Meet Melinda R. Cordell

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It’s time for another author interview. Today on Paws 4 Thought we welcome Melinda Cordell. Tell us a little bit about yourself, Melinda.

I’m a former city horticulturist who now works as a full-time proofreader. I love working in air conditioning in the summer, but I still miss working in the city rose garden. Mainly, though, I’m an author. I’d been sending out novels since 1995, and during those 20 years I’d published a lot of magazine articles in national publications, but had only one book published. I finally quit traditional publishing, and between September 2016 and December 2017 I self-published 22 books. I had a huge backlog of finished, polished novels that were ready to publish. So I published them!

I’ve been going like a rocket sled on rails ever since I got into self-publishing, because I’m 46 right now, and heaven knows I’m not getting any younger. Now I’m working on some novels involving Vikings, dragons, and war, the first of which will be out this May. I’m not going to lie, it’s pretty intense, but I love it.

Outside of that, I live in northwest Missouri, have lived here all my life, and I have the best family that ever walked. If any of you have read Those Black Wings, then you’ll be pleased to know that Wyatt, in real life, is actually my husband. We’ve been together since 1990, married since 1995, and he’s the best thing that ever happened to me. We have two crazy kids and it’s really a great setup. I couldn’t have asked for better.

(Melinda also shared with us a picture of her family’s silky, Maximum Floof)

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2) When did you first start writing?

When I was four. I was reading pretty well and writing my name in all my books in this semi-cursive script. All through school I wrote stories. I always had teachers encouraging me, all through elementary school and junior high and high school and college. They’re the salt of the earth, all of them. These teachers were often the only people who saw my stories, now that I think of it, because I had absolutely no social life. I just wanted to stay home and write, and walk in the woods, and read. I was lonely, but people in general were terrible to me in junior high and I just didn’t want any part of that, thank you very much. Also I was terrible at conversations. It was like I had a wire between my brain and my mouth that constantly shorted out, so I’d have all this cool stuff in my head that I wanted to say, but I just couldn’t spit it out.

So all my conversations were in my journals, in my novels, in my stories. I did my living on the page. My writing was my letter to the world that nobody got to read.

But it was also life to me.

3) Who are your favorite authors?

In the past, I’d say E.B. White and Ursula K. LeGuin. Right now Nnedi Okorafor is my favorite author. She writes these amazing fantasy novels. Of course, the entire faculty at the Hamline University MFAC program are my favorite authors, hands down. I spent five wonderful summers up there in their residency program, and I love ‘em so much.

4) What inspires you to write?

Well, that’s kind of like saying “What inspires me to breathe?”

It’s not like I sit down and write, and roses flow out of my pen. Sometimes writing a novel is like more like wrestling a squid. But if I can’t write, I start getting really cranky and emo. That act of creation is something I need in my life.

I mentioned that I was trying to get traditionally published for 20 years – i.e. I was trying to get an agent or an editor. For all my novels, I think my accumulated rejections number in the high hundreds, or low thousands. I am perfectly serious. I was pretty thick-skinned, but after 20 years of coming very close in a number of places but still ending at “no” … it does something to you. You know in your heart that you have talent and worth, but every industry professional ends up telling you, “This story is very well written, but it just doesn’t have that spark,” then you start wondering if you’re really that much of a hotshot after all. I lost a lot of faith in myself, and I couldn’t even write anything, and I was miserable.

That’s another reason why I took off like a rocket when I went into self-publishing. There weren’t any gatekeepers saying, “No.” It was just me. Whether I succeed or fail, it’s all on me. Nobody else. And I can work with that. Now I’m controlling my own destiny – I have my own power – and I have a truckload of books already finished and published, which really helps.

5) Tell us a little bit about Butterfly Chaos.

