Hey Melanie! Thanks so much for having me on your blog! Gosh, some stuff about me… but I'm boring! That's why I write fantasy stories… gotta spice up my normal life! LOL! Seriously though, I'm a wife and a mommy of a wonderful little boy. Up until just last month I was working as a teacher, but I've decided to stay home with my son and work on my writing… and praying God will provide!
I love Jesus so much because He knows that I am not perfect and I mess up a whole lot! That's why He came, for all us lovely mess ups! I also love Speculative fiction (fantasy, sci-fi, paranormal… anything a little weird) and if you can get me a really great Speculative/Christian/Romance, well I'm one happy camper!
What is Conception about?
Conception is the first book in a five book series called The Future Savior Series. The entire series has been pretty much planned out since the beginning so to take Conception aside and talk about it by itself is pretty difficult since it's only 1/5 of the entire story. Plus it's REALLY hard to talk about Future Savior without giving spoilers! But here's a basic breakdown:
A young woman, Christina, is mysteriously transported from her normal life to a fantasy world called Meric. There she discovers she has an amazing destiny... she's the prophesied Savior of Meric! She learns that she has unbelievable powers including visions and telekinesis. She also discovers that she has a shape-shifting Watcher (body guard) named Shaw who has been protecting her since before she was born. Plus, Shaw just so happens to be the most breath-taking, handsome, yummy man ever!
Christina sets forth on an amazing adventure that has her battling unbelievable creatures, discovering her amazing powers, uncovering fantastic mysteries, and falling in love. All the while, Christina's adventure, and the adventures of her friends, mirror Biblical stories. So not only will you be enthralled in Christina's story, you'll be grabbing your Bible to see how the stories mirror the actual Biblical events.
I definitely saw some mirroring of Biblical events in Conception! What is something the average reader wouldn't know about you?
I have three tattoos! Yep, it was a pretty crazy life before I met Jesus. I could tell you some stories… maybe I'll just write the stories!!!
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
Well, I have always loved fantastical stories. I use to write and make up stories all the time when I was a little kid. The first one I can remember was about faeries who had their magic wands stolen by evil trolls! Unfortunately, life takes us on strange trips sometimes and I ended up moving away from writing, but, thankfully, the writing bug found me again. Sometimes I wonder where I would be if I never stopped writing… but I am so happy to be doing it now!
Future Savior Book One: Conception was the first novel I ever wrote. I can't believe how people are responding to it! The Future Savior Series has actual REAL fans! How cool is that?!?! These fans really keep me going when I wonder, "Why in the world am I wasting my time writing?" I'm so thankful for my fans!
How many books have you written/published and do you have a favorite?
I currently have three books published. They are the first three books in The Future Savior Series (Conception, Resurrection and Evacuation) I am working on Future Savior Book Four: Desecration right now, which will be released on December 1st. I also just signed a contract for another four book series called Heroes of the Horde.
I think The Future Savior Series will always be very high on my favorite list because I wrote a story I would LOVE. I took every element from every story I have ever enjoyed and crammed it into one crazy series… I'm just glad other people like it too! Out of the first three I'd have to say Conception would be my favorite… only because it was the first and it got the ball rolling. However, Desecration (book 4) is nipping close at its heels. I'm having sooo much fun writing Desecration!
What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?
I obsessively bite my nails when I write. I have no idea why… but I guess it's better than eating a bunch of junk food!
Where do you like to write?
Cross-legged on my couch, my laptop on my lap, and a Speculative movie on in the background. Recent movie picks have included: Thor ***Chris Hemsworth, sigh***, Captain America, The Neverending Story, The Sorcerer's Apprentice, Star Trek ***Chris Hemsworth again***, and Immortals ***Kellan Lutz MAJOR sigh***
What is the best and/or worst part about being a writer?
The absolute best part for me so far is having fans! I am so excited The Future Savior Series has actual fans I can't even begin to tell you how cool I think it is! There are people out there who are genuinely stoked for the next book to be released!
The hardest part is self-doubt and discouragement. I've never really had a problem with writer's block or lack of ideas… I've got so many book ideas I'll be writing FORVER! But sometimes I lack self-confidence and I worry no one will enjoy my books. That's why when The Future Savior Series started getting fans it meant the world to me! It made me realize that I wasn't crazy and should keep writing.
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I love hanging out with my family and my church family. Of course, I also enjoy reading Speculative stories or watching a good movie.
Is there a place you’d like to visit, but haven’t yet?
I would LOVE to go to Ireland someday. It's been a dream of mine for a long time. I doubt I'll ever have the money to go, but you never know… maybe someday!
Do you have a favorite song and/or movie?
I've got a lot of favorite songs. It might be easier to give you my favorite bands. I grew up in the nineties so I'm a total grunge rocker… U2, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, Soundgarden and the Counting Crows are some of my favorites. But I'm also really into Christian Alternative music. My absolute favorite right now is Manic Drive. I LOVE those guys! My current jam out song is Walls by Manic Drive. If you haven't heard it go listen… it's so good!
As for movies, I'm a speculative freak. Of course very high on the list are Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings. Recently I really liked seeing The Hunger Games and The Avengers, but I think my all time favorite move is The Goonies.
Besides the Bible, what is one of your favorite books?
Ah, great question! Here's the list: The Lord of the Rings, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Hunger Games Trilogy, The River of Time Series, The Harry Potter Series, Where the Red Fern Grows, and The Stand by Stephen King.
What is your favorite dessert?
I'm not a huge sweets fan, I'm more of a salty snack person, but I'd be hard pressed to say "no" to a Peanut Buster Parfait from Dairy Queen.
Do you have a favorite Bible verse?
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope for a future." ~Jeremiah 29:11
A few this-or-that questions:
Snowstorms or Thunderstorms?
Snowstorms ~ My house was struck by lightning and burned down when I was 13… not so fond of thunderstorms after that!
Tea or Coffee?
Coffee ~ Coffee and my Bible first thing in the morning are the best things ever!
Movie Theater or DVD?
Movie Theater ~ I just love seeing a movie on the big screen… it still feels kind of magical.
Early-bird or Night-owl?
Early-bird ~ I have a four-year-old who wakes up at 5:30… I don't have a choice!
Cats or Dogs?
Cats ~ I love my fuzzy little friends!
I love cats, too! Are you currently working on any new novels? If so, could you give us a hint?
Oh! Would you like a tiny little sneak peak at Future Savior Four: Desecration? These are the very first lines in the Prologue from Desecration. Please remember that this excerpt is unedited and may vary upon publication:
Beliza's eyes filled with tears as Drexton cupped her chin with his hand. How could they survive this? He stared lovingly at her face and she gazed back at him, wondering why he sent Markella out of earshot when he pressed his lips firmly to hers, catching her completely off guard.
"I've loved you since the first moment I saw you," Drexton said. Then, quick as a flash, he was on his feet heading for the rock staircase, at the bottom of which waited an entire legion of their enemy's troops.
"Drexton!" Beliza called after him in a hushed voice, but he didn't stop. He didn't even look back. Beliza's fingertips gently touched her soft lips. She could still feel the lingering heat Drexton's kiss had left. A wave of dread washed over her. She realized Drexton must be assuming their imminent demise; otherwise he would have never kissed her. He was overly forward with his advances toward her, but deep down he was such a gentleman he would never have kissed her without permission.
"What in the world is he thinking?" Markella, the teenage Mortif warrior, asked coming up beside Beliza. The two of them hid behind a few boulders near the edge of the cliff at the bottom of which housed Leticia's fortress, Castel Terlach.
"I have no idea," Beliza replied, dread clinging to her voice. They watched as Drexton came to a screeching halt several steps down the massive staircase leading to the front of the castle.
"Howdy, folks! Nice night, wouldn't ya say!" Drexton yelled down to the troops below.
"He's crazy," Markella scoffed.
Beliza's eyes widened with shock as she looked at Drexton on the stairs. She couldn't help but agree with Markella. Drexton was crazy, she knew this from his relentless pursuit of her, but it seemed now his craziness was about to get him killed.
The troops scrambled, several began to climb the stairs. They even pulled along one of the horrifying creatures with them. These beasts looked like crocodiles only they were huge. Easily eighteen feet long from nose tip to tail. The creature was so big it barely fit on the narrow stone steps.
"You can't catch me!" Drexton actually stuck his tongue out at them, and ran away back up the steps.
"Never mind, he's not crazy. He's suicidal!" Markella jumped to her feet and pulled out her two swords from their sheaths.
Oh! Great excerpt! Thanks so much for being here! Is there anything else you’d like to tell readers and where can we find you on the web?
Hey, thanks for having me!!! I do have some very exciting news… The Future Savior Series is going to PRINT! I’m so stoked! The entire series will be in print by the end of 2013 and Book One: Conception will be available in print sometime this October. Yay!
Here's where you can find me on the web:
The Future Savior Series on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TheFutureSaviorSeries
Me on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jennifer.hartz.71
My Speculative Book Review Blog: http://read4areadreviews.blogspot.com/
Enter to win one of TWO eBook copies of Future Savior Book One: Conception! Winner can choose either a Kindle or PDF format.
Enter via the Rafflecopter below.