Podcast

Back in the summer, I was asked if I would like to be interviewed for a Podcast for Blondie and the Brit. Through Facebook I’d already become friends with ‘Blondie’ aka KJ Waters – you might remember the posts on her book, Stealing Time – and we were working on my book cover together (along with Jody Smyers), so I was looking forward to chatting with her again. Also, I’d done one before so it didn’t faze me. The time was set for the recording and after a couple of minor technical hitches, it went ahead.

'Blondie' aka KJ Waters

‘Blondie’ aka KJ Waters

I have to say I had a brilliant time. It was lovely to get to know Suzanne Kelman, ‘the Brit’, and between the three of us there were plenty of laughs. We obviously did some serious stuff as well though. I can’t believe how many subjects we covered in ninety minutes: editing; jewellery making; book reviews; Of Ice & Air; my publishing group, Myrddin; the writing group I lead, Writebulb; inspiration; and, of course, writing.

'the Brit' aka Suzanne Kelman

‘the Brit’ aka Suzanne Kelman

Anyway, the great thing is that the interview went live yesterday. The timing could not have been more perfect with the launch of my new book today!

Here’s the MP3 link so you can listen to it:  <a href=”http://blondieandbrit.podbean.com/mf/play/8z67fg/Carliecullenfinal1118.mp3“>Download this episode (right click and save)</a>

I hope you enjoy it and if podcasts are your thing, check out Blondie and the Brit. They have some great ones already on their backlist and plenty of talented people still lined up.

Click to go directly there

Click to go directly there

 

Pre-Launch Teaser #2

With one day to go to the book launch, here’s another little teaser from Of Ice & Air for you. Enjoy!

Also my podcast interview with Blondie and the Brit is airing today. Check it out here http://blondieandbrit.podbean.com/e/carlie-cullen-episode-…/  I had so much fun doing it and the ladies were great hosts!

Letter T-Maa

BOOK TAKEOVER: Vera’s Song

Hi! Remy Injay here, indie book reporter! Firstly, I’d like to thank Carlie for letting me takeover her website today for an interview! Today we’re interviewing Ionan, a fire breathing, emerald green dragon who takes center stage in the second book in the Creatures of the Lands series, Vera’s Song! Vera’s Song comes out this Friday, June 10th. 

Vera's Song cover

Thanks for being here today, Ionan. Can you tell us a little about the book?

It’s different, this time around. In the first book my companions and I had to journey the realm in order to find a cure for a strange illness. Now my friend Kia’s son has been kidnapped, and we must go beyond all reason in order to get him back.

This book is about your first love, Vera, correct?

Yes, that is what our sequel pertains to.

And? Details?

I’m not inclined to give any, at the moment. (Lets out a puff of smoke).

Darn! Okay, then tell us about your adventures. What can readers expect this time?

What else? Danger. Excitement. True love gone wrong for multiple couples, and a despicable creature out to destroy the Lands. Usual, I expect.

You sound rather grumpy today.

You cannot possibly imagine.

But this is your book!

Yes, it is my story, though not a particularly pleasant one all the way through. People died, you know. There’s a fair bit of tragedy among the adventure. Not everyone gets their happy ending this time. Sacrifices had to be made for the greater good. The first book was lighter. Things are getting darker.

I see. And you’re not inspired to tell us anything except for what’s on the back?

I am a dragon. I do not meddle in the affairs of humans. 

Irritable reptile.

Did you expect anything different?

Okay, fine. In the first book, you participated in a great battle to save Kia’s forest. Is this book going to be similar to last time?

Things involved more people in Book 1, but now all of our battles are on a much more personal scale. There’s more to lose for all of us, if you can believe it. Our children are at stake, and the people who have them like to play mind games.  

Wait a second…if this is your story then why aren’t you on the cover?

Because dragons are expensive to make, you fool. I suppose none of you humans could catch me in all my scaled, green glory anyway.

Will you behave?

I do not know the meaning of the word.

You know we could call your rider, Keota, in here. He’ll put a stop to this.

That’s what I thought. Can you tell me a little about the book’s antagonist, Wyntier? From your honest opinion?

I could tell you I want to rip him limb from limb until he goes out of this world screaming.

Ionan!

Well, you asked me to be honest. I am a fearsome creature, as you well know, and I don’t take well to people who try to destroy everything I hold dear. I don’t suppose anyone does, really. I’m certainly not going to sit down for tea and crumpets with him…that’s what you humans eat here, tea and crumpets? I’m sure that must be what the phrase is…

Fine, fine. What’s the last thing you want to say to readers?

Expect the unexpected. Things aren’t always what they appear in the Lands, and this time, enemies are lurking everywhere…even from within our circle of friends.

