Monday, April 5, 2010

Authorpalooza Day 6 - Guest Author: Leanna Renee Hieber

I am proud to welcome:

 Leanna Renee Hieber 

To Strictly Reviews'
Authorpalooza 2010

How long have you been writing?

As soon as I could hold pen to paper and finish a sentence. I started writing my first book at age 12, a Gothic novel set in 1888. While a world different, my debut novel, The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker, does share a trait with that childhood venture in that it’s also a Gothic novel set in 1888. My favourite themes have long been with me.

When did your first book release?

My first fiction release was my 2008 novella “Dark Nest”, a futuristic fantasy that won the 2009 Prism Award for excellence in the genre in the novella category.

What's one day in the life of Leanna Renee Hieber like?

Totally random and never the same. In the midst of writing and promoting my work I freelance at a television production studio and I am a background actor for TV and film (I belong to actors’ unions AEA, SAG, AFTRA). I have writing rituals, but there’s never an exact routine. When I have a free moment I love adventuring about my adopted hometown of New York City.

Do you have a current project you’re working on or something you plan to begin soon?

Promoting The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker (April 27th) and then the next in the Strangely Beautiful series! I’ll soon be polishing up edits for “A Christmas Carroll” a Strangely Beautiful series novella starring Headmistress Thompson and Vicar Michael Carroll to be included in Dorchester’s A MIDWINTER FANTASY anthology (October) and I’m currently writing Strangely Beautiful III, a prequel novel.

In your opinion, what is the most difficult part of being a published author?

Staying ahead of deadlines and juggling many types of work, a wonderful relationship with my real-life hero, my family, friends and keeping sane amidst it all.

What’s the most rewarding?

Readers telling me they love my characters as much as I do. There’s just nothing better than that. I also love speaking in schools and encouraging young writers to persist and keep their dreams alive no matter what.

If you could co-author a book with any of your fellow authors or anyone from anywhere, who would you choose and why?

J.K. Rowling. Because she’s a genius and I bow at her feet. Of course I’d like to go back to the 19th century (my favourite time period) and work on something with Charles Dickens.

Describe your writing process.

Haphazard. I have an idea where I’m going but no idea how to get there other than letting my characters tell me how they’d like to get from point A to point B. I do a lot of note taking, visioning and imagining while listening to music, taking walks (or pacing about the apartment). I take down the movie in my mind and translate it, piece by piece into a narrative. I have to smooth it out until I have a whole. I write like people make quilts; my sense of theme and atmosphere makes the separate colours match, my beloved characters make sure the patterns don’t clash and my editor makes sure none of the stitches are going the wrong way.

What is the most interesting place you’ve ever visited?

Of course I’m going to say London because it has forever unlocked my imagination and does so every time I visit.

What can we expect to see from you in the near future?

In the immediate future, please join me for the Strangely Beautiful sequel, The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker, releasing April 27th, available now for preorder. It picks up exactly where The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker leaves off and rouses to an epic conclusion, I’m very excited about it. (And thrilled to say I’ve gotten some early rave responses from places like

There’s the A MIDWINTER FANTASY anthology out in October that I mentioned, two more novels in the Strangely Beautiful saga, and I hope to sell my YA series- another Historical Fantasy/Paranormal series.

Stay tuned via
Twitter:  and I have fun contests coming up at  to celebrate the release of The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker.

Blessings and thanks Veronica for this opportunity!

Thanks Leanna!

The ghostly, Gothic Victorian fantasy begins! A Barnes & Noble Bestseller, first in the Strangely Beautiful series...

ISBN 10: 08439-6296-8
ISBN 13: 978-08439-6296-3
Length: Novel (320 pages)
Publication Date: 8/25/09 from Leisure Books / Dorchester Publishing

What fortune awaited sweet, timid Percy Parker at Athens Academy? Considering how few of Queen Victoria’s Londoners knew of it, the great Romanesque fortress was dreadfully imposing, and little could Percy guess what lay inside. She had never met the powerful and mysterious Professor Alexi Rychman, knew nothing of the growing shadow, the Ripper and other supernatural terrors against which his coterie stood guard. She knew simply that she was different, haunted, with her snow-white hair, pearlescent skin and uncanny gifts. But this arched stone doorway offered a portal to a new life, an education far from the convent—and an invitation to an intimate yet dangerous dance at the threshold of life and death…
APRIL 27, 2010: The bestselling STRANGELY BEAUTIFUL series continues!

