Sunday, June 28, 2015

AUTHOR INTERVIEW with C.B. Mac Gillavry

 The Solstice Tour comes to an end with a sit down with indie fantasy author C.B. Mac Gillavry.

If you could sum up your book in two words what would they be?

Mac Gillavry: Probably lovey-dovey. I hope not though, I hope my readers get the point, which is not always the lovey-dovey part.

    What is your target audience for your book?  Why choose Fantasy?

MacGillvary: Ideally young adults, but I hope it’s good enough also for adults. Fantasy gives me the chance to use magic and creatures like dragons and fairies. It’s fun to be around such great beings. Besides I tend to use also Greek mythology to make my stories more realistic, which also works perfectly in the fantasy writings.

    Nice blend. Who is your muse when writing?  What is your inspiration?

Mac Gillavry: Inspiration often comes from need, when I need to explore feelings I have or to fight them off.

     Do you have any secret writing tips?

Mac Gillavry: When I’m on a tight deadline I use Bach, the really famous one, Johann Sebastian, to keep me on track. His music does something with my brain, it messes with it in a good way and I work a lot faster, getting my things done just in time. I’m a huge procrastinator…

Studies have shown listening to classical music helps your brain. I love classical music anyway too. Tell me now, what do you love most about writing?

Mac Gillavry: I can get lost in what I read, which is awesome. But when I write, I’m the one taking the reader by the hand, it’s my imagination I let unfold. And in those moments it’s nice to be me. I have created a place that’s very comfy for me, it’s always a great thing to visit my world, at least it is to me.

    I think most writers can concur to that. Alright I prefer mornings to write. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen, but do you have a personal favorite time of day to write?

Mac Gillavry: Because of all my other obligations, I end up writing in the evening (my characters tend to go to bed very often, exhausted and all). But I’m not always very lucid in the evening. I think I would work better and faster in the morning.

    Close us out with an inspirational quote for future writers out there.

Mac Gillavry: “Only in our dreams are we free. The rest of the time we need wages.” Terry Pratchett.

Check out Mac Gillavry's upcoming book Domus Dianae - An Eco Fantasy for Young Adults

Synopsis - Victoria Springer is a girl of seventeen, but when she is in Italy, every creature that lives in dreams  comes to life. She has a task: she has to protect the Lake, the Valleys, the wonders of Nature, together with her friends and the Magic that the Moon gave her. Fairies, Gnomes, Dragons, Golden Souls and Love are her allies. Do you still believe in fairy tales?

 The Eco fantasy series Domus Dianae for young adults is composed, so far, of novels and short stories revolving around a group of characters of various nature and backgrounds.

Domus Dianae is the magical place on the shores of the Lake Garda, Italy, around which the series revolves. There is an ecological theme waving through every individual story, together with a quote from Shakespeare and a song setting the tone of the  individual tales. The fantasy element also brushes against both real historical events and Greek mythology, as the place chosen for the tales has historically been home to a Greek colony and further inhabited throughout history.
The series will include at least two more short stories and a longer novel (work in progress), mostly set in Indonesia.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  C.B. Mac Gillavry studied English and Dutch literature, she has an affinity for Colonial Dutch literature. C.B., like so many authors, started writing as soon as she was able to write, although the actual reading started at a later stadium, with the discovery of Jane Austen. She enjoys many different genres and writers, preferably in the original language. The environment is a key topic in her writings and she ideally writes for young adults, in the hope of enchanting them, even if just for a short while.

Connect with Mac Gillavry at

Saturday, June 27, 2015

AUTHOR INTERVIEW with Charlotte Henley Babb

Today I have Fantasy/Steampunk author Charlotte Henley Babb in my hot seat.

 JC: If you could sum up your book in two words what would they be?

CB: Maven Fairy Godmother-Fractured fairytale. 20 hours to Charles Town-Steampunk adventure. 

JC: What is your target audience for your book? And why Fantasy?

CB: My audience is the large group of women readers over 40, and a subset of the under 40 crowd who like fantasy, silliness and fairy tales even if the main character is over 30. The fandom for fantasy and science fiction no longer consists of adolescent males—some of them grew up, at least physically, and some of them were always women. I’ve been reading science fiction since I was 8—more than 50 years.

JC:  Do you have a muse that inspires you when writing? What is your inspiration?

CB: I am my own muse, my secret self, my inner heroine. I use inspiration from my own life, from Netflix, from my favorite writers, and even from people I know and things that happen to them. Sometimes my inspiration is that it’s 8:30 pm, and I haven’t written yet. I have two accountability partners, and I don’t want to disappoint myself by admitting to either of them that I didn’t write today…at least 500 words of new draft material. 

JC: Nice dedication there, so do you have any secret writing tips to share?

CB: Don’t worry if you don’t know what you are going to write or if you can’t think of what comes next. Start typing. Think of a character and if nothing else, ask that character what the next most logical step is. Let yourself be surprised.  Writer’s block is about fear, not a real thing. Type something, no matter how bad, but stay on the story, not on whining or endless character charts and world building.  It has taken me 20 years to learn that, so listen to the voice of experience. The only way to do it is to do it, one letter at a time, one word at a time, one sentence at a time, one paragraph at a time, one scene at a time. 

JC: I’ve heard that before about Writer’s block not being a real thing. Guess that is true even if I am stuck on my book I usually just move on and write something else so my writing isn’t really blocked now is it? Can I ask you now what do you love most about writing?

CB: I am the first reader, so I love watching the story be revealed to me as I write it. I am a world-builder, and love to research the details that can make my world work. In my current work in progress, a steampunk adventure, I have to keep myself from getting too involved in what was really possible in 1850 as opposed to just going for it and making it up as I go along, gears, smoke and all.

 JC: I prefer mornings to write. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen, but do you have a personal favorite time of day to write?

CB: Since I have a day job and an evening job, I tend to write in the evenings. If I get up early and am coherent, I can write in the mornings, especially on the weekends.  Ideally, I’d write in the mornings, but I rarely can get up early enough to write and then be at work at 8 am. When I do try it, I get involved in the story, and then I’m late to work.  Time management is critical. 

