It’s my privilege to introduce to you one of my favorite authors. Tamara Shoemaker has just released a great new adult fiction book, entitled, “Kindle the Flame”. It’s filled with everything you want in a great book: action, romance, mystery, and lots of imagination. This book is fun, and exciting. Tamara knows how to write in a way that engages your heart, soul and your mind. Read my interview with her and consider taking a look at this and other works she has done.
I have to begin by asking the obvious: how did you get started writing?
I’ve been filling up notebooks since I was a kid old enough to read. I vividly remember wishing so badly to own The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner that I checked it out from the library, got a legal pad from my dad, and began to write the the entire book onto that lined paper. I don’t think I ever finished it, because we had to return the book to the library, but the seed of an idea was born. What if, instead of relying on other books for my entertainment, I just made up my own stories and put them on paper? My little author heart beat faster.
So that’s exactly what I did. Anne of Green Gables was another favorite book of mine, and in that story, Anne started a story club with her friends. They’d write stories together and share them among themselves. I thought that was a great idea, so with my friends, I started a story club, too. I think it lasted about a week on my friends’ parts, but I enjoyed it so much, I kept writing long after the others had stopped.
The first book I published, I wrote on a dare. My husband and I were discussing the ridiculousness of me writing a book, and he dared me to write one. So I did. It was on my lunch breaks at work, and occasional evenings at home, but bit by bit, that book came together.
In building the world for Kindle the Flame, how did you get your ideas? Did you draw from other sources or do you just make it all up?
In Kindle the Flame, there’s an entire roster of mythological creatures that are common to most books in the genre: dragons, ogres, trolls, direwolves, etc. I freely used those creatures in my book, but I tweaked them according to my world that I built. For instance, I introduced four kinds of dragons in my book, a Mirage (a dragon coated with mirror scales that can turn invisible with the twist of a scale), an Ember (a dragon with flaming scales), a Poison-Quill (a dragon with poisonous spikes that will explode off the dragon when they’re upset), and a Nine-Tail (a dragon with nine tails tipped with razor sharp points and capable of moving independently of one another).
So yes, I borrow from some of the same common source material from which a lot of other fantasy writers borrow, but I also do a lot of making up my own stuff. 🙂
What are you hoping this book will do for the reader? Is this purely entertainment or are you hoping to inspire something in the reader?
When I offered ARCs (Advance Review Copies) to readers, I had several nearly decline, saying they were not a fan of the fantasy genre. For one reason or another, most agreed to review anyway, and to a reader, they let me know that even though they don’t enjoy fantasy, they still enjoyed my book. They identified with the characters, enjoyed the nuances of relationship in the story, and rooted for the themes behind the story line: redemption, sacrifice, overcoming evil.
In other words, I’m hoping to entertain readers, but I’m also hoping that readers will identify with the themes in the book, and come away thinking about those same themes that may be evident in their own lives.
Tell me about yourself, family, interests, anything.
I spend most of my days herding cats… er, children, ages seven, five, and three. Between that and trying (and failing) to maintain order in our home, I write. I love to write, so that’s what I spend most of my time doing. On the rare occasion that I depart from the darkened regions of my writing cavern, I love tinkering around on the piano, and burning various foods in my oven while I continue to convince myself that I can bake.
Coming right up! The first book of the Guardian of the Vale trilogy, Mark of Four, will hit the market on Cyber Monday in November. It’s an urban fantasy set in post-apocalyptic earth, and the new source of power is the elements: Air, Fire, Earth, and Water. Elementals can wield one of those four, depending on their bloodlines, but…
Alayne Worth can wield all four. No one knows why. But all the powers in CommonEarth, both good and evil, want her gift. How will she survive the earth-shattering struggle for the power she possesses?
A girl who never fit in, a young man forced into an outcast’s life, a boy raised without a community, and a ruler who holds the key to their destinies…
Kinna has a Pixie she can’t train and a head full of doubts. Her worst fears come true when she fails the Tournament entrance test. She flees her Clan in disgrace, inexplicably drawn to a Mirage, a rare Dragon she has no business training.
Ayden is cursed—anyone he touches turns to ash before his eyes. He hides amongst the Dragon Clan with the only creatures he cannot hurt. When Kinna frees his favorite Dragon, his world turns upside down.
Cedric grows up in isolation, fostered by an outcast Centaur. When tragedy strikes, he ventures into a strange new world of Dragons, political intrigue, and magic.
Sebastian’s country hovers on the brink of war. Chased from his rightful throne, he schemes to retake his kingdom by any means possible, even if it threatens an ancient agreement that underpins the foundation of his realm.
Only by examining their pasts will these four find their futures. But will they survive the fires of discovery?
Tamara Shoemaker lives in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia with her husband, three children, a few jars of Nutella, and a never-ending carafe of coffee. She authored the Amazon best-selling Shadows in the Nursery Christian mystery series and Soul Survivor, another Christian mystery. Her fantasy books include the beginning of the Heart of a Dragon trilogy: Kindle the Flame, as well as the upcoming Guardian of the Vale trilogy.
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