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Interview with Author Selah Janel!

Published June 22, 2014 by glgiles

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It’s truly my pleasure to welcome the captivating raconteur, Selah Janel, to The GL Giles Files again. First, here’s her amazing bio. to bring everyone up to speed:  

Selah Janel has been blessed with a giant imagination since she was little and convinced that fairies lived in the nearby state park or vampires hid in the abandoned barns outside of town. The many people around her that supported her love of reading and curiosity probably made it worse. Her e-books The Other Man, Holly and Ivy, and Mooner are published through Mocha Memoirs Press. Lost in the Shadows, a collection of short stories celebrating the edges of ideas and the spaces between genres was co-written with S.H. Roddey. Her work has also been included in The MacGuffin, The Realm Beyond, Stories for Children Magazine, The Big Bad: an Anthology of Evil, The Grotesquerie, and Thunder on the Battlefield. Olde School is the first book in her new series, The Kingdom City Chronicles, and is publishedthrough Seventh Star Press. She likes her music to rock, her vampires lethal, her fairies to play mind games, and her princesses to hold their own.

 

Selah’s Links:

Blog – http://www.selahjanel.wordpress.com

Facebook author pagehttp://www.facebook.com/authorSJ

Twitter – http://www.twitter.com/SelahJanel

Amazon Author Page – http://www.amazon.com/Selah-Janel/e/B0074DKC9K

Goodreads –  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5622096.Selah_Janel

 

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Olde School by Selah Janel

Book One of the Kingdom City Chronicles

Genres:

Cross-Genre: Fantasy, Fairy/Folktale, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Horror

Blurb:

Kingdom City has moved into the modern era. Run by a lord mayor and city council (though still under the influence of the High King of The Land), it proudly embraces a blend of progress and tradition. Trolls, ogres, and other Folk walk the streets with humans, but are more likely to be entrepreneurs than cause trouble. Princesses still want to be rescued, but they now frequent online dating services to encourage lords, royals, and politicians to win their favor. The old stories are around, but everyone knows they’re just fodder for the next movie franchise. Everyone knows there’s no such thing as magic. It’s all old superstition and harmless tradition.

Bookish, timid, and more likely to carry a laptop than a weapon, Paddlelump Stonemonger is quickly coming to wish he’d never put a toll bridge over Crescent Ravine. While his success has brought him lots of gold, it’s also brought him unwanted attention from the Lord Mayor. Adding to his frustration, Padd’s oldest friends give him a hard time when his new maid seems inept at best and conniving at worst. When a shepherd warns Paddlelump of strange noises coming from Thadd Forest, he doesn’t think much of it. Unfortunately for him, the history of his land goes back further than anyone can imagine. Before long he’ll realize that he should have paid attention to the old tales and carried a club.

Darkness threatens to overwhelm not only Paddlelump, but the entire realm. With a little luck, a strange bird, a feisty waitress, and some sturdy friends, maybe, just maybe, Padd will survive to eat another meal at Trip Trap’s diner. It’s enough to make the troll want to crawl under his bridge, if he can manage to keep it out of the clutches of greedy politicians.

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Q. One of the many things I appreciate about your “Olde School” is that I see in your characters (be they trolls, kings, brownies, a strange bird, princesses, ogres and other Folk) a nod to many traditional renderings, but they also almost defiantly resist being categorized by ‘old school’ characteristics. Is this an accurate assessment?

A. First, thanks so much for having me on and reading the book! I’d definitely agree with that assessment. Some of that was purposeful and some of it evolved during the writing process. I’d always envisioned Kingdom City as a modernized folktale-ish world, so I wanted a lot of modern elements and a lot of traditional elements. It’s always intrigued me that a lot of character types in that type of fantasy are very similar in most renderings across the board. There’s nothing wrong with that consistently. A lot can be said for keeping things to a certain structure. Personally, though, I don’t like boxes and labels, and I began wondering why those types of characters were always done in certain ways. The real difficulty was tapping into their personalities and portraying them so they wouldn’t become a gimmick. That was extremely important to me. I didn’t want this to be seen as someone trying to hop on the fairy tale/fantasy popularity train. I have a deep love for these traditions and stories, so if I was going to shake things up, it was important to me that everything was grounded and felt like it made sense. Not only was it fun for me to write these new types of trolls, animal helpers, royals, and whatnot, but it really got me thinking as to what it might be like for them to be typecast one way but not be that way at all.