JC: Close us out with an inspirational quote for future writers out there.

CB: "People on the outside think there’s something magical about writing, that you go up in the attic at midnight and cast the bones and come down in the morning with a story, but it isn’t like that. You sit in back of the typewriter and you work, and that’s all there is to it".- Harlan Ellison


A dead cellphone calls with a job offer and a promise of dragons.
Imagine if Terry Pratchett sat down with Kathy Bates to make up fractured fairy tales for Edward Everett Horton to read aloud: you'd get MAVEN FAIRY GODMOTHER: THROUGH THE VEIL.
Giving up what's her self-esteem for coffee, her last chance to redeem her life comes as a job offer to be a fairy godmother. But Faery is shrinking, the other fairy godmothers have disappeared, and nothing she does turns out right. How can she put together the happily ever after each of her clients wants with her boss standing in her way?
MAVEN FAIRY GODMOTHER: THROUGH THE VEIL is fast, fun read that shows that none of us is ever old enough to know better as we try to wish for we think what will make us happy.
 $5.95 Kindle  /$15.99 Paper

Just a Smidgen of Magic: Enchantment at the Edge of Mundane
Five flash fiction stories of magical encounters.  $2.99 kindle/  $5.49 paper

Maven's Fractured Fairy Tales

Fairy Godmother Maven Morrigan has her own way of making the happily ever after come true. These stories take on The Frog Prince, Rumpelstiltskin and Beauty and the Beast. Three fractured fairy tales to bring you a smile.
 $2.99 Kindle / $5.99 Paper  

Also available as separate stories $0.99
Bubba and the Beast
Fairy Frogmother

 Walking Off Heaven’s Shore
A ten-piece bucket of Southern fried flash fiction.

$2.99  Kindle/ $5.99 Paper

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Charlotte Henley Babb began writing as soon as she could hold a piece of chalk and scribble her name. Growing up in the red mud and sweet tea Carolinas, she was a voracious reader with widely diverse interests ranging from the classic folk and fairy tales to sci-fi writers like Terry Pratchett and Robert Heinlein.
Her first novel, Maven Fairy Godmother: Through the Veil, won the 2014 Sharp Writ Book Award for Sci-fi/Fantasy and an honorable mention in the 2014 National Federation of Press Women Communications Contest for adult novels. Her second novel, a steampunk story of espionage and political intrigue set in an alternate 19th century U.S., is scheduled for release in summer 2015.

            Maven Fairy Godmother
            Facebook Author
            Facebook Book Page
            Twitter: @charlottebabb
            Amazon Authors

Friday, June 26, 2015

BOOK REVIEW: P.A.W.S by Debbie Manber Kupfer

SYNOPSIS - When Miri's grandmother dies, she takes with her the family secret. Miri finds herself alone and abandoned in a St. Louis boarding school. But she is about to discover the secret isn't dead. Taunted by bullies, Miri is shocked to learn she possesses a secret power. It can save her... but can it save those she loves? After she is befriended by others with the same strange, magical powers, her history comes alive. And with it, Miri's fate becomes more dangerous. Join Miri on a mysterious and supernatural journey with her new friends, members of an underground St. Louis society known as the Partnership for Animagi, Werewolves, and Shapeshifters, better known as P.A.W.S.


P.A.W.S was the most adorable read I have read in a long time. The story is a bit nonchalant to me. It reminded me of that old book series my nephew used to read when he was a kid titled Animorphs. Instead of gaining shapshifting powers from aliens, and being able to morph in to any animal they touch.  P.A.W.S. uses the element of magic charms, and werewolf-ism to explain its teens animal shapeshifters. Speaking of werewolf-ism Kupfer uses lycanthropy as an actually disease,(which it is by the way.) BUT she uses it as a disease in a different way. I wont give it away! I found though the way Kupfer used it to be really interesting.

P.A.W.S. is aimed for the middle school/ young adult reader. I found myself  slightly hooked though by this exciting tale(No pun intended). The villain Alistair is a bit of a creepy attractive character. I loved Kupfer’s descriptive writing on the experience of shifting from human to animal. The transformation from human to animal scenes are the best I’ve seen. She really gets into the human/ animal mindset.

Overall thoughts...
P.A.W.S was really a enjoyable read. It is perfect for the age market it was made for. If you are an adult though, and love animals this is a nice guilty pleasure escape read.


Check out the Sequel ARGENTUM

Argentum . . . silver. Magical powers.

The death of Alistair has brought a measure of peace and calm to those at P.A.W.S., but his silver charm remains in Miri’s possession and it seems to almost have a life of its own.

Nightmares and questions torment Miri until the charm mysteriously disappears and Jessamyn seeks help from Quentin, who claims to have repented his past association with Alistair. But can he be trusted?

And what of Jenna, a young girl once held captive by Alistair who carries a terrible secret—a secret that could determine the future of P.A.W.S.
Available on AMAZON

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Debbie Manber Kupfer grew up in London and lived in Israel, before somehow ended up in St. Louis, where she works as a puzzle constructor and writer. She lives with her husband, two children, and a very opinionated feline. She is the author of P.A.W.S and Argentum and has short stories in several anthologies including Fauxpocalypse, Shades of Fear, Darkly Never After, Sins of the Past, and Heroes & Villains. She believes that with enough tea and dark chocolate you can achieve anything!

Visit Debbie at her Blog
Amazon Author Page


Follow Debbie on  Facebook    and Twitter

Tuesday, June 23, 2015


 Grettings! Today I got to chat with indie fantasy Alaskan author Joshua Robertson of Thrice Nine Legends Series.

JC: If you could sum up your book in two words what would they be?

JR: Surreptitious Motivations

JC:  I think I need a dictionary to look that up…any who! What is your target audience for your book? And why Fantasy?

JR: Young Adult to Adult. Fantasy literature maintains a mysticism in its telling of parables that stirs something substantial, although intangible, in readers. Fantasy stories directly impact our thoughts, feelings, and beliefs. It’s life changing.

JC:. That is the most philosophical answer I have ever heard, quite poetic. Now who is your muse when writing?  What is your inspiration?

