Category Archives: Interviews

A Symbol of Resistance

David Crane Author Interview

David Crane Author Interview

Planet of Gods finds Peter quickly embroiled in dangerous political games instigated by powerful aliens on a far flung colony. This being the start of a series, how did you develop the idea behind this series and is that different from writing other novels?

Planet of Gods was my first professionally published science fiction novel featuring a protagonist who becomes a stranger in a strange land forced to participate in a game designed by a powerful and enigmatic alien intelligence. The idea for the series actually came from my fascination with the comic book superheroes who are born with or have acquired superhuman abilities as a result of an accident or a laboratory experiment. In any story, superheroes always interact with ordinary human beings without whom their story could not be told. Considering all this, I had an idea: why not place an ordinary person into an extraordinary world where he will not only be forced to fight for survival but become a symbol of resistance mentioned in the centuries old prophecy. By giving my protagonist a military background, I wanted to present him as a man with a sense of duty and honor as well as a person who is vulnerable physically and emotionally, because he is after all an ordinary mortal in an extraordinary situation.

I enjoyed planet Enigma in this book and it’s rich backstory. How did the idea for this planet start and change as you wrote?

Working on Planet of Gods was a great fun. Not only because I had an interesting idea for the book but also because I had managed to see it through to completion with the help of a team of dedicated professionals. Planet Enigma had to be a believable, yet fascinating world, which in most ways resembles planet Earth but falls under an alien influence. I designed the mysterious and immensely powerful alien red cloud that is made of evolved pure energy and which is virtually immortal. I thought that such powerful intelligence could have monitored human activity and expansion into space for centuries before deciding to conduct its on unique experiment on a planetary scale. As I was working on Planet of Gods, I wondered what would happen if half of the humans captured by the red cloud were given extraordinary powers and the other half remained ordinary human beings? So I gave these enhanced humans called Overlords the inhuman powers of accelerated healing, ability to fly at will, generate deadly plasma bolts and be immune to old age. When I placed Peter Blackwood into this world populated by these remarkable beings, the stage was set for an adventure designed by the alien red cloud to test the limits of human potential in matters of love, war and desire for power.

This is book one in your Enigma series. Where will the story go in book two?

Planet of Gods has a sequel titled Planet of Men. This is the last book in the series, but I hope it will present an entertaining conclusion of these two volume series. In the second book, Peter Blackwood becomes a powerful symbol of resistance against the rule of tyrannical Overlords and is helped in his task by the men and women who populate a mysterious Freedom Island, the only place on planet Enigma where Overlords cannot go because there they lose their powers and become ordinary human beings. The second book features Peter Blackwood’s new and old friends as well as powerful and vindictive enemies, who will stop at nothing to destroy him and prevent the change of their society. In the sequel to Planet of Gods, Peter Blackwood would be finally able to complete his mission and fulfill the centuries old prophecy and find a place where he could finally live at peace and earn his happiness. I hope my readers will enjoy the second book and follow Peter Blackwood on his final extraordinary adventure on a faraway planet.

Author Links: Goodreads | Facebook | Website | Amazon

Planet of Gods (Enigma Book 1) by [Crane, David]

Professor Peter Blackwood, a former Space Marine turned scientist, looks forward to retirement on a paradise resort planet.

A powerful alien intelligence in the form of a vast red energy cloud cuts Blackwood’s plans short, snatching him from the hyperspace highway, and catapulting him light years away to a remote planet in an unexplored region of space.

With his ship damaged and unable to escape, Blackwood encounters a distant human colony on planet Enigma, a world controlled by the red cloud and populated by mortals and powerful overlords—immortal human beings with godlike powers.

When Blackwood’s desire to escape is replaced by his intense scientific curiosity, he becomes a player in a dangerous socio-political game designed by the red cloud. It’s a game Blackwood cannot afford to lose—for on his shoulders rests the destiny of millions of people.

