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White Swans by Annamaria Bazzi!! Blog Tour Stop!!

“Today I have the distinct pleasure of hosting Annamaria Bazzi’s fourth blog tour stop for her new book, ‘White Swans: A Regency Era.’ I am pleased to be able to do this for her, and I always want to thank Annamaria for recently hosting me on my own blog tour. She’s a wonderful person to work with, so make sure that you check out her and her new book!” ~Chelsea

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Blog Tour stop #4

Book: White Swans: A Regency Era

Author: annamaria Bazzi

First, I’d like to thank Chelsea for hosting my fourth blog tour stop for White Swans: A Regency Era, a young adult, fantasy, short story series.

It’s been quite challenging to prepare so many blog posts for this tour. Creativity is something that comes natural to me, that is, until I’m under pressure, then my brain shuts down and goes for a walk, leaving me stranded. It took a while to decide what to write.

The hero, Kendíka, walked into my life one morning as I stared out the window at a deep blue sky sipping a mug of late. She too sat at a window looking down at a lake. Three white swans swam there. She did nothing and said nothing. A wonderful and suspenseful ending came to mind, yet I still didn’t know the character or her story.

Now I had a beginning, a girl sitting at a window, and an ending you need to read the book to find out. The situation was perfect because I’m not a plotter. I always have a beginning and a general idea where the journey will end, but never plot the middle.

It’s exciting to sit at the computer and let the character, Kendíka in this case, tell her story. Pictures and scenes start to play in my head as the story unfolds, revealing details and secrets I never would have imagined. New characters walk into the scenes unannounced, taking shape and acquiring a personality of their own. At times, even I’m surprised at the direction the story takes, and that’s what makes writing so exciting. I never know what will happen until it happens. One of the most intriguing characters to walk into a story was the hazy eyes in White Swans. They were unexpected and weird.

If I’m astonished and sometimes shocked at the turn of events, I hope the reader will experience the same surprise, wanting to read more.

Characters come and go, but those that tend to stay in the story, taking on major roles end up on a character sheet, with a small blurb detailing who they are and what their importance is in the story.

So far, I’ve never had to go back and make major changes to a plot, somehow all pieces fall neatly into place. My characters seem to understand how to bring a story to a clean ending.

At times, a new character, I never expected, will step in a scene, taking over, and becoming the real hero of the novel. The first time it happened I was devastated, since I’d become attached to the character I believed the tale was about. It took a bit of adjusting, but I never interfered with how the characters unfolded their stories.

The voyage, going from beginning to end, is the journey where I have fun. It’s the part of the process that brings me the pleasure of writing every day, adding mystery to my life. Every day I prance into new and exciting adventures with characters I learn to love as they become a part of who I am. I could never give up writing.

Chelsea, it’s been a pleasure working with you and getting to know you. It was exciting to host your blog tour on March 15, and thank you again for hosting mine.

 

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‘Embers At Galdrilene’ by A.D. Tropser- Five Star Review!!!!

Embers-at-Galdrilene-Version-5Five Stars*****

A.D. Trosper has managed to give life to a whole new world, filled with fantastically diverse and realistic characters. By the time I had read through the first six chapters or so, I felt as though I were amongst friends. The entire book plays out like a movie inside of the mind, making the reading effortless. There are no dull parts at all. ‘Embers at Galdrilene’ is truly one of the most fantastic fantasy books I have read in a long time. Fantasy is one of those genres that I tend to be extremely picky with, and yet I could find not a single flaw. There was nothing I thought that could use a little work or be built upon. The book is perfect exactly as it is. I was so drawn into the plot, so connected with the characters, that I lost many nights of sleep…and gladly to! It would have been impossible for me to stop reading. The story ends on a subtle cliffhanger that leaves you wanting to know what happens, yet without the annoyingly dramatic effect some authors are fond of using.

 

I would highly recommend this book to anyone who even remotely enjoys fantasy, magic, or dragons; or anyone who enjoys a truly thrilling and inspiring read. You will not regret taking a chance on this book, you can be guaranteed of that!

