Popular Posts

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Random Interview Saturday! RJ Conte

DISCLAIMER
The H. L. Burke Random Interview is not like other interviews. The questions are all over the place. They have no purpose. Their purpose is their lack of purpose.
There are nine questions because cats, but these nine questions are subject to change without notice, so the questions one person answers may not be the questions answered by the next author.
Our next author rides in on a desk lamp! Let's find out why. It's RJ Conte!
RJ Conte


Author bio:
RJ Conte, formerly Rachael Lynn Thomas, has kissed only one boy in her entire life. And she married him, inspiring her to write about sweet or powerful love stories ever since. RJ Conte writes psychological, relational fiction that explores human nature and the depths of the soul, while pointing readers to their Creator.

Sum up your life in five words and two punctuation marks. I have energy and pep!!
In your opinion, which is the best space ship? As a teen, I saw the old War of the Worlds movie at a friend's house. I remember loving the subtle "let's survive because I think we're in love" element to what was a cheesy alien movie. And I adored the alien spaceships. I thought they'd make amazing desk lamps. My friend, fellow writer, Heidi Wright, was highly amused that she'd invited me over, shown me a film classic, and all I could do was go on and on about desk lamps. Seriously, though, aren't these things adorable??? Someone order me one to sit on my desk, please?

If you could live inside a theme park ride, which would it be? Um... It's a Small World at Disneyland? I mean, the dolls are so cute. And I'd have lots of friends from all over the world.
Which of the following potions would you like to possess: a Love Potion, a Sleeping Potion, an Invisibility Potion, or Coffee? I've ALWAYS wanted to be invisible - to know what was really going on with people, what they really were like behind closed doors, what they're really saying... Yeah, can we make my desk lamp spaceship a secret monitoring device too? I promise I'm not a stalker. I like to write psychological, inter-personal fiction. I like knowing what makes people tick way down deep inside. :-D
If your favorite historical era had an ice cream flavor made in its honor, what would it taste like? Let's go with Victorian because the dresses were so pretty. I'd say pecan praline, which also might be my favorite ice cream of all time...
If you had to communicate with an alien presence in a non-traditional way (like, for instance, interpretive dance) what would be your method of choice?
BY SHRINKING THEIR SPACESHIPS INTO MINIATURE DESK LAMP STALKER MONITORING SYSTEMS!! Okay, I'm on a roll, baby!
Who wrote the book of love? The Lord God 😊
You have to trade places with one of your characters for a day. Which and why? Ugh. My characters go through horrible, tough, soul-shattering things... Hmmm... I'll be either Soleil Punicello from "Gem" in the Hall of Heroes anthology, or Blessing Spivey from Heartsick. Both of those characters are merely thinly veiled versions of myself anyway. :-D
If this question were any question in the world, what question would you want it to be and how would you answer it? RJ, list one thing about H.L. Burke that you like and appreciate: Her savvy business sense, helpful advice to all other authors, and ever-flowing story ideas and writing disciplines. Woops. That was more than one thing. 😃 Thank you, Heidi!

Links: Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/RJ-Conte/e/B00MDY4T0S/ Blog: http://blonderj.wordpress.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BlondeRJConte/ Twitter: @BlondeRJConte

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Best H. L. Burke Heroine

A little while back I did a poll to determine my readers' favorite Romantic Lead in my books (the guys who get the girls) and posted the results. When doing the same thing for my ladies, I decided to go with the phrase "heroines" instead, because a couple of my female leads actually don't have romantic counterparts (mainly Cora from Cora and the Nurse Dragon), but I still wanted to include them.
Similarly to the guy poll, I did not include all my characters but rather kept it to the main characters or characters who were half of a major romance in the book (which means Abry from Cora and the Nurse Dragon and Zebedy from Beggar Magic did not make the poll, though I almost included Zebedy because of her relationship with ... spoilers)  ... so here is a run down of my leading ladies and who received the votes.

Now, while the Guys Poll was neck and neck, the Ladies Poll had a clear winner. Take a look at this pie chart.


One lady took most of the votes. But which one? Well ... you'll have to read on to see.

Let's start with the "tied for fourth" group. These are ladies who received a single vote, and I'm listing them in the "Honorable Mentions" Category. 
Willa from Lands of Ash, Leilani from Beggar Magic, Rill from Spellsmith & Carver, and Cora from Cora and the Nurse Dragon ... honestly, if I were picking my personal favorite, I really love Rill, so I'm sorry she didn't do better on this. There were a lot of leading ladies to choose from, however, and I guess they all couldn't win. 
Some quotes from the voters:
I love so many of your female characters, but Willa is the winner for me because I related so deeply to her, personally. <3 i="">
I love Leilani because she was resourceful and caring. She knew what she wanted from life but she also wasn't willing to try to and be something she wasn't.


So ... onward and upward to the top three!


Third place was a tie, and kind of a surprising one between two of my newer creations.

Laidra from Coiled and Lotta from the second book (and third ... spoilers) of the Spellsmith & Carver series. 
Lotta's story has only been in print about a month and Laidra's since June, so I didn't think either would have a chance to develop a "following." Apparently both women appeal to my reader base (or maybe my reader base just really likes L--a names?).
We didn't get any quotes for Laidra, but the readers had a lot to say about Lotta.
can't vote just one here so will also mention I love Lotta, but she reminds me of an older Nyssa Glass
I really relate to her (Lotta) and she has my taste in men. 🤗
It was a big toss up between Lotta and Trea (from Lands of Ash) but Lotta won out in the end :) Funny they're actually very similar characters and extremely different personality than me. Though I can relate to their social awkwardness!
This was so hard. I went with Lotta because she's the character I wish I'd thought of. Love her. 👍🏻


Second place was held by Shannon from The Dragon and the Scholar series. This feels appropriate since Ewan (her romantic interest) was in the top three for my Guy Poll (he got third, beaten out by Brick from Beggar Magic and Ellis from Nyssa Glass). 
Some reader quotes about Shannon. 
Shannon is feisty and bookish, which just makes her awesome.
Shannon is smart, sassy, and not afraid to be herself. Plus, she says one of my favorite lines of dialogue, "As a free woman, I retain the right to be ridiculous whenever I wish"


Shannon was my first heroine, so she's had a long time to endear herself with my readers, and I do like her a lot. 
Still, there was one obvious winner, one unstoppable force who picked her way into my readers's heart and took this poll by a landslide.
And that is ...

The Peerless Nyssa Glass.


Similarly to how Ellis Dalhart from the same series took the Guy Poll, this wasn't completely unexpected. Of all my books, the Nyssa Glass series has the strongest following. However, while Ellis's first place win was a close race (beating Brick from Beggar Magic by a single vote) Nyssa smashed the competition, getting 13 votes to Shannon's 6. 

Why do the readers love her? Let's see what they have to say:

Gotta be Nyssa!
Nyssa beats out Cora by the sheer volume of her adventures. Plus: Ellis.
Really comes down to Nyssa, Rill, and Lotta, but I can only pick one...
Whyyy are you making me pick between Nyssa and Leilani and Rill? *goes with Nyssa but really now*
I LOVE NYSSA GLASS!!!
I love Nyssa!! She is my favorite female character
Smart, witty and best of all sarcastic.
Nyssa's too much fun not to win. Although Leilani and Rill both are close seconds.
Nyssa is so smart and capable. Technically she doesn't NEED a man to take care of her.


So that's the poll. Should I do another one? Favorite sidekicks? Best villains? Let me know if the comments! 

