Book Tour for It Takes Death to Reach a Star and Guest Post by author Gareth Worthington

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Guest Post by author Gareth Worthington

First off, let’s get the advertisement piece out of the way. My latest novel, co-written with Stu Jones, It Takes Death to Reach a Star, is currently kicking butt. At the time of writing, we have won the New York Book Festival 2018 sci fi category, been shortlisted for Chanticleer’s Cygnus award and are on the official finalist’s ballot for a Dragon Award (set up to be an alternative to the Hugo Award). It’s also in development for TV/film with Vesuvian Media and Boilermaker Entertainment – founded by the director/producers of the famous CSI TV series franchise.

 

Stu and I are as happy as clams.

 

That said, today, I am going to talk about something not so happy, very real and pertinent to the book and me: mental health.

 

For those of you who have not read the book, it is told from two points of view in first person present tense. Stu wrote Mila (named after my daughter) – a tough, badass character who survived the slums. She’s witty and cool and readers across the board have spouted their love for her. Understandably.

 

I wrote Demitri. He’s part of an elite race, a quiet scientist, a little afraid, and very tortured inside – mostly due to an evil voice in his head called Vedmak. Readers are often split on whether they like Demitri, some saying they wished he was brave or stronger, some wishing to give him a big hug; yet these same readers all love Vedmak, who for all intents and purposes is a complete [insert expletive here]. Vedmak is viscous and evil to the core.

Here’s the important bit that perhaps these same readers miss: Vedmak only works, because Demitri is meek.

 

Let me back up.

 

Demitri was born of two things. Firstly, he is the product of my own condition: Borderline Personality Disorder. While symptoms vary, those that manifest in me include: frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment; splitting (“black-and-white” thinking), self-damaging behavior (suicide), and distorted self-image. The cause of BPD can vary; however, mine can be traced back to an abused childhood. My father was very mentally and physically abusive and we lived in social housing in a very bad neighborhood for twenty years. This latter piece, is Vedmak.*

 

When writing a character like Demitri, I wanted him to be very real. Equally, I wanted readers to feel the evil that is Vedmak. For Vedmak – or any bully – to have power, the bullied have to be weak. And so, writing what I know, I endowed Demitri with all of the inner doubts and fears and struggles that have plagued me for a good chunk of my own life. And for Vedmak, I drew on the years of mental torture from my father (and surrounding environment). Like Vedmak, my father only had power, because I was weak then.

I’m not writing this to garner sympathy or tell a sob story. I have my BPD under control for the most part, and I have spent more than thirty years building myself a very nice life. I’m good! Instead, I hope people read Demitri and understand a little better what it is like to doubt yourself every day and suffer at the hands of a bully.

 

Everyone would like to believe that they would be strong in the face of adversity – but for some, that choice just isn’t as easy. For some, the ultimate goal of feeling good in our skin seems just so far away. For some, it may very well take death to reach a star.

 

*Disclaimer: Vedmak plays a HUGE role in the book, beyond his torturing Demitri. He is also not my father so you’re allowed to like him!

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It Takes Death to Reach a Star

By Stu Jones & Gareth Worthington

Genre: Sci Fi, dystopian, apocalyptic

THE WORLD YOU KNOW IS DEAD. WE DID THIS TO OURSELVES.

The epidemic struck at the end of the Third World War. Fighting over oil, power, and religion, governments ignored the rise of an anti-bacterial-resistant plague. In just five years, the Earth was
annihilated. Only one city survived—Etyom—a frozen hell-hole in northern Siberia, still engulfed in conflict.

The year is 2251.

Two groups emerged from the ashes of the old world. Within the walled city of Lower Etyom, dwell the Robusts—descendants of the poor who were immune to The New Black Death. Above them, in a metropolis of pristine platforms called Lillipads, live the Graciles—the progeny of the super-rich; bio-engineered to resist the plague.

