The tour will run from July 9th to August 7th, 2012 – Check here for details For the giveaway, zip to the end of the post.
I’m dying, I thought. This was unexpected and not at all how I envisioned my death. I was supposed to die gardening in a flowerbed as a hundred-year-old woman, not as a seventeen-year-old trapped in a lake beneath inches of ice.
Llona Reese is used to living on the run. After a Vyken killed her parents, she knew they would eventually come for her too. She can’t take any chances. But when she starts to make friends for the first time in her life, she gets careless and lets her guard down. Big mistake. As an Aura, Llona can manipulate light and harness its energy. But if she wants to survive, Llona will have to defy the Auran Council and learn to use her power as a weapon against the Vyken whose sole desire is to take her light. Now she’s caught in something bigger than she can understand, with a power she can’t wield, and no one she can trust, except, just maybe, a mysterious stranger.
The Guest Post
A warm shower that doesn’t involve flushing the toilet 13 times.
Pete Loeffler to sing me to sleep every night.
A 1967 black Chevy Impala.
To be like Jack and Annie in the Magic Treehouse series so I can open any book and be magically transported to the world within. I call dibs on Harry Potter.
A washing machine that washes, dries, folds, puts away my laundry, and picks out my outfits.
One stupid day where my children can find their shoes. And not fight.
The chance to write a TV script for Supernatural or similar show.
A frosted brownie and a side of vanilla ice cream with zero calories. (But if this can’t be done, I’ll still eat it. Like a million times. In one sitting. Screw the spoon, give me a shovel.)
What would you give a body part for?
Character Interview with ‘Christian’
1)What did you think about getting your first ward at such a young age? I was stoked. It was a great honor, and I didn’t want to let anyone down, especially my father.
No. The less he knows the better. I wouldn’t ever want to burden anyone with the scary truth of our world. Monsters exist only in nightmares, right?
4)What were your initial thoughts when you first met Llona? And be honest.
(Laughs) Of course I thought she was beautiful, but that was all. I had a job to do and wasn’t going to let any feelings for her get in the way.
5)But they did. Isn’t that right?
(nods) Because I had to keep my identity a secret, I had to find other ways to get inside Llona’s small circle of friends. This gave me a different perspective that most Guardian’s don’t get to see. I saw Llona, the real Llona. Her fears, her dreams, her strength and weaknesses. All of these made me fall in love with her.
6)What is one of your most favorite memories of you and Llona?
There are so many, but the one that stands out the most is our first real kiss. That’s when I knew I’d give up everything for Llona.
7)What are your goals for the future?
Actually, don’t tell my father, but I’m thinking of going to college. Maybe NYU so I can be closer to Llona. As for being a Guardian, I’ll try to do both. We’ll see.
Author Interview With Rachel McClellan
The Personal Questions
- What’s your idea of total happiness?
There have been many times in my life when I’ve felt what I consider to be total happiness. They are often small and simple moments, but full of gratitude and “completeness”.
One of these moments for me was when my family had just finished building our first home. I was riding on the back of a four-wheeler behind my husband, my arms around him tight, while we drug some MacGyver-like contraption my husband had built behind us to level the dirt in our back yard. Near the house my four children were playing quietly together, not a single one threatening to kill the other. And the sun was setting. I was happy.
- Which trait do you most deplore about yourself?
It’s a trait I developed after my fourth child. It’s what I call my “devil voice”. I used to have a sweet, patient voice. It didn’t matter that my kids just broke my five year anniversary plate or deliberately put red crayons into my white load of laundry. I was calm, cool, collected. But then I had my fourth and final child. I’d like to think it wasn’t just him that brought the demon out, but regardless, when I get upset, my voice drops several octaves and scares even me. One of these days I’m afraid I’m going to go all Exorcist and my head is going to spin.
- What do you consider to be the most overrated virtue?
Honesty, and by that I mean raw honesty. If you were to tell the harsh truth the whole time, you’d be in a whole mess of trouble.
Teacher: “Why didn’t you hand in your assignment?”
Me: “Because I hate this class.”
Officer: “Why were you speeding?”
Me: “I didn’t think there were any cops on this road.”
- What’s your worse vice?
I often speed, and when I do I sing the Judas Preist song, “Breaking the Law.” I’m such a bad A.
- What do you most value in your friends?
I love a friend who’s truly happy for me when something good happens in my life. Friends like that are hard to find. And in return, I’m happy for my friends, no matter how better looking, how much more successful, or how rich they may be.
- Do you have a mantra or motto?
Stand for something or you’ll fall for everything.
- Which living, and which dead person, do you most admire and why?
Living? I have some very close friends and sisters I really admire. They’ve had these crazy hard lives, but somehow they still manage to be strong and positive. I hope I can be like them when the crap hits the fan in my life.
Dead? If you want me to get all spiritual on you, of course I’d say Jesus Christ, because, well, he pretty much led the perfect life and is the perfect example. But if you want a more literary person, I’d say C.S. Lewis. He really seemed to understand man and his role in life.
