Author Interview Immigrant Soldier Tour

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I’m interviewing K. Lang-Slattery, author of historical fiction “Immigrant Soldier: The Story of a Ritchie Boy”.

Q:How long have you been writing?

I enjoyed writing in High School, but didn’t really start to think of myself as a writer until I returned to it in mid-life.   I began by writing for children and had some of my stories and articles published in such magazines as Boys’ Life and Jack and Jill.   When I began writing Immigrant Soldier, I intended it to be non-fiction for ages 12 and up. But that all changed.

 

Q: What was the most challenging part about writing “Immigrant Soldier: The Story of a Ritchie Boy”?

Changing the original non-fiction manuscript into a novel was an immense challenge. I tackled it as if I were building an onion, layer by layer, a little at time. One of the most difficult aspects of the transformation was removing sections of historical fact that slowed down the action of the novel. Most of this material was based on family stories or long hours of research. I hope that I will be able to use some of the deleted history in my blog.


Q:What is your favorite part of being an author?

I actually love the writing process, but not just the rush of getting the first draft onto the computer.   My favorite part is the editing and rewriting process—changing the words to make it better, adding important character insights, all the honing and perfecting—for me that is actually fun. I don’t think I would have returned to writing if computers hadn’t come along to take the drudgery out of rewriting.


Q:Is this book part of a series? If so, will there be more books in the series?

Immigrant Soldier is a stand-alone novel. Friends have suggested that I write a sequel about Herman’s career as a TV cameraman for CBS. However, though it was fun to listen to his stories of meeting famous actors, politicians, astronauts, and sports heroes, I am not interested in writing about it.


Q: Do you have any works in progress you’re working on?

All my efforts at present are toward writing my blog and promoting Immigrant Soldier, though I do have a couple of ideas tucked away for future writing projects. I’m thinking about a novel based on the character of Molly, Herman’s first love. I’d like to write about a female character next time.

About The Book

immigrantcover Title: Immigrant Soldier, The Story of a Ritchie Boy

Author: K. Lang-Slattery

Genre: Historical Fiction

Herman watches in horror as his cousin and a friend are arrested by the SA. As a Jew, he realizes it is past time to flee his homeland, a decision that catapults him from one adventure to another, his life changed forever by the storm of world events.  Part coming-of-age story, part immigrant tale, part World War II adventure, Immigrant Soldier, The Story of a Ritchie Boy follows Herman as he evolves from a frightened and frustrated teenager looking for a place to belong into a confident and caring US Army Intelligence officer serving in the Third Army.  The reader is swept along as the hero experiences fear, romance, loyalty, disappointment, friendship, and compassion in his quest for an understanding of hate and forgiveness.

Author Bio

Kathryn Lang-Slattery (web)Kathryn Lang Slattery is a published author of fiction and non-fiction for youth and has become an expert on many aspects of the Ritchie Boys of WWII.

Born during World War II and raised in 1950s Southern California, she enjoyed a childhood filled with reading, drawing, and long days at the beach. College took her to Los Angeles where she studied art and English at UCLA, earning a BFA.  She then travelled to Mexico City where she did graduate work in art and education at the University of the Americas. The years afterward passed, filled with teaching art, English, and cooking, and traveling around the world, including a 2 year car trip through Central America, Europe, the Middle East and the Indian sub-continent. Later she returned to her hometown, where she raised a daughter and a son and devoted over 20 years to Girl Scouts as a volunteer. Finally she returned to her early love of writing, concentrating first on creating stories and articles for young people. She has been published in several highly rated magazines for the youth market, including Spider, Ladybug, Jack and Jill, Boys’ Life, and Faces.

Immigrant Soldier, The Story of a Ritchie Boy, her first adult novel, is based on her uncle’s World War II experiences.  More than a decade spent researching, interviewing Ritchie Boys, and turning a true story   into fiction became an odyssey of discovery.  “I wanted to tell his story,” she says, “because it was different from any other Holocaust story I had read. The young Jewish hero is not a victim, but a young man who gradually grows from a frightened and frustrated teenager, looking for a place to belong, into a confident US Army Intelligence officer who struggles with the conflicting emotions of hate and forgiveness.”

