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Sunday, August 14, 2022

Interview: Ruslan Alabaey

 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0B855DK7G

 

Today, we have an opportunity to talk to Ruslan Alabaev. Ruslan has written the book, “The Cave”. 

 

First, let me thank you for joining me.  I appreciate you giving me your links and I want to share those with our readers.

 

My book is  The Cave

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0B855DK7G

 

That is great.  Can you tell us a little about yourself and what led you to start writing?

 

I’ve had a passion for writing since I was a kid, and as I got older, I wanted to write something significant. I wrote my first book when I was 18 and my second at 23, but both were in Russian and meant to be more of an exercise that allowed me to share my ideas. But 4 years ago, I decided to write a book in English to reach and influence many more readers. Back then, I was ready to publish it, but this year, I finally found the courage to self-publish it and take that next step in my writer’s career.


Where do you get your inspiration, information, and ideas for books?

 

I consider myself to be an “idea generator.” Imagine a melting pot, where you throw bits and pieces of information from reading, movies, series, computer games, general knowledge, scientific papers, and anecdotal knowledge. I use all these sources as inspiration to come up with ideas for my books. Believe it or not, I often get the initial ideas in my dreams. Sometimes I dream vividly about something exciting, and when I wake up, I write down the dream’s plot to the best of my ability and later use it as the core inspiration for one of my books.

 

What are your hobbies and do they ever play into your writing?

 

Yes, all the sources of information I mentioned earlier are my hobbies. Reading scientific articles and news, watching movies, reading, and even playing computer games – all contribute to my writing. I also enjoy sports, but that hobby usually doesn’t make it into my books.

 

What advice would you give someone who wants to be a writer?

 

My advice is to just start writing. Many writers spend too much time planning the plot and every little detail in the book, which often gets them in a loop of perfecting everything without actually writing anything. I think a person should prepare a baseline plot and just start writing. As you write, many ideas and plot details come to you, making the process more fluent and productive. Besides, you can always edit anything you don't like. The first draft doesn't have to be perfect.

 

 Do you write full-time or around another job? How do you schedule your time to write?

 

Currently, fictional writing is more of a hobby for me. But coincidentally, my job involves writing too! It’s a different kind of writing (Direct Response Copywriting), with different rules, formats, and goals.

 

As for the schedule – I don’t have one. If I feel inspired and have a day off, I can write all day.

 

How many hours a day do you write?


If we’re counting fictional and non-fictional writing, I would say an average of 5-10 hours a week. It’s not something I do every day.

 

What is your favorite part about writing?

 

My favorite part is when I get a fantastic idea or plot twist and think, “Wow, that’s going to be really good, I love it!” Sure, the readers might disagree with me when they read it, but having that satisfaction of coming up with something unique or funny makes me love what I do.

 

What does literary success look like to you?

 

Personally, I would like more people to read my books and enjoy them. That’s success in my book (no pun intended). So, I don’t care about fame or money – all I want is to reach more people, and hopefully, they’ll appreciate my writing style and my ideas.

 

 Please tell us about your current release.

 

“The Cave” is my first published book, and it’s a mix of genres. I have difficulty pinpointing it to a specific category because it has elements of horror, thriller, suspense, mystery, adventure, and even sci-fi. One of the contributing factors is that my protagonists tell stories of their own – each has a unique subject and genre. So, all in all – I would say that no matter what books you like to read, you’ll probably find something in it that you’ll enjoy.

 

Who are your favorite authors?

 

Hands down, my biggest influence is Stephen King since I love all the “scary” genres myself, although not all my books are necessarily from those categories. But still, I feel like he’s my role model. He came up with many “groundbreaking” ideas that are considered revolutionary to this day. And I also would like to come up with ideas that give readers something refreshing and new rather than reiterate the same concepts that have been written about hundreds of times.

 

What part of writing and publishing was most difficult for you?

 

So far, it has been easy! The challenging part is reaching out to potential readers as an indie writer. Since nobody knows me, I must try extra hard to get my book out there and into the readers’ hands or e-book readers.

 

 

One more time, where can someone go to purchase your book?

