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Author Interview: ‘The Ialana Trilogy’ by Katlynn Brooke

About the Books:

In this roller-coaster fantasy adventure series, six diverse characters, three girls and three boys, between the ages of 15-21 embark on an epic quest to find a magical crystal lost 500 years in the past. What is their connection to this crystal? They must not only rediscover their past and survive a perilous journey over mountains infested with venomous mutant creatures, but they must also discover who the traitor is in their midst. In the second book of the series, they continue their healing mission but are thwarted by a Galonese Warlord, and hunted by a deadly foe. Shape-shifters, mutant creatures, and a power struggle between the rulers of Ialana all work together to make this one of their most difficult challenges yet. In the third book of the series, the Six and Anwyn, the daughter of two of the Six, must find and deactivate a weapon of mass destruction before Astrobal, the Demon-Lord of the Shadowlands finds it and uses it to destroy all life on Ialana. An old enemy in a new and even more deadly form arises, one who is able to match their enhanced abilities. In a nail-biting race to the end, the outcome is uncertain. Have the Six and Anwyn met their match this time?

…refreshingly original, complete with surprising plot twists and interesting, engaging characters.” – Hungry Monster Review

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Purchase Links:

Trilogy – Amazon US / UK

Book 1 – The Six and the Crystals of Ialana – Amazon US / UK

Book 2 – The Six and the Gardeners of Ialana – Amazon US / UK

Book 3 – The Six and Anwyn of Ialana – Amazon US / UK

Author Interview:

1: Tell us a little about yourself and what got you in to writing?

As a child, I grew up in the African bushveld. My father’s job was to build infrastructure in a country that had little in the way of roads, bridges, or towns outside the confines of major cities. This resulted in a gypsy lifestyle of camping, wherever his job led him, into places with no power grids for electricity, or potable water.

Our main entertainment was reading, and I became an avid bookworm from the age of six. I quickly bypassed Dick and Jane readers, and moved on to the classics in literature by the time I was nine.

I also loved to write, and since our family entertainment did not include television or movies, we wrote plays and produced them on my mother’s 8-track recorder. We also made movies with her 8mm camera, so my exposure to the joys of writing began at an early age.

I did not seriously pursue writing as a career, though, until I realized rather late in life, that it was something I really wanted to do. With age came a desire to share a hodge-podge of life experiences in a way that could be both entertaining and enlightening to younger readers. I thought that epic fantasy adventure would be the best way I could convey my philosopy and feelings about life, so in 2014 I wrote the first book in the Ialana Series. Three months later, I wrote the next, and am now on my fourth book in the series.

2: Do you have a favourite time and place where you write?

I am most comfortable writing in my own home. I have everything I need at my fingertips, and I can multi-task, do other things when I get tired of writing.

Mornings are my favorite time. My brain is fresher, and I have the afternoons to take care of life’s many other responsibilities.

3: Where do your ideas come from?

Since I was a child, I’ve had epic dreams that would rival any fantasy movie. For example, the island of Mu’A in Book One of the Ialana Series (The Six and the Crystals of Ialana), is based on a real dream I once had. Some of my characters are based on dream characters. Some, I believe, may even be past life memories. I feel I have lived in other times and places, and if that does not prepare me to write fantasy, then nothing else will!

4: Do you have a plan in your head of where the story is going before you start writing or do you let it carry you along as you go?

I am a “pantster”, as we’re known in writer parlance. I do not sit down and sketch out an outline, not even a short one on a napkin. I write by the seat of my pants. I just sit down and begin to write. There is a lot of thought that goes with this along the way, juggling of plot threads, characters, etc., but in the beginning it’s a fluid situation without bones or structure.

I know very few writers who do write this way, and I would not recommend it, either. Somehow, though, my plots do come together, my characters all begin to make sense, and I see a structure forming.

It’s weird, I know, but it works for me.

5: What genre are your books and what drew you to that genre?

I write young adult epic fantasy. I wanted to learn how to world-build as well as Tolkien, and fantasy allows for almost any situation to occur. One does not have to adhere to the rigidity of an existing world created by others. To explore the worlds that exist in our imaginations, dreams, and turn them into a story that others can access, is the magic of fantasy.

6: What dream cast would you like to see playing the characters in your latest book?

I would not mind who played my characters, as long as they understood the character. Having famous actors play the parts would be awesome, but I would be just as pleased to see an unknown actor, one who understands the character well, in any movie or television production of my books.

7: Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors.