Kathryn lives in Laguna Beach, California, only steps from her childhood home, where she is surrounded by trees, birds, and her vegetable garden. Besides writing, her main interests are travel to foreign places, creative gourmet cooking, pastel painting, and time with family and friends. She finds tranquillity simply by looking out her large living-room windows to her view of one tall sycamore, her lush garden, and the natural hillsides beyond.

Links

Website: http://www.klangslattery.com

Blog: www.klangslattery.com/blog

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ktealang

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/immigrantsoldier

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Guest Post The Portal and the Panther

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Five Things I Can Tell You About The Portal & the Panther Without Ruining It

After taking a deep breath and letting my cursor hover over the “Save and Publish” button for a few minutes, I published the first two books in my young adult trilogy on December 19, 2014.  The results so far have been promising:  The last time I ran a promotion, The Portal & the Panther made it to #1 on Amazon’s Top 100 in the free category for Science Fiction Action & Adventure, and #4 in the free category for Teen & Young Adult Fantasy Coming of Age.

Here are five things I can tell you about the first book in the series without ruining them for you:

1 – I’m sorry to disappoint you, but there are no aliens.  Technically speaking.

One of my five star reviews on Amazon begins with:

“Shapeshifters, aliens, high school drama, danger, laughs – what else do you want?”  Well… the “aliens” bit might be a little misleading.  There’s no outer space element to this story, no spaceships, no green Martians with laser guns.

There are “intruders” from “other worlds,” but those worlds aren’t in outer space.  They’re parallel universes.

2 – Also there’s no sex.

There’s some romance, yes, but nothing too erotic.  My books are strictly PG-13, folks.  My parents are my No. 1 and No. 2 beta readers, so even though I’ll be turning 40 in just a few more years, I have to be able to give them new chapters of my books without blushing.

3 – But there are some fight scenes.

The Portal & the Panther focuses a lot on characters — namely, the title character’s internal struggle to figure out exactly who he does and doesn’t want to be.  Because there’s so much emphasis on character development, the action takes a little while to heat up.  But be patient — you’ll get your fight scenes!  (And by the way, if you’re into action sequences, the fight scenes only increase as the books continue into The Girl Between Worlds (already published) and The Rook & the King (due out in May 2015.))

4 – And everybody loves Jon.

I’ve been pleased that nearly everyone who’s reviewed the book so far seems to love the main character, Jon Parker.  I’ve got to admit that I’m a little partial to Jon, myself.  Here’s what people have said in their reviews:

“Jon is a loveable and loyal main character who struggles to survive high school before this mess. He has few friends and an absentee father. Saving the world on top of it would be more than most teenagers could bear. Like most of us, he fumbles his way through the nuances of his life with heart and charm.”

“The main character is well written and likeable. He and his emotions feel real.”

“Bottomline: I highly recommend checking out Jon’s adventure here – and after that, Kristin. The writing is top-notch, the plot unique, and the characters become like beloved friends.”

5 – Sorry.  The first book lands on a cliffhanger.

Don’t hate me.  My only truly negative review so far actually started somewhat positive; it says the book has an interesting premise and the “author has a good voice.”  But — yes it’s true — the book ends on a cliffhanger.  For that reason, the reviewer gave me two stars.  😦

At least I published the first two books at the same time.  So it’s not like you have to wait for six months to find out what happens!  Heck, the first chapter of the second book is even included in The Portal & the Panther.

I hope you’ll enjoy reading The Portal & the Panther as much as I enjoyed writing it!

About The Book

PP - FINALTitle: The Portal & The Panther

Author: R.A. Marshall

Genre: YA Fantasy / Science-Fiction

The only thing seventeen year-old Jon Parker wants is to escape his sleepy hometown of Mecksville, Arkansas. But everything changes when Jon stumbles into the boys’ bathroom and transforms into a black panther.

