Category: Writing Advice & Tips

Author Guest Post | Kaki Olsen writes about the depth of the human experience in her debut novel “Swan and Shadow” (based on Swan Lake)

Posted Monday, 25 April, 2016 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

Author Guest Post Banner created by Jorie in Canva.

I had such a strong connection to the story within Swan and Shadow, I wanted to reach out to the author Ms Olsen to ask if she wanted to be a guest author on my blog – kicking off a week where I celebrate #YALit as this is one branch of literature I have a keen interest in seeking out whilst I find new debut authors to champion each New Year.

The Young Adult market has a wide selection of offerings but each year, I find myself trying to find a particular niche of offerings which are threaded with light and not too darkly underlit to push out the light completely. I appreciate finding stories set in the Contemporary world, the historical past or amongst the genres of Speculative Fiction which have the tendency to carve out new worlds of thought and dimension per each writer’s unique perspective and imagination.

I was quite taken by the level of depth Ms Olsen knitted inside her debut novel, and I wanted to explore those depths with her whilst giving her a chance to flex her wings with guest features which broached a bit deeper than the surface of her writerly inspirations. I definitely wanted to learn more about the supernatural attributes but at the core of the story, there is a coming-of age tale of a girl not quite confident in her own skin whose attempting to sort everything out one step of the way.

Underscored to the Fantasy elements are topics young adults will appreciate seeing in this novel, such as the highlighting of mental health and wellness and the struggle between sisters, of whom love each other dearly but do not always act in the best interests of each other. Olsen owns her story to such a degree of honesty, as to ground you directly inside the lives of her characters whilst giving you this curious story surrounding a shapeshifting swan! The back-story is one that is quite well known but it’s her interpretation of the story’s heart which stands out from the pack!

This Guest Post Feature kicks off my showcasing of Young Adult Literature – a special focus which will be re-occurring on Jorie Loves A Story straight til the start of Summer! I look forward to bringing a variety of stories to my blog, across genres and styles where characters are on the fringes of exiting their childhood but have a bit of growth left in their younger years before they fully embrace their adulthood. It’s a transitional part of our lives which endears me the most to the stories, but also, to the authors who find new ways of talking about this period of growth, discovery and self-awareness which everyone (lad or lass) can relate too.

Happily join me as I converse via:

#IReadYA | #IndieYA (movements of their own)

  Tags to promote these showcases: #JorieLovesIndies | #JorieLovesYA

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Aislin’s curse is the standard fare: swan by day, college student by

Swan and Shadow by Kaki Olsen

night, true love as the only cure. But does true love even exist outside of fairy tales? After having to cover for Aislin during her swan hours, Aislin’s twin, Maeve, is willing to resort to anything from matchmaking to magic to see her sister live happily (and human) ever after.

Will either of them get their wish?

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Topic of Interest: Shadow and Light can metaphorically tackle a wider depth of a human’s journey; how did you seek to define Aislin’s struggle to grow in strength and personal acceptance of her swan / human duality?

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

One Saturday afternoon, I was standing in line for a book signing. I’d been a fan of Brandon Sanderson since my friend made me read her writing teacher’s debut novel and this was years before he was an award-winning podcaster, novelist and the man who finished the Wheel of Time series. I’ve always found him to be an approachable and unassuming man, which is what gave me the guts to comment on one of his observations.

The person standing in front of me was having him sign a middle grade book called Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians and said how much her son loved reading something that didn’t have to be homework. Brandon wittily said that he’s never been the type to write books that people would have to write papers on. I immediately piped up that I was presenting an academic paper on leadership in two weeks and had used a chapter from his first book as the foundation for part of it. He blinked, signed the woman’s book and, while signing my copy of Hero of Ages, asked me what I had written it on. I immediately quoted a passage from the book in which a young prince is taught about noble leadership by some well-phrased observations and questions posed by a glowing ball that used to be his constant companion. Brandon responded with something along the lines of, “Well, THAT’S not exactly what I thought that chapter was about” and laughed. Read More