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Butterfly is actually my creative thesis for my master of fine arts for writing for children from Hamline University, and I worked on it with Gary Schmidt and Mary Logue, both of whom are wonderful teachers and all-around good folks. I wrote the first draft of the story while my dad was dying of early-onset dementia. And the story came together as a big constellation of all these other deaths in my life, two of which I mention in the Dedication. There’s been a bus accident when I was in junior high that affected the whole community at large. And there were some deaths in the family that were very hard for all of us. And I have a close-knit family that is like Cassie’s in the book, and I wanted to write something about them. So this book seemed to grow out of all that.

Jake is based on a guy who I had a crush on when I was a freshman in high school. He was a sarcastic kid, super-smart, and he loved to argue with pretty much anyone about anything. I’m kind of laughing, writing this, because some of my friends hated his guts. But I’ll tell you this: He knew I was very badly afflicted. I stared at him all the time, and then I stopped staring and couldn’t even look at him. But he was always so kind to me. He could have used his sarcasm and completely crushed me. But, unlike the whole rest of the school, he didn’t, and he would even talk to me a little. He moved away the next year and I never knew what became of him. But I still appreciate that little act of mercy from him, even after all these years.

6) What attracts you to writing YA?

I like writing for high schoolers. They’re on the edge of childhood, getting ready to leap into adulthood, and there’s a lot of conflict in this, in moving out and letting go. Also, high school kids are kind of nuts and funny and smart. And they’re never boring. Adults are boring. They’re so settled in all these pre-conceived notions. High schoolers are still figuring things out and it’s all new and shiny, but also there’s all these hormones so there’s EMOTIONS.

Of course I have a high schooler living in my house who I have to kick out of bed every morning, and all the trauma that comes of having to wake up!  But I learn a lot about the world from her, and vice versa, I hope. And she’s a cool kid. But of course I’m biased.

7) I see you also write gardening books. How did you get started with this?

When I first dived into self-publishing, I had a bunch of gardening articles and columns I’d written over the years. So I started using those to write gardening books. My undergrad degree had been in horticulture, and I’d worked in horticulture for half my life at that point, as city horticulturist, rose garden potentate, greenhouse manager, landscape designer, independent contractor, and perennials boss at a garden center. So I grouped my gardening articles together by content, and used the first group to write a book about vegetable gardening, then roses, adding a bunch of new content and filling in new chapters. Those two books are my best sellers right now. I have nine gardening books out right now, and I’ll be adding to them through 2018.

8) Do you have a favorite plant?

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I have a *lot* of favorite plants lol. I used to go into the woods in May and hunt for showy orchis. Yes, that’s how it’s spelled. I also like apple trees, daffodils, calla lilies, larkspur and delphiniums (there’s this little larkspur native to Missouri that used to grow around Nodaway that was this delicious dark purple), roses of course, orchids. Dutchmen’s breeches, which is a little small Dicentra species that grows wild in early April. White oak trees. Dayflowers, just because they have this pretty cadmium blue flower. The list is endless. Plants are cool.

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9) What are you currently working on?

VIKINGS AND DRAGONS.

I’m writing a Viking series to market – writing again after those late years of frustration – and I love this story because I’m cramming it full of swordfights and dragons and storms at sea and looooooooove, and I have a sea battle coming up that I’ll be writing about this weekend. It drives me nuts that I have to work full-time. Leave me alone, full-time employment! I want to write this!

Also I need to pull together a little butterfly gardening book, and a couple more gardening books on the side. I have nine gardening books out and I really want to make it ten, a nice round number.

10) If you could have any superpower what would you choose?

I really want to fly, but I’m also scared of heights, so I’d be flying around like five feet off the ground. I kind of want to be able to morph into animals, and then I could turn into a barn swallow and dive-bomb everybody. Those guys really know how to have fun when they’re flying.

But then again, I always write about characters that fight evil spirits with song magic, so they’re having battles with song. This song magic is like all the things you want to do when you’re singing, only cranked up to 50. Now that would be glorious.

11) How can readers connect with you?

Through bird calls or semaphore signals (aka “wig-wag”).