Without choice, Jon is thrust into a world where parallel universes are real, shapeshifters exist, and dangerous “intruders” can control the elements with a mere thought. Jon learns he’s inherited his shapeshifting ability from his long-dead mother, and now, like it or not, his mission is to protect our world from invaders from other worlds.

But is it a mission Jon will accept? His decision will determine the fate of the people he loves — and our whole world.

Author Bio

photo1My first attempt at novel writing was when I was ten years old.  At the time, I was writing fan fiction, without realizing what fan fiction actually was (I don’t think the term existed yet).  I had just finished reading Tunnel in the Sky by Robert A. Heinlein for the second time and, for the second time, couldn’t stand that the book was ending.  I needed some sort of sequel. I think I got about 12 handwritten pages into my Tunnel in the Sky sequel before my father pointed out that I’d never be able to publish it.

I tried writing novels again some time in college, but that was the period in my life when I took myself faaaaaar too seriously. If you’re over the age of 23, you’ll know what I mean by that.  I was only interested in writing something Important, something that Mattered, and consequently wrote no more than about 10,000 words before giving up.  In my heart, I didn’t want to write Les Mis or War and Peace, but The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

When Kindle came along and I stopped buying actual paper books, I realized that there was a revolution going on in the publishing world.  As I heard tales of self-published authors meeting with unprecedented success, I decided it was time to dust off my fiction writing skills and join their ranks.  I could finally just write for the hell of it and never have to worry about what a publisher would think or what anyone else would think.

I finished the first draft of The Portal and the Panther in April 2014; I plan to publish it in January 2015.  Meanwhile, I’m hard at work on the second book in the Guardians of the Portal series, The Girl Between Worlds.  I hope to also have it ready at the same time as The P and the P.

Links

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00R8PMXCS

Website: http://ninja-writer.com

You can read the prologue here:   http://ninja-writer.com/the-portal-and-the-panther/

Email sign-up: http://eepurl.com/SMrjX. If you sign up before March 15, you will get the third book for free.

Twitter: RAMarshall78

Release Day Party Immigrant Soldier

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About The Book

 immigrantcovere: Immigrant Soldier, The Story of a Ritchie Boy

Author: K. Lang-Slattery

Genre: Historical Fiction

Herman watches in horror as his cousin and a friend are arrested by the SA. As a Jew, he realizes it is past time to flee his homeland, a decision that catapults him from one adventure to another, his life changed forever by the storm of world events.  Part coming-of-age story, part immigrant tale, part World War II adventure, Immigrant Soldier, The Story of a Ritchie Boy follows Herman as he evolves from a frightened and frustrated teenager looking for a place to belong into a confident and caring US Army Intelligence officer serving in the Third Army.  The reader is swept along as the hero experiences fear, romance, loyalty, disappointment, friendship, and compassion in his quest for an understanding of hate and forgiveness.

Author Bio

Kathryn Lang-Slattery (web)Kathryn Lang Slattery is a published author of fiction and non-fiction for youth and has become an expert on many aspects of the Ritchie Boys of WWII.

Born during World War II and raised in 1950s Southern California, she enjoyed a childhood filled with reading, drawing, and long days at the beach. College took her to Los Angeles where she studied art and English at UCLA, earning a BFA.  She then travelled to Mexico City where she did graduate work in art and education at the University of the Americas. The years afterward passed, filled with teaching art, English, and cooking, and traveling around the world, including a 2 year car trip through Central America, Europe, the Middle East and the Indian sub-continent. Later she returned to her hometown, where she raised a daughter and a son and devoted over 20 years to Girl Scouts as a volunteer. Finally she returned to her early love of writing, concentrating first on creating stories and articles for young people. She has been published in several highly rated magazines for the youth market, including Spider, Ladybug, Jack and Jill, Boys’ Life, and Faces.

