Tag Archives: series

2019 Business Plan

I skip the whole New Years resolutions thing. If you enjoy it, have at it. What I like to do is outline my plan for the upcoming year. I’ve been known to look back at it here and there to see how I’m doing.

Last year, I pledged not to take on yet another social media platform. I signed up for Book Bub anyway. I like it as a presence for my books. It doesn’t require a lot of my time, and it gives me a nice place to post reviews of the books I read. I’ve transferred over a bunch of old reviews I wrote for people who are also there. I see they’ve done the same thing for me. Technically, there isn’t really a social aspect to it, but I put it in the same category.

Google Plus announced they are going away, and they won’t really be missed. About all I did with it was autofeed my blog there. I monkeyed with it for a few months, but never enjoyed it, or found any value.

The point is that social media has only produced minimal sales for me. I never really noticed a difference in my bottom line. Some of my author friends are even quitting Facebook now. I like the occasional Far Side cartoon, or bulldog video, so I’ll keep mine. With their advertising changing so frequently, it’s become kind of worthless for book promo.

Pinterest I really enjoy. Not for promotional purposes, but for ideas. I have images to inspire characters, paranormal art, science fiction, all kinds of things. I’ll keep my presence there, but for different reasons. It’s nice to forward a few images to my artist when I want a book cover or a new Lisa Burton poster.

Last year, I decided that my best promotional tool was to write my next book. Voyage of the Lanternfish is available as of a few hours ago. This is a pirate fantasy, with all the black magic and monsters you might expect in one of my stories.

I lost my critique group in 2016, then started relying upon beta readers. I like this process, but you have to find people who are willing to kick your butt. (Behind the scenes, of course.) In 2018, I lost my beta readers. This was devastating, but the end result was good.

I’m now part of a new critique group. While there is a difference between critique and beta, they both serve somewhat the same purpose. As a bonus, I get to hang out with a very talented bunch of people who are willing to kick my butt when I need it. (Behind the scenes, of course.)

These people have all written series, and are encouraging me to do the same. My own reading preference is for stand alone books, but I admit to enjoying a series on occasion. I understand the drill, hook them with the first one, then sell them additional stories in the same environment.

I’m still up in the air about writing stories where a previous book is a prerequisite. If I can pull it off, I would like any subsequent stories to be enjoyable even if you haven’t read the previous book. Honestly, I haven’t written a book where someone didn’t mention interest in a sequel.

Having said this, 2019 is going to be my year of the sequel, and possibly the prequel. I intend to write at least one more book in the Lanternfish environment, plus a prequel for one of the supporting characters.

In addition to all that, Lizzie and The Hat are going to make a return. The Hat is my most popular title, and I have multiple ideas that would be fun to explore. One at a time though, and with some dependence on whether the next one is popular too. The next one promises to bring back a few other old friends, and I’ve already started writing it.

That’s a big list, but I may be able to release three titles in 2019. Things would have to fall into place, but it could happen.

In a perfect world, I’d be about to start that cyberpunk novel I’ve been talking about for a couple of years. This one is intended to be a stand alone title. It went on the back-burner again, because I really need to explore the advantage of sequels.

Finances are a big concern. Book covers and promotional art are one thing, but advertising is getting expensive too. I would like to hire a promo company at least during the time around the book’s release. This is a push on multiple fronts in addition to any blog tours I might set up.

My mentality is to bounce around a lot. When I read, I change genres with every title, and I like that. When I write, I do the same thing. I’m starting to realize that many people are not like me. An author sparks their imagination with either a character or world building, and they want more. I intend to deliver some of that in 2019.

I’ve bounced around with promotions in much the same way. It all becomes somewhat like Whack-A-Mole after a while. My blog will remain my main focus, it will auto feed to other sites, but if you really want me you can find me here.

It’s all kind of calming to make these decisions. My focus will be on production of good fiction. There will be blog tours to help promote, and even some new Lisa Burton posters. I’m not going to spend time making graphics for Twitter, or figuring out how often to make Facebook posts about my stories.

I hope your 2019 is productive, positive, and enjoyable. I think mine will be too.

Advertisements

54 Comments

Filed under Writing

The Bow of Hart Saga, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Welcome all you arrow slingers and adventurers, Withlings and casters of every stripe. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you the characters from the books you love. With me in the studio today is Tordug, and he’s a dwarven adventurer. “Welcome to the show, Tordug.”

“Wonderful to be here, Lisa. May I call you Lisa? Yes? Good! It’s always a pleasure to get off the back-lot of the fiction set and make some visits. You have no idea how boring it is these days. Oh, by the way, thanks for that little gift of, what do you call it? Whiskey? That guy you work with was generous to offer a sample from his supply. Warmed my toes!”

“You’ve brought along a friend today. You know I’m a sucker for a fluffy dog. Who’s this?”

“This old whelp? That’s none other than Spark, himself. He’s around in all of the books when I have to act like I don’t see him. Spark’s been great on the set. He glows some so he makes a great light on the walk home from the local pub. He talks with his tail – you know, wags for yes and everything else is no – so he’s a good listener while I’m having a pint or eight. Hee, hee. Spark hands out his advice with my help, if you know what I mean.”

“Well aren’t you a handsome doggie?”

“Judging by that big tail wag, you’ve won him over without even scratching behind his ears!”

“Let’s get down to business. My bio says you were a pretty respected fellow in Chokkran society, but then you wind up on the road running from trolls. What the heck happened?”

