Valista by B Lynn Harris

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Check out this new YA Fantasy – first in a new series!

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Stolen from her desert tribe, sixteen-year-old empath Adanya is cursed to fatten a predatory witch who feeds on fear. Adanya’s torment becomes the witch’s meal of choice.

Seventeen-year-old Prince Regin’s glorious destiny is to lead his father’s forces and annihilate the desert tribes. But when he finds Adanya in the clutches of the witch and they fall in love, Regin realizes he must defy his father’s command.

The only one who covets the imminent war more than Regin’s father is the witch, who will feast on the suffering it elicits. To save their homelands, Adanya and Regin must journey to Valista, a world where their fears take life-threatening forms and battling them mitigates the witch’s curse. Their bond is tested, and a new truth emerges—there’s more to the witch’s interest in Adanya than merely as a meal.

 

Thanks for stopping by to talk a little about your writing! Let’s jump right in. When did you begin writing and why? I began writing about 11 years ago. I wanted a book for my then teen-aged son that explained what I believed in spiritually but couldn’t find anything. So I decided to write one. Little did I know it would take until he was 24 to get it published.

Do you have a favorite genre? Is it the same genre you prefer to write? I love romance books. Started reading “bodice rippers” in the 70s and have never stopped. The young adult fantasy I just published has a strong romance B-story, so it satisfied my need for romance in all books I read or write.

Do certain themes and ideas tend to capture your writer’s imagination and fascinate you? All romance books have the theme “Love conquers all” but that is especially important in this book. But in this case, it isn’t romantic love that takes precedence, but instead the love of humanity.

How do you balance long-term thinking vs. being nimble in today’s market? I write what calls to my heart and let the market decide if it likes it. I can’t write to the market.

How do you find readers in today’s market? I’ve had great success with Kindle Unlimited.

Do you come up with the hook first, or do you create characters first and then dig through until you find a hook? Characters always come first for me. I can hear them chatter in my head, and they tell me their stories.

How do you create your characters? As I said before, they talk to me and tell me their stories. Sometimes I have written interviews with them to nail down the specifics.

What’s on the top of your TBR pile right now? I love motorcycle club romance and I’m working my way through about 20 from an author on Kindle Unlimited.

Tell me a little about the characters in Valista. Valista is a young adult fantasy and a coming-of-age story. The main characters are 16 and 17, which is the age of adulthood in their societies, but they still have some of their youthful naiveté. Their societies are on the brink of war, but even in the face of that, they fall in love. Think of it as Romeo and Juliet meets a genocide.

Where’s the story set? How much influence did the setting have on the atmosphere/characters/development of the story? Setting is everything in the story. It takes place in a desert (based on southern Arizona), a temperate climate (based on Bavaria in Germany), and a tropical rain forest (based on Costa Rica’s rain forest). Each of these locations have influenced how the culture has developed there, and therefore, how the characters developed.

If you had to write your memoir in five words, what would you write? I lived my truth.

How often does your muse distract you from day to day minutiae? I think about my stories a lot. I can remember making notes on a napkin at a stoplight once!

What do readers have to look forward to in the future from you? Valista is the first book in a trilogy. I will be finishing the other two books as soon as I can.

Since B. Lynn Harris was a small child, she’s told herself stories at night to slow her brain and allow sleep to come. So, when, later in adulthood, she started hearing voices in her head, she was aware that some would direct her to a psychiatrist, but she knew it was merely a character who wanted to be expressed. Putting fingers to keyboard, she wrote her first novel. She’s been writing ever since.

B. Lynn Harris lives in her beloved North Carolina with a husband, son, and two cats who hate each other. Feeding time is very special, with swats and hissing to accompany the kibbles.

 

 

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