Author Spotlight – Toi Thomas

Introducing Toi Thomas

I’ve been at this for about 10 years. I’ve entertained paranormal fans with my Eternal Curse series, an angels, demons, and others tale with a Christian world view. I stretch minds and imaginations with my short story collection, Legend of the Boy…, featuring works of science fiction, paranormal, fantasy, romance, and suspense. Glorie Townson, my pen name, brings along a bit of romance and comedy in the first book of my Sayings Series, It’s Like the Full Moon. I’ve even delved into the world of educational children’s books to enlighten and entertain little minds. Something for the whole family, here.

Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself.

A self-proclaimed techie and foodie, I was born in Texas, but consider Virginia, USA to be home. I enjoy reading, cooking, painting, geek culture, collecting vinyl records, and spending time with my family. Currently working as a special education teacher’s assistant while blogging and writing full-time, I find comfort and peace of mind in chocolate, green tea, and naps. My husband and I have been married for twelve years and share our home with a tortoise named Betty and a Redbone Coonhound named Margie, who’s sure to inspire future publications.

Could you tell us a bit about your latest book?

I’m currently working on two different sequels, but the one that’s pulling me the most is for my Eternal Curse Series. When I first wrote Eternal Curse: Giovanni’s Angel it was a pivotal moment in my life. I had no idea I was writing a book. I just thought I was piecing together remnants of a reoccurring dream so it would finally go away.
As I developed the story, I realized that I didn’t want it to end. I’d grown attached to the gray man, who later became Giovanni. Giovanni was a sad and secluded character, and it was my job to fill his world with purpose, wonder, and even a few companions. What I created, still to this day, blows my mind. I don’t think it’s the greatest story ever conceived, but the fact that it came from me, humbles me.
Giovanni’s story makes me laugh and cry and wonder; what if? By the time I finished the first draft, I realized it was a book and had finally decided to share it with a small few for feedback while starting a blog to help me plan out the developmental details. It was amazing to see Giovanni’s tale of literal and emotional transformation evolve and develop into the story it is now.

Who is your intended readership?

Most of my work is written for adults, but is suitable for teens. I write adult fiction, mostly in the speculative genres, which is why I took on the pen name, Glorie Townson, when I decided to delve into romantic comedy.  Recently, I allowed my day job to influence my writing by developing four educational children’s books. For those, I saw no need to take on another pen name; it’s simply an extension, another part of my writing spectrum.  Most of my promotion is split between catering to adult readers of speculative fiction or readers of contemporary or romantic fiction. The children’s books tend to be bonuses discovered by satisfied moms or dads.

When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?

When I look back in retrospect, it’s clear that I’ve always been a writer. I’ve found old notebooks filled with stories, drawings, bad poetry, character ideas, and more. For me, though, writing was never something I considered as a career. I’ve also loved technology since I was a kid and got my degree in computers, even interning for a short time with N.A.S.A Langley. When I begin to crave a creative outlet beyond my amateurish paintings and baking from scratch, I began to develop a love of reading and writing that I’d let slip away from me.
When a reoccurring dream began to haunt my days with figments of a story that made no sense, I began to write it down until I had something to base a whole book on. Once I completed that story, I knew writing was the one thing missing from my life. I’ve never stopped since. I may not always pursue publication, but I will always write.

Do you have a favorite author, or writing inspiration?

This question requires two answers, sort of. When I look back at the many stories I read in my youth, before school work tainted my love of reading, there were so many authors who made me feel like I could do anything. There was one, however, who brought out my creativity. What would now be considered fanfiction, as a kid, I paid homage to J.M.Barrie with by writing my own tales of Neverland with me as one of the many lost boys. That story, at the time, made we want to create new worlds and characters.
As an adult, I’m influence by everything around me; of course, that includes what I read. I try not to take what I’m reading too seriously, unless it’s nonfiction. I’ve rekindled my love of reading simply for pleasure and try not to let my writer’s mind get in the way. At the moment, I’d say my favorite authors are Stacey Rourke, Marissa Mayer, Deborah Harkness, Alex J. Cavanaugh, and Tricia Drammeh.

What advice would you give beginning writers?

For a young or aspiring writer, I’d say it’s important to know why you are writing.  I think the why is one of the most overlooked, yet powerful, struggles a writer faces. Are you writing for pleasure? Are you writing for therapy or understanding? Are you writing for publication, just to put something out there? Are you writing for money? Are you writing for fame? The why will determine the course of action you take in your writing life. It will decide if or how much research and effort will go into the development of your work. It will decide if or how much time and or money will be spent on promotion, and so much more.

Do you have any amusing writing stories or anecdotes to share?

I once wrote a short story about a gray cat who stalked me and my sister around the little town in Texas, where we lived at the time. Everyone thought it was a good and creepy story I wrote for the Halloween season, but in reality, it was a true story. Yes, there were some exaggerations, but it really happened.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing? Any hobbies?

I’m a geekgirl. I collect comic books and action figures (guess that makes me a bit of a collector too). I also collect vinyl records. I love the cinema and taking pictures of my family and my dog, Margie. I like to bake and cook, from scratch when I can, but it’s not required. I’ve been struggling to find the right balance between my faith and all my other interests, and since I’m still seeking, I feel like I’m on the right path (I don’t feel lost and I haven’t given up).

What’s your next project? Any upcoming book secrets you care to reveal?

I have a ridiculously long list of WIPs at the moment. Because of this, I’m taking a year off from attending major live events and am scaling back on my blogging. Aside from the sequels in the works for the Eternal Curse Series and my Saying Series, I have a new fantasy I hope to release soon. It’s set in a world were magic is tied to the land and should be used, but is being suppressed. A garden hidden in a library and an unknowing young mage are about to change this world forever.

Eternal Curse: Giovanni’s Angel


“You have plenty of time to change your mind. You have not yet seen the monster I can be.”
Giovanni has been waiting his whole life to meet someone like Mira, someone from the outside world who might be able to help him. He wonders if there really is help for him as he continues to hold tightly onto dark secrets and even darker memories. Giovanni wants to be hopeful and he wants to accept Mira’s help, but first he has to look himself in the mirror and face what he truly is- and that is a reality no one is quite ready to accept.
Searching for new purpose and meaning in her life, Mira meets Giovanni online and an exciting and, in some ways, scary friendship is developed. Mira decides one day to meet Giovanni in person, at his secluded country home, in order to aid him on his journey of self-discovery. What these two are able to discover will not only test their strength and will, but it will stretch the limits of their minds and catapult them into a world where earth, Heaven, and Hell collide.
Giovanni’s Angel is the story of a man who may just be the answer to a spiritual war swiftly heading his way- but for now, he just wants to be a man.

Buy Now: Paperback, E-Book

Author Pages:

Amazon

Where to find Toi Thomas:

Website & Blog (The ToiBox of Words), Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook

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Author Spotlight – Renee Scattergood

Introducing Renee Scattergood

Renee Scattergood, author of the dark fantasy serial, Shadow Stalker, lives in Australia with her husband and daughter. She loves reading, watching movies with her family, and doing crafts and science experiments with her daughter.

Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself.

I live in Australia with my husband and daughter. I’m originally from the US, but I met my husband online and came out here for a visit. We were married three months later and I’ve never looked back.

Could you tell us a bit about your latest book?

Currently, I’m finish up my Shadow Stalker serial. It’s about a girl who is destined to enslave her world, but she is determined to make sure that doesn’t happen. Of course, sometimes there are some things we can’t control. Really it’s her struggle to create her own destiny. Part 1 (Episodes 1 – 6) is available free in most online retailers for those interested in checking it out.

Who is your intended readership?

This is a hard one to answer. I guess dark speculative fiction is the best way to describe it since it has a mix: a dark fantasy with elements of science fiction and thriller. It’s been described as having futuristic technology in a primitive world. There are also some themes (such as torture), which may be uncomfortable for some readers. It’s recommended for mature young adult readers and up.

When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?

I have always loved telling stories, but it never occurred to me to be a writer until I was in my mid-twenties. I was in college and my English instructor suggested I get some of my work published. Before that, I had always done badly in English, so writing wasn’t something I would have ever considered.

Do you have a favorite author, or writing inspiration?

I’m inspired by various people for different reasons. Terry Goodkind inspires me by getting me into a creative mood. J.K. Rowling inspired me with the way she maintained control of her work and didn’t sell out simply for a shot at glory. And there are many indie authors who inspire me every single day to keep doing what I’m doing.

What advice would you give beginning writers?

Something I was told, and it’s turned out to be the best advice I’ve ever gotten, is to keep writing. If you finish your first book and it doesn’t sell well, keep writing. If your second doesn’t sell well, keep writing. And don’t keep yourself in a shell either. We live in an age where authors don’t have to be hermits. The internet gives us a limitless platform for connecting with our readers (and potential readers). So get yourself out there and let people see who you are as a person as well as an author!

What do you like to do when you’re not writing? Any hobbies?

I really haven’t had much time for hobbies. I used to love doing crafts, but arthritis keeps me from that now, and I have an autistic daughter as well who keeps me busy. I love watching movies and reading though.

What’s your next project? Any upcoming book secrets you care to reveal?

Well, I am starting work on a new serial. It’s basically the shadow stalkers’ origin story. And I’m working on my first novel series as well. It’s called A God’s Deception. I’m still working out the details of the story still, but I think the title tells a lot. 🙂

Shadow Stalker Part 1 (Episodes 1 – 6)


Auren learns she is destined to enslave the people of her world, and Drevin, emperor of the Galvadi Empire is determined to end her life before it happens. Her foster father, Kado, has sworn to protect her and trains her as a shadow stalker. But her training is cut short, when their people are overrun by the Galvadi Empire. Now she has to find a way to help her people without succumbing to the prophecy.

Buy Now: E-Book

Author Pages:

Amazon, iTunes, Kobo, Smashwords

Where to find Renee Scattergood:

Website (Renee Writes), Twitter, Pinterest, Blog (Renee Writes), Facebook

Author Spotlight – Stephanie Ayers

Introducing Stephanie Ayers

A published author with a knack for twisted tales, Stephanie Ayers is the Executive Creative Director of OWS Ink, LLC, a community for writers and readers alike. She loves a good thriller, fairies, things that go bump in the night, and sappy stories. When she is not writing, she can be found in Creative Cloud designing book covers and promotional graphics for authors.

Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself.

What can I say? I am me, and that is all I am. I’m quirky, weird.. I talk to myself. I have 8 children altogether, cats, dogs. I’m married. I met my best friend through a writing group who paired us up as writing partners and we started a writing community in 2015, and have grown into a publishing house more recently. I enjoy book creation from cover to formatting, and am currently more interested in designing than writing. I am a fierce football/soccer/basketball mom. and I decompress by reading, playing Oz: Broken Kingdom, or watching tv/movies. I am one of those “I like anything” types who listens to all types of music and reads all types of books. I am easy to get along with, suffer depression and anxiety, am diabetic and deaf, and very passionate about my friends and my family.

Could you tell us a bit about your latest book?

I found myself to be fond of writing short stories vs the traditional novel. I like the brevity and the ability to turn the tables with unexpected twists. The 13 is definitely a book full of twisted stories. It began as a collection of soul collector type stories and turned into a different project as I hand selected each story from my library and polished them to a shine. It starts with my favorite poem, Soul Survivor, and moves to a camera with ill intent, a haunted house, an electric chair, supernatural creatures, evil pixies, gypsy magic, ghosts, and a serial killer or two. it’s hard to narrow down the characters as they are all lively on their own, but perhaps Mr. Worthington , Logan, and Abigail are 3 of the best. You’ll have to decide for yourself.

Who is your intended readership?

This particular book is definitely intended for an adult readership, and one that loves horror, macabre, and good twists. This book has a little bit of everything wicked in it, from stolen children, to sexual predators, to seductive ghosts, and much of everything in between. It’s definitely not a read for the squeamish or the easily frightened. If you’re not into horror, this is not the book for you. It’s well and above Til Death Do Us Part, as I have learned to let many of my inhibitions go in order to tell the story the way it deserves to be told. That said, there isn’t a lot of slasher type gore within the pages. They are more psychological terrors than anything else. A lot of What If? and real possibilities went into the creation of these stories.

When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?

I wrote my first story in 3rd grade. The teacher read it aloud to the class as an example of how stories should be written. This definitely made me write more. Life got in the way for a while and I stuck to mostly poetry writing in my late teens through my 20s. When I became a single mom, the writing took a backseat. It was not until 2010 when I started my blog that writing became a thing for me again, and when I wrote my first story for the first time in forever via The Red Dress Club writing group, my soul was complete.

Do you have a favorite author, or writing inspiration?

I don’t have one favorite author, I have several. Stephen King is an author I read a lot of as I grew up, and he has probably had the most impact in my writing style. I also love Terry Brooks and his Shannara series, Tolkien with the Lord of the Rings, both of whom play a role in my fantasy writing. My current favorite reads are from indie authors like Andy Peloquin, EC Jarvis, John Ryder, and A.L. Mabry.

What advice would you give beginning writers?

“The blank page is the canvas on which a writer paints a story.” Stephanie Ayers. “A single letter cures the blank page.” Stephanie Ayers.

Do you have any amusing writing stories or anecdotes to share?

I used to run a blog called The Scoop on Poop. The premise was a humorous look at the daily life of my family as a special needs mom with kids in a large age gap and coparenting.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing? Any hobbies?

I am passionate about suicide prevention. As a former suicide candidate myself, and mother to a suicide candidate, and after losing a beloved friend to suicide, it is one of my highly passionate parts of my life. The other parts I am passionate about are my graphics and my family. Wanna meet my momma bear? Mess with my family.

What’s your next project? Any upcoming book secrets you care to reveal?

While I am busy reworking websites, creating book covers, and formatting books, I am also working on getting book one in my fantasy series The Master of the Relics ready for editing. I need to add the finish to Elven Games, and finish writing my novella, Say Say Oh Playmate. And then, I have another story collection I want to put together titled Cheap Thrills. I keep busy, but it’s the only way I stay sane.

The 13: Tales of Illusory


Can you survive all 13?

13 enchanted horrors. 13 spine-chilling tales. Down down in the depths they fell, bodies in the dark of a liquid hell. Can you survive all 13?

Buy Now: Paperback, E-Book

Author Pages:

Amazon, Smashwords

Where to find Stephanie Ayers:

Website (Stephanie Ayers: word whisperer, coffee guzzler, creative ninja), Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook

31 Days Of Halloween – Here’s What’s Coming Up

October is a month where I have a lot to celebrate. October 1st marks the anniversary of “Under A Hunter’s Moon” first appearing in print, and takes place on Halloween Eve itself.

This year the story turns three years old, so I decided to create a huge Halloween event, celebrating the work of my fellow indie authors. Everyone involved has submitted a Book Spotlight, Author Spotlight, Story, or Guest Post.

So What’s Happening? [updated @ 11:10 pm (AKST) 10.20.17]

Here is a full listing of posts and events that are happening throughout the month.
The links in the Author column will take you to the individual author’s websites.
The links in the Topic column will take you to the posts, once they are live. Please note that posts will not be live until around 8am EST on the date of release. (This post will be updated as more authors join the event).

Date Author Topic
10/01/17 Anita Stewart Book Spotlight – “Horror Haiku Pas De Deux
10/02/17 Assaph Mehr Storytime – “Shade’s Shadow”
10/03/17 Anaïs Chartschenko Book Spotlight – “Bright Needles”
10/04/17 Stephanie Ayers Author Spotlight
10/05/17 Suzanna J. Linton Guest Post – “Black Cats On All Hallows Eve”
10/06/17 Angela B. Chrysler Event Spotlight – 4th Annual Brain To Books CyCon
10/07/17 Angela B. Chrysler Book Spotlight – “Broken”
10/08/17 Marnie Cate Book Spotlight – “Envy”
10/09/17 Angela B. Chrysler Book Spotlight – “Zombies From Outer Space… and Vampires”
10/10/17 Joe Compton Book Spotlight – “Amongst The Killing”
10/11/17 Kayla Matt Book Spotlight – “Hell Bent Arc 1”
10/12/17 Timothy Bateson “Asteroids In Film & Fiction”
10/13/17 Mackenzie Flohr Book Spotlight – “The Whispered Tales of Graves Grove”
10/14/17 Renee Scattersgood Author Spotlight
10/15/17 Timothy Bateson Top 10 Scary Superheroes & Super Villains
10/16/17 Heidi Angell Book Spotlight – “Elements of a Broken Mind”
10/17/17 K.N. Johnson Book Spotlight – “A Haunting Of Words”
10/18/17 Ariel Marie Book Spotlight – “Mating Two Dragons”
10/19/17 Timothy Bateson Top 10 Haunted Locations
10/20/17 Toi Thomas Author Spotlight
10/21/17 Catterfly Publishing Book Spotlight – “Mirrors & Thorns”
10/22/17 Ed Ireland Storytime – “The Iconic Face”
10/23/17 Ani Manjikian Book Spotlight – “Do You Believe In Legend?”
10/24/17 A.L. Mabry Author Spotlight
10/25/17 A.L. Mabry Character Interview – “Miranda Spencer”
10/26/17 Tiffany Apan Book Spotlight – “Descent”
10/27/17 Timothy Bateson Book Spotlight – “Under A Hunter’s Moon”
10/28/17
10/29/17
10/30/17
10/31/17 Timothy Bateson “31 Days Of Halloween – Happy Halloween”
10/27/17 thru 10/31/17 Timothy Bateson “Under A Hunter’s Moon (Shadows Over Seattle: Prequels #1)” will be FREE over on Amazon

30 Days Of Halloween pt2. – Updated Guest List

Our Guest List… So Far!

Three days ago, I pitched a request for authors to send me their requests for blog slots, and things are shaping up very nicely. Here’s a few of the things that will be coming up. I’ll be linking the individual authors and posts, and adding dates as things continue to develop.

Guest Name Featured Slot
Angela B. Chrysler Book Spotlight – “Broken”
Event Spotlight – TBA
Book Spotlight – TBA
Toi Thomas Author Spotlight
A.F. Stewart Book Spotlight – “Horror Haiku Pas De Deux”
Kayla Matt Book Spotlight – “Hell Bent Arc 1”
Ami Lutkus Pjhillips Book Spotlight – TBA
Stephanie Ayers Book Spotlight – TBA
Ed Ireland Story – “The Iconic Face”
Nina Johnson Book Spotlight – TBA

Readers: If you have a Halloween experience you’d like to share, please email me at timothy.bateson.author@gmail.com . I love collecting stories, and I’d love to hear from those of you who follow the blog. Alternatively, you can leave comments on individual posts, especially if you read a post and loved it.

Writers: I’m looking to gather 30 individual posts for this event. I’m looking for Author Spotlights, Book Spotlights, Poetry, and Guests Posts themed around Halloween. There are forms to fill out for the book and author spotlights, but for anything else, click the “Pitch A Guest Post” image, and email the information.

Deadlines: I need to get all the guest posts and spotlight information as soon as possible. If you would like the post to release on a give date, let me know in your email (or in the “Additional Notes” on the forms)