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lizzi_author_pix (1)Ken Lizzi is an attorney and the author of an assortment of published short stories. When not traveling – and he’d rather be traveling – he lives in Portland, Oregon with his lovely wife Isa and their daughter, Victoria Valentina. He enjoys reading, homebrewing, and visiting new places. He loathes writing about himself in the third person. Connect with Ken on Facebook and Twitter.

About the Book:

In the tradition of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ John Carter of Mars, Under Strange Suns brings the sword-and-planet novel to the twenty-first century. War is a constant, and marooned on a distant world, former Special Forces soldier Aidan Carson learns there is nothing new Under Strange Suns.

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Q: Congratulations on the release of your latest book, “Under Strange Suns.” To begin with, can you gives us a brief summary of what the story is about and what compelled you to write it?  

A: “Under Strange Suns” is the story of a burned-out, former Special Forces soldier hired to search for the lost inventor of the Faster-than-Light spaceship drive. You can blame this one on Edgar Rice Burroughs. ERB popularized the sword-and-planet genre with his “A Princess of Mars” back in 1912, the first of the John Carter stories. But what cut it with readers in 1912 might raise some eyebrows a hundred years later. So when I decided to dip my toe into the sword-and-planet genre, I knew that getting my characters to another world would require a bit more heavy lifting on my part. The resulting novel, “Under Strange Suns,” works the mechanism of space travel into the narrative itself, driving the plot (in addition to driving the characters to their destination.)

Q: What do you think makes a good science fiction novel? Could you narrow it down to the three most important elements? Is it even possible to narrow it down?

A: As with every story, the primary consideration is to entertain. With science fiction, a secondary requirement is novelty, or at least some twist on a familiar theme. And finally, the story must entertain. Yes, I used entertain for two slots. That factor is twice as important as any other.

Q: How did you go about plotting your story? Or did you discover it as you worked on the book?

A: I worked out a moderately detailed outline, broken down into chapters and describing the events each chapter must cover. Once I began writing, the outline became more of a mission statement or list of suggestions. But most of the events described in the outline made it into the novel in one form or another.

UnderStrangeSuns_medQ: Tell us something interesting about your protagonist and how you developed him or her. Did you do any character interviews or sketches prior to the actual writing?

A: Since the impetus for “Under Strange Suns” was “A Princess of Mars,” I knew the main character would be a soldier. Other than that, his character owes little or nothing to John Carter. I spent some time in uniform, many years ago, and did have the opportunity to train and hobnob with members of the Special Operations community. Aidan Carson’s personality is based to some extent on my foggy memories of those unique people.

Q: In the same light, how did you create your antagonist or villain? What steps did you take to make him or her realistic?

A: My villains are fanatics, true believers. The primary step required to make them realistic was reading the news. Other than that, I needed to show sincerity, that the villains truly believed their actions were not only justified, but moral, even laudable.

Q: How did you keep your narrative exciting throughout the novel? Could you offer some practical, specific tips?

A: Know when to end the chapter. Cliff-hangers never go out of style, because they work. Try to leave the reader with a desire to find out what happens next.

Q: Setting is also quite important and in many cases it becomes like a character itself. What tools of the trade did you use in your writing to bring the setting to life?

A: With an alien landscape as a setting, I tried to reinforce the novelty and unique aspects of the place. I used frequent repetition to reinforce the unearthly lighting that two suns would provide. I also employed intermittent description of alien flora and fauna to occasionally remind the reader he’s no longer in Kansas.

Q: Did you know the theme(s) of your novel from the start or is this something you discovered after completing the first draft? Is this theme(s) recurrent in your other work?

A: I considered theme at the outlining stage and stuck with it. The theme, or related aspects, have cropped up in my other work, yes. But theme is secondary to the obligation to (say it with me) entertain.

Q: Where does craft end and art begin? Do you think editing can destroy the initial creative thrust of an author?

