Tag Archives: Science Fiction

Angels in the Mist (The Z-Tech Chronicles Book 1) by Ryan Southwick – My Review

Title: Angels in the Mist (The Z-Tech Chronicles Book 1)

Author: Ryan Southwick

Release Date: June 16th 2020

Genre: LGBTQ, Science Fiction

An ancient, powerful evil is loose in San Francisco. The heart of Silicon Valley must fight back the only way they know how — with compassion, unwavering determination, and, of course, super-technology.

Anne Perrin is resigned to a life driven by an adolescent trauma: a strict routine, no socializing (outside of the safety of her waitressing job), and no romantic relationships. When her cautious lifestyle lets the perfect partner slip through her fingers, Anne vows she won’t let it happen again and ventures into San Francisco to find happiness.

Her first night out in a decade becomes a nightmare when her date turns on her with sadistic intent. But his nefarious plans for Anne are unexpectedly interrupted by a mysterious savior. Valiant, smart, compassionate … Charlie is exactly the partner Anne has been looking for. And best of all, he likes her too.

Things go well between her and Charlie until an assailant with unexpected strength plunges Anne into a world she didn’t know existed — nor could have imagined — where super-science and an eclectic group of extraordinary individuals may be the solution to Anne’s lifelong loneliness … and humanity’s only hope against an ancient threat.

You’ve never read a story like this! 

You meet Anne. She suffers from PTSD from something that happened in her past. She’s tired of living her life this way and decides to go out one night. That night will change her life forever.

I was not expecting to devour this book the way I did. It’s a mix of science fiction and paranormal. The we also have some tech and action. The author did an awesome job of bringing it all together. He even managed to throw in a love story of sorts. Not your average for sure and I was digging it. Very unique characters! LOVED Zima! I enjoyed the humor and banter between everyone. I appreciate that the techy part was written in a way I could both understand and picture as I was reading. Thank you Mr. Southwick!

As a whole, this book is entertaining. It’s different with very unique characters. If you’re a fan of sci-fi and paranormal, I highly suggest you taking a chance on this book! Add to your TBR! This is a new to me author and I really enjoyed his style of storytelling. I look forward to reading more by him. I give this 5 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


Temporal Gambit by Larry A. Brown – My Review

Title: Temporal Gambit

Author: Larry A. Brown

Release Date: August 13th 2020

Genre: Science Fiction, Time Travel

Playing with Time can have dangerous consequences.

Martin joined the secret Chronos Project to research some of history’s intriguing mysteries. At first, his journeys through time go smoothly. Then something goes wrong.

When an alien race tampers with earth history, their interference ripples through time. Martin no longer recognizes his present. He must travel to the ancient past to save his planet. But he finds himself playing a game without rules.

Can Martin counter his opponents’ moves before they eliminate the world he knows?

If you like time travel and alternate reality adventures, you’ll enjoy Larry A. Brown’s Temporal Gambit. To find out who wins, get your copy today!

Buckle up because you’re about to go on one wild ride!

Right from the start, you’re thrown into one heck of an adventure! Time travel, enough said. It was fun to see where in the past Martin would end up.There are many twists and turns that added to the thrill. It was really cool to see Martin think on the fly and connect the changes to the past and fix what needed to. From the characters to the story, everything was well written and exciting. This is a new to me author and I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoy this book! 

If you love adventure and history, this book is for YOU! The author’s storytelling style has gained Mr. Brown a new fan. I look forward to reading more from this author. The story and characters will engage you. I highly recommend this book. You won’t soon forget the journey it will take you on. I give this 5 stars.

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*


Interview with an Author Featuring Mike Adams

The Literary Vixen presents…

Joining us today is Mike Adams! Author of the Fierce Girls at War Series.

Have you always wanted to be a writer?

I’ve thought about writing on and off since high school but I really wasn’t ready to actually do it until much more recently. It takes time that I didn’t have before and you have to overcome the anxiety of having other people read and critique your work. Now the kids are grown up and out of the house, money isn’t a problem, and I can work when I want, or not (substitute teacher).

What time of the day do you usually write?

That would depend on which aspect of ‘writing’ you are referring to. During the mornings and afternoons, I often write longhand on pads of paper the basic scenes that I know I will need although often not in the order they will appear. Then I’ll talk them into Dragon Speaking Naturally software, checking to make sure what it shows on the page is what I said (not always successful there!). Later in the day, or evening, I’ll flesh out and edit the scene or chapter. Then I’ll put it aside for awhile and work on another piece.