Q. I can only imagine the amount of work you put into capturing the amazing dialects, atmosphere, character strengths and flaws, et cetera that brought this, Book One of “The Kingdom City Chronicles,” to life. Are you a believer in creating elaborate character profiles first?

A. I’ve become the sort that takes notes as I go, honestly. I’ve done some extensive character profiles for other projects, but this one actually started out as a short story then grew. I stopped and started and re-worked things so many times it probably would have made things easier, but I ended up writing out things in notebooks to refer to as I went. I definitely have timelines, some character backgrounds fleshed out, a general city history, and some other things to keep me honest. I always feel like I’m not the best on keeping things filed at the ready, so that’s something I’m working on. A lot of things like the dialects were finalized in edits – I’d get a better idea of what generations or creatures used which slang and go through and make sure it was all consistent. That was probably one of the hardest aspects. Ippick’s speech differs from Paddlelump and Uljah, Clyde and his ilk tend to not use contractions except in certain cases, there are all sorts of slang terms, specific names for things, and curses I invented…I definitely think they add a lot, but I was ready to smack myself for being that detailed in edits!

In terms of personality issues and flaws, a lot of the times the character traits are so embedded in the characters for me, I don’t necessarily need to write those down. It becomes more of an instinctive feel – I can tell if something Flora says doesn’t ring true, or if Clyde is getting a little off. That being said, there have been some things that have popped into my head that seemed very out there at first, but were definitely dead-on for the characters or plot. Paddlelump is probably the hardest because in this book, at least, he’s very reactionary and well-meaning. It took a lot of sitting down and reworking his character to get him to feel right, but I’m really pleased and proud of how he turned out.

Q. Me, too! He’s definitely a well-drawn character. And, I know that I personally liked the feisty and capable waitress over the inept, but beautiful, maid. However, did you favor any of your characters in this book? In your other books?

A. This is one of the books that I really have a huge, huge love for my entire cast. Even those that may not be likeable or are considered antagonists I’ve come to adore. I’m a firm believer that in Kingdom City, everyone has their story, their reasons, so what you’re seeing in the first book is just a sliver of why the characters are doing what they’re doing. Some of that will be explored in later books, and I want to do some short collections in different points of view so readers can really understand why some characters may be acting the way they are.

I think for me, my opinions differ since a lot of characters were fun to write even if they differ from my personal tastes. I really came to feel protective of Paddlelump, but I absolutely love writing Nobody. She is a wreck, but she is endlessly entertaining because I can just let myself go and have her do say just horrible things and it works. Flora is definitely more in my wheelhouse, and I have a lot planned for her in the future. Ippick is probably my excuse to let out my subversive, inappropriate humor, though I think he’s going to do some awesome things in the future. Clyde is definitely the little winged devil on my shoulder, and I’m always discovering just what he will and won’t do. He’s fascinating to write, and definitely stretches me sometimes. Everyone has their fun points and their frustrating ones for me. It’s like there’s several levels to them and I have to be aware to keep them well-rounded and believable instead of just getting them to do silly things. Even the minor characters like some of the schoolgirls, Addlebaum, Ran, or Grimclaw intrigue me.

Q. You allude, in the Acknowledgements, to how difficult and time-consuming it was to make “Olde School” a reality—and I know readers will be happy that you persevered because it’s incredibly well-written and great fun—but, have you ever been so frustrated by the process of a novel coming together that you decided to take a ‘gap year’ before sorting everything out?

