Interview with Diane E. Steinbach, Author of Song of Mornius

What can you tell us about your new release, Song of Mornius?

This is a book I started in my early thirties while I was involved in multiple writer workshops and trying to learn my craft. I had reached the point that I was starting to submit it as a finished piece to agents and publishers, but then my world fell apart. I had a lot of bad things happen all at once, and through the course of several years, I lost the story. My computer crashed, my laptop died, and I was simply too distracted and out of sorts to think about what I had on those computers that I needed to salvage. Then as I started rebuilding my life, I realized I no longer had most of the work I had put into this book. All I could find of Mornius was a few chapters on floppy disc, and a partial, printed version of a very early draft. I realized then that I needed to make a choice–either to recreate a digital version, or move on and write something else. I decided to spend a year rebuilding. I gathered what I could find from the earlier drafts and started over again. Now as a result, Mornius represents to me not just the journey of my characters in the story, but my journey and battles as well.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

Stephen R. Donaldson was my inspiration. I loved his Chronicles of Thomas Covenant books (the first two trilogies). I love the reluctant hero approach to writing, the guy who needs to save the day but has a lot of internal conflicts that get in his way.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

My top five books? Watership Down (Richard Adams), Dune (Frank Herbert), Lord of The Two Lands (Judith Tarr), The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel), Lady of the Glen (Jennifer Roberson)

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

My first guest would have to be Samuel Clemens. He is family–my mother’s great uncle. I just think he was a fascinating man who would be awesome to meet.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

I really enjoy world building, but I think my favorite thing about writing books is how the characters become real for me–to the point they take over. Caven Roth (in Song of Mornius) is a great example of this. He started out as a background character. But then he made it known he wanted more. And because I listened and paid attention, now the story is better because of it. I think the best part of writing is the adventure the writer gets to go on, not just the characters. People who think writing books is a lonely business, have not experienced a character getting in their head the way I have.

What is a typical day like for you?

I feed my cats first. (Yes, I am a crazy cat lady). I also feed my dog, Haley, and my snakes and tortoises. (I am a crazy small menagerie lady, too!) Then I make my coffee, grab a bagel or whatever, and sit down to write. I do not have a set number of pages I want to get through. I just write until I feel like stopping, whenever that might be. Since I have a full-time job driving for public transit (those big 60′ articulated buses!), I always make sure to give myself enough time before I leave for work to walk my dog, etc. Then while I’m on my break at work I often run through scenes in my head, or think about where I need to go next with my story. This way I have already done the groundwork when it comes time for me to write again.

What scene in Song of Mornius was your favorite to write?

My favorite scene in Mornius? I have several. I think one of my favs is whenTerrek confronts Felrina and forces her to tell him how his brother died.

Do you have a motto, quote or philosophy you live by?

My motto; never give up, never surrender.

Diane E. Steinbach is the author of the new book Song of Mornius.

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Song Of Mornius: Book One Of The Talenkai Chronicles

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Interview with Sagan Morrow, Author of She Wants More

What can you tell us about your new release, She Wants More?

She Wants More is a steamy new adult romantic comedy, starring Helen, a 30-something career-driven woman who is on the verge of marrying the love of her life, Ben. But her world is turned upside down when she meets their wedding photographer for the first time and realizes she is extremely attracted to him.

A little sexy eye candy never hurt anyone, and Helen figures it’s okay to look as long as she doesn’t touch. The problem is, she wants to touch. Even her perfect relationship with Ben isn’t enough to quell that desire.

Helen has to figure out what this means for her and Ben, whether they will go through with their dream wedding or not, and how she can reconcile her love for her fiancé with her undeniable attraction for another man.

Luckily for Helen, one of her best friends is polyamorous, so she can help Helen along the way as she navigates her desires! She Wants More is Book 4 in the Polyamorous Passions series, and it can be enjoyed as a stand-alone novella. The series follows the story of Helen and her two best friends as they each explore ethical, consensual non-monogamy in their own ways.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

I’ve always wanted to be a writer. I’m one of those people who, from the time they could hold a pen, was sitting at a desk and scribbling away. I’ve been dreaming up stories and writing them down since I was a little kid.

For the past 10 years, I’ve had my own business wherein I mostly do freelance writing for clients. In the last few years I wrote and published a couple business books (teaching other freelancers how to build their own businesses and improve productivity while working from home), but because I’ve been so focused on writing non-fiction, years had gone by since I’d done any creative writing.

