I’ve been a big fan of today’s featured author for some time now. Without further ado … BETH TELIHO is a writer, artist and tree hugger who lives in Texas with her husband and two adventurous sons. Restless in the mundane, she writes about the abnormal, paranormal and otherwise fantastical because that’s what quickens her heartbeat. She laughs at inappropriate jokes, and prefers spicy food and margaritas to almost anything. One day, she hopes to live in a treehouse, where she can be an eccentric introvert with at least seven cats.
1. Please provide a brief synopsis of your book.
The paranormal fantasy, Order of Seven, is a gritty, fast-paced journey drenched in archaeological mystery and nail-biting suspense. You experience everything up close and personal, real time, with the main character, eighteen-year-old Devi Bennett, who’s surrounded by mysteries: her unknown heritage, a reoccurring dream about an African tribal ceremony, an inexplicable attachment to a certain tree and a psychic ability she’ll never understand – unless she finds her biological parents.
Things take a shocking turn when she meets Baron, an intense and alluring energy healer who receives prophetic dreams which all seem connected to her. Devi must rely on an empath, a seer, and Baron to help research her roots to discover who she is and what she is capable of. But when Baron’s visions lead to an ancient legend which may link to her birthright, Devi learns her gift is more imperative than she thought imaginable.
Equal parts suspenseful and sexy, adventurous and philosophical, Order of Seven delivers a story that will leave you questioning everything you thought you knew about the hands that carry fate.
2. Tell us a little bit about what motivates or inspires your writing.
I’ve always been a voracious reader and chronic daydreamer, but it wasn’t until I was encouraged by professors to pursue writing that I realized my “lively” imagination had an artistic purpose. Prior to that encouragement, I assumed penning a book was reserved for the uber smart and savvy, but quickly learned writing has less to do with a formal writing education, and more to do with passion, tenacity, and mule-like stubbornness. That was a pivotal moment in my life.
If you think about it, our entire existence is based on stories being passed down from generation to generation, throughout all cultures. Without stories we have nothing on which to base our faith, history, or direction. Stories stretch our imagination and open our eyes. They educate and preserve. They inspire all mediums of art. I write because…stories.
3. Writing aside, what passions drive your life?
As momager of a house, a dog, two sons and a husband, I’m a busy gal, but I still have many loves outside of writing. In a nutshell, I’m a gardening, running, nature-loving, adventure-seeking, painting, movie-going, science-obsessed, recklessly dingy bibliophile. I don’t take myself too seriously, and I firmly believe a good, hard laugh is the most cathartic thing in the world.
4. It’s hard to pick just one, but what do you consider your favorite novel and why?
I don’t want to merely read a story. I want to experience it viscerally. To me, a good story is one that makes me forget where I am for a little while, inspires my imagination, and forces me to feel. Life of Pi by Yann Martel comes to mind, as does Ishmael by Daniel Quinn. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. Oh…you asked me to pick one, didn’t you?
In my writing, I try to achieve that level of emotional response. I use powerful words that evoke imagery; I want to capture the reader and pin them in that moment. I want them to be helplessly swept away in my story and have a brutal book hangover when they’re done.
5. What is the name of your blog (include the URL) and what can readers expect to find there?
My blog, Writer B is Me, can be found at www.bethteliho.me. It’s pretty much an “anything goes” blog. I write about the journey of writing sometimes, but mostly you’ll find a place filled with humorous, sarcastic, sometimes thought provoking, and often random anecdotes that will always leave you with a smile.
I’ve been pleasantly surprised with the community of readers I’ve built. It was hard work, but also educational and enjoyable because you build a blog by reading blogs. Comments are your calling card. Sharing and revisiting builds trust and friendships, just like with anything else. Don’t write for trends. Be genuine and true to your voice. People naturally respond to that.
6. What does your drafting and/or editing process entail?
I am not a disciplined writer, but I’m learning to be. I consider myself a “burst” writer. I stew with an idea for a couple weeks (or sometimes months) until I sit down and write day and night until I have a first draft, which is why challenges like Nanowrimo work well for me. Once I work that first draft into a second draft, I send it to my beta readers. Based on their feedback, I work on a third and probably fourth draft, which then gets sent to professional editors. A fifth, six, and seventh draft follows…and so on until my pile of sand has been shaped into a castle.
7. Are you traditionally published or self-published?
I’ve known since day-one I had no interest in the traditional route. The ability to be in control in all aspects of self-publishing intensely appeals to me. I’m not saying I’ll never traditionally publish, but for right now self-publishing just feels right.
I use a professional cover designer and text formatter because they do a much better job than I ever could. I’ve yet to pay for any kind of promotion, but I’ll probably consider a book blog tour at some point. I’ve been fortunate to have many bloggers willing to give their time, energy, and blogs to help me market, which I’m infinitely grateful for!
8. Can you offer one or two helpful tips for fellow writers when it comes to marketing and publicity?
The best advice? Ask. Reach out to other bloggers and authors. It’s the most supportive community I’ve ever known. If they’re not willing to do a cover reveal or review on their blog, they will certainly be happy to share your work on social media channels. Your reach will multiply exponentially through theirs.
Use all forms of social media available: Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Also, Goodreads is a great place to run a giveaway and heighten interest, and I’m very pleased with my decision to have my novel available for pre-order on Amazon a month prior to publication. I think that’s worked well for me.
9. What future projects can we look forward to?
While I do plan on writing a sequel to Order of Seven at some point, it’s not what I’m currently working on. My second novel is in the same paranormal vein, but with an entirely new cast of characters. Also in the planning stages is a children’s book inspired not only my youngest son’s struggle with anxiety, but also my own.
10. Is there anything else you want your potential readers to know?
You can connect with Beth Teliho and her social media websites via her blog.
Is there anything else you’d like to know about Beth? Just ask. Her answers will be fun. I promise 🙂
You might also like to read a guest post I wrote for Beth’s blog titled Beyond Boring: Three Days with Professor Bland.
Permission must be granted by Beth Teliho to use the images in this post.