THAW: Fairytale Series Launch! (& Giveaway)

Thaw Crown promo

I’m thrilled to join in the blog hop for the launch of some exciting new books–the THAW series, which are wintry fairytale retellings!

Make sure to check out the other posts in the tour!

Today I’m privileged to interview Miss Elizabeth Kaiser about her new series, and there’s a giveaway at the end of the post (make sure to enter!) but first, the books themselves…

The first two books released this last week, and book 3 is releasing on Amazon Kindle today soon! (EDIT: Prince of Demargen is actually now releasing January 20 — which is also when the giveaway runs to!)

THAW: books 1 – 3

Thaw  WCh promo1: Winter’s Child

A barren king and queen pray for a child, and when in their loneliness, they make one out of snow, their prayers are answered in a special, and unusual way.

Sometimes, when we get what we wish for, we don’t know what to do with it.

AMAZON

[Pinterest Board]

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Thaw  WQu promo2: Winter Queen

A slightly pampered girl allows her avoidance behavior to isolate her from the world… and it’s only when she takes the final step that the realizes the wall she’s built in the name of safety is also the one that will hold her prisoner forever… unless she discovers how to destroy it.

The only one who can break a neurosis… is the one who has it.

AMAZON

[Pinterest board]

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Thaw PrD promo3: Prince of Demargen

The whole world knows his guilt, and is absolutely correct about it, but how far can a man go to regain respect so swiftly lost?

Or is an honorable death the best a fallen star can hope for?

The only person who can help him… is the one he most deeply wronged.

AMAZON

[Pinterest board]

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Interview with E. Kaiser Writes

1. Is there a story behind how the titles came about?

Well, I’d wanted to write a piece titled Winter Queen for some time now, it just seemed like such a great title and there was a lot of heavy drama in it, to my mind. (Also I had a lovely picture for the cover, of a white dress taken by my sis that evoked a story-tale feel.) But I had another person’s story in my head (basically a maiden ends up married to Winter itself, and she becomes the Winter Queen and lives forever while everyone else dies, but that’s okay because she’s protected from the cold by her husband.) I didn’t want to go that route, but nothing was materializing. Then when Frozen came out, and I liked some of what they did, but felt there was so much missing… especially the Christian themes in Anderson’s original. While researching that the idea came to combine the Snow Maiden tale with the Snow Queen, borrow a bit from Disney’s version, (it is a universal truth that as soon as they do a version of a tale it immediately becomes the stock version for American audiences!) add in some historical aspects, toss it into a not-quite-Europe world and add a generous helping of “what it then?”

After that it just grew, and became three books. Winter’s Child just made sense as the prequel’s title, and once the full scope of the project became evident, Prince of Demargen was a natural follow up.

The other two in these “first five” will be Reindeer King, and Princess of Noran. So there’s sort of a theme through there, going Child, Queen, Prince, King, Princess… and they each have their slightly different arc focusing on another character of the original four that get introduced in Winter’s Child. That really is the origins book that sets up the rest of the series… I think a person could read any of the others as stand-alones just fine, but they’d be missing some of the subtle hints that start out in Winter’s Child.

2. If you had to describe subgeneres/categories for the books, besides fairy tale retellings, which would you pick? (action/adventure/romance/humor/historical fiction/fantasy etc.)

Definitely historical fiction and fantasy. This has a majorly hist-fic feel, readers often comment on the “realness” of the settings and the culture, and I love being able to give homage, so to speak, to real history, without actually hijacking it and making it suit my needs. This is a fantasy tale, with prayers answered in supernatural ways; it is a fairytale in the most wonderous sense of the word and anything can happen here. But there is a firm foundation from history underneath it all, and that just enhances the marvelousness, to my mind.

3. How long did it take you to write these first three THAW books?

They had percolated in my mind a long time, as I resisted writing them down. I had “better things to work on” and I was trying to “finish the WIPs” that pack my docs folders… but then, just to get the plot out of my head and encourage it to fly away, I told my sister about it. She got so excited that she insisted a write it down, even if just to make it a story or novella length. “Just write the really good parts.”

Ha!

