Thorns of Betrayal by Lynn Donovan Blog Tour
Title: Thorns of Betrayal
Series: Spirit of Destiny, Book Two
Author: Lynn Donovan
Published: February 11th, 2014
Publisher: AltWit Press
Word Count: 65,000
Genre: Paranormal Christian Fiction
Recommended Age: 16+
Ever since her father’s mysterious death, Rose Bauer has suffered with migraines. Visions and voices reach out to her from the intense pain. Is her father’s spirit trying to contact her? Or is she going crazy?
Now is not a good time to be crazy.
Zeke Clayton claims destiny led him to her door. But how strong can destiny bind two souls when one is as tainted as hers? Is his love for her and faith in God strong enough to survive all her secrets? Will justice ever be served against the one who has betrayed them all?
Lynn Donovan spends her days chasing after her muses, trying to get them to settle down and behave long enough so she can dictate their words and actions. Thank goodness her muses love Christ or she’d be in big trouble. The results have produced The Clockwork Dragon, a collection of nine short stories in which she wrote half (4.5 stories), The Wishing Well Curse, and Thorns of Betrayal, Rocking Horse Shadows, and Christmas Grace, Signing Seeds. A speculative fiction called The Abraham Project is hovering out there somewhere. Lynn enjoys reading and writing Christian fiction, paranormal, and speculative fiction, but you never know what her muses will come up with for a story, so you could see a novel under any given genre. All we can tell you is keep your eyes open, cause these muses are not sitting still for long! Oops, there they go again…
1) When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I have wanted to write for a long time, like thirty years. I took a creative writing class in 1985 and I jotted down scenarios but never could get into the whole writing thing. I had two kids at that time. Since then I’ve had two more. So I was busy being a mom, wife, full-time secretary, and…well you get the idea. A few years ago, the company I worked for closed down, I started having serious health problems and my mother began showing signs of Alzheimer’s. We brought her and my special needs sister into our home, and I stayed home to care for them, and myself. I found I had a lot of time on my hands so I started writing, just to see if I could. I completed one manuscript and started another. It took eleven months of learning the craft and copious amounts of editing, but that was my first published novel, The Wishing Well Curse (2013). Since then, I’ve written Thorns of Betrayal (the reason for this blog tour), and several other stories that will be published later this year and into next year.
2) What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I write in our garage.
Yes, I have a small desk out there. Remember the movie by Erma Bombeck, “The Grass is Greener on the Other Side of the Septic Tank”? Carol Burnett played Dorothy Benson who was a housewife and an aspiring writer. She forged a small space for herself in the garage. She was surrounded by large bags of lawn fertilizer, and gardening tools, you name it. One day, her husband was trying to retrieve a sack of manure and it broke open, yep, all over her. In the end, her husband built her a really nice office area and they lived happily ever after. Oh, then the septic tank had a problem and the men had to dig up the front yard. Oh well…
I think of this movie all the time, because I’m surrounded by fishing equipment, our camper, tools, a freezer, a fifty-five gallon trash barrel, you name it. But it’s quiet. I cannot write around noise. I can’t read or concentrate on anything if I hear a voice. The TV bothers me, the radio, a CD, anything with a voice speaking, nope, can’t write.
So I’ve forged a space for myself in the garage. It’s attached to the house, and I keep the door open in case anybody needs me. But for the most part, I’m alone with my imaginary friends and happy as a clam in the sand where nobody is digging.
3) What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
That I actually can write and people actually enjoyed my story. My dad was a great story teller, so was his dad. As a child I loved to hear their stories. My grandmother had two elderly Aunties who came to Oklahoma in a covered wagon. I adored sitting at their knee listening to their tales. But I was not a good reader. In fact, I had difficulty reading and preferred movies over paper backs. It wasn’t until I was in my thirties that I began to read and enjoy it.
My writing is influenced by movies, not books. But I learned this is not a bad thing. Today’s society is movie and video game oriented. Therefore, today’s written stories have to be visually stimulating, like a movie or game, in order to meet today’s readers’ interest. Authors call it “show, don’t tell” and “deep point of view”. Well, what do you know? So this is my time, my style is the style that is right for this era of readers. God’s timing is perfect. And I am thankful for it every day.
4) Where did you get ideas for your books?
Thorns of Betrayal is a sequel to The Wishing Well Curse. So the original idea was: Okay, Zeke has met Rose, now what? It had to be paranormal, but it couldn’t be the same scenario as TWWC. So I sat down and thought about what could be paranormal in Rose’s life.