Mila Solokoff is a Robust who trades information in a world where knowing too much can get you killed. Caught in a deal-gone-bad, she’s forced to take a high-risk job for a clandestine organization hell-bent on revolution.

Demitri Stasevich is a Gracile with a dark secret—a sickness that, if discovered, will surely get him Ax’d. His only relief is an illegal narcotic produced by the Robusts, and his only means of obtaining it is a journey to the arctic hell far below New Etyom.

Thrust together in the midst of a sinister plot that threatens all life above and below the cloud line, Mila and Demitri must master their demons and make a choice—one that will either salvage what’s left of the human race, or doom it to extinction…

 

Praise for ITDTRAS

 

“… merging the best of apocalyptic fiction and science fiction… compelling.” ~ Library Journal

 

“Cinematic, thought provoking, and immersive, this is an option for fans of darker, grittier, and more science-focused dystopias in the manner ​of the novels of Philip K. Dick.” ~ Booklist

 

“… I cannot fathom how Stu Jones and Gareth Worthington created this masterpiece.” ​~ Readers’ Favorite

 

“…this new series has the potential to render popular franchises like the Hunger Games, the Maze Runner, and Divergent as mere forerunners in the genre.” ~jathanandheather.com

 

About Gareth Worthington

Gareth

Gareth Worthington BSc PhD is a trained marine biologist and also holds a doctorate in comparative endocrinology. Currently, Gareth works full time for the pharmaceutical industry helping to educate the world’s doctors on new cancer therapies. His debut novel, Children of the Fifth Sun, won in the Science Fiction category at the London Book Festival 2017. He has a number of passions, including: martial arts (he trained in Muay Thai at the prestigious EVOLVE MMA gym in Singapore), studying ancient history, and most of all writing fiction. Born in England, Gareth resides in Switzerland.

About Stu Jones

Stu

Stu Jones has served full time as a law enforcement officer for twelve years. Over the course of his career he has worked as an investigator, an instructor teaching SWAT close quarters and defensive tactics, and as a member and team leader of a multi-jurisdictional SWAT team. He is also trained and qualified as a law enforcement SWAT sniper, as well as in hostage rescue and high-risk entry tactics. He is an Eagle Scout, a lifelong martial artist, and an avid outdoorsman.

http://www.ittakesdeathtoreachastar.com/

On Twitter: https://twitter.com/DrGWorthington

On Amazon: https://amzn.to/2uoafnV

On B&N: https://bit.ly/2KZbBjg

On Kobo: https://bit.ly/2NUczLy

 

