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Meet the Author with Bianca Rowena

Bianca Rowena

Hello Lovelies,

I would like to introduce you to the lovely Bianca Rowena, who was born in Romania, Transylvania and has enjoyed writing from a young age. She now lives in Canada, which is the setting and inspiration for her novels. She lives with her daughter and husband in Southern Alberta.

Let’s get to know her a little bit better! Welcome to An Angell’s Life of Bookish goodness, Bianca! What is the current book you are promoting? 

The Gift Stone, Book One of The Gifted Series.
It is a Young Adult Sci-Fi / Fantasy novel following Rita, a lowly Temple Girl and Takano Rynn, the feared ruler of the Galaxies, who form a bond that will change both of their destinies forever.

Ooh, I love sci-fi! Who is your favorite character in your book and why?

Beeps. She’s a social robot that doesn’t always get social cues, so it allowed me a fun way to have comic relief in the story when things got too intense. Also, Beeps becomes a true friend to Rita, something she’s never had before because she’s never opened herself up to it. I also would love to have a little Beeps BFF that followed me everywhere!

I have a son on the autism spectrum and can totally imagine the unintentionally hilarious moments that not always getting social cues can inspire. What inspired this story?  

This story was actually written originally as a Star Wars Fan Fiction to appease the fans of The The Force Awakens who wanted a romance between Rey and Kylo Ren. I got so many encouraging comments on my Fan Fiction that I decided to rewrite it as its own story and change the characters! The first half of the book is actually taken from a different story I wrote called “Temple Girl” and then merged into my Fan Fiction story. So there are elements of both in this final version.

Ah, that explains the robot. When I read the description I thought “It sounds like if C3PO and K2SO had a baby! What is your next project? 

Book Two of The Gifted Series! It’s entitled Takano Rynn and is from Takano’s point of view rather than Rita’s. It’s already written and in the editing stages. I’m so excited about it. I’m hoping to have it out before Christmas, as books make great Christmas gifts 😀

​​Books make great ANYTIME gifts, lol. In my house we give them for every holiday and sometimes make up holidays just so we can give books 😉 How do you write your books? 

Fast and furious. Notepads stuck under my pillow at night and near the shower and in my purse. Sticky notes everywhere. A Sticky note dispenser in the car. I write on napkins, on my hand, and any surface I can find. I know better than to let good dialogue or story description slip through my fingers. The ideas come at the most unexpected times. I always have a pen with me everywhere I go. And sometimes I do actually sit down and write at my desk or at the kitchen table. I also attend a bi-weekly writer’s group where I get an hour of uninterrupted writing time 

Writing groups are great. I totally credit mine for the completion of Elements of a Broken Mind and Hell School: Fresh Meat. I really needed their support for my first book, and their encouragement as I relived the trauma for Hell School. If you could have your book made into a movie, who would you want to direct it?

Definitely J. J. Abrams 😉

An EXCELLENT call. He’s the best for Sci-fi, right? What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer?

You have to teach yourself to write in non-ideal places and in imperfect writing conditions, or else you’ll never get your writing done.

So true, especially with the busyness of kids and family, and life. If you could never write again, what would you do?

Help on Independent Movie sets.

A true storyteller at heart. Love it. Me too! Tell us something unique about you:

I was born in Transylvania, Romania.

And last, but not least, what is your favorite word?


It is a fun word to say, isn’t it? Thank you so much for joining us today, Bianca, I hope we get to see you again soon, maybe for the release of your next book? If you are as intrigued with Bianca and her stories as I am, you can learn more on her website If you would like to follow her writing adventures, join her on Facebook

Until next time, 

Keep Reading!

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Meet the Author with Konn Lavery

Meet the Author with Konn Lavery

Hello Lovelies, 

I have an interesting new author to introduce you to today. Konn Lavery is a Canadian horror and dark fantasy writer who is known for his Mental Damnation series. The second book, Dream, reached the Edmonton Journal’s top five selling fictional books list. He started writing fantasy stories at a very young age while being home schooled. It wasn’t until graduating college that he began professionally pursuing his work with his first release, Reality. Since then he has continued to write works of fiction ranging from fantasy to horror.

His literary work is done in the long hours of the night. By day, Konn runs his own graphic design and website development business under the title Reveal Design. These skills have been transcribed into the formatting and artwork found within his publications supporting his fascination of transmedia storytelling.

Let’s get to know him a little bit better. Hello Konn, welcome to An Angell’s Life of Bookish Goodness! What is the current book you are promoting? 

The current book I am promoting is my new release, Dream: Part 2 of Mental Damnation. This is the second edition of the novel and has been released on September 13th. For those that are not familiar with the Mental Damnation series, the books went through a massive overhaul back in late 2016. The first editions of the books came out in 2012 and 2014. Since then I have learned a lot of do’s and don’ts with narration clichés and polished the series with second editions.

Dream is the second installment of the Mental Damnation series which follows the protagonist Krista who is diagnosed with the brain disease, Mental Damnation, where she sees vision of hell during her dreams. The series is a lot like Lord of the Rings meets Alice in Wonder Land. It has fantasy elements of paladins, spells and mystical races mixed in with the weirdness of a dreamscape realm.

Who is your favorite character in your book and why?

​​Personally my favourite character is Malpherities. He is a lot like the Cheshire cat in Alice in Wonderland, expect he is creepier and vague. He is a ghoul who follows the protagonist, Krista, both in the real world and the dream world known as Dreadweave Pass. He says he is here to help her deal with her ‘gift’ of realm crossing and guides her throughout the day to avoid trouble and at night when she is in hell.

Wow. Malpherities sounds like quite the character. What inspired this book?

The inspiration has mutated drastically over the ten years since its conception. The original manuscript of Mental Damnation was written back in high school in 2007. Since then the book has evolved and altered from its original conception. The series inspiration has rooted from my nerdism with the Warcraft franchise and the Lord of the Rings. Since then it has been influenced from my heavy research into philosophy and spirituality. As seen in the subtle undertones of Dream and the third, unreleased novel.

What is your next project?