JR: Most of my inspiration comes from dreams that I have had throughout my lifetime. It has been rare, if ever, that I have written about a real life experience or encounter with another person.

JC:  Yes I concur. Dreams are a great muse. Do you have any secret writing tips?

JR: The internet is inundated with tips for writing. My tip is simple; keep writing.

JC:   Good tip! What do you love most about writing?

JR: I like the feeling of having a story within me that I can put down to paper and read over and over again. It is a wonderful feeling for another person to pick up the same story, and for the tale to resonate with them. However, there is a sense of excitement when I can read back through my own story and discover new elements that I did not intentionally place within its folds.

JC: Nicely put. Okay I prefer mornings to write. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen, but do you have a personal favorite time of day to write?

JR: I typically write in the late evening and early morning between 8:00 PM and 2:00 AM. If I happen to have additional time, or a free Saturday, I will write during the daytime as well.

JC: When ever the mood strikes I say!  Close us out with an inspirational quote for future writers out there.

JR: There are plenty of quotes out there that are inspirational, but it is Hemingway that I will echo: “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

Check out Joshua and his Thrice Nine Legends Series with the first book Melkorka

Kaelandur was forged by the Highborn to slay one of their own, Nedezhda Mager. As their slave, Branimir Baran never thought to question his cruel masters until he is forced to take part in the execution. His actions begin a chain of events that will lead him to confront demons, cannibals, and himself as he is forced to question his own morality and the true meaning of good and evil.
 Available now on Paperback and Amazon

Also check out his Hawkhurt Saga Series

A sellsword is lured into the daunting political games within Hawkhurst. How many people will he have to kill to keep his own secrets hidden and to escape the city? 

Available on Amazon

Gladiators and Thieves: Coming June 2015
Anaerfell(Thrice Nine Legends): Coming October 2015
Dyndaer: Coming January 2016


Joshua Robertson is an ambitious writer that enjoys devising flash fiction, short stories, poems, children’s books, and epic fantasy novels. Joshua is the author of the transitional children’s book, Bo Bunny and the Trouble. He is also the author of the dark fantasy novel, Melkorka, in the Thrice Nine Legends series. A tabletop game based off of the novel and world, called Thrice Nine Legends,  is set to be released in 2015.
Joshua currently lives in Alaska with his spouse and children. His ancestry is primarily Slavic and Scottish, which is often recognized in his fantasy writings. He lives his life with the purpose of enhancing each moment, seeking happiness and connection. Joshua enjoys writing, teaching, reading and traveling. His philosophy is that life is an adventure worth experiencing.

Connect with Joshua

Crimson Edge

Monday, June 22, 2015

BOOK REVIEW: Exile's Redemption by Lee Dunning

Lee Dunning writing stuns in Exile’s Redemption. Her writing is witty, and charming which is something I love in a story. The fantasy world Dunning creates is in-depth with vivid detail leaving no stone unturned giving Exile’s Redemption its solid foundation to build around.

 After four hundred years, isolated from the rest of the world, the Elven Nation has finally reestablished a presence on the mainland of Allasea. With their return, the elves have built the city of Second Home, a place of learning, open to all who would come to study.

For Raven, a young Shadow Elf historian, and one of the few elves born on the mainland, it's an opportunity for her to research the truth about the first child born to the elves, Umbral K'hul, a god-like boy whose attempted patricide and subsequent banishment triggered a civil war that fractured the Elven Nation.

A more sinister presence sees the elves' return as a chance to strike, filling the beautiful city with an army of chaos and death. But along with the demons, strides another: after ten thousand years of exile, Umbral K'hul has escaped his prison.

Now, the elves' greatest pariah and an untested heroine must face an enemy bent on genocide. In the process they will discover secrets their people have kept since the elves established First Home. Secrets which could prove even more devastating than the demons.

Exile's Redemption
is everything you want in your fantasy book. Dunning’s character development  is superb bringing  her stoic Elven nation to reality. I really liked her creation of different Elven races such as the Shadow Elves with their ebony skin gives a nice visual change.

The story itself is a battle epic adventure fantasy tale. Fantasy lovers with an epiphany to Elves in the likes of Tolkien wilt enjoy this read.



  W'rath laughed and snarled and taunted. He wheeled in a spiral of death, splattering demon entrails, burst eyes and glittering fangs across the gray walls of the castle, painting them in hues of carnage. A bubble of pulsating magic encapsulated him and he teleported free, appearing behind the demon responsible for the spell. Shadow's Edge separated its spine from its legs, and then its head from its neck. Its head tumbled away, rolling over and over, surprise flashing by with each rotation, the last emotion to mold its features before it died.
    A few lesser creatures skittered by the psion. He didn't pursue. Seconds later blue and white light flared and the stench of things burning tickled at W'rath's nostrils. He nodded in satisfaction. Lady Swiftbrook did indeed know her way around a proper lightning spell.
    He ducked to the side as a sword sliced through the space he'd just occupied. The grey devil snarled in frustration as the psion slipped out of its reach. Two more joined it and W'rath raised his arm. Their blades bounced off of the invisible shield he'd conjured the instant he jumped ahead of the other elves. He gritted his teeth as the power of their blows vibrated up his arm. Time to even the odds.
    Kill your companions, W'rath ordered the first devil. Most couldn't compel a creature to go against their allies, but few could resist the Shadow Elf's crushing will. Without so much as a shake of its head, the devil disemboweled the fiend next to it. The third devil hissed, and worked its blade to defend against the first devil. W'rath slipped to its side and hamstrung it. His new pet finished it off. Come along and defend me.
    It stepped ahead of W'rath, its tail swishing as if it had a mind of its own. Hmmm. "On second thought," W'rath said, "I mistrust that tail of yours." He struck, and flicked blood off Shadow's Edge as he skirted around the devil's corpse.
    He rode the shadows and stepped from a niche before what had once been the double doors leading to the throne room. Corpses clogged the hall. A half dozen elven soldiers lay in heaps, most dismembered in some manner, one completely turned inside out. Empty pieces of armor suggested others, now eaten, or dissolved or reanimated, had met their ends here. Something had shattered the doors leading into the throne room. Shards of wood littered the floor and the dead. More debris probably spread in the room beyond, but W'rath couldn't tell. A translucent membrane draped over the gaping wound left in the wall when the doors blew apart. It pulsated with malignant life.
    "What sort of foul beastie are you?" W'rath muttered.
    As if in answer it flowed from the opening to the floor and leaked into the shadows of the fallen warriors. Too late W'rath understood what he faced. Faster than thought his shadow came alive, and oozed up from the floor to wrap itself around him. It didn't matter how powerful his psionics, W'rath couldn't teleport free of his own shadow.
With a malevolent chuckle it cut off all light, all warmth—all hope.


