Sunday, October 23, 2016

Guest Post: Colors of Lady Dragon, Tela Du


I'm super excited to take part of my friend Kendra's blog tour today for her latest book! I read the first in this series (Water Princess, Fire Prince) and loved it, and I cannot wait to get into this second book. From all that I've seen, it promises to be just as amazing as the first.

But all my fangirling aside... I've invited Kendra over to talk some about the colors of Rizkaland and Lady Dragon, Tela Du. I found out a few years ago that I have a form of synesthesia (which is a blending of the senses) where I think in colors. And since that time, I've been fascinated with colors period, especially how they pertain to my favorite things and how other people see different colors. 

So, let's get started!

A bit about the book:


Book Description: 

Two girls with one face
Two girls with twisted fate
One in purple, one in red
One shall speak the other’s death
Who shall win their final war?
Lady Dragon or Tela Du?


Amber, the Lady Dragon, has been promised a fifty-year reign over Rizkaland and nothing can stop her from claiming it. But when you've lived six thousand years, fifty is such a pitiful number. Only one person can keep her from making this reign permanent - the Tela Du, a girl who shall share Amber's face.

The last thing Petra wants is a magical world interrupting her plans for a normal life, let alone an ultimate battle against the Lady Dragon with only one prophesied survivor. She has her childhood best friend, Reuben, at her side, but she's not sure if he's more of a help or a hindrance right now. Though she'd much prefer to just return home and forget about this whole crazy affair, things change when she discovers that the world has surprising connections to her own family - including her sister who disappeared without a trace two years before. Still, Rizkaland can't possibly expect her to risk her very life, can it?


Buy the Book:

Kendra's Guest Post

A couple years ago, Kiri wrote a post about how she thinks in colors and images, a post which I found very intriguing because I do pretty much the same thing. Not so much the images part, but very much the colors. I associate people with colors, ideas with colors, even days with colors. Sometimes I can't even quite put my finger on what that color is, but it's still a color. 

The strongest place where this comes into effect is literature - both the stories I read and the stories I write. After reading one book earlier this year, the best way I could describe it to my sister was, "This is a very yellow story. When it comes to my writing, I can quicker tell you the color of a particular character than what they look like. I can tell you the color of a scene, but not necessarily the description of the setting. Kinda frustrating sometimes.

And that's actually what I'm here to talk about - the colors that I associate with Lady Dragon, Tela Du.

First of all, the story as a whole is gold. A rich gold, with streaks of lemon yellow and brush strokes of red. A lot of this is because a good number of the notebooks I used to write LDTD were yellow or red, and a lot of it is because those are the colors I associate with family and sacrifice.

The book is divided into five parts, and each part also has a distinct color.

Part 1 is dark, black and dark gray, with a few glimpses of a some pastel yellow and green.

Part 2 is brighter, with emerald green, rich golds, and some lavender.

Part 3 is also green, but a darker green. And some darker purple.

Part 4 gets dark again, bringing back some black. There is some rich red and gold in this part too, though.

Part 5 has golds and whites, but then turns dark blue and even black for the climax.

And almost every character has their own character.

The titular characters are obvious - Amber, the Lady Dragon, is red and black, while Petra is puple.

Reuben is green, ranging from emerald green to hunter green. 

Granite is multiple shades of gray.

Ashna is pastel colors - pastel blue, pastel green, and pastel yellow. 

Noraeto is steel blue.

Summer is turquoise and brown.

Tyler is tan.

Alphego is white and gold.

Author Bio:
Kendra E. Ardnek is a homeschool graduate who picked up a pen at an early age and never put it down. The eldest of four, she makes her home in the Piney Woods of East Texas with her parents, younger siblings, giant herd of giraffes, and honor guard of nutcrackers. 

Blog:

Official Website:

Oh, and today is the last day of the tour that the first book of the series, Water Princess, Fire Prince, will be free on kindle

Friday, August 19, 2016

Let's Play Catch-Up

Well, here I am. Kiri back again. And I've finally gotten my blog back under control after a certain pair of pesky royal twins took over a few weeks ago. I will admit, they kept those few days of my novella's promotion quite lively. And yes, I did enjoy reading over their posts. 

I'd also like to thank you all for the enthusiastic response I've received over The Rose and the Balloon. I could say so much on this, how much it all means to me, but I won't gush. I was so afraid to release the book to the world, so afraid of how people would receive it, but this has been nothing like what I expected. Thank you, thank you all for your support. 