That’s a wrap! Thanks again Ionan for showing up…

I really shouldn’t have.

And make sure you grab a copy of Vera’s Song, which can be found here at Amazon!

Author Interview: K J Waters

A couple of days ago, I revealed the book launch and an exclusive excerpt of Stealing Time by K J Waters. Click here if you missed it. I was so excited and intrigued by this book that I asked the author if she’d be kind enough to grant me an interview. She very kindly agreed so here it is:

kj pic

Welcome KJ. It’s great to have you here. Are you ready for a grilling?

Thank you so much Carlie, great to be here. Yes, let’s put the shrimp on the barbie! Wait… you meant the other kind of grilling. Yes, hit me with it!

CC: Your book Stealing Time deals with time travel. How long have you been interested in this subject and what was it that attracted you to it?

KJ: When I was a kid my step mother would read to us on long walks in the woods. We would sit down on a bed of leaves surrounded by the sounds of nature, the smell of pine, and the view of a canopy of tall trees and lose ourselves in the book. It set the tone for our mystical and beautiful adventures with C.S. Lewis, J. R. Tolkien, Richard Adams and more. One of books she read to us was A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle and it really sparked my imagination, and believe it or not starts with the famous Snoopy line, “It was a dark and stormy night.”

I soon discovered that the possibilities were endless with time travel. When I began writing, it was even more magical because you can go anywhere and change anything you want to suit your needs and tell an exciting story.

CC: I agree, the possibilities are endless with time travel – there are so many places you can take your characters to! I was particularly interested that you featured Hurricane Charley in the book. I was actually in Florida when it hit and lived through it myself. Did you experience this first hand? If so, how were you affected by it?

KJ: We have that in common, Carlie. I hope nothing too dastardly happened to you. Hurricane Charley was my welcome to Florida. I moved there and just like in Stealing Time, three days later Charley paid us a visit. Rude, don’t you think?

I’ve grown up on the East Coast and it seems where ever I’ve lived the hurricanes chose that location to wallop us. The prior year I was in Virginia Beach where Hurricane Isabelle devastated North Carolina and Southern Virginia coastline. I have been in over 15 hurricanes and tropical storms in my life, so it was an easy subject matter to convey the terror and helplessness you feel as the storm is raging around you, dropping trees and tornados as Mother Nature throws her tantrum.

I was lucky with Hurricane Charley, and for that matter, Francis, Ivan, and Jeanne that same summer in Florida also hit, but didn’t sustain any real damage, mostly just a lot of clean up. The last hour of the last hurricane, Jeanne to be exact, a branch from a Loblolly pine dropped and pierced our Florida room roof. Other than that was just a messy clean up and the dreaded no power or cable service for a week or more after each storm. It was a hot summer anyway, but throw in no power and zero entertainment… well you were there so you know.

CC: I was actually quite lucky. I didn’t lose power or water. It sounds like you had a rough time there. Moving on though, one of your characters ends up in London – have you ever been to the UK or has all your information come from research?

KJ: I visited London with my best friend after I finished grad school. I have always been fascinated with English history and how people lived back before modern conveniences. The details and social issues I had to research, but I felt very natural writing in that place and time.

I’m definitely an Anglophile and loved visiting the castles and other historical buildings when I was there. We also visited Ireland and Scotland on that visit and I was equally enamoured with the land, the history, and the people.

CC: If you come back to the UK, we’ll have to meet up! Anyway, I’ve given away a few minor details about Stealing Time, but can you tell us more about it?

KJ: Stealing Time starts with Ronnie Andrews and her best friend Stephanie McKay watching news coverage about Hurricane Charley. Ronnie gets a call from her boyfriend to spend the night at his weather lab, he is monitoring the storm, and it’s her birthday. He shares a very special gift with her – a watch she found on her trip to London with Stephanie the month prior. The watch is a very important part of the story.

During the peak of the storm, Ronnie is thrown back in time to 1752 London, where she struggles to figure out what brought her there and how to return. She is a modern woman and the people around her start to notice differences in her speech and behaviour and accuse her of being a witch. Ronnie struggles to find her way out of the life and death struggle to return to Florida and save her neck from the witch trials that ensue.

Meanwhile, Steph heads back home and invites her hot friend Nick over so she is not alone when the hurricane hits. She and Nick are caught out in the middle of the storm a few times and quickly find everything is falling apart around them, and are faced with losing everything.

CC: I noticed it has Volume 1 on the cover. How many books do you plan to write in this series?

KJ: I started Stealing Time as one book, but as I got so detailed in the telling and found so many cool twists and turns I decided to turn it into a trilogy. I neatly ended Book 1 after the storm and will pick up Book 2 immediately after. The third book will be the final in this trilogy. If you ask my son, who is my helper on the ideas of the books, he has mapped out 3 more trilogies after this. I’ve no idea if I’ll want to move on to something different after the first three books or keep it up. We shall see.