As soon as I started writing is all came pouring out in a huge tangled mass and there were no “not good parts” I could throw away. It quickly escalated to a novel, then two, and I was really hoping to keep it there. But no… Winter’s Child splintered off as a origins prequel, and then Reindeer King and Princess of Noran insisted on happening, and we were up to a five book set up.

Then… our boy Hess, (did you know that Hess is named after a place in Germany? Also, we once had neighbors with the last name of Hess, and as soon as I cast about of a name for our beloved Prince of Demargen, Hess just stuck to him like glue. As a nod to the historical origins, his mother Queen Agatha, says it’s from her side of the family… and she is a inner kingdom princess, from the area on the map, if correlated to the Europe’s map; would be approximately Hesse. With a silent “e”.) Anyway, our boy Hess is one of 13 princes, (which we borrowed from the Disney version, it was too cute to toss, and the sequels it leads to…!!!!) So… his 12 older brothers all get spin-offs, retelling other fairytales. Princess and the Pea? Yep. Snow White? Yep. Cinderella? You got the picture!!!

ThawBut first, we’ll travel back in time to when our boy Hess was only a little tyke, too young to be out of the nursery, and the year that his 12 older brothers got into trouble of a nasty sort in Twelve Dark Knights, (a 12 Dancing Princesses twist.) (I absolutely love this one! It’s going to be so much fun!)

Anyway, to answer your question, Winter’s ChildWinter Queen, & Prince of Demargen came out in one year; I started letting them onto the page last January. Those 3 are finished, and I have 56k on Reindeer King, under 10k on Princess of Noran (a super fun book!) and 17k on Twelve Dark Knights. (Another super fun one!)

So yeah. We’ll have to see how this year goes, but I hope to have 3-to-5 of the others readied, possibly out, by 2016. I have to move fast, because they’re putting so much pressure on my poor brain! I’ve got to get them removed…

4. Do you have a favorite character in these books? Tell us a bit about them! (A character for each of the three books is allowed, if you have to. ;))

Oooooh!!!! Okay, hard one.

My favorite character is probably Princess Ilise, later Queen Ilise. She is the most like me, and I based a lot of her flaws on my own. The tendency to withdraw from conflict, and then suddenly blow up icily when she reaches a tipping point… her arguments were so easy to write because they came filtering through my own teen explosions. Her triumph is what I’d love to be like some day, and her ultimate happy ending is possibly the sweetest one ever.

A close second would be Hess… even though he goes through a bout with the Devil’s Mirror consuming his heart, he makes such a pitch perfect performance in Prince of Demargen.

5. What authors/books do you think have influenced your writing the most?

Oh, yes! Definitely J.R.R. Tolkien, Lloyd Alexander and the KJV. I love the rhythm of the words, and they paint such brilliant pictures.

6. Just for fun: do you have a favorite color? (Hey, I’m one for classic questions. ;))

I’ve long held my favorite color to be blue, but as an artist they are all indefensible. (Except many fluorescent pink/green/ orange… 😉 )

7. Thanks so much for joining us! Any closing thoughts?

I’m so excited to be putting these first three of the series out pretty much simultaneously, and I can’t wait to hear what more readers think of them! There will end up being a lot in this series, (I’d love to hit as many tales as I can,) so I’m very thrilled about beginning this path with so many enthusiastic people, and I hope we just continue to be joined by more and more fans as we go along it!

Thanks so much for hosting me, and I’m very glad of the chance to be here!!!

Giveaway

Be sure to click through to enter the giveaway for a chance to win one of the books! There will be six winners! 🙂

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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You can connect with E. Kaiser Writes at:

EKaiserWritesPhoto

Her Blog

Website

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Goodreads

“Iiiin Summerrrr!” (Olaf Award)

So this may sound like I’m talking about how my summer was and wondering how it’s almost September (I am actually wondering that… How IS it almost September!?) But in actuality… I’ve been given the Olaf Award (twice!) so I thought it was about time for me to do it.

From Other Half of the Story — thank you Vandi Liz! ❤ — and, quite a long time ago (*cough*), from Christine Smith, formerly known as Lauriloth, of the brilliant blog Musings of an Elf – thanks Lauri! (Everybody go read her blog because it’s one of my absolute favorites and is always so lovely and whimsical!)

