Thursday, August 27, 2015

Elle and Bravo Become Audiobooks! A Zero Trilogy Announcement!

Over the last few years, a lot of people have asked me why my books aren't available as audiobooks yet. The chief reason for this was that it is incredibly time-consuming to find a narrator, work with him/her to find the right tone for the story, and to create and release an entirely new project, especially when I've already got three different series going on at the moment. 

I have been searching for a narrator for a long time, but I finally found someone who I believe will deliver a great narration to Elle's story. As you know, End of Day releases on October 9th, 2015. By the time the audiobooks are released, you will be able to enjoy the stories as a full and complete set. 

Right now, I do not have an official release date for the audiobooks. It is an ongoing project, but we are working to get it finished and polished as quickly and as efficiently as possible. 

Until then, just a little over one month until End of Day! 

Friday, August 21, 2015

Who runs the world? Girls! THE GATHERER, by A.G. Henley

Title: The Gatherer by A.G. Henley  
Series: (Brilliant Darkness, #2.5) 
Publication dateAugust 21st 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

Alev is proud to be a Fire Sister, one of a fierce group of women who live on their own terms in a flaming mountain compound called the Cloister. The Sisters live without men, so Alev Gathers young girls to replenish their numbers. After she plucks young Kaiya from the remote village of Koolkuna, the girl’s father follows them into the wilderness. Alev keeps him at bay, but over time she suspects that this man, at least, isn’t the monster she was taught all men are.

When Kaiya’s father manages to reach the Cloister, the Sisters want to put him to death. Alev can look the other way, or she can heed the growing whispers of her heart to help the girl and her father escape. But to defy the Fire Sisters is to revoke the only life and family Alev has ever known—and to face certain death herself.


THE GATHERER is an exciting 50-page prequel novella in the young adult fantasy Brilliant Darkness series. The first novel, THE SCOURGE, was a finalist for the 2013 Next Generation Indie Book Award. Two novels and two short stories are currently available, and the final novel in the series, THE FIRE SISTERS, is coming September 25, 2015.

Recommended series reading order:

(coming September 25th)

Exclusive Excerpt:
Not long now, the child will come—the one I will Gather.
Crouched in the living embrace of a greenheart tree, one arm around the trunk for stability, I stare down at the water hole on which the girl's village relies, waiting for her. My hair, painted white, hangs stiffly down my back. My dress, made of fine leather and adorned with a single colorful feather threaded into the seam at my waist, pulls up my thigh, revealing the smooth muscles there.
I admire my body the way I would a well-made weapon. It is strong, efficient, deadly, tightened by years of daily training with staff and spear. My muscles, my mind, my blade—the tools I use to do what I must for my people, the Fire Sisters.
Nascent rays of sun sweep the treetops around me at a sharp angle. They strike the waterfall that feeds the pool, shattering it into a million shards of blue and white. A rolling ridge of hills cradles both the water hole and the girl’s village beyond, which I cannot see but know is there. My nostrils flare. The air is thick with the sharp tang of sap, the decay of the slick foliage around the water pool, the smoky hints of cooking fires starting up.
The trees in this remote part of the forest are crowded and close. Bursting with leaves at full summer, they are simple to move through without being detected. Over the last few days I have crept among them, around the village called Koolkuna, observing the people, cataloging their daughters.
They live well. They have more food than others I've seen, and they seem peaceable, with well-maintained homes and enough families to spread out their work. If it weren't for the presence of men, it might be perfect.
This group must have few enemies, and they do not seem to fear the wailers. There are no walls or other protective barriers against the rabid flesh-eating creatures. No adults accompany the children who collect water in the early mornings. How they are not consumed when the wailers come, I do not know. Do they have some unknown power or protection? I must be cautious.
My body stills as the girl meanders into the clearing from the path to the village, swinging her bucket. I think she sings to herself; it is hard to know for sure over the crushing noise of the waterfall.
I look her over one last time. She is the right age: not very young, but not yet old enough to be entirely set in her people's ways. She seems healthy, and she is built sturdily, the way the Teachers like our girls to be. I chose her for all of these qualities, but also because she has a boldness in her posture and movements that promises physical prowess and athleticism.
She kneels at the edge of the water hole, back to me, filling the bucket. Her black hair, cut shorter than some of the other girls her age, sticks out in sleepy tufts from her head.
Quietly, I inch down the trunk of the tree, landing softly on the ground. I am ready, but I listen and watch a little longer. I am here by myself. If her people catch me, my life will be forfeit.
The girl is alone. Vulnerable. It is time.
I dip the point of my knife into the small sack of jewel wasp venom at my waist, and run toward her.

Buy THE GATHERER now on Amazon!

A.G. Henley is the author of the BRILLIANT DARKNESS series. The first book in the series, THE SCOURGE, was a finalist for the 2013 Next Generation Indie Book Award.

A.G. is also a clinical psychologist, which means people either tell her their life stories on airplanes, or avoid her at parties when they've had too much to drink. Neither of which she minds. When she's not writing fiction or shrinking heads, she can be found herding her children and their scruffy dog, Guapo, to various activities while trying to remember whatever she's inevitably forgotten to tell her husband. She lives in Denver, Colorado. Learn more at

Author links: 

Friday, August 14, 2015

The Nazis Are Coming: Bestselling UK Author Iain King!

