Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal, Erotica
Publisher: Mojocastle Press
Date of Publication: 3/8/15
Number of pages: 72
Word Count: 18138
Cover Artist: Vanessa Hawthorne
In a time when legends ruled ~
Deep in the heart of the Kelljek Mountains the Wolf People of Elnorn follow the ways of Odin – living and dying by the sword.
An untried warrior king must find truth in the darkness ~
Gararic – warrior and ruler wages war against the dark arts of the Black Witch, Dianaria and finds he must battle for more than just his people’s freedom. Will he find the truth he seeks on the sweet taste of her lips or will treachery destroy him and his people?
To be set free, one only needs to dream ~
A Dreamwalker by birth, Dianaria knows her fate and her future lies with the warrior king. Can love conquer the shadows of betrayal and hate?
Lightning and thunder danced through the sky in a symmetrical glow, roaring through the cliffs. Gararic hurried up narrow winding paths of loose shale. It would take him a morning’s time in good weather to get up the path to the Perch. With the storm riding the edge of the sky, he needed to be there sooner and by the looks of the storm clouds, their darkening, heavy weight would not hold for long.
As lightning continued to arc across the sky, illuminating his way in intervals, each step grew more precarious as the small stones beneath his feet crumbled and the incline grew steeper. Halfway up the rocky path, the heavens opened up, unleashing the storm in all its fury, pelting Gararic with sleet and rain and soaking through his garments within moments.
Thor’s Hammer! He quickened his pace, all the while keeping the opening to the cave in sight. In a flash of light bright enough to warm the heavens, a shadow appeared in the opening of the cave.
He paused to watch the light dance around the mountain, giving him an excellent view of the cave’s opening. Staring in disbelief, he cursed Dianaria freely. “Witch! I swear by Odin’s blood, if you have brought this storm to torment me, I will kill you with my bare hands.” His roar echoed off the mountain.
Is that not your wish?
Startled, Gararic turned on the trail, certain he would find her on the path beside him. But the path he climbed was empty. No one followed up the winding rocky pathway. No one could be seen in the valley below.
He reached for the hilt of his sword, certain the devil’s army was on his trail. When he looked back to the opening of the cave, it too was empty. He stood silent on the path; the icy rain sluiced down upon him, staring at the empty opening of the cave in disbelief.
“What do you know of what I wish, Witch?”
The wind silently whispered her seductive reply. Come and tell me, Gararic, Leader of the Chenia River Clan. Leader of the Wolf People of Elnorn. There are many things to know this night.
Chills of desire flowed over Gararic; her soft words danced over his body. “I’ll not barter with a dead woman!” He tightened his grip on his sword, angered at his body’s response to her.
Are you so sure? Your father was not so quick to turn me away. Her voice was sultry as a moonlit night.
Gararic cursed under his breath. An image of her in all her naked beauty, alone in the creek with winter surrounding her, instantly filled his mind. Cursing himself for a fool, he tried to let his anger rule him and turned his thoughts to his father’s death. He tried to let his rage turn to molten lava and spread through his veins, knowing it was the one thing that would keep her from affecting him.
She had killed his father. She sought to kill his people. Yet even now, she wished to barter with him for his soul. If he wished to be the victor of this battle, he could not let his baser needs affect him. She would use her womanly wiles against him if she could. And that he could not allow if he wished to live.
Amazed at her audacity, he vowed he would defeat her. He would see who was more cunning; the Witch, or the warrior. Aye, he would play her game. But it was a game that he was certain she would never win.
Bounding up the path, his anger fueling his every step, Gararic hastily made his way up the remaining length of the mountain through the snow, ice, and rain. By the time he finally reached the entrance, there was no sign of Dianaria, the cave appearing as dark as his mood.
“Too afraid to face me, I see?” He wiped the rain from his face and wrung it from the length of his sable hair.
The back of the cave burst into a brilliant red flame. Gararic jumped back, drawing his sword before him. The fire died down to a single flame. He was able to see the shadow of a woman reflected on the wall of the cave. Next to the fire stood the Witch, in all her dark glory.
At first he was unsure if she was real or another image, this time from a waking dream. His eyes narrowed, taking in the voluptuous figure before him. With her back to him, besides her lush curves, he could see the rich fall of her waist-length black hair.
She wore no cloak, and through the length and thickness of her hair he could see the glorious stretch of her legs, encased in boots to her knees. He recalled the visions from his dreams, and wondered absently if she ever wore clothes. Her feminine laughter startled him from his reverie.
“Do you intend to stand in the cold all night, warrior?” Her voice was soft and sweet as a gently flowing brook.
Did you always wanted to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
I think most writers just are…by this I mean we write because we have to. Whether it’s lists, poems, notes; sometimes, we just have to get the words out however we can. Have I always wanted to be an author – yes. I also wanted to be a mortician, a criminal investigator, a rock star (can’t sing a lick,) and an archeologist. The list is endless. But the words were easier and more captivating and they take you to far more exciting places.
When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?