Not entirely sure why you're reading this, my books are far more entertaining, but since you've bothered to pop over I suppose I ought to have the decency to tell you a little about myself.
I've done many things over the years, including daring the horrors of IT for over 24 years. At the moment I'm reinventing myself (i.e. retraining) as an accountant. I know, that sounds terribly dull, but it is a profession in demand pretty much everywhere, so I can live where I wish and not have to worry about keeping a roof over my head. Of course, there is more to me than that. I've worked with digital art since 2004, and have gotten to the point I am able to occasionally sell said art (sometimes to myself - see my cover). Photoshop is heavily involved in that area as well. Oh, and yes, I write. It's nearly a given these days, isn't it?

As of July 26th, 2014, I am officially a published author, with my book, "Exile's Redemption" available at Amazon in Kindle and Trade Paperback formats. I'm working on the sequel, and hope to have it out before folks have forgotten what happened in the first book.
I live with five cats, four Siamese and one horrified orange tabby. I live in the desert but hope to relocate to the Pacific Northwest after I finish my current studies.


                Amazon Authors                Goodreads                   Facebook                  Twitter

Friday, June 19, 2015

BOOK REVIEW: Journey to Avid


Threatening clouds and fierce storms besiege the city of Tyroc. More frequent and powerful than ordinary storms, young Elowyn, a weaver’s daughter living in the outskirts of the city, senses something disturbing and unnatural about them. She soon realizes that the storms are but a warning sign of much more frightening things yet to come.

Terrifying wolf-like creatures emerge from the depths of the wilderness at the bidding of a dark master. His name found only among the crumbling pages of ancient texts, the re-appearance of Alazoth and his Hounds is a dark omen for the people of Tyroc and beyond. Only legends remain of the heroes and prophets whose blood was shed ages ago to banish him into the abyss, which should have remained his prison for all time. How he has been released is a mystery, but all the old stories agree that death and destruction are sure to follow.

With the Hounds inching closer each day, the city of Tyroc caught up in religious and political turmoil, and her home life no less turbulent, Elowyn has nothing left to rely on but her meager courage and a budding faith in Aviad, the Creator. She and her sister, Morganne, set out on a remarkable journey that challenges everything they have ever known about themselves, the world, and the path that Aviad has laid out for them.

Journey to Avid  takes us on a magical medieval adventure. We follow our young heroine Elowyn along with her older sister Morganne as they get swept away into the politics and religion of the village after Elowyn’s discovery of a mysterious item in a nearby stream. Elowyn’s encounter with a mysterious Einar who saves her from the lurking hell hounds entices Elowyn on her destined path.

Allison D. Reid writes crisp, clear, with a hint eloquence making Elowyn’s world is easy to create in you minds eye. This  also helps sets the tone for the whole book. Reid’s writing takes your hand gently leading you on a journey of self discovery and faith.Being Christan fantasy I was not sure how that would work. I had no worries though. The subtle religious undertone message in this fantasy tale is beautifully blend in hardly noticeable. It is just an enjoyable read.

             BUY JOURNEY TO AVID:

   Create Space

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Allison D. Reid’s passion for medieval history and fantasy was sparked by writers like C.S. Lewis, J.R.R Tolkien, and Lloyd Alexander. She also spent years living in Europe, captivated by its ancient towns, cathedrals, and castles. She received her B.A. in writing from Hampshire College in Amherst, MA.  Her first published work, Journey to Aviad, is a Christian Fantasy novel—the first in The Wind Rider Chronicles book series.  Many of her short stories relate back to the world of her books.  Allison has two young daughters, runs a small business with her husband, and also provides editing services to other independent authors.

Check out Allison@
AMAZON Author Page@


Today I sit down with the talented Renee Scattergood of the Shadow Stalker serial on this magical Solstice Fantasy Tour!

     If you could sum up your book in two words what would they be?

RS: Dark and adventurous.

   Oooo nice choice of words. I agree with that. What is your target audience for your book? And why Fantasy?

RS: My target audience is adults between 18 and 35. Of course, it seems to have been appealing to people younger and older than that as well.

    Yes, 40 and loving your books here. Now why fantasy as your choice of genre?

RS: I've been a big fan of fantasy since I was a kid. From a writing perspective, it allows me to really let my creative mind go. I can create new worlds and make up the rules as I go along.

     Do you have muse when writing?  What is your inspiration?

RS: I don't really have a muse, just a very overactive imagination. I'm inspired by a lot of things, but most of my ideas tend to come from vague memories of dreams I've had. My daughter gives me some good ideas on occasion too. :-D

      Aww that is sweet! Son’s are not so helpful *coughs*. Anyway do you have any secret writing tips to share? TELL US!

RS: Everything I can tell people is public knowledge, but one thing that has helped me most since I started writing the Shadow Stalker serial is keep a written record of all the major events and details about your characters and your world as you write. I didn't do that with Shadow Stalker in the beginning and now I'm having to go back and write everything down. I figured I'd be able to keep it all straight in my head. I was so wrong.

      Nice advice. So what do you love most about writing?

RS: I love being able to escape reality for a time, and creating my own realities. I love the excitement and feeling of freedom that comes from being able to let my imagination go wild.

      Tough question here now. I prefer mornings to write. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen. Do you have a personal favorite time of day to write?

RS: I don't really have a favorite time. I love writing at any time of the day, but I seem to get a lot more done in the morning and early afternoon because I get really tired as the day goes on. My mind is most alert in the morning.