Author Feature: Marilynn Dawson

Today’s featured author is Marilynn Dawson, who writes books in the religion/spirituality genre. Her books include “Becoming The Bride of Christ: A Personal Journey,” which is a six part series with a leader’s guide. You can find her books here on Amazon. You can also find a digital version of her series here on Scribd. You can follow Marilynn Dawson on Facebook or here on her Companion website, plus you can also find her work on Goodreads.

Author Interview

1. When did you first begin writing?
I began writing fictional short stories, puppet plays and poems as a young child.

2. What first inspired you to become an author? Who or what continues to inspire you?
My parents were always encouraging me to better myself as I wrote. When I got to grade three, my school teacher told my parents, in my hearing, that I had potential to become an author. I’m not really sure what first inspired me to write. The desire to be creative with words has always been there. In recent years, writing has left the realm of fiction and leaned toward Scriptural exegesis and end-time eschatology. The strongest inspiration to write is the ongoing need around me for spiritual questions to be answered in a sound, Biblically accurate manner. The advent of the Internet has resulted in a lot of strange stuff being posted by supposedly prominent leaders in the faith, and I’ve found myself digging through the Scriptures to make sure those asking the questions get what God says instead.

3. Do you ever get so caught up in your own stories that it often blurs with reality?
No, any time I’ve written fiction, the settings and characters have been so far removed from modern life that there is no room for blurring.

4. What is your favorite genre of book to read?
Christian action/adventure, Missionary biographies, etc.

5. Does anyone help your stories along when you get stuck? Or do you go it alone?
I typically went it alone.

6. Who was the very first person that read your very first book?
Published or unpublished? Most of my writing never got published until a few poems entered the American Poetry Anthology back in 1988/89. They published two sets of my poetry. I’d have to say my parents got their first copy of my published work back then.

7. Do you have any other hobbies besides writing?
Singing, walking, HTML

8. What is one word that you think describes you as a person?
Intense. Among other things. . .

9. Are you an organized or unorganized person? Both in writing and in life?
Generally organized, especially when writing! Although too much organization frustrates when I’m writing fiction. I have a virtual filing cabinet happening with my current book series efforts.

10. Is there anything else you would like readers to know?
Not right off the top of my head as far as who I am as an author goes. The focus of this book series is aimed at the fellow Christ-follower who wants to go deeper in their faith. It’s boot camp. But it is my story of healing and restoration as God invaded my home in a greater way than in times past.

Now that we’ve gotten to know the author, let’s get to know her works a little better! The following is an excerpt from Marilynn’s book series.

Excerpt

“It was then that an unmistakable sensation came over me, as if God were holding me in a 360 degree embrace and saying, “NOW I can love you!” Fresh tears began to flow as I sat there soaking in a love I had never anticipated could ever flow from God to me.

I honestly had never learned that God could touch my emotions. I had never expected that God’s love and talk of His Bride would be anything more than ethereal head knowledge found in the pages of Scripture. Needless to say I had to go diving through the Scriptures to make sure I hadn’t suddenly snapped and fallen off the deep end.

What followed led to the lessons, discoveries and revelations found in this series!”

Author Feature: Jeffrey Scott Sorensen

Today’s featured author is Jeffrey Scott Sorensen. He writes in the ‘Horror Comedy’ genre, and his book’s title is ‘Zombies Ruined My Weekend.’ The book can be purchased on Amazon (click here) and also as an ebook for Kindle (click here).  In addition, you can also follow him on Facebook , and check out his website here. Got Twitter? His handle is @SorenJeff. Follow him and his information!

Author Interview

1. When did you first begin writing?
I began serious writing when I enrolled in college courses for a Journalism major. Sadly, the more I learned about that career, the less I wanted to pursue it seriously. I was offered a chance to writer for a local newspaper and was given a few assignments that included interviewing a 12 year old male figure skater, talking to a lady about the relationship with her dog, and reviewing the computer animated film ‘The Ant Bully.’ I felt that I couldn’t write about things that I didn’t care about. Soon after, I started writing for various online websites that received quite a lot of positive attention.