BOOK EXCERPT

Chapter One: MILA

No matter how badly I want it to be different this time, in the end I still die.
     We all do.
     I lie on the cot, cold sweat clinging to my skin, arms raised to my face, stuck like a marionette tangled in its own strings. The dream feels so real. Another breath—count it out. In, two, three, four. Out, two, three, four. My heart slows, my mind no longer caught in the grip of the terrifying dream: a battle in which I play a critical role, yet I’m no soldier. This nightmare stalks me night after night, and even though I know I’m dreaming, I’m powerless to prevent the inevitablethe coming of Death.
     The alarm on my personal electronic device, or PED, chirrups three times: 05:00. Not much sleep during the dark hours, again. I squeeze my shoulders, rubbing away the dull, muscular ache, and try to remember the fading embrace of a brother who now feels far away. A deep breath in, a slow exhale out. Get up already, Mila.
     The frigid floor stings my bare feet. I shrug into a few less-than-clean garments and pull on my boots. The stale smell of the attire fills my throat. A shiver crawls across my skin. Sard, it’s cold. Gotta find something warmer. After rummaging through a pile of soiled clothes that lie in the corner of my room, I pull out a short leather jacket, its collar lined with fur—though from what animal is unclear. Shaking it hard a few times, I stare at the fur lining. I know the lice are in there somewhere. No time to try and clean it now. The jacket slips over my shoulders, the ice-cold collar snugging up around my neck. It stinks like dead rat.
     My PED and my precious collection of writings go into my satchel, carefully so as not to crush the worn old picture that lies at the bottom. I fish out the faded image of Zevry and me. I can be no more than eight-years old in this photo. He’s grinning, as usual, with one arm wrapped around my shoulder. It was taken more than twenty years ago—yet little seems to have changed. Still have roughly cut short hair, now with a streak of color in the front. Still have a lean, almost boyish frame—though I’ve added some piercings and tattoos over the years in an attempt to distinguish myself. And then of course there’s my scar—cutting its pink path across my forehead and left eye. Slashed deep into my face not long after this picture was taken, it’s a permanent reminder you don’t walk the streets alone in a place like Etyom.
     No time for this. I stuff the picture back into my satchel and head out the door without locking it. Anything worth stealing is already on me—and it wouldn’t take much to force the door to my closet-sized room anyway.
     My boots creak on the rickety stairs leading into the bar below. It’s quiet now, a far cry from the bedlam hours earlier. Smoke hangs lazily in the air, like the memory of an old ghost.
     “Come on, Clief.” I cough. “How do you breathe this stuff night after night?”
     The man at the bar raises his head but continues to wipe down the counter. “Oh, it’s not that bad. Sorta like burning plastic.” He offers a tired smile. “Off so early?”
     “Every day.” Still pinching my nose and squinting, I make my way toward the door. “I’m serious. Get some fresh air in here. That botchi is going to scramble what’s left of your tiny brain.”
     He huffs out a laugh. “And that out there? That’s where you get the fresh air?”
     “You know what I mean.”
     As I push open the door, the wind hits me like a frozen punch in the mouth. Going out in this icy hell never gets easier. The streets are dark and cold, shadows upon shadows concealing the horrors of Etyom. It’s hard to believe this place was once considered a haven. Long ago, it was a vast, sprawling gulag-turned-mining community called Norilsk. Between World War III and the New Black Death, nearly nine billion people around the world lost their lives. Those who were left fled their homes and cities in search of someplace safer. For many, this barren hell hole was it. The conflict hadn’t fully destroyed the city, and the New Black Death struggled to take hold in the brutal Siberian climate. Survival was possible here.
     A mass migration followed; the Russian government was helpless to stop it. Outside Norilsk, organized social structure, atleast the way people understood it then, gasped its final dying breath. And then, silence. Communications with the outside world went dark. Zev said anyone who hadn’t died in the war succumbed to the New Black Death. It was then everyone here knew they were truly alone. They chose to isolate themselves, even renamed the city Etyom. My brother and I weren’t born for another few hundred years, the descendants of those who fought to survive. We’re fighters, Mil. Survivors. Nothing can keep us down. That’s why we’re called Robusts. But then why didn’t you come home to me, brother?
     I pull the jacket closer around my neck. Bilgi’s place is only a block away, and it’s a good thing, too, because with average temps below zero, the wind is cutting through me like a razor. I half run, half walk, down the quiet street, torn between wanting to get there fast and not wanting to bust my tail on the ice.
     Six raps with my knuckles in the practiced manner and the rickety door immediately opens. Bilgi waits inside. His simple place is lit by a single oil lamp. It’s barren and less than inviting, but I’m not here to be pampered.
     “Love me so much, you just wait for me by the door now?”
     “If you would rather stand on the stoop a little longer, then be my guest,” he answers in a clipped tone, ushering me in.
     “Come on, let’s do it already. I need to get my blood pumping.”
     The words are barely out of my mouth, my arms still stuck in the sleeves of my jacket, when he lunges forward. I see it coming, but the impact still throttles me as Bilgi’s heavy hands encircle my neck and drive me against the wall. My hair scatters across my face. Bring it, old man. The jacket comes free, and with a flurry of punches and a swift roundhouse kick to Bilgi’st high, I drive him back.

