Authors are People | Angela Carina Barry

A Special Monday Edition of – Authors are People Too =)

 

Up until now, I’ve stuck with authors that I’m emotionally & personally thick-as-thieves with; highlighting folks that I’ve had deep-seated conversations with, talks rooted in reality (and sometimes fantasy). This next author is a more recent friendship ‘acquisition.’ So far, I’ve found her to be a giving, dedicated and personable gal. Course, as I get to know her better, you may read a special blog on the ‘many twisted faces of Angela Carina Barry,’ but I doubt it- unless I’m doing a special edition write-up on LARPing and Angela’s cast of quirky role-playing characters and imaginings (now, that’s a distinct possibility since I’m always scrambling for blog ideas).

Angela Carina Barry  

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I met Angela during the EYHO (Eat Your Heart Out) Event this past Valentines’ Day 2014. Read more about it here (and keep track of upcoming events) http://indieauthorevent.co/.

 

She was, among other things, in charge of scheduling the EYHO showcase with radio host Jackie Chin (Zombiepalooza Radio | Jackie Chin, Dead Door, KR Chin). It was a stressful endeavor- back-and-forth with authors, the host, setting up a schedule, folks dropping out, folks almost dropping out (guilty as charged). Angela and I started chatting during this time- her yanking her hair out and me attempting to release a bit of the ballooning pressure, pulling the end of the (I like to think of it as a big red balloon) balloon into a thin line so the air squeezed out in a horrendous, ear-bleeding hiss- annoying other EYHO participants, but giving Angela a little levity in the chaos.

 

We heard each other’s voices for the first time on Jackie’s show- she instantly put me at ease (I was scared witless) and Jackie did too, but knowing that Angela was going to be dual hosting was the biggest reason I didn’t chicken out at the last minute. She helped me find my radio courage. Sure, it’s a small courage- nothing in light of service men and missionaries abroad, but it’s still a type of meaningful bravery.

 

I’m not sure how Angela ‘remembers’ our meeting- whether with fondness or a resounding ‘dear god, I can’t believe that girl is still messaging me on Facebook!’ For my part, I remember the meeting with fondness =)

 

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So, as in past ‘Authors are People’ interviews, I asked Angela to provide me with a personal statement and factoids. Reading the info below, I already feel like I know Angela better (although, I’m rethinking writing that ‘many faces of Angela Barry’ blog).

Personal note: “What man sees, he loves, and what he loves, he will never allow to pass away.” -Angela Carina Barry

They say you shouldn’t quote yourself, but who’s going to if you don’t let them know what you’ve said? It has to start somewhere. Likewise writing, if you want to write, you have to start somewhere. I wrote up characters and notes for games long before I started penning poems, and writing stories. But I didn’t see writing as being a career for myself, outside of maybe publishing in journals. And I don’t think I could have started seriously writing before now. I wasn’t in the right headspace for it.

But I will tell you a secret, or even three about writing. One: Learning to write is like learning to use a register, or learning to do any other job. It actually takes time to get the discipline down. No one ever tells you this. But it’s what I discovered. You have to build up the neural pathways for the new task you want your brain to do. So don’t give up right away, and do whatever writing you can. My first published piece was a haiku. Now I’ve got full-length novels on my hands. Two: You don’t have to write every day. But if you aren’t well-disciplined, you may want to. I don’t do it like that. I will write intensely for 8-12 hours or even up to 16 hours as I approach a deadline. But when I’m done, I’M DONE for at least a couple of weeks. My style is intensive and I have to completely break away from it. Others need to write two paragraphs a day, every day, or a chapter five times a week. It doesn’t matter, as long as you keep going back and writing. It’s okay to find your own rhythm. Three: Plot all you want, the characters will do what they want. It’s true. Sometimes you feel like you are more like a field reporter than the author. When things are going well, you’re just along for the ride. But it’s a great ride and I recommend anyone try it.

 

*Born in Flint, Michigan

*Loved animal shows and cartoons equally as a kid

*In kindergarten told the class she wanted to be an Animal Rescue Worker.