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Random Interview Saturday! Missy Sheldrake

DISCLAIMER
The H. L. Burke Random Interview is not like other interviews. The questions are all over the place. They have no purpose. Their purpose is their lack of purpose.
There are nine questions because cats, but these nine questions (10 this time because the owner of this blog is bad at counting) are subject to change without notice, so the questions one person answers may not be the questions answered by the next author.
An author flutters down on delicate fairy wings! It is Missy Sheldrake!!!
Missy Sheldrake
About the Author
Missy Sheldrake is an author/illustrator who has been conjuring images of fairies in one form or another since she was very young. The wind in the trees and the rich scent of forest earth are her most treasured sources of inspiration, and on most mornings you will find her wandering the wooded paths, dreaming of the next adventure she hopes to put to the page.
Missy was born in Connecticut and attended Western Connecticut State University, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Art with a concentration in painting and illustration. Even then, in her free time, she was writing. She moved to Northern Virginia several years ago and lives there now, on the outskirts of Washington D.C., with her true love and their son. She published her first novel, Call of Kythshire, in March of 2015 and intends to keep writing as long as the fairies allow it.


The Interview

If you had a store, what would you sell?
I have so many answers to this question!  My first thought was art. I would love to have a store filled with artwork and books by a variety of independent, unknown artists and authors. People could come browse the shelves, view the art, and sip wine or coffee.
After pondering the question for a little while, though, I realized I had forgotten about my nap store idea. I’ve always thought someone somewhere should open a nap ‘n’ watch, where mothers of babies and young children could come and get a nice private room to take a nap in for a couple of hours, and in the meantime there’s a play area hosted by certified childcare professionals who watch her babies while she sleeps. I wish there was something like this when my guy was little!

Best writing tool: pen, pencil, keyboard, or crayon?
Keyboard and pen! I have an obsession with each. I do some of my writing on my ipad, and have a small collection of bluetooth keyboards. I finally found one that works just right - the Apple magic keyboard. I also have a thing for pens. I have a million pens, but every time I go to the office supply store, I beeline to the pen section. Something about them has fascinated me for as long as I can remember. My great-grandpa used to have a drawer full of all kinds of interesting pens. Maybe that’s why.

What's your sign? Mine is that one that warns you to watch for falling cows.
My sign says, “STOP! WRITE NOW!” I need the reminder or I just end up prioritizing housework all day instead of writing. I just now came up with that on the fly, but it’s an excellent idea. After I finish this interview, I’m making that sign and pinning it up all over my house.

What weather is your writing? A dark and stormy night? A sunshiny day?
It’s definitely sunshiny. A little warm with a pleasant breeze, until the freak tornado comes out of nowhere and scatters everything you know and love for miles and miles. But then the sun comes out again, and someone comes to help you collect things, and in the end you’ve made a new friend, so it wasn’t all that bad after all.

On a scale of 1 to 10, what do you think your chances are of surviving the zombie invasion?
Unless I’m already in some kind of zombie-proof facility decked with a laptop for writing and lots of delicious food when it strikes, probably like, a 2. P.S. Zombies seriously freak me out. I really, really hate them. A lot. Ever since Michael Jackson’s Thriller, I have been terrified of them. I like Thriller now, though. From an artist’s perspective, I can really appreciate the work that went into making that video.

You can time travel in an oddly specific way that only allows you to visit other authors. Where do you go and what do you do?
I’d love conversations with Jules Verne, Mary Shelley, Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, L. Frank Baum, Jim Henson, and so many of my other favorites who’re now sitting at that great typewriter in the sky. I’d ask them how they survived without social media and Amazon and Goodreads reviews to keep them motivated. I’d ask them whether they ever cared about sales, numbers, and public opinion, or whether they just wrote for the pure joy of writing. I’d observe their writing habits. Did they write every day, or only when the mood struck them? I’d learn some real perspective from each of them, I think.
You receive a contract that allows you to have any pet you want (mythical or real) but in return you have to spend a week AS a pet to a mythical creature of your choice (dragon, giant, sphinx?). Do you take it or do you decline?
If it means no laundry for that week, then absolutely! Ha! Seriously, I’d love a...oh. Hm. I was going to say fairy, but Flitt was in my head scolding me before I could finish the thought. Fairies are people, just like humans. They could never be pets. Shame on me. How about a fairy dragon, then? A tiny, talking dragon with beautiful rainbow wings who would follow me around and do magical things. I’d hope I could be a pet to a… huh! A fairy! I don’t know if any of them would have me, though.
What is the best dream you ever had? Alternately, what is the worst nightmare you’ve ever experienced?
I have a lot of dreams in which it’s an ordinary day, but I can fly. Not for long distances, but just very long, high leaps.It’s an exhilarating feeling. Sometimes if I really get going, I can jump on the wind and go very far, almost like actual flying. Sometimes, I can hover at the treetop level. Every time I have these dreams, it’s like a new discovery to me--look what I can do! This is amazing. I love the feeling that comes with it. Those dreams are my favorite.

Alternatively, my worst dreams are of angry skies over angry oceans. I can see the storms coming in from the horizon, and usually I take shelter in some place with large windows. As the storm charges closer, the ocean surges, and inevitably there’s a tidal wave that crashes into the window, smashing it and drowning me and everyone else inside. In these dreams, I’m aware I’ve had the dreams before, and I think it’s really happening in real life this time. All those warnings, and there’s still nothing I can do to stop it.

If you were to plan a “literary crossover” where the casts/worlds of two books (or series of books) were to combine, which would you choose and how would it go down?
I’m going to take this opportunity to plug a couple of my favorite indie authors, because I’d really love to see Christina McMullen’s Ellie from “A Space Girl from Earth” bump into LX from GG Atcheson’s “The Legacy” series. Princess space robot commander and vampire aliens, please.

If this question were any question in the world, what question would you want it to be and how would you answer it?
Question: What are your two favorite cheeses? Answer: Extra sharp cheddar, and Roquefort.


LINKS
Call of Kythshire (Book One):https://amzn.com/B00UVLQWGY
Call of Sunteri (Book Two):https://amzn.com/B0187IG3HK
Call of Brindelier (Book Three):https://amzn.com/B01FM8XR7W
Call of Hywilkin (Book Four)
https://amzn.com/B06WGNWLH9
Snowberry Blossom (Perma-free holiday short story):https://amzn.com/B0196P041O

Website:
www.missysheldrake.com
Pinterest:

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Strangest Browser Searches


I was tagged by Jenelle Schmidt to participate in this fun challenge created by Madeline @ Short and Snappy. Honestly, most of my funny searches are for personal use. Like I searched "death by cow per year" to win an argument and "Pepto-Bismal Pronunciation" to win another argument (hmm, maybe I get into too many arguments?) and "Wizard Howl MBTI" because I thought he was probably an ENFP like me. I just like to slither out of things, you know? 


The Rules:
  • Access your browser history
  • Pick at least 5 of your strangest searches you’ve had to look up as a writer
  • List them below with an explanation as to why you had to look them up
  • Tag 2-5 other bloggers
So here are mine!

How to get out of a pit.

I didn't get anything that helpful with this one, and admittedly I wasn't super optimistic, but if you put a character in a pit, you have to get them out of the pit, and ... yeah. I didn't get my answer from Google here. 

Tape Measure Invention

I write Steampunk/Gaslamp a lot (fantasy/scifi set in a vaguely Victorian setting), and while that is allowed to have some anachronistic tech, it needs to feel grounded in that historical setting, so I do a lot of searches to find out when phonographs or balloons or tape measures were invented, just to judge how well they fit.

Difference between Pistol and Revolver

Because I almost used the words interchangeably and realized that it was probably not right and wanted to double check. 

Heard Tell or Heard Tale

Sometimes it is simply faster to Google something than to look it up in a dictionary. Similarly Stalagmite because I THOUGHT I knew the difference between Stalagmite and Stalactite but easier to double check in the moment than fix it later. 

Symptoms for Dehydration 

Kind of self-explanatory. 

History of Infant Feeding

I had some babies. They needed to be temporarily away from their nursing mom. Needed to figure out how they would eat. 

So mine aren't all that great, honestly. Maybe these authors will provide more interesting material.





