Have you met Dawn Napier, yet?

Our author, Dawn Napier, author of Star Pack, has a few more writing projects in the works. Check out Star Pack on our website! We took some time to ask her a few questions about her writing, her inspiration, and some other fun questions. Check out her interview below!

 

Dawn’s favorite color is red – so we decided to add a little color to our interview!

 

 

Ink Smith: What are your current projects?
Dawn: I’m currently writing a sequel to Star Pack, and I’m finishing a last coat of polish on a recently completed fantasy novel called Vellichor.

Ink Smith: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Dawn: It’s called Sea Pack, and it’s the continuing adventures of the space-faring werewolves I wrote about in Star Pack. They have moved on to explore the rest of our solar system, and they’re currently about to make contact with life on Europa.

Ink Smith: What is your favorite book?
Dawn: Watership Down by Richard Adams

Ink Smith: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Dawn: Science fiction is hard. My last couple of books have been fantasy, and in a fantasy novel if something’s not working you can just change the rules. But even with extragalactic werewolves I have to at least try to follow the laws of physics. NASA is finding out new things about our local planets every day, and I have to try to keep up with their discoveries so my book stays current while I’m writing it.

Ink Smith: Did you learn anything from writing your book(s) and what was it?
Dawn: I learned that you can’t world-build by the seat of your pants. I had to learn how to plot in order to finish it.

Ink Smith: What inspired you to write your first book?
Dawn: I don’t have any idea. It never occurred to be NOT to write it.

Ink Smith: What is your favorite food?
Dawn: Shrimp Fried Rice

Ink Smith: Do you have a specific writing style?
Dawn: I guess you could call it Stephen King meets Piers Anthony and their love child collaborates with HP Lovecraft.

Ink Smith: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Dawn: I had a few themes and symbols in the back of my mind when I wrote it, but I’d rather people read it and enjoy it on their own terms. I’d love to hear from people who have found messages of their own in it.

Ink Smith: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
Dawn: I have no idea. I think I was about six.

Ink Smith: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Dawn: Don’t TRY while you’re writing. Don’t try to sound like anyone else, but also don’t try too hard to be original. Don’t try to make the story follow a certain path, and don’t try to guide your characters’ fates. You’ll find your own voice organically the more you write, but you have to sit back and let the muse do her thing.

Ink Smith: If you had to do it all over again, what would you change, if anything, in your latest book?
Dawn: I would have made the character’s names have meanings.

Ink Smith: Who is your favorite author, and what really strikes you about their work?
Dawn: Stephen King. I started reading his books when I was 12, and I loved how he wrote about kids. My parents divorced when I was 11, and during that turbulent time, I often felt that I was at the mercy of the four winds. In King’s books, the kids are the smart ones, the ones who understand what’s going on. And they’re the ones who have the power to stop the monsters. I found that deeply reassuring. I still read his books and feel soothed by his familiar voice. He probably wouldn’t appreciate me saying that I find his books soothing. But compared to the real world, sometimes…

Ink Smith: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Dawn: If you don’t have a library card go get one now. Libraries are a magical place where anyone can learn anything for free. They’re staunch defenders of the Constitution, and they will help you learn whatever you need to know without checking your credit or health history. Everyone needs to use and love their libraries, so they stay with us forever.

Ink Smith: Final thoughts?
Dawn: Just keep writing, just keep writing…

 

About Dawn Napier

Dawn Napier grew up in Waukegan IL, and upstate New York. She has a husband, three children, and a ridiculous number of pets. She grew up reading Stephen King, Isaac Asimov, Mercedes Lackey, and Piers Anthony. When she’s not reading and writing, she is hiking with her dogs, napping with her cat, or cleaning up after her herd of adopted guinea pigs.
Visit her online on Facebook and her website dawnsdarktreasures.com!

Evelyn Allen Harper Releases New Book: Essence!

Evelyn Allen Harper just published her tenth book, Essence! This mystery novel is tinged with the paranormal and filled with surprises at every turn. You can find Essence available for purchase on the Ink Smith website, or on Amazon!

We chatted with Evelyn about her current projects, what she has learned as an author, and what is behind her inspiration.

Ink Smith: What are your current projects?
Evelyn: While waiting for my current book, Essence, to be edited, I started to write a story, still with no title, in the first-person tense. I’m just sorry I hadn’t tried writing in that tense sooner.

Ink Smith: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Evelyn: 
This is an excerpt from the untitled story I’m writing while waiting for Essence to be edited.

“Buck and his gun were gone, so who was doing the shouting? The sounds were getting desperate so I ran to the cave’s opening and peeked out. There was no one out there, and all that I saw were sheets of copy paper, many with something red on them, being blown around by the wind. Where was the shouter? Moans from behind a huge tree answered my question. I cautiously crept toward the sound, peered around the tree, and screamed. The mountain lion lifted his bloody head from his prey and looked at me. I screamed again when I saw what he’d been chewing on. It was Buck.”

Ink Smith: Did you learn anything from writing your books, and what was it?Evelyn: Essence is my tenth book. In every book, there were many topics I had to look up on the Internet such as the climate of the area where the story is taking place, to the symptoms of a poisonous snake bite. Facts I pick up while writing one book, I sometimes use in another book.