I have several on the go 🙂 The next immediate release will be the third installment of the Mental Damnation series which is due for 2018. I also have a thriller novel and horror anthology in the works which are aimed to be out in 2018-2019. These two novels are quite different from the Mental Damnation series and share more similarities to my stand-alone novel, Seed Me.

The life of an author, always so many pokers in the fire! If you could never write again, what would you do?

By day I am a contract graphic designer and web developer. Running my own business is a handful on its own. Yet I never sleep, which is where I have time for writing. If I were to give up writing entirely I probably would be more invested in my music, which is a hobby of mine. I’ve been a huge fan of industrial music all of my life and have always been intrigued with the concept of forming a band within this genre and touring. With my life as it is, I am far more invested in telling stories and writing than I am recording music and playing shows.

Thanks so much for joining us! Want to learn more about Konn and keep up with his exciting writing adventures? Follow him:

Until next time, 

Keep Reading!

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Meet the author With Edward Willett

Meet the author With Edward Willett

Hello Lovelies, 

I am so excited to introduce you to a multi-genre author who seems to hit all my reading sweet spots. Edward Willett is the award-winning author of more than 60 books of fantasy, science fiction, and non-fiction for all ages and for a variety of publishers. His latest novel, The Cityborn, is his eighth published by DAW Books in New York; previous DAW releases include Marseguro, which won the Aurora Award for best Canadian science fiction or fantasy novel in 2009, and the Masks of Aygrima fantasy trilogy, written as E.C. Blake. Ed has also written several YA novels for smaller publishers, including the five-book modern-day Arthurian fantasy Shards of Excalibur. Born in New Mexico, Ed moved to Weyburn, Saskatchewan, from Texas as a child, but returned to the States for a degree in journalism from Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas. He began his career as a newspaper reporter and editor in Weyburn before moving to Regina, Saskatchewan, as communications officer for the Saskatchewan Science Centre. He’s now been a full-time freelance writer for 24 years. He and his wife, Margaret Anne Hodges, P.Eng., live in Regina with their teenaged daughter, Alice, and black Siberian cat, Shadowpaw.  

Hello, Edward! Welcome to An Angell’s Life of Bookish Goodness. What is the current book you are promoting?

The Cityborn is my eighth novel for DAW Books in New York. It’s a stand-alone science fiction novel set in The Heartland, a mountain-ringed plain dominated by a strange towering City, where the bulk of the populations lives. The City has 13 tiers, and the tier you live on reflects your place in society, from the ruling Officers in the top three tiers to the crime- and poverty-ridden slums of the bottom Tiers. The City straddles a great Canyon, which over the centuries has been filled by the garbage the City discards, and the lowest of the low lived in that garbage heap, known as the Middens, scavenging to survive and always trying to avoid the murderous gangs who rule it.The Cityborn is the tale of two young characters, Alania, who grew up the pampered ward of an officer on Twelfty Tier, and Danyl, who was raised by an old man in the Middens. When Alania, fleeing an unprecedented ambush on Twelfth Tier, is dumped into the Middens, the two of them find themselves pursued by City forces for reasons they can’t understand, but must discover if they are to survive. What they find out over the course of the story, and their actions, determine not only their fates but the fates of everyone who lives in the City and The Heartland.

Wow. Sounds exciting! What inspired this book?

For me, stories can start from any number of seeds: an idea for a character, something I’ve read, a place I’ve visited, or just an image. The Cityborn came from two sources. Once, I’ve always loved books set in exotic cities. (Think Ankh-Morpork in the Terry Pratchett books, which is practically a character itself.) Two, I read something about people scavenging to survive in the massive rubbish heaps outside overpopulated cities in developing countries. Take those two notions, toss them around in my SF-and-fantasy-steeped brain, and voila! The City of my story. After that, my process for developing a story is always to ask myself questions. Who would live in the City? What would life be like in the Middens? Characters developed, and then all I had to do was put them together and figure out who they were and why everyone wants to capture or kill them. Hopefully readers will enjoy my answers to those questions!

It definitely sounds like an entertaining adventure. What is your next project?

I’ve sold the first two books in a new fantasy series called Wordshapers to DAW, so that’s my main fiction focus at the moment. The first book is called Worldshaper, and it’s currently with my editor at DAW (the wonderful, Hugo Award-winning Sheila Gilbert). No release date yet, but I would expect it will be next summer. It’s a modern-day fantasy that begins when an ordinary woman in an ordinary city suddenly discovers she has the power to shape the world around her…and a mysterious individual arrives to tell her why, and why she has to flee with him if she hopes to survive.  

Ooh, fun! What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer?

The only way you get better is by writing more. There are no shortcuts. Both the storytelling imagination and the ability to turn imagination into words are like muscles that are developed by exercise. Coming up with ideas for stories helps you come up with more ideas for stories. Writing stories helps you write more stories. When you’re just starting out, you’ll write lots of bad stories using clumsy words. But over time, as your storytelling muscles develop, you’ll get better. Also, read, especially in the genre in which you want to write. You can’t write science fiction without reading science fiction, you can’t write mysteries without reading mysteries, you can’t write romance without reading romance. Genre readers are steeped in the genres they love, and your stories have to be at least as good as the other books they’ve read if you’re going to find readers yourselves. If, for some readers, your books are better than the other books they’ve read…you’re on your way.  

Great advice. If you could never write again, what would you do?

Act. I’ve been in a lot of plays, musicals, and operas over the years here in Saskatchewan. Most have been community theatre productions, but I have done some professional work (I’m a member of Canadian Actors’ Equity.) If I hadn’t gone into writing, I might have found myself trying to make a living as an actor. Of course, there’s an old joke about acting: “What’s the difference between an actor and a pizza? A pizza can feed a family of four.”Going further back, I made the decision in high school to focus on writing—but at the time, I also loved science and math. I could very well have chosen to go into something like engineering or chemistry instead. I didn’t, but I did the next best thing: I married an engineer. Which, I might add, is a great career move for a freelance writer.

