Friday, December 12, 2014

I am Shadow...Alexander of the House of Cronos from Shadow TEARS (Paranormal/Fantasy YA novel)

Q: Who or what are you?
I am the future of my people.  You have been blessed with my presence only by the order of my father.   My name is Alexander of the House of Cronos.  I am Shadow.
Q: What is your cause about?
My cause is not one that is uncommon.  I want to create unity among our people.  The three realms must be dominated and my enemies eliminated.
Q: What’s the most important thing in your life right now?
Acquiring power and control.  Once I find my prize, there will be no one to oppose me.  Jared and Shep thought they could hide that child but she has grown beyond their ability to hide.  Selena will be a fine tro…match.  The Zeus House will fall to their knees before long.
Q: How did you become antagonistic?  I was written that way but am truly just a humble soul who is misunderstood.  My goals are not that unusual but my views are little more traditional than some.  In our House, among my group, we believe in the caste system.  This system keeps everything at an even keel.  You don’t have to strive to be more than what you were born to be.  How fortunate for some to not have such great responsibilities as I do.  I am responsible for all who are under me.  MY hardship far outweighs most.  I must see that everything runs as it should.  No one should ever try to have more than what they are allotted.  They have food, shelter and chores that are important to the whole not just to them.  If that chore is not completed, then that person has upset the whole community and trust me no one wants that.  If such a thing should happen then all must buckle down to see it fixed.  So as you see I am looked at as a villain for making sure that happens.  I give protection.  That should be enough.
Q: Who was your idol when you were growing up? Who did you first fantasize about in your life?
I have no idols for I am to be the idolized.  At one time I did fantasize but no more.  I know my path.
Q: What annoys you more than anything else?
That Protector dog who thinks he is of higher rank than me.  Shep…Shep Goodwin… doesn’t deserve the reference of Master.  He is of a strong line but I am stronger.  He thinks he can beat me but he doesn’t know everything like he thinks.  Lady Selena will be mine along with all who followed her grandmother Terah.
Q: What would be the perfect gift for you?
Selena enough said.  After all she is promised to me.  Why am I doing this?  (Alexander looks to his aid in disgust.)
Q: What time of day is your favorite?
You truly are a simpleton.  Oh, I forget you are Mortal.  What time of day is my favorite?  Let me see if you catch on.  I am Shadow.  Night of course…the darkness feeds me. 
Q: What kind of weather is your favorite?
Must we go through this.  I am Shadow but more importantly I am a Protector.  I love storms…dark stormy nights.  They make for good target practice.  Training can be quite interesting.  (His smirk is dark as he and his aid share a snicker.)
Q: What do you find most relaxing? (Not as in stress relief, but as something that actually calms you down.)
Hunting.  We are descended from the great gods.  They are great hunters.

Title: Shadow Tears
Author: A. J. Tupps
ISBN: 978-1-61244-310-2
Page count: 302
Genre: Young Adult – Coming of Age Novel
Price: $16.95 for paperback and $5.99 e-book

About the book:
Shadow Tears is the first book in a series. In this book you meet Selena Goodwin who discovers more about her heritage than she ever wanted. She has special abilities that are fascinating while others are frightening to her.  All her beliefs are tested when she finds out that the mortal rules don’t apply to everybody or everything.  Her knowledge of the supernatural and myths might become her only means to survive.  She must accept who she is meant to be. 

Being thrust into a world full of secrets, danger, and a family she didn’t know existed is overwhelming, not to mention a responsibility. Luckily she still has the love and support of her adoptive father who had known all along who she is meant to be.  To make things worse she discovers her very existence is threatened by an unknown enemy.  The normal obstacles of being a teenager are hard enough. Now she has to learn how to live a lie while falling in love and accepting her life as it was meant to be. High school is supposed to be the best years of your life. 

Selena must rely on strangers who she is not sure are reliable. The only person she can rely on must stand between her and the possibility of death.  Selena faces these realms with reality always reminding her she is fallible. Yet she can overcome anything with the love of her family and friends.  

Where can we go to buy your book?
Shadow Tears is now available on the Halo Publishing website,, Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Nook, Bowker Books, Ingram Distributing, B. Dalton, and many more

Author Website:

Twitter URL: AjTupps@AjTupps

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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Spotlight Post: Three Secrets of Three-Dimensional Antagonists

saunters through the fog with a black cape flapping about his heels, shoulders back, chin tucked so he can fix you with a sinister glare. When his eyes catch yours, you can’t help but shudder at the complete lack of compassion or humanity in his gaze. His chuckle sets your skin crawling, and your brain sends panicked signals to your limbs: run, run, run.
But something holds you back. A tickle at the back of your mind won’t let you quite believe. Haven’t you met this fellow before—at least a dozen times? And aren’t black capes and maniacal laughs a little passé? Does this embodiment of senseless, delighted evil represent dimensional antagonists–or will it be nothing more than a host of clichéd villains?

Dimensional Antagonists–or Melodramatic Clowns?

Sometimes those villains we grew up with—the ones who twirled their curly mustaches, smiled “evilly” to show off a gold tooth, or wore black cowboy hats—like to worm their way out of our memories and crawl onto the page to take up residence in our stories.

 Snidely Whiplash Tying Nell to the Railroad Tracks in Dudley Do-Right
But when that happens, we run the risk of creating a robotic villain who exists solely to resist the hero–or, worse, as some sort of twisted villainous clown whose ineptitude provides nearly as much comic relief as opposition.

Read the whole post at

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Guest Blogger Scott Rhodes: What Makes Your Antagonist Interesting?

I've written about the antagonist before, but this is a
subject that can not be talked about enough. The antagonist is every bit
as important as the main character.

In some ways, the antagonist may even be more important. Your main
character cannot become sympathetic without an opposing force. The
antagonist is more than just a bad guy who tries to stop the good guy. A
good antagonist actually pushes the protagonist to action. The bad guys
gives the good guy a reason to behave like a good guy.

Because he is so important, your antagonist has to be every bit as real,
every bit as well-rounded, as the protagonist. So how do you do this?

The Antagonist is Evil

No. The good antagonist is not evil. OK, he could be, but not for the
mere sake of being evil. The antagonist truly believes he is the good
guy. Everything he does has a reason, and to him, those reasons are
Right. They are Correct. They are Good.

Few characters are as flat and dull as the arch-villain who is evil just
because being evil is evil. People aren't like that. Even people with a
warped sense of reality (and here's a little secret: we all have a warped sense of reality, shaped by our own histories and imperfect perceptions), do things for a reason.

There are truly evil actions, and your bad guy might do some of them.
But we humans have an almost unending supply of rationalizations for our
actions. If we're honest, we recognize that sometimes the way we
rationalize our actions is often, at best, flawed, and at worst, just
plain delusional.

Just like you want your good guy to have flaws, you need your antagonist
to have positive characteristics. In some stories, the reader might
even start to wonder just which character is the good guy and which is
the bad guy. The line doesn't have to be a thick one.

Read the full post at Utah Children's Writers: What Makes Your Antagonist Interesting?