I think my first published poem was in 2001. Did that make me a “writer?” Probably not. Writing is a craft that you hone over time. It takes practice, hard work, and tremendous dedication. And, I think, the ability to check your ego at the door. Just because you can sling a few sentences into paragraphs doesn’t render you with the ability to tell a story. It’s a learning process. When you think you’ve learned enough, you should start over and try and remember why you started to write in the first place. To my mind, writing should take your reader away – whether it’s for five minutes or an afternoon. If your words have some sort of effect on your reader, perhaps then you’ve accomplished something.
How long did it take to get your first book published?
I’m probably a bit of an industry oddity. I went to a writer’s convention – met an editor at large (still love ya, Ansley!) Sent her the outline of my first three chapters and she set me up with three publishing companies. One rejected me, the second said to make some changes and resubmit, and the third accepted me – knowing changes would come. I’ve been writing ever since. Truly, truly blessed. See – fate, luck and blessings happen. You never know what can happen.
Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?
I work for the fourth largest financial firm in the country helping people plan for their retirements and ultimately, their demise… It’s an important job, planning for death. And Death has so much to say. Does it spill over into my writing – you bet. Life is funny that way.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say? My latest title is, Dreamwalker. In 20 words or less --
Viking legends, warrior kings, defiant witches, magic, mystery, betrayal, hate, lust, greed & fate. Where will your dreams take you?
Who is your publisher? Or do you self-publish?
I am currently published with Mojocastle Press and love everything about it. Small Press is wonderful and my entire team is outstanding.
How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it? I’d have to say it depends on the story and the characters. And what is going on in my life. I’m busy – plain and simple. I also let my characters tell their own stories. If that takes a couple weeks or months then that’s what it takes. I don’t do outlines (my characters tend to laugh at me if I try to make them do things they don’t wish to do.) I just write. It’s a process.
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
I have a lot in the mix; from a Queen to the Land of the Dead, to fairies and werewolves, to the final chapter in my Faith Savage Demon Huntress series. There is always something in the works or something waiting its turn to be written.
What genre would you place your books into?
I would say all of my work has a paranormal element. Where it goes from there is to be determined. That includes sci-fi, gothic horror, time-travel historical, and poetry. I don’t think it’s a good idea to limit one’s self – whether that’s with your writing or in life. You should always be open to learning and attempting new possibilities. Growth is important.
Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
I don’t generally listen to anything when I’m writing and if say, the T.V. is on, I don’t notice it. It’s just me and my characters.
Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?
I try to read everything that’s written about my stories. Always good to get a perspective on what readers and reviewers have to say – they are our bread and butter. But you can’t take everything to heart either. Not everyone will have the same opinion, or a nice opinion, or understand myth and legends the way others will. It’s still a good idea to get to know your readers and get their take. Growth only happens when you look at things from alternate angles.
Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?
Each story I write is different in every way therefore, how the title, characters and settings come are different. Sometimes, it almost feels like a flashback and whole scenes and settings and conversations will just be there and the title and the characters names will make themselves abundantly clear. And, before I even realize it, half the book is written. Other times, you have to draw the names of things out – like painting; the first few brush strokes lay the foundation, but the more color you add, you get the image eventually.
How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
Character names are like that painting referenced above. Some characters know exactly who they are, what they do and how they behave. Some are bigger than life. Others take time, like raising a child. Their growth occurs over many chapters and they surprise you at the most remarkable times.
Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")
I believe every book has some sort of message or moral. Being true to yourself. Finding the good in the bad. Helping others first. Love is always out there if you just reach for it. Good always conquers evil. Whatever it is, a writer always hopes that the reader will find the message within their story. That they’ll take something positive away with them when they reach the end.
Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?
I prefer a book that’s available. If I’m at a book store and something catches my fancy, I buy it. Same as online. I like ease of access, regardless of where I purchase it.
Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favorite/worst book to movie transfer?
In most circumstances – good Lord, no! Look back at the mess they made of Anne Rice’s books. Irritating doesn’t even describe it. It would have been so much better is the screen writers had actually read the series. You can’t just make someone’s creator, somebody else. Especially with vampires; ruins the whole story. When you find yourself sitting in the theatre yelling at the screen – not a good thing. I think the best transfer I’ve read/seen was The Dark Half by Stephen King. Excellent book. Good movie. If you’ve have had a chance to check out either, I’d recommend both. An author trying to kill off their villains never tends to go well…especially when said villain doesn’t wish to die.
Of course, what author doesn’t have a list of their own works they’d love to see made into a movie, or an FX or HBO series? There would be two of my works that I’d love to give a try – Once Upon a Dragon would make an excellent family Christmas movie. And I would love to see Faith Savage on FX. They’ve got the gumption to walk the line on a lot of hard core issues. I’d love to see what they’d do with faith, hope, temptation and demons…
K.A. M’Lady lives in the ‘burbs of Chicago with her husband, her three children, and her beagle, Chevy. She’s gone to school to be a business assistant, a criminal investigator, and an insurance agent, but she’s more at home lost in the pages of mythology, myth, and fiction, in the worlds of possibility, with all the dark creatures that the night can hold. And she’s happily dragging her husband right along with her — though he questions her sanity at times.
You can find more of her mayhem on her website — www.kamlady.net. Or feel free to drop her a line — firstname.lastname@example.org. Sometimes, she does come out of the Darkness to answer her e-mail.