How much ‘world building’ takes place before you start writing?

You have to have some general parameters to work within although you can always tweak things as you go along. 

For the Fierce Girls At War series I had two worlds to build in rough outline before I could really start writing down the story. I spent quite a bit of time, a couple of months on and off, daydreaming the basic story, carrying it forward and backwards, and thinking about how it needed to start, where it would go, what kind of people would fit in it and what things required some research.

Initially, the story I wanted to write took place on an Earth-like world that was Earth’s first colony. If it was to be ‘Earth-like’, then the air needed to be breathable, the water drinkable, and the gravity within a comfortable range. That was the easy part. More complicated was deciding how such a colonization project could come about, who would be involved, who would pay for it, what kind of technology would be used, what situation the characters would be put in. And, what was the planet like – length of year, size, the local solar system, the weather, animal and plant life etc.

So, then I had to give the main characters a reason for going there in the first place. I had to imagine what Earth would be like 100 years in the future. For this, I chose not to think about all the ways things would be different, but how much might be the same, more or less. Look back 100 years and you can see much that is similar to today – Marines sent to ‘hotspots’ overseas, people often resided in houses that were built decades before, there were families with generations of service in the police or military, people went to school, drove vehicles, and there were children raised by single parents due to pregnancy outside of marriage, or because of divorce or the death of a parent. And there were political rivalries, chauvinism and sexual violence, and there were fanatics dedicated to some cause or other, that drove them to violence. 

I think these attributes will still exist 100 years from now regardless of whatever else is going on. Technology is more advanced, of course, but human behavior itself hasn’t changed that much. I simply carried today’s familiar attributes forward, adjusting for further advances within those attributes such as more female Marines and soldiers in combat overseas, the commonplace use of artificial intelligence in the home (think ‘Alexa’ but much more advanced), and so on. 

Add in the standard future technology that allows sci-fi to go to other worlds – anti-gravity lift and the ability to use hyperspace/jump space/folded space to cross interstellar distances in a short period of time. In both cases, as the story evolved other elements of these worlds would be incorporated as needed.

Which of your books were the most enjoyable to write?

Books 10 and 11, Death By Water and Death By Fire, and Jacks Company, were the most fun to write. They were really the climactic installments of the first half of the series. They required complex battle scenes in different locations going on almost simultaneously with all the different groups of characters involved. A lot of characters had been introduced in the earlier books and I got to make use of many of them, and I got to kill a few of them off, too. They were fun to write but had a lot of moving parts so the process took a while.

Who is the author you most admire in your genre?

I’d have to say that David Weber has been my favorite author for over 20 years with Elizabeth Moon and John Ringo a close second and third. Weber, especially in his Honor Harrington series, writes great female heroes whose lives evolve with very interesting stories over many years. His books also often have multiple storylines that come together at points but could stand independently from the main story. Weber’s series, and there are quite a few of them, tend to be long with a dozen or more volumes in each, and each has a lot of details and many characters. That does tend to result in rather long installments. While 23 books in my Fierce Girls At War series (so far) might seem like a lot, it would take at least 2 or 3 of mine to match any one of his in length. Even so, his books are hard to put down once you start one.

Do you find it more challenging to write the first book in a series or to write the subsequent novels?

I can’t start writing the beginning without knowing where the story is going, so starting with page one or chapter one doesn’t work for me. I‘ll make an outline of a portion of the story arc then I’ll start writing scenes that I want to be in there somewhere. I’d pretty much written the first eight books in the series and portions of books 9-20 before I was ready to finish Book 1 Fierce Girls in late 2017.

In retrospect, Fierce Girls is really more of a prequel to the main story of the Fierce Girls At War series. It introduces the major characters who are central to the series – a group of strong-willed, intelligent, and brave women and girls in the Cassidy/O’Brien family led by retired police weapons trainer Kelly Cassidy. whose son Rick is the father of Kelly’s only grandchild, Ciara, and is the main male protagonist, and the main female protagonist, Molly Bennett, a courageous Marine whose life will becomes intertwined with this family. Heroic actions result in their being hunted until they have to flee off-world under new identities to the New Hope Colony on Tau Ceti 4 where Earth’s first extra-solar colony is being developed. There they will join the Colonial Rangers and become important to the future of the colony. They will also meet and become friends with some of the female Rangers who will play important roles during the alien invasion of the colony that begins in books 2 ‘Threat on the Horizon’.