The reason I was absent for so long was because my mother had an unexpected trip to the hospital. During the end of July, she was having intense pain in her abdomen, and then on August 2nd, the pain grew so much that she finally consented to go see a doctor. From there, she went immediately to the hospital and had an emergency surgery on her appendix. Praise the Lord, it all went well, but she was in the hospital for a week after the surgery. I am very grateful for the care she received, but it was interesting living a week without Momma at home. And busy for my sisters and I, keeping on top of everything. But we managed all right. 

And now, I am offering a farewell of sorts, since I leave next week to return to school. I'm very excited to start my third year as a Creative Writing major! As always, I don't know how much time I'll have to be on blogger, but I'll do my best to pop on from time to time. 

God bless!

Thursday, August 4, 2016

We Share Our Photos... And Ask for Your Questions

Nicolas here.

And the more popular royal twin, Nicoline.

Sorry for being late, random people. Kiri's been really busy, and we couldn't get into her computer before now.

I think she may know now that we're doing the posts for her, but...

She's not mad.

Oh, no! Of course not!

Anywho, since we're so late with getting around to this post...

And we have to get back soon. Dmitri won't be pleased if he finds us here.

Today, we're going to share some photos from Kiri's pinterest board

With our comments.

Ready?

Let's go!


old hot air balloon  | Recent Photos The Commons Getty Collection Galleries World Map App ...:
Early on, Kiri knew she wanted to include some kind of steampunk inspiration, so hot air balloons suddenly appeared in the sky.
Not that she can remember where they came from. 
No, she just said that she's always wanted to write a story about hot air balloons.
Although, there really aren't any other Beauty and the Beast stories with hot air balloons in them. 
Nope. We're an original.


Beauty and the Beast ~ Just as I envision the scene.:
Kiri loves the Disney film.
Yes, she does.
And with our story, she wanted to make some connections to the film, just for fun. One of the most important was this iconic scene.
You know, I've not actually seen the film.
You should. The music is awesome. Anyway, Kiri wanted to keep this scene in the book as close to the same scene in the movie, so she was very thankful when Janelle had that happen just exactly so.



roses:
Roses are a huge part of Beauty and the Beast.
Ha. That's an understatement. They're basically the reason that Beauty and the Beast get together.
So, Kiri knew she had to include them.
The real question though was: How?
Exactly. But she's a rather smart one, when it comes to writers. She decided to put it all backwards - have the Beast's mother destroy the Beauty's roses.
Well, technically, it was the Beauty's father's roses, but...
Just a technicality. And then, of course, our whole entire kingdom had to go and love roses.
Including our mother. If you've ever offered rose petal stew...
Just don't. Don't eat it. This is one of the few things that Nicoline and I completely agree on.


Library in the castle:
The library is one of the most important places in the book.
No, it isn't. The West Wing is.
No, dear sister, I'm pretty sure it's the library. That's where all the best things happen.
Um, where you tried to trick me? I don't think so.
Ha! That was an awesome prank! Janelle was a genius with that one. Ow! Don't hit.
Let's move on, shall we?


Beauty and the Beast.:
The rose was one of the first things that presented a real problem. 
See, Kiri wanted it to be the glowing rose from the fairytale.
But she doesn't like to write about magic.
So, that was the problem: How to get a glowing rose without using magic? How could you do it?
She used science.
Nicoline, you stole my thunder.
Now, who's the slow twin? *gloats* 
You're a pest.
Enter steampunk into the story. Enter my victory in this post.
In your dreams, sis.


The feather duster that danced...:
This was the best part!
It was a feather duster.
But you enjoyed it, too!
Nicoline, of course I enjoyed it. But I'm not going to plaster that I liked a feather duster all over the internet. What will that do to my reputation?
Wait, like you have any reputation to uphold?
*grumps*

Now, if you have any questions for the two of us, Nicoline and Nicolas, twin royals of Rohesia, please write them below in the comment box!

Oh, yes! Please ask us all assortment of questions. Whatever you can think of! We'll put together a post and answer them all sometime probably later next week.

And no, this is not an excuse for us to confiscate Kiri's computer again. Thank you, random people!

And good night!


Cover Reveal for Lady Dragon, Tela Du

Kiri is busy with family things going on...

So, the royal twins are here again. You can read more about us here. Nicolas, scoot over. I can't comfortably reach the keyboard.

Nicoline, stop it. You have plenty of room. And you'll have to excuse us, random people. We've taken it upon ourselves to put together this cover reveal post for Kiri.