An easier way is through Twitter at @rosefiend, or email me at hello@melindacordell.com – I’ll try to get back with you in a reasonable amount of time. If you don’t hear from me after a week, ding me again because I’ve probably lost your message, and I really try to reply to every message I get. I do like hearing from readers – I never get tired of it.

Check out Melinda’s books on Amazon

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Meet Stephanie Barr

Hi everyone today on Paws 4 Thought we’re pleased to introduce fantasy author, rocket scientist and cat lover, Stephanie Barr.

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1) Which of your characters are you most like?

Most of my protagonist characters, including several side characters, are based on aspects of my own personality either gifted with traits I lack, taking that aspect to a much greater degree or both. Sometimes the aspects I lack are provided by people I know (a few exceptions like Lofar (short story) and Dante da Silv (Tarot Queen), both more based on my husband of the time).

Two in particular were focused on my being unusually bright (which does not get you friends) and my social awkwardness (not shyness) that makes me incredibly unpopular even today except among a few discerning folks. That’s Dylan Chroz of Saving Tessa and Nayna from the forthcoming Ideal Insurgent.

However, I’m probably most like Darma from Nine Lives. I know my own strengths, I’m smart, I’m not afraid to show it, but I’m also a dabbler, pushy, capable of quick changes of temper with moments of insecurity. And exceptionally protective.

2) What is important to you in your character building?

Strengths and weaknesses. Relatability. Depth. Growth. Sheesh so many things. Intelligence. Most of my characters are smart and I generally use brains over brawn to solve problems. Sarcasm is pretty popular, too.HUMOR! Too many books just aren’t funny enough.

I like characters that challenge stereotypes, that force readers to reexamine their preconceived notions or open them to new perspectives.

3) How much do you know about your characters ahead of time?

Before I put even one word to paper, I usually have a very good sense of who the character is, how they’d react, what shaped them, where they need to grow. Not what they look like. That’s rarely a key factor for me and I’ve had to be reminded a few times to even mention that.

I might not know everything consciously, but my subconscious will have it in my head and cough key details rationales, mindsets in the story that solidify my original thought. I’m a total pantser when writing a story, but not the characters; they’re always true to my original vision.

4) What genre do you admire but not write?

Truly well-researched historical fiction. Some of my favorite books are from this category (Hawaii, Shogun, etc) I’m a perfectionist and I’d have to have it exactly right, and I love research, but the amount of research to get every detail correct takes a lot of time and organization, two things I rarely have. It’s not that I couldn’t do it if I was really compelled, but, at least so far, I haven’t felt more compelled than I am for my speculative fiction that requires relatively little research.

5) What haven’t you tackled yet but plan to?

I’m a single mother with three kids–two at home and on the autistic spectrum. More than one person has encouraged me to take some of the little vignettes I’ve written on facebook and compile them into a book to encourage other parents of autistic kids, not only that they’re not alone for the challenging pieces but to really steep themselves in the joy of the fun and unique pieces.

Check out some of Stephanie’s books:

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Also Stephanie has an awesome story in Sins of the Gods – the most recent release of my Sins of Time anthology group.

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Meet S.T. Sanchez

Today on Paws 4 Thought we welcome Fantasy author, S.T. Sanchez. Tell us a little bit about yourself.

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Thanks so much for having me!

I was born in Dallas, TX. I love Texas. The weather is crazy, but the people are friendly.  I graduated from the University of North Texas with a BA in Spanish. Mexico is my second home.  My husband is from there, and I have family down there. I love the culture, the people and of course the food.  I have three wonderful children and I love hiking and spending time outdoors when I am not writing.
Fantasy is my preferred genre to write in. There are no limits in fantasy beyond my own imagination.  Anything can happen. Sunwalker is my debut novel. It is a YA vampire novel. The first in a trilogy. Nightwalker, book 2, is set to be released in Spring 2018.  I also just released a MG fantasy novel entitled The Portal Keeper, in December 2017.

I love fantasy too. So tell me when did you first start writing?

