Thursday, October 24, 2013

I've Moved to WordPress

I'm now blogging at "The Wisewoman" on WordPress. Most of my writer friends have had WordPress sites for a while now, and since I moved over there I've enjoyed quite a bit more interaction. It seems to be a livelier place than on this side of the Web.

Please drop by "The Wisewoman" and say hello. I'll be looking for you.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Awesome Indies Magical Mystery Tour: Special Book Offers and Prizes!

During the Awesome Indies Magical Mystery Tour, September 27-30, you’ll have chances to pick up special offers at the blogs participating in the tour and win an awesome prize. At each blog you’ll find one scene in a mystery story, and one playing card. You’ll need to take the full tour to read the whole story and find out which card is missing from the suite. After taking the tour, return to the beginning and use the name of the missing card (e.g., Jack, King, Ace, or seventh) to enter the drawing for an Amazon gift card. (First prize is a $25 card, second prize is $15, and third prize is a $10 card.) 

The drawing ends at midnight PDT on September 30, giving you 4 days to take the tour. All you have to do is follow the links from blog to blog, read the story, note the playing card -- and while you’re there, pick up the host’s special offer.

Every purchase gives you another entry into the Giveaway.

When you’ve finished, ask yourself which card is missing from the suite? The answer is the key to enter the drawing.


To get started, read on.


Monday, September 23, 2013

The Tropes: Essential Elements of Fantasy

     For the “Barnes & Noble Review,” Paul Di Filippo wrote a thoughtful and informative analysis of A Wrinkle in Time, the famous YA science-fiction novel by Madeleine L’Engle.

     Wrinkle was among my favorite books as a girl. I remember being utterly enchanted, caught up in the tale as though it were real life. Intending to reread the story and its sequels, I purchased the Science Fiction Book Club’s 2003 edition of “The Time Quartet,” which includes A Wrinkle in Time as well as A Wind in the Door, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, and Many Waters.

     Until recently, I’ve been too deep in my own novels—the Waterspell fantasy trilogy—to reread Wrinkle. But now it’s “time” (pardon the pun). My novels are published. For the first time in a decade, I actually have time to do something other than write, revise, and edit.

     Paul Di Filippo’s review of A Wrinkle in Time is fascinating reading. Here’s one passage that particularly caught my eye:

     “Her [L’Engle’s] fairy-tale tropes -- abducted parent; arrival of the Gandalfian stranger(s) initiating a quest; far-voyaging; realms under a spell; well-met comrades; exotic vistas -- are superbly arrayed yet never programmatic.”

     This list practically demands that I analyze my own work to see how these elements figure in Waterspell.

ELEMENTS OF “FANTASTIKA”

     First, a definition of the word “trope,” a term that is often used in discussions of speculative and genre fiction: A trope is a common or familiar theme or device.

     Here are the tropes that Di Filippo identifies, with a brief summary of how they appear in Waterspell.

Abducted parent. In my story, it’s the child (Carin) who is abducted. But her parents have gone missing too.

Arrival of the Gandalfian stranger. This is an interesting one. It requires thought to determine which of my characters is THE “Gandalfian stranger.” Carin herself is a stranger in a strange land. So is Megella, the wisewoman who acts as the “herald,” the player who brings a message or otherwise acts to set the events in motion. Verek is also a “Gandalfian stranger.” Like Megella (and Gandalf), he possesses knowledge and capabilities that are superior to those of the protagonist, Carin. But also like Gandalf, Verek requires assistance: he cannot succeed alone. Another candidate for this role is the monk Welwyn, who provides additional support to Carin in her quest. I must conclude that my novels brim with enigmatic “Gandalfian strangers.”

Initiating a quest. Megella initiates a quest by sending Carin off to find her place in the world. Even earlier, however, Carin was launched on her quest amidst circumstances that I cannot discuss here without spilling the beans. :-) This idea of questing, which is central to all types of heroic literature, is illustrated by a rough diagram I created to show the underlying structure of Waterspell:


Far-voyaging. For sure, there’s plenty of far-voyaging in Waterspell. Again, it would be a spoiler for me to reveal details of the places to which my characters travel. I’ll let a reviewer sum up this aspect. Tahlia Newland commented: “I enjoyed the second in this series even more than the first. The end of it takes us somewhere completely different …” Book 1 begins with a road trip, but Books 2 and 3 are road trips.