 

At the moment, my book is only available on Amazon, so if you’d like to purchase it (either in digital format or paperback), here’s the link:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0B855DK7G

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Now a member of Goddess Fish Book Tours!

 

 

 

http://www.goddessfish.com
http://www.goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com
Celebrating Eleven Years of Helping Authors Succeed!

We offer book editing services, graphic design, virtual tours and more...

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/GoddessFishPromotions
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/GoddessFish

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/goddessfish/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/goddessfishpromotions/



I will continue to do blog interviews and reviews for authors who contact me directly as well and I am still connected to Lola's Blog Tours.

And as always, you can find me on the Book Blogger List





Sunday, August 7, 2022

Dark Goddess by Kelsey Ketch

Dark Goddess tour banner

This is my post during the blog tour for Dark Goddess by Kelsey Ketch. Dark Goddess is a vampiric retelling of the Eye of Ra.

This blog tour is organized by Lola's Blog Tours and the tour runs from 7 till 13 August. You can see the tour schedule here.

Dark Godess book cover
Dark Goddess (A Dark Reflections Short Story #1)
By Kelsey Ketch
Genre: Dark Fantasy
Age category: New Adult
Release Date: August 2022

Blurb:
Chaos has descended on Egypt, and the people are revolting against their immortal king. Little do they know the wrath he is about to unleash using his daughter as his weapon.


Links:
- Goodreads
- Bookbub
- Amazon
- B&N
- Kobo
- Smashwords
- Google Play
- Apple

Other book in the series:
Dark Creation
Dark Creation (A Dark Reflections Short Story #2)
By Kelsey Ketch
Genre: Dark Fantasy
Age category: New Adult
Release Date: 30 April 2021

Blurb:
Long before Charissa began her murderous rampage through history, she was a young woman living in ancient Alexandria.

Oppressed by society and cursed by the color of her hair, Charissa had hardly seen the world beyond the four walls of her home. So, when her husband leaves for extended military duty, she takes the opportunity to tour the city her brother once loved. Little does she know the Fates have other plans in store for her when she runs into an exotic woman in the Rhakotis District. The encounter will change her life forever.


Links:
- Goodreads
- Bookbub
- Amazon
- B&N
- Kobo
- Smashwords
- Google Play
- Apple

Dark Creation series


Kelsey Ketch author picture
About the Author:
Kelsey Ketch is a young-adult/new-adult author, who works as a Wildlife Biologist and Data Analyst. During her free time, she can often be found working on her latest work in progress. She also enjoys history, mythology, traveling, and reading.

Author Links:
- Website
- Newsletter
- Facebook
- Twitter
- Pinterest
- Instagram
- Goodreads
- Amazon
- Bookbub

Giveaway
There is a tour wide giveaway for the blog tour of Dark Goddess. The author is giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Card (INT).

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Dark Goddess square tour banner


Lola's Blog Tours graphic


SPECIAL GUEST POST BY THE AUTHOR:

"How did you research and prepare to write about Egyptian lore?"



The first thing one needs to have to write about Egyptian lore (or any lore, really) is a curious mind. The seed of curiosity was planted in 2007, when my Reading Shakespeare professor told us the legend of Isis and Osiris. I don’t remember why she told us this story or even how it related to our course. We were probably reading Antony and Cleopatra. Anyway, I’m grateful she did. The legend stuck with me all these years.

 

During that time, I still held a lot of fear and bias about ancient Egypt. Then, in 2011, I started writing my first novel, Daughter of Isis, and I began my journey into researching ancient Egypt. Not having a degree in Egyptology, I started my research by digging into books, online articles, and magazine articles. I watched any documentaries I can get my hands on, including every National Geographic I could either purchase or get through streaming. I purchased video lectures on ancient civilizations and architecture. I visited museums, studied ancient Egyptian artwork, and listened to ancient Egyptian-based music. Additionally, to prepare creatively, I pinned inspirational artwork and photographs onto Pinterest boards and watched some of my favorite Egyptian-based movies (i.e., Stargate, The Mummy, Gods of Egypt, Death on the Nile). The only thing I haven’t done, but wish to soon, is visit Egypt.