A: There’s a question for you. Something to hash out over a pitcher of beer. I’d suggest that from traditionally published debut writers up through the ranks of mid-list authors, craft predominates. Art dominating craft, for better or worse, is found among either the self-published or the best-selling traditionally published authors. In between those two poles, editors are going to push conventional narrative voice and technique. And in most cases, I’d guess, rightly so. But I’m just speculating here. And without that pitcher, damn it.

Q: What three things, in your opinion, make a successful novelist?

A: A firm grasp of craft, perseverance, and the ability to entertain.

Q: A famous writer once wrote that being an author is like having to do homework for the rest of your life. What do you think about that?

A: No one ever paid me to do homework. I like this writing gig better. Less math.

Q: Are there any resources, books, workshops or sites about craft that you’ve found helpful during your writing career?

A: Any book on craft is useful. I’ve read several. The good advice stands out by repetition from multiple sources.

Q:  Is there anything else you’d like to share with my readers about the craft of writing?

A: Pay close attention to your editor. Even if you don’t agree with a suggestion, consider the reason for it.

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Peer Through Time banner
David T. PenningtonDavid T. Pennington grew up in a small northern California town called Paradise, but his home is in San Francisco. While his associate’s degree in computer programming has helped pay the bills, his bachelor’s degree in psychology has informed his writing. His love of fiction–mainly mysteries, science fiction, and thrillers–is balanced by his fascination with books on futurism, theoretical physics, and cosmology. Peer Through Time is his debut novel.

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About the Book:

Peer Through Time 3Title: Peer Through Time
Author: David T. Pennington
Publisher: Quantaj Publishing
Pages: 371
Genre: Science Fiction
Format: Paperback/Kindle

In 2079, a time travel experiment sends physicist Carmela Akronfleck further back in time than she’d intended. Though she’s still in her small northern California town, the year is 1936 and she must learn to live without the technology she’s come to rely on. Her neurological implants should be dormant, but she receives a cryptic message, periodically accompanied by an audio transmission from the future. It’s the voice of her former psychotherapist, an android named Kass, stating his innocence in a series of murders occurring in 2079.

When Carmela deciphers the code as a hit list, she’s shocked to discover her mother and sister are among the intended targets. Further evidence reveals the killer’s true identity, but the inoperative time portal prevents her from returning to save her family and vindicate Kass.

She considers another option: hunt down the killer’s ancestors and avert his existence without radically changing history. She devises a plan to protect her family, haunted by doubts that she’s becoming the kind of person she’s always loathed—one willing to take another’s life.

For More Information

  • Peer Through Time is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.

Would you call yourself a born writer?

Yes and no. I wrote stories from a young age, but I didn’t come back around to it until many years into my adulthood.

What was your inspiration for Peer Through Time?

Many things inspired me, but one significant inspiration was when the TV series Lost began its fifth season and finally began exploring time travel in earnest. My passion was sparked and I was inspired to write a time travel novel.

What themes do you like to explore in your writing?

I like to explore cause and effect, friendship, and what it means to be human.

How long did it take you to complete the novel?

It took two and a half years.

Are you disciplined? Describe a typical writing day.

I’m not as disciplined as I’d like to be, but I plan to get there. A typical writing day for me is squeezing in as much writing as possible in the morning, before other demands take over.

What did you find most challenging about writing this book?

Keeping track of my two timelines was most challenging.

What do you love most about being an author?

I get massive satisfaction in revising. Taking writing of questionable value, and turning it into something meaningful and intriguing, can be a reward in itself.

Did you go with a traditional publisher, small press, or did you self publish? What was the process like and are you happy with your decision?

I self-published Peer Through Time. The process was overwhelming at first, so much so that I postponed getting started. Once I educated myself on how to present a professional product, I took it step by step and found the process enjoyable. I’m happy with my decision.

Where can we find you on the web?

