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Speaking One’s Truth

Maria Ereni Dampman
Maria Ereni Dampman Author Interview

Emma is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

Emma is the epitome of the saying “Women are like tea bags – you have no idea how strong they are until you put them in hot water.” In the early pages of the novel, Emma is literally dying under the exorbitant suppression of her spirit. At times she believes death to be better than living the future that has been planned out for her. Her rebellious nature and need for freedom she’s been taught are both sinful and unlawful, and she honestly believes something is wrong with her because she cannot submit and simply do what she’s told.

Emma has a lot to lose in this new America if she continues to rebel, with many of her actions putting at risk of execution if she’s caught. Yet her desire for truth, freedom and autonomy outweighs her fears. When she realizes the lies she and the rest of the nation are being told by her father, the government and the new national church, it only spurs her on to determine the truth for herself. Although terrified, she persists in her search for knowledge, and that knowledge forces her to act.

The novel is also a cautionary tale that warns of what will happen if our increasingly divisive culture carries on this ill-fated path. In recent years, our population has become more and more split on financial, ideological and political ideologies. Discourse is becoming more and more intolerant between different groups, with a frightening increase in the “-isms” that only serve to push us further apart. We are rapidly becoming a nation of hate and suspicion, two mindsets that will only lead to the unraveling of our nation. If we want to prevent our nation from becoming what’s written in The Governor’s Daughter, now is the time for us to draw together before it’s too late.

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

The biggest theme of this novel is the importance of voice and speaking one’s truth. I wrote this novel after watching the Kavanaugh Senate confirmation hearings, and in particular, the testimony of Dr. Ford. For many women, watching her come forward only to have her testimony thoroughly disregarded was an enraging ordeal. Especially for women who have also suffered sexual assault, the injustice of his appointment was devastating. Like Dr. Ford, when I was much younger, I suffered greatly after a sexual assault. When I came forward, I was talked out of pressing charges being told no one would believe me. I was so frightened of things becoming worse that I let them silence me. I will forever regret not coming forward when I found out later how the man who assaulted me went on to victimize other women.

When watching the hearings, I was angry that women all over the world were still getting the same ridiculous message I was told nearly 30 years ago. I worried about the young women watching this who might be thinking what’s the point of coming forward if someone as credible as Dr. Ford’s testimony means nothing? If I’m ever assaulted, who is going to believe me if no one believes her? I felt like in one afternoon, all of the gains made in the #metoo movement were flushed down the toilet.

So, when I began writing, I wanted to write a story where the actions of one woman, even one as initially powerless and broken as Emma, manages to not only pull herself together, but comes to truly believe her voice is important. Her actions are important. The desires she has and what she wants out of life are important because she is important. This theme is pervasive in the upcoming novels as well, where characters from all sorts of backgrounds use their words and actions to make a positive change in their world.

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

The Prodigal Daughter is the second novel in the four-book Daughters of the New American Revolution series. It picks up right where The Governor’s Daughter left off and continues Emma’s thrilling story. It is scheduled to be released in December 2021.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

Don’t believe what The New State Press tells you.
Nineteen year-old Emma Bellamy is not a “good girl.”

She’s sick of the men who treat her like property, the endless Purity Protocols to which she must conform, and the brutal consequences when she inevitably fails. With a recalcitrant mind and headstrong nature, Emma continually questions the policies of the White Nationalist government, the suffocating patriarchy of a corrupt Universal Church and her uber-powerful father, the revered Governor. When she determines that everything she’s been taught to believe is based on lies, Emma disobeys in the most ruinous way yet – she sets out to find the truth for herself.

And she doesn’t give a damn if that makes her a “bad girl.”

In a clandestine journey beyond the razor-wire topped walls of the Premier City, Emma is faced with the reality of what ninety-eight percent of the population faces. Extreme poverty. Disease. Unchecked police violence. Civil war in the 20s leveled cities and killed millions, leaving the masses broken, dispirited and unable to ever again threaten the Committee’s reign. In her travels, Emma finds a few brave souls who dare to resist, risking everything to live their lives by their own rules. Now she must choose. Does she doom herself to an unfulfilled but privileged life? Or does she risk everything for a chance at a future filled with purpose, passion and freedom?

The Governor’s Daughter

The Governor's Daughter by [Maria Ereni Dampman]

The Governor’s Daughter follows nineteen year-old Emma Bellamy who is guarded and suspicious of others in a brutal dystopian future where she’s treated like little more than property. Emma uncovers the dark truth about her strict society and abandons her privileged life to set our on a perilous journey beyond the walls of the Premier City to seek the truth. But what she finds will challenge her in ways she hadn’t even imagined.