I read approximately one book a week. My tastes are eclectic, and I enjoy both fiction and non-fiction. My book purchases — my secret vice — range from self-help to true crime, biographical, fantasy, adventure, and suspense. My favorite authors are Tolkien, R.A. Salvatore, and Terry Brooks (fantasy), M. William Phelps, (true crime), and John Grisham (suspense).

8: What book/s are you reading at present?

Hostile Witness, by William Lashner; The Plot to Hack America, William Nance; and Denali’s Howl, by Andy Hall.

9: What is your favourite book and why?

The Lord of the Rings trilogy by Tolkien. Reading the books as a trilogy transports me into a world unparalleled in fantasy fiction. Tolkien was a master at world building and characterization. His work has become the gold standard for many fantasy authors, and I find myself going back to these books, reading them over and over, just to get a sense of the feeling the story and words convey.

10: What advice would you give for someone thinking about becoming a writer?

Read. A lot.

If you don’t love it, don’t do it. It’s not an easy way to make money. You can do better with a conventional job, but if you must be a writer, then never give up. Hone your craft, but know that there will always still be room for improvement.

Don’t be in too much of a hurry to publish your first book. Get a professional opinion about its readiness for publication before submitting, whether you are thinking of self-publishing or going the traditional route.

11: What are the best Social Media Sites for people to find out about you and your work?  

www.katlynnbrooke.com

www.facebook.com/katlynnbrookeauthor

Books in the Trilogy:

Book 1 – The Six and the Crystals of Ialana

Mutant creatures, a Reptilian Dragon King, and a mysterious shape shifter… The first book in the Ialana Series.
The quest to find and restore the lost crystals of Ialana, unites six people who, along with a seventh, were all born with a secret buried deep within.Guided by a shared dream, they leave the only homes they have ever known and set out on a life-altering quest through a maze of mountain caves and tunnels where they encounter insidious creatures, and dangers from within their group.Mentored by Irusan the transcendental shape-shifter, they develop impenetrable relationships and learn to rely upon one another. They battle their way towards the lost crystal, but will they find it in time, or will their enemy succeed in his mission to control the powerful crystals of Ialana?

Book 2 – The Six and the Gardeners of Ialana

In a seamless continuation of the first book in the series, The Six and the Crystals of Ialana, the six healers have escaped the destruction of the Citadel in Rhiannon. But now they find themselves caught in the midst of a power struggle between the competing rulers of Ialana.

Unable to complete their healing mission, to heal mutants who were genetically altered by crystal manipulation, they flee the Galonese War-Lord, Ortzi, and attempt a dangerous journey back to their homes in northern Ialana.

Trapped by malevolent creatures, hunted by a monster who seeks them for reasons of its own, and on the run from a king and a conniving shape-shifter, there seems to be no place of safety for them.

Will they find the mysterious abode of the Gardeners? Who are the Gardeners, and what is their purpose for the Six? Will The Six be able to find Queen Catrin, who sets off on a quest of her own, or will Catrin run afoul of her husband, King Brenin, before she can find The Six?

In The Gardeners of Ialana, the Six explore the mysteries of healing, elemental command, and through many more trials, learn their true purpose in life.

Book 3 – The Six and Anwyn of Ialana

In the third book of the Ialana Series, an ancient weapon of planetary destruction has been uncovered. Astrobal, the demon-lord of Iochodran, will stop at nothing to gain possession and control of the deadly weapon. When Astrobal discovers that the key to the control of this weapon is Anwyn, the daughter of Jarah and Tegan, he must use all the resources he can muster to hunt her and her family down. He sends Glahivar, an old and powerful enemy of the Six, to Three Rivers, where they and Anwyn are under the protection of the Queen. But Queen Catrin and her husband, Ambros, have problems of their own. A threat from the south is brewing: Moran, the war-lord of Yor Swamps has designs on Catrin’s kingdom. In a race to the end, Anwyn and the Six must not only gain possession of the weapon, but deactivate it too, before Astrobal can use it to destroy the planet.

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Blog Tour and Author Interview: ‘Rebound Revival’ by Jerica MacMillan

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Rebound Revival Ebook Cover (3)

 

Rebound Revival

Book 3 in the Rebound Series

Jerica MacMillan

Contemporary Romance

Release Date: July 25, 2016

 

Blurb

What do you do when your one-night stand turns out to be your new boss?

