Novel Thoughts

AlTonya's Opinions, Musings & Other Information…


February 2016

7 Things… AlTonya’s “Eternal” Q&A with a Curious Mom


Hi All!

Recently, a curious mom posed some very interesting questions about my upcoming title “Eternal”. I’m used to getting awesome questions from my readers, but I thought I’d share these since these inquiries are related to a novel that many of you may have similar questions about. I know there are lots of you who don’t read YA or New Adult (wish they had something in between) but my hope is that you may decide to indulge once you have a bit more information about what the story entails.

“Eternal” is now available in print. Coming to Kindle: April 20, 2016.


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Now! On To The Questions…

  1. Is “Eternal” a YA or New Adult novel? “Eternal” doesn’t fall comfortably into either of these genres but since there isn’t a Mature YA listing (yet) I will probably have it listed as both. I say “Mature YA” because the youngest characters are in their late teens (17+) Some of the “younger” characters only appear to be in their late teens but are considerably older (immortal). As a result, there is a more ‘adult’ feel to the storyline and that makes me hesitate to offer it as only a YA title. Labeling it only as YA, might draw very young readers to a story that; while educational in many respects, may still hold themes that are a tad bit over their heads. Additionally, there are several adult characters that have a rather robust purpose in the plot that enhance the more mature aspects of the story as well.

2. Is “Eternal” a vampire story? No. While the hero and his siblings look 17 they are considerably older. They are not vampires, but gifted members of a tribe whose lineage is far more ancient.

3. If my 17 year old reads this will they need a dictionary to figure out the words? They might at some point and if they do, I’d consider that a good thing because it shows that they are intrigued enough by what they are reading to want to understand it better. I often tell the story of my introduction to the romance genre at age 13. My mom is a retired teacher who back then was very concerned when she realized I was reading those kinds of books. When she saw the dictionary I kept on hand each time I grabbed one of those novels, she wasn’t quite so… on edge about me reading them because I was at least building my vocabulary. 🙂 An additional benefit of them reading material that may, at times, go over their heads is that they are more likely to ask you to help them clarify aspects of that material. This is an opportunity to engage in healthy and lively conversation with your reader. 🙂 🙂

4. What is the intimacy level? Right now, the intimacy level is a solid PG. Any consummation of the relationships is written in such a way that it is assumed. While there is some detail, it’s not the kind you’d find in a full romance novel. This is primarily because of where we are in the story right now. As the series continues, you will see the intimacy levels heighten-though I have no plans for the detail to reach that of a steamy romance. Still, this is another reason why I’m hesitant to strictly label “Eternal” as a YA novel.

5. From the preview read, the story seems to incorporate some teen angst/drama. Will that aspect of the story be prevalent throughout the entire book? While that dramatic aspect is vital to the storyline, there are a host of other elements at work within this plot. The ‘drama’ between Fystian, Lilia and their crew will escalate in danger and suspense as more of the novel’s plot is revealed. What you see in the preview read are the beginning stages of attraction between the story’s hero and heroine. This attraction holds a specific relevance not only for Fystian and Lilia on a personal-romantic level-but to the overall plot and its antagonists.

6. Is this primarily for younger readers or will I (a mom in her 40s who loves some YA) be able to relate to it as well? Great question! When I started drafting “Eternal” it was a story that I’d intended to write for a target audience along my son’s age-at the time he was still in Elementary school. As my research led me to more information, a new story took shape and it moved far beyond the children’s book I’d intended to write. I was, at the time, becoming more of a YA fan myself. I loved the talent certain authors had for crafting stories targeting the ‘Mature YA’ age group and featuring characters whose storylines appealed to older readers. I’ve written “Eternal” with that goal in mind.

7. Is “Eternal” part of a series? “Eternal” is not yet part of a series, but I do have plans for 2 more stories in this line. However, each book will presented as a stand-alone that will focus on a different aspect of the plot. Many of my loyal series readers know that I don’t slow down subsequent titles with a wealth of previously stated information. However, each new ‘Eternal’ title will be complete with brief recaps throughout the story to refresh certain details.

Happy Reading!


Imagination & unpredictability are the ingredients of dynamic stories.



A Cloud’s Silver Lining??



Amazon Exterior-Shared

As a traditionally published author it has been relatively easy to have my books placed in actual brick and mortar bookstores. It’s been the same on the library front with my traditional titles having a spot in the romance fiction sections. Little work has been done on my part to secure these placements. They occur primarily because of who my publisher is, but also because of my beloved and dedicated readers who visit the circulation desks of their local libraries and request such placement. I am also, however, an independently published author. Things in Indie World work a lot differently. A LOT DIFFERENTLY. On my own, I’ve had modest success with securing library placement. I’ve had less than modest success, securing bookstore placement.  As authors, we continue to strive to break through those hallowed brick and mortar walls often to no avail.

To no avail has special meaning in terms of the Indie author who published via Create Space. I’ve worked with Create Space almost since the beginning of my Indie career. They put out a professional product and are easy to work with. Sadly, there are tons of bookstores that have standing rules not to carry work published via Create Space. Why? Well…Create Space is owned by Amazon and if you have no idea how much some bookstores loathe Amazon, call ‘em up and ask. Some stores flat out tell you that the company (Amazon) is trying to run them out of business so they refuse to carry any work that benefits them on principle. While I understand why stores might take such a stand, it’s the (Indie) authors who suffer the most through all this.

Now, it seems that there may be an actual silver lining in the cloud that has held its placement over the Indie world. Amazon has opened an actual brick and mortar bookstore in Seattle Washington. I know I’m not the only Indie author out there who hopes this means the end of struggling to get Indie titles in an actual store. I called the new Amazon store out in Seattle and posed this question to one of the store associates. He told me that at this time they may be carrying one or two titles released by Amazon publishing, but no more than that. He says that’s where things stand for the moment, but that could definitely change.

I’m so hoping that changes.  For now, I’ll just start trying to plan out a trip to Seattle-the home of the Ramseys.

More About The New Amazon Store

Paperback Now Available!

Hello All,

Just a quick note to inform all you print lovers that A Lover’s Return is now available in paperback! My apologies to all you hard copy people for taking so long to get this out there. Hill & Persephone appreciate your patience.

Lover’s Return In PrintALoversReturn_300DPI



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