Interview with {Blaire Edens}: Part Two

oam-cover-finalHAPPY RELEASE DAY (to an all around awesome lady)!

Enter the Giveaway

Blaire brings An Officer and a Mermaid to our Falling in DeepCollection. Make your fins happy, and order the novella here. She’s a talented author and an all-around lovely lady.

What is your favorite writing music?

It changes with the book.  Strangely enough, with An Officer and A Mermaid, I started out with watery music, like Pachabel’s Canon in D, but my characters just weren’t that into it so most of it was written with Pink Floyd blasting in my ears. For longer books, I will develop a play list and listen to it while I work. Fergalicious was part of my playlist for a book I wrote in 2013 and I still know all the words. For better or worse. Ha. I also like to binge watch Netflix while I write. I need background noise. It’s hard for me to write when it’s too quiet.

Where is your favorite place to find inspiration?

I’m a hard core people watcher. I often get inspiration just from a phrase I overhear at the gas station. People are just plain fascinating. They say all sorts of things that just BEG to be explored and written. I’m also a bit of a Sporty Spice (nineties flashback, sorry) and I love to be outside. I hike and bike and walk a lot so I’d say nature is a big inspiration, too.

What was your inspiration for An Officer and A Mermaid? Tell me about your heroine.

When I was invited to write this novella, I found Mami Wata and I was hooked. For some reason, before I discovered the Afro-Caribbean version of a mermaid, I imagined all mermaids as being white, in cold water and somewhat passive. I have no idea where that perception came from but when I found Mami Wata, I knew immediately that she was a mermaid I could work with. The legends, most of which originated in Nigeria and moved to the Caribbean on ships and with slaves, cast as her a powerful force, totally in touch with and comfortable with her sexuality and gender. I like that in a girl. My heroine, Syreena, is the daughter of an eighteenth century sugar plantation owner. Because of imminent danger, a servant uses voodoo to transform her into a mermaid to save her life. In the two hundred and twenty plus years she’s forced to swim alone, she becomes her own sort of Mami Wata and the legend plays out in some expected ways. I like the idea of using legends that have been around for centuries to teach us things about our current world.

Any advice for new writers (like me)?

Write, write, write. Then repeat. For most writers, it takes thousands and thousands of words to find voice and style. Words on the page are never a waste. Even if the book is never published or ever seen by another human, we learn something every time we write. It’s okay to experiment, it’s okay to make a mess. Take constructive criticism graciously and use feedback as a way to get better and better.

Read Part One, and buy An Officer and a Mermaid.

Enter the GIVEAWAY (:

oam-cover-finalAn Officer and a Mermaid:

When a slave uprising threatens the life of Syreena, the daughter of an eighteenth century plantation owner, a servant uses voodoo to transform her into a mermaid. The spell will be only broken when she returns to the beach where it was cast. After three hundred years of swimming, she’s ready to trade fins for legs.  The only problem is she can’t find her way.

Dylan, a twenty-first century Coast Guard Officer, has sworn off love for the sea. When a wave throws him overboard, Syreena uses her amulet to ward off the sharks and save his life.

With Syreena and Dylan stranded on a remote cay, Dylan has the know-how to build a raft and navigate but his near-drowning has made him terrified of the water. Syrenna will use every charm she has to convince Dylan to take her home.

Even if it means falling in love. . .

About Blaire:

edens_blaire_600x600Blaire Edens lives in the mountains of North Carolina on a farm that’s been in her family since 1790. When she’s not plotting, she’s busy knitting, running, or listening to the Blues. Blaire loves iced tea with mint, hand-stitched quilts, and yarn stores. She refuses to eat anything that mixes chocolate and peanut butter or apple and cinnamon. She’s generally nice to her mother, tries to remember not to smack her bubble gum, and only speeds when no one’s looking.

Meet Blaire:

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Love mermaids? Looking for a great beach read? The Falling in Deep Collection, a collection of 15 unique tales of creatures of the deep, is rolling out the first novella in their collection at the end of May.

From mermaids to sirens, Miami to Athens, dark paranormal romance to contemporary stories with steam, the fifteen award-winning and best-selling authors of the Falling in Deep Collection are bringing you mermaid tales like you’ve never seen before.

Every week beginning May 26th, 2015, we’ll be releasing one unique, never-before-published novella! Each novella will feature our favorite creature of the deep: mermaids.

