About Ednah Walters

Author of several YA/teen series: The Guardian Legacy YA books about children of the fallen angels who nuke demons between classes and high school drama. Runes series (NA) about Immortal soul reapers and their interraction with humans. And contemporary romance series about an Irish-American family on the west coast and their search for love in these trying times

The Roads Less Traveled

Since this month’s topic is about books OUTSIDE our genre that have influenced us, I’m not sure where to begin. I read a lot of books outside my genre. I read to learn, to be entertained, to escape boredom and boring friends, to understand the madness of my neighbors, the psychosis of people of different races, the teen angst… The list goes on and on.

Having four older brothers and two older sisters, I started reading grown-up books at a very young age. My oldest sister read romance, so I was introduced to romance at a time when there was no kissing in romance books. I still remember my first book, Shutter the Sky by Janet Daily. Then there was Barbara Cartland’s historical romances. The ton. The handsome rakes. The young ladies swooning. I don’t write historical, but yes, I’m old.

cartland

My brothers introduced me to espionage books before they started turning them into movies . I loved the intricate plots of Tom Clancy books (Jack Ryan books), the intensity of Robert Ludlum (Jason Bourne books), the cunning minds of criminals in Mario Puzo books.

puzo

Then there’s non-fiction. The one that tops that pyramid is the Road Less Travelled Scott Peck. I love learning how people’s minds work and the root of mental illness or psychosis.

peck

So now I write romance with suspense, wicked villains, totally flawed characters, paranormal and fantasy elements

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New Year A New Series

Happy New Year . I’m sorry for the late post. So what’s happening in my corner of the world? I am continuing with the Runes series and plan to start another YA paranormal series by the middle of the year.

Seeress (book 3) is slated to be released in April. We’ll see.

The next Guardian Legacy series book should be on my editor’s e-mail by next month. Writing it has been tough because everything is upside down in my MC’s world. You know how every villain has plausible reasons for their villainous acts? I have to do that with the evil faction in the series and quite frankly, I am enjoying their view of the Guardians.

Once again, sorry for the late post.

Acceptance makes us Fearless

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Sorry for the late post.

What can I say that hasn’t been said? Hmm. I have personal phobias like most people.

1. Large hairy spiders. Small ones don’t bother me. In fact, I’m the designated spider killer in my house.

2. Anything that crawls: Worms and caterpillars.sssss

3. Slimy things: Slugs, sea creatures. Three of my kids are certified scuba divers because they attend San Diego Sea Camp every year and all they do is live on a boat, diving and studying marine biology. I can’t even wade in shallow waters with sea weeds without cringing.

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4. Death. I’ve lost my parents (Mom at 13), two older brothers, one half-sister and a nephew. The worst thing a parent can go through is bury a child.

On a different note, we should never let our fears stop us from doing things. Fears should be a compass we use when deciding our next action. Denying our fears only make them stronger. Ignoring our fears doesn’t make us fearless, we give them power over us and they cripple us. Acknowledging and facing them allows us to live with it without giving them power. This is what makes us fearless.

Last, as a parent, the worst thing I can do is let my fears cripple those under my care, so I’m fearlessly forging on ahead by making my fears my *itches. Own your fears.

A Soul Going Once… Going Twice… Sold!

I am reading Donna Brown’s Half Truths. Sentence: The body floated in the shallow end of the murkypool. I Googled pool, and this is what popped up:

A SWIMMING POOL: (I couldn’t get the picture to upload)

My stomach rumbled. Despite being hungry, I didn’t feel like eating. My appetite was going to suffer until I figured out what to do about my family’s finances. Choosing a chair under an umbrella instead of a lounge, I sipped the lukewarm coffee, pulled out the printouts from the envelope and started reading.

Mr. Sinclair hadn’t been kidding about the final cost. Throw in transportation, food and lodging, the final bill was going to be huge. The more I read the more I knew that the procedure was the only solution. I couldn’t put a price on my brother’s life.

I was almost done when the telltale prickling feeling of being watched returned. Lowering the papers, I glanced around and studied the other guests.

The few grownups on the pool deck were busy worshiping the sun, their children splashing in the hotel’s pool. Others walked by on their way to the beach. No one appeared to be paying me any attention, yet the feeling persisted.

I glanced at the hotel. Our room was on the executive floor and faced the pool. Could Sinclair be watching me? Checking on his investment? I shuddered at the thought. If I lacked conscience, I’d quit. Pack up my things and disappear. I had enough money to buy a bus ticket to anywhere, but I couldn’t do that to my brother, the only person who’d ever loved me. Because of me, he’d suffered for two years. Because of me, he was pumped full of pain meds every day and treated like a child when he was once the star QB of my high school. No, Sam needed me now more than ever. As for Mom, I couldn’t thing about her crazy suggestion without cringing. Mothers were supposed to be nice. Loving. Protective of their children. Mine just threw me under the bus. There had to be another way to make a hundred grand without selling my soul to the devil.

Publishers and Authors Beware: FONT PIRACY

First there was/is Book Piracy, which we cannot control. Big publishers, small presses or self-publishers, it doesn’t matter. People will upload and download your baby whether you like it or not

Then there’s Photograph Piracy. We’ve learned not to use photographs without giving the photographers their kudos. These days, I just buy whatever photograph I want to put on my blog. End of stress.

Now there’s Font Piracy.

You CANNOT download fonts online and use them on your books WITHOUT authorization from the publisher. That is stealing, plain and simple.

Today, I got a BIG scare when I was contacted by this very nice, polite gentleman that I’d used his fonts on the covers of my books without his permission. His name is Juan Casco (he gave me permission to use his name and approved this post). His beautiful font is Romance fatal serif. http://www.dafont.com/es/romance-fatal-serif.font

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He has the right to be angry if his beautiful fonts are being used without compensation After all, he worked really hard to come up with them just like we work hard to write our books. In fact, I stopped by his website and he specifically states that the fonts are for private use not for commercial.

The problem is I didn’t download the fonts. I’m not computer savvy to pull that move. I wouldn’t know how to add them to the list of fonts on my software. When my hero in Runes and Immortals was nominated for YA Crush Tourney, a friend asked me to download certain fonts and use them and I was totally clueless. Happy I didn’t.

Back to fonts and piracy. Since the book in question was my first attempt at self-publishing (Betrayed before Spencer Hill Press)

Betrayed final 03 sharpBETRAYED

I had to explain that I used Adobe Photoshop to create that particular cover but a friend finished the cover for me for free and she is the one who added the title. Now whether my friend got permission to use his fonts is another story.

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As if that’s not bad enough, my books Runes and Immortals, also has his fonts. My name on both covers is done in his fonts (beautiful, aren’t they?).

Runesgirls hugeimmortalsgirl huge with logo

He’s contacted my talented cover designer about this, but I spent the entire afternoon discussing this situation with Mr. Casco. I took screen shots of the Adobe Photoshop file among other things, but we finally reached a satisfactory arrangement because as much as I hate piracy, I hate to be accused of something I didn’t do. I have never downloaded fonts in my life.

The bottom line: DO NOT DOWNLOAD FONTS and use them WITHOUT FIRST CONTACTING THE PUBLISHER.

Mr. Casco was very polite and understanding, but not all people are like that.

Here are places you can buy fonts:

http://www.fonts.com/

http://www.fontshop.com/

http://www.myfonts.com/

Podcasts: Another medium for book lovers

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I was all stressed out about what I would post about since everyone’s mentioned books, books and more books: audio books, e-books, chapter books, MG books, fantasy books, science-fiction books…  You see where I’m going with this. We love books, we write books, and we read books. We are book people.

So yes, I wasn’t sure what I would contribute to this month’s topic until my college daughter, who’s home for the holidays, asked me to listen to a podcast on her iTunes. Now I have another medium through which I can enjoy books. For the last few weeks, we’ve been listening to Pocasts, when not listening to audio books. My favorite is Welcome to Night Vale by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor, and narrated by Cecil Baldwin (Commonplace Books).  Oh, my, the narrator is amazing. The book is funny, scary, and brilliant.

I’m a serious geek and have watched a lot of sc-fi movies. I finished Eureka a few months ago and Welcome to Night Vale reminds me a lot of Eureka except there’s something seriously sinister going on in Night Vale, from glowing clouds in the sky, angels seen by Old Woman Josie, Pteranodons, hooded figures in Dog Park, a house the scientists are convinced doesn’t exist, books that can’t be read, the Sherrif’s secret police…

Nothing is ever normal in Nigt Vale.

Since we are on the road a lot, we also listen to audio books. This summer we’ve focused on mythology. My kids loooove mythology. And it doesn’t hurt that I’ve a series based on one, lol. We’ve covered Greek, Norse and Egyptian. We threw in a few interesting stories like Sherlock Holmes and Archimedes and the Stargazers. We get these on CDs and the best narrator out there for these kid classics is Jim Weiss. Love his voice.

On a different note, if anyone is interested in having their book narrated into audio and is not sure how to go about it or even to try it, DM me on Facebook. My fourth book has just been turned into an audio book and I’ve never been happier. When not listening to podcasts, I’ve been listening/editing the chapters my narrator upload on ACX.

Anywho, happy reading and listening.

POSITIVE OR NEGATIVE, EMBRACE TRANSITION

Sorry for the late post. My summers get a bit crazy but better late then never right?

What can I say about transitions that you guys haven’t discussed. Transition is change, which means it can be either positive or a negative. Negative when it is a ball curve you didn’t see coming and you want to curl up in bed with a bottle of whiskey, or wine in my case, and shut out the world. Give up. Indulge in a paralyzing why-me pity-fest. You know the kind I’m talking about. When the editor working on your book quits and they cancel your contract, or when your publisher closes shop. That’s when your test begins. Do you pick yourself up and keep going? When positive you grab the same bottle of wine, or whiskey, call your best friend and celebrate. Positive or negative, transitions is character building.

I’ve had my shares of transitions as an author. When I parted ways with my first publisher and decided to just write for fun and not submit anything. When I had an agent who didn’t think I should write about the Nephilim (my Guardian Legacy series) and I let her go. When I signed with a new agent who is so supportive. When I got my first contract and I thought I’d made it only to realize success doesn’t end with signing a contract. When I decided to start a small publishing press to publish my adult romance book.

Facing transitions head on isn’t always easy, but I refuse to stop doing what I love just because some faceless person behind a desk at some publishing house thinks my word isn’t good enough. Transitions are like sieves. Those who refuse to face them stop growing as a person.