After introducing the newly published Claire Riley to you all yesterday, I thought it only fitting to welcome another fresh pen to the fold. Carol Bond (pen name: Ellen Mae Franklin) is due to publish her debut novel 'The Unseen Promise' this week, so I'm very excited to be featuring her at such a busy time! Her work is George R. R. Martin vs Enid Blyton, to put it largely, and though that in itself is a brow-raising claim I thought it best for her to pop along and introduce herself to you all!
Carol Bond aka Ellen Mae Franklin
I have been told it is a classical fantasy piece, pure imagination with characters in abundance. This, I think reflects upon the days of my childhood and the books that influenced me along the way. Reading is habitual and there isn’t a day that goes by, where I am not toting a book.
The worlds that Enid Blyton created for me, had me reading long after I heard, lights out! From there on in the power of words captured my heart and mind. I progressed to other authors and more complex storylines. The love, I have for this genre shows in my writing and the endless meanderings I put to paper. Authors that have inspired and influenced my writing style are many, but to name a few that stand out as giants are in order, Joe Abercrombie - for me this author has taken fantasy to a new level. The story he creates are complex, gritty, violent and colourful. I have learnt a great deal from his books, character development and dialogue.
George RR Martin, Fiona McIntosh, Ian Irvine, Guy Gavriel Kay, Julian May, Stephen Donaldson, Robert Jordon, Robin Hobb, Sara Douglass are to name a few that have given me years of enjoyment.
I was born and still live in Adelaide, Australia. For me, there is no place like home. The big 50 has come and gone, my children are adults, which leaves me to indulge myself in the things I love, writing, reading, gardening and traveling. I get to spend quality time with the people I love. Adding to my family are 2 dogs and like all pet owners, I shamelessly dote on them.
The Unseen Promise is the first book in a series I am working on, called the Tarkeenia Sagas. It takes place on the world, Tarkeenia. Imaginary and very new characters have been created to walk this world that is on the brink of chaos. I have been asked, if my book contains a message to the reader. I thought that it would be a good idea for The Unseen Promise to answer that question.
In the beginning...
What is curiosity? Is it a beginning or is it an ending? Should you embrace it or do you shut your eyes and pray for the love of whatever god you hold close that it disappears? It is a thing without limitations and restraints, for it carries no conscience, other than what its bearer holds. So I ask, should it be valued or feared? For it begs to be heard and it never, ever, no matter how much you should wish it, offers even the smallest measure of mercies.
Even the gods feel the tug of its call, its alluring charm. All except for one. He believed that he alone held its secrets, and valued curiosity as a favorite trinket to be kept close until such time, as it was needed.
So, be warned friend, for to answer its call - curiosity’s enticing song - it must be with wide eyes and a steady heart, for trouble always follows.
It was always my intention to write this book as a part of a series, but it wasn’t until I was half way through, that I understood the complexity of the many characters and storyline I was creating. With 90 characters to work with, there are some very colourful personalities, some shouting out to be heard way after the final two words - The End!
Who knows where this might lead.
I know the market I am working in is very competitive and the Big 6 almost an Urban Myth. So what does a fledgling writer do? For me it was simple - Take Social Media by the horns and build a platform, I believed I needed awareness for The Unseen Promise before it was released. I created a Fan Page on Facebook, a Twitter account and in trial and error, websites. Networking became a priority and I set about the business of making connections. It was important for me to listen and learn from others with experience in the industry.
Hosting interviews in different forms on my blog and website, has also helped in creating awareness to myself as a writer and to the work I am producing. Supporting other Authors gains, not only a respectable standing in the industry, but helps to form a supportive safety net. I have had some very positive experiences connecting with others like mind.
The other crucial belief I have and this may stem from my many years of Field Merchandising, is that the book cover of any book must be visually compelling. All humans are visual creatures, so the artwork must be as such that it stops a reader mid stride. I used the website Odesk to find the graphic artist, I believed was capable of illustrating fantasy. I chose Cristian Poppa, he had an artistic eye, the creative ability and the technique to portray my characters as I visualized them.
I am currently doing my best to keep my head above water. Working hard on three different projects, the second book in the Tarkeenia Sagas. It is called - It’s not the Bite that kills you. I am also, co-writing with a very talented UK Author, Pete Emmerson on a fantasy series. We have not given our project a name it is still a work in progress.
My other project is a group effort. I am co-founder of an Australian group of writers and authors, 34 in total and we are working on writing short stories for Australian themed anthologies. We are called Terra Australis and the anthologies we are producing will be published late August this year. The book names will be Tales from Terra Australis, book one and book two.
Interviews take up any remaining free time. This is a way of connecting with others and supporting their efforts and hard work. Building friendships and networking along the way. I will endeavor to market my work on a very personal level and this seems to be part of the world when self-publishing or working closely with a small publishing company. So, it is imperative to remain positive. For me it is simply, once I emerge myself in the world of writing and the process of creating I find that I am often swept along, and of course, there can be no going back.