A #WyrdAndWonder Special Feature | “The Qinali Virus“ by Valerie J. Mikles

Posted Friday, 1 May, 2020 by jorielov , 0 Comments

Guest Contributor and/or Reviewer of JLAS banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

Today kicks off #WyrdAndWonder – a month long Fantastical celebration of Fantasy Lit (for those of us who are book bloggers – we tend to do an all-out binge fest of #Fantasy) and all the wondrous ways in which Fantasy can become a forethought of interest in our lives. This can express itself through exploring other mediums wherein Fantasy can reign and become a celebration of the fantastical. As the event gets underway, I have a rather uniquely new post to share with my readers this morning which showcases a Speculative Fiction novel which I felt was quite a lovely discovery due to how interesting the plot felt to me when I first read the premise!

I realise it might fit better under the @SciFiMonth (ie. Sci Fi November, #SciFiMonth) umbrella of inclusion being this is a Science Fiction Post-Apocalyptic novel – however, I like other #WyrdAndWonder participants like to blur the lines between Science Fiction & Fantasy – where even if I’m celebrating one of the genres during one of the yearly events, there are strong odds I could be caught reading the other genre! Laughs.

Perhaps the same is true for you, dear hearts!?

The reason why is because I LOVE Speculative Fiction so dearly much – its hard to just read it twice a year! lol This one is a special selection of mine to be featuring as it dips into one of the genres I do not generally seek out to read – Dystopian & Post-Apocalyptic – as these are themes I find harder to source when seeking out stories to read which are not gritty in graphic violence and are a story I can sink my Speculative teeth into without feeling overcome by the theme itself. This particular story also focuses on two other interests of mine as a reader: astral projection and telepathy – as I was definitely the girl who grew her paranormal love off of tv series which focused on parapyschological investigations! I definitely want to read this lovely one day – if only to see how the author treated those sections and to see how she pulled us through her vision of how those concepts can be explored in literature.

I’m hopeful once my library re-opens this can become one of my next purchase requests – as I dearly wanted to read it but I have to await a print copy. My libraries are quite helpful when I want to seek out Indie Authors & Indie Publishers to be reading – they accept either print (locally) or audio (regionally) which keeps me well consumed I must admit in a lot of lovely Indie writ stories!

My featured author today is the first author I’m hosting for OWI – Other Worlds Ink Blog Tours – a touring company I discovered whilst I read a wickedly delightful Historical Fantasy novel by Edale Lane. I’ll be hosting a blog tour focusing on Ms Lane’s sequel to “The Merchant’s of Milan” lateron this May – however, I am thankful I found her via Tomorrow Comes Media otherwise I might not have found OWI whilst following her blog tour route – as more than one of the stops had someone hosting for OWI! (big smiles)

This post was a lovely surprise for me as I signed on to host something special by the author and I am wicked thankful I had! I *love!* grab bag surprises – for me, getting a wholly original post by an author on a blog tour is just about as wicked sweet as it can get – I loved how she approached how to ‘interview’ herself and how to give a well-rounded impression about her personality as well. I hope you’ll enjoy getting to know the author through this quirky interview and conversation!

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A #WyrdAndWonder Special Feature | “The Qinali Virus“ by Valerie J. MiklesThe Qinali Virus
by Valerie J Mikles

Rage. Poverty. Disease.

They’re gone. Every last one.

The cost was great. The population has been devastated. But for the survivors, utopia has arrived.

Then the suspicious death of a young person forces Amber to question her world like she never has before. The Contentedness Council is after her, determined to protect their perfect society. Now Amber must unbury her city’s repressed past, expose the crimes that led to their utopia, and find a way to stop the Council from killing the world… again.

Join astral-projecting asexual Amber and her telepathic sister as they fight to save the human race from extermination!

Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Dystopian, Genre-bender, Paranormal Suspense, Science Fiction, Space Opera

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 979-8610487830

on 9th March, 2020

Genre(s): Science Fiction, Adventure, Quest, Post-Apocalyptic
involving astral projection, mental projection (empathy, telepathy), aliens

Identities represented: Aromantic/asexual, gender-fluid,
neutrois/agender, FTM (with the first two most prominent)

Converse via: #WyrdAndWonder, #SciFi, #ScienceFiction, #SpeculativeFiction

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Hello, dear readers! My name is Valerie Mikles. I’m a scientist, film maker, and sci-fi author. Today, I’m going to talk about practically none of that! If you want to read about who I am and what I do, check out my web page.

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What is the first book you remember reading?

Mikles responds: “Hop on Pop” by Dr. Seuss. I remember going to the library every week and picking out new books to read, and I was a great Dr. Seuss fan. I memorized most of “Fox in Socks.” My mom put a ten book limit on us, and I’d come home and be through three books before the end of the day. I was also a big fan of Hardy Boys, before I left the junior section and went to the grown-ups section. There, I was drawn to Star Trek series books. I’ve always loved series books. There’s a comfort in the familiarity of it.

I practically lived at my library as a child too! I would carry out a stack of books which were actually taller than I was at the time I borrowed them! lol Dr Seuss was happily one of the authors in my personal library (as I had maternal grandparents who loved to surprise me with books along with my parents) – however, I never had a book limit, either from the library or my parents. I consumed heaps myself as a kid – I think if I had to put a limit on them as a child I might not have explored as many different sub-niches of Children’s Literature or graduated directly into Adult Lit as an eighth grader who was gifted “Jurassic Park” (the novel). I loved the science in the book and felt the adaptation short-changed that aspect of it – esp for Ian Malcolm’s POV but I digress. Like you – I read loads of series – Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys, Miss Marple, etc – as I, too, felt the familiarity of a series was the best part of reading serial fiction.

To this day, I love finding series I can either read or follow in television because I crave the repeat visitations with characters I get attached too! lol

If you had the opportunity to be a settler on Mars, would you go?

Mikles responds: Not a colonizer, but once they had regular grocery stores and such, then sure. Although, with the sun being so much dimmer there, I’d probably get depressed and have to come back. My dream would be to run a telescope observatory on Mars. (Or the moon.) I think eliminating the Earth’s atmosphere, the tragic city glow, and the sky-contaminating satellite constellations would be awesome.

I always dreamt of going the opposite way? To either one of Jupiter or Saturn’s moons? I wanted to get further away from the Sun itself – but also, finding a location like you said which would have an aesthetic I could love to see everyday. Plus, some of those moons have such a lot of water – from oceans and lakes, I thought it would be a great place to have an organic farming community with local fibre farms. Of course, knitting, baking and cooking might be approached a bit different depending on what could be grown – but its fun to dream, eh? Anything far enough away from city lights, where the stars can dance free and the air is crisp and clear is a brilliant locale for me, too!

What happens if you order fish at a BBQ place?

Mikles responds: Probably food poisoning. Think people. If you want fish, you go to a seafood place. If you’re at the BBQ place, get the brisket. Or pulled pork.

Or, a wicked good BBQ Jackfruit sandwich! I’d love to try one of those! Not really keen on fish or traditional BBQ – though in the past, whenever I had it – I was more into pork than beef. Though I suppose I could go with my favourite sides? I love boiled down Southern greens, fried okra, a creamy rich mac & cheese, bourbon baked beans and a sweetened (baked) sweet potato with a side of cinnamon butter! Either way, if they have beer on draught – they’re stellar!

You’ve been given an elephant. You can’t give it away or sell it. What do you do?

Mikles responds: Start a go-fund-me for Ella Fantsgerald. (Ella Fitzgerald.) Depending on the influx of elephants into the local area, this may go to the start of an elephant sanctuary, or perhaps transport to a sanctuary. Ella will star in her own YouTube channel, where she raises awareness for the true dangers of the “white elephant gift.”