Realms under a spell. That’s kind of self-evident from the series title: Waterspell. In my fantasy world(s), spells wreathe mountains, meadows, gardens, oceans … all of the bewitchments different, all placed for different purposes by different practitioners of the art magick.

Well-met comrades. Carin meets a wisewoman, a woodsprite, a housekeeper, a gardener, and a wizardly monk, each well-disposed toward her, or at least not actively hostile. She makes deadly enemies too. But it’s her relationship with the warlock, Verek, that raises the central question: Is he a well-met friend or a manipulative foe? Is he good or evil? Hero or villain? Do we root for him or against him?

Exotic vistas. Waterspell’s far-voyaging characters move through many an exotic landscape. Their travels take them to mountains, prairies, woodlands, valleys, rivers, seashores, sea cliffs: such lands and climes as I’ve encountered in my own travels, or read about, or invented in flights of fancy. One of the perks of writing fiction is the freedom to set one’s story against wild and dramatic backdrops, whether natural or made-up.

     I did not deliberately set out to incorporate into Waterspell these tropes of the fantasy genre. The story grew around them, or they grew into the story, as inevitably as a plant roots into soil. Years of reading fantasy and science fiction planted these elements within me. When the time was right, when I was ready to write the kind of story I love to read, the essentials were there, all set to serve me as they have served generations of storytellers.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Finale: Waterspell Blog Tour. Thanks!

The Autumn (is it autumn yet?) 2013 Waterspell Book Tour has ended. Thanks to everybody who participated! Including:




Highlights

On any blog tour, the REVIEWS are the main attraction. Here are excerpts — all 5-star or 4-star reviews. Many thanks for these, you wonderful bloggers!

"This author has woven such a spell with this book as Verek can with his magic. I just can’t seem to get enough of this series." —Crystal, Once Upon a Book

"This is Young Adult in age, but Epic in Fantasy. Imaginative, Exciting, plenty of action, and an ending that will leave you satisfied." EverLeigh, A Life Through Books

"Deborah J. Lightfoot just really has this way of bringing the reader into her world. The story really surprised me and the author one upped herself." —Cami, My Reading Addiction

"What a brilliant and unforgettable story! I devoured this book … literally consumed by the originality and depth Deborah brings to her characters. She provides a strong balance between action, adventure, fantasy, and romance and Carin’s combination of pride and vulnerability make her a fabulous character! Quite frankly, I am just astounded by the emotions this book stirred in me. It is simply extraordinary." —Feifei Le, Goodreads 

"If you like epic fantasy that sweeps you to amazing, immersive worlds and while following intriguing characters, be sure to add this series to your to-read list."
Kimberly Wheaton, Once Upon a YA Book

"I really loved the main characters, particularly because they are complicated—not cookie-cutter at all. I also enjoyed the writing. It is stylized perfectly to the story, so you feel you are in the Waterspell world. I definitely recommend these books!" Beck Digs It, Amazon

"This series is so vivid in my mind thanks to wonderful descriptions and attention to detail." Bailey Ember, Texas Book Nook 

 
"Deborah J. Lightfoot does a wonderful job at creating a story. She has created an environment that is easy to understand yet complex enough to keep the reader thinking through her story. Her writing style is engaging and she has great pacing." Lisa Is a Bookworm

"A fascinating, complex world and interesting characters." Zili In the Sky

"Ms. Lightfoot has opened a new mystical world with this series. The characters and setting most definitely will leave you wanting more." Let's Get Booked!


Interviews


"What did you want to be when you grew up?" Mom With a Kindle

"What's the most exciting thing to happen to you as a writer?" Books and Other Spells 

"Is impossible love an imperative ingredient for fantasy?" Mythical Books

"Do you consider Waterspell to be a romance?" Laurie's Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews


"What was the hardest part?" Reading Addiction

"What do you think about the future of book publishing?" Book Goodies


Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Excerpt
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Excerpt
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Review (to come)

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm - Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Excerpt
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Excerpt
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 - Ali's Books - Excerpt
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Review and Excerpt
September 13 - Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews - Excerpt
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review Wrap-Up

Friday, September 13, 2013

Day 21: Waterspell Blog Tour. Fascinating!


