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Wishing everyone a wonderful holiday season!

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Welcome to my blog! Pull up a chair, grab a cup of coffee and read what's on my mind. I've a vicious sense of humor, an apprecation for romance and a mad addiction to writing.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

MIDWEEK MEET & GREET. Interview with Hywela Lyn. Contest. TWO winners will be drawn!

Welcome! This is a much delayed post due to the fact when I last featured Lyn, a family emergency came up and I had to cancel all blog posts. I thought, however, to put this up now as I have Lyn's wonderful characters visiting over the next several days. 

Lyn is also hosting a fantastic contest. Two lucky commenters will be chosen at week’s end to win an Ecopy of DANCING WITH FATE. So comment on any of Lyn’s posts the remainder of this week and you’re automatically entered for a chance to win!

So let’s get to know Lyn a bit better…

SKY: Welcome! Tell us a little bit about yourself. Did you always want to be an author? When did you first start writing? What have you published?

HYWELA LYN: Hello Sky. Thanks so much for this opportunity and for having me as your guest.

I think I started writing as soon as I could read. I used to like to embellish stories I’d read and then a friend suggested I write a ‘proper story’ when I was about fourteen, so that’s when I got serious. It took a while for me to realize that being a ‘writer’ was actually something attainable and not something that only ‘famous’ people did.

To start with, I wrote short stories which I had published in various magazines, including ‘The Lady’. Then I had the idea for a full length Western Historical, which I submitted to various British publishers without success (hardly surprising really, I hadn’t the vaguest idea of structure or point of view, besides which the UK wasn’t publishing many Westerns.) Several years later, I started reading Science Fiction and Fantasy and it wasn’t long before I decided if I couldn’t get a Western published, I’d try writing Science Fiction.

‘Starquest’ started out as a short story, but I got fond of my heroine and the short story became a full length novel. I began to realize that everything I wrote turned into a romance, so when I started looking for a publisher, and came across The Wild Rose Press, this seemed the obvious place to submit, even if it was in the US. The Wild Rose Press accepts email queries; the internet makes everything so much easier (and cheaper.) I was lucky enough to have ‘Starquest’ accepted, and this was followed by a sequel ‘Children of the Mist.’ Between the publications of these two books, I was invited to join eight other others to write a story in an anthology about the nine muses. I chose Terpsichore, muse of dance, and her story became ‘Dancing With Fate.’ I have now regained my rights to this story and published it as a ‘stand alone’ novella with Smashwords. 

It will also soon be available in print from Createspace

SKY: I like to write at night. Inspires me. Where and when do you like to write? Why?

HYWELA LYN: I love to write at night too. I’m a ‘nightowl’ and don’t really wake up until midday. Unfortunately, my husband is a ‘Lark’. I’ve tried getting up early to write, but my brain just doesn’t function at that time of day, so we’ve reached a compromise, and go to bed around 1 a m. Too late for him really, and still a bit too early for me - but sometimes in marriage compromises have to be made and it’s probably not a good thing for me to sit up into the early hours, night after night, which I would do if left to my own devices! :)

SKY: You know you’ll always pen a particular genre. What is that? You might also dabble in other genres. Care to share what those are and why?

HYWELA LYN: Well, as I mentioned above, my first love was the historical ‘Western.’ I’ve always loved the stars though, and wondered what it would be like to travel to other planets, so it was natural that I should gravitate towards Science Fiction /Futuristic. The way I look at it, space exploration is very similar in its concept to opening up the West all those years ago. Only instead of horses there are starships, and alien civilizations instead of Indian villages, but the stories are still about courageous men and women exploring unknown territories and dangers. As for Fantasy, I just love mixing myths and legends in my imagination and coming up with something new. And we all love to have a little ‘magic’ in our lives, don’t we.

SKY: Oh yes, I’m all about magic! We writers are often urged to write what we know. Have you? Perhaps implemented a scene from your life or somewhere you’ve traveled. Tell, tell!

HYWELA LYN: Although my romantic ‘sub-genre’ is Fantasy and Science Fiction, which means research and imagination rather than actual ‘knowledge’ I draw on the beautiful landscape of rural Wales, which I do know very well, for the settings in many of my stories. This is especially true of ‘Dancing With Fate’ which is actually set in 5th Century Wales. Of course when it comes to other planets, I exaggerate and distort these landscapes a little, but I feel the mist sweeping over the mountains is just as beautiful whether it’s in the Welsh countryside on Earth, or a distant planet ‘far, far away.’

I also frequently use my love and knowledge of horses and most of my stories have a horse (or unicorn) somewhere in their pages.

SKY: Let’s get down and dirty. Writers typically love to read. You especially enjoy certain authors for a good reason. What are they? Their use of prose, voice, characterization, etc. You’ve got pet peeves as well. What are they?

HYWELA LYN: I have a very eclectic range of reading – everything from Tolkein to Daphne du Maurier and Anne McCaffrey to Zane Grey. All these authors have the gift of writing characters that one cares about and can identify with, as well as weaving intriguing and interesting plots. For me the story is hugely important, and I love to be surprised by the twists and turns – but the characters have to be people I can empathize with and really care about. Even villains can have a certain ‘charisma’ which makes you want to read on while hoping for their demise! Although none of the above writers could be considered ‘romance writers’ per se, they all have a strong love interest running through most of their stories. (Arwen and Aragorn, Max de Winter and his nameless wife, Lessa and F’lar, Jane Withersteen and Lassiter, for instance.)

Peeves? Not too many, but while, like most of us, I don’t want to read about a weak, sniveling heroine, I don’t like the opposite extreme either, where the ‘kickass’ heroine is so strong and independent, you wonder that she even feels the need for a love interest, and ‘femininity’ seems to be a word she’s never heard of. I dislike heroines who are so strong and self sufficient, they’re really little more than ‘men with curves’ if you know what I mean!

SKY: I so hear ya, Lyn! You’re writing or have written the book that will always hold a special place in your heart. What is it and why?

HYWELA LYN: Oh definitely the first book I had accepted for publication, although I did enjoy writing the others. ‘Starquest’ really is that old cliché ‘the book of my heart’ though. While I was writing it I lived and breathed as my heroine, Jess, and acted out scenes in my head while I walked my dog or rode my horses, and at night before I went to sleep. Forget counting sheep – working out an exciting scene, or working on the romantic scenes was guaranteed to have me ‘out like a light’ just as I got to the crucial bit! My heroine still talks to me, as do some of the other characters – and two of them demanded their own stories. One has since been published and one is the book I’m currently working on.

SKY: We’re all guilty. Though we like variety, we tend to adore a certain type of hero and heroine. What does your perfect hero look like? Tell us about his personality. Same goes for the heroine.

HYWELA LYN: For some reason which I’m not sure of, I’ve always liked dark haired heroes although the hero of ‘Dancing With Fate’ is blond. I also like them tall, perhaps because I’m so short myself, I’m not sure, LOL. Anyway, another thing I like my hero to have is nice eyes, the kind that look straight at you, and have a warmth and a depth to them. Of course he should be strong and brave, but I also want my perfect hero to be gentle and considerate, and not to be afraid to show his feelings, especially when it comes to the heroine! I like my heroines to be spunky and pretty. Long, red hair for preference (I have a ‘thing’ about ‘flame coloured’ hair) but again, several of my heroines are dark haired, including Terpsichore in ‘Dancing with Fate’. I want her to be have an inne strength and courage, but to retain her femininity and sensitivity - sweet and sassy and every inch a woman!

SKY: What’s next for you? What are you currently writing?

HYWELA LYN: I’m currently working on the third in the ‘Starquest’ series. I need to give one of the characters from he first book his own H.E.A. He keeps nagging at me and won’t leave me alone until I do! After that – well I might just dust off that old ‘historical western’ and give it a complete new revamp!

SKY: Where do you see yourself five years from now? Ten?

HYWELA LYN: Oh I believe in living in the ‘here and now’ and not thinking too much about the future (unless it’s in one of my stories, of course. I’ve had the rug pulled out from under my feet too many times to be confident in making plans, besides, I like surprises (if they’re nice ones) and being spontaneous. I would love to have a best seller though (LOL, wouldn’t we all!) and to have written a few more books - and hopefully be living back in my beloved homeland of Wales.

SKY: There’s no doubt in mind that you’ll right a best seller, Lyn. You’ve such a talent with words! Here goes. The grand finale. Share with us one thing you think readers would be surprised to know about you.

HYWELA LYN: Apart from books and horses, I’m also crazy about steam engines. I love these huge workhorses of another age. There is something really romantic about a steam roller or train, something that modern machinery just doesn’t have. I think perhaps I should write ‘steam punk’. I might have a go at it one of these days.

SKY: I never knew that about you, Lyn! I love steam engines too and *Sky hangs head* I never knew what the sub-genre ‘steam punk’ was until now! I thought it was some 80’s punk sort of genre. LOL! Great interview, Lyn. Thanks so much for sharing!

HYWELA LYN: Thank YOU Sky, my dear friend. You ask the best questions!

SKY: Thank you! They come out sounding even better when I have a great interviewee to question. *winks*

What reviewers are saying about some of Lyn’s titles…

STARQUEST

"The lovely, lovely descriptions never slow the action, but manage still to convey emotion and carry the narration forward. This is an incredibly original tale, and for all the science fiction trappings is truly a classic quest for love, and the romance, which at first seems very much at the periphery, will become not only a primary motivation, but the chief joy of the tale. Adventure may be the main motif, but the heartwarming side will be a surprising bonus."

'Snapdragon'

LONG AND SHORT REVIEWS

Read full review HERE

Children Of The Mist:

"This book is wonderful! There are few books that hold my interest to the point where I can't bear to put it down, but Children of the Mist is most certainly at the top of this list."

Reviewed by Orchid, The Long and Short Of It Reviews (Five Star Plus Best Book Review)

Read full review HERE.

Hywela Lyn’s Website ~ Blog ~ Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Myspace

Don't forget to leave a comment for your chance to win an Ecopy of Dancing With Fate. TWO chances to win! Contest ends Sunday, November 6th, 12 AM, EST.
 
Be sure to swing in again tomorrow as the heroine from DANCING WITH FATE joins us here for A Writer's Mind, End of Week Character Blowout!
 
Best Always,
~Sky

7 comments:

Sky Purington said...

Fabulous interview, Lyn!!! Always a pleasure having you over. :-)

Eva's Flowers said...

Great interview ladies, I enjoy reading about how you got started with your writing and how you go about creating some of your book charactters :)

Eva
evitap67(at)gamil(dot)com

Sheila Deeth said...

Interesting to read your path to writing. I remember how I loved borrowing Westerns from the library in England, but there are a lot more of them here.

Author Roast and Toast said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hywela Lyn said...

Sky, thanks so much for having me, it's always such a pleasure to visit your wonderful blog!

Hywela Lyn said...

Hello Eva's Flowers

Thanks so much - glad you enjoyed the interview.

Hywela Lyn said...

Hi Sheila

Thanks so much for your kind comment.
Yes, I suppose there would be a lot more Westerns over there, but there is a lot of interest in the UK too!