We’re kicking off this week by getting to know the one and only Janna Jennings who writes the always amazing Grimm Legacy books.


 

What was the first book you wrote? Published?

A Grimm Legacy, which started out as four character sketches, and grew from there. I entered the manuscript with all it’s many flaws into a contest on NaNoWriMo. That’s how I got hooked up PWP… and the rest is history

janna1Which author do you most look up to?

This could be a long answer. I’ve always loved C.S. Lewis, and think he’s an author who could easily be considered timeless. Kids enjoy his books as much fifty years ago as they do today. Jerry Spinelli’s language and descriptions create these amazing visuals that drag you right into the heart of the matter. Newer author Shannon Messenger really knows how to build a world and twist a tale right on its ear. Honestly, there is so much good writing out there, one is never out of things to read.

What is your ultimate goal as an author?

To connect with readers. To have them enjoy a story, to love the simple act of reading and being satisfied and a little sad when they flip to the last page of the book. To leave them wanting more.

Which of your characters do you most connect with?

I think there is always little pieces of me and my experiences in each character I write. But the troublemakers seem to flow from my pen a little too readily to deny a strong connection with them.

What is your favorite genre to read? Why?

I’m on the fence between historical fiction and fantasy. The historical fiction always seems so fascinating to me, and it’s the only way I enjoy history. Wading past the dates and facts and getting to the human heart of the story. What was this person’s experience, hopes, dreams? And fantasy is always fun, pushing the boundaries of what is possible, one great big ‘what if?’

What is the most challenging part of your writing process?

Consistently finding time to write, and probably because it is a fresh would… formatting!

Do you have any go to snacks while writing?

9781927940518I’m a tea drinker 🙂

What is your all-time favorite novel to read?

I think I’m going to have to go back to Lewis on this one. The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.

What do you consider your greatest strength as an author?

Being able to absorb advice and apply it to my writing.

What is the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

The importance of having a plan before you start writing.

What’s the best thing about being a writer?

The power words have. Twenty-six simple letter, when strung together can elicit unanticipated emotions, thoughts, and dreams from anyone they come in contact with.

If you couldn’t be an author, what would be your next choice for a dream job?

Librarian, and fortunately, I get to live it!

How long does it usually take you to write a book from plotting to publishing?

A year. It would be nice to cut that down.

What is your favorite place to write?

Surrounded by books, usually a book store or library.

Tell us something fun about yourself, completely unrelated to writing!

I recently started my dream job of being a librarian at an elementary school. I get to spend all day surrounded by books and get kids as enthralled about books and reading as I am. And just how excited would you be if your employer had a substantial budget for you to buy books every year?


Learn more about Janna on her website!

 

Release Day: Polaris AwakeningPolaris Awakening by Kellie Sheridan, E. Latimer, Erica Crouch, Janna Jennings, Hannah Davies, Terra Harmony, Meghan Jashinsky
Series: Polaris #1
Published by Patchwork Press on May 26, 2015
Genres: Anthology, LGBT, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Pages: 505
Formats: Paperback, ebook
Goodreads
Synopsis:

ZEUS PROTOCOL 000101: REBOOT, SCAN.

DANGER DETECTED.

THREAT LEVEL: UNKNOWN.

RECOMMENDED ACTION: INCREASE MILITARY PRESENCE.

There’s trouble brewing on Polaris. Under the watchful eye of the space station’s supercomputer, Zeus, the lower classes are awakening to the corruption of their wealthy, privileged, and protected leaders. When the quiet voices of protest get louder and alliances form, change dawns on the horizon. But the small acts of resistance won’t be enough to subvert the system for long. Zeus is alert to the growing threat level, and he will do whatever’s necessary—including purging the lower levels of Polaris—to preserve stability for all.

Inspired by the mythology of the constellations hung around Polaris, the seven stories in Polaris Awakening reimagine the classic characters in a futuristic world where alien creatures are commonplace, combat arenas are used for entertaining foreign dignitaries, slaves and soldiers stand side by side, and music orchestrates a revolution. And their first acts of defiance are just the beginning. Polaris will never be the same.

ZEUS PROTOCOL 000099: ENGAGE THREAT.

FINALLY! The release day for Polaris Awakening, the newest anthology from Patchwork Press, is today! The authors of Patchwork Press (Kellie Sheridan, E. Latimer, Erica Crouch, Janna Jennings, Hannah Davies, Terra Harmony, and Meghan Jashinsky) have come together to compile this YA science fiction anthology, and we’ve been so excited to share it with everyone.