I blog occasionally on my website, http://davidtpennington.com/, I’m on Facebook nearly every day, https://www.facebook.com/david.pennington.90, and I tweet every now and then. https://twitter.com/davidtaj68

 

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2014 WINNER for the EPIC eBook award for Science Fiction!

 

Excerpt for Aquarius Rising: In the Tears of God, by Brian Burt

 We were born in the tears of God.

When the First Creator wept at the fate of His Creation, His tears fell like burning rain to melt the polar ice and swell the seas, the cradle of all life.  His grief swallowed the mighty human cities of the coast and gave them over to the realm of Mother Ocean.  Humanity, who did not aggrieve the Maker out of malice but out of ignorance, wished to atone for their sins against the Earth.  We are that atonement.  We are Humankind’s offering to the First Creator, the Maker of All.  The Great Father — a man, and nothing more — crafted his transforming virus and infected his own kind, so that we might be born as the children of Man and Mother Ocean.  Humanity became the Second Creator, Aquarius the Second Creation, and we the stewards of its bounty.

We owe much to Man, who is our father and our brother.  We must honor our debt to him.  But we must always remember this: he who has the power to Create also has the power to Destroy.

— Delphis, Third Pod Leader of Tillamook Reef Colony, from a speech to commemorate the Fiftieth Aquarian Birth Day

 

CHAPTER 1—BIRTH DAY

 Ocypode dove through the turquoise waters of Tillamook Reef toward the fringes of the celebration.  Revelers floated everywhere.  Strings of limpets, whelks, and periwinkles glittered around their necks, clicking when they moved.  Brightly colored pigments stained their skin of blue and gray and silver with pictograms symbolizing the history of Aquarius.  Ocypode ghosted through the crowd in silence.  His own flesh bore no ornaments.

Ocypode of Tillamook had no desire to draw attention to himself.

He slipped through the window of an ancient building, its barnacle-encrusted frame long devoid of panes, and hovered in the opening like a misshapen eye thrust into the socket of a skull.  Birth Day throngs made him want to flee toward open ocean.  He preferred to watch from the shadows.

The surface shimmered overhead as sunlight filtered down to paint the reef.  The drowned Human city had been reborn, bones of steel and concrete covered with a growth of corals. Fish darted between caves marked by crumbling doors and windows, danced across the reef like fragments of a shattered rainbow.  Waves soughed beneath the chatter of the crowd.  When he listened, Ocypode could almost grasp the secrets hidden in that ceaseless whisper.

Ocypode hated secrets.  They had ruled his life for far too long…but not today.

 

SYNOPSIS
 
AquariusRising-510On an Earth ravaged by climate change, and a disastrous
attempt to reverse it, human-dolphin hybrids called Aquarians have built
thriving reef colonies among the drowned cities of the coast. Now their world
is under siege from an enemy above the waves whose invisible weapon leaves no
survivors. Ocypode of Tillamook is an Atavism: half-human and half-Aquarian,
marooned in the genetic limbo between species. Only he knows why the colonies
north and south of Tillamook Reef have been destroyed, literally turned to
stone. Ocypode knows that Tillamook will be targeted next, but sharing the
reason might prove as deadly to Aquarius as the Medusa plague itself.
Ocypode and his Aquarian and human comrades flee into the
open ocean to escape Medusa, until another Aquarian’s treachery leaves them at
the mercy of a killer storm. Ocypode must pass through the Electric Forest,
where he faces nightmarish creatures and a legendary sea witch who becomes an
ally. Finally, he must confront the cyber-ghost of the human he most despises:
Peter Cydon, the Great Father who bioengineered the mutagenic virus that gave
birth to the Aquarian species. These unlikely allies provide the only chance to
stop the Redeemers, rogue scientists who are determined to resurrect the land
by slaughtering the sea. Even these allies will not be enough, and Ocypode must
decide whom to trust with a secret as lethal as any plague.
Where to Purchase Aquarious Rising
 
 

The Author
Brian’s Website / Goodreads / Facebook 

 

Brian Burt works as an information security engineer in West Michigan, where some of his most bizarre flights of fancy wind up in threat assessments.  He’s been blessed with a wife and three boys who tolerate his twisted imagination and even encourage it.  He enjoys reading, cycling, hiking, horseplay, red wine, and local micro-brews (so hopefully the virtues balance the vices, more or less).  At every opportunity, he uses his sons as an excuse to act like an overgrown kid (which is why his wife enjoys rum, school days, and migraine medication).