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The Concept of the Soul

B.T. Keaton Author Interview

B.T. Keaton Author Interview

Transference explores the possibility of eternal life and its impact on society. How did this idea start and change as you wrote your novel?

Transference literally started off a two-page hot mess. (laughs) It was a short synopsis for a movie. It grew from there and sort of took shape on its own as I rolled it around in my brain over the period of a year or so. Once I decided that it should be a novel instead of a script, I fleshed it out, somehow, and then wrote the book in about 8 weeks. It’s hard for me to remember all the little details because I wrote it over seven years ago! I knew right from the start I wanted to tell a story similar to Star Wars (because my dad loved those movies) and I wanted to honour his memory by writing something I thought he would enjoy. And also, I wanted the book to contain sci-fi elements that I had not really seen in other works before. The concept of the soul being real and tangible actually came (loosely) from Ghostbusters. By the end of the developmental phase—and after all the many, many edits—I realized the book was very much about family in a way that I had never intended, or expected. And I’m so glad for it.

Barrabas is an intriguing and fun character to follow. What were some ideals you wanted to capture in his character?

I’m glad you liked him! Barrabas is interesting to me, too. I think that’s because he wasn’t written to be the protagonist. I feel like he finds himself surrounded by the real protagonists. That’s not to say he’s a bad guy, he’s just an everyman who was put into a bad situation by, among other things, being at the wrong place at the wrong time. The name Barrabas was always intriguing to me as well, and I’m not sure I can answer why that is. In terms of his character, though, I think he’s very much “me”… but also part of my brother… and my dad, too. He’s every important man in my life, basically. It’s funny to be talking about him in this way, because it’s almost as if I had nothing to do with his creation.

I found this book to be thought-provoking as well as entertaining. What were some themes you wanted to explore in your book?

I am chuffed to bits to hear you say that. That was all I really wanted to do—to entertain and maybe, just maybe, make the reader think a little bit. And I’m talking to myself too as I say that. I wondered what it would be like if we could quantify the soul, or, at least to capture it, and then keep it here in this plane of existence. And if we could do that, then it just seemed to me that it was possible to move souls from body to body. With that came identity issues, and the conundrum of “playing God,” all of which intrigued me. But that’s all the heady stuff! (laughs) Ultimately, the book is about a lot of things; revenge, jealousy, rebellion, love, and family… and in the end I’m kind of asking the reader how far they’d be willing to go for what they love more than they love themselves.

What is the next book that you are writing and when will it be available?

I love time travel, so my next book is about that. A few years back I started researching the theories behind it so I could talk about it competently, or at least sound competent. I’ve got the beginning and the end, it’s just getting through the center that’s the hard part for me. But, since I’ve got point A and point Z, I should be able to get there… eventually. I’d like to have it finished, edited, and ready to go by the end of 2020. But I’ve inadvertently thrown a monkey-wrench into my own head with Transference, and a sequel for that is now brewing in my mind. It seems to want to take precedence over anything else. Funny that, eh? (laughs) Also, I’ve written two children’s picture books that I’m so in love with (one is about clowns, and the other about snails) so I really want to get those out into the world for the little ones to enjoy with their parents.

Author Links: GoodReadsTwitterWebsite

Transference by [Keaton, B.T.]

Eighty years from now mankind has discovered the secret of eternal life. Human souls can be moved from one body to another through the process known as transference. Control of this new technology has fallen under the dominion of Jovian, a powerful prophet and head of the Church which governs every aspect of existence.
Banished to a mining colony on a distant planet for lawlessness is Barrabas Madzimure, the king of thieves. Only when Barrabas faces execution does he claim that another man committed his infamous crimes decades earlier. The authorities are suspicious. Is he the Madzimure of legend and a potential threat to Jovian’s new world order, or just another victim of transference?

The epic story of a personal mission, Transference takes the reader on a heart-racing journey through rebellion, revenge, self-sacrifice, and the soul’s search for identity.

When everything you believe about civilization is a lie, the ultimate power is truth.

