Thursday, July 28, 2011

CAGED IN DARKNESS by Joy Stroube: Guest Post & Interview!

Caged in Darkness
By J.D. Stroube

The ebook version will be available for purchase on August 1, 2011 at Amazon, B&N, Smashwords, and many other online websites. Shortly after the ebook release, a print version should be available through Amazon, as well.


A witch raised in a cage of darkness...

Savannah Cross was born into a life of isolation and abuse. As a child, she witnessed her parents perform acts of malevolent evil, and now feels permanently tainted by their dark deeds.

When a coven discovers a tear stricken child, wounded on their elders lawn, they offer her a sanctuary she has never known. Savannah spends the next several years shattered, continuously looking over her shoulder, waiting for the darkness to claim her.

On her 16th birthday, Savannah’s life takes a drastic turn.She is consumed by overwhelming power that forever alters her emotionally and physically.

She must choose between two loves; the one who taught her to smile or the darkly seductive stranger who tempts her towards another path. Savannah must decide between the coven that was her haven and another one vying for her initiation. Just as Savannah begins to grasp what fate has in store for her, an evil looms over her loved ones; coming to claim an unbreakable debt.

How will she choose and survive the greatest evil she has ever witnessed... long enough to have a choice to make

The Idea Behind “Caged in Darkness”

My whole life I have been a dreamer. I would stay awake at night and daydream about other worlds and what it would be like to live in them. When I am asleep, I tend to have lucid dreams, which are complete plots to a book. I often write these dreams down, as ideas for future book. I have a dream journal designated for this purpose. Sometimes I find my ideas, while watching a show or reading a book. The idea for “Caged in Darkness” came to me, while browsing the Goodreads website for a new book. I had a strong urge to read a book about witches, but most of the books I came across did not satisfy my craving. Instead, I wrote down a plot for the kind of book I wished I could find. I then incorporated some other unique aspects to it and created a recipe for what I believe is an amazing series!

Quotes from Caged in Darkness

The day I first came to Meadow Falls is little more than a dream, though that little girl plagues me everyday. I still hear her crying out, and my skull fractures as pain is inflicted on her. She remained frozen in an eternal chamber of torture, and I did not know how to help her escape. Though, I would never escape her. She would follow me around for the rest of my life; a ghost waiting in the wings for me to acknowledge her. Her soft trailing fingers would continue to attempt a connection that I refused to allow; that I couldn’t allow if I wanted to survive. That ghostly girl was weak and insecure, while I needed to be strong and confident.

"What you are or where you came from is not important. It is who you are and the choices you make, that determine who you will become. If you can look inward and be satisfied, the opinions of others should melt away."

"All that is left to bring you pain, are the memories. If you face those, you’ll be free. You can’t spend the rest of your life hiding from yourself; always afraid that your memories will incapacitate you, and they will if you continue to bury them."

"No one has freewill until they are an adult, and by then the choices that were made for them, have already set them on a course that gives limited freedom in the choices to be made."


1.      What was the inspiration behind Caged  in Darkness?

The inspiration behind Caged in Darkness began with my craving for a paranormal book that was not a vampire novel. I have always been fascinated by witches and the Wiccan religion. When I couldn’t find a book to sate my craving, I decided to write one. Caged in Darkness ended up evolving past the plot I originally imagined and took on a life of its own. When I was developing Savannah’s character, I gave her a dark past that she overcomes. As a psychology major, I have an appreciation for anyone who manages to carve their own path. I fueled Savannah’s personality with a great deal of my own.

1.  What book are you currently reading?

I am currently reading many different books. The Game of Thrones is my favorite out of the ones I am reading. I began reading it because I watched the show and couldn’t wait to find out what would happen next. It’s refreshingly original and it’s nice to read a fantasy novel since I rarely do.