Brian has published more than twenty short stories in various markets, including print magazines, anthologies, and electronic publications.  He won the L. Ron Hubbard Gold Award in 1992 for his short story, “The Last Indian War,” which was anthologized in Writers of the Future Volume VIII.  His story “Phantom Pain” received an Honorable Mention in The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror, Tenth Annual Collection, edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling.  He’s a card-carrying member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.  His debut novel,Aquarius Rising: In the Tears of God, won the 2014 EPIC eBook Award for Science Fiction. Book 2 of the Aquarius Rising trilogy, Blood Tide, is scheduled for release from Double Dragon Publishing in 2015.

 
Follow the entire Aquarious Rising tour HERE
 
 
 

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nine2NINE PLANETS by Greg Byrne

SCIENCE FICTION

Publication date: November 30, 2014

$16.95 trade paperback, ISBN 978-1-940076-17-1

$6.95 E-book, ISBN 978-1-940076-18-8

Publication date: November 30, 2014

Publisher: Dragonwell Publishing

Distribution: Ingram Book Company

 www.dragonwellpublishing.com 

AMAZON

In the world of despair, Father Nick’s Day is the only hope…

Peter Blackwell wakes from a coma into a world he doesn’t recognize. Without memory or identity, all he has are nine random images. Nine planets. Eight he can see, although he does not understand them, but the impenetrable ninth is the secret that two opposing and hidden brotherhoods have been seeking for nearly two millennia. Pursued, betrayed, Blackwell has twelve days to unlock his Ninth Planet and prevent terminal worldwide suicide. And his only ally is a manic assassin sent to extract the secret and kill him.

NINE PLANETS is a debut Christmas-themed science fiction thriller from an Australian author.

About the author:

gregGreg Byrne is an English teacher, grammar consultant, and lecturer. He enjoys exploring places, ideas, history, languages and science, dinners with friends, watching his family grow, and living life’s great adventure. His next projects are a young adult thriller with a twist, developing a grammar teaching system for schools, and writing a grammar text for ESL students. He lives in Perth, Western Australia, with his beloved wife and family and an overweight British Blue.

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Galanti, Donna 2 (1)Donna Galanti writes murder and mystery with a dash of steam as well as middle grade adventure fiction. She is the author of books 1 and 2 in the paranormal suspense Element Trilogy, A Human Element and A Hidden Element, the short story collection The Dark Inside, and Joshua and The Lightning Road (Books 1 and 2, 2015). She’s lived from England as a child, to Hawaii as a U.S. Navy photographer. She now lives in Pennsylvania with her family in an old farmhouse. It has lots of writing nooks, fireplaces, and stink bugs, but she’s still wishing for a castle again—preferably with ghosts.

Website: www.ElementTrilogy.com
Blog: http://www.elementtrilogy.com/blog/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/DonnaGalanti
Facebook: www.facebook.com/DonnaGalantiAuthor
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5767306.Donna_Galanti

Q: Congratulations on the release of your latest book, A Hidden Element. What was your inspiration for it?

A: A Hidden Element is book two in the Element Trilogy. The novel that I was stumped on…and a dream. My readers asked for a sequel and I said, never! Then one day I woke up with a vision of that second book. I dropped the psychological suspense novel I had over-plotted and was stuck on, and got to work right away on the sequel. There’s a third and final one planned out, A Healing Element.

Q: Tell us something interesting about your protagonist.