If you were one my closest friends, you would know that I have more than a little bit of a fascination with the historical time period of World War Two. This, of course, means I adore Captain America and all of the movies and comic book plots. Which brings me to Iain King. He is the author of Secrets of the Last Nazi, a "mind-blowing conspiracy thriller," set during the earth-shattering events of the Second World War. 

I find the entire idea and historical setting positively alluring in terms of storytelling - and what a great cover! It really packs a punch. But who is Iain King? He has traveled to the Middle East on several occasions for the United Nations, and he has even co-written a couple of books about his experiences there (we talk more about that in the interview below). 

Check out the conversation we had below to learn more about Iain and his writing! 

Iain the Middle East! 
Hello, Iain! Welcome to Writing Belle. Where are you from, where do you live now, and how did you become a writer?

Thank you!  I was brought up in the West of England, and now live in London – although most of my working life has been abroad.  I used to write non-fiction, but a friend – on her deathbed – told me to switch to fiction, and make her one of the characters in my stories.  I dedicated ‘Secrets of the Last Nazi’ to her, and yes, as promised, the heroine has her name.

What is 'Secrets of the Last Nazi’ about?

One of the very last men to serve the Third Reich dies in Berlin.  A Russian diplomat, knowing the man had worked on a sensitive Nazi research programme, insists that the man’s papers be examined again by an international team.  But just as representatives from Russia, France, Britain and the USA begin to investigate, more sinister characters become interested too, and they are determined to keep the secret hidden...

It’s a book which blends fact and fiction; more of the book is fact than many people readers have realised.  The secret itself has been described as “mind-blowing” – one American reviewer has said “What the secret is and where and when it originated comprise one of the most original and carefully thought out stories that have yet to appear in print.”  I was amazed by it myself.

Why did you choose to write about World War II?

World War Two still dominates the way modern society thinks about war – just look at any programming schedule for the History Channel.  I don’t think it should, as most people who’ve been in 21st century wars, in Africa or the Middle East, will agree.  But World War Two was exciting and fascinating, and Nazis are the ultimate ‘baddies’.

Tell me a little bit about the books that you contributed to: Making Peace in War and Peace at Any Price.

Peace at Any Price was my first book, co-written with a friend.  It’s a modern history of Kosovo, where I spent four years working for the UN.  The booktries to make sense of the Kosovo war and the international intervention which followed, including what worked, what didn’t, and why.  The very kind reviews for the book inspired me to keep writing.

Making Peace in War came out last year.  Several of us who’d worked in Afghanistan as civilians wanted to record our bizarre life out there, knowing we’d never face anything as unusual again.  We wrote about our first-hand experiences - the ever-present toilet humour, what it’s like living with the military, life under siege and how we coped with attacks by the Taliban, and the close-to-home tragedies which happened far too often.  There were only 37 who took on our particular frontline role during the decade-long war; we put the nine best personal testaments into Making Peace in War, and published it ourselves.

Back to your novel: what is the trickiest part about writing a thriller?

Giving the right amount of clues.  Too many clues, and readers know what’s going to happen.  Too few, and the book becomes a series of random events.  It’s hard because, as a writer, you become too close to your own work.

By extension, what is the trickiest part about writing a historical thriller? How much research did you have to put into the book?

There has to be lots of research – I spend more time researching than writing.  And you have to research every aspect of the story, although the research can be fascinating.  For this book, as well as researching lots of stuff about secret Nazi programmes, I found a whole bunch of unexpected evidence that astrology really can make accurate predictions.  It’s best if you can find data which has been hidden or covered up somehow, as well as facts people already know.

What advice would you give those aspiring to write a historical fiction?

1 – Be clear why you’re writing and what you hope to achieve;
2 – Know the period in history well, or you’ll be caught out;
3 – Try to make your book special – ideally, books should contain non-fiction elements which would be merit reading in their own right;
4 – Enjoy it.

Where can readers connect with you online (website, twitter, Facebook, etc)? and @iainbking

Thank you so much for visiting with us. It was a pleasure!

Thank you – it was fun!

About the Author 
Iain King CBE has worked in sixty countries, including ten warzones, and has written non-fiction books about international affairs and philosophy.  He coordinated the international civilian support effort in Benghazi during the 2011 Libyan war, and in Afghanistan served in more frontline posts than any other civilian, where he was frequently under fire. In 2013, he was made one of the youngest ever Commanders of the British Empire (CBE - an honour issued by the Queen, one down from a knighthood).

Secrets of the Last Nazi has just become the bestselling spy story in the UK, and been classified by Amazon USA as a ‘Number One New Release’ in espionage.

