Tag Archives: Fiction

Interview with T.G. Campbell, Author of Bow Street Society – The Case of The Toxic Tonic

Hello,

Today’s interview is with T.G. Campbell, author of Bow Street Society – The Case of the Toxic Tonic.

Please enjoy!

Best,

-Vincent Lowry

 

Interview:

1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?

I write under T.G. Campbell and I live in the United Kingdom.
2) What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?
My newest book is The Case of the Toxic Tonic and it’s predominantly crime fiction with historical fiction elements.
3) What is the book about?
When the Bow Street Society is called upon to assist the Women’s International Maybrick Association, it’s assumed the commission will be a short-lived one. Yet, a visit to the Walmsley Hotel in London’s prestigious west end only serves to deepen the Society’s involvement. In an establishment that offers exquisite surroundings, comfortable suites, and death, the Bow Street Society must work alongside Scotland Yard to expose a cold-blooded murderer. Meanwhile, two inspectors secretly work to solve the mystery of not only Miss Rebecca Trent’s past but the creation of the Society itself…
The Bow Street Society is a fictional group of amateur detectives operating in Victorian London. Each of its civilian members has been enlisted for their unique skill or exceptional knowledge in a particular field derived from their usual occupation. Members are assigned to cases by the Society’s clerk, Miss Trent, based upon these skills and fields of knowledge. This ensures the Society may work on the behalf of clients regardless of their social class or wealth; cases that the police either can’t or won’t investigate. From an artist to a doctor, from a solicitor to a journalist, the Bow Street Society’s aim is to provide justice by all and for all.
The Case of The Toxic Tonic is the fourth instalment in the Bow Street Society Mystery series of novels.
4) Where did you come up with the idea?
I think I was at work when I decided to use a hotel for the mystery’s setting. I work part-time as a receptionist. I like to ponder new ideas and iron out plot kinks etc. on rare, quiet days to keep my mind occupied.
5) How long did it take you to write it?
It took me approximately 4 months to plan the plot and research the historical context. The actual writing took me approximately 6 months. Following this, it was beta read for a month and then edited before finally being released on the 31st August 2019.
6) Did you learn anything from the project?
I’m keen to make the historical elements of my fiction as accurate as possible. This often includes the scientific knowledge and expertise which the fictional police surgeon possesses in my Bow Street Society books. In The Case of the Toxic Tonic, the surgeon (Dr Percy Weeks) and a member of the Bow Street Society, Dr Lynette Locke, must determine the victim’s cause of death. They suspect aconite poisoning but the scientific tests for detecting poisons—which would’ve been available to them at the time—were unreliable when trying to identify this substance. Thus, Dr Weeks is forced to resort to the only test available to him; a taste test. This surprising ‘technique’ for detecting aconite poisoning was one I discovered while doing research into the real-life scientific techniques of the time, and something I was unaware of prior.
7) Do you have an author website and/or blog? How about a book video?
Website:
Rather than an author website, I have one dedicated to the Bow Street Society: www.bowstreetsociety.com It’s where readers may find out more about the Society’s members, sign-up to the free, monthly newsletter, the Gaslight Gazette, and read blurbs and reader reviews for the first 3 books in the series (The Case of the Curious Client, The Case of the Lonesome Lushington, and The Case of the Spectral Shot. Details of the Bow Street Society Casebook collections, The Case of the Shrinking Shopkeeper & Other Stories and The Case of the Peculiar Portrait & Other Stories may also be found there.
Blogs:
There’s also two blogs on the website. The first is my monthly blog that covers a wide range of topics from the Victorian origins of the word “copper” to my reviews of crime-based television dramas. The second is called The Writers’ Wing where I interview crime fiction, thriller fiction, suspense fiction, horror fiction, and true crime nonfiction writers within the setting of an imaginary prison wing. Inspired by the long-running BBC radio show, Desert Island Discs, my blog asks each guest (or ‘inmate’ the same three questions: Who is your cellmate and why? Which four books would you choose to pass the time with and why? And Which of your literary creations would you choose to visit you and why? Guests are featured for free on my blog and I’m always on the look-out for more to interview.
Book video:
Last year, I wrote, produced and directed a live action book trailer for the first Bow Street Society Mystery, The Case of the Curious Client. It also explains what the Bow Street Society is and how it’s perceived by the police.
The Case of the Curious Client book trailer: https://youtu.be/UVvXKqSFRZo
8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?
The two most important tips I could give my fellow authors are: always have your work edited and proofread by a professional editor, and never be afraid to be different.
Susan Soares is an Editor at SJS Editorial Services who has edited every Bow Street Society book and short story to date. She’s thorough, great value for money, and highly professional. I’d recommend her services to any of my fellow authors.
SJS Editorial Services: www.facebook.com/SJSEditorialServices
Heather Curtis designed the Bow Street Society logo that has featured on all Bow Street Society books and short story collections to date.
Freelance artist Peter Spells has created the illustrations which have been featured in the centre of the covers on all Bow Street Society books and short story collections to date.
9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?
I enjoy reading crime fiction, historical nonfiction, and true crime nonfiction books. I’m certainly open to discovering new authors but I don’t usually review authors’ works on either of my blogs. If any crime fiction, thriller fiction, suspense fiction, horror fiction, or true crime nonfiction authors would like to be featured on my Writers’ Wing blog they may either complete the form linked on the Writers’ Wing page (see previous answer) or email me at info@bowstreetsociety.com.
10) What is your favorite book of all time and why?
I couldn’t possibly pick a favourite! My favourite series at the moment is the William Quest books by John Bainbridge. My favourite nonfiction book currently is The Queen’s London, printed in 1896. Depicting photographs and paintings of London from this time, it helps me to describe real-life places when I feature them in my writing.
11) Fun Question: Do you have any pets? If so, what kind?
I currently have no pets. I did have a canary called ‘Tweeps’ but he sadly passed away last year.
Fun Question 2: Do you own an electronic reading device? If so, what kind and how do you like it?
Yes, I own an Amazon Kindle Fire. I find reading on the Kindle a great deal easier than a paper book. This is due to the fact I have a degenerative eye condition. I therefore tend to read books in an enlarged, white font on a black background. This allows me to read comfortably without straining my eyes. I have reference books which are in paper form but I often have to use a magnifying glass in addition to my reading glasses in order to see the print in these. Font size is something few publishers consider when formatting a manuscript for release but it’s one of the most important elements in my opinion.
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Interview with Cole Bruce, Author of Ruler and the Gods and the Athanatos Stone

