Saturday 20 July 2013

Jeremy Shory, author of The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets

The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets by Jeremy Shory is available for Kindle from Amazon:
US: The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets by Jeremy Shory
UK: The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets by Jeremy Shory

The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets by Jeremy Shory

The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of
Forgotten Secrets by Jeremy Shory
Fate guides him. Magic controls him. Evil awaits him.

When fourteen year old Orion Martins ventures deep into the forest behind his New Hampshire home, he’s quickly lured into a sadistic game of life and death where the prize is the fate of two worlds. After uncovering a hidden land ruled by enchantment and magic, wicked schemes and dark family secrets begin to expose a perilous trail of deception he’s been destined to travel. Can the mysteries trapped inside an ancient journal unlock the enigmas of his past, assuring his victory over an ancient mastermind long believed to have vanished? The board is set and the pieces are ready to be played.

Three weeks ago, Orion knew he would avenge his father’s murder. Three days ago, he knew there was nothing beyond our own unforgiving world. Three hours ago, he knew magic only existed within the depths of his imagination. Three minutes from now, he’ll discover just how wrong he’s been.

The first move has been made. Will Orion save our lives at the risk of his own?

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Author Quiz interviews Jeremy Shory...

What are you working on now and what projects and ideas do you have lined up next?
I just wrapped up The Orion Chronicles: The Journal of Forgotten Secrets, which is the first installment in The Orion Chronicles series. It’s about a teenager that finds himself inadvertently lured into a sadistic plan, a game of life and death if you will, that was specifically designed for him by a mastermind thought to have vanished almost a hundred years ago. The more Orion dives into this evil scheme, the more he uncovers about his family and how everyone he’s ever known has been keeping dark secrets from him. Ultimately he decides he’s had enough and he decides he’s going to take matters into his own hands and start controlling his own fate. At least he thinks he is anyways. That story is out now, ready for people to snatch up. While working on promoting that, I’m also diligently working on trying to finish the second episode in the series called Curse of the Phantom Brotherhood. It takes Orion’s journey into the dark underworld of a magical sect supposedly eradicated some time ago. The more he discovers who he is, the more his life is thrown into peril. It’s really a great little adventure that I don’t think is a whole lot like anything else out there.

If you were to write a novel outside your usual genre, which genre would you like to experiment with and why?
This is a really great question. I think most authors look at their body of work and think to themselves, “Gosh, I wish I would have been able to write this or that.” Or something along those lines anyways. I actually have aspirations to write a historical-based piece that centers around World War II. There are a few plot concepts I have tucked away in the old noggin that I hope to develop further once I have The Orion Chronicles series completed. I’d expect that story to be a little more adult, but who knows. The whole idea is currently just in its infancy stage right now.

If you were to write a fictional story based on a real-life celebrity, who would you feature and why?

It’s funny that you ask this question, because there’s a highly prominent figure from real life that makes his way into The Orion Chronicles: Curse of the Phantom Brotherhood. With this series being more imaginative and fantasy-based, there’s a lot of room for magic and enchantment. So I thought it would be a really neat idea to take someone that everyone knows and give him a little back-story that no one knows. The character is Leonardo Da Vinci. You say that name and everyone immediately thinks of his unbelievable contributions to science and art; The Last Supper, The Mona Lisa, the parachute, and armored tank amongst other things. And there certainly have been a lot of stories about him, The Da Vinci Code being a really prominent one. But I thought it would awfully cool to take Da Vinci in a different path, give him a little more…character if you will. But you’ll just have to wait until Curse of the Phantom Brotherhood is released to find out just how different his story is. Too shameless of a book plug? Haha.

