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Authors Kathleen Berry, L.F. Falconer, and Tara West

I would like to give a shout-out to three talented authors

Paranormal Author Kathleen Berry
and multi-genre Authors L.F. Falconer and Tara West

I have had many occasions to speak with these multiple award winning, hard working authors.
Here is a look at their most recent projects.

Kathleen Berry

Kathleen Berry, manager of a community college’s Nevada Ghost and Paranormal Series , has worked with many of the West’s best paranormal investigators and psychics. Stemming from her experiences, she published the spirituality memoir, “A Reluctant Spirit: A True Tale of God, Ghosts and a Skeptical Christian” and writes a regular blog at www.kathleenberry.com.

Kathleen explores what happens when ghosts confront a religiously narrow skeptic. She joins a CBS affiliate news crew and paranormal investigators as the team’s impartial observer. Their first stop: central Nevada’s fabled Goldfield Hotel. This 12-hour, overnight odyssey in the long shuttered, four-story hotel pulverizes her beliefs that the paranormal is evil or figments of the weak-minded. It also threatens her fragile health.

Eerie activity confronts her on every floor. She hears, feels, and sees spirits—and they aren’t what her pastor preached or Hollywood portrayed. The group’s psychic tells Kathleen that Goldfield has opened her third eye. Having an evangelical background, she must face her years denying that she possesses a sensitive’s gifts and, therefore, may be bound for hell.

About A Reluctant Spirit… A true tale of God, ghosts, and a skeptical Christian relates how this night wrenches her reality, impacts her health, and leads to her spiritual transformation. Kathy shares insights into the mysteries of life after death, why coincidences do not exist, and why we should heed our intuition. A Reluctant Spirit chronicles how Kathy reconciles her supernatural experiences with her Christianity and comes out stronger for it.

Her book has received accolades from Kirkus Reviews, calling it “intriguing” and “a gripping account.” The Reno News and Review named her Northern Nevada’s Best Female Writer of 2014. In addition, she’s been a featured guest on Coast to Coast A.M. with George Noory.

When I asked her what she would like to tell my readers she responded to always examine fear: if you are afraid of the unknown, release your trepidation and be open to what’s out there. You’ll probably be quite surprised where it would lead you.

As for what’s next? Kathy like to write another book, but she is not sure the direction it may take. She is also considering whether to start a web-based spirituality class about Christian mysticism.

Visit Kathleen’s Amazon Author Page at https://www.amazon.com/Kathleen-Berry/e/B00FNUH74Y/

L. F. Falconer

She can’t sing and she can’t dance, but Nevada author L.F. Falconer has been transforming words into stories since childhood. Growing up in a haunted house fostered her fascination with the unknown and kindled her imagination while she honed her craft with classes in journalism and creative writing.

An independent author of Dark Fiction, she has published seven novels and one collection of short stories, available online at both Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Her novel, The Vagabond’s Son was the 2015 Epic Fantasy Finalist in Readers’ Favorite International Book Awards, and she has had several short stories published in WeirdBook Magazine.

When she has time to relax, she enjoys exploring the roads less traveled, discovering what might lie beyond the next curve.

Her novel, The Vagabond’s Son, placed as Finalist in Epic Fantasy in Readers’ Favorite International Book Awards, and she has earned numerous small awards in both the USA and the UK.

A wife, mother, and grandmother, she resides in her home state of Nevada where she enjoys challenging Mother Nature in gardening duels, and exploring the roads less traveled.

About The Legacy of Skur...

In a land where magic and myth still reign, a wizard’s quest goes terribly wrong. A protective talisman unleashes a curse and two children born of darkness will come to rule.

No one has ever returned from Skur. “It’s a death quest,” Fane is told, but he ignores the legends, compelled by the belief that hidden among the dragon’s trove is the key to eternal life. Armed with little more than a sword and a magical talisman, Fane fights his way up the mist-enshrouded mountain of Skur, his misadventures soon creating a legacy for generations to come.

A three-book set for mature readers, this epic saga of love, betrayal, vengeance, and friendship follows the pawns shrewdly manipulated by the gods within a celestial game of dominance. It’s survival of the fittest as the players are maneuvered across the field. These are their stories: Fane the wizard, Kael the warrior, Adalanto the Piskie, and Elva the legacy.

Taking a look at her newest release – A Debt of Survival… Sheriff Don Lattimore has his demons, but when one of them goes on a killing spree, the cost of stopping it doesn’t come cheap.