A: Caleb lives an oppressed life. He has sons he can’t be a father to, he can’t choose who he loves, and he must carry out despicable acts just to survive. Yet Caleb finds he is pushed to the wall even further and must risk the very things he desires to save those he loves. Caleb is also a Watcher in a way, and Watchers are some of my favorite characters to write. Read an article I wrote about this theme.

Q: How was your creative process like during the writing of this book and how long did it take you to complete it? Did you face any bumps along the way?

A: I wrote this novel in a Write a Novel in 9 Months Class. We met once a week and it kept me accountable to get the story down in a certain time frame. One challenge was completely re-working some of the chapters to be in different voices from the original draft. I had to critically review each scene and really decide which character’s point of view was best to tell that scene.

?????????????????????????????????????????????Q: How do you keep your narrative exciting throughout the creation of a novel?

A: I look at each chapter as a short story in itself. There is a beginning, a middle, and an end – and I love ending my chapters on cliffhangers that raise a question and (hopefully) beg the reader to keep turning the pages.

Q: Do you experience anxiety before sitting down to write? If yes, how do you handle it?

A: Each day I sit down is like starting with a blank page all over again, so yes, there is some anxiety. The day before I try to finish writing in the middle of a scene or paragraph, and not end a chapter. This way I can easily re-read the scene’s intro and jump back into finishing it.

Q: What is your writing schedule like and how do you balance it with your other work and family time?

A: There are many days each week that my alarm is set for 4:30am. Early morning hours are my best writing time when the skies are dark and the world is asleep – and my mind is not yet filled with the details of daily life. During the school year my day ends at 3:30pm when I pick my son up from school but I have a very understanding husband! I often spend a weekend day writing all day at my favorite spot in my local Wegman’s Café.

Q: How do you define success?

A: To me, success in writing is continuing to learn the writing craft, add it to my expanding toolbox, and apply all I learn along the way and see the fruits of that labor. Success in writing can also only truly come when you let go – let go of your ego that is. I believe that this is the biggest reason why I am published, have a wonderful agent as my champion, and have four books coming out in the next year. And this is the biggest reason I see writer’s fail because they do not accept criticism and are not willing to do the hard work to make their writing better. To succeed you cannot think your writing is perfect or that your story can’t change. You cannot take it personal when a developmental editor tears apart your manuscript for you to re-work. I love it! I am like – bring it on! Help me be a better writer. Why? Because I want to write a good book and then a better one and a better one. This writing business is hard. If it were easy everyone would be doing it. This writing business is not going to be easy – it’s going to be worth it!

Q: What advice would you give to aspiring writers whose spouses or partners don’t support their dreams of becoming an author?

A: Every writer has times when they hit lows in their writing and think, I can’t do this! Every time I debate whether I should be a writer and tell myself that I should just update my resume and get a real full time job with an actual weekly paycheck so I can support my family better – I remember how I sat down and wrote my debut novel A Human Element without knowing anything about writing a book. And I remember how it came from my heart and came from the deep places inside me where I most love, where I most hurt.

And I know that no matter how much I think I suck at times – I KNOW THAT I AM A TRUE STORYTELLER. And this is what I was born to do. And if you think that, then that’s what you need to follow. No matter how much you suck at times. No matter if others tell you that your writing sucks. Don’t let the negative thoughts – or negative people – stop you from telling your stories. We need your stories. We need to tell our stories. Be the true storyteller you are. Visit my Writers Corner for inspiration and resources to help you keep writing.

Q: George Orwell once wrote: “Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.” Do you agree?

A: Yes! If we didn’t have demons chasing us to write, why would we? Knowing what I know now about being an author I have to wonder if I would have gotten in this business at all. If someone told me all I would have to go through to get here I would have said “I can’t do that! It’s too hard and too long!” I’m grateful I was ignorant about it all when I started.

Q:  Anything else you’d like to tell my readers?