*Can draw animals and dinosaurs well, but not really people or cars

*Was in Honors Biology in high school

*Did vocal training at the Flint Institute of Music

*Loves “Aria” by Yanni and wanted to perform it someday.

*Is the vocalist you want on your Rock Band/Guitar Hero team unless it is a metal tune or The Cars

*Usually prefers to listen to music when writing that fits the mood of the characters or the book

*Graduated from Lake Superior State University with a degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Management.

*Is married to author Robert W. Barry

*Started writing because of her husband’s help and encouragement

*Also started writing because she couldn’t LARP for a long period

*Has run up to 80 people before in a live-action role-playing game at a convention and was well known enough for her story-telling that they knew about her in 2 states.

*Still likes LARPing. (So, if you want a pick-up game…)

*Believes that Triceratops and Pterodactyls rule.

*Her favorite animal is the Griffin.

*Her favorite real animal is the Snow Leopard.

*Her favorite extinct animal is the Painted Vulture.

*Knows how to raise baby parrots.

*Likes animals a lot, can you tell?

*Loves to read fantasy, but winds up writing horror and romance currently.

*Wonders if there is a name for this condition.

*Favorite movie is Lady Hawke.

*Tends to have a pretty hair-trigger temper. Tries to warn people, but no one believes it until it is too late. (Do not rile the Carina. It goes very badly. Offer chocolate, especially dark chocolate. Always a good plan.)

*Values honesty and integrity in people highly.

*Has saved at least 2 people’s lives but probably won’t talk about it.

*Has plotted with a friend to get her friend’s dad a chicken as a birthday gift. Will definitely talk about it.

*Wanted to work at a zoo and help save animals.

*Instead, sells games, Japanese anime, writes, and designs games.

*Can be seen at a lot of Michigan conventions in the dealer’s rooms.

Upcoming works include:   “Love at the End of all Things”, “Lost Heroes 2: Osprey’s Tale” and “Lost Heroes 2: Firefly’s Tale”

Available Titles featuring Angela:

 

Thank you for sharing, Angela. I look forward to many years of getting to know you better. You’re quite a gal and quite a talent.

Eli

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(Angela riding a dinosaur? Yeah… that’s right. She did that) =)

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Authors are People | Ken Mooney & a Chance to Get His Debut- Godhead- FREE

So far, I’ve showcased two of my favourite Indie authors- Claire C Riley and Jack Wallen. Want to meet my third absolute favourite? Of course you do!

 

Ken Mooney

The self-proclaimed not-so-people person who just happens to be a people person

(despite his assertions otherwise).

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Gosh, how did I meet Ken? I’m thinking Claire might have introduced us… did you Claire? Or did Ken and I meet some other way? I feel a bit badly that I can’t remember. The important thing to remember here though is that we did meet and I quickly became enamoured of the talented, humble man who is as parentally-protective of his writing as I am about my own.

 

“Your beloved and your friends were once strangers. Somehow at a particular time, they came from the distance toward your life. Their arrival seemed so accidental and contingent. Now your life is unimaginable without them. Similarly, your identity and vision are composed of a certain constellation of ideas and feelings that surfaced from the depths of the distance within you. To lose these now would be to lose yourself.” ― John O’Donohue, Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom

 

Just like Claire and just like Jack, once Ken and I were strangers, but somehow, at some time, we crossed a distance and became part of each other’s lives. We share a constellation of ideas and feelings, a solar system that belongs to the creative mind, and I cannot imagine my body without the constants of them as sun, planets and moons. Ken has a centre onto himself; we each do, making us individual systems within a larger system. He creates worlds, as we all do, and he protects them.

 

I think that’s why we bonded originally. He has a deep-seeded love for the characters he creates- a love that’s quickly understood when you converse with him about plot elements in Godhead. He’s more than willing to discuss the story from different angles, but conversation always leads back to his personal feelings toward the story. Isn’t that how it should be? Sure, art is in the eye of the beholder and we readers look at things how are preconceptions dictate (see my last interview with Jack Wallen), but at the same time, shouldn’t the authors hold steady to the ‘whys’ in our head that crafted our story? The muses in our minds, so to speak.