2. What first inspired you to become an author? Who or what continues to inspire you?
The first initial experience that inspired me to  begin writing my novel was when I worked in Detroit rehabbing houses. The day already started off strange enough when we walked in to the house and there was a homeless man and a prostitute in the attic. After we kicked them out, I looked out the window and see a man robbing the house next door. I told my dad to call the police, and it was busy. I was shocked that 911 is busy and replied, “911 is busy?! Are we in a zombie movie?!” That’s where it initially hit me and I started to write with in that first couple days.

Authors who inspire me would be Chuck Palahnuik, Cormac McCarthy, Jack Kerouac, Hunter S. Thompson, and Daniel Quinn. Life experiences inspire me as well. I’ve lived a ridiculous life that would be worthy of a few books, but I think most of the people I know would kill me if I wrote anything.

3. Do you ever get so caught up in your own stories that it often blurs with reality?
There have been a few times where I’m writing or reading something that I have written and I lost track of time. I include variants of real experiences in my stories that blend with the fiction I’m writing. There was a time when I was really  in deep in my book and was figuring out a fate for a character and got really sad. I soon snapped out of it, but that was pretty strange.

4. What is your favorite genre to read?
I enjoy various non-fiction books like how to, psychology, science, and humor books. When it comes to fiction genres, I’d say I mostly read fantasy, graphic novels, science fiction, and fictional humor novels. You won’t catch me reading young adult or glittery vampire novels.

5. Does anyone help your stories along when you get stuck? Or do you go it alone?Midway through my novel, I got stuck because I lacked technical knowledge about the military, and I wasn’t quite sure which direction I wanted to go I shot ideas back and forth with a friend who was in the military. He jolted me out of my writing funk and I knew where the rest of it was going to go. For the most part though, I stress and stress and figure it out by myself.

6.Who was the very first person who read your book?
I believe it was my mom. The moment I got my first issued paperback copy in the mail, I gave it to her to read. She said she loved it, but, when it comes to friends and family, I don’t believe anything.

7. Do you have any other hobbies besides writing?
I play a few musical instruments and had this huge intention of being a rock star since i was in high school, and I guess I still do a little bit. I tend to read a lot, which leads me to being the person that brings up random facts in public that relates to almost any situation. I also go to the gym too much. I’m not the super cup off shirt guy grunting while lifting weights guy. I hate that guy.

8. What is one word that you think described you as a person?
Strange.

9.  Are you organized or unorganized person? Both in writing and in life?
It goes both ways, I guess. It’s either I’m obsessively organized, or I’m shockingly unorganized. It all rests on motivation. When I’m motivated, I make things happen, but when I’m not, I fall into a black hole of worry and concern.

10. Is there anything else you would like readers to know?
Don’t think that you can’t achieve something you set your mind to. I never thought I could write a  book, and then I did it. I have their recurring mantra repeat in my head when I think I can’t do something, and it’s, “Lesser men have achieved what you think to be unachievable.”

Now that you’ve gotten to know the author, let’s get to know his book! Here is an excerpt of ‘Zombies Ruined My Weekend’ along with the cover art!

