my Soulwalker Series, The Heart Knows. It’s the story of Joseph RedFox and Amy Hastings, the hero’s and heroine’s best friends from Book 1. They’re worlds apart but a heartbeat away from a love that could save his life.

On the young adult side, I’m editing my second Secret Journals: The Haunting. This one is set in the heart of New Hampshire’s White Mountains during the bleakest month of the year. Sixteen year old brainiac Therese Berard feels something is not right at the royal old house she and her dad are rehabbing, and it has nothing to do with her IQ. Eighteen year old Caleb Braeburn, grief-stricken over his grandfather’s recent death, is furious his beloved home is up for sale and heads for New Hampshire, determined to stop it. Then there’s Luke, Therese’s best friend’s big brother, who keeps showing up at the wrong time. Three teens with secrets. A journal that draws them together. A house that stands in their way.

Connect with J.D. on her web site and on facebook

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