Immigrant Soldier, The Story of a Ritchie Boy, her first adult novel, is based on her uncle’s World War II experiences.  More than a decade spent researching, interviewing Ritchie Boys, and turning a true story   into fiction became an odyssey of discovery.  “I wanted to tell his story,” she says, “because it was different from any other Holocaust story I had read. The young Jewish hero is not a victim, but a young man who gradually grows from a frightened and frustrated teenager, looking for a place to belong, into a confident US Army Intelligence officer who struggles with the conflicting emotions of hate and forgiveness.”

Kathryn lives in Laguna Beach, California, only steps from her childhood home, where she is surrounded by trees, birds, and her vegetable garden. Besides writing, her main interests are travel to foreign places, creative gourmet cooking, pastel painting, and time with family and friends. She finds tranquillity simply by looking out her large living-room windows to her view of one tall sycamore, her lush garden, and the natural hillsides beyond.

Links

Website: http://www.klangslattery.com

Blog: www.klangslattery.com/blog

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ktealang

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/immigrantsoldier

Giveaway

Win small historical items associated with the main character and an eBook copy of the book!

Go here to participate in the giveaway.

 

Book Excerpt from Desolation

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Book Excerpt

Blood and Water!

Western Nebraska

Melanie’s thirst was insatiable as she pushed down again on the old pump handle, summoning another refreshing torrent of water. She drank, filled her water bottle, and then doused her head and neck, cooling her body down, slurping the last drops as the gushing flow trailed off into rivulets. She had had her fill. Not so insatiable after all, she mused.

The well pump was located in back, conveniently visible from the driveway of the farmhouse she had been approaching for the last hour. When she spied the pump, she had paid no mind to the state of the house, or to whether it was occupied or not. She regarded it now.

Before their escape module had crashed, she could see that all of North and South America were dark. This was no doubt the result of the giant solar storm that took out the ISS’s systems. She was pretty sure that anarchy reigned in the cities, but unsure if its ugliness had yet taken root in the more rural western states, where she was. Being one to not take chances, she approached the house with care, hoping that her caution was overdone, and she would find Ma and Pa Kettle having their Sunday dinner. Speaking of which, she was hungry.

She painstakingly peeked in each of the back windows, following the wrap-around porch, finding no one moving about. However, there were several signs of occupancy, and one in particular that caused her concern. Her vision and focus, previously lost in a haze of dehydration, were now sharp and hyper aware as she approached the back door. Its small window, about chest height to her, was broken. She peeked through the jagged opening, looking into the home’s kitchen. A light breeze blew through the opening, brushing the single curtain aside, and then letting it fall back into place. Each breeze revealed more of what she was looking at: lots of dishes and discarded food strewn around the kitchen; a wood-burning stove–it was on, its heat visible–and resting on top, an old camp-fire coffeepot with steam gushing from its spout; and a man.

Melanie hurriedly looked to her left and then right and then back through the breach again, attempting to will the curtain aside once more so that she could see. A man with crazy hair dressed in overalls walked out of a large pantry into the kitchen. He wrapped a folded towel around the coffeepot’s handle to temper the heat.

One of the porch’s old wood floor boards creaked, sounding an alarm behind her. She spun, shocked, as she was staring at the ugliest mug of a man she could ever remember seeing. Rotten breath and the words, “What do we have here?” spilled from a mouth missing several teeth. The gun he pointed at her and everything about him announced this was one bad dude.

About The Book

Desolation-EbookTitle: Desolation

Author: ML Banner

Genre: Science Fiction

A #1 Hot New Release in Post-Apocalyptic Fiction

A world devastated: a sky filled with magical auroras at night and deadly radiation during the day; technology all but gone; hundreds of millions dead by fire, starvation, disease and violence. The survivors will have to face their own desolation.
– – – – – – – – – – – – –
Three groups struggle to endure and hold onto what little they have, while others will do anything to take it all. On a beach in Mexico, a small town in Wyoming, and a rural ranch in Illinois, epic battles between good and evil will be fought. Winners will have to face forces of nature never seen before.
But there is a dim light on the horizon. A 150 year old secret may lead the lucky few to a place that holds the promise of a new future, unless the sun sets on humanity first.
– – – – – – – – – – – – –
The stunning follow up to the #1 Amazon Best Seller STONE AGE.