Favorite book when you were a kid.

Hard to say. I was big into Andre Norton when I started reading science fiction so probably Witch World or Beast Master. Also, The Dragon Riders of Pern books by Anne MacCaffrey.

If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be?

Curious, open-minded, creative.

What advice would you give to other authors?

  1. If you haven’t written before, assume that your first effort or first two or three, will not be very good. Think of it as practice, not failure. There’s lots to learn, just keep writing, that’s how you get better.
  2. Ask people to read some of what you wrote but not a whole book (they probably won’t want to invest that amount of time so they won’t even start it). Don’t ask someone who won’t tell you what’s wrong with it. Constructive criticism is a good thing!
  3. Write about what you know.
  4. If you are stuck at home during these covid times, the silver lining is having the extra time to write, re-write, jot down ideas, edit, work on marketing, develop your website, read other authors’ works, and do research. You can send stories to other people stuck at home who now have time to read your work and give you feedback. On the other hand, if you’ve got company in lockdown, you may have even less time than you had before. Been in both situations over the last 8-9 months. Either way, do whatever you can to move forward.

What is the one thing you want people to know about you and your books?

I’ve read lots of books where I knew that I could have done it better and I needed to prove that to myself and I think I did.

 

Thank you Mike Adams for chatting with me! I will include his information down below. Check out his series, Fierce Girls at War today!

~Synopsis~

Fierce Girls At War
This series is dedicated to the female soldiers, marines, sailors and airmen all over the world who are as capable and competent as their male counterparts but are often discounted by people who in reality are often not as smart, not as brave and not as competent as they are. It is also aimed at young, intelligent girls who given the chance to do so, or in this case when they have no other choice but to do so, are able to demonstrate their smarts, their courage, their determination and their ability to fight to survive in a difficult situation.

“I love being a Marine but there are days…We may have a lot of the same problems in 2122 we did a hundred years ago but back then the Gul brothers weren’t paying lots to see my head on a spike! Not that I was born yet but that’s not the point! So I’m a pretty good shot and Rick is even better. Did I ask daddy Gul and his boys to go on a rampage? No, I didn’t! But now we have to leave the planet and go to the New Hope colony where the locals like to eat people!”
-Staff Sergeant Susan ‘Molly’ Bennett, USMC

The story of the alien Rift invasion of the New Hope Colony begins on Earth in 2122 when all too familiar problems and events cause a chain reaction that will have repercussions on two worlds. Fleeing for their lives and to protect his family Navy, Lieutenant Paul “Rick” O’Brien and Marine Staff Sergeant Susan Mollison “Molly” Bennett will have to board a starship for the long voyage to Earth’s first extrasolar colony under new identities. There they will join the Colonial Rangers, the international military force designed to protect the colonists from the planet’s ferocious predators, not to deter an alien invasion.

The female-loving Logistics officer O’Brien and superb marksman and the courageous Marine recon squad leader form an unbreakable bond forged under fire that will serve them well as events unfold around them. The circumstances that send them to the New Hope Colony will also have a profound effect on the other members of the O’Brien/Cassidy family and especially Rick’s daughter Ciara as well as on the colony where they find refuge.

‘FIERCE GIRLS’ introduces the lead characters and covers the events that force O’Brien and Bennett to leave Earth. Then as Lieutenant Commander Rick ‘Cassidy’ and Gunnery Sergeant Molly ‘Pickford’ the story will deal with their first months at the New Hope Colony. It also introduces the key members of Rick’s family, their embrace of Molly Bennett, and the repercussions on their own lives.

The Fierce Girls At War series beginning with ‘Fierce Girls’ is not simply about the bonds between the characters. It is about women who are smart, brave, quick thinking, resilient and who are good leaders. They are steady under fire, they are problem solvers and they are resourceful and creative thinkers. They feel fear when circumstances are frightening but they don’t panic. They are not dependent on their male counterparts and more often than not they outshine them. They feel lust and love but are not driven by either (most of the time). Many of them are experienced, competent soldiers while others are young students dropped into a perilous situation from which no one is coming to rescue them. Some of them are bound by bonds of family but by no means are they all. Book One ‘Fierce Girls’ introduces the main characters –Gunnery Sergeant ‘Molly’ Pickford, Lieutenant Commander ‘Rick’ Cassidy, his daughter Ciara and other members of his family, and Captain Naomi MacCaffrey, a Canadian officer captured by extremists and rescued by Molly in the African jungles. They must find it in themselves to fight battles against other humans before the coming desperate struggle against an alien invasion of Earth’s first colony in space that will arise in the following books of the series. Those books will show these women and others take the lead in fighting for the life of the colony.