     Exactly! That is why I prefer morning to write. Renee please close us out with an inspirational quote for future writers out there.

RS: One of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite authors:

"If the road is easy, you're likely going the wrong way." ~ Terry Goodkind, Wizards First Rule


Shadow Stalker is an ongoing monthly serial about a young shadow stalker, Auren, who, according to the emperor of the Galvadi Empire, will enslave the people of the Serpent Isles if she is not stopped. It's a story about how she comes to learn the truth of who she is and what she will have to do to put a stop to the emperor's tyranny.

So far there have been nine episodes published. Each episode is generally released on the last Saturday of each month.

Download Shadow Stalker: The Hidden Truth (Episode 1) free:


Renee Scattergood lives in Australia with her husband, Nathan, and daughter, Taiya. She has always been a fan of fantasy and was inspired to become a story-teller by George Lucas, but didn't start considering writing down her stories until she reached her late twenties. Now she enjoys writing fantasy. She is currently publishing her monthly Shadow Stalker series, and she has also published a prequel novella to the series called, Demon Hunt. Aside from writing, she loves reading (Fantasy, of course), watching movies with her family, and doing crafts and science experiments with her daughter. Find out more about her, and sign up for her newsletter on her blog:

Connect with Renee
Follow Renee

Monday, June 15, 2015


We are heating up here in the Solstice Fantasy Writers Tour as I sat down with awesome fantasy writer Ali Cross of Desolation (She is also Alex Banks!)

JC: If you could sum up your book in two words what would they be?

AC: I'll answer for the Desi books ... epic battles.

JC: Name your target audience for your books?

AC: The target audience for my Desolation books is young adult girls and boys who think they're life is already decided. I hope that through reading my stories they'll see that it's never too late to choose a new path.

JC: Deep man! Do you have a muse when writing? What is your inspiration?

AC: I don't really have a "muse". My inspiration? Hmm ... giving back, I think. I know that sounds trite or something, but I feel that it's true.

JC: Not trite at all. So do you have any secret writing tips?

AC: My secret tip to writing is .... *bum glue*. Shhh. It's not very classy, but it works! Use a liberal amount at the start of every writing session and you won't be able to budge from your seat until you're done!

JC: I wonder if they sell it at Wal-Mart? Okay now what do you love most about writing?

AC: The freedom! The joy! The adventure!

JC: Love! Now I prefer mornings to write. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen, but do you have a personal favorite time of day to write?

AC: I LOVE to write in the afternoons, when the sunlight is streaming through my office window ... but I usually write in the mornings so I'm certain to get my own writing time in before I have to go to work.

JC: Please close us out with an inspirational quote for future writers out there.

AC: Wow. Inspiration? That's asking a lot of a simple girl like me but I'll try! ... Writing is hard and sometimes you don't know which story to tell or which direction to take. My advice is to listen to your heart--not your head, not the voices of friends or the trends of indies Listen to your heart. Write what's in there. Do that, and you're writing will not steer you wrong!


Become (Desolation #1):  It’s never too late to choose.
Sixteen-year old Desolation Black wants nothing more than to stay in Hell where it’s cold and lonely and totally predictable. Instead, she’s sent back to Earth where she must face the evil she despises and the good she always feared.
When Desi is forced to embrace her inner demon, she assumes her choice has been made—that she has no hope of being anything other than what her father, Lucifer, has created her to be. What she doesn’t count on, is finding a reason to change—something she’s never had before—a friend.


Desolate (Desolation #2):  Where darkness lives, all will become desolate.
It’s been two months since sixteen-year-old Desolation Black chose Earth over Hell and her friend Miri over her eternal love, Michael.
Desi goes through the motions of life: school, training, remaining vigilant against the forces of darkness, but her dreams are full of the choices she wishes she could change. When she’s injured by a strange demon, old temptations arise, and the lines between good and evil blur. Desi discovers those choices aren’t so final after all.
And this time, the power of love—for a friend, for a lover—may not be enough to save her from the darkness that lurks within.


Destined (Desolation #3):  Destiny isn’t fate, it’s choice.
Choosing is a bad idea, because Desi always makes the wrong choice, and sometimes there are no do-overs. Certainly not this time, when all has been lost and Desi can’t even save herself, let alone her friends. For Desi, the hardest thing is letting someone help her, to accept their sacrifice on her\behalf. But that’s exactly what she’ll have to do in order to save the worlds from Helena’s destruction.
The goddess of Helheimer, long imprisoned by Desi’s father, Loki, is free at last, and she’s bent on reclaiming what once was hers. The nine worlds will be drawn into war, over Hell, over Earth, with innocent humans as meaningless collateral.
While Michael and the Guardians of Asgard, along with the golden-armored Valkyrie, lead the battle for freedom, it’s Desi who holds the destiny of all the worlds in her hands.
Can she set aside her doubts, once and for all, and claim the gifts that are hers to bear? Can she accept the sacrifice that is made for her and Become all that she was created to be?


ABOUT THE AUTHOR : :  Ali Cross grew up watching Bruce Lee movies and dreamed of being a kick-butt martial artist like Cynthia Rothrock. Well, she never became the kind of ninja she envisioned, but she does hold a black belt in awesome. She lives in Utah with her kickin' husband, two sparring sons, one ninja cat, one sumo dog and four zen turtles. And a cache of nun-chucks, staffs, kamas and other dangerous ninja-weapons.

Ali moonlights as Alex Banks where she writes wild middle grade adventures set in the faraway places of her imagination.



Amazon Authors






Saturday, June 13, 2015


Author and Angels continues to bring you hot sizzling authors on the Magical Solstice Fantasy Writers Tour with U.K.'s Melissa Barker Simpson of The book anthology Changing Worlds.

     If you could sum up your book in two words, what would they be?

Mel: Magical adventure.

   Very good. Now who is your target audience for your book? And why write fantasy?

Mel: Anyone who enjoys fantasy fiction, with a hint of romance and the paranormal. The genre chose me in this case. I’ve always loved fantasy, and I’ve had a character in my head for a while - a witch named Maddison. She is a hunter, one who usually goes looking for trouble. I find her extremely entertaining, and it got to a point where I had to create a world in which she could live, so she would stop following me around! Her favourite weapon is her hair, which is really fun to write.

