Author Spotlight: Sonia Poynter’s THE LAST STORED

Cue my excitement as I get to share a writer friend’s debut novel!

Copy of the last stored 1600x2400

Blurb:

After the sudden death of her parents, making it through the day is a struggle for Amber Megan Peel. In the midst of her grief, an exquisite bird perches on her garden fence and shows her visions of a vivid landscape and a dark lord slouching upon a throne. She thinks the visions are tied to her sorrow. But when a boy flies through her kitchen window to tell her she’s the Last Stored, she wonders if she’s just lost her mind.

Cree of Din is tasked with one job: Bring Amber home. For seven years, Cree has trained as her protector and it is the ultimate responsibility. Failure means Amber’s certain death, and that’s not an option for Cree – especially since he’s falling in love with her.

The Returning has begun. Now all Amber and Cree have to do is enter Tali, a world of unimaginable splendor and equally unimaginable horror, and defeat Lorthis. If they can’t, not only will Tali plunge into darkness, but so will Earth.

Release Date: January 6, 2015

Book Links:

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22606747-the-last-stored?ac=1

Anaiah Press: www.anaiahpress.com

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Last-Stored-Sonia-Poynter-ebook/dp/B00QUD6CGC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1419879023&sr=8-1&keywords=the+last+stored

Excerpt:

Cree climbs onto the railing and extends his hand to me. “Your choice, Amber, you can come or you can stay!” he yells over the roar of the water.

“This is nuts. You expect me to jump?”

“Nuts? No, merely the door.” He beams with anticipation. He seems fine. In fact, his eyes sparkle with the moon’s glow.

My heart skips. My choice. I had another choice. I grasp his hand and crawl onto the railing. My feet slip, and I waver. Cree steadies me with his hand. The water falls in torrents in front of me. Am I really about to do this?

“You can’t go back once you enter. Are you ready? You can do this.”

He looks into the raging waters, then back at me. His cloak swirls around him like Superman’s cape.

“Yes, I can do this!” My heartbeat bangs in my throat. I’m about to jump off of Lovers Leap with a boy I don’t know, along with two little old men who have vanished below my feet. This is crazy, but I’m supposed to do it. Part of me knew it every time my mother and father looked over this very railing. I’m at the door.

Cree squeezes my hand, nods, and we jump. He howls. The feeling of dropping over a roller coaster comes on fast. The water rushes by, cold and wet. I fall.

My chest tightens like I’ve had the wind knocked out of me. I choke and cough, spitting out water. I see darkness, and I feel Cree’s hand holding mine.

Then, a bright light shimmers and glows at my feet, reflecting upward. The sound of the water fades. My lungs fill with sweet air. The light expands, covering me. Wind swirls and holds me up. I no longer fall, but glide upward. A light from above warms my face, and the aroma of fragrant honey hangs on the air. We twist and turn, Cree’s cloak coils around him, my own clothing flapping in the wind.

I giggle loudly and squeal like a child.

Cree crinkles his face and laughs along. The wind continues pushing us through a tunnel. I lift my free hand and try to feel the mist forming around us; it scatters with my touch, only to form again when I retreat. We have increased our speed. Far above me, Dartlin and Fink’s feet come into focus, and they’re whooping with joy.

Then we stop.

We stand in a brick wading pool a few inches deep. Stone replaces the air, which moments before surrounded me. I take in a deep, fragrant breath.

Cree continues to hold my hand. He looks at our fingers still entwined and laughs. “You can let go.”

Book Trailer:

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Author Bio:

Authors photo

Sonia Poynter grew up traipsing through the thick woods of Kentucky. The magic of the forest made her want to write. Currently, she lives in the sleepy community of Pittsboro, Indiana, with the love of her life and God has blessed them both with three amazing kids.

Website: http://twowillowswriter.blogspot.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SoniaPoy

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/bigmug/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/8009965-sonia-poynter

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SoniaPoynterAuthorhttp://www.facebook.com/jen.novotney

http://www.anaiahpress.com/

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Learning From Cliché Avoidance

There’s a warning out there in Writer Land: avoid clichés at all cost. If one pops up in a manuscript, light the blowtorch and burn that sucker out of the story! Okay, so maybe it’s not that extreme. Forgive me, I’ve been preparing Superhero battles with my son.

The type of cliché I’m focusing on is the plot cliché, an occurrence found so often that it becomes cliché and loses that special spark in the process. I had one I hadn’t even realized: my main characters met at a bar. At the time I had read very few novels that began in this fashion, it was a honest and clueless mistake. I reworked the scene to avoid the real cliché part of the meeting: their eyes lock from across the room… Nope, done before, needs something to set this meeting apart from the pack.

This past week I was diving into a Work In Process, trying to find something to revise with a purpose, because I really do love what a revision can do. I’m plugging along, planting in new concepts, and came to an abrupt halt. My characters meet where? That’s right, a bar. So not only had I not been aware of this being a clichéd occurrence, I made it cliché in my own work.

I retreated into my warped little mind and played around with other scenarios that would work for my characters. What really spurred on this realization was a decision to make one of my characters not drink alcohol. But that still left me with a stressed out character looking for a release.

Hello ice cream. No longer do my characters meet at a bar, their eyes locking and… yeah. Now my female drops her ice cream cone down the front of my male’s shirt. And I’m saying a silent thanks to the Cliché Gods, as this small change revamps my entire opening and makes it stronger.

ice cream

Furthermore, a trail of ice cream, down a hot guy’s shirt. It just calls for licking, doesn’t it?

Hope

sunrise flower

The sun rises on a new day
Hope blooms
Hope breathes
A rainbow of options span the horizon
New paths
Old ways
Each day holds the potential
To improve
To fail
The power lies inside

Some days will be good
Some bad
All have the sun rising

And hope.

I Love Revisions—And You Should Too

I love revising. No, really, I do, no sarcasm implied. And at this point many authors are looking at their screens with funny expressions on their faces, or sending some not friendly words my way.

This isn’t to say revisions are easy, just that they are something I’ve found to be a very positive experience. Here’s why:

1) Revisions breathe new life into stories. By the time a revision comes into play a novel has been worked through, cleaned up, and read many times over. The words on the page have grown familiar, and comforting. A revision is a way of looking at all those words differently, a fresh point of view that can take what has grown stagnant into something better.

2) Revisions involve new discoveries of characters. There is always something new to learn about a character, and a revision can take on a different path and open up a character to new experiences, new pasts, or just a different take on life in general.

3) Revisions are a new journey. They mark a changing point for the novel. Regardless of the origin of the revision, a slate is wiped clean and new potential grows. A revision also marks a new journey inside the novel. Something new comes to the plot and the internal journey has a makeover.

Yes, I’m in the middle of a revision right now. And yes, I’m loving it. That’s not to say I haven’t spent a decent amount of time staring at my blinking curser trying to find my way.

But I’m loving the change in the story, the changes in my characters. I’m loving seeing little plot points grow stronger due to the changes, as if the changes were always meant to be there. And I’m loving the new life in the novel, the new excitement for a story grown comfortable.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to get back to work.

Trying to decide if you should begin a revision? Check out this blog post by my writer friend Kim for some excellent pointers!