The Falling in Deep Collection (May – September Releases)

Scales by Pauline Creeden

Ink: A Mermaid Romance by Melanie Karsak

Of Ocean and Ash by A. R. Draeger

Deep Breath by J. M. Miller

At the Heart of the Deep by Carrie Wells

The Mermaid’s Den by Ella Malone

How to be a Mermaid by Erin Hayes

The Glass Mermaid by Poppy Lawless

An Officer & a Mermaid by Blaire Edens

The Water is Sweeter by Eli Constant

Cold Water Bridegroom by B. Brumley

A Beyond the Sea Prequel by Emily Goodwin

Immersed by Katie Hayoz

Siren’s Kiss by Margo Bond Collins

To Each His Own by Anna Albergucci

Never miss a release! Join our newsletter for behind the scenes information and release updates:

Join the Mermaids!

Interview with {Erin Hayes}: Part Two (and a giveaway)

htbam-erinIt’s out, it’s out! You could WIN it here.

I met the lovely Erin Hayes through a rocking writers group! She’s releasing a novella with the Falling In Deep Collection. You can Order the mermaid awesomeness here.

What is your favorite writing music?

I listen to a lot of movie and video game music. It’s meant to enhance a situation, not distract from it, and I find that a good soundtrack amplifies my mood. I just need to find the right mood.

Where is your favorite place to find inspiration?

My desk! I’ve surrounded my writing area with great, creative things, such as my Sailor Moon figurines, 50 pieces of art, and my Sharknado figurine.

What was your inspiration for How to Be a Mermaid? Tell me about your heroine.

I wanted to tell a fun story unlike anything I’ve ever seen before for mermaids. I came across professional mermaids, and the story unfurled from there.

Any advice for new writers (like me)?

Other writers have said it, but I find the best advice to be to read as much as you write. This is an art where it’s easy to isolate yourself from everyone, but reading is something that takes you to different worlds and allows you to perfect your craft.

Synopsis:

All Tara ever wanted was to be a mermaid.

So she takes a year off between high school and college to don a fake tail and tour aquariums across the country in a professional mermaid troupe.

Everything’s great until she meets a gorgeous real-life merman named Finn. Suddenly, what she thought was a dream turns out to be a nightmare — she’s turning into a mermaid herself. For real.

Yet when she returns to the sea to seek out Finn and reverse her transformation, she finds herself in the middle of an impending war between the land and sea. Tara may have always wanted to be a mermaid, but now it’s sink or swim. In order to survive, she has to learn how to be one, too.

ORDER IT! YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO.

Check out this GIVEAWAY!

Short Excerpt:

“What is this?” a rough, intense voice demanded.

I swam out of unconsciousness, an uncomfortable experience that revealed my entire body aching, my head most of all. It was so dark, and a strange feeling had overtaken my body. Like I was floating. I tried touching a hand to my head, only to find that I couldn’t.

What the-?

My hands were tied behind my back with what felt like…kelp?

The realization hit me and I thrashed about trying to free myself, and I finally opened my eyes.

I paused for a moment, unable to grasp exactly where I was.

I was…underwater?

Air bubbles popped out of my mouth in a flurry when a scream escaped my throat. A thousand thoughts filled my head, none of them making sense except for the overwhelming dread that I was somehow underwater with my hands tied behind my back. From what I could tell, there was no way I could get air to breathe. I’d lost a lot of air when I screamed.

Oh my god, I was going to drown.

My mermaid necklace was thrust in front of my vision, momentarily disorienting me.

“What is this? I demand you to tell me now!”

“What?” I asked out loud. A sharp pain zigzagged across my head from where I’d hit it on the rock. I was trapped underwater and this man wanted to know…what exactly? What my necklace was?

The necklace came even closer to my face, so much that I’d have to go cross-eyed in order to focus on it.

“Where did you get this? What is it?” the man demanded.

“It’s my…” I was unsure and still terrified of my situation. “It’s my necklace.”

About the Author:Screen Shot 2015-05-30 at 9.07.40 AM

Sci-fi junkie, video game nerd, and wannabe manga artist Erin Hayes writes a lot of things. Sometimes she writes books, like the fantasy mystery novel Death is but a Dream, the sci-fi middle grade book Jacob Smith is Incredibly Average, and the Her Wolf paranormal series.

She works as an advertising copywriter during the day, and she moonlights as an author. She has lived in New Zealand, Texas, and now in Birmingham, Alabama with her husband, cat, and a growing collection of geek paraphernalia.

You can reach her at erinhayesbooks@gmail.com and she’ll be happy to chat. Especially if you want to debate Star Wars.

