Please join me in welcoming Cheryl Landmark, author of Wind and Fire to Debbie's Book Bag, this evening. I had the opportunity to ask Cheryl a few questions to find out a little more about her and her writing.
DEB: Cheryl, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
CHERYL: I would be happy to, Debbie. But, first of all, I would like to thank you for having me as your guest today. As a newcomer to the world of publishing, I appreciate your willingness to promote and support my writing.
I was born and raised in Northern Ontario, Canada, and have lived here all my life. I love it, even with all the snow and cold in the winter! I wouldn't live anywhere else. I'm married with no children except the furry four-legged canine kind. I work at a full-time job as a sales analyst, but I still manage to find time to write. From as far back as I can remember, I've always loved reading and writing and that passion has never waned over the years. In fact, I think if anything, it's become stronger over time.
DEB: Tell us about your book, Wind and Fire?
CHERYL: "Wind and Fire" is the story of a young woman struggling to rid her world of a ruthless, evil Demon Master, who is bent on conquering and dominating it. To do so, she must embark on a perilous journey that will test her courage and the fledgling powers buried deep inside her. She must use that power, which manifests itself as white fire, to help free her mother, the Mistress of the Wind, from the ice tower where Zardonne, the Demon Master, has imprisoned her.
DEB: What was your inspiration for this book? Have you always been interested in Sci-Fi and Fantasy?
CHERYL: The inspiration probably came from the many fantasy/sci-fi novels that I've read over the years. Anne McCaffrey, Terry Brooks, J.R.R. Tolkein, and David Eddings are a few of the authors that I enjoy reading and who have inspired me to set my imagination free. The Fantasy genre is fascinating to me, so full of rich, magical, mystical worlds and characters. As a writer, I love the freedom to create a whole new world that is limited only by my imagination.
DEB: What kind of research did you do for your book?
CHERYL: No research, just pure imagination. I seem to have an overactive mind that's constantly whirling with idea's, characters, scenes, dialogues.
DEB: What is your normal writing day like? Do you have things that have to be in place for you to write comfortably?
CHERYL: I don't follow a strict regime or schedule when I write. Since I work full-time Monday to Friday, I have to find a few hours here and there to sit in front of my computer. Sometimes, it might be for only an hour or two and sometimes , when the writing bug really hits me hard, it can be for several hours. When I'm in the groove, however, I need to have quiet around me. I don't listen to music or have the television on in the background. Fortunately, my writing room is far enough away from the living room that my hubby can watch television but it doesn't distract me from writing.
DEB: What was it like when you first got the world that your book would be published?
CHERYL: After so many polite, form-letter rejections from publishers, it came as a complete shock when Asylett Press asked me to send them my complete manuscript after reading only the first three pages of it, which is part of their submission process. My hubby sent their e-mail to me at work and I can still remember floating around on cloud 9 for the rest of the day! It was a totally awesome feeling that, finally, all of my hard work and those countless hours spent in front of the computer were going to result in a published novel.
DEB: Do you have advice for new writers?
CHERYL: Never give up, never stop dreaming. Don't let those polite, form-letter rejections puncture your balloon or stop you from doing the thing you love. Believe in yourself and persevere and, one day, you'll add your name to that list of published authors.
DEB: When you're not writing, what kind of books, do you like to read? Do you have a favorite author?
CHERYL: My preferred genre's for reading are fantasy, mystery, suspense, and paranormal. I enjoy reading the works of several authors, including Anne McCaffrey, Terry Brooks, Dean Koontz, Kelley Armstrong, James Patterson, Stephen King, to name a few.
DEB: What are you working on right now?
CHERYL: I have another fantasy novel in the works right now, which is almost complete. Only a few more chapters to go, woohoo!! As well, I'm writing a dog detective series and have several more partially completed manuscripts of different genres that hoping to polish into novels.
DEB: Tell us one thing people might not know about you?
CHERYL: Hmmm, let's see. That's a tough one. I'm usually very shy and quiet, but, every now and then, I let my crazy, wild side out. I once dressed up like Simon the Chipmunk for a Christmas Party and sang Chipmunk Christmas carols with two of my friends who were Alvin and Theodore. I surprised a lot of people at the party who never thought I would do such a thing. But you know what they say, still waters run deep!