Only we've never done a cover reveal before.

We've never done much of anything before on the internet.

Anyway, this is for Kendra Ardnek's newest book, a wonder of a thing called Lady Dragon, Tela Du. 

Kiri got to read the first one, and I think she rather enjoyed it.

Enjoyed it? Didn't you hear her squealing about it? If I could figure out how to use her Kindle, I'd read it. 

Wait, so is that what an ebook is?

I guess. I'm slowly figuring these things out.

Ha! Slow is the right word for you. Ouch!

You deserved that slap, you little wretch. Now let's do this cover reveal thing. I don't think we're doing it right just yet.

No. First, we need to post a summary of the book. Do you have it?

Two girls with one face
Two girls with twisted fate
One in purple, one in red
One shall speak the other’s death
Who shall win their final war?
Lady Dragon or Tela Du?

Amber, the Lady Dragon, has been promised a fifty-year reign over Rizkaland and nothing can stop her from claiming it. But when you've lived six thousand years, fifty is such a pitiful number. Only one person can keep her from making this reign permanent - the Tela Du, a girl who shall share Amber's face.


The last thing Petra wants is a magical world interrupting her plans for a normal life, let alone an ultimate battle against the Lady Dragon with only one prophesied survivor. She has her childhood best friend, Reuben, at her side, but she's not sure if he's more of a help or a hindrance right now. Though she'd much prefer to just return home and forget about this whole crazy affair, things change when she discovers that the world has surprising connections to her own family - including her sister who disappeared without a trace two years before. Still, Rizkaland can't possibly expect her to risk her very life, can it?

Annnd then, about the author.

No, we're supposed to post Kiri's interview first.

No. Author biography!

Interview!

Nicolas!


Kendra E. Ardnek is a homeschool graduate who picked up a pen at an early age and never put it down. The eldest of four, she makes her home in the Piney Woods of East Texas with her parents, younger siblings, giant herd of giraffes, and honor guard of nutcrackers. 

You really are a pest, you know that, right?

Oh, of course, sister dear. Otherwise you wouldn't love me like you do. Hey, look, she likes giraffes and nutcrackers! 

I'd like a nutcracker!

You are a nut without a cracker. Ouch!

Time for the interview. Kiri was pretty excited to post this one. She told me so. Ready?

1. Just because I'm fascinated with editing right now *cough*noreason*cough*, what was one of the hardest scenes to edit in this book?

I do this thing while I'm editing that I just delete all memory of struggling as soon as it's done, so ... I'm having trouble calling something to mind. However, the scene I'm working on now has been a bit difficult. It was a lot of action and description, and I had left it clunky while writing, so it's been difficult to clean it up.


2. What one (or two or three) Pinterest pins did you find yourself most inspired by when working on this book?


Reuben and Petra:

Since Petra had two sisters who disappeared only to be forgotten by all of her family, it’d be understandable if she’s a bit wary of the same happening to her. This pin represents a touching scene between her and Reuben on that note.


Reuben and Petra:

Reuben and Petra gain telepathic powers over the course of the book, and I blame this pin for some of the finer details of their mental link. It may not be immediately obvious what those details might be, but you’ll find out over the course of the book.


"Reuben, go put on a shirt." "You need a hug."

The chapter that this pin inspired happens to be one of my favorites in the entire book. I had found a whole bunch of romantic pins that day, involving different degrees of hugging and handholding. This one I put the caption, "Reuben, go put on a shirt." "You need a hug." on it because I don’t normally post pictures of shirtless guys … and I probably would have left it alone and pretty much forgot about it, but one of my readers posted the comment, “Fine, I’ve been hugged, now go put on a shirt.” and I knew I had to include the scene in the book.


3. And I'm shamelessly stealing this question from some of your recent interviews, but it's an epic question, and I'm *really* curious now. Please tell us a little bit about your MBTI personality type and how it affects your writing?

I'm an ENFP, one of those rare extroverted writers. The most obvious effect is that there are a lot of ENFP's among my characters. (Petra, remarkably, isn't one - she proved to be an INTJ instead ... but her love interest, Reuben, is an ENFP.)

I've always had a huge imagination and have thrown myself into my stories. When I played with my dolls, I became them, I didn't just direct the story. I never had an imaginary friend, because I was my imaginary friends. The same is true of my writing today. My characters aren't people I watch, I live their stories with them, which is why I write deep POV, usually Limited Third or First. The few times that I've attempted Omniscient ... usually end up predominately in one character's head by the time I'm done with a scene.

