Interview with the lovely author, Kelly Said

Hey, today is another Make Believe Blog Tour day and are you in for a treat.  I have the wonderfully talented Kelly Said here today to woo you with her words of wisdom.  Kelly’s short story, PETRIFIED, appears in the anthology and you can read an excerpt of this fantastical tale here.

Make Believe is not Kelly’s first anthology.  Her short story, PEARL OF PAU’MAA, also appeared in J. Taylor Publishing’s Tidal Whispers anthology, which you have to get because the stories are amazing!

Hey, Kelly!  Welcome to my blog, fellow anthology buddy!

Hi Jenny! Thank you for welcoming me, I’m excited to hang out with you for a bit 🙂

Me, too!  I love this mutual admiration society here.  🙂  So, Kelly, I always like to ask this question first. Can you tell us in one sentence why we should read your short story?

I’d like to welcome readers to a world of magic and mystery, where healers travel through time and space by whispering to the wind, where snow falls in summer, and where one woman’s love for a man threatens to destroy the world around them.

It is really, really a cool story, no pun intended, and the concept is new to me.  I can actually say I’ve never read anything quite like it. Do you have any other short stories or novels in the works?  Goals for future projects?

I prepared for National Novel Writing Month in November, working out the plot points for an idea with the hope that when November 1st hit I could let my fingers fly and get through a first draft quicker than I did last year – which took me every spare minute of every single day, hehe! Each year I’ve tried a new approach and it’s been fun discovering new methods for time management and personal writing goals. 🙂

What do you always have around you when you write?

I always have my dictionary (I like flipping through the pages to find a word vs scrolling back and forth through screens on a computer), my cup of caffeine and my dog – he likes to lean on me while he dreams his puppy dog dreams of chasing all the things, hehe!

Ahh, gotta love the pups and kitties that share our writing space.  As a published author and a NaNoWriMo survivor, do you have any advice you would like to give to aspiring authors?

Read. Read all the books, hehe! These are your textbooks. Just like in art where students study the masters of drawing, painting, or sculpture, read the authors in the genre you write, study what it is that engages you or what makes you skip entire sections in boredom. Then, write. Every day. No matter your word count, just get your ideas down on paper, join a critique group or find a crit partner and remember that a good CG or CP isn’t looking to hurt your feelings — their comments or constructive criticisms are merely opinions meant to help make the story better 🙂 

Excellent advice!  Stephen King is a huge proponent of authors reading anything and everything in order to hone their craft.  I think he said something along the lines of “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have time to write.”  I also have to agree with you on the whole beta reader/critique group thing.  It may be scary putting your work out there to others, but it’s very, very important and another part of the learning curve.

Okay, are you ready for some tough questions now?  What is your favorite quote?

Never give up, never surrender! hehehe, it makes me giggle each time I see it. That’s a line from the movie Galaxy Quest, a movie that was totally set up for a stellar sequel but has YET to happen. *taps foot impatiently* Anyways, I have a silly sense of humor and lines like that or “Nobody makes me bleed my own blood” from Dodgeball keep me snickering long after I’ve heard ’em.

Pet peeves?

Creased spines on my books. hehehe! I know, probably silly of me! I mean, I guess I could see a creased spine as a sign of a thoroughly enjoyed book. But for some reason, I’m a careful reader, keeping my spines crease free and enjoying the sight of “like new” books on my shelves. 🙂

Oh my, you would have issue with some of my books.  They’ve been read so much their spines are falling apart and pages are falling out.

Reece’s Pieces or M&M’s?

nom nom nom, mmm, both, please! and preferably sprinkled over popcorn, teehee! 🙂

Really?  Popcorn?  I’ll have to try that.  A little salty with the sweet.

What is your favorite television show of all time?

Bewitched! omgosh, back in the day as a little girl I would watch that show with my Great Aunt and pretend I was Tabitha Stephens, wiggling my fingers and pressing on my nose, trying to will my toys to float to the toy box, hehehe! Probably didn’t work because I was too young to know about the rules about magic and personal gain and all ;D

I loved Bewitched, too.  Never could wiggle my nose like Samantha, but I can assure you, it wasn’t from a lack of trying.  All I learned was how to flare my nostrils and move my nose up and down.

Well, Kelly, here comes the time we say good-bye and part.  Thank you so much for hanging out with me today and sharing a bit of yourself with my readers.  For all of you out there, you can connect with Kelly on her website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Pinterest

Thank you for having me on your blog, Jenny! I’m looking forward to seeing what you’ll write next! 🙂

Aww, you’re sweet.  Everyone, give Kelly a round of applause and then head over to any one of the links below to get your own copy of Kelly’s story and Make Believe, just in time for Christmas.  Heck, give a copy to your best friends, too.  They’ll thank you a lot.

Exciting Announcement!

On December 3, my short story, The Amulet of Ormisez, will be published in Make Believe and released into the big wide world.  My words, no longer mine but everyone’s.  It is every author’s dream.  No matter how many times you sign that contract, a glow happens inside knowing a publisher believed in your hard work and it will be read by hundreds, thousands, maybe even millions.  How very exciting!

A few early reviews have already trickled in and I’m thrilled to say they are all positive.  Have a look below:

Rachel Morgan at Goodreads writes:  “MAKE BELIEVE is a magical collection of short stories. Just the right size for someone like me who falls into bed too late every night and doesn’t have much time (or energy) left to read!…Fantasy-lovers should definitely check this one out.”

Jen – At Random says:  “…With mystery, deceit, fate, grief, greed, romance, and action each story has its own engaging elements but all are sprinkled with a morsel of magic. Definitely a great read!”

And, an overall 5 star review on had this to say about my story in particular:  “There’s lots happening in this story but to say much more would reveal too much of the tale. I also enjoyed this tale…as I have not read a great deal about selkies. I would look out for other books by the author and dependent on blurb seriously consider reading them…”  She gave the story 4/5 stars!!  You can read the full review here.

There is so much more I have to share with your about the anthology.  The official Blog Tour kicks off on December 3 and all the authors appearing in Make Believe are promoting tons of giveaways and contests, so make sure you visit each of their blogs/websites to see what’s going on. On Sunday, I will post information about my blog tour, AND share a little secret about what I’ll be doing the whole month of December to celebrate the release of Make Believe.  It’ll be pretty cool.

Also, if you want to participate in launch day celebrations and enter for your chance to win an e-copy of the Make Believe anthology, make sure you leave your website/blog information in the comments section of my blog between now and November 30.

Oh, and if you can’t wait until December 3 to get your own e-copy of Make Believe, a little bird told me and Barnes and  Noble just might have a little treat for your Kindle or Nook at this very moment.  You should head over and check it out.  Go on. You know you want to.  Take some friends with you.  Grab some coffee while you’re at it.  Kick your shoes off.  Relax.  Who needs to work today when you can Make Believe.