Book Launch - Catrina Taylor "Xarrok: Birth of an Empire Book 1'
The war began centuries before they were born, but that doesn’t change their desire for peace. Strife, pain, suffering are endured by many involved. The Militaries build in different ways, each one striving for survival of their species. These two fleet commanders want to see it all change. First they have to face their own past. Once they can achieve peace between themselves, the two will work to achieve peace between their people. They will push to end suffering, and death. Can they face their own people and make a stand for unity? More importantly, can they face each other?
Catrina Taylor has developed a deeply intertwined connection between two species at odds for centuries before the Great War began. Today she launches a book, Birth of an Empire book 1 that shows the life among this prolonged war. The vibrant characters endure the horrors up front, pushing many to want to just find a way out of the war.
To celebrate her launch, she’s encouraging you to participate in a multi-site interview and scavenger hunt. The top three winners take home a free copy of Birth of an Empire, book 1.
Here’s how to play:
Read the questions and the samples at the bottom of the posts, then go to TheWritingNetwork.com and/or Xarrok.com and answer the 5 questions OR the 2 bonus questions accurately and win a free copy of Xarrok’s first novel, Birth of an Empire part 1. The Top 3 responses will win a copy.
At the end of the sample on each site will be a link to another post and on to the home of the Scavenger Hunt.
What’s the title of the book?
Xarrok: Birth of an Empire book 1
What's your favorite scene in your book?
That’s a tough question. There are many good scenes in the book. If I had to pick just one, in this book, I’d have to pick a scene about halfway through the book, when one of the supporting cast forces Kala to understand that she can do what she puts her mind to.
How long did it take the book to be created?
Birth of an Empire is still in creation. Book one took life, in part, in January 2010. At the time I was working to give life to ReAwakening as well, and it held most of my focus until the middle of 2010. Suddenly the life that I needed for Birth of an Empire sprung forth like the raging rivers, and words poured onto the paper. A year later book one was completed, and book two is currently half done.
What inspired the creation of this novel?
This may make you giggle a bit, but I am part of the Twitter Role Playing community. There are two characters that I enjoy a lot, Kala Cree and Yatrell Rae. They have a unique relationship that developed through some friction and her naivety. After some conversation with the person who plays Yatrell’s character, I translated the two into my universe, during the Great War period, and poof – We have Birth of an Empire. This is the origin of the main planet discussed in my universe.
What kind of research went into the universe, book, species etc?
A lot. I read up on basic life requirements of certain animals, and the ecosystems around them. I researched some of the early weapons technology development, like Tesla’s original plan and how far it ended up, as well as some of the speculative potential. Watch the Dentonian weapons tech to see his influence. I also made sure I read up on warp theories. In the end, I ran with a technology that’s been used in other science fiction series, but it was the most sound and efficient warp theory for this use.
How many characters do we meet in this book?
Dozens, but you follow primarily a cast of 17. Most of them are psionic in nature and used to dealing with extensive bigotry because of it.
Can you define psionic for your readers?
Psionic is the ability to manipulate an outside force with your mind. This can only be generated by people who develop an additional lobe, known as the psionic lobe, by birth. It develops and matures over time. Some find it active early, others later but it’s always active by adulthood. With the correct genetic manipulation a psionic lobe can be activated at or before birth.
Which psionic types are represented in this universe? And can you explain what each of them do?
Of course. This may be a bit lengthy so bear with me a moment, please.
Telepathy is the ability to manipulate a mind, either through simple projection of thought or the more trained and honed telepath can enter a mind and reorganize, erase or alter thoughts.
Telekinesis is the ability to manipulate physical matter. Most can lift things, themselves for short periods. The more trained and focused can break even the strongest metals.
Pyrokinesis is the ability to generate fire with the biological body, or manipulate it outside of the body. Each pyrokinetic is able to do one or the other with very few being able to do both. Those who can generate their own fire can manipulate what they generate, but can’t stop a fire generated by other means around them.
Electrokinesis is the ability to alter, manipulate and amplify electrical current from within the body. Highly trained electrokinetics can manipulate body functions, but most lean toward manipulating various computer and mechanical interfaces.
Astroprojectors can alter a person’s perception of the world around them. They can make objects appear to the mind’s eye. The items are not solid, but they look real to the person watching it. Touching an image projected by one from this psionic discipline would be the same as interacting with a hologram, without the equipment.
Healers are the most unresearched ability. At this point the only explanation available is that the healer can manipulate the electrical impulses in a biological entity. Their intention is always to heal, improve or take away pain. The issue with this group, one that makes the difficult to study, is that the limitations of what they are able to do varies by individual. Some take away pain by duplicating it in their own bodies, and eliminating it in others. Some are able to heal even major wounds, while others can help alleviate minor afflictions like headaches.
Seers - This discipline can see images from the future based on a given course of action. They are not forecasters, they are not charlatans and are aware that if choices change, their vision does as well.
Psionic Sensors are people who can identify a specific psionic marker in an individual. While they have no other significant psionic ability by birth, they can train to develop another. Typically the few who seek to select the simplest to develop, telepathy.
There are few other abilities in this universe, but not others seen in book one.
And now an excerpt from Birth of an Empire book 1
Kala nodded and looked at him, trying to focus on her own body. She found the effort trying but not impossible. It took significant concentration for her to finally realize that her mind was clear of other thoughts. Once she did, she projected, ~I am relaxed.~
Dak smiled, ~Yes, you are. Stay in that state, keep your mind focused on one thought. Whatever it might be that brings you peace and comfort. Think about and feel nothing else.~
Kala struggled to find something that brought her either comfort or peace and found herself returning to the stone and to home. Eventually she settled her focus on her home. She allowed her mind to recall every aspect of it. Calmly she remembered the way her door creaked slightly when she moved it. She relaxed more as she recalled her bed in the calm summer evening.
The window would be open and a warm breeze would blow through. She always found it to be the best time of the year to rest.
She enjoyed the calming sensation of the wind over her skin as she slept on top of her bed sheets those evenings. She remembered how beautiful the moons and stars looked from that bedroom window at night. How much those beautiful balls of light danced in her mind and thoughts when she watched them against the deep darkness behind them. She listened to the soft rustling of the wind in the trees by her home and the sounds of the night insects singing to one another.
Gently Dak telepathically pushed her, ~Kala. Kala it’s time to go.~
Her eyes opened and looked across at the trainer, ~Go? You said it would be a long night.~ Kala was clearly confused by his statement.
~You’ve been here for hours now.~ He smiled at her, ~Didn’t feel like it to you though. Meditation rarely does.~
You can find the book through major retailers including the ones listed below.
Barnes and Noble
Learn more about the universe around Xarrok at Xarrok.com
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