Monday, May 16, 2016

Morgan Huneke on Espionage


Morgan, what have you been up to since the last time you were here?
Goodness, a lot of things have happened in the two and a half years since my last interview. I published four more books (one of which comes out today), helped win a congressional campaign, graduated, moved, joined a college orchestra as a community member, built a basement, got a job at my local library…it’s been insane. I’m currently working on a YA outer space dystopian novel (well, that’s the official genre tag I put on it, my stories don’t like to be typical of their genre), and getting ready to prepare book 3 of Time Captives for publication.

What inspired the Time Captives series?
That’s difficult to say. Time Captives happens to be another one of those not-quite-sure-where-the-initial-idea-came-from books. The Experiment, Espionage, and my YA dystopian were all sparked by dreams. Time Captives…it probably largely came from wanting to write a fantasy story. There are definite Narnian influences, ideas from Tuck Everlasting, and influence from Gone-Away Lake. I’ve also pulled inspiration from Ilyon Chronicles, Dragons of Starlight, and Doctor Who. It’s been quite interesting.

What do all the Time Captives books have in common?
Time Captives is essentially one story in three volumes. The overall storyline is about freeing the people of Calhortz from the strytes who invaded and enslaved them. Each book has its own smaller goal within the story, but there’s always that overreaching end in sight. While the cast of characters grows with each book, it’s always essentially about the Time Captives, fourteen children from our world who disappeared, one every twenty years, and their quest to save Calhortz.

What makes Espionage different from the rest of the books in the series?
First off, Espionage is a companion, so while it’s connected to Time Captives and helps to set the stage for the third book, it’s independent and not technically a part of the trilogy. It has a shorter timeline, smaller cast, and (even though the stakes are very high) is much more personal. It’s set in Briznom, the neighboring country to Calhortz, which is only seen in short glimpses throughout the Time Captives trilogy. Espionage is also rather more political. And it’s written in first person. Before Espionage, I hadn’t completed a first person narrative since I was nine, so that was interesting and a fun challenge.

If you could pick one character from Espionage to meet, which one would you choose?
Hmm. That’s difficult. I would be torn between Vannie and Kyle, the two main characters. I love them both so much and they’re so different. I know Vannie inside and out already, though, so I’d prrrroooobably choose Kyle.

What have been some of your favorite Homeschooled Authored books that you have read in the last year?
Samara’s Peril by Jaye L. Knight. Water Princess, Fire Prince by Kendra E. Ardnek. Implant by J. Grace Pennington. They’re all SOOOOO good, and WPFP is how I got to know my best online friends.

Where can people find Espionage and the other Time Captives books?
They’re all available on Amazon, both as paperbacks and kindle books. You can also purchase from CreateSpace or get signed copies directly from me.

Where can people keep up with you?
I’m on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (@authormorganhuneke), and you can also keep up with me on my blog, Goodreads, Pinterest, and Google+.

Any final thoughts?
I’m having a blog tour for Espionage right now. Find fun interviews, reviews, and behind the scenes information here.

Writing is a gift from God. And sometimes He’ll weave messages into your writing that you don’t even notice until you get to the end. It’s pretty amazing to see.

Thanks for having me!

(You can find a giveaway for the book here.)

Monday, May 9, 2016

Rachelle Rea on The Sound of Emeralds



Rachelle, what have you been up to lately?
I just released my third book, The Sound of Emeralds, the end of the Steadfast Love series on April 15th. And on April 3rd I got engaged to the only man I've ever met with the same first name as my fictional hero! (I didn't know him at the time I wrote these books years ago, so that makes it even funnier!)

Congratulations on your recent engagement! Have you picked a theme for the wedding?
Thank you! We have! The Beauty and the Beast fairytale is our very favorite, so there will be lots of books at our reception! And we're having a dessert bar reception, yum!

What have you been reading?
I'm reading Roseanna M. White's The Reluctant Duchess right now, and I highly recommend it. Roseanna's books are always favorites, and that's not just because she's also my editor. ;)

What has been the hardest part of writing The Sound of Emeralds?
A lot happens in Book Three that I didn't see coming and even tried somewhat to change, but the characters insisted on telling their true story. Fun fact: Books One and Two took me three and six months to write. This third book took me a y-e-a-r. It took a lot out of me but I'm so pleased with the way it turned out.