A. Oh, definitely. Olde School is the result of what I thought was a short story evolving into something much bigger. The very beginning of Kingdom City started in 2006, but I didn’t like the ending I had in mind for the short, so I put it away until 2011, where it grew to a short novel. I still didn’t like the ending I had in mind, but when I was approached for a series idea, I realized that I was having trouble because the world of Kingdom City was so much bigger than I’d originally realized. It’s one of those series where I immerse myself in it and step away constantly. It’s the only way to stay semi-sane. I get ideas for it all the time, but it’s like letting a massive tidal wave become something more manageable. There are definitely times I need to breathe, and that’s when I can shift through what’s really going to work and what has to wait. Even during edits I had to take a few days or a week here or there to just get my mind together and catch my breath. My brain tends to throw everything at me at once, and sometimes even my to do lists just make things seem mountainous. I had it in my head that fantasy world-building was going to be easier than urban fantasy because I could invent everything my way. This is a horrible, horrible lie. It wasn’t awful because I enjoy the creative process, but it was definitely more than I had expected because I really, really wanted Kingdom City to be a full-bodied world. I want people to get excited and imagine what it’s like to explore those streets and the other parts of The Land. That area is so diverse, I think anyone could picture themselves as a tourist or a resident there, and I wanted people to have enough detail to be able to do that in their own imaginations. Granted, the process drove me a little crazy getting to that point, and I’m sure as things change and develop it’ll continue, but it’s definitely a labor of love. If I didn’t care, I wouldn’t keep going back to it. I’m very lucky to have a publisher and an editor who get it and who communicate freely with me, but also give me a little space and support so I don’t wear myself out.

Q. Thanks for the wonderful insight which I’m sure many writers can appreciate. Switching gears, please give readers a glimpse into the lives of your oft-endearing trolls.

A. I have three trolls in the book: Paddlelump Stonemonger is the youngest and the main character, Uljah Toothgnasher is his older friend, and Ippick Bonecrusher is the oldest. Ippick is the crotchey bachelor of the group, the one who inserts his commentary whether they want it or not. He leans toward wishing for the ‘good ol’ days,’ but definitely takes advantage of modern convenience. He’s in real estate, but because of his off-putting nature he tends to have a lot of odd jobs on the side to make up for his lack of sales.

Uljah at times acts as a father figure to Paddlelump. Unlike his two friends he’s pretty gaunt and bony compared to their substantial sizes. He’s the married one of the group, and it’s strongly hinted that he’s bossed around by his wife quite a bit. He’s affable, amiable, and hard to ruffle. Like Ippick, he’s pretty good at fighting if he has to, but his personality is a little less abrasive. He’s a butcher and is still trying to reach a place of financial stability (no thanks to his wife’s habits with credit cards).

Paddlelump is the most successful of the three, the youngest, and the most unique. He’s young and approachable-looking, and he has a kinder, gentler nature than his friends. He’s progressive and tends to give others the benefit of the doubt. His recent inheritance and his ability to use it to fund a booming toll bridge business means he’s often the target of different opinions from townspeople, the local government, and those who may not wish him well. Although he has a kind nature, he can be a little reactionary and tends to blame his circumstances for his misfortunes a little bit.

All three of these guys bring different things to the table. All have their fun and amusing qualities, their likeable qualities, and all three have their irritating aspects. That’s what makes them fun for me. They hang out at Trip Trap’s diner for lunch everyday, pick on each other, help each other out, antagonize each other…for me, their friendship is very real and is reminiscent of those who have known each other a long, long time. They’re fun to write together. It’s nice to know that even creatures that are traditionally seen as bloodthirsty or dumb or as bad guys can not only have very different types of personalities, but also cultivate long-term friendships and have each other’s backs.

Q. Speaking of trolls, I’m curious how you weigh in on the subject of a different sort of ‘troll’:  an internet troll. Some might argue that this is the most insidious sort. Now that the Internet is a town square of sorts should there be more gatekeepers to keep out these new trolls?