 

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Hello,

Today’s interview is with Cole Bruce, author of Ruler and the Gods and the Athanatos Stone.

Please enjoy!

Best,

Vincent Lowry

Interview:

1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?Cole Bruce. Tennessee.
2) What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre? Well, I have tons of books out already. So, if this for the book to show up, it’s ‘Ruler and the Gods and the Athanatos Stone‘; oldest book out of them.
3) What is the book about? Jesse Talley is chosen to go into the Greek World to face against Hades. On his adventure, he meets Athena and Ares; he’ll also meet Gods and Goddesses, fight Greek Mythology Monsters and see creatures. But, what makes this book series unique is my very own Fantasy characters, creatures and worlds.
4) Where did you come up with the idea? Back in 2009, I had a notebook plan called ‘Ruler’s Ring’, but in 9th Grade at my High School, my English Teacher showed us ‘The Odysee’ and that’s when ‘Ruler’s Ring’ turned into ‘Ruler of the Gods’. The ring turned into the Magical Timeline Transporter and the magical world combined into Greek Mythology. In 2012, ‘Ruler of the Gods’ changed to ‘Ruler and the Gods’.
5) How long did it take you to write it? 9 years on Notebook and a few attempts on computer, but on Oct.2017, I finished it.
6) Did you learn anything from the project? It really helped me love History, create more stories, come up with more imagination.
7) Do you have an author website and/or blog? How about a book video? ‘Ruler’s Greek World Crossovers and Others’ Facebook Page shows it all! Books, Links, Videos, etc
8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists? Right now, I’m still trying to get my work out. I’m the Editor and Book Cover artist (in a way. I went on Canva.com, but zoomed it in to make it something else)
9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work? I love mostly Fantasy, Adventure and Sci-fi, but also Classic Literature, Mystery, Thriller, Comedy, etc. I do like to see new Arthors and connect with them.
10) What is your favorite book of all time and why? Even though, I’m a Potterhead (Harry Potter Lover), my favorite book is ‘Of Mice and Men’
11) Fun Question: Do you have any pets? If so, what kind? 3 Cats, 2 Dogs, 2 Guini Pigs and a Hampster (My sisters)
12) Fun Question 2: Do you own an electronic reading device? If so, what kind and how do you like it? Amazon Kindle and only care about the music. I don’t care about Ebooks and Digital Books. Only way I would use them as a sample of my books.