“Er, yes, I was pretty big back then. But that was a long time ago when some mistakes were made, uh, around some of my decisions. Those dirty Rokans tricked us! Oh, sorry, didn’t mean to knock that, uh microphone around. Is that what it’s called? Anyway, I’m helping find the Bow of Hart in the saga, me and Makwi, that is. You need good dwarves along to keep things lighthearted, focused and find your way in dark, underground places. Finding the bow will fix a lot of things, even for us Chokkran dwarves.”

“Seems like a desperate play, but I’ll bet it was interesting.”

” Well, Lisa, it got off to a right surprising start when we helped Hastra’s bunch on the road to Marston’s Station. That’s when we met Limbreth and found out she was an ax-maid of the death-grip, no less. Couldn’t get a sword out of her hands. High honor in our society, especially for those who are her companions if you know what I mean. Me and Makwi, well mostly me, started training Limbreth about her honors in dwarven society. I had high hopes for her, just knew she’d, uh, help when the time arrived.”

“Wait a minute here. Did you use Limbreth as a pawn to get back into the good graces of Chokkra society?”

“I wouldn’t say that! I mean it can be an advantage to regaining, no, no, that wasn’t the purpose though. She deserved that honor, and more than once for her courage, mind you. Opps, sorry I slapped that microphone around again. Let me get that. Anyway, that training was very useful. She teamed up with me to get us some much-needed assistance from dwarves when they would have denied me out of hand. But an ax-maid? With the death-grip? That’s something special, cause for celebration and all. I just needed her help is all. She’s like a daughter to me!”

“Okay, Spark seems to agree with that statement. Sounds like Limbreth is quite the lady.”

“Oh, Limbreth’s all that and much more, isn’t she, Spark? Ha ha, by that tail-wag Spark definitely agrees! Limbreth fights like a dwarf champion. Too bad she had that little disagreement with Athson and left Auguron. But there was still lots to do for me and Makwi with the trolls coming. Captain Sarneth, he’s the leader of the elven rangers of Auguron, asked my help when he realized who I was and how much experience I had fighting trolls and all. I jumped at that and hoped the scattered remnants of Chokkrans would flock to help. But they’d already left for less dangerous lands. Someone needed to rally them but they just mind their own business these days. I did hope my stand – and Makwi’s might – get some attention. I just didn’t know what was going to happen next but we’ll leave that to the readers to discover, eh?”

“That sounds like a slim chance to recover a bit of honor. I really hope that is the case.”

“It was, Lisa, and a dim set of days for me and Makwi. But we decided we’d fight for our people even if they had not fight left and left like refugees. Can’t blame them, all they’ve had for years is a wandering life. They just needed some inspiration and we hoped, Makwi and me, that they’d hear and honor our effort on behalf of Chokkra. Right, Spark? See! Even he agrees with me.”

“It sounds like you got an interesting call-back recently. What can you tell us about that?”

“Oh yes, we did, didn’t we, Spark? PH, that’s the author of the books, got a message from this Podium Publishing bunch and they wanted the saga for audiobooks. Once the agreement was signed there were all these questions about accents from the narrator, fella named Tim Bruce. We all got called in again and helped teach him, that voice actor, on all the correct pronunciations. He got it right with Spark to tell him when he was on the correct path. Right, Spark. Yes, you did all that so just keep wagging your tail!”

“Audiobooks are awesome. I know my author would love to release one someday. How did that all fall together?”

“Your author should if he gets that chance! You’d do well, yourself. I hear tell he’s got a book about dwarves too. I like your author, uh, uh, what’s his name? Boyack, right? Anyway, I heard about the talking hat and the talking yak, whatever that is. Sound like interesting stories for the campfire, so why not audio?

“Well, these Podium people came around, humans, you know? They were snooping around the back-lot when we were still working through An Arrow Against the Wind and The White Arrow. I thought they were extras for the fights, dressed kinda funny, for business or something. Anyway, we were practicing our fight scenes with some trolls and I tossed one of them an ax and told him to get busy and he looked at me like I was the biggest, ugliest ogre, which I’m not. They started asking questions like some of those reporters I keep having to talk with. Turns out they wanted to do this audio thing once we finished with the series. Well, I was glad for the offer of more work, Lisa, and that’s a fact.”

“That had to do great things for the Bow of Hart series.”

“That it does. There’s this Audible where the audio is published and it links to the book somehow. People who buy the ebook can get the audio and use it with this Whispersync stuff. It picks up where someone’s reading and goes on telling the story, perfect for traveling.

“Anyway, it’s one more way for the books to be seen and working with Podium is a big deal. Their first audiobook was something called The Martian which made it pretty famous as I hear. So, it’s good to work with this bunch. This Tim Bruce fellow is busy and pretty well-known in his circles, won some awards for his work too. Ha, ha, having an award-winning book, like The Bow of Destiny with and award-winning narrator is kinda like having an ax-maid with the death-grip on your side, right? See? Spark agrees!”

“Tordug, we wish you all the best with that lost honor thing. Any closing remarks for our listeners, while I hug this big old doggie?”

“Thanks for having me and Spark on the set today, Lisa. The Bow of Destiny is already out in audio so anyone interested can listen to a sample. An Arrow Against the Wind arrives in audio on 10/23/18 and The White Arrow releases to audio on 11/27/18. I never thought this series would get this far but it’s been quite a ride for Spark, me and all these others. I have to thank the readers for all their support. We wouldn’t have made it to the awards for the series and audio without them. Oh, sorry I bumped the microphone again. I just can’t get used to the thing and I talk with my hands.”

“I’ll post all the details on the website after we log off today. For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.