A. Great question! I have to admit, it’s a loaded subject. I’ve seen stuff posted on memebase that make me laugh, but anymore I can see how frustrating being at the receiving end of that sort of behavior is. It’s hard enough sorting through things online because of the nature of text responses, but having people purposefully making things difficult makes it harder. I guess it’s one thing if it’s more playful or being dumb, but when you’re getting into trolling boards or comment threads of topics that are already hot-button subject matter, what’s the point in stirring up all that ire or emotion? I don’t know how you patrol something like that, honestly. Admittedly, any time I see that sort of thing going on now I think of a scene in Trip Trap’s where Ippick is intentionally stirring up online forums and laughing about it. It’s funny in the book, but I’d hate to be on the receiving end of his hijinks.

Q. What’s on the horizon for the rest of 2014?

A. I’m currently working on promoting Olde School and working on a short story collection to go with it before I start book two. Beyond that I’m polishing a couple novels to start shopping, and working on some anthology submissions. I’ll be working with Fortress Publications later this year for an issue of Trail of Indiscretion themed around my fiction, Mocha Memoirs Press just re-released my historical horror story Mooner in e-book format, and I’ll be appearing at Imaginarium in September. Besides all that, you can (usually) catch me Wednesday nights at 9pm est as a co-host on The Star Chamber Show podcast on blogtalk radio!

Q. Where can readers go to connect with you and your wonderful work?

Blog – http://www.selahjanel.wordpress.com

Facebook author pagehttp://www.facebook.com/authorSJ

Twitter –http://www.twitter.com/SelahJanel

Amazon Author Page – http://www.amazon.com/Selah-Janel/e/B0074DKC9K

Goodreads –  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5622096.Selah_Janel

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Interview with Author Bryce Warren!

Published June 11, 2014 by glgiles

 

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 Q: I had the pleasure of reviewing your “Voodoo Mayhem” here last year. Were you thinking of combining “Beneath the Mausoleum” and “Voodoo Mayhem” at one point?

A: “Voodoo Mayhem” was created mainly because I wanted to get “Beneath the Mausoleum” out to my fans because it was a sequel to “The Mortician’s Daughter.”  As I concluded “Beneath the Mausoleum,” I thought I had enough ideas left for a third book, so I created a cliffhanger ending.  Recently, I combined the two under the title “Voodoo Mayhem” and am awaiting word from a publisher.

Q: Still in the darkly delightful arena is your latest release: “Waverly Hills Incursion.” How did this book come about? And, have you ever visited the Waverly Hills Sanatorium?

A:  The idea for this book started when I watched the film “Session 9” and later heard that the building featured in that movie, Danvers State Hospital in Massachusetts, was being transformed into apartments.  I started wondering, what if a place like that was haunted?  What would happen to the people living there?  I wrote a rough draft about an asylum in Northern Kentucky that had been abandoned and later turned into apartments.  I ran out of gas on that one, and revisited it several times, and then eight years later, I thought about visiting a place in Louisville that my students at Northern Kentucky University had introduced to me.  Waverly Hills Sanatorium had been an abandoned tuberculosis hospital for years.  I decided to make a trip to the Hill with some friends and do some ghost hunting.  Mainly, I wanted to see the place a get a sense of it and so I could describe it in a complete rewrite of my original rough draft.  The history and the paranormal activity of Waverly Hills gave my novel the specific details and background information that it was originally lacking.

Q:  Many popular television shows have attested to the Waverly Hills Sanatorium being haunted. What are your thoughts about the possible hauntings? And, if so, by whom?

