Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Stone of Darkness Blog Tour

Welcome to my stop on the Stone of Darkness blog tour! I got the opportunity to interview author Resa Nelson. Keep reading to find out more about the author, her books, and a free mini ebook!

What inspired you to become a writer?

I knew from the time I was 8 years old that I wanted to be a writer. I come from a family of readers, so being surrounded by books and people reading was normal. I’ve always loved books. And after a group assignment in the 2nd grade to re-tell a classic children’s story in our own words, I was hooked.

How many books have you written?

I have four novels in print: a standalone novel about a modern-day society based on ancient Egypt and the first three books in my Dragonslayer series. My fifth novel (the last book in the Dragonslayer series) will be published this November. I’m getting ready to write a new standalone novel.

What's the biggest challenge of being an author?

It’s finding the readers who are really going to enjoy your books. I get wonderful feedback on my novels from my core group of fans and from bloggers, but about 99% of authors don’t have huge amounts of money being spent to promote their books simply because the smaller publishing houses don’t have the money to spend on promotion, and the publishing houses that do have a ton of money decide to spend it on the “sure thing” – typically, books they know are going to sell millions. So the rest of us (the 99%) have to figure out how to let readers know our books exist! The term I like that describes this challenge is “book discovery.”

What drew you to the fantasy genre?

When I was a kid, I loved the public library. The children’s section was in the dark, spooky, maze-like basement of the public library, which was pretty wonderful. I’ve always loved fairy tales and folk tales from all over the world. I think that led me into the fantasy genre.

What would your ideal career be, if you couldn't be an author?

I’ve always been interested in lots of things, so my answer changes all the time. Today my answer is I’d love to be an Egyptologist and go on archaeological digs in Egypt.

What do you do in your spare time?

I love spending a day or two doing as little as possible, usually lazing around reading or watching movies or TV. But I’m also a huge fan of museums and ballet and Broadway musicals.

What are some of your favorite movies/tv shows?

I love mysteries, so I’m a huge fan of The Closer – which ended recently! But it’s being replaced by Major Crimes, so that makes me happy. I’m also a big fan of Grimm, Once Upon a Time, The Walking Dead (although I “watch” the gross scenes by putting my hands in front of my face and barely peeking between my fingers), Drop Dead Diva, and The Amazing Race. I love movies. Most of the time, I try to rent two movies each week that I haven’t seen. I watch all kinds of movies. I really love finding independent or foreign movies I’ve never heard of that turn out to be really, really good.

What is a book that you're dying to read?

I’ve read The Hunger Games, and I have Catching Fire and Mockingjay stacked on my nightstand. It’s funny because I’m anxious to read them, but I’m putting it off because I don’t want the series to end.

Which of your characters is your favorite?

My favorite character is probably Astrid, the main character of my Dragonslayer series. She was chewed up and spit out by a dragon in childhood, which left her entire body covered in scars. And then her own family gave her away to a childseller. And then the childseller had a tough time getting rid of her and decided he’d have to kill her if he couldn’t sell her soon. And all that happens in just the first chapter! Astrid constantly faces tough situations but she’s very resourceful and resilient.

Do you design your own book covers?

No, but my publisher encourages authors to make suggestions, which is wonderful! The process is that when a book is accepted for publication, the author fills out a really long questionnaire, and part of that questionnaire includes a section where you can toss out ideas for cover art. The publisher works with the art director and the artist chosen to create the cover. When my first novel (The Dragonslayer’s Sword) was accepted, I had no idea what to suggest for a cover, so I asked my publisher to come up with something, and they did a great job. But I’ve had ideas for every novel since then, and when I fill out the questionnaire I try to give them two or three different ideas to choose from. I’m thrilled with all of my book covers!


The Dragonslayer's Sword (Dragonslayer #1)
For Astrid, a blacksmith who makes swords for dragonslayers, the emergence of a strange gemstone from her body sets in motion a chain of events that threaten to destroy her life. Her happiness is shattered when her lover--the dragonslayer--disappears without a trace, and the life that she knows and loves implodes without warning.
Astrid lives in a world of shapeshifters whose thoughts have the power to change not only themselves but others. Everything Astrid knows to be true is called into question when she learns the truth about her past and the mysterious family from which she was separated as a child.
Reality turns inside out as Astrid gradually learns the truth about the people she loves as well as those she disdains. With the fate of dragons, ghosts, and slaves in foreign lands resting on her shoulders, Astrid faces the challenge of deciding who she is and how she will stand up inside her own skin. Will she withdraw and hide from the world that has disappointed her so much...or will she rise to lead others to freedom and peace?

