Amanda Orneck ~ Author Interview

We have a very special guest today, Amanda Orneck was raised in Southern California on a healthy diet of fantasy and science fiction. She grew up knowing from the time she was small that she wanted to be a writer. She wrote her first story at the age of five and began her first novel at eleven. While attaining a Bachelor’s in Creative Writing from USC, Amanda received the Middleton Fellowship for excellence in Poetry. Today she has one published SciFi novel and has recently begun following her renewed passion for Regency Historical Romance.  

Check out Amanda’s books below!

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Author Interview – Jordan E. Lasater

Jordan BookWhat name do you write under and is it a pen name?
I write under Jordan E. Lasater, it isn’t a pen name.

What or who inspired you to start writing?
It was less of an inspiration and more that author Amanda Porter forced me while in a teen writing group she was leading.

How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing for four years now.

What is the name of your most recent story and if you had to sum it up in 20 or fewer words, what would you say?
The name of my most recent story is There is Love in War. I’d sum it up by saying, Gods and Goddesses turn into werewolves and griffons and fight for love against each other.

Is the above story part of a series or anthology?
It is not part of a series but it is included in the anthology a Door to Our Minds with four other short stories. A Door to our Minds is set to be published later this month or early December 2018.

ADoor-Final - FRONT COVERHow did you come up with the cover design idea/concept?
I just used what my mind thought of and Amanda Orneck, the cover artist, made it way better.

Love in War - Jordan LasaterDid you listen to any particular songs while writing your story?
I listened to a lot of Taylor Swift and also some classical music.

How did you come up with the title for your story?
I was acting stupid with my friend, Bethany, and it just came to me.

As a reader, do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hard-covers or audio-books?
I prefer hardcover.

Have you ever read a book more than once? And if so what was it?
Only one, The Shadow and it was only because of editing.

Have you ever read a book just based on its cover?
Oh yes!

What is your favorite film based on a book?
The Outsiders

What is your favorite book genre at the moment?
Fantasy/Romance

What books have made it onto your wish list recently? And why?
Evermore! I read Everless and Fell In Love! Shout out to Sara Holland, I need it!

What book are you reading at the moment? And in what format?
I’m reading some random werewolf Wattpad book right now.

If you could invite any authors (alive or dead) to your dinner party, who would you invite?
J.K. Rowling and Jane Austen

What’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
Shut up and write what you want, you can always fix the messes later.

What authors inspire you?
All of them! It is really inspiring to me, for someone to write a book and have it published for the whole world to see. It is very vulnerable and I appreciate it so much because I love books.

If you are interested in reading There is Love in War and purchasing your own copy of a Door to Our Minds, fill out the information form below and I’ll be sure to email you more information as soon as the anthology is released.

Author Interview -Bethany Martin

Beth Anne Book

What name do you write under and is it a pen name?
Bethany Martin, which is not a pen name.

What is the name of your most recent story and if you had to sum it up in 20 or fewer words, what would you say?
My story is called “The Peculiar Case of Matthias Chase” (I know, it’s a mouthful). The simplest way I can sum it up is this – a wild mix of kidnappings, demons, and sassy characters.

Is the above story part of a series or anthology?
The Peculiar Case of Matthias Chase is not part of a series, but it is part of the anthology a Door to Our Minds, which is full of other short stories written by some amazing teen authors.ADoor-Final - FRONT COVERWhat or who inspired you to start writing?
Ever since fifth grade, I’ve really enjoyed writing, especially argumentative essays, however I really got into creative writing about 2 years ago, when I joined Wrecking Havoc on Paper. My friends in band, as well as author A.G. Porter, convinced me to join, and I’ve been hooked on creative writing since then.

How long have you been writing?
Like I said above, I’ve loved writing for a long time, but I suppose you could say I’ve actually been writing for just a little over two years.

Beth Anne Martin

How did you come up with the cover design idea/concept and who designed it?
Well, for one thing, I’m such a sucker for minimalist designs. A simple, yet intriguing cover will always interest me more than super detailed covers (not that detailed covers can’t catch my eye too). Second, because the ‘X’ seen on the cover, as well as the smoke, are such a big part of my story, I knew I needed to incorporate those. I’ve had other, different ideas, but I really think no matter what, I’ll be happiest with the cover I have now. The cover was actually designed by Amanda Orneck, the author of Sister of the Circuit. 