 

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Blog Tour, Giveaway, and Author Interview for Passage by Indie Gantz

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This is my stop on the Blog Tour for: Passage by Indie Ganz. This tour will run from September 3rd to 7th. Check out the tour schedule here.

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Passage (The Akasha Series #1)
by Indie Gantz
Genre: YA Scifi

Fantasy
Release Date: March 2018

Summary:

Uncover a Lifetime of Lies in this Fantasy Adventure!

On day one, Charlie Damuzi and her mute twin brother Tirigan are blissfully unaware of the dangerous world they live in. They may be aliens living on Earth after the extinction of humans, but to Charlie, life is pretty mundane.

On day two, the Damuzi family is ripped apart by a family secret that forces the twins to flee the only home they’ve ever known.

Determined to find a way to reunite their family, Charlie and Tirigan travel to uncharted territory in search of their salvation.

But that’s just Charlie’s side of the story.

In the future, forty days from when we first meet the Damuzi twins, Tirigan is on the move. His destination is unknown, as are the people he’s surrounded himself with, but his mission is still the same.

Keep his sister safe and reunite their family.

However, as Tirigan attempts to navigate the complex bonds he’s formed with his companions, he’s forced to confront the one thing in life he has yet to fully understand.

Himself.

Family. Deception. Power. Destruction.

It all begins on day one.

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If you’ve recently finished Passage, the first book in The Akasha Series, chances are you’re desperate to start the second book! Picking up right where Passage left off, Kindred: Book II of The Akasha Series will see Charlie and Tirigan’s timelines merge. By the end of the second book, a burning mystery will be solved and more than one relationship begins to unravel.
Friendship. Trust. Dependency. Lies.
The Damuzi Twin’s Story Continues
Author Interview:
  1. What is your writing process? Do you aim for a word count daily or maybe just a scene?

Typically, I like to write scene by scene. As I’m writing, I will play out the scene multiple ways in my head and then go back and edit it so it is consistent and fluid. I could never go by word count because cutting myself off like that would inhibit my creative process. However, the downside is that sometimes I’ll go days without writing, because I don’t have the scene in my head yet.

  1. What sort of research did you do for this book?

I read up on Anunnaki and Sumerian history and mythology. I also boned up on my basic science knowledge since the series discusses  geology, chemistry, physics, and biology.

  1. What are you working on now? Any chance of a sequel?

Currently, I am reading the proof for Kindred: Book II of The Akasha Series. The release date is currently set for February 1st of 2019. I am also working on the third book, as well as the first companion piece novella that serves as a character profile for one character.

  1. How did you come up for the idea of your book?

I’ve always really enjoyed both science fiction and fantasy novels, and wanted to create something that could serve as a genre crossover. The most important aspect of my series is the characters, so I spent time developing the main characters first. The story formed as a sort of subversive narrative of popular YA tropes. From there, I’ve followed the characters and the stories they have to tell.

  1. Just for fun — what TV shows or movies have you really enjoyed (or disliked?) recently?

Most recently I’ve watched the Netflix documentary series Wild Wild Country, the first season of USA’s The SInner, and binged the latest season of Orange is the New Black. The most recent movies I’ve enjoyed were Hard Candy, The Greatest Showman, and A Quiet Place.

 

About the Author:

indie2bgantzIndie Gantz grew up in Northern Virginia and received her Psychology degree at George Mason University. Despite her passion and curiosity for the human mind, Indie left her chosen field of study to finally give voice to the many imagined minds she has created.
Indie lives with her family in North Carolina. She spends her days drinking tea and clacking keys.

Author Links:

WebsiteGoodreadsTwitterFacebook

 

 

GIVEAWAY:
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YA Bound Book Tours

Blog Tour for Butterfly Blood (Metamorphosis #2) by Rebecca L. Carpenter

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bb22bnew2bcoverButterfly Blood (Metamorphosis #2)
by Rebecca L. Carpenter
Genre: YA Sci-fi
Release Date: August 2018
Lakewater Press

Summary:

A sixteen-year-old girl who cheated death continues her fight for survival as she goes up against real-life monsters, desperate for her unique blood, while risking everything to reunite with the love of her life, who is battling his own soul-sucking demons.

