Indie Author Spotlight – Holly Dae and “White Rose: The Seal of Oblivion”

Indie Author Spotlight – Holly Dae and “White Rose: The Seal of Oblivion”

I’m happy to introduce you to another great indie author. Today I’ve got Holly Dae:

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A 22 year old college student whose been writing novels since she was ten, Holly Dae writes YA fantasy and paranormal novels featuring a diverse cast of characters, usually featuring an African-American female protagonist. When she’s not writing or doing homework, she’s gardening, cooking, obsessing over Teen Wolf and trying her best not to spend her gas allowance on new books.

You can find Holly at her blog, on Goodreads and on Twitter.

Holly’s new book is “White Rose: The Seal of Oblivion”, which is the first book of a series…

Olivion new cover

“Look at you, coming in here all demanding. As if. You’re just some prissy bourgeois-y rich girl cry baby. Doesn’t even want to be the hero, but ironically wants the hero relic. What are you going to do, pretend in your house for a while and then when the real fight comes, cower?”

Thirteen-year-old Laqiya wants to be normal, but that’s a hard feat when she can control the forces of nature. It become even harder when she finds out from her old babysitter, Nightshield, a part feline woman who literally has nine lives, that she is the reincarnation of a woman who locked a power hungry tyrant in oblivion and created the seal of oblivion to make sure he stayed there. Now the seal is breaking and if Laqiya wants to be normal, she has to deal with the baggage her past self left behind, starting with find the pieces to a staff that used to belong to her past incarnation before one of The Tyrant’s dark mistresses, Lady Sahajah, finds them first and uses them to destroy the seal of the oblivion.

Laqiya would actually be content to simply ignore Lady Sahajah and her so-called destiny. But Laqiya quickly finds out that the dark mistress won’t let her because the Tyrant is afraid of her. While he can try to take over the world with his dark powers, Laqiya can stop him by turning the forces of nature against him. That is if Laqiya could figure out how to actually use her powers.

And going head to head with the Tyrant’s dark mistress Lady Sahajah is not like the anime she likes to watch on the internet. Instinct does not always lead her in the right direction. Good is not in everyone. And Lady Sahajah doesn’t plan on wasting time lecturing Laqiya on her brilliant plan before she kills her so that Laqiya can figure out a way to defeat her. 

Laqiya has no choice but to try to stop Lady Sahajah. More than that, Laqiya has to try to invoke the alter identity of her previous incarnation. She has to be The White Rose… Then, maybe after all that, she can at least pretend to be normal again.

You can buy the book, right now, with one simple click, at Amazon!

I’ve got an interview with Holly…

 

Tell us about your family.
I’m the oldest of seven (six girls and one boy) and between them and my parents, there is never a dull moment for me. As a result of being the oldest though, I am also incredibly bossy and my family does nothing to help it because they depend on me for a lot and take everything I say on face value because of it. Some of the interactions between the characters I write are usually based on my interactions with my family.
Tell us about your current release.
I’ve never had children, but if I ever had to imagine what it was like to give labor I’d say it was The White Rose series, both The Seal of Oblivion and its sequel, Plague of the Black Akanthas. It features Laqiya (the q is pronounced /k/) and she’s, African-American, thirteen and able to control the forces of nature and has to use them to keep oblivion sealed and the antagonists from shattering the seal. My inspiration for it was and still is the magical girl anime I enjoyed as a child (particularly Sailor Moon). So if anyone if familiar with some of the tropes of a magical girl anime, they’ll more than likely recognize Laqiya and other characters comparing and contrasting themselves in general to those types of heroines.
Tell us about your next release.
Right now I’m working on Going Lucid and it’s was inspired by my sister and her twitter friends when they were experimenting with lucid dreaming and one of her friends who is a devout Christian said don’t do it. Lucid dreaming is the pathway to hell and you could possibly be possessed by demons. Whether it was true or not, I thought it would make a great ya paranormal novel and after a year or so of sitting on the idea, I finally decided to write it.
What is the hardest part of writing your books?
Titles. Sometimes they come to me and sometimes I don’t have one to well after the second or third round of rewriting a draft.
Do you use a pen name? If so, how did you come up with it?
Holly Dae actually is my pen name and it’s really obvious what my really name is. Three guesses what it is and the first two don’t count. Hint: I’m named after Billie Holiday
Do you have any suggestions for beginning writers? If so, what are they?
Persistence is the key. I was a really terrible writer when I first started writing and there are still times I think I’m a really terrible writer. Writers are their own worst critics. So get your work out there! Let people read your work. Don’t be afraid. Even famous authors are always perfecting their craft and have flaws. But practice and having no fear is the key. Writers can only grow from having their critiques and experiences, good and bad. But you’ll never gain the experience if you don’t look for a way to get it.
If you could select one book that you could rewrite and add your own unique twist on, which book would that be and why?
The Twilight series. I got on the bandwagon for this book late and am currently reading the last two books. They aren’t as bad as its haters make it out to be. There were some scenes and pieces of prose I really liked and drew me into the world, but there were also badly done scenes that pulled me out of the world too. As I read it I would frown and say, “I could have written this better.” There were some things in the book that had so much potential, and I would have a lot of fun fleshing that potential out.
How do you develop your plots and your characters? Do you use any set formula?
I don’t really have a formula, but I do usually sit on ideas for novels for years before the words hit a Word document. In that time I come up with characters and scenes and in general build the entire world in my head. Then after that time, I write it down. But the story doesn’t come until it’s had that time to marinate in my head.
What are your favorite TV shows?
I don’t watch a lot of TV because unfortunately I don’t have the time, but I am obsessed with Teen Wolf right now. If it’s not that, I watch anything with Gordon Ramsey in it when I can find the time to.

And, as a special bonus, here’s a brief excerpt from the book.  Enjoy!

 

Laqiya ignored the banging as she looked around, and seeing the redheaded woman nowhere in the front, she went to the back room. She found the woman rummaging through some junk muttering under her breath about the ‘tall rude woman’ from before.“Excuse me,” Laqiya said trying to be nice even though she wasn’t in a nice mood.  The woman appeared to ignore her, but Laqiya caught her glance her eyes up away from her task before looking back down.
Laqiya sighed, “Look. I don’t want to be here all day, but I do have all day. I’m in no rush, and I won’t leave. I was forced all the way down here to get something, and I don’t plan for this dumb trip to be for nothing when I could have gone to the movies today.”
The woman raised her head to look at her with a raised eyebrow.
“Says who?” she asked.
“I don’t want to be here about as much as you don’t want me here, but I don’t have a choice alright? Three men, who called themselves Anaxars and have been stalking me since I was seven, kidnapped one of my best friends and I barely was able to fight them off. I’d like to ignore it, but I can’t. Nightshield and Isis won’t let me.” Laqiya shook her head. The woman really didn’t need to know all of that. “I know there’s a staff piece in that chest and I’ll bet your family has been guarding it for the last seven thousand years waiting to give it back to its rightful owner. I don’t want to be its owner, but I figure if I can get that, Nightshield will back off for a while.”
“Funny.”
“What?”
“You want something that will bring you the attack, but you don’t want the fight,” the woman pointed out brushing past Laqiya and back into the front of the shop.
“Tell me about it,” Laqiya muttered following her.
“Hm.”
“So what do I have to do for it,” Laqiya said standing directly behind the woman.
“Do for what?”
“The staff piece.”
“Be the White Rose for one.”
Laqiya winced. “I don’t want to be the White Rose. I’m hoping I can pass this along to someone else.”
The woman huffed and grabbed Laqiya’s jacket by the lapel. “Look at you, coming in here all demanding. As if. You’re just some prissy bourgeois-y rich girl cry baby. Doesn’t even want to be the hero, but ironically wants the hero relic. What are you going to do, pretend in your house for a while and then when the real fight comes, cower? That staff piece isn’t a toy to be played with or a nice antique for over the fireplace.”
“That’s where you’re wrong,” Laqiya said in a matter-of-fact tone. “I don’t even want to pretend to be the hero. There are about ten people trying to drag me into this. I would rather be worrying about my status and wardrobe to be honest. In fact, I might make a better villain. I’m selfish, self-centered and hate not getting my way. I just want Nightshield to leave me alone for a while.”
Laqiya then grabbed the woman’s hand and removed it from her jacket. “You don’t have to touch me by the way. I got the point when you said, bourgeois-y.”
The woman glared at her, and Laqiya resisted the urge to cringe. That might not have been the best way to be nice. This was probably some test of will that she had to pass, to test her determination to get what she wanted (not that she really wanted to pass it, just get the staff piece), and it was likely she had just failed.

 

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