A: I truly believe that something wonderful can come of something that threatens to break your spirit. I started writing books to survive the grief of my mother’s death. She died from cancer five years ago. But here’s the thing. If she were alive I would not have finished writing my first book – or any book. I would not be getting published. I took care of her in the final moments and when she passed away I knew I had to make my dream come true. For in passing away my mom gave me her own gift – the gift to follow my dream of becoming an author.

So every once in a while I say these words out loud. “Thank you, Mom.” I let them hang in the air like a gift to her. She defined who I am and who I hope to be. And she was always my #1 champion and now I have be my own champion – like all of us writer so. So, I may have started writing books from grief but eventually my grief turned to peace and then joy at discovering what I love to do. Be a storyteller.

ABOUT A HIDDEN ELEMENT:

Evil lurks within…

When Caleb Madroc is used against his will as part of his father’s plan to breed a secret community and infiltrate society with their unique powers, he vows to save his oppressed people and the two children kept from him. Seven years later, Laura and Ben Fieldstone’s son is abducted, and they are forced to trust a madman’s son who puts his life on the line to save them all. The enemy’s desire to own them—or destroy them—leads to a survival showdown. Laura and Ben must risk everything to defeat a new nemesis that wants to rule the world with their son, and Caleb may be their only hope—if he survives. But must he sacrifice what he most desires to do so?

PRAISE FOR A HIDDEN ELEMENT:

“Chilling and dark…a twisty journey into another world.” —J.T. Ellison, New York Times bestselling author of When Shadows Fall 

“Fascinating…a haunting story…”—Rebecca Cantrell, New York Times bestselling author of The World Beneath 

“Will keep you up long past your bedtime…a pulse-pounding read.”—Allan Leverone, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Final Vector

BUY THE ELEMENT TRILOGY BOOKS:

Purchase Book 2 in the Element Trilogy, A Hidden Element: http://amzn.to/1p1YD1o

Purchase Book 1 in the Element Trilogy, A Human Element: http://amzn.to/1mNcyCO
ON SALE NOW FOR JUST $.99cents!

ENTER HER GIVEAWAY HERE: 

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ABOUT GRYDSCAEN

 

Title: grydscaen

Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy

Author: Natsuya Uesugi

Publisher: Xlibris

EBook: 288 pages

Release Date: July 21, 2011

 Follow the lives of the main characters as they come together in the backstory to grydscaen:retribution, the first volume of the grydscaen saga. Faid is tired of life on the run in the Echelons, trying to keep his psychic power in check, he founds the Packrats establishing a safe haven for psychics. As a hacker he uses his jack to support his neurocyne habit. Lino is recruited by the Psi Faction and is sent on a mission to kidnap Faid. Riuho, Lino’s half brother becomes a prisoner of the Elite military and they experiment on him, train him and subject him to mind control, then send him out on a mission. On his return, Riuho is set on escaping and recruits Faid who hacks into the Psi Faction systems. They escape and return to the Packrats leading up to the start of grydscaen:retribution.

Xlibris

The grydscaen series which is set in 2055 in the near future
is a microcosm of today’s society. Technology is pervasive and infiltrates the
day to day lives of the people recounted in the book. The lead character of
grydscaen is Ameliano “Lino” Dejarre who is the son of the Viceroy of the
Pacific Territories and a prince. Lino is a clandestine psychic operative of
the Psi Faction who’s job is to fight against cyber terrorism and the
infiltrations of the Atlantea Federation which dropped the nuclear bomb called
the Dionysis Effect on the Pacific Territories.
 
Lino and the psychic operatives of the Psi Faction are set
against the Packrats which are seen as cyber terrorists by the government. The
grydscaen series makes a commentary about freedom and anti government actions.
Today we have activists and hackers standing up against oppression in various
countries. I think that grydscaen gives voice to that fight and shows how
things could happen in a world where there are less freedoms and the government
rules everyday life.
 