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Buy on Amazon (ON SALE for $0.99 from August 27th – 31st): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07DYLLVDX/

Butterfly Bones (Metamorphosis #1) on Goodreads

BUTTERFLY BONES AMAZON US (FREE from August 27-31): https://www.amazon.com/Butterfly-Bones-Coming-Age-METAMORPHOSIS-ebook/dp/B01M1E9854/

BUTTEFLY BONES B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/butterfly-bones-rebecca-carpenter/1124807692?ean=9780994451170

Book One:
Butterfly Bones (Metamorphosis #1)
Release Date: November 2016

Summary:

Bethany should be dead, just like the doctors predicted.

But along came the butterflies, altering the order of nature.

And now nature is hell bent on revenge.

Because when fate’s path is disrupted, it’s only a matter of time before balance must be restored.

 

About the Author
rebecca2bauthor2bphotoRebecca Carpenter is a native of western Colorado. She is married with two grown children and has been blessed with four amazing grandchildren. She owns and directs a large childcare center where she shares her love for books. In her spare time, she freelances as a copy editor, helping others attain their writing dreams. She finds solace and clarity while spending time with her husband exploring the beautiful mountains of Colorado.

Author Links:
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Book Blitz for Rain on Neptune By Lisa Jade

Rain on Neptune

By Lisa Jade

Genre: Sci Fi, Dystopian

In the city of Pyre, only those with excellent genetics can visit Earth’s colony planets, including the legendary Orithyia. Those without this advantage live in relative poverty, under the forceful control of the Council.

Quinn isn’t one of Pyre’s elite, though she’s desperate to see the stars. After an incident with the Council’s thugs, she stows away on the latest ship to launch, the Neptune.

But when a series of deadly ‘accidents’ occur on board, Quinn and her new friends must figure out who’s orchestrating the attacks – and why.

About the Author

Lisa Jade is a fiction writer based in the UK. She lives in Shropshire with her husband and mostly writes Science Fiction, Dystopian and Post-apocalyptic fiction. With two novels already available, she is currently working on a number of new projects.

Having joined her local writer’s group, Lisa has been involved with the creation of annual anthologies, as well as attending and hosting writing workshops. She also regularly takes part in flash fiction competitions and has had a number of pieces of short fiction published.

https://www.facebook.com/LisaJadeBooks/

https://lisajade.net

Amazon UK – https://amzn.to/2meayNv

Amazon US – https://amzn.to/2N8RVWA

Goodreads – https://bit.ly/2mehn1x

Excerpt

I wait until the early hours before sneaking out. I creep down the stairs and past Dad’s room, reassured by his squeaky snoring, and pull my rucksack from the cupboard. I try to be even quieter than normal tonight – Alice decided to stay over for once, dozing in the box room that sits upstairs, next to mine. Perhaps she sensed some tension between the two of us and took it on herself to provide a barrier to keep us from clashing. I’ll never call her out on it, but secretly I’m immensely grateful.

Even so, I don’t want her to know where I’m going. If they wake in the night, they’ll know exactly where to find me; but they have no clue how often I’m out here. How often I slip away.

There’s an absolute silence over Level Four as I make my way towards the edge. Despite the warm day, the night is bitterly cold. I tug my jacket a little tighter around myself.

Eventually, I reach a rusted sign. DANGER – KEEP OUT is scrawled across it in what looks like spray paint. A half-hearted, last-ditch effort to keep people like me away from the Drop-off.

None of the Levels have external fences. The floor simply drops away into the darkness, meaning that a drunken stumble or accidental misstep can spell disaster. It’s not quite so bad on the upper Levels – they’re smaller, so falling just means you hit the next floor down. It’s still certain death of course, but here? When there’s nothing but miles of ocean below and no way of being found?

