Archive | April 2016

Cyci Cade~Brazilian Writer of Urban Fantasy and YA Fiction

cyci cade  We are delighted to welcome Cyci Cade with us today. Cyci lives in Brazil and writes Urban Fantasy and YA Fiction. Her debut novel Dragon’s Curse was released in November of 2015.

I am anxious to know if you chose urban fantasy and young adult fiction or did these two choose you?

I believe both things happened. During my childhood, my mother used to read me stories like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, and Beauty and the beast; as time passed I started reading those types of genres and new ones like Marvel, DC Comics, and Philip Pullman´s books. I use to say  I´m a professional reader! Becoming a writer was inevitable.

Tell us what publishing is like in Brazil. 

The process is a little different from the way it is here in  America. We don´t have literary agents; we send the query letters to editors. Getting published is easier in Brazil but more expensive. We have to compete with best-sellers books that come from America and Europe. Usually, it´s a combination of both.

And what about the marketing methods, are they so different from here in America?

My book, Dragon’s Curse you can get on AgBook, a Brazilian publisher, and you can get it on Amazon.com. I set up online giveaways,  write bonus material, short stories, and offer exclusive content. I also use social media to distribute my work.

Do you market in Brazil only or do you also market in other countries as well as America?

I market in many countries. Social Media gets me in touch with people from other countries, so when I set up my giveaways it is open on a worldwide scale.

I read where you said your ideas for your book Dragons Curse came from reading and watching Painted Skin and Game of Thrones. What specifically from each one?

I took the dragons from Game of Thrones when Daenerys Targaryen mentioned them for the first time. I immediately thought, “I´ll write a book about dragons”. Then Painted Skin gave me the idea to look for Chinese mythologies, places and creatures. Chinese culture is very rich so I was able to find many legends and mythologies.

Do you attend writer’s conferences and/or belong to a writer’s group?

I use to attend book fairs and biennials, now I belong to some fantasy, sci-fi, and writers´ groups on Goodreads.

Tell us a little about your book Dragon’s Curse.

dragons curse      Two princes from the Dragon´s Dynasty, Liu and Wei, are cursed and condemned to live as dragons because they failed in their duty, to protect the Dragon Empire. After two centuries their fate changes when Kate appears in their lives and they are able to return to their human form. However, the curse isn´t broken yet, they can´t survive without the dragon´s side.  To break the curse, the princes must recover the eyes and heart of the Great Dragon. As Liu, Wei, and Kate embark on a journey to the Palace of Jade in search of the first eye, they´ll have to face mythological creatures and the immortal warriors. Face death and have to prove  they are honorable men to save Kate´s life. They´ll be tested as never before and discover feelings they never imagined existed plus they will have to  fight like wild warriors. A curse can be broken… But at what cost?

Wow, great description. Now I know I’ve got to read this book. I would think this will have a lot of following. This is just book 1 in the series right?

Yes, I wrote  six books of the series Dragon Princes; Dragon´s Curse is the first one published. I also wrote another trilogy and I decided that now is the right moment to share my work.

What’s next for Cyci Cade?

egypt   I´ve worked on a new book related to a short story I´ve published on my blog, Son of Egypt. As the name suggests, the story is set in ancient Egypt, I mix real people who lived at that time with gods, myths, fantasy, and romance.

Love the cover. Congratulations Cyci. Please keep us posted as new books come out.

Thank you so much for visiting with us.

 

For more information about Cyci Cade visit her at:

http://cycicade.blogspot.com/

https://www.facebook.com/cycicade/?fref=ts

 

 

TERRY SHAMES-THE SAMUEL CRADDOCK SERIES

 

Terry Shames 3 photo by Margaretta K. Mitchell Terry Shames is the author of the award-winning best-selling Samuel Craddock series, set in the fictitious town of Jarrett Creek, Texas. MysteryPeople named Terry Shames one of the top Five Texas Mystery authors of 2015!

Welcome Terry, I am excited you are here and anxious to hear about this series. 

What brought about the writing of this particular series?

 I had been struggling to find a publishing niche for several years. I took time off when my son was in middle school and high school and when I went back to writing, I took a weekend workshop that changed my writing life. In it, one of the workshop leaders spoke passionately about the need to find your own voice. I had heard this advice before (“Find an empty space on the bookstore shelves and fill it,” and “Write the book that only you can write.”). Maybe I was ready to hear the advice, but a month later I sat down and thought about the book only I could write. I had written a few short stories set in the fictitious town of Jarrett Creek, which was based on the town where my grandparents lived when I was growing up, and I thought it would be a natural setting for me. And when I thought of a main character, there was really no question. I was very close to my grandfather. He was no angel, but he had a strong sense of fairness and responsibility. I thought those qualities would be excellent in a protagonist who solved crimes. The first book in the series poured out of me as if it had been waiting to be told.