I'm not afraid of risks and going against the tried and true. I write the stories I want to write because those are the stories I want to write. I don't like writing rules, and I don't like people telling me that something's cliched. In fact "cliche" to me just means "this has lost all meaning, time to infuse new life into it!" It's also why I love world building - I get to create so many brilliant what-ifs and watch them work.

I'm a social writer. Writing is a way for me to connect to people and I love talking to and engaging with my readers. I'm also very open with my writing and I'm not afraid to let people read my rough drafts.

I don't outline. As a P, I like to keep my options open. This doesn't mean that I don't have the story planned (because if I don't, it ends up a mess), but I never write any plans down beyond what I call "snippeting" - or in other words, writing scenes ahead of time to get a feel for the story and characters. I want to be able to change the story based on the nuances of the characters, and I want the characters to surprise me.


And, finally, it means I'm easily distracted and terrible with - oh look, a squirrel!

Now can we post the cover?

Sure, let's post it now. I think we've managed to cover everything else.

And make sure you put it in really big. 


I like that! Now Kiri's gonna have to get it, so I can read that one, too.

Hey, look Kendra sent a snippet! Let's post that!

She navigated through the bookshelves and got turned around a few times, but she finally found a corner with a number of large, fluffy chairs. Reuben was sprawled in one, nose buried in one of the books, the other three on a small table beside him.

She hesitated a moment, reluctant to interrupt him as he looked like he was enjoying the book so much. But since she knew that he would never forgive her if there was food involved and she didn’t offer it to him, she marched over, pulled the glasses off of his face, and deftly tucked them into his shirt pocket. She had long ago discovered this to be the quickest, most efficient method to bring him back from the realm of story.

He blinked and looked up at her, though his mind was clearly still miles away. “Have you any idea how to get through the Mountain?”

“No. I don’t. Are you hungry?”

He blinked twice, and this time she saw him pop back to the here and now. “I am, now that you mention it.” He snapped the book shut – allowing Petra to see that the title was Water Princess, Fire Prince – and stood up. “What is there to eat?” he asked, setting the book on the top of the stack.


And important links. Can't forget about those. 


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

We Just Checked Kiri's Email!

And The Rose and the Balloon is available on the Kindle!

Nicolas, may I please speak first for one of these posts? Why do you get to tell all the exciting news?

Well, I am the faster twin. I just can't help that.

*glares* Anyway, random people, if you're interested in picking up a Kindle version of our story, please CLICK HERE to visit Amazon. 

And enjoy reading the story!

You know we're probably lucky Kiri hasn't seen all of our posts yet. 

Our Favorite Snippets From RatB

Nicolas here again, random people. 

And Nicoline. Why are you calling them random people?

I don't know. They're people, and they're random. It fits.

Anyway, we wanted to take some time here today to share with you all some of our favorite snippets and such from our story. 

Unfortunately, Kiri had her laptop off for a long while today, and we don't know her password so we had to wait for her to turn it on this afternoon to check her email before we were able to get to this post. Hope you enjoy this!



~*~*~*~

A voice spoke from behind him. “It's rather pretty.”

Dmitri turned to smile at the speaker but frowned when he saw only one person standing there. “Nicoline, where's Nicolas?”

His sister shrugged. “I don't know. He said he had a surprise for you.”

Dmitri scowled. Young Prince Nicolas, full of the unfortunate mischief that plagued most twelve-year-old boys, did not usually have very good surprises. Most of them resulted in a mess that Dmitri himself had to clean up. He did not look forward to this newest surprise. Nicoline, however, was not disturbed by whatever trouble her twin was up to now.

“What's with the frown?” she asked. “Aren't you happy?”

“Perfectly.” The word came out in a growl.

She only laughed. “It could be worse. Mother could start off your courtships again.”


Dmitri winced, remembering the fiascoes of visiting dignitaries and supposedly eligible young ladies of rank. Nicoline was right; it could be worse – far worse.

~*~*~*~

“Whoops!”

Janelle jumped at the sudden yell, and something behind her splatted. She whirled to find a smashed cream pie on the floor – right where she’d been standing.

“Sorry, sorry. It slipped. I didn't mean to get you.”

Janelle peeked behind the broad door to see a young boy descending a ladder leaning against the floor-to-wall shelves. His light hair was mussed and he was missing both shoes, although his clothes spoke of his obvious wealth. When he reached the floor and turned, Janelle instantly knew him.

“Prince Nicolas.”

He waved away her curtsy. “Don't bother with that. Did I get you?”

“No, I remain unscathed, Your Highness.”

“That's a relief, but now I have to go back to the kitchen for another pie. I was going to drop it on my sister,” he explained. “I really didn't mean to aim for you. I just thought that Nicoline was early.”


Janelle felt her eyebrows go up. “Do you usually play jokes like that on your sister?”

~*~*~*~

One morning, Janelle found herself hanging over the balcony in the ballroom with Nicoline. She held multiple threads in her hands and looked down to where the girls had tied a feather duster to the opposite ends.

“You think this is going to work?” Nicoline asked.

Janelle smiled. “I used to do this all the time with my cousin. I just hope my fingers remember what they used to do.”

The balcony wasn't incredibly high, but looking down at the duster below them made Janelle's head swim – just a little bit. She shoved the feeling down fiercely. Now was not the time to get dizzy.


“Shh! Here he comes!” Nicoline ducked behind the railing as footsteps sounded below them. Janelle hunched, out of sight, but still able to see everything clearly. Nicolas marched into the ballroom. He stopped short when he saw the feather duster suspended in thin air a foot off the floor, standing upright as if it were a real person.

~*~*~*~

Hope you enjoyed all of those! And no, we did not pick out scenes with us in them on purpose.

Hey, was this a whole post where we didn't actually fight at all while writing it?

Nicolas, we really don't fight all the time, you know.

No, we just like people to think that we do. Helps our reputation as royal twins. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

The All-Amazing Prince Nicolas Talks About Twins

Hello, random people, Nicolas here, again. My dear twin Nicoline isn't here with us today, and I really couldn't say where she is. There was a situation with a cream pie, and... well, she's not here to write the post with me.

So, I just wanted to take the time for a moment to tell you some things about being a twin. First of all, don't ask me what it's like to actually be a twin. Because I really wouldn't know how to answer that. I don't know what it's like to not be a twin. 

Nicoline has been my best friend and my worst enemy... since birth. I really don't remember which one of us is older. I think our older brother Dmitri knows, but he won't tell me. I keep asking, because I'm pretty sure I'm the older twin. But if I was the older twin, that would be awesome. Nicoline would hate it, and that would be so much fun. But Dmitri won't tell us which is older. 

Older brothers really can be a pest sometimes.

But who's the better twin? Obviously, me! I'm smarter, better looking, more popular... only Nicoline probably would never admit to all of that. 

But being a twin really is a lot of fun! I know most of you probably will never understand what I'm talking about, but anyway. It's like having a built-in partner to do everything with. There's always someone to pester. 

But, no. Nicoline and I do not, repeat DO NOT, switch places. That would be highly disturbing. After all, I'm a dashing, royal prince, and she's only my sister. When we were little people used to mix us up all time, but then I thankfully got old enough to wear real trousers, and Nicoline grew her hair out longer. 

And, I don't like to admit it, but we do sometimes finish each other's sentences. It's rare, though, considering that we usually don't like to think the same about things. Every once in a while, we work well together.

The only problem with my twin is that Nicoline is a girl. We used to argue horribly about what we wanted to do, because Nicoline couldn't see the sense of having a sword fight in the ballroom, and I really don't like tea parties. Dmitri used to make us take turns at choosing what we were going to do - one day was Nicoline's and we'd do whatever she wanted to do. Then, the next day was mine, and we'd do all the fun stuff.

But that was before Nicoline and I started our competition. It all began when I hid a toad inside the tea pot during a tea party that I was forced to attend. After that, she coated my sword hilt with honey, and then we progressed to more and more pranks. 

The ultimate goal of our competition is to eventually kill each other. But it's all in fun. I'm going to win, of course, and poor Nicoline just can't agree to that. 

Of course, she's not happy for the stunt I pulled right at the beginning of our book. But it really wasn't my fault that the balloon destroyed Lord Roux's garden. It really wasn't! But, Nicoline is intent on blaming me for everything, and therefore, I am behind on the competition. 

Never fear, I have some plans to catch up, and pull ahead in our competition. I always have a plan. I...

Nicolas, what's going on?

Ahh! Nicoline, don't do that!

What are you doing??

Writing a blog post. Nope! Sorry, can't read it. It's already live.

Um, no, it's not. What did you write?

Nothing important!

Nicolas! Don't publish it before I get to proofread it!

Like I said. I'm the faster twin. Hey, random people, go read our book.