Mike Adams is a native New Yorker who holds a degree in Business Administration from Wagner College and an MBA from San Diego State University. He is the father of 2 grown sons, a retired US Navy Supply Corps (Logistics) officer, a former small business owner, and a part-time substitute teacher. He has visited 6 continents and 36 countries, speaks Spanish, some German, a little Italian and less French. He currently lives in Chula Vista, CA with his wife Chris.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-adams-36760954/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MikeAda90581594

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/38307838-fierce-girls

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=Fierce+Girls+Mike+Adams&ref=nb_sb_noss

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/books/fierce-girls-fierce-girls-at-war-book-1-by-mike-adams

Website: https://www.fiercegirlsatwar.com/

 


Interview with an Author Featuring Benjamin S. Schofield

The Literary Vixen presents…

Joining us today is Benjamin S. Schofield! His debut book, bifurcation point… survive the night, papua (survive the night series Book 1) is celebrating a publiversary on December 17th!

How long have you been writing?

I wrote some when I was young, but I didn’t start writing until I created the origin of Bifurcation Point, 9 or 10 years ago.

Describe a typical writing day.

My creative process has me daydreaming stories before finding what clicks. Most of the big ideas are created in my head before being written. During the writing process is where I start to brainstorm to figure out all the smaller details in between.

Where do you get your inspiration for your books?

I’m interested in most genres, but I aim to capture a realism approach. That’s why I tried to make the story and prion to be as scientifically accurate as possible. I’ll also gain inspiration from cinema or other books.

Do you have a favorite character that you have written? If so, who? And what makes them so special.

Tess is my favorite character, no question about it. My main source of inspiration for the character is my sister. She’s a proud mother of 3 and served in the Military Police. I have nothing but love and respect for her and I wanted to emulate her strength so others can be inspired as well.

When you’re writing an emotionally draining (or sexy, or sad, etc) scene, how do you get in the mood?

I’m an emotionally sensitive person so it is relatively easy for me to feel a character would feel. When creating an emotional scene, it’s not difficult for me to be invested in how the character is feeling.

If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be?

Eccentric. Nerdy. Imaginative.

How do you deal with the emotional impact of a book (on yourself) as you are writing the story?

I empathize with the characters and connect with them emotionally, however, it’s not really draining.

Are you working on anything at the present you would like to share with me?

I will just say I have some plans for Tess in the future.

What advice would you give to other authors?

Everyone’s creative process is different, just make sure the story is yours.

What is the one thing you want people to know about you and your books?

Family is the most important thing to me and without them, I never would have been able to make Bifurcation Point what it is today.

 

Thank you Benjamin S. Schofield for chatting with me! I will include his information down below. Check out his debut book, bifurcation point…  survive the night, papua today!

~Synopsis~

One verse. One plague. One night. One hero. The question is not, could it happen? The question is, when will it begin?

See how scientific facts combine with prophecy to reveal a possible future where humans have reached the tipping point for their survival. Read about prion diseases. Read about gene editing. Read about the apocalypse in Zechariah 14:12. And then read bifurcation point, survive the night, papua.

Tess Camon has a genius level IQ and a biomedical engineering degree. She served in the Army and deployed as a medic with Special Forces units. She achieved “Expert” certification in the Army Weapons Qualification Course requiring hits on 36 of 40 targets. She hit all 40.

Now she is following in her parents’ footsteps, continuing with their research on a new prion discovered in the Papuan rainforest. It doesn’t take long before she finds this research is destined for much more than she ever anticipated. In the wrong hands, this research can lead to devastation, and her own government can’t be trusted to help her. With time running out, can she save the world from an outbreak of the most devastating bioweapon ever created for which her family is responsible? Who will survive the night?

As a millennial, Benjamin S. Schofield, has spent his entire life on the cutting edge of technology, particularly e-sports and video games, which helped mold the storyline for his debut novel, Bifurcation Point.

His life’s philosophy is to avoid growing old with regrets, living the best life possible. It’s his goal that his readers can do the same.