The Iron Maiden (Dragonslayer #2)
Astrid is reluctant to travel the winter route beyond the Northlands, even though it’s her duty. She’d rather stay home in her village, surrounded by friends and neighbors. Ignoring the bonds of tradition, she decides to spend the cold winter months in the warmth of her blacksmithing shop. Why should she leave the comfort of her cottage to serve and protect foreigners who might raid and harm her native Northlands?
Everything changes when a traveling merchant steals Starlight, the first dragonslayer’s sword Astrid forged and her last link to her sweetheart DiStephan. Having no time to alert her friends, Astrid races in pursuit of the merchant, determined to reclaim Starlight as her own and return home in time for dinner. Instead, her quest leads her to new lands, unexpected friendships with foreigners, and a harrowing encounter with the damage done by the followers of a new god that considers women as nothing more than servants to men. All the while, she must be ready to face any dragon traveling the winter route.
In Book 2 of the Dragonslayer series, Astrid must learn that deciding who she is isn’t a decision she can make just once. It’s a decision she must make every day.

The Stone of Darkness (Dragonslayer #3)
In Book 3 of the Dragonslayer series, Astrid accepts her duty and follows the winter route--until she's bitten by a dragon. Everyone knows dragon bites are poisonous and deadly, so she reluctantly accepts her impending death. In a twist of fate, she survives. Desperate for an explanation, Astrid believes she has somehow been protected by the black stone she keeps with her at all times, a stone that emerged from the sole of her foot a year ago.

Determined to find out what the stone is and what kind of powers it possesses, Astrid begins a journey that leads her to alchemists and an army of men under the rule of the powerful warrior, Mandulane, the acting lord of the Krystr army. Mandulane's mission is to spread the word of the new god Krystr, which preaches the evil intent of women and the danger they pose to all men, who are entitled to dominate the world. Rumors about this new god and army have spread, but Astrid is the first Northlander to encounter them.

Soon, she stumbles upon a secret of a far-reaching and mind-numbing plot that will impact the entire world. Astrid must find a way to spread the news of this threat and protect her people and everyone else at risk. She's convinced the answer lies inside the Stone of Darkness, and she must find a way to understand the stone and the powers she's convinced it must hold before it's too late.

Book #4 coming November 2012

Where to buy Resa's books:
Mundania Press (get a 10% discount at checkout with the coupon code MP10)


About the author:
Resa Nelson has been selling fiction professionally since 1988. She is a longtime member of SFWA (Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America) and is a graduate of the Clarion SF Workshop.

Resa was also the TV/Movie Columnist for Realms of Fantasy magazine for 13 years and was a contributor to SCI FI magazine. She has sold over 200 articles to magazines in the United States and the United Kingdom.
Her first novel, The Dragonslayer’s Sword, was nominated for the Nebula Award and was also a Finalist for the EPPIE Award. This medieval fantasy novel is based on a short story first published in the premiere issue of Science Fiction Age magazine and ranked 2nd in that magazine's first Readers Top Ten Poll. The Dragonslayer's Sword is Book 1 in her 4-book Dragonslayer series. Book 2, The Iron Maiden, was published last December, Book 3 was published in May, and the final book in the series is scheduled for publication in November.
Resa's standalone novel, Our Lady of the Absolute, is a fantasy/mystery/thriller about a modern-day society based on ancient Egypt. Midwest Book Review gave this book a 5-star review, calling it "a riveting fantasy, very highly recommended."
Resa lives in Massachusetts.

Find Resa at the following places:

Free “mini” ebook of Dragonslayer short stories:

Goodreads giveaway going on HERE

1 comment:

  1. Great interview! Like her, I love fantasy and crime drama, so I'll definitely check out her books! Thanks! :D