Category Archives: Author Interviews

Author Interview: Dean J Anderson

Please welcome Australian author Dean J Anderson to No Wasted Ink. He is a writer of paranormal fiction.

Author Dean J AndersonHi, Dean J Anderson is my name. I live in Central Queensland, Australia with my wife and son in the small coastal town of Yeppoon. Best of both worlds, beach and bush in my back yard.

My real world job has changed recently. It sees me developing, building and fitting out a vegetarian/vegan/healthy foods option restaurant called Cafe Calma, in Rockhampton, the beef and 4 wheel drive capital of Australia. Yes, I do like a challenge or I am possibly insane. Maybe both.

When and why did you begin writing?

I’ve always been an avid reader since I was 13. In 2008 I had a story so vivid in my mind that it wouldn’t let me sleep. I put pen to paper Christmas day 2008 and haven’t stopped writing since. I started writing late in life so I made up for it the first two years.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

After joining the Bundy Writers Club in 2010, I began to learn more about the art of writing by attending WriteFest and other writer events. I met other authors who had been published and began to see that what I was doing wasn’t just entertainment for myself. There, other writers read my work in critique sessions and I got good feedback on my stories. I later teamed up with a freelance editor to improve the manuscripts.

Can you share a little about your current book with us?

Unnaturals is a Dark Urban Fantasy- romance action I guess is the best description. It is set in current day Australia. The story is about the Douglas family who find themselves fighting for survival as a family, clinging to their humanity. The Bloodells want them dead, the Darkells become reluctant allies. Soon, unexpected relationships form and sparks fly, as desire inspires them. The very definition of family changes when not all are human.

What inspired you to write this book?

Ha, I had a ‘what if’ moment while camped out on a headland one night. There under the clear sky, no lights for kilometres, the Pacific Ocean thrummed under the sand. Campfire gazing, I asked myself how my ‘normal’ friends would react to meeting the non-human side of my family.

Do you have a specific writing style?

Yes, I make the reader think. I’m not overly descriptive, and write with a sharp, fairly fast pace.

How did you come up with the title of this book?

I wanted to say in one word what the tone of the story is. Unnaturals says a lot, not human, not mainstream etc.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Yes, by our standing together as a family, regardless of how it looks to the outside world, it will always make you stronger and win the day.

Are experiences in this book based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Our life experiences always help you write believable characters. A writer’s imagination takes real life and recreates it into a fantasy.

What authors have most influenced your life? What about them do you find inspiring?

Tolkien, is the first fantasy author I ever read. Followed by Anne McCaffery, Steven Donaldson, Sara Douglas, Raymond E Fiest and Janny Wurts. They do it for me in Fantasy. The paranormal writers that I like are Anne Rice, Poppy Z Brite, and Laurell K Hamilton. They really had a huge influence on me with their strong female lead characters and voice. More recent influncers are Keri Arthur, Stephanie Laurens, Amanda Bridgeman, Anne Gracie, Sandy Curtis and Cheryse Durrant. All of whom I’ve met. All of them make it hard for me to stop reading until the book is done.

If you had to choose, is there a writer would you consider a mentor? Why?

Laurell K Hamilton. She has survived the ups and downs of writing such long series over the years. Has multilayered relationships for her characters and I like her voice.

Who designed the cover of your book? Why did you select this illustrator?

My publisher handled the cover design.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Write whenever you can, whether it be a paragraph or a whole chapter, get it out and onto paper.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

Unnaturals is a new world. The Douglas family, Mason, Ruth and Wilson are unique. Come meet them and the Darkells in Bondi, Australia.

Also, buy your mum a flower today, no reason, just do it and enjoy.

Unnaturals Book CoverDean J Anderson
Queensland, Australia

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Publisher: Clan Destine Press Melbourne

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Author Interview: Nikki Broadwell

This week’s author writes fantasy with a bit of time-travel and romance stirred in. If you like myth and dragons and magical boats, you’ll enjoy this indie author. I’m pleased to introduce Nikki here on No Wasted Ink.

Author Nikki BroadwellMy name is Nikki Broadwell and I live in Tucson, having relocated from Portland, Oregon two years ago with Jim, my husband of nearly thirty-five years, and Buddha our standard poodle. I love the dirt road that leads to our house, the Catalina Mountains in the distance and the myriad trails that wend their way between our house and those rocky peaks where I can walk my dog off leash!

When and why did you begin writing?

