Interview with Barbara Underwood, Author of the Rhuna Series

Interview with Barbara Underwood

 

What were your goals and intentions in this series of books, and how well do you feel you achieved them?
My goal was to present information and theories about “Ancient Mysteries” such as Atlantis and the building of pyramids and other megaliths all over the world in an enjoyable fictional setting.  It was also my intention to include social issues that have shaped mankind’s past and continue to confront people in our day.

So far, at the completion of the fourth book in the series, I am pleasantly surprised to see how well the series is developing and that it encompasses many subjects that I wanted to share with my readers.

What are some of the references that you used while researching these books?

My interest in ancient mysteries began after reading Thor Heyerdahl’s books about his discoveries of megaliths on Pacific islands, and how they appear to be connected to megaliths in the Americas and other continents.  From then on, I read countless books on the subject, tending more and more into the New Age and esoteric/occult area, where fascinating theories began to spark my imagination.

What do you think most characterizes your writing?

The easy-to-read style and viewpoint from the main character, Rhuna, even though it is written in the third person.  Readers see the world through her eyes, and relate to her because she her thoughts and feelings are clearly expressed.

What was the hardest part of writing these books?

Keeping track of each character, especially as the series developed and more characters were added.  Intertwining each character’s goals or actions with the main plot and subplots is also challenging.

What did you enjoy most about writing these books?

Letting the characters develop themselves, once personality and their circumstances were established.

How did you become involved with the subject or theme of your books?
As mentioned above, reading Thor Heyerdahl’s books sparked my interest in the subject of ancient civilizations and how many things are still unexplained by conventional history and science.

Where did your love of books/storytelling/reading/writing/etc. come from?

Perhaps from my father, who could express himself better with the written word than speaking face to face.  He also read books to me as a child, but other than that, I can’t think of any particular thing or person that inspired me to write.  It was something I just enjoyed doing since early school days.
How long have you been writing?

Since early school days.  Writing something for a school project in 5th or 6th grade wasn’t enough, so I began to write about things in my spare time.  Later, I began writing letters to penpals all over the world, and as an adult I became involved in various things which allowed me to write newsletters or reviews, while still writing accounts of my travels or other experiences to share with penpals.

What inspires you?

The mysteries of ancient civilizations and the concepts found in New Age and esoteric works:  it makes me want to write about the fabulous wonders of the world in which we live.

What do you like to read in your free time?

Currently, I enjoy reading the two series by Charles Todd, namely Inspector Rutledge and Bess Crawford mysteries set in the WW! period; The Pendergast series by Preston and Charles, the gaslight mysteries by Victoria Thompson, all books by Sarah Rayne, and the Hamish Macbeth series by M.C. Beaton.

What projects are you working on at the present?
I’ve just finished the fourth book in the Rhuna series, and I’m preparing ideas for the fifth book, as well as one or two short stories, also featuring Rhuna.

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

It crossed my mind several times during school days, but I took serious steps towards it in my mid-twenties when I began a correspondence course in professional writing.

What question do you wish that someone would ask about your books, but nobody has?

How much of myself and my own life experiences do I put into my stories.  The answer is quite a lot!

 

Rhuna website:

http://www.rhunafantasybooks.com

Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/Barbara-Underwood/e/B008ZT6PBG/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

Twitter

https://twitter.com/KeeperWisdom

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/RhunaKeeperWisdom/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

Pinterest

https://au.pinterest.com/KeeperWisdom/rhuna-fantasy-book-series/

Google+

https://plus.google.com/u/0/105171705656215274408

Goodreads Author Page

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/946941.Barbara_Underwood

YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdTv4GZBM2yG5mY1Jy30MpQ

Barbara’s Blog

http://barbaraunderwood.blogspot.com.au/

 

 

Author Interview with Tahlia Newland, The Locksmith’s Secret

A message from indieBRAG:

We are delighted that Charla has chosen to interview Tahlia Newland who is the author of, The Locksmith’s Secret, our medallion honoree at indieBRAG. To be awarded a B.R.A.G. Medallion ®, a book must receive unanimous approval by a group of our readers. It is a daunting hurdle and it serves to reaffirm that a book such as, The Locksmith’s Secret, merits the investment of a reader’s time and money.

 

tahlia-newlandlocksmiths-secret

 

I had the immense pleasure of contacting author, Tahlia Newland, for an interview concerning her book The Locksmith’s Secret. Ms. Newland is based in Australia. – Charla
What were your goals and intentions in this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them?
The Locksmith’s Secret was planned as a sequel to Worlds Within Worlds. I wanted to finish the romance that I began in the first book and also to explore more of the same concepts—that of a person being made up of several strands of experience including past lives, imagination, dreams and spiritual experiences. I think I achieved this pretty well.

What do you think most characterizes your writing?
I’ve been told that my writing makes people feel as if they’re in the scene with the characters, but other than that, I guess it’s the metaphysical aspects of all my work. There is always some spiritual or mental level to my stories.

What was the hardest part of writing this book?
Getting the different strands to weave together so it feels like one story.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
I love the ephemeral city—a vacant transparent city floating in space and existing only by the grace of the lines of light that draw it like a sketch. Ella spends most of her time there trying to get to the locksmith who is the only other soul in the whole city, and he’s several floors up in a building with no doors. The story thread, particularly the end, is a symbol of what is actually happening in her real life.

How did you become involved with the subject or theme of your book?
There’s a strong emancipation theme in the book, and that’s just something that I’ve always been concerned about, and the idea of a person having many strands to their existence is also a subject that has fascinated me for years. So I guess these interests just came out in the book.

Why did you choose to write in your particular field or genre? If you write more than one, how do you balance them?
My books are all fantasy or magical realism with a touch of romance. I like these genres because they have lots of scope for powerful metaphysics.

Where did your love of books/storytelling/reading/writing/etc. come from?
I’ve been an avid reader since I was a young child. I saw books as a doorway to worlds that I would never see any other way. Now I can share the worlds of my imagination with others.

How long have you been writing?
Since 2007. My first publication was in 2010.

What inspires you?
Ideas and mental images.

What do you like to read in your free time?
Fantasy and sci-fi and sometimes really good lit fiction or a cozy mystery.

What projects are you working on at the present?
My energy at the moment is going into a pod and video cast called Happiness Hints, which is on You Tube, Podbean, Stitcher and iTunes. I put out a show every week, so it’s taking all my writing time for the moment. If it doesn’t take off after a few months, I’ll go back to writing.

What do your plans for future projects include?
I have a steampunk book ¾ done (The Rise of the Aether Mages) and an adult fantasy romance in the works.

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I never wanted to be a writer, it just happened when I got inspired for The Diamond Peak Series. Inspiration drove me to learn what I needed to learn in order to write well.

How do you find or make time to write?
I’m under-employed so I have plenty of time. When I’m in the midst of a project I get up early and write before the day gets going.

What question do you wish that someone would ask about your book, but nobody has?
Is mind really that powerful? The answer is ‘yes.’

What book would you like to write but haven’t or can’t yet?
I would like to finish Captive, which is the fantasy romance I mentioned above, but it’s a tricky one because the protagonist is taken for a ‘personal’ slave, so it’s a subject matter that needs to be handled carefully. The theme of the book is that real freedom comes from mental freedom. I’ve written two drafts, but haven’t felt ready to finish it yet. It needs a time when I can really focus on it.

 

Stop by Tahlia’s website to keep up on her writings: http://tahlianewland.com

 

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