Psychics are oppressed in grydscaen and I wanted to make a
commentary about marginalized groups in society such as the transgender and gay
community. LGBT youth also have to face bullying in schools and can have a
difficult time adjusting to just being who they are. I wrote grydscaen to
provide positive role models to today’s youth and show them that they can be
different and still be respected. Bullying is a big problem today in person and
online. I remember being bullied in high school for just being who I was and
who I liked. This shaped who I am and I wrote grydscaen because I wanted to
give back and let gay and trans kids know that they can be accepted for who
they are.
 
The other topic that I touch on in grydscaen is mental
health. There is stigma about mental illness that is pervasive in society. One
of the grydscaen characters named Sati Ima has schizoaffective disorder but he
is a pilot in the military. He just needs to take medication and otherwise he
handles his symptoms. There are many people who deal with depression and other
mental illnesses that take medication. There should be no stigma to that. I
wanted to shed light on this and make it clear that people with mental illness
can lead full and fulfilling lives and they should be treated with dignity and
respect.
Grydscaen deals with difficult themes all rolled up into a
science fiction backdrop. I also talk about LGBT homeless youth in the series
as one of the characters Rom who is 16 years old lives on the streets. I wanted
to detail the plights of homeless youth and give them a voice that is often not
heard. Many people think this is just a problem in the inner cities but there
are many cities where gay kids come out and tell their parents and then they
are kicked out on the street, or for some reason or another they are running
away from abusive situations. Homeless youth need a voice and I just wrote a
grydscaen short story which is available on the grydscaen blog called “A
Storm’s Coming” which is about Rom the homeless LGBT youth.
 
Grydscaen makes a commentary about life and marginalized
groups in society. It calls for equal rights and equality like the marriage
equality initiative that is getting media now. When I was in college I wished
that I had strong LGBT role models that I could look up to who would have
helped me find out more about who I am. I wrote the grydscaen series to provide
this voice for those that might not feel that they were worthy of having a
voice or had no means to speak up. Grydscaen shows that a gay teenager can have
a position of power and rise up and make a change in his environment for the
better. Lino is that character and the grydscaen series revolves around him. I
wanted to give him a voice and tell about his struggles and his triumphs.
Grydscaen is about respect and being recognized for your talents. I wanted to
give back and grydscaen allows me to do that.
 
There are currently 4 books published in the grydscaen
series: grydscaen: utopia, grydscaen: beginnings, grydscaen: retribution and
grydscaen: war with a fifth book grydscaen: alliance due to be published this
year. I hope that you would take a look at grydscaen and the positive message
that it brings for today’s youth.
 
For more on grydscaen visit http://www.grydscaen.com

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Donna Galanti writes murder and mystery as well as middle grade adventure fiction. She is an International Thriller Writers Debut Author of the paranormal suspense novel A Human Element, the short story collection The Dark Inside, and the forthcoming Joshua and The Lightning Road.

Galanti, Donna 2An avid reader as a child, Galanti grew up in a nurturing environment, immersed in books such as The Hobbit, Little House in the Big Woods, The Island of the Blue Dolphins, My Side of The Mountain, Call of the Wild and White Fang. “My favorite author was Roald Dahl and my favorite book of his was Danny the Champion of the World,” says Galanti, whose dark imagination ran wild from the start.

From her early years in England to her later work in Hawaii as a U.S. Navy photographer, Galanti always dreamed of becoming an author. She wrote her first murder mystery screenplay at the tender age of seven. She had a career in writing for marketing and communications and ran her own resume writing service, but it wasn’t until her mother died five years ago that she began writing novels out of her grief. Eventually, that grief turned to peace, when she fully realized what it was she truly loved to do: becoming a storyteller. In addition to being a full-time author, Galanti also works part time as a freelance copywriter for an advertising agency.

“I write from the dark side with a glimpse of hope. I am drawn to writing the hero’s journey – more so the tormented hero, and tormented villain. I enjoy creating empathy for both by blurring the lines between good and evil,” states the author, whose first two books in The Element Trilogy, A Human Element and A Hidden Element (Imajin Books, August 2014) are both full of murder and mystery with a dash of steam, and both have their own tormented hero and villain. “I slay my own demons through my writing – and I highly recommend it!” she says.