Well played, sir. Well played. I love that you would stick to storytelling one way or another. Want to learn more about Edward Willet and all the adventures he is on? You can follow him on Facebook and twitter @Ewillett, or visit his website

Want to learn more about his books? He’s the author of The Cityborn, science fiction from DAW Book,The Shards of Excalibur YA fantasy series from Coteau BooksThe Masks of Aygrima fantasy trilogy for DAW Books (as E.C. Blake), Flames of Nevyana, YA fantasy from Rebelight Publishing

Until next time, 

Keep Reading!

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Meet the author with Katherine Dell

Meet the author with Katherine Dell

Hello Lovelies,

​​Remember the other day I shared this really cool new book, Harmless? Well, I was so intrigued that I tracked down the author and asked her for an interview. Katherine Dell is a young adult fiction author fascinated by the supernatural and the stories that surround them. She began her writing endeavours in 2011 when she wanted to reinvent herself from her previous career as an event planner. When she’s not writing, she can be found in cold hockey arenas sipping coffee, working on her tan at little league games, or trying to keep her dog out of her many gardens. She lives with her husband, two boys, and fur babies, in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.Let’s get down to the interview!

Hello, Katherine, welcome to An Angell’s Life of Bookish Goodness. How are you?

I’m restless, yet optimistic. The official start to the promotions of my new book starts in just a few weeks and I’m excited to see the results!

On a cold day: coffee, tea, cocoa or something a bit stronger, and why?

Coffee all the way! I love coffee so much I wish I could hook it via IV to my veins. Alas, I can’t handle very much caffeine. So, I’m usually found drinking things with a little less kick.

I have to balance my coffee intake too. What is the current book you are promoting?

My current book I’m promoting is my YA, Paranormal, Thriller, called HARMLESS. Here’s a short blurb to get you hooked.
Be careful what you wish for.
After moving from Vancouver to isolated Hazelton, BC, high school senior Rachel Barnes hopes she’ll finally find closure and a sense of direction after tragedy has torn her family apart. When she and her friends discover the old spirit box her grandmother gave her, they see it as a chance to wish their troubles away. But the Great Spirits—deer, crow, bear, and the mythical wendigo—give away nothing for free. 
So instead of worrying about fitting in and finding a boyfriend, Rachel finds herself in a race to control the malevolent spirit who’s taken up residence in Mason Allen, who she fears and craves in equal measure. What began as a harmless game forces Rachel to confront her past—and offers her a future she never imagined.

It sounds SO GOOD! If you could have your book made into a movie, who would you want to direct it?

​​M. Night Shyamalan, hands down. Maybe he could even do a cameo in it. I’ve seen him in one or two of his movies. He’s known for his movies with supernatural plots and twists at the end. His movie, Lady in the Water is one of my favorites.

If your book were made into a movie, who would you cast?

Personally, I think it would make a better TV series than a movie, but I wouldn’t be one to argue if someone wanted to make it into one! The three main characters in the book are Rachel, Mason, and Nate. For Rachel, I would cast Chloe Grace Moretz. She’s down-to-earth, pretty, but can portray a character with a darker side. For Mason, I would choose Alexander Nifong. Mostly on his looks alone; those eyes … whew. And Nate, I would choose twenty-one-year-old, Rick Mora. Except, you’d need a time machine, or a cloning machine. Rick Mora, although stunning, is far too old to play the role of Nate.

I love Rick Mora. His Native Man modeling series is so beautiful. What is your next project?

The sequel to Harmless of course! Harmless is the first book in a proposed three book series. The next books in the series will be Mavens, and then Tempest. I’m hoping to have the next one out in the spring /summer of 2018.I’m also working on a YA, Post-Apocalyptic book. I can’t really say much about it. We’ll see where it goes.

Thanks so much for joining us, Katherine!

Thanks for interviewing me today, Heidi. I wish you good reading and good writing.
Katherine was so delighted with my Teaser Tuesday post that she has offered to do a cool Rafflecopter for us! Click the link and enter for a chance to win!
Want to follow Katherine’s writing adventures? Social Media Links:

Facebook Page


Amazon Author Page



Until next time, 

Keep Reading!

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Meet the Author with Claire Plaisted

Meet the Author with Claire Plaisted

Hello Lovelies!
Remember that awesome set of character spotlights from Enchantments last week? Well this week, let’s meet the author behind that urban fantasy fun!
Claire Plaisted lives in Rotorua, New Zealand with her family. Rotorua is one of the main tourist stops for a cultural Maori experience with lots of things to do, be it walking, cycling, museums, spa days etc.
Claire is an Multi Genre Indie Author, with side lines in genealogy where she researches and formats family history books for clients. Claire also developed a business to help Indie Authors self-publish, assisting over thirty clients so far
Claire has published twenty-six books.  Two are short stories, six are part of a series which is called ‘Garrett Investigation Bureau.’  She has one adult fantasy, one children’s mythical story.  Along with six contemporary romance novellas under her pen name ‘Beth Bayley.’ Claire has a children’s book series called Girlie Adventures. The first three are now available. ‘Girlie and the War of the Wasps,’ ‘Girlie and the Quest for Pedi’s Family and ‘Girlie’s Circus Adventure.  They are adventure story for children from four years upwards. Each one sold gives 40% to a charity.  The first book is, in essence about healthy eating and the book will help raise funds for ‘Chasing a Cure for Type 1 Diabetes.’
Enjoy your lives and read a book.

​​ Hello, Claire! Welcome to An Angell’s Life! How are you?

Thank you for the opportunity for this interview. The sun is shining and I’m in a good place at present, though rather busy with my work and several clients I am working with.

What is the current book you are promoting?

I am starting to promote ‘Enchantments – The Beginning’ it is a short story introducing readers to the characters in a new series.  The book is YA Fantasy and tells the story of eight young adults who are trained to fight against the Shadow Master and his Dark Realm.  If they fail the human world will die and the Shadow Master will rise and rule supreme.

Ha, ha, I was RIGHT! The Shadow Master is just a perfectly villainous name! If you could have your book made into a movie, who would you want to direct it?

I would love to have Sir Peter Jackson to direct my fantasy movie along with Weta Workshop to do all the fantasy details. It would be amazing.

Jackson does do fantasy so very well! What is your next project?