Cate’s been burned by her cheating ex-boyfriend, and runs away to a small town in southeastern Washington to avoid seeing him ever again. Her first night in town she’s swept away by a sexy stranger and gets treated to the best night of her life, only to find out he owns the vineyard where she’s the new events coordinator.

Max, disappointed that Cate didn’t call after their night together, is thrilled to run into her again, even if it is at work.
Intrigued by this beautiful, self-contained woman, he is determined to draw her out of her shell and get her to open up to him outside of the bedroom as well as inside.

Will Max be able to overcome Cate’s distrust? Or will her ex’s infidelity make it impossible for her to trust a man again?

 

 

Rebound Revival Teaser 3 (2)

 

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Excerpt

My question dies before it finishes when I realize Max is right there. He pulls the drinks out of my hands and sets them on the counter at my back without a word. His hands return to my hips where he pulls me against him, his mouth coming down on mine once more.

This. This is what I expected in the hallway. His mouth is firm and demanding, and he nips at my lower lip with his teeth. With a gasp at the unexpected sting my mouth opens, and his tongue sweeps in. He tastes like strawberries.

His hands run up my back under my shirt, kneading and caressing my skin. I’m swept away by him, by his kiss, by his commanding presence, and it seems like all I can do to hold on, my fists clutching his shirt my only anchor.

He breaks away from my mouth and runs his lips down my jaw to my neck, biting and sucking at the place where my neck meets my shoulder. I shrug my shoulder to discourage that. It feels good, but I don’t want a hickey. I’m twenty-two for God’s sake, not a teenager in the first throes of lust. I didn’t even let boys give me hickeys then, especially not with two older brothers watching all the guys who were interested in me.

Max raises his head, a wicked grin on his lips and mischief dancing in his eyes. Before I can react he lifts my tank top, and my arms raise to help him strip it off me. He tosses it to the side, his eyes on my breasts. I look down and realize I’m wearing the most boring bra imaginable—beige cotton with zero decoration. It’s not like I expected to show off my lingerie for anyone today.

I open my mouth to explain away the bra choice, nerves getting the better of me. Before I can say anything he traces one finger along the edge of the cup. “You’re beautiful, Cate.”

I guess boring lingerie doesn’t faze Max. Both hands come up and cup my breasts. His large hands engulf them, the upper curve just spilling over his grip. He circles my nipples with his thumbs, bringing them to attention, absorbed by what he’s doing to me.

He tugs one cup aside to expose my now-hard nipple. Bending down, he takes it in his mouth and sucks deep, a groan rumbling in his chest. I can’t stifle the gasp that escapes from my mouth, and I clutch at the counter behind me so I don’t fall from the sensation.

His hands reach behind me to unhook my bra, and he stands up so he can pull the straps down my arms, letting it fall to the floor at our feet. His eyes flick up to my face for a moment to check in with me, and he leads me by the hand to the bed. Sitting on the edge, he brings me to stand between his legs. “So beautiful.” His hands run up my torso and caress my breasts, teasing the nipples, sliding to my back to bring me closer so his mouth can play with them some more. In this position his head is at the perfect height to reach my breasts. The longer he plays, the weaker my legs get, and I clutch at his shoulders so I don’t fall, his hands on my ass holding me up.

 

Rebound Revival Teaser 4

 

Author Interview

Tell us a little about yourself and what got you in to writing?

I’ve always written in some capacity.  And I was one of the weirdos that liked when my English teachers had us write stories rather than essays.  But I’ve written in a journal for the majority of my life.  I started dabbling in fiction, actually writing down the fragments of story ideas that popped into my head, about three years ago.  I got more serious about it at the beginning of 2015.  I went to a mini conference in March 2015 put on by my local RWA chapter, and that was so educational and inspiring.  And it gave me enough courage to finish the novella I was working on.

Do you have a favourite time and place where you write?

I do almost all my writing on my laptop (the exception is when the words are coming and I have to get them down before they vanish and I don’t have my laptop, then they go in Evernote on my phone).  Basically anywhere that people will leave me alone for a chunk of time.  Usually it’s in my office, but I like to go to the Starbucks near my house for a change of scenery and fewer opportunities for distractions from my kids.

Where do your ideas come from?

The ether?  The universe?  I don’t know.  They just show up.  I don’t question it.  I just write them down.

Do you have a plan in your head of where the story is going before you start writing or do you let it carry you along as you go?