I describe my writing style as “chasing my muses and writing down what they say and do.” That’s sort of what I did with Rose, I followed her around in my mind and the plot began to work itself out. I thought about ending the book with an engagement, but I had another idea. I talked to my publisher about a third book, but she strongly suggested I put that idea into this one. So I did. (I’m trying real hard not to give away any spoilers.)
That’s how the story of Thorns came about. Other story ideas come from dreams (there’s a scene in Thorns that my oldest daughter dreamt), or from a news report (the car crash in TWWC is an example of this), sometimes from my own or a close friend’s experience, TWWC idea came from a song by Gordon Lightfoot, If You Could Read my Mind Love. Other times, I get ideas from a Bible passage. I guess you’d say I get my ideas from everything I see and hear. Absolutely anything can spark an idea. It’s a matter of writing it down and remembering the spark.
5) Out of all the books you have written which is your favorite and why?
I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but it’s true: That’s like asking me which of my four children and eight grandchildren are my favorite. I love them all. I am particularly fond of the character Zeke, because my oldest son was his muse. But I put my heart and soul into everything I write. Each is a best-effort on my part, so all of them are dear to me.
6) What age group do you think best describes your reader? Why?
My nine-year-old grandson has read some of my stories, but I’m sure that’s not my audience. I have fans who are older teens and I have fans who are my age (ahem, let’s say over fifty) So, I supposed I’d answer this question with adults in general are my readers.
Why? Because my stories are about people being human and struggling to overcome difficult situations in their lives. I think this relates to just about everybody and that’s why those who read my stories enjoy them.
7) What do you think makes a good story?
For me, that’s easy. A good story is one that makes you cry, laugh, get mad, get happy and you walk away thinking about it. The characters stick in your mind and you would really like more. I am a big fan of happily-ever-after (HEA). There was a movie once about an automated boy. The end was not HEA, in fact it was shocking and left me with an empty feeling. I enjoyed the movie up to the ending. I remember the incredible silence of the movie attendees. We were all in shock and just got up and left the theatre. I had never been to a movie where no one talked once the movie was over. It was eerie.
Obviously, with a series there are plot points left open, but I have to have some sort of HEA, hope for a future happiness, or possibilities for good things. At the end of WWC, Zeke meets Rose. In Thorns, we learn more about Rose and watch them struggle to be together. Something good has to come of it, but what will it be?
8) Who are some of your favorite Authors?
I have a friend who said, of herself, “If I don’t have something to read, I’ll resort to soup cans.” I’ve become that way. I can’t sit still. I love my kindle because it’s easily transportable and holds a lot of books. I’ll read anything. I do not like erotica, or stories about special needs people being abused. (There was one Stephen King book I could not read for this reason.) I’m not drawn to Vampire or Zombie stories, but I have read some (and saw a movie with Brad Pitt) that I DID enjoy. So, I’ll give anything a chance, and very few I put down and refuse to read. I have met and become fans of new authors on Facebook, which I am very fond of.
But “my favorite”? I just can’t single one out!
9) If you could pick one actor to play a character in your book in the movie version, who would it be?
This is an easy question also. When I’m starting a story and I’m working out the plot and the characters, I go to Google and find actors who look like the characters in my mind. I save their pictures and print them on one page. I pin it up in my visual range and use that print throughout my story to describe a physical gesture or whatever.
SO, for Thorns of Betrayal: Rose Bauer is Michelle Trachtenberg.
Keisha Moore is Nicole Beharie
Or Zoe Saldana
Uncle Russell is Willem Dafoe
Clifford Valdez is Zac Efron
Twyla Rivers is Mrs. Hogenson, from The Incredibles played by Linda Hunt.
Pastor V is Ralph Fiennes, with a beard of course.
Zeke could easily be Tyler Posey but he’ll have to shave his head and grow a goatee.
10) What song best describes your book and Why?
I usually have a song that I feel belongs to my stories. But this one didn’t. Sorry to disappoint.
11) Who are some of the people that influenced your love of writing?
My family. Dad, Pappy (grandpa), Aunt Scottie and Aunt Dellie (the Aunties). People in general. I love watching people and noticing their differences and likenesses.
12) If you had one piece of advice for an aspiring Author, what would it be?
Get on the computer and make contact with other writers, through blogs, Writers’ Associations, discussion forums, critique groups, Facebook groups, Twitter, Linked In, anywhere you can find an established writer. I saw an author at the Christmas Craft Show in our little town, introduced myself to her and, through her, met five other authors in our area. They now keep me abreast of local events where we can sale and autograph our books.
