Tuesday, 20 October 2020

Interview With Author Alex Apostol

 Another interview today, this time with supernatural author Alex Apostol, who chats about her dark fiction (just in time for Halloween). Enjoy.


Interview With Alex Apostol




Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself?
 

My name is Alexandra Sandbach but I write under my maiden name, Alex Apostol. I have been self-publishing Fantasy, Supernatural Thrillers, and Horror fiction for the last eight years. I currently have ten books in print and am always working on something new. I have a BA in English Literature and a MA in Business Admin and Marketing, which has really opened my eyes to the world of social networking and marketing. I also design guided journals for authors, horse enthusiasts, women, and self-discovery, which has been an interesting journey. Right now I live in Northwest Indiana with my husband, daughter, and our black cat Bob, but I spent the last ten years traveling all over the country including Hawaii, Texas, Florida, Illinois, and California.


Why did you decide to write in the Fantasy/Supernatural/Horror genres? 

I have always been an avid reader of those types of books. I grew up with the Harry Potter series (I was actually 11 when the first book came out!) and have gravitated toward those types of fantasy books, for adults and children. As I got older I started to read more Supernatural Thrillers and Horror books. I love books that feel like real life but add a bit of magic to it and bring mythology and folklore to life.


You write in several genres. Do you have a favourite? And if so, why?  

It's hard to pick which one is my favorite. The majority of my books are either fantasy or zombie horror and I love both for their own reasons. Zombie horror is the most popular of my books right now and I enjoy putting everyday people in extraordinary situations where they really have to tap into their unused potential to survive. It makes me think what I would do if a horde of zombies ever came knocking at my door and would I have what it takes to make it through the day. But Fantasy fiction is where my heart is. I grew up on it and I love that it blends real life with a touch of whimsy and the supernatural.


Could you tell us a bit about your latest book?

My latest release is called "Wayfare Angel" and it is the fourth book in my Chronicles of a Supernatural Huntsman series. It follows a young woman, Kamlyn Paige, as she suffers a substantial loss which opens her up to the supernatural world. She joins a secret society called The Chamber of Darkness and it's there she learns to fight the creatures of the darkness that threaten the human race. Her biggest motivation is seeking revenge on the mysterious being that murdered her son in the night. As she travels the country looking for vengeance, she realizes there are things about her that are extraordinary and not-so-human as well. Coming to terms with who she is and what she's capable of, she vows to use her powers for good and to protect humans from suffering as she has. In the fourth book, she is traveling between worlds to gather supporters for the coming supernatural war. Her first stop is the land of witches where she hopes to form a fortuitous alliance. The series is great for those who love mythology and folklore. Kamlyn faces many creatures, from werewolves to witches to demons, and even a few you've probably never heard of. Readers have said that it's reminiscent of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Supernatural on the CW, which is high praise because I love both shows.


What is your greatest challenge as a writer?  

For me, marketing is still my biggest challenge. I can knock out a story pretty quickly because there are always a few queued up in my head at a time. I can go through and do a thorough edit and rewrite. I have even started designing my own covers recently. But marketing has always remained my biggest struggle. I am on all the social media sites I feel are prevalent for writers and I keep up with my posts. I don't blast my followers with the advertisement of my books but like to include posts about my research in mythology and history, what's going on in my life, my writing process, and more. I have gained followers organically, but getting people to follow through by clicking the links to my website or buying the book is a challenge. It has to go beyond hitting the like button, which is not a science.

You can find me on social media at: 
And you can learn more about my books from my website: writeralexapostol.com



Do you have a favourite character? If so, why?  

Kamlyn Paige of my Chronicles of a Supernatural Huntsman is my favorite character by far. She is the very first character I ever developed. She is so incredibly human with her stumbling over her words and mistakes she makes in life, but then she is also extraordinary because of her interesting and unique lineage. She's a very strong female protagonist and I feel she can be a great inspiration to readers. I know she is to me.


What did you enjoy most about writing your book?  