A:  I’ve watched many episodes on YouTube about Waverly Hills, and walking through the building gave me much to consider about possible hauntings.  I got strange feelings in certain areas like when I entered the solarium and the surgical room.  I heard the faint sound of children screaming like they were on a playground, and only one other person in a room of fifteen could hear it.  I saw the dark images of what is proposed to be the Shadow People who seem to live on the fourth floor.  One of the Shadow People even seemed to transform into a large black mist that grew slowly, taking up most of the hallway.  Upon leaving Waverly Hills, I was convinced that many souls and entities made this their home.  I even believed what the tour guide said about it being a portal to the “other side” where entities can come and go.  But, I remain skeptical, because nothing we heard or saw could be proven as evidence of paranormal activity.  Seeing the Shadow People relied upon seeing them at the end of a dark hallway and from the corner of your eye.  As eerie as the total experience was, we came away with no convincing evidence.  I did, however, capture an image on my digital camera that shows what looks like someone with a skull-like head walking across the hallway and looking directly at me as I snapped the shot.  I had to zoom in on the shot to see it, and it is so faint that you can only see it in near or total darkness.  A photographic expert couldn’t do anything to enhance the image and refused to declare it as evidence of paranormal activity.  That picture still challenges my skepticism.

Q:  Amazing! Changing the subject, what have you learned from being a nontraditionally published author? What are your thoughts about being traditionally published in this day and age?

A:  I know that many people are trying their hand at self-publication, and this angers many traditionally published authors.  I don’t think it hurts traditionally published authors.  People will purchase what they want to read.  In my case, I wasn’t having luck with publishers, so I decided to try self-publishing to see if anyone found my work interesting.  I was surprised and overwhelmed by the response to my first novel, “The Mortician’s Daughter,” so I decided to keep on trying.  The most difficult aspect of self-publishing is marketing.  I have not put much money into marketing, but I have relied upon social media such as Facebook and Twitter to get the word out.  For “Waverly Hills Incursion” I decided to create my own book trailer on YouTube and share it on social media as an ad for my book.  I used images, video footage, and sounds from my trip to investigate Waverly Hills, and I created a simple, creepy soundtrack with my iPad and my computer.  I reversed some of the video footage sound to make the sounds of entities trying to communicate from the other side.  The video has been a big hit and has helped to advertise my novel.   I am still sending work out to publishers, because I want to see what that experience is like.

Q:  Great work! Readers can view it here . Changing the subject again, I know that you and I share a love of music. So, did you listen to any of your favorite bands/musicians while writing your “Waverly Hills Incursion?” If so, then which one(s)?

A:  While brainstorming and writing, I listened to Gary Numan’s newer gothic/industrial works such as “Pure,” “Jagged,” “Exile,” “Dead Son Rising,” and “Splinter.”  The atmosphere and sounds of the music put me in an eerie and otherworldly state of mind but also influenced my writing to a certain degree.  In a couple of his albums, Numan mentions a little black box as a kind of metaphor for a place to hide your fear, or as something to store bad emotions in and to give them to someone else as a kind of evil present.  I liked the idea so much, I used it in a couple different ways and it became part of the central image for my novel.  It also made it onto the book cover.  I used it as a kind of Pandora’s Box which the character Scarlet Snow gives to the main character Ben Clausen and tells him to open.  Upon opening it, Ben tells Scarlet that there’s nothing in it.  She replies that it doesn’t have anything in it, now that he’s opened it—implying that whatever was in it has now escaped.  Later, another character, Kayla, claims to have seen Scarlet conjuring a fiery entity from the box.  Sometimes the music I listen to can directly influence what I’m writing, but I let occur consciously so that I’m creating something new from the idea and not just copying someone else’s idea.

Q:  Now for a random and fun question: Have you ever gone through a period of binge- writing?

A:  Yes, when a scene gets really good, and when I don’t want to stop writing and forget to write something down, that’s when the white-heat writing kicks in.  Also, when I get close to the conclusion of writing a novel, I get so excited that I can’t stop writing.  During the conclusion of “Waverly Hills Incursion,” I used this kind of writing to increase suspense.  Hopefully, the reader will sense the conclusion approaching and feel the suspense increase as the novel comes to an end.

Q:  I know that I did with “Voodoo Mayhem.” What’s on the horizon for the rest of 2014? And, do you plan on attending World Horror Con in 2015?

