Q & A With D.G. Kaye – Featuring Deborah Jay and her Hot #NewRelease – The Prince’s Heir

Welcome to my last Q & A post for 2021. I know I have been sparse this year with Q & A features due to my world turning upside down, but  I couldn’t end off the year without sharing the news here from one of my oldest blogging friends, Deborah Jay, who has just released Book 4 in her 5 Kingdoms series – The Prince’s Heir.

About Deborah Jay:

Deborah Jay writes epic fantasy and urban fantasy featuring complex, quirky characters and multi-layered plots – just what she likes to read.

Fortunate to live near Loch Ness in the majestic, mystery-filled Scottish Highlands with her partner and a pack of rescue dogs, she can often be found lurking in secluded glens and forests, researching locations for her books.

She has a dream day job riding, training, and judging, competition dressage horses and riders, and also writes books and magazine features on the subject under her professional name of Debby Lush.

A lifelong fan of science fiction and fantasy, she started writing her first novel aged eight, and has never stopped. Her first published novel is epic fantasy, THE PRINCE’S MAN, first in the Five Kingdoms series, and winner of a UK Arts Council award. #2, THE PRINCE’S SON and #3, THE

PRINCE’S PROTEGE are both available with the concluding book in the quartet, THE PRINCE’S HEIR, released December 14th 2021.

Blurb:

Read the gripping conclusion to The Five Kingdoms series…

King Marten’s reign balances on a blade’s edge. Chel’s Casket, symbol of his right to rule, is missing. Can master spies, Rustam and Risada, recover it before someone notices its absence and challenges Marten’s sovereignty? Or is there a more sinister motive behind the disappearance of the casket—a relic that could be used to raise the demon god, Charin.

As a series of natural disasters besets the kingdoms, evidence points towards interference by the meddlesome deity, and the terrifying prospect of war between its two opposing aspects.

When Marten’s beloved wife, Betha, and their infant daughter vanish, Marten faces a stark choice: save his family, or try to save his kingdom from a conflict that threatens all humanity.

Excerpt from Prince’s Heir

“Risada,” said Marten in a tone that sent ice crawling down her spine. “There’s something we didn’t tell you last year. We thought it would never be an issue once we’d destroyed Charin’s Cult.”

The king paused, pursing his lips. Blood pounded through Risada’s head, filling the silence. She felt nauseous. What had they kept from her, and why?

Marten drew a deep breath, then continued. “You know they wanted our child. What you don’t know is that things came to a head when you returned with Halson. Charin wanted a child of the royal bloodline, and it seems Hal’s would have satisfied Him as much as mine.”

Risada gripped the back of a nearby chair, clinging to that spot of reality in a world turned hazy.

Halson! Charin wanted her son!

A fierce rush of protectiveness blasted through her. She would die before she allowed that to happen. Staring into Marten’s eyes, she saw the same intent reflected there. Of course, he and Betha had been willing to sacrifice themselves before, and now he feared Betha might be forced to make that call again.

“We won’t let it come to that; I promise.” She took one of his hands and squeezed it, but he shrugged and disengaged his grip.

“Sadly, that’s not something you can promise. Not where Charin’s involved. I’ve faced Him, remember? I was lucky to survive, and I don’t give much for my chances if it comes to a rerun.”

“Marten.” Risada employed the same tone she used when Halson was being difficult. “You’re not alone in this. You will never be alone to deal with such an attack again; that I can promise.

Let’s get to know more about Deb’s writing and dressage life in our Q & A session:

How many books have you written? Do you have a favorite of your books and if so, why?

Nine so far, plus novellas and short stories. Two non-fiction books on horse training (my day job), one SF (not published), five epic fantasy (one not published) and one urban fantasy. The unpublished books were where I cut my writer’s teeth, learning about plot, pace, and technique. One day I’d love to revisit them, but with so many other projects on the go, who knows if I’ll find the time?

My favorite book will always be the last one I finished. If you are anything like me, as we write more books our style changes, develops and (hopefully) improves. I am still proud as punch of my first published novel – THE PRINCE’S MAN – which in the early days before self-publishing, netted me two agents and a slew of positive feedback from the Big Six (as they were in those days) publishers, although no contract. Now, I’m really happy it didn’t sell – I would never have been allowed to write the sequels the way they’ve turned out, and I wouldn’t have control of my own career.

