Monday, July 31, 2017

New interview with fantasy author Leslie D. Soule

Fantasy author Leslie D. Soule is back in the hot seat. This time she’s chatting with me about Betrayer – book 3 of the Fallenwood Chronicles.

During her virtual book tour, Leslie will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a lucky randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit her other tour stops and enter there, too!

Welcome back, Leslie. Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a fantasy/sci-fi author from Sacramento, CA. I have an M.A. in English and am currently working on the final book of my fantasy series, The Fallenwood Chronicles.

Please tell us about your newest release.
My newest release is a novel called Betrayer. It’s the third book of my Fallenwood series, which is a fantasy series about a girl named Ash Kensington, who travels to the fantasy world of Fallenwood. There, she finds friends, and danger, and in this book, she finds an intriguing dragon slayer named Draeon.

What inspired you to write this book?
I was in a whirlwind romance – I thought I’d found the man of my dreams and everything was finally working out. That is, until I realized what I was up against, like Ash, in my novel. This guy who appeared to be everything I wanted, ended up being a psychopath and putting me through hell. It’s hard to explain, and I think it’s really hard to understand unless you’ve been through this sort of thing. So I wrote Betrayer as a kind of explanation of how it happens, to show those who haven’t been there. Also, writing is a kind of therapy for me, and I think the beautiful thing about writers is that they’re able to take all this darkness and pain and channel it into something good – something with an important message.

Excerpt from Betrayer:
“What can I do for ya?”

She looked at the bartender and said sorrowfully, “Give me a spell to make me forget.” I’ve wasted so much time, she thought to herself, and now I don’t know if I can get back on track. Malegaunt is out there, and none of the crystals have been destroyed. It drove her mad.

He shook his head and pushed a pint of dark beer across the bar. “This is the best magic I know. That’s why I’m a bartender.” He pointed down the bar a ways to a man who looked to be in his forties, if not older. He was clothed in a black coat, and his stubbled face was hunched over a glass of what looked like whiskey on the rocks. “Now, that guy over there, on the other hand, he might be able to help ya. People call him the Oracle of the Oasis,” he informed her.

What’s the next writing project?
Currently, I’m working on the final book of the series – it’s called Retribution. It’s where Ash finally meets up with Malgaunt and the epic battle of good versus evil, happens. Ash has been through a lot in this series, and she’s gained and lost allies, and been strung along by this evil entity known as Malegaunt. It’s exciting for me to write the final book of the series. Also, though, I’m working on this voodoo killer story with my friend Tom, who’s hilarious! He keeps me in stitches and is a literary gold mine. We started talking about the story as more of a joke, but it’s developing quickly into an actual story. So we’ll see where that goes.

What is your biggest challenge when writing a new book? (or the biggest challenge with this book)
My biggest challenge is that since it’s a series, you want to get the details right. And if you’ve written a few books in the series, sometimes you have to go back and get the details from your other books, since if you’re like me, there’s a lot that doesn’t get memorized. Like, I had to go back and figure out just how many gold pieces Ash took in book 2, so I’d know how many she had to work with in book 3. That kind of stuff.

If your novels require research – please talk about the process. Do you do the research first and then write, while you’re writing, after the novel is complete and you need to fill in the gaps?
So usually, I’ll write a rough draft, and make a note of the things I’ve got to read up on. Such as, I didn’t know a whole lot about the keeping of horses, but Will’s got one in Fallenwood, so I figured I’d better read up. I took a break from writing and read all of this book called A Horse of Your Own by M.A. Stoneridge. It’s huge, but very informative, and I’d suggest it for anyone else who’s writing horses into their novel. On my rough draft, I’ll usually make a note where research is needed, and then randomly go back and do the research, and then do the writing after the research is done.  

What’s your writing space like? Do you have a particular spot to write where the muse is more active? Please tell us about it.
I find that I have to actually write things down, to get the flow going. So I can’t actually sit down at a computer and just start writing. For me, it doesn’t work that way. And at home, I find that I have a lot of distractions. I prefer to get out into the world and find a quiet cafĂ©’ in the area, get a coffee, and sit down and write. Lately I’ve found this Mountain Mike’s near my house, and it’s quiet enough that I can go there and not feel rushed or pressured or have a lot of people around, wondering just what I’m doing with those Sixth-Sense cards.

What authors do you enjoy reading within or outside of your genre?
I’ve just gotten into reading Terry Pratchett novels. He’s got this dry humor that takes a bit of getting used to, but it quickly becomes endearing. Also, I got my first audio book! It’s Kurt Vonnegut’s novel Fates Worse Than Death. I listened to it on the way up to Ashland to see a Shakespeare play, and back down to Sac. It was fantastic.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers today?
Yes! Well, I think the important thing I’ve taken from writing Betrayer is that you can take the pain and suffering that you’ve been through in life, and transform it into something that no longer hurts you, and has the power to help others. A lot of people shy away from writing painful subjects, but I feel like it can be very cathartic, to do so.


Buy book 1 – Fallenwood: Melange Books | Amazon

Buy book 2 – Forgetting Fallenwood: Melange Books | Amazon

Buy book 3 – Betrayer: Melange Books | Amazon 

Thank you for coming back to Reviews and Interviews!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Rita Wray said...

I liked the excerpt, thank you.

Leslie D. Soule said...

Yes, thank you for hosting, Lisa. I'm glad to be back here again! And feel free to ask me questions, everyone. I'll be checking in periodically throughout the day.

Leslie D. Soule said...

And thanks, Lisa and Rita!!!

Victoria Alexander said...

This sounds like a book I'll enjoy reading, thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Victoria!

Bernie Wallace said...

What was your favorite book as a child? Thanks for the giveaway. I hope that I win. Bernie W BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com

Cali W. said...

Thanks for the giveaway; I like the excerpt. :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the question, Joseph! When I was in the sixth grade or so, I got one of the Redwall books from an assortment of books donated to the school. I finished it quickly and was hooked. I've always loved those books, by Brian Jacques.
And thanks, Cali!

Ally Swanson said...

Congrats on the new book and good luck on the book tour!