A:  I want to go back to writing short stories for a while and send some out to publishers.  Then I want to start working on another novel.  I have many ideas for it already, and I know it will encompass conspiracy theories and government control.  I am hoping to attend the World Horror Con 2015 in Atlanta.  I’ve been to Horror Hound Weekend in Cincinnati and Scare Fest in Lexington, KY.  I’ve always wanted to go to the World Horror Con so I could meet some of my favorite authors and publishers.

Q:  Where can readers go to connect with you and your wonderful work?

A:  My author page at Amazon (which includes my book trailer) can be found at:

http://www.amazon.com/Bryce- Warren/e/B004XWKLLE/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

Facebook:   http://www.facebook.com/bryce.warren.37

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Thank you!

You’re welcome, Bryce!

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Interview with Artist Karen Emma Hall!

Published June 7, 2014 by glgiles

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“Karen Emma Hall is a creative new children’s author. Her first series of stories for children…combines skills of illustrations and words to draw children into the magic world of stories and reading. Karen discovered her love of writing a long time ago while reading to children as an auxiliary nurse and a nanny. She helped children in the classroom with their art, and soon decided to put the two together – writing stories with illustrations for children.
Eventually she started working with the elderly, and found that they loved art and painting as well, so her stories are not just for the young but everyone, aged one to one hundred. Her first series of children’s stories are a little bit magic. They leave readers with that magic feeling after reading them. If you love owls and you love cats, then you are going to adore her fully illustrated books. All the illustrations in the books are hand drawn and painted.
The very first book in the Teeny Pheeny Tales series is very appealing, as it is the introduction of the main characters, Mrs Phoenix and Teeny Pheeny, (Pheeny coming from the word Phoenix) and the owl folk of Boohoo Village. This series brings you teeny bits of teeny magic. The owls are almost living and breathing as they’re very endearing, funny and even a bit grumpy! It’s all about the owls!
Karen has four daughters and two special cats (who turn up in the stories). She is very active on social media, and is very happy to reply to messages in person on twitter, where she also writes her own quotes. You can follow her on google+ facebook and her blog. Karen’s blog is very popular and very amusing and a must read. Karen is currently illustrating more sketches and starting on her next children’s amusing stories about cats… but I can’t give away too much about that just yet…’Follow’ said the pied piper, and they did follow
Twitter @PeachyEmma https://twitter.com/PeachyEmma
http://captnjacksparrow.wix.com/books
peachyemma.blogspot.co.uk” (Amazon).

 

 

 

 

Q: Please tell us where your inspiration for your wonderful illustrations has come from?

A: In a couple of words, children and animals. My children and the children I have worked with, and my pets I have. Children love art in one form or another, and no child is bad at art. It is an expression of themselves, their feelings, their personality.
Even when my daughter said she wanted her room newly decorated to get rid of the mess on the wall, (it was covered in various pictures, drawings, writings, notes, posters, etc.) I told her it has her art, her expression and her creation. It showed us who she was, how she expressed herself, and her personality comes through those pictures and how she placed them on the wall. She did look on it with different eyes, and changed the way she thought about art. But she still wants new wallpaper….

Q: Where can readers find your artwork?

A: Originally I had never thought about showing my artwork, as a lot of it I had done years ago before I even got a computer. I did self-portraits when I was a teenager, which I will never show anyone ha! Then I started painting. Water and oils. I could never get away with oils, but then discovered these amazing pens from a craft shop and I loved how they worked and blended. I never felt I was any better at Art than the next person, they were always pretty, colourful, but because I loved illustrating that was all that mattered. I did not originally set out to show them off, I just loved drawing and found it relaxing and therapeutic. I really must decide which website to use to show them off… when I get a little time.

Q: Which medium do you prefer to work in? What other mediums have you tried?

A: I try everything. I don’t like working with oils as much I found, but I really admire oil paintings. I love water paints, and plain and simple coloured pens and pencils the best.

Q: What can readers discover at your blog here?

A: Silly quirky fun stuff mainly, as I always used to just write whatever comes into my head. I wasn’t writing for anyone else but me. It is always good to get stuff down, so I thought I would start a blog to see how it went and if anyone wanted to read it. These days I blog about the KLA and children’s literature.