Meet Erin:

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Love mermaids? Looking for a great beach read? The Falling in Deep Collection, a collection of 15 unique tales of creatures of the deep, is rolling out the first novella in their collection at the end of May.

From mermaids to sirens, Miami to Athens, dark paranormal romance to contemporary stories with steam, the fifteen award-winning and best-selling authors of the Falling in Deep Collection are bringing you mermaid tales like you’ve never seen before.

Every week beginning May 26th, 2015, we’ll be releasing one unique, never-before-published novella! Each novella will feature our favorite creature of the deep: mermaids.

The Falling in Deep Collection (May – September Releases)

Scales by Pauline Creeden

Ink: A Mermaid Romance by Melanie Karsak

Of Ocean and Ash by A. R. Draeger

Deep Breath by J. M. Miller

At the Heart of the Deep by Carrie Wells

The Mermaid’s Den by Ella Malone

How to be a Mermaid by Erin Hayes

The Glass Mermaid by Poppy Lawless

An Officer & a Mermaid by Blaire Edens

The Water is Sweeter by Eli Constant

Cold Water Bridegroom by B. Brumley

A Beyond the Sea Prequel by Emily Goodwin

Immersed by Katie Hayoz

Siren’s Kiss by Margo Bond Collins

To Each His Own by Anna Albergucci

Never miss a release! Join our newsletter for behind the scenes information and release updates:

Join the Mermaids!

Interview with {Ella Malone}: Part One

With our Falling in Deep Collection: Ella Malone’s The Mermaid’s Den releases on Tuesday, June 30, 2015. I caught up with Ella, and she agreed to answer a few questions. Watch for Part Two on June 30, 2015!

Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 1.20.38 PM Tell us about you. What are some of your previously published projects?

This is my first publication for public sale. I write a lot, but mostly for people I know. I’ve been commissioned to write a few poems here and there, and I write marriage vows and speeches when asked, so I feel like I’m a part of a whole lot of love!

When did you start writing? When did you start publishing? The hardest thing about writing?

I started writing in high school. I had a hard time expressing how I was feeling and grabbed a pen and notebook. I found journaling soothing and it helped to record good days and look back to them when I had bad days.

As for the hardest part… starting! Finding that first paragraph is tough. I usually start in the middle.

What has been your favorite character that you’ve written so far?

I really like the character I wrote named Cora. Her story doesn’t have a title yet, but she’s a recent college grad who decided to take one last summer to break out of her shell before settling into the business world. With a job lined up in the fall, she escapes her roommates and parents by spending the summer researching in Italy. She comes alive!

Where does your inspiration come from? What do you do to break through a block?

Inspiration can come from anywhere. I find a lot of it comes from things I see or hear. Listen hard the next time you’re in the store. People forget you’re standing there and say the darnedest things. Most can be easily turned into a story.

Has there been a progression through genres with your writing, or do you mostly stick with one genre?

I write chick lit and some sexier stuff. I don’t do dark generally. I like writing to be about passion and relationships, things I actually enjoy in life.

Watch for Part Two of my interview with Ella Malone on June 30, 2015.

PRE-ORDER The Mermaid’s Den here.

Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 1.20.38 PMBlurb for The Mermaid’s Den:

Laura and Tom Flynn married after she fell for him hook, line, and sinker — literally. Finding Laura in his fishing net had been a shock for Tom, but one he came to embrace as they quickly fell in love. For fifteen years, they have lived and worked by the sea, and Laura hasn’t thought once of what she left behind when she chose to marry Tom. She doesn’t regret giving up her mermaid form. It wasn’t a sacrifice. It was a good decision, and one she had to make to survive.

Now, with Tom missing at sea, Laura faces a decision she swore she’d never consider. In order to search for Tom and his crew, she must become a mermaid again and face the demons of the deep that she eagerly dodged when trading in her tail. Or she can stay on land and continue her life, but without Tom?

Does she enjoy her future alone, without the man she loves, or face her fears and her past in the ocean? Either way, nothing will be the same for her again.

About the Author:

An avid believer of the saying “YES”, Ella Malone works to make the most of life in every way. She is a lover of all wonderful things: cherry blossoms, red lipstick, city skylines, snow covered country sides, the finest chocolate, a man’s hands, a woman’s back, vodka, and high heels. She has worked in public relations, advertising, and restaurants and recently decided to make her way doing what she loves, capturing the passionate moments of life on a page.

Ella Malone is the author of “The Mermaid’s Den” and the “Hot in the City Series” releasing in 2015.