Movie Rating: PG-17 for descriptions of violence and language.

Author Bio

Hello lovers of apocalyptic fiction!

I devour the same books I enjoy writing: science fiction, but especially anything apocalyptic/post-apocalyptic or dystopian. I love stories about regular people being put into extra ordinary circumstances, and having to rely on their own cunning and that of others to survive.

Stone Age & DESOLATION are that kind of story. They’re fast moving, have some regular and amazing characters who must make life changing decisions, all while the world is experiencing an apocalypse unlike anything imagined.

When not writing fiction, my wife and I split time between Tucson, Arizona and the sunny beaches of Mexico. I also write for a few blogs, and I still write articles to assist small business owners for one of the companies I founded, SmallBiZ.com.

Links

Amazon

Goodreads

http://mlbanner.com

Cover Reveal Party Damnatio Memoriae

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Title: Witch’s Diary

Author: Kate Baray

Genre: Urban Fantasy

A romp with Max Thorton becomes more, but Kenna McIntyre’s standing by her tried and true method of dating–she’s moving on. Having successfully dodged Max’s calls and crushed any remaining sparks, Kenna learns that one of their encounters has produced startling results–a pregnancy she didn’t believe possible and activation of her fire witch powers. Can she reconcile her past relationship failures with a future that includes Max–if only as the father of her child? And what about her knitting, crafting, home-body mom who turns out to be a bad-ass fire witch fighting for the good of humans everywhere? Can Kenna be a devoted mom, a crime-fighting daughter, and a newly awakened witch without losing her sanity? With the help of friends Lizzie and Jack, her shockingly capable mom, and a feisty little magical book that refuses to be silenced, Kenna might just have a shot. Witch’s Diary is fourth in the Lost Library (Paranormal Urban Fantasy) series, but can be enjoyed as a standalone novel. Witch’s Diary is approximately 225 pages.

 

 

Author Bio

KB_GSPVBaray writes urban & paranormal fantasy, frequently with a romantic twist. She writes and lives in Austin, Texas with her pack of pointers and a bloodhound. Kate has worked as an attorney, a manager, a tractor sales person, and a dog trainer, but writing is her passion. When she’s not writing, she volunteers with a search and rescue team, sweeps up hairy dust bunnies, and watches British mysteries.

Links

Amazon Pre-Order

Newsletter sign up

Author Website and Book List

Goodreads Page

Giveaway

There’s a giveaway for 2 eBook copies of “Defensive Magic” and one signed copy (US, UK, AU and CA only).

Click here to enter

Promo Post Mr. 8

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About The Book

Cover1Title: Mr. 8

Author: David J. Thirteen

Genre: Psychological Thriller / Horror

Psychology professor Denton Reed has been pulled out of the classroom to find a killer. Bodies are turning up all over the quiet town of Bexhill. They are found dismembered and burned beyond recognition in a snow covered farmer’s field, by the abandoned mill, and under the train bridge. The only clue linking the victims is the bizarre figure eight patterns left behind in their homes.

Denton must use his unique profiling techniques to uncover the murderer, who the police have dubbed Mr. 8. As he begins to unravel the mystery, a strange pattern begins to emerge. Before their deaths, each victim was seized by dark obsessions and inexplicable changes in behavior. Whatever strange forces are affecting the people of Bexhill, they may actually be more dangerous than any killer.

As a wave of insanity sweeps the town, Denton will put his life on the line to get to the source of the madness and risk all to protect the woman he loves.
But is it already too late?

Author Bio

David J. Thirteen has studied English Literature, Film Making, and Media Studies. He has lived and worked in the technology field for twenty years throughout the North East, in both Canada and the U.S. Writing has been a hidden passion for most of his life.

Mr. 8 is his first published novel and will be in stores on February 5th, 2015. It was first written as a serial story on Wattpad, where it became a #1 ranked feature novel. He still writes and posts new stories on Wattpad every week.