 I really didn’t start writing until college.  I am terrible at grammar and never really thought about becoming a writer.  But I decided to try my hand at it.  It was horrible and childish, but I wrote something longer than I ever had.  It gave me some confidence and I decided that I could always find a good editor to polish up my grammar.  That first novel is hidden in a dark abyss and well never see the light of day.  But I kept at it and got better.

 Who are your favorite authors?

 I love Brandon Mull.  He is a fantasy author. I love reading his stories out loud to my children.  They are just so much fun and very imaginative.

 So awesome to read aloud to your kids. I have very fond memories of my father reading to me when I was a child and have done the same with my own children. So on to writing now. What inspires you to write?

Everything.  Sometimes questions that I don’t see answers too will spark an idea.

 Tell us a little bit about your YA fantasy Sunwalker.

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 Sunwalker is the first in a trilogy.  It has action, romance, and you won’t know what’s coming.  I try not to be predictable.  I hate books that I can predict the entire storyline after only reading the first couple of chapters.

It is a story about a vampire named Lilly.  She is an unusual kind of vampire, one born from human parents due to a rare genetic disorder.  The world she lives in is aware of her kind, and hunts them down.  She lives her life pretending to be a human, wishing to one day meet another one of her species.  When Tread, another vampire, shows up, it turns her world upside down.  Lilly has to decide which world she belongs in, the human or the vampire, or risk tearing them both apart.

It was fun to write because Tread and Lilly are complete opposites.  Lilly knows and loves the human world, and knows practically nothing about her own species.  Tread was raised loathing humans, and thinking of them as nothing more than food.  He is fascinated that someone would choose to live as one and subject themselves to their rules.

You can read the first chapter for free on Amazon, or the entire book for free on Kindle Unlimited.

Nightwalker is the second book in the trilogy and should be coming out Spring 2018.

 What attracts to writing YA?

 In YA novels the characters are just starting to figure out who they are or who they want to be.  I like being able to watch them and discover that as the stories unfold.

 What are you currently working on?

 I have a few different projects at the moment.  I tend to get bored and I like to jump around a bit.  I have a new children’s series I am working on, it is currently in the hands of four 7 year old beta readers.  Nightwalker is with the editor. I have just started Darkwalker the third and final installment of the Sunwalker trilogy.  I have a short non-fiction book with beta readers about getting out of debt and finally the last item on my list is to start the outline for book two in my MG series entitled the Keeper Chronicles.

 What do you like to do to relax?

I play games with my kids, read and watch movies.  The Greatest Showman was a great film if you haven’t seen it.

Definitely going to have to check that one out. So how about a fun question now? If you could have any superpower what would choose?

This one is easy. I would love to speak every language.  I speak English and can get by with my broken Spanish.  Knowing two languages even to the poor extent of my Spanish speaking skills has taught me one thing.  Some things can’t be translated.  They just lose their beauty.

Thank you so much for taking your time to answer my questions. So how can readers connect with you?

Goodreads

Facebook

My blog

 

Email  authorstsanchez@hotmail.com

Pick up Sunwalker from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

and The Portal Keeper on Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

 

 

 

Meet RL Andrew, author of A Lunatic’s Guide to Interplanetary Relationships

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Today on Paws 4 Thought I’m excited to welcome RL Andrew who recently published her debut novel the awesomely titled A Lunatic’s Guide to Interplanetary Relationships.

 

  1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m a former Legal Executive, chronically ill Australian writer, Movie Reviewer, mother of three adult daughters and grandmother (aka Grammy) to two grandchildren. Along with many short stories published in International Anthologies I’m also a regular, long term contributor to the CrypticRock.com Website based in New York.

(RL Andrew has a wonderful story in once of the horror anthologies I edited, Sins of the Future. Be sure to check it out, DMK)

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I live in a regional city in Victoria, Australia, where I’ve been for around thirty years. Early next year my husband and I will be moving back to the place I grew up in where he will work as a full time bee keeper.