Ink Smith: What inspired you to write your first book?
Evelyn: 
I have suffered from Restless Leg Syndrome most of my life. Neither of my two sisters is afflicted with it, so one night when the syndrome wouldn’t let me sleep, I sat down at the computer and started a story that had the main character, Molly, crying over her ‘crazy legs’ that wouldn’t let her stay in bed. I emailed the story to my sisters, and when they contacted me and demanded to know “What happened next?” I continued the story for six books in the Accidental Mystery Series.

Ink Smith: Is there a message in your novels that you want your readers to grasp?
Evelyn: 
The six books in the Accidental Mystery Series are filled with facts about Restless Leg Syndrome. The Nightwalker, a publication of the Restless Leg Syndrome Foundation, gave me free advertisement for my books. I picked up readers from all over the country. The next four published books are just for reading pleasure.

Ink Smith: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Evelyn: 
My advice is to just try to write and see what happens. You just might surprise yourself.

Ink Smith: If you had to do it all over again what would you change in your latest work?
Evelyn: 
I wouldn’t change the plot, but when I read the printed book, I always find many sentences that I would love to have the chance to change.

Fun facts about Evelyn: Her favorite color is red! And she loves ethnic food.

Be sure to follow Evelyn on her website: www.evelynallenharper.com!

 

About Essence

“Why are you wearing my wife’s perfume?” Laura Baker’s rescuer demanded, after
hoisting her out of the water.

Laura, a typical stay-at- home mom, is jolted out of her complacent world when she
discovers that her best friend, Joan Wilberson, is having an affair with her husband.
Banished from Laura’s life, Joan is an easy target for the escaped serial killer, George
Knox, but when George’s murderous plan is interrupted, the quiet town is thrown into
turmoil.

Broken hearted from losing both her husband and her friend, Laura is driven back to
her passion of painting and into the path of Josh Lang, a recently widowed author,
battling his own ghosts.

It isn’t until the alluring, Bob Miller, catches Laura’s eye that she thinks her life is
back on track. With no recent sightings of the dangerous convict, the small town is lulled
back to sleep, but unknown to Laura and the rest of the town, something much more
sinister is afoot.

Why Writing is Important!

In this day and age of technology, many real-life experiences have seemed to fade in importance. Hanging out among friends is now just relaxing in the same room on their cell phones. In fact, any social event is made up of cell phones taking up a majority of people’s attention. Social media platforms are more important to people than real friendships in person. The internet, in all of its glory and accomplishments, has taken over a lot of people’s lives and priorities.

<I’m not bashing social media or the Internet–I’m all for innovation and taking advantage of new things that come arise as time changes. This is just my opinion on where priorities should lie, and why some things (writing) should not be overlooked.> 

I’ve noticed this in myself, actually. At one point in time, my presence on social media was more important than my off-screen life. I was more caught up with Twitter retweets and Snapchat views than real conversations, and it wasn’t until I missed an event in a close friend’s life that I realized I had to check myself. I also realized it was a long time since I had written. I’ve written Facebook posts, Twitter threads, etc, but nothing for myself. Not like I used to.

I’ve kept a personal journal for years, and it has helped me immensely. Whether it be getting things off my chest, or working through life decisions, writing has grown to be a part of me. Inspiration for stories or poems come to me at the most random times, and I see writing opportunities everywhere. Surprisingly, writing is not a common hobby for the majority of the population anymore. And a percentage of those who do write prefer to have followers/subscribers; so anything they do without viewers doesn’t seem worth doing.

Hopefully today, I’ll let you in on the secret as to why writing is important and why it’s a life-changer for many of us.

Writing is therapeutic, and I’m not the only one to say so. Personally, I’ve used my journal(s) to help me through many issues, like what major I wanted to study in college, whether or not I wanted to move from NJ to PA (and back again!), through my struggles with anxiety and depression, my goals and dreams, etc. Writing helped me through so much in life and has been meditation-like. After writing, without worrying about neat penmanship or getting all the details perfect, I feel calm and collected. (For more information about how writing can be meditative, check out this article on How Life Unfolds!)

Writing for social media and for yourself are two different things. When you write for any sort of audience, there’s a filter and also a purpose. When you write for yourself, for the most part, there’s no purpose or target other than self-fulfillment. Easing that burden of meeting an audience’s expectations helps the creativity flow, at least for me!

The society we live in seems to dictate success by the measurement of how many people see your work and respond to it. Whether your choice of platform is YouTube, Twitter/Instagram, Facebook, or some other shareable network, the driving factor of this “success” relies heavily on followers, subscribers, the number of views/likes, etc. The act of writing shouldn’t need gratification from social media.

For those of us who have a Twitter (or any other platform obsession), it is too easy to get caught up in thinking personal reflection needs to be in the form of a [INSERT PREFERRED PLATFORM HERE] thread. It seems that if there’s something you want to say, it has to be done online so it can go viral.

I disagree.