I’ve always loved to write but I became serious about it around eleven years ago. I took a writing workshop in order to get some ideas about structuring a fictionalized memoir about my father’s experience in a Japanese prison camp during WW2.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I called myself a writer after the bug took hold of me and wouldn’t let go–so probably when I was about half way through Wolfmoon Trilogy.

Can you share a little about your current book with us?

The book I’m working on now, Gypsy’s Return, is a sequel to Gypsy’s Quest and follows the heroine, Gertrude from Milltown, Massachusetts to Far Isle, a place in a dystopian future where corporations rule.

What inspired you to write this book?

I wrote a trilogy entitled, Wolfmoon, but at the end of the third book we don’t know what happens to Gertrude, one of the main characters. Gypsy’s Quest is her story, told in the first person.

Do you have a specific writing style?

I’ve been told that my writing is very visual so I guess it would be called cinematic? Besides description, I love dialogue and so a good portion of my stories unfold through conversations.

How did you come up with the title of this book?

The Gypsy series refers to the main character’s heritage as well as a magical boat name Gypsy, that could also be called a character.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

The message is about saving the earth for future generations. I know, that sounds didactic, but the message is revealed through action, story and character development.

Are experiences in this book based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Not really, although some of my own concerns about oil exploration are a part of the themes in the books.

What authors have most influenced your life? What about them do you find inspiring?

I love Kurt Vonnegut, C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, A.A Milne, Lewis Carroll, Margaret Atwood, Joanne Harris, Tom Robbins and many many others. I have always been an avid reader. I like the themes these authors explore in their stories and their disparate writing styles.

If you had to choose, is there a writer would you consider a mentor? Why?

I’m sure I’ve gleaned all sorts of information from reading these authors, but not any one person stands out for me. But I do think that Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, started me on the road toward fantasy writing.

Who designed the cover of your book? Why did you select this illustrator?

Viola Estrella designed the cover for Gypsy’s Quest as well as The Wolf Moon, and my redo of the cover for The Moonstone. I plan to hire her to do Gypsy’s Return as well. She is very good. I highly recommend her work!

Do you have any advice for other writers?

If you decide to go the indie route, make sure you have your book well edited before you put it out in the marketplace. And don’t let anyone tell you how to write or what you should write about–follow your own muse.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

I feel honored every time someone reads my books and has something nice to say. Having people enjoy my books is paramount!

Gypsy's Quest Book CoverNikki Broadwell
Tucson, Arizona

Gypsy’s Quest
Airmid Publishing
Cover Art: Viola Estrella

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Author Interview: Catherine Cruzan

I’ve known Catherine for quite some time, we seem to bump into each other at author related events constantly. She is also a fellow member of the OC Writer’s in Southern California. I am pleased to introduce Catherine here on No Wasted Ink, she’ll make a daydream believer out of you too.

Author Catherine CruzanI was born and raised in Bloomington, MN, but I moved to Southern California in 1984, so I’m really a California girl at heart. Since graduating from California State Polytechnic University in Pomona with a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering, I’ve been working as a structures engineer for different aerospace corporations in and around the Los Angeles area. About 10 years ago, between working as an engineer and teaching dance classes, I began writing more seriously. I studied in the UCLA Writer’s Program and at Long Beach City College. They had an excellent creative writing staff there at the time.

I must have a split personality or something, because there are so many wonderful things to experience in the world, I can’t seem to pick one thing and settle down. I want to do it all. I love my motorcycle, and my blue celestial parrotlet, Jasmine. I’m a period costumer, and a cosplayer; as well as a scuba-diving, sky-diving, hang-gliding kind of girl. I like to get really geeky sometimes, while other times I need to get out there and get some wind in my hair.

When and why did you begin writing?

My interest in books started as a child. I had a voracious appetite for reading. It’s my mom’s fault really, because she read to us a lot, and I loved it. As soon as I could read for myself, I wasn’t waiting for those snowy days when we’d pile onto her bed to hear a story. I always had extra books in my backpack, and an eye open for the next new Fantasy or Sci Fi series I could sink my teeth into. It became my escape when things weren’t going well in my life.

Climbing into a book was the best medicine for my fears and frustrations. I would rather hang out in Xanth than face the bullies at school. I could ride a dragon, jump through gates to other worlds, or put on a golden ring and fight wraiths when things weren’t good at home. And when I was bored or lonely, the pages were my best friends.