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Interview with Susanne Leist, Author of Prey for the Dead – Book Two of The Dead Game Series

Hello,

Today’s interview is with Susanna Leist, author of Prey for the Dead – Book Two of The Dead Game Series.

Please enjoy!

Best,

-Vincent Lowry

Interview

1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?

 

Susanne Leist

New York

 

2) What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?

 

Prey for The Dead, Book 2 of The Dead Game Series

Paranormal suspense

 

3) What is the book about?

 

Prey for The Dead is the second book in The Dead Game Series. My main character, Linda, and her friends find themselves faced with the return of The Dead vampires. These vampires aren’t as peaceful as the vampires living in Oasis, Florida. A love triangle develops where Linda is caught between a hybrid—half vampire and half man—and a vampire. Their adventures take them to an exclusive club in Disney World and the swamps of southern Florida to defeat the evil vampires.

 

4) Where did you come up with the idea?

 

Vampires living in Florida came from my overactive imagination.

 

5) How long did it take you to write it?

 

The book took me a year to write, a year for others to proofread, and six months for me to edit.

 

6) Did you learn anything from the project?

 

My publisher edited my first book, The Dead Game. I used the ProWriting Aid program to edit my second book, Prey for The Dead. The program gave a more comprehensive edit than the Outskirts Press’ editor. I felt confident enough to send my book for a Kirkus Review. The reviewer liked the story and the supernatural mystery. 

 

7) Do you have an author website and/or blog? How about a book video?

 

My author website is https://www.susanneleist.com/

My blog is https://susanneleist.wordpress.com/

 

I have book trailers. My newest one is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pILNxaD5XlI

 

 

8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?

 

My best tip for a new author is to have your promotions prepared in advance before you launch your book. I learned this from experience.

 

9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?

 

I read all genres. I don’t stick to the same authors. I enjoy reading books written by different authors.

 

10) What is your favorite book of all time and why?

 

My favorite is And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie. This book led me to read mysteries, and it set my expectations for future books. For me to enjoy a book, it must have plenty of twists and turns. Thank you, Agatha Christie.

 

11) Fun Question: Do you have any pets? If so, what kind?

 

I have a Maltese. His name is Nounous, which means a teddy bear in French. My daughter gave him his name.

 

12) Fun Question 2: Do you own an electronic reading device? If so, what kind and how do you like it?

 

I own a kindle, but I read e-books on my computer. I prefer paperback books.

 

*As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

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Interview with Donald Firesmith, Author of The Secrets of Hawthorne House

Hello,

Today’s interview is with Donald Firesmith, author of The Secrets of Hawthorne House.

Please enjoy!

Best,

-Vincent Lowry

Interview:

1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?
My name is Donald Firesmith and I live in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

2) What is the title of your newest book, and what is the genre?

My newest book is The Secrets of Hawthorne House. It is a young adult modern urban fantasy.

 

3) What is the book about?

On moving next door to a dilapidated Victorian mansion, 15-year-old Matt meets Old Lady Hawthorne, the town’s infamous recluse who is said to be a witch and a murderess. When her niece arrives with her three children, something extraordinary happens. Matt meets Gerallt, the strange boy destined to become his best friend. And when Gerallt divulges the Hawthornes’ family secret, it changes Matt’s life forever.

This is the story of an unlikely friendship, the clash of two radically different cultures, secret magic, and a search for the lost Hawthorne treasure.

 

4) Where did you come up with the idea?

I wanted to show how two boys from totally different backgrounds and with opposite beliefs could eventually become friends and learn to accept each other.

 

5) How long did it take you to write it?

About 15 years. I worked on the book for a couple of years until I was about 90% done, but I could not think of the right ending. I put the manuscript away and wrote five other books. One day, I pulled out the manuscript, re-read it, and realized that I knew how it ends. It took me about another year to complete and go through the rewrite and editing process.

 

6) Did you learn anything from the project?

I learned that sometimes the best way to complete something difficult is to put it aside and do something else. That not only gives you a new perspective that helps you solve the problem; it also gives you time to practice and hone your craft so that the end result is much better than it would have been otherwise.