I nearly dropped my keyboard – the best part of this answer is the punch-line at the very end of it! White elephant gifts were all the rage whilst my Dad served in Kiwanis – ooh my gosh that brought back keen memories for me! Seriously, I can’t stop laughing!! I even liked who inspired her name!!

If you could name a galaxy, what would you name it?

Mikles responds: If it’s an elliptical galaxy, then Miss Scarlet. If it’s a spiral galaxy Mrs. Peacock. Elliptical galaxies have older stars and appear redder. Spiral galaxies have more young, hot stars and appear bluer. Obviously, I have no Clue how to name a galaxy.

I had not idea about the colour codes!? Is that a thing – if so, I’m seriously impressed! Otherwise, carrying the ‘them’ of “Clue” into naming the galaxy would be such a human thing to do to seriously mess with an alien species who doesn’t understand us anyway! lol Clearly you can tell I’m still contemplating the binge fest I had this Spring for “Star Trek: Enterprise” as there were a load of horrid aliens in that ‘expanse’ part of the series where you never really were certain are the humans going to survive that whole experience? Speaking of which – the series finale broke me – heart and soul. Emotionally destroyed by that episode! I’d rather take your lead and do something happy with naming the galaxies and hopefully fate would be kind to us and we’d meet some nice local aliens!

What’s your favorite reality/talent show?

Mikles responds: I watch a lot of HGTV and Food Network.  A year ago, I probably would have picked one of those shows. But then you hear the behind-the-scenes stuff, like the people on House Hunters already have a house on contract, or the bakers on Cupcake Wars already know the theme and challenge ingredients. I think it would really help the confidence of the general public if we weren’t made to believe that these people were coming up with stuff on the spot. Sometimes, these things take time, and I think some realism in the timeline would help the rest of us manage our expectations and not give up on our dreams.

I recently gotten into Project Runway and RuPaul’s Drag Race. I sometimes mute all the catty work room chatter and diary cams, and focus on the performance parts. I definitely have new respect for drag queens. My next WIP actually features a drag queen character, and watching this show, I realize there is so much more I could do with that character than I’d originally intended. But that’s why it’s a WIP.

I do as well – even after I cut cable, I was streaming the free episodes from Food Network series via their app on Roku. Then I found PhilioTV where you can stream nearly 60 channels (including Food Network!) for a more budget friendly price point – and I was in serious heaven because they also have Hallmark Channel & Hallmark Movies & Mysteries along with Animal Planet (ie. #CrikeyItsTheIrwins). 

Ironically, I gave up on ‘House Hunters’ & HGTV as I read an expose article about how they actually create ALL those tv series and it was the balloon which burst the illusion for me! I just couldn’t return to the channel and get any joy of out it! Meanwhile, it gave me a newfound respect for all the series which have the same cycle of insanity about “on the spot” choices & life changing choices in general – but with Food Network I wasn’t as disappointed if they are cheating a bit on the timeline because I love to cook & bake – so seeing what they can do with even limited ingredients (hallo, have you found this new one – called “Supermarket Stakeout”? I am on a serious binge this week! – thanks to PhiloTV!) is something that gives me bliss!

I miss RuPaul’s talk show – I binged watched it via YouTube with my Dad and it was just this awesome burst of joy to watch everyday – then, I never heard it was renewed and/or picked up by a network – I saw he was moving onto other projects, so maybe only a handful of us liked it?

I never thought I was a reality tv junkie – but if you talk to me about Australia Zoo, Food Network or even American Ninja Warrior – ah, you’d see we all have a bit of it in us! lol I also love BYU’s “Random Acts” – that’s been a binge fest recently as I saw they loaded all their seasons on their Roku app? Series 5 was heart-hitting and wicked good, now I’m moving into Series 4!  I love it for the same reasons I used to love Extreme Home Makeover Edition.

What are you working on now?