This supernatural thriller takes place in the small town of Diablo Springs in northern Nevada. After doing his stint in the army, Don Lattimore buried his battlefield demons deep inside and settled comfortably into the quiet peace of his hometown.

Serving as county sheriff for nearly two decades, he’s enjoyed the tranquility of the Nevada desert until the day he discovers evidence of satanic activity inside an abandoned house. Now he finds himself trapped in a showdown with his own nightmares. Something inside him has clawed itself free to fulfill a chilling prophesy, and the good people of Diablo Springs begin to die.

The only way Lattimore can put a stop to it comes with a price—a price he’s unwilling to pay. But to save his community and his family, he must. And time is running out.

When I asked her what she would like her readers to know, she responded  that she believes reading should be an enjoyable experience, so she strive to make my stories as entertaining as possible. Even though most of her longer works hover around themes of timeless social issues, her main objective is to entertain.

She writes about hard social issues:

  • A Debt of Survival – PTSD
  • The Vagabond’s Son – child abuse and social alienation
  • Hope Flies on Broken Wings and its sequel, Hope Rises from the Ashes – segregation of socio-economic classes and domestic violence.

She has some favorite reviews that she wanted to mention:

    Blue Ink Review writes, “Falconer offers an intriguing and well-crafted fantasy of epic proportions.”

    Rabia Tanveer, Readers’ Favorite writes, “Definitely a thrilling read.”

    Trisha Dawn, Readers’ Favorite writes, “The Vagabond’s Son: Prelude to a Legacy is a must read. This is one to watch out for.”

Visit L.F. Falconer’s Amazon Authors Page at https://www.amazon.com/L.F.-Falconer/e/B009S95216/

Her web page at www.lffalconer.com
And Twitter @lffalconer

Tara West

Tara West writes books about dragons, witches, and handsome heroes while eating chocolate, lots and lots of chocolate. She’s willing to share her dragons, witches, and heroes, but keep your hands off her chocolate. A former high school English teacher, Tara is now a full-time writer and graphic artist.

She enjoys spending time with her family, interacting with her fans, and fishing the Texas coast.

Awards include:

  • Dragon Song, Grave Ellis 2015 Readers Choice Award, Favorite Fantasy Romance
  • Divine and Dateless, 2015 eFestival of Words, Best Romance
  • Damned and Desirable, 2014 Coffee Time Romance Book of the Year
  • Sophie’s Secret, selected by The Duff and Paranormal V Activity movies and Wattpad recommended reading lists

Tara is one of twenty-five author who contributed to Wrath and Ruin. Take flight with all new and exclusive stories that are out of this world, including full-length novels from some of today’s most popular names in science fiction and fantasy!

From magnificent dragons, bloodthirsty aliens, and mad genetic engineers to intergalactic wars, magical curses, and fantastical worlds, you’ll find everything you’ve been waiting for in this heart-stopping, limited edition collection.

With over 100 hours of reading, you’ll be able to travel to faraway lands and distant planets. A safe return cannot be guaranteed.

About Curse of the Ice Dragon… Born with mark of the Mighty Hunter, Markus saves his village from the brink of starvation-for whenever he releases an arrow, his aim is true. But despite his skill and strength, Markus is unable to confront his tyrannical father.

Shamed by his cowardice, he distracts himself by needlessly shooting the forest creatures. When Markus takes no heed of the village prophet’s warning that his actions will attract The Hunter’s Curse-for every animal Markus kills, his loved ones will suffer the same fate-the Sky Goddess unleashes her ice dragon.

Now, Markus must flee the dragon without killing it … or his beloved brother will be the next to die.

About Spirit of the Sea Witch… Desperate to escape the wrath of the vengeful sky goddess, Madhea, a group of brave young explorers flee to the sea. They search of safe haven for their people while the apprentice witch Dianna steals away Madhea’s dragon to The Shifting Sands. Though they are an ocean apart, the future of all humanity lies within their entwined fates. Before they can defeat Madhea, they must stop the vindictive sea goddess, Eris, from destroying the world.

When I asked Tara what she would tell her readers she responded, she appreciates the readers patience as she works on finishing up the Keepers of the Stones Series. She is relentlessly working toward completion which she hope will deliver another excellent story-line.

What’s next for Tara? Wraith and Ruin will be released in January 2018 which will feature book one in my Keepers of the Stones Saga. Curse of the Ice Dragon, Book Two, and Spirit of the Sea Witch also releases in January.