 

7) Do you have an author website and/or blog? How about a book video?

My author website is http:/donaldfiresmith.com, and my blog is part of it. I’m in the process of producing a trailer for my most recent book.

 

8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?

Keep writing because even if practice doesn’t make perfect, it does make improvements. Each one of my books is better than the previous one. The Secrets of Hawthorne House would not have won the 2019 Readers’ Favorite silver medal in the young adult urban paranormal category had I completed it over a decade ago.

Be an indie author; it is very easy with ebooks and print on demand. It also gives you so much more artistic control and better royalties.

Use editing tools (e.g., I use Grammarly and AutoCrit) in addition to human editors. Also, the more beta readers, the better. No matter how many people edit and read your book, some mistakes will always slip through, which is another reason to be an indie author. Each time someone  points out a problem, I go in, fix it, upload the new files, and the new version is available in a matter of hours.

Rudi Parfaite did the cover of The Secrets of Hawthorne House, my most recent book. He is the lead environmental artist for a Paris-based gaming company. He took my architectural drawings of the old mansion and perfectly recreated it. His cover deservedly won a best cover of the month award.

 

9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?

I write the kind of novels I like to read: speculative fiction such as science fiction, traditional and paranormal urban fantasy, steampunk, and horror (with monsters, not psychopaths). I read a lot of authors who have not yet made a name for themselves. Knowing how critical reviews are, especially for indie authors like myself, I always leave a review for each book I read.

 

10) What is your favorite book of all time and why?

The Tolkien trilogy (yes, I know it’s not one book but three) because I can be read over and over again without it ever getting old. When I spent a year studying in Germany, I wanted to immerse myself in written and spoken German. Tolkien was the only English-language book I allowed myself to take with me.

 

11) Fun Question: Do you have any pets? If so, what kind?

Our family has two dogs (one quite neurotically needy) and a wonderful cat.

12) Fun Question 2: Do you own an electronic reading device? If so, what kind and how do you like it?
I own a Kindle Fire, and I love it. Not only is it a great way to read; it is surprisingly inexpensive for being such an unexpectedly powerful tablet computer.

 

As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

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Interview with Susana Imaginario, Author of Wyrd Gods

Hello,

Today’s interview is with Susana Imaginario, author of Wyrd Gods.

You can find it below.

Thanks,

-Vincent Lowry

 

Interview:

1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?

Susana Imaginário. I live in Ireland.

2) What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?

Wyrd Gods is a (grim)dark fantasy with hints of satire and mystery.

3) What is the book about?

It’s about falling from grace and the thin line between selfishness and self preservation. How limited each individual’s perspective is and the consequences of assumptions and miscommunication. It’s about predation and redemption.

4) Where did you come up with the idea?

I saw this ancient yew tree in an old graveyard, all gnarled and hollow amongst the faded gravestones, and tried to imagine how it all would have looked like when the tree was young. This led to a series of incomplete stories about time travelling through trees. I liked the concept, but failed to make it work, so eventually I used the plot of another unfinished novel written years before that, a sort of Clash of the Titans set in Niflheim and (after many drafts, revisions, edits, tears and curses) Timelessness was born.

5) How long did it take you to write it?

Three years altogether. I had to stop and restart several times for ‘real’ life always takes priority.

6) Did you learn anything from the project?

So much! I’m still learning. Not just about writing and publishing but about myself and those around me. It has been a life-changing experience.

7) Do you have an author website and/or blog? How about a book video?

I have the simplest website. For now.

http://www.susanaimaginario.com

8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?

Just write. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Learn from them, fix them, and then write some more. Listen to the advice of everyone who seems to want to help you but don’t believe everything you’re told and don’t try to please them all either. You’ll fail. At the end of the day, you’re the one who has to take responsibility for your work, not them, so you better be proud of it (yes, that also includes the mistakes).

The book was edited by Lisa Gilliam (https://www.lisagilliam.com) and the cover designed by Design for Writers https://www.designforwriters.com

9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?

Fantasy, scifi and historical fiction are my favourite genres, but I’m always up for reading anything new and different. And sure, I’ll be happy to review.

10) What is your favorite book of all time and why?

The Book of Disquiet by Fernando Pessoa. It’s a flawed and incomplete masterpiece. I find it soothing. It’s not the sort of book to read through in one go, but to keep on your nightstand instead and randomly open when there’s no one to talk to. A must have for every introvert writer.