I published my first story in the 8th grade, when a teacher put my homework (a short story about forest animals facing hunters) in the school newspaper. I didn’t even know she’d done it until some of the other kids started coming up to me to ask about it.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

That’s a tough one really, because I’ve never really defined it. I was just always in the habit of writing things down my whole life, from grocery lists to my bucket list, from a poetic phrase to dialogues between characters that don’t even appear in any of my stories yet.

I have this crazy collection of napkins and post-it notes I keep in a box under my desk, which I raid often and replenish constantly.

But I guess I didn’t really feel like a *writer* until I was neck deep in classes at UCLA, trying to hone my craft. When I could no longer suppress my desire to write well and publish, that’s when I began actually calling myself a writer. That’s when it all changed for me.

Can you share a little about your current book with us?

It’s about a young woman’s quest to avenge her family and save the Elves.

Lariel has lived a life of privilege as the daughter of King Tallen, and heir to the Tallen throne, until the captain of the King’s Guard betrays the Tallen family, murders the king and takes possession of his lands. On the run and in exile, Lariel finds refuge in the distant north at the heart of the Elvin kingdom, where she discovers her secret heritage. She is Elfkind, not fully human, blessed with the gifts that come with Elvin bloodlines. But will her new skills be enough to overcome the dark powers awaiting her as she endeavors to reclaim what was taken from her?

What inspired you to write this book?

This book is a culmination of daydreams. I used them to return to the world after losing a major relationship in my life. So imagine my surprise when, thematically, the book turned out to be about loss – experiencing it, coming to grips with it, and moving on with purpose. It also touches on what I consider key tangential elements to loss – forgiveness and redemption.

Do you have a specific writing style?

I write deep point-of-view (POV), character-driven stories. I climb into my characters’ heads and live there while I write. If there’s a narrator voice in what I do, it’s not by design. I want to feel like I’m living what they are living; and I want the reader to experience that too.

How did you come up with the title of this book?

In touching on aspects of humanity, I ruminated over what makes us different, yet what makes us all the same. What motivates anyone to do anything? What shapes our character and our temperament? What is good, bad, beautiful, ugly, right, wrong….? Basically, what comprises humankind? What are you if you’re not truly a part of humanity, but are of Elvin blood as well? Not human, not Elvin. You are Elfkind.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

If you want to be your best, you need to find out who you are on a fundamental level and be true to it. Yes, let the world shape you in wild and wonderful ways, but never lose sight of your best qualities. Don’t let the hard times dissuade you from your truth – that you are loyal, or clever, or considerate or brave.

Are experiences in this book based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

You will find glimpses of my friends, family and strangers off the street in everything I write, because I steal from life and then put it in a blender. I have borrowed snappy attitudes and simple winks, compulsions to do the right thing in misguided ways, yearnings for love and the fear of it, even some physical traits. But I promise you, if I ever find myself nose-to-nose with a Grahze, I’ll probably wet myself and then run away.

What authors have most influenced your life? What about them do you find inspiring?

This list is long and eclectic, ranging from Tolkien to Drew Hayes, from C.S. Lewis to Bill Watterson and David Mack. Robert Jordan, China Mieville, Tad Williams, Raymond Feist, Terry Brooks, George R.R.Martin, Scott Westerfield, Anne McCaffrey, C.J. Cherryh, Tim Powers, Bradbury, Heinlein, Asimov, Neil Gaiman, Edgar Allen Poe… . I could keep this up all day, so let’s stop here.

The key is rich, character-drive story that compels the reader to do more, to be more, to think more, to question more. These writers embody adventure on the page, and entertainment that stimulates the mind. What could be more inspiring than that?

If you had to choose, is there a writer would you consider a mentor? Why?

I consider Tim Powers my biggest mentor. He is the reason I didn’t flat out give up and walk away from writing when things weren’t happening for me. He has taught me so much about the craft and about the business, I cannot even express. He’s an amazing teacher – encouraging, smart, talented, and able to convey things clearly to his students. We walk away better writers just for listening to him and trying again.

My agent/author/friend Denise Dumars is a terrific mentor as well. She was the first person to really have faith in me and my work. She put herself out there to get me published, and I dedicated the book to her for that reason. Elfkind is as much her baby as it is mine.

Who designed the cover of your book? Why did you select this illustrator?