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Philosophical Details of Satanism

Henry Panic Author Interview

Henry Panic Author Interview

With Lucifer On My Side delves into your life as well as the practice and philosophy of Luciferian. What was the inspiration that made you want to write this book?

While you can find books covering philosophical details of Satanism, Luciferianism, paganism and more, there are VERY few books about practice outside of the traditional occult practice. No one was really writing about how they practically use these theories in their life. I found that curious and decided to write WITH LUCIFER ON MY SIDE. Being the first one to explain Luciferianism like this is an accomplishment for me, and I hope the readers take something away from it, whether they agree or do not.

In this book you explore personal details about your life which gives people an understanding of where you come from. What was the hardest thing for you to share?

Easily the chapters DRUGS and JUDGMENT. In DRUGS I detail the mindset during a miserable withdrawal from opiate use. While I cover some of the physical parts of that experience, I wanted the focus to be on the mental changes. Going from furious, to depressed, to drained, to miserable is what I remember most. The physical experience is shitty, definitely, but my mind going to the places it went was the worst part of it. Specifically the things I thought and wrote about my father were difficult for me. DRUGS was exceptionally close to getting pulled because of that.

JUDGMENT, well it’s pretty self explanatory to anyone who has read it. An embarrassing situation I found myself in. The behavior I exhibited during that relationship truly was massively out of character for me. As a result, the guilt I experienced in the aftermath was incredibly difficult to let go of. I am better than that now and then. But hey, live and learn. Shit happens.

You give a lot of great insight into the life and practice of a Luciferian. What do you find is a common misconception people have about Luciferian?

That it is some kind of conspiracy theory religion only held by the billionaire elites. Or that the horror movies got it right and we are gathering in a forest to sacrifice people or animals. Couldn’t be further from the truth. Luciferianism started in ancient Greece (ancient Egypt if you want to get REALLY technical), then it moved to Gnosticism during the time of Christ, and then again with Madame Blavatsky and Michael Ford. It’s a real philosophy, with roots in ancient cultures. To be fair, I am a sort of outlier in Luciferianism because I don’t practice in the traditional occult sense. Many do, and more power to them. The point here is do what works for you and disregard what doesn’t.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I have a couple ideas in mind but I want to ride this wave for a while. The next book would be called WHAT IS LUCIFERIANISM? That much I know. WITH LUCIFER ON MY SIDE details my practice much more than it details what the philosophy is actually about. Not to say that I don’t give a solid summary, but there is so much more to go into. No one has really done it yet, outside of occult type stuff, so if nothing else that would be my next writing project.

Author Links: Twitter | Facebook | Website

With Lucifer On My Side dives into the upbringing, life, and Luciferian practice of the author, Henry Panic. From Catholic roots he found LaVeyan Satanism. From there he discovered various pagan belief systems, ultimately finding Luciferianism, a Gnosticism derivative. This book goes through the trials of a man attempting to self-deify and gives a detailed insight into the life and practice of a Luciferian in the 21st-century.

Panic’s approach is daringly honest, humorous, and thought provoking. Challenging you to visit his reality and decide for yourself – can a person become like God?

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The Disappointment of Promise

Jeffrey Sotto Author Interview

Jeffrey Sotto Author Interview

Cloud Cover follows a gay man struggling with grief, romance, and mental health issues. What was your inspiration for this thought-provoking novel?

The book is based on my own experiences. Tony and I have a lot in common. The death of my parents when I was young, being bullied in school, and being in the closet really affected on me. I had been dealing with mental health issues – specifically depression and anxiety since my late teens, and an eating disorder since my late 20s. I underwent psychiatric therapy and was in and out of recovery programs. I couldn’t make sense of all the events that happened to me, of this “cloud” I felt was following me. During that time I journaled a lot. The only reason I could come up with as to why these things occurred was so I could have a story, and maybe share it with others who are experiencing the same. Maybe it would help them. Maybe it would help me. I so wanted to make my pain and grief mean something. So I started piecing together my journals and continued writing what eventually became the book.

