07Jun/19

Eliot Parker

June 7, 2019


It gives us great pleasure to welcome Eliot Parker back as the guest on Episode 219 – Don’t Be Afraid, Be Proud!

Eliot Parker joins us to discuss his two novels, Fragile Brilliance, and A Knife’s Edge, as well as book contests and awards.

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Bio:

Eliot Parker is the author of four novels, most recently A Knife’s Edge, which was an Honorable Mention in Thriller Writing at the London Book Festival, and is the sequel to the award-winning novel Fragile Brilliance. His novel Code for Murder was named a 2018 Finalist for Genre Fiction by American Book Fest. He is a recipient of the West Virginia Literary Merit Award and Fragile Brilliance was a finalist for the Southern Book Prize in Thriller Writing. He recently received with the Thriller Writing Award by the National Association of Book Editors (NABE) for his novels.

Eliot is the host of the podcast program Now, Appalachia, which profiles authors and publishers living and writing in the Appalachian region and is heard on the Authors on the Air Global Radio Network and Blog Talk Radio. A graduate of the Bluegrass Writers Studio at Eastern Kentucky University with his MFA in Creative Writing and Murray State University with his Doctorate in English, he teaches English at the University of Mississippi and lives in Oxford, Mississippi and Chesapeake, Ohio.

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September 8, 2017


It gives us great pleasure to welcome Eliot Parker as the guest on Episode 128: Show Up and Keep the Chair Warm

This week Eliot Parker joins the show to discuss his new release A Code for Murder, characters with flaws and drive, and then shares some advice for authors prepping for interviews based on his own experience as an interviewer!

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Bio:

Eliot Parker is the author of three novels: Breakdown at Clear River, Making Arrangements, and Fragile Brilliance. He currently teaches writing and literature at Mountwest Community and Technical College in Huntington, West Virginia, and hosts the television show “Chapters” across the Armstrong Television Network, which profiles authors, editors, and publishers in West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky.

 

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04Jun/19

Ithani (The Oberon Cycle Book 3) by J. Scott Coatsworth

The third and final part of the Oberon Cycle trilogy, the first books being Skythane (Book 1) and Lander (Book 2) The books must be read in order, the first concentrating on building the world the author has created, and the second adding more characters to those already introduced.

The worlds of Oberon and Error have been lovingly crafted right from the get-go, so I felt I knew the characters and their surroundings, the curious alien foods they eat and the commodities they treasure. There is an excellent glossary in each book too, reminding the reader of what unusual words mean if they get stuck as I did on occasions. And the size of the glossary alone is testament to how meticulous the author has been in creating these worlds.

The writing was flawless in all three books, with colourful, almost cinematic set-pieces and rounded-out, diverse characters. As with a lot of fantasy/sci-fi novels, there were a LOT of characters, which is always risky as sometimes it can be hard to connect to them all. And yes, I did have a job remembering all of them, and what their dynamics were. There were places where I had to re-read to ensure I was following the plot correctly.

But in this world, the world of Oberon, everyone had their role, and there wasn’t one character that I felt didn’t really need to be there. They were an engaging lot as well, even the bad guys. I don’t want to give too much away, to be honest, fearful of letting a spoiler loose by accident.

What I can say is by the end of the trilogy, a lot of the characters, Jameson and Xander, Quince and Robin, almost felt like friends. Their dialogue was approachable and very natural. I love the mix of pronouns, the diverse genders and sexualities; it really was a rainbow cast, and with cool tech to boot.

Also I saw echoes of our own world and warnings for the future of what we stand to lose if we aren’t responsible for our planet (but not in a heavy-duty, worthy way) but in the end it was just a really good story from start to finish. I think I said in my review of Skythane that Scott’s writing made me fall in love with sci-fi again.

And at the end of this trilogy, I’m glad to say I’m more in love with it than ever.

BLURB

Time is running out.

After saving the world twice, Xander, Jameson, and friends plunge headlong into a new crisis. The ithani—the aliens who broke the world—have reawakened from their hundred millennia-long slumber. When Xander and Jameson disappear in a flash, an already fractured world is thrown into chaos.

The ithani plans, laid a hundred thousand years before, are finally coming to pass, and they threaten all life on Erro. Venin and Alix go on a desperate search for their missing friend and find more than they bargained for. And Quince, Robin, and Jessa discover a secret as old as the skythane themselves.

Will alien technology, unexpected help from the distant past, destiny, and some good old-fashioned firepower be enough to defeat an enemy with the ability to split a world? The final battle of the epic science fiction adventure that began in Skythane will decide the fate of lander and skythane alike. And in the north, the ithani rise….