Olaf Award Banner[132]
Rules:

1. Answer the award questions.

2. Pass the award on to however many bloggers you choose, using the same or your own questions.

…Except I’m going to just say anybody who wants to do this can, so feel free to take the questions and answer them in the comments or on your blog. 🙂

This tag is apparently mostly for Disney animated films… And… well. Okay, I’m going to be honest. I haven’t seen many of the classic Disney films. And even when I do see any I don’t think specifically “Disney”. I’m one of those people who takes movies as movies and doesn’t think overmuch about the company/brand that is putting it out. Except maybe Pixar. Or Dreamworks. But, again, I don’t always notice and sometimes get them mixed up and sometimes they’re Disney too and just… I don’t pay attention.

I know, I’m weird.

So I actually looked it up and found a list of Disney animated films (the truth comes out! *crawls away to hide under rug*) so I could see which I’ve seen. And I’ve seen about a dozen of the recenter animated ones, and only like six or seven of the older cartoon ones. …Yep. But that being said, I’m going to do it anyway because it looks like a lot of fun.

So here we go! Answers and pics! (yay Pinterest!)

Questions:

1. What is your favorite Disney movie of all time?

Does Prince of Persia count? Ahem. If we’re going with animated films, which we seem to be, I guess I’d have to say Tangled.

2. Of the three newest Disney films (Tangled, Brave, and Frozen), which is your favorite?

Frozen was great. I loved the Brave setting/music. But Tangled is my second-favorite animated film ever (after How to Train Your Dragon), sooo… Tangled.

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3. Do you tend to prefer Disney films made prior to the 2000s or those made more recently?

Well, considering the fact that I’ve only seen half a dozen that were made before then… I guess the recenter ones.

4. Who is your favorite character in Frozen?

Kristoff, definitely! He’s kinda-sorta-totally-awesome. (Plus he’s like the only one to ever ASK her if he can kiss her. Which was just adorbz.)

5. Everyone loves Disney music. Any movie whose soundtrack you particularly enjoy? Limit yourself to three.

I’m just going to go with Brave’s soundtrack. Because… just… WOW. That music was INCREDIBLE. ❤ (And I’ll admit I find myself humming Frozen songs a lot as well…)

touchthesky

6. In your opinion (similar to Question #3), has the quality of Disney’s film-making decreased as time has gone on, or has it only improved?

I don’t knooooow. *flails* Like I said, I don’t have much to compare. The originals have a classic… well… original feel (shocking, I know) but I do enjoy the newer animation. So probably the new ones. But maybe if I see some more of the older films I might change my mind…

7. Favorite Disney couple?

Flynn and Rapunzel. They’re basically perfect. (Maid Marian and Robin Hood are adorbz as well.)

flynnrapunzelcupcakes

8. Favorite Disney sidekick?

Um. Mike Wazowski, or Doug — SQUIRREL! — or Finn McMissile. (If any of them count as Disney sidekicks.)

He’d probably be really put out if he heard me call him a sidekick. But I’m only saying that because he’s awesome.

9. What is the worst Disney film you’ve ever seen?

The Black Cauldron. Hands down. *shudders* It was HORRIBLE. It took one of my favorite book series ever, mashed them together and totally wrecked everything. I think it’s the worst book-to-movie adaption I’ve ever seen, ever. Just… no. Never, ever watch that thing, people — and if you have, then please do me and yourselves and everyone a favor by reading the actual books it was “based” on so you know what really happened — The Prydain Chronicles by Lloyd Alexander, starting with The Book of Three.

Read this book to counteract the ill effects of watching Disney’s version of “The Black Cauldron”

10. Lastly, what is one lesser-known Disney film you’d recommend?

Huh. I don’t know if I’ve SEEN any lesser-known ones… I naturally loved the latest three princess-y movies, and I also loved Monsters Inc. and the prequel, Robin Hood, and Winnie the Pooh to a point (the books were better), Cars 2 was a lot of fun and so was Ratatouille. So… all of those. Watch them if you haven’t. 🙂