I have the pleasure of having a guest post by author Karin Rita Gastreich who answers...
ELF: What is one of your hobbies and how has it enriched your writing?
KRG: Dance has been an important part of my life almost as long as storytelling. Growing up, I trained for many years in classical ballet, jazz, and tap. Like a lot of little girls, I dreamed of being a professional dancer, but during my high school years, I turned away from those ambitions to devote myself to a career as a scientist.
Through my undergraduate and graduate years, I never gave up dancing. Dance not only kept me in shape, it provided an important creative outlet and helped me make new friends. As the years went on, I moved away from classical dance and into modern. I even had the opportunity to perform. Most recently, I’ve picked up flamenco, which I thoroughly enjoy for its passion, drama, and elegance.
When I began writing Eolyn, I wanted to give my protagonist the sort of experience I had had with dance; to find companionship among a group of performers, and to undergo the exhilarating demands of the art. So I invented Mage Corey’s Circle, a loose take on a traveling circus, and threw Eolyn into the middle of it. For added spice, I made sure all the performers were closet revolutionaries. In the end, the chapters that follow Corey’s Circle were some of the most entertaining for me to write.
I also made dance, along with music and other arts, an integral part of magic in Eolyn’s world. According to the traditions of the Eolyn’s people, magic exists in many forms, including Primitive Magic. Primitive Magic is not less advanced than other forms of magic. Rather, it is considered the source of all magic; innate to the human spirit. Rhythm, dance, and music are all part of Primitive Magic.
In many ways, I think of writing as a kind of choreography. To this day, I often listen to music while envisioning scenes in my head, just as I used to do back when I choreographed dances for a performance. Every time dance appears in my writing, it is a tribute to everything this wonderful performance art has given me in my own life.
Like Eolyn and her people, I consider dance a form of magic. After all, the world would be a very dull place without it!
by Karin Rita Gastreich
In a land ravaged by civil war, the Mage King Kedehen initiates a ruthless purge of the magas. Eolyn, last daughter of the magas and sole heiress to their forbidden craft, seeks refuge in the South Woods.
When she meets the mysterious Akmael, heir to the throne of this violent realm, she embarks on a path of hope, seduction, betrayal, and war. Desire draws Eolyn toward Akmael’s dark embrace, but fate binds her to Corey of East Selen, a cunning mage whose ambition challenges the limits of love and loyalty.
Can she trust either man?
Hunted in a realm of powerful wizards and brutal deceptions, Eolyn must find her own path to freedom or she will burn on the pyre.
"Vigorously told deceptions and battle scenes, with a romantic thread." -Publishers Weekly
A Nest of Vipers
Mage Corey closed the distance between them. His magic spread in a hush through fallen leaves, surrounding Eolyn, cutting off all retreat, and daring her to defend herself with a counter spell. He stopped just in front of her, his face a breath away.
“Sometimes I like to imagine you and I live in a world where we do not feel compelled to keep secrets from each other,” he murmured.
Eolyn’s throat went dry.
“Indulge me in this fantasy and tell me: Why do you desire to go to the King’s City?”
Eolyn willed her eyes to remain steady on his. “It is a child’s wish. I had a friend growing up. I believe he lives there. I wish to find him. That is all.”
Mage Corey studied her a moment. Then he stepped away and continued his walk. The autumn earth released Eolyn’s feet. She quickened her pace to catch up with him.
“A friend,” Corey asked, his voice a mask of idle curiosity, “or a lover?”
“A friend. We were only children when we knew each other.”
“I see. I am sorry, Eolyn, but I cannot take you to the city, not because I object to you finding your friend, but because I am averse to leading fawns into nests of vipers. Still…” Corey stopped, his expression thoughtful. “I know many people in the city. If you give me the name of this friend of yours, perhaps I could...”
Eolyn’s expression put a stop to his words.
“I see I am pressing too hard. Very well, Eolyn. We have had a fair exchange: one truth for one truth.” Touching Eolyn’s chin, Corey brought her gaze back to his. “Perhaps we can continue down this path when I return.”
On April 21st and April 22nd, EOLYN will be available for free download on Kindle as an "Earth Day" promotion.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
The tour dates can be found here