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Tuesday, 9 May 2017

ℚ♫ The Waterfall Traveler: The Waterfall Traveler [1] - S.J. Lem

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about The Waterfall Traveler (, Carpe Noctem Publishing, 468 pages), a Young Adult Fantasy, book one of The Waterfall Traveler series.

"A gripping, harrowing adventure tale propelled by a complex, mythology-inflected plot." -- Kirkus Reviews


|| Synopsis || Teaser: KCR Preview || Author Q&A || About the Author || Giveaway & Tour Stops ||


A very warm welcome to S.J. Lem; thank you for joining us on BooksChatter!

To start, here is S.J. Lem's music playlist for The Waterfall Traveler - enjoy!
Note: I could not find two pieces by Kerry Muzzey, but here are their links on other platforms:
Things that Hold Memory, and The Sting of Loss.


What was the inspiration for The Waterfall Traveler?
"The idea for The Waterfall Traveler came to me during my train commute to work one morning. It was a very rough concept, but after outlining and gaining an understanding of my characters' needs and motives, the plot began to solidify. Since I’ve always enjoyed YA and Fantasy novels that have fast-paced, adventurous storylines, that’s the shape my novel took."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover. Can you tell us about your cover for The Waterfall Traveler - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"I had the opportunity to work with two talented individuals during the cover’s design process: illustrator Lindsay Nery and designer Vic Sanchez. Both Lindsay and Vic did a tremendous job visualizing my ideas, and the final piece exceeded all of my expectations.

When I first began working with Lindsay, I mentioned that I wanted the cover to capture the intensity, emotion, and fast pace of the story. Throughout the novel, characters Ri and Bryce face terrifying dangers, brutal elements, and internal struggles. They develop a strong friendship that deepens into much more as the story progresses, and often risk their lives for each other and their friends. I really wanted the artwork to show the connection between those two characters. The final illustration, with its vivid colors and movement, truly represents the tone of the novel. I couldn’t be happier with it.

Once the illustration was completed, Vic tackled the typography and layout. Like the illustration, the typography captures that same sense of movement. I love how the “R” in “Waterfall” dips down like "
Why should we read The Waterfall Traveler and what sets it apart from the rest? What makes your book unique?
"It’s hard for me to say what sets my book apart from others as every reader experiences novels differently. What one person finds unique, another may find silly. That said, I generally like to let folks read my work and form their own opinion (whether it be positive or negative). At the end of the day, it’s the readers’ opinions that matter. As far as what sets me apart from other authors? I think my values make me more similar to other authors instead of different. For example, like most authors I admire, I closely collaborate with others (editors, artists, readers, etc.) to create a quality story, I love chatting about books, and I love connecting with writers and readers."
Who would you recommend The Waterfall Traveler to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?
"I wrote the type of story that I adore to read (fast-paced adventures with strong main characters who take action). I hope that readers with similar tastes will enjoy The Waterfall Traveler as well. The novel is more suitable to older YA readers (14+) as there is some violence that may not be suitable for younger readers."
What do you like to write and read about? Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?
"Though I enjoy writing fantasy, I enjoy reading a variety of genres. (I’ll read pretty much anything if the blurb grabs my attention.)"
What is your writing process?
"Since I juggle writing with family and a full-time job, I set aside time to write during my train commute to and from work each day. After I complete a rough draft, I share it with a small group of other authors to collect their feedback. I then revise and revise until I feel the story is close to perfect as possible before sharing with my editor. Then I revise some more! Lol! It can be a lengthy process filled with numerous rewrites, but it’s so worth it to be able to hold the finished book in my hands."
What is in store next?
"The Waterfall Traveler is the first book in a series, and I’m actively writing the next. Though I can’t say too much without giving spoilers away for the first book, it will have lots of action and give Ri an opportunity to grow. In the first book, she’s very impulsive, often making decisions based solely on emotion. As the second book progresses, she will need to consider her actions more carefully when she returns to Black Valley. There will be new evils to face, deceit, and betrayal. I’m also outlining another standalone YA Fantasy that has a western flavor. This will be a lighter read, with lots of action and humor mixed in (and a bit of romance). I’m looking forward to writing this simultaneously with TWT, since the former will be quite dark."
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?
"I don’t own any pets. However, I have strange animal encounters whenever I travel. I’ve been talked into holding a jellyfish, had an owl perch on my arm, and have been followed by a herd of cats. I’m sharing a picture of a recent trip to South Dakota. As I was driving, a horde of donkeys swarmed my rental car. They were actually quite friendly and looking for snacks (I can’t blame them lol). One stuck his head through the window and then broke the side rearview mirror.

As far as something special to me, I have a Squirtle keychain that my husband gave to me when we started dating (we were high school sweethearts) twenty years ago. The eyes and shell are a bit worn off, but he guards my keys well. 😃"

Brilliant! Thank you for sharing! 
"Thank you so much for your wonderful interview and featuring me on your blog."

The Waterfall Traveler
Available NOW!

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