 

Did you listen to any particular songs while writing your story?
I can’t think of any one song specifically, but I tend to listen to the soundtrack for Over the Garden Wall while writing, so I’m sure I listened to that at least a few times while writing this story.

How did you come up with the title for your story?
I’ve had this title from day one. In all honesty, I hadn’t even been working on this story when I came up with it. I was sitting in my friend’s room and I just said the title, sort of as a joke. However, a plot came after that, and the name just stuck.

As a reader, do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hard-covers, or audio-books?
I definitely like hard-covers most, but I see nothing wrong with a paperback. I don’t dislike e-books or audiobooks, but they’re not what I prefer at all. I like feeling actual paper and smelling a new book.

Have you ever read a book more than once? If so, what was it?
I’ve totally read the Harry Potter series a couple of times (Goblet of Fire being the one I’ve read the most). There are many other books I’ve read multiple times as well. I have nothing against reading a good book over again.

Have you ever read a book just based on its cover?
Absolutely. I oftentimes only pick up books with an interesting or aesthetically pleasing cover. Usually I’ll read the back of the book, as well as the first page, but every once in a while there are good covers that have me invested in the book all on their own.

What is your favorite film based on a book?
This is definitely a hard one. Even though I haven’t read the book, I recently watched The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society on Netflix, and it was fantastic. Of course, I also love Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets as a movie.

What is your favorite book genre at the moment?
Hands-down mystery/thriller. I am fascinated by true crime, so anything of that nature is a must-read for me.

What books have made it on your wish list recently?
A book I would like to read is Columbine by Dave Cullen. I picked it up at Barnes and Noble recently, and what I read of it before leaving was very interesting. Another book I’m eager to get my hands on is the second book is Marissa Meyer’s Renegades duology, Arch-Enemies. It comes out early November, and I cannot wait. Renegades was fantastic, and Meyer never disappoints, so it’s been at the top of my wish list for a while now.

What books are you reading at the moment? And in what format?
I am currently reading “Unsub” by Meg Gardiner in hardback.

If you could invite any four (4) authors (alive or dead) to your dinner party, who would you invite and why?

  1. Lois Lowry– her book, The Giver, is what really got me into dystopian, and I think all of her books are absolute works of art (Gathering Blue is my personal favorite).
  2. William Pene du Bois– I read The Twenty-One Balloons when I was younger for a project, and it’s still one of my favorite books to this day. It’s such a dreamy and whimsical story, and I’m sure a conversation with du Bois would be fascinating.
  3. Gillian Flynn– Gone Girl is probably my favorite book of all time, and talking to the genius behind it would be a dream-come-true. I’d love to talk with her over dinner about true-crime and how to write the perfect mystery. And, she can sign copies of her books for me.
  4. J.K. Rowling– Overdone, yes, but who wouldn’t want to have a dinner party with her? Harry Potter plays a huge role in my reading journey, it would feel like a crime to not take advantage of an opportunity to chat with Rowling.

What’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
The best advice I’ve been given thus far is probably not to edit as you are writing. Nina Soden told me this, and while it was definitely a struggle to adjust to, I’m glad she told me. Now, I’m not constantly being so critical to myself, therefore I can write freely and actually come up with some great ideas.

What authors inspire you?
I have loads of author inspirations, but the two biggest are A.G. Porter and Nina Soden. I’ve learned so much from working with them, and I them a lot of gratitude because of how much they have not only improved my writing, but motivated me to keep with any story I come up with.

Where can your readers follow you?
On Instagram @bethanymartinbooks and please give the Wrecking Havoc on Paper Instagram a follow, @whop.teens

If you are interested in reading The Peculiar Case of Matthias Chase and purchasing your own copy of a Door to Our Minds, fill out the information form below and I’ll be sure to email you more information as soon as the anthology is released. 

Author Interview – Lilly Brown

Over the next few weeks, I’m going to be introducing you to some amazing young adults who will be releasing a short story anthology in the next month or two.

Today, I am very excited to introduce you to Lilly Brown, who I’ve had the pleasure of working with over the last 7 months. She has been working hard to finish her short story, The Spark, which will be included in an anthology being publish within the next couple of months. I promise to keep you posted on the publication details as we have them.

