Series Conclusions and Baring the Heart of a Character: an Interview with Aamna Qureshi

May 2022

Wait a minute, before we dive into the sequel, jump over here and watch my discussion with Aamna about The Lady or the Lion.

Done?

Welcome back! Today I had the honor of speaking with Aamna Qureshi about her sequel, and finale to The Marghazar Trials, The Man or the Monster. We talk author tips on how to conclude a series, and how to get right to the heart of a character. So pour yourself a cup of tea and join us!

The Man or the Monster comes out July 26, 2022. You can preorder your copy here.


Find out more information about Aamna and her other works here:
Website: www.aamnaqureshi.com
Instagram: @aamna_qureshi
Twitter: @aamnaqureshi_

The Man or the Monster


She made her decision. Now she has to live with it.

Durkhanai Miangul sealed her lover’s fate when she sent him through a door where either a lady or a lion awaited him. But her decision was only the beginning of her troubles. Durkhanai worries that she might not be the queen her people need or deserve when conflict threatens her kingdom.

Her presumed-dead father comes back with a vengeance and wishes she join him in his cause. But her family’s denial of his revenge forces Durkhanai to take matters into her own hands and she must decide whether to follow the traditions of her forefathers or forge a new path on her own.

My Thoughts

**MILD SPOILERS**

click here to read the full review OR to leave your own
Contest of Queens in the wild

There’s nothing like browsing the shelves of your local bookstore and seeing your name staring back at you! Since the world is opening up more and more, I’ve been able to deliver signed copies of Contest of Queens to a few local bookshops in the Bow Valley and in Calgary. You can now find signed copies at Owl’s Nest Books, Shelf Life Books, Café Books, and Flow State.


Contest of Queens Review Spotlight

Reviews are so helpful in getting word of Contest of Queens out there. If you have time, and if you’ve read the book, I would be eternally grateful if you could leave a star rating and/or a written review on Goodreads or Amazon.

Thank you for this beautiful review!

x live magically

80’s Vibes and Supernatural Bullies: an Interview with Sara Hosey

April 2022

Adjust your scrunchies and pull on your legwarmers, today I’m joined by author Sara Hosey to talk about her upcoming YA novel, Imagining Elsewhere. We cover all things 80’s and deep dive into the psychology of the bully. Make sure you have a cup of tea handy for this one or, if you’re trapped in CandiLand, order an Egg Cream to sip on and strap in!


Find out more information about Sara and her other works here:
Website: sarahosey.com
Instagram: @sarahoseyauthor
Twitter: @hoseysara

Imagining Elsewhere

Being a better person can be a lot harder than it looks.

It’s 1988, and former bully Astrid is forced to move from Queens to the small town of Elsewhere. Although this town is totally weird, Astrid sees the move as a way to reinvent herself. That is, until Candi—the teenage tyrant with supernatural powers who rules Elsewhere—decides she wants Astrid to be her new bestie.

Having to choose between the perks and safety of being the Queen B’s best friend and the desire to be a better person could literally cost Astrid her life. As Astrid and her new friends begin to dig into the dark history of Elsewhere and the source of Candi’s powers, they form a dangerous plan to resist Candi’s compulsion and to escape Elsewhere, or else be doomed to live under Candi’s rule forever.

My Thoughts

I was fortunate enough to receive an eARC (Electronic Advanced Reader Copy) from Sara Hosey and had a few cents to share on the subject:

click here to read the full review
Contest of Queens Book Signing

Owl’s Nest Books: April 9, 2022

My first in person book signing!

Thank you to Owl’s Nest Books for hosting me on April 9th for an author book signing, and thank you to everyone who showed up on purpose- and everyone who showed up by accident! It was such a special event, and I felt so so humbled by the whole thing.

There was signing, chatting, and prize winning! If you’re thinking to yourself, “aw, nuts! I wish I could have my book signed,” fret not! I am more than happy to send you one of these:

To receive your very own, please fill out the form below, then pat yourself on the back for a job well done.


Contest of Queens Review Spotlight

Reviews are so helpful in getting word of Contest of Queens out there. If you have time, and if you’ve read the book, I would be eternally grateful if you could leave a star rating and/or a written review on Goodreads or Amazon.

