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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

"When I'm not writing" with Alayna Williams

Laura Bickle/Alayna Williams

Today's post is from Alayna Williams. You may know her from her Delphic Oracle books, DARK ORACLE and ROGUE ORACLE, or you may be more familiar with her Anya Kalinczyk series, which she writes under her real name, Laura Bickle. She's here today to promote her Delphic Oracle series and to tell us just what it is she does when she's not hard at work on her next novel. Welcome, Alayna, and thanks for joining us!



Yes, I know that I should be writing right now. And I do try to keep a daily word count. When I’m on deadline or doing National Novel Writing Month, it’s usually around 1500 words a day. Other times, I putter. Skip a day. Real life intervenes.

Here are a couple of my favorite places to write: my indoor office and my outdoor one. Okay, okay, I know it’s a patio. But it’s amazing how much work I can get done without the television on. I hang the laundry out to dry and listen to the birds chattering.

Alayna Williams indoor officeAlayna Williams outdoor office

But when I’m not writing…

The first place I can usually be found is at my local public library. My day job is working in a library. It’s a great place for a writer, because I have all the resources of a major library at my fingertips. Whether I’m researching Tarot, spontaneous human combustion, or the Amish, it’s all there.

Not to mention pleasure reading. Here’s my latest TBR stack, strictly for fun. Luna, one of my five semi-reformed feral cats, is guarding this pile. In sunshine. Sleepily.

Alayna Williams TBR pile

That brings me to another occupation of mine. I’m owned by cats. There are five cats in our house, and I do their bidding. Fellow cat minions understand what I mean.

My husband and I are amateur astronomers. When we have dinners out on the patio, I’ll occasionally point at a star and say: “I bet that’s Mars!” We haul out the telescope to check. I can usually find Mars purely by color, but I have problems putting my finger on Jupiter. My husband, on the other hand, found Saturn the first time he turned a telescope skyward.

Beyond reading, stargazing, and keeping the cats in the style to which they’ve become accustomed, I have a few more frivolous pursuits. As followers of my blog know, I’ve been in the process of re-assembling my brother’s childhood collection of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe figures. About once a month, we have a party at my house in which the centerpiece looks like something out of Christmas morning, circa 1985. Castle Greyskull looms over the appetizers, and Skeletor is charging over the silverware.

Alayna Williams Greyskull

That has led to a vice for me. As much as I enjoy those old action figures, I really enjoyed She-Ra when I was a kid. Lo and behold, through the miracle of eBay, I can be eight years old again. I’ve found various odds and ends in the process of completing my brother’s collection. It always brings a smile to my face, remembering when I was a little girl and seriously into pink swords and secret identities.

Alayna Williams She-Ra 1Alayna Williams She-Ra 2

I think, when I’m not writing, my brain is usually at play. Whether it’s working with books, reading them, or restoring old toys, some part of me is involved with telling a story about a fantasy world. And being a writer fits right in with the rest of my life.


Thanks for visiting Tynga's Reviews, Alayna!

For more information about Alayna and her books, check out her website or visit her on Facebook or Twitter.


Here's the scoop on ROGUE ORACLE:

Alayna Williams Rogue OracleThe more you know about the future, the more there may be to fear.

Tara Sheridan is the best criminal profiler around - and the most unconventional. Trained as a forensic psychologist, Tara also specializes in Tarot card reading. But she doesn't need her divination skills to realize that the new assignment from her friend and sometime lover, Agent Harry Li, is a dangerous proposition in every way.

Former Cold War operatives, all linked to a top-secret operation tracking the disposal of nuclear weapons in Russia, are disappearing. There are no bodies, and no clues to their whereabouts. Harry suspects a conspiracy to sell arms to the highest bidder. The cards - and Tara's increasingly ominous dreams - suggest something darker. Even as Tara sorts through her feelings for Harry and her fractured relationships with the mysterious order known as Delphi's Daughters, a killer is growing more ruthless by the day. And a nightmare that began decades ago in Chernobyl will reach a terrifying endgame that not even Tara could have foreseen…

Read an excerpt

Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository

You can also check out DARK ORACLE, the first book in the Delphic Oracle series:


As a criminal profiler, Tara used science and her intuitive skill at Tarot card divination to track down the dangerous and depraved, including the serial killer who left her scarred from head to toe. Since that savage attack, Tara has been a recluse. But now an ancient secret society known as Delphi’s Daughters has asked for her help in locating missing scientist Lowell Magnusson. And Tara, armed with her Tarot deck, her .38, and a stack of misgivings, agrees to try.

Tara immediately senses there is far more at stake than one man’s life. At his government lab in the New Mexico desert, Magnusson had developed groundbreaking technology with terrifying potential. Working alongside the brusque but charismatic agent Harry Li, Tara discovers that Magnusson’s daughter, Cassie, has knowledge that makes her a target too. The more Tara sees into the future, the more there is to fear. She knows she has to protect Cassie. But there may be no way to protect herself—from the enemies circling around her, or from the long-buried powers stirring to life within. . . .

Read an excerpt

Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository


Do you guys have suggestions for who you’d like to see featured on the blog? If so, you can make your suggestions on this page. No guarantees that your favorite authors will be able to participate but we’ll try!

Authors, would you like to visit and share with us? Please email me at jennblogs (at) gmail (dot) com and we’ll set it up!


Born and raised in the Toronto area, Jenn moved to St. John's, Newfoundland, eight years ago for school. She's still in school (thankfully on another degree!), now trapped in her dissertation. When she's not dissertating, which happens more often than it should, Jenn spends her time reading, watching movies, playing volleyball, travelling, and enjoying the local music scene. Her latest addictions: yoga and Almond Crunch cereal.

6 People left their mark' :

  1. Great guestpost, thank you! I still have to start reading your books, but they are on my TBR mountain.
    What fun those figurines! I also loved to watch those two series, all those gorgeous colors and magic and all. By the power of Greyskull!

    1. Thanks, Aurian! I loved those cartoons, too...as a kid, I was glued to the TV at 4:00 every day! By the power of Greyskull! ;-)

  2. Thanks so much for hosting me today, Jenn! I appreciate the chance to meet your readers. :-)

  3. Wow - You brought back fond memories of my childhood! Yes I was totally into She-ra too! My brothers were into He-man. Did get kinda upset that She-ra never went on He-Man's show but he did on hers frequently!

    Envious! I only had Bow and Adora/She-ra dolls. I really wanted the rest but with my family's limited income I was lucky on what I got.

    1. Totally - She-Ra was always getting muscled out by He-Man. Entirely unfair!

      I still have Catra and Frosta from when I was a kid. One of my friends still had her box of toys from her childhood that she gave to me. The rest have appeared via the magic of eBay. I'm amazed that this stuff still exists!

    2. Totally - She-Ra was always getting muscled out by He-Man. Entirely unfair!

      I still have Catra and Frosta from when I was a kid. One of my friends still had her box of toys from her childhood that she gave to me. The rest have appeared via the magic of eBay. I'm amazed that this stuff still exists!