For Chronicles of a Supernatural Huntsman, my favorite part of writing the book was the folklore research in finding the many beasts and creatures that haunt nightmares around the world and then bringing them to life. The supernatural has always been an interest of mine, not that I believe in werewolves and vampires but I think it's interesting how those legends were formed so long ago. For my Dead Soil zombie series, which is my bestselling series to date, I enjoyed creating very real and human characters who were not experts in martial arts or shooting or survival and putting them in a world where they had to learn those skills quickly in order to survive. I also love going into detail of a disgusting zombie's features. They are all unique in their grossness which makes for a good Halloween read.


When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?  

I have been writing stories here and there since I was twelve years old. Creative writing was always an interest of mine and enjoyed studying it during my BA in English Literature. All my life I've been an avid reader, devouring whatever I could get my hands on, but it wasn't until I finished college that I started to really consider being an author as a career path. I self-published my first book in the Chronicles of a Supernatural Huntsman series in 2012 and have never looked back. 


What’s your next project? Any upcoming book secrets you care to reveal?

I am stepping outside my comfort zone with my next book, which I have just recently started writing. It is a fairy tale/historical fiction mashup that I am super excited about. It is loosely based on the fairy tale of Beauty and the Beast, with the main character resembling Belle. The historical twist is that her story takes place during the horrific years of the French Revolution. It will tackle social injustices such as slavery and equality for women which were both hot issues even then. There will be many historical figures like Thomas Jefferson, the Marquis de LaFayette and his wife, King Louis XVI and his wife Marie Antoinette of course, Thomas Paine, Robespierre, and more. The beast makes his appearances as well, though there is something mysterious and unique about him that has yet to be seen in a Beauty and the Beast retelling. This one I am going to seek traditional publishing for, so it might be a while before it can be found on the shelves.


About the Author
 
Alex Apostol is an independently published Amazon bestselling author of mythology and folklore for her Chronicles of a Supernatural Huntsman series. She was born and raised in Northwest Indiana where she currently resides with her husband, daughter, and black cat, Bob, but she spent her 20's traveling the country. She has lived in Hawaii, Virginia, California, Texas, Illinois, and Florida. She has a BA in English Literature and a MA in Business Admin and Marketing and is a veteran of the United States Navy. When she's not writing her next novel, she likes to spend time with her family hiking, reading, and watching movies.

You can follow Alex Apostol on Instagram @writer_alex_apostol
or visit her website at writeralexapostol.com


Sunday, 18 October 2020

Interview With Author Alene Nation

Today I have an interview, with fantasy and sci-fi author Alene Nation who stops by to chat about her books and writing. Enjoy.


Interview With Alene Nation



Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself
.

I’m retired. For a long time, I have worked in health insurance offices due to my degree in Computer Information Systems. Twenty years ago, I owned and ran a small screen print and embroidery shop. This is where I learned how to use my design talents on my covers. I have always read fiction and non-fiction books for the past 60 years. My genre is realistic science fiction and urban fantasy. I have also added a travel mystery series and wrote a non-fiction true story.

 

Could you tell us a bit about your latest book? 

My latest book is the fifth urban fantasy about a thirtyish aged woman who is a widow, called The Magic Within. She sees little people and ghosts that no one else can see. Her unusual friends are the ones who lead her into trouble or save her life. In this story, she has to save her boyfriend’s daughter from a kidnapper. One day she steps into a hidden library and enlists the help from a wizard.

 

How long have you been writing, and how many books have you published to date? 

I always wanted to write but never knew how to publish until I found an excellent writing club in 2011. Since 2013, I have published 16 novels and several novellas and short stories. I attach the short stories to my monthly newsletters.

 

Of all the books you've written, do you have a favourite? 

It depends on my mood. They are all mysteries, some cozy and some thrillers. I love writing and exploring what could be in our quest of space. So, this is fun and examining how we might live on Mars or the Moon.

I wrote my first urban fantasy as a NaNoWriMo test. Which means I had to write 50K words in 30 days. After finishing the story in 11 days, I knew I had a talent for writing. Since the character lives in a little town not far from my home, I know the people so well and what they would do.

After I took a fantastic trip to Europe, I met my next character and wrote two stories about her (my) experiences.

My only nonfiction is based on a true story in northern Idaho in 1971 where I grew up.

What is my favorite book? That’s like asking who is my favorite child?

I’ll pick Fatal Error because it’s based on actual occurrences and a lot about robots in the future. The danger is real.

 

Do you have a favourite character? If so, why? 