 

My resources have grown over the years. But most often, when I begin a new novel or short story, I’m basically starting from scratch and looking at the information with new eyes. First, I focus on the boarder spectrum of the concept, then work my way into the details as I’m finalizing the first draft. Unfortunately, not everything I research makes its way into my books. But, for the most part, I think I strike the right balance between creating something enjoyable to read along with providing accurate knowledge.

 


Blog Tour Dark Goddess by Kelsey Ketch

 

This is my post during the blog tour for Dark Goddess by Kelsey Ketch. Dark Goddess is a vampiric retelling of the Eye of Ra.

 

This blog tour is organized by Lola's Blog Tours and the tour runs from 7 till 13 August. You can see the tour schedule here: http://www.lolasblogtours.net/blog-tour-dark-goddess-by-kelsey-ketch

 

Dark Goddess (A Dark Reflections Short Story #1)

By Kelsey Ketch

Genre: Dark Fantasy

Age category: New Adult

Release Date: 7 August 2022

 

Blurb:

Chaos has descended on Egypt, and the people are revolting against their immortal king. Little do they know the wrath he is about to unleash using his daughter as his weapon.

 

Links:

- Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/57836873-dark-goddess

- Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/books/dark-goddess-a-dark-reflections-short-story-book-1-by-kelsey-ketch

- Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0B1JMQX65

- B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dark-goddess-kelsey-ketch/1141486239

- Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ebook/dark-goddess-12

- Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1148092

- Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=mP1vEAAAQBAJ

- Apple: https://books.apple.com/us/book/dark-goddess/id6442828482

 

Other book in the series:

Dark Creation (A Dark Reflections Short Story #2)

By Kelsey Ketch

Genre: Dark Fantasy

Age category: New Adult

Release Date: 30 April 2021

 

Blurb:

Long before Charissa began her murderous rampage through history, she was a young woman living in ancient Alexandria.

 

Oppressed by society and cursed by the color of her hair, Charissa had hardly seen the world beyond the four walls of her home. So, when her husband leaves for extended military duty, she takes the opportunity to tour the city her brother once loved. Little does she know the Fates have other plans in store for her when she runs into an exotic woman in the Rhakotis District. The encounter will change her life forever.

 

Links:

- Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55076541-dark-creation

- Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/books/dark-creation-a-dark-reflections-short-story-book-2-by-kelsey-ketch

- Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08WPCVKMB

- B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dark-creation-kelsey-ketch/1138833395?ean=2940162277101

- Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ebook/dark-creation

- Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1069458

- Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=fRMeEAAAQBAJ

- Apple: https://books.apple.com/us/book/dark-creation/id1553933977?mt=11&id=1553933977&ign-mpt=uo%3D4


 


Monday, August 1, 2022

Stephen R Babb's Skallagrim





Email Stephen R. Babb: soundresources111@gmail.com
Twitter: @GlassHammerProg

MY REVIEW:

Babb's Skallagrim is a tour de force. It recalled for me all the love I had of the DragonLance books. It has some nods to the great epic fantasies such as Tolkein including a great scene at the end on the edge of a pit. But make no mistake, those familiar moments are intertwined into a unique and riveting story. 

The beauty of the work is the language implemented for the high paced, immersive action. Babb is by profession a songwriter and it shows. The novel has almost an epic Homerian quality. It drew me back to the sword and sorcery books I loved in my childhood.  Yet here the imagery has the masterful twist that offers enough to ignite imagination without smoldering it.

The story is a classic chase-after-the-princess quest with enough twists, turns, and surprises to leave you enjoying the ride and satisfied with the ending. You might even sit back and blow a few smoke rings on your pipe as well as you wait for volume two. The plot flows well and gives satisfactory conclusion while still setting up future offerings. However, the real joy of the book for me was not the superb plot but the simply fantastic monsters. For example, here is one nasty encounter with a ghoul:


"But this was a monster, a ghoul, a thing of legends, born of horror and death. The sorcerer's arrogant, leering visage was nothing compared to the malevolent, hateful face that hovered inches from Skallagrim's own, slinging venom in every direction as it strove to deliver a bone-crunching bite to the thief's head. Skallagrim could hear more than see Swanhild beating the ghoul with his staff, which at least had the effect of distracting the fiend from his attack."

