Monday, August 22, 2016

Crannig Castle Cover Reveal and Blog Tour Sign-Up

*now entering panic mode*

Actually, I'm better now I've made my publishing checklist. Anyone else require a checklist to stay sane and not forget anything?

Anyway, it's that time again (already? how does this happen?) to get ready for a cover reveal and blog tour! And you're probably more than ready since I decided to be mean and make you wait a whole year between books 2 and 3 of Time Captives. Don't worry, the book will be ready on time. Eleven more weeks! What?! 

So that's why it's time for me to ask for you to volunteer as tribute again. And for being so kind and volunteering, I'm giving you the first chapter of Crannig Castle now, and an ARC if you'll review it once it's ready. But only if you sign up. ;)

Cover reveal will be on September 26 and release will be November 7. I can't wait!

Only'll be the end of Time Captives and I'll have to say goodbye. :( Maybe there will be short stories and tie-in novels in the future.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Your Favorite Doctor

I came across this meme or one like it quite some time ago. I laughed at it as a Whovian joke and moved on, but somehow I couldn't forget it. It stuck in my head, bothering me. My first train of thought went something like this:

I like the Doctor an awful lot as a character, but I wouldn't want to marry someone like him. I want someone better. Someone who's a Christian, first of all. Someone who would protect me as the Doctor does his companions, yes, but someone who isn't so emotionally damaged by the horrible things he's done in his past and still struggling with hatred towards his enemy. Someone who will help me grow closer to God, not get my head all wrapped up in exciting death-defying adventures. Because while the Doctor's on the whole a good guy and a hero, he does have some serious issues. Besides, he's fictional.

Recently, though, I've started realizing that this is an even bigger problem. It's not isolated to the Doctor Who fandom. It's pretty much any and every fandom. For instance, there are numerous pins about how Percy Jackson sets the bar pretty high for the "perfect boyfriend." And fangirls everywhere are always going on about how they have a crush on such and such character or such and such actor. I don't get it. And it's not even healthy.

Because, girl, you're probably never going to meet that actor. And that character? He's not even real.

I'm not saying I don't ever get too invested in fandoms because I do. I've been too into Narnia, Star Wars, Doctor Who, even Little House. But at the end of the day, I still keep in mind that it's not real. As much as I like Jace from Ilyon Chronicles, I don't wish he was real so I could marry him. He's not right for me, he's right for Kyrin. I don't want Percy Jackson as a boyfriend, he's Annabeth's and he's too immature for me anyway. Steve Rogers is an upright and honorable guy and I love that, but he's a fictional character. Captain America is never actually going to come save me.

I'm not pointing fingers at anybody; this is mostly just going off of what I see when I search a fandom on Pinterest. While it's fun to fangirl about awesome stories and great characters, you've got to be careful. Because it's not real. It's not okay to obsess about a story (something I had to learn the hard way), and it's not really okay to crush on actors or fictional characters either. Don't go imagining your life with someone you've never met and likely will never meet. They're probably nothing like what you think they're like anyway. Most actors are liberals and very few are Christians. And your favorite fictional character? He's fictional. The author can make him do whatever he or she wants him to do, and outside of the written story, you can do the same thing. Real people aren't like that. And by setting up your idea of this awesome actor or this awesome character as the standard for a boyfriend or even husband, you're doing nothing but creating problems for yourself. Just like Anne Shirley...she fell for Roy Gardner when Gilbert Blythe was right in front of her the whole time, simply because Gil didn't fit her fictional ideal of Prince Charming.

I speak a little fangirl. I have fandom boards on Pinterest. I love my favorite stories and I love my favorite characters. But I can never be completely okay with the whole fangirl culture. It's too shallow and it's too problematic (which is why my fangirling rapidly turns to literary/theological analysis). Be careful when you fangirl. Because the only thing it's okay to be obsessed with is not a story. Not a character. Not your friends or family. Not even your spouse. The only thing it's okay to be obsessed with is God.

Monday, August 8, 2016

A Crannig Castle Announcement

I keep forgetting to announce the release date for Crannig Castle! I'm sure you're all anxious to know when you get to finally finish reading Time Captives. Or maybe you're not, but I'm going to tell you anyway. 

But not yet. Because I'm just mean like that and want to make you keep reading. ;)

Crannig Castle is the Time Captives book that has required the least rewrites. I'd mostly figured out what I was doing by the time I got to that point in the story, so I wasn't flailing around trying to figure out what in the world I was doing anymore. The battle sequences were a little flat, however, but a friend gave me some recommendations for battle-writing research which were immensely helpful, and I rewrote those chapters into something way better.

And there are situations for Adriel that require him to learn things like this. Because salvation isn't the end of the journey, it's the beginning. But while it's not always easy, it is always worth it.