The cover of the book was designed by my publisher, Hunt Press. There are also a couple of illustrations in the body of the book by artist Sarah Banning. She is amazing. She’s a wonderful blend of American and Manga style with an outrageous eye for color. I love her coloring. I was lucky to stumble upon her through a mutual friend. I’ve got her working on some stuff for the next book now, and I can’t wait to get my greedy paws on it.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

I cover a number of topics on my website which I consider critical to the craft. But the bottom line is: You have to write. You have to sit down and do it every day. Find your method, your motivation, your tenacity to keep doing it even when you can no longer explain why you would even try.

Listen to what your mentors tell you, and trust your instincts. Do not confuse ego with instinct. Ego has to be set aside if you want to improve, and we should always want to improve. There is no glass ceiling on being better.

Go read David Gerrold’s Worlds of Wonder whether you’re writing genre fiction or not. It’s loaded with compelling, enlightening information that will make you a better writer.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

Only that I hope you love this story as much as I do. I look forward to your feedback on Amazon, so please take a moment to rate it if you have the time.

Elfkind Book CoverCatherine Cruzan
Long Beach, CA

Elfkind
Hunt Press, Los Angeles
Illustrations by Sarah Banning

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Author Interview: Warren Reed

No Wasted Ink is happy to introduce Warren Reed, an author of adventure and science fiction novels.

Author Warren ReedHello, everyone! My name is Warren Reed, and I live on the East Coast in Portland, Maine. I grew up on action figures, comic books, Saturday morning cartoon shows (back when they were good), and science fiction novels. I love a good story as much as I love an adventure, and I’m always on the lookout for both.

When and why did you begin writing?

I think the first story I (legibly) wrote with a beginning, middle, and end, was in 1st grade. It was for a class project; each of us had to write and illustrate our own book, including a front and back cover. Being an avid drawer, I thought I would enjoy illustrating the most, but once I started writing, it soon became a struggle to fit the story into the allotted number of pages–I was having too much fun and didn’t want to stop. After the project was finished, I continued the story outside of school, and I’ve been writing stories ever since.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

For me, even though I’ve been writing for several years, the term ‘writer’ carries a certain weight; it’s something I continuously aspire to be, and I’m hesitant to label myself as such. Above and beyond everything, I consider myself a storyteller, whether it’s writing, drawing comics, or producing film/video. If I had to choose a point in time, however, it would probably be a few years ago when I was starting my latest story–now known as DARKRIFT: Arrival–and decided that it would be the first of my stories to have published.

Can you share a little about your current book with us?

DARKRIFT: Arrival is a YA/teen sci-fi action/adventure novel; it combines many of my favorite sci-fi themes and delivers them in a story that is meant to be fun and engaging. It follows two modern-day characters who are thrust into a sci-fi inspired, otherworldly adventure that presents them with mystery, dark moments, and epic showdowns…all the while trying to stay one step ahead of a ruthless enemy.

What inspired you to write this book?

When I was growing up, I loved reading sci-fi; it stimulated my imagination and got me excited to read. Quite often, though, I had to dig to find sci-fi novels, and many of them were not as exciting or adventurous as I had hoped. Many of them were slow and dry. I wrote DARKRIFT: Arrival as a tribute to the action-filled, epic-scale sci-fi stories I wish I could have found more of as a kid.

Do you have a specific writing style?

When a reader is reading one of my stories, my goal is for them to feel like they’re watching a big-screen blockbuster–I want the story to play out in their head like it’s a movie, as it does for me when I’m writing it. “Show, don’t tell” sums it up nicely, and being a very visual, imaginative person, I try to convey that in how I write so that each paragraph, each sentence, each word, has its own, unique energy that paints a vivid picture for the reader.

How did you come up with the title of this book?

DARKRIFT: Arrival relates to two simple (but relevant) elements in the book. The second part of the title is more self-explanatory than the first, but so I don’t give too much away, you’ll have to read it to find out more!

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

There are some subtle themes, as well as messages, woven throughout the story, but my primary goal in writing DARKRIFT: Arrival is for entertainment. If readers happen to pick up on anything deeper, that will purely be a bonus for me as a storyteller.

Are experiences in this book based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Because DARKRIFT: Arrival, like many of my stories, centers around both sci-fi and supernatural elements, no, it’s not based on experiences or events in my own life. However, in an attempt to ground my stories in reality, I do base the personalities of my characters (everything they feel, say, and do) on people I know or have met. This way, I have a very real-world understanding of how my characters will react to the situations I put them in, and will hopefully make the journey of reading my stories more believable and engaging for my readers.

