Cover Reveal and Interview with C.L. Schneider
Not to long ago, I was slipping along the fiberoptic pathways of the interverse and came upon a cover that stopped me cold in my high-speed tracks. It was a stunning image of a man who knelt while holding a crown of stones.
I complimented the image. The author tweeted back. I liked the cover so much, I decided to give the book a try. This is a habit of mine going back a few years. Since then, Cindy and I have become friends. I read Magic Price, and posted a review here not too long ago. I’m glad I found her and her book when I did, as book three is days away. I hate waiting for sequels, and having a new series to read gives me motivation in a lot of ways. In celebration, she’s shared her cover with me to show off, and also took the time to answer a few questions.
I review books. I’ve said before I only tend to read authors I like. I don’t hyperbolize, and I don’t promote authors I don’t think well of. Cindy’s world is expansive, creative, and, most importantly to me, filled with compelling, proactive characters. It is with great pride I present to you the cover for Magic Borne, the final book in the Crown of Stones Trilogy.
Interview with Author C.L. Schneider
1) Now that the trilogy is over, what are your feelings?
I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel accomplished. Yet, ending The Crown of Stones trilogy has also been very bittersweet. I admit I teared up a few times while I was writing this last book of the trilogy. These characters have been a part of my life for a long time. I know them as well as I know myself, which made writing their dialogue not only feel effortless, but incredibly fun. At the time same time, I need to move on. There are many other worlds out there waiting for me to create and explore. The closer I get to the release of Magic-Borne, the more I can’t wait to sink my teeth into something completely different.
2) What is your dream reaction from anyone who reads this book?
My goal is to make my readers feel; the good and the bad. I want them to ‘get’ my characters, even if they don’t like them or agree with their decisions. My dream reaction would be for my readers to ride a roller coaster of emotions as they furiously turn the pages. I want them to suffer the worse book hangover ever!
3) Now that this trilogy is over, what’s next for you?
Up next for me is my current work in progress, Nite Fire, an urban fantasy told from the POV of a shapeshifter named Dahlia Nite. Dahlia is a lyrriken, a hybrid species born of a human woman and a male dragon in human form. She’s capable of shifting from human to a reptilian, dragon-like form, complete with scales and fire. The story involves spontaneous combustion, travel between parallel worlds, mythical creatures, retro-cognition, psychic abilities, genetic experiments, serial murder, revenge, secrets, friendship, betrayal, loss, blood, sex, and yes, dragons. Nite Fire is for adults, so expect mature themes (if you’ve read Crown of Stones, you’ll have an idea of what to expect from me in that department). I’m aiming for three books in the Nite Fire series, but that may change depending on how the story unfolds as I move forward with the draft. I’m hoping for a winter 2017 release.
4) What would you say was the best part about working on this trilogy?
I would have to say that worldbuilding was one of the best parts of writing this trilogy. It was wonderful to form all those realms and craft all that history. Taking the flaws and accomplishments of each realm and interweaving them together was a lot of fun. Mirra’kelan is a world I’m proud of. I think it has a lot of potential for future stories.
5) What are you going to miss the most about it?
I’m going to miss my characters tremendously. I love spending my days with them, watching them grow, and being able to experience the story through their eyes. One of the hardest parts of moving onto a new project has been letting go of the characters I knew so well. I’m going to miss hearing their voices in my head. Though, something tells me they won’t all stay quiet for long ☺
6) Of all of your plot-lines which was your favorite and why?
That’s a hard one. Anything revolving around Ian’s Shinree enemy (who shall remain nameless to avoid spoilers) was a great plot-line to write. But I think I my favorite overall would be the eldring. When the eldring appear in the first book, you learn a decent amount about them, but so much more is unveiled throughout the trilogy; the truth of what they are, their role in the history of Mirra’kelan (and its future), their impact on the overall plot, and on Ian. I love how that whole plot-line played out.
7) Through this trilogy, how would you say you’ve grown as an author?
I’ve learned a lot since that first draft of Magic-price, and I think each book has taught me something different. Magic-Price took me the longest to write. It went through many revisions, and I feel like my knowledge of the craft of writing grew after each one. I think one of the most important things I learned during that time was not to over-explain. I had to learn to trust, not only the strength of my readers’ imagination, but my ability to paint clear pictures for them. I learned that not everything in my head (or my character’s head) needed to be on the page. Writing the subsequent books took far less time and far fewer revisions. Going from one into two, my grasp of pesky grammar and punctuation issues, unnecessary dialogue, and the nuance of foreshadowing improved. With three, I just got out of the way and let my characters do all the work. They knew what they were doing by that point anyway.
8) Crown of Stones was your first project. Were you worried about starting your career as an author with a trilogy? Why/why not?
I wasn’t worried, but I knew it was a gamble. I read how new authors are encouraged to write stand-alone stories. They should be under 100k words, and they should never ben in first person. I didn’t listen to any of it. I wasn’t trying to be a rebel. I simply told the story of Ian Troy the way it needed to be told. I didn’t stress over word count or series length, and I never considered writing it anything but first person. With first person, I can slip right into my character’s head. I feel what they feel, and put it on the page. It’s just how I write. Besides, I think it’s less of a risk with my chosen genre. Epic fantasies and trilogies just go together.