A Human Element, just released by Imajin Books, is the thrilling, unrelenting page-turner story of Laura Armstrong. Her friends and family members are being murdered and, despite her unique healing powers, she can do nothing to stop it. Determined to find the killer, she follows her visions to the site of a crashed meteorite in her hometown, where she eventually unravels a terrifying secret that binds her to the killer.

The book has already garnered excellent praise from New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Maberry and international bestselling author M.J. Rose.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00067]Galanti lives in an old farmhouse – sadly, with no ghosts – with many fireplaces where she often curls up to create her page-turners. Other times she works in her office overlooking the woods. Throughout the year she meets weekly with a women’s writing group at a café where they write together and share advice and their success stories.

“When I am creating a new book I love to sit outdoors overlooking the woods with a pen and notebook and handwrite my ideas. My thoughts are slowed down this way as my brain connects to pen in hand, and it opens my mind up to brainstorm,” says the author, describing her creative process. “There is nothing more freeing creatively to journal story ideas and throw all sorts of ‘what if?’ questions out there to find the kernel of a good story you want to pursue. Then I create character worksheets and type up a ten page synopsis of the book. I do all this before I write that first word of the story. And I always create a title first! It’s what drives my inspiration for the story.”

Galanti began writing A Human Element seventeen years ago from a vision she had while driving to work one day. She wrote two chapters and shelved them for over a decade. When she finally decided to continue the story, she wrote Monday through Friday from 4:30am to 6:30am. After seven months she typed THE END.

All writers have their stronger and weaker points, and for this author, revision is her favorite process. That’s where she can make her story shine. “Knowing how important this process is has been one of my strong points,” she says. “There are many layers to a story to be found after you write that first draft, and that’s what I love to do: peel back the layers.” One area she struggled in for a long time was to slow down her writing. She can be a very fast writer, creating pages and pages of words that often would need to be trimmed down. She has since then learned to slow down her writing and craft her words with care as she writes them, so she doesn’t have to spend so much time on revision.

In an era when small presses, the good, the bad and the ugly, abound, Galanti’s experience has been nothing but positive. “My experience with Imajin Books has been amazing!” she says of her Canadian-based publisher. “Imajin Books is dedicated to working with me to help my books succeed. The owner, Cheryl Kaye Tardif, is a bestselling author in her own right.” Imajin Books was very responsive and provided in-depth editorial guidance as well as marketing plans, not to mention fantastic book cover designs. The publishing industry is notorious for being slow-moving, but in the case of The Element Trilogy, Imajin Books made the process quick and efficient.

As with many authors, Galanti finds starting a new book most challenging. The first blank page can be a scary thing, until the story takes over, propelling your main character into his new unbalanced world toward the ultimate end. However, being an author can be extremely rewarding. “When it comes to readers, there is nothing more thrilling than reading wonderful reviews about your book that you spent months, or years, creating and shaping,” she says. “It’s from that private place in your heart, where you love the most – and hurt the most – that you pour out pages to show the world. And it’s all worthwhile when you discover that others have been touched by your story, just as you were touched while you were writing it. Second, it’s rewarding to pay it forward to up-and-coming authors. There is a wonderful feeling that comes from speaking to writers about your publishing journey and sharing advice and techniques on how to find success as an author, and hope that they do.”

Galanti is currently working on the idea for the third and final book in The Element Trilogy called, A Healing Element, and gearing up to release book 2, A Hidden Element, on August 28th. A native of upstate New York, the author now lives in Southeastern Pennsylvania with her family in an old farmhouse. It has lots of writing nooks, fireplaces, and stink bugs, but she’s still wishing for a castle—preferably with ghosts.

Connect with the author on Facebook Twitter and her Blog.

This profile was originally published in Blogcritics

 

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