Robbie Cheadle is hosting John Howell and his new book, Eternal Road.
Today, I am delighted to welcome author, John W. Howell, to Roberta Writes with his amazing new book. Take it away, John.
Thank you so much for having me on your blog, Robbie, and for helping me launch Eternal Road – The final stop. With all yu have to do with kids and your accounting practice, blogging, and writing terrific books, I’m happy you could take the time to host on the book tour. Speaking of the book, let me describe it. Eternal Road is the story of two people finding their way through the selection process leading to the place where one will spend eternity. Yes, it is true. They both have passed away. James Wainwright just died in an auto accident. Samantha Tourneau died seventeen years before. Sam is James’s guide to help him decide where to spend eternity. This is not your usual thriller or paranormal romance…
the tapestry is unraveling
earthy tones of brown and
tan, yellow and red fading,
white patches soiled from
blood and tears, offering no
warmth, no consolation,
threads splintering, breaking
unable to hold together the
dreams of the innocents
wrapped in it like a shroud…
where are the seamstresses
with steady hands and nimble
fingers, trembling with needles,
eyes too narrow to thread, to
mend the tatters, to scrub
the fabric clean, to restore
the tapestry, or better yet,
to weave a new cloth, one
that is brilliant, softened
with batting, large enough
to cover all who slumber,
to shield us from nightmares,
from the darkest of nights,
to bring us safely to the dawn
we’re hanging by a thread
tossed by tempests, trembling,
chilled to our bones
while the world burns
Crawling out from under my rock. Sorry for my recent silence. I confess that I have…
I asked Teagan to come back to give us an update because while I was on break, Teagan launched her third novel in the Pip series, ‘A Ghost in the Kitchen”.
What have you been up to since your first feature?
Let’s back up this “time machine” to last October. 2018. That’s when I launched the second novel in the “Atonement” series, Atonement in Bloom.
I am a big fan of Teagan Geneviene’s books as I find her stories to be highly entertaining and imaginative and, despite containing elements of the mystical and supernatural, to be believable and seem quite possible. I also find the author’s characters to be interesting and colourful and I enjoy the way she uses their actions, emotions and dialogues to weave her stories in a natural and heartfelt way. Roberta Cheadle, South Africa
I “bookized” my serial from spring 2019, Brother Love — a Crossroad.
Late this summer, at my blog, Teagan’s Books, I began rewriting a nearly finished steampunk novel — and making it into a weekly serial. It’s called The Delta Pearl. A wide range of passengers and crew create a mystery, set on a fantastical riverboat.
I love Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene’s writing because she can transport the reader to the time and place of her story. Not that she is unique in this ability but she does it so well. John W. Howell, TX, USA
Then not long ago, I launched the third novel about Pip, a flapper and her friends. It’s a whimsical, culinary mystery called A Ghost in the Kitchen.
I have been a follower of the author’s blog for several years. Teagan Geneviene is a fascinating and versatile writer. I have read her novels, and know that apart from an imagination that knows no bounds, and a love of period research and attention to detail, she has a way with words and can create magical characters that readers get to care for and make them live through situations that never fail to surprise us and keep us on tenterhooks. Olga Núñez Miret, Spain
The heroine in A Ghost in the Kitchen is Pip. She’s determined to be a “modern woman” — a flapper. The story is set in 1920s Savannah, Georgia, which is reputed to be one of the most (if not the most) haunted cities in the USA. So, it’s only to be expected that this time some ghosts get in on the act. Pip sets out to unravel a spooky mystery.
On a personal note, I finally escaped from Washington DC, and parted company with my government job. Since I’m very much an agoraphobic, it was the hardest thing I’ve done, but I managed to move 2000 miles and two time zones across the country.
I know several people who have relocated this year. I admire the progress they’ve made. I however, am still a long way from being settled in at my little home. I haven’t even been able to finish painting the walls. Although those unfinished walls do have a couple of prints by my favorite artist — Rob Goldstein.
Your three things approach to writing invites readers to collaborate with you, but you also collaborate in a more direct way with other
bloggers. What have you learned from these collaborations?
It’s hard to answer “what do I learn” specifically. The main thing I get from collaborating is strong sense of comradery — what I take away from the experience is different each time, but always hard to define and always priceless.
Collaborating lets me learn new things and broaden the scope of my blog when I work with bloggers who have a different focus or topic than my own. I’ve been privileged to work with artists, cooks, photographers, and meditation experts for short stories and serials. And yes, other authors as well.
What I learn is really what I feel and what I see in my mind when I brainstorm with someone. I see and feel those things differently with each collaborator.
It was wonderful to work with you on the Lulu 1920s fantasy stories, Rob. I think when you and I get together we take imagination to worlds no one else would explore. All the limits come off. Our “what ifs” are so vivid to me.
Blogger and photographer, Dan Antion has illustrated some of my stories. Dan’s remarkably encouraging. He’s also really patient about letting me bounce ideas around, and stepping outside his comfort zone to reply with a counter-thought. Some of the thoughts he bounced back resulted in a character for “Brother Love — a Crossroad.” That character was an evangelist that became half a person from my childhood, and half a different preacher from Dan’s youth.
One of my earliest collaborators was Chris Graham, the Story Reading Ape. We’ve done a number of stories together. He brings in a real world foundation for the whimsy of his ideas. I’m not sure whether it will already be posted when this feature comes out, but Chris and I are working on another short story that combines his character Artie with my Pip character.
One thing that has impressed me is the generosity of the people with whom I’ve collaborated. They always give more than I expect.
I guess you could say the main thing I’ve learned is don’t be afraid to ask someone to collaborate with you. Be up front and clear about defining each person’s role. That avoids confusion and bumps in the road. But go ahead and ask. The worst they can say is “No.”
Will you share a section from A Ghost in the Kitchen?
My favorite part of this story is meeting Maestro Martino, a cursed ghost. Here he explains how his predicament came to be.
“Ah Signorina,” the ghost began. “It is a poignant tale. I was chef to the Patriarch of Aquileia at the Vatican. I always preferred the pun as a form of humor, and the Pope, he shared this with me. However, one evening we served dinner to a plethora of patrons, speaking Punjabi, Parsi, and Philippine. I presented a perfect prawn pasta… Perhaps something went awry with the translations… But — you see, the short of it is that I pissed off the Pope! And this predicament is my fate,” the ghost said with a mournful expression.
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You can always count on Teagan to create eccentric and charismatic characters and an intriguing plot. Teri Polen, Kentucky, USA