***

 

Contact

Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Website | Pinterest | Wattpad

BookBub | Amazon Author | SFWA Member

Current Titles

 

Book 1 of The Bow of Hart Saga: The Bow of Destiny can be found at these online retailers: Amazon – Kindle | Audible.

The Bow of Destiny Blurb

 

Haunted by his past. Hunted in the present. Uncertain what is real.

Athson has seen things that aren’t there and suffered fits since being tragically orphaned as a child at the hands of trolls and Corgren the wizard. When a strange will mentioning a mysterious bow comes into his possession, he’s not sure it’s real. But the trolls that soon pursue him are all too real and dangerous. And what’s worse, these raiders serve Corgren and his master, the hidden dragon, Magdronu, who are responsible for the destruction of his childhood home. Athson is drawn into a quest for the concealed Bow of Hart by the mystic Withling, Hastra, but Athson isn’t always sure what’s real and who his enemies are. With Corgren and Magdronu involved, Athson must face not only frequent danger but his grasp on reality and the reasons behind his tragic past.

Book Trailer on YouTube

 

Book 2 of The Bow of Hart Saga: An Arrow against the Wind: Amazon | Audible

An Arrow Against the Wind Blurb

Haunted by his past. Hunted in the present. Buffeted like an arrow in the wind.

The hunt for the Bow of Hart continues for Athson and his companions. They have escaped the clutches of Magdronu and Corgren, but they are still pursued. In need of answers to deep mysteries revealed in Chokkra, Athson must gain possession of the mythic bow to face both his enemies and his tragic past. But Magdronu’s reach stretches among Athson’s companions, endangering Limbreth and even Hastra in schemes to entrap them all. With each turn of the search for the Bow of Hart, long hidden secrets surface that threaten to destroy Athson. Will he falter like an arrow against the wind?

Book Trailer on YouTube

Book 3 of The Bow of Hart Saga: The White Arrow: Amazon

The White Arrow Blurb

Bound to prophecy, his destiny balanced on an arrow’s tip.

Athson has found the Bow of Hart and is being pursued by his enemies as well as haunted by both his past and his failures. But according to Hastra the Withling, the prophecy of the bow indicates Eloch will send an arrow for its use. Magdronu watches for the appearance of the arrow and sets his plans in motion to regain control of his magic. With his sights set on Auguron, the dragon sends his forces on the attack while waiting for his chance to steal both prophesied elements that stand in the way of his ultimate goal. But when the arrow arrives, it is from a most unexpected source and lands in unforeseen hands, so that events twist like an arrow in flight. Can Athson overcome his past and his failures to use the Bow of Hart as intended against Magdronu? The archer and the bow await the coming arrow…

Book Trailer on YouTube

 

Prequel short stories to The Bow of Hart Saga:

Trading KnivesKobo | iBooks | Barnes & NobleSmashwords | Amazon | AudFans

What Is Needed Barnes & Noble| Kobo| iBooks | Smashwords | Amazon | AudFans

Additional Titles:

The Black Bag Amazon |

 

28 Comments

Filed under Lisa Burton Radio

The Nightforce Security series, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Don’t touch that dial. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio, coming at you with 1.21 jigawatts of power all across the cosmos and beyond the veil. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, bringing you characters from the books you love.

Today we’re going to have a little chat with Danny Caruso, owner of Nightforce Security, a new-ish company in headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania whose employees have rather impressive skillsets.

“Welcome to the show, Danny.”

“Thank you, ma’am.”

“Ma’am! Such formality. Call me Lisa.”

“Sorry. Old habits die hard. Thanks, Lisa. Uh, glad to be here.”

“Don’t sound so enthused. This is supposed to be fun.”

“I know. I’m just not much of a showboat. I do my best work out of the limelight.”

“Then why’d you agree to come on the show today?”

“Because my employees insist I need to do more publicity. We haven’t been taking on the kinds of jobs we expected. We’ve been… sidetracked.”

“Oh? Sounds juicy. Do tell us more.”

“We’re a security firm, right? We’re supposed to be protecting movie stars in town to shoot a film. Singers here for concerts. Businessmen. Politicians at the occasional rally. And don’t get me wrong, we have those clients. But lately, pfft. Might as well have re-upped.”

“Re-upped? Are you former military?”

“See? This is why I hate being in the hot seat. There’s just certain sh—can I swear on the radio?”

“I don’t mind. I can’t speak for the FCC censors, though.”

“There’s stuff I don’t like to talk about.”

“I would think a military background would make you ideally suited for operating a security firm.”

“It does. I just don’t like to discuss it.”

“Seen some bad sh—stuff overseas?”

“What part of ‘don’t like to discuss it’ confused you?”

“Sorry. It’s my job to pry. So, you were saying you’re taking on jobs you didn’t expect.”

“Yeah. Fewer famous people needing a sense of security and more people caught in the middle of life-and-death situations.”

“Sounds exciting.”

“Infuriating.”

“Do tell.”

“I can’t talk about my cases.”

“Okay. Well, let’s change topics then, shall we? I understand you’re off the market now.”

“Excuse me?”

“You are in a committed relationship, correct?”

“Oh, that. Um… you were asking about cases. Here’s one for you. Noah Crawford, my right-hand man, just stumbled into one hell of a—oh, sorry.”

“Hell’s a place. I think you’re okay.”

“Right. Anyway, Noah was licking his wounds after a one-night stand.”

“Don’t single men often prefer no-strings fun?”

“Noah is the consummate bachelor. Or he was. Until the one who got away. He didn’t even catch her name. Had a bug up his… butt about it for the better part of a week.”

“Then what?”