Are any of your characters based on yourself and if so to what degree, and do you find it easier or more difficult to write characters based on yourself?
I actually have a blog piece about this very question:
Let Me Tell Ya A Lil Bit About My Characters…

I get it a lot actually. When I tell people I write, they often ask where I get the concepts for my characters. Truth is that most of my characters are me in some fashion. Creepy right? That probably totally makes me sound like I have multiple personalities or something…which I just might. In all seriousness though, what I set out to do was give each of my characters one of my own character traits or flaws. For instance Grayson Grummel; here’s a kid that’s fun-loving with a penchant for practical jokes and teenage boy crude humor. Anyone that knows me, or follows me on Twitter (@JeremyShory) will tell ya, I go out of my way to try and make people laugh…and it’s usually accomplished via childish, crass humor. I guess you could say I just never grew up. But there are serious sides to me as well. Cremmel Veloria is good example of that. He’s a little more intellectual, especially when it concerns animals, which I’m very much into animals as well as intellectual conversation. So I’d say as I created each of the characters in the series, I did so with an intent to inject a little of myself into them so I could really give them life beyond the pages. They say write what you know, and what do I know the best? Myself.

Do you have any useful marketing tips for other authors?
I know everyone will tell you that Social Media is a must. And it truly is. But the problem is that it can be extremely cumbersome. I mean maintaining a Facebook page, a Twitter account, Google +, and whatever flavor of the month pops up. It’s too much. Besides, those venues are really more for building your brand as an author, your Author platform. They allow people to meet you and connect with you. It’s not the avenue to sell your books because that’s not what people are there for. They’re there to connect with other people. My focus personally is on Twitter (@JeremyShory) and via my own blog site ( I feel that’s where my time is most effectively geared and where I can converse with the most people. So my advice is to decide which social media outlets you feel the most comfortable with and stick with those. If you feel you can balance all of them, great. If you feel like you can only focus on one or two, than do that. The fact is that life’s too busy to be able to work a normal day job, write, AND keep up with social media. So instead focus on the outlets you feel you can work into your daily life. You’ll connect with more people on a more intimate level that way and they’re all potential customers/fans.

How do you see the publishing industry changing over the next few years?

I think it’s very evident that the times are changing in the publishing world, and it’s only picking up more steam with every passing moment. We’re seeing more and more people take control of their writing careers and publishing their work on their own. It’s what I’ve done as I felt it was the best fit for me. The fact is that self-publication affords the author complete control, so no one’s looking over your shoulder asking you to change this character’s name, or that plot point, or to omit a chapter altogether. But the choice word here is publication. Authors are not just the writer in these scenarios. They’re also the publisher. So there’s a ton more work required including hiring of an editor and graphic designer for the cover, etc. The problem is that not everyone is cut out for all of it. So there will always be a need for the traditional publishing houses. But I really see their dominance on the market diminishing to a point where things will never really resemble what they used to be. And with the rise of self-publication, publishing firms can track sales of indie authors and offer them directly. Most of the work is already done at that point, so they’d be gaining an edited piece with an established presence in the industry. This of course leads to less need for Literary Agents, which is a whole different topic best left for another day.

What are some of your favorite quotes from reviews that you've received?
Oh man, I love all the reviews I’ve received thus far. I can’t tell you the joy I feel when I read that people like my work and enjoy Orion’s adventure. But if I had to pick out a few specific snippets from the reviews, these are my favorites.

“Never thought I would like this. I jumped in and couldn't put it down...loved how visual it was and how I could feel myself there with the characters. I have to say this…I read the Harry Potter series.......I will take this one please!”
“From the first word until the last page the story is engaging and alluring. This is without a doubt the best book I've read in a long time.”
“One of the new greats. Up there with Terry Brooks and R.A. Salvatore.”
“It was exciting and imaginative and managed to build a picture of the ‘other world’ in a colourful and interesting way. My daughter had to keep taking the Kindle out of my hands so she could carry on reading what was meant, after all, to be her book!”

Would you rather have great reviews but average sales or great sales but average reviews?
This is interesting because it’s my personal belief that it’s hard to have great reviews with average sales or vice versa. At least after an author has fully marketed his story, I mean. Certainly not everyone is going to fall in love with a writer’s work, and there will be those that are vocal about it. But if your work is truly a gem, then I think the sales and great reviews go hand-in-hand. Simply put, as more people purchase the book and enjoy it, they will leave the good reviews, which will then lead to more sales. Sort of a cycle if you will. Either way, I feel both are a sign of flattery and I cherish each and every book I sell and review posted.