He lives in Tennessee and is engaged to be married.

Website – https://www.bifurcationpoint.com

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/Benjamin-S-Schofield-100789201337904/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/Ben_S_Schofield

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/benjamin.s.schofield/

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19525589.Benjamin_S_Schofield

 


Interview with an Author Featuring Ryan Southwick

The Literary Vixen presents…

Joining us today is Ryan Southwick! Author of The Z-Tech Chronicles.

How long have you been writing?

Angels in the Mist was my first serious attempt at writing a novel. The original file was created in 2010, so it’s been 10 years now! I wasn’t sure at the time I would even finish 1 book, let alone 8.

Describe a typical writing day.

3 years ago, I started getting up early to create a few hours of productive time before my day job starts (the “5 am club”, I think they call it). After I get up, it’s straight to the espresso machine to start it warming up, check a few news sites to see what’s going on, then fix my wake-up juice (mochas are my preferred poison), open Scrivener, and hit it.

I’ve always been easily lost in whatever I’m working on, be it programming, reading, or story writing, so once I start writing, I sometimes forget to have breakfast or lunch, and will write straight through to the afternoon. Unsurprisingly, those are the chapters that tend to flow the best. My workstation is in the kitchen, so I do get to see my wife and kids throughout the day, but they’ll usually steer clear if they see I’m in “the zone.” =]

By 3 pm, my creative energy is spent, so that’s when I usually pack it in and spend more time with the family, do chores, etc. I’m in bed by 8:30 pm so I can get up early and do it all over again.

Where do you get your inspiration for your books?

The Z-Tech Chronicles was inspired by characters my friends and I used to play in college, combined with a desire to tell a fantastical tale in an accessible and believable way.

As for my other series, they’re random thoughts usually that come up from watching a show, or even writing my current works. Sometimes I’ll see a character or scenario that isn’t well-explored. It’ll rattle around in my head for a while. If I stop thinking about it, then I’m probably not excited enough to write about it, but if it sticks, the only way to get it out is on paper, and that’s when I start writing.

For example, the idea for another series I’m working on, the Timeless Keeper Saga, came after watching a few shows and reading books about characters who’ve lived for a very long time. Every author has a different way of portraying how time has affected them, but they’ve never settled right with me, so I decided to write my own in a dystopian setting.

Do you have a favorite character that you have written? If so, who? And what makes them so special.

Happy to say that’s a tough choice! There are several characters who stick with me. If I had to pick one, though, it’s probably Zima from The Z-Tech Chronicles. She’s a complex, walking contradiction: logical yet unpredictable, affectionate but deadly, soft-spoken but intimidating, naïve yet worldly, a natural leader who’s completely lost. Her mind works differently from everyone else’s, which makes almost any interaction with her awkward, but her innocence gives the awkwardness an endearing tone. Writing (and reading) from her perspective a ton of fun.

When you’re writing an emotionally draining (or sexy, or sad, etc) scene, how do you get in the mood?

It’s not hard at all. I have a pretty vivid imagination and high empathy, so slipping into the character’s shoes and really feeling the situation comes easily. I also tend to write about scenarios that interest or move me the most, which helps.

If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be?

Empathetic, obsessive writer. =]

When writing a series how do you keep things fresh, for both your readers and also yourself?

First, I make sure the plot and characters don’t resemble anything I’ve read or seen before. The Z-Tech Chronicles has vampires and cyborgs in it, as well as some paranormal, but all three have their own lore and style that make them unique to other series, and they play together in a way that builds something greater than the sum of its parts.

Second, as I’m writing, I keep a mental tally of what subjects, scenarios, conversations, etc. I’ve already presented to the reader. If it’s relevant but hasn’t been discussed, I may throw a few words in to remind everyone what’s going on, but I’ll keep it very brief. Likewise, when I’m writing a scene, I first look for elements I haven’t covered yet (conversations between 2 characters who haven’t spoken much, relationship complications, combat that explores a character’s strengths or weaknesses… the list is endless). This ensures every scene and chapter is truly a new adventure, and every book a fresh story that stands apart from the rest.

Are you working on anything at the present you would like to share with me?

Several things! To date, only the first book of the main Z-Tech Chronicles series is published. The rest of the series is already written, so I’m working on editing the other 5—yes, 5!—books leading to the series conclusion (it was originally 3 books, but they were way too many pages each for my publisher’s taste, so I’m splitting them up). Book 2, Angels Lost, is due this coming March, which I’m really excited about.