What has been the easiest part?
I know the characters well, by now. In fact I was cautioned by my amazing editorial team at WhiteFire to be careful to still acclimate new readers to the cast of characters. I know very well by now that Dirk's hair is red and which of his sisters isn't very nice, but my readers need to be reminded! :)

Which character are you most like?
Margried. She's strong in different ways from Gwyn. She's thoughtful and quiet and kind, and I relate the best to her. Gwyn I modeled after my mom, who is way cooler and brassier and braver. But they need each other. ;)

Have you had a single moment that made all the work for the series worth it?
Every single time I read a review or an email or a message or listen to someone say they loved the book because it inspired them...it's always been worth it because I write for God, but when He shows me how He's using these books to glorify Him, you can't beat that.

Where can people buy The Sound of Emeralds?
Wherever books are sold!

Barnes & Noble: http://is.gd/RguS9l
Amazon Paperback: http://is.gd/F53u5R
Kindle: http://is.gd/MJ61ak
Books a Million: http://is.gd/NdMWGr
Goodreads: http://is.gd/zRI9dg

What is next for you?
My next project is Top Secret and I do have a wedding to plan this summer, but I can't wait to share it! :)

Where can people go to keep up with you?
I love social media and old-fashioned email (be on the lookout for these handles to switch over to my married name after my wedding day on June 11th!) :
Website: http://rachellerea.com/
Blog: http://rachellerea.com/blog/
Facebook: http://facebook.com/inspiringdaring
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RachelleRea
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/rachellerea/
Instagram: @RachelleDianeRea
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Rachelle-Rea/e/B00RZHIL1Q
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8144149.Rachelle_Rea?from_search=true&search_version=service

Monday, May 2, 2016

Sarah Allerding on The Spunky Monkeys


Sarah, welcome to Homeschool Authors! Tell us a little bit about yourself.
First of all, I am a forgiven child of God. I enjoy studying the Bible and teaching others about their savior.
I really enjoy reading and writing. I like reading fiction, especially historical fiction and Christian Fantasy. I like writing devotions and fiction. I especially like creating a different world when I write.
I am also a baseball umpire. :) I graduated from professional umpire school in 2014. I enjoy umpiring high school baseball.

Everyone’s homeshooling experience is different. What do you think made yours unique?
I would say that my experience was unique because I didn't learn history or science from a set textbook. I learned by going to different historical sites, museums, and by reading books.

How did being homeschooled prepare you to write?
I would say it prepared me to write books because I got to write my stories as part of my school work.

What caused you to start writing?
The fact that I had to for school. :) For a long time I did not like writing. I even said that I didn't need to learn to write because I would never get a job that required writing. :)

What inspired The Spunky Monkeys: A Christmas Full of Surprises?
I am not exactly sure, it has been a long time since I wrote the book. The fact that I really liked monkeys is likely why I chose them as characters.

Would you give us a synopsis?
The monkeys are preparing for Christmas. Johnny and their dog friend, Pugsly, will be visiting. There is a lot of preparation to be done before Christmas comes. The monkeys manage to get everything done even though they find themselves in several predicaments. Journey with the monkeys as they encounter surprise after surprise in this exciting Christmas adventure. - description from publisher.

Who will enjoy The Spunky Monkeys: A Christmas Full of Surprises?
The book is about a 3rd to 4rth grade reading level but it has been enjoyed by people who are a lot older.

Do you plan to write more books?
Yes. I have another book in the Spunky Monkeys series that I plan to get published in the near future. I am also working on another book that I hope to publish soon that would probably fall under the science fiction and fantasy categories.

Where can people connect with you online?

Goodreads.
My website.

Do you have any final thoughts?
Thanks for the interview. I want to encourage any aspiring authors not to give up. Sometimes the difficulties of writing a good story can be discouraging. Keep writing and learning more about writing. :)

Monday, April 18, 2016

Azalea on Falcon Heart

 

Azalea, welcome to Homeschool Authors! Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Well, I grew up with a patchy school history: I learned some math from Dad, who's a machinist (this doesn't mean I'm good at math, I'm not), doing some A Beka curriculum or something similar, and a little experience with traditional junior high and high school. I hated those quarters in school--not the teachers--the environment. Then I got my GED. The oldest of five siblings, I have always loved books, and even some of my English classes and workbooks. We had no TV where we grew up in the California hills, and I read to my brothers and sisters a lot. Home-schooling soaked me in various experiences, from hunting squirrels with a bow with my brother, to hiking the wilds of far galaxies and worlds in my books, to learning how to learn and think constructively about problems, school or otherwise, without being spoon-fed.

