Let's give a warm welcome to Jackie Gamber, author of YA Fantasy, Redheart. Please check out her website, and let me know what you think of it when you are done.
1. Please tell readers about your current book.
In “Redheart”, Kallon Redheart lives with his back turned on his fellow dragons, on humans, and on everything he once understood. Riza Diantus is a young woman with dreams too wide to fit inside her village fence. When danger erupts in Leland Province, Riza is threatened. Kallon is the only one with the power to save her, but to do so he must confront his past and the future he stopped believing in. He must claim his destiny.
2. Who or what inspires your writing?
My writing inspiration comes from everywhere, because people are everywhere! I tend toward character-driven fiction, which draws on the “why”. Why does a person feel the way they do? Why do they act a certain way? What about their life could create their fears, their hopes? In my attempts to fill in the blanks, stories emerge.
3. When did you know you would be a writer?
I’d been dabbling at writing, on and off, for a number of years, but it wasn’t until my children were in school full time that I realized I had a chunk of time on my hands for taking a stab at a dream again (I’ve been a stay-at-home Mom since my first was born). That’s when I delved into really studying the craft, practicing, and learning about the industry. Over time, right around the publication of my first story, I realized I had evolved from “wanting to write” to “being a writer”. It wasn’t the publication as much as recognizing I began thinking of writing as my career, for real.
4. How long did it take you to write your first novel?
I’d had a few chapters of my first novel on a word processor for years, and I’d open them up and edit things around, add a paragraph here and there. But when I decided to get down to business and finish the thing, it took about six months.
5. What is the hardest part of writing for you?
For me, the hardest part of writing is keeping to a rhythm, even on days when I can’t seem to find the words, or the inspiration. When I struggle to find the right words, the right time, the right attitude, I sometimes wonder if I’m all dried up, and maybe I’ve told all the stories I’m capable of. But on those days, I’m still a writer; I have to hang on to remembering that.
6. Do you have any writing rituals?
I do! I simply must have a cup of tea beside me. Whether I’m writing from home, or from my studio, I want the smell of brewing tea, the heat of a mug against my hands. On the days when I actually forget to drink the tea and it goes clammy sitting on my desk, that’s when I’m on a serious writing roll.
7. Have you written anything else?
I have several short stories appearing in science fiction and dark fiction venues, including a Mary Shelley award-winning story in Rosebud magazine. I’ve recently finished a time travel novel based on two real historical figures: Georgiana, the Duchess of Devonshire, and Adam Worth (the gentleman thief who was the inspiration for Doyle’s “Moriarty”). The novel took over two years for me to write! Since it’s based on real timelines, I was careful to keep my facts straight, while at the same time filling in the blanks of “what really happened” between these lovers born 100 years apart.
8. Any advice to aspiring writers?
Learn all you can about how to tell a good story, and practice, practice, practice. Write for reasons only you understand.
9. Who is your favorite Author?
It’s so hard to choose just one. Mary Shelley—because she was so ahead of her time, tying dark themes to emotional issues. And I have to mention Ray Bradbury, who is my hero for the way he tells a fantastic story with such conviction that it simply must be true!
10. What is your favorite book?
I have so many favorite books (which is a bit of a contradiction to “favorite”, I know!), but I like them each for different reasons. First, without a doubt, is Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” for its redemption and hope. Shelley’s “Frankenstein” –it’s so much more than the cult movies make it out to be. Wyndham’s “The Midwich Cuckoos” for his utterly charming way of telling a chilling tale. “Fahrenheit 451”, “Island of Dr. Moreau”…I’d better stop or I’ll be here all day!
11. What are you currently reading?
I have just picked up Peter Beagle’s newest novel “Tamsin”, about a girl who moves from the U.S. to England and discovers ghostly secrets in her new home. I’m already pondering just what kind of tea would be a good sipping complement.
In fact, I believe books and tea are such terrific partners, I love to pair certain blends with certain novels to really bring out the behttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifst of both. You can check out my BookTastings on my website at www.jackiegamber.com
12. How do readers find out more about you?
I have links to my Leland Dragons website, my work with HADS.us (Humans Against Dragon Stereotypes), my aforementioned BookTastings, and even an opportunity to sign up for my newsletter, all conveniently gathered at my website www.jackiegamber.com. Come visit and say hello!
Jackie Gamber is an award-winning freelance editor, as well as award-winning author of the fantasy novel Redheart, available now through Seventh Star Press(www.seventhstarpress.com) and ebook at a special rate of $1.99! A veteran of the USAF, she is now, among other things, a rosarian, a professional BookTaster, and an avid believer in imagination. Visit Jackie and her BookTastings on the world wide web at www.jackiegamber.com
Original cover from Meadowlark Press, now under Seventh Star Press.
Kallon Redheart lives with his back turned on his fellow dragons, on humans, and on everything he once understood. Riza Diantus is a young woman with dreams too wide to fit inside her village fence. Their unexpected friendship is risky in Leland Province, where drought has stripped the land and superstition has cowed its people. And the danger only grows. Fordon Blackclaw, Dragon Council Leader, resents Leland's time-worn venur system. He has inflamed tensions between dragons and humans to the brink of war. He wants to trample humans into utter submission, or wipe them off the face of the land. Anger erupts, scorching innocent lives in its path. When Riza is threatened, Kallon is the only one with the power to save her. But first, he must confront his past and the future he stopped believing in. He must claim his destiny.
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Seventh Star Press
Purchase at Amazon
Everyone can get Redheart on eBook for just $1.99 right now, through mid