Visit Tara’s Amazon Authors Page at https://www.facebook.com/tarawestauthor

Or at her web pages http://tarawestauthor.wordpress.com/
and www.tarawest.com
And Twitter @TaraWestauthor

She loves to hear from her readers at: tara@tarawest.com

Veterans’ Day Today

Veterans’ Day Today
By D.M. Stoddard, USN (ret.)
11/10/17

Sleep now, oh brethren.
Do not furrow thy brow.
Peace and freedom you set,
Quietly lumbers on.

Protection cast of old,
Like blanket on a bed.
Our rights  claimed heedlessly,
Our nation struggles on.

Our opportunities,
We gain your sacrifice.
Sleep now, oh brethren.
We honor you today.

 

To me, there is not a more powerful image of sacrifice than the USS Arizona Memorial. I have visited it several times, but its the timeless image of the photograph that take my breath, focusing my heart on the unprovoked loss of December 7, 1941. And it is that loss that has come to represent the Veterans’ sacrafices to me.

The USS Arizona (BB-39) was a magnificent ship. At 7:48 am the crew, like the rest of Pearl Harbor and Hawaii, were just waking up. Just for being present and willing to serve, 1,102 of the 1,177 sailors and Marines made the ultimate sacrifice.

Landscape

 

 

 

 

 

Certainly our veterans have provided for our safety, peace, and freedom for hundreds of years. I was reminded yesterday that Veterans’ Day arose from World War I Armistice Day, which occurred at 11:00 am on November 11, 1918 – “the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month”. It is impossible to capture more than the essence of their sacrifice, but here are some other images that move me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Despite our best intentions, some of our brethern are left behind on battlefields or disappear into the smoke of the skirmish. My step-uncle disappeared over the South China Sea in World War II.

After their service, most Veterans are laid to rest in local and national cemeteries. There are memorial cemeteries all over the world where United States military rest. For each and every veteran, a symbol of honor for their final resting place is Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.

 

 

 

Sci-Fi Author Robin Lythgoe & Children’s Author Diane Mae Robinson

I would like to give a shout-out to two talented authors

Robin Lythgoe & Diane Mae Robinson

Both are fantasy/sci-fi authors that I have come to know; Diane introduces fantasy through multiple award winning children’s books.
Here is a look at their most recent projects.

Robin Lythgoe

Robin Lythgoe spent her formative years in a family of seven readers (including herself). She was immersed in books of nearly every variety: historical and modern romances, mysteries, thrillers, fantasy, historical fiction, westerns, and the occasional horror. Fantasy, with its wonderful worlds and creatures and magic, firmly captured her heart, much to our benefit.

Robin has been dragged across the United States several times and has volunteered for several more trips on her own terms. She spends lengthy visits at museums and historical sites, and still manages to read everything in sight. As if that is not enough, Robin looks up even more interesting facts on her trusty traveling data center.

She graduated from a tiny school with a class membership of a prodigious fifty-one students. Robin even sacrificed part of a grueling summer to study a year’s worth of foreign language enabling her to  graduate early with extra credits.

Her husband calls her a “brown ajah”, which is acceptable when he is referring to dark chocolate (because milk chocolate is a color, not a flavor). She’d “open a vein and bleed,” but she’d get chocolate all over the keyboard.

Although she’s never trained as a thief or ridden a dragon, Robin writes tales about wizards and magic, fantastical places, and extraordinary journeys.

About Blood & Shadow… A vengeful mage. A powerful gift. A naive youth. Sherakai never wanted to become a warrior like his father and brothers. Satisfied with being fourth in line to inherit title and responsibility, he wants only to be Master of the Horse. But on the eve of his sister’s wedding, a terrible gift arrives and Sherakai’s course changes forever.

His magic is the key to secrets he does not know or understand, and he must learn to fight in order to escape a future he doesn’t believe in. Inevitably, he must use what he hates to regain what he loves.

When I asked Robin if there was one thing to tell your readers, what would it be she had two parallel things to offer:

    First, the wisdom inside a Dove candy wrapper: “What are you waiting for?” Interestingly, this came to me at the very same time another favorite quote resurfaced: “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”

Visit Robin on her Amazon Author’s Page: https://www.amazon.com/Robin-Lythgoe/e/B006K7OFEO

Or her web site at http://robinlythgoe.com/
Twitter @RobinLythgoe

Diane Mae Robinson

Diane lives in a small hilltop castle nestled amongst an old and magical forest. This mystical forest is where she finds inspiration to write children’s fantasy/adventures. Her first three books in The Pen Pieyu Adventures series have won eight international book awards and one prestigious provincial award. Her next book entitled The Dragon Grammar Book – Grammar for The Whole Kingdom is due for release in late 2016. Diane is also an art teacher and writing instructor.