D.G. – You’ve certainly come a long way my busy friend. And yes, you are spot on, the more books we write, of course, our styles change as we learn new things. How many of us would like to go back and rewrite all our published books? Lol 🙂

What’s your opinion on self-publishing?

As a hybrid author – both traditionally and indie published – I can definitely say the latter is far and away my preferred route. Not only do I get to write what I want, when I want, I also earn a markedly higher percentage of the income from my indie published books (70% from Amazon, 60% from some other platforms, paid each month) than I do from my trad published books (10% from my publisher, paid annually).

Sure, traditional publishers can get you into bricks-and-mortar stores, but that’s far less important since Covid struck, closing so many, or forcing them to sell online. Publishers also have extremely limited funds available for marketing, and contracted authors are expected to do most of the grunt work themselves – marketing, networking, selling in person, etc. – so I’d rather put my efforts into my indie books for a higher return.

D.G. – My sentiments exactly Deb. And I’ve heard same thoughts from a few different authors who left trad to take control of their own books. 🙂

Did you have a passion to write as a child? Do you remember the first thing you wrote?

I don’t know about a passion, I just always assumed I would write. It seemed the natural progression – read other people’s stuff, then write your own.

As a child, comics took my interest, and my earlier attempts at writing were accompanied by awful illustrations (I’m no artist). When my mother died a couple of years ago, in amongst her papers (she was also a writer) I found what must be my earliest attempt, aged about 6 – ‘The travels of Sammy Snail – Scotland here I come’. Weirdly prophetic, as at that time I had never been to Scotland, nor had any of my family, and yet that’s precisely where I now live.

After that, came ‘The Adventures of Galloper’, another illustrated comic book, and then ‘Samantha the Adventurous Poodle’, a novel which failed at chapter 3 because it had no plot!

D.G. – What a gorgeous find! I know you have tons on your plate and agenda, but wouldn’t it be fun if you revised and published her work in a children’s book someday, authored by both of you? Food for thought. 🙂

Would you like to share with us what upcoming projects and/or ideas for books you’re working on?

While this week’s release brings to a conclusion the main story of one set of characters, I still have plenty of other tales to tell about them. One of the best aspects of self-publishing is the option to publish books of any size. I already wrote one short story that fits in between books #1 & #2, with another underway. I plan to write a set of them, with the ultimate goal of gathering them into a book of their own.

I have also plotted out and started a novella, telling the back story of a minor character who grew to become a major force in books #3 & 4. In addition, years ago, I wrote the novel that takes place before this set, so I plan on going back and rewriting that to a publishable standard too.

Beyond that, I have a rough outline for the next sequence of books, featuring the next generation. I’ve set up a lot of worldbuilding ready for them to walk right into, so, although the over-arching plot appears to end in book #4, it has a lot further to go – I’m thinking maybe 10 books in all?

Next up is putting together a boxset of books #1 – #4, and start editing for audiobook production – something I still have to dip my toe in. I also have one novel and a short story published in an urban fantasy series, with 6 chapters of the next book already done and just waiting for me to pick it up again.

Finally (as if that lot wasn’t enough!), I am currently writing a commissioned non-fiction book on horse training to go with the two already published, and sketching out two new in-person presentations now we are allowed to do such things again.

I’m certainly never short of stuff to do!

D.G. – You’re a machine girl! I hate to add to your plate, but I was hoping you would come out with a sequel to Desprite Measures with your Cassie character. 🙂

Do you edit and proofread your own work solely or do you hire an editor?

Neither!

I’m really fortunate to have worked with an awesome writer’s group for many years – thirty, to be precise! Members have come and gone, but the core has remained. New members have to put in an audition piece, so we can assess the standard of their writing. If we feel they aren’t ready to join us yet we point them towards where they can find more basic help to develop.

The group consists of (almost) exclusively published authors – some short fiction writers, some novelists. We do include a uni student, reading creative writing (what else?), but fundamentally we all write professional pieces that sell. We used to meet in person once a month, now we do it on Zoom, which means a couple of former members who moved away have rejoined.

One of the best aspects is that between us we cover a wide range of professions and interests, such as a medical doctor, a computer programmer, a travel writer, and a stand-up comic! Between the lot of us, we’re pretty darned good at the whole gamut of editing. And knowing we will all be on the receiving end at some point, we’ve become well practiced at constructive critiquing – the best sort of group.