Tony is an an intriguing and well developed character. What were some themes you wanted to capture with his character?

To me, Tony represents the pervasive mental state that that plagues many people today: disenchantment and contradictions; the disappointment of promise; the loss of hope. The disenchantment causes his disorders, and as a result, he is full of contradictions: he no longer sees the bright future he once saw for himself, yet he still tries to improve his life in what little capacity he has. He is suffering emotionally with depression and anxiety and he is suffering physically with eating disorders, but he still drags himself to doctors and the recovery facilities. He is devasted by the death of someone he loves, yet reluctantly, he tries to find love again. He feels he is being judged by the gay community, but really, he is just as, if not more, judgmental about his overweight boss and his millennial coworkers and boyfriend.

This novel does a great job of capturing the reality of mental health issues and eating disorders. What do you hope readers take away from your book?

Thank you. For those suffering from any kind of disorder, talk to someone. There are people around you that care so much about you, but the mental illness makes you blind to that. That was probably the worst thing it did to me. Reach out, ask for help – that is how the stigma is broken. The world is good and full of people who love you and want to help you.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

Although I’ve generally received positive feedback about Cloud Cover, I’ve been told that perhaps my next book could be “a bit more cheerful.” Lol. So I’m going with that. My first love has always been tennis. My parents taught me how to play when I was 8 years old. I have been part of a gay tennis league for almost 20 years … and oh the drama you get when you put a bunch of gay athletes together! There are just too many good stories for me not to share! I’m going to try to write an absurd comedy/satire about a gay tennis league, and the chaos that ensues when straight people start joining.

Author Links: GoodReadsTwitter | FacebookInstagram

Tony, a gay man struggling with grief and mental health issues centered around his body image, is about to turn 35. As this “cubicle daydreamer” takes steps to improve his situation, his life is turned upside down when he is drawn to a younger, flamboyant and free-spirited artist named Antonio.

Will Tony successfully make a meaningful connection with Antonio despite their many differences? And how long can he hide the secret devastating to himself and to their relationship? Part romance, part drama, part comedy and a raw portrait of disorder, Cloud Cover captures the experience of love and loss—of others and of oneself—amidst past trauma, modern expectations and resulting inner turmoil.

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Journey of Discovery

Ruth Finnegan Author Interview

Ruth Finnegan Author Interview

Grass Miracle from the Earth is a well informed and interesting book about grass. What intrigued you about this project?

Well I was just so astounded that something so humble and unnoticede had all these qualities! I kept finding more and more and more (the ‘miracle’ in the title cropped up pretty soon) – and then just couldn’t stop!

Actually having finished it I see it’s pretty typical of my work as an anthropologist: to look deep into the ordinary – whatever, wherever – and find the extraordinary and the magical. So mine, I feel, is really a pretty good calling and one that suits me ( and my family inheritance) exactly.

You are the editor along with Maria Teresa Agozzino and author David Campbell Callender. What was the collaboration like on this book?

I have, er, to confess that I wrote the book myself, well almost all of it – Maria, the meticulous and inspired Welsh Mabli, whom I found by enormous good luck, corrected my mistakes and omissions and added some super fokloric and other bits as well as some great pictures of her gorgeous cats making the most of her grass. It’s been a wonderfully happy collaboration with multiple emails flying back and forward each day at crucial points. No, we have never actually met (except in mind) but will CERTAINLY continue to collaborate – soon it’ll be on the history of horses (an amazing adventure that ) then, we hope, on birds, magic of the sky and trees.

But otherwise, yes , I have to confess I basically thought of, and wrote it, a miraculous ( yes) journey of discovery. ‘Ruth Finnegan’ is known for rather different kinds of publications, so that was one reason I used a penname. But chiefly it was to remember and honour my inspired and gentle and modest maternal grandfather from Derry, my native city, himself a naturalist.

Starting this book I certainly didn’t think grass could so fascinating. Was there anything new you learned about grass when working on this book?

