My first author interview is with Merita King author of The Lilean Chronicles.
Merita King has loved the science fiction and fantasy genre in both books and movies since she was a young child. She has been greatly inspired by years of watching movies and reading books and has wanted to make a contribution to this genre for many years. Her stories all contain a strong spiritual thread as she believes that spirituality is universal and crosses all boundaries. She believes that the creative process is largely intuitive and can be very effectively blocked by too much pre-planning. “Plot lines, characters and events all come to me intuitively,” she says, “and this makes the act of writing a constant pleasure.” She is a psychic medium and lives alone in Hampshire, UK.
What genre do you generally write?
My books tend to be a mix of space opera/science fiction/fantasy with a paranormal thread that runs through them. It sounds a bit complicated but it’s not really. They’re set in the future when space travel is normal and many other inhabited worlds are known. There’s adventure and danger, monsters and creatures and spiritual beings form part of the central core of protagonists. For me, it is important to impart universal wisdom through the story and this aspect runs through all of my books.
What is your book/s called and how did you choose this title/s?
I have a series going at the moment so there isn’t really a ‘main’ book as such but the first in the series is called The Lilean Chronicles: Book One ~ Redemption. The reason for the title is partly the obvious – The Lilean Chronicles is the name of the series, Lilea being the planet my male protagonist comes from. I named it Redemption because that encompasses the story in one single word. It is about a man’s redemption, the redemption of a race and the redemption of a planet.
The second in the series is called The Lilean Chronicles: Book Two ~ The Sleeping. The Sleeping is the name given to a strange and terrible affliction that affects the whole of planet Lilea and the story tells of the character’s attempts to discover the cause and their race to bring it to an end and save Lilea.
The third in the series will be out in August 2012 and is called The Lilean Chronicles: Book Three ~ Changing Faces. The ‘bad guy’ of this book is a shape shifter who has the ability to form itself into a perfect clone of anyone it chooses, hence the title Changes Faces.
There will be a fourth in the series out in Feb/Mar 2013 called The Lilean Chronicles: Book Four ~ The Avalanche Effect. The avalanche effect is a mathematical theory which states that with just a tiny adjustment at the start, the end result of that change transforms out of all proportion to the change you made at the beginning. It’s kind of like putting a penny into a slot and getting a million out of the bottom, like an avalanche that can start with just a tiny movement and end up with a huge landslide. The story centres around a broken promise and a course of action taken that brings a new path of destiny into being; the effects of which have devastating consequences for two of the main characters.
The Lilean Chronicles: Book One ~ Redemption
Two ancient prophecies, both foretelling the extinction of a race. Two sides racing to their appointment with destiny. A terrible tide of evil laying waste to their world. So much rage, fear and a baby crying. A single baby prophesied to save Lilea and many other worlds from extinction by the Transmortal Army. One single man who will bring an end to the evil that almost wiped them out and in doing so, save many worlds from their darkness. Vincent worries for his sanity as he suffers the nightmares and hears the voices in the dreams. As he battles with the nightmares and the source of the voices in the dreams is revealed, he begins to discover his destiny and finds that there are other forces at work against him.
Many worlds away Farra discovers her part in his great task. Can she survive the terrors that lurk in the tunnels and can she unmask the mysterious killer? The ancient spirit people take them on a journey through space and time as they both race from world to world to meet their date with destiny and fulfil the prophecy.
The Lilean Chronicles: Book Two ~ The Sleeping
Just as Vincent and Farra begin to relax after their battle with the Transmortal Army, a new terror befalls Lilea. As they look forward to their pledging ceremony the first signs that something is wrong become apparent. They cannot understand why their spirit guides have left them and it isn’t until the Lilean people begin to succumb to a mysterious affliction that they realise a new evil has found them. Plunged into a terrible nightmare, Vincent battles to find reality amongst the make believe as he struggles to come to terms with loss and betrayal.
Many days away across the gulf of space their Drycenian friends suddenly find themselves hosts to some uninvited guests who beg them for their help. Whilst racing to Lilea they must find a way to communicate with their new guests in order that they know how to aid their friends. It is up to one man to venture into the darkness alone and put his own soul at risk to save Vincent, so that they can try to end this new evil and save Lilea from the terror of The Sleeping.
The Lilean Chronicles: Book Three ~ Changing Faces
An evil, ancient as time itself is inadvertently set free and begins to feed, threatening the Drycenian home world and all of her people with extinction. Vincent, Farra and Kyle find themselves once again called into duty as chosen ones to battle this new terror that has befallen their friends. As they struggle to understand what is happening around them, they find themselves also battling many more personal inner demons.
How can a man be in two places at once and who murdered the little princess? Can Vincent escape execution and can the friends find the mysterious spiritual leader who is the only one who knows how to kill an evil so ancient that it is thought to be nothing more than legend?
Has your book been published and how did you go about this?
The first two in my series have been self published through Lulu for the paperbacks and via Smashwords for the e-books. The third and fourth in the series will be published the same way. I have a little old man who does the lulu formatting for me, as I haven’t a clue how to do it myself, although I do the e-book formatting myself without a problem. I am at the moment reformatting the first two books in the series, with the intention of seeing if I can successfully upload them onto the KDP at Amazon. Not being a techie, I’m not hugely confident..!
Approximately how long did it take you to finish your book?
It normally takes me around two months to do a first draft from start to finish. That is evenings and weekends, as I work part time. Once I sit down and begin to write, it just flows and I could just go on and on. Writer’s block is an alien concept for me.
Do you use social media to promote your book, if yes which social networks do you like the most?
Yes I do. I use Facebook and Twitter mainly but I also have LinkedIn. I also have a Facebook page just for the book series as well as my own personal one.
Have you enrolled your book onto Amazon’s KDP Select and how have you found it?
No I haven’t. KDP Select requires exclusivity and my books are already self published with lulu and smashwords. I am going to have a go at getting them on the ordinary KDP though, if I can get the formatting done correctly.
What do you feel is the most important stage of writing a book?
I suppose technically speaking, the most important stage is editing and proof reading, as that’s where you make the raw material into something that is error free and a pleasure to read. As for the writing, for me there isn’t one stage that’s of more importance. I feel the same excitement as I begin chapter one as I do when I type The End.
How did you go about designing the cover for your book?
I have two wonderfully talented guys who do the cover art for me. One is an illustrator and the other is a photoshop expert. I tell them what I feel I want and they bring it to life. They are great and put up with my changes of mind and tweaks here and there.
Are you writing or considering writing a follow-up to your book?
Yes definitely. The third in the series will be out in a couple of months and the fourth should be out in Feb/Mar of 2013.
Do you have a day job (if so, what do you do?) or do you write full-time?
I do have a day job. I work part time cleaning houses for people. I live alone and have no family or significant other to support me so I have to go out to work. I’d much rather stay at home to write more but, well one must eat…!
Where are your books available to buy?