Bringing luck to my Friday the 13th is a British blogger who posted a Waterspell review at "Zili in the Sky":

"A fantasy adventure with interesting characters and a fascinating, complex world."

Thanks, Zili!

Please click over to "Zili in the Sky" to read the complete review and an excerpt.


Tomorrow: Dalene's 
Book Reviews

On Saturday, September 14, a review is scheduled at Dalene's Book Reviews. Please check back to hear her thoughts.



 

Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Excerpt
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Excerpt
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Review (to come)

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm - Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Excerpt
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Excerpt
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 - Ali's Books - Excerpt
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Review and Excerpt
September 13 - Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews - Review
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review



Thursday, September 12, 2013

Day 20: Waterspell Blog Tour. It'll Grab You!

Today's stop on the Waterspell book tour is a five-star (yippee!) review by Crystal at "Once Upon a Book." Here's an excerpt:

"This book has really grabbed me … This author has woven such a spell  as Verek can with his magic. I can’t seem to get enough of this series."

Thank you, Crystal! 

To read the complete review, please pop over to Once Upon a Book.

Tomorrow:
A New Review

Scheduled next on the tour is a review by British blogger Zili in the Sky

I am keen to hear what she thinks, since the British Isles gave birth to the kind of fantasy I particularly enjoy.


Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Excerpt
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Excerpt
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Review (to come)

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm - Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Excerpt
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Excerpt
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 - Ali's Books - Excerpt
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Review and Excerpt
September 13 - Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews - Review
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review 


 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Day 18: Waterspell Blog Tour. Spellbinding!

Kicking off the final week of the Waterspell book tour is an interview at Books and Other Spells in which I explain what I love about the fantasy genre and I describe my writing "process," if it can be called a process. 

Please click over to Alisia's blog Books and Other Spells, read the interview, and maybe leave a comment. I will welcome your company. :-)


Tour Wrap-Up:
Three Reviews

Brief stops take us to the weekend, then the Waterspell blog tour ends with reviews scheduled for September 13-15. Please check back, beginning on Friday when a review is scheduled at Zili in the Sky.



Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Excerpt
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Excerpt
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Review (to come)

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm - Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Excerpt
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Excerpt
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 - Ali's Books - Excerpt
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Excerpt
September 13 - Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews - Review
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review 


Friday, September 6, 2013

Day 15: Waterspell Blog Tour. Wonderful!

Today's stop on the Waterspell book tour is a review by Bookworm Lisa:

"Deborah J. Lightfoot does a wonderful job at creating a story. She has created an environment that is easy to understand yet complex enough to keep the reader thinking through her story. Her writing style is engaging and she has great pacing."

Thank you, Lisa! 


Please click over to the blog of Bookworm Lisa to read the complete review, along with an excerpt from Waterspell Book 2: The Wysard.


Monday's Feature:
An Interview

On Monday, September 9, Books and Other Spells is scheduled to post an interview in which I answer such questions as:

"Since becoming a writer, what's the most exciting thing to ever happen to you?"

Please stop by for my answer to that, and more!

The Waterspell Fantasy Trilogy




Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Excerpt
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Excerpt
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Review (to come)

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm - Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Excerpt
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Excerpt
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 - Ali's Books - Excerpt
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Excerpt
September 13 - Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews- Review
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review








Sunday, September 1, 2013

Waterspell Is Awesome Indies Approved!


I just got word that Waterspell has been awarded the Awesome Indies Badge of Approval! The badge attests to the quality of my trilogy. These books had to meet stringent criteria to be listed at Awesome Indies and to gain the right to display the AIA badge (the black and gold circle) on the ebook covers.


I am proud of this honor. Even more, I am delighted to be part of a great group of independent authors who "are independent in that they do not depend on someone else to decide whether, or not, they can express their voice in the world. They create the new trends, offer the new adventures, and make you think, feel and wonder anew. Awesome Indies Approved authors have exacting standards. They choose this path, not because they have no other choice, but because they choose independence." (Awesome Indies)


Please check out the great books listed at the AI site. When you buy books listed there, you can be assured that you are supporting the best independent authors: writers who deserve to succeed, who maintain high standards of written language. Awesome Indies is where you’ll find the best indie authors and some of the most exciting fiction available today.




Awesome Indies Reviews:

Waterspell Book 1: The Warlock & Book 2: The Wysard
Waterspell Book 3: The Wisewoman

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Day 10: Waterspell Blog Tour. Addicting!

Today's stop on the Waterspell book tour is "My Reading Addiction," where Cami says:

"As much as I enjoyed The Warlock I have to admit, this one surpassed it. Not by just a little bit, by a whole lot. … Deborah J. Lightfoot just really has this way of bringing the reader into her world.

"The characters are so believable and lovable … the ending to this one [The Wysard] was very well done. The story really surprised me and the author one upped herself."


Thank you, Cami!

To read the complete review, please visit "My Reading Addiction," Cami's excellent blog about books, authors, and book tours.




The Tour Takes a Break

Have a Great Labor Day holiday, everybody! We'll return after the break with a brief stop at Rose & Beps on September 1, then an excerpt at Faerie Tale Books on September 2.




Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Excerpt
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Excerpt
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Promo

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm- Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Promo
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Promo
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 -Ali's Books - Promo
September 11 - Lov Liv Life Reviews - Promo
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Review
September 13 -  Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews- Review
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Day 9: Waterspell Blog Tour. Exciting!


Featured today on the Waterspell book tour is a review by EverLeigh Phelps, who blogs at "A Life Through Books." EverLeigh says:

"This is Young Adult in age, but Epic in Fantasy Imaginative, Exciting, plenty of action, and an ending that will leave you satisfied."

Thank you, EverLeigh! To read the complete review, please visit her excellent blog, "A Life Through Books."


Tomorrow's Review:
My Reading Addiction

On Thursday, August 29, the Waterspell book tour moves to "My Reading Addiction," where blogger extraordinaire Cami is schedule to post another review. Please check back to see what she says and add your own comments.


Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Promo
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Review
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Review 

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm - Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Promo
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Promo
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 -Ali's Books - Promo
September 11 - Lov Liv Life Reviews - Promo
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Review
September 13 -  Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews- Review
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Day 8: Waterspell Blog Tour: Millions!


Today's stop on the Waterspell book tour is an interview by "Mom With a Kindle," aka Michelle. She asked what I would do with a million dollars. What do you think? 

Please click over to Michelle's blog to check your answer against mine.


Tomorrow's Review:
A Life Through Books

On Wednesday, August 28, the tour moves to "A Life Through Books," where EverLeigh Phelps is scheduled to post a review. Please stop by, read, and comment. We'll love to see you! 



Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Promo
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Review
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Review 

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm - Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Promo
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Promo
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 -Ali's Books - Promo
September 11 - Lov Liv Life Reviews - Promo
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Review
September 13 -  Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews- Review
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review

Monday, August 26, 2013

Day 7: Waterspell Blog Tour. Mystical!

From today's review at "Let's Get BOOKED!"

"I'm so glad I did [read Books 1 and 2] otherwise I would have missed the depth of the characters in the Waterspell series. Ms. Lightfoot has opened a new mystical world … the characters and setting most definitely will leave you wanting more. I look forward to reading the third book and can't wait to see where the author takes us."

Thank you, Let's Get BOOKED! 


Tomorrow's Interviewer:
Mom With a Kindle


On Tuesday, August 27, the Waterspell book tour moves to "Mom With a Kindle," aka Michelle. At "MWAK" I answer such provocative questions as "One food you would never eat?"



 




Tour Schedule:

August 18 - Reading Addiction - Interview
August 19 - Mythical Books - Interview/Excerpt
August 20 - Once Upon a YA Book - Review
August 22 - Texas Book Nook - Review
August 23 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
August 24 - Always Jo Art - Excerpt
August 26 - Let's Get Booked - Review
August 27 - Mom With a Kindle - Interview
August 28 - A Life Through Books - Review
August 29 - My Reading Addiction - Review
September 1 - Rose & Beps - Promo
September 2 - Faerie Tale Books - Review
September 3 - Becky's Barmy Book Blog - Review 

September 5 - Must Read Faster - Promo
September 6 - Lisa is a Bookworm - Review 
September 7 - Books and Tales - Promo
September 8 - Word to Dreams - Promo
September 9 - Books and Other Spells - Interview
September 10 -Ali's Books - Promo
September 11 - Lov Liv Life Reviews - Promo
September 12 - Once Upon a Book - Review
September 13 -  Zili in the Sky - Review
September 14 - Dalene's Book Reviews- Review
September 15 - RABT Reviews - Review