I’ll have to choose Detective Alex Blackhawk because he’s strong, smart, and won’t give up in his search for his suspect. I would say my favorite female character would be Alice Morgan who worked on the Moon and Mars. Next in the UF series, it would be Hobnobby, the gnome. Now he’s not the MC, but he uses magic to benefit others and he’s a little sneaky. 


Why did you decide to write in the urban fantasy & science fiction genre?

I have always liked mysteries and spooky stories. Just as I’m about to end writing one of my books, I discover a twist that has to be told. I’m interested in science and the progress our country has made. I’m a deep Star Trek fan since 1960.

 


What is the hardest part of writing science fiction? 
 

Getting the scene times in order. On the whole, I find writing it quite easy.

 

What do you enjoy most about writing in the urban fantasy genre? 

It’s easy and relatable to people I know.

 

You write in several genres. Do you have a favourite? And if so, why? 

It depends on what I want to express. If I want to continue my SF series to explain the galaxy beyond, then I’ll do that one. If I think my character has to have an unusual encounter with the fantasy world, I’ll write that one. For example, my character, Susan Edwards and her friend Hobnobby had just trapped a terrible witch inside an old mirror. Done and settled? No, I had to write the next book about the witch’s escape and what Susan was going to do. Like life, my stories go on.

 

Who is your intended readership? 

Probably 30-70 age group. I do have a couple of YA and NA SF books for the 16-22 age group as well.

 

Are there particular challenges in writing for your core readership? 

I don’t see one, I remember what I expected at those ages. It helps too when I watch shows or read about that age range.

 

Why did you write this book? What was your inspiration? 

The first science fiction book was a test for my writing class. It was a story I had continually thought about. The same happened when I wrote the first urban fantasy. I had every scene memorized before I began NaNoWriMo.

 

What did you enjoy most about writing your book? 

Finishing, re-editing where I change scenes around, and that final sale.

 

What did you find most challenging about writing your book?

If I need to know how a machine works. I had to research tunnel digging, a grain mill operation, and the unique surface formations on Mars.

 

Did anything surprise you about the process of writing your book? 

In the beginning, it was the formatting and the publishing, but I have that down pat now.

 

What did you hope to accomplish by publishing your book? 

Entertain and make people think

 

When did you realize you wanted to be a writer? 

After a year in my writing class.

 

Can you tell us about your writing process? Where do your ideas originate? Do you have a certain writing routine? 

As I said above, I’m retired and have lots of time on my hands. If I don’t have any appointments to keep, I sit down after breakfast and write until Lunch. After Lunch, I pick up the mail, and do a few house chores, and write until 4:00pm. I don’t do any writing at night. That’s my time off to watch mystery shows or Forensic Files for ideas. On Saturday, I’ll set my promos on Facebook.

 

What is your greatest challenge as a writer? 

To remind my hubby not to test the fire alarm during NaNoWriMo. He did one year and since then I remind him before November 1st. Once in a while between hitting the stores and housework, I need more time.

 

Do you have a favourite author, or writing inspiration? 

I loved reading Agatha Christie ad Isaac Asimov. Georgette Heyer is another favorite with her beautiful long sentences. I was told not to do long sentences for today’s readers, so I don’t. I have read all of Rita Mae Brown’s books, which gave me the inspiration to write what my SF animals are saying.

 

How do you research your books? 

Google for details listed above. When I’m sitting in the doctor’s office or at the airport, I watch people and decide what type of character they could become. After 60+ years of living, I have seen a lot.

 

What advice would you give beginning writers? 

Read, read, read as much as you can. Books will always help you with your grammar. As for publishing, use KDP as Amazon sells 75+% of all the books in the world. Use Grammarly and ProWriting Aid before you let anyone else read your book. Try to find beta readers after you have read your manuscript over ten times or more. Give them a free book and ask them to help correcting your errors. Start with ebook, the formatting is easier than print. Ebooks are the fastest sellers on the publishing market today.

 

Do you have any amusing writing stories or anecdotes to share? 

Several odd things that I have experienced have found their way into my books. I had a small Corelle dish break in front of my eyes. If you own some, then you know they aren’t supposed to break. Then I read in the newspaper that Peru had an earthquake at the same time. That scene went into my UF book. Another time, I lost my ship card while in Europe. Talk about panic. The stewards were kind and replaced it for me. That scene went into my travel book.