04Jun/19

The Radicals by Marolyn Krasner

Marolyn Krasner was a very welcome recent guest on WROTE! To check out her interview and her work, follow Episode 209: Have To Have That Light and Dark!

It’s interesting to dive into a book with absolutely no idea what to expect. I confess I didn’t warm to D at first. She was too aggressive, too attracted to chaos and seemingly selfish, but as the story unfolded, I began to get why she was like that, and  understand her frustration and being propelled into a world of diapers, responsibilities to loved-ones and society in general. One can’t rage all the time. Sometimes you have to listen, to learn, and D found those dynamics very hard to adjust to.

And her refusal to compromise made her bloody difficult to like, if I’m honest, but in the end I really did warm to her her. Not because she manages to conform and make those around her more comfortable in her presence, but because she kept true to her beliefs, her spirit, making a brave decision not to be held down by choices someone else made for her, and still fighting for those who find it hard to fight for themselves. It really was a triumph, and I loved her by the end.

The author pulls no punches. She doesn’t attempt to make D accessible to readers, and by that I mean she isn’t afraid to make her protagonist unlikeable at times. But then, we are all unlikeable at times. She doesn’t try to feminise her, or make this a tale where everyone is happy at the end. It’s life, with compromises from everyone. It felt very real.

The writing is first-class, with sharp dialogue and great characters. D’s hideous alt-Right father is one, and so is Sally, the Pussy Power cofounder who I didn’t warm to at all. She seemed even more toxic than the bigoted dad, constantly undermining D who incomprehensibly (to me) went back for more every time, even though she knew how toxic the woman was. For me that was the only bum note. I hated Sally every time she was on the page, and her presence haunts D and her lovely femme girlfriend, as they try to do the right thing for their baby whilst holding on to their disintegrating relationship.

In the end though, this is a coming-of-age story, not just for D, but for Sally and those around them, and the ending is oddly uplifting. This is a book I’ll remember for a very long time.

BLURB

After twenty-five years of extremist feminist activism, D is on probation for assaulting homophobes and she is becoming something she never wanted to be: respectable. D’s mom and girlfriend hope her life as leader of the feminist collective Pussy Power is over, but D feels like a failure. When she finds out her estranged father has jumped on the white power bandwagon and is sharing the personal details of marginalized people on his badly designed website, she reconnects with her toxic Pussy Power cofounder and triggers a chain of events that causes her new life to implode, which is very bad, but is also exactly what she wants.

31May/19

Tarian PS

May 31, 2019


It gives us great pleasure to welcome Tarian PS back as the guest on Episode 218 – I’ve Developed a Healthy Crush on Life!

Tarian PS comes back to the show to talk about the work he’s doing on his brother’s books as well as his own, the craft of storytelling, and a perspective on life after transitioning.

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Bio:

Both Proud Indy Authors, twins Talon and Tarian love to torment their editor with a nefarious world of foreign language, slang, local dialect, stretched/outside-of-the-box definitions, and have even been known to throw in some new word creations of their own at times. This, of course, is all thrown in there with the dyslexia soup stock they both suffer from that makes editing for them a joy {joy: n. see mental illness}.

However, the final product comes out as richly detailed as we believe all stories should be created: holographic worlds of love, pain, frustration, and challenges beyond the every day. We believe a good story should take you on an emotional ride, pluck your heart strings, and zing you about until you’re dizzy and screaming at the antagonist, while cheering for the protagonist before returning you to your cozy reading spot. And we’ve created these adventures within a mix of genres, so you can find the one right for you: Gay & Het Romances, Suspense, Paranormal and Sci-Fi Erotic Romances, War-time Romance Fictions, along with Talon’s favorite Space Sci-Fi Frontiers, and Tarian’s favorite works of Post-Apocalyptic Dark Fantasies and Historical Fantasies. All for readers to submerse themselves into and escape from their day when they need or desire, and to whet your appetite for more.

“A true Story Teller doesn’t deliver a product, they take you on an experience.” ~ Tarian P.S.

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September 28, 2018

It gives us great pleasure to welcome Tarian PS as the guest on Episode 183 – Will Write for Sex!!

Tarian PS (Stephan Knox) joins us to talk about his historic fantasy, Anáil Dhragain: (Dragon’s Breath), transgenderism in literature, and culturally sensitive ways to write Native American characters into your works!

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Books Mentioned in This Episode:

Bio:

Both Proud Indy Authors, twins Talon and Tarian love to torment their editor with a nefarious world of foreign language, slang, local dialect, stretched/outside-of-the-box definitions, and have even been known to throw in some new word creations of their own at times. This, of course, is all thrown in there with the dyslexia soup stock they both suffer from that makes editing for them a joy {joy: n. see mental illness}.

