Saturday, July 27, 2013

Defiance (the Priestess trilogy volume 1) by Melissa Sasina blog tour

Book Blurb:
Shiovra has been named High Priestess of the village Tara, but she quickly finds herself hunted by the Milidh, a clan born of war and vengeance. With the safety of Tara at stake, it is decided that she is to seek aid from her betrothed, one she considers the enemy.

At her side is Odhrán, a Milidh warrior sworn to protect her and determined to gain her trust. But their journey is fraught with peril and Shiovra learns that darkness lurks in the hearts of her own kin.

Steeped in ancient Irish myth, this tale is spun of love, war, and DEFIANCE.

I received an eARC copy of this book in return for an honest review. Honestly at first it was hard to get into, mainly because of the names of the characters and I didn't know exactly what was going on. But as the story progressed, it started getting exciting and active. I started to want to know more about the characters. The story line was great and very addictive> I felt the author painted a beautiful picture in my mind with all the details, but not too many details that it bored me. This is a RECOMMENDED READ for YA that will intrigue and capture your heart and soul. Thank you, Melissa Sasina, for the beautiful story and I can't wait to read more of your work. I give this book 5 Stars.

Most of my favorite authors are indie or self-pubbed, what made me you decide to go that route?
Well, I initially tried the traditional route. After feeling dejected about a certain company telling me that they really liked my book, but it wasn’t what they were looking for, my father-in-law mentioned seeing an article about the rise of popularity in independently published books. So, after looking a bit more into it, I found I liked the freedom of it and now here I am.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
You can never have enough test readers. Professional editing can be very costly, but having friends and family willing to be test readers and help catch errors can be very helpful. I have also learned that I need to cut back on the number of characters I create per book. I can keep them straight in my head, but more then once feedback has told me that not all readers can do that.

Which of your characters are you most like? Least like?
Would it be bad to say that I have one character who is both? Hehe. Ril’Hounithra, better known as Ril, is my most loved and hated character. I like him the most because of his rather carefree, snarky attitude, but also for his dangerous seriousness when the need arises. Once you have his trust, he will fiercely protect you. Yet, it is for those same reasons that I hate him. For me, he is the MOST difficult character of all of them for me to write. The guy literally can give me headaches! Though it is well worth it in the end since he has some of the most positive feedback from readers, so it makes it well worth the headache.

Do you have a particular writing habit?
Would you like the good or the bad? One of my habits is to listen to music while I write. I try and find song that fit the mood of the particular scene. Another habit is to have a notebook with me at all times, filled with notes for the particular book. Unfortunately my bad writing habits include going online to look something up and about five hours later finding myself on Tumblr…

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
I have discovered a recent love for Neil Gaiman. “Neverwhere” was the first book I read by him and it completely enthralled me. I hope to one day be able to write like he does.

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
Yes, actually. She’s a young author, but her writing is very good. Her name is M.A. Bronson and I recently read her book “Ashes, Ashes.” It was very well writing and I can really see her going far.

What is the hardest part of your writing?
In all honesty, aside from the headaches offered by Ril, the hardest part of my writing would be not getting distracted and finding the time. Aside from writing, I hold a day job, I am a wife, and I am a mother to a seven year old. Distractions abound!

Do you have any advice for other writers?
Don’t be discouraged by readers, you know your story best. Not everyone can be pleased. Write for those you know will enjoy it. I had someone once tell me that my characters should have simpler names like Joe and Bob, but when they book they were commenting on was set in ancient Ireland, Joe and Bob were not plausible. So, while you may value what readers say, just remember that you know your story the best!

Describe yourself in three words.
Imaginative, quiet, and human.

I know characters are like children but if you could chose, who’s your favorite from your books? Of all time?
Ril. I could just squeeze him for hours!

Do you plot out your books or just freely write them and let the characters tell you what to do next?
I write out a general plot and as I write, plans change sometimes, depending on the actions the characters make.

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider the biggest influence in your writing?
Originally, Lloyd Alexander was, but now I’m not quite sure. I read a more varied collection of books now, so I’m most likely influenced by more than just once. Most recently I have been reading Neil Gaiman, S.M. Stirling, and R.A. Salvatore.

What are your current projects? Can you share a little of your current work with us?

I actually have three current projects. The first would be “Opening of Lost Doors”, which is the next installment of my Chronicles of Midgard Series. Alongside that, I am working on a standalone book called “Rogue’s Dance” based off, of all things, my current D&D character in my husband’s game. The third project is the “Chronicles of Midgard Compendium” which will be a detailed look into the characters, races, history, and places of the series and will be released alongside the fifth and final book, most likely in late 2015 of early 2016. It will be full color and filled with artwork.

Born in 1982 in Cleveland, Ohio, she has always been an avid lover of fantasy. In her youth she would write short stories and add artwork to them. While in high school, Melissa decided to change her career path from graphic art to writing, though she still enjoys drawing up a random picture or two, usually of her characters. During her younger school years, she won a Young Authors Honorable Mention for a short story she had written. Melissa has also won a few Visual Arts awards during her school years and upon graduation from High School,she was given a President's award for Outstanding Academic Achievement.
The first book she began to write seriously for publication was The Priestess. Completed in 2008, the book was separated into a trilogy and published in 2010. It is currently undergoing reediting and will be re-released as both the individual books and as a one book collection, The Priestess: A Complete Collection.
Her current book series is The Chronicles of Midgard, which will be a five book collection once completed.
Melissa still lives in Ohio with her husband and son. Random character artwork can be found on her facebook author page as well as


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