Check out H D. Lynn’s new release God’s Play

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Congratulations to H.D. Lynn, who just released her debut novel God’s Play. She found time to answer a few of my questions about her writing process, offer tips to unpublished writers, and share a story about hiking. After you check out her great (informative and honest) answers, read on to see more about her YA urban-fantasy that is available now.

So, my first question is about how you write. So, are you a panster or a plotter? How do you approach a new idea?

As Yoda says, outline you must. New works especially require at least a simple outline or else the story can get really tangled. That said, for writing sequels, the outlines can bog me down in a swamp of tedium because I know the characters pretty well by then; it’s fun to continue the adventure and heartache with them. If it’s a BIG new idea, I write it down. If it’s a small detail new idea, I might make a note of it

Do you have the same critique partners for all your work or do you have different sets? And why?

Different people, for sure. Not everyone likes everything, and people are busy. No one has time to read everything I write because, to pull a humble brag, I’m pretty prolific and quick when I write drafts. There’s a core group, though, who are generally helpful when I want to mull over ideas about writing and fiction.

 What is the most difficult aspect about being a writer?

Editing. Coming up with ideas—easy. Making an idea better—now that’s hard. (This is a great answer… Nathaniel Hawthorne — “Easy reading is damn hard writing.”)

 What are your top three nuggets of wisdom you would like to share with unpublished writers?

  • Don’t give up! You really never know what’s going to be the story that sells.
  • Write you. People respond to authentic voice. I had a beta who said they didn’t read YA…and then they read the first chapter of my story and asked to beta all of it because they liked it so much.
  • Surround yourself with positive people. I don’t mean kiss-asses who’ll give you an ego pat but people who can and will be there for you, aren’t self-destructive, or being critical to stoke their own egos. (great advice)

 What is your favorite part of the writing process?

Writing! I love the feeling of falling in love with the characters, their stories, and the world(s) they inhabit. There’s nothing like when you finish a first or second draft, too, and know that this story is all yours; you made it. For that sweet moment, it doesn’t matter how good or how marketable it is—it’s just your little story.

 Do you have any suggestions for editing drafts?

Anything that even feels a bit off usually is. I can power write, but I don’t even try to power edit; slow and steady wins the race during editing. The Golden Rule of Editing: If an editor says it, they’re probably right, and you’re probably wrong. This is not a bad thing, but it’s not a feel good process.

 What do you think is the most important element a story should have?

It should, above all, be a story. It doesn’t matter if you use 5 Act structure, 8 circle plot points, or the snowflake method—it has to be about a person, multiple people, or an amorphous entity wanting something, struggling to get it, and reaching some type of conclusion about their journey. Anything else is boring. Characters without motivation or agency are boring. Convoluted plots without realistic characters are pointless slogs. Cool worlds without coherent plots are just paintings. You’ve gotta catch ‘em all to make a story.

 Do you have other stories in the works?

I have the sequels to God’s Play outlined, and I’ve started to write the next book. I also am finishing a set of rough drafts for an adult urban fantasy trilogy.

 I wrote a blog about self-doubt being a new demon I encountered. Do you have any writing demons?

Imposter syndrome. It’s pernicious and jumps me like a mugger at the most inopportune moments. This might be because succeeding never feels like I think it will in my head.

 If someone wrote a book about your life, who would star as you in the movie version?

People in Hollywood are tan and pretty, and I am neither of these things. I’m a huge fan of Eva Green, though, so I’d pick her just so I could be like ‘EVA GREEN PLAYS ME IN A MOVIE.’ I mean, I’d put signs up on my house that’d say that.

 What led you to this genre?

I’ve loved fantasy for a long time. While I read across genres, I always come back to fantasy, and there was never a question of writing another genre. Urban and contemporary fantasy are great to write because they’re fantasy that asks questions about our world while looking towards the future. God’s Play happens to be YA, and there’s a part of me that’ll always relate to teens because I can’t seem to leave my ‘awkward and weird’ phase behind. I just embrace it better as an adult.