My primary concerns are, of course, books and reading, particularly encouraging children to read in a world full of technological distractions, but I talk about anything that catches my eye. It’s intended to be a five minute coffee break – leave whatever’s stressing you out alone for a few minutes, put your feet up, and let’s chat about whatever comes to mind.

Q: Speaking of KLA, you started the popular ‘Kid Literature Authors’ Facebook page—which has already had over 1,000 likes in a little over a month. Why is it such a ‘happening spot’?

A: I think I managed to stumble upon a real gap in the market. There’s a wealth of pages on Facebook dedicated to specific books, authors, series or genres, but nothing that’s a meeting place for bringing together readers, authors and books all in one group. It really started out on Twitter while I was working on Teeny Pheeny. I was looking to build up interest in my own book, of course, but found so many people there with ideas and suggestions and their own needs, and we made a bit of a loose group out there in the ‘Twitterverse’. It soon became clear that we’re all pulling in the same direction – we want our children reading, and we want to get books into their hands. So a Facebook page seemed to be the next logical step. I put the page in the hands of those core people I met on Twitter – after all, it’s intended as a democratic arena for the promotion of reading. With a handful of administrators and editors, we were able to pull together plenty of relevant material and all of our collective contacts, and the page just flourished from there. Ironically, once I started setting the Facebook page up and then organising the website, I had little time left for poor Teeny Pheeny. So now I have to be very strict with my time, as I have so much to do in one day, and I must try to not feel guilty for taking time for myself and my books.

Q: I think that many altruistic personalities will find that entirely relatable. You also founded the wonderful ‘Kid Literature Authors’ site at http://www.Kidliteratureauthors.com where there are book reviews, free books and information for parents and teachers. What else can readers find there?

A: The reviews have just started at the beginning of this month (June), and we’ve had a great batch to start with. We’ve got a ‘free stuff’ page which includes short videos of stories being read aloud, and these are great for parents and children to watch together. We’ll be keeping our news up-to-date on the front page, so any events we think are relevent to our visitors will go there. We also have individual pages for our key collaborators, so you can find out a bit more about our authors and illustrators. The site has only been live a couple of weeks and already we’ve got a lot of content up there – and we will only be adding more and more! In the near future we’ll be looking to add to our reviews, and introducing a guest blog feature.

Q: Now for a fun, random question: Do you see yourself taking a trip ‘across the pond’ to meet many of your fellow children’s picture book enthusiasts here?

A: I couldn’t think of anything better! I’m ridiculously busy at the moment, what with keeping an eye on the Facebook page, getting the website up and running, promoting many people, and of course with my own books, but I’d never rule out a trip ‘across the pond’ It is one of my ambitions. Now I have a reason to go, as I have come to know a few super people since starting the KLA.

Q: Where can readers go to connect with you and your work (social networking sites, etc.)?

A: Lots of places! The website’s at http://www.kidliteratureauthors.com. The KLA is also on Facebook, with a lively community waiting to meet you there. I’m also very active on Twitter, and always pleased to welcome new followers. The first in the Teeny Pheeny series is available at Amazon to download for your Kindle or PC, and it’s a great introduction to my range of characters. Really if you want to know the instant anything happens go to Twitter, as that is where I go to escape—for timeout. If you are on Twitter and you follow me, you will be the first to know what I am up to!

Q: What’s on the horizon for the rest of 2014?

A: Plenty of work will go into the Kid Literature Authors website, adding in additional features, working on reviews and promotions. From the perspective of my own writing, there’s another Teeny Pheeny book on the way with more brand new illustrations, as well as a collaboration on a book for middle grade readers, called ‘Corey in Cold Cliff Castle’. It’s a wild adventure with gruesome characters that will hopefully attract boys to reading. Very fun, Scooby doo meets Hammer Horror. What is more thrilling for me is that Eric Heyman is illustrating some drawings for Cory in Cold Cliff Castle, and they are so good they are spooky-rific! You all must keep checking up to see the goings on from Twitter and the website.