Connect with Ella Malone:

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Love mermaids? Looking for a great beach read? The Falling in Deep Collection, a collection of 15 unique tales of creatures of the deep, is rolling out the first novella in their collection at the end of May.

From mermaids to sirens, Miami to Athens, dark paranormal romance to contemporary stories with steam, the fifteen award-winning and best-selling authors of the Falling in Deep Collection are bringing you mermaid tales like you’ve never seen before.

Every week beginning May 26th, 2015, we’ll be releasing one unique, never-before-published novella! Each novella will feature our favorite creature of the deep: mermaids.

The Falling in Deep Collection (May – September Releases)

Scales by Pauline Creeden

Ink: A Mermaid Romance by Melanie Karsak

Of Ocean and Ash by A. R. Draeger

Deep Breath by J. M. Miller

At the Heart of the Deep by Carrie Wells

The Mermaid’s Den by Ella Malone

How to be a Mermaid by Erin Hayes

The Glass Mermaid by Poppy Lawless

An Officer & a Mermaid by Blaire Edens

The Water is Sweeter by Eli Constant

Cold Water Bridegroom by B. Brumley

A Beyond the Sea Prequel by Emily Goodwin

Immersed by Katie Hayoz

Siren’s Kiss by Margo Bond Collins

To Each His Own by Anna Albergucci

Never miss a release! Join our newsletter for behind the scenes information and release updates:

Join the Mermaids!

Interview with {Carrie Wells}: Part One

Heart cover Carrie L. Wells is bringing an awesome tale to the Falling in Deep Collection: At the Heart of the Deep – releasing Tuesday, June 23, 2015. (Novella details below)

On with the interview!

Tell us about you. What are some of your previously published projects?

While this is my first fiction work, I co-authored as kick butt technical writing book. Other than that, I’ve written for newspapers and in public relations.

When did you start writing? When did you start publishing? What is the hardest thing about writing?

I started writing as a kid. I loved stories so much that when I ran out of interesting things to read, I wrote my own. The hardest part is not writing the whole world at once. I want every story to encompass all of the ideas I have in my head and I have a hard time limiting what happens.

What has been your favorite character that you’ve written so far?

I’m in love with my YA fiction character Alex Montoya from my forthcoming Sugar Skull Chronicles. She’s a nerdy teen who finds herself with paranormal abilities. She is everything I wish I had been in high school!

Where does your inspiration come from? What do you do to break through a block?

Inspiration is in anything. I love looking at pictures and writing from those. Or songs. Songs can drive my writing in one direction or another. As for writer’s block, I talk. I talk to my super successful writer friends and my husband. He’s worked out quite a few plot lines for me.

Has there been a progression through genres with your writing, or do you mostly stick with one genre?

I write what comes to me. Most of my writing has a romantic element to it because relationships are a huge part of life in my world.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015: Watch for Part Two of my interview with Carrie Wells.

Be a mermaid! Pre-order the novella here.

About At the Heart of the Deep Heart cover

Oceanographer Luke McAllister races to figure out why the ocean depth is changing off Florida’s Treasure Coast. But before he and his crew discover what’s transforming the deep, he stumbles upon an even greater mystery. Leagues below the waves, he swears he sees…a mermaid?

Anya isn’t allowed to get close to humans. But when a golden-haired researcher gets too close to her island, she can’t afford to stay away.

Together, this unlikely pair will seek to discover what’s causing shifts in ocean floor. While their new alliance is forbidden, Anya will risk everything to save her beloved ocean. The only problem is, she’s not sure what’s really luring her in, her love of the sea or the tempest Luke has stirred in her heart. Either way, Anya knows that the dangers facing the sea are nothing compared to what will happen to her when her father learns she’s broken the merfolks’ most sacred law.

Can Anya and Luke discover what lurks at the heart of the deep before it’s too late?

C. WellsAbout the Author:

Carrie L. Wells crosses genres, writing everything from newspaper editorials and textbooks to paranormal romance novellas. Her first fiction publication, The Heart of the Deep, will release in June 2015, followed by Playing with Magic in October 2015. A New England native, she spent her childhood on the beach and inland, fishing and dancing, before moving to Florida. And while she doesn’t tan, nothing keeps her from a walk on the beach.

Carrie earned her Master’s degree in English with a minor in Psychology from Hardin-Simmons University and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Florida. With a love of chocolate, books, and her family, Carrie braves the world and chaos only children can bring. She currently lives in Florida with her fire-medic hubby and three children. She is an English instructor at Eastern Florida State College.

Find Carrie in these awesome places:


Love mermaids? Looking for a great beach read? The Falling in Deep Collection, a collection of 15 unique tales of creatures of the deep, is rolling out the first novella in their collection at the end of May.

From mermaids to sirens, Miami to Athens, dark paranormal romance to contemporary stories with steam, the fifteen award-winning and best-selling authors of the Falling in Deep Collection are bringing you mermaid tales like you’ve never seen before.

Every week beginning May 26th, 2015, we’ll be releasing one unique, never-before-published novella! Each novella will feature our favorite creature of the deep: mermaids.

The Falling in Deep Collection (May – September Releases)

Scales by Pauline Creeden

Ink: A Mermaid Romance by Melanie Karsak

Of Ocean and Ash by A. R. Draeger

Deep Breath by J. M. Miller

At the Heart of the Deep by Carrie Wells

The Mermaid’s Den by Ella Malone

How to be a Mermaid by Erin Hayes

The Glass Mermaid by Poppy Lawless

An Officer & a Mermaid by Blaire Edens

The Water is Sweeter by Eli Constant

Cold Water Bridegroom by B. Brumley

A Beyond the Sea Prequel by Emily Goodwin

Immersed by Katie Hayoz

Siren’s Kiss by Margo Bond Collins

To Each His Own by Anna Albergucci

Never miss a release! Join our newsletter for behind the scenes information and release updates:

Join the Mermaids!

Interview with {A.R. Draeger}: Part Two

I met Amber during a workshop sponsored by the Cisco Writers Club. This was my first experience with her style of writing, and it’s been great to read everything since. I have secured a spot on her coattails, and it is my plan to ride them when she hits her fame! ❤ She’s been a great friend. She’s always encouraging, ready to lend a hand. I know you’ll love her new Falling in Deep novella, Of Ocean and Ash.

On with the interview…

What authors do you like to read? Favorite saying about writing?

Oh wow. Uh. I have a long list of those.  I can tell you succinctly who I do not like to read. 😉  I shall save that for a bonus.  If people bug you about it, I will divulge my guilty secrets on who I avoid reading.   Favorite saying?  I believe Ernest Hemingway said “All first drafts are s**t” and “Write drunk, edit sober”, but my favorite is a twist on his last – “Write sober, edit drunk.”

You recently attended the DFW RT Conference. How did that go? Any advice for new conference attendees?

The RT Booklovers Conference was in a word – amazing. Completely overwhelming in every sense of the word. I even stalked and got stalked by Heather Graham, who is a lovely soul, by the way.  Advice would be unless you are completely and utterly new to writing, don’t bother with (most of) the panels. Your money is better spent at the bar or at the social events meeting people.  The reader events are a blast, and you get free books…and you meet readers. 🙂  I learned more by visiting with people than I did through any other avenue.

Tell us about Of Ocean and Ash.

You mean a blurb? You want me to write a blurb? Ack! *pokes out eyes*  Let me get back to you after I finish a blurb. LOL 😉 {But she has one! Check it out below!}

Any advice to even newer writers (like me)?

You are not a newer writer, my friend. You’ve been at this longer. I just stuck my head out a teensy bit before you. 😉 {Thanks, Amber! ❤ ❤ }

Keep writing. Don’t ever stop. Don’t give a crap whether or not anyone likes it.

Hire an editor. You can have crappy everything else, but if you have bad editing, no one will forgive you.

Make friends with other writers. Actually be their friend. When you read something of theirs, and they ask for your opinion, give it – but give them ideas to strengthen the bits you didn’t like.

Learn to drink a little. You will need to throw back a glass of wine or two from time to time.

Don’t let them (your critics) see you cry. It’s like bleeding in the water with a bunch of sharks swimming around you. Get pissed off then write more.

Try not to read reviews. I know I’ll be guilty of this – all of this advice is just as much for my benefit as it is for yours.

The best way to sell your work is to have something to sell. Develop a backlist.

Don’t think that traditional publishing or self-publishing is entirely good or bad.  They play well off of each other currently and hybrid authors are seeing great results doing both. Consider this when you have your choices laid out in front of you.

About Amber’s new release:

Of Ocean…

Cast into the sea at birth, human-born Ia found her adoptive family among the merfolk. While her underwater upbringing was peaceful, Ia’s blood-heritage and the strict societal rules of the merpeople lead her to wonder of the world above the waves.

And Ash…

When a storm lands Ia ashore, she discovers her body has transformed into the human she would have been. Taken in as property by a callous plantation owner, Ia works alongside the slaves until she can make her way back to the water. There is nothing Ia wants more than to go home, that is, until she meets a handsome, troubled man named Matthias, who has a touch that can be as kind as his tongue is harsh.

Torn between two very different lives, Ia must choose – stay in his world and risk her life for a love untested, or return to the familiar arms of the underwater world that raised her and risk losing what may be the greatest love she will ever know.

Will Ia’s choice lead to her happiness or her destruction?

Make your library happy here

AmberHeadshot

Author Amber (A.R.) Draeger specializes in macabre, fantastical fiction, spreading her interest across multiple genres including horror, sci-fi, fantasy, romance, and thriller.  Her debut romance novella, Of Ocean and Ash, to be published in the Blazing Indie Collective’s Falling in Deep Collection, will be released June 9th, 2015. Her debut horror/thriller/sci-fi novella,Daughters of Men, to be published in association with Bathory Gate Press, will follow in Summer 2015.  She resides in rural Texas with her husband and son.

Talk to Amber (:

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Love mermaids? Looking for a great beach read? The Falling in Deep Collection, a collection of 15 unique tales of creatures of the deep, is rolling out the first novella in their collection at the end of May.

From mermaids to sirens, Miami to Athens, dark paranormal romance to contemporary stories with steam, the fifteen award-winning and best-selling authors of the Falling in Deep Collection are bringing you mermaid tales like you’ve never seen before.

Every week beginning May 26th, 2015, we’ll be releasing one unique, never-before-published novella! Each novella will feature our favorite creature of the deep: mermaids.

The Falling in Deep Collection (May – September Releases)

Scales by Pauline Creeden

Ink: A Mermaid Romance by Melanie Karsak

Of Ocean and Ash by A. R. Draeger

Deep Breath by J. M. Miller

At the Heart of the Deep by Carrie Wells

The Mermaid’s Den by Ella Malone

How to be a Mermaid by Erin Hayes

The Glass Mermaid by Poppy Lawless

An Officer & a Mermaid by Blaire Edens

The Water is Sweeter by Eli Constant

Cold Water Bridegroom by B. Brumley

A Beyond the Sea Prequel by Emily Goodwin

Immersed by Katie Hayoz

Siren’s Kiss by Margo Bond Collins

To Each His Own by Anna Albergucci

Never miss a release! Join our newsletter for behind the scenes information and release updates:

Join the Mermaids!

Interview with {A.R. Draeger}: Part One

I met Amber during a workshop sponsored by the Cisco Writers Club. This was my first experience with her style of fiction, and it’s been great to read everything since. She’s been a great friend, and she’s always encouraging, ready to lend a hand. I know you’ll love her new Falling in Deep novella, Of Ocean and Ash.

Tell me about you. What are some of your previous projects?

Oh man. Where to begin?  I’ve created stories since I could read. In college, I wrote a lot of screenplays.  For the sake of brevity, some of my previous projects are Daughters of Men (set to release soon!) and Malice, a short story that I am shopping currently. {Check out Daughters of Men here.}

When did you start writing? When did you start publishing?

I first put pen to paper when I was six..maybe? As an adult, I first began writing with the intention of publishing in August of 2014.  I signed my first contract to publish that October, and hope to release the fruit of that endeavor soon.

You’re new to this world. Tell me what part has been the hardest so far?

Navigation. Old days would have you seek an agent and hope to sell to a big NYC house.  These days? Who knows where your efforts are better placed.  It’s different for everyone, and with the market increasing saturated by half-assed e-books, it’s becoming extremely difficult to decide which winding path to follow.  Sadly, most of the success in today’s market seems to be entirely opportunistic.  Right topic, right genre, right time – and with little regard to talent or effort (at times).

What’s your favorite food? Color?

Ooooh. I love food. Mango may be my favorite. Watermelon?  I can’t decide!  As far as color, it’s a close call between varying shades of blue, blue-green, and purple.  Most of my decisions on food and color depend on mood. 🙂

What has been your favorite character that you’ve written so far?

He’s actually one that I’m writing right now, Bastien. He’s a cocky, know-it-all, spoiled version of myself, and I absolutely adore the man he’s becoming.

Where does your inspiration come from? What do you do to break through a block?

My inspiration comes from any and everywhere.  Reading, writing (usually writing something completely different), watching films, going for walks – all of those inspire me and help me to get through blocks. Brainstorming with others that I trust is a huge help. Learn to trust and take advice. Doesn’t mean you have to apply their specific advice – just heed the fact that something sticks out to them that you may need to fix/repair. I find a lot of inspiration in my dreams and have always been blessed with very vivid, very structured, very fascinating dreams.

Has there been a progression through genres with your writing, or do you mostly stick with one genre?

I don’t know that I have it in me to stick with one genre, although as a new author, I am constantly warned that switching genres early in the game will alienate my fans.  Maybe, maybe not.  I write for myself at the end of the day, quite frankly, and if I’m bored, I’m going to find another venue. I hope to narrow that down to 2 to 3 genres, but we shall see. 🙂

Part Two of my interview with hot, new author A.R. Draeger will be available on June 9, 2015!
Of Ocean…

Cast into the sea at birth, human-born Ia found her adoptive family among the merfolk. While her underwater upbringing was peaceful, Ia’s blood-heritage and the strict societal rules of the merpeople lead her to wonder of the world above the waves.

And Ash…

When a storm lands Ia ashore, she discovers her body has transformed into the human she would have been. Taken in as property by a callous plantation owner, Ia works alongside the slaves until she can make her way back to the water. There is nothing Ia wants more than to go home, that is, until she meets a handsome, troubled man named Matthias, who has a touch that can be as kind as his tongue is harsh.

Torn between two very different lives, Ia must choose – stay in his world and risk her life for a love untested, or return to the familiar arms of the underwater world that raised her and risk losing what may be the greatest love she will ever know.

Will Ia’s choice lead to her happiness or her destruction?

AmberHeadshot

Author Amber (A.R.) Draeger specializes in macabre, fantastical fiction, spreading her interest across multiple genres including horror, sci-fi, fantasy, romance, and thriller.  Her debut romance novella, Of Ocean and Ash, to be published in the Blazing Indie Collective’s Falling in Deep Collection, will be released June 9th, 2015. Her debut horror/thriller/sci-fi novella, Daughters of Men, to be published in association with Bathory Gate Press, will follow in Summer 2015.  She resides in rural Texas with her husband and son.

Talk to Amber (:

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Love mermaids? Looking for a great beach read? The Falling in Deep Collection, a collection of 15 unique tales of creatures of the deep, is rolling out the first novella in their collection at the end of May.

From mermaids to sirens, Miami to Athens, dark paranormal romance to contemporary stories with steam, the fifteen award-winning and best-selling authors of the Falling in Deep Collection are bringing you mermaid tales like you’ve never seen before.

Every week beginning May 26th, 2015, we’ll be releasing one unique, never-before-published novella! Each novella will feature our favorite creature of the deep: mermaids.

The Falling in Deep Collection (May – September Releases)

Scales by Pauline Creeden

Ink: A Mermaid Romance by Melanie Karsak

Of Ocean and Ash by A. R. Draeger

Deep Breath by J. M. Miller

At the Heart of the Deep by Carrie Wells

The Mermaid’s Den by Ella Malone

How to be a Mermaid by Erin Hayes

The Glass Mermaid by Poppy Lawless

An Officer & a Mermaid by Blaire Edens

The Water is Sweeter by Eli Constant

Cold Water Bridegroom by B. Brumley

A Beyond the Sea Prequel by Emily Goodwin

Immersed by Katie Hayoz

Siren’s Kiss by Margo Bond Collins

To Each His Own by Anna Albergucci

Never miss a release! Join our newsletter for behind the scenes information and release updates:

Join the Mermaids!

Interview with {Melanie Karsak}: Part Two

Read Part One

I met Melanie Karsak when I joined Falling in Deep. I’ve read the first two books in the Airship Racing Chronicles, and I really love the depth to her character Lily. Melanie’s new novella, Ink, is available TODAY!

Closeup of a big white wave

Happy release day, Melanie!

WInterviewMelanieKarsakImage.docxhat authors do you like to read? Favorite saying about writing?

I’m a really eclectic reader. I read A LOT of nonfiction, probably a book a week. I’m always trying to learn something new. Some of my favorite steampunk authors include AW Exley and Elizabeth Watasin. In terms of the dark stuff, I love Margo Bond Collins’ vampires and Peggy Sue Martinez’s zombies. But I like romance too. Staci Hart is one of my favorite romance/erotica authors.

Favorite writing music? Does it change from project to project? 

My writing music definitely changes from book to book. My mermaid book required a lot of weird instrumental music as I figured out how it would be to exist underwater. My zombie stuff is usually dark. My steampunk books take me all over the place!

Tell us about Ink: A Mermaid Romance

InterviewMelanieKarsakImage1.docx InterviewMelanieKarsakImage2.docx InterviewMelanieKarsakImage3.docx

As I mentioned, I moved to Florida about five years ago, and I was really inspired by all the sights on the coast. We’ve taken trips to Miami on a few occasions. I enjoy the architecture, but dislike the vibe of the city. It’s the same vibe Ink feels when she is there (sorry, Miami). I live on the Space Coast, not far from NASA, and I love this area. We are close to Cocoa Beach which has the feel of a “once-happening” place. There is a quaint charm to its faded, sea-side glory. I adore Cocoa Village, a quaint downtown area. There are lovely little shops and old oak trees with Spanish moss. It was the perfect setting for Ink’s eventual rendezvous with a good friend.

I think looking at the water every day made me really feel the vibe of the ocean—and yes, go ahead and imagine I’ve said that in the most hippie way possible. It probably doesn’t hurt that my daughter had me watch The Little Mermaid about 1000 times on summer. Watching Ariel turn herself inside out for a life on land made me really wonder: was it all it was cracked up to be? What if mers were more like vampires, dark and hedonistic on land…no Prince Eric’s here. Then what would a poor mermaid do? I think I played with that idea in Ink.

Do you have any advice for new writers (like me)?

Keep your expectations realistic. Study what successful authors are doing. Don’t give up. You will make mistakes, and you will learn from those mistakes (I say as I sit here realizing I need to recover and rebrand my Lady Macbeth line). Expect things to go wrong: bad reviews, slow sales, typos that slip through. These things happen. Don’t let them discourage you. Fix whatever is wrong and move on. Remind yourself you are in this for the long haul. Write.

READ PART ONE of my interview with Melanie Karsak

A bit about Ink:

A mermaid princess destined to wed a handsome king… 

It sounds like a fairy tale, but the reality is far murkier. 

Ink, Princess of the Florida Atlantic mers, is slated to wed the ancient enemy of her tribe, the King of the Gulfs. After years of war that led to countless mer deaths, as well as the genocide of aquatic shapeshifters and the freshwater mers of Florida, Ink’s marriage will bring lasting peace. 

Or so it seems. 

Mere hours before she’s supposed to leave the ocean for her customary year as a drywalker, Ink meets Hal, an alligator shifter who warns her that a storm is brewing. There is malicious intent behind Ink’s marriage—and worse, meeting Hal has also caused a storm to rage in Ink’s heart. Nevertheless, loyal to her tribe, Ink will put aside her feelings and journey to Miami to marry the decadent King Manx. 

Ink soon learns that her only hope of surviving the crashing force swelling around her is to tap into a power deep inside—a forbidden power that might destroy them all. 

InkAbout the author: Melanie Karsak is the author of the Amazon best-selling The Airship Racing Chronicles, The Harvesting Series, and The Saga of Lady Macbeth. She grew up in rural northwestern Pennsylvania and earned a Master’s degree in English from Gannon University. A steampunk connoisseur, white elephant collector, and zombie whisperer, the author currently lives in Florida with her husband and two children. She is an Instructor of English at Eastern Florida State College.

Keep up with Melanie: Blog  Twitter  Facebook Pinterest  Email

Make your library happy: order INK here


Love mermaids? Looking for a great beach read? The Falling in Deep Collection, a collection of 15 unique tales of creatures of the deep, is rolling out the first novella in their collection at the end of May.

From mermaids to sirens, Miami to Athens, dark paranormal romance to contemporary stories with steam, the fifteen award-winning and best-selling authors of the Falling in Deep Collection are bringing you mermaid tales like you’ve never seen before.

Every week beginning May 26th, 2015, we’ll be releasing one unique, never-before-published novella! Each novella will feature our favorite creature of the deep: mermaids.

The Falling in Deep Collection (May – September Releases)

Scales by Pauline Creeden

Ink: A Mermaid Romance by Melanie Karsak

Of Ocean and Ash by A. R. Draeger

Deep Breath by J. M. Miller

At the Heart of the Deep by Carrie Wells

The Mermaid’s Den by Ella Malone

How to be a Mermaid by Erin Hayes

The Glass Mermaid by Poppy Lawless

An Officer & a Mermaid by Blaire Edens

The Water is Sweeter by Eli Constant

Cold Water Bridegroom by B. Brumley

A Beyond the Sea Prequel by Emily Goodwin

Immersed by Katie Hayoz

Siren’s Kiss by Margo Bond Collins

To Each His Own by Anna Albergucci

Never miss a release! Join our newsletter for behind the scenes information and release updates:

Join the Mermaids!