 Funniest hiking story 🙂

I got caught in a thunder-snowstorm over Memorial Day weekend on a mountain pass. When I got back to the car soaking wet and cold, I couldn’t stop laughing—it was super crazy. I’ve also played a game where, to save phone/ipod battery life, one person will put in a headphone and sing the songs that come up on their player and the person without the headphones will do their best to sing along. We’ve weirded out a lot day hikers with this game, especially because I’ve got a playlist loaded with Amanda Palmer songs. (This has the bonus benefit of warding off bears.)

 

This one isn’t mine, but a friend got stalked by this thing on the trail. He nick-named it the Demon Grouse because it hissed and stalked him. 🙂

 

And here is it… God’s Play. Read on and then go grab a copy.

cover1000-5God’s Play, by H.D. Lynn

Genre: young-adult, urban-fantasy

Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press

Date of Release­­: September 18, 2014

Cover Artist: Alexandria Thompson http://gothicfate.com/

 Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22895484-god-s-play

Available at Amazon

 

Description:

Sixteen-year old Toby was trained by a family of hunters to kill shape-shifters — but he has a unique weapon in his arsenal. With a touch of his hand, Toby can lift the magical protection shape-shifters use to disguise themselves as human. It’s an unusual skill for a hunter, and he prefers to kill monsters the old-fashioned way: with a blade.

Because of his special skill, Toby suspects he may be a monster himself. His suspicions deepen when William, a jackal-headed shape-shifter, saves him from an ambush where Toby’s the only survivor. And Toby doubts William helped him for purely altruistic reasons. With his list of allies running thin, Toby must reconcile his hatred of shifters and the damning truth that one saved his life. It’ll take both of them to track down the monster who ordered the ambush.

And Toby needs his unlikely alley because he has a vicious enemy — the infamous Circe, who has a vendetta to settle against the hunters. Toby has to unravel the mystery of his dual nature. And he has to do it on the run — before Circe finds him and twists him to her own ends.

 

boatAbout The Author:

H.D. Lynn is like Harry Potter in one way: she’s currently renting an apartment with a bedroom under her building’s stairs. Other than this, she explores fantasy worlds through storytelling like anyone else. She loves books with a mix of humor, adventure, and horror, and especially enjoys the urban fantasy genre. GOD’S PLAY is her first published novel.

When not writing, she enjoys hiking, climbing, and running. She’s a voracious reader, and has found listening to audiobooks while backpacking to be a perfect mix of two of her favorite things. She currently lives in Connecticut, but finds herself on the road often.

Find H.D. Lynn Online: @HeatherLynn117 on Twitter   |   godsplaybook.tumblr.com   |   captainheatherlynn117.tumblr.com 

 

 

Cover Reveal : Looking For Lucy Jo by Suzy Turner

lucy_ebookLooking for Lucy Jo by Suzy Turner 
(Morgan Sisters #3) 
Publication date: September 20th 2014 
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Synopsis:

It’s their first Christmas since entering the Praxos Academy and 16-year-old sisters Lana Beth and Emma Jane Morgan are looking forward to some serious R&R. But when their little sister mysteriously disappears from her bed on Christmas Eve, all thoughts of fun disappear with her. Emma and Lana must do everything in their power to locate her and bring her home safely. Easier said than done, they are forced to go on yet another journey, this time taking them out to the murky depths of the North Sea as well as to the far reaches of southern Portugal.

Previous books in the series:

 

The Ghost of Josiah Grimshaw

Adopted sisters Lana Beth and Emma Jane are polar opposites, but when the same strange ‘tattoo’ suddenly appears and winds its way up their bodies within days of each other, they soon realize there’s more to their relationship than they could ever have imagined.

Sent off to London for two weeks of ‘work experience’, the Morgan Sisters soon find themselves being initiated into the ancient Praxos Foundation, one that protects the innocent while fighting evil, both human and supernatural.

At the same time, Lana Beth and Emma Jane must also investigate why the sweet but sometimes pesky ghost of Josiah Grimshaw just won’t leave them alone.

