HOT OFF THE PRESS!!!
NEW RELEASE THIS WEEK
Today, I'm absolutely delighted to be showcasing a fantastic new novel, which was only released 4 days ago. So if you're looking for a delicious fantasy read that's still hot off the press, get your copy now...
Heart of Kylassame
Publish date: June 22nd, 2013
Publisher: Kristi Strong
Book Genre: Fantasy - General
It has been two years since the reign of the tyrannical King Verikhan has ended, and the realm of Kaldalangra flourishes.
Nyssa has taken her place as Queen of the realm, with her secret love, Sebast, now openly at her side. She rules with a fair hand, striving for justice and prosperity for all of her people.
Rowan and Rhea travel the realm, spreading peace and healing wherever they go. In Kylassame, they have formed a strong bond with friends and spread deep roots in the community.
The people of Kaldalangra are joyful, and life in their world is better than ever before.
But a string of tragedies has the ability to bring Rhea to her knees, and with her, the entire realm. While Rowan struggles to recover the village of Kylassame from a devastating crime, Rhea’s faith in her own strength weakens, with dire consequences.
Re-enter the world of Kaldalangra, and join the adventure as Rhea and Rowan endeavor to continue upon their chosen destiny.
Fixing broken computers, wrangling a very spirited little toddler, and creating a world with a tyrant king, are all parts of the average day for Kristi Strong. While she has called Virginia her home for two decades, her head has rested in two countries, three states, and far too many houses to count. She was more than happy to give up her nomadic lifestyle and settle down with her husband, daughter, and their pets.
While attending James Madison University, she was given the rare opportunity to work as part of an archaeological team on a variety of dig sites in Virginia, including the homes of former Presidents, James Madison and George Washington, civil war sites such as The Steven’s House and Fort Evan’s Mississippian Encampment, and a variety of pre-historic hunting sites and camps.
Kristi now uses her extensive studies in human cultures (aka, Anthropology degree), to create her own world in her fantasy novels, beginning with her debut novel, TheLady of Steinbrekka.
First in a four part series, The Lady of Steinbrekka introduces readers to the realm of Kaldalangra as they follow the adventures of Rhea, a young woman who gets kidnapped and taken to Kaldalangra for less-than-friendly reasons. While there, readers will encounter a wide variety of characters, both good and evil, supernatural beings, and watch as Rhea struggles to choose her own destiny.
The second book in the series, Heart of Kylassame, follows the path of Rhea and Rowan as they seek to spread peace and healing over the realm. We are once again united with our favorite characters, and some newcomers are also added to the mix.
A third tale of Kaldalangra, Soul of Asimina, currently in edits and scheduled for a tentative Christmas 2013 release date.
Connect with Kristi
Firstly can you tell us a little about yourself?
Absolutely. I am a former horse trainer turned archaeologist turned pet expert who is now working as computer support for a high school. Though my parents were not military, we moved a lot when I was little so I have lived in over 26 locations in the 29 years of my life. My other creative outlets include crochet, singing badly, and coming up with activities for my toddler.
How long have you been writing?
All of my life, it seems. The projects in school that always drew me in were the writing projects, and my mom kept several of my first stories, such as The Magic Vegetable Garden. In high school and college I focused on poetry, and then in 2010 began writing novels with the intent to publish.
What inspired you to start writing novels for your chosen genre?
I enjoy writing fantasy because it gives readers a way to escape life. Ordinary problems seem much different when set in the realm of kings and queens, or mythical places. I also enjoy being able to create new worlds with unique sets of rules and altered laws of nature.
Are there any other genres you’ve written?
Not that are yet published, unless you take into account the archaeological report I wrote under my maiden name. However, I am currently working on a YA fiction work as well as a NA contemporary fiction novel.
Have you published any other novels, if so can you share the details?
I published my first novel, The Lady of Steinbrekka, in August of 2012. That is the first book in the Land of Kaldalangra series, and began the story of Rhea and Rowan, which is continued in Heart of Kylassame. The Lady of Steinbrekka begins with Rhea’s abduction into the land of Kaldalangra, and takes readers through a journey of darkness, mystery, and shows the power of strength and courage.
Are you working on anything new right now?
I am currently editing the third book in the series, Soul of Asimina, as well as simultaneously writing the fourth book, Jewel of the Court, and the fifth book, Grace of Kaldalangra. The characters just will not let me rest!
What motivates and inspires you to write?
The little things in life that have the power to become extraordinary, such as a child interacting with a parent, or a couple having a fight in public. Many times emotions that bubble out from inside of me turn into plot lines, or needs for stories to be told.
Can you offer any advice to the fledgling authors, just starting out?
Write the book you wish to read. Heart of Kylassame was a bit of therapy for me, and many of the interactions in the book were things that I needed to hear in my own life, put into a fantasy setting. Don’t worry about what popular media says is good, or what your English teacher said was proper writing. Write what makes you happy, and chances are it will make someone else happy as well.
