Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Harmony Run Series by Sarah Elle Emm Interview

About the Books:

Rare glimpses of birds are the only reminder of the freedoms Rain Hawkins once had. Now segregated into a mixed-race zone within the United Zones of the Authority, under tyrannical rule of President Nicks, Rain is forced to endure the bleak conditions set upon her. The possibility of a way out arises when Rain discovers an organized resistance called The Freedom Front, and learns that she, along with many other multi-racial people, has special abilities. Determined to overcome her situation, Rain sets out on a mission with the resistance that will fill her life with wonder, romance, and the undying hope for a better world.

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Still enslaved in a mixed-race zone within the United Zones of the Authority, Rain Hawkins is part of a secret resistance preparing to take on the tyrannical President Nicks before plans to kill the mixed zones across UZTA are executed. When unsettling dreams and a mysterious voice begin to haunt the dark nights, Rain fears someone more powerful than she has discovered the resistance and their secret abilities. With a known Authority spy on her heels, and her boyfriend, Jabari, suddenly acting strange, Rain doesn't know who to trust and if the voices calling to her are friend or foe. As conditions across all of the zones get worse and the stakes rise, Rain embarks on a quest for answers that will put the people she cares about most in more danger or take them one step closer to the truth and their eventual freedom.

In the wake of an interrogation led by the UZTA's dictator, President Nicks, Rain Hawkins and her friends must deal with the consequences of their defiance as the countdown continues towards the execution of the mixed-zone citizens across the United Zones of The Authority. The Freedom Front faces new challenges as Rain's cousin, Calista, prepares for her impending relocation to the pure zone, and Rain sets out to solve the mystery surrounding her mother's torment while being followed by an officer of the Elizabeth Guard. As she uses her abilities to dodge The Authority and follows the strange clues from her dreams, Rain is determined to persevere, to secure the future she and Jabari have been fighting for, and to earn The Freedom Front's ultimate goal of liberation.

After two members of The Freedom Front are arrested and interrogated by the UZTA’s tyrannical President Nicks, Rain Hawkins and her friends face the alarming reality that their plans to liberate the mixed zones across the United Zones of The Authority might not come to fruition. While the resistance movement is growing outside the walls of the zones, the president’s forces are strengthening and putting citizens everywhere in more peril than ever. When Rain receives warnings that her cousin, Calista, has agreed to support plans to kill the mixed zones, and that her life could be on the line at the upcoming pure zone initiation ceremony, she must decide where her loyalties lie and if all of her allies can be trusted. As The Freedom Front use their abilities to unravel the mystery of the ceremony, The Authority captures some of their friends, forcing TFF to either go into hiding, or plan a rescue mission that could jeopardize everything they’ve been fighting for.

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About the Author:

Sarah Elle Emm is the author of the HARMONY RUN SERIES, a young-adult fantasy and dystopian series, released in May 2012 by Winter Goose Publishing. (PRISMATIC, May 2012, OPALESCENT, February 2013, CHATOYANT, September 2014, NACREOUS, August 2015) Her debut fiction novel, MARRYING MISSY, was published by Bird Brain Publishing in October 2011. Sarah is a graduate of The University of Evansville, she has lived and worked in Mexico, Germany, England, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and has traveled extensively beyond. Sarah lives in Naples, Florida with her family. When she’s not walking the plank of her daughters’ imaginary pirate ship or snapping photos of Southwest Florida scenery, she is writing.

Stalk the Author:
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1.  When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I was seven-years-old and saw my mother writing in a notebook and on her typewriter. I felt the pull right then and there. Eventually, I asked her if she’d let me use her typewriter to write my own story. I didn’t get very far, but I knew I wanted to write. The feeling always stayed with me.
2.  How long does it take you to write a book?
Honestly, it depends on how much is going on with my kids and my schedule. The last two books took a little less than a year for each of them. When my kids were younger and didn’t have homework and after school activities, I completed my books a lot faster.
3.  What is your work schedule like when you're writing?
I write in the mornings, right after I exercise. Unless I am pushing to meet a deadline, in which case, I skip the exercise and just write the entire day. I pick the kids up from school, help with homework, feed them dinner, and once they are in bed, I go back to writing.
4.  What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
When the pressure gets to me during editing, I have a secret stash of Thin Mint cookies that I must have to complete my work. Seriously, I only crave them during editing. I don’t know what’s wrong with me.
5.  How do books get published?
My books are published by Winter Goose Publishing, a traditional press. I found them back in 2010. They open submissions twice a year to writers who have agents and also those who don’t.
6.  Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
Sometimes, I feel like I could write a story about anything. But the thing is, I’d rather write about something that’s on my mind and heart. So, if I am thinking about something a lot, and it won’t go away, I think it has the potential to be made into a book. For the Harmony Run Series, I had a very vivid dream about the story and simply had to write the first book.
7.  When did you write your first book and how old were you?
I attempted to write books a couple of times before I actually took myself seriously. I was twenty-eight when I finished my first book. I was a new mom, and I think I was losing it a bit not having an adult to talk to, so I just pulled out my computer and decided it was time to write a book.
8.  What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I like to read, garden, cook healthy, walk outside for exercise, do yoga, and hang out with my daughters.
9.  What does your family think of your writing?
They love it. They are so supportive. They tell everyone about my books. My siblings both think the Harmony Run Series should be made into movies, and they insist that I bring them to the “Red Carpet” for the premiere. I have the best family.
10.             What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
I was surprised at how difficult it was to write the third and fourth books in my series. I knew what I wanted to happen, but I was so stressed out about pulling the entire series together. I wanted it to be perfect.
11.             How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
I have written seven, and five have been published. My favorite is Nacreous because my readers can finally see how the story ends. They’ve had to deal with enough suspense over the past four years. I was so happy to provide them with some answers.
12.             Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they?
I think the advice I would give anyone, myself included, would be to write what’s on your heart and to read lots of other books by a variety of authors to stay inspired.
13.             Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
Yes, and I love to hear from readers. Mostly, I hear how he or she think the books would make a great movie series. I’ve had a few readers write to me about how they had never really connected with a lead character before like they do with Rain because she is multiracial like they are. I’ve also had someone write to me asking if they could name characters I might add in later books. I’ve also had a parent in England write to me how she wished the books could be included in her son’s school curriculum because of the history that is dropped here and there in the books. She said her son and his friends love the series. Some middle school teachers have written to me telling me how their students, the guys and girls, all love the series. One teacher said she has a waitlist for the boys to read in her class for the first time ever since she added my books to her classroom library. I was so complimented.
14.             Do you like to create books for adults?
Yes. My first novel was a women’s fiction, Marrying Missy. I am working on a suspense novel as well. Of course, a lot of adults read my young-adult series, which is nice.
15.             What do you think makes a good story?
I wish I knew the exact answer, and to each their own as they say. Still, for me, I think a good story will pull you in from the first chapter and have you hooked. If the first chapter has me concerned for a character from the start, that’s a good indication I am going to enjoy the book.
16.             As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
I was so shy. When they asked us what we wanted to do in Kindergarten, I cried. I wanted to live at home forever. The teacher wanted us to decide on a career for a project we were doing, but all I could do was cry and say I wanted to be with my mom. The teacher went with it, and made me say I wanted to be a PTA Mom for the project. I don’t think my mom was even in the PTA. Two years later though I knew I wanted to write and asked Mom to use her typewriter. It was my secret dream.
17.             What would you like my readers to know?
My publisher has reduced all four books from the Harmony Run Series to only $1.99 on Kindle during the blog tour. If you’d like to help me spread the word, that would be great.

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