There are new characters like Connor

Vannie and Kyle show up


Seriously, I felt like crying every time I worked on the Grant and Eleanor sections (because there are several), because as much as I love it--and I really love those two--it's just so sad.

Poor Weathersbard. (Ship name courtesy of Amanda Beguerie.)

Oh, yeah. And you finally get to find out about Theodore's backstory.

I love this book. I'd forgotten how much I loved it until the last time I edited it. And then I remembered. I went on such a long journey with these characters. That journey is almost over, but not yet.

When does the end come? I'll tell you in a minute. First here's when you get to see the cover.

September 26

And the book comes out...

November 7!

It's still a few months away, but it'll be here before we know it. Now it's time for me to go panic...

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Lady Dragon, Tela Du Cover Reveal!

This is a special day! We finally get to see the cover of Lady Dragon, Tela Du, the second book in Kendra E. Ardnek's Rizkaland Legends! Remember how much I loved Water Princess, Fire Prince? Well, let me tell you, Lady Dragon, Tela Du is even better. I'm serious! This book is fantastic, and I haven't even read the final version (though that's because the final does not yet exist...). Reuben and Petra are simply adorable, there are plot twists I did not see coming (thanks, Kendra, for purposely misleading me ;) ), we find out about Amber and Granite's backstory...It's awesome. Hey, Kendra said I could flail about it as much as I like.

Reuben. That guy could be my brother. He's awesome. I could talk to him for hours about Narnia and Middle Earth and probably just about any fantasy story and he could tell me what it's really like to go to a fantasy world. But then Petra would probably get mad at me for taking up all of Reuben's time. Have I mentioned those two are adorable together? BFFs since she was born, those two. They're just perfect for each other, if only Petra will agree. Oh, my goodness, those two are the best.

Nothing like this happens in the book, but Kendra says it reminds her of a roleplay she had Petra in once. See, Petra and Reuben end up with this telepathic link, and...stuff. I don't know how much I can say because of spoilers, but the way Kendra develops it is really cool and really awesome. 

Yes, I'm making you wait for the cover. :) Have a snippet.

“Reuben!” Petra growled. “What was that for?”

“You were intimidating the girl. I had to do something. Besides, she promised another world.” Reuben answered. “And … now the door won’t open again. It looks like our only way now is forward.”

“We’re stuck in this house?” asked Petra, really not wanting to believe what was happening. “This dark, dilapidated house made of sticks that … really ought to let in more light that this.”

“Scared? You could hold my hand if you’d like.”

“Reuben, I’m not scared.”

“But maybe I am. Look, there’s no one here to see us, not even ourselves.”

See? Aren't they quite the interesting pair? Have the prophecy. Because every good self-respecting portal fantasy story has to have a prophecy, right?

Petra has the same face as Amber, the Lady Dragon. It makes for quite the (complicated) interesting story. And the book description:

Amber, the Lady Dragon, has been promised a fifty-year reign over Rizkaland and nothing can stop her from claiming it. But when you've lived six thousand years, fifty is such a pitiful number. Only one person can keep her from making this reign permanent - the Tela Du, a girl who shall share Amber's face.

The last thing Petra wants is a magical world interrupting her plans for a normal life, let alone an ultimate battle against the Lady Dragon with only one prophesied survivor. She has her childhood best friend, Reuben, at her side, but she's not sure if he's more of a help or a hindrance right now. Though she'd much prefer to just return home and forget about this whole crazy affair, things change when she discovers that the world has surprising connections to her own family - including her sister who disappeared without a trace two years before. Still, Rizkaland can't possibly expect her to risk her very life, can it?

 And now I suppose you want the cover.

Amber's red, Petra's purple. And there are reasons for that... 

You can go ahead and preorder the book here. You won't regret it. Unless you wish you'd bought the paperback instead of just the kindle version. You might do that. I'm buying the paperback. Also, Water Princess, Fire Prince is free today. That way you can experience Rizkaland right now, just in time for book two.

Author Bio:
Kendra E. Ardnek is a homeschool graduate who picked up a pen at an early age and never put it down. The eldest of four, she makes her home in the Piney Woods of East Texas with her parents, younger siblings, giant herd of giraffes, and honor guard of nutcrackers. 


Official Website:

Monday, August 1, 2016

Interview With Robin

My youngest sister Addyson is here today to interview Robin for the Bookania Party.

Hello! My sister let me invade her blog today to interview Robin from Bookania! I really don't know what people normally say before posting interviews of this sort, so I'll just put the interview up without any more introductions.

Thank you so much for invading my sister’s blog with me today! May I ask you a couple of questions?

I thought that was the entire point of my coming here.

I was just being polite, that's all.
What is your worst nightmare?

And I thought I was bad at conversation openers.
Haven’t you read the opening of the second book? I know you have. You reviewed it. Robert got eaten by a forest. I fell apart. I think it’d be safe to assume that that was my worst nightmare.

