Blog Archives

Their True Purpose

Rowan Staeffler
Rowan Staeffler Author Interview

Swords Of Deception follows a woman on a mission to track down a rogue council member but her journey reveals dark secrets about the Council of Witches. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

To show at what length people go to hide their true purpose and misuse of power.

Ellemar is a character that was fun to follow and well developed. What were some challenges you felt were important to defining her character in the story?

To find the right timing when Ellemar loses herself in her anger and how she learned throughout the story to be more reasonable. Then finding the right moments how Ason patiently tries to help her, making it as believable as possible. Because Ellemar mostly relies on him but he wants her to think for herself. Stepping only in if she loses herself in her anger again.

With beta readers and my editor, it took us a while until everyone was happy with the outcome. So lots of changes had to be made, leading to some frustrating moments.

What were some sources that informed the development of the world and lore in your book?

The world I have created in my Black Eyed Witch series was still fresh. So it made it easy to write it with a different story, powers and characters.

This is book one in your Sword of Deception series. What can readers expect in book two?

That Ellemar will be mentally challenged. That’s all I will say as otherwise it will spoil a big moment betas and my editor didn’t see coming. One beta said she cried during that scene.

Author Links: GoodReads | Facebook

Three years ago, rogue council member Celeana Maar massacred all the students at the Witches Academy and left Ellemar Vancel for dead. Now, still haunted by that day, Ellemar seeks to track Celeana down and settle the score.

But her mission is nearly halted before it even begins because the Council of Witches prohibits members from killing, even if justified. Given the gravity of Celeana’s crime, the Council bends this rule and approves Ellemar’s mission.

Searching for Celeana takes Ellemar to a royal ship, a Forgotten Forest, and a secret island. Along the journey, she begins hearing stories that suggest Celeana’s horrendous act may actually have been justified. Is Ellemar chasing the wrong enemy? Has the Council been harboring secrets from its members? Getting the answers right is critical. The peace of the entire kingdom is at stake.

No Easy Answers

Greg Fields
Greg Fields Author Interview

Through the Waters and the Wild follows a discontented man who finds renewed purpose through his grandfathers letters. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

Conor Finnegan was introduced in my first novel, Arc of the Comet, which followed his evolution from a confident young man with great promise through personal and professional frustrations that left him timid and unsure. By the novel’s close, Conor had just begun to recognize the failings of character that led to a deep-seated depression. He had also realized that the questions of purpose, time and place that we all must ultimately address had no easy answers. I felt his story needed to go forward as he wrestled with these realizations.

At the same time, I recalled stories of my own grandfather’s separation from his native land for reasons that, in the end, were not terribly different from Conor’s own angst. I saw a parallel between the two, and thought it might be appropriate to tie them together around themes of exile and redemption, themes that are universal enough to span the generations.

Conor and Liam are intriguing and well developed characters. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

From the beginning, Conor Finnegan embodied noble characteristics – intelligence, passion, a well defined social conscience, and a readiness to engage with those around him. But at the same time he also possessed the serious flaws of hubris and inflexibility which compromised the application of his strengths. As such, I believe he represents the challenges we all face as individuals, regardless of our strengths and weaknesses. All of us must find a balance that allows us to develop our own passions, and our own purposes, while answering the timeless questions, Where shall I go now? What shall I do?

Liam Finnegan is a simpler character, and so an effective contrast, especially as his story unfolds through the swirl of the Irish Civil War. He responds instinctively and intuitively, discontent with the circumstances of what he sees as a pointless existence, but listening to his inner voices which constitute a highly refined sense of integrity. In so doing, he establishes a strength of character that Conor draws upon in his own struggle to identify his purpose and place.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

As noted, the book revolves around the themes of exile and redemption, framed through the central questions – Where shall I go now? What shall I do? Each of us, whether we acknowledge it or not, must ask ourselves these questions, the answers to which define purpose, identity and self.

Because we’re constantly in motion, constantly evolving, any resolution is temporary. In my mind, what matters is not the answers to these questions, but the asking of them. When we fail to ask them of ourselves, we stagnate, fester and ultimate lose a bit of our soul. We ask these questions to stay alive.