However, the final product comes out as richly detailed as we believe all stories should be created: holographic worlds of love, pain, frustration, and challenges beyond the every day. We believe a good story should take you on an emotional ride, pluck your heart strings, and zing you about until you’re dizzy and screaming at the antagonist, while cheering for the protagonist before returning you to your cozy reading spot. And we’ve created these adventures within a mix of genres, so you can find the one right for you: Gay & Het Romances, Suspense, Paranormal and Sci-Fi Erotic Romances, War-time Romance Fictions, along with Talon’s favorite Space Sci-Fi Frontiers, and Tarian’s favorite works of Post-Apocalyptic Dark Fantasies and Historical Fantasies. All for readers to submerse themselves into and escape from their day when they need or desire, and to whet your appetite for more.

“A true Story Teller doesn’t deliver a product, they take you on an experience.” ~ Tarian P.S.

This Podcast episode is available on these channels (in order alphabetical):
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24May/19

Sera Trevor

May 24, 2019


It gives us great pleasure to welcome Sera Trevor as the guest on Episode 217 – I’m the Expert What Are You Gonna Do?

Sera Trevor returns to talk about her latest release, Son of Beauty God of Death, and what to do when your carefully planned book goes off the rails.

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Bio:

Sera Trevor is terminally curious and views the 35 book limit at her local library as a dare. She’s a little bit interested in just about everything, which is probably why she can’t pin herself to one subgenre. Her books are populated with dragons, vampire movie stars, shadow people, and internet trolls. (Not in the same book, obviously, although that would be interesting!) Her works have been nominated for several Goodreads M/M Romance Reader’s Choice Awards, including Best Contemporary, Best Fantasy, and Best Debut, for which she won third prize in 2015 for her novella Consorting With Dragons.

She lives in California with her husband, two kids, and a cat the size of three cats.

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October 12, 2018

It gives us great pleasure to welcome Sera Trevor as the guest on Episode 185 – Ugh Reality!!

Sera Trevor joins us to talk about her upcoming release, Earthly Pleasures, as well as writing fantasy in M/M, and fantasy that is not set in or inspired by medieval times!

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Books Mentioned in This Episode:

Bio:

Sera Trevor is terminally curious and views the 35 book limit at her local library as a dare. She’s a little bit interested in just about everything, which is probably why she can’t pin herself to one subgenre. Her books are populated with dragons, vampire movie stars, shadow people, and internet trolls. (Not in the same book, obviously, although that would be interesting!) Her works have been nominated for several Goodreads M/M Romance Reader’s Choice Awards, including Best Contemporary, Best Fantasy, and Best Debut, for which she won third prize in 2015 for her novella Consorting With Dragons.
She lives in California with her husband, two kids, and a cat the size of three cats.

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17May/19

Brad Graber

May 17, 2019


It gives us great pleasure to welcome Brad Graber as the guest on Episode 216 – Tales of the City Meets The Crash!

Brad Graber joins us for a delightful discussion about his amazing and award winning works The Intersect, a love letter to Phoenix, and After the Fall, a tale of two healing journeys.

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Bio:

Brad Graber writes novels because he grew up in a family where no one ever listened to him—so he made up stories about them. Born and raised in New York City, Brad obtained a B.A. in Biology from the State University of New York at Buffalo and an M.H.A. from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. A former healthcare executive, Brad has held a number of management positions and been a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and a Certified Medical Executive through the Medical Group Management Association. Though he no longer works in healthcare, he continues to volunteer with local non-profits.

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10May/19
William C Tracy author photo

William C. Tracy

May 10, 2019

Fruits of the Gods book cover
It gives us great pleasure to welcome William C. Tracy as the guest on Episode 215 – 110 Percent Germination!

William C. Tracy joins us to discuss his latest novel, Fruits of the Gods, as well as cosplay, selling at cons, and the importance of inclusivity.

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Bio:

William C. Tracy writes tales of the Dissolutionverse: a science fantasy series about planets connected by music-based magic instead of spaceflight where you can explore aliens, magic, and steampunk!

He currently has five books out, from a coming of age story, to tales of political intrigue, to a Sherlock Holmes-like mystery, to a Jules Verne style adventure, to the first book of his epic space opera, titled THE SEEDS OF DISSOLUTION. Several books include LGBT-friendly elements as well.