CC: I’m so glad there’s another book in the works. Can you give us a few hints about what’s coming in the next book?

KJ: Book Two has been so much fun to write. I have Hurricane Francis approaching and if you were there, Carlie, you remember it was the size of Texas and a category 5 as it approached Florida.  In Book Two, many of the same characters, and several new and quite colourful ones emerge as heroes and villains. To give you a quick 30 second snapshot of book two I’ll provide a list of highlights.

Stealing more time, seduction, rape, deceit, mud slides, Hurricane seeding and steering, drowning, suicides, Puerto Rico, Wild West shootouts, Hurricane Jeanne, the black plague, London 1666, and past life theories coupled with string theory, fifth dimension and other religious, cultural and belief systems to explain the time travel method I’ve invented.

CC: That sounds fantastic and maybe a little darker than book one. Changing the subject, I understand you also design book covers. How long have you been doing this and how did it come about?

KJ: Great question. I designed the cover to Stealing Time with a professional photographer friend of mine, Jody Smyers. A year later, I had several author friends approach me wanting to know who did my cover and if they would help them with theirs. I’m an indie author and I know the importance of having professional cover that captures the mood of your book – as you know everyone does judge your book by the cover. I’ve seen too many indie authors either pay way too much for a good cover or struggle to create their own without the marketing and editing knowledge on how to pull it off.

I talked to Jody and asked if he’d be interested in going into the business of book cover design and he was game. We started in January 2014 and you can see some of our covers here:

book cover from calendar graphic

We offer the usual book cover services of design and we can use your photo, one you purchase or as a niche market that most don’t offer, we can create a custom photo shoot to capture the cover you want. You can see a mixture of these methods on the book covers we’ve done.

CC: What do you do when you’re not writing?

KJ: Well I’m a water lover so if it’s warm out I’m neck deep in some body of water, whether it’s my pool or preferably I’m on a trip somewhere awesome. This summer will be Cape Cod.

I spend a lot of time with my gorgeous children and help them with school, or develop fun learning things for us to do during summer with my Camp Waters, where I invite their friends over for learning, lunch, and swimming.

When it’s not warm out, I write about my love of water on my blog, Blondie in the Water (kjwatersauthor.blogspot.com) and you can see some of my water adventures here.

I love the gym and you can find me there 4 days a week, if I’m not too busy.

CC: What sort of books do you enjoy reading? Do you have an all-time favourite?

KJ: I like a lot of different genres, from Michael Criton’s science fiction to Dan Brown, but my all-time favourite is Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. She is the main reason I decided to write a book. Her stories are so rich in history, character development, humour and time travel, that it inspired me to create a story of my own with more modern tilt.

CC: Let’s have a few fun ones to finish off with.

Gold or Silver?

KJ: Gold

CC: Cats or dogs?

KJ: Dogs, although I really like cats, too.

CC: Sandals or bare feet?

KJ: Bare feet, unless it’s cold. Then boots!

CC: Summer or winter?

KJ: Summer a million times over!

CC: Witches or vampires?

KJ: Witches.

CC: Hot or cold?

KJ: Hot! Hate being cold!

CC: Sweet or savoury?

KJ: I have a massive sweet tooth!

CC: And finally, pizza or chilli?

KJ: Pizza!

CC: Thanks for taking the time out of your busy schedule to come and talk to me today. I wish you every success with Stealing Time!

KJ: It has been a pleasure Carlie! Thank you so much for having me on your blog!!

CC: You’re very welcome.

I hope you enjoyed that as much as I did! KJ has kindly agreed to write a guest post on what inspires her so I’ll be posting that in a couple of days time. It’s another chance to learn more about her so make sure you keep checking the blog for the next post.

If you’re interested in buying Stealing Time, the buy links are on the launch post (see top of this page for the link to the post)

 

Interview with Tiffany Shand

As promised in my last post, I’ve scored an interview with Tiffany Shand, author of Denai Touch, her debut novel. And here it is:

Book Cover

CC: Hi Tiffany! Welcome and congratulations on your debut novel.

TS: Hi Carlie, thanks for having me. Don’t mind the mad cats jumping around!

CC: That’s no problem. They’re really cute.

Let’s start you off on an easy one – can you tell us a bit about Denai Touch?

TS: It’s about a witch named Cate McCray, who is prophesied to defeat a terrorist organisation named the Covenant. The story mainly focuses on her relationship with her partner Jason and how they fight to stop the Covenant before it’s too late.

CC: What made you choose witches as your theme?