  1. Who are your favorite authors?

Edgar Allan Poe

Janet Evanovich

Joss Wheldon

Danielle Trussoni

The Soska Sisters

Nicholas Gyeney

  1. Tell us a bit about your new book, A Lunatic’s Guide To Interplanetary Relationships? (I love the title by the way. Reminds a lot of my favorite author Douglas Adams!)

Thank you so much. I grew tired of reading stories containing main characters with ordinary flaws, none over the age of 35 nor any sick ones. I’ve got a crazy imagination and one day the idea came to me. In many ways Shayne’s the physical embodiment of personality traits that frustrate and irritate me in people I’ve met or come across. She does get her darkness and sarcasm from me and her small stature. That’s about where the similarities end. As for Annu all his good qualities come from my husband and other close men in my life. In regards to the rest of their and other character’s traits are all fiction.

Blurb:

When perpetual screw-up Shayne James is transported from Earth to another planet, she has no idea she’s the key to saving the universe. When Annu discovers this puny human on his planet, little does he know that she’s the key to the two of them defeating the enemy. He finds her irritating, annoying, and somewhat attractive! If they don’t kill each other, or get killed by an unknown force attempting to take over the universe, they might live happily ever after.

(That sounds a lot of fun. I can’t wait to read it, DMK)

  1. If you could travel back in time to any place and period in the past where and when would you go?

Back to the time of creation when everything was apparently perfect.

  1. Do you have any pets? (Pictures please! We love to see furry friends here on Paws 4 Thought!)

We have one pet – a chocolate labrador named Max.

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(Hi Max – he’s a cutie! DMK)

  1. What are you currently reading?

A day with an Extraterrestrial by Lou Baldin

Forbidden Science

The Anunaki of Niribu by Gerald Clark

The Hidden History of the Human Race by Michael A Cremo

  1. So whats next? What are you working now?

The sequel ‘A Demigoddess’s Guide to Menopause and Marriage’ is currently in revision stage and I’m plotting book three – A Demigoddess’s Guide to an Interplanetary Apocalypse.  (Adore those titles, DMK)

  1. What do you like to do to relax?

When I’m able to I go out in my garden and weed or tidy up. I also enjoy baking and watching horror movies, which I review for a New York based website. Purely for the experience and I’ve made some amazing contacts.

  1. Tell us a fun fact about Australia that my readers might not know?

Well for starters we live in towns and cities just like you guys. And while in some more country areas you see Kangaroos and Emus they aren’t wandering our streets. Oh and despite how it looks Vegemite on toast is delicious.

Would you like to read a little of A Lunatic’s Guide to Interplanetary Relationships? Sure you would:

Chapter 1: Crazy Like a Falling Coconut

Ardrossan, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia, Earth

 How did I, Shayne James, a Demi-Goddess and daughter of the Great God Ki, end up in a nut house? It’s God damned ridiculous. Literally. Ive got to get out of here. I cant do another night in this stupid place.

Shayne shook the gate; her fingers ached and rust embedded beneath her nails. “What kind of screwed up torture is this? Haven’t I suffered enough?”

She surveyed the yard for Geoffrey from Ward 3, her one true fan, believer and stalker. Where he went, hospital staff followed. Yard all clear, Shayne counted on her fingers. “How many weeks have I spent in this shit hole?”

2 or 3? Fuck. I don’t know.

The medication they’d thrust into her made time a slippery worm difficult to grasp. The morning’s pills jiggled next to her phone in Shayne’s pocket. She’d hide them with the others. The few missed days cleared her brain and the memories returned. The instant their effects wore off, Shayne realised the governmental nightmare with its hard beds, terrible food, and bad TV, interfered with her true destiny on another planet.

Shayne kicked the metal lock. Pain shot through her foot. “Shit. Crap.”

She hopped in a circle and cursed dodgy hips connected to short legs. The bastards prevented her climbing up the Wistingera hedge beside the gate without assistance, and she couldn’t find anyone to hold her steady without grabbing her arse.

Cant get out the gate, cant break the fence, cant climb the hedge. I’ve tried all the doors. Which leaves what exactly?