   Sounds fun! Reminds me of Sindel from Mortal Kombat. I digress though. So who is your muse when writing? What is your inspiration?

Mel: I’ve always joked that the writer within me is a separate entity. That’s what it feels like at times. I put pen to paper and something always comes out; I’m often surprised by the results! The characters are my inspiration; the desire to tell stories and connect with readers.

   Truth my sister! That is one of my reason I write. I have a story to tell. Also perhaps I can move someone. Do you have any secret writing tips you can share?

Mel: I’ve always found, in addition to reading as often as I can, that writing short stories (with or without a prompt) teaches me discipline. Interviewing characters can be fun, or allowing them to have a fun; whether that’s unedited dialogue or scenes where there are no restrictions. I don’t have any secret writing tips. My advice would be to study the craft, learn from others, explore your strengths and weakness and write, write, write!

    Awesome tip! What do you love most about writing?

Mel: The prospect of taking readers on a journey, and sharing the joy that writing brings to me every day.
       Yes, writing does bring joy.  Alright I prefer mornings to write. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen, but do you have a personal favourite time of the day to write?

Mel: I generally write at night, because I have two teenagers in the house and a full-time job. But I can write at any time of the day. I don’t have a particular preference.

    Close us out with an inspirational quote for future writers out there.

Mel: I’d like to use one of my favourite quotes by Maya Angelou –
“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” 

The Contract (Prequel to the Fractured Series) - Melissa Barker- Simpson

After the Demonic War, a battle which devastated the mortal realm, humans now stick to the world’s major cities. To even the score, and to protect those cities, hunters joined together to establish cells across the globe. Maddison Wood is part of an alpha cell within the north of England.
Though a skilled fighter and powerful witch, Maddison can be brash, and unpredictable. She has a penchant for trouble, and is usually the first to volunteer in battle. When she accepts an assignment to protect the Hympe King, Tobias Locke, Maddison’s fate becomes bound to his. As the stakes change, and she finds herself trapped inside the bowels of an enemy camp, Maddison must fight for her freedom, her independence, and for a prisoner who has not seen the light of day for almost a century.
Saunders' Choice:A Natural Gifts Novella By Gina Briganti
Saunders finds himself in a plane of existence called the Dreaming, where he encounters Velvet, the most exciting creature he will ever meet.  The answer seems obvious, but Saunders’ life has never been easy.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: I've been writing since, well...since I was knee-high to a grasshopper. I often look back on those earlier stories, and apart from laughing at the heavy-handed drama, or cringing at my inexperience, I am reminded that I have always lived in other worlds.

My first novel was published in 2008, and I love nothing more than working on a new project. The voices inside my head invariably pull me in different directions, so although I try to work on one thing at a time, those who know me would tell you it doesn't always work!

I have a full-time job which, though does not involve writing per se, incorporates my love of language. As a British Sign Language Interpreter, I get to translate information between two languages which is (mostly) fun.

I have two beautiful daughters who bring me great joy. They also keep me grounded, because otherwise I would have my head in the clouds permanently!








Changing up the scene today we have a spotlight light on sensational fantasy author Nichole Giles!

Nichole Giles: Author of DESCENDANT, BIRTHRIGHT, and WATER SO DEEP, has lived in Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and Texas. She is a huge fan of all things paranormal and magical. Her dreams include owning a garden full of fairies, riding a unicorn, and taming the pet dragon she adopted at a recent local ComiCon. His name is Zane. She also loves to spend time with her husband and four children, travel to tropical and exotic destinations, drive in the rain with the convertible top down, and play music at full volume so she can sing along.

 13 Random Facts about Nichole Giles

1.    I am the oldest of eleven children: two biological sisters, four biological brothers, and four step-brothers.
2.    I don’t like to read books that don’t involve some kind of romance, kissing scenes included.
3.    I must have lived during the regency period in a past life, because I love corset-style dresses and costumes. For Halloween, I’ll probably dress up, even though my kids won’t.
4.    My favorite ice cream flavor was discontinued over 10 years ago, but I still hold out hope that Ben and Jerry’s will bring back their Island Paradise flavor.
5.    My favorite food in the world is steamed snow crab.
6.    Whenever I struggle with creating or writing, I like to go for a drive with my convertible top down. I’ve even been known to do this with snow flurries in the air.
7.    Nichole’s ultimate dream house: on a white-sand beach, with lots of windows, palm trees in the yard, a huge patio, and within walking distance to a number of friends’ homes. Also near great shopping. It should also have a dedicated library where I can write.
8.    I have a growing collection of fairies. Statues, paintings, etc. And I’ve started picking up mermaids as well. I love to be surrounded by fantastical creatures.
9.    I have four kids. Two boys, two girls, all nearly grown.
10.    When I was in high school in Arizona, my friends and I haunted a local hangout, where I became highly proficient at playing air hockey.
11.    During my junior year, I had the opportunity to go to New York with my choir, where we sang in Carnegie Hall. We also toured the city, largely without supervision.
12.    My favorite candy includes Kookabura licorice and Black Forest gummies. All varieties of both.
13.    I have kissed a stingray, petted a shark, high-fived a sea otter, and hugged a dolphin, but I have never wrestled an alligator or tried to housebreak a lion—and I don’t think I ever will.
Thanks for hanging out with me for thirteen random facts. You can learn more about me and my books at
Seventeen-year-old Emma Harris is drowning on dry land.

No one knows what’s happening to her, and she’d like to keep her evolution from human to mermaid a secret, but the truth is getting harder and harder to hide. From her adoptive family, from her friends, and especially from the irresistible James Phelps.

Her time in the ocean is spent dodging a possessive merman, while her time on land is split between caring for her special-needs brother and squeezing in every last possible moment of human life. She soon realizes falling for James is unavoidable when he constantly comes to Emma’s rescue and somehow manages to see through her carefully constructed icy facade to the vulnerability she lives with every day. Everything about James makes Emma yearn for a life on land she just can't have.