1.  Who is you’re your favorite author?

I have many favorite authors. My favorites depend on the genre. Historical Romance, my favorites are Eloisa James, Sabrina Jeffries, Sarah Maclean, Lisa Kleypas, and Julia Quinn. Mystery my favorites are Lisa Jackson and Kay Hooper. Fantasy would be James Clemens and Jim Butcher. The genre with most of my favorite authors is probably Young Adult. I absolutely love Rick Riordan, Richelle Mead, Rachel Hawkins, Claudia Gray, Cassandra Clare, J.K. Rowling, Amelia Atwater-Rhodes, and L.J. Smith. I love reading most genres. However, my favorites are Historical Romance and Young Adult.

1. What prompted you to start your writing career?

I’ve been writing my whole life, but have always been insecure about letting people read my pieces. My friends and family told me that I was a natural and was destined to become a writer. It has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. However, I always had a little voice telling me that they were only saying those things, because they felt obligated. My professors often compliment my essays, but those are academic. Then, about six months ago, I had to write a personal narrative for one of my classes. My professor called me and told me that my essay was phenomenal. It was vastly different hearing it from her, because I knew she didn’t feel an obligation to compliment me. I also befriended a girl from my University, who quickly became an email buddy. We would tell each other about our experiences. Every time she read my emails, she would mention that she felt pulled in by them. She continually told me I should be a writer, which was amazing since I never told her about that dream. Finally, I decided that I needed to publish my books. I am sure there will be some people who won’t enjoy my books, but hopefully the people who do enjoy them will out number the ones who don’t.

1.   Why do you think people will be interested in reading your books?

I plan to release my novels quickly. As a reader, I despise waiting a year for the next book in a series and I refuse to do this with my readers. I have three series and a stand alone novel that I will be releasing. I think people will be interested in reading my books because my writing style is unique and I have an extraordinary imagination. The people who know me, often comment on how I see the world differently. I am extremely descriptive, obsessed with editing, and I try to incorporate many twists to my stories. When I read, I can usually figure out everything that will happen in a book within the first few chapters. I don’t want people to have that issue with my books. I try to ensure that my readers will be completely surprised by my books. I also make my characters personalities realistic. There are so many different people in the world and each personality is unique. My characters aren’t perfect; they have flaws. However, I think their flaws are what make them captivating.

What authors do you look up to or consider to be mentors?

The authors I most consider my mentors are James Clemens and Richelle Mead. James Clemens pulled me into his Banned and the Banished series because he constantly introduced new developments into each book. His books were so unique that I still have not found a fantasy author who lives up to him. His series has remained by favorite since I was in junior high. Richelle Mead captivates me with her writing because it is so sincere. She goes the extra step to create her characters and her plot. I admire both authors.

Did you have a lot of help and support while writing this novel?

I’ve been lucky to have an amazing support network! My family is encouraging and is with me every step I take. My friends (Lisa, Jackie, Sarah, Regina, and Kari) all help with my editing and constantly beg me for the next piece I write. They really help to boost my self esteem. My husband is phenomenal, because he doesn’t let me give up. My father has always believed in me, which makes it easier to believe in myself. Surprisingly, my cover artist “Regina Wamba” has been great for support. We became friends during the process of creating the cover for Caged in Darkness. I feel blessed to know that I have so many people to catch me if I fall.

Do you plan to continue writing novels in the future?

I am hoping to make writing novels a career. However, I also understand that many authors cannot make a living on writing alone. I write because it’s my passio,n not for money. For now, writing is something I do purely because it makes me happy. My career will be a psychologist once I am finished with the massive amount of schooling it takes to become one.

When did you first realize that you wanted to become an author?

My interest in writing originated when I was too young to write properly. My stories were scribbles back then. I remember beginning because my family told me to write a story during dinner. I think it was to get me to sit still, but it turned into one of my favorite things to do. When I gazed on my scribbles, I saw a real story and would read it to family members. As I aged, I became a better writer. My family quickly picked up on my natural ability and encouraged it. 

Thanks so much to Joy Stroube, author of CAGED IN DARKNESS, for taking time to write a guest blog post for me as well as do an interview! I am looking forward to reading CAGED IN DARKNESS in the very near future!

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