In fact, it wasn’t until shortly after I realized that I identify as polyamorous that I began searching for romance novels featuring ethically non-monogamous relationships… and I couldn’t find quite what I was looking for. I realized that this was the perfect time for me to write the stories I wanted to read—and finally become a published author, like I’d always said I wanted to do but never got around to. I’ve now written and published four novellas within the last year and I have no intention of slowing down any time soon!

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

It’s torture to choose just 5! Some of my favourites that I reread again and again include the Warlord Chronicles trilogy by Bernard Cornwell (the best version of King Arthur and Merlin that I’ve ever read), Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell (her ability to write relationship dynamics and character arcs is incredible), The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova (no other story is quite like this portrayal of Dracula), The Princess Bride by William Goldman (such a classic), and the Hellions of Halstead Hall series by Sabrina Jeffries (swoon-worthy historical romance).

Can I throw in a couple works of non-fiction, for good measure? The Ethical Slut by Janet W. Hardy & Dossie Easton and Perv by Jesse Bering are both fascinating reads for anyone interested in learning more about relationships and sexuality.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

I would love to interview Emily Giffin about her novel, Love the One You’re With. It has a similar vibe to She Wants More, in that it explores what happens when you’re madly in love with one person and still attracted to someone else. I would be interested to know what compelled Giffin to write such a raw, frank take on relationships and her perspective on writing realism into romance novels.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

When the characters take on a life of their own—that’s the best part. Sometimes they’ll say or do something you hadn’t planned, but it’s exactly in line with their character, and it fits perfectly with the story. I also love it when something I wrote three chapters ago ties into a new scene unexpectedly and creates a thread that makes the story stronger or builds upon themes in a way I didn’t plan. It feels like magic when that happens.

What is a typical day like for you?

Because I work from home full-time as my own boss, I get to make my own schedule. My business is divided into three parts: doing freelance work for clients, teaching other freelancers how to be more productive with their home businesses, and writing novels.

My creative juices flow better earlier in the morning and also in the evening, so that’s when I usually work on novels. I typically focus on client work for two days each week, and the rest of the time I focus on teaching through e-courses or else writing novels. I like taking long breaks in the middle of the day, since my productivity levels always take a dip around then.

Every day looks a little different and I like it that way. It keeps me on my toes. I do some kind of writing (whether for my clients, my books, or for other aspects of my business) each day. The important part for me is to create deadlines for myself, to plan when I’ll work on which projects (such as setting myself daily word count goals when I’m working on a new book), and also to pay close attention to what I’m feeling at any given time. I listen to what my body needs and honour that, including giving myself plenty of breaks, which I find has the happy side effect of making me more productive, energetic, and excited about my work.

What scene in She Wants More was your favorite to write?

Every time Helen interacts with her wedding photographer! I loved writing the sexual tension between them (particularly the scene after they leave the cocktail lounge together in Chapter 8).

I was surprised by how much I enjoyed writing the scenes between Helen, Ben, and their premarital counsellor, too—drawing out their thoughts and feelings and discomfort was interesting. But it makes sense: as an author in the new adult genre, I’m fascinated with exploring relationship dynamics and self-discovery, so the premarital counselling scenes lend themselves well to that.

Do you have a motto, quote or philosophy you live by?

“Life is too short, but also too long, to spend your time doing what you don’t love to do.” I’m paraphrasing here, but this is something that was said by a very talented artist, Elizabeth, who took my freelancer e-courses a few years back. She said it during a chat we were having, right around the time that she was making some big changes with her business. It perfectly encapsulates my attitude toward life (and business).

It’s the reason why I have my own business, it’s why I asked my own spouse to open our relationship after I realized I identify as polyamorous, it’s why I write novels and became an indie author. Identifying what makes us happy and embodying that in how we live our lives can be a game-changer and it’s something everyone deserves to experience.

Sagan Morrow is the author of the new book She Wants More.

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She Wants More (Polyamorous Passions Book 4)

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The Story Behind the Maxwell Family Saga Series by S.B. Alexander

By S.B. Alexander

When I sat down to write the first book in the main Maxwell series back in 2014, I had no idea how the book or the series would resonate with fans. But when book 1 – Dare to Kiss was released, I was shocked at how the book had taken off. Fast forward five years and the original Maxwell series, which consists of six books, was complete.