Free Swag! If you leave a star rating and review, let me know here, and be sure to include your mailing address in the message because I’d love to send you some goodies to show my appreciation! (limited supply)

Thank you to Midra for this stunning review!
The full review was much longer, check it out here
Contest of Queens Reading

If you’re unable to come to an in person author event, why not let me read to you in the comfort of your own home? Here’s an excerpt of Contest of Queens from my recent event with the Banff Public Library (click here for the full interview). Enjoy!

x live magically

New Twists on Old Lore and the Art of Ensnaring the Senses: an Interview with Jason Offutt

March 2021

Welcome back for another Book Nook! I had the pleasure of dipping my toe into the Horror genre for the first time with Jason’s Offutt’s new novel The Girl in the Corn and was lucky enough to chat with him about it. So turn all the lights on and huddle under a heavy blanket for this one!

Find more information about Jason’s novels here: https://www.jasonoffutt.com/

The Girl in the Corn


Beware of what lurks in the corn.

Fairies don’t exist. At least that’s what Thomas Cavanaugh’s parents say. But the events of that one night, when he follows a fairy into the cornfield on his parents’ farm, prove them wrong. What seems like a destructive explosion was, Thomas knows, an encounter with Dauðr, a force that threatens to destroy the fairy’s world and his sanity.

Years later, after a troubled childhood and a series of dead-end jobs, he is still haunted by what he saw that night. One day he crosses paths with a beautiful young woman and a troubled young man, soon realizing that he first met them as a kid while under psychiatric care after his encounters in the cornfield. Has fate brought them together? Are they meant to join forces to save the fairy’s world and their own? Or is one of them not who they claim to be?

Order his book here
Upcoming Book Signing Event

Owl’s Nest Bookstore

815A 49 Avenue SW
Calgary AB
Canada, T2S 1G8

I cannot wait for this event! If you have a copy of Contest of Queens or The Rose Petal Princess, bring those along with you and I’ll happily sign them. Otherwise, there will be copies to purchase in-store! If you have no interest in my signature, come out anyway, I’d love to see your faces 🙂

Featured Writer on Wellness

Thank you Colleen Story, a fellow CamCat author and the mind behind the Writing and Wellness site, for featuring me this month on your website! Click on the above picture to read more. Her page is full of tips and tricks to make sure you’re looking after your mind and body while writing. Also, look out for her upcoming novel, The Beached Ones. The first paragraph alone had me in raptures!

California Creative Writing Conference

On March 6th I had the pleasure of speaking at the California Creative Writing Conference on a panel with Sara Hosey (website) who talked about her upcoming novel, Imagining Elsewhere, and Ruth Fox (website) who spoke about her upcoming novel, Under the Heavens. (I bet you can guess what book I spoke about!)

Check it out on Goodreads
Check it out on Goodreads
Contest of Queens Reading

If you’re unable to come to an in person author event, why not let me read to you in the comfort of your own home? Here’s an excerpt of Contest of Queens from my recent event with the Banff Public Library (click here for the full interview). Enjoy!

Signed Book Plate

If you follow me on Instagram (@jordanhbartlett), you will have seen that I am offering to send a personalized book plate and some limited stock swag to anyone who has bought themselves a copy of Contest of Queens.

If you’re interested, please fill out this form, then pat yourself on the back for a job well done.

Review Spotlight

Reviews are so helpful in getting word of Contest of Queens out there. If you have time, and if you’ve read the book, I would be eternally grateful if you could leave a star rating and/or a written review on Goodreads or Amazon.

Free Swag! If you leave a star rating and review, let me know here, and be sure to include your mailing address in the message because I’d love to send you some goodies to show my appreciation! (limited supply)

Thank you to this wonderful reviewer for your beautiful words!

x Live magically

First Flight: Releasing Contest of Queens into the World

February 2021

Banff Public Library Launch Party

To celebrate the release of Contest of Queens, I was fortunate enough to join Kim Mayberry and a wonderful audience for an evening of book talk! So put on your comfy pants, pour a cup of tea, and strap in! We discuss Contest of Queens, writing, future projects, and I share some insider information about the sequel to boot.

Here’s the whole talk:

And here’s a reading of a snippet from Chapter 13: First Flight:

Contest of Queens Updates

Holy Hera, it has been such a wonderful first month for Contest of Queens. The thing I’ve really loved about this whole journey is the incredible people I’ve met along the way. Here are some more of the recent interviews and events I’ve attended since its release in January.

