First off, I’d like to thank Nik for giving me space today! This is stop # 4 on my current blog tour to promote the upcoming release of my second novel, Mark of the Successor.
Everyone has moments in their life that they replay in their heads. A birthday, graduation, wedding, and holding their child for the first time are all memories worth savoring. As an author, though, there’s a single day that stands out. It’s the day we get news of our first contract offer.The story of mine is a little convoluted. I live in the Seattle, WA, USA area. Notorious for rain (though it’s not nearly as bad as you’ve heard), we don’t get lots of snow. It generally skips years. A good, cold, snowy winter in 2004 generally meant it’d be warmer and damp in 2005. Granted, anything beyond a very mild dusting can send drivers around here into a panic. We’re used to driving with wipers going, not having to use a broom to get white flakes off the windshield before we can even scrape off the ice!
2011/2012 was one of those winters. For three days, the area was hit hard by back-to-back storms. First significant snowfall (over 3” in a single day) hit, followed by freezing rain, small warming trend just enough to melt the top layer of snow, then it froze and snowed again. My van was encased in ice. Tree limbs were snapping all over the region due to the weight on the branches. Our house backs up to a wilderness area. We could hear the cracking and popping in the house. Two of our neighbors lost trees. One was about to walk out her front door when her tree came crashing down – across her porch.
The school district had already cancelled classes for the following day, so I stayed in bed and slept in a bit. When I woke up, the house was slightly chilly and the alarm clock stared blankly at me. We’d lost power. I wasn’t too concerned. The lines coming to our neighborhood go underground about two blocks from us. The longest we’d ever been without power is six hours.I reached for my cell phone, thinking I’d check my email to make sure my husband had made it to work fine. That’s when I saw the email I’d been waiting over six months for.
I remember taking a deep breath, telling myself that I’d have to look up a new place to submit to once the power (and Internet) were back. I expected a rejection. It’s such a part of this business, and I’d had at least a dozen by this time. It was my default expectation.I had to read the email three times to realize it said something different.
My point is this: you’re going to get the rejections. It’s part of the learning curve with this business. But that one email that says “yes” instead of “no” makes you forget the pain of the past. Your stomach’s going to do acrobatics, your hands will shake, and you’ll be almost unintelligible when you call people to share the news.But you’ll have one of those memories that’ll stay with you forever.
KateMarie Collins is the author of ‘Daughter of Hauk’ and the upcoming ‘Mark of the Successor’, both with Solstice Publishing. You can find her on her blog (http://www.katemariecollins.wordpress.com), twitter (@DaughterHauk), and FaceBook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/KateMarie-Collins/217255151699492?ref=hl). Her books are available at the Solstice Publishing website, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords.Good to have you visit, KateMarie. I've been getting rejections for over 40 years, but that doesn't deter me! It seems your wait for acceptance was worthwhile: you’ve had a blizzard of praise from reviewers on Amazon alone for Daughter of Hauk (see below).
Blurb for DAUGHTER OF HAUKWhat would you do, if you found out your life was a lie?
After you were dead?Arwenna Shalian spent her life in loyal service to a God she was never meant to serve. Tricked by her fellow priests, she betrayed a man she thought she loved by binding a demon to him. One that would send him to the brink of madness.
Can she find a way to forgive herself? And what of Hauk, the God she was Marked to serve? Will He find her and give her the chance to undo what she’s done, or leave her at the mercy of the creatures that torture her soul?
Here’s a condensed selection of reviews for Daughter of Hauk.KateMarie Collins has created a wonderful hero in a fantastical world of elves, faeries, orcs, gods and monsters. This highly imaginative book is a pleasure to read and draws you in from the unexpected twist in the first few pages. From there you are taken on a fabulous thrill-ride through a delightful new realm. Don't get me wrong, this author hasn't written a fluffy fairy tale - she does not shy away from the grim realities and has a keen knack for capturing the terror in a situation - but this serves to heighten the journey that the protagonist, Arwenna, must take - a journey the reader follows without wanting it to end. – E.J. Harrigan, author of Where the Dead Go
This was one of the best stories I've read in a long time, with the perfect blend of fantasy, action, adventure, drama, and romance. Collins has a wonderful writing style that is easy to follow and hard to put down. - Andrea Buginsky, author of Open Heart
Collins fills each chapter of Daughter of Hauk with heart-throbbing action that keeps pulses racing and pages turning until the last paragraph. But don't fret; book 2 is in the works. -Michael Thal, author of The Legend of Koolura.
From the opening pages the author placed me in a world filled with armor-clad elves and half-orcs wielding mighty swords and casting magical spells. In short order I began cheering for the protagonist, Arwenna, as she and her gang carry on an epic adventure while battling their evil enemies. I particularly enjoyed Collins' vivid descriptions to not only paint the scenes in the book, but also to portray the characters' use of magic. - Daniel Springer, author of The WILCO Project
Collins invests the tale with all the mythic power it suggests and deserves. The legends and secrets are numerous and intriguing. The battles are epic, their outcome often in doubt. And, whatever you do, do not skip the epilogue. Without that, you're left without the heart of this very engaging novel. – Carl Brush, author of The Second Vendetta
KateMarie Collins has proven herself a master storyteller in her exciting novel (… and) has given each of these characters traits that evoke strong emotions in the reader. Some you will love. Some you will despise. Collins’ novel reads like a Greek tragedy as she explores themes of loyalty, friendship, valor, revenge, betrayal and the pain of an impossible choice. - Nancy Curteman, author of Murder Down Under.
The author has created a dark fantasy world... These dark characters are driven by hatred, revenge, ego and a consuming lust for power, and you feel (all) that as you turn the pages. You start to really develop a hatred for Bohr and his ilk, and want Arwenna to deliver some justice. Arwenna and her band are fleshed out characters with depth and complexity that is refreshing. You feel for these characters as if they were your own close circle of friends. If you're looking for a fantasy novel that makes you want to hate evil and cheer on the good guys who are more than just two-dimensional place-holders, then this is a book you want to pick up and read. – Tony Rudzki, editor
And here’s theBlurb for MARK OF THE SUCCESSOR
Dominated and controlled by an abusive mother, Lily does what she can to enjoy fleeting moments of normality. When a break from school only provides the opportunity for more abuse at home, the sudden appearance of a stranger turns her world even bleaker. Disappearing without a trace, he has left a lingering fear in Lily. His parting words to her mother, “Have her ready to travel tomorrow,” is something her mind refuses to accept.
Running away is the only answer. But before Lily can execute her plan, a shimmering portal appears in her room. Along with two strangers who promise to help keep her safe. With time running out, she accepts their offer for escape and accompanies them into a brand new world. A world in which she is the kidnapped daughter of a Queen, and the heir to the throne of Tiadar.
Can she find her own strength to overcome both an abusive past and avoid those who would use her as a means to power?
I wish you every success with both books, KateMarie, and your blog tour!