- What is your favourite (song) and why?
What’s with the tough questions? Sheesh. ☺ Just one? I’d have to say I really love the song Highland’s Apparition by Chevelle.
- What is your favourite cuisine?
This is hardly a cuisine, but it should be. I love homemade ranch dressing and eat it with just about everything. But if you want to get all technical, I’d choose Italian for its yummy sauces.
- Have your personal experiences (or situations) influenced you, creatively? Give us an example.
For sure. I’ve traveled a lot and seeing other places has helped me discover new landscapes, cultures, other points of views, etc. I’ve had the honor of traveling through much of the United States, Mexico, Canada, Italy, Germany, Austria and Ireland.
- What are you reading now?
I just finished a book called Angelfall by Susan Ee. I really liked this book. It was sort of an angels meet Hunger Games sort of book.
- What other interests do you have?
Besides reading and writing, I love snowboarding, all kinds of sports including football, soccer, volleyball and racquetball. I’m a sucker for an adventure, and I’m always in search of one.
- What was the last movie you went to see?
I just took my kids to see the new Spiderman movie. Ehh…not sure if I liked it. I think the originals were better.
- Do you have a favourite genre?
Paranormal and urban fantasy mingled with horror. Is that a genre?
The Writer Specific Questions.
- What got you into writing?
When I discovered that with a pen and paper I could create new worlds.
- What is your new book about and what inspired you to write it?
My book FRACTURED LIGHT is about a teenage girl named Llona Reese who is used to living on the run. After the Vykens killed her parents, she knew they would eventually come for her too. But she never felt ready to face them until now. Defying the Auran Council and everything she s been taught, Llona must learn to use her power over light as a weapon if she wants to survive.
The idea came to me when I was completing a writing exercise out of a book on writing (yeah, I’m nerdy like that.). I wrote of a girl at her father’s funeral. She had such blond, almost white, hair that she looked like a ghost in the cemetery, but as I wrote about her, I felt her strength and I just knew I had to keep telling her story. There was so much she wanted to tell the world.
- What are the challenges to being a writer? And what are the benefits? Have things changed lately?
The biggest challenge for me is trying to balance time between my children and my love for writing. It took me a while to find this balance, but I think I’ve got it down now. It’s pretty much stay up late and get up early to write.
The benefits of being a writer are huge. I’m doing something I enjoy, creating whole other worlds with characters I love. And even better, I see my children doing the same thing. Stories exist in every corner of my home. I love it!
- What advice can you offer to struggling writers?
Learn and study the craft. I mean really do it. And never think your work is perfect, because it’s not. Take advice from others, in fact, seek it out.
- Where do you see book-publishing in the future?
I think more books will be published electronically, making room for more writers to self publish, which can be both good and bad. I’ve read some amazing books by self published authors, but I’ve read some really bad ones too.
I also think the need for big publishers and agents will stay the same, but they will have to adapt. I’ve already seen several do this by offering higher royalties an author’s eBooks.
- Are you an indie or traditional author?
- Did you publish the first book you wrote?
Nope. I wrote two books before Fractured Light called The Devil’s Fool and The Devil’s Angel. I love these books, but they need some major editing love. One day I’ll go back to them. I don’t regret writing them, though. They taught me a lot about the writing process.
- Why do you write in that genre?
I love writing urban fantasy/paranormal because it opens doors to the impossible. And I love writing for teens because it’s when everything is new and exciting: first love, first kiss, first broken heart. There’s so many heightened emotions that there’s pretty much instant conflict from page one.
- What is your biggest problem with the writing process? How do you tackle it?
I struggle with editing. It seems to take forever! It doesn’t help that I’m an extremely impatient person. Writing, more than even my children, has taught me patience. Some anyway.
To combat this weakness, I do my editing by chapters that way it doesn’t seem so overwhelming. I try to do a chapter every two days, which gives me time to write on my current project. I’m rarely just editing.
- Do you feel writing is something you need to do or want to do?
I want to do it all of the time, but I won’t die if I can’t. Know why? Because even if I was thrown in a jail cell for the rest of my life (I won’t be; I’ve covered my tracks carefully.) I’d still be writing, just in my head.
- Whose writing inspires you most and why?
There are several, but I’ll choose three: C.S. Lewis whose works helped me become a better person, James Dashner and Suzanne Collins for teaching me about pacing and tension, and (I know I said three, but I’ve got to choose one more) Markus Zusak for showing me how words can come alive.
Thank you for being with us today, Christian. We hope the best for you and Llona.
Mini-Bio of Rachel McClellan
Where you can find Rachel
Thanks to Dark Mind Tours, Rachel and of course ‘Christine’ for joining us today 🙂
PS: There will also be a big giveaway on Dark Mind Tours Blog, throughout the whole tour.
The items up for grabs are a surprise, so you’ll have to follow the tour to find out 😛
This is international as well, and you’re all welcome to join!