If you saw the announcement of the anthology, you know that each story in the book is based off of the mythology of constellation. The anthology was a lot of fun — and hard work — to write, and we hope it will be just as exciting of a read: there’s action, there’s romance, there’s rebellion, and all of the characters and stories are so unique while still existing in the same world. It’s cohesive, creative freedom at its best!

You can order the anthology right now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo. It will be available as both an ebook and a paperback. Add Polaris Awakening on GoodReads, and let us know in the comments which constellation is your favorite!

Since the release of Patchwork Press‘s first anthology (The Lost Locket of Lahari), we’ve been talking about the next anthology and how great it’s going to be. We’ve been pretty tight-lipped on the details, only revealing small facts like the theme — CONSTELLATIONS! — and the genre — YOUNG ADULT SCIENCE FICTION! — but everything else? A mystery. But no longer!

Today, we are revealing the title, the authors involved, the constellations the stories are inspired by, and the mythology behind each star cluster. We’ll begin with the title reveal. Drumroll please…

Polaris-Awakening

Polaris Awakening is the title of the newest Patchwork Press anthology! Each of the seven stories in the anthology take place aboard the space station of Polaris. The station of Polaris is the brightest star in the galaxy, with it’s shining technology and renowned space academy. But not everything on Polaris is perfect — there’s a tilt of balance in social classes, and those below are beginning to awaken to the injustice of their leaders. A rebellion is thrumming through the ship, and the characters of each story all play a part in the ripple of discontent.

There are seven stories contributing to the anthology. And our authors (in order of appearance) are: Kellie Sheridan, Erin Latimer, Erica Crouch, Janna Jennings, Hannah Davies, Terra Harmony, and Meghan Jashinsky.

Zeus

Kellie Sheridan‘s story will not only open the anthology, but it will be peppered throughout the anthology, interspersed between the other pieces. Kellie’s story doesn’t focus on one particular constellation or origin myth, but rather she is writing as the embodiment of Zeus (you know, Mr. Lightning Bolt, the Big Guy in the Sky). Zeus is personified as the supercomputer operating Polaris, and he’s more aware than you’d expect, which could lead to some danger for our characters…

Ophiuchus

After Kellie Sheridan’s introduction, we have our first full story from Erin Latimer. Erin’s story centers around the constellation Ophiuchus. The constellation represents the god Apollo struggling with the huge snake that guards the Oracle of Delphi. After Apollo slew the snake, he was ordered by Zeus to host the Pythian Games as a form of penance.

Lyra

Next up is Erica Crouch with her story based on the constellation Lyra. In the original myth, Orpheus — a musician with almost supernatural talent — falls in love with Eurydice. But their love is doomed, and Eurydice dies, stolen away to the Underworld by Hades. When Hades hears Orpheus’s mournful music, he strikes a bargain: Orpheus will be returned his love if he continues playing his music. Eurydice will follow him from the Underworld, but if Orpheus doesn’t trust Hades and turns around to check that Eurydice is still with him, he will lose her forever. The deal is made, and Orpheus plays his lyre, but when he walks over pine needles and can no longer hear Eurydice’s footsteps, he turns around and Eurydice fades away, gone forever.

Gemini

Following Erica’s piece is Janna Jennings‘s story of the constellation Gemini. The Gemini twins, Castor and Pollux, were both born from Leda, the Queen of Sparta. Their sister is Helen of Troy and there are several myths about them, including sailing with Jason and the Argonauts to find the golden fleece and fighting in the Trojan War to bring their sister Helen home. Castor is a renowned horseman, and Pollux is a great boxer.

Scorpio

Then we have Hannah Davies‘s story, inspired by the constellation Scorpio. Scorpio has a few different mythologies to chose from, but the one Hannah chose was a story about Orion and Artemis. Orion boasted that he was the greatest hunter in all the land and could kill any animal. Artemis — Goddess of hunting and also protector of beasts — sent a scorpion after Orion to defeat him. The scorpion stung Orion’s ankle, killing him. Zeus was impressed by the scorpion, so he made a constellation for it. In the sky, the scorpion is at the opposite side of the horizon to Orion to keep them apart.

Virgo

Terra Harmony‘s story follows next, and she was inspired by the constellation Virgo. Persephone, beautiful daughter of Zeus and Demeter, is tricked by Hades who carries her off to the underworld to be his wife. Her mother was so upset by this, she completely neglected her duties as goddess of agriculture, and famine spread over the entire world. The solution was for Persephone should be with her mother for half the year, and go to the underworld with Hades for the other half of the year. When Persephone is gone, agriculture essentially dies until she returns again six months later.

