Welcome to Day 1 of the DRAGONWITCH Release Day Blog Tour!!!
Today I’m super excited to welcome the uber-cool author of all the Tales of Goldstone Woods books…..
ANNE ELISABETH STENGL!!!!
GET TO KNOW ANNE…
How soon did you know you wanted to write amazingly awesome books?
Well, I’ve always wanted to write amazingly awesome books! Whether or not I’ve succeeded is subject to debate . . . 😉 But I have known I wanted to be a novelist since I was nine years old, when I wrote my first “novel.” It was an eight-chapter romp about a kitten, his misadventures, and his desire to find a girl of his own. (Yes, I was a crazy-cat lady even then!) It was a simple enough story, but I loved writing it and went on to draft several sequels. Then, at thirteen, I dabbled in fantasy for the first time. Another story about a cat, this time a wish-granting cat and all the various powers trying to catch and use him for their own purposes. But seriously, people, have you’ve ever tried to make a cat do something it doesn’t want to do?
So, cats and fantasy. The rest is history!
What is the best writing advice you have for aspiring authors?
I always tell aspiring authors that the best writers are the best readers. Read a lot. Read in many genres. Read with care and an analytical eye. I honestly believe my years as an English lit. major were utterly priceless! I spent hours every day poring over classics and the brilliant works of minds much, much greater than my own. I drank in what they could teach me, and learned to apply what I could to my own writing. You’ll never find better teachers than the great literary masters!
Also, find the genre you love most and read, read, read in that genre! Along with classics, I swallow a steady diet of YA fantasy, which is my genre of choice. I’ve found my favorite authors, picked apart their styles to discover why I loved them, and do what I can to mimic them even as I develop my own unique voice.
All the great storytellers are ultimately thieves. So read and read more to find out what you like best and how best to steal it!
Tell us 3 random facts about yourself.
I am a crazy cat lady. Utterly crazy. I have five cats of my own (plus the one long-suffering dog) who all prefer my husband over me, but I DON’T CARE ABOUT THAT! I also rescue wild kittens, rehabilitate them, and find them homes. My home is full of feline.
I practiced the piano for three hours a day when I was in high school. Yes, you read that right: three hours a day. I couldn’t relax unless I’d put in my time. I was this close to pursuing music rather than English lit. But the stories were always more important to me, and in the long run, I am very thankful I made the choice I did!
I am also an artist and made my living for a few years teaching art lessons and painting portraits.
What 4 things would you have to have on a deserted island?
My husband. He’s a resourceful type and would do well on a deserted island. He’s also cute.
An endless supply of tea. (I’ll harvest sugar cane and milk wild goats in order to have it with cream and sugar.)
My entire collection of Terry Pratchett novels (because we all need a laugh now and then!)
Do you have a favorite Bible verse?
I have always loved Ecc. 3:11: “He has made everything beautiful in its time.”
If you could hang out with any character from your books for 24 hours, who would you hang with and why?
My first instinct is to say Eanrin, but somehow I think he and I might get on each other’s nerves before the 24 hours was up. So I’ll say Imraldera. When Eanrin isn’t provoking her, she is very sweet, gentle, hospitable, and intelligent. I think we could spend the whole 24 hours hanging out in her library at the Haven!
The Dragonwitch first appeared in the Tales of Goldstone Wood #2 Veiled Rose. What can fans expect in Dragonwitch?
Finally, finally you will learn the true story behind all the legends surrounding the Dragonwitch! In Veiled Rose, you learn that she was a “goddess,” and that she drowned. In Starflower we learned hints about the destruction of her demesne, the loss of her wings, and her time spent as the Wolf Lord’s bride. But what motivated all of this loss, all of this fire? What led to the destruction of her life and of whole nations? In Dragonwitch, those mysteries are at last resolved.
Congrats on “Starflower” being nominated for the 2013 CHRISTY AWARD!!! “Heartless” and “Veiled Rose” are also CHRISTY winners! Did you ever dream the Tales of Goldstone Wood would have such huge success?
Thank you so much! I am thrilled to see Starflower honored at the Christys this year, just as thrilled as I was for Heartless and Veiled Rose. It’s always a bit of a shock, somehow. I write the stories, and they are very dear to my heart, and I know God intends to bless others with them. But honors such as the Christy Award are beyond my expectations, and it is very encouraging and rewarding and humbling all at once.
This series has such an amazing fan-base! (YAY IMPS!!!) Does the creativeness and love of your fans surprise you?
I LOVE my Imps! They are the most wonderful bunch of readers anyone could ever ask for! Did you know they gave themselves the name? That just tickles me. I love hosting contests for them, giving them the chance to display their talents, such as the fan art contests both last year and this year, the fan fiction contests, and now the Five Glass Slippers contest running to the end of December. They are endlessly creative and inspiring to me!
They are all so dear, taking the time to write me notes and emails, sending in their gorgeous art and stories, and demonstrating so much love to me and to each other. I never in a million years dreamed I would see such a fan base spring up around my work! Of all the blessings this writing career has afforded me thus far, the Goldstone Wood Imps are by far the most brilliant!
What’s next for the series? Any movie deals in the works? (Please, please)
Heheh, no movie deals at this point! What an intimidating notion that is to me! Fun, but intimidating . . . J
Currently, I am writing book 7 in the Tales of Goldstone Wood, which I hope to release in late 2014 (after Shadow Hand). It is currently untitled, but I will tell you that it brings back some intriguing characters from Veiled Rose, including Captain Sunan of the Kulap Kanya and the Oracle of the Hidden Temple. It also introduces the readers to a whole new charismatic cast whom I love dearly.
And, of course, Eanrin plays a pivotal role . . .
I also will soon be announcing my fun Super-Secret project, which will be releasing between Dragonwitch and Shadow Hand. But that’s still Super-Secret for a few more weeks!
Anne Elisabeth Stengl is the author of the award-winning Tales of Goldstone Wood series, adventure fantasies told in the classic Fairy Tale style. She makes her home in Raleigh, North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, Rohan, a passel of cats, and one long-suffering dog. When she’s not writing, she enjoys Shakespeare, opera, and tea, and studies piano, painting, and pastry baking. She studied illustration at Grace College and English literature at Campbell University
DON’T MISS ANY OF THE TALES OF GOLDSTONE WOOD!!!
NOW FOR THE GIVEAWAY!!!
Enter to win the first 5 books in the series…
CLICK HERE TO ENTER THE RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY!!!!
TOMORROW ON JOJO’S CORNER….
A SPECIAL SNEAK PEEK OF DRAGONWITCH!!!