 

And that’s what Ken must have sitting on his shoulder- a real life, honest-to-goodness muse, straight out of mythological text. An ethereal, statue of a man with chiselled features and a six pack framed by a sweeping loin cloth, hanging out on Mr. Mooney’s shoulder whispering sweet nothings. Because surely it can’t be Ken’s own imagination that weaved such a tale as Godhead? | Godhead |

 

Over the course of our relationship, I’ve found Ken to be a personable, caring guy- truly a friend to call when you are in need. Someone to not ask questions, but just help with the body you’ve got covered with a holey tarp in your garage. Ken will always offer a kind word and simply accept who his friends are as people. Those acts of openness and kindness lead me to believe that Ken honestly treats folks the way he desires to be treated, and that’s an unexpected quality in a person in the world we live in.

 

And of course, as with Claire & Jack, here come some fun facts about Ken Mooney!

 

Curious about the quirks of Ken’s persona? Well, I was too. What I do is ask authors to provide me with a list of facts they think are interesting about themselves, facts that they maybe haven’t shared before with the general public. So, here goes-

 

My favourite Irishman,

Ken Mooney, tells all (well, not all, but quite a bit)

 

  • Born 1985 in Dublin, always lived there. Wait, here…
  • Lives with partner Dan. Technically, he’s my fiancé, but since that sort of thing isn’t legal in Ireland yet, it feels like false advertising.
  • Speaking of advertising, that’s my industry. My day-job is in TV advertising, working for the broadcaster on the legal/efficiency side of things. It’s a pretty big company, in that the biggest shareholder is a well-known media mogul.
  • I’m an only child. But I’m not actually that bad at sharing. Just interacting with people.
  • I joke about things that aren’t always funny…
  • Studied English Studies at Trinity College Dublin. College applications here in Ireland are done on the basis of how you do in your final exams in school. In this case, I scraped in by the skin of my teeth on the third round of offers. Mind you, it might have helped if I actually applied myself in school. My first college offer was a three-year journalism course. I would not have enjoyed it. English was actually my fifth choice, since I actually wanted to do English with either Psychology, Philosophy or Classics. I got more out of doing just English though.
  • Sticking with college, my undergraduate thesis was on vampire fiction and their changing relationships with humanity, shifting from enemies to friends, all with a  focus on Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend. I wish I could go back in time and rewrite it.
  • I have three tattoos on my left arm, all of which mean something “writerly” to me: one is from my favourite book (the WASTE symbol from Thomas Pynchon’s “The Crying Of Lot 49”), one is from my favourite album (the ‘Art is Resistance’ flag from Nine Inch Nails’ “Year Zero”) and the last is an alchemic symbol for Zeus.
  • I really dislike wearing long sleeves, so the Zeus tattoo is pretty much always visible.
  • Book-related facts: some of the characters in Godhead have been fully-formed in my head for about fifteen years. They were always around my age throughout the writing period.
  • Godhead itself has some autobiographical elements: there’s a bereavement early in the book and that scene was written as a way of dealing with my own emotions about a bereavement in similar circumstances. It was surprisingly therapeutic.
  • I like to look up words and the meanings of words, and then I get really interested in certain things, and then I get excited about building a story around that.
  • I really want to write sci-fi, but don’t have the balls to follow through on the science element. Or making myself sound convincing with it.
  • My next book is non-fiction, The Little Book of The End Of The World. I didn’t think I’d be able to do it…turns out I enjoyed it just as much as writing fiction.
  • I really like genre movies and TV shows, but I have a very low BS-tolerance level. The second something starts pandering, I’ll drop it. But words can barely describe my love for Arrow, Sleepy Hollow and Lost.
  • There is no finer thing in life than bacon, chicken, cheese and just a teeny bit of ketchup. Ideally, served on top of carbs.
  • An incredibly wise friend of mine once said that she doesn’t trust people who don’t make faces when they’re eating. I have never heard a greater truth.
  • I prefer city-breaks to holidays in the sun. I was incredibly disappointed in Rome and Amsterdam, which totally didn’t live up to expectation. But I’d move to London, New York or Madrid in a heartbeat.
  • I have the weirdest taste in books ever, and love a flawed, messed up protagonist. See: Oscar Wilde, Chuck Palahniuk, Bret Easton-Ellis.
  • 90% of my writing comes with a soundtrack. Music is a big part of my process, and entire scenes are built around a song that might be playing over a sound-system, as if the scene is part of a movie.
  • I’d prefer to be a fraction too cold than too warm.
  • I can’t drive (it’s not that big a deal in Dublin. Traffic is terrible, parking is terrible, and the public transport isn’t as bad as we’re legally obliged to give out about it being.)