Shayne breathed in crazy free air and ran through other options. “Oh fuck it. I can’t think of any. What to do, what to do?”

Her shoulders drooped; Shayne’s freedom remained as distant as Orion.

Even if I did escape, what then? How do I get home and back to Orion? Why can’t a wormhole just appear right here? Huh?

Frustrated with her lack of control, Shayne grabbed the top fence rail and shook. Each rattle represented wasted minutes spent there and the time taken from her future with Annu. The strive for freedom pulsed through her, it interrupted her thoughts and shoved her out of bed each morning. All to face a day filled with half baked escape concepts and pleas to release her Godly self.

Shayne moved her anger down a rung. “That nobody fucking listens to.”

Her arms ached; she relent her hold on the fence. Shayne shifted from the gate across to the hedge filling the fence and smushed into the middle of it. The faint scent of rosemary comforted her, a fresh wave of memories flooded Shayne’s mind.

Shayne wriggled her middle finger, not a scar or mark indicated its former separation.

I can’t believe I got a finger chopped off and it grew back, let alone all the other stuff.

Before being found on the pantry floor by her son and taken to the hospital, Annu held Shayne in his arms inside a stone room. Both Demi-Gods fresh from ascension, and filled with universal power. All they’d been through to get there seemed like a dream, and she’d fucked it up.

Shayne in the ultimate moment of stupidity mentioned Earth one too many times, and in a flash a wormhole ripped Shayne back to her home planet and away from love.

True fucking love and shit too.

Annu’s shocked expression tormented her. “Damn you medication for making me forget it even for one second.”

A branch stuck into her back, Shayne wriggled further onto the hospital’s back lawn, a large pile of dried bird poop on her right fared better than her. “We did everything right and in return we weren’t given time to soak in our success; the greatest moment of existence. Let alone kiss and enjoy things. No, not me. I got cosmically shafted. As usual.”

Shayne yanked out a wad of grass and tossed it to the side. “I remember when, I remember, I remember when I lost my mind, there’s something pleasant about that place, even your emotions had a gecko, and so much pace. Mmm. Does that make me crazyyyy? Does that make me–oh wait apparently it does.”

Neighbourhood dogs howled, a flock of magpies a few metres ahead shot into the air.

Bastards don’t appreciate a good voice. Oh what does it matter? My new life waits on the other side of the Galaxy, through the stupid wormhole–an hour and a half, several security guards, and several door alarms from here.

Shayne resigned herself to no knight in shining armour arriving to rescue her from the current dilemma.

Rather, a retard in tin foil waited on this one planet, on the hospital lawn, deep in thought and determined. “It’s not the first time I’ve saved myself. It’s probably like the third. Surely I can do it again?”

I miss my chocolate hulk.

Shayne shook her head, Annu lingered in her mind. Her belly gurgled, doubt poked into her thoughts.

Is he still waiting for me? No, he probably gave up, and I cant blame him. He’s probably relishing in glory–alone.

Shayne tried to twirl her jade ring, its absence on her naked finger shot another wave of panic through Shayne. She’d grown accustomed to the odd piece of jewellery despite its catalytic nature.

Where did it go? I must have lost it when I burst through the wall. Its got to be under the pantry shelf.

Shayne massaged a lump in her shoulder and sighed. “Another thing that doesn’t matter because I’m not getting out right now, so fuck it and fuck them.”

She scanned again for any sign of staff; all clear. Eyes squinted; she pulled out a smoke and lit it. Shayne inhaled to her lungs’ capacity, held the breath and fought coughing.

Hold it in, don’t waste it. Any second now it will be worth it. You’ve got to cough to get off don’t you?

The scratch in her lungs eased, a warm rush numbed her senses and removed life’s edges. While it didn’t remove the body pain, it made not caring about it easier.

Want to read more? Pick up a copy of A Lunatic’s Guide to Interplanetary Relationships today.