Diane Mae Robinson has been imagining things all her life—imagining stories, that is. By the age of eight she was making plays, casting herself as the princess and her little sister as the prince (who would only participate is she wore her cowboy outfit). They performed the plays in the forest next to their house cheered on by a crowd of clapping kids.

Diane is most known for her multi-award-winning children’s fantasy series The Pen Pieyu Adventures.

The Pen Pieyu Adventures (3 books thus far) is about a precocious princess, Petra, who becomes a knight, and her sidekick, a smart-alecky dragon named Snarls, on their adventures and misadventures. The series is filled with, “zany characters, hilarious situations, wry humor, and titillating prose.”

  • Sir Princess Petra –The Pen Pieyu Adventures (book 1)
  • Sir Princess Petra’s Talent – The Pen Pieyu Adventures (book 2)
  • Sir Princess Petra’s Mission – The Pen Pieyu Adventures (book 3)
  • Sir Princess Petra’s Quest – The Pen Pieyu Adventures (book 4, still in imagination mode)

When I asked Diane if there was one thing she would like to tell her readers, she said: “Never clobber your dragon with a book. Just saying.”

What’s next for Diane?

Releasing any day now, The Dragon Grammar Book – Grammar for Kids, Dragons, and the Whole Kingdom. 

Finally! An easy-to-understand grammar book with fun grammar lessons. The Dragon Grammar Book is the ideal grammar book for kids, dragons, and adults alike.

From multi-award-winning children’s fantasy author, Diane Mae Robinson, The Dragon Grammar Book introduces middle grades through adults to the basic rules of the English language with easy grammar lessons. Featuring the zany fantasy characters in the author’s The Pen Pieyu Adventures series, The Dragon Grammar Book is sure to be enjoyed by the whole kingdom.

Visit Diane at her Amazon Author’s Page: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B007DKO8SK

Or at her website: https://www.dragonsbook.com
Twitter https://twitter.com/DianeMaeRobinso

Alina Sayre Guest Blog & e-Book Giveaway

Welcome BannerAlina Sayre

Alina Sayre

The Illuminator Rising, is the third book in The Voyages of the Legend series. See her guest blog below.

e-Book Giveaway Rules

1) Subscribe to the Kingdom of Torrence webpage (including email),  and
2) add the following to the comments in Alina’s guest blog:

  • your name and
  • a comment on another section or post on the KOT website.

If you have read one of Alina’s books, a comment about that book would be appreciated. The winner will be randomly selected and checked against the subscribers list. Alina will send the e-Book directly to the email the winner provides. Good luck.

Guest post

Insanity-Free Revision

My writing process makes me what they call a “pantser.” I create a vague, skeletal outline of my book plots in advance, but then I start writing and see where the characters take me. Sometimes they are stubborn, and I end up with a tangled-up manuscript at the end. That was definitely the case with my latest book, The Illuminator Rising. 76,000 words is a lot of tangled manuscript. So if you’re going to be a pantser, it’s crucial to be a good reviser. Here are some of the hacks I’ve developed that help me tackle huge revision projects without going insane along the way!

  • My revision process starts with my amazing team of test readers. After doing two complete drafts of a manuscript in complete solitude, I send the rough product to them for their hard, honest critique.

Since they’re a mix of middle-grade readers, young adults, and parents of middle-graders, I get a whole range of comments, which is exactly what I need! I compile their feedback into a comprehensive spreadsheet. Seeing it all together on one page helps me to identify trends and recognize the manuscript’s biggest weaknesses—like that the early draft of The Illuminator Rising had 28 named characters, most of whose personal arcs got lost halfway through the book. Oops.

Once I’ve got the comments spreadsheet together,

  • I divide the book into sections and assign each one its own color of post-it note. (I couldn’t write anything without post-it notes. I should put them in my book acknowledgments.) Each thread of revision—each shallow character, dropped plotline, or half-baked theme—gets its own sticky note.

The Illuminator Rising had a lot of sticky notes. Then I can work chronologically through the book and check off each sticky note as I address it. In college writing classes, I was known to physically cut up my stories with scissors so I could visually rearrange the pieces and fix structural issues. That’s virtually impossible (or at least a really messy idea) with a 75,000-word manuscript. So for this book, I went digital instead.

For one messy section,

  • I digitally highlighted each logical section in a different color. Then I grouped the bits and pieces together by color, which allowed me to quickly see where the material was, how long the sections were, when I finished a section, etc.

It was a lot of staring at screens, but I think it helped me sort the material into a much more logical flow!