But fans kept asking for more Maxwells, and at the time I’d been planning a young adult sports romance series that revolved around a boy who plays basketball and a shy, nerdy, farm girl. So instead of a separate brand new series of books, I decided to build more with the Maxwell family. Hence, a spin-off series was born.

I’ve been having a blast writing in the sweet romance genre and bringing more Maxwells to life. The response has been amazing since My Heart to Touch was released in December of 2018, and I’m grateful to my fans for all their excitement and love for the books.

Some highlights of the series and future books to come:
• Staunch Maxwell fans from the original series can expect to see their beloved characters like Kade and Lacey in this series.
• The books revolve around 8 Maxwell cousins.
• The first four books will follow Maiken Maxwell the oldest in his family.
• The books should be read in order.
• Maiken’s siblings will also have their own books.
• Like in the other Maxwell stories, family plays a big part.
• This series is targeted for young adults 13 and up and falls into the sweet and clean romance subcategory.
• As of this writing, the first three books are available on Amazon and in Kindle Unlimited. Book 4 will be released in late 2019.

S.B. Alexander is the author of the new book My Heart to Give.

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My Heart to Give (A Maxwell Family Saga Book 3)

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New Mystery and Thriller Books to Read | May 28

Hold on to the edge of your seat as we hunt for clues and solve the case with these exciting new mystery and thriller books for the week! There are so many bestselling authors with new novels for you to dive into this week including Marni Mann, Stephanie Parker McKean, Peg Cochran, Anthony Horowitz, and many more. Enjoy your new mystery, thriller, and suspense novels. Happy reading!



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New Romance Books to Read | May 28

Looking to fall in love with some new romance reads? You’ll adore these exciting new novels! This week you can get your hands on books by bestselling authors S.B. Alexander, Sagan Morro, Ruth Cardello, and more. Enjoy your new romance books and happy reading!



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New Books to Read in Literary Fiction | May 28

Literary fiction readers are in for a treat. This week’s latest releases list is full of intriguing reads you won’t want to miss! The new releases list includes so many bestselling authors like Mary Beth Keane, Richard Roper, Mandy Berman, and many more. Enjoy your new literary fiction books. Happy reading!



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New Science Fiction and Fantasy Books | May 28

Set off on an adventure to new worlds this week! This selection of new science fiction and fantasy books will surely please! Science Fiction fans should be excited about the latest from bestselling authors Mark Lawrence, D.J. Molles, and more. If Fantasy is what your library needs, you’ll be able to pick up the latest from Diane E. Steibach, Nikki Broadwell, Alisa Woods, and more. Enjoy your new science fiction and fantasy books. Happy reading!


Fantasy


Science Fiction


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New Young Adult Books to Read | May 28

Are you an avid reader of Young Adult books? This week you are in luck! With all of these new novels, you’re bound to find a new favorite book to add to your reading list. This week includes new novels from bestselling authors Angelina J. Steffort, Isabel Sterling, Terry Brooks, and many more. Enjoy your new young adult books. Happy reading!



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New Biography and Memoir Books to Read | May 28

Looking for some new biography and memoir books for your library? There are so many new releases this week that you’re bound to find a new favorite. You can pick up new novels from Karen Kilgariff, Georgia Hardstark, Lamar Odom, Shannon Watts, and more. Enjoy your new biography and memoir books. Happy reading!



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THE FALLEN: GENESIS (Deadly Virtues #0.5) by TILLIE COLE

5 stars!

"Please, Jesus, please save him. Redeem him, forgive his sins. Forgive me mine. I just need him to be okay. He is all I have left."

Tillie Cole has done it again! What an incredibly multilayered storyteller this lady is. Her talent never fails to astonish us. This series promises to deliver everything and more, so dust off the bookshelves because a new dark series is about to take up residence in your hearts, minds, and souls!

The characters in The Fallen shocked us, saddened us, broke us and made us so utterly desperate to hear each of their stories. This is no easy read. When Tillie Cole warned readers this series was VERY dark, she wasn't exaggerating. There were times we had to stop and regroup before we could continue. Some aspects of this story are confronting, uncomfortable and harrowing, and will have you questioning exactly what is good and what is the evil.

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THE FALLEN: GENESIS (Deadly Virtues #0.5) by TILLIE COLE