Keep updated on RL Andrew:

Amazon Author Page

Facebook Page

Blog

Twitter

Website

Goodreads

Articles & Reviews: www.CrypticRock.com

An Interview with an Artist – Meet Tina Wijesiri

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Today on Paws 4 Thought I’m happy to welcome illustrator, Tina Wijesiri. Tina created the awesome pictures for my new picture book, Esmeralda Grunch and the Red Tulip.

  1. Tell us a little about yourself, Tina.

I’m Tina Wijesiri. I live in Sri Lanka and I’m 27 years old. I love drawing.

  1. When did you start drawing?

I’ve liked to draw since I was a kid.

  1. What is your favorite thing to draw?

I like to draw every kind of thing and improve my skills.

  1. Do you prefer working on the computer or by hand?

I love both. But by hand is easier. (The pictures that Tina created for Esmeralda Grunch were hand drawn with watercolors. DMK)

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  1. What’s your favorite food?

Rice and curries, pizza, and burgers.

  1. Tell us a little bit about Sri Lanka?

Sri Lanka is in the Indian Ocean. It’s an island and a tropical country. We speaks Sinhala, Tamil, and English. Our main religion is Buddhism, but there are also Hindus, Muslims, Christians and Catholics. Sri Lanka has lots of natural beauty and a great history.

  1. Do you have any pets?

Yes, I have a cat. (Aw – we like kitties here at Paws 4 Thought, DMK)

  1. What’s your favorite thing to do when you’re not drawing?

I like to write to my pen pals, and enjoy reading and writing stories.

Tina has written and illustrated her own picture book, Bob the Cat, which currently available FREE on Amazon. Download a copy today.

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Do you want to hire Tina as an illustrator? Check out her page on Fiverr!

And of course, if you haven’t already pick a copy of Esmeralda Grunch and the Red Tulip, now available in paperback and Kindle on Amazon.

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Meet Mirren Hogan

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Today on Paws 4 Thought we are privileged to host the Night Witches blog tour. Night Witches is a cool new book from eclectic author Mirren Hogan. I caught up with Mirren to ask a few questions.

  1. Tell us a little bit about yourself, Mirren.

I’m an Australian author with two kids and too many pets. I write fantasy, sci-fi, paranormal, horror, historical fiction… maybe it’d be quicker to say I don’t write romance, ha-ha.

  1. Who are your favorite authors?

Jennifer Fallon, Anne McCaffrey, JK Rowling, Kathy Reichs, and tons more.

  1. Tell us a bit about Night Witches?

The Night Witches is based on a true story about a regiment of Soviet women who flew biplanes on the front line during WW2. It was their job to drop bombs on the Germans to keep them from sleeping. They frequently came under fire and many were shot down and died. There were three regiments with different roles, but the Night Witches were the only ones to consist entirely of women throughout the war.

The book itself centres around Nadia, a young Russian woman who wants to defend her country, and joins the air force. We follow her training and allocation to the regiment as a navigator. Along the way she makes some friends, but loses many others.

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  1. If you could choose a superpower what would it be?

The ability to edit an entire book in an hour. Lol

  1. What do you like to do to relax?

I like to walk my dog in the forest behind my house.

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  1. Who is your favorite character you have written and why?

Flynn from the upcoming Dark Shores trilogy co-authored by Erin Yoshikawa. He’s cute but goofy, and ends up having to be a bit of an action hero.

  1. What are you currently working on?

I’m working my way through a backlog of editing, but when that’s done I have book 3 of a fantasy series to write.

  1. If you could visit any time period when we choose?

Right now. The last year has been a good place for me. I hope it keeps up!

  1. Do you have any pets? 

Lots! A dog, cat, rabbits, parrots and chickens.

  1. Tell us one odd thing about Australia that we wouldn’t know.

Most people I know don’t say ‘g’day’.

  1. How can readers connect with you?

Ouija board. No really @MirrenHogan on Twitter or on Facebook

Pick up a copy of Night Witches today and check out all of Mirren’s awesome writing on Amazon.