Taurus

And finally, to close the anthology we have a story from Meghan Jashinsky, based on the constellation Taurus. From the Mesopotamian Epic of Gilgamesh, the goddess Ishtar sends Taurus to kill Gilgamesh because he spurned her. In the sky, this is why the constellation Taurus seems to be facing off with Orion (who is representative of Gilgamesh).


Patchwork Press’s Polaris Awakening is going to be a whirlwind of a read! With so many spectacular myths interpreted into the science fiction world by an array of talented authors — all with strong, unique voices — we’re readying for an epic read. You can expect the cover reveal in March, and trust us, you won’t want to miss it! The release day is scheduled for April 28th, one day before Patchwork Press’s second birthday! So let us know…

WHAT CONSTELLATION ARE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO READ?
Tweet us @Patchwork_Press!

** SIGN UP FOR THE COVER REVEAL MARCH 13 **

We’re in the final stretch of celebrating Patchwork Press’ first birthday, and today’s post is all about the Patchwork Press anthology. In case you didn’t already know, the five original authors of Patchwork Press — Kellie Sheridan, Terra Harmony, Janna Jennings, Ruth Silver, and myself (Erica Crouch) — are collaborating to write one kickass anthology.

Now I don’t want to brag, but I think this is one of the coolest anthologies I’ve heard of (and I’m not just saying that because I’m contributing a story!). But before I get into the summary of the anthology, I guess I should tell you the title, right? Announcing… The Lost Locket of Lahari Anthology! And I’m now realizing you could have gotten that bit of information from the title, but now it’s official so… There ya go!

The Lost Locket of Lahari (or as I’ve been lovingly calling it LLoL) is a young adult fantasy centering on a mystical, kickass locket, which by the way, looks a little bit like this:

Lockets

Pretty cool, right? Well if you love it so much, you can enter to win your very own locket below!

Anyway, onto the anthology itself… There are five novella-length stories in the anthology, all centering on this locket that travels through the different decades of the book:

  • The Victorian Era (My story!)
  • The Roaring Twenties (Terra’s story)
  • The 1940s (Janna’s story)
  • Present day (Ruth’s story)
  • and the Future (Kellie’s story)

In each story, it takes on different magical qualities, becoming what the characters need it — be it a vehicle to see ghosts, or something entirely different!

So, as I was saying, this locket is special. It all ties back to an Indian Mythology that we developed especially for this story. To sum it up quickly, an elderly Indian man crafted this locket in hopes of his six children (represented by the six dragonflies) returning home to him one day. He took their most prized childhood trinkets, melted them down, and forged them into this locket. But through his wish for his children, he imparted a bit of magic… It seeks out those with the same attributes of his children, and while it never brings his children back to him, it finds the next best thing: their spirit in other people. And that’s how the locket finds all of our characters in their stories.

You can expect a lot out of this anthology, as each story is entirely unique! Different characters with different voices in different eras. Mine, for example, is a Victorian romance/ghost story, inspired by the poetry of Edgar Allan Poe. (Yeah, I am EXCITED about this one!) Other stories feature a spy, a thief, a dancer, and a dreamer… Hmm, you can only guess what these great stories will be about!

Here’s the official synopsis and our temporary cover:

LostLocketCoverThe Lost Locket of Lahari Anthology by Erica Crouch, Terra Harmony, Janna Jennings, Ruth Silver, and Kellie Sheridan
Published by Patchwork Press Published Summer 2014 
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal,Young Adult 
Goodreads 
Synopsis:

In a dusty, dilapidated stall tucked away in an alcove of a bustling Bazaar in India, a man with a rickety spine and a spindly beard bends over his work bench, forging a locket with accidental magic. There’s power in a wish, and there’s nothing he wants more than for his children to return home. The locket was intricately crafted, adorned with one dragonfly for each of his children—and the power to find them.

With the guidance of fate, the locket skips through time and journeys across oceans, traveling from person to person in a constant search for the souls whispered into its vessel. Centuries after the magical old man in the Bazaar became near-forgotten myth and whispered legend, the locket has fallen into the hands of those with echoes of the six dragonflies: a seer, a specter, a dreamer, a spy, a thief, and a dancer.

In the hands of its new owners, the power of the locket adapts, bending and remaking itself to answer need. While the locket never found the children of Lahari, it found the next best thing… Their spirits.