Sometimes.  Sort of.  But mostly not.  To get started, I like to know the names of the characters, how they meet/the first scene, and the main conflict.  From there I try to figure out the major plot points.  I’m not a huge plotter—I don’t have detailed outlines or anything.  I have a sketchy framework, and usually I’ll jot down a scene list to get me from where I am in the story to where I know it needs to go.  But I’m mostly figuring it out as I go.  My scene lists rarely go beyond the next plot point.

What genre are your books and what drew you to that genre?

The Rebound Series is contemporary romance and my Players of Marycliff University Series is New Adult romance.  Those are primarily what I read.  For the NA stuff, there’s so much going on in a person’s life around that age, and there’s so much angst and drama to pull from.

What dream cast would you like to see playing the characters in your latest book?

Is it boring to say that I don’t dream cast my books?  Probably, but that’s the truth.  I do think it would be fun to know who readers would like to see cast as the different characters.

Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors.

I read all the time.  Like, every chance I get.  I have some writer friends who don’t read much while they’re drafting a book.  I’m not one of them.  First off, I’m almost always in the middle of writing something (if I’m not writing, I’m editing, sometimes I have one book in edits, and one in draft simultaneously).  Reading happens mostly at night in bed or squished into opportunities during the day.  My youngest is still nursing, so I read a lot while I’m nursing him, and I don’t watch much tv.  It’s on, but I prefer to read usually, especially since I rarely get to choose what we’re watching.  As for favorite authors, that’s a tough one.  Diana Gabaldon has long been a fav.  Douglas Adams and Christopher Moore for humor.  Julia Kent for romantic comedy.  And Kate Canterbary’s Walsh Series has latched onto me and not let go.  I read her latest one last month and just discovered books 6 and 7 are on preorder on iBooks, so I’m looking forward to getting those.

What book/s are you reading at present?

I’m almost done with Nothing Else Matters by Blair Babylon.  I’m reading it (and the three books that precede it in its series) for the second time.  So good.

What is your favourite book and why?

I’m terrible at picking favorites.  So I won’t.

What advice would you give for someone thinking about becoming a writer?

Don’t be a chicken, and just write.  It can be helpful to read some books or take a class on story structure.  Most writers write on instinct, but you need to know how it should fit together so it’s not a meandering mess.  And knowing how story structure works gives you names for the parts of the story that you already know you need, but maybe can’t articulate.  Also, finish something.  Maybe not everything, especially at the beginning, but have enough stamina to make it to the end.  It makes it easier next time.

What are the best Social Media Sites for people to find out about you and your work?  

I’m most active on Facebook and Pinterest (www.facebook.com/jericamacmillan and www.pinterest.com/jericamacmillan) but I am on Twitter (@jericamacmillan) and always update Goodreads when a new book comes out (www.goodreads.com/jericamacmillan).  The very best way to stay up to date, though, is to join my Book Club—www.jericamacmillan.com.

 

 

Other Books in this Series

 

Jenna just needs a little rebound therapy …

Jenna is still stuck in her grief a year after her fiancé died in a tragic accident. She exists, going through the motions of living, her former spark gone. Her best friend Amy drags her out to meet someone, convinced she needs a rebound guy to have some fun and start living again.

Brian is the hot owner of the wine bar where Amy takes Jenna. He has a mischievous grin that he wields like a weapon to convince Jenna to give him a chance.

Will his love be enough to pull Jenna out of her grief so she can learn to live and love again?
Available FREE on all major retailers!
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Always the bridesmaid …


Amy’s best friend Jenna is engaged … again. And she’s asked Amy to be her maid of honor. Amy can’t help but feel jealous that Jenna’s ready to walk down the aisle for the second time, especially when her own love life is virtually nonexistent.

Adam has wanted Amy since she first walked into his wine bar. After he finally got the chance to take her out, problems from his past got in the way. Now she’s dating someone else, and he’s jealous of the lost opportunity.

Will Adam and Amy work out the issues from the past and present that are keeping them apart? Or will their jealousies ruin their relationships and keep them apart forever?

Join my Book Club and get a FREE copy!
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About Jerica MacMillan

Jerica MacMillan is a lifelong reader and lover of romance. Nothing beats escaping into a book and watching people fall in love, overcome obstacles, and find their happily ever after. She was recently named a semi finalist in Harlequin’s So You Think You Can Write competition.

Jerica is living her happily ever after in North Idaho with her husband and two children. She spends her days building with blocks, admiring preschooler artwork, and writing while her baby naps in the sling. Join her Book Club at www.jericamacmillan.com and get a free book!

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