 

What do you like to do when you're not writing? Any hobbies? 

I did commercial embroidery for many years. I still do totes and shirts once in a while, but writing has taken up most of my time. My husband and I used to travel a lot before covid happened. So, before I send out my newsletter, I write and attach a new short story each month. After a year, I put all of the short stories into one book.

 

How did you become interested in science fiction/urban fantasy? 

Movies, TV shows, and books I have watched and read.

 

Are you working on another book? 

I will for NaNoWriMo this November 2020. I may write one novel, a novella, and a few short stories. Last year, I wrote over 80,000 words in 30 days using this writing system.


What’s your next project? Any upcoming book secrets you care to reveal? 

My next projects are the books I start in NaNoWriMo. The SF book will be first.

I just discovered Justkindlebooks.com. They are the best for sales. Just use the bargain offer. In that one day, I had more downloads than I have had from that one book in years. I keep a section on my blog for writing tips that anyone can look over – blogingwrites.weebly.com.

The average fiction book is sized 6x9” but I have tried 5x8” and I like that one better. For the series, keep all of them the same size.

Write a lot of novellas and put them into kindle unlimited. I use the free days with great success.

~*~


You can find more about Alene Nation and her books at these sites.


Webpage:

Blog:

Facebook:



Thursday, 15 October 2020

October Frights Day 6: Past Legends

Welcome to the last day of the October Frights Blog Hop. To end it all, I have a spotlight on my new release, Past Legends. This is the first book in my Camelot Immortals series and is a dark fantasy based on Arthurian myth, full of witches and magic. Enjoy!




Past Legends



An immortal witch of Camelot. A looming magical crisis. A destiny she’s willing to reject.

All Nimue wants is a peaceful life, but her past won’t leave her alone. And when her friend Iseult brings news that her old rival Morgawse has been abducted, an impending catastrophe lands on her doorstep. And worse, the wizard responsible is Nimue’s ex, Nostradamus.

Dragged into another adventure, Nimue confronts her former flame as he wages a desperate quest, only to be thrust deeper into an escalating crisis. As Nimue struggles to unravel what is happening, she discovers dark secrets that threaten the heart of magical energy. Now it’s her fate to rescue magic for every witch and wizard, including her friends. Trouble is, she wants no part of being magic’s saviour.

Will Nimue step up as a champion? Or will she let the magical world die?


Past Legends: The Camelot Immortals Book One, is a contemporary Arthurian fantasy inspired by the tales we all know and love. If you like strong snarky heroines, wizards and witches, and copious amounts of alcohol, then you’ll love the adventures of Nimue and her friends.

Warning: this book contains offensive language.



The book launches on Oct 28th (and will be in Kindle Unlimited)
but is available for pre-order now for 99 cents.

Find it on Amazon


Here's a taste of the book:

ONCE UPON a myth, or legend, or tall tale, or whatever you want to call it, there existed a wondrous place called Camelot. Full of knights and wizards, magic and quests, a beautiful land of enchantment, fair maidens and ruled by a just king.

Not quite.

Camelot was more akin to a Dark Ages lunatic asylum. I should know, I lived there.

Let me introduce myself. I’m Nimue. I’m a witch and I’ve been alive for fifteen hundred years, give or take a few decades. These days I live in Cumbria, England, in the Lake District, but a long time ago, I lived in the aforementioned Camelot, that mysterious land of magic and legend. Also a place with no running water, no modern medicine, and where basic hygiene could be iffy. Warriors in leather jerkins and dented helms roamed its dusty roads, not knights in armour, and usually held a drink in one hand while the other groped a woman’s—well you get the idea.

I never meant to get involved, with either Camelot or magic, but one day a handsome stranger walked into my father’s tavern.

Merlin, the grand wizard of Camelot.

I should have stayed in the tavern.




In addition, I'm offering the Camelot Immortals two story prequel, Eternal Myths, for free to anyone who preorders Past Legends or purchases it during launch week. Just message me at my Facebook author page with a Past Legends proof of purchase for the prequel download link.


And I have some more myths and legends for you with this great giveaway!