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Posted Monday, 25 April, 2016 by jorielov in After the Canon, Ballet, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Chronicles of a Prospective Adoptive Mum, Coming-Of Age, Debut Author, Equality In Literature, Fairy Tale Fiction, Folklore and Mythology, Indie Author, Inspired by Stories, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Methodology of Writing Science Fiction & Fantasy, Musical Fiction | Non-Fiction, Re-Told Tales, Reader Submitted Guest Post (Topic) for Author, Realistic Fiction, Shapeshifters, Supernatural Fiction, The Writers Life, Trauma | Abuse & Recovery, Urban Fantasy, Writing Advice & Tips, Writing Style & Voice, YA Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction

Author Guest Post | “Summer of the Oak Moon” by Laura Templeton

Posted Friday, 8 May, 2015 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Author Guest Post Banner created by Jorie in Canva.

One of the blessings for hosting blog tours with Chapter by Chapter, is watching all the lovely new releases by Month9Books and their imprint Swoon Romance! On the latter side of the ledger, the Swoon Romance titles which interest me to read in the future when I can acquire a print copy of the books are the Young Adult and New Adult titles; although I notice most of the ones that tempt me of late are strictly YA. I happen to fancy the stories where authors take different turns highlighting the coming-of age period of young adults and the shifting of perspectives from childhood, adolescence, and the opening chapters of their adult lives.

This is why I was drawn into wanting to read Summer of the Oak Moon, as I have previously picked up a similar story about societal perceptions and influences on a multicultural relationship by Julie Kibler in Calling Me Home; a novel I still need to finish reading. I first discovered it soon after my local library purchased it as a debut novel, and what compelled me inside the story itself was the honest realism of the relationship as it was unfolding inside the narrative grace Kibler gave her characters to inhabit. It is these kinds of stories I am in search of finding, and as soon as I read the synopsis for Templeton’s Swoon Romance, I felt as if I had found a novel to anchour alongside my readings of Kibler.

When I decided to ask the topic for this blog tour, I decided to talk about the heart of the story and counter-balance that against the social movement towards seeking Equality and Diversity in Literature. I have openly spoken about my pursuit of #EqualityInLit which runs hand in hand with the #WeNeedDiverseBooks mission towards a balance of stories which represent the world we live in. I found the author’s response quite refreshing and I look forward to hearing your response in the comments after you’ve read her essay.

Summer of the Oak Moon by Laura Templeton

Rejected by the exclusive women’s college she has her heart set on, Tess Seibert dreads the hot, aimless summer ahead. But when a chance encounter with a snake introduces her to Jacob Lane, a black college student home on his summer break, a relationship blooms that challenges the prejudices of her small, north Florida town.

When Jacob confesses that Tess’s uncle is trying to steal his family’s land, Tess comes face to face with the hatred that simmers just below the surface of the bay and marshes she’s loved since birth. With the help of her mentor Lulu, an herbal healer, Tess pieces together clues to the mysterious disappearance of Jacob’s father twenty-two years earlier and uncovers family secrets that shatter her connection to the land she loves.

Tess and Jacob’s bond puts them both in peril, and discontent eventually erupts into violence. Tess is forced to make a decision. Can she right old wrongs and salvage their love? Or will prejudice and hatred kill any chance she and Jacob might have had?

Published By: Swoon Romance (@SwoonRomance)

an imprint of Month9Books (@Month9Books)

on 5th of May, 2015

Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook | Add to Riffle

Converse on Twitter via:

#SummerOfTheOakMoon, #YALit & #Month9Books Read More

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Posted Friday, 8 May, 2015 by jorielov in 21st Century, African-American Literature, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Chapter by Chapter Blog Tours, Civil Rights, Coming-Of Age, Compassion & Acceptance of Differences, Contemporary Romance, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Equality In Literature, Family Drama, Family Life, Indie Author, Modern Day, Multi-cultural Characters and/or Honest Representations of Ethnicity, Reader Submitted Guest Post (Topic) for Author, Realistic Fiction, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, Taboo Relationships & Romance, The Writers Life, Writing Advice & Tips, Writing Style & Voice, Young Adult Fiction