Rise of a Queen
by J.S. Riddle
Published: February 13, 2013
Page count: 356 pages
When her human life became engulfed in darkness, despair, and pain Tessa decided to leave that world behind. She followed her heart to stand beside her love, Greco, ruler of one of the more prominent vampire clans, the Levé’s, ultimately becoming their Queen. She becomes an intricate part in the domination of all mankind, overseen by the Vampire Nation.
She is torn by both sides of a spectrum. Her love for Greco came with a new devotion to all things vampire, yet she cannot seem to shake humanity aside and ultimately vows to unite the two worlds some day.
By unforeseeable circumstances she is left to rule her clan alone, with only the assistance and guidance of her loyal counselors Drake, Bade, Vala, and Andreas. With gearing wars with an equally dominant rival clan, the Krones, and human rebels at her doorstep, she has no choice but to become a strong, cunning, and pragmatic ruler. Instead of looking at it sitting from her throne she get’s down in the dirt and does everything she can to fix, and many times eradicate, the situation.
Greco’s past and the human life she thought she left behind mesh into a whirlwind of deceit and betrayal, interweaving constantly with one another making every step taken much harder than the last. It is up to her to overcome every obstacle that stands in her way and rise to the role of the true Queen she was destined to become.
Interview with J. S. Riddle
1. Why did you decide to write the supernatural series, The Vampire Realm?
As a lover of all things supernatural and vampire I came across the same thing in practically every one of them; vampires were either hiding in the shadows or planning on taking over the world but somehow a hero (or anti-hero) thwarted their plans so the lovely humans could stay oblivious. I wanted to see what would happen if we bypassed all that nonsense and got down to the meat of it. Vampires 1 - Humans 0.
2. Did you start writing Rise of a Queen with the clear idea of a trilogy in mind or did you decide that during the process?
It actually started out as one book, The Vampire Realm. When I began writing I kept getting ideas and I condensed a lot into Rise of a Queen and realized I would have to find a stopping point or it'd end up war and peace. That was the birth of The Vampire Realm trilogy.
3. Can you tell us what kind of research went behind Rise of a Queen?
I love my research! I also love history and mythology. I mean I really, really love mythology; I already had an entire shelf dedicated to different world mythologies. To have something believable, even in fiction, you have to start with a kernel of truth. I did the best that I could to gather as much history and culture as I could so what wasn't available at home I scoured the internet and took many a trip to my local library.
4. How did you celebrate the sale of your first book?
It was around Valentines Day and I decided to give myself an extra treat by hitting the after-holiday candy aisle.
5. Tell us about some of the biggest challenges or learning experiences you faced throughout the writing and publishing process.
I think the biggest challenge to date is having to morph with the way things work in the world and its rapidly changing interests. When I first wrote Rise of a Queen, e-books were not that big of an thing. By the time I was done, this entire platform became so huge and bookstores were dwindling. I had to change my ideas and strategies to attempt to keep with the crowd before I got left behind. Social Media becomes such a huge impact that sometimes a person can get lost or overwhelmed quite easily.
6. Tell us something personal about you that your readers may be surprised to know.
My stubbornness in Language Arts my 11th grade year in secondary (high) school was almost at its peak and as much as I enjoyed writing essays (and the books that had to be read to create those essays) I completely despised being told how I would write them. I didn't like the structure because it ruined my retelling and my teacher struck up a deal with me. As long as I proved to her I actually understood the mechanics of the writing style I could continue to hand in my rebellious essays; in return I had to hand in short stories and poems to keep my grades afloat. I call that a great barter system where we both got what we wanted.
7. What do you do when you are not writing or reading?
At least once a week I block off time to watch my favorite football team, Arsenal, I also absolutely love movies. On my down time I try to escape via streaming movies/tv or my own private collection. I will always take a break from that when a new video game comes out though; I'm a total gamer girl.
8. What's next? Are you working on any other projects to come after The Vampire Realm trilogy?
Even though I have one book set for publishing and another in the writing process I still have time to jot down ideas and schematics. I completely know what I'm going to write after this trilogy and probably a few after that. Although it is bare bones I think I'm going to focus on something a bit more science fiction than fantasy, but still in a dystopian future. It will about about a genetically selective plague. I will stick with the strong female as a lead character. I'm actually not certain I could write it any other way.
9. Lastly, any special thoughts for your readers who are reading this interview on DDE?
Find things in life you love to do and do it as often as you can. Challenge yourself and never give up on your dreams, even if you can only live them a small piece at a time.
About the author
J.S. Riddle was born in Oxford, England and currently resides in the Southeast United States. She has been writing since a teenager to hone her skills; starting on an old manual mint green typewriter from the 50's she got from a consignment shop for about $20. She loves reading and enjoys Stephen King, Anne Rice, Edgar Allen Poe, William Shakespeare, J.R.R. Tolkien, Ray Bradbury, but credits Robin McKinley for her book The Hero & the Crown for her idea of woman empowerment and opened up a fantastical world for her. Her style of writing tends to lead toward the supernatural and dark fantasy but finds a hold in in science fiction and dystopic as of late.
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