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Adam Interviews...R. Valentine!


That's right, it's 2024 and we're back with another author interview!

What a great way to get your Monday off to a good start - meet an author you might not know and get to hear about their books.

Today, I have R. Valentine with me. R. Valentine is an author with a deep appreciation for the simple pleasures of life. With a love for fantasy, science fiction, paranormal, and romance, R. Valentine's stories offer readers an escape from the mundane. In her free time, she can be found lost inside a good book, pretending to cook, neglecting her flower garden, or making memories with her family.



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Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Trek hands down. My favorite is TNG and Captain Picard follow closely by Voyager and Janeway.


Coffee, tea, or cacao? Coffe and tea, they are both a mood.


Favorite hangover recovery recipe? Chinese food, lo mein noodles, fried rice, egg rolls, give me all the carbs!


When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer? After reading Twilight. Take that as you will. No shame to Stephanie Meyer or the fans, as I love them too, for better or worse; however, they heavily inspired me to write my own stories.

 

When did you write your first book and how old were you? The first thing I ever wrote was in grade-school, I was thirteen, I think. It was a dark short story about a depressed girl who becomes a ghost.

  



What do you like to do when you’re not writing? The obvious answer is reading, which I do a lot of, but I binge watch tv shows that I put off while writing. I love to travel, road trips are my favorite and I have a love/hate relationship with camping.

 

How many books have you written? I have ten books published under several names. This pen name R.Valentine has 5 and counting.


Which is your favorite? I have three favorites series that I write, I can’t choose because they are all so different. But I’m feeling sentimental right now about Abby and Ethan from The War of Blood and Roses series. They are special to me because they are my first and I’m currently wrapping up their story, which is bitter sweet.

 

Do you have any suggestions to help someone become a better writer? If so, what are they? Through this journey my go-to advice is, if you’re writing a series, try to finish it before publishing—or at the very least have the second one done and ready to go, with the others started or plotted. This way you can really focus on marketing the book(s) and you’re not splitting your focus. Also, space out publication so you have plenty of time to work on the next installments.  

 



 Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say? I do hear from readers, but not a ton for this series. My books are really angsty and character-driven, and I leave readers with massive cliffhangers, so I get a lot of feedback for those reasons.

 

What are common traps for aspiring writers? Paying for things you shouldn’t. There are a lot of people out there who will happily take advantage of new authors. Do your research, make author friends, and ask them for advice. There are a lot of authors in the indie community who are happy to help and answer questions. Several on social media constantly post their tips, tricks, and advice too. I would suggest following other authors and learning from their experiences before you jump into anything, especially when there is money involved.

 

Did you ever consider writing under a pseudonym? Yes, I use a pen name and highly suggest it. There is something very freeing about publishing and promoting books under a pen name. It gives you that slight disconnect and makes it easier to talk about the work and take criticism for it. (at least for me)




  

Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want? I write what I want and write stories that I want to read. I can’t image doing it any other way. I need to feel connected to the world and the characters.

 

Are you traditionally or self published? Or both? Do you feel there are advantages to one over the other? I am self-published. There is often a negative connotation associated with self-published authors, which I find perplexing considering that independent creators in various other fields, such as artists and musicians, are celebrated. I love being an indie author. It allows me the freedom to write without conforming to 'mainstream' ideas, and I retain full control over my rights, ideas, profits, and successes. Everything is truly mine.

 

How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have? 5 but that’s normal, right?

 



What is the answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything? I don’t know the question, but the answer is to be kind. Be kind to yourself, be kind to others, be kind to animals and be kind to the earth. It costs nothing, but its worth is priceless.

 

 What’s the best way to market your books? Getting it in the hands of readers who love it.

  

What do you have coming next?

My final book in my series The War of Blood and Roses is set to release in March. Print copies of the first book Revenant will be available in May. I will be doing my first author signing in August in Lincoln City, OR at the Books and Beaches book signing.



Excerpt from REVENANT:

The crack of a can and the release of the carbonation brought my focus back to where I was and the outstretched hand that held the beverage in front of me.

“Drink.” He demanded.

“Thanks.” I accepted the can from him and tipped back a few sips of the fizzy sugar water and mustered up the courage to really look at him for the first time. He was very tall and muscular; toned and well defined from what I could see. He had dark hair that was disheveled in a way that lay neatly on his head. It was several inches long and layered, and the few strands that didn’t stay in place with their style, wisped out in odd directions at the back and sides of his head. His bangs fell and feathered over his forehead and hung nearly into his eyes. The color was dark like mocha, the silky strands shiny and smooth—and probably soft.

 His dark brows had sharp arches that dramatically crowned his piercing violet eyes, which were framed with long, black lashes. High cheekbones and a straight nose led to a set of full lips with a prominent V and a plush of softness; the top smaller than the pouty bottom. The color was a warm, light maroon, and they parted just enough that I could see the sharp, white points of his fangs.

 His clothes were like ours; heavy boots, leather pants, and a tight fitted black shirt worn under a leather jacket. The major difference was that his belt held a long sword in addition to a gun.

“What’s your name?” I asked him faintly as I traveled his body up and down with my eyes. “Ethan.” He smirked and lifted one side of his mouth. “Ethan Sterling.” He repeated with a sly grin and a lift of his brow as he crouched down in front of me.

 His swift movement took me a few seconds to catch up with; he was much faster than my eyes could track. A small breeze followed and wafted cool air across my face with the action—the freshly scented air a far cry from the musty smell of the hangar—it reminded me of a summer sun-shower in the woods on an early morning. He held out his hand, so naturally, I responded and placed mine into his.

“It’s nice to meet you, I’m Abby Rose.” I gave him my full name since he’d given me his, which was strange, but whatever.

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