David currently lives in Toronto, Canada and lives a bright life, while dreaming dark dreams.

Links

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23607905-mr-8?from_search=true

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Mr-8-David-J-Thirteen-ebook/dp/B00S0DQCME/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1422028518&sr=8-1&keywords=mr+8+david+thirteen

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/mr-8-david-j-thirteen/1121019076?ean=9781620156193

Twitter: https://twitter.com/davidjthirteen

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DavidJThirteen?fref=ts

Website: http://www.davidjthirteen.com/

Guest Post Prime Tour

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I’m hosting a guest post today for the book tour for science-fiction novel “Prime”. The author talks about bending genres. I hope you enjoy the guest post!

Getting My Exercise from Bending Genres

Throughout the entire book-publishing process that I’ve been going through over the past few months, I don’t think I agonized more than over two drop-down menus.

For the benefit of people who have never published a book on Amazon, there is a stage in the process when you must choose two genres in which to place your book. You are confronted with two drop-down menus with dozens and dozens of categories.

This choice almost killed me. Prime, my first published novel, is firmly in the science fiction genre, but that isn’t good enough. Sci-fi these days includes a lot of diverse territory. And my problem was the book didn’t fit neatly in any one category.

While to story takes place on another planet, it isn’t really a space opera, since it’s not a grand, sweeping story of spaceships. Nor is it hard sci-fi, with endless details about the alien world, and the physics of it. Was it dystopian? Well, maybe, but that is generally reserved for stories about Earth falling into bad times. War, apocalypse, nothing really seemed to fit.

So what about non-sci-fi genres? It could be considered a coming-of-age story about a boy, Toch, who is the result of generations of genetic engineering—he’s a messiah-like figure (the Prime) who can free his race. The problem is that his ‘powers’ won’t emerge until his genes can mature. Or, since the story follows Toch and his friend as they try to avoid being captured by the planet’s oppressors, it’s an adventure story? But do readers of these genres expect a sci-fi overlay to their stories?

And since it involves kids growing into adults, is it young adult fiction, or even more appropriately, new adult fiction? (Incidentally, Amazon hasn’t yet introduced new adult as a category.) And as soon as the book is pigeon-holed as a youth-centred book, would that scare off adult readers?

And there is a love story element to the book—surely I shouldn’t categorize it under romance?

With so many sub-genres these days (I remember when bookstores had simple categories like ‘fiction’ and ‘poetry’ and ‘biography’) it’s harder and harder to categorize books that don’t exactly fit in one niche. I waffled for an eternity, trying to figure out where my book belonged.

And, on some level, I’m proud of that. If it did fit too neatly into a single genre, I would be worried that it was two-dimensional and not robust enough. As it is, this dilemma I found myself in proved that I had crafted a (hopefully) well-rounded book that might appeal to a wider cross-section of audiences.

That experience of writerly genre-angst has crossed over into my life as a reader. I find now I am more willing to explore other genres I had previous ignored, hoping to find hidden gems that defy their forced-upon categories.

About the Book

Prime_coverTitle: Prime

Author: Windsor Harries

Genre: Science-Fiction

Since birth, Toch has prepared for his destiny: to become the Prime, the being who would save his race from the oppressive Spidon. Perfected over uncountable generations, the genetic power that will free them lies dormant until he reaches maturity. Until then, with the help of his friend and Protector, he needs to stay hidden—and safe—from the Spidon.

Everything goes according to the Plan, until a traitor reveals the truth about Toch, putting the future of their entire race in danger . . .

Author Bio

WH photoWindsor Harries was born and raised in Toronto, Canada in the heady years between TV’s heyday and the internet revolution. He has been writing ever since he can remember. His early influences include Edgar Rice Burroughs and Doctor Who (Tom Baker, of course). For his mild-mannered secret identity, he works as a marketer in the financial services industry. He had written numerous books, but Prime is his first published novel.

Links

www.windsorharries.com
www.facebook.com/windsorharries
www.goodreads.com/windsor_harries