Author chat and a chance to win an Amazon gift card, oh yes!

Make Believe Blog Tour ButtonToday I’m joined on the couch by three wonderful authors; they’re here as part of their blog tour for ‘Make Believe’, an anthology published by J.Taylor Publishing. And as if that wasn’t exciting enough, I’m also giving away a £10 (approx. $16 US) Amazon gift card to one lucky person who comments on this post! *

The authors are J. A. Belfield, Jennifer M. Eaton, and J. Keller Ford. Welcome ladies. They are three of the six authors whose stories have been published in ‘Make Believe’. I read it, and I LOVED it. All six authors certainly know how to tell a story; adventures and fairytales for grown-ups, what a joy!

Make Believe book cover

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Here’s a bit of info on the three gals…

J. A. Belfield

J.A.Belfied author imageBest known for writing the Holloway Pack series, J. A. Belfield lives in Solihull, England, with her husband, two children, three cats, and a dog. She writes paranormal romance with a second love for urban fantasy.

Her story in Make Believe: ‘Escort to Insanity’. Booking a male escort was supposed to be a simple affair for Nicole Harrington but somehow leads to the craziest night of her life—and Benjamin Gold is wholly to blame.

Blog | Twitter | Facebook

Jennifer M. Eaton

Jennifer M EatonJennifer Eaton lives on the east coast of the USA… where she pulls new worlds out of the air while juggling her knight in shining armor, three young princes, and a conceited poodle.

Her story in Make Believe: ‘Last Winter Red’. Emily leaves the safety of Terra in search of a husband, but what she finds outside the city walls will question everything she believes in, and the basic fabric of life as she knows it.

Blog | Twitter | Facebook

J. Keller Ford

J Keller-FordJ. “Jenny” Keller Ford lives on the west coast of Florida with her husband, two sons, three spoiled pets, and an endless supply of fictional characters desperately trying to escape her head.

Her story in Make Believe: ‘The Amulet of Ormisez’. When Lord Elton Fletcher returns home from war to find his brother possessed by a magical stone, he finds himself in yet another battle where the price of failure could be his own life.

Blog | Twitter | Facebook

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I asked the same three questions to the three of them, so while me and the gals sit here on the couch eating virtual Christmas chocs and drinking virtual mulled wine, you can have a read through their answers…

1) The book is called ‘Make Believe’, but what did you make believe about when you were a child?

J. A. Belfield – Um … how many people are gonna read this before I answer? Okay, I’ll ‘fess up. When I was waaaaaaaay younger, I used to do a lot of putting myself in the spotlight imaginings. So when I played on my roller blades, I’d pretend I was in a competition and do spins and stuff and pretend the crowd was clapping whilst mumbling commentary under my breath. Also, in our kitchen, there was a big square window right in front of the main work surface, and whenever I baked (which I did quite a lot) I would talk to the window like it was a TV camera and I was on my own cooking show. But seriously, don’t tell anyone. I have my rep to think of, ya know?

Jennifer M. Eaton – Oh!  Tons of stuff.  I was always on one wild fantasy or another.  I think I saved the world three times, and the galaxy twice.  Yeah, I was a bit of an under-achiever.

J. Keller Ford – I loved playing dress up, even into my early tweens.  I loved gowns with elbow length gloves and would collect them from thrift shops like some people collect trinkets.  I was a bit of an actress even then, and would often write stories and act them out for family and friends.  Yes, I was a bit eccentric.  I still read my stories aloud as it helps me to find unnatural words and cadence.

2) If you had the opportunity to do one of these, which would you choose and why? a) Travel into space. b) Time travel into the past or future. c) Swap lives with somebody rich and famous for one week.

J. A. Belfield – Eeeek. Well, I definitely wouldn’t travel into space. The mere thought of it scares the bejeebus outta me. I have no desire to travel into the past because what’s happened already should never be tampered with and consequences are there for people to learn from. If we had the ability to go back and alter every crappy decision we ever made, we’d never treat our lives with the respect they deserve. And I think seeing what’s up and coming would be a seriously dangerous tool for anyone to have. So, I’d have to go with ‘c‘ – though who I’d swap lives with would take a whooole lotta consideration.

Jennifer M. Eaton – I think I would time-travel.  I’m really into history… especially ancient Egypt and Medieval times – you know – knights and castles and all that stuff.  I’m sure as fascinating as it would be though, I’d be glad to come home.  I like my modern conveniences… and writing a novel with a feather dipped in ink sounds painful.