ISBN 10: 0-8439-6297-6
ISBN 13: 978-0-8439-6297-0
Length: Novel (340 pages)
Publication Date: 4/27/10 from Leisure Books / Dorchester Publishing

With radiant, snow white skin and hair, Percy Parker was a beacon for Fate. True love had found her, in the tempestuous form of Professor Alexi Rychman. But her mythic destiny was not complete. Accompanying the ghosts with which she alone could converse, new and terrifying omens loomed. A war was coming, a desperate ploy of a spectral host. Victorian London would be overrun. Yet, Percy kept faith. Within the mighty bastion of Athens Academy, alongside The Guard whose magic shielded mortals from the agents of the Underworld, she counted herself among friends. Wreathed in hallowed fire, they would stand together, no matter what dreams or nightmares—may come.
Here's an sneak peak excerpt:
From The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker (Strangely Beautiful #2)

Within the misty grey of the Whisper-world, Beatrice Tipton was preparing one of the doors between Athens Academy and her current position, following after the Groundskeeper to undo his work with cerulean fire, but a putrid smell washed over her, heralding a powerful presence. Bile rose in her throat and she turned, every hair rising on her transparent flesh.

Odd, how her body still felt like a solid mass. She wondered if all corporeal sensations would one day go numb, hollow; but she felt so like herself, still felt the flame of desire for Ibrahim, still ached to feel his firm hand upon her hip, his lips upon— But these were distracting and ill-timed thoughts.

She had the advantage of being cloaked in deep shadow. The goddess had done well in hiding these portal thresholds deep in the murk, frightening and taxing as it must have been for a soul of such light to do so. From this location Beatrice could watch a huge and hulking shadow, a form hidden deep within—Darkness himself—hold out something raw and bloody. His voice was coaxing, but like stone on stone.

“Come, come, we must put you back together. Just as the Groundskeeper reassembles the Gorgon, you must become whole again, my pet. I’ll not have you bested, splintered by silly mortals.”

“Oh, good God,” Beatrice murmured, watching the shadow of a hound whimper and slide into view.

Not that true light shone here. Just the ghost of sunlight, the spirit of a candle, the wraith of gas lamp. The Whisper-world was just that: a whisper of all that was real. But its power was formidable, as were its army and its beasts. She would have to quicken her pace. As much as she’d like to give the poor girl a rest, Persephone would yet be called out, whether she liked it or not. The “puppy” now knew whom he hunted, and when it became whole again, God help her. Beatrice wondered if there was a way to bury a part of that splintered creature, vanquished by the great light inherent to the goddess, to keep it from wholly reassembling.

The portion of Phoenix fire she controlled—an entity that had always had a life of its own—seemed to react to this thought. A tendril flared, a snaking trail of flame that dripped down from her locket, making a circle in the air and tightening it, sparkling as if in joy. Beatrice grinned. A leash? That might indeed do the trick. But for now her job remained the doors. The doors that would open onto spectral war.

(End of Excerpt)

Bonus Time!!
Leanna is giving one commenter the chance be giving away a copy of The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker 
To enter just comment below one of your fictional couples from either tv and/or books in the comment section below.

And tweet with the hashtag #Authorpalooza2010 with the link of this post.
Sorry folks.. only residents of the U.S. can enter at this giveaway but there are plenty of other author's giveaways that international residents are eligible to enter and of course there will be plenty book giveaways from me here!


Rosie said...

That's easy . . . in books right now is Cat and Bones and on TV it would have to be Buffy and Spike (no, not Angel). Thanks for the great contest.

rosie0512 @ hotmail . com

Robin K said...

Another awesome sounding read! Love the blurb.

Tweeted here:

Tabby said...

Sookie and Bill from both the books and TV! I LOVE the Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood series! :D
Thanks for the giveaway!
Tweeted: @tabbyngraham (don't know how to get the url from a single tweet)
tabbylewis at hotmail dot com

Heather (DarklyReading) said...

Hmmm my favorite fictional couple really is dependent on what I've recently read - since I'm hoping to start Silver Borne soon I would say Mercy and Adam in Patricia Briggs series. Favorite TV couple definitely Sookie & Bill - I love True Blood. Don't enter me in the contest -I already have the lovely book - just wanted to hi!

throuthehaze said...

Rose and Dimitri from The Vampire Academy series


throuthehaze at gmail dot com

Bookie said...

My fav fictional coupling is Eve and Roarke.


dawnpnr at aol dot com