When Emma’s brother disappears on her watch, James is the only person she trusts to help her save him. But even if they can save her brother, nothing can prevent her return to the sea. Whether she likes it or not, Emma is changing—unable to breathe without yielding to the tide—and it's only a matter of time before she's forced to surrender forever.

Seventeen-year-old Abigail Johnson is Gifted.

Blessed—or cursed—with Sight and Healing, Abby lives an unsettled life, moving from place to place and staying one step ahead of the darkness that hunts her. When she arrives in Jackson, Wyoming, she is desperate to maintain the illusion of normalcy, but she is plagued with visions of past lives mixed with frightening glimpses of her future. Then she meets Kye, a mysterious boy who seems so achingly familiar that Abby is drawn to him like he’s a missing piece of her own soul.

Before Abby can discover the reason for her feelings toward Kye, the darkness catches up to her and she is forced to flee again. But this time she’s not just running. She is fighting back with Kye at her side, and it’s not just Abby’s life at stake.

*An exciting young adult paranormal romance & coming of age story & urban fantasy involving Greek and Roman mythology
*featuring fairies, mermaids, psychics, healing herbs and crystals, sprites, magical creatures, dragons, swords and sorcery, goddesses, demons, the Morrigana, magic, witchcraft, romance and kissing.


Two months ago, Abigail Johnson saved the life of the boy she believes is her destiny and defeated an army of demons that have pursued her ancestors for centuries. Now, she and Kye should be taking their place as leaders of the new generation of Gifted, but the curse they thought was broken has returned, and every minute together brings them closer to death.
When remaining shadow demons attack again, the Dragons send Abby to Mexico. But she isn’t any safer here than she was back home. The shadows have tracked her, the locals expect her to help with their own demon problems, and the more time she spends away from Kye, the more she doubts the destiny that ties them together.
When the demons destroy her safe house, Abby has no choice but to take the fight to them. The arrival of an old nemesis throws their careful plans into disarray, and Abby and her friends find themselves facing new adversaries in a battle that turns fatal. This time, not everyone will make it out alive.


Connect with Nichole!    
Website: Nichole

Also Check her out on Amazon Authors  and Goodreads

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


Today I have in my seat Fantasy short story writer and poetess Louise Findlay.

  JC :  Tell us about your book summing it in two words.

 LF: Medieval Poetry.

JC. Who is your target audience for your book? And why Fantasy?

LF: Teenagers who like a good sword fight. An adventure with a daring thief who has a destiny to save the kingdom, why is it not fantasy?

JC: Why not indeed.  So who is your muse when writing?  What is your inspiration?
LF: Well it depends. If I’m writing certain kinds of poetry it is nature. Other times inspiration just strikes.

JC: Sometimes inspiration does just strike. I can be talking to some one and bam! An Idea hits. Now do you have any secret writing tips to share?

LF: Um, no. Well, NaNoWriMo. Their word sprints are really good just to get you into the routine of writing.

JC: Nice! Can you share what do you love most about writing?

LF: The finished product, especially in print format. There is nothing like seeing your creation and being able to hold it in your hands.

JC: I totally remember that feeling. I prefer mornings to write. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen, but do you have a personal favorite time of day to write?

LF: The afternoon/evening. I’m not a morning person at all but sometimes getting up an hour or two earlier on the weekend (about 9-10) is quite good.

JC: End us with an inspirational quote for future writers out there.

LF: “If nobody wrote anything then nothing would ever have been written”


The Magic Christmas Dragon & Other Poetry Tales
There was a dragon that hated Christmas because Santa never gave him any presents. Every year he tries to ruin it for everyone in Wintaru. Read the tales about fairies, elves and goblins who try and thwart this dastardly dragon.

Dreamless Roads Anthology

Join us on the Dreamless Roads where we step across the threshold into the unknown to discover words that have turned into worlds of imagination, legend and, of course, fantasy. Commune with your inner elf, or dwarf, quest with heroes and warriors, and cross the borders into the land of gods and dragons ~ and the past and future realms of possibility and adventure.
Louise's feature: The Rogue’s Odyssey
Heroes with an edge are always fascinating and when the métier is poetic, the romance tends to rise exponentially because, after all, everyone loves a rascal who’s only a heartbeat away from being on the wrong side of the tracks, but who somehow always battles on to win the day, whether that’s fleeing from dastardly henchmen, or fighting a terrifying dragon.
 AVAILABLE @ Amazon     Barnes & Noble

The Rogue’s Odyssey (Stand alone)

Heroes with an edge are always fascinating and when the métier is poetic, the romance tends to rise exponentially because, after all, everyone loves a rascal who’s only a heartbeat away from being on the wrong side of the tracks, but who somehow always battles on to win the day, whether that’s fleeing from dastardly henchmen, or fighting a terrifying dragon.  
AVAILABLE @ Smashwords   Amazon Kindle  iBooks  AND Kobo

 Louise Findlay writes fantasy (generally short stories) and inspirational poetry. She enjoys reading and writing about mythological creatures such as angels and demons but has a soft spot for vampires. Louise is currently in the midst of writing a vampire novella about two vampire clans whose deputy’s clash in a big way, entitled A Spy in the Sagax Vampires.

She generally writes ebooks but she’s apart of a few anthologies which are in print and plans to release a print version of a collection of poetry at Christmas time this year.

CONNECT WITH LOUISE ON  Smashwords    Lulu    
Amazon Author Page    Facebook  and   Twitter

Sunday, June 7, 2015


Next on the Tour (Go to #MagicSolsticeFantasyAuthorsBlogTour to see all the amazing authors)

I had the pleasure to sit down and speak with The Other Inheritance author Rebecca Jaycox


JC: Tell us about your book summing it in two words.

Jaycox: Epic adventure.

JC: What is your target audience for your book? And why Fantasy?

Jaycox: This is a young adult fantasy so primarily teens, but it is also a book adults will enjoy. Fantasy is so much fun because you build your own world and share it with people. You get to play around with reality and invite the reader on a new adventure. It's so much fun!

JC: I like that answer! So do you have a muse when writing? What is your inspiration?