Only a lunatic would come out here.

I nudge past the sign and keep walking.

The Drop-off.

Here, the lights of Pyre fall away. The cobbles underfoot sink down into a smooth, white tile. This tile is always underfoot in Pyre, though it’s usually disguised by concrete or shrubbery. Sometimes, it’s bizarre to think about it. Pyre is just a massive airship floating over the Atlantic – and yet, somehow, it’s become a country in its own right.

But I don’t care about that – not right now.

Because as the lights fade, and the chaos of the day sinks back into the folds of my memory, I’m captivated by the stars.

The sky overhead is inky blackness decorated with a tapestry of stars. Swathes of deep blue and indigo swirl above me, highlighted every so often by a splash of pink. The lonely moon resembles a silver disc that sinks into the glittering canvas. And the stars themselves – a million tiny, indifferent specks, images created a billion years ago. Many are already dead, burnt out millions of years ago. In their place are millions of others, stars I’ll never see, patterns that will cascade through the sky like brushstrokes on a scorched, blackened wall.

I can’t help it. When I think about the beauty that must be out there, how long a simple thing might take, how impossible it all seems – I’m filled with strange emotions.

Excitement. Ambition. Hope. And a wonderful, indescribable, near-painful sense of joy.

Blog Tour for Stricken by C.K. Kelly Martin

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Stricken by C.K. Kelly Martin
Publication Date: November 4, 2017
Genre: Middle Grade
Publisher: Dancing Cat Books

Purchase Links:
BAM | Chapters | Indies | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | TBD | iBooks

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Naomi doesn’t expect anything unusual from her annual family trip to visit her grandparents in Ireland. What she expects is to celebrate her thirteenth birthday, hang out with her friends Ciara and Shehan, and deal with her gran’s Alzheimer’s. What she finds is a country hit by an unexpected virus that rapidly infects the majority of the Irish population over the age of twenty-one.

Amnestic-Delirium Syndrome (ADS) starts off with memory loss, but the virus soon turns its victims aggravated, blank, or violent. Naomi and her friends must survive on their own, without lucid adults, cut off from the rest of the world, until a cure is found.

But there are whispers that ADS is not terrestrial, and soon Naomi and her friends learn the frightening truth: we are not alone.

Author Interview

  1. What is your writing routine? Do you aim for a word count, to tackle a certain number of pages at a time, or do you go scene by scene? (Something else?)

I do some preparation (research, emails, sometimes a bit of social networking stuff) in the morning. I find I can’t get into a good creative groove before about eleven a.m. so that’s when I start writing in earnest.  Usually, I’m working from some kind of rough outline but the further I get into the book the more it tends to diverge from what I anticipated might happen. That’s cool because it means I’m usually surprised rather than knowing exactly the way a book will unfold. It takes on a life of its own.

I used to have a word count I tried to reach each day but four years ago I developed health issues and was diagnosed with polyneuropathy. Now it’s very uncomfortable to sit still for long periods (or stand or walk for long periods!) so I have to keep getting up, moving and shift positions and stuff. Overall this has shortened my daily writing period so I don’t have a word count or set number of pages I try to reach; I just do what I can, all the better if I can get a scene finished.  

2. What was your inspiration for your book? What was the most fun and the most difficult part of getting the story just right?

I love zombie movies and also plague outbreak movies in general so with Stricken I kind of married the two. The infected in this book aren’t zombies but they’re certainly not themselves and some of them are dangerous (others aren’t at all). On a deeper level, at the time I was writing Stricken I didn’t know my mother had Alzheimer’s but I’d known for years that something wasn’t right. I think that was very much in my consciousness and that it shaped aspects of the book.  Stricken is my first middle grade and writing from a younger point of view was so refreshing. But it was my editor’s idea to include lists, which became the most fun part for me. Who doesn’t love lists! On the other hand, the most difficult part was finding a good point to end the book while still leaving room for more in the future because I knew the story in its entirety was too long for one book.  

