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Shiny new things

I haven't done a whole lot of adventuring lately, because it's been buckle-down-and-write time. This picture is from a mini outing - one of my brothers and I ran out for ice cream on a gorgeous summer day and happened upon this adorable park - as soon as I saw the dragon, little free library, and fruit trees, my entire day was made. (Plus then there was ice cream!) I really love parks with a whole lot of character - do you have any favorites to recommend?

And as for that buckling down -- I'm thrilled and a little shocked to tell you I've written 82,600 words (give or take a few) since I got back from Liberty Con. It's an average of 3000 words/day, and while I might not keep up this exact pace forever, I'm pretty giddy about it.

It means, as you may imagine, there's book news afoot!

Lyon's Pride, the first of two books I got to write with Chris Kennedy (the incredible Factory Boss himself), will be released August 12. Allllso, it's out to advanced readers now, which is one of the most exciting and also nerve-wracking writing moments for me as a writer.

We're also going to finish World Enders this week! There will still be some next steps (you know, edits, re-checks, additions/subtractions...details!), but that's a huuuge win. These books have been so fun to write - Chris is a very disciplined writer, and is regularly putting down 3-4500 thousand words. I don't want to let him down, so I try to match - or, you know, beat - those numbers, and the upside is we're adding 8k to a story on average per day.

It's bananas, and I love it.

Also, in case you missed it, something else happened this week:

This cover!!!! It is absolutely amazing. The cover artist, Shez, is brilliant, and has been doing a number of CKP covers lately. Given how many times I've stared at the full art, it's not hard to see why:

The Valkyries Initiative, out September 16, is chock full of awesome ladies doing all kinds of badass things. The kinds of things that get them tapped for a toppity top secret task force to combat a rising know. Girl stuff. ;)

I can't wait for you to get to meet them! And in the meantime, how about getting to know one of the fantabulous authors a little better?

Interview with Becca Lee Gardner:

  • What do you write and why do you write it? I write fast-paced science fiction and fantasy because wonder and suspense should always go together.

  • What do you want people to know about your stories? I want to entertain you. I want you to feel so connected with my characters, they feel like friends or enemies or both.

  • What book do you love to recommend or are you super into right now? I am obsessed with KHYVEN THE UNKILLABLE by Todd Fahnestock. It has all the heart and magic of epic fantasy, without any of the slow bits.

  • In Hit World, everyone has a knack or talent that just might be magical. What’s yours? Puns. I can spin one out of most conversations. Getting me to stop is the real trick.

Speed round

  • What’s your theme song? Don’t Stop Me Now by Queen

  • What’s your go-to game night choice? Right now it’s Splendor with the kiddos.

  • What sitcom would you star in? IT Crowd

  • What is/are your favorite treat(s)? Indian food and German chocolate cake.

  • Team Beach or Team mountains? Mountains! I’ve always lived near mountains and they feel like home.

  • What are your favorite pizza toppings? Olives and mushrooms—mostly because the rest of my family hates them, so now they’re special.

  • What fictional character would you choose as a mentor? Rey Skywalker. . . and Obi-Wan Kenobi.

  • Are you a morning or night person? Morning!

About your girl:

  • How would you introduce your Valkyrie? Lin Ji-Na is one of the best bodyguards in the world. If you have an assassination contract out against you, she’s the one you want watching your back.

  • Three words that describe your Valkyrie: Capable, kind, and underestimated.

  • What inspired the development of your character and/or the plot of your story? Jonathan Maberry! I heard him talk about his former career as a bodyguard and the stories started spinning in my head right away.

  • What actor(s) would be perfect to play one of your characters? Nam On-Jo (the lead in All of Us Are Dead).

  • What's your favorite thing about Hit World, your Valkyrie, or badass ladies in general? I’ve always craved stories about capable, resourceful, and resilient women. The Valkyries Anthology is the perfect place to dive deep and find just that.

Bonus round:

  • What should I have asked that I didn't? These were all great!

  • What question do you have for me? What’s your favorite comfort movie? Princess Bride! Everything about that movie is my favorite, and I will quote it with little to no prompting (you've all been warned)!

Find out more about Becca at the following:

Website: Twitter: @beccaleeg

Instagram: @beccaleeg

And check out Hit World: The Valkyries Initiative, coming September 16!

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