What advice would you give to a new author who has just finished writing their first novel and is unsure as to what steps to take next?
FIND AN EDITOR! And a good one! I was conversing with someone on Twitter the other day who was just finishing up their first story, and we got on the subject of editing. She said she’d received advice to edit her own work. That it wasn’t worth the money and that really you can edit your own work just as well as an editor can. I face-palmed so hard. Authors, you CANNOT edit your own work. Editors do what they do and charge what they charge for a reason. They catch things your mind normally won’t. And that’s not a knock on you. It’s just you know your story, so your brain fills in the gaps for you. It also doesn’t catch all of the misspelled words or grammatical errors. Commas! Don’t even get me started on commas. Get an editor because they will take your story and make it presentable to the world. You only have one shot to make an impression. Do you want to waste that chance on a poorly edited book? Even if you do get the errors fixed afterwards, you’re still going to be known as “that author.” The better and cleaner your work is, the better the Indie Author brand is. Also to the editing note, do not hire the people I like to call “Predatory Editors.” These are the 2nd grade English teachers who moonlight as editors. Not saying they don’t know grammar. I’m saying they don’t know editing…or how to edit. They come in and charge a small fee because you’re about to get exactly what that small fee is worth…not a whole lot. You’ll end up with a product that wasn’t much better than when you started and you’re out the cash! There are some very reasonably priced editors out there that are trained for this. It’s what they do. It’s not their hobby. It’s their livelihood. Hire that kind of person. You won’t regret it.

What would you say is your biggest strength as a writer?
This question reminds me of a Saturday Night Live skit with Christopher Walken. The sketch was a behind-the-scenes piece on the band Blue Oyster Cult, and Walken was the Record Producer. There was a funny line where he says, “I’m just like everyone else; I put my pants on one leg at a time. But when I do, I make gold-plated records!” So if I had to say my biggest strength as a writer, it’s that I make gold-plated records. Haha. Okay not really. In all actuality, I’d have to say my ability to add description into my work. The age-old adage of Show Me, Don’t Tell Me, is something I really strive to capture in my writing. And I must pull it off decently because almost every piece of feedback I’ve received on The Orion Chronicles is that the reader really felt like they were there due to the pictures I painted with my descriptive words. The trick, however, is to work it into the action. For instance if I said: The girl had curly blonde hair and a pale skin, you clearly get the picture of this girl. But what if I said it this way: The vibrant rays of sunlight bounced off her golden blond hair, her thick ringlets bouncing with every step she took. The soft, milky complexion gave her an angelic appearance. See the difference?

Why should people buy your book?
I feel everyone should buy my books because I want to be a bajillionaire so freaking bad! Don’t we all? I kid, I kid. Actually I really think that The Orion Chronicles is something different. I have had a lot of people tell me that it’s not their “typical” read, but they walked away loving every bit of it. Hopefully that means they’ll buy next in the series and so on. But it’s really a fun adventure that has some pretty imaginative items and magical moments strewn throughout, not to mention the clever twists. Perhaps a better selling point is the cast of characters. I really tried to capture a group of characters that the readers not only want to root for, but really want to be a part of. Like you want to be friends with these characters. I promise you that you’ll fall in love with them just as I did as I wrote them into existence.

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Thanks for your comments, Jeremy, and good luck with your writing.

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Jeremy Shory, author of The Orion Chronicles:
The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets
Discover more about Jeremy Shory/The Orion Chronicles at the official webpage:
The Orion Chronicles

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You can preview The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets at the following links:
Chapter One: Children’s Games
Chapter Two: Just How He Likes It

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Follow Jeremy Shory/The Orion Chronicles on facebook and twitter:
Facebook: The Orion Chronicles
Twitter: @JeremyShory

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The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets by Jeremy Shory is available for Kindle from Amazon:
US: The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets by Jeremy Shory
UK: The Orion Chronicles: The Journal Of Forgotten Secrets by Jeremy Shory

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