3. What are your favorite books? What authors inspire you the most?

There are so many authors and books I love. In the past year I discovered Grady Hendrix’s My Best Friends Exorcism and Horrorstor and ate them both up. Recently I was also delighted by graphic novel Duran Duran, Imelda Marcos and Me by Lorina Mapa.  I’m always finding new inspiration. I’m usually more excited to read something new or an author I haven’t read before than to revisit books or familiar authors.  I’ve been writing speculative and horror-leaning stuff lately so I’ve been reading more in those areas, but one of my forever favourites remains The Chrysalids by John Wyndham. I’m also an enormous fan of Judy Blume who showed me, as a young person, what it looks to be unflinchingly truthful about young people’s lives.

4. Odd question – what TV shows do you like?

This is a great question because I just finished watching the Americans finale and it’s one of my favourite shows of all time. It’s incredibly character driven for a show about spies. All the relationships are so nuanced and intricate. There are multiple levels to every conversation and action and you feel you know and cared about the main characters so much (even when they do horrible things) that it makes every single thing that happens all the more gripping. But I like a lot of different kinds of shows: Wilderness survival show Alone, makeup artist contest Face Off, Stranger Things, The Crown, This is Us, The Handmaid’s Tale. I’m sad that this is the final season of Nashville; I’m really going to miss it. I’m also a big fan of Star Trek Discovery and Doctor Who (I can’t wait to see Jodie Whittaker as the doctor!).  

5. Lastly, is there anything else we should know about you? Do you like to listen to music when writing? What book projects are on the horizon for you?

I need quiet to be able to put myself in the world of my characters. Sometimes I’ll actually listen to white noise to block out noise from neighbouring apartments. I do like listening to music beforehand though, to help put me in a certain frame of mind that matches up with whatever I’m working on.  In the past, I wrote a lot of contemporary young adult books and while I might return to that at some point these days I feel a strong pull to horror, sci-fi, and storylines with fantastical elements. I have a speculative YA, horror YA and a sci-fi MG that I’ve been working on but I’m not sure which will see the light of day first.

Thanks so much for having me over to bookblogarama to talk bookish things!

About the Author

C.K. Kelly Martin

Long before I was an author I was a fan of books about Winnie the Pooh, Babar, Madeline, Anne Shirley and anything by Judy Blume. Throughout high school my favourite class was English. No surprise, then, that most of my time spent at York University in Toronto was as an English major—not the traditional way to graduate with a B.A. (Hons) in film studies but a fine way to get a general arts education.

After getting my film studies degree I headed for Dublin, Ireland and spent the majority of the nineties there in forgettable jobs meeting unforgettable people and enjoying the buzz. I always believed I’d get around to writing in earnest eventually, and I began writing my first novel in a flat in Dublin and finished it in a Toronto suburb. By then I’d discovered that fiction about young people felt the freshest and most exciting to me. You have most of your life to be an adult but you only grow up once.

Currently residing near Toronto with my Dub husband, I’m an aunt to twenty-one nieces and nephews, and a great-aunt to two great-nephews. I became an Irish citizen in 2001 and continue to visit Dublin as often as I can while working on novels about young people.

My first young adult book, I Know It’s Over, came out with Random House in September 2008, and was followed by One Lonely Degree, The Lighter Side of Life and Death, My Beating Teenage Heart and sci-fi thriller Yesterday. I released Yesterday’s sequel, Tomorrow, in 2013 and put out my first adult novel, Come See About Me, as an ebook in June 2012. My most recent contemporary YA books, The Sweetest Thing You Can Sing and Delicate, were published by Cormorant Books’ Dancing Cat Books imprint in 2014 and 2015.

Website • Twitter • Facebook • Goodreads

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