Thursday, June 2, 2011

R.K. Finnell's Kickshaw Candies

R.K. Finnell was adopted by a single mother and became the youngest child in her family. Childhood was unconventional with experiences that helped to make her the writer she is today, drawing from these experiences to create a story.

She's been writing for years and never took it seriously until her own children were older. "For me it was just a fun thing to do. I believe it helped me find my voice and develop my writing style."

Welcome, R.K.

What books or authors have influenced you?

Thank you, Susan. The Elementals by Michael McDowell is a deliciously gruesome gothic horror. It draws on what truly frightens and gives one that feeling of chill.

I list McDowell, Clive Barker, and Stephen King among my favorites, but my writing is inspired more by things I see around me. I find my influence comes from life and my dreams.

Tell us about your latest book. Is it available in print, ebook, and Kindle formats?

Kickshaw Candies is a fantasy/horror based on Irish folklore. A different twist to the tales of the Bean Sidhe, Tir na nOg, and other myths.

It is available in print, ebook and recently, Kindle.

Can you share how you name your characters?

For Kickshaw Candies I chose Irish names with specific meaning that reflected something of the character. Admittedly, I also named some just for a like of the name.

How does your environment/upbringing color your writing?

I bring a lot of myself and my life experiences into my writing. While they say truth is stranger than fiction, sometimes it is better to pass it off as fiction.

I grew up watching every horror movie I possibly could and reading horror fiction. I draw from these to say what I want to say. I believe one can find inspiration within all different kinds of media.

Can you tell us about current or future projects?

Currently, I’m working on the sequel to Kickshaw Candies. It will have less fantasy and more horror. I’m also toying around with an idea for a vampire novel, but it will not be what people are used to in the vampire genre.

Where can folks learn more about your books and events?


Facebook fan page-


Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Marvin Allan Williams: Death at Devil's Hole

Marvin Allan Williams is my guest author today. Marvin worte Death at Devil's Hole. Welcome to the blog, Marvin.

We'd be fascinated to know more about you.

I'm honored to be here, Susan.  Well, I didn’t start writing until I was sixty years old. The death of my long-time friend and business partner not only shocked me, but left me unemployed. My wife encouraged me to write the book I had been talking about for years. She even setup a writing place for me where I could work undisturbed.

The idea for my book came to me when I was in my hometown of Niagara Falls, New York and I visited Devil’s Hole State Park. The name conjured up an idea for a murder mystery and from that Death at Devil’s Hole was born. The story just sort of flowed out of me. I wrote the first draft without worrying about bothersome things like grammar and punctuation. I was afraid if I stopped I would never finish the book. Only when the draft was finished did I start the editing process.

How many books have you written? In what genres?

Death at Devil’s Hole is my first book. I am currently writing Death at Three Sister Islands, the second book in the Cadogan Cain Mystery series, and I am working on a mystery that takes place in the south where I have been living for the last twenty-five years.

Tell us more about Death at Devil's Hole, Marvin.

Death at Devil’s Hole is about the mass murder of ten teenagers in Devil’s Hole State Park in Niagara Falls, New York. The protagonist, Cadogan Cain is a retired Air Force veteran who returns to his hometown trying to escape twenty years of wars and bad dreams. Working as a photojournalist, he overhears a radio call on his police scanner and becomes involved in the investigation into the murders in the park.

Is it available in print, ebook, and Kindle formats?

It's available in all ebook formats and as a paperback through most online outlets, Barnes &Noble, Amazon, etc.

Can you share how you name your characters?

I name my characters based on the personality I want them to have and their family ancestry. Cadogan Cain has a Welsh ancestry and the name Cadogan can be shortened to Cad which is perfect for his personality traits. His girlfriend Angie Bianco is of Italian descent and her given name Angelina means little angel. She is petite, but possesses a fiery personality so she is a study in dichotomy based on her name.

What are your protagonist’s strengths? Flaws?

Cadogan Cain is a man who uses his sense of humor to mask the inner turmoil he feels because of the secrets he keeps. He would be considered a social drinker if the circle were made up of blue-collar toughs and rat pack throw-backs. He has a driven need to see justice done no matter the cost and he loves one woman almost to obsession.

How does your environment/upbringing color your writing?

Being raised in a blue-collar family with the belief that there are no free rides in life, I learned early on to be self-sufficient. My mother taught us the difference between right and wrong and left us believing there was little room for grey areas. So yes, my upbringing has and probably always will color my writing.

You and I were very fortunate to be raised that way. 

We all know how important promoting our work has become. How do you get the word out both off and online?

Promotion is something I should be doing right now, but I have never been much of a marketing person, but I guess this interview would be a good start. I will certainly play it up on my blog. I also use both Facebook and Twitter.

Marvin, I think you'll find that networking can help readers learn more about you as a person. Then if they're interested, they'll look for your books. Make it easy for them;-D

Note to visitors:
This would be another interesting topic for blog visitors to weigh in on. What draws you readers to certain blogs and authors? I'd love to have your comments in the "comments" section.

Marvin, where can folks learn more about your books and events?

I have a blog at and I can be found on both and I am a bit new to all of this, so I don’t currently have events planned.

I thank you, Susan, for giving me a spot on your wonderful blog so people can learn a little more about me and my book.

You're certainly welcome, Marvin. Now get out there and promote! Wishing you well!