YES, EVERYTHING! I had no idea. Basically that, mostly forgotten, it’s just – THERE! And there all the time almost whatever you do to it. But honest, there’s just far far too much to even begin on, you’ll just have to read the book!

You can easily find the paperback at Lulu.com and the Kindle.

What is the next project you plan to work on and when will it be available?

I have two nearly finished academic books (one on ‘The shared mind’ – ESP and all that, a highly p topical subject – one on taxidruvers’ lives, again the extraordinary in the seemingly ordinary and though, like grass, near ubiquitous so often unnoticed and unesteemed. Also a couple of ( dream-inspired) novels and experimenting with a few filmscriots (hopefully some at least will appear this year, not certain: why aren’t there more hours in the day …). Chiefly I am working as general commissioning editor on what I think an exceedingly important and innovative series of books for young adults (‘Grass … ‘ is one example, my recent ‘Time for the world to learn from Africa’ another), you can see more on this at https://www.balestier.com/category/hearing-others-voices/ with LOTS more super titles to come during 2020.

Author Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook | GoodReads

Grass Miracle from the Earth (Hearing Others’ Voices) by [Campbell Callender, David]

We see grass everyday, tread on it, maybe handle, smell, or plant it.But how many of us noticed it – let alone appreciated its amazing presence and resilience and the way it someway holds our planet together? It’s everywhere.

This beautifully illustrated book, engaging and readable, gives us the full,picture. It tells of the marvellously complex evolution of grass, the incredible number of species (did you know that bamboo and sugar-cane are forms of grass, and that three kinds of grass make up the major food of humans and the grazing (‘grass’-eating) of innumerable animals?), leading us on into some appreciation of the abiding necessity of grass for humanity, for nature and for the arts. It has a place in folklore too, and in poetry

A book to give and to treasure.

David Campbell Callender, a name taken (adapted) from, and in memory of, her gifted Irish grandfather, is the penname of the British anthropologist Ruth Finnegan.

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My Father’s War Diaries

Greg Kater Author Interview

Greg Kater Author Interview

The Warramunga’s War follows two friends conducting counterespionage operations during WWII. What was your inspiration for the setup to this riveting story?

My initial inspiration was based on my father’s war diaries. He was involved in the Second World War initially fighting in the Syrian campaign and later in the desert war. After I retired from a 55-year career in the resources industry, working in all parts of the world, for the first time in my life I had time on my hands. I had met and worked with many unique characters in different countries throughout the years and thought it would be fun to write a series of novels starting with the desert war, where most of the characters would be based on those weird and wonderful people I had worked with over the years.

All the different localities in which the action takes place are known to me intimately. I was familiar with the Warramunga aborigines from the early part of my career when I worked in the Tennant Creek area in the central Northern Territory.

Jamie and Jacko are intriguing and well-developed characters. What were some ideas that guided their development throughout the book?

One of the most enduring lessons I learnt, when working in remote or foreign regions, was the value of friendship and teamwork. As they are involved in many different situations, I have attempted to develop the principal characters along these lines. Friendship, teamwork, loyalty and trust are always important. Each of them are based on multiple characters I have worked with around the world.

The historical figures and scenes in the novel were well executed. What kind of research did you undertake to ensure things were accurate?

Apart from my personal knowledge of the localities where the action takes place, my research has included diaries, well-known history, reference books in libraries, and references online. I spent more time on research than I did in writing the novel as I wanted to be sure the historical events were accurate.

What can readers expect in book two, The Warramunga’s Aftermath of War?

I worked for a major resources company in the Philippines during the 1970’s and became aware of some of the tragedies which occurred in the aftermath of war. There were several groups (who I would describe as cockroaches) who were taking advantage of the general chaos created by the war. Fighting had been extremely intense in the Philippines and many people were orphaned, displaced or homeless. There were instances of trafficking of children in the aftermath of war, and my second novel deals with this aspect.