Thank you so much for sharing, Ken. I’m blessed to know you and call you friend.

 

Purchase Godhead: Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk

Praise for Godhead (Amazon.com Review):

“Imagine what would happen in a mash-up of The X-Men, Percy Jackson, and Nicholas Flamel, with a dash of Homer just for the fun of it. Ken Mooney’s intelligent and action-packed adult novel starts with the destruction of Olympus, the home of the ancient gods; brings a vengeful Aphrodite, accompanied by blood-thirsty demons, into the 21st century; and then sets her against the descendants of those same gods. Aphrodite must kill all the descendants before she can reclaim her home at Olympus. The result: mass murder, “collateral damage,” utter destruction — starting with a NYC nightclub and ending just days later with a good portion of Greece. It reminded me of Dr. Peter Venkman in Ghostbusters: “… a disaster of biblical proportions.”

Also by Ken Mooney: Little Book of the End of the World (TBR October 2014) & Please visit his site for short stories and release information! http://kenmooneybooks.com/

Follow Ken: Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

 

Ken- ‘I don’t interact well with people.’

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(Ken in Madrid- Photo above)

Me- ‘That’s bullcrap…’ =)

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(Rome after Ken shaved his head for cancer charity and raised 1500 euro)

 

** SALE **

NO, WAIT…

FREE *** FREE *** FREE

Tomorrow only- Godhead will be offered for FREE on Amazon sales channels- .com, .co.uk, etc. After this date (4.19.2014), Godhead will become available across a wide array of sales platforms such as Nook, Smashwords and more!

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Authors are People | The oddly charismatic JACK WALLEN

Here’s another ‘Authors are People’ segment, folks.

 

The super-likeable, oddly charismatic, ridiculously endearing:

JACK WALLEN

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I think it’s wildly important to gain an understanding of the creator behind the creation. When our eyes feast on a painting, when we read a book, even when we ride a gravity-defying ride at the amusement park, we bring into that experience the preconceptions that we have garnered over our X numbers of years on this planet.

Take it from Orson Scott Card’s “Characters & Viewpoints” –

As storytellers, we can’t stop our readers from making stereotype judgments. In fact, we count on it. We know of and probably share most of the prejudices and stereotypes of the community we live.

-Orson Scott Card

Characters & Viewpoints

© 2010

 

OSC makes a good point and that point applies to most artistic creations (and also goes beyond the realm of art to taint and decide consumer acceptance of everything from interracial cereal commercials to plus-sized clothing).

One thing learning about an author as a flawed, opinionated person will do is break down the fluxing barrier between the consumer and the producer.

Once you’ve delved into an author’s psyche, you may realize that there exists a deeply personal reason for why a character in the book responds the way he or she does to a tragedy or joy. You may begin to understand that, as improbable as a plot twist may be, that it’s a piece of the writer’s reality and, therefore, must be treated with the respect of reality.