“Then it all hit the fan. He bumped into her, but before they talked about things, they found themselves hostages in the middle of a heist. Of sorts.”

“Of sorts?”

“Well, he hasn’t written his final report yet, so I don’t have all the details. Just another job-that-isn’t.”

“What do you mean, job-that-isn’t?”

“We keep falling into these crazy situations. We aren’t hired, but there we are. Doing favors for someone or being in the victim pool. We don’t get money for that. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mind helping where I can and I’d never turn down someone in need.”

“Hero complex?”

“Something like that, I guess. But I have to pay the bills, too. And that’s why I’m here today—trying to drum up some paying customers. Don’t suppose you need a bodyguard?”

“Sorry. Robots can take care of themselves. But if I did, you’d be the first person I’d call.”

“Thanks.”

“Don’t mention it. I—hold on a second. I see we have a caller. Hello, you’re on with Lisa and Danny.”

“Hey, boss. Mind if I ask why you’re talking about my love life on the radio?”

“Uh… hey, Noah. Didn’t realize you planned on catching the show.”

“We nagged your sorry ass to do it. Think we weren’t going to tune in when the show was on?”

“We? We, who?”

“Me, Mac, Ethan. Cap’s here. We’re at his bar. The whole joint’s listening.”

“Perfect.”

“Even Gianni, Vinnie, Nico, and Coz are here. They brought their women.”

“Wait a minute. Noah, are you talking about the Notaro sisters and the Brotherhood?”

“Sorry, Lisa. Rude of me not to say hello.”

“Hi. Now, back to my questions. Are you telling me you know the Notaros and the Medici Protectorate?”

“Yeah. Danny introduced us. He and the guys go way back.”

“Danny, you’ve been holding out on me.”

“How so?”

“I’ve had the pleasure of talking to a few of your friends before. I never did hear how their situation turned out.”

“That’s not my story to tell.”

“You like to hold your cards close to your vest, don’t you?”

“Speaking of cards, did I mention Noah’s exploits took place in a casino?”

“Hey! Stop talking about me. You’ve got your own story to tell.”

“Lisa, where’s the disconnect button?”

“Oh, Danny. You think I’m going to cut off this conversation? It’s way too juicy.”

“We’re all hanging out at Cap’s bar, if you want to join us, Lisa. One Ugly Mug.”

“Sounds like an entertaining evening, but I believe Craig has plans for me after this.”

“Noah, don’t you have something productive to do right now?”

“Nope.”

“Do you like your job?”

“Yeah.”

“Then find something to do.”

“I’m off the clock, boss. Nothing but time on my hands. I can talk all night.”

“So, Lisa, I was telling you about Noah crashing and burning with this girl he met.”

“Okay, boss. Hanging up now. Lisa, the invitation stands. Anytime you want to hang out with us, just drop by.”

“Thanks, Noah.”

“Hang up, Crawford.”

“Geez, Dan. I’m going. We’re all still listening, though.”

“Noah!”

“All right. Bye.”

“Dickhead. Oh, shit. Damn it! Sorry, Lisa.”

“No worries. I know how you military guys are.”

“Ex-military.”

“Old habits die hard, right?”

“Exactly.”

“If the censors have a problem with it, they’ll bleep it out.”

“I’ve said enough, anyway. I think I’ll take off. I’ve got some employees who need a stern talking to.”

“He’s a handful, isn’t he?”

“They all are, Lisa. They all are.”

“Must make things at work… interesting.”

“Work is hard. Often dangerous. But the guys make it fun. I wouldn’t want them any other way.”

“I’m guessing you’re headed to One Ugly Mug now. Please give my best to the Notaros and the Brotherhood.”

“Will do.”

“And listeners, if you’re in the need for the services of a first-rate security firm, might I suggest Nightforce Security? You can’t feel safer than when you’re in the care of a team of former special ops officers.”

“I didn’t say anything about special forces.”

“Am I wrong?”

“That’s not the point.”

“Thanks for dropping by, Danny.”

“Thank you, Lisa.”

“All right, folks. Thanks for checking out the show. Please use those ‘like’ and ‘share’ buttons down below. The guys at Nightforce Security could use the support, and I know Staci will happily return the favor if I have you on the air.”

* * *

Staci Troilo’s Nightforce Security Series is a spinoff of her Medici Protectorate Series. The security firm, headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, makes use of the talents and specialties of the people it employs—people with elite military and law enforcement backgrounds.

Visit old Brotherhood friends and meet the new crew destined to make your heart stop and your fingers flip the page for more.

Password is the novel that starts the series. Danny Caruso is busy expanding his security firm when an old friend approaches him with a job. Next thing he knows, he’s protecting the world’s most private and stubborn woman from an unidentified threat. Secrets, lies, and subterfuge slow him down, and if he can’t solve the mystery, they’ll cost him everything. Universal Purchase Link

Second in the series is the novella Gamble, which is available now. Noah Crawford can’t get a one-night stand out of his head. He can’t even track her down, because she didn’t give him her name. While trying to forget her, he goes to a casino with friends and runs into her. Before he can try to pick up where things left off, armed men take them hostage. The stakes are high, and they’re cut off from help. Noah needs to take them down or he could lose everything. Universal Purchase Link

Staci Troilo writes because she has hundreds of stories in her head. She publishes because people told her she should share them. She’s a multi-genre author whose love for writing is only surpassed by her love for family and friends, and that relationship-centric focus is featured in her work.

Web | Newsletter | Twitter | Facebook | Other Social Media Links

98 Comments

Filed under Lisa Burton Radio

Why Windemere needs Champions, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Don’t touch that dial. No, seriously, it may be cursed now. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you the characters from the books you love.