D.G. – Sounds like a great plan and a wonderful and eclectic bunch of writers! 🙂

What was the inspiration behind the series you’ve just completed?

I was always frustrated that the super-spy, James Bond, was never allowed (until now!) to develop as a character. Enter my leading man, Rustam Chalice – a shallow, womanizing, spy. During THE PRINCE’S MAN, alongside the action and politics, everything he thought he knew is challenged and proven to be false, bringing about profound changes to his life, which continues to develop through the entire series.

I chose a fantasy setting partly because of my love for Lord of the Rings, but also because of the incredible scope available to my imagination. I can do whatever I want with the world (provided it’s consistent and makes sense), which allows me to put my characters through a crucible unlike anything they would experience in a real-world setting.

Out of these two things came tagline for the series: Think James Bond meets Lord of the Rings.

D.G. – Brilliant concept! 🙂

It was a pleasure having you over today Deb. I wish you much success with your new release, and no doubts the Prince’s Man fans for this series are anxiously awaiting this new release.

Connect with Deborah:

Newsletter sign up and FREE short story: http://eepurl.com/bPZcmT

https://deborahjayauthor.com/

https://www.facebook.com/DeborahJay

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7172608.Deborah_Jay

Amazon author page: https://viewAuthor.at/DeborahJay

©DGKaye2021

Sunday Book Offer – The Spy and the Lady by Deborah Jay

Books by Deborah Jay

 

Deborah Jay is a wonderful and prolific fantasy writer/author. She recently wrote a short and engaging prequel to her series – The Prince’s Man and The Prince’s Son, called, The Spy and The Lady.

 

Deborah hasn’t published this book, rather, she is offering it as a free download if you subscribe to her newsletter. And as she comments on her signup form, “I’m an infrequent mailer, so no overloading of your mailbox, I promise.” You may want to sign up to keep abreast of the many promotions she shares of her own books and of other’s as well as other goodies such as this book offer.

 

I can assure you, if you’re a fantasy genre lover this book will hook you and have you dashing off to Amazon to start reading The Prince’s Man.

 

The Spy and the Lady

 

Ex-spy, Rustam Chalice, never could resist a lady in peril, and this one’s up to her pretty eyelashes.
 
Getting into the outlaws’ camp isn’t so tricky, but how come the rogues don’t seem that motivated by promise of a rich ransom? And why does the lady not appear enthusiastic about escaping?

 

The Prince's Man

Get this book on Amazon

 

Blurb:

 

Think ‘James Bond meets Lord of the Rings’

Rustam Chalice, dance tutor, gigolo and spy, loves his life just the way it is. So when the kingdom he serves is threatened from within, he leaps into action. Only trouble is, the spy master, Prince Hal, teams him up with an untouchable aristocratic assassin who despises him.

And to make matters worse, she’s the most beautiful woman in the Five Kingdoms.

Plunged into a desperate journey over the mountains, the mismatched pair struggle to survive deadly wildlife, the machinations of a spiteful god – and each other.

They must also keep alive a sickly elf they need as a political pawn. But when the elf reveals that Rustam has magic of his own, he is forced to question his identity, his sanity and worst, his loyalty to his prince.

For in Tyr-en, all magic users are put to death.

Award winning novel, THE PRINCE’S MAN is a sweeping tale of spies and deadly politics, inter-species mistrust and magic phobia, with an underlying thread of romance.

What readers are saying

“Book 1 in the five kingdoms series is a sensational creation that blends together sweeping epic fantasy with a thoroughly modern edge to it. The mix of spellbinding romance with a dark mystery, made me feel like I was reading a Robin Hobb novel – -and yet something quite different.” Lucinda

“Randomly browsing thru newer ebooks and came across this gem. Was delightfully surprised after reading the description “Think James Bond meets Lord of the Rings” which intrigued me to no end, to find that this was exactly how I perceived the book” R Lewis

“Reminiscent of Game of Thrones, this delightful fantasy will hold your attention from beginning to end.” Rhoda D’Etorre

 

Visit Deborah’s post HERE to sign up for this book free!

 

Visit Deborah’s books on Amazon to read more about this series.

So You’ve Hired and #Editor? – Deborah Jay

reblogging

Today we have another interesting and informative article on editing by Fantasy author, Deborah Jay. 

 

Many of you are aware that there are different types of editors. Deborah takes us through the different types of editors below in her post, and talks about the author’s right to agree or disagree with the editor’s changes. She also demonstrates when it is best to follow the editor’s suggestions.

editing tips

“So you’ve finished your book and you’ve hired an editor, right?