The five novellas of the Lost Locket of Lahari anthology pause a moment in time when the locket finds the ripples of its ancestry. From the Victorian-era to the Roaring Twenties, the 1940s to modern day and beyond, this anthology is a collection of stories as dynamic as the authors themselves.

Are you excited? Because we sure are! As of now, we are expecting the anthology to be out and available this summer, so make sure you add it to your GoodReads and get ready for this awesome title to become available! For now, though, go ahead and enter the giveaway below for a chance to win the locket (with a personal message from me!).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

B1 Grimm LegacyA Grimm Legacy by Janna Jennings
Series: Grimm Tales 
Published by Patchwork PressPublished October 29, 2013
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Pages: 249
Format: Paperback
Goodreads
Cover (re)Design By: Erica Crouch
Synopsis:

Enchanted castles and charming princes thought to exist only in stories come to life in this classically twisted fairy tale that combines the timeless quality of generations old folktales with the challenges of the modern world.

The woods of Elorium appear ordinary to Andi Grace, until birds start talking and elves answer doors. Along with three others, Andi has been whisked out of her world and finds herself the reluctant guest of the perplexing millionaire, Mr. Jackson—a stranger willing to help get them home, but who’s keeping secrets of his own.

Discovering unexpected family connections to this fairy tale land, the group must rely on each other as they dodge evil fairies and battle giants, intent on keeping them in Elorium.

Faced with characters short on whimsy and bent towards treachery, Andi, Quinn, Fredrick and Dylan are forced into fairy tale roles to find the way home. But in Elorium, happily ever after is never guaranteed.

Today we have a very special re-reveal of Janna Jennings’ young adult fantasy, A Grimm Legacy.

We all thought the original cover, designed by Ravven, was great, but after talking about the development of the series as a whole with Janna, the team here at Patchwork Press decided the Grimm Tales series needed a bit of a face lift to make the series nice and cohesive. And, well, you can see the results! (Just wait until you see the last to cover reveals for the series!)

The final book in the series, Grimm Memories, will be released later this year, and we are sure you’ll be seeing the cover reveal for that shortly. To cap off the series of fairy tale retelling will be a compilation book, with both A Grimm Legacy and Grimm Memories in one big, beautiful book! There might even be some bonus features, we’ll have to see. It’s going to be amazing!

The new cover of A Grimm Legacy should be available for purchase as a paperback starting February. Make sure to add it to your “to read” shelf on GoodReads! And let us know what you think about the new cover in the comments! 😀

B1 Grimm Legacy FULL

About Janna Jennings

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Janna is a Colorado based YA author who loves a good fairy tale. She’s married to her own real life Prince Charming, and will usually admit to being mom of three, including her incorrigible middle child, Benny. Besides wrangling her kids she can be found doing some therapeutic baking, dreaming of the ocean, and of course, curling up with a good book.

Website • Twitter • Goodreads

Bloggers! We’ve got a new book coming out, and we need your help to spread the word. On June 27th, we’ll be revealing the cover for Janna Jennings’ debut YA novel, A Grimm Legacy–and I’ve got to say, the cover is amazing! (designed by the one and only Ravven, so you know it will be good)

If you want to participate in the cover reveal, please fill out our Reviewer Form!

About the book:

Title: A Grimm Legacy
Author: Janna Jennings
Publisher: Patchwork press
Publication Date: October 1st, 2013

The woods of Elorium appear ordinary, at least until elves appear and the birds start talking. Four teenagers, whisked out of their own world, find themselves as the reluctant guests of the strange and secretive millionaire, Mr. Jackson—a man who knows the secrets of their families’ histories as well as the way back home. But nothing comes without a price.

Mr. Jackson’s mother is dying and the only cure is in the hands of a giant barricaded on a floating island. Unable to retrieve it himself, Mr. Jackson strikes a deal with the teens: steal the antidote and in return receive the key back to their world.

Caught in Grimm’s fairy tales with characters short on whimsy and bent towards treachery, the teens begin a race against time. Without any other way home, they are forced into fairy tale roles that may not lead to a happily ever after.

 

janna1About Janna Jennings: Janna is a Colorado based YA author who loves a good fairy tale. She’s married to her own real life Prince Charming, and will usually admit to being mom of three, including her incorrigible middle child, Benny. Besides wrangling her kids she can be found doing some therapeutic baking, dreaming of the ocean, and of course, curling up with a good book.

A Grimm Legacy on Goodreads
Janna’s Website
Janna Jennings on Twitter