And one of my faves (I'm a sucker for the dark that is both terrifying and tantalizing):

"every time he considered walking out on Forneus, his mind was inevitably drawn back to the door and to the whisperer in the darkness beyond. Such promises it had made. He dreaded the sound of it but was fascinated by it as well. Those whispers, like the exhalation of a dying man, had thrilled him, filling his mind with visions both ghastly and grotesque.... Straker was a killer with a killer's heart, but the whisperer in the dark was death itself. 'Come down and dream with me, my son,' it had said. 'Cast aside your doubts and fears. Come down, confess all to me, and I shall make you whole, for I am the Father of Death.'"


Overall, I would highly recommend this read for any and all epic fantasy fans. Further, Stephen Babb is part of the band Glass Hammer and they have two albums connected to this book. I have yet to listen to them, but can't wait to see how they play out some of the work. If done with the same careful hand this book was given, I imagine they are fantastic and offer an even deeper level of craft to the world of Skallagrim.

Friday, July 29, 2022

INPassage now available!

 



Pitch only knows a few things. There are people hunting him. Indeed, those men killed his partner. Pitch knows he needs to get a gun. He is good with a gun. No, he is better than good. He is a ranger, sent here from a different time. However, his injuries are dire and his memory faint. Is he here to save the oppressed or is he just another gunslinger thirsty for violence. Inspired by Louis L'Amour's "The Man Called Noon" Jerry Harwood with a dystopian, sci-fi twist.


“An outstanding post-apocalyptic setup. The landscape, the portals, the psychic powers, the centering tricks, the male-female divide. Made for an excellent read. A peasants’ revolt, deftly done.” 
– Calvin Beam, Book Reviewer



Monday, July 11, 2022

Review: The Grace Year

 I usually review independent authors. I normally give my star review and leave the written reviews to others when a book is a NYT bestseller and has over 2,000 reviews. It isn't because I don't care, but because I want to support the author who is trying to create a following.

There are some exceptions. These are books I come across and I am simply compelled to write a review for some reason. For The Grace Year by Kim Liggett that reason is the novelty of the idea. It reminded me of several puritan works I read by Nathaniel Hawthorn in the explanation of the women's magic powers and near evils during their grace year. And yes, not all the girls are coming home. 

A truly compelling idea turned into a page-turning story. There were very few subplots but the main thread kept me engaged. It draws on the tensions between science and faith, gender roles, tradition vs contemporary, generational sim, coming of age, and, of course, throws in a bit of a love story.  Worth a read.

The story is set in a dystopian future where girls are sent into the woods the year before they are married to "get rid of their magic." While there, they must gain control of their magic powers but also stay within the camp confines. If they venture out, poachers will capture them and harvest body parts for potions to be sold back in the town.

The main character ends up crossing the fence into poaching territory. There she finds there may be some scientific explanation for the women's madness. She also finds out her parents are not who she thinks they are, learns about herself, and finds love. Over all, it is worth a read or, if you have audible, worth a listen.









Monday, June 27, 2022

Review: The Family Buisness

BUY HERE



 I was given an advance reader copy. Opinions are my own. I received my copy at Dragon Con last year during a panel with Baen Books. If you are not familiar with Baen, you should be. Their stuff is tremendous. Great authors, great stories. All fun pulp reads. Mostly sci-fi. Haven't had a bad title yet. In fact, I always go to their panels at conventions because they give away free reads. They have a bunch up fornt to select form and offer trivia. They also always ask first responders (me), active service, vets, and police to come up and get one as a thank you. Great company and great products.


VISIT BAEN HERE - TOTALLY WORTH IT!!



Here is my review. It is short and sweet. 

Didn't want to give away some cool twists on the more familiar tropes:

Good story with a great set-up / premise. I know series are all the rage, but I enjoyed the stand alone novel. Fun, action packed once you get fifty or so pages in, and some good twists. It is set not only after the horrible alien invasion but after us earthlings battle back. A world where history changes the possibilities of the present, including new abilities like physical or mental enhancements. People are still people though and Kupari writes them well.