What caused you to start writing?
One day I was frustrated. I'd put down an excellently written book because of the immorality in it. Looking out the window, I thought, I'd like to see more good, clean adventure for other people like me to read. Not sentimental Amish romance. I was in my teens at the time. My first story, about a boy and girl who are twins in a besieged medieval castle (I think it was besieged--can't remember now) reached about three chapters and died. Then I had an idea for another book. But that's the next question.

What inspired Falcon Heart?
When I was young, I confess I admired the show Xena: Warrior Princess. I didn't even see the wrong things in it until later. What I saw was a woman who stood up for the helpless, who defeated evil, and had a best friend she would die for, and who would die for her. Later I quit watching it when I realized what was really going on, the bad slurs on God and His moral law, the wrong dress, not to mention sub-par acting. But the original impression, the dreams of heroism and adventure it stirred in me, stayed. And I knew, or was convicted, that I had given up on my first story too soon. So I told God that I would keep writing on this story idea until I finished it, or He made it clear He wanted me to do something else. A very helpful Christian author, Jeanette Windle, told me at the Colorado Christian Writers Conference that the bare bones of Falcon Heart was a book in itself, too long for a single book. Thus Falcon Heart was born, with the sequel, Falcon Flight, coming soon in May.

Would you give us a synopsis?
Sure. From the Amazon description:
A band of slavers murder stronghold daughter Kyrin Cieri's mother. Forced to sail for Araby with an exiled warrior from the East and a peasant girl closer than blood, she learns Subak from her husband-in-name to protect her from the raiders of the sands and the secrets of the caliph's court.

A strange dagger pursues her through tiger-haunted dreams.

Will she live until she faces the sword that killed her mother and find justice for her blood? For she must return to her father's side and take up the keys of her stronghold.

To keep her friends from a fate worse than death, Kyrin Cieri, keeper of the keys, takes up justice against hate and a dagger against her master's sword. If she can pay the price the falcon dagger demands . . . and forfeit ever returning to her people.

Discover the legend of Kyrin Cieri, who adventures with her mother's mysterious falcon dagger from Britain to Arabia and back.

Who will enjoy Falcon Heart?
Also from Amazon description:
Falcon Heart, the first book in an epic young adult fantasy series, is a medieval adventure that will please fans of Sherwood Smith's Crown Duel and Stephen Lawhead's King Raven trilogy.

Do you plan to write more books?
Yes, I've got three companion Entries to Falcon Heart written, and I'm working on a fourth, with about twelve total planned. Two stories, Path of the Warrior and Cieri's Daughter, are free for anyone who signs up for my blog-letter.
Both Falcon Heart and Falcon Flight will be free ebooks May 13th - 15th, 2016 in honor of the new release.
If the Lord wills, I want to finish the Entries and Kyrin's world by the end of 2016 and begin my next book, a straight-up sword and sorcery fantasy, the sorcery part belonging to an evil queen, involving her daughter, who runs away and, with a gaggle of friends and enemies, must protect a sword and win a kingdom and a prince's heart. All this despite her fears--not to mention war, intrigue, and assassins. And in the process she finds new life and courage in the words of an old man, a wise counselor who serves the Creator of all.

Where can people connect with you online?
Contact me anytime at any of the places below. All questions and opinions welcome!
Website: www.azaleadabill.com
Email: azaleadabill@gmail.com
Twitter: http://twitter.com/AzaleaDabill
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/azaleadabill
GoodReads:  https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/10067218-azalea-dabill
Wattpad: https://www.wattpad.com/user/azaleadabill
FB: https://www.facebook.com/azalea.dabill

Do you have any final thoughts?
Hmm. We're all writers, here. We all probably have more book ideas than we'll ever keep up with. The thing is, keep honing that skill and that gift our Creator is growing in you. Be faithful to Him, giving Him room and a free hand to work out the details of our writing career (or lack of it), and He will. He will put you in an effective place, as He wishes. It may not look like our vision of success, but if it's His, that's what matters. His "well done," is what I'm searching for at the end of the world. Aren't you?

Monday, April 11, 2016

Kellyn on The Dressmaker's Secret


Kellyn, welcome to Homeschool Authors! Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Hi Sarah! Well, to begin with, I hate Latin. I just do. I'm sorry, all you Latin-lovers out there, but I do! I can't stand it! It drives me nuts. I mean, I know it's the language of science and all things educated (in the Middle Ages, that is), but I can't bear it! IT'S A DEAD LANGUAGE, MAN! GET OVER IT!!!

Second, ALWAYS CHOOSE CHOCOLATE OVER VANILLA! ALWAYS!

Third, commas. They're, wonderful, things. I, don't, know, why, anyone, would, want, less, of, them.

Fourth, I live on a ranch in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains with my parents, little brothers, and assorted animals. I have three older siblings who are already grown up and moved away. :)

Fun fact: I've been an aunt since I was six years old! :D

Everyone’s homeshooling experience is different. What do you think made yours unique?
Well, the amount of donuts around here is ridiculous. We have donuts, and the day just gets better. Besides that, we also sometimes have cocoa puffs. I love cocoa puffs! Like, as much as I hate Latin (see Q1) ... if not more! :)

Besides pastries and cereals, we read a lot of books here. I have a math program and a science book (well, technically I'm doing biology now) and a grammar program (Jensen's) that HATES me ... oh, and Latin, of course. The Latin does everything it can to be fun, but it is, after all, LATIN! (see Q1)


How did being homeschooled prepare you to write?
Funny thing: I learned to write while being homeschooled. My mom thinks her kids' education isn't complete without writing. Go figure. ;)

Seriously, though, being homeschooled didn't prepare me to be an author so much as gave me the rudiments I needed to develop any talent I might have.

What caused you to start writing?
When I was a newborn, a pen and a sheet of paper dropped from heaven into my cradle. Ever since then, I just haven't been able to stop!

What inspired The Dressmaker's Secret?
I saw the summary in the clouds one day and decided to write it.

Well, a number of factors played into it. For instance, I really wanted to write a historical fiction book, and I liked the idea of the Victorian era. And I liked the idea of a little girl who's not afraid to questions things that she thinks are messed-up.

The plot itself has changed until it's unrecognizable! When I first had the idea for the main character, her name was Alicia Bandeau. She was a French young woman who meets an American writer and falls in love with him. That was called "The Sapphire of the Seine," I think. It was a mystery/romance.

After that, I decided to write about Alicia's childhood. I called that "The Lady of the Vineyard." In time, that developed into "The Dressmaker's Secret." You can read more about that on my blog post here .

Would you give us a synopsis?
It comes to the attention of curious eight-year-old Alice Chattoway that her father is seemingly nonexistent. After realizing that his absence is making her mother unhappy, Alice becomes determined to find him and pull her family together. But Miss Chattoway’s answers to her daughter’s questions are vague at best and Alice begins to wonder if she will ever discover her mother’s secret.

Who will enjoy The Dressmaker's Secret?
Elephants, border collies, and dolphins.

What? You didn't mean animals? You meant amongst the humans? Oh, right ...

Middle-grade and young adult readers and lovers of historical fiction.

Do you plan to write more books?
Definitely! The Dressmaker's Secret is the first book in a series, and I'm going to publish the next three books ... and maybe a fifth, too, though I only have a plot bunny for it now. After that (and maybe while I'm still working the series, too) I have dozens of other plot ideas. My brain is always swimming with ideas, and the only way to make the swimming stop is to write the ideas down! :)


Where can people connect with you online?
On my blog where I post often, or on Goodreads . :) You can also email me at kellynroth@gmail.com.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Amanda Tero on Journey to Love


Amanda, welcome to Homeschooled Authors. What have you been up to since the last time you were here?
Well, this is my first time to actually be featured on HA...I'm newer to the publishing journey, starting by publishing short stories last year. :)

Your newest book, Journey to Love, is set during the time of the orphan train. What drew you to that time?
Well, I had an idea for "Marie's story" and as I prayed about it and worked on our house (yes, we built a house last year), the Lord just drew together the story idea and the orphan train. I was introduced to the orphan train by Al and Joann Lacy's Orphan Train trilogy and while I don't necessarily recommend all of their books for various reasons, it definitely gave me a taste for this amazing time in America's history.

What were some of the most helpful resources you found during your research?
I did a lot of online research and contacted some historians directly. I know that the orphan train has been "romanticized" by novels and want to portray as realistic a picture as possible. After I actually wrote the book, I got two books which solidified the information I had already learned: Orphan Train Rider (by Andrea Warren) and The Orphan Trains: Placing Out in America (by Marilyn Irvin Holt). I also did research for Illinois (the setting for JTL) and life in the west.

How does Marie’s spiritual journey reflect your own?
Hmm...that's kind of hard to answer. Marie's journey to love is pretty much a salvation journey, a journey to accepting the love of those around her. Because I was raised in a Christian family, I have been surrounded by love, so never had to "accept it." And also because of that, I didn't have a hard time accepting that God loves me (and, though He is equally holy and just, He is love). So actually, Marie is pretty much in every way a character completely opposite myself.

What was the easiest part of writing Journey to Love?
Pastor Owens' sermons. No, it's not because "preaching come naturally" to me. ;) I actually copied sermon notes from summer 2014 because the message just fit in perfectly with Marie's story.

What was the hardest?
I had a few brick walls as I wrote. One came at chapter four! The other came around chapter ten, when I thought I was almost done (after all, it's "just a novella"). As I was wrapping it up (or so I thought), I realized that the theme was more "Journey to Freedom" or "Journey to Truth" and that kind of puzzled me, because when I started out, it seemed so clear that it was supposed to be "Journey to Love." The very next day, I went to my sister's church and the Sunday school lesson was on 1 John 4. Wow! Talk about God giving me some much-needed confirmation--and substance for more chapters!

What are books by fellow Homeschooled Authors you have enjoyed recently?
I don't know all of the Homeschooled Authors you have listed, but recently, I have enjoyed Faith Blum's The Solid Rock (Yep! I was a beta-reader, as it's not out yet). Haven't been doing quite as much reading lately.

Where can people buy the book?
Journey to Love is available on Amazon.

How can readers keep up with you?
Email: amandaterobooks@gmail.com
Website: http://www.amandatero.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/amandaterobooks
Instagram: amandateroauthor
Pinterest: truthpicsart
Blog: www.withajoyfulnoise.blogspot.com
Goodreads: AmandaTero
I also have a street team for Facebook and non-Facebook users. :)

Monday, March 28, 2016

Tialla Rising on Where Shadows Lie


What have you been up to since the last time you were here?
Oh boy, so much has happened since I was last interviewed for my book, “Holding the Future Hostage”!  I took about six months off from writing, then started on the first draft of my second book, “Where Shadows Lie.”  Since then, I spent two years completing the book, published it in June of 2015, and have been taking a bit of a break from writing since then, but I plan to start up again soon!

What great Homeschooled Authored books have you read recently?
A few months ago, I read “Be Thou My Vision” by Faith Blum, which was pretty good, and I would recommend it as a Family Read-Aloud for Christians!

What inspired Where Shadows Lie?
WSL follows the story of Shawn, one of my characters from my first book.  WSL takes place after my first book, so it is basically just a continuation of his story and the other main characters from “Holding the Future Hostage.”  Shawn was always my favorite character in my first book from the moment I first wrote him in, so I couldn’t just walk away without continuing his story.

What was the hardest part of writing this book?
Editing and revisions.  Seriously, so many headaches and late nights trying to put it all together and fix plot holes.

What was the easiest?
I’m pretty sure writing the outline was the easiest, unless I can count the formatting/publication process, which would be the easiest by far.

Where can people buy a copy?
It’s available here on Amazon and here on Barnes and Noble (available on both Kindle and Nook as well), or they could always just contact me for a copy via email (therubyvial@commspeed.net) or Facebook.

Where can they keep up with you and your writing?
Facebook is always a good option, as well as my monthly newsletter, my blog, my website, and if they are the social type, Instagram and Snapchat (@tiallarising).

Do you have any final thoughts?
Thank you so much for having me on the site, Sarah!  I wish everyone the best in their writing adventures!