Did you like this feature? If you're a writer of dystopian fiction, survivalist stories or post-apocalyptic tales, contact me to get featured for the End of the World Event at Writing Belle! Email me at: 

Monday, August 10, 2015

ANCIENT DESERT VIBES: An Adventure with Debra Chapoton

Those "ancient desert vibes," as author Debra Chapoton calls them, are part of the inspiration behind her post-apocalyptic Young Adult novels, Exodia and Out of Exodia. Debra has written just under 20 books, an impressive feat for ANYONE, and I was very interested in her work. Since this is an End of the World Event, we're focusing on her post-ap work, but you can check out more about her books at her website (the link is at the bottom of this interview!). 

Read on to see what Debra would take with her into the apocalypse, and how she thinks the end of the world will come about. 

Hello Debra! It's the End of the World (at least at Writing Belle), and you can only take three items with you into the wilderness to survive. What are they?

Oh no! Only three? [thinking, thinking] Um, chapstick for sure, a ton of water purifying tablets (chocolate ones), and that fire starting thing-a-ma-gig.

Now let's talk about you as a writer. How did you get into writing post-apocalyptic fiction?

I’ve always been overly anxious when the power goes out, which used to happen almost weekly where I live. Gradually I’ve honed my skills, like heating my curling iron in the fireplace, so that I think I could survive at least a week after a nuclear blast [eye roll]. Actually, after studying history it seems to me that starting over would be a lot like living in ancient Egypt.

Tell us about Exodia and Out of Exodia. Where and how did you come up with the idea?

I was always fascinated with the story of Moses and intrigued with the fact that one of his first actions was to commit murder. I wanted to do a modern retelling of the story and start with the murder. The ancient desert vibe seemed best recreated in a post-apocalyptic world. That way the primitive way of life could be better presented for my readers’ imaginations. Weaving together ruined modern technology and ancient prophecies worked well, and the reader doesn’t really need to know who the story is based on.
I had a ball working in all the elements of the original story—plagues, prophecies, relationships—and tweaking it with futuristic essentials like machines, government, and radiation fallout.

Here’s the back cover blurb for EXODIA:
Two generations after the Eurasian nuclear war American life is a strange mix of failing technologies, psychic predictions, and radiation induced abilities. By 2093 tattoos on the left elbow, blue or red, are mandatory to differentiate two classes, privileged and slave.
Sixteen year old Dalton Battista fears that his fading tattoo is a deadly omen. He is either the heir of the brutal Blue tyrant of Exodia or he is the Reds’ prophesied liberator. Shy, handsome, smart and in possession of powers he doesn’t yet realize, he escapes an order for his execution by fleeing the city with the help of Lydia who quickly captures his heart. But he cannot escape a destiny that will force him to accept a role in the life of another girl, one who is not tattooed.
Exodia is a dystopian novel of hidden identity, murder, slavery, prophecies, plagues, and a love triangle that pits the truth of ancient promises against duty, honor, and devotion.

And OUT OF EXODIA continues the saga:
In this sequel to EXODIA, Dalton Battista takes on his prophesied identity as Bram O'Shea. When this psychic teen leads a city of 21st century American survivalists out from under an oppressive regime, he puts the escape plan at risk by trusting the mysterious god-like David Ronel. With Ronel's ulterior motives under suspicion, Bram’s loyalties questioned, and a mutiny imminent, this large group of outcasts faces multiple problems. What should have been a two-week journey lasts for months as they engage in battles against new enemies. Bram’s unusual abilities and a special weapon supplied by Ronel help them overcome obstacles but can they reach the "Promised Land" before time runs out?

How many books have you published in total, and what are the different genres?

I have 11 middle grade chapter books for kids and 6 young adult novels. Besides EXODIA and OUT OF EXODIA which are end-of-the-world dystopian, I’ve written the psychological thriller EDGE OF ESCAPE, a coming-of-age adventure THE GUARDIAN’S DIARY, a demonic paranormal story titled SHELTERED, and a paranormal romance, A SOUL’S KISS. (My writing is as eclectic as my reading.) I also have 2 non-fiction works, BUILDING A LOG HOME IN UNDER A YEAR and CROSSING THE SCRIPTURES.

How you think the end of the world might come about? Zombie apocalypse? Lack of wi-fi connection subsequently causing riots across the country? *wink*

I think the world will end the way it’s foretold in the Bible—anti-christ, famine, plagues, earthquakes, disease, horrible tribulation and lots of death. I’ve studied the Bible my whole life and I’ve read the last book in it several times. The end of the world is far worse than any human author has written (though Jerry Jenkins and Tim LaHaye have written a pretty good series that chronicles the apocalypse), but in the end God wins. I’m on His side.

Any new or upcoming projects?

Yes, I’m in final edits for a time travel adventure and also a science fiction series.

Where can people connect with you online, and where can they purchase your books?

My books are on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. You can also connect with me on these sites:

Thank you so much for your time - best of luck in all of your writing endeavors!

Thank you! It’s been a pleasure to be here.

About the Author
Debbie has written more than 15 novels for kids and adults. She now concentrates on clean young adult fiction which means that though the topics may include tough subjects there are no four letter words or sex scenes.

Did you like this feature? If you're a writer of dystopian fiction, survivalist stories or post-apocalyptic tales, contact me to get featured for the End of the World Event at Writing Belle! Email me at: