GtPGKogPYT4p61R1biicqBXsUzo" /> Google+ Sheep Interview: Seventh Star Singles + 3 winner give away | I Smell Sheep

Paranormal reviews of books, movies, comics with author interviews and giveaways we love urban fantasy, romance, science fiction, horror, fantasy, mysteries

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Sheep Interview: Seventh Star Singles + 3 winner give away

Seventh Star Press is a small press publisher that specializes in speculative fiction (fantasy, science fiction, and horror). I stopped by the website and being the cover-ho that I am, I was awed by the art work. Once I got over that, I realized the stories sounded like fantastic reads, but finding time to try new authors is tough so I was happy to see that SSP was starting a new line of stand alone e-short stories set in the worlds of the author’s novels.

Short stories are a quick and easy way to introduce your self to a new author and/or genre if done right. Sometimes short stories assume you are already familiar with the characters and world and you just can’t settle into the story. Author Stephen Zimmer proposed writing stand alone shorts that would introduce new readers to their worlds as well as entertain them for only $.99!

So in an effort to help expand your horizons (as well as my own!), I have invited author Stephen Zimmer from Seventh Star Press to tell us about this new line of e-short stories called Seventh Star Singles...

*And he is giving away all 8 e-shorts currently available to 3 winners!

Sharon: I guess the obvious question would be why and how did the idea of Seventh Star Singles come about?
I had a great amount of background material for my two novel series that lent itself well to creating a wide array of stories about places, characters, and historical events in those worlds. Not everything I developed can be addressed or featured in the novels, and many things can only be briefly mentioned. I thought that doing some short stories would give me a wonderful chance to bring some aspects of my worlds to full life, elements that before this were just part of the maps, timelines, histories, and other foundational things underlying the two series. That evolved into the idea of expanding it into a concept that other SSP authors could participate in, which is when I brought it forward to the SSP family.

I have had a great deal of fun writing them, and I think the eBook format is fantastic for this type of story. You couldn't do something like this in print, as it would be highly cost-ineffective. With the ability to offer these short stories as singles, new readers can try out myself, or any of the other Seventh Star Press authors who are doing these, very inexpensively without a big time commitment. With the tie-in with our novel series, the readers who are fans of the series will be able to get a lot more content and exploration of the worlds. In my view, it is truly a win-win!

Sharon: Can you tell us a little about your short story contributions. What type of novels do you write?
(can you also describe your stories in the _____s, ______s, and _____s! Oh, My! Format?)
Both of my novel series are epic scale, the “big books”, if you will, LOL. Both involve ensemble casts, arranged into threads themed by characters. I think readers that like George R.R. Martin's style would find themselves very comfortable with mine.

The Rising Dawn Saga has a lot of ingredients. Built around an urban fantasy core, it has paranormal, horror, science fiction, and even military thriller elements. It draws more heavily on the mythical and supernatural than does my other series, and I think readers have a lot of fun catching references from across the world pertaining to various traditions, religions, and cultures.

The Fires in Eden series is immersive epic fantasy, though it has several characters from today's world that get taken back to the world of Ave in the first book, Crown of Vengeance. I strive to keep a nice balance between iconic fantasy imagery and new/inventive elements. It has a Wizard race and dragons, but it also has the brawny Trogens, the underground-dwelling Unguhur, and the Skiantha sky steeds. I truly mean it when I say the reader will have adventures in the skies, under the ground, and even under the water in this series! LOL

My short stories are being grouped as the Chronicles of Ave, which goes with the Fires in Eden series, and the Annals of the Rising Dawn, which fits with the world of the Rising Dawn Saga. I've got three out now for the Chronicles of Ave (Into Glory Ride, Lion Heart, and Land of Shadow) and one for the Annals of the Rising Dawn (Temples Rising), with much more to come.

Now, as far as another way of describing my stories, I'll give it a shot:

Warriors, exotic lands, and legendary creatures! Oh My!

Sharon: Steven Shrewsbury is another SSP author that has written some shorts for the new line. What are his stories about?
(can you also describe his stories in the _____s, ______s, and _____s! Oh, My! format?)
Steven's stories focus upon the iconic figure of Gorias La Gaul, who is introduced in the novel Thrall as an aging warrior setting out to liberate one of his own blood from a Necromancer. I am a big Robert E. Howard fan, and I can say that Steven's world and Gorias should appeal strongly to anyone that loves the Conan stories. Gritty, hard-hitting sword and sorcery that can only come from an author who has a genuine passion for it.
The two short stories in this first wave of Seventh Star Singles from Steven are Gorias adventures set in times before the events in Thrall. For readers of Thrall, there's much more to learn about Gorias' past in these stories.

Now, as far as another way I would describe Steven's Gorias tales....

Monsters, Ancient Lands, and Mythic Heroes! Oh My!

Sharon: I just got to ask about the art work. Who is this artist and how did you hook up?
With my novels and Steven's, the artist is the same, Matthew Perry. I knew Matt for a long time, as we first met on the movie side of things when both of us were doing independent film in Lexington. I was able to bring Matt aboard as the cover artist for The Exodus Gate, during which time he created a wonderful set of interiors for the book. Since then, he has done interiors and covers for all of my novels in both series, as well as the interiors and cover art for Steven Shrewsbury, Jackie Gamber, and Michael West. He is enormously talented and I know all the SSP authors have been really thrilled with his artistic interpretations of their work. Matt probably never expected things to grow so much when he did my first book, but he appears to be enjoying things as he continues to develop what is now a very extensive body of fantasy, urban fantasy, horror, and sword and sorcery artwork affiliated with Seventh Star Press releases. The artwork is one of one of those extra touches that show just how much commitment there is to the releases from Seventh Star Press.

Sharon: Anything else you would like to tell the flock?
Whether it is myself, Steven, or one of our other authors, I invite you to try out one or two of these eBook short stories for yourself. If you like them, there's a good chance you will enjoy the novels as well. I love to hear from readers and consider myself very accessible, so please drop me a note and let me know what you think of them. If one of us is to your liking, tell your friends and online communities. Word of mouth is what really helps authors like myself on smaller presses.

Thank you very much for letting me introduce this new series, and perhaps a few new authors in the process! I hope to be back on here again sometime to visit with everyone at I Smell Sheep!

3 winners will get all 8 e-short stories. Below are the titles and blurbs to all shorts can be found here!

Stephen Zimmer
Chronicles of Ave-Adventures set in the world of Ave, the world that serves as the primary setting for the Fires in Eden Series
-Into Glory Ride
-Land of Shadow
-Lion Heart
Annals of the Rising Dawn-Adventures set within the world found in the Rising Dawn Saga
-Temples Rising

Steven L. Shrewsbury
Blood and Steel: Legends of La Gaul-more adventures of the rising Sword and Sorcery icon, Gorias La Gaul

-Author and Finisher of Our Flesh

Michael West

Tales from Harmony collection features stories with ties to Harmony, Indiana, a location synonymous with horror and the site of many of his tales, including the novel Cinema of Shadows.
-For the River Is Wide and the Gods Are Hungry

To Enter:
+1 entry comment (leave contact info)
+1 entry for each author you follow on twitter
+1 entry for each author you follow on Facebook
you can earn up to 6 entries! just tell me how many you get.
contest ends: January 19th at midnight
Goodnight- I really liked this story. Leaves you with a good feeling, not all ghost stories have to be scary.
3.5 Sheep

Author and Finisher of Our Flesh- this had a good dose of humor and blood spilling action with a cool monster in need of slaying! I think I would enjoy reading more about the foul mouthed Gorias.
4 Sheep


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Sounds awesome.

    Follow both on twitter as @robinblankenshi
    and all three on FB as Robin MIchelle Hamilton Blankenship

    Making it 6 total entries.

  3. Thanks for the giveaway. This book sounds interesting.


  4. Awesome Giveaway!!

    Followed both on twitter and all three on Facebook for a total of 6 entrys.

    Thanks all!!

  5. Woo hoo!

    I follow all three author's on FB

    4 total entries :)

  6. Thank you for having me on the site today! I really appreciate the opportunity to talk in more depth about my work and this new series. It is going to be a very active one. Thanks to everyone for reading this too! Enjoy the new stories!

  7. Those are awesome covers and sound like good books, too! :)

  8. What an incredibly generous and prolific group of guys. I have hopped over and followed on facebook and twitter for these gentlemen authors and look forward to the journey and finding out what is to come. Thank you for the fun:) (6)
    FB - Denise Zaky

  9. Contest closed. Winners are: Sirhijinx, Joleene Naylor, Jill Wilkins!
    thanks for playing with us:) I will email the winners.