What authors have most influenced your life? What about them do you find inspiring?

Authors such as Edgar Allan Poe, H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, and more “local” authors like Archer Mayor and Stephen King, have influenced me the most. I find them inspiring because they each have their own distinct style and are known for being masters of their genre.

If you had to choose, is there a writer would you consider a mentor? Why?

I consider all of the authors mentioned above, as well as various others, mentors in one way or another…but if I had to choose, I would say Stephen King; he is a hugely successful author with many books, movies, and other accomplishments to his name, and he’s a Mainer (I often drive by his house when taking motorcycle trips). Having such a successful writer so close to home is hugely inspiring for any aspiring Maine author, but even more so than that, his writing of strange, and oftentimes dark subject matter has, over the years, inspired me to embrace those types of themes, instead of shy away from them.

Who designed the cover of your book? Why did you select this illustrator?

I had a rough idea of what I wanted the cover to look like, and artist Meghann Pardee brought it to life. I chose Meghann because her portfolio was very diverse, and all of her work exhibited a style I wanted to capture for the cover of DARKRIFT: Arrival. Meghann was a pleasure to work with. Please, check out her portfolio.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

I think the best advice I’ve heard for writing is to write for yourself, not others. And, if you’re planning to publish, a professional editor really should be a part of your writing arsenal.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

Thank you. I had the story of DARKRIFT: Arrival brewing in my head for quite some time. A few years ago, I decided to sit down and write it. Part of my intent in writing it is was not only to offer YA/teen sci-fi fans a new universe to explore, but also offer an alternative, yet equally-engaging option to movies, television, and video games. So for anyone who has, or will, give DARKRIFT: Arrival a chance for themselves, or a YA/teen they know who might be on the search of a new and exciting sci-fi story, I humbly and graciously thank you for your support.

Darkrift Arrival Book CoverWarren Reed
Portland, Maine

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Cover Artist: Meghann Pardee

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Author Interview – Nadine C Keels

Author Nadine C. Keels“Nadine” is a French name that means “hope,” and hope has become my mantra for life. I’m Nadine C. Keels: a dreamer, an introvert, a romantic, a passionate soul, and a stroke of God’s genius with an appreciation for literature, performing and visual arts, and pastas with lots of sauce.

When and why did you begin writing?

I’m a lifelong bookworm, and my love of writing stemmed from the books I read as a child by authors like Beverly Cleary. (I couldn’t read enough about Ramona Quimby.) Hence, I’ve been writing stories for fun since I was about seven or eight years old. Then, during the few days of a horrific experience I had when I was thirteen, a novel saved my life: John Nielson Had a Daughter by Ruth Livingston Hill. Probably not what scores of people would call a spectacular book, but I needed to read it right when I did. My purpose for writing books (beyond writing for my own pleasure) was awakened in that experience. I now write to help people: to bring hope, to change minds, to expand imagination, to provide entertainment, and to save lives, all of which other authors’ books have done for me.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

That’s a little tricky to pin down. If people asked me as a child what I wanted to be when I grew up, I’d tell them, “I want to be a singer,” an occupation I imagined would include fame and glamour with it. I was a shy child without tons of friends, so whenever classmates or other peers of mine overheard me singing something to myself and would gush over me with surprise and delight upon finding I had a nice voice, I liked getting that attention and admiration that reading and writing books didn’t bring me. However, when it came to what I truly loved the most, my nose could be found buried deep in books: at school, at home, during car rides, in bed while I was supposed to be sleeping. So, books eventually won out over my emptier childhood fancies about being a professional vocalist. The first time I recall verbally, decidedly responding to the “What do you want to be?” question with the answer “A writer” was when I was twelve years old. I started considering myself to be publishable at seventeen, when I wrote my first novel, Yella’s Prayers.

Can you share a little about your current book with us?

The Movement of Crowns is a novella series of royalty, romance, war, and hope, set in the fictional kingdoms of Diachona and Munda. The three books center on an indomitable princess, a beautiful prankster, and a young, untried ruler of a powerful Realm: three people whose destinies are entwined. An epic journey awaits each of them, after which they’ll never be the same.

What inspired you to write this book?

