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Sunday, November 29, 2015

Self-Interview Author Challenge

Challenge: So here's the jest of this little challenge I thought up (of course, when I should've been writing): Interview yourself. Talk about anything you like! Answer a few, simple questions, and maybe talk about a book you're writing, or books you've published. Just have fun with it! :)

Okay, so here goes mine.

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A cover concept for my current novel-in-progress, When the Sky Cries:

The above image is a cover concept created by the author -- it is not official!

And a novel summary:

There is a thin line between rejection and royalty...

Princess Radha cannot stand her brother's fiancé, the Lady Adrianna. Pretty, proper, and absolutely perfect, she is everything Radha has strived to be... but better.

Even worse than the friction between her and the soon-to-be-sister, Radha has learned that suitors are practically lining up at the castle gates, begging for her hand in marriage. An amazing sister-in-law and a string of handsome suitors. Could things get any worse?

Adrianna -- whether by choice or by accident -- has begun to lead the young nobles against the princess. When a gathering is called for, no one is there: they are all out in the town with Adrianna. Radha will not stand for this, but matters can only go farther from what she wants.

When an assassin comes to light with his true identity unknown, Radha becomes his apprentice-puppet, carrying out the tasks he finds himself unable to perform. Why? The reason is simple. Either she risks the lives of everyone around her... or she and all the king's loyalists will die.

With strings entwined in the hands of her assassin, the whole of the castle turned against her, and her suitors turning away, Radha begins to believe that the odds will never be in her favour. She is lost. She will never be saved, will she?

...Or will an enemy's uprising, an assassin's plotting, and a loved one's death bring Radha all she's ever wanted?

To learn more about When the Sky Cries, you can head over to its page on my author website, or check out the board it has on Pinterest.

INTERVIEW

Tell a little bit about yourself. Introvert or extrovert? Cats or dogs? Rain or shine? Indoors or outdoors? Anything you like!

O: I suppose I'm an introvert, though I'd like to think I can be a bit of an extrovert on the web (ha ha). I tend to prefer dogs, though I must admit that it cats are lovely. Rain over shine, and my opinion on indoors versus outdoors changes from time to time. :)

When did you first realize that you wanted to write?

O: Oh, I would probably say I was about four or five! I remember having this Dr. Seuss blanket on my bed, with the letters from the phrase "cat in the hat" on it. I remember lying in bed one night, looking at those letters, and thinking, "I do to something with words."

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?

O: I don't remember much about it, other than the plot being about a ballerina who had a birthday party. I think I was about to go into Kindergarten when I wrote it. It was a picture book, and I remember shouting across the house different words, and asking my mum how to spell them.

What was the first big accomplishment you made in your writing? Was it a short story, novel, or such?

O: Hmm... It's hard to say. There was one story I wrote on paper when I was ten; it was basically a retelling of Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson & the Olympians series, called Nara Li Jojo: Jordan's Ambush. Naturally, I forced it down the throats of nearly everyone I could get my hands on.

But I think the biggest accomplishment for me and my writing was a trilogy I started called SOUL. It was about a dystopian society in the year of 2015 (I was twelve when I wrote it, mind you). It was a bit like Harry Potter, as to the classes and everything. I eventually got to somewhere around a hundred pages, but eventually ended it, deciding that there was far too much weirdness to be dealing with.

What has been a big motivation for you and your writing?

O: Probably a deal I made with my cousin when I was nine. We struck a bargain that if I ever published a book, he would have to dress up in a bunny suit, and advertise it on the corner of an intersection. So that's been a huge motivation for me. ;)

Was there a particular book or author that helped you get a firm grasp on what your work?

O: Yes! When I was twelve or thirteen, I read Anne Elisabeth Stengl's Heartless, and it had a GINORMOUS impact on me! Not long after reading it, I found her blog, and immediately started following it, as well as her Facebook page. She was very encouraging, and always had something kind to say. Eventually, I came up with a story I loved, and began writing it. I feel as if Anne Elisabeth Stengl has been a huge contributor to that.

What are some of your favourite books?

O: John Flanagan's The Ranger's Apprentice (even though I'm only on book two), J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter, Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson & the Olympians, Anne Elisabeth Stengl's Tales of Goldstone Wood, Robin Hardy's The Annals of Lystra and The Latter Annals of Lystra... Oh, I could go on and on about all this! I suppose I'll stop there, for now.

What is a one-sentence overview of your manuscript-in-progress?

O: A beautiful knight and princess must step up to save those who betrayed her.

Who's your favourite character in your current manuscript? Why?

O: Hmm... Even though I'm just now starting draft two, and so I need a refresh with the characters, at the moment, I would have to choose my top three. (Ha ha! ...Sorry.) ;)

First in no particular order would be my main character, Radha. Though she was kind of an emotional wreck in draft one (here's to hoping that's not happening again!), she was very fun to write (and hopefully, she still is). A knight and a princess, she deals with the everyday threats to royalty: You know, assassins and all that nonsense. But since she's one of the king's knights, she has to do her best in preventing those sort of things from happening. And she has a lot of friends in her trade. Yes, she's extremely fun to write.

Second would be my knights' commander, Sir Gilmore. He's an incredible amount of fun! In a way, he's a bit of a flirt, but at the same time, he keeps to his senses, and does his job well. He can be stern when he needs to be, but also let loose and have some fun.

And last but not least is my assassin, who... Well, I can't exactly name him, at the moment. He's currently kind of a secret. But he's VERY complicated, and (in my opinion) is totally awesome. He's clever, deceitful, shows little mercy... (My mum hates it when I say things like that, ha ha.) But, yeah, he's great.

Would you like to share the first few lines from your manuscript's current draft?

O: I would love to!


OPENING LINES
TO DRAFT II
OF WHEN THE SKY CRIES,
A MANUSCRIPT-IN-PROGRESS


I fell against the ground with a thud. Why now? On the day I'd taken such a chance?

Picking up the sword I'd just dropped, I leapt to my feet as fast as I could, escaping my opponent's blow just in time.


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So that's my challenge! And yes: I challenge each of you to do the same!

Have fun!!

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