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

I believe Conor Finnegan’s story reached closure at the end of Through the Waters and the Wild. I’m currently developing a completely new character to continue the investigation and reflection of place and purpose. This new character will be more negative than positive, more failure than success, bitter and alienated. I’m hoping this provides a new perspective on these questions, one that may in fact underscore the need to ask them regardless of where we stand as we pose them. I’m hopeful that this work will be done within the next year.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

Haunted by lost loves and limping through a lifeless career, Conor Finnegan’s discontent mirrors the restlessness of his grandfather Liam, caught as a young man in the crossfire of the Irish Civil War. Drawing from Liam’s wisdom and courage, Conor seeks to reinvent his character and reclaim passions made numb by neglect and loss.

Women of Courage

Ms T N Traynor
T N Traynor Author Interview

Hope in Liverpool follows a dejected young woman who finds renewed hope in a handsome stranger that provides the prospect of a better life. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

My Women of Courage series is a set of standalone stories, all of which I try to find a courageous female as the lead. In all my books in this series I would like to inspire or encourage. Hope in Liverpool is about showing that although we can go through extremely sad things in life, if we look towards hope we can be pulled out of the mire.

Each book has a unique place and time in history. I decided on Liverpool in 1958 because my mum has told me of what life was like for her back then. This isn’t her story at all, but the things like the dance hall she went to and meeting boyfriends at the pictures came from her stories.

Hope is an intriguing character that was well developed. What were some driving ideals behind her character’s development?

I have suffered from depression in the past, and pulling yourself up out of the black pit (because nobody else can do this for you) was a very hard thing to manage. Desmond Tutu’s quote – ‘hope is being able to see that there is light, despite all the darkness’ means so much to me, and this quote was the inspiration behind this story.

Hope’s character, therefore, needed to go through dark places to be able to appreciate the light when she found it.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

The main theme of this book is hope, I touch on forgiveness a tiny bit because I believe unforgiveness can hold us in the dark.

I also don’t think everyone ends up with a fairytale romance marriage, however, that doesn’t mean they are unhappy, so another theme is that not all marriages may be like Cinderella and Prince Charming, however, they can be full of love and kindness.

I try in each of my books to bring the settings to life, I do extensive research on how people lived, what they wore etc before I start any of my books, so besides making sure the characters were believable I always want to ensure the setting is just right, so the last theme would be Liverpool how it was in 1958.

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

I am currently working on the last book in this series. Although it is about a very courageous young woman, it is in lots of ways different to the other four, which is why I have given it a different style of book cover and title to the others. It is called Brianna Trefae and is set in England in 1667. Brianna is a woman of such faith that when she prays for people they are healed, unfortunately, this quickly gets her labeled as a witch, and brings her to the attention of the Witch Finder General. This will be the longest book in the series. I have already started researching what life was like after the civil war and other things. I am hoping it will be released in September 2022, but his is the book that has caught my heart the most and I won’t rush it so Sep is only my aim.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

A gritty romantic novella ~ where life isn’t always a bed of roses.

Can an alliance of convenience heal two broken hearts?
Liverpool, 1958. Hope Bennett longs to feel safe and wanted. Loyal to an alcoholic mother who gambles away all her hard-earned wages, she’s devastated by the announcement her family is moving and she’s not to follow. But her despondent plan to fling herself off the ferry and succumb to the freezing River Mersey is interrupted by a handsome older man.
John Walker expects to live out the rest of his days drowning in grief, isolated and lonely after the loss of his childhood sweetheart. When he spots a young woman in distress he is immediately drawn to help her.
Can the fragile dream of a better life out of the slums provide the security and companionship they both crave?
Hope in Liverpool is a deeply emotional foray into historical women’s fiction. If you like compellingly complex characters, light humor woven through heart-wrenching drama, and gripping romantic overtones, then you’ll adore T N Traynor’s poignant story.

Ontological Shock

E A. Bagby
E A. Bagby Author Interview

Illyia continues to follow Giels as he returns from his adventure and must make a decision about his future. What were some new ideas you wanted to introduce in this book that were different from book one?

Book one was really about introducing a cast of characters and the very different world they inhabited at a moment of lost innocence. In Illyia, we get to experience the aftermath of that—what happens after an ontological shock, and how does each person react?

What were some obstacles you felt were important to developing Giels character?