I began drafting scenes for the first book, The Movement of Crowns (which I thought for years would be the only book) back when I was a high school senior, inspired by the thought that although my generation was young, we weren’t precluded from aiming toward greatness. It took over ten years of growth, both as a person and as a writer, for me to be able to convey the story as I see it, and I wrote and published Crowns in 2012 in Love & Eminence: A Suite of Stories. It wasn’t until the spring of 2013 that I got the idea for a sequel. The “other side” of the Crowns story came to me, pretty much all at once, one afternoon. Out came The Movement of Rings. After that, I thought one more book would round out and top off the Crowns message nicely, so I wrote The Movement of Kings.

Do you have a specific writing style?

To make one stylistic note, I’m a poet and a lover of words, and when I construct a long sentence or use a couple more adjectives in a paragraph than another writer might use, it’s intentional. I understand the importance of concision, of not being redundant or wordy for the sake of wordiness, but we live in a media-driven culture of quick sound bites and 140-character limitations, where “idk,” “smh,” and “lol” have become what we frequently fall back on to express ourselves in writing on a regular basis. I believe there should still be books where readers can delve into the magnificence, the depth and height and breadth, of language. Sometimes taking the scenic route and enjoying the ride in literature is a great way to paint a compelling, lasting picture for reading audiences and thinkers, something I find and appreciate in much of the classic literature I read—something I don’t want our society to lose. I don’t yet have the command of language I’d like to have one day, but I’m working on it.

How did you come up with the title of this book?

When I originally began drafting scenes for The Movement of Crowns, the title was And So, They Ran. However, as the story really started to evolve and mature in 2012, and some of what were going to be pivotal “running” scenes weren’t going to make it into the final story, the book needed a new title. So, I took the Crowns name from a fitting line in a piece of my previously published poetry/spoken word:

the firsts, the lasts, what each new season brings
the changing of times, the rise and fall of kings
the movement of crowns, of scepters, of rings
prologues, epilogues, inductions, eulogies…

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

There are so many sub-messages that I put in for different readers to catch, but the main idea I want to get across is that your destiny is a perfect fit for you, and you can walk deeper into it step by step, never throwing your hope away.

Are experiences in this book based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

I wouldn’t say that much in Crowns is taken directly from my external life experiences or solidly based on people I know. This series has served as a landscape for me to lay out some of my internal life: hopes, convictions, loves, and my belief in the overall beauty of the human story.

What authors have most influenced your life? What about them do you find inspiring?

Beverly Cleary was my earliest major influence. Some of my warmest childhood memories are of reading Cleary’s work, as she made so relatable what her young characters were thinking and feeling. L.M. Montgomery, with her beautiful descriptions and timeless characters, let me know through her work that my partiality for books was going to carry on right through my adolescent and teenage years, even if hanging out and talking on the phone would have been considered “cooler” pastimes for a girl in my neck of society. Ruth Livingston Hill, of course, showed me just how pivotal a book can be in the life of a reader. Then there’s my pastor, Dr. Edward Donalson, III, who, through publishing his own work, helped me to gain the much needed sense that having my work published was a possibility—not just an “I wish, maybe someday” possibility, but a truly attainable one. After all, there’s a difference between conceptually knowing that you’re a publishable author and knowing that you can and will be published.

If you had to choose, is there a writer would you consider a mentor? Why?

I don’t have a personal writing mentor, but I do consider myself to be mentored through what I read, especially from authors of classic literature: Henry James, L.M. Montgomery, Jane Austen, John Milton, to name a few. The motivation to keep pushing myself forward in the craft of writing comes from reading the works of people who’ve gone down in history as masters of the craft.

Who designed the cover of your book? Why did you select this illustrator?

I design my own book covers. Trying my hand at graphic design is my consolation to myself for never becoming a great artist or painter. (Smile.) Also, cover designing and video editing for my book trailers gives me extra opportunities to reflect on and to engage with the material I’ve written or am going to write.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

My main piece of advice that I repeat for any writer is simple: know the specific reason(s) why you, the individual, write, so that you’re writing (and living) on purpose. Be able to clearly articulate your purpose for writing to yourself and to other people. Whenever you experience discouragement anywhere in your writing, publishing, or book business process, you can revisit the reason(s) why you write, which will motivate you to keep on doing what you’re doing, and to do it well.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

Always, thank you for reading! Books do so much for those who read them and, consequently, for the world. It’s up to authors and readers to keep the value of literature alive on earth, and we can and will, if we keep on reading and writing for the need and the love of it.

The Movement of Crowns Book CoverNadine C. Keels
Seattle, Washington

Book: The Movement of Crowns Series

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