Author Links: GoodReadsTwitterFacebookWebsite

The Warramunga's War by [Kater, Greg]

The Warramunga’s War is a sweeping narrative of the friendship that forms between a young Australian army officer, Jamie Munro, and an educated half-caste Warramunga aboriginal NCO, Jack ‘Jacko’ O’Brien, during the Syrian campaign against the Vichy French in World War II. Jacko rescues a wounded Jamie after which they are conscripted in Cairo by MI6. Here, Jamie and Jacko learn about the seamy side of war in counterespionage as they track down German spies. The principal fictional characters interact with actual historical figures and events throughout the story.

As the desert war escalates to the west of Cairo, the MI6 team confuses the enemy with misleading radio messages using German codes and using local entertainers as undercover agents. On one of his day leaves, Jacko meets a beautiful young Syrian-French girl and a strong romantic bond forms between the two during his time in Cairo.

Following the end of the desert war, Jamie and Jacko are assigned to wartime intelligence work in Southeast Asia. After the end of the Pacific war, they initiate the Darwin operations of the CIS, the Commonwealth Investigation Service. On the trail of two suspected wartime German agents, they discover the agents have formed a dangerous criminal gang with an individual they had known during their time in Cairo. The tracking skills of the Warramunga are needed to finally catch up with the murderous gang in Western Australia’s Kimberley region.

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The Pursuit of Justice

Simon Gandossi Author Interview

Simon Gandossi Author Interview

Cecilia House follows Patricia after a series of events destroys the life she knew. What served as your inspiration as you wrote this provocative story?

I spoke to a survivor firsthand from such abuse that occurred in the 1960s. One thing she said really got to me. “We never had a voice while those terrible things were happening.” I wanted to be their voice and bring to light one story that I know does just that. I based it during the 1930’s because even fewer people cared about what was happening. The survivors and their families are my inspiration because they never gave up in the pursuit of justice. When they read my book they told me I inspired them in so many ways. There is not greater joy for a writer to hear that.

I enjoyed the themes of family and friends running through the novel. What were some ideas that were important for you to explore in this book?

Those children went through so much hell and I wanted to explore in depth how they came to be there. I was able to do that with the main character Patricia. She had such a happy family life prior to the orphanage but others there did not. Patricia gives the reader first-hand knowledge of her own life whilst creating relationships with the girls to discover that their lives were nothing like hers.

I appreciated how realistic and emotional this book is. What do you hope readers take away from your book?

Never give up in the pursuit of what is right despite how many years may have passed. Countless people have gone to their graves suffering so much. If my book encourages many who are reluctant to take action for those harmed then I will have achieved one of many goals I set for myself.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I am working on a book loosely based on a true story set during the Holocaust. At this stage I am aiming for a May or June release date.

Author Links: GoodReadsTwitterFacebook | Website

Cecilia House by [Gandossi, Simon]Life is a precious gift and it can change within the blink of an eye, something Patricia discovered at a young age. After an extremely tragic event her loving family, good friends and many dreams and aspirations were all gone. An unwanted child sent to what was supposed to be a place of lovingness and warmth. Instead she soon discovered that those responsible for her care added so much more pain and sadness to many lives. What occurred within the walls of Cecilia House was one of the most despicable and unimaginable acts to ever happen within an organization whose duty it was to protect innocent children.

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Lucid Dreams and Nightmares

GJ Scherzinger Author Interview

GJ Scherzinger Author Interview

The Henna Witch is the enthralling account of Ashia’s mission to defeat a SORCERER who is invading dreams. How did this fascinating idea start and change as you wrote?

Dreams have long been a fascination for me, lucid dreams and nightmares in particular, as they exhibit such profound power and imagination. I wrote the book while I was in the recovery stages of my last cancer surgery, in which a 2×2” piece of skull was replaced with a 3D printed part. I was having a lot of lucid dreams, even extracting myself from certain death in one of them, so much so that when I woke I wasn’t sure if I’d actually been close to dying.