Mikles responds: Everything. In addition to getting The Qinali Virus out to the world, I’m editing Premonitions: The New Dawn Book 7, and I’m drafting a new stand-alone, tentatively titled Lost in Transit. The ultimate message of the New Dawn series is that there is hope for tomorrow. Every new dawn is a new chance to make things right.

I truly believe this myself – every new day is a new day we all have to embrace the hope of what tomorrow can bring to us all. Thank you for giving me such a wonderful and conversational interview to share with my readers, today! I truly appreciated it. I loved your replies and I loved how random and lovely the conversation became! I hope you didn’t mind if I added my replies as you gave me a lot of good material to run with and we shared a heap in common, too!

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About Valerie J Mikles

Valerie J Mikles

Valerie loves dancing, writing, astronomy, sci-fi, and grapes. She’s agender, aromantic, and asexual, and even though her labels describe many things she is not, her motto in life is “I can be everything I want, just not all at the same time.”
Although she has yet to get paid to eat grapes, she was delighted to learn that people would pay her to study black holes, and spent much of her twenties as a black hole hunter. She was rewarded with an astronomy PhD, which promptly inspired her to move to L.A. to be a screenwriter. How she ended up working on weather satellites for NOAA, we may never know.

Her passion for story-telling extends back to before she could write, and in fall 2017, she achieved a life dream and published her first book, “The Disappeared.” Valerie currently has six books published in her New Dawn series You can learn more about Valerie’s books on her websit.

An asexual activist, Valerie has written and produced a series of comedic short films featuring asexual characters. You can watch her films online at: http://www.aces-sitcom.com. Her third book ‘Trade Circle’ features an asexual protagonist, and interestingly, she created this character before she even knew there was a word to describe it. She is super-excited about the release of the Qinali Virus, featuring an asexual, aromantic astronomer (and a weather satellite for good measure).

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This blog tour is courtesy of:

OWI Blog Tours badge provided by Otherworlds Ink Blog Tours and is used with permission.

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 I look forward to reading your thoughts & commentary!
Be sure to leave notes, takeaways and commentary for the author who would love to hear your thoughts on behalf of this conversation. We look forward to seeing what you felt about the topics discussed.

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NOTE: Similar to blog tours wherein I feature book reviews, book spotlights (with or without extracts), book announcements (or Cover Reveals) – I may elect to feature an author, editor, narrator, publisher or other creative person connected to the book, audiobook, Indie film project or otherwise creative publishing medium being featured wherein the supplemental content on my blog is never compensated monetarily nor am I ever obligated to feature this kind of content. I provide (98.5%) of all questions and guest topics regularly featured on Jorie Loves A Story. I receive direct responses back to those enquiries by publicists, literary agents, authors, blog tour companies, etc of whom I am working with to bring these supplemental features and showcases to my blog. I am naturally curious about the ‘behind-the-scenes’ of stories and the writers who pen them: I have a heap of joy bringing this content to my readers. Whenever there is a conflict of connection I do disclose those connections per post and disclose the connection as it applies.

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#WyrdAndWonder 2020 event banner created by Jorie in Canva.

This post is part of my #WyrdAndWonder showcases!

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{SOURCES: Book cover for “The Qinali Virus”, book synopsis, author biography, author photograph of Valerie J Mikles, the special interview feature writ by the author and the OWI badge were all provided by OWI – Other Worlds Ink Blog Tours and used with permission. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets were embedded due to codes provided by Twitter. Blog graphics created by Jorie via Canva: Guest Posts & Reviews banner, #WyrdAndWonder Year 3 banner and the Comment Box Banner.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2020.

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About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Friday, 1 May, 2020 by jorielov in #WyrdAndWonder, Astral Projection, Blog Tour Host, Equality In Literature, Genre-bender, Hard Science Fiction, Indie Author, OWI - Other Worlds Ink Blog Tours, Parapsychological Gifts, Science Fiction, Space Opera, Speculative Fiction, Telepaths & Telepathy, Twitterland & Twitterverse Event

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