What would you do if somebody killed Robert and Eric?

*Very long pause, coupled with a stare of disbelief* Thank you very much. I now have a new worst nightmare.

I'm very sorry. I assumed you would have thought about that possibility before now.
What is your favorite piece of modern-day Earth technology that your author won’t let you have?

All right, you’ve decided to stop with the horrible questions. Thank you. I’d like a refrigerator. I mean, it keeps food cold so it tastes better, and after a nice, hard workout you can stand in front of it with the door open … Kendra says I can’t do that, though. Says her mom wouldn’t like it. I don’t see why.

Refrigerators are very nice, though I'm very partial to air condition and indoor plumbing myself.
When did you first realize you loved Eric?

I … I dunno. I spent so much of my childhood actively hating him that the transition to love was almost painful. I knew I’d be happy with him, that he was the one person who didn’t judge me for I was, that he’d take me on the adventures I’d always craved. But at the same time, I was marrying Eric. I’m glad our engagement was short because it meant that I didn’t have a chance to second-guess myself and change my mind. I can’t put my finger on the exact moment I realized that I loved him, though I like to say that it was five seconds after he did, which was five seconds after I accepted the proposal he doesn’t remember giving. I mean, that’s when I realized what I’d done, but that doesn’t mean I knew that I loved him. I do know I wasn’t comfortable with the decision until after the wedding. There’s been no second-guessing since then, and I must have realized that I loved him, actually loved him at some time since then, but I can’t put my finger on the moment, what he was doing, what he said, what I said … it just happened.

How many children would you like to have?

Uh … I’ve not really thought about that one before. More than two, I think. It seems that almost all royals just stop after the second child, and I don’t understand that. But I don’t want more than I can handle, either. Thing is, I don’t know how many I can handle, so…

Excluding your own author’s characters, which fellow mistreated characters do you feel the most sorry for?

Back in the days when Kendra would take us to do roleplays on a site called NaNo, one of the other characters, Kestrel, had a really mean author. The girl thought that killing the girl just to make her in-roleplay love interest sad was a fun thing. It was terrible. And the worst thing was that Kendra loved roleplaying with that particular author.

If your author would allow you, would you kill me for all of my annoying questions?

Fortunately for you, killing isn’t my style. Especially not for the simple thing of asking questions. Still…

Well, I'm glad Kendra wouldn't allow you to kill me, then. So long, Robin!

And there you have it. I personally think I'm lucky Robin answered any of my questions.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Interview With Eric

It's party time!

My good friend Kendra E. Ardnek is having a blog party to celebrate five years of The Bookania Quests! It's a series full of fun fairy tale retellings you won't want to miss. And for the party, a bunch of Bookania characters are visiting blogs for interviews. Hop over to Kendra's blog to find all the rest!

I got to interview my favorite Bookania character, Eric. It was a ton of fun. Enjoy!