13) What would you like to say to friends and family of writers (not just your own)?
My family is very supportive, but I know some are not. Please, support a writer in your family. Encourage them. But most important: Respect their time when they are writing. Don’t interfere if at all possible.
For writers, I say—Don’t ask your family to proofread for you, even if they are an English major. Remember, Mike Tyson never received millions of dollars from his family or friends. It took an opponent, Larry Holmes, to win him $2.8 million.
It takes an objective critique or two to help a writer polish a manuscript and make it publishable.
14) What projects do you have up and coming?
I have contracts with Astraea Press for Rocking Horse Shadows (a paranormal mystery) and Christmas Grace: Signing Seeds (a Christmas paranormal/mystery). I am currently working on a sequel to Thorns of Betrayal, titled Secret Voices. It will continue with two characters from Thorns. And I have a couple of other ideas clamoring for my attention. I have three short stories which will be included in a Paranormal Colorado anthology, and one short story in a Different Dragons II anthology. My goal is to write at least four stories a year and, hopefully, publish them the next year. Wish me luck, and keep me in your prayers.
15) Is there anything else you want to share with your readers?
This has been a very thorough interview. I enjoyed stretching my mind to answer your questions. But I would like to thank all of you who read my stories. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you.
I am flattered. I am blessed. I am humbled. I pray God’s abundant blessings upon you. I hope I never disappoint you or God.
Thank you Elizabeth, I have enjoyed our time together. I appreciate you helping me get the word out about Thorns of Betrayal. I pray blessing for you and your writing, as well.
She had to get away from him, away from his lies. She pulled onto the county road. Her tires fishtailed on the wet asphalt and her head banged against the driver’s window. She slammed her transmission into second gear and then third. She could barely see through the downpour. How could she let herself get caught in a spring storm? She knew how bad they could get. Lightning flashed and momentarily blinded her. She blinked and blinked. The residual ball of light obscured her vision. Her VW splashed through a low-water crossing.
She down shifted as her car traveled through the water but returned the gear to third and pressed the gas. He’s lying! That’s what Russell did. He lied! Nobody knew that better than her. Wipers flapped vehemently across her windshield. Her mother did not kill those people. They killed her. Her body shook as she sobbed. Tears poured down her face. She scrubbed a knuckle across her nose. Around the curve a granite outcrop became part of the view. Her little bug dipped and climbed with the contour of the road. She needed to talk to Keisha.
The wipers squealed against drying glass. The downpour had stopped. She reached into her purse for her cell phone. Her car slammed into another low-water crossing and hydroplaned to her left. She jerked her eyes up. Terror shot through her chest. Oh God! Her cell phone crashed to the floorboard and broke apart. She gripped her steering wheel with blanching knuckles, but it didn’t help. The current pushed her little Beetle off the concrete road into the water. It tipped to the left and then righted itself. The Volkswagen bobbled but favored the left side. She leaned toward the center and frantically looked around. Men and women ran from vehicles along the side of the normally dry gulch.
Hysteria barely in check, she pounded the windshield and screamed, “Help me!”
The people were throwing ropes across the river down from her car. Thank God, they’ll catch the car. Her eyes met theirs. They were yelling something at her.
“What?” She rolled down her window.
“Don’t move,” the crew hollered. “Don’t move!”
Three men spilled from a black Hummer. Many voices yelled for her to be still.
A warm sensation cascaded over her like a sheer drape. Her fear flushed out like a drain and peace filled her heart. She would be saved. She sat back in her seat and sighed.
Her VW jerked, and her head slammed against the steering wheel. The ropes had caught. The current roared against the hull, filling her ears, drowning out the people’s voices. A warm trail of fluid ran down her neck. She touched her chin. Blood! Fear crept back and tightened in her throat. Like a terrifying roller coaster, she tipped in her seat. Her car was rolling over! She screamed as it continued to tumble.
Water punched her in the face and shoved past her as it poured into her car, quickly filling it. Panic clawed at her mind as the water engulfed her. Her door opened. She jerked her head toward it. A man! She could get out. She grabbed at his shoulders, his arms, whatever she could get hold of to pull herself out. But she couldn’t get out! She was stuck. He pushed back from her.
Oh No! Don’t leave me!
Her lungs burned. Raw pain tore at her throat. Choking convulsions. Pain…fading…darkness.
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- Signed Print Copy of Thorns of Betrayal and swag (US Only)
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