C.L. Cannon’s Myths & Legends Reader Giveaway


And don’t forget our group giveaway with 23 great books available. 

Ends October 31st.

The October Frights Giveaway




Well, that's it for this year.
Be sure to check out the rest of the hoppers for their last day offerings.



Wednesday, 14 October 2020

October Frights Day 5: Dark Poetry Corner


Today it is time for my annual dark poetry corner, and I have three offerings for you today. I'm stepping away from witches today into the macabre magic of the undead and the Fae. Enjoy.




Bleed Me to Life

 

Immortality

written within the tomb

Saddened fatality

beneath the moon

Who am I,

to stalk the shadows?

Who am I,

but a corpse

 

Blood through the veins

Substance to hunger

You are Life

I am Death

You always crave

what you cannot have

 

A momentary glimpse;

the warmth of breath

against decaying skin

when I hold you, mesmerized

Your lifeblood stolen

to feed my eternity

 

It is not enough,

our flirting dance,

your poignant demise

Even though you've given

me this fa├žade of life,

prolonged my existence

I long to join you

in life or death

Not this forever in-between

 

 


As the Shadows Dance

 

As the shadows dance

under the moon,

against shafts of light

reflecting fire,

the whispering wind

murmurs the names

of the wandering Fae

 

Among the trees, they move,

one with the night,

sapphire eyes searching

for the ghosts lingering

on the edge of forever

 

Left there long ago

by careless words

and broken hearts

Suspended souls, waiting

for broken Fae promises

to be kept

 

Now it is time

for the reaping

Now it is time

for the payment come due

 

The night wails

for the lost souls,

The night mourns

as the Fae collect

And the wind howls;

the last sound of

human trust





Breathless and Chilled

 

In the shadow of the frost,

a last whisper past the twilight,

there creeps a sigh

and a glimmer of the moon

 

Once he held a rose,

the warmth around his heart,

now he sees only ghosts

in the barren, solitary tomb

underneath the ice

 

Winter blows,

down the long road

Winter settles,

in the truth

And her voice echoes,

in his lies





Here's a free book for you

Visions and Nightmares




And don’t forget our group giveaway with 23 great books available.

Ends October 31st.



 Check the books out here.

The October Frights Giveaway


And I have another great giveaway!

C.L. Cannon’s Myths & Legends Reader Giveaway



And be sure to continue on with the rest of our hoppers to see what they’re up to. 


Night to Dawn Magazine & Books LLC

Hawk's Happenings

Heidi Angell

Curiosities

James McDonald

Always Another Chapter

Spreading the Writer's Word

Yours in Storytelling

Carmilla Voiez

Hello Romance

GirlZombieAuthors

Frighten Me

M'habla's!

Angela Yuriko Smith

Brain Matter

NLCARTERWRITES.COM


Tuesday, 13 October 2020

October Frights Day 4: Soul's Day


Today I have another book spotlight for the supernatural box set, Souls Day. Enjoy.


Soul’s Day Boxset


This Halloween, Soul’s Day brings you all the creepiest, the horror, terror, mysteries, thriller and paranormal unexplained.

Old Hallows Eve, when things go bump in the night,
Children come to play, and the witches provide the fright.
For 19 authors, USA Today and international bestselling,
The Halloween tales become more than this foretelling.
In the Soul's Day Boxset, a mansion feeds on souls,
A gargoyle captures them, and a demon dungeon master makes the calls,
Campers get picked off one by one,
The Karnaval's corn dogs are less than fun,
Ghosts lurking around every bend,
'I do' at the wedding is the very end.
A boxset of chills and thrills to keep you up at night,
One-click pre-order to snap your copy filled with fright.
On old Hallow's eve when creatures come to play,
With this spine chilling pages, it's where you'll want to stay.

A boxset filled with all kinds of weird, the unexplained, terror and survival from unearthly beings.


Pre-order Today: Soul's Day

Releases October 20th

 


AND BE SURE TO GRAB THE PRE-ORDER SPECIAL GIFT

BUY SOUL'S DAY AND CLICK FOR YOUR GIFT

https://soulsdayboxset.com/pre-order-gift/

 





Here's a free book for you



And don’t forget our group giveaway with 23 great books available.
Ends October 31st.


Subscribe Now:

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