We’ve had our share of evil warlords, fallen angels, and general baddies on the show before, but never one the gods took a direct involvement in. My special guest today is none other than Baron Arthuru Kernaghan. “Welcome to the show, Baron.”

“My pleasure to be here. It’s nice to interact with non-demons for even a little while.”

“My research provided me with a little bio, and it says here that you have an on-again slash off-again relationship with a woman named Zaria. What’s that all about?”

“To say my marriage to the Goddess of Purity is complicated would be an understatement, so I will try my best to explain the situation. We were both mortals and worked in a traveling circus. I was a beast tamer and she was the resident swordswoman, which was fairly unique during that time. She was chosen to save the gods and I, being her friend and eventual husband, fought alongside her. At the end of our travels, she joined their ranks and I was left behind with a broken heart.”

“So how does one go from human to becoming a god?”

“When the gods have openings in their ranks, they may choose a mortal with the properties to replace them. Other times, they will find a mortal who becomes so powerful that it is better to have them ascend. In most cases, it involves being chosen, which is a system that I have never truly understood. I prefer the exceptions where a mortal gains godhood by their own hand.”

“That probably put a damper in your relationship with Zaria.”

“I supported her rise until she helped create what is known as the Law of Influence. This states that the gods cannot get physically involved in the lives of mortals. I was now a mortal and my wife was a goddess, which meant we could no longer be together. My petitions fell on deaf ears and I was basically cast aside after sacrificing so much. Zaria did try to find a place for me among the gods, but nothing happened.”

“Okay, so off again. But you had a plan to undo the Law of Influence.”

“More or less. At first, I sought to create such an imbalance in Windemere that the gods would have to get involved. I became the greatest warlord in history with the hopes of proving that the Law of Influence was a mistake. As the years progressed and my plan did not, I turned towards conquering everything. If the gods have no followers then they have no true power and I would make worshipping them punishable by death. Unless I found a way to ascend myself and then I could make the gods pay in person. It helps to be flexible and change your goals as situations evolve.”

I dunno, Brain. What do you want to do tonight?”

“Pardon me?”

“So did that plan work out?”

“Not the way I intended, but isn’t that always the case? I had discovered a way to become the new God of Destiny, but the object I needed was lost. My forces were searching for it, including a young man named Gabriel. He came to me in the hopes of earning greatness and warned me of these champions destined to destroy me. Perhaps I was still a little naïve back then because I never realized that his true goal was to kill me himself and prove that destiny could be undermined. As much as I hate that man for targeting me and eliminating many of my children, I will admit that I like his ambition and goals.

“To continue the story, Gabriel did find me the Ring of Destiny and I took it before he could don it himself. That made me a god and I attempted to make the others suffer. At least, I went to Ambervale intending to do that, but my reunion with Zaria took precedence. She had a point that I could finally be with her and I enjoyed my brief time, but I was still far too angry that I had been left to suffer for so many years. After all, I’d promised my soul revenge.

“That was my mistake. I wasted too much time trying to live a life with Zaria that I had given up on and I was cast out of history before I could reach my goals. Some may say the conceiving of our daughter makes the experience worthwhile, but we’ve never had a close relationship. I do fear that the Law of Influence has hurt Dariana just as much, if not more, than me.”

“Seems like a strange path, but happy ever after, right?”

Not in the least. As some may realize, Gabriel is the current God of Destiny, which means he stole my title and power. He was angry about me trapping him in the Chaos Void and his mood soured even more when he realized the Law of Influence prevented him from killing me. I was only an immortal and not a god. His decision was to trap me in the Chaos Void and erase my existence from history. Imagine living forever and being locked in a cage where nobody can find you. It was worse than that.”

“Come on, Baron. They wouldn’t just arbitrarily decide to do that. What did you do?”

“Gabriel can be such an angry and immature child when he is wronged. He lashed out at me because I tried to kill him. I feel he also wished to show his power in front of the other gods in order to prove he was stronger than them. Do not think I am trying to say I am a good man or even a victim. I did horrible things that earned the proper amount of wrath. Torture became a hobby of mine and I sought to improve upon the trade as often as I could. Quite frankly, I have to be honest and say that I’d have been destroyed if that insufferable Law of Influence didn’t exist, but then I wouldn’t have turned to evil in the first place either.”

“So you’re making another play at getting on-again with Zaria. You do realize she’s the goddess of purity, right?”

“Sadly, I think I’ve run out of chances and we’ve both gone too far down our different paths. I do take some joy from knowing we had a daughter. Dariana may have been made into a champion and sent against me, but she is still a symbol of the life I could have had.”

“So how’s that going to work into your plan? Do you have to turn Dariana to the dark side or something?”

“Dariana is free to do as she wishes. I would like for her to join my side, but destiny is difficult to destroy. Free will does play a role, which means I must leave the final decision to her. That is not to say I will go out of my way to kill her like the other champions or even fight her at full strength if I must. Perhaps I can defeat my enemies and destroy Gabriel’s plans before Dariana and I are forced to fight to the death. Sadly, we’ve been put at opposite sides of the chess board.”

“Baron, I usually wish people the best of luck at the end of these interviews, but this time not so much. I hope you can reunite with Zaria and reconcile your differences with Dariana. She’s nice, I’ve met her before. I can’t wish you luck in battle against the Champions. That’s the best I can do. Any closing comments for our listeners today?”

“Thank you for your kind words and I understand why you would wish for me to fail. I seek the conquering of an entire world, but I assure everyone that I will only be cruel to those who stand against me. Ruling entirely by fear will lead to revolts and failure. I’d much rather lead through a strong grip alongside an air of kindness.”

“You can read all about The Baron in the Legends of Windemere series, by Charles Yallowitz. The final book is out now, and it’s called Warlord of the Forgotten Age. I’ll post all the deets on the website after I go off the air.

“Help your favorite robot girl out, and use those sharing buttons too. I think the Baron would do it for you, and Charles has shared and reblogged many of these episodes for his fellow authors.

“I’m always looking for guests, so if you have a new release, or a promo push, contact me and get your character on the show. For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

Whether in darkness or light, every path inevitably comes to an end.

As Gabriel, the Destiny God, determined centuries ago, his chosen will face Baron Kernaghan for the fate of Windemere. Through many victories and losses, the champions have stood together and prepared for this great battle. Now that the Baron’s influence stirs those with evil hearts, they have run out of time and must travel to Shayd. Yet, there are more secrets for them to uncover before entering a battle where the only way to survive is surpassing limits and putting everything they have on the line. Through it all, Gabriel’s statement that he made them destined to fight, but winning was not set in stone rings in their minds.

Will the champions usher in an Age of Heroes or become the sacrifices for an Age of Darkness?

Book link-  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B078KHZFSS/

 

Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you, and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.

Blog: www.legendsofwindemere.com
Twitter: @cyallowitz
Facebook: Charles Yallowitz

Website: www.charleseyallowitz.com

67 Comments

Filed under Lisa Burton Radio

Warlord of the Forgotten Age

Charles Yallowitz is a good friend of mine. He has appeared on my blog many times, and me on his. If you are the kind who read comments, you’ll find us getting into some fairly deep topics on one site or the other. Charles has what I see as a major accomplishment. He’s completed the final volume of his Legends of Windemere series. As a writer of stand-alone books I am in awe. This series is epic fantasy, and epic in proportion at fifteen volumes.

Many months ago, we got into a discussion about writing characters of the opposite gender. This isn’t something that comes easy to every writer. Our discussion morphed into the following post, and it’s part of his blast to announce Warlord of the Forgotten Age to the world. Read the post, join in the discussion, and get your copy of the book. I’ll also note that if you’re one who likes to wait for completion before starting a series, this is the time to jump on the Windermere train.

Oh, and if you would use those sharing buttons, we would both appreciate it. I’ve released enough books to know that spreading the word is super important.

Thank you to Craig for helping me promote Legends of Windemere: Warlord of the Forgotten Age, which is also the last of the series.  That works for the necessary sales pitch because I want to get to the fun.

A while back, Craig wrote a guest post for my blog about how he writes female characters.  This is a question I’ve seen come up a lot in forums with people asking members of one group how they write characters from another.  It’s almost like readers are surprised when a man writes a strong, interesting female character or a woman comes up with a great male character.  Although, more the former than the latter because many female authors admitted that they find heroes and villains easier to write than heroines and villainesses. By the way, ‘villainesses’ is a word that doesn’t get used nearly enough   So, where do I stand on this?

Honestly, I never really thought about it until now.  Since I was a teenager, I focused more on how the characters acted and evolved.  The gender was important only to denote romantic interests, pronouns, clothing, and physical appearance, but the core of my characters was to make them human.  My heroines had to be able to pull their weight on teams and have unique skills that made them stand out.  In my earliest stories, I gave all of my characters roles and the female protagonists did tend to fall into caster and healer roles.  Only recently did I revisit these characters and redesign all of them to flush them out more.  To be honest, the males weren’t any better, but I think most of us have started out with flat characters.

In regards to the women of Windemere specifically, I started with a character that was introduced in the connected D&D game.  Selenia Hamilton isn’t the best example of how I write female characters.  The reason is because she’s a tough, legendary mercenary who now runs a warrior school, but has eliminated her femininity to the point where she’s very masculine.  A lot of authors seem to think this is the way to go for a ‘strong, female’ character.  I considered changing her, but realized she’s one of Windemere’s pioneers in terms of proving women can be strong warriors.  So, it would make sense that she went this route and paved the road for characters like Nyx, Sari, Kira Grasdon, and Dariana. Does this mean Selenia Hamilton is a bad character?  Not in the least, but it does show one way I used to think when it came to creating tough heroines. The thing is that you do have people like this in the real world, so I don’t see why it would be a problem to have fictional versions.  I’ve met plenty of women who decided that the only way to get ahead is to act more like a man. So, here we have me observing different types of women (men too to be fair) and using the variety.  After all, not every character of the same gender has to be the same.

That’s really the biggest thing that’s helped me write female characters in general.  I look around to see how women respond to things, listen to what they would like to see in heroines, and watch for various personality traits.  This really began because of Nyx, who is easily the most powerful hero in Legends of Windemere.  Seriously, who’s going to try and tell her that she’s not?  Nyx started as my wife’s first D&D character and I worked with her to do the transition from game to book.  I had to keep the personality the same while making it deeper and more flexible since she was going to be facing monsters instead of finals.  It wasn’t easy because the game Nyx wasn’t nearly as powerful, but still ran into battle and tended to get knocked out in the first round.  Mages are NOT supposed to rush into hand-to-hand, which is why the book version knows how to fight and has a massive defiance streak.  This experience led to me doing the same thing, but it gets difficult with characters that don’t have a real-life counterpart.  For those, I paid attention to heroines and villainesses from movies, shows, games, books, and whatever else I could find. I was looking at how other creators handled female characters and went on forums to see what people thought.  Usually, I found more complaints than praise, but it helped me figure out the details.

