1. Please introduce yourself. Tell us a little about the person behind the pen.
I am Shana O’Quinn, artist and author of Lady of the Sidhe and Secret Ones Volume 1, both in my Ages of Telamon series. I’m your favorite internet redneck. I love cats, classic rock, bacon, feminism and elves. Zombies are way up there on the list, too. Let’s just say the country folk living round about are a bit…wary of me.
2. What made you decide to write (the genre of your book), were there any influencing factors, or were any of the stories based on true events.
I’m a huge fan of fantasy, horror and science fiction, and after a while I began to get ideas of stories of my own. Over the years (and it took me years to get my first book, Lady of the Sidhe, out) it became my goal to make everything elves. When given the opportunity, always elf. ALWAYS.
3. How do you promote your book, and do you find that difficult or just par for the course.
I mainly promote using Facebook and Twitter and the Virtual Ebook fair, I’ve also hit message boards I used to frequent to leave my links there.
4. Do you remember your first review and how it made you feel? (If it was a bad one, also tell about your good one too).
My first review was an editor with his own independent publishing company, and it made me feel great. I didn’t feel like such a buffoon. “Ms. O’Quinn/Driftwood has that refreshing ability to weave a memorable story from myth and, possibly, poetic license, not unlike the bards of old. I was captured by the title – being of Scot’s descent and a follower of the Old Religion, to boot – and became even more entangled as the story progressed.” —David Keith, November First Publications.
5. Tell us about your book and if it’s a series and how the public is reacting to this book.
Secret Ones Volume 1 is the second book in my Ages of Telamon series, the first being Lady of the Sidhe. Basically, it is set in an alternate 1970’s where Elves live among us (mostly unseen and unrecognized) and superband White Death is topping the charts. Little does the public know that the band has Elves in it, and that they’re only the tip of the iceberg of the creatures of legend. Lilith, once human and once innocent, comes back out of the shadows, and the cousins of the Elves, the Drow, have re-emerged as blood-drinking vampires. Add to that a race that was spawned from Lilith, the werewolves, and there is a worldwide disaster waiting to happen.
6. Can you share any and all links that are important to you as a person and the book? (You can relate more to a book if you know more about the author).
7. I’ll wrap it up with this question since “7” is a lucky number. Can you share an excerpt from your book, and I’d like to thank you so much for taking time to share your book with me. Please share as much as you’d like.
Somewhere in the West Coast, USA
“Magdalena,” came the low-pitched female voice.
The Drow Overlord ignored the voice, choosing to pace the chamber instead. Her blue hair bounced with each step.
“Magdalena,” it came again. The owner of the voice stepped into the faint light from the single lamp in the room. “Magdalena!”
“What?” she finally snapped, whirling on the blonde woman.
“I need to find the others. It’s the edge we need on these Sidhe and their Mohrtei allies.”
Maggie snorted. She was taller than the woman and much more angular, which belied the power of those of the Faery race, and her amber eyes missed little. The blonde however, was more muscular than the Dark Elf, and she radiated power.
It may be because she had never truly died, and was much, much older than the Overlord. “My people have little experience with your…children. It may cause more trouble than it’s worth to–”
“My followers won’t hurt your precious vampires,” the blonde interrupted. She wasn’t a Fae, but she didn’t look exactly human either. At least, like any Mohrtei that now lived. Her blue eyes were wide-set, her mouth wide, her forehead high. She wasn’t unpleasant to look upon, just…different. Maggie felt like a child next to her.
“Are you–were you, human?” Maggie asked, genuinely curious.
Valillia, for that was her name, laughed outright. “I was born to a simple, peaceful tribe of mortals so long ago, that the very face of the world is vastly different from it was in the time of my youth. We had no idea of the evils and cruelty of the world. Blissfully ignorant, as they say. What am I now? That I do not know. I am Lilith, I am the Night-mare. I am the Mother of Wolves.” She smiled a dangerous, sharp-toothed smile, and melted back into the shadows.