Jaycox: Wow, that's a tough question! Star Wars inspired me to become a writer was I was around 10. I wanted to create an epic saga like George Lucas did. I'm strictly referring to the original films, of course. Now that I'm older, traveling inspires me. Seeing other places and cultures and using those observations as a basis for my world building.

JC: Very nice! Do you have any secret writing tips?

Jaycox: Hmm, honestly? Never give up. If you really want to write, then do it. And learn to take criticism. You have to have a thick skin in this business or you won't survive. Recognizing good criticism makes you a better writer. And isn't that what we're all trying to be, better writers? I certainly am.

JC: Stubbornness works too in this business. Criticism just makes me work harder to prove them wrong. Now what do you love most about writing?

Jaycox: I feel alive when I write. I get excited about writing in a way I don't get excited about anything else. And when you're in that sweet spot, (I realize how dirty that sounds, sorry!) and creating something really amazing, there's nothing like it.

JC: Ahhh yes the “writers zone” I call it. Nothing can compare to it. Okay I prefer mornings to write. Sometimes that doesn’t always happen, but do you have a personal favorite time of day to write?

Jaycox: Nope, any time I can find to write, I do.
JC: Close us out with an inspirational quote for future writers out there.

Jaycox: It took me almost eight years to find a publisher for "The Other Inheritance." Despite all the rejections and self-doubt, I never gave up. And neither should you. It will happen.


Seventeen-year-old Reggie has been having a tougher time than usual. As if dealing with her alcoholic mother and fighting school bullies isn't enough, this biker dude shows up in her dreams, babbling about magic and a world called the Other. Then, in biology class, her finger brushes a dead frog set out for dissection and it leaps off the table, scaring everyone, including her. Reggie's life is changing, and she has no idea why. Or whether she should believe the man in her dreams, who claims she's in danger and that someone is coming to take her to a safer reality. But if there's one thing she's learned, nowhere is safe.



ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rebecca Jaycox grew up in the tiny town of Berryman, which borders the Mark Twain National Forest and the Courtois River about 70 miles south of St. Louis. The beautiful landscape fed her imagination, and she began writing stories at age 10 and never stopped. Always seeking adventure, Rebecca moved to France after she graduated college with a journalism degree to teach English at a French high school. Bitten by the travel bug, she has recently visited Italy, Greece, Austria, Spain, and finally made it to her bucket-list destination of Istanbul last summer. Rebecca now lives in New York City with her husband, Gregory. She is the curator and program director of the YA Lit Series at the 92nd Street Y--one of New York's premier cultural centers. She enjoys reading and writing fantasy, urban fantasy, steampunk, and science fiction. The Other Inheritance is her first novel.


 Amazon Authors    ****  Facebook **** Twitter

Friday, June 5, 2015


Greetings all! Turning the heat up here with an AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT on new fantasy author KJ Hawkins! Check out this hot excerpt from “An Elf, A Dragon, & God’s Intervention” soon to be featured in the upcoming The Dragon Tempest Anthology published by DKC publishing co.

An Elf, A Dragon & a God’s Intervention


By: KJ Hawkins

The forest floor was littered with fallen twigs and leaves from the winter months. Blake could feel the life slowly returning to the slumbering trees as Blackmoon led him deep into the forest. He had to pace himself; the journey to the rubies was going to be a long one.

Blake was surprised at how Blackmoon’s chatty demeanor had changed from the moment they left the cliffs of Torrin. She hadn’t said two words to him since. If he hadn’t been able to see her walking just two feet in front of him, he wouldn’t have believed she was there.

The sun was waning on the horizon and Blake started to dread the idea of staying overnight in this forbidden land. He didn’t even feel comfort from Meisha’s presence hovering above the tree tops. She was always carefully scouting ahead for danger. “At least one of us needs to be able to see what is coming. As far as we know, Blackmoon could be leading us into a trap.”

“Don’t be so hasty little one,Meisha teased. “There has been no reason not to trust the kyre.”

He sighed letting her win another argument. It was always easier to play dumb with Meisha. Like all dragons, she was a sore loser. Blake was so busy mind speaking with Meisha, he didn’t realize Blackmoon had stopped until he was practically on her tail.

Blake saw her hackles slowly rising. He looked ahead of himself to see a wide-open clearing. At the center of the clearing was a large stone obelisk. What surprised him most were the three large rubies protruding from its core.

“We’re here,” Blackmoon growled.

“What’s wrong?”

She looked at him, burning deep into his soul with her yellow eyes. “This fight was ordained by the child goddess,” she stated. “I hope you and Meisha will survive.”

With that Blackmoon tucked her tail and bolted for her life. She looked like black lightning flashing across the ground. “Meisha, did you get all that?”

“Pay attention to the ground, youngling!”
Meisha let loose a battle cry. The ground shook beneath Blake’s feet as he looked on in horror. A creature from Zorric dug itself out from under the obelisk, melting the soil into black goo as it fought for freedom. “Damn! It had to be a shadow wraith.”

CHECK OUT KJ’S OTHER SHORT IN The Magical Muse: A Collection of Fantasy Stories

 Stories of fantasy ranging from dark, to light and inspiring, bring life to this anthology.  The creatures featured throughout, both good and evil, display the devastating or wonderful personalities they were given by the authors who created them for your enjoyment.
 KJ’s feature: Trisha finds herself in the clentches of a monster like know other. She has to fight her way to freedom only to find herself looking at deaths door. Will she survive the fight or will a secret hidden from her be her saving grace.


 THE DRAGON TEMPEST Tales of Fantasy and adventure ANTHOLOGY 2 COMING SOON

KJ Hawkins is a young fantasy author making her way into print. She has had a strong love for fantasy since she was nine years old.

As an adult the magic stayed with her inspiring her to write stories of adventure and magic. Hawkins, at her best, brings personality to every word she writes, exciting her readers with every page.

Fun Fact

KJ Hawkins is actually a pen name taken from the initials of her real first and last name. Hawkins came from her favorite childhood film, Treasure Planet, the lead character is James Hawkins!


    Facebook  Google+   Twitter

Sign up for KJ Hawkins Newsletter