J. Keller Ford – Hmm, time travel, definitely.  I would love to go back to June 13, 1886 to Berg Castle in Germany and find out how King Ludwig II actually died.  Was it suicide?  Murder?  If only Lake Starnberg could talk.

3) How would your closest friends describe you?

J. A. Belfield – Probably as slightly vacant and nuttier than the nuttiest fruit cake. Ha!

Jennifer M. Eaton – Ha!  Unpredictable. I’m one of those really quiet people who pops up and surprises you once in a while.  I have a very wild side, but I keep it under wraps with the hubby and kids… well, my oldest son is starting to see it.  Yeah, I am the mad woman who ran through a corn field with my kids a few weeks ago doing research for my novel.  My youngest was afraid we’d get arrested… okay… maybe I cut loose with my kids too.  Don’t tell my husband. 🙂

J. Keller Ford – Don’t know, so I asked.  From the mouth of one of my best friends: “Jenny is passionately stubborn, overly-trusting, loving, moody, impulsive, weird, imaginative and a free spirit who forgets on a daily basis how amazingly wonderful and beautiful she is, both inside and out.” Yeah, ok.  *blush*

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* Amazon gift card giveaway info/rules

1) Leave an interesting/funny/sparkling comment on this post by 11pm (GMT) on Friday 28 December (actually, dull and uninteresting comments have just as much chance of winning – it’s random!).

2) After the closing date, I will put all the names in a hat and ask one of Santa’s elves to randomly pick one out. In the unlikely event of my not being able to find an elf, I will ask one of my children to randomly pick a winner out of the hat. I will select which of my children will do this by asking one of Santa’s elves to randomly pick one of them. Oh no…wait. Well it’ll be random anyway.

3) The lucky winner will be notified and will receive a £10 Amazon gift card. If the winner is outside of the UK, I will check the currency exchange rate applicable on 28 December and will get an Amazon gift card closest to that amount from the relevant country’s Amazon website.

4) The lucky recipient will spend the gift card at Amazon on whatever they like. As a completely random suggestion, plucked out of nowhere, they could buy an anthology, such as ‘Make Believe‘.

You’ve got one week people, so get commenting! Additionally, I am informed that random commenters throughout the blog tour will receive ebook copies of either ‘For the Love of Christmas’ (another anthology which includes a story by Jennifer M. Eaton) or ‘Make Believe’, so even more reason to comment.

And follow this Rafflecopter link for even MORE chances to win – a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you so much for your time ladies. I wish you, and all my readers, a very Merry Christmas!

Candy cane with holly

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127 responses to “Author chat and a chance to win an Amazon gift card, oh yes!

  1. This is great! Just today, I posted about trying to hang onto that belief in something magical while surrounded by such horrible events and discussions of impending doom. What a great example these talented ladies are that you are never too old for make believe. Thank you for sharing!

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  2. What a fun interview, Vanessa. I learned a lot about these three ladies (I’m glad I’m not the only one who ever performed for an invisible audience as a child). Now for my fun/sparkly comment: Fart, burp (my boy thinks those are the funniest words in the universe), and glitter sequinned disco ball (very sparkly and groovy). How’s that? And I’d definitely use my Amazon card to buy Make Believe if I win.

    Like

  3. Pingback: What did you Make Believe as a child? Tell Vanessa and you may win an Amazon gift card | J. Keller Ford ~ Author

  4. Ok I’ve checked it out – it is a real book. Knowing you as I do, I suspected that this was one enormous wind up (oh its Christmas, not 1st April!). Can’t think of anything interesting to say so can I have the voucher just for being boring….? No? Oh well I never win things anyway – hey I’m not being boring, just defeatist!

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  5. This will come as no great surprise….but when I was little, well from as soon as I could talk really. I used to pretend TV cameras were documenting my whole life and Id walk around giving ‘interviews’ the whole time whilst going about my daily business like playing with teddy or walking to school.

    Sometimes if I ever got bored of being the ‘Star’. Id pretend to be crew. One of my favourite jobs, was being the ‘dew maker’ on the set of a feature film. I had a plastic bottle with a spray attachment thing and would fill it with water and skip round the garden spraying all the hedge leaves and spiders webs so that they were covered in dew ready for our big morning scene and the directors inspection.

    Sometimes now I’m grown up and a real live actress I pretend to be ‘normal’

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    • Do you have any idea how cute this is? I love the idea of some young girl going around and spraying nature for a purpose far greater in her mind than any spectator could ever imagine. Thanks for stopping by, and have a great Christmas. 🙂

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    • You were so ahead of your time, you had your own reality show going before reality shows had even been invented!