“Del, you and Janet head to the east coast and collect all the Lyceans you can.”
“Are you serious?” asked Janet, her dark eyes narrowed. “They are called the Hidden Ones for a reason.”
“I taught them well,” put in Valillia.
“We’re gonna need all the help we can get, those rock star fools will have alerted all the Hunters, Guardians and Elf-friends they can to us,” Magdalena explained.
“I’ll meet up with you in three weeks,” the blonde tells them. “I’m still weak after all these years, it’ll take some time to replenish myself.” She turned and was gone.
She would see others of her kind soon. Her children and grandchildren. As she went to the loft above Maggie’s headquarters where she slept she tried to remember if she’d actually given birth in her first life. She’d been in love, she recalled that much. Jor had been a young man, and they had met that night to go off together. They were going to run away and it would just be him and her. She entered her room, slammed the door, and leaned against the cold surface. She squeezed her eyes shut at bits and pieces forced themselves on her brain.
Jor embraced her, whispering in the language of their clan, one that she’d long since forgotten. They were completely unaware that their village had been attacked, until they heard screams ring out in the night. It froze the pair’s blood into ice. They ran back to their people to see strangers pouring through the area, killing people at will. Behind them were creatures Jor and Valillia had never encountered before: trolls. Large humanoid creatures with arms like pile-drivers and fists of iron, who were bloodthirsty opportunists. Valillia screamed as her tribe were butchered. She and Jor grabbed pieces of wood and rushed the invaders, flailing and yelling.
It had little effect. Jor went to his knees with two spears in him. He looked more surprised than anything as his life’s blood spilled out. She shrieked and ran to him, only to have a sharp, searing pain in her side. The girl looked down to see a stone-tipped spear embedded in her. She fell over, her hands instinctively scrabbling at the wound. She dimly heard the screams of her tribe as they died. The humans were searching for anything of value to them while the trolls pilfered any food. She heard men laughing as some of the trolls raped some of the tribeswomen before caving their heads in with heavy clubs.
She lost consciousness for a short time, then her eyes fluttered open. Dawn was coming and the scent of smoke came to her nostrils. The village was burning. Jor was dead. Everyone was dead. Why didn’t she die?
She somehow managed to pull the spear out of her body and drag herself clear of the flames. And there she lay for some time.
Valillia opened her eyes. She finally noticed her face was wet with tears. Idly she wiped them away, glad that these honor-driven Dark Elves hadn’t seen her like this. She wasn’t driven by greed or domination like these simpleminded Drow were. She loved to live, and to make more like herself. And endure she had.
Joe sat at Keith’s bedside, generally fidgeting and biting his nails. The man had taken a fever and drifted in and out of consciousness, but it seemed to be improving.
“You look like hell, mate,” came the drummer’s voice. Joe’s head snapped around.
“How you feeling?” the singer asked him.
“I’ve felt better,” was his raspy reply. “I’m no longer burning up. Am I…gonna make it?”
“‘Course you are!” the elf interjected. “You uh–well, um..”
“Out with it!”
“Ok, so you’re likely gonna start craving blood and avoiding sunlight. Good news is, unless you taste the Drow what bit you’s blood, you won’t completely become a vampire. “
“And that’s good news?” the drummer snorted. “Guess I’ll start taking my steak rare from now on.”
“This is no laughing matter!” Lindsey’s voice, ever serious, echoed from across the room. She came into Keith’s field of vision, and he saw with visible relief that she was all right. Her arm was in a sling, but she seemed to be fine. “You’re connected now with the one that bit you. She will be able to sense when you’re near and vice versa.”
“Oh, that’s lovely.”
“Roger’s been keeping an eye on you,” Joe pipes up. “And Malcolm got released on bail for the murder of that groupie.”
“Jesus Christ,” Keith exhaled. Things were just getting better and better, it seemed.
***Shanna is a published author and colleague of mine, please check this book out 🙂