Zombies Ruined My Weekend

Looking around now everything feels so distant. I was worrying about small things like my cell phone bill and whether I texted too much. Now, I was thinking of calling a lawyer, jail time, and getting pounded by some gang of Neo-Nazis in the laundry room of a maximum security prison.
Still, though, for some reason no cops have shown up yet. The cops in my city would be on your ass if you went 5 MPH over or just because your car looked suspicious. I am really sure they don’t ignore throwing Grandpa into the bottom of a lawnmower, or caving in the skull of a vagrant, that much is certain.
I forgot I was even walking while I was thinking all of this to myself and was already at my apartment door. I go to open it and it’s locked.
KNOCK KNOCK!
“Kacey?! Open the door!”
After a slight pause, the light showing threw the peephole turns dark. I raise my eyebrows with a smart ass smirk and shrug my shoulders.
Kacey opens the door fast with red eyes and fresh tears pouring down. Regardless she was happy that I made it upstairs alive. She begins to grab me for a huge hug but stops quickly with a taken back look on her face.
“EW.” She says again.
“Yeah, I know. Blood isn’t easy for me either, ya’know?”
I walked in and immediately shut and locked the door. I looked through the peephole and turned around back to Kacey. She appeared to be okay, either that or she was in a state of shock. She isn’t the one that killed 2 people.
On the TV, the EMS was going off again. That sound is so distinctive, but its ring grinds into your ears louder when you know that it’s probably related to what just happened. This is the first time that I actually cared to pay attention to it, and finally see the reason for it.
I quickly walk over to my recliner and pick up remote. All that is happening on the EMS screen now are just the same three words repeating over and over again like a Japanese cartoon that will give you a seizure.
PLEASE STAND BY
PLEASE STAND BY
PLEASE STAND BY
“What the hell is going on, Kevin?!” Kacey said in a trembling tone while shaking my left arm with her hand.
I just shook my head. Every channel had the same message, the same screen, and the same words. Usually there was a voice over or something to go along with an emergency like earlier, but for some reason there was nothing.
“Check 2, 4, and 7?” Kacey suggests.
It seemed obvious but it slipped my mind to be more exact when switching around. I tried channel 7, and EMS popped up. Then I tried 2, and eureka! 2 anchors, a man and women, who look extremely tense and over worked, are attempting to report the news that seemed to be quickly coming in from various sources.
“The various national guard check points were overrun by the violent crowds in Detroit and other areas of Wayne County and the surrounding Metro-Detroit areas.”
“The National Guard is urging people to stay in their homes and to not be alarmed, but to be extremely cautious, and to be prepared to stay in their homes for the next day or more.”
“This is some of the footage we got from Chuck McDonald before we got cut off from him at a National Guard check point in front of the Fox Theater on Woodward.”
The Camera cuts to a shot of a man standing in front of a barricade with the usual army looking Hummers and soldiers holding M-16 Rifles.
The reporter was standing there yelling into his microphone but you couldn’t hear anything except the troops running around behind him. The reporter was looking off camera and asking if he was on-air. Troops behind him were beginning to stabilize while aiming their guns in the same direction down the street amongst military vehicles and barricades. Through them you could see what looked like a mob of people, but the camera kept focusing and going out of focus that it was hard to say. It was like that stupid Cloverfield movie all over again.
“Am I on? I am? Ok. Diana and Robert, I am here observing Company F, of the 425th infantry out of Selfridge, mobilize against what officials are calling a “full on metropolitan riots.” Attempts to contact sources outside areas have been successful and what we are hearing is that this is not an isolated incident. Similar occurrences are happening in Atlanta, New York City, and San Diego before communication went down and…”
ZWOOSH!!! TING! TING TING!
“The soldiers have now begun firing tear gas canisters into the crowd to stop the crowd that is slowly making its way to the barricades that we are safely behind. It looks like that might have done the trick.”
The reporter signals to his camera man to get as close as he could to the barricade to get a better shot of what was happening. All that was visible was a huge white smoke plume that covered the entire city street like heavy fog on a spring morning.
The soldiers seemed to become a little bit less on their guard after that. The tear gas continued to envelop the street and come closer and closer to the barricade.
The cameraman backed up and the reporter came into the view now wearing a gas mask and adjusting his hair.
“It seems like the tear gas may have cleared the crowd. It looks like the Michigan State University riots back in 99’.”
Over the reporter’s shoulder, the cloud of tear gas had just about reached the barricade. 2 soldiers were talking with each other while one’s back is to the barricade.
“Looks like we might be breathing a sigh of relief now and…”

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