    I’m hiking along a trail in Bookania, when I see a man walking up ahead. He's tall and muscular, with black hair and he's wearing green. Something about him seems awfully familiar.  I squint at him. Is that who I think it is? I hesitantly approach him. “Eric?” I ask.
    “Hello fair damsel. Are you lost? Do you need any aid? I don’t believe that I’ve met you before.”
    “I...well...I’m not exactly lost. I know where I am. But you are Eric? I’m very pleased to meet you. I’m a fan of yours.” I extend my hand for him to shake.
    “A fan?” said Eric, accepting the offered hand, though he kisses it instead of shaking it. “I suppose you’ve heard of my exploits and adventures? People do love to talk.”
    “They do that,” I admit, trying not to grin at his reaction to my intended handshake. “Eric--you don’t mind if I call you by your first name, do you?--would you mind terribly if I asked you a few questions? I’d love to get to know you better, and I have friends on my...on a writing platform I have who would as well.”
    “I don’t mind,” said Eric. “Titles grow pretentious. Are you with one of those newspapers that I’ve heard rumors about?”
    “Thanks. I don’t like titles much either.” I hesitate, not sure how to explain to him about my blog. “No, I’m not with a newspaper. I’m actually from another world. I have a thing called a blog that I post on the internet for people to read.”
    “Ah, another world? Most intriguing. I’ve read books that speak of one, where this world is but a story, but I’ve never met anyone to speak of it as fact before. So what questions do you have for me? Perhaps we should find a place to sit, however?”
    “Your world is a story where I come from. I very much enjoyed reading about your adventures. But yes, a place to sit sounds very nice.” Eric leads me to a fallen tree and we both take a seat. “I’m intrigued by your quests to rescue enchanted princesses. How many have you tried to rescue?”
    “A number of them,” Eric answers. “A a good number more that I heard rumors of but could never find.”
    “You didn’t count then?”
    “Oh, I did, but the number no longer matters now that I’ve found my Robin.”
    “I see.” I’m sure I’m grinning like a silly idiot after that comment. “You knew her growing up, though. When did you realize you loved her?”
    “Five seconds after she accepted the proposal I still don’t remember giving,” Eric answers, grinning.
    I laugh. “Robin’s quite a character. What was going through your head when Robin said you needed to marry someone like her? I mean, she essentially proposed, even though you sorta kinda did without meaning to.”
    “That she is.” Eric shakes his head. “I was focusing on the battle at hand, for she’s a very fierce fighter. I was speaking without thinking, really. I don’t usually let myself do that...”
    “Well, I’m glad you did, since I doubt any other method would have worked out in an engagement.” I study the trees as I try to decide what to ask Eric next. They’re so different from Rizkaland’s trees... “Have you ever met the Doorkeeper Laura? I don’t know if she comes to Bookania much...”
    “No, the name is quite unfamiliar to me.”
    “Ah, well, it was worth asking. I suppose that means people don’t generally world travel here.” Which makes me question how I got here--but no matter. Getting to talk to Eric is worth it. “One of my favorite things about you and Robin was your collections. I think it’s kind of romantic you kept so much of each others’ stuff, though I doubt you were thinking that way then. Why did you actually keep all the stuff Robin threw at you when you were kids?”
    “She, uh, told me to.”
    “That’s the only reason?” If someone threw stuff at me and told me to keep it, I doubt that I would, but I’m not Eric.
    “Well, what else was I supposed to do with it? At least I wasn’t sneaking into her room with malicious intentions of sabotage.”
    I burst out laughing. “You two have the craziest beginning to your relationship. She picked on you mercilessly when you were kids. You don’t hold any of it against her?”
    “Well, perhaps a little,” Eric admits, leaning back. “But now that I understand what she was going through...” He shakes his head. “Besides, there were times when she was nice.”
    “Times.” I turn to look straight at Eric. “Be honest, does she ever get on your nerves? And if not, you must be a super easy going guy.”
    “Well, there are times...” he admits. “She doesn’t see the importance of always being on time - or even early - and that can be frustrating. Also, right now...” he trails off.
    “Yes?” I prompt.
    “The woman doesn’t know how to take it easy and take care of herself!” he exclaims with sudden ferocity.
    “The baby on the way.” I smile at the thought of a cute, sweet little baby. I love babies. “I suppose that even though she has frustrating faults, she wouldn’t be Robin without them, and you wouldn’t like that. I understand.” I finish off my previous thought and launch into the idea of the royal baby. “Are you excited to be a father?”
    “I don’t know,” he admits. “I really wasn’t expecting to face it quite so soon. We were going to do some adventuring first. Now ... I’m really not sure how parenthood will factor into that. And Robin ... I found her climbing a tree yesterday! The day before that ... I understand her need for freedom, I really do, but she needs to take care of herself. If something were to happen to her or the child…”
    “Wow, I didn’t think even Robin would climb a tree while pregnant! That could be a problem. But this baby, it’s, I mean the Author’s will, so it’ll work out, I’m sure. I suppose that means you don’t feel prepared for fatherhood?”
    “She’s only in her fifth month, and she’s such an energetic person,” Eric admits. “But no, I don’t feel ready. How can anyone be ready for parenthood?”
    “True,” I agree. “I’m certainly not ready for parenthood, but I’m not even in a relationship yet, so I don’t have to worry about it.” Robin, though.... I stand up and brush off my skirt. “I probably ought to let you go find Robin; make sure she’s not doing something crazy like standing on her head or running down halls like a maniac or something. But before you go, since you’re a story in my world, what’s the thing you most want readers to know about you?”
    “About myself? Hmm, I don’t know,” Eric admits. “I’m just a man, after all. I may wear the title of prince, but I’m a man all the same. And yes, I really should get back...” At that moment, there is the thunder of horse’s hooves, and the moment after that, Robin appears around the corner on the trail, riding Snow bareback. “Ah, there you are, Eric!” she exclaims. “I’ve been looking all over for you!”
    My eyes widen. Of course Robin’s doing something ridiculous that she really shouldn’t be doing.
    “They wouldn’t saddle Snow for me,” she continues, “and you’ve forbidden me to saddle her myself. Who’s your friend?”
    “I’m just a friend of the Arista. Don’t worry, I’ll let Eric get back to you.” My gaze lowers to the horse, then comes to rest back on her. “You need it. Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions, Eric. I really appreciate it.”
    “No problem at all,” said Eric. “Will you be able to find your way back to your own world?”
    “I hope so.” I shrug. “And if not, there are worse places to be stuck.”
    “You could always stay for supper!” Robin hastily adds.
    “I think I’ll do that.” I grin. “Especially if it means you’ll take it easy for a little while.”

Journey Into Bookania
Sew, It's a Quest Free Today!
The Prior Quest Free Today!