TS: I’ve always loved witches. I thought it would be nice to betray them in a different way rather than hooked nosed hags. My witches are sexy and bad arse!

CC: Why did you pick this genre?

TS: I got bored of contemporary fiction in my teens and that’s when I first discovered my love of paranormal romance/fantasy and knew they were the kind of genres that I wanted to write in.

CC: What was the hardest thing about writing the book?

TS: The hardest thing for me was probably motivation. When I get to the middle of a story I sometimes get a bit bored and really have to motivate myself to finish it.

CC: What was the easiest part of the whole process for you?

TS: Writing the book was probably the easiest thing. The hardest thing was the lead up to the publishing process. Editing took over a year which I was not happy about and did wonder if it would ever end. It was a big letdown.

But despite the bad things that happened I have learnt a lot during this process and know I won’t make the same mistakes with my next book.

CC: I know from experience that a part of the author somehow ends up in the persona of one of the characters. Which of the characters is most like you and why?

TS: That’s a tough question! But probably Cate, she’s a strong woman and I think that strength helped her get through some of the hard times she’s had and I can relate to that in some ways. She’s tough, feisty and sometimes outspoken – which I don’t think I am, but she also has a vulnerable side. We also both have a car named Ruby!

CC: Do you have a particular writing routine?

TS: I usually tend to do other things done in the morning and then write during the afternoon – if my laptop isn’t jumped upon by my two cats! Or I usually spend half an hour removing cat hair from my keyboard.

CC: What can we expect to see next from you?

TS: I’ve almost finished my second novel, Denai Bound which I’m hoping to publish later this year. They are going to be part of a series and I also have a spin off series in the works.

CC: Now for a few fun ones to finish with:

Tea or coffee?

TS: Definitely tea.

CC: Spring or autumn?

TS: Spring.

CC: Sandals or barefoot?

TS: Sandals.

CC: Cocktails or shots?

TS: Neither, I don’t drink.

CC: Green or Purple?

TS: Purple.

CC: Silver or gold?

TS: Silver.

CC: Thanks very much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to talk to me today, Tiffany. I wish you every success with Denai Touch.

TS: Thanks Carlie!

Well, I hope you enjoyed that and getting to know Tiffany a little better. If you’re intrigued about her book, check it out on Amazon by clicking here.

 

 

“What if you demanded a … hostage of sorts?”

Sadly, today is the last day of the Heart Search: Betrayal blog tour *wipes tear from eye*. I’ve had a great time and I hope you have too. I’m so grateful to everyone who has given up time and space on their blogs for me – I wouldn’t have got the word out about the book without you.

HS trilogy new

So what have we got for you today? First there’s an interview I did with the lovely Sherry Fundin. I met Sherry through her sister, Laura, when I was launching the second book in the series, Heart Search: Found and she quickly became a fan of the books. We had fun on the interview so click here to read it.

Next up is Sherry’s sister, the wonderful Laura Thomas, who has written a review of Betrayal. Laura has been a staunch supporter of the series since my first blog tour for Heart Search: Lost. To read her review click here.

Thirdly, we have the fantastic Emma Biddulph. I’ve told you before about how I met Emma so I won’t bore you with the details again. Today she’s posting a great excerpt. Click here to read it.

Last, but certainly not least, is the fabulous Maria V A Johnson. She is my ‘partner in crime’ at Eagle Eye Editors and without her, this series might not have been written at all. I have so much to thank her for! Maria twisted my arm for a guest post, something I said I wouldn’t do this time around, but in all honesty, how could I say no? So check out ‘Saying Goodbye and Hello’ on her blog here.

You now have just under three hours to enter the giveaway, so you need to get your entries in NOW. It closes at midnight tonight GMT. Here’s the link again: a Rafflecopter giveaway

You still have time to enter the competition from yesterday’s blog for two eBooks of Heart Search: Betrayal. I’ll be accepting entries until midnight GMT on 28th February.

Good luck and may the odds be ever in your favour!

Saying Goodbye to Characters

We have a rather late blog post today and all because of a Junk Folder. Why is it that people you are in regular contact with on email suddenly get swiped into the junk folder? It’s so flipping annoying (can you see I’m being good here and not swearing, even though I’m sorely tempted?). Still, at least it was caught in time and before midnight!

junk

Today, I’ve been interviewed by the wonderful Sarah-Jane Bird (yes, she of the fantastic jewellery and book trailer!). I have to say, she threw a couple of hard questions my way about Heart Search: Betrayal, but I have to forgive her…for now at least. I’ll get my revenge when she releases her book. Ha ha ha! I digress. Click here to read the interview and consider following her blog, The Booklife – she has some great stuff on there!

Sarah-Jane

Sarah-Jane