I love the rural life you create your story in and the Texas setting. It’s that small settlement feeling, where everyone knows everyone. And the characters you create just come to life.

killing-at-cotton-hill-175  This book, A Killing at Cotton Hill, was a finalist for numerous awards and won the Macavity for Best First Mystery, 2013.

For those who don’t know The Macavity Award’s name is the “mystery cat” of T.S. Eliot (Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats). Each year the members of Mystery Readers International nominate and vote for their favorite mysteries in four categories.

Is there a purpose behind the story that you want your readers to know?

I have heard it said writers have one main story to tell, or one main idea to explore. I am always interested in the way secrets affect people. The person keeping the secret isn’t able to fully be part of a family and community. I’m not talking about small secrets (when you stole a lipstick from the drugstore when you were nine), I’m talking about the big ones. Big secrets ripple all the way through the community. Sometimes an entire community has made the decision to ignore an open secret. When I was growing up, there was a woman in our community who was a kleptomaniac. Everyone knew it and was complicit in allowing her husband to quietly return purloined items.

nonie-blake-175    Families sometimes simply don’t talk about the family member who is a little “off.” In my latest book, The Necessary Murder of Nonie Blake, the family has chosen to hide a family member who did something terrible by sending her to a mental facility. But as the book reveals, there’s more to it. Liars keep secrets in order to save face. And sometimes they even kill to make sure the secret doesn’t overwhelm them.

What was the most challenging part in writing this story?

For some reason The Necessary Murder of Nonie Blake didn’t present the challenge I talked about in the prior answer. It seemed to unfold easily. But in that book most of the challenge was in researching how mental illness would have been described and handled twenty years ago.

dead-broke-175  Every book seems to present a challenge at some point. Usually for me it’s the plot resolution. I know how I want it to end, but I don’t know exactly how to get there. My third book, Dead Broke in Jarrett Creek, lead me astray until I had a complete mess. Finally I went back to the middle and realized where I had gone wrong. Sometimes it’s when you try to force your characters into roles they don’t want to inhabit, but sometimes it’s not exerting enough control over your story. It’s a delicate balance. 

death of jacklast-death-175 The Last Death of Jack Harbin was a Macavity finalist for Best Mystery, 2014 and named one of the top ten mysteries of 2014 by Library Journal and top five of 2014 by MysteryPeople.

Tell us about this book.

 Right before the outbreak of the Gulf War, two eighteen-year-old football stars and best friends from Jarrett Creek, Texas, signed up for the army. But Woody Patterson was rejected and stayed home to marry the girl they both loved, while Jack Harbin came back from the war badly damaged. The men haven’t spoken since.

Just as they are about to reconcile, Jack is brutally murdered. With the chief of police out of commission, it’s up to trusted ex-chief Samuel Craddock to investigate. Against the backdrop of small-town loyalties and betrayals, Craddock discovers dark secrets of the past and present to solve the mystery of Jack’s death.

Deadly Affair at Bobtail Ridge When I finished my fourth book, A Deadly Affair at Bobtail Ridge, which came out last May, the end didn’t satisfy me. It was empty and didn’t give me the resolution I wanted. My editor told me to keep thinking about it. Finally I appealed to my agent, and she told me that one scene didn’t quite work for her. I immediately realized that what was in my head hadn’t fully made it onto the page. Fixing it required a whole new scene and a big expansion of another scene. When I was done, I knew it was right.

 I read A Deadly Affair at Bobtail Ridge. Could not put it down. Loved the twist you created in the story. In fact, I liked it so well, my husband decided he wanted to read it. He too could enjoyed reading this book and liked your story style.

Did the writing require a lot of research and if so what kind?

All the books require some kind of research. I do “backwards” research, which I fear one day will get me in trouble. I usually write my books the way I “think” things would go. If I have a question about the way law enforcement works, how an autopsy would be handled, or the type of gun someone would carry, for example, I write it the way I think it would be and put big stars around it. When the first draft is done, I go back to find the stars and research how it would really happen—to make sure I haven’t made any glaring mistakes. In a couple of books, I’ve had to go back several years to find out how things would have been done.

In book three, I relied on an official website for information about law enforcement. After the book was edited, I had the good fortune to attend a talk at Heart of Texas Sisters in Crime, given by a veteran detective. I asked him about the protocol. He laughed and told me that officially it was supposed to work that way, but in reality it was handled much differently. I instantly phoned my editor. Fortunately, it wasn’t too late to make the few lines of changes. Here’s the thing: it wouldn’t have really mattered if the book had been published with the error. I doubt that anyone would have quibbled. But I knew that it was wrong, and I wanted it to be right.

Thank you Terry for visiting with us today. We have enjoyed learning more about your writing and books. I recommend them for other readers, knowing they will enjoy your stories and writing style.

Be sure a visit Terry Shames at:

http://terryshames.com/

http://terryshamesbooks.blogspot.com