      I’m not sure that you’re very good at being normal though I’m afraid 😉

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    • You have given me a wonderful idea for a story I’ve been playing with. I can picture in my mind all the parts of nature covered in mist that you put there. Thank you for the character image. I’m going to write her down right now. Of course, since I write fantasy, she’ll be some sort of garden sprite. She’ll be fantastically innocent. I’m really excited about this! Have a wonderful Christmas and Happy New Year, too. All the best in your career and being ‘normal’.

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      • Ooooh please, please let me read your story afterwards!! I am honoured I have inspired a character for you… I’ve never ever told anybody that before, I’m so glad I now have. I also had some imaginary friends that lived behind the water butt in the same garden, they were responsible for every ‘naughty’ thing I ever did, in fact I think they still are….. 🙂

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    • Ha! Isn’t it funny how you want something and then you want to revert back? Right now…. I want to sleep and relax. Nope. Can’t!

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  6. Vanessa, thank you so much for having us over. The chocolates were divine. I’m about 10lbs heavier now. Have a great Christmas.
    @J.K.F. Your friends description of you is amazing. She must be quite the person to be so openly honest. And love that she described you as weird. But then, aren’t we all?

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  7. it is too early to be sparkling so I will just have to be my usual dull self and thank you for this post Ms Vanessa.

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  8. This is a brilliant post and is so much fun, Vanessa! Lovely idea on the Amazon gift card and very generous of you! 🙂 I loved the questions that were asked and they provoked some really fun answers! 🙂

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  9. What a great interview with my lovely Pen Sisters!!! Hugs to you all.
    (Don’t enter me in the drawing. Just wanted to say howdy.)

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  10. Yay! I have a dull comment!

    I’ve been reading about this book everywhere, it seems. I’m assuming it’s a good book (and plan to buy a copy to find out). Also I’m certain that I should consult these folks for marketing advice.

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    • It’s not dull Mike, you’re never dull!

      It is a good book, 6 proper stories. And yes, they do have the marketing thing sorted!

      Like

    • Ach, the marketing’s not so daunting once you figure out where you’re at. Most of it’s down to taking notice of what’s happening on the Internet and all the blogs, and letting people know you’re okay to get along with. The rest’ll follow. Thanks for stopping by, Mike. I’m sure you’re not dull, as Vanessa said.. Have a great Christmas. 🙂

      Like

    • Thanks for stopping by, Mike. The marketing stuff is a little daunting at first, but I’ve found that so many people are willing to help you. All you have to do is ask. Of course, it’s always nice to reciprocate when the time comes. Your hosts will love you for helping them when the time comes.

      Like

  11. I used to pretend my stuffed animals came alive and we’d talk and play together. I also used to pretend I was invisible. I’m still pretty good at sneaking into a room with no one noticing. 🙂

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  12. Excellent interview. You are the next Oprah Winfrey, Vanessa. Can I borrow a few of your millions?

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  13. Sparkly – like the glitter on my little granddaughter’s Little Ponie’s tail? Or sparkly like snow when it falls past a lit lamppost? Perhaps sparkly like my man’s smile when I greet him with a kiss and a cup of his favorite tea at 6 a.m., or sparkly like my 3-year-old grandson’s hug when I bake him his favorite chocolate chip cookies. Sparkly is my soul when I read these wonderful blog posts that we writers share with one another. Lots of sparkles filling the air, thank goodness!

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  14. Vanessa, this sounds like such an excellent way to promote the work of some interesting writers and a great book. What a wonderful opportunity for both you and them!

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  15. This book sounds right up my street, infact I definately want to read those stories by the lovely ladies. Interesting interview Vanessa, thanks for highlighting these writers. Looking forward to following their stories.

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  16. Great interview. I especially enjoyed the answers to #2–an intriguing question for sure. Although it would be cool to travel back to Medieval times, I don’t think using a chamber pot would be much fun…

    Congrats to all the writers! I’m impressed by their book-marketing stamina. 🙂

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  17. Great interview, Vanessa! Of course, writing a book about time travel myself, you know I loved those answers! And I am relieved/happy/pleased to know I’m not the only one who imagines talking and/or performing in front of an audience, which, maybe is the only way a shy introvert like me can be comfortable with that idea. 😉

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    • I still do it now and then, mostly in the shower. I talk about my book to my invisible audience that loves me. I guess I’m preparing my synopsis. Then again, maybe I’m loony and talk out loud to invisible people. I hear that’s okay for authors to do, though. I mean, what other profession allows you to have voices in your head and it’s okay to talk to them?

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    • Thank you and I think you were in my mind when I was composing the questions! I perform a lot in the car too when I’m sitting in traffic, it must look very odd from the outside!

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    • Yep, I only used to do those things when I was alone. Though they sometimes bled into when I had company from other kids and we were playing as a group. Then, they just seemed to accept my unusual quirks. Now, as adults, they still remember me as a bit weird, and like to remind me of some of my less-normal behaviour. 😉

      @J.K.F. I mostly just sing in the shower now. It saves Mr B’s eardrums from implosion. 😉

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    • I can imagine I will be doing this a lot in the next month getting ready for my live appearances. Answering questions with people looking at me???? GACK!

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  18. So much fin Vanessa! Thanks so much again for having us! 🙂

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  19. Love the interview and so nice to ‘meet’ you, Vanessa! I’m actually a Pixy in real life, so sparkly things really get my attention – and sprinkling pixy dust over all my friends is always a fun thing I like to do! When I was a little girl I tried to convince my friends I was really an Indian Princess – they thought I was only play-acting, lol. I created a puppet stage and puppets with paper-maché heads and beautiful costumes, so I got to be anyone I wanted – usually something or someone beautiful and tragic. I was always being other-worldly ‘beings’ from other universes, (anyone except myself) just visiting this world to see what humans were really like. If the doctors ever looked inside my head, they’d have a field day with all the characters inside there! Now that I’m all grown up, I’m just a Pixy. Hahaha! ~ Julie 🙂

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    • Hi Julie! Thanks for stopping by, nice to meet you too! I recognise you actually, so I must have seen you commenting on other blogs – funny how we bump into the same people all over the place.

      Your puppet stage sounds amazing, you obviously knew how to make believe in style!

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  20. I had small glass animals (called Whimsies) that I used to arrange all around my record player (yes, I’m that old) and pretend that they were a band on stage singing the songs. I also pretended my stuffed animals were students and I was their teacher.

    Fun interview. Love the chance to get to know these wonderful authors a bit better.

    Like

    • Don’t worry, I had a record player too! It was red and had a lid that could clip over the top and then had a handle so you could carry it around like a case if you wanted (not sure why you would want to!).

      I had forgotten, but I also used to pretend I was the teacher and my stuffed animals were the students! I used to sit them in a semi circle, and put a little piece of paper and a pencil in front of each one, and instruct them what to do, then go around and get them each to “hold” the pencil and do their work. What fun!

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  21. I know I shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but I did it anyway. My goodness, what a beautiful cover. I therefore believe this book will be a bestseller. Thanks for the author interviews, too. They were fun to read.

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  22. I am honest, and I am not going to lie. I didn’t read your post entirely. But since you said that you “will ask one of (your) children to randomly pick a winner out of the hat”, I can think that I may have the chance to win that card that I need.
    I would like to know if I can get the card number or code (if I win it) if I am outside UK? Also I would like to know if I have to do something other than commenting to have the chance to win?

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  23. I’ve always thought all authors (or want-to-be authors, as some of us are) must have a bit of a wild and wacky side to them…and this goes to confirming it! 😀 Performing in front of an imaginary crowd, make-believing you’re the subject of a television interview, running through a corn field, we’ve all done that, haven’t we? (Well, maybe not that last one, necessarily…but I’m certain we’d all find examples of carefree nuttiness in our pasts, if we looked just a little bit hard!)

    What great questions to ask these talented ladies. It’s this kind of personal insight that makes me interested to pick up the book!

    Thanks, Vanessa!

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    • Thanks for stopping by Mayumi, I don’t know if writers have more of a wild a wacky side to them than other people or not! Maybe creative types in general do.

      It is certainly nice to find out more about the authors isn’t it – usually we don’t get to do that with books we read unless the author is very famous.

      Hope you have a chance to read it at some point!

      Like

  24. Pingback: Five good things I have discovered this Christmas | Vanessa-Jane Chapman

  25. Whew, I almost missed my window of opportunity 🙂 But you had me at “Amazon gift card”. When I was a child of about four, our yard was full of clover, and therefore, honeybees. The honeybees were my friends, until one day, one stung me. The pain was a lot less than the shock. It was my first experience of betrayal. There is something terribly sad about losing your belief in magic.

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  26. Season’s greetings to you Vanessa. Really enjoyed reading how different the answers were from your three Make Believe authors, except the shared J initials and two like to say “ha!”. Not exactly sparkly feedback from me, but clearly will do anything for chance of an amazon voucher… http://homemadekids.wordpress.com

    Like

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