Summer Lit Blitz – Miranda Shanklin

My guest this week is Miranda Shanklin, a fellow Eclectic Bard’s Books author. I met Miranda at last year’s Kentuckiana Author Book Blitz. I was such a nervous wreck, I barely remember anything from the event. I do remember Miranda and her lovely daughter. She seemes so relaxed and at ease while I was trying not to throw up on people.  I’ve managed to glean a tidbit  or two from her. I’m not an introvert by any means,  but that first author event was worse than getting up on stage in front of 200 people.

Here’s your chance to get to know a little about Miranda.

1. Tell me a little about yourself

     I live in Central Illinois with my husband and our two teenage children. I work day job as a paralegal. I am also the assistant coach on my daughter’s competition dance team. I have been an avid reader since I was a kid. I have always loved to get lost in a good book. Now that my children are older I am chasing my dream of being an author.
2. What genre do you write?
   Paranormal romance for now…..  I currently have a 5 book paranormal romance series out.
3.  Do you have any future books already planned out?
     Yes. I have a trilogy that is a spin-off from my series that will be coming out probably next year. Then a contemporary romance. I am also researching a paranormal suspense series that will be starting to come out probably 2018.
4. Are you a plotter or a pantser?
   I am usually a pantser. I sit down at my compter and just start typing. I am usually just as surprised at what happens as you are! I have tried plotting and it never goes where I want it to. It is like my characters look at it and start acting like petulant toddlers saying ‘I don’t want to do that!’
5.  Do you have a dedicated writing space?
    Not really. My writing space is my dining room table. It keeps me in the middle of everything. That can be good or bad it depends on the day and how good my focus is that day LOL
6.  Was there a book that was really hard for you to write?
    I am having a hard time writing the third book in the spin off trilogy. The original series is in the process of being re-edited right now and I have written the first 2 books in the trilogy. All that is left is the last book in the trilogy. The whole trilogy still needs to go through the whole editing process but I haven’t been able to even start writing that last book. It will bring an end to that whole idea. It will be a final goodbye to all of those characters. It will be a final end to both the series and the trilogy. The book that started it all and the characters that brought me to where I am will be put to bed. It is more a sentimental thing and I will get over it, I just need to put fingers to keyboard. It is just getting moving on it.
7.  How do you keep track of details?
  Many authors use many different methods for this. I use a whiteboard. It is something that is not the best looking to walk into my dining room and see this huge whiteboard with multi-colored lines and words scribbled all over but I can look across from my seat and know exactly where to look without searching for the information I need for a name, eye color or hair color as I am writing.
8.  How do you come up with names for your characters?
    Most of the names I use I just look up names online. Some of them are from people I know.  I try not to use people I know unless it is a very minor role. I did use my kids names but I made sure it was alright with them and they told me as long it was for characters that were nothing like them. I go to name websites and just scroll through until a name jumps out at me for the character that I am looking for.
9.  Do you have designated writing times?
   No. I write when I have time to. I have such busy schedule that sit down in front of my computer every chance I get. There are times that the hubby will tell me that I am not allowed to be on the computer cause I have to pay attention to him, but other than that I am in front of the computer whenever I am able to be.
10.   What is your favorite thing about being an author?
   I love that I might be able to give to someone else what so many authors have given to me. I have used books for an escape and enjoyment since childhood. If only one person gets that from my books then it is all worth it.
It has been many lifetimes since the cycle began.
The cycle that still haunts Annisa Lawson.
A spell cast in desperation to help, which only caused heartache.

Now, Annisa has found her way out of the varying repeats of her past; only to bring more danger to herself, and those around her. Now she must learn to survive with the help of her friends: Chase, Penelope, and Landon have all gone through each life cycle with Annisa. Sometimes helping, sometimes hindering. Now that Annisa has broken the cycle of their collective punishment, she finds that she needs her friends more than ever to keep their enemies, known, and unknown, at bay. As the group of friends learn of their souls’ journeys through their many life cycles, they must also learn to control the magick they have discovered within themselves and each other, in order to defeat the most feared assassin in their world.

Soul Redemption
Just when Annisa and her friends were starting to think maybe the Counsel would leave them alone, two new students arrive at school. In any other town, new students wouldn’t be a sign that something big was about to happen to Annisa, Chase, Landon, and Penelope; but this wasn’t a normal town and they weren’t normal teenagers. They had come into their powers and defeated the most feared assassin in their world, so the appearance of new witches in their small town could only mean one thing…..the Counsel was ready to make another attempt to destroy them. After watching the new students alienate them from everyone they know, including their parents, Annisa and her friends break through the spell and things start to calm down for them. It’s not until an old enemy returns with news that will shock them that they realize everything is not as it seems. Now they have to decide whether or not to trust an old enemy claiming to help them, or try and fight against the Counsel’s most trusted Advisors on their own. The choice the group makes will change their lives forever.
Soul Knowledge 
Annisa Lawson and her friends were getting pretty good at surviving. So far, they have defeated every force sent to destroy them. So when they are faced with new forces they had never thought possible, they were not entirely prepared. They were scrambling to catch up their magickal knowledge of the forces that were being sent after them. With their newly strengthened bond, they would have to work together to triumph. Just when they think they have it all figured out, something new pops up. They are offered help, but will it be enough to once again overcome the forces working against them? The highly misunderstood forces in play will either help or hinder them; the question is, who do they trust? The collective uncertainty and lack of knowledge could be the downfall of the entire group, testing their ability to trust in their own power, and that of each other. Can they overcome these forces and once again defend their special bond from destruction?
Soul Freedom
With the stress of graduation and planning weddings, Annisa and her group of friends want to end things with the Counsel once and for all. They strengthen their bond to the strongest it can be and go on the offensive. After they achieve their goal, they find that was not their only problem. Now they have to figure out who will be the next Counsel, and how to deal with other realms that have found their way in. While the group guards over the Origin, Annisa goes with members of the other realms to track down the wayward travelers, before they cause too much damage in our realm. To prevent this from happening again or any damage that may result, the group, along with their newly appointed Counsel, must come up with a system to allow other realms access to our realm, so they don’t have to constantly be on the lookout for trespassers from other realms. Can it be done in time for Annisa and her friends to enjoy graduation, and Annisa’s upcoming nuptials? With the help of friends and family, it just may be possible!
Soul Discovery
Annisa and her group have finally made it to the point where they don’t have to watch over their shoulders for someone trying to destroy them. They have put together a system that allows the other realms access to our realm and they are still able to keep an eye on them. Will the faeries and the trolls outsmart them and accomplish their goal? Will Annisa and the others be able to obtain enough support to keep their realm intact? Or will the faeries and trolls destroy all that this realm stands for? Chase and Annisa have taken on a task that they are not sure if they can accomplish without the help of the others who have to stay behind and keep things running smoothly at the passageways. They will have to be creative and convincing to pull this one off and create a truce between all the realms.



Thank you Miranda for being such a lovely guest and I hope to have you back again when you rerelease the rest of this series as well as the spin off!

Write one my friends, write on!