Emma’s character develops dramatically throughout the story as she transforms from a naïve young lady to a woman with huge inner strength. Her dialogue, inner monologues and actions all portray her as a strong young woman who is battling against the system she finds herself in. As she grows and matures, she finds herself to be growing stronger both physically and emotionally. Ryan, her fiancé, is an entitled, and cruel young man, determined to use his power in this corrupt society to its full extent.

Declan, a young physiotherapist, is handsome, clever and darkly sullen. Trapped within the rigid rules of society he is a ‘marked man’ and bears this mark both physically and psychologically. Supporting these main characters are a small group of minor but still alluring characters, that weave in and out of the story. These are characters that both support the government and characters that are secretly fighting the government. All of these characters help to make the story authentic and believable.

While the novel explores some heavy topics the novel has a clear and easy structure to follow. Most of the chapters are all entitled with the name of whoever is narrating that chapter. The narrations give a clear picture of the rules of this disturbing dystopian world, from the points of views of both the oppressed and the oppressor. There are many twists and turns along the way which holds the reader’s interest and keeps them guessing until the end of the story.

The story is set in the future; in 2045 America. The setting is vastly different to the U.S. of today, with physical walls dividing citizens and keeping them apart. There is some description of the architecture, from the palatial mansion like homes Emma resides in, to the squalor others live in. This dichotomy between the haves and have-nots and the physical and moral differences between the two reminds me of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, but made for a young adult audience.

The Governor’s Daughter is a riveting dystopian novel with subtle by deep commentary on society. Readers will enjoy following the vivacious protagonist and exploring the vivid dystopian future author Maria Ereni Dampman has created.

Pages: 488 | ASIN: B097CKSNYK

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The Quantum Mate – Book Trailer

You’re not ready for the future. Don’t fret. They say, there’s nothing you can do. I’m not so sure. You will abandon much of what is considered essential in a free society. The exponential technologies saved us from the abyss, but introduced the social paradoxes. Now, the female-aligned genders have advantage over the male-aligned. Not without a heavy toll, mind you. Abundance is the norm. Yet, be forewarned, if not disciplined, succumbing to your passions will be your ruin. So, consider this an offer to choose another future. For there to be any chance, you had better get started.

Available on Kindle Vella

 

A Feminist Revolution

Donna Fisher
Donna Fisher Author Interview

Queentide follows a woman in a future dystopian Australia who creates a radical feminist group to return women’s right to vote. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

The world in Queentide isn’t so different from the one we live in today. Women are underrepresented in positions of power, they’re the victims of more domestic violence, they still face more discrimination at work, and when they try to challenge the status quo, by speaking out or running for office they are beaten back by a system not designed to support them and widespread trolling.

I wondered what it would take to change this, and I decided it would be the army of women Gloria Steinem talked about.

Bodie is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind her character’s development?

Bodie’s character is based on some women I’ve met who were part of the feminist moment back in the 1960s. They’re realists – they’ve been fighting for women’s rights for 60 years so they know change is hard! But they are still trying, they still think its possible. It was this fierce optimism I wanted to capture in Bodie’s character.

But ultimately, the biggest driver for Bodie is love. She thinks love will change the world. And it does, but perhaps not in the way she expects!

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

A really important theme for me to explore was the silencing of women, and the myriad of ways that is done – in relationships, on social media, in the news, in politics, in the courts, even sometimes by themselves. Queentide was my way of giving these women’s voices an outlet, and to highlight the inequities that still exist for women.

It was also really important for me to look at the issue of intersectionality, or the lack of it, in the feminist movement. When I imagined a feminist revolution, one that worked, it couldn’t just be lead by straight white feminists-people like me. And being set in Australia, It was important to reflect on the experience of First Nations women and men. Writing Queentide, I did a lot of listening, learning and privilege-checking. That experience has changed how I see the world, my blinkers are definitely off.

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

The next book is called There She Goes – it’s about a woman rapidly approaching middle age who revisits her youth in a desperate attempt to reroute her future. It will hopefully be on shelves by the end of the year.

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

Australia in 2026 is not an easy place to be a woman. Authoritarianism has crept into the country. Women have lost their rights and voices. But Bodie and her militant granddaughter, Insley, are gambling everything to return them. They have set up a radical feminist group, Queentide, to steal the upcoming election and make Aboriginal politician, Kathleen, the next Prime Minister of an all-women Government. The ex-wife of a senior Minister, Lilith, vows to help them by sharing explosive secrets that will guarantee Queentide’s success.But two things might stop them. A state-backed, violent men’s rights group and a bitter power struggle that threatens to tear Queentide apart.Can the women harness the storm and smash the patriarchy? Or will Queentide wreck itself?