Saturday, September 9, 2017

Random Interview Saturday! H. R. B. Collotzi

DISCLAIMER
The H. L. Burke Random Interview is not like other interviews. The questions are all over the place. They have no purpose. Their purpose is their lack of purpose.
There are nine questions because cats, but these nine questions (10 this time because the owner of this blog is bad at counting) are subject to change without notice, so the questions one person answers may not be the questions answered by the next author.

Our next author KARATE CHOPS! her way through the door. It's H. R. B. Collotzi!

H. R. B. Collotzi
Author Bio:

I was born in Berlin, Germany, but came back to the US when I was just a baby. Early in life I found a love for telling stories, but when my parents told me to stop lying I kept them inside my head. When I got older (and hopefully wiser) I decided to turn those ‘lies’ into stories again. I began a serious (if you can call fantasy ‘serious’) writing career in 2010. The Secret of Avonoa was my first published novel. Book two in the Avonoa series, The Shadow of Avonoa, is currently available and book three, The Heart of Avonoa, is set for release in August 2017! There will be two more books in the Avonoa series. I also have a couple of modern-day sci-fi novels that I plan to re-vamp into young adult novels when my dragon series is finished. I currently live in Minnesota (yes, by choice) with my husband and our three kids.


Interview Questions:

If you had a store, what would you sell?
I would definitely have a bakery, because I love donuts!

Sum up your life in five words and two punctuation marks.
Rough youth, but amazing adventures!

Pirates, Ninjas, or Vikings? Choose carefully.
Pirates don't always live by a code. Vikings aren't always intelligent. Ninjas live by an ethical code. They are well-trained so they're also smart. Plus, I have two black belts and I teach Gracie Jiu Jitsu, so I think I could take at least one of them on if I had to.

Technology or Magic?
Magic! Or as it's called in Avonoa, majik! You don't have to have any talent to use technology. You have to have at least a little musical talent to do majik in Avonoa, in order to make incantations work. Plus, you have to be smart to know the ingredients and their uses. You have to be adventurous to discover new uses of those ingredients. Not to say I don't love a good sci-fi, but dragons are the most majikal creatures!

On a scale of 1 to 10, what do you think your chances are of surviving the zombie invasion?
Martial arts, I can build a fire, and the fact that I'm a firearm enthusiast...I'd say fairly decent.

You can time travel in an oddly specific way that only allows you to visit other authors. Where do you go and what do you do?
I would probably visit Sam Clemens first and float down the Mississippi with him for giggles. Then see Tolkien, Vern and Doyle and pick their brains!

You receive a contract that allows you to have any pet you want (mythical or real) but in return you have to spend a week AS a pet to a mythical creature of your choice (dragon, giant, sphinx?). Do you take it or do you decline?
Absolutely, take it! I think I could survive a week as the pet of a unicorn. I don't think they would be very brutal. Curled up in the hay, I'll dream about flying away on the back of my dragon!

What’s the most important lesson you ever learned from a cartoon?
Calvin and Hobbes, always believe. You can shape your own reality. It doesn't matter if no one around you believes in your dreams, as long as you do!

Do you consider yourself a cat person, or a dog person?
I have always considered myself a dog person, because I love to play! I've always thought that, given the choice I would get a dog. However, my favorite animal (next to a dragon, of course) has always been a lion. I love big cats! And the older I get, the better I think a cat would fit my life. So, maybe a little bit of both!

If this question were any question in the world, what question would you want it to be and how would you answer it?
Why dragons? What is it about dragons that I love so much?
Dragons are everything I wish to be in life. They are powerful, but gentle. They are wise, but playful. They are ruthless, but kind. And...they can fly!


Social Media/Sales Links:
Facebook: @hrbcollotzi
Twitter: @HRBCollotzi

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Lawless: Cover Reveal!


If you follow me on social media you know I love DRAGONS!!! And Steampunk!!! AND STEAMPUNK DRAGONZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ ...

BREATHES FIRE!!!

Oh my.
Sorry.
Got a little ...
(coughs smoke)
carried away.

But anyway, when Janeen Ippolito asked if I could host a cover reveal for the Steampunk Dragons of her new book Lawless, I jumped at it.

About Lawless:

The salvation of humans and dragons lies within a convicted murderer.

Dragonshifter Kesia Ironfire has one goal—to redeem her past by serving the cruel dragon Pinnacle as a soldier in the dragon-human war.

Then a rogue mission to spy on a new airship explodes into sickening green smoke. The same mysterious green smoke that was present the night of Kesia’s crime. When her dragon overlords deny any involvement, she and her tactical partner Zephryn Nightstalker try to investigate--and are sentenced to death.

Still searching for answers, Kesia and Zephryn flee to the human military capital, where Captain Shance Windkeeper has been furloughed after the destruction of his airship. Eager to discover what--and who--blew up his vessel, he agrees to help Kesia and Zephryn infiltrate High Command. In exchange, Kesia must pretend to be his betrothed so Shance can escape an arranged marriage. If only she knew what ‘betrothed’ and ‘arranged marriage’ meant.

But human social customs are the least of her worries. Dark secrets surface as Kesia delves deeper--secrets that challenge the facts of her crime and undermine the war itself.

A steampunk fantasy adventure with a side of quirky romance and snark.



Author Bio

Janeen Ippolito is two authors for the price of one! She writes quirky nonfiction world-building and writing resources, plus she's an author of speculative fiction with monsters, misfits, and mushy stuff. She's also an experienced author coach, teacher, and the Fearless Leader (president) of Uncommon Universes Press. In her spare time, she enjoys sword-fighting, reading, food, and making brownie batter. A lifelong misfit, she believes different is beautiful and that everyone has the ability to tell their story. Two of her goals are eating fried tarantulas and traveling to Antarctica. This extroverted writer loves getting connected, so find her on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and at her two websites: janeenippolito.com and writeinsideout.com


And now ... THE COVER!!!





Are you excited for the dragons now?

If so you can pre-order ...

At minimum, it would be awesome if you could share the following:
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Lawless-Ironfire-Legacy-Book-1-ebook/dp/B075BSZ3JF/

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36188056-lawless
(so people can add it to their "want to read" list)

Autographed Paperback Preorder:
https://uncommonuniverses.com/product/lawless-autographed-paperback/
(discounted price)

Additional Preorder Links (discretion):
Apple: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1278784157
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/lawless-36
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lawless-janeen-ippolito/1127060987?ean=2940154896310


Social Media (discretion)
UUP Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/uncommonuniverses/

Janeen Ippolito Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/janeenippolitowriter/
Janeen Ippolito Website: www.janeenippolito.com
Janeen Ippolito Twitter: @TheQuietPen
Janeen Ippolito Instagram: janeen_ippolito




Saturday, September 2, 2017

Random Interview Saturday! Intisar Khanani

DISCLAIMER
The H. L. Burke Random Interview is not like other interviews. The questions are all over the place. They have no purpose. Their purpose is their lack of purpose.
There are nine questions because cats, but these nine questions (10 this time because the owner of this blog is bad at counting) are subject to change without notice, so the questions one person answers may not be the questions answered by the next author.
It's a dark and stormy night. The thunder crashes. We're blinded by lightning and in, out of the rain, rushes our next author, shouting, "Come with me if you want to live!"
It's Intisar Khanani!

Intisar Khanani
Intisar Khanani grew up a nomad and world traveler. She has lived in five different states as well as in Jeddah on the coast of the Red Sea. Until recently, Intisar wrote grants and developed projects to address community health with the Cincinnati Health Department, which was as close as she could get to saving the world. Now she focuses her time on her two passions: raising her family and writing fantasy. Intisar's current projects include a companion trilogy to her debut novel, Thorn, featuring the heroine introduced in her free short story The Bone Knife, and The Sunbolt Chronicles.



The Interview


What's in the box? What box? How should I know!? You're the one standing there with an imaginary box!
Must be take-out! That, or the shriveled remains of the evil king’s heart, as sliced out by the huntress he sent out to kill his dear, lovely stepson (the fairest in all the land). Huntresses are tricksy that way.

Best writing tool: pen, pencil, keyboard, or crayon?
Pen. Not only is it mightier than the sword, but it doesn’t require sharpening. I actually do most of my writing on the computer (cue keyboard), but I work through my general outline and most plot problems with pen and paper. Something about switching mediums to one that’s a little slower helps me work through the questions at hand.


When cats take over the world, how do you plan to win their good graces?
I have a jar of catnip in my car. Just in case. (You think I’m joking.)

If you were the captain of a space ship, what would its mission be? Exploration? Colonization? Partying?
Oh, I think we’d be the anti-colonization ship. You know, going boldly to “new” planets in advance of the colonizers and making sure native residents have the chance to demand full protection from said colonizers in advance of their arrival. Or establishing protected planet status on behalf of less-advanced life forms that really don’t need us mucking up their world and acting like manifest destiny is a thing. (It’s not.)

During an alien invasion, what would be your weapon of choice?
A love triangle. I mean, what else could confuse them enough to stop their invasion while they choose who they most ship… and if they disagree with each other, maybe they’ll just obliterate themselves and leave us all in peace. (For the record, love triangles usually drive me crazy, but not to the point of obliterating others.)

You can time travel in an oddly specific way that only allows you to visit other authors. Where do you go and what do you do?
I get really nervous speaking to authors whose work I love but whom I don’t really know personally. I mean, part of me would love to meet Jane Austen or Robin McKinley (yeah, I totally put them together in the same sentence), but then what would I do? Invite myself over for tea? And then giggle nervously and drop my biscuits? Nah. I think I’d do much better as courier between authors and their favorite authors. I mean, wouldn’t it be cool to help start a conversation between a modern-day mystery writer and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, for example? Think of the mentoring that could happen! Think of the possibilities for new, co-authored works with Shakespeare! What could possibly go wrong?

Write me some Vogon Poetry (for those not in the know, Vogon poetry is so awful youll want to rip your ears off and eat them. Its considered a method of torture in many corners of the galaxy. So give us your worst).
The trouble with Vogon Poetry is you have to be really good to be really bad. I mean, if I just wrote “Blarffie on a peanut, slimey on a grofflenut, rhyme-ie this a boffleput,” it’s bad, but it’s not reader-destroying. It’s just bad. So… after spending literally a week avoiding this question, here’s my best attempt, recognizing that I’m not a poet quite yet:

Smirkle, smirkle flight the bird
Like a burp-iferous turd
A broken window smaish the grittle
Goldilocks so bold and brittle
Crunch and munch crickly bones…
Don’t go snooping in bearly homes.

(Can you tell I’ve been doing a fairy tale unit with my daughters? Also, I’m sorry my worst isn’t worse.)

Can you simply walk into Mordor?
I hear it’s been done before…. There might have been some injuries involved, though. So no, I cannot. I may be willing to bobsled since it’s all downhill from Gondor, though.

If you had to board yourself up in a store to wait out the apocalypse, what store would you choose?
My seven year old is voting for a restaurant. Which makes me think I should be practical about this? So a lot depends on how long this apocalypse is supposed to last, and if we’re looking at surviving a meteor impact or hordes of zombies or a deadly viral outbreak. Or all three. Assuming all three, because we all know that when it rains, it pours, I think I’d be looking for a military surplus store, preferably located in an underground bunker, and containing enough dehydrated food, water purifying tablets, and toilet paper to last a few months. Since I’d have my Kindle with me, and my daughter would have her restaurant, I think we’d be all set. Military surplus stores totally carry toilet paper, don’t they?

If this question were any question in the world, what question would you want it to be and how would you answer it?

Unfair. I’d like to be the one asking the question of someone else, pretty please, who has all the answers. Because I really need to know how to write a one-draft wonder (revision is miserable! And also by far the longest part of the process!), and how to cook without actually spending any time in the kitchen (unlikely, but how awesome would that be?), and exactly how much wood a woodchuck would chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood (don’t tell me you haven’t wondered that yourself)….
Connect with the Author