Two ideas were at play when I started the book and I made an attempt to merge them. The First is that we can live and even die in dreamlands when we sleep, an intriguing concept that I expanded to collective worlds where the creatures of our dreaming imagination are the souls of others. Surely animals dream as well. How many times have I watched my dog ‘run’, even ‘bark’ in his sleep?

Secondly, on a metaphorical level, bad leadership and greed steal the dreams of the populace. The greed of a few supplanting the dreams of many became the subtext.

Because of the multi-dimensional nature of dreams, it was hard to not take advantage of it and there are quite a few larger than life moments because of it. I’m pretty sure many people have done astonishing and magical things in their dreams, where anything is possible. Ashia and O’la also bring an equally dimensional approach to living in the day to day.

I am entirely indebted to my editor in keeping the transitions between dreams and characters comprehensible and helping me arrange the book. It would be far less of a story without her guidance.

Ashia is an intriguing and well-developed character. What was the inspiration for her character and the obstacles she faces?

I wanted to write a story centered around a black shamaness of the jungles facing the power of civilization. She was meant to be a simpler character in the beginning, but the scope of the challenge changed her as well. I initially made my ‘evil sorcerer’ a little too arcane and masterful to justify his powers and her backstory had to match in some way. The dreamscapes demanded attention as well, so she became much older, one of the fabled Muses that live in both worlds. This story grew with the telling, though her motivation from the beginning was always the protection of the animals, her sacred trust. The ability to communicate with animals was also meant to be a central part of the story from the beginning. I think there is a universal wish to be able to understand animals if we but knew their language.

The young girl, O’la, was only to be an introductory foil in an early chapter, but she ended up staying with the story, often stealing the scene. I even had to add my own dog in, a scruffy mutt with Buddha’s soul. He proves to be as powerful and brave in his own way as the panther that guides Ashia, whose journey was far more interesting with them in tow. She could talk to the animals and exhibit great power, but could she manage a twelve-year-old with a stray dog?

I felt the relationship between Ashia and O’la to be one of the most important parts of the book, especially in those moments when the girl’s capacity seemed to outshine Ashia’s own.

I thought that the novel captures the dark feel of age-old fairy tales. What were some themes you wanted to explore with this book?

I’m glad that association to old fairy tales exists. I was totally captivated by Grimm’s Bros., et. al. as a young reader and I know it influenced my later choices in reading material and favored authors. Fairy tales by their nature are very metaphorical. I mentioned a few of the themes above, though at the root of it is Man in conflict with Nature. There is life in every corner and under every rock and perfectly adapted for whatever niche it is in, often astounding creatures that exceed our imaginations. Ashia and O’la became their voices as much as the wizard Kapornic and his Trader enablers were the embodiment of civilization.

Are you still working on ‘Deck of the Numinon’ or do you have other projects in the works?

I’m on the third draft of ‘Deck of the Numinon’, which should be the final one, with subsequent editing. I expect to publish it in early summer of ’20. Like my other books, it has evolved far beyond my original concept. I have truly enjoyed resurrecting the characters of Cerra and the Demon from ‘Demon of the Black Gate’. It wasn’t really planned in the original outline, but it became apparent that I needed a dynamic and equal counter to the magical strength I had given the Deck, a powerful fortune-telling tool. Cerra and the Demon were perfect for the challenge and the story took off from there. I am particularly thrilled with the original artwork by Bluebird Design that will be incorporated into the story and cover. As far as future projects, I don’t have anything solid, just notes building a new tale. I enjoy mysteries and spy novels and want to incorporate some of those elements into the next book. By this time next year, I should be done with a tolerable draft. Working title: ‘The Transparent Mask’.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Amazon

When an enchanter begins stealing the souls of animals to haunt the dreams of men, Ashia Verena, one of the ageless Guardians, is drawn into a confrontation that resurrects a dangerous secret of her past. A native girl stows away on Ashia’s journey and becomes irrevocably entangled within the nebulous realms of magic and dreams. As the circle tightens, experience and innocence must join in hopes of overcoming the sorcerer’s lust for power and revenge.

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