Saturday, September 19, 2020

THE MIDNIGHT SHOW Paperbacks Now Available!

 

Hey'a, all! I'm happy to announce that The Midnight Show is now available in paperback! Thanks, everyone, for your patience as I sorted things out with KDP and formatting requirements. You can purchase your copy of the book here on Amazon.

Also, signed bookplates WILL be available as promised! Today through Tuesday, September 22, after you purchase The Midnight Show in paperback, you can claim your signed bookplate by filling out this Google form with your address and proof of purchase.
 
Thanks again! I hope you enjoy the book, and if you do, make sure to leave a review on Amazon and Goodreads!

Friday, September 18, 2020

Fall 2020 Reads (Ft. MUCH EXCITEMENT!)

Hello, everyone! Fall is somehow upon us — which keeps throwing me off, to be honest. Even with my sister back at Cedarville, a significant part of me still feels like it's supposed to be June or July or something. But, on the upside, we have a new season's worth of books to get excited for! (Never mind that I'm at least a year behind on reading in general . . . it's fine.) And some of this fall's releases are ones I've been looking forward to for a very long time indeed.

Fall 2020 Reads

1. Dear Hero by Hope Bolinger and Alyssa Roat (September 2020). Superheroes and and a story told, somewhat like Illuminae, primarily through messages between the characters? Sign me up! Also, the concept — that there is, essentially, a hero/villain nemesis site that works like a dating app — sounds absolutely golden.

2. The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes (September 1). Mystery! Puzzles! Strange inheritances! Probably murder! Secrets! I am a fan, as you can tell. I'm 90% hoping that this will be a properly puzzle-and-riddle-filled book. Odds are that it'll end up disproportionately focused on romance, but, y'know. A girl can dream.

3. Legendborn by Tracy Deonn (September 15). Urban fantasy and King Arthur vibes? Storms yes; hand it over! (Also: a little bit of mystery/detective vibe? Maybe? This may just be wishful thinking, I don't know.) I haven't read a good King Arthur-based story in a while; let's hope this one delivers.

4. Return of the Thief by Megan Whalen Turner (October 6). Ahhhhhh I've been waiting so long for this! Or I feel like I have, haha. I'm so sad that the series is ending, but at the same time, I'm excited to return to this world and these characters after so long, especially since it's going to be another Eugenides-focused novel. (I love A Conspiracy of Kings and Thick as Thieves, but Gen-centric stories are my favorite.)

5. The Monster in the Hollows and The Warden and the Wolf King by Andrew Peterson (October 6, rerelease). The rerelease of these got pushed back a long while because of at least one of the many trials and terrors of 2020 (I can't remember which), but that's ok — it just means more time to get excited. That said, I do have eARCs of these, and I'm currently rereading Monster in the Hollows, and I love the art in these new editions. I know I said that about the new editions of the first two, but it really is one of my favorite things.

6. Swamp Thing: Twin Branches by Maggie Stiefvater (October 13). I think this is a graphic novel? Which I have recently gotten back into reading, so that's cool. Apparently it's also related to some DC Comics super-something, which . . . I do not care about. It sounds like a good story, and I know Maggie Stiefvater does beautiful-magical-and-creepy very well indeed, and that is what I care about.


7. The Merchant of Menace by Kendra E. Ardnek (October 19). So, I forgot this when I originally made this list. Oops. I blame the fact that it didn't show up in the proper section of my Goodreads TBR list. Anyway. I am currently alpha-reading this book, and I can confirm that it's pretty fun. It takes a special author to combine Cinderella, The Merchant of Venice, and The Odyssey and make it work, but Kendra manages. (Kendra also has a promo going on where if you preorder the ebook and let her know, you have a chance to win a paperback copy, if she gets ten preorders. So you should go do that.) 

8. Among the Beasts and Briars by Ashley Poston (October 20). Ok, the description doesn't say fey explicitly . . . but I'm hearing fey. Like, properly magical and wild and wondrous fey. And the description also implies there's a magical fox in the book, which — what more could I ask for? The only thing better than a magical (probably faerie) fox is a magical (faerie) cat. (We all know who I'm talking about here, right?)

9. Magic Dark and Strange by Kelly Powell (October 27). It's a historical fantasy mystery with a heavy dose of delicious creepiness; how could I resist? Even if the lead character's power does sound a bit sketch, the story sounds too good to pass up. The few reviews that are currently up also imply that the romance is pretty low-key, so that's a bonus.

10. These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong (November 17). I'm not sure if this is historical fantasy or historical magical realism, but either way, it sounds pretty great. A Romeo and Juliet retelling in 1920s Shanghai? With monsters and madness and murder (mystery?) mayhem? I'm here for it.

11. Rhythm of War by Brandon Sanderson (November 17). IT'S ALMOST HERE! For a given defintion of almost. I am so excited to get back to Kaladin and Shallan and Adolin and Lift and the rest. And, yes, I know they're posting the first part of the book chapter-by-chapter on Tor.com, and no, I have not been reading it. I want to wait until it comes out, then devour it all at once. Or, you know, in a few sittings, since it's a big book. In any case, I am SO EXCITED.

What books are you looking forward to this fall? Did I miss any on my list? Please tell me in the comments!
Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Tattered Slippers Blog Tour: Spotlight on Vicia!

 

Hello, everyone! So, the Tattered Slippers blog tour technically ended, what, a week ago? But due to some issues on the author's end, A Time of Mourning and Dancing got pushed back, and the associated blog posts got pushed back even further. Still, it's never too late to share about good books, so . . . have a character spotlight.

About . . .

A Time of Mourning and Dancing

The Floramancy Archives #1
Once, Toph knew his place in the world. As a respected captain in a victorious army, he had triumph and promotion to look forward to. But crippling injury stole his future and war stole his friend. Belonging nowhere and with nothing left to lose, Toph accepts a challenge that could end his life: discover a secret the princesses will do anything to hide.

Vicia is a princess, but powerless and in mourning. Her beloved brothers were killed in a war she’s beginning to question. Ever since, she and her eleven sisters have become mere treasure for her stepfather the king to use to barter. A chance meeting with a frightened faery gave a wild hope that they may recover what they’ve lost. But it will cost a dance—and a dangerous secret.

Soldier and princess must learn to rely on each other if they are to survive curses, slighted fae, and an enchanted lost land. Something dark and powerful lurks in the mists beyond the dance floor, conducting the steps… and time is running out.

Find it on: Amazon || Goodreads

 

Abigail Falanga

Abigail Falanga may be found in New Mexico creating magic in many ways – with fabric, food, paper, music, and especially with words! She’s loved fantasy ever since playing out epic adventures of swords, fairies, and monsters with her siblings, and loved sci-fi since her dad’s stories around the dinner table. Abigail has published nearly two dozen flash fiction stories across a variety of genres, having discovered that extra-short stories are a wonderful way to explore ideas without getting distracted by – Squirrel! But fantasy and fairytales are her first and truest loves. She's launching "The Floramancy Archives" - dark and epic fantasy reimaginings of classic tales, filled with plant-magic and portals, curses and fae.

Find her online at: Website || Goodreads || Facebook || Twitter || Instagram || Amazon 

The Tattered Slippers

The Tattered Slippers are six retellings of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairytale, each one fantastical and magical. You don't want to miss any of them! You can learn more about the books and find the full tour schedule on the tour page.

The Tattered Slippers are the result of the 2019 Arista Challenge. The Arista Challenge is hosted by Kendra E. Ardnek; it invites fairy tale authors to come together in community as they work on unique retellings of a selected fairy tale.

Character Spotlight: Vicia

Princess Vicia—born the eldest daughter of Queen Flora and King Oliver, coregents of the kingdom of Merimor—is a beautiful woman in her late twenties, with long dark hair and forest-green eyes. Destined for leadership of her country or in alliance with another. Fiercely loving older sister, pampered and sheltered princess, intelligent and capable but often under the mask of being just another silly girl.

Vicia was given the same name as her faerie godmother, Sweetpea, but decided that the Latin form was more dignified and went with that from about the age of ten onwards. As the eldest of five full sisters, she always had a sense of responsibility and maturity.

Although the culture of Merimor and the surrounding kingdoms expects a male leader on the throne and only men go to war, Vicia was groomed from an early age to rule competently and wield a sword. After all, she has no full brothers and was therefore next in line to the throne. She was trained in all the ways of ruling a country, just as a prince would have been, and is as well-versed in swordplay and politics as she is in embroidery and music.

She is haughty and clever, sure of herself and strong, and prepared to put down prelates and princes in conversation. Sheltered by her upbringing in the palace, she has little acquainted with the ways of commoners and often looks down on those she thinks her inferiors.

But she is also kind, generous, gracious, and has strong and good principles. She may not understand the ways of ordinary folk, but she has compassion on them. And she dearly loves her sisters and is always willing to have fun with them.

Vicia has known tragedy from an early age. Her father died when she was young, and King Victor, the man her mother remarried, was often cruel. She gained brothers and sisters with the remarriage, however, and grew to love them as dearly as her own siblings. And then her mother died and her stepfather took control of Merimor, remarrying an ambitious woman named Varella whose sole aim in life is now to marry off her stepdaughters.

 It was always assumed that Vicia would marry her eldest stepbrother, Forest, and rule the country after the death of her stepfather.

Until her dear brothers were killed at the end of a long war.

Vicia does a very good job of hiding her sadness and struggles. While it appears at first that she and her sisters are thoughtlessly wearing their slippers to shreds, and heartlessly not telling why even though their secret has already cost the lives of six men, the truth is far more complicated than a simple dance. The princesses are playing a dangerous and urgently important game.

She has been overlooked and put aside her whole life, trapped by wartime politics and the expectations of her cruel stepparents. But the time has come for her to take control of the destiny of her kingdom, and herself.

~~~

Are you excited to meet Vicia? Please tell me in the comments!
Thanks for reading!

 

Friday, September 4, 2020

August 2020 Doings!

 Hello, everyone! First things first: today is the last day of nominations for the Silmaril Awards! If you haven't yet nominated and seconded all your favorite characters, make sure you go do that ASAP! And now, since that's been said: let's get on with the Doings!

Writing!

  • As you probably noticed if you were anywhere near my blog or my social media last week: I published a book! Which is very exciting! The Midnight Show, a Jazz-Age-inspired retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses, is now available in Kindle format on Amazon. It's also in Kindle Unlimited, so yeah. You should check it out. We're still working on the paperback, but as I said on Wednesday, I'm doing my best to get it out as soon as possible.
  • Unsurprisingly, I spent a very solid chunk of the month doing final proofs and edits on The Midnight Show, formatting files, and prepping blog posts for the tour. In related news: I now know how to format ebooks in InDesign. Whoooo! (This doesn't sound like a big deal, probably. Trust me when I say that it feels like a big deal to me.)
  • I've also been working on my D&D campaign, though that's slowed down a bit because I can only do limited planning until I know what my players decide at an upcoming juncture. In the meantime, I've started writing a second campaign. This one is loosely inspired by one of my favorite video games and is a lot more dungeon-crawl-y than Defenders of Serys, but I think it'll be fun. And I mentioned it to some of my players before our last D&D session, and they seemed enthusiastic about the idea.

 Reading!

  • This was another pretty solid reading month. About half of what I read this month, was, unsurprisingly, a Twelve Dancing Princesses retelling or other fairy tale retelling. I read all the Tattered Slippers books, of course, and enjoyed all of them. (If you want my thoughts on them, just scroll back to last week.) And because I was on a fairy tale kick, I reread the Princess of the Midnight Ball trilogy, which was actually just as good as I remembered it being.
  • Also in the realm of retellings, though not fairy-tale ones, were Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett (a reread) and, to a certain degree, Bloodlust and Bonnets, a graphic novel by Emily McGovern that kind of sends-up both Austen and Romantic literature. Wyrd Sisters was excellent, and better on the reread than it was the first time around. Bloodlust and Bonnets was . . . not my favorite thing. In hindsight, I don't know why I thought I would enjoy it that much, since the author's webcomics tend to be hit-or-miss for me. But it did sound like it could have been funny. Oh well. Lessons learned.
  • (I later soothed my desire for an actually-good graphic novel by rereading Nimona, which was excellent.)
  • The last few books of the month were all somewhat mixed bags. Whisper of the Tide was the sequel to Song of the Current, and it alternated between being enjoyably nautical/piratical and frustratingly fraught with communication issues. The ending was good. The middle . . . well, there was a point where I was halfway tempted to just not finish. Caraval was an interesting concept with a lot of potential, but it had too much romantic and relational angst and too little of the actual Caraval. And Crimson Bound is what I'm currently reading; I think it has potential, but I'm not crazy about it thus far.

Watching!

  • I'm still primarily watching Critical Role, though I've slowed down a little. This is partially because I'm busy and having a harder time fitting it in and partially because Travis and Laura are gone on baby leave and I knew from spoilers that another one of my favorite characters was . . . also about to not be around anymore. And so I kind of procrastinated a bunch on a particular episode. But I got through it! And now I'm continuing to move along through the show! And soon Travis and Laura will be back, so that'll be great!
  • I also started watching both Cowboy Bebop and My Hero Academia, sort of. By that, I mean that I watched the first three episodes of Cowboy Bebop and the first five or six episodes of My Hero Academia while my family was taking my sister back to college and then after that they had to compete with (1) Critical Role and (2) actual responsibilities for my attention and it hasn't exactly been winning. Hopefully, I will change that soon! Hopefully!
  • It is really weird watching anime after having not watched it in so long. I forgot how little tends to happen in an episode. And also how characters have a tendency to be so dramatic about so much stuff. I'm not saying that in a bad way, just in a "this is a thing that happens" way.
  • I'm also having a really hard time figuring out what people's names are in My Hero Academia (with a few exceptions), but that's mostly because I keep trying to match up names I've seen associated with fanart with names used in the show, and I think a bunch of people use last names with fanart? Though I could be wrong?
  • They're both good shows, though. I enjoyed them. And I look forward to watching more when I have time.
  • Other than that, I watched a few movies with the family. On the recommendation of Jenelle Schmidt, I went ahead and gave the newer Casino Royale a chance, and I have to say, I liked it much, much better than Goldfinger. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that it was my favorite of the actual movies I saw this month. My second favorite was WarGames, an older sci-fi movie. I don't know that I'd watch it again unless someone I was with really wanted to, but it involved hacking and artificial intelligence in a fairly interesting way. Also, it was reasonably accurate hacking in terms of how it was done? So that was kind of fun, even if the premise was rather out there. At the bottom of my list in terms of how much I liked them were Spellbound (cool premise, but the female lead frustrated me) and Hello, Dolly! (which was just generally not my thing, and I didn't buy any but one of the four different romantic couples). I can see why other people would like both of them. They just aren't my thing.

Life!

  • So, my sister went back to college. I didn't, for obvious reasons. This is the first semester-start in four years that I haven't made the trek up to Cedarville. It felt . . . kind of weird? But at the same time, I'm so glad that I don't have to deal with things like having chapel outside or the massive crowds in the dining hall or any of that.
  • I also had the house to myself for a weekend, which was pretty nice. I didn't have internet for the weekend because the hotspot went with the rest of my family, but I did a bunch of gaming (I played through the entirety of The Silent Age and Portal and started Portal 2) and watched stuff on the actual TV rather than my tablet or laptop and listened to music with no headphones. It was nice. (Also: can you tell I'm an introvert?)
  • I would like to add that The Silent Age hits different when you play it during a pandemic. To reveal minimal spoilers, it involves traveling back and forth from the future to prevent a plague from causing the end of the world. Technically, the future year you're traveling to is 2012. Had the developers made it 2021, well, I probably would've been like "Yeah, that seems reasonable."
  • And because I'm on a gaming kick at the moment, I also restarted Undertale, which I technically started playing back in March or April and have been continuing on and off since. But I got stuck on the spider fight, so I decided to restart so I could get an item from the beginning of the game that will hopefully either shorten the fight or let me bypass it entirely. Hopefully. Fingers crossed. (I'm playing the True Pacifist mode, for anyone curious. So that makes it more difficult.)
  • On a more serious note, I'm still working on finding a job beyond self-published author. The Tor.com internship fell through, sadly — not that I really expected it to work out. I did manage to get a contract/freelance position doing copywriting for Study.com, which is nice — the writing isn't hard, and the pay isn't bad, and obviously, it's pretty flexible. But I am still looking for something else. To that end, I had a job interview with one company yesterday — my first actual in-person interview, believe it or not. As of the writing of this post, I'm waiting to find out what will and won't come of that.
  • In the meantime, I've gone back to trying to teach myself to draw. It's going fairly well, even though I'm basically having to relearn everything I figured out when I first attempted this two summers ago. I've gotten back to the point where I can draw a face without thinking it looks bad, and occasionally it actually looks reasonably good.

September Plans

  • With The Midnight Show (mostly) published, I have three major things on my plate:
    1. Continue job-hunting, assuming that I don't get offered the position I interviewed for. (I'm operating under this assumption until corrected; it's less likely to end in disappointment. For all that I try to be an optimist, I can't deny the advantages of pessimism, and I'm unfortunately good at it.)
    2. Keep working on and hopefully finish the first draft of Blood in the Soil/Earth. I know I've hit either endgame or something close to it, and I hope that I'll get back to the scenes where it's easier to write 500 words than 100 soon — you know what I mean, when the words are flowing freely enough that you don't want to stop for fear of losing your train of thought. The trouble is that I don't know how many of those scenes I have left; I know for sure that I have at least three days and three nights of narrative left. (Also, before anyone gets excited . . . this first draft is very rough and is going to require at least one full rewrite. It may require two.)
    3. Figure out for sure if I'm writing a Frosted Roses story (I think I am, and I posted about my main idea in the group) and, if I am, hopefully get started on it. If I end up on a roll with Blood in the Soil/Earth, though, this will get pushed back.
  • Outside of those three things, I'm going to continue writing my D&D campaigns. I think I'll be able to go back to working on Defenders of Serys as my main fairly soon, but we'll see. In the meantime, I'll continue having fun with writing the new campaign. It really is a nice change of pace.
  • On the reading front, I think a lot of my reading plans are going to be defined by who ends up moving on to the voting round of the Silmaril Awards. After all, I want to make sure I'm well-prepared to write the finalists well in the awards ceremony post! At the moment, it looks like I'm going to get to reread some of my favorite books and some books I've been meaning to reread or read for a while, so that's very exciting. I'll also be rereading the third and fourth Wingfeather books, because those release in October! Huzzah!
  • But, yeah. Unless I get a job, it'll probably just be more of the same old same old, with a little bonus urgency to hurry up and finish the hood of the cloak I'm making.

How was your August? Any exciting plans for September? How do you feel about graphic novels? And have you watched either My Hero Academia or Cowboy Bebop? If so, what did you think of them? And if you've watched MHA, can you maybe help me out with my confusion about names? Please tell me in the comments!
Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

An Update on The Midnight Show Paperback

 

Hello, all! I wanted to take a minute to update y'all on the status of The Midnight Show paperback release and the accompanying bookplate promo. As you may recall, on the original release day, I said that due to some issues with Amazon, the book might be delayed until that afternoon. However, it didn't appear that afternoon, nor the day after, nor any day since. On Monday, I said that I hoped it would be out that day and that I was extending the promo through Wednesday. It's now Wednesday, and still no paperback.

The reason for this delay?

  • On Friday, Amazon rejected the manuscript, saying that I needed to increase the page size to allow for the bleed. I did so, figuring that the book would be delayed by a bit, but not a full day (as I said).
  • Saturday, rather than getting a "Your book is approved" email, I received a message identical to the one I received on Friday. Very weird, said I, but I increased the bleed sizes again and sent it back.
  • After getting no emails at all from Amazon for over three days, I called the KDP helpline yesterday afternoon.
  • The KDP representative I talked to didn't know why my book was being rejected or why I wasn't hearing back from them either, but she said she'd have a technical team look into it — a process that could take twenty-four to forty-eight hours.
  • I then received another identical email about page sizes about fifteen minutes after I hung up. I did not act on this one; I'm giving the technical team time to act in hopes that they actually will look into it.

What does this mean regarding the release?

  1. The paperback will be released eventually. When? At this point — and I say this in the most literal sense — God only knows. I will do my best to make it as soon as possible.
  2. The paperback bookplate promo is, for obvious reasons, postponed. It will happen for real when the paperback actually releases.
  3. I will let you all know as soon as the paperback is released.

Thank you all so much for your patience and understanding. I truly appreciate your support.

P.S. Have you nominated your favorite characters for the Silmaril Awards yet? If not, go do that!

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Tattered Slippers Tour: THE MIDNIGHT SHOW RELEASE DAY! Feat. The Pros and Cons of Writing in the Jazz Age!

 

Hello, everyone! It's official: The Midnight Show is out in the world! I'm so excited that I get to share this book with y'all. As a reminder, if you purchase the book in paperback format today through the 31st and send a proof of purchase to sarahpennington.author(at)gmail.com, I'll send you a signed bookplate to go in the book!

(Side note: due to some technical issues — aka KDP not telling me that I needed larger bleeds on my pages until after I'd ordered two separate proof copies, what the pumpernickle — there may be a slight delay on paperback availability. They should be up by the end of today, if they aren't already. Thanks for your patience.)

Now, you know, stories don't come out of nowhere. For everything anyone ever writes, there's at least of a bit of a journey to get there. And today, I thought I'd share some of the story behind The Midnight Show in a somewhat . . . unusual . . . way. But first, a bit about the book, for those who are just getting here!

About . . .

The Midnight Show

This mystery is the case of his dreams — and her nightmares.

By day, Dayo Temitrope is a swinging singer, an up-and-coming star with a shining career ahead of her. By night, she’s . . . well, she’s not sure, but whatever she does leaves her every morning with sore feet and worn-out shoes. And after six months, she’s had enough.

Enter Bastian Dennell, a private investigator just trying to get by. When Dayo hires him to find out where she goes at night, he’s sure it’s his big break: his chance to establish himself and get the funds to pay off his family’s debt. Plus, he gets to work with his favorite singer, even if she isn’t exactly what he expected. What could be better?

But first he has to solve the case — which means navigating a tangled web of strange dreams, fair folk schemes, and show business. It will take all Bastian’s wits, along with the shining talents of Dayo herself, to figure out the truth before the curtains close for good on Dayo’s career.

A jazz-age-inspired twist on the Twelve Dancing Princesses from the author of Blood in the Snow.

Find it on: Amazon || Goodreads

The Tattered Slippers

The Tattered Slippers are six retellings of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairytale, each one fantastical and magical. You don't want to miss any of them! You can learn more about the books and find the full tour schedule on the tour page.

The Tattered Slippers are the result of the 2019 Arista Challenge. The Arista Challenge is hosted by Kendra E. Ardnek; it invites fairy tale authors to come together in community as they work on unique retellings of a selected fairy tale.

Pros and Cons of Writing in the Jazz Age

So there I was, halfway through May, with Hadestown in my headphones, a few characters niggling at the back of my mind, and an unexpected surplus of time on my hands. The Tattered Slippers group reveal was creeping ever closer, and Kendra was keeping the Love and Memory alpha chat buzzing with cryptic comments about her excitement for the lineup and teasing me with the promise that she’d accept a late entry if I sent one in. I’d planned to sign on for the release, but Blood in the Soil (or possibly Blood in the Earth) was fighting me on every page, and I knew — had known for months — that I had no chance to whip it into shape by the release. I thought that was that.

But there were those characters — ! A private investigator with a heart of gold who tried to hide his feelings under a callously professional demeanor and a jazz singer whose sunny smiles masked an ever-growing desire to just be left alone when she was off the stage. They’d been born as alternate universe versions of major characters from another Twelve Dancing Princesses retelling, but they’d become their own people while I wasn’t looking. And they wouldn’t leave me alone! 

There was clearly nothing else for it. I had to write the story. I set a goal for myself: I’d make the most detailed outline I’d made in years, then write like mad to have the book finished by the beginning of June. It was crazy — but it was a novella, nothing more. Perhaps even a novelette. And, anyway, compared to ancient Asia, how hard could it be to write a Jazz Age-inspired story? 

Headphones on. Writing music playing. I was about to find out the answer.

Pro: The soundtrack is an absolute bop.

I’m used to hard-line definition between writing music and for-fun music. Writing music is instrumentals: Lindesey Stirling, Two Steps from Hell, Brunuhville, Brandon Fiechter, soundtracks, the works. If it’s not instrumentals, it’s Kalafina or Korean folk and the lyrics are all in a language I don’t know two words in. It’s inspiring. It’s non-distracting. It also all sounds the same after a while. 

Now? I had jazz. I had swing. I had electro-swing. It was, as I said, an absolute bop and a much-needed change of pace. However, there was also an unexpected downside . . .

Con: You will have “Swinging on a Star” and “I Found My Yellow Basket” stuck in your head for weeks solid, and nothing will dislodge them.

Despite Ella Fitzgerald's refusal to stop singing in the back of my head, though, I made good progress. I had my story well outlined, my characters profiled, my world built. I had written enough of the story that I could secure a last-minute entry into the Tattered Slippers group, and my characters were, astonishingly enough, cooperating. I’d also discovered another advantage of my chosen era.

Pro: Research is so astonishingly easy.

I’d spent the last year writing in an ancient Asia-inspired world, where getting the answer to any historically-based worldbuilding question was almost guaranteed to take significant effort wading through irrelevant search results, dubious information, and articles meant for scholars. Now? Abundant reliable information; original sources written in a language I knew; photos. It was blessedly easy. I wanted to know what kind of shoes women usually wore? When Band-Aids or an equivalent were invented? What types of appetizers or hors d'oeuvres might be served at fancy restaurants? Easy as a search and a few clicks. Of course, with such ease comes a certain danger that you might have guessed by now . . .

Con: There was too much information — so much that it was easy to get distracted.

Also known as:

Con: At one point, trying to figure out what my characters would eat for breakfast turned into a good twenty minutes researching the history of Grape-Nuts cereal . . . and then didn’t use most of what I learned.

(Fun fact: Grape-Nuts are partially responsible for the existence of the Andy Griffith show. I am not making this up and am still pretty amazed and amused by this fact. You can read about it here.)

Despite periodic research distractions, though, the writing continued to go astonishingly well. My characters were mostly cooperating, and while I did have a bit of a change of plans — enough so that I missed my June 1 deadline — it was manageable. By June 7, I had a full draft ready to send to both Kendra and betas. Also by this time, I’d developed a hearty appreciation for another benefit of my chosen era:

Pro: Finally, familiar technology!

For possibly the first time in my writing career, I could assume that many of the modern conveniences available to me would also be available to my characters. They had cars. They had telephones. They had flashlights. They had refrigerators — some of them, anyway. They had out-of-season fruit. It was magnificent. Except, of course, for one problem . . .

Con: I kept forgetting that said technology existed. 

(And that is the other reason why poor Bastian walks almost everywhere and forgets his camera that one time. I forgot he had another option. Sorry, Bastian.)

In between the end of the story were several rounds of edits, but those were actually easy compared to the madness that was editing Mechanical Heart. And now we come to today: story finished and published and available for all of y’all to read and enjoy. And the question arises: are the pros enough? Will I be back to this Jazz Age world?

Absotively. (And hopefully, you’ll come with me when I return.)

Are you excited for The Midnight Show? Do you think you would want to write a Jazz Age-inspired novel? What other time period do you think would be fun? Please tell me in the comments! And don't forget to check out the rest of the tour stops!
Thanks for reading!

August 29 Tour Stops

Dreams and Dragons: Pros and Cons of Writing in the Jazz Age
 
Five Reasons to Read:
Knitted by God's Plan
 

Interviews:

Guest Posts:
Cobonham: A Day in the Life of Dayo
Rachel Rossano's Words: A Day in the Life of Bastian
Abby's Blog: Like, But Not the Same
 
Character Spotlights:
 
Reviews:
 

Friday, August 28, 2020

Tattered Slippers Tour: Interview with Fionn of The Dark King's Curse!

It's the second-to-last day of the Tattered Slippers blog tour, and today we have one of the books I'm most excited about: The Dark King's Curse by my lovely friend Wyn Estelle Owens! This is a fabulous fae retelling of the tale, full of marvelous and colorful characters — one of whom I'm interviewing here on the blog today. But we'll get to that in a minute — first, as usual, a bit about the book and author.

About . . .

The Dark King's Curse

A darkness seems to hang over the lands of Conall, slowly but surely growing in strength with each passing year.

It all comes to a head when the twelve daughters of King Muir begin to disappear each night. None will admit where they go, and the only clue is their shoes; new in the evening, tattered and torn by morning.

When no one can stop the disappearances, Ailsa--lady-in-waiting to the youngest princess--volunteers to try and solve the mystery, or she and her peers will pay the consequences for failing to watch over their charges.

Armed with nothing but her gift of Fae-sight, Ailsa ventures forth on a quest to free her lady and the other princesses. With the help of an grumpy, glamoured gardener, a cursed faerie cat, and the mysterious Lord of Autumn, she may discover both the secrets and the truth behind the Dark King that lies at the root of the curse.

Find it on: Amazon || Goodreads

 

Wyn Estelle Owens

Wyn Estelle Owens is the penname of a young woman who’s still figuring out what this whole ‘adult’ thing is all about. She lives in a big, old house in Maryland by a Hundred Acre Wood (dubbed Neldoreth) with her parents, three occasionally obnoxious brothers, her dog Jackie, and her personal plot bunny, Joker.

She is fond of reading, writing, drawing, speaking in dead or imaginary languages, playing videogames, quoting classic or obscure literature, being randomly dramatic, and generally making things out of yarn. Her dream is to write stories that inspire people to chase after the wonderful world of storytelling.

Her favorite all-time authors are Anne Elisabeth Stengl, Christa Kinde, and above all, J.R.R. Tolkien, who first inspired her to pursuing novel writing when she read the Hobbit at the age of seven. 

Find her online at:  Goodreads || Facebook || Amazon

The Tattered Slippers

The Tattered Slippers are six retellings of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairytale, each one fantastical and magical. You don't want to miss any of them! You can learn more about the books and find the full tour schedule on the tour page.

The Tattered Slippers are the result of the 2019 Arista Challenge. The Arista Challenge is hosted by Kendra E. Ardnek; it invites fairy tale authors to come together in community as they work on unique retellings of a selected fairy tale.

Interview with Fionn

Welcome, Fionn! We're excited to have you join us here at Dreams and Dragons! To start out, can you tell us a little about who you are and what your role in the story is?

Ah, thank you for your hospitality. I’ve served as the royal gardener in Castle Greer for a hundred years, when I wasn’t fighting in the wars. Before that… was a long time ago, and doesn’t matter. As for my role in the story, I just got dragged along in this mess because that girl’s going to end up dead if someone doesn’t watch her back.

A reluctant hero! I like that. So, I'm already starting to get an idea of your answer to this question, but what are your thoughts on the other characters in the story? (At least, those you've interacted with or know about?)

The other characters? Simple. Laisren has better things to do than bother with a cursed man like me, if you mess with Siobhra do so with the knowledge you’re taking your life in your hands, and Ailsa needs to look before she leaps. She has the most irritating way of growing on you, too. Mairead’s a good friend, and she doesn’t deserve to suffer the pain a curse can bring. As for Fiachra... pretty much the same as Laisren.

Hmm. I know you're talking about others, but you seem a bit down on yourself here. Who would you say has had the biggest influence on your life thus far?

…Fiachra. And Laisren, because he’s been popping out of nowhere for a hundred years and bothering me. He’s a king and has responsibilities, I’m only dragging him down.

I see. What’s one thing that you think most people don’t know or don’t understand about you?

Well, there’s the fact that I’m not mortal. Most people don’t know that because of the curse. Otherwise? …I really like gardening. I’ve been raising flowers since I was hardly more than a child, so I’m glad that if I’m stuck here, it’s at least I’m doing something that I like.

Well, that is good. Speaking of gardening: if you were a plant, what kind of plant would you be and why?

A plant?... A thistle, I suppose. They’re strong, able to take care of themselves, not easily removed from where they belong.

Fascinating answer. One last question! If you could spend an afternoon doing anything you wanted with anyone you wanted, what would you do, and with whom would you do it?

Anything and anyone? …I’d like to work in my own garden, back home, I think… with my family. And I would like to show Mairead the flowers that I grew back then. And, I suppose, might as well bring Ailsa along. It’d be boring without having her around to tease.

Naturally. Well, I hope one day you get the chance to do just that. Thanks for answering my questions!

What do you think about Fionn? Are you excited to meet him and the rest of the cast of The Dark King's Curse? Please tell me in the comments! And don't forget to check out the rest of the tour stops!
Thanks for reading!

August 28 Tour Stops

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Tattered Slippers Blog Tour: Interview with Tricia Mingerink!

 

Hello, and welcome back to the blog for Tattered Slippers day three! Today, we are welcoming into the world Poison's Dance, the third book in Tricia Mingerink's Beyond the Tales series. To celebrate, I have another author interview for y'all, but first, a little bit about the book and author.

About . . .

Poison's Dance

Beyond the Tales #3
If he falls to the lure of the curse, the dance might trap him forever.

Alex has survived his first year as high king. The new counsel has improved cooperation between the kingdoms, and peace seems achievable. When the Tuckawassee queen sends him an invitation he can’t refuse, Alex must once again face his greatest threat for the sake of peace.

Princess Tamya of Tuckawassee, along with her eleven sisters, has danced from sunset until sunrise every night of her life. It is her gift and her curse. When Queen Valinda wishes to use the power their cursed dance gives them to rule all of Tallahatchia, Tamya must decide if she will do what is right even if it betrays her own sister.

Daemyn Rand has survived a hundred years' worth of battles. All he wants to do now is safely marry his princess. Will he be forced to choose between the love of his life and the high king he has loyally served for years?

They have faced certain death before. This time, they might not make it out alive.

Don’t miss this re-envisioning of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairy tale.

Find it on: Amazon || Goodreads

Tricia Mingerink

Tricia Mingerink is a twenty-something, book-loving, horse-riding country girl. She lives in Michigan with her family and their pack of pets. When she isn't writing, she can be found pursuing backwoods adventures across the country.

Find her online at: Website ||  Goodreads || Facebook || Twitter || Instagram || Amazon 

 

 

 

 

 

The Tattered Slippers

The Tattered Slippers are six retellings of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairytale, each one fantastical and magical. You don't want to miss any of them! You can learn more about the books and find the full tour schedule on the tour page.

The Tattered Slippers are the result of the 2019 Arista Challenge. The Arista Challenge is hosted by Kendra E. Ardnek; it invites fairy tale authors to come together in community as they work on unique retellings of a selected fairy tale.

Interview with Tricia Mingerink

Hello, Tricia! Welcome to the blog! To start out, can you tell us a little bit about yourself? Who you are, favorite hobbies (other than writing), favorite books (outside your own), coffee or tea?

I'm Tricia Mingerink, author of The Blades of Acktar (a Christian YA kingdom adventure series) and Beyond the Tales (a fairy tale retelling series). I live in Michigan, but I love taking camping trips throughout the United States, especially anywhere that has mountains and waterfalls. Other hobbies...reading, I guess. I don't have time for other hobbies right now, lol. Some of my favorite authors are K.M. Shea, Melanie Cellier, W.R. Gingell, and J.M. Stengl, just to name a few. Coffee or Tea? Neither. I'm a Mountain Dew girl all the way.

Ooh, I didn't know you were a fellow W.R. Gingell fan! That's so cool! Where did you get the initial idea for Poison’s Dance? And were there any other sources of inspiration along the way?

I had the idea for Poison's Dance all the way back when I was writing Dagger's Sleep (book 1 in the series). I love the 12 Dancing Princesses fairy tale and knew I wanted to retell it. The various versions of the 12 DP tale provided a lot of the inspiration. Some versions have the princesses poisoning or drugging the princes and soldiers who try to figure out why they are dancing. Sometimes princes end up stuck with the princesses dancing (and the princesses marry all the princes in the end). In some versions, it is a prince who discovers why they are dancing while in other versions, it is a common soldier. I took elements from many of these versions to craft my retelling, which has both a prince and a commoner figuring out the curse and trying to avoid being poisoned/drugged.

My other main source of inspiration is all the hiking trips I have done, which have provided lots of ideas for the setting of my books. Many of the waterfalls in Beyond the Tales are based on real waterfalls in the Appalachian Mountains.

What were some of the most challenging parts of writing this book, and how did you deal with those challenges?

The most challenging part was balancing the number of characters, since there are 12 sisters that I had to keep track of and develop to various extents. I also had to make sure the nights of dancing didn't end up feeling repetitive. In my first draft, I was so afraid of the nights feeling redundant that I cut a night. It ended up throwing the natural progression of the book off, and I added it back in during edits thanks to very helpful suggestions from my dad.

Ah, I love it when family is able to help with storytelling. So, almost any retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses will necessarily have at least some emphasis on music and dancing. Are there any particular songs that you associate with this book?

The soundtrack to the Barbie 12 DP movie, lol. The music in the Barbie movies is surprisingly amazing, and I adore that music of that one.

I will agree with that, honestly. At this point, you’re a pretty well-established and well-respected author in the Christian indie fantasy sphere. What advice would you give to someone just starting out in this sphere?

Make sure you do your research so that you can put out a professional book inside and out. Connect with other Christian indie fantasy authors and treat those fellow authors with respect. Be prepared to do a lot of marketing. And, most importantly, pray about your writing. You're going to hit a lot of walls of exhaustion and burn out and disappointment and struggles while writing. Pray that God gives you the strength to write the words that He wants you to write for His glory. 

That sounds like very good advice. As we get to the end of the interview, let's have a more fun question: if you could spend twenty-four hours with one of your characters from Poison’s Dance, either in their world or ours, who would you pick and how would you spend it?

I would want to go hiking through Tallahatchia with Daemyn, though I would probably want Rosanna along because that would just make it awesome.

Oooh, that would be fun. Finally, now that Poison’s Dance  is out in the world, what can we expect to see from you next?
 
Up next is book 4 in the Beyond the Tales series, which is a Goose Girl/Wild Swans retelling. I also have a Bluebeard/Robin Hood retelling that will be coming out as a novella sometime in 2021, though the details are a secret yet until I have the ok to share more.    
 
That sounds awesome! I can't wait to find out more about both of those, especially the Bluebeard/Robin Hood story! Thanks for sharing with us!

And thanks to everyone for reading! So, are you excited for Poison's Dance? Please tell me in the comments! And don't forget to check out the rest of the tour stops!
Thanks for reading!

August 26 Tour Stops

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Tattered Slippers Tour: Guest Post!: Worn Out Shoes but Not Worn Tales ft. E. J. Kitchens!

 

Hello, everyone! Welcome back to the Tattered Slippers blog tour! Today's release Wrought of Silver and Ravens by the lovely E.J. Kitchens, a truly impressive epic of a novel with very classic Twelve Dancing Princess vibes, yet many new twists. I have more thoughts over on my other blog, Light and Shadows, but here at Dreams and Dragons, I'm sharing a guest post from the author that I think you'll all enjoy. But first, a little about the book and author.

About . . .

Wrought of Silver and Ravens

Of Magic Made #1
The rarest magic is the most dangerous.

Athdar Owain is a hunted wanderer, one determined to keep his secrets and the treasure he carries safe at all costs. When he rescues the Kingdom of Giliosthay’s prince from raiders, he’s rewarded by being forced into the king’s elite Silver Guard. While this gives Athdar a temporary home and some protection from those hunting him, it also makes him responsible for the young prince, who still bears curses from the raiders, and seven enchantress princesses with curses as mysterious and dangerous as their brother’s.

Princess Thea of Giliosthay is a Realm Walker. Betrayed by a trusted guard, her rare gift of enchantment is used to curse her brother and trap herself and her six sisters into a nightly dance with dragons in a secret Realm. The Realm’s prince has the ability to take and twist her magic for his own purposes, and Thea fears what those might be. For when one dances with a prince, a kingdom might be at stake.

Athdar alone can save them, but to trust enchanters is to risk exposure. And Athdar isn’t sure where his loyalties lie.

Wrought of Silver and Ravens is a clean adventure-romance retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses set in The Magic Collectors story world.

Find it on: Retailers || Goodreads

E.J. Kitchens

E.J. Kitchens loves tales of romance, adventure, and happily-ever-afters and strives to write such tales herself. When she’s not thinking about dashing heroes or how awesome bacteria are—she is a microbiologist after all—she’s taking photos, reading, or talking about classic books and black-and-white movies. She is the author of the historical fantasy series THE MAGIC COLLECTORS and of several fairytale retellings. She is a member of Realm Makers and lives in Alabama.

Find her online at: Website || Blog || Goodreads || Facebook || Newsletter || Amazon 

 

 

 

The Tattered Slippers

The Tattered Slippers are six retellings of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairytale, each one fantastical and magical. You don't want to miss any of them! You can learn more about the books and find the full tour schedule on the tour page.

The Tattered Slippers are the result of the 2019 Arista Challenge. The Arista Challenge is hosted by Kendra E. Ardnek; it invites fairy tale authors to come together in community as they work on unique retellings of a selected fairy tale.

Worn Out Shoes but Not Worn Tales

When I was young, my sister shared an illustrated fairytale with me that, though there was no Disney movie to go with it, I’ve always remembered. It was of “The Twelve Dancing Princesses.” There was no dragon to slay or evil stepmother to escape, just a mystery to solve as we followed an old soldier—one gifted an enchanted cloak and wise advice from an old woman he’d helped—in his attempt to discover why the twelve daughters of a king had worn-out dancing slippers every night. The tale was intriguing and the illustrations beautiful.

I don’t remember exactly which version of the story I read, but the "The Twelve Dancing Princesses" (also called "The Worn-Out Dancing Shoes" or "The Shoes That Were Danced to Pieces") is a German fairy tale collected by the Brothers Grimm and published in Grimm's Fairy Tales in 1812. As with many other fairytales, there are similar stories from other regions, including French, Russian, and Scottish versions (it’s a prince who dances every night in this version).

Also, as with other fairytales, it has many modern retellings. It’s a strange thing in a way to love something and then redo it, but I guess redoing something is another way to spend time with, so it makes sense in a way. Some aspects of fairytales are disturbing, however, and that gives us another reason to re-write them—to make them more acceptable or fun. In “The Twelve Dancing Princesses” the princesses are actually not very nice. They drug the princes trying to solve the riddle of the dancing slippers even though they know the men will die if they don’t solve it within the three-day limit set by the king. Not exactly the kind of heroines I’d want in my story.

One of my favorite retellings of the story is Lea Doue’s Firethorn Crown. She changes it up so that the princesses are kind and are forced to dance every night against their will. I preferred that approach, and so in my story, the princesses (only seven of them to make it easier to keep track of all my many characters) are cursed and forced to travel via magic to a mysterious Realm of Caves where a prince is stealing their magic and their kingdom dance by dance.

Remembering the illustrated story’s focus on the soldier rather than the princesses, however, I wanted him to be a major part of my book. Fairytale retellings tend to focus on the female character, in general, but I wanted the soldier in this one. I made him young and changed how he got the cloak. As I started writing him, I really fell in love with him and the story became a lot more about his adventures and his relationship with the Silver Guards as these older men take him—a wanderer who doesn’t trust others easily—in and give him a home and family. It has romance too—don’t worry—it’s just that I wasn’t expecting the other relationships to be so important.

My retelling, Wrought of Silver and Ravens, is part of a larger story world that I have other books set in, so that background also influenced the way I retold the story. For one thing, it’s set in a place like Ancient Greece, so instead of slippers, the girls have sandals, and instead of them simply being worn through, they are burnt because of how the prince is stealing their magic.

So retellings are often another way to enjoy something we love or an attempt to make it better, and there are lots of ways to change things—our character of interest, that character’s character, the setting, the overarching storyline—it is mostly the fairytale or is the fairytale simply a part of it?—and the aspects of the story we choose to pull out. So while dancing slippers (or sandals) may wear out, a fairytale rarely does.

~~~~

Wow! Thanks for sharing that story, E. J.! I really enjoyed hearing about your journey with this fairy tale.

Are you excited for Wrought of Silver and Ravens? Do you prefer your 12DP retellings to focus on the princesses or the soldier-character? Please tell me in the comments! And don't forget to check out the rest of the tour stops!
Thanks for reading!

August 25 Tour Stops

Five Reasons to Read:
Knitted by God's Plan
 
Author Interviews:
 
Guest Posts:
Erudessa's News Blog: Favorite Fairytale Dances
Dreams and Dragons: Worn Out Shoes but Not Worn Tales
Rachel Rossano's Words: The Writer Who Pricked Her Finger
Reality Reflected: A Dance through Time
 
Reviews:
Live. Love. Read. + Mini Interview!

Monday, August 24, 2020

Tattered Slippers Blog Tour: Interview with Kendra E. Ardnek

 

Hello, everyone! Welcome to the first day of the Arista Challenge Tattered Slippers group release! Our first release of the week is Kendra E. Ardnek's The Dancing Princess, the latest addition to the Twist of Adventure series. And today, I have an interview with Kendra herself . . . but first, a bit about the book and author.

About . . .

The Dancing Princess

Plagued by nightmares for the last few years, Katrine only wanted answers. Instead, she finds herself trapped in a tangled web of melody as she tries to free a cursed king and his brothers. No one deserves existence such as theirs, but dare she risk her very life?

Find it on: Amazon || Goodreads

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kendra E. Ardnek

Kendra E. Ardnek is the self-proclaimed Arista of Fairy Tales. She lives in the Piney Woods of East Texas with her dragon babies and massive herd of mini-giraffes, and she is still waiting for one of of her fifty nutcrackers to come to life and marry her. When not writing, you can usually find her sitting in a random box, and she's frequently known to act before she thinks.

Find her online at: Website || Blog || Goodreads || Facebook || Twitter || YouTube || Newsletter || Instagram || TikTok || Amazon 

 

 

 

The Tattered Slippers

The Tattered Slippers are six retellings of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairytale, each one fantastical and magical. You don't want to miss any of them! You can learn more about the books and find the full tour schedule on the tour page.

The Tattered Slippers are the result of the 2019 Arista Challenge. The Arista Challenge is hosted by Kendra E. Ardnek; it invites fairy tale authors to come together in community as they work on unique retellings of a selected fairy tale.

Interview with Kendra E. Ardnek

Hello, Kendra! Welcome back to the blog! To start out, can you tell us what gave you the initial idea for The Dancing Princess and what additional sources of inspiration you might’ve found along the way?

So, once upon a time, I wrote stories about fairies. I had a whole society built for them, drew pictures of them and everything. One of the fairies was a story fairy, and she was very upset because the fairy tales we tell are nowhere near the "real" versions. The Dancing Princess was one of the titles I had tossed about, and it was supposed to be one of the two that had merged into the 12DP we know and love. Buuut then Bookania came along, and that idea kinda faded? Eventually, as I was writing the Twists of Adventure, I remembered this one and thought it'd make a lovely addition. And then ... it went Russian.

Ooh, I love rediscovering old story ideas and making them work now. What were some of the most challenging parts of writing this book, and how did you deal with those challenges?

Probably the fact that I knew so little about the story going in. How I dealt with it? Um ... I let the story be what it wanted to be? Which was a Russian genderswapped reimagining.

I feel that. The Dancing Princess is the fifth book in your Twist of Adventure series. Do you have a favorite out of your books in this series? And will there be more Twists after this one?

I think I'm going to be eternally partial to Poison Kiss, as it was a hoot to write, there were so many references and call-outs, and I love its ending message. As for more Twists ... I'm not going to say a hard-and-fast no, but for now, I don't have any plans to complete the series. I'd had a B&B percolating - Fairer than Beauty - but the story just doesn't want to be written. Eventually, maybe, I'll think up some more zany, adventurous twists, but right now I'm focused on launching two new fairy tale series - my Jane Austen/fairy tale mashups, and then some Superhero reimaginings. That said, the Twists of Adventure canonically take place within Bookania - just not necessarily on the same page as the main Quests, and there miiiiiiight be some more direct connections down the line.

Fascinating! I look forward to finding out about those! Between Bookania, the Twists, and these Arista Challenges, you’ve become very strongly associated with fairy tale retellings. What advice would you give to others who want to write these types of stories?

Own your twist. Even if you're not writing a twisted tale, a retelling needs a good twist - even if it's just "Rapunzel's diary entries." Know what makes your retelling stand out, and have fun with it. Maybe someone else has already done it before, but you can take it in your own direction. People love retellings because they love hearing the story they know and love with a fresh perspective, so let them see your love for the tale.

And as a bonus ... don't retell Disney. Sure, they're iconic, but they're also ... copyrighted. A reference or two is fine, but focus on making the story your own - and there is so much potential in the original fairy tales and their families, it's not even funny.

I will second that last piece of advice. So, you’ve retold quite a few fairy tales, including some that aren’t especially well-known. But are there any that you really want to retell but haven’t gotten around to yet?

I really want to write a Nutcracker retelling. I have two planned, but it's just never felt like the right moment to write them. I keep getting distracted by Cinderella ideas, buuut, one of them is a Nutcracker/Cinderella mashup, so maybe I shall prevail?

I feel like I should've known that would be your answer, given your love of nutcrackers. Moving back to The Dancing Princess: this book includes a lot of emphasis on music and dancing, especially the former. Are there any particular real-world songs you associate with this book?

Not really? Just find some good Russian music and play that. Maybe the Russian Dance from the Nutcracker?

All right. Also, because we have to have a fun question in here: you get to spend twelve hours with the cast of this book. How are you spending that time?

I'm not sure, really? I think I'd like to go hang out with the king's book-loving brother and explore some libraries with him. We'll go with that.

Sounds like fun. Finally, now that The Dancing Princess is out in the world, what can we expect to see from you next?

This. Also This

Ah, very exciting! (For those who don't feel like clicking the links: that's The Merchant of Menace, Bookania #6, and Love and Memory, Rizkaland Legends #3. And I believe both of those have preorder specials on, though I could be wrong about that.) Thanks for answering my questions, Kendra!

What did you think of the interview? Which fairy tales do you want to retell or see retold? Which of the Tattered Slippers are you most excited for? Please tell me in the comments! And don't forget to check out the rest of the tour stops!
Thanks for reading!

August 25 Tour Stops