After all of that, I still came up with one important fact that I use for all of my characters.  It doesn’t matter if they’re male or female.  I write about heroes who stand for good and villains who wish to do bad.  They’re motivations, personalities, and abilities might be different, but all of them stand for something more than what’s between their legs.  I want all of my characters to be seen as strong and flawed, which is why I pay more attention to the core than the fleshy coating.  Personally, I think that should be the goal.  Make a strong character of either gender that everyone can enjoy and you’ve done something special.  Thanks again to Craig and hope people check out Warlord of the Forgotten Age to see how Nyx, Sari, and Dariana do against the Baron.  Oh, I guess the guys will be there too.

Author Bio & Social Media

Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you, and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.

Blog

Twitter

Facebook

Website

All cover art done by JASON PEDERSEN

Catch the rest of the LEGENDS OF WINDEMERE on Amazon!

83 Comments

Filed under Writing

Heartstone, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Hey there, all you casters and spell slingers. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you the characters from the books you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and my special guest today is Sylvie Sirx, of The Drowned Tower. “Welcome to the show, Sylvie.”

“Glad to be here, Lisa.”

“My bio doesn’t actually say this, but a girl can read between the lines. You have a conundrum. Your friend Jack wants out of the Drowned Tower, and you have a pretty sweet deal there. I mean, apprentice to the head of the Tower and his heir apparent. So, give us the scoop; are you going to leave with Jack or stay put for the big payoff?”

“You… um, you jump straight to the good stuff, don’t you? Well, I don’t hate that. But to tell you the truth, I don’t plan on leaving. I’m perfectly content where I am. Now, that might sound disappointing to all you listeners out there—and really, it is to most. You won’t believe how much backtalk I hear about my decision to remain, but like you said, Columbus Cephas, my master, is head of the entire Tower, a position that will be handed down to me upon his passing. Many have died achieving less. I know more than a dozen master-less practitioners that would jump at the chance to stand where I do.

“Besides, what’s not to like about the Tower? Practitioners are free to stay and live out their lives in comfort, regardless of talent or skill, so long as they abide by the rules of the Institute. Not a bad deal, I’d say. Their rules can be a tad stifling, but they aren’t entirely unreasonable.

“Still, what I want can only get me so far. Master Cephas is pushing for me to participate in the upcoming Choosing. An offer of apprenticeship in the Diamond Alps doesn’t come every day after all. Really, he’d be better off endorsing Jack. He’s been the obvious choice from the start, and more importantly, he actually wants to go.”

“Is there anyone you can talk to about this? I mean, I’ve met Jack. He’s a little brash, but he has some worthy goals. Is he running from the oppression of the Tower, or pursuing those worthy goals?”

“I can tell you this, if I’m still in the running at the end, I’d find a way to back down. What are they going to do? Drag me kicking and screaming all the way to the Diamond Alps? That would just be a headache for everyone involved.

“And Jack, he… well, he wants to do a lot of things. His dreams are grander than most. Certainly grander than mine. His lineage isn’t anything to scoff at either. A prominent family name will serve him well in the future—and he knows it. But it’s hard to say for certain what exactly it is he’s doing. He spins you around with a lot of talk and opinion, then gets upset when you can’t follow. If anything, I’d say he’s pursuing his goals in order to escape the oppression of the Tower.

“Rather than simply deserting and being chased for the rest of his days, he wants to change his world from the inside. But people fear change. They also fail to realize when they might need it. I doubt his views will be well accepted, especially in the Alps. He’s a bit like the First Zenith in that regard. A group of four practitioners that reformed the entire Institute, abolishing slavery and crafting many of the councils and regulations that we have today. Though Jack goes against most of them, the fact that he’s looking to change things through the proper means is worthy of respect.

“And look, ages later, the First Zenith are regarded as apotheoses. Worshipped across Ferus Terria with statues built in their honor. Oddly enough, I can imagine a statue of Jack somewhere with people kneeling in devotion before him. But whenever I think of them singing songs of praise, all I hear is him spewing a mouthful of Íarre curses in response.”

“Sylvie, maybe you can both take an internship at the Diamond Alps. That allows you to keep your master happy, and still hang out with Jack. Do you both practice the same kind of magic? That way you aren’t competing with each other.”

“We don’t. I’m a Conjurer. We control one specific elements all our lives—fire, wind, you get the picture. Jack’s an Elementalist, and Elementalists are a different breed entirely. They’re able to draw upon all the primal forces in nature and use every element to their advantage. They’re powerful, to be sure, but are the master of none types. The Elementalists are special in that they’re a dying breed. They’ve dwindled over the years, and no one knows why. So, every Elementalist that’s born is carefully watched after. Conjurers, in comparison, are more common and are usually trained in other skills to be more rounded.

“There are other kinds of practitioners, too. Healers and Amorphs. My older brother belongs to the former, which is self-explanatory. Healers carry ungainly grimoires on their person at all times, and most are trained in some form of hand to hand combat. Amorphs, on the other hand, can take the form of animals, though their eyes always remain the same—black and abysmal. There is a certain group within the Alps that are specifically educated in identifying and tracking Amorphs.

“While those are how practitioners are officially classified, there are also sub-types for those gifted with magic in their veins, but don’t have the ability to properly draw it out, or for those that simply want to pick up other skills. Embrocologists, for example, create tonics and salves. Gavinists survey the land and Enchanters use charms.

“But I’m just going off on you, aren’t I? Regarding what you first said, I suppose we could both go to the Alps, but I’m mostly set on staying in the Tower. It would have to be a truly spectacular offer for me to even consider going.”