So, without further ado, let me introduce you to Lilly Brown, author of The Spark.

Lilly BookWhat name do you write under and is it a pen name?
I write under the name Lilly Brown and no it is not a pen name.

What or who inspired you to start writing?
I don’t really have a specific inspiration as much as I’ve just always wanted to write a book. However, another author and my former writing coach, Amanda Porter, was the one who gave me the opportunity to write.

How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing tiny little stories probably since I could write, but I’ve been seriously writing for about three and a half years.

What is the name of your most recent story and if you had to sum it up in 20 or fewer words, what would you say?
My latest story is call The Spark and I would describe it as a group of moody teens who don’t want to do what they’ve been told to do.

Is the above story part of a series or anthology?
It is in an anthology called a Door to Our Minds, which includes my story and four other stories. However, The Spark is also the first book in a series that I’m planning to continue with now that the anthology is getting ready to be published.
ADoor-Final - FRONT COVER

What or who inspired you to start writing?
I don’t really have a specific inspiration as much as I’ve just always wanted to write a book. However, another author and my former writing coach, Amanda Porter, was the one who gave me the opportunity to write.

How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing tiny little stories probably since I could write, but I’ve been seriously writing for about three and a half years.
The Spark - Lilly Brown
How did you come up with the cover design idea/concept?
The basic idea came from one of my favorite scenes in the book but my cover artist, Amanda Orneck took it and made it so much better.

Did you listen to any particular songs while writing your story?
I listened to a lot of Broadway soundtracks. I listened to many video game scores and plenty of Star Wars as well.

How did you come up with the title for your story?
My main character is firey and I like to think of this book as the beginning of the story so I thought “The Spark” was fitting.

As a reader, do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hardcovers or audio books?
Hardcovers all the way. I kind of hoard them but they’re just so beautiful that I can’t help it.

Have you ever read and book more than once? And if so what is it?
Yes I have read a book more than once–seven times, I’m pretty sure and it the Warriors Super Edition, Crookedstar’s Promise.

Have you ever read a book based on its cover?
No. I don’t trust covers alone. There have been so many times where I see a cool cover and then I read the blurb and it sounds super boring so I always double-check books.

What is your favorite film based on a book?
The Phantom of the Opera is definitely my favorite film based on a book, as well as musical.

What is your favorite book genre at the moment?
Fantasy. It’s my favorite right now and I can’t remember a time when it wasn’t.

What books have made it onto your wish list recently? And why?
Bright Burns the Night by Sara B Larson is at the top right now. I found the first book in her series at a used bookstore and I loved everything about it, especially how she explained the lore of the fantasy world.

What book are you reading at the moment? And in what format?
I’m reading Part of Your World by Liz Braswell and it’s a hardcover.

If you could invite and four (4) authors (alive or dead) to your dinner party, who would you invite and why?
This may sound totally basic but the first would be J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter is one of my favorite book series and I have always admired Rowling for the way she wove every part of each book together. The second would be Erin Hunter. Even though Erin Hunter is a pen name for the group of authors behind the Warriors, Survivors, and Seekers series, I’m still going to use them as my second author. I’d love to find out how they are able to write and publish so many books and keep every character and timeline in order. The third person I would invite is, Liz Braswell. She’s is one of the two authors of Disney’s Twisted Tales series and I admire her ability to take classic stories and rewrite them. The fourth author I would invite is Leigh Bardugo, the author of the Grisha Trilogy and Six of Crows Duology. I love the way she connected these two series and I really admired her world-building skills.

What’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
To not edit as I go. I would end up editing things out that I really liked but I would get rid of it because I thought I didn’t need it. I finally learned to let my editor edit.

What authors inspire you?
The list is very long but I’ll cut it down to just a few. Obviously, the four I would invite to a dinner party inspire me. Also on this list is: Kendare Blake, Ashley Chappell, Stephanie Garber, Marissa Meyer, Amanda Porter, Nina Soden and Tui T. Sutherland.

If you are interested in reading The Spark and purchasing your own copy of a Door to Our Minds, fill out the information form below and I’ll be sure to email you more information as soon as the anthology is released.