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The Ghost of Josiah Grimshaw, FREE on Amazon

 

Daisy Madigan’s Paradise (a novella)

When tragedy falls upon 15 year old Daisy Madigan, she escapes to the only place she feels safe, the cemetery of Abney Park. There, in the company of the dearly departed, she realizes she is changing, growing stronger and faster by the day. But in the darkness lurks a terror even she can’t imagine facing.

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Daisy Madigan’s Paradise, FREE on Amazon

 

The Temporal Stone

It’s been a couple of months since Emma and Lana entered the Praxos Academy and life has been hectic ever since. What with regular A level classes combined with learning all about the supernatural world, control classes, self defence and fight night, the girls are constantly busy.

But when their world seems to stop right in front of them, they and their fellow Watchers, have a huge mystery to solve. A mystery which will lead them on a long road trip across south west England where they will meet all kinds of strange creatures, some intent on causing harm and others desperate to put a stop to the problem.

 

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The Temporal Stone, Amazon

Suzy August 2014AUTHOR BIO
Although Suzy is a Yorkshire lass at heart, she left her home town of Rotherham, UK, to move to Portugal with her family when she was ten. The Algarve continues to be her home, where she lives with her childhood sweetheart, Michael, two neurotic dogs and a cat who thinks she’s a princess.
Shortly after completing her studies, Suzy was offered the position of trainee journalist for a local English newspaper. Her love of writing developed and a few years later she moved on to become assistant editor for the region’s largest English language publisher. Since then she has also worked as the editor of one of the Algarve’s most loved monthly lifestyle magazines. Early in 2010 however, Suzy began working as a full time author. She has since written several books: Raven, December Moon, The Lost Soul (The Raven Saga), Daisy Madigan’s Paradise, The Ghost of Josiah Grimshaw, The Temporal Stone (The Morgan Sisters) and Forever Fredless.Website: www.suzyturner.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/suzyturner
Facebook: www.facebook.com/suzyturnerbooks
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/suzy_turner
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/suzyturnerbooks
YA Blog: http://www.suzyturner.blogspot.com
Chick Lit Blog: http://www.fictiondreams.comXpressoBannerTours

Cover Reveal: The Curse Merchant by J.P. Sloan

The Curse Merchant Ebook Cover2The Curse Merchant, by J.P. Sloan

 Genre: urban-fantasy

Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press

Date of Re-Release­­: September 15th, 2014

Cover Artist: Conzpiracy Digital Arts (http://www.conzpiracy.co.uk/)

 

Goodreads

 

Description:

Dorian Lake spent years cornering the Baltimore hex-crafting market, using his skills at the hermetic arts to exact karmic justice for those whom the system has failed. He keeps his magic clean and free of soul-corrupting Netherwork, thus avoiding both the karmic blow-back of his practice and the notice of the Presidium, a powerful cabal of practitioners that polices the esoteric arts in America. However, when an unscrupulous Netherworker interferes with both his business and his personal life, Dorian’s disarming charisma and hermetic savvy may not be enough to keep his soul out of jeopardy.

His rival, a soul monger named Neil Osterhaus, wouldn’t be such a problem were it not for Carmen, Dorian’s captivating ex-lover. After two years’ absence Carmen arrives at Dorian’s doorstep with a problem: she sold her soul to Osterhaus, and has only two weeks to buy it back. Hoping to win back Carmen’s affections, Dorian must find a replacement soul without tainting his own. As Dorian descends into the shadows of Baltimore’s underworld, he must decide how low he is willing to stoop in order to save Carmen from eternal damnation… with the Presidium watching, waiting for him to cross the line.

 

 

bio picAbout The Author:

I am a storyteller, eager to transport the reader to strange yet familiar worlds. My writing is dark, fantastical, at times stretching the limits of the human experience, and other times hinting at the monsters lurking under your bed. I write science fiction, urban fantasy, horror, and several shades in between.

I am a husband and a father, living in the “wine country” of central Maryland. I’m surrounded by grapevines and cows. During the day I commute to Baltimore, and somehow manage to escape each afternoon with only minor scrapes and bruises. I am also a homebrewer and a certified beer judge. My avocations dovetail nicely!

Find J.P. Sloan Online:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads