Hello and welcome to another Wizard with Words. Today, I’m welcoming Joanne Wadsworth to my blog. Joanne is a sister author at Lyrical Press and, has just released her debut novel, PROTECTOR, a young adult, fantasy romance. Joanne and I became new authors with Lyrical about the same time, and it’s been a delight to get to know her. Her book promises to be an engaging read, the beginning of her MAGIO-EARTH SERIES. I hope you’ll welcome Joanne as she tells us a bit about herself and her particular style of writing.
I’m so happy to have you here, Joanne. To start, how about sharing what first prompted you to begin writing?
Joanne: Thanks for the lovely intro, Mae. I’ve been so excited about dropping by your blog to visit. Mine’s an unusual story. In 2009 I was waiting in the car for my son to finish preschool. I’d turned up way too early, and with time on my hands, I picked up a pad and pen and began writing. I couldn’t stop. In fact, I’d say I was addicted right from that first moment. After I got home, I swapped the pad and pen for my laptop, and away I went. I studied the craft of writing in every way I could. I wrote eight hours a day, seven days a week. I was completely hooked.
Wow, what an amazing way to discover writing! And your dedication to embracing the craft was remarkable. I’ll say you’re hooked, LOL. I’d love to hear more about PROTECTOR. Can you tell us about the plot and your characters?
Joanne: Absolutely. Protector is in fact that first book I constructed the storyline for outside my son’s preschool. It holds a very special place in my heart, and now being my debut, I’m sure it always will. Now for the plot–
My heroine, Faith, is a young eighteen-year-old woman completing High School in New Zealand. She’s a regular girl and ready to experience life, only the last thing she expects is to meet a man from another world, a prince who finds her on Earth through their soul-bound bond. Davio comes from Magio, a planet where the people have strength skills, and Faith soon becomes caught between two worlds. To further complicate issues, she comes into the skill of forethought and soon discovers her unknown father is from this other world.
Lovely! I like that you’re blending elements of YA with fantasy and romance. How long did it take to finish your manuscript from initial draft to submission-ready?
Joanne: I rewrote Protector in 2011, and it took five months to complete. At the end, I was so excited–I was completely ready to head out there and submit.
I’m always curious how authors who have a planned series develop their novels. When you wrote PROTECTOR did you know it was going to be the first book of several, or did the series develop as you wrote? And, tagging onto that question, do you find it difficult maintaining plot threads and characters over multiple books?
Joanne: I definitely plotted. With this series I sat for days in the beginning constructing it, building a large cast of heroes and heroines, and a scourge of villains. I plotted several books and laid out what went where. Book two in the series has just been contracted with a release date of 4th November 2013, and this month I’ve begun writing book three of which my editor already has the synopsis outline. There’ll be several books in the series, and each one is already half written in my head, but the other half comes as I write. In many ways my characters drive their story, and at times I have no control over where they lead me. They’re young, and they have a mind of their own. I just go with it. 🙂
I can definitely relate to that! In your novel, you introduce readers to the planet Magio. I love the idea of world-building a completely different reality. Is there any element of Magio that you wished existed on Earth?
Joanne: I love that once Magiolings reach eighteen, they no longer physically age, and they live easily to around one-hundred and twenty. I’m grinning right now at the thought of never getting wrinkles or gray hair, of always having the boundless energy of youth.
I’d love to bottle that, LOL! I’m curious how you chose the names for your characters, especially those who live on Magio.
Joanne: I’ve never been asked this question before–how cool. To give the characters from Magio an other-worldly name, I found the best way, was to take an Earth name and swap or remove letters. I played around with them until I had something that was unusual, yet still pronounceable. For example in the second book, I took the name Elizabeth, and made it into Elizara.
How clever! I love when creativity strikes with unique ideas like that. Do you have a favorite time of day to write, when you’re more productive or more creative than others?
Joanne: I start first thing in the morning at 8.30 once the kids have gone to school. I have four kiddies, and they’re aged 14, 12, 10 and 8, so once there’s no noise, oh boy, I’m like a bullet heading to my office.
I bet! 🙂 What is the current title you’re reading on your Kindle/Nook or in print?
Joanne: I love my Kindle and now only buy ebooks for the ease of carrying so many around in one easy to store place. Would you believe I’m currently reading six books? Usually it’s about four, and I’m not sure if this is normal, but since I can read two to three books in a week, I usually have a number on the go at any one time. Does anyone else do this? Please, tell me I’m not alone. 🙂 Anyway, I’m currently reading Fantasy Mountain by Piper Denna, Born of Silence by Sherrilyn Kenyon, By the Sword written by Alison Stuart, Hard Core by Jennifer Lowery, The Devil of Kilmartin by Laurin Wittig, and Trouble Won’t Wait by Autumn Piper. It’s a wide spectrum of stories, from contemporary to paranormal to historical.
That’s amazing! I’m an avid reader but I’ve never been able to read more than one book at a time — unless I’m balancing a novel with a book on writing craft. Then I might have two going at once. It sounds like you’ve got some wonderful selections. I’m a Kindle addict too 🙂 Speaking of books, I know you already have another contracted with Lyrical Press. Can you share some details about that?
Joanne: I’d love to. Warrior is book two in the Magio-Earth series. It’s the story of Hope and Silas, and is set both within the Outback of Australia, and Magio. I love combining both worlds. They come from opposing nations, but are mated, their soul-bound bond causing havoc as Silas is drawn to aid Hope in her endeavor to discover her unknown mother’s lost heritage. Theirs is a journal which takes them deep into foreign lands. It’s fast-paced and exciting for the Young Adult.
Awesome! Okay, now some quick stuff for the fun of it!
Favorite number: 7
Favorite color: Now, don’t laugh, but it’s seriously the color of diamonds. Those sparkly little gems can’t be outdone by anything else.
Favorite food: Watermelon, but soft-serve ice-cream is a close second.
Dressy or casual: Casual.
Dawn or dusk: Dawn.
Cake or pie: Cake.
Book you would like to see made into a movie: Nalini Singh’s, Angels’ Blood.
Five books you enjoying reading over and over again: You know, I only ever read a book once, unless I count the kids bedtime stories, of which they are all the classics, like Peter Pan. I love Peter Pan. Okay, now I wonder if this is why I love the fantasy genre?
That was fun! I especially liked your answer about the color of diamonds 🙂 Joanne, thank you again for visiting my blog and taking the time to do an interview with me. I wish you much success with PROTECTOR. I’ve already snatched it up from Amazon, and I’m sure many others will too!
Joanne: Thanks, Mae. You are a fabulous host. 🙂
Reading romance books captivated Joanne Wadsworth as a teenager, particularly when she tucked herself into bed at night and continued to dream those stories as she slept. She’d visualize the direction, taking the hero and heroine on an adventure unparalleled to what she’d read. Today she is devoted to writing romance, bringing her imagination to life within the lines of young adult, and thrilling romantic suspense.
Born in New Zealand, Joanne works both as a writer and a financial controller, all while keeping up with her four energetic children and dreamy husband.
To love and protect…across worlds.
Eighteen-year-old Faith Stryker is prepared to leap out into the unknown world beyond her home shores of New Zealand to experience life. Only she never expected to encounter Magio, a planet with two warring countries, where its people reach adulthood at eighteen by coming into their strength and prophetic abilities. Only after Faith discovers she’s a Halfling–thanks to her warrior father she’s never met–does her own skill of forethought develop.
Peacio’s Prince Davio Loveria is sent to the young Faith Stryker by his grandfather, but not all goes as planned. Davio discovers Faith isn’t just a Halfling, she’s also his soul-bound mate–an intense relationship he cannot, nor will not, give up.
With two wars now waging…one of land and the other of the heart…can the young lovers find their place in the world?
Davio leaned over me, all six foot four of him, his warm honey-brown hair falling forward to curl snugly around his neck, and I longed for him, just as I had during my first sighting of him in the classroom.
“What’s happening is the bond, my mate. It will become difficult for me to keep my distance both physically and emotionally unless I leave and end this now.”
My heart hitched. “You want to leave?” I swayed closer on impulse. “Is that how this bond works? We find each other and then you leave?” God preserve his people if it did.
“No, it is not. Those mated are bonded for life if we allow the link to grow. Except that would be the most unwise choice for us to take. You are, quite clearly, neither from my country nor from my world, and as such will have no allegiance to me or my people. I have no wish to join with one who does not wish to join with me in all ways. With that being the case, I will find another when the time is right. As should you,” he added solemnly.
I frowned. Hold on–did he just say he would be joining with another woman?
I bit my tongue. That was good? I should leave it at that, right?
Jeez, what was wrong with me for questioning that choice?
“I’m sorry. We just met, and you’re right. Go find your, your–” Strangely, I struggled to get the words out and finally gave up. “Well, have yourself a nice long life, and all that.” I patted his chest roughly.
That was more like me.
The clock ticked and time slowed.
He didn’t move.
“Look at me.” He tipped up my chin, directly staring at me. “This would never work.”
“I understand. It’s been pretty awful meeting you too.” I leaned back, only to feel the pressure of his hand move around my waist to the small of my back, preventing me.
I moved to grip his arm. “Okay, you were going.”