I’ve also just completed the first draft of the first book in the Timeless Keeper Saga, which is a light dystopian / science fiction series with elements of fantasy to keep things interesting. I’m really happy with it so far and am in the process of tightening it a bit. Look for more information soon. My guess is it will be a three-book series. It centers around a half-blind farmer in one of the few remaining agricultural domes on a wrecked earth, whose world is turned upside-down when a strange outsider enters his life and challenges everything he and his entire dome considered true. She has a few more surprises, too, that keep things interesting. =]

Last on the current roster is a science fiction / planetary romance series with elements of fantasy, tentatively called Starcrossed. The protagonist is a young woman who is also an accomplished ambassador to other human colonies who are just coming back into contact after 10,000 years apart. Things spiral out of control, and she’s soon stranded on a strange colony world with unexplained phenomena that threaten her life, made more difficult when she loses the ability to speak. Her salvation comes from an innkeeper with issues of his own. She has to figure out how to get off of a technologically-bereft planet to prevent her own from breaking into inter-stellar war.

There are a few more ideas in the works, but I’ll leave those for future articles. =]

What advice would you give to other authors?

Don’t give up.

Don’t wait for your book to be published before you learn and use social media (you may hate the idea, but you’ll need to get over it, otherwise don’t expect to sell many books).

Your first draft will suck. Always. That’s what second and third drafts are for, so don’t be discouraged.

Get feedback early. Yes, showing someone the pages you’ve poured your soul onto is hard. Yes, it will suck (see above), but the right reader will understand that and give you advice based on where you are—advice that will take years to learn otherwise. Find that person. It could be a friend, a writing group, whatever, just make sure you have eyes on it other than your own of someone willing to give you honest feedback.

When someone offers criticism, don’t argue. Don’t defend yourself. Don’t convince them to your side. Say “thank you.” Afterwards, aggregate their feedback with others’, then decide offline whether the feedback has merit and is something you want to pursue.

What is the one thing you want people to know about you and your books?

I write from the heart. It’s the only way I know to create anything worth reading. If you read my books, I hope you find as much joy (and laughter, and sorrow, and heart-pounding adventure) as I did when creating them.

 

Thank you Ryan Southwick for chatting with me! I will include his information down below. Check out The Z-Tech Chronicles, today!

~Synopsis~

An ancient, powerful evil is loose in San Francisco. The heart of Silicon Valley must fight back the only way they know how — with compassion, unwavering determination, and, of course, super-technology.

Anne Perrin is resigned to a life driven by an adolescent trauma: a strict routine, no socializing (outside of the safety of her waitressing job), and no romantic relationships. When her cautious lifestyle lets the perfect partner slip through her fingers, Anne vows she won’t let it happen again and ventures into San Francisco to find happiness.

Her first night out in a decade becomes a nightmare when her date turns on her with sadistic intent. But his nefarious plans for Anne are unexpectedly interrupted by a mysterious savior. Valiant, smart, compassionate … Charlie is exactly the partner Anne has been looking for. And best of all, he likes her too.

Things go well between her and Charlie until an assailant with unexpected strength plunges Anne into a world she didn’t know existed — nor could have imagined — where super-science and an eclectic group of extraordinary individuals may be the solution to Anne’s lifelong loneliness … and humanity’s only hope against an ancient threat.

Ryan Southwick decided to dabble at writing late in life, and quickly became obsessed with the craft. He currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife and two children.

His technical skills as a software developer, healthcare experience, and lifelong fascination for science fiction became the ingredients for his first series, The Z-Tech Chronicles, which combines these elements into a fantastic contemporary tale of super-science, fantasy, and adventure, based in his Bay Area stomping grounds.

Website: https://www.ryansouthwickauthor.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ryansouthwickauthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/RyanSouthwick

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17971367.Ryan_Southwick

Amazon Author Page: https://amazon.com/author/ryansouthwick

And to The Z-Tech Chronicles:

https://www.ryansouthwickauthor.com/z-tech-chronicles


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Fall to Earth (Pillars of Fire and Light Sci-Fi Book 1)

By Ken Britz

~Synopsis~

A desperate athlete. A super-soldier experiment. Will cutting-edge technology change the world or destroy it?

Indiana Beckham’s lifelong goal has just been cut down. Banned from competing in Olympic fencing, she jumps at the chance to join a research project that could make her the best. But to unlock the promise of her unlimited potential, Indiana must endure a risky, life-altering transformation…

Lieutenant Arthur MacGabran has a mission: advance humanity in a single generation. Eager to prove his neuro-technology, he ignores the dangers and recruits his first live test subject. But when Indiana’s enchanted abilities turn deadly, he’ll have to keep a shocking secret to fuel his twisted dream…

As Indiana harnesses her super-skills, the project and its subjects teeter on the edge of termination.

Will the fencer’s attempt to better herself end up destroying her instead?

Fall to Earth is the first book in the action-packed Pillars of Fire and Light military sci-fi series. If you like high-stakes technology, intriguing characters, and super-human soldiers, then you’ll love Ken Britz’s thrilling novel.


Margaret (The Risen Series Book 2) by Marie F. Crow – New Release

NEW RELEASE FROM MARIE F. CROW!

Margaret (The Risen Series Book 2)

Release Date: August 17th 2020

Genre: Sci-Fi, Horror

~Synopsis~

It’s just a simple shot, right?”

Margaret Erikson will ask this question many times today. What is supposed to be a basic school wide vaccine will go horribly wrong. It is not a simple shot and the lives that are lost to it will not become simple monstors.

Get started on the series with Dawning (The Risen Series Book 1)!

Buy link: https://amzn.to/2ZK6Wr8

 


Interview with an Author Featuring Carol Ann Kauffman

The Literary Vixen presents…

Joining us today is Carol Ann Kauffman! Author of multiple series’ such as Cat Collier and Time After Time.

How long have you been writing?

As soon as I could put big, fat primary pencil to paper, I was writing. I used to revise the stories in our primary classroom readers to be more relevant to my friends, and get big laughs on the playground. I won essay contests in the upper elementary grades. I had a story published in a magazine in high school. But then, life happened and I quit writing to go to work. I didn’t write seriously until I retired.

Describe a typical writing day.

There is no typical day for me. I write when the mood calls to me. It could be the middle of the night. I especially liked winter when the weather was bad and my husband got called out to work at 2:00 in the morning. A few of my novels were written in that time frame. Normally I set aside a few hours in the morning to write. If “it” doesn’t happen, I edit, blog, or market. Late night hours are also good writing time for me, when everyone is asleep and the house is quiet.

Where do you get your inspiration for your books?

Some are life experiences, mine and others. Sometimes it’s part of an overheard conversation or especially touching song will evoke an emotional response in me that needs to be written down. When we were on our second honeymoon in Florida, back to the same hotel where we first stayed, I promised my husband it was a “no writing” vacation. However, I woke up in the middle of the night in a bit of a state of anxiety. Unfamiliar room, etc. For a moment, I couldn’t figure out where I was. The snore next to me brought me out of it, but that made for the beginning of my novel, Charming Deception. I wrote that opening chapter on my phone in the bathroom.

Do you have a favorite character that you have written? If so, who? And what makes them so special?

Yes, Richard Mackenzie, the main male characters in my Time After Time series, is my favorite. (Shhh…don’t tell the others.) People ask me if he is modeled after my husband. I laugh. Richard is a composite of many qualities I find admirable in a man. He is tall, dark, and handsome, yes, but he’s also loving, strong and vulnerable. Not many men are brave enough to open up emotionally the way Richard does.

When you’re writing an emotionally draining (or sexy, or sad, etc) scene, how do you get in the mood?

Just start writing. Louis L’Amour has a great quote. “Start writing. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.” There are days I’ve started with a grocery list. But on really great writing days, that mood comes first and I have to hurry up and write it.

If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be?

Happy. Empathetic. Italian.

When writing a series how do you keep things fresh, for both your readers and also yourself?

I always have more than one project going on at the same time.  Different series. Time After Time is a romantic adventure series about the same couple finding each other over and over again in different lifetimes. Cat Collier Mystery is a girl sleuth series. Different genres. Romance, mystery, sci-fi, Christmas. It helps me to bounce around from one to the other. If I don’t think it’s new and fresh and exciting, my readers won’t either.

Are you working on anything at the present you would like to share with me?

I am excited to share with you my work-in-progress, 47-O, Ford Deseveno. 

A sci-fi tale about the male humanoid in tank number 47-O at an upstate Ohio cryogenic facility who is suddenly needed back on his home world to avert a planet-wide crisis. His emergency thaw is activated. But while Ford struggles to remember his mission and regain his strength, forces are gathering against him.

​Meanwhile, Ford feels an immediate attraction to Dr. Olivia Bellamy, granddaughter of founder William Ulysses Bellamy (Wubsy), the man who put him in the cryogenic tube so, so, long ago to save his life, and also to separate him from Wubsy’s wife who has developed a strong attachment to the tall, thin, ashen alien called 47-O, or Ford. Granddaughter Olivia bears a strong resemblance to her grandmother, also named Olivia.

​From there, things get complicated.

Read a little from my work-in-progress here: https://www.weebly.com/weebly/main.php#/

What advice would you give to other authors?

Everybody has a book inside them. Everyone has at least ONE story to tell. When I taught school, I always had my students keep a journal. Writing things down helps you remember, helps you work through a problem, makes you a more organized thinker, and lowers your blood pressure. Now, that said, it doesn’t mean anybody will want to buy your book. But write anyway. Wasn’t it Edgar Rice Burroughs who said, (paraphrasing here) if you write one book, it could be really bad. But if you write 100, you’re bound to improve? I’m working on #27. Don’t get discouraged. Don’t let someone who never wrote a book tell you how to write yours. And when you get that first awful, terrible, soul-sucking review (and you will because Amazon lets anything with opposable thumbs write a review if they spend $50), read it once, take from it any glimmer of honest, constructive criticism, then forget it as you gently step over the warm, stinking pile and continue on your happy writing way.

What is the one thing you want people to know about you and your books?

My books are about life, love, loss, and lunacy. I bristle at the label “clean romance” because although there are no graphic sexual scenes, they’re written for adults. On a personal level, my advice is: Open up. It’s never too late to be the person you were meant to be. Life is full of second chances if you’re brave enough to take them. Yes, you risk getting hurt. And sometimes you will and it will be sad and pitiful. But the rewards are astounding. Don’t be that old person who says I should’ve done this or that. DO IT!  

The characters in my books tend to jump in with both feet, especially my heroines. They are brave and feisty. I don’t know where they get that…

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to talk to your captive audience. Stay well.

Thank you Carol Ann Kauffman for chatting with me! I will include her information down below. Check out her series today!

Carol Ann Kauffman’s books range from short stories to full-length novels. Her novels are classified as romantic action adventures with a sci-fi/ fantasy twist, and mysteries. They’re about life, love, loss, and lunacy. She is a retired teacher. She has worked as a printer, managed a department store office, worked as an insurance agent, and in the hardware and automotive industries. She was a Red Cross volunteer. Carol loves to travel; her favorite places being Italy, Aruba, and the American Southwest, which tend to show up in her novels.

“I also love to stay home. I get lost in my own little world, where I always have more than a few stories in progress. I grow orchids and African violets, and still like to play in the dirt!”

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/Carol-Ann-Kauffman-Author-248958045181202

Author Website: http://carolannkauffman.weebly.com/carols-blog.html

Art & Author Blog: http://visionandverse.blogspot.com/?m=1h

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/12687826-carol-ann-kauffman

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Carol-Ann-Kauffman/e/B0076OMJY8/

Twitter: @Cay47

Email: cakauffy@aol.com and carolannkauffman@gmail.com


bifurcation point…survive the night, papua (survive the night series Book 1) by Benjamin S. Schofield – My Review


Release Date: December 17th 2019

Genre: Science Fiction

~Synopsis~

Tess Camon is following in her parents’ footsteps, continuing with their research on a new prion discovered in the Papuan rainforest. It doesn’t take long before she finds this research is destined for much more than she ever anticipated. In the wrong hands, this research can lead to devastation, and her own government can’t be trusted to help her.
With nowhere else to turn, she reunites with her father who gives her some much needed answers, but leaves her with even more questions. With time running out, can she save the world from an outbreak of the most devastating bioweapon ever created for which her family is responsible?

~Add To TBR~

~My Review~

A fantastic debut! This story is packed with suspense and will have you on your toes till the very end. Tess is the heroine you didn’t know you needed. She’s strong, intelligent and ready to save the world! Once I started, I couldn’t put it down. I was completely engaged. The story and the characters were very well written. I look forward to reading more from Mr. Schofield! I give this 5 stars.

~Buy Now~