Hopefully you hired the right sort of editor…

‘What?‘ you say, ‘there’s more than one type of editor?’

Oh yes, folks, and if you haven’t got that piece of information yet, you need to go do some research. As an overall guide, you will find:

  • structural editors

  • copy editors

  • proof readers

and they won’t be the same person. . .” Continue Reading

 

 

Source:

https://deborahjayauthor.com/2016/04/04/youve-hired-an-editor-but-what-happens-if-you-dont-agree-with-them-authors-writing/

Source: deborahjay | Mystery, magic and mayhem

 

DGKaye©2016 

Book Review — Desprite Measures by Deborah Jay

book reviews

Deborah Jay is a fantasy author. When she’s not busy writing books, or reviewing other’s books, Deborah is busy in her ‘real life’ being a professional horse rider, trainer, and judge of competitions. I honestly don’t know how she keeps up and manages to write fabulous books. I just finished reading one of her books, Desprite Measures, which is an urban fantasy novel. I have to admit, it was different for me to jump into this genre as I usually read nonfiction, and chick-lit for my great escape moments, but I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It had me turning pages (or should I say clicking pages on my kindle), quickly, as I became concerned for the main character’s demise and mission.

FIVE STAR REVIEW:

An Entertaining Fantasy with Heart and Compassion Desprite     Meet Cassie Lake, the loveable water sprite. She’s an elemental who has the ability to transform herself to human form. Cassie is often caught between two worlds; experiencing the emotions of love and compassion as a human, while out of her water form. In the beginning, Cassie meets Gloria, her polar opposite. Gloria is a fire element. They both are trapped by the magician Liam who wants to experiment with their elements, which would have detrimental consequences if he succeeded by having the two elementals touch. In a clever ploy, the two escape and the story continues with Cassie’s quest to stop the mad magician with the help of Gloria and some other wonderful characters such as witches, vampires, and Euan the silkie, from seeking them out to carry out his plans.

One can’t help but to cheer Cassie on after encountering so many predicaments in her quest to save the Loch in Scotland from exploding by the hands of Liam. This was a well-written story and a delight to read.

The Writing Process Blog Tour

how we write

 

I was thrilled to be invited to this blog tour about sharing an author’s writing process and showcasing other authors and their works. My friend Carol Balawyder has kindly invited me to this tour. Carol is the author of Mourning Has Broken, her memoir about life, loss and grief of a sister and parents. You can check out Carol’s wonderful Blog at CarolBalawyder.com and read about her upcoming books and her wonderful reviews of famous women writers and Nobel prize laureates. While you are there, take a look at Carol’s post on the blog tour last week and learn all about her writing process.

And now I am happy to share the answers to the four questions posed to the authors on this blog hop:

2013-10-02 15.11.00

WHAT AM I CURRENTLY WORKING ON?

I have just recently finished first draft of my next book. This book is a look at women’s self-esteem issues and the obsessions and hang ups we endure in younger life which have a propensity to devalue our self-worth. It is written from my own experiences and analysis. This book will be published this fall.

I am also writing chapters intermittently for three other books, one is a sequel to my first book Conflicted Hearts, another is essays on rants and reminiscence , comparing life today to yesteryear, and the other is a secret for now.

HOW DOES MY WORK DIFFER FROM OTHERS OF ITS GENRE?

Writing in memoir can be raw. Some write in first person. Others may write in third person and choose to use another character to represent the story. And some memoirs are written in diary form. Many memoirs are written in one particular chunk of time. But all memoirs are based on a theme. my writing style was influenced by reading books written by William Zinsser, author of the widely acclaimed, On Writing Well. Only I wrote my first book, Conflicted Hearts with some slight deviation. My book spans through my life in different vignettes through time, holding with the same theme about how powerful guilt can continue to prevail throughout life, regardless of what we learn and how much we grow. For me, guilt didn’t exist in one chunk of time, I lived with it most of my life, even through my triumphs. I write raw and true and my voice speaks to my readers as though I am sharing my story with them personally.

WHY DO I WRITE WHAT I WRITE?

I began my writing as a teen. I kept journals to release pent up emotions and to self-analyze events and people in my life. I was driven to try to find answers for people’s actions. In those earlier times writing was self-medicating, and as the years passed I wanted to share my thoughts on subjects that people could relate to and possibly leave some suggestion from my writing about my experiences. I don’t believe we just decide to be kind or nasty. The events of our pasts have much to do with the character traits we acquire.