I have several projects on the go right now.  I have an Anthology – Ghostly Writes Anthology 2017 to publish at ‘All Hallows Eve’ This involves about 20 – 30 authors with short stories. There may be two books this year.  This Anthology is free to contribute to and the ebook will be free as well.  On to my own writing.  I have two books to publish by December.  Book six of Garrett Investigation Bureau called Ancient Relics and book four of my childrens series which raises money for charities.  This one is called Girlie and the Ninja Ladybugs.  It is about bullying, changing and team work.  All the books are set in a Cottage Garden with insects and small animals from around the world.

Whew, how busy! Best of luck with all of that. I know the pressure of a fast-paced publishing model! But it is so fun. What is one place you would like to visit and why?

Canada.  I would then tell my dad all about it.  It is a place he wanted to see and never did and now he’s too old to travel. We also have family there and I have a few friends I’d love to meet.

Canada is beautiful, especially in the fall. What one person from history would you like to meet and why?

My grandfather.  He died four months before my birth. He looked like a loving and charming man who was ruled by his wife.  Granddad was a Minister and spoke at least four languages including: Russian, Welsh, Latin and Hebrew.  He also became a Minister in North Dakota in the 1930’s and at that time the Native Indians weren’t allowed to do baptisms, marriage or funerals.  Grandfather was a great friend with the local chief ‘Yellow Horse’ – I think his name was, and had the honor of taking his funeral prior to returning to England with his young family.

Wow, you come from a family of travelers. How do you write your books?

I suppose many would say ‘by the seat of her pants’.  I literally fell into writing by accident when researching a family history book for a client.  At that time, I opened a word document and a novel was born (still not published) It was good to read (apparently) though my writing was all over the place with third and first person etc.  It has since been a huge learning curve.  Anyway, the how I write is when the muse insists. I go with the flow. I never know what I will write or where the story is taking me.  My main issue is the muses keep disappearing for months on end so I have over sixty draft manuscripts on my computer. 
When I need information to confirm a time, a place, a description, an historical fact etc then I will go and research via google, historical websites I am a member of, ask friends or those I know who are interested in a topic I am covering.  I have started to acknowledge the websites (learning curve) and I always put in names of those who have helped if they have agreed.
This is how I write and it still blows me away that I have published twenty-six times.  The older ones are now going under re-work and editing to correct where I’ve improved my writing. 

What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer?

It is never ending and you always miss something.  It doesn’t matter if you are a Trad published or Indie (Classic) published author.  There will also always be someone who sees issues, these are mainly to do with the variety of English Language used today.

What is your favorite word?


Such a great word! Lol, well thank you for joining us today Claire! Want to learn more about all the awesome bookish goodness Claire is rocking? Visit her website. Want to keep up with all the bookish fun Claire shares? Follow her on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, instagram, or tumblr. Read samples of her writing at Wattpad or grab her books on Amazon.
Until next time, 
Keep Reading!

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Meet the author with Katrina Shawver

Meet the Author Katrina Shawver

Hello Lovelies, 

I am off to watch the solar eclipse, but before I go, I wanted to share this wonderful author with you.

​​Katrina Shawver wrote hundreds of newspaper columns over eleven years for The Arizona Republic, holds a B.A. from the University of Arizona in English/Political Science and has excelled at the School of Trial and Error. In addition to variety of previous careers in software support, the paralegal profession, tax preparation, and answering phones for a forensic psychiatrist, she has presented at the community college level on Poland Under Hitler and Stalin. She lives in Phoenix, Arizona with her husband and still wishes sweet potato fries counted as a vegetable. Don’t we all?

Welcome to An Angell’s Life, Katrina! What is the current book you are promoting?           

My debut nonfiction biography Henry: A Polish Swimmer’s True Story of Friendship from Auschwitz to America is the true story of a Polish swimmer who survived three years in Auschwitz and Buchenwald, and then lived the American dream. The book has been thoroughly researched and includes more than 75 original photos and documents not seen elsewhere. The official release date is November 1, 2017 and it is available now worldwide for preorder.

What inspired this book?           

When I met Henry Zguda in November 2002 I wrote for the Arizona Republic, the daily newspaper in Phoenix, Arizona which I’ve called home for more than forty years. The only reason our paths even crossed was a random phone call for a possible lead on a new column. From the beginning, he possessed an exceptional memory, a surprising cache of original documents and photos, and a knack for meeting the right people at the right time. I still can’t explain why, after a single 600-word column, I impulsively and naively called him and suggested we collaborate on his story. I knew nothing of Poland and had never written a book before. But we “clicked”, he trusted me, and he had no one else to leave his story and documents to.           

One of the powerful messages contained in this book is a reminder that no single class of people was safe from Hitler’s reach or imprisonment, and no country suffered more under Hitler and Stalin than Poland. Especially in today’s world, it’s a dangerous thing to hate any group of people simply for who they are or the label society places on them.          

For many reasons, his story touched me, has stayed with me, and for whatever reason fate led me to him, I believe it was entrusted to me for a reason. I did not seek this story, the story chose me unexpectedly, providentially, and I believe, as the right person to carry it forward. The entire path to completion has been filled with the right doors opening at the right time to to help propel the story forward, I’m know I’m following a higher power in finishing this book.

Wow, and there couldn’t be a better time for it, for sure, with everything happening here and now. What inspires your writing?

I have always been drawn to nonfiction since I was a young girl, especially those stories that combine biographies and history. After writing for the newspaper, I respect solid journalism. People fascinate me, and for me, are far more intriguing than characters I might invent. Just look at today’s news. From the newspaper I became passionate about the power of the written word, not only to transport us to imaginary worlds, but to influence opinion, provoke discussion and inform the community about interesting people and organizations who deserve credit. I like books that make me think. As to history, I found a quote by A Whitney Brown that I included in the front of my book: “The past actually happened, but history is only what someone wrote down.” If my writing influences how we think about history, that’s the power of the written word.

Such a good point. We need to preserve as many stories as possible, not just history. Otherwise, all we will learn about is the people who “won” which isn’t always the best story. Who is your favorite author?  

