Monday 6 February 2017

Q & A with D.L. Richardson

Welcome to the Apocalypse 
Pandora #1
by D.L. Richardson

 “Players. Welcome to the apocalypse…”

Kelly Lawrence is a grieving widow. Jack Minnow is a website designer. Reis Anderson is the son of a senator. Each of these players has their own reasons for signing up to The Apocalypse Games, a state of the art virtual game designed to entertain doomsday preppers, gamers, and cosplayers. Altogether, over 100 people enter NASA designed simulation pods and hook up to the mainframe computer with one goal: survive 24 hours of an apocalypse. Instead of game over at the end, they’re plugged straight into a new game. Then another. It’s clear the computer has malfunctioned. What’s not clear is why. With no communication to or from the outside operators, they can only fight endless battles and hope they’re rescued before it’s too late. While they can’t die inside the game, they can die if the pods break down while they’re still hooked up. This game of survival just got real.

Pages:  437 ebook / 338 print
Release date:  November 21, 2016 
Genre:  Apocalyptic sci-fi

Find it on Goodreads
Buy it on Amazon US * UK * CA
Read It & Reap:  July 9, 2017

D.L. Richardson is a writer of speculative fiction, with reviews such as "exciting and fast-paced book with an original story line--Buzzwords Books", "I really enjoyed the twists and turns of this YA novel--Night Owl Reviews" and "This was a marvelous book--Lit Pick Reviews". She conducts workshops at writers centres and has appeared on panels at Conflux 2015. She recently held a mentor a role at a writer weekend retreat. Writing credentials include "Writing Feature Articles for Newspaper and Magazines" Sydney Writers Centre, "Writing for Children and Young Adults" Sydney Writers Centre, and "James Patterson Teaches Writing" Masterclass. Her published books can be found on her website

When she's not writing, she can be found wandering in her yard waging war on weeds, watching back-to-back episodes on Netflix, playing her piano or guitar, curled up on the couch reading a book, or walking the dog.

Connect with D.L. Richardson:
Goodreads  *  Website  *  Blog  *  Twitter  *  Facebook

Q & A with D.L. Richardson

Tell us a little bit about your main characters.
Kelly Lawrence suffers from misanthropy - the hatred of humanity. For her, puberty was a tough time, she wanted to cry at all the pain and suffering in the world and she had no idea what to do about it. She went into law and her loathing of the world intensified, until she met the man of her dreams who soothed her haunted soul. And then he died.Jack Minnow is Kelly's older brother, and he looks out for his sister because it helps him avoid looking out for himself. He suffers from a superman syndrome, always sweeping in to save others, never saving himself. He's a good older brother, a good friend, the type of person you can depend on...until he finally has enough.

Reis Anderson is the son of wealthy parents and is probable more of a basket case than anyone else in the game. He enters to escape the pressures of his overbearing parents. He is aloof and quiet, but inside he's brimming with anger at everything. But he has his reasons to be angry. And he has a sweet side.

Who designs the covers for your books and what is that process like for you as an author?
My first two YA novels were designed by an excellent artist who resides in Ireland, Eithne Ni Anluain. She creates such stunning images that when I self published my third YA novel, I knew I had to try to as least match her designs somehow. I've searched sites that sell book covers and while they are lovely, I haven't found anything that says 'yes, that's my book'. I've put a bit of a contemporary spin on these YA covers for something different. I hope the new covers work.

With 'Welcome to the Apocalypse', I spent months searching for images to suit the story. I wanted to capture one part of the story - virtual reality - and the other part of the story - apocalypses. It's one of my best designs, and I also had to think  'high concept' for the series so the images and words carried across all the books.

Describe your ideal writing spot.
My office. It was recently renovated and now I have a stunning desk with a stunning view. I have my piano and my guitars in the room with me, and there are lots of pictures on the wall. I love being in this room. Put a fridge in there and a coffee pot, and I'd never need to leave.

What is the best advice you have been given?
"Nobody asked me to do this". I heard this piece of advice at a writer workshop. We were learning about book proposals, and one lady put her hand up, she was teary-eyes and she said, "But I've been doing everything you said and I still keep getting rejected". That's when the presenter said that nobody asked her to do this. It's the most grounding piece of advice I've ever heard.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be the girl who got to ride a horse and play the piano all day. Of course, the big flaw in that plan was that I grew up in a household in the poor suburbs with four siblings and only one income. Suffice to say, I never got a horse, and it took me over 30 years to get the piano. I still dream of being the girl who rides a horse and plays piano.

Which do you prefer: hard/paperbacks or ebooks?
As a reader, I like paperbacks, because I can't imagine life without a shelf full of them. But when I'm travelling I like ebooks because they're so compact.
As a writer, paperbacks are essential to take to workshops and conventions. But ebooks are still the format that sells best for my books.

If you could have any supernatural power, what would you choose and why?
Magic. For the life of me I never understood why Samantha on "Bewitched" chose not to use her powers and live a pedestrian life when she could do anything! And apart from the whole 'master and slave' premise on "I Dream Of Jeanie", I always wanted her powers too.

What book are you reading now?
I'm reading a Dean Koontz novel "False Memory" that I started reading a while ago and put down. It started to drag. Reading can be influenced by a 'mood', so at the time I started reading I probably wanted a faster pace. 

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