QueenTide

Queentide by [Donna Fisher]

QueenTide by Donna Fisher, is an intriguing story about women empowerment and uses fierce yet gentle feminist Bodie Hughes as the face of a feminist movement. She finds herself tackling challenges faced everyday by average women and encourages them to find the strength in their voices. However, she does not tackle all these challenges all by herself, it is a movement.

Fisher writes with passion and is able to intrigue your mind with vivid images of what goes on in each chapter of the book. She adds background knowledge of psychological common patterns in her writing and allows the reader to see and understand the psychology behind each character’s behavior and motives. Fisher manages to play mind-tricks with her writing on the reader by using her metaphors. Just when you think you have everything figured out she hits you with a plot twist.

Personally I am a reader who loves relating to at least one character in the book. Fisher manages to make me relate to more than just one character, it is even hard to have a favorite! She ensures that each character is given their chance to tell their story by including their background stories, when you think one character has it bad she then adds another twist to the story.

At first I was a bit confused with the first chapter of book but then eventually I got into the flow of the book, once the characters’ backgrounds were explained. Fisher manages to bring in every single issue that is considered taboo or an issue that is not widely and openly spoken about, issues that we as women deal with on a daily basis yet are forced to keep quiet and keep on acting like we are living in a world of so-called equality. However, the humor most of the characters show does bring some levity to this story.

The genuine friendship between Brodie and Lilith is definitely complicated at first, since Lilith at the beginning is a scared woman with no voice who is then put in the same environment with a woman who is completely the opposite of her. This created a riveting dynamic that I really enjoyed, and eventually shows that who you surround yourself with is who you eventually become.

QueenTide by Donna Fisher is an engrossing book that will appeal to women and show that they are not alone in this world. I think it would also appeal to anyone looking for an impassioned dystopian-esque political thriller. It has been a long time since I have read a book that I could easily engage and relate too.

Pages: 286 | ASIN: B092SCWR1L

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People Want to Destroy It

Author Interview
Harry Wolden Author Interview

The Bystander finds mankind trapped in time, never aging, which brings out the best and worst in mankind. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

My inspiration was a scientific theory that i read about. Please, don’t ask me, it’s a major spoiler for the story! And once i read it, the main story created in my mind.

The characters in your story were intriguing and well developed. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

The first thing i did was think about what characters i want to tell my story. Then, i made a storyboard which showed what journey would make every character from beginning to end. Τhis technique helped me develop my characters as best I could.

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

I wanted to explore three themes that intrigue me. The first was the hunger for power. The second one was how easy you can believe everything because you have the need to feel that you belond to somewhere. And my last and favourite theme was whatever political system you apply (good or bad), if some group of people want to destroy it, then they will find the way and they will do it.

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

For my next book, i want to play with the theme of stereotypes. In another words, i want to break them. Αnd I know you will be immensely sorry for what I say, but I am at a very early stage.

Author Links: GoodReads | Amazon

A woman and her son prepare to start a new life…
A homeless failed stockbroker walks the streets of New York City, just waiting for another chance…
A C.I.A. operative lies comatose in a hospital bed…
Their lives, and many more, are destined to cross when the world is struck by an incredible global phenomenon…
When time itself inexplicably stops, mankind is trapped in an eternal moment, never ageing and effectively immortal. But still just as ruthlessly ambitious.
As people fight to survive the perpetual evening of a new America, murderous leaders and dictatorial oppressors rise. The brutality of man is brought into focus more clearly than ever before.
Thousands of miles away, on another continent, a different threat is emerging – and the connection between these distant events just might hold the answer to the mystery of time…
Dystopian sci-fi fantasy on an epic scale, The Bystander is a metaphorical allegory of humanity, power-hunger and the ambiguity of war.

The Bystander

The Bystander by [Harry Wolden]

What would happen if time just…stopped? If people stopped aging, and the sun never again moved from its current spot? The people on Earth had the opportunity to find out, and the answer turned out to be chaos and war. For the groups of survivors who remain after many moments, no one could say exactly how long, each day is a struggle. Those that are just trying to make it have to contend with time cults and cannibals, as well as other survivors who may or may not be benign. Is there any chance of the world returning to normal? There are clues that point to an unlikely place for salvation.

The Bystander by Harry Wolden is an epic tale of a dystopian future that is stuck firmly in the present. Wolden weaves the story through a variety of voices and points of view, a device that isn’t always easy, but he does it extremely well. The beginning of all the trouble is laid out calmly enough, with an introduction to a few of the main characters, before everything gets wild and the story takes on a palpable sense of chaos and uncertainty. By the time the action really gets going, the impression is that an incredibly long amount of time has passed since time stopped, but it is never made explicit as there is no way for the characters to know, and truly it doesn’t matter. Each new group adds another layer to an already exciting story until an eventual showdown between those who want a return to normal life, and those who have created a religion around making it happen.

The Bystander touches on many themes over the course of its pages, some of them wholesome like family, hope, and resilience. It also doesn’t shy away from the ideas of arrogance, greed, and power and even the best of us harbor to a small extent. The book is multi-layered and complex without ever feeling too heavy or difficult to understand. Wolden does an excellent job of balancing all the pieces and building a complete environment for us to witness, for better or worse.

The Bystander was easily one of the best sci-fi novels I’ve read this year, and was engaging from the very start. Wolden crafted a plethora of characters that weren’t always likeable, but were nonetheless always interesting and he created an epic story from a unique idea. Highly recommended!

Pages: 520 | ASIN: B0947JDV4R

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Primeval Origins

B. A. Vonsik
B. A. Vonsik Author Interview

Paths of Anguish follows a graduate student working on a field expedition that reveals our hidden history and the origins of our End Times. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

A deep study of our (humanity’s) mythologies and ancient gods of old, discovering most tell a similar story of creation and of the gods (little “g”s) only with different names and different cultural contexts. The Primeval Origins saga is architected as an epic adventure revealing our “undiscovered” human history and origins through the eyes and experiences of Nikki and her experiences of the memories of Rogaan and others in the First Man civilization on Earth. The setup of the modern story is in the late 21st semi-dystopian century. The ancient story is set 65 mya on the lost continent of Dilmu years before nature made extinct the dinosaurs and more than 70% of all life on Earth. Or was it nature?

Nikki, Rogaan and Pax were interesting and well developed characters. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

Rogaan and Pax are AD&D characters played by myself and a friend, among other characters to be joining the adventure in the books following Paths of Anguish, at the United States Air Force Academy in the early 1980’s. Their interactions are genuine as they were played by us through multiple adventures, though adapted to the Primeval Origins storyline. Nikki is a combination character in personality and drive of my daughter and daughter-in-law. Both strong women that are inquisitive with streaks of stubbornness, yet with enormous senses of integrity and loyalty. This made character development rather straight-forward…with some tweaks to fit with Nikki’s profession and spinning out of control situation.

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

The nature of our humanity is at the core of all story themes…are we just simple chemical accidents in the universe or is there a grander plan, origin, and history of our human experiences of being Lights/Souls merged with the clay of the earth, our flesh bodies? Everyone behaves and reacts to situations/influences for reasons of their own, though our environment does not dictate who we are and who we are to grow into. We make choices and act. The question is whether we choose to be good persons or not, brave or cowardly, honest or deceptive, selfish or selfless. Our maturing through these experiences and testing of our souls determines which path we follow both in this life and the next. As to the worlds of the future and ancient past, accuracy of scientific knowledge, archeology (the undiscovered and non-dogma version of archeology), paleontology, geology, physics, engineering principles, etc are important to the story as is the speculative sciences that are largely ignored all integrated with our oldest creation myths telling of the creation and origins of earth, life in our solar system, and mankind. It’s a really unique and cool story that will be revealed in the books ahead.

This is book one in the Primeval Origins Epic Saga. What can readers expect in book two?

Book #2, Light of Honor, and book #3, Rise of Serpents, are both published. Book #4, untitled to the public at present, is being written now. The Primeval Origins saga grows in interesting characters telling of the creation of humanity (taken primarily from the Sumerian, Egyptian, and Hindu myths and their correlation with the Abrahamic religions) and of the coming days of Final Judgment in the modern story as Nikki is witness, and a player, in the rise of the Four Horsemen. I don’t know of any story past or in present literature that combines these themes, the sciences, our mythologies, and humanity’s religions into a single story as Primeval Origins does.

Author Links: GoodReads | Facebook | Website

Multiple Award-Winning Book! Book one in this epic story of mankind’s origins and the creation of the Four Horsemen. Join Nikki, a graduate student working on a field expedition that turns her life upside-down, as she learns of and experiences our undiscovered and hidden history filled with terrible tyrannies, deadly dinosaurs, brutal beasts, ancient gods, and heroic hearts as the origins of our End Times is revealed, answering the question, “What if all of our myths and legends are true

Primeval Origins: Paths of Anguish (Book #1 in this Epic Saga, 2nd Edition)
http://www.primevalorigins.com
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