While I follow certain authors, I’m drawn more to individual works. Books that come to mind include Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd. I also like to try different genres. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children was fun. Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale and George Orwell’s 1984 are in my growing TBR stack. I also keep both volumes of This I Believe, Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women in a prominent place on my bookshelf. It’s an incredible challenge to write out your personal beliefs in 300 words or less, and everyone has a different angle. We can learn so much if we first stop and listen to each other’s wisdom.

Yes! We should always be forever students! What is your next project?           

Currently my full energy is on launching Henry to as many readers as possible. I would love to write a similar story of someone unknown but who is worthy of being remembered. I do have someone in mind who I met a year ago, but until I reach out again, and she would agree, I don’t know if that will happen.

What is one place you would like to visit and why?           

I keep adding places to my bucket list. I traveled Poland and Germany in 2013 to research this story, retrace Henry’s footsteps, and visit Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are many other beautiful places in Poland I would love to experience. For my husband it’s a tie between Machu Pichu in Peru and the pyramids in Egypt. This past spring I visited Ethiopia on a sponsor tour with Compassion International, a fabulous organization through which I sponsor two young women. Meeting them was a chance in a lifetime. So now my dreams are even bigger. I want to say I’ve visited all seven continents in my lifetime. I have four more to go. My husband has assured me he has no interest in Antartica.

Ha, ha, a wandering spirit, much like myself! Though, I might be with your husband. The penguins would be cool to see, though! 

Want to see some of the research Katrina did for Henry? Check out her guest post An Author’s Adventure: Visiting Poland and Germany to Retrace Henry’s story

Want to learn more about Katrina and her work? check out her website
Want to follow her adventures? Follow her on Facebook, twitter @KatrinaShawver, or Linkedin

Interested in Learning more about Henry?

Until next time, 
Keep Reading!

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Meet the Author Monday with Andrew Mackay

Author interview Andrew Mackey

Hello Lovelies,

I met a very interesting author recently (He was kind enough to offer his “In Their Shoes” trilogy up in my Birthday Bash giveaway back in May) and as I have gotten to know him a bit better, just knew I had to introduce you!
Some authors are afraid to cross the line. International Best-selling author Andrew Mackay makes it his starting point.

A novelist, screenwriter and former teacher, Mackay is the creator of the best-selling, groundbreaking satire series ‘In Their Shoes’ – the hilarious and outrageous journey of fictional newbie journalist Joy Attwood, who follows a different profession in each volume.

Self-proclaimed “Antisocial Justice Warrior” Mackay is the founder of Chrome Valley Books – “The Home of Dangerous Fiction”. Never knowingly inoffensive, his works often contain a ruthless and shocking commentary on society, delving into the darker and disturbing machinations of modern life, but always with a sense of humanity and wit.

His influences include John Cleese, Tom Sharpe, Kurt Vonnegut, James Patterson, Hunter S Thompson, Douglas Adams, Imogen Edwards-Jones, Michael Frayn, Chris Morris, Jerry Sadowitz, Christopher Hitchins, Bill Maher, George Carlin, Milo Yiannopoulos and Larry Cohen.

One of the UK’s most dedicated provocateurs and contrarians, his obsessions include (and are essentially limited to) unhealthy amounts of: smoking, drugs, alcohol, caffeine, sex, arguing, fighting, vandalism, daydreaming and writing about himself in the third person.

See how interesting he is? Let’s dig in a bit more. Hello, Andy, welcome to An Angell’s Life. How are you?

Tired lol – but upright and alive, better than the average dead guy. Thanks for asking!

Lol, seems to be the life of a writer, doesn’t it? What is the current book you are promoting?

My new crime/thriller “Versus”, which will be available to buy at Amazon. Kindle and Paperback – and it’s also in Kindle Unlimited should anyone wish to borrow it.

Who is your favorite character in your book and why?

Oh, man – that’s a tough one for this book. It follows two characters; Daryl Kelly, a teenage loner who decides to shoot up his school. He’s a nasty piece of work, but he’s very intelligent. He gets good grades and, occasionally, shows some compassion. Then there’s Fariq, a Pakistani Muslim, also a student at the school, who’s being radicalized by his older brother and cousin, who have just returned from a Pakistani training camp. He’s going to blow himself up at the school on the same day Daryl is going to shoot it up. Neither of them know of each other’s plans, though. Unlike Daryl, Fariq (or Freddie as he’s known) is a likeable guy. He’s way more likeable than Donna Doubleday, the news reporter who uses the atrocity as a big break for her career. Probably Freddie, if I absolutely had to choose <!>

Wow. Talk about a sucky situation for the students at that school! Who is your least favorite character and why?

It would be easy to say Daryl Kelly. Easier still, Donna Doubleday, the reporter – or Janny Shadow, her news rival. Janny is a horrible piece of work. She interviews the bereaved with absolutely no compassion and almost jeopardizes the armed police’s response at one point. A thoroughly repugnant character. And that’s saying something when you’re up against a school shooter and a terrorist!

I can totally get that, though. I recently read a book about the Sandy Hook shooting, and even though the author didn’t delve too much into her experience with the press, it reminded me of the footage and the disgust I felt about how the reporters behaved. What inspired this book?

I was out one day and a sentence/idea popped into my head. What would happen if a school shooter and a terrorist bomber blew up a school in the middle of nowhere at the same time? I just couldn’t get that question out of my head. It must have been a meld of all the news stories we’ve had in the UK lately. All the terrorist activity has been in tourist areas. If I were a terrorist, I would strike in the heart of normality; average, boring, humdrum UK. It’d terrify everyone. All those people who avoid London and famous places think they’re safe. Well, what happened if a terrorist attack occurred on some unnamed road in the middle of nowhere? Where would you run? Of course the main question led to many others, as you’ve seen, and so I had to spend a fair bit of time thinking like a school shooter who wanted to be the UK’s first to do it. How would I do it? How could I maximize the death toll? And then, as the suicide bomber – where best to attack? And then, conflict – both these strands of thought “versus” one another, which gave me the title.

The UK has never had a school shooting? That is mind-boggling! They seem quite commonplace here. And yet, you all seem to handle the bombings as if it were, as you said, humdrum, so I guess we each have our battles.


The book is more than just the event itself, though. It’s a character study, showing how easy it is to fall into a mental trap. Brainwashing yourself into loathing others. Or, as in Freddie’s case, being brainwashed by others. The signs were there all along, and no-one saw it. In many ways, it’s a vicious satire. But Versus is scarier than any horror you’d ever read because this could happen one day. It will happen one day, I’m sure

It is sad, isn’t it? I have two teen boys and I am constantly trying to re-direct their thoughts from the way the news shapes their Us/ Them mentality. TBH, it’s a struggle for me sometimes, too. If you could have your book made into a movie, who would you want to direct it?

I don’t think Versus could be made into a film, purely because of its subject matter. Especially what happens in the last chapter. It’d be impossible to film. It’d be lucky to get an NC-17 rating.
But if I had to choose a director, I’d probably go with Jeremy Saulnier, who wrote and directed Blue Ruin and Green Room. He’s a breakthrough director who has yet to succumb to the devil’s spawn of Hollywood Blockbusterdom. He makes compelling and suspenseful independent thrillers. He’d be perfect for Versus. Jeremy, email me.

Ha, I bet he’ll get right on that! It certainly is a compelling concept. If your book were made into a movie, who would you cast?

For Daryl Kelly, certainly an unknown and young character actor. Maybe a young Brad Renfro, or any of the actors from Larry Clark’s Kids, or the 2004 movie Mean Creek. The book has that kind of vibe to it. Haunting, paranoid, dark… brooding, deadly. Courtney Cox played Gail Weathers in Scream. Donna Doubleday was loosely based on that character. I’d like to see Ellie Goulding play that part, actually. I dunno why, maybe it’s because I want to have sex with her.

I loved Brad Renfro back in the day! Mean Creek was hard to watch, so I could only imagine how tough this would be! What is your next project?

My next book is the start of a series; a short horror story collection – ten per volume, called PURE DARK. The ten shorts start off relatively tame; ghosts and stuff, but, as they go on, they get especially gross, sick and disturbing. There’s a short called Majesty about a clown who follows two girls home from school, and then abducts and tortures them. It’s one of the tamer shorts, and has a brutal twist. There’s another story called Fine Dining, about two successful women who have dinner in a high-class exclusive restaurant which turns sick and bizarre. Another story concerns a man releasing an Ebola-like killer virus into the air vents in a shopping mall, and removes teeth and other appendages with pliers.
The tenth and final story is called Baby Champagne. I’m not going to tell you a damn thing about that one. It’ll probably get pulled from Amazon after a few people complain. I’m selling Pure Dark as “the ultimate horror endurance test” – and will be offering t-shirts with “I survived Pure Dark” and so on to select readers. It really will test the reader’s constitution. I think most will give up a quarter of the way through, once they’ve acclimatized themselves to the heinous, black, poisoned, angry and vile minefield that is the darker recesses of my warped and violent imagination.
But it’ll be a lot of fun, too. (lol)

Hmm, sounds like you and my buddy Lee Newman should get together. His short story Eat totally skeeved me out! What is one place you would like to visit and why?
I’ve travelled the world extensively, but I’ve never been to Australia or New Zealand. I’d love to go there so at the very least I’d have covered all the continents. Travelling is so important as a human being. It’s not till you’ve gone everywhere else that you truly learn about your own country and city and town. It made me a much better and more knowledgeable person. Quite handy when you’re writing, I think.

I completely agree! I love to travel and wish I could do more international travel. So far, I’ve only been to Mexico and Canada. Who is your favorite fictional character and why?

Of all time? Probably Basil Fawlty, as played by John Cleese. A classic comic creation. Pretentions to the higher classes whilst going about it the wrong way. He’s utterly afraid of his wife. He gets himself into so much trouble unnecessarily. It’s wonderful.

We introduced my son’s to Fawlty Towers this summer. My husband and I are huge John Cleese fans! What one person from history would you like to meet and why?

Hitler’s mother. I’d put a chainsaw through her face and give her husband a condom, just to make sure.

If there was one thing you could do to change the world, what would it be?

Somehow make the 1% of the world’s richest go bankrupt and redistribute the wealth. Force the government to regulate the media properly. One man, like Murdoch, cannot be allowed to own the majority of the news corporations. We get all our ideas, news and facts from the media. Imagine of Hitler was in charge – we’d all be killing certain faith groups by now. It’s insanity. I go into it in Versus – the media have always been morally adrift but, in the age of social media and getting stuff for free, they’re playing an uglier game in trying to stay solvent and relevant.

How do you write your books?

I blast them out project by project. My last book (In Their Shoes: The Dealer) took five days to write. It was 85k words. Then I have two or three weeks off while it’s in editing, or we’re in marketing etc, and daydream about the next book, and then blast that out.

Who inspires your writing?

Honestly, me. I write stuff I want to buy and read. So, my stuff is usually written because I’m first in line to consume it. I figure there must be others like me out there, and so I use that as my basis. Other self-published authors have been a massive inspiration, and I know a few of them. Kim Faulks, Michael Anderle, Craig Martelle, H Claire Taylor, Brian Meeks – I could name hundreds more, but they inspire me as well. We’re all very supportive of each other.

That’s one thing I love about the Indie community. And it gives me the chance to meet people like you! Where do you come up with your stories?

They just randomly pop into my head. I would say I have four or five ideas a day, and none of them stick. One day, though, an idea will refuse to leave my brain. It happened with Versus. It happened with Pure Dark – the latter, certainly, just wouldn’t budge. I never write my ideas down in a notepad. They have to stay fresh and relevant for weeks, sometimes months, in my head. That’s my elimination process. If I have to write the bloody idea down so I don’t forget it, then I’m sorry to say that it was likely worth forgetting about.

Oh, I have dozens of notebooks, but you’re right. Rarely when I go back to them is a story concept worth building on. On the other hand, sometimes there’s a story that just refuses to quit! Who is your favorite author?

The Gibbons brothers, who have been writing with Steve Coogan for the Alan Partridge books are magnificent. I love Douglas Adams, Stephen King, John Steinbeck, Harper Lee… my favourite writer of all time, whether it’s movies, TV shows or books is John Cleese.

What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer?

Stop talking about how you’re going to write, and just f**king write the damn thing. “Oh, but I’m not ready”. Bulls**t. If you have a beginning, middle and end, you’re ready to write. I don’t care if you write 15 words a day for seventeen years to get the book done, just do it. I’m fed up with people saying “I’m gonna write this, and x will kill y, and it’ll be great, and…” – shut up. I had this a lot at film school. Pretenders and chancers at the bar, getting more and more drunk, each and every night, talking about their projects. I got fed up and stopped going and actually made those films. They were still at the bar.

Telling it like it is, folks! What is one thing you hate about being a writer?

Two things, mainly. Ordering what’s going to be written next in my head and sticking to it. I have sixteen thousand ideas all fighting to jump to the front of the line. Second, marketing. I wish I could hit the sweet spot permanently. It’s annoying. I want loads more readers than I already have.

I can completely relate to that first one! I keep genre hopping and series hopping and it is so much work getting back into the frame of reference when I go back to a series. If you could never write again, what would you do?

I used to be a teacher. Fifteen years. I hated it. I’m not going back. I dunno, maybe I’ll just claim welfare and spend the rest of my life locked in a room and making a messy nuisance of myself.

Tell us something unique about you:

I’m a movie obsessive. I am a walking, talking movie encyclopedia. I write screenplays, and have done for over twenty years. It’s really helped my writing in novel form. When I write, I kind of visualize the movie and just type/describe what I’m seeing. My mind and psychology is very good like that.

You would love Joe Compton from Go Indie Now. He’s the same way! What is your favorite word?


Thanks for joining us, Andy! Didn’t I tell ya’ll he was fun? Want to get more of his blunt honesty with a dash of good humor? Follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Youtube. Want to learn more about his upcoming projects and get news about his releases? Join his Facebook Group. , check out his website and his Amazon author page. Wanna see what awesome books he reads? Check out his Goodreads page.  

Andy has a gift for you! Subscribe to Chrome Valley Books and get your free short story ‘One Size Fits All’, the prequel to ‘In Their Shoes’

Until next time, 

Keep Reading! 

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Meet the Author with L.J. Kane

Meet the Author L.J. Kane

Hello Lovelies, 
I’m excited to introduce you today to L.J. Kane, the English author of Snatch Girl, the shocking, fast-paced, suspense thriller novel released on 21st April 2017.
L.J. Kane lives in the UK with her husband who’s a great soundboard, full of encouragement, and great ideas. Between them, they have met many unusual characters over the years, people with extraordinary lives from whom she can derive lots of inspiration.
L.J. Kane loves people-watching, overhearing conversations on the bus, dreaming up exciting plots while waiting in traffic, and while walking the dogs. She has so much fun writing novels, and it’s because she’s always believed in herself, that she has finally become an author, after spending 20 years procrastinating!

And with an intro like that, you know this is gonna be a fun interview. Let’s get to it! Welcome, L.J. What is the current book you are promoting?

Snatch Girl, my debut novel, was published in April 2017.Girl Missing: What if you’re with her all the way through to the end? If it ends…? Will Ellie survive? Would you?The shocking, fast-paced, suspense kidnap thriller that will hook you from the very first line.Snatched from her sadistic captor’s lair by his own getaway driver, eighteen-year-old student Ellie realises that she’s still kidnapped. As the enigmatic Darren Broderick drives off into the night with the terrified girl beside him, the sadistic Jon Braddon is not far behind.Thrown together, on opposing sides, Darren and Ellie must stay one-step ahead of Braddon’s twisted mind, and Ellie must resist Darren’s Aussie charms to the end. Darren Broderick needs the ransom. Braddon needs a victim. And he will fight to the death to get her back.


Wow, what a great description to go with that chillingly beautiful cover! If you could have your book made into a movie, who would you want to direct it?

It would have to be the late, great, Wes Craven! There is something about his films that grips you and doesn’t let go. I love the way his portrayal of the stories stay inside your head.

Oh, he would be sooo good, I agree! Snatch Girl would be right up his alley. How do you write your books?

I use a PC, but I do write longhand when I’m feeling lazy, lying on the sofa with a clipboard, pen and paper on my lap. I have typed like that too! A wireless keyboard is brilliant for that, though my back doesn’t thank me for it. I wrote the penultimate chapter of Snatch Girl in draft in about three hours, while listening to good music. I can’t write dialogue with music on though…

Lol, I must always be lazy. I’m constantly writing from my laptop because it can go where I want, which is usually the bed, or the couch, or lying on the floor! Where do you come up with your stories?

I get my ideas from a mixture of experiences, news, books, and films. Observing people is one of my favourite pastimes, and my best friend is just the same. We often meet up in a coffee shop (we can sit chatting for hours) and then fall silent, listening to an interesting conversation going on at the next table. There are some amazing people, with amazing stories to tell, even if they don’t realise it. My friends are amused when I jot down ideas on paper napkins, old envelopes, anything to hand really. I learned pretty quickly to always carry a writing pad with me!

Love it, I am the same! The real world is a great inspiration for stories, right? Who is your favorite author?

Stephen King. His books just hook me in, even if I don’t feel like reading. I also read his book ‘On Writing’ (part bio, part writing guide), and it really helped me focus on my own project, but I still can’t bring myself to read the axe scene in ‘Misery’.

He definitely has a way with descriptions that follows the KISS principle, yet still grips you in its simplicity. Well, thank you for joining us and we look forward to seeing more from you! 
Readers, want to get a copy of Snatch Girl? Snatch Girl is available on Amazon as an ebook through kindle unlimited, or for $2.99, and in paperbackfor $10.75

Want to see what L.J is reading? Follow her on Goodreads.

Want to see samples of her work and learn about her releases? Follow her blog. 

To learn more about her and her work, check out her website.   

Until next time, 

Keep Reading!    

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Meet the Author with Nichole Giles

Meet the Author Nichole Giles

Hello Lovelies,
Let’s welcome another delightful author I met through the Shattered Worlds anthology, Nichole Giles. She is the author of the Descendant trilogy, and the Water So Deep series, and has lived in Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and Texas. She is a fan of all things paranormal and magical, and her dreams include raising a garden full of fairies, riding a unicorn, and taming the pet dragon she adopted at a recent local ComiCon. She loves to spend time with her husband and four grown children, travel to tropical and exotic destinations, drive with her convertible top down—even when it rains—and play music at full volume so she can sing along.   