11) Fun Question: Do you have any pets? If so, what kind?

Yes, I have a very spoiled Portuguese Water Dog named Locke.

12) Fun Question 2: Do you own an electronic reading device? If so, what kind and how do you like it?

My old fourth generation Kindle is still my favourite device. I don’t like the glare of any of the new ones (including paperwhite).

*As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

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Don’t Look Back by Nadia Harlan

“The first time my mummy killed me, it was an accident.”

– – – –

My mum is a psychotic bitch and my dad moved us half way across the world to escape her.

I’ve suffered unimaginable abuse.. even dad doesn’t know the full extent.

But when the annoyingly gorgeous Rafe gives me CPR he witnesses my past in the 10 seconds our lips are connected.

Now he knows my real secret.. the secret even dad doesn’t know.. the secret that’s going to kill me..

 

 

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Interview with Prince Cavallo, Author of The Cenotaph of Dreams!

Hello,

Today’s interview is with Prince Cavallo, author of The Cenotaph of Dreams!

I hope you enjoy it!

Best,

-Vincent Lowry

 

Interview:

1)    What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?

My name is Prince Cavallo and I live in the south of England.

2)    What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?

The title of my current book, which happens to be my first, is ‘The Cenotaph of Dreams’. It is a small book of short stories and is available through the Kindle Store (here’s a link to my page on Amazon in the UK and USA). I would classify the genre as Weird Fiction, Strange Stories, Speculative Fiction or maybe even Slipstream. That said, it’s not as science fiction as Slipstream might suggest, although there are certainly Science Fiction elements in some of the stories.

3)    What is the book about?

The Cenotaph of Dreams’ is a collection of twenty-eight extremely short stories. Touching on subjects as diverse as the unexpected effects of exploration, a night in a prison cell, time travel, a family with unusual abilities and an abandoned Victorian swimming pool – what links them all is their innate strangeness.

4)    Where did you come up with the idea?

I have been experimenting with flash fiction, on and off, for longer than I can remember, but I had no idea that it had a name until quite recently. I started writing these particular stories (all limited to precisely one hundred and fifty words) about two years ago and found the idea of combining the diverse nature of weird fiction with a tightly economical word count to be an interesting challenge.

5)    How long did it take you to write it?

Although the stories are selected from the past couple of years (years which involved a lot of life), the re-writes and editing to my exacting standards are what took the most amount of time.

6)    Did you learn anything from the project?

I realised that it takes an awful lot for me to be satisfied with what I’ve written; and that procrastination is a disease of the mind to which I am highly susceptible.

7)    Do you have an author website and/or blog?

I do have a blog. I write articles that are generally related to my obscure interests, including (but not exclusively) forgotten literature, maligned architecture, un-popular music and anything else that takes my fancy. It can be found here.

8)    Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?

Even though I cannot comment from the perspective of success (as of yet, but there is still time!), something I would like to pass on is this: – Write with all your creativity and re-write with all your concentration. Leave it alone and do something else for weeks or months, but keep writing and reading. Go back to it and edit it further (if you still think it’s worthwhile), then accept when the work is as good as it is going to be and either publish it or bin it!
Being my first book I decided to do the artwork and the editing myself. I think the cover art suits the subject matter quite well. I tend to find a lot of the professional book covers look quite similar in style and are not particularly interesting or striking enough to pique my curiosity.
9)    What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?
This is a difficult one. Generally (and maybe unsurprisingly) I like to read things which are a little odd, although that is not necessarily confined to a particular genre. Stories which are revelatory or have an element of wonder are what appeal the most, but they are extremely hard to find. I do like to try new authors and would be happy to review their work, but I think my heart lies in the writing of the late 19th and early 20th century.

 

10) What is your favourite book of all time and why?

If I had to pick one book that I could read endlessly, it would have to be Edgar Allan Poe’s ‘Tales of Mystery and Imagination’. In particular it would be the leather-bound copy I inherited from my grandfather. It includes the fantastic, other worldly and rather gruesome illustrations of Harry Clarke. It was awarded to him by the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty for Meritorious Work at Naval College in the 1930’s. It has been in my possession since I was a teenager and for me it opened a door into The Weird. Thankfully, I have so far failed to find the exit.

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