All in all, Draft 6 of The Illuminator Rising looks very, very different than the draft I sent to my test readers. (As in, different people die in this draft. Surprise!) I hope it makes for an exciting read!

Synopsis of The Illuminator Rising
Book 3 of The Voyages of the Legend
 

Driven from their home island of Rhynlyr, Ellie and her friends must solve a riddle to find the survivors of the Vestigia Roi. But instead of a safe haven, they discover a hopeless band of refugees paralyzed by fear. Strengthened by new allies and new gifts, the crew of the 

Legend faces dangers like never before. Can they escape being shot out of the sky, falling over the Edge of the world, or being engulfed by urken armies long enough to rally the Vestigia Roi? And can they rekindle a fire from the ashes of the One Kingdom before Draaken takes over the world? 

 
Advance praise: 
“…a thrilling read…[Sayre] has a flair for being able to capture the interest of a reader and hold onto it.”
-Readers’ Favorite, 5-star review

Alina Sayre is also on Goodreads

Guest Blog by Alina Sayre & Blog Tour

JUNE 15, 2016
It is a privilege to announce that Alina Sayre will be writing a guest blog for the Kingdom of Torrence. It will be posted on June 15, 2016, as part of her blog tour (schedule below) for her soon to be released novel, The Illuminator Rising, Alina will provide an e-book give away to her tour stop at the Kingdom of Torrence . (Rules at the bottom)
Alina Sayre
AUTHOR BIO:

Alina Sayre began her literary career chewing on board books and has been in love with words ever since. Now she gets to work with them every day as an author, educator, editor, and speaker. Her first novel, 

The Illuminator’s Gift, won a silver medal in the Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards, and all three books in The Voyages of the Legend series have received 5-star reviews from Readers’ Favorite. When she’s not writing, Alina enjoys hiking, crazy socks, and reading under blankets. She does not enjoy algebra or wasabi. When she grows up, she would like to live in a castle with a large library.

Book two of the series is titled The Illuminator’s Test.
Author’s Synopsis of The Illuminator Rising, Book 3 of The Voyages of the Legend:
 

Driven from their home island of Rhynlyr, Ellie and her friends must solve a riddle to find the survivors of the Vestigia Roi. But instead of a safe haven, they discover a hopeless band of refugees paralyzed by fear. Strengthened by new allies and new gifts, the crew of the 

Legend faces dangers like never before. Can they escape being shot out of the sky, falling over the Edge of the world, or being engulfed by urken armies long enough to rally the Vestigia Roi? And can they rekindle a fire from the ashes of the One Kingdom before Draaken takes over the world? 

Blog Tour Schedule:
June 8: Jenn Castro (jenncastro.com)-Book 3 announcement with synopsis and cover
June 9: Margaret Bloom (webloomhere.blogspot.com)-Book 1 review, Book 3 announcement with synopsis and cover, giveaway
June 10: Publication day!!! Announcement on alinasayre.com
June 11: Angela Wallace (angelawallace.wordpress.com)-guest post
June 12: W.R. Gingell (wrgingell.com)-guest post
June 13: Rabia Gale (rabiagale.com/blog)-Book 1 review, Book 3 announcement with synopsis and cover
June 14: A.R. Silverberry (arsilverberry.com/blog)-guest post
June 15: D.M. Stoddard (kingdomoftorrence.com)-guest post – requested e-book give away
June 16: Intisar Khanani (booksbyintisar.com/blog)-interview

June 18: Caleb Fong (geekosupremo.wordpress.com)-radio interview

June 15, 2016, e-book giveaway: 1) Subscribe to the Kingdom of Torrence webpage (including email) and 2) add the following to the comments in Alina’s guest blog: your name and a comment on another section or post on the KOT website.  If you have read one of Alina’s books a comment about that book would be appreciated. The winner will be randomly selected and checked against the subscribers list. Good luck.

Happy Thanksgiving

DM Stoddard with the Sword AndurilAuthors are so thankful for their readers and fans. We write for personal enjoyment/expression and to share those thoughts with others. It is great to hear from readers about what they like and dislike.

We also appreciate those who help us bring our stories to you. In my case that includes: my editor, Toni at Rakestraw Book Design; Glendon at Streetlight Graphics; and my beta readers: Carolyn, Helen, Eric, and Dennis. And my friends and mentors at the Fantasy/Sci-Fi Network (FSFNet.comm) and at High Sierra Writers (http://www.highsierrawriters.org/).

I wish you and your families the happiest Thanksgiving.