Who is your all-time favourite author?
Anne Bishop. I have read her books so much that most are being held together with rubber bands. Her Black Jewels series is the perfect example of a book being able to be both an easy, somewhat fluffy read and having a deeper message all at the same time.
Can you us who your favourite indie author is?
Hands down, Kristina Circelli. The first books I read of hers were the Whisper trilogy, which is a fascinating blend of Native American history in a contemporary, but fantasy, setting. Then she published The Sour Orange Derby which is a contemporary fiction novel and blew me away.
Do you have a favourite quote, if so what is it?
Everything will be alright in the end. If it is not yet alright, then it is not yet the end.
If you could be any character in any novel, who would it be and why?
Marian from the Black Jewels Series. She is very much like me in that she is mild-tempered and shies away from conflict, but I strive to find her inner strength and courage.
Do you decide on your book title first, or do you write the book and then the title is decided later?
The title normally comes well after the book is finished. Normally I will write a line in the book and go, “oh, that sounds like a good title,” or when inspiration strikes. Coming up with the title is one of the hardest parts of writing, other than the synopsis.
Do you have a day job, other than writing – if so what is it?
I am computer tech support for a local high school. My job is to keep all of the technology in the school current and working, as well as provide training and on-the-job support for our teachers and students.
What is your preferred method of writing:- The plot pre-planned from day one, or just go with the flow and see what happens next?
My novels usually are a blend of both. I have a list of occurrences that I want to have happen in the novel, and then go from there. While writing Heart of Kylassame there were many times when the characters went off script and I was left scratching my head trying to figure out where to go next.
If you don’t like a character you’re writing about, what do you do?
a. Kill them off instantly
b. Get over it and learn to like them
c. Give them a whole new personality
Normally I just continue to not like them, although I will give them little personality quirks. For example, in The Lady of Steinbrekka you learn about the abusive and downright evil King Verikhan, but then future books the reader is given more about him, and begins to how he ended up as cruel as he did. Even my bad guys have back stories, and I try to make sure that nothing happens without purpose
Which type of book do you prefer to read?
I still love a good paperback. They look so nice lined up on my shelf with their beautiful covers, and there is something about the smell of the paper and the feel of the book in your hand. However, I would not give up my Nook for anything, since it can hold all of my books in one place and is harder for my toddler to destroy.
Do you have any input in the Cover design of your novel?
The cover of Heart of Kylassame was a very long and winding road. The original design was completely different, and I just kept wanting more. Then I got the idea of Rowan and Rhea standing on two cliffs, with the setting sun in the background. I sent a very, very bad mock-up to my cover artist, Jenny Laatsch, and she worked her magic.
What is the best thing about writing for you?
Having the power to control the outcome of conflicts. It is a way to put all of my doubts, fears, worries, or angers into the context of someone else’s life, and work through it all. I also love being able to create a world that might exist, but that we currently have not found.
What’s your least favourite part of the writing process?
I hate editing, but usually do about three rounds of edits on my books before sending it to an actual editor so that I know the book accurately represents me. I would rather do dishes than edits though, so it’s a time consuming process.
How long does it typically take for you to write a novel?
It will usually take me about 6 months to a year to write a novel, and then an additional 6 months to edit/publish. It’s a painfully long time for fans, I know, but that has been shortened now that I started writing several books simultaneously.
How many hours a day do you dedicate to your writing?
Not nearly enough. My writing is confined to when my daughter is sleeping and when there isn’t laundry/dishes/cleaning/promoting to do. It probably averages out to about an hour a day, which is why my books take so long to write and publish.
Are you a:
a. Laptop Writer
b. Desktop Writer
c. iPad Writer
d. Pen and Paper Writer
I’m a combination of B and D. I have a pen and paper notebook that keeps all of my stories, brainstorms, and legal information, but then do the majority of the story typed. I just can’t write quickly enough these days to keep up when the creativity starts flowing. I also prefer a desktop because I am surrounded by inspiration images for the books, as well a copy of my first published novel as extra support to keep writing through writer’s block.
Tell us one thing that no-one else knows about you – your darkest secret if you dare!
No joke, I am afraid of talking on phones. I’m not sure why, but starting around age 20 I would have panic attacks just at the thought of having to make a phone call. It’s manageable now, but I still have mild attacks when I need to make important phone calls or someone/something important calls me on the phone. Thank goodness for the increasing popularity of texting and email.
Thanks so much for sharing Kristi
If you love a good fantasy novel, then try this or better still get the first in the series to really get hooked and don't forget to add it to your GoodReads 'to read list' by clicking HERE ~ I have!
I do hope you've enjoyed this 'Hot Off The Press' Release and join me again later in the week when I have something sizzling to tickle your taste-buds.
Until then, keep calm and read a fabulous fantasy novel