“About that. My bio says you like to hang out in someplace called Archive 19. What’s so appealing about that place? I mean is it a cool bar or coffee shop?”

“No, nothing like that…”

“So, if it’s more of a quiet place, maybe you could ask the chick inside the rock you found.”

What! Jack told you about Her? Of all the—Silas’ holy pyre! When I get my hands on him, I swear… Well, since he’s already loosened his tongue, the rock is officially called a Heartstone. It’s an old, enchanted thing meant for storage. Use the proper spell, and you have your own tiny room for your luggage. Convenient, isn’t it? I thought so, too, but the one I found is… infinitely creepier. There’s a woman inside, no, surely she’s some kind of ancient, heinous being. She likes to whisper things. Riddles, mostly. The first time I heard her sing, my blood burned, as if she was calling out to me for— I… I think I’ll stop there.”

“I wish you luck in deciding which path you’re going to take. Any last thoughts for our listeners today?”

“I know Jack had a segment before me, and even though he’s prickly, he can be persuasive when he wants to be. Don’t let him corrupt your views of the Institute too much. He’s only expressing the opinion of one side after all.

“With that said, if any of you happen to come across him, send him to my archive, would you? I have more than just a bone to pick with him.”

“You can read all about Sylvie and Jack in The Drowned Tower, by Nicholas Rinth. I’ll post all the links on the website.

“Help me keep the lights on around here, by using those sharing buttons on the way out. It’s simple, it’s fun, you get to help someone. I know Sylvie and Nicholas would do it for you, when your character appears on the next Lisa Burton Radio.”

***

“If the future was bared before you, would it still be yours?
If the past could chase you, would you run from it?
If the world crumbled tonight, would you carve your own?”

Freedom is out of the question for practitioners of the Institute, and any supporters otherwise are dealt with violently. A system Sylvie Sirx neither refutes, nor endorses—born from an enviable family, talented in her skills, and entirely too content with her position, her path has always been a straight one… until now.

Her qualifications backfire when an elder from the north descends upon her home for a Choosing. He calls upon the Drowned Tower’s most sought after practitioners for a simple job that ends in blood, and then Sylvie’s blissful world erupts. She finds herself in the company of the Elementalist, Jacques Dace, an insufferable but deadly enthusiast of personal reform. Together, they’re swept into a spiral of powerful magic and ancient grudges. Where truth bends, stones whisper secrets of the past, and their home lies at the heart of what could very well be Ferus Terria’s next recorded war.

And for once, she is forced to choose a side, learning for herself what it means to master fate.

 

Author Bio:

Nicholas Rinth is the author of Sitting in Silence and the NA fantasy series, Heartstone. He currently lives lakeside in the southern graces of Savannah, Georgia, where he spends his time fantasizing about other worlds and working on his next novel.

LISA BURTON RADIO: JACK INTERVIEW

Contact Nicholas Rinth:
Blog | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr | Goodreads | Amazon

The Drowned Tower is Available for Purchase Here:
|EBOOK MASTERLINK|

PAPERBACK:
AMAZON UNIVERSAL LINK

 BARNES&NOBLE (USA) | !NDIGO (CA) | BOOKTOPIA (AU)

43 Comments

Filed under Lisa Burton Radio

Blood Match, by Don Massenzio

Don a a great supporter of independent authors, and he’s certainly supported this one. Let’s help him launch his new book today. You might consider following Don’s blog too. He’s the kind of person all authors need to know. – CB

Introducing Kindle Scout Candidate – Blood Match – By Don Massenzio

blood match front coverBlood Match, a new thriller by Don Massenzio is currently a candidate in the Kindle Scout Program.

What is the Kindle Scout Program?

Kindle Scout is reader-powered publishing for new, never-before-published books. … Selected books will be published by Kindle Press and receive 5-year renewable terms, an advance, royalties and featured Amazon marketing.

A Little about the book:

Intelligence analyst Jake Balrich boards his Monday morning flight, as he has so many times, for routine field work. When the plan lands, a passenger fails to wake up. Jake soon realizes that the death was not accidental and that the murderous plot was meant for him.

The situation soon spins out of control with Balrich running for his life trying to prove his own innocence as he struggles with an unknown enemy that seems to guess his every move.

Blood Match is a terrorism thriller examines how far someone will go to reach the height of power and ambition with little regard for human life.

Follow Jake, Balrich as he enlists the help of Commander Brad Rafferty, to take down an enemy more powerful and dangerous than the United States has ever faced.

Some of you may recognize this story. It originally appeared as a weekly serial on my blog under the name Road Kill. The story has been reworked and many extras have been added to turn it into this novel.

Why is it a Kindle Scout Candidate?

If Don’s book is selected for publication by Kindle Scout, it can help take his writing to the next level in terms of exposure and recognition.

How can you help?

First and foremost, you can vote to nominate the book. The campaign goes up on September 20th at midnight and will continue through October 20th. You can vote for it and preview the opening of the book by clicking HERE.

How can you help even more?

Spread the word. Don has made it easy for you using something called Thunderclap. Thunderclap is a social media tool that allows you to effortlessly spread the word using your social media accounts with a pre-written message. All of your followers will receive the message. You can help by signing up for the Thunderclap campaign HERE.

What’s in it for you?

Apart from Don’s eternal gratitude, if his book is selected, you will receive a free pre-launch copy from Amazon and will have the opportunity to officially review it before its launch. That is a free book for you, but it also help, yet again, by allowing the book to launch with established reviews.

Social Media Contacts

Facebook
Website/Blog
Twitter: @dmassenzio
Amazon Author Page

24 Comments

Filed under Writing