When it comes to writing, something that seems obsolete in this day and age, this art form should be taken seriously. When I write, I try to have silence or at least soft music on in the background. If I’m writing in my journal, I don’t really care about where I am; but if I’m writing for something (like school or Ink Smith), I write at my desk to help keep me focused. I don’t care if anyone sees my writing.

I’m not saying that no writing should ever be done online. Me writing this article would be hypocritical if that was the claim I was making. I’m just saying that, as amazing as social media is, it should not replace true writing. It should not replace the soft, gentle reflection, or ferocious scribbling as a thought consumes you. It should not be peppered with SEO keywords just because you want it to show up first in a search. It should not only be written with the sole purpose of many people reading it. Writers who write for the enjoyment of it, for the catharsis of it, even for the utter need to write – those are the writers who will find their writing most relatable to others.

In short, as long as your purpose for writing is to achieve some form of Internet Fame, then wanting to post your work online to share doesn’t have a damaging effect on your writing. Just because your work doesn’t go viral doesn’t mean it isn’t a message that people want to hear or a work of art that people wouldn’t appreciate.

I am all for innovation. I’m 100% in support of social media, and I think it’s a great thing. It helps people reconnect, celebrities seem more like regular people, and it brings a lot of people together. I just think that it’s important people remember how useful things offline can be, whether in functionality or whatever else. Writing is a great tool and is most definitely worth doing in any way.

 

 

Meet Jenna LaBollita!

Jenna’s passion for writing started very young, even winning her a Young Author Award in elementary school. Since then, she has written for The Odyssey and Puckermob, and has read countless books in many genres.

Her love for writing is unmatched, and she hopes to become a published author herself one day. Jenna holds an associate degree in Liberal Arts from Ocean County College in Toms River, New Jersey.

Ink Smith Welcomes Summer Intern Jenna LaBollita

Welcome, Jenna!

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Jenna LaBollita is Ink Smith’s newest summer intern! Jenna will be working closely with the Ink Smith staff in the capacity of blogger, reader, and reviewer!

Jenna’s passion for writing started very young, even winning her a Young Author Award in elementary school. Since then, she has written for The Odyssey and Puckermob, and has read countless books in many genres.

Her love for writing is unmatched, and she hopes to become a published author herself one day. Jenna holds an associate degree in Liberal Arts from Ocean County College in Toms River, New Jersey.

 

Summer Interns Wanted!

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*Internships are unpaid but could result in future employment. All positions are remote and interns will be held to strict deadlines. Failure to meet deadlines will result in early termination. Internships are not for credit. All questions can be directed to Corinne Anderson at EditorInkSmithPublishing@gmail.com.

Julie Flanders at Marysville Public Library

 

Author Julie Flanders will be giving a presentation about her writing and books on Tuesday, May 9 in Marysville, Ohio (Baby Moo’s hometown!). The Marysville Public Library invited her to be a part of their author series. The event, 12th Annual Friends of the Library Author Series, will begin at 7pm at the Veteran’s Memorial Auditorium.

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Don’t forget to follow her on Instagram for updates on her events, pictures of Baby Moo, and other Julie Flanders news at @julesflanders!

 

Bruno & Grace: Into the Wild

Bruno and Grace are at it again! Join the dynamic duo in The Adventures of Bruno and Grace “Into the Wild” by Rachel Young.

Bruno, a retired Police K9 was injured in the line of duty in March 2014 in Southern California. After a long journey to recovery, Bruno found a home with his best friend Grace. This is the second book in the series. Whether you have little ones at home or have been touched by a police dog, this book is a must have!

This book is based on the true story of Bruno, an Anaheim, CA police dog. Learn about Bruno’s heroic story, his devoted family, and his adventures with his best buddy Grace! Bruno passed in May 2016, you can read his story here!
Published by Native Ink Press, the sister company to Ink Smith Publishing. Grace&Bruno2.jpg

Book Release!

The much-anticipated release of Just How Long is a Lifetime has arrived! You can find the book for purchase on amazon and on our website! Remember, the best gift you can give an author is your review. So, after your read this romantic, time-spanning love affair, leave a review for our debut author D.A. Sciortino!

About the book:just-how-long-is-a-lifetime

When Luisa, a young girl in nineteenth-century Sicily, falls in love with Giovanni, she is destined for heartache. Luisa’s father has plans for her – to marry the heir of the vineyard that both Luisa’s and Giovanni’s families work on. Avoiding trouble, Giovanni’s father decides to leave the vineyard after the young couple is caught together.

Following her father’s orders, Luisa marries the heir, Lorenzo, and together they build a family. But fate leads Giovanni back to the vineyard, this time working for Luisa’s husband. All too soon, Lorenzo learns of their past and jealousy sets the barn on fire.

While Giovanni perishes in the flames, Luisa remains unharmed – and extraordinarily, eternally 32. As her family ages around her, Luisa is forced to adapt to each new decade, the mystery of the fire burning in the back of her mind. Will Luisa finally find the answers to a happy ending, or is time against her even when things start to fall into place?

 

About the author: 
D. A. Sciortino works and lives on Long Island, NY with her husband and three children. Her first novel, Just How Long is a Lifetime? was inspired by her interest in science fiction. It’s always been her dream to write a story about subjects that are close to her heart, like tradition and family.