I think all good characters have strengths and weaknesses that play off of each other. And it’s usually those internal forces that drive them above all else. Giels has a near didactic memory, which is perfect for becomming a great storyteller, not to mention he’s in the right family to have that talent nurtured. Yet, he’s terrified of talking in front of large crowds. Double that with the fact he’s no longer sure if he believes in the stories he recites. And that’s the tip of the iceberg. He wants to preserve his standard of living, marry his girl, prove that he’s not privelaged and on. It’s maddening, but these problems propel him forward. Underneith it all, like all of us, he’s seeking elusive balance. And, as if his normal life isn’t confusing enough, he has a whole other realm that’s tugging at him. Getting his bearings is nearly impossible.

I enjoyed the deep and detailed world you’ve created. What were some sources that informed this world’s development?

Everything. Fiction, for me, is a way to reframe real life. By exaggerating personal experiences, especially those indellable moments and memories, whether bad, good, or just odd, we can take a closer look at them. We can understand them for what they really mean. For me, that process of tranforming life to fiction is usually automatic. For example, I’m pretty sure the Underworld originally came out of my experience of moving to Manhattan from Nevada as a child. Of course, this was a big moment for me, and stories of abandoned subway stations and tunnels where so-called “mole people” lived played on my imagination. Then there was the view out of my bedroom window. Tucked in the spaces between buildings existed a hidden world of pipes and machines and latticework eleven stories below. The imagination goes wild, especially if you’re used to seeing snocapped mountains out of your window. What sort of world existed there? Rumored giant rats and waterbugs and tropics-sized dragonflies I’d see fly around now and again, possibly sustained by the heat of the machinery and the steam? At that age, you even wonder about mythical creatures, too. Could there be beauty and life, an entire ecosystem, in the unnatural ugliness? It was aweful and fascinating all in one. Did people live back there, tucked somewhere? But for storytelling, what is most important is what did those hidden features of the city mean for me, and how did they represent my transformation after the move? I’m sure some of that worked its way into the Entiria stories.

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

The next one is episode 3, The Champions. Things really start taking a turn in this episode, and the bigger picture comes more into focus. When will it be available? Well, I wish I could say next month, but it’s important to me that the writing does the story justice, so we’ll have to follow up with one another. That said, I hope not too long.

Author Links: GoodReads | Facebook | Website

A tale of love, adventure, magic, mythology, and tech.

Reality has now taken a hard turn into the unknown. What do you do when hell isn’t the dark world you imagined, but something much more unfathomable?


As Giels reorients himself back to life after the disorienting adventure, his friends have a different plan. Everything that tortures him, inspires them.
As possibilities begin to open up and seem endless, what route will Giels take? Will he reconcile with the council to fulfill his birthright as his tribe’s Lead Storyteller, or will the gods have their way with him, hurtling him back into the great machine?

This episode picks up where we left off from episode 1, delivering lush prose and mythology like Lord of the Rings and Mists of Avalon, strange worlds like Journey to the Center of the Earth and Ringworld, dark themes like Gormenghast, the mysteries of The Sixth Sense, and even a touch of the relationship depth of Jane Austin.

All that with tech that ranges from aluminum spears to that which rivals The City and the Stars and Star Wars.

Stand Apart From The Crowd

Haelee Moone
Haelee Moone Author Interview

The Rules of a Little Boss shares positive messages to help children gain and improve their self-esteem. What lessons were important for you to share in this book?

The most important thing to me was the being kissed by the suns brightest rays. If I was younger I would’ve taken that very nicely considering I didn’t like the color of my skin so my hope is that children of color take that to heart.

In the book you state that readers ‘must be willing to do the work’. What is one way children can implement what they learned in your book?

By not giving into peer pressure and by consistently telling themselves not to they’ll learn stand apart from the crowd.

The art in the book is wonderful and bright. What was the art collaboration process like with illustrator Arsalan Khalid?

He really understood what the message that I wanted to share in the illustrations. He went the extra mile to make sure that the art matched to give a good visual representation of my words.

Do you have plans to write more children’s books?

I may create a series out of them under the umbrella of The Rules of a Big Boss: A book of self-love. They will be more fictional if I do.

Author Links: GoodReads | Instagram | YouTube | Facebook | Website

This award winning book is published by the Rules of a Big Boss LLC. It is a manual to help school aged children gain and improve self-esteem. It is available in hardcover, paperback, and Ebook formats. While it will help, it won’t help them achieve higher self-esteem by itself. They must be willing to do the work expressed within to achieve higher self-esteem. The things contained within are what helped me when I was your age. My hope is that these things help you as they did me. Good luck, Godspeed, and thank you for your purchase.