I knew of Jack quite a while before he and I began forming a ‘virtual’ friendship via social media. He has turned out to be a generous man, nurturing lesser-known Indies on their journey, who manages to maintain a modicum of admirable modesty, despite his fans calling him the ‘Zombie King.’ He’s a talent beyond the page- a stage actor, a narrator, owner of Adorkable Designs, Inc. He’s always up for a challenge and I’m jealous of his almost preternatural ability to roll with life’s punches and discover for himself the road to a brighter, healthier future. Many of us don’t have that talent- sitting in a cesspool until an outsider shows us the window that opened in place of the door slamming in our faces.

I asked Jack to send me a list of facts on himself- things that his fans wouldn’t have discovered from a simple, quick search on the net. Some of the little tidbits about him surprised me and I find myself looking at him in a different way. These revelations, listed below, coupled with my current reading of his stellar book “Hell’s Muse,” leads me to examine my preconceptions (and current conceptions) of Jack, the person & the author.

Thank you for sharing, Jack. I’m very grateful that we’ve become friends.

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Get the facts… Jack 😉

More than you ever wanted to know about Jack, that you won’t find on his website (or your imagination).

Random facts

  •  Born in New Castle, Indiana
  • Suffered from a bone de-generative disease when he was 7
  • Was planning on studying marine biology until he auditioned for his first play in high school
  • Scored 100% in both geometry and biology classes in high school
  • Was a national finalist in speech and debate
  • Played Tuba in both marching band, orchestra, and even jazz band
  • Is in three movies that you’ll likely never see
  • Started his writing career with a vampire story based on a role playing game he played
  • Enjoys wearing kilts more than he’ll ever admit – oh wait, I just admitted it
  • Will grow “old” but never “up”
  • Favorite film of all time is The Crow
  • Favorite piece of classical music is Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings
  • Studied opera for a brief period
  • Performed in one opera and quickly left the field due to the raging egos
  • Listens to music nearly all day
  • Plays guitar (but only with a lot of effects so you don’t know how bad I am)
  • Has been an avid cyclist since high school
  • Have two (living) brothers and two sisters
  • Was named after my father
  • My real name is Jackie – I stopped going by that name in elementary school after I made the school bully cry
  • Has five cats (Oni, Wookie, Bigen, Bazo, and Miko)
  • Has three step children (Josh, Leah, and Courtney – all grown and out of the house)
  • Is married to the fantastic Stephanie Wallen
  • I was nearly shocked to death as an infant (I chewed my way through an electrical cord). Had it not been for my father seeing me convulsing on the floor and unplugging the cord…well…you can do that math.
  • Went through a very long goth period (didn’t we all?)
  • If I could be one character from my books it would probably be Shero because…well…he’s Shero!
  • Used to have an office that was entirely black (walls, floor, ceiling, desk) so I could concentrate solely on writing
  • Have been told I look like the bastard love child of John Mellencamp and Stephen King – or Leonard Hoftstadter’s twin.

A note from Jack: Imagination has been my savior throughout my life. As a child I would spend hours devising ways to scare my younger sister. The methods of madness grew ever-more elaborate with time. That same imagination helped me survive not the greatest of surroundings and also propelled me into a twenty-year career as an actor. I hold onto that imagination very dearly – even though it tends to keep me from growing up. I honestly don’t know what I’d do without it.

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Jack is the author of:

I Zombie I | My Zombie My | Die Zombie Die | Lie Zombie Lie | Zombie Radio

T-Minus Zero | Hell’s Muse | Screampark | Shero | Shero II: Zombie A GoGo

A Blade Away | Gothica | Endgame | Klockwerk Kabaret

If you want to receive an automatic email when Jack’s next book is released, sign up here. Your email address will never be shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Find out more about Jack:

Website: http://www.getjackd.net | Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/author.jackwallen

Twitter: @jlwallen | Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+jackwallen/posts

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Jack-Wallen/e/B004MZWR3W/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4468548.Jack_Wallen

Zombie Radio: http://www.zombieradio.org

 

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I’m so enjoying showcasing authors as people that I’ve decided to make this a regular segment on my blog. Look for a new showcase next Friday!

Cheers,

Eli