Welcome to An Angell’s Life, Nichole! What is the current book you are promoting?  

Currently, I’m promoting two books. Two years ago, Water So Deep was published after a long, rocky road. Since then, I’ve moved, finished another series, married off two daughters (in one month—yes, we did that) wrote a co-authored series that will not be published due to extenuating circumstances, and FINALLY, I have been able to finish the sequel, Ocean So Wide. Not only that, I had an opportunity to be part of a boxed set with 23 other authors, which inspired me to write a prequel for the Water So Deep story, Sea So Blue. These two books have been written almost side-by-side, and though they’re completely different stories, each one has definitely influenced the other. So I’m promoting the entire series, really. But most specifically, Sea So Blue and Ocean So Wide.


Wow, busy woman! Two weddings in a month? Whew! What inspired this series?

Sea So Blue was inspired by the back story in Water So Deep, which has become an important influence in the sequel, Ocean So Wide. As I was finishing OSW, the story of Elise and Caspian came to life for me, and I realized that they had a story, and they wanted it told. Sea So Blue, as a standalone story that urges toward the beginning of Water So Deep, and ironically, was the easiest of the three for me to write, since the characters told the story, and all I did was write it down. 

Those are the best stories, both to read, and to write! What is your next project?  

I think I’m going to weed my yard, and then clean my basement, maybe organize my closet. After that, I’m thinking of branching into romance (not fantasy) for a while to see where that leads. I am toying with a few fun ideas for series that I’m excited to dive into. Not that I’m leaving YA Fantasy behind completely—we’ll see when I get to that road!

I can completely relate. My house always gets a good cleaning after I finish a project. It needs it! What is one place you would like to visit and why?

Europe. I’ve never been there, and I LOVE to travel. I’ve done a lot of tropical themed trips, and been to a lot of islands and beaches, but the art and rich history of England, Scotland, Ireland, Britain, Greece, Denmark (where my ancestors are from), and Italy (where my husband’s ancestors are from)—all of it just fascinates me. The biggest problem is deciding on one or two destinations per trip!

I know, right? I would love to just take a summer and back pack across Europe! But I fear once I was there, I’d never want to stop. I hope to do it once my kiddos are all grown. What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer?


Creativity is subjective. Just because one person doesn’t love what I write doesn’t mean it’s crap, and just because another person adores it, doesn’t make it good. There are a lot of things in this industry that I can’t control, so it’s important not to focus on those things, and instead worry about the things that I can. Like how hard and how often I work, what I am willing to give up to make a deadline, and which books should I read or classes should I take to help myself improve my craft? I think this kind of applies to all walks of life.

Very excellent advice! Thanks for joining us, Nichole! Love what Nichole is laying down? You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to see more. Want to keep up with specials and promotions? Follow her on Bookbub and Amazon. Want to see what books Nichole is reading? Follow her on Goodreads. 

Until next time, 

Keep Reading!

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Meet the Author with Ndeye Labadens

Ndeye Labadens

Hello Lovelies, 
Today I am delighted to introduce you to a lovely author I met on Goodreads. Ndeye Labadens is a multi-best-selling author, blogger and Vlogger, entrepreneur and World Traveler. She enrolled in a doctorate in Business Administration (DBA). With strong followings on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter at @labadensndeye allowed her to detail her travels and experience to the enthusiastic audience. Ndeye works as a consultant at She helps other authors and small business owners.

So let’s jump on in!

Hello Ndeye, welcome to An Angell’s Life. How are you?

I am doing great Heidi, Thanks for having me here. I am Launching my book 

Relocation Without Dislocation: Make New Friends And keep the Old It will be free this Sunday, August 6th, and 7th. The normal price is $10.


Ooh, mark your calendars, lovely readers! Tell us a bit more about Relocation without Dislocation!

An excellent and helpful guide that will provide readers not only with information regarding their moving needs but also about the resources they need when it comes to moving and how to utilize these tools so that their relocation is a success. Relocating can be stressful, and the author’s personal experiences have enabled her to share everything that is required from websites to links to online tools to make moving a pleasant experience. Whether you are a student, a business owner, a professional, or a homemaker, this book will help you accept the challenges that come with relocating and handle it maturely and calmly.

With checklists of required personal items, travel documentation and carrying cash tips. The information is easy to understand and can be applied while moving from one place to another or another country. All the links, websites, and online tools make it easier for readers to get more information before they relocate to a new place without dislocating themselves.

If there was one thing you could do to change the world, what would it be?

I would help one person at a time. I know I can’t change the world but one person’s life at a time would be awesome. I love to help and enjoy the impact it has on travelers who write to me to thank me because the tips were awesome thanks to my recommendations. That makes me happy!

That’s really great advice. Good to see you are already making a difference, and encouraging others to do so as well. Who is your Favorite Author?

Marian Keyes, for her original style. She inspired me, and I was this year in Ireland to visit her land and join the Irish Writing center. Which I am a member now.

If you could never write again, what would you do?

I would be a movie producer or director. In this new position, I can still express and share feelings with my audience.

Love it! A Storyteller at heart, no matter what medium! What is your next project?

European Memories: Travels and Adventures Through 15 countries are my next project, and it will be launched within two months. The difference in my travel book series is the fact that you can watch me live on site in different countries. I vlog and interview people or simply broadcast live some event. My readers feel like they are by my side all along. There is a FB group where it is possible to follow me live on site or a website to watch the videos as my readers like. Here is, in exclusivity for your audience Heidi, the FB group:

What a neat way for travel fans to get to experience the travel vicariously through you! Thanks for sharing with us today. 

Thanks for Having me here Heidi.
Do you love travel and want to see more of the awesome stuff Ndeye shares with her people?  Follow her on Twitter or Instagram at the handle  @labadensndeye Follow her facebook page, or join her Bestseller Giveaway group. 
Want to learn more about her services?

Want to take a peek inside?

Until next time, 

Keep Reading!