William is a North Carolina native and a lifelong fan of science fiction and fantasy. He has a master’s in mechanical engineering, and has both designed and operated heavy construction machinery. He has also trained in Wado-Ryu karate since 2003, and runs his own dojo in Raleigh NC. He is an avid video and board gamer, a reader, and of course, a writer.

In his spare time, he cosplays with his wife such combinations as Steampunk Agent Carter and Jarvis, Jafar and Maleficent, and Doctor Strange and the Ancient One. They also enjoy putting their pets in cute little costumes and making them cosplay for the annual Christmas card.

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09May/19

Chasing The Dragon: Are You Chem-Friendly? By Cameron Yorke

Cameron Yorke was recently on WROTE! To find out more about him and his work, check out Episode 210: The New Normal!

Very briefly, Cameron Yorke was a successful journalist who accidentally became a drugs kingpin, providing liquid pleasure to eager punters wanting to get “High and Horny.” Then it all went wrong, ending in the death of a young man and a prison sentence for Yorke.

That’s the short version. The long version is told over a trilogy of books, the first two being Chasing The Dragon and Candy Flipping. I certainly learned a lot about this underground industry and the drug-fuelled parties, the wide variety of people involved, the lengths many go to in order to achieve sexual pleasure, and the hunger for as much as possible.

I worried for the author and everyone else involved long before it all went horribly wrong. There was an inevitability about it, almost from the first page. For me it was deeply disturbing that people would willingly do that to themselves, and the peer pressure involved. More than once I wondered what drives a person to seek out this kind of thing?

But I’m not and will never be part of that world, so I would not understand truly how it feels, or what the allure is. I get that, which is why I hope my review as someone new to this topic helps.

There is a lot to unpick here, and an incredible story that needed to be told. However, I thought both books were let down by the editing, and an overuse of exclamation marks, which had the effect of sensationalising all the activities. Someone did die, we have to remember that, and others were left with mental health problems and zero self-esteem.

The size of the paragraphs was also an issue, with stonking great chunks of prose that left one a little breathless by the time I had read through it. Again, this lessened the impact of the words, which was a shame. The books could have been more concise, and therefore powerful, if it had been edited more judiciously.

One thing that came across well; Yorke’s life became a drug-fuelled hot mess, a sort of Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas but in Belsize Park. There are times when it was hard to read because of the relentless pleasure-grasping, but I did because I wanted to understand even just a bit of why he embarked on what seemed like a wanton journey of self-destruction.

I’m not squeamish by any means, but in the end I was reeling at the shocking salaciousness of it all. A little less lurid detail might have had a stronger impact. I came away with the message, “you’ll be fine! It’s fun! Until you get caught!” Were you breathless after reading that? Well, that is what the books are like.

There isn’t much more I can say. Both books will stay with me, that’s for sure. I probably sound like a dowager aunt clutching her pearls, but although it was a fascinating insight into a shadowy underworld, I’ll stay on this side of the table, thank you very much.

When you’re finished, I’ll make some tea…

BLURB

Everyone is into Chemsex – everyone wants to get ‘High and Horny’ and PnP is a normal weekend pastime. At least that’s what it seems when you log onto one of the many gay apps now available, And if it’s not your bag, be prepared to be bullied, ridiculed, scorned and demeaned, such is the attitude towards the few chemsex virgins still left. Chemsex, for the uninitiated, refers to sex parties lasting three or more days, fuelled by recreational drugs such as crystal Methamphetamine or Gamma-Butylactose (GBL), where up to 100 men will gather for indiscriminate sex, in fact, gay middle-class men of almost any professional background are spurning relationships to inject, or ‘slam’ class A narcotics every weekend all over the world, turning to chems as a substitute for love.

Chasing the Dragon is a brutally honest portrayal of this phenomenon, and demonstrates how quickly seemingly successful, civilised men get sucked into a downward vortex, where judgement becomes impaired, and the bizarre becomes the new norm, with disastrous consequences.

26Apr/19

Abigail de Niverville

April 26, 2019


It gives us great pleasure to welcome Abigail de Niverville as the guest on Episode 213 – Unnecessarily Mysterious!

Abigail de Niverville joins us to discuss her new novel, I Knew Him, as well as how her musical composition informed her work and her take on YA literature.

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Books mentioned in this episode:

Bio:

Abigail de Niverville is a Moncton-born composer and author living in Toronto, Ontario. She graduated from the University of Toronto in 2017 with a Master’s of Composition, having studied with Alexander Rapoport. She has previously studied with Kevin Morse at Mount Allison University. Her experiences in theatre performance and production often influence her creative works.

Recent musical works include: Letters (for tenor and piano), Let Me In (for Ensemble Atlantica), and October 4th, 1967 (a mini opera).

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