HOW DOES YOUR WRITING PROCESS WORK?

I try to write five days a week. I don’t impose time-frames on my writing, I go with the flow. Some days I can crank out 2000 to 3000 words, others may only be 500. My outlining process is usually: the concept of the book and then creating temporary chapter titles for the subjects I’d like to include in the book. I begin writing a chapter and when the pen gets flowing full of ideas, I keep another blank page for that chapter for when too many thoughts come at once and I don’t want to lose them. I jot what I want to talk about on the separate page so when I’m finished writing my current thought, I know what I want to write next. When I’m not writing for my books, I will be writing blog drafts or doing creative writing exercises from Natalie Goldberg’s book Old Friend From Far Away.

I write in long-hand. Okay, call me old-fashioned but I just don’t feel creative in front of a computer. For my first book, I had been journaling for years. I had torn out the chapters and began adding to them. I used a post-it-note system where I’d title the chapters so I could add to them or move them around. I know this may sound archaic but it worked for me. I actually tried using Scrivener but I was so overwhelmed by it, I went back to my tried and true system. I did promise myself to try Scrivener again when I wrote my second book, but old habits die hard, so I found myself once again back to my pre-historic method.

My system can become quite messy. If anyone saw my kitchen table (where I love to write) while I’m working, they were overwhelmed by what appears to be a mess of papers, yet I know exactly where to find any page.

Only after finishing first draft do I venture over to the computer. I begin entering my work into Word with my chapters already in order—sprawled out on the floor. Being a tactile person, I just work better when I can pick up a page.

My revisions are all done in Word and through the process it’s not uncommon for me to print off about eight copies of my manuscript between revisions and edits. The human eye catches typos much easier on paper than the computer screen.

Final readings and proofs are always done from paper.

 

For next week’s blog tour I am introducing two fellow authors here who will be passed the torch. Deborah Jay and Annie Edmonds are author friends of mine. Deborah is a fantasy author and Annie writes in erotic romance. Be sure to visit their blogs next Monday August 4th when they will be joining the blog tour.

Here is a little sampling of what these two talented authors are about:

Annie's book

 

Annie is a Jersey Girl born and bred. She has been happily married to the one man that stole her heart thirty years ago. She hopes one day to move her Jersey girl butt to the sunshine state.  She says winters are just too hard on someone who lives with chronic pain.

Annie loves to write and has been doing so her entire life. In 2013 she reached a milestone birthday and decided it was now or never. She needed to write and she published her first novel. She had no idea what to write about so she started asking her friends and their friends what they were reading. When the consensus was erotic romance, she did some research and what she found fascinated her. Annie took her love of romance, and added lots of kink and started writing Second Chances Sammy’s story. It’s the first novel in the Second Chances series. Annie is currently working on book two, Master Mike’s story.

Being an independent author isn’t always easy, but it can be fun when you start to write a sexy blog that you love. She started Sex w/Annie on WordPress and it seems to have hit a sweet spot where followers are concerned. She posts a Sexy Sunday blog for couples and singles every Sunday by 4 pm. aedmonds315.wordpress.com.

When Annie isn’t writing/blogging and promoting, she loves to spend time with her husband and family. At the beach is where she gets her inspiration. The beach has always been the one place to calm Annie’s soul.  Her interests also include, photography, gardening, and, being a foodie, Annie loves to cook.

Follow Annie at her Amazon author page, on twitter @aedmondsauthor and facebook.

 

Prince's Man

Deborah Jay writes fast-paced fantasy adventures featuring quirky characters and multi-layered plots – just what she likes to read.

Living mostly on the UK South coast, she has already invested in her ultimate retirement plan – a farmhouse in the majestic, mystery-filled Scottish Highlands where she retreats to write when she can find time. Her taste for the good things in life is kept in check by the expense of keeping too many dressage horses, and her complete inability to cook.

Her debut novel, epic fantasy THE PRINCE’S MAN, first in a trilogy and winner of a UK Arts Board award, has featured frequently in the Amazon Top 100 Epic Fantasy books since publication in July 2013.

Find out more about Deborah at http://www.deborahjay.wordpress.com or follow Deborah on Twitter, Facebook, GoodReads and Pinterest