Alter The Course of History

Thomas Bauer
Thomas Bauer Author Interview

The Assassin follows the life of a baker’s son in a small Italian village whos future is radically changed by a mysterious visitor. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

I simply wanted to explore the idea of how one small act might be able to alter the course of history as well as what impact historical events might have in an insignificant spot on the planet peopled by those ignorant of world events.

Umberto is a stirring and authentic character. What were ideas you wanted to capture in his character’s development?

How the innocent and ignorant among us live lives more simple, but still filled with the same aspirations as the more privileged among us.

Author Links: Amazon | GoodReads

During the Napoleonic era, Umberto Guardo, a naive son of a baker in an insignificant Italian village, falls under the spell of a radical revolutionary. When the great general himself sets foot in the village, the awe stricken lad is given a task that could alter the course of history. The Assassin portrays an Italy that once was and a small village, isolated and unaware of the world beyond its borders until the unexpected intrusion by the most famous man in the world.

Wars Are Ugly, Bloody, And Vicious

Rox Burkey
Rox Burkey Author Interview

Out of Poland is a historical thriller following a group of Polish citizens who band together to fight Hitler’s forces. What was the inspiration for the idea behind your story?

We have long held that the three founders of the Enigma Series escaped Poland in 1939 during the German invasion. These heroes stole a copy of the Enigma Machine and put it on the last British plane out of the country. But they were shrewd enough to make a copy of it. Taking refuge in Switzerland the three broke the code and started their information brokering business to help victims of WWII recover and protect their wealth under the cover of the R-Group. Their children and grandchildren make up the cyber heroes of the Enigma Series.

We wanted to tell the harrowing tale of how they accomplished their deceptions and the risks are taken. Heroes born of the circumstances, especially under fire, sacrificing for what is morally right, for us, is a compelling story. We wanted to bring the realism of the war to our readers. We feel we accomplished this in our novella. We also created a screenplay which we have submitted for consideration with a few groups.

Was writing a historical fiction story a challenge or a nice change from writing technology thrillers?

Writing historical fiction, much like our novels in the series, requires accurate details. Breakfield has studied World War II for years. He has read hundreds of books of the battles, places, and people from English, American, German, and Russian authors. The details of the war in this novella are accurate, it is the circumstances of our heroes that are embellished to protect the unsung heroes of the travesty of overrunning Poland. Hitler was driven and we are grateful he was stopped.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

We wanted to convey the struggles of the people faced by war from a maniac who demanded harsh domination. Wars are ugly, bloody, and vicious filled with victims from all economic strata. We also highlight the racial prejudices that the invaders brought with them. No one is immune to the evils of war. Our German military is portrayed as a machine overrunning a proud country with passionate people.

We wanted to focus on the trials of the Polish people and the lengths they went to keep their beliefs alive. Without a properly equipped army or the support of the allies, escape was their best option. Illustrating that was key as was the part Russia played in the loss of Poland.

This is a novella-length story. Was that intentional or incidental to telling the story you wanted to tell?

The length of this story, like all our stories was a result of what we wanted to convey to readers. We are storytellers who are passionate about telling a great story. The drama, passion, tragedy, sorrow, triumph, and hope captured in our stories dictate the length. We believe this is a fabulous foundational story that created the basis of our current day technology thrillers of the Enigma Series. That focus is realized for us in this story. We want readers to gain that insight into our award-winning R-Group. We invite your readers to view the book trailer https://youtu.be/VnQOxg1rMgU of this story.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website (check out the freebies)

Out of Poland: Novella by [Charles Breakfield, Rox Burkey]

Beneath the storm clouds of a deadly war, three men are poised to unlock the secrets to redeem the world.

The setting is Poland 1939, Germans are marching toward Warsaw running their armor, and devastating swarms of armed soldiers, along with their cavalry. Fighting against the Nazi military machine is a death wish realized all too clearly.

The path of the invaders is paved with death, destructions, pillage, and woman brutalized at the hands of soldiers with no honor. As much as the citizens of Poland pray for a different outcome, everything they have known, loved, and grown up with is devastated.

Three young men are tasked with finding and extracting the German military communications device, Baby, that is kept under heavy guard. Polish patriots die to aid the three in getting the information and then fleeing with the prize. The race is on as the Germans try to match wits with the clever patriots who risk detection at every turn.

The Ambassador Ferdek Watcowski, insists that his son Ferdek along with Wolfgang and Tavius, take their families and flee while there is still time to reach a border. The goal of their journey is to escape with Baby intact.

Poland’s military is so outclassed by Hitler’s forces that survival is key to fighting another day. Facing great peril and odds against their survival, the men resolve to make a difference so that those who died helping them would not have sacrificed in vain. They vow to undertake a lifetime of fighting tyranny.

Successful survivors must look ahead.

Buy Now From B&N.com

Tribal and Human Values

Thomas Kochuthara
Thomas Kochuthara Author Interview

Christianity and the Tribal Societies of North East India provides readers with an in-depth exploration of Indian tribes and Christianity. Why was this an important book for you to write?

The north eastern region of India comprising of seven states, covering the sub-Himalayan mountain ranges, has seen waves of migration from time immemorial. It exhibits a plurality of cultures, races, languages and religions and is one of the most unique and romantic places. I lived there for fifteen years and thus had the opportunity to visit the places and have contact with people. My appreciation for their social, cultural and religious life and the way they led their political and economic struggles and faced the challenges and threats from the natural forces, prompted me to write the book to convey relevant messages to modern man.

What were some key aspects of tribal societies that were important for you to include in this book?

Their loyalty and faithfulness to the tribal traditions and way of life, their struggles to keep up their tribal identity in spite of modernization, their desire for imparting education to their children, their involvement in the struggles for obtaining political statehood on tribal basis, gender equality, higher status of women in some tribes as an inspiration for women liberation, absence of any caste system found in many major population groups in India, their love for singing and dancing etc., are some of the important aspects included in the book.

What kind of research did you undertake to complete this book?

It is a descriptive and analytic research that I have followed in this work. I have given a clear and precise picture of the seven states in the north eastern region of India, their topographical and geographical details, the tribal people inhabiting the states, their cultural, social, religious and political life, the struggles for the formation of the different states and the scope and challenges in the economic and agricultural fields. I have also analysed various aspects of their socio- cultural life and advances in education and political consciousness and I have made theological reflections in the light of these.

What is one thing you hope readers take away from your book?

The one thing, I hope, the readers will take away from the book is their high sense of tribal and human values, characterised by sincerity, openness, simplicity, solidarity with fellow human beings and concern for the poor and the weak.

Author Links: Website | GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook

The north-eastern region of India comprising of the seven states known as the ‘Seven Sisters’ represents an area of enormous ecological, geographical and ethnical diversity. This region which is inhabited by 166 diverse tribes is blessed with dense and lush green forests, hills and valleys, rich flora and fauna, and holds immense mineral and power resources. Its passes and valleys have witnessed centuries of migration and served as a gateway of commerce and culture. The North East has a plurality of races, religions, cultures, languages and dialects, making it one of the most diverse and picturesque regions of India. Ending its isolation, this region has come into the main stream of national life through the educational and modernization process set in motion in the region chiefly by Christian missionaries. The region has also over the years been through much unrest and turmoil. With growing awareness, people have also been demanding a greater share in the achievements of the nation. But often their aspirations are met only partially, and the dissatisfaction with the poor development of the region and the absence of adequate opportunities prompt the younger generations to adopt what often turn out to be unconstitutional and militant ways to end exploitation and domination, culminating in much violence and bloodshed, throwing the entire region into turmoil. As Christianity has much influence on the life of the people here, it is its responsibility to take seriously the situation of insurgency and militancy that directly affect the people’s aspirations for an authentic, dignified and peaceful life. In order to enable the Church to respond adequately to this situation, it is essential that a suitable theology emerge in the multicultural and plurireligious context of the North East. Such a theology will not be limited to that region, but will have consequences also for dealing with several problems affecting the universal Church. The present study is undertaken with a view to examining the features of the theology that will emerge in the north-eastern context, and also its impact on universal theology. The North East of India can exert tremendous influence on the debates on current theological issues and can pave the way for the emergence of a Church with truly indigenous features.

Buy Now From B&N.com

%d bloggers like this: