Wednesday, September 14, 2016

NBtM: Mark of the Dragon by JW Troemner


Mark of the Dragon
by JW Troemner

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GENRE: Urban Fantasy

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BLURB:

Rosario Hernandez doesn't ask for much. She'd like to sleep on a bed instead of a sidewalk, to know where her next meal is coming from, and maybe, if she's really feeling optimistic, to get a girlfriend. More than anything, though, she wants her best friend Arkay to not murder anyone— because Arkay is a dragon, claws and all, and she has a penchant for vigilante justice. When Arkay's latest escapade goes sour, Rosario gets stuck with a stolen van and a cooler full of human organs. Now they're on the run, and it's not just the cops who want answers. The owner of the cooler is still out there, and they want to replace what they've lost— by any means necessary.

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Excerpt One:

The Cooler:
What have ya got there?” Raimo asked when his inspection reached the back of the van.

No clue,” I said, coming around front. “The guy we got this from said he was delivering something.”

Like what, a case of beer?” He tipped the box back a few inches, and it made a wet gravelly sound. “It looks like a cooler.”

Must have been some excellent beer,” I said, tapping the padlock that sealed the lid. “You don’t get ice boxes like this at Walmart.”

An excited grin crossed Raimo’s face. “Let’s find out, shall we? Give me a second.” He vanished into the garage and came out with what I could only describe as a murder weapon. “Watch your fingers, Hiccup.”

This wasn’t a friendly little set of bolt cutters. It had wicked blades nearly as long as “Isn’t that a bit excessive?” I asked.

I know, right?” he squealed. “I just got her in. Isn’t she gorgeous? I’m going to call her Matilda.”

Ooh, did Raimo get a new toy?” Arkay called from inside. “I wanna see!” She bounded out to join us, bits of moisture still dripping down from her damp hair.

The padlock could probably have been pulled off with a solid pull, but Raimo caught the remaining sliver of metal between Matilda’s jaws with an almost dainty twist. Another roar, and the pieces fell away.

All right,” Arkay said, taking the lid with both hands. “Let’s see what we’ve got here.”

Matilda hit the floor with a solid thunk as Raimo stumbled back. “Jesus Christ!”

It took me a moment longer to make sense of the metallic, meaty smell and the sudden flash of red.

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:


JW Troemner was born in Germany and immigrated to the United States, where she lives with her partner in a house full of pets. Most days she can be found gazing longingly at sinkholes and abandoned buildings.



Interview with JW Troemner

As a kid did you write or make up stories?
All the time!
When I was really little, I had my older brother convinced that I was a space alien who had snuck to earth while on a field trip. I’ve got to say, researching was a whole lot easier when I was five—my brother was really into science, so he’d look up all sorts of interesting plants and animals and ask me if I’d seen anything like it on my space adventure, usually answered with “oh my gosh, yes! How did you know?” He wound up charting my entire “journey” all over the world.
I kept insisting on that one for months before I finally gave it up and moved on to something else.


Where does most of your character inspiration come from?
Usually I’ll pick one particular image or idea that the character evokes and explore as much as I can of that idea. When I was writing Fext, I had a very clear image in my head of a Russian ballerina, so I immersed myself in all things ballet while writing her. After I refined the character a few times, very little of the original dancer was left, but she retained a lot of a ballerina’s discipline and elegance, and an utter refusal to put up with anybody else’s ineptitude.

Do some qualities of your characters come from real people?
I’m one of those people who thinks every character is a really exaggerated facet of the person who wrote them, or at least someone they know. Arkay got a lot of my anger and Rosario got a lot of my mother’s compassion (and my personal ineptitude with sports), but the most specific example was based on someone I never met personally. The character of Mike Jones was inspired by Maurice Young (http://www.tedxindianapolis.com/speakers/maurice-young/ or  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgZZ7r-AR3A ), a major advocate for the homeless and the mayor of the Irish Hill homeless camp in Indianapolis before it was destroyed.

What was the inspiration for your book?
The story actually started out as more or less of a thought experiment. During commercial breaks in my TV shows, or between chapters of whatever book I was reading, I would mentally plot out how it was probably going to end, and how it could potentially end.
A lot of times, that potential manifested as an outside character asking the heroes some basic questions, like why they hadn’t bothered actually talking to the obviously sentient monster, or why they insisted on using flashlights when they had a phone right there, and if they were going to dedicate their lives to hunting superpowered monsters, why hadn’t they bothered investing in a decent health insurance plan? Eventually that voice of snarky reason became Arkay, and the story formed around her.

What is your favorite spot to write?
I wish I could say the coffee shops around town, because there’s a ton of amazing ones in my area and I’d love to spend all the time in the world in them. But for the life of me, I can never manage it. People seem to take an open laptop as an invitation to ask what I’m writing about and then start in-depth conversations. It’s lots of fun, but I never get anything written!
Thankfully, I’ve got an office at home that’s quiet and people-free. And the best part is that there’s usually a dog keeping my feet warm as I type.

What advice would you give budding writers?
The process of writing is going to be different from writer to writer—sometimes even from writing session to writing session—and any writing advice you get from somebody else might not work for you (or it might one day and not the next). Don’t sweat it, and don’t try to force a process that doesn’t actually work for you. Keep trying different things until you find something that does.


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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

JW Troemner will be awarding $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.






66 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed reading the excerpt, thank you!

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    1. Thank you, Nikolina. How are you enjoying the blog hop so far?

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    2. I am really enjoying following this tour, thank you for all the great blog posts and excerpts! See you on my blog on October 19 :)

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  2. Hello, Teresa! Thank you for having me on your blog today. I'll be stopping by all day to chat!

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  3. What do you like best about writing? What do you like the least?

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    1. Thank you for asking, Clojo.

      My favorite thing about writing is that moment when I've got all these disparate elements laid out in my head and they just sort of click together, like I'm completing a puzzle without having seen the picture on the box.

      My least favorite bit would be that awkward moment when you realize you've been trying to smush two pieces together that don't actually belong next to each other, just because then I suddenly realize how much time I've lost trying to force something that doesnt' work.

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    2. I really enjoyed your answer to Clojo9372's question

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  4. congrats on the tour and thanks for the chance to win :)

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    1. Thank you, Rita. Do you read much urban fantasy?

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  6. I'm looking forward to checking this one out - thanks for sharing!

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    1. I'm glad to hear it. I look forward to hearing what you think of it!

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  7. It's 1:21 here, so I think it's time for me to call it a night. Thank you so much for having me, Teresa. I'll be sure to come back over the next week or two and answer any more questions your readers have for me.

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  8. Could you tell us about your hobbies (when you are not writing or reading)?

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    1. When I can get away with it, I try my hand at urban exploration-- the investigation of abandoned and derelict places. Officially I call that research for the settings I use in the series, but I can't deny my love for exploring them. I also do a lot of travel when I get half the chance, tagging along on my husband's business trips or helping friends move, and using that excuse to explore new places.

      And when I'm not being exciting, I play video games.

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    2. I love urban exploration. I follow several people on youtube who post video's of their exploration. I also enjoy exploring cemeteries.

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  9. Shared on Facebook to help spread the word! :)

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    1. Thank you, Nikolina! You've been an amazing help with this blog hop. I really appreciate it.

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  10. I love the excerpt. Sounds like a great book
    Best of luck to you and your book!!

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  11. Thanks for being a part of my favorite form of entertainment

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    1. Whoops, sorry I missed your earlier comment!

      But thank you, Teresa!

      I've got to ask, though, what specifically is your favorite form of entertainment? Do you mean reading, or fantasy, or something else entirely?

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    2. Actually both reading and fantasy. When I choose a book I try to get as far away from every day life as possible. Reading about Day to Day life isn't that much fun. Make Believe, Dragons, Witches and things like that take me away from dishes and dinner.

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    3. I feel the same way. I know how important contemporary stories can be to a lot of readers, but they've just never held my interest the way that space battles and magic spells do. There's also a sense of hope in those. Things that feel overwhelming or impossible in real life get a lot easier to handle when you've got access to a dragon.

      Have you had any books that have pulled you away from dishes and dinner recently?

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  12. I've read a few that make me rush through the dishes, and had my tablet on the table while cooking, but none that have made me forget to make dinner of do the dishes. Would love to get my hands on one of those books.

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  13. How did you come up with the name for the book?

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  14. How did you come up with the Arkay?

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  15. Still hosting and posting. Best of luck!

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  16. What made you want to become a writer?

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  17. If you could have been the author of any book ever written, which book would you choose?

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  18. What do you love most about the writing process?

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  19. What tactics do you have when writing? (For example: outline or just write)

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  20. Does your book have a lesson? Moral?

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  21. What made you want to become a writer?

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  22. Congrats on the new book and good luck on the book tour!

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  23. I stopped in to share. Merry Christmas everyone!!

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