Interview with Rob Murray at 106.5 Mountain FM Radio

Cyn’s Workshop Interview

Elizabeth Chatsworth Interview

Elizabeth Chatsworth Interview

Art and Reviews

I’ve been blown away with the reception Contest of Queens has been getting from readers already. It was part of the TBR and Beyond Book Tour as well as the Let’s Talk Books Tour, I’ve included some of my favourite posts below, but they were all honestly so fantastic. Thank you to everyone leaving reviews, taking pictures, telling their hairdressers, and doing even the smallest things to get the word of this book out there – you’re all fab 🙂

On that note, reviews are so helpful in spreading the word of my book. If you have time, and if you’ve read the book, I would be incredibly grateful if you could leave a star rating and/or a written review on Goodreads or Amazon.

Better yet, if you leave a star rating and review, let me know here, and be sure to include your mailing address in the message because I’d love to send you some goodies to show my appreciation! (limited supply)

Giveaways

I held two giveaways this month. The first was a coloring contest the Banff Public Library hosted (which, oh my goodness, the masterpieces were amazing!). We drew the winner during our author talk, so congratulations, Adrian!

The second was my final Hype Train giveaway. Congratulations to Erin Evans (who hosted me on her podcast last month) for winning a Contest of Queens swag bag!

Thank you so much to all who entered and all who helped promote and spread the word of Contest of Queens 🙂

x Live magically

Contest of Queens visits France

October 2021

Oh nelly, October was a whirlwind of a month. I had a few very exciting things happen that I can’t wait to share with you all! In this month’s newsletter, check out:

  1. The Queens take on France (and I turned 30, flirty and thriving)
  2. The Genre LA Creative Writing Conference
  3. September/October’s hype train draw

The Queens take on France (and I turned 30!)

In two weeks, Katie and I went coast to coast and everywhere in between in France. I could fill books (and I did) about our adventures, but that is for another time. So instead, enjoy the pre-published French book tour we took with Contest of Queens!

The Genre LA Creative Writing Conference

Let me tell you, it is a surreal feeling to see your name and photo next to all of these incredibly talented writers/authors/publishers!

I was lucky enough to speak on three different panels across the week, I’ve included their summaries below.


On the Speculative Fiction Panel (description below), I joined my fellow CamCat authors to talk about the “What If” factor as well as debate the value of escapism and story outlines, with Dungeons and Dragons popping up for an honorable mention. I was armed with a cup of tea, and if it weren’t for the screen, could have mistaken the panel for a chat with old friends.

Thanks to Josh Chamberlain for moderating, and to my fellow panelists:
Elijah Menchaca- They Met in a Tavern
Bryan Prosek- The Brighter the Stars, Measure of Serenity
Christian Klaver- Shadows over London series
Jason Offutt- The Girl in the Corn

To find out more about any of these authors, please visit their websites or even better, find their books at https://camcatbooks.com/

September/October Draw

Last but not least, congratulations to Hayley (@these_damn_fools on Instagram) for winning this months’ hype train draw! She will be getting a Contest of Queens goodie bag sent to her 🙂

If anyone would like information on how to get on the hype train and how to enter to win cool swag, please jump over to my contact page and send me a message!

x live magically

Contest of Queens Cover Reveal

August 2021.

Hello, dear Readers!

August has been a wild and wonderful month, namely because I was able to reveal the cover of my upcoming novel, Contest of Queens! It was such a magical and humbling experience, and it just kept on going!

The day was spent out at Two Jack Lake with a group of wonderful humans who all took time out of their Saturdays to come celebrate. We had champagne and nibbles, and laughed in the face of the orange smoke that turned all our photographs sepia tone. Billie Marlow captured the day perfectly (check out her photography on instagram: @marlowb).

On top of the in person magic, the cover was also released online through The Nerd Daily, and the story was covered by the Rocky Mountain Outlook (keep scrolling to see what they had to say). I know this journey is truly just beginning, but I honestly cannot believe how lucky I am to be on it! Thank you to everyone who came out and supported the release in person, thank you to everyone who is showing their support from afar, AND the pre-order link is up, so if you want to be the first to read Contest of Queens, please pre-order your copy now!

The Nerd Daily Reveal
Thank you to The Nerd Daily for hosting the online cover reveal on their website! You can check out the full article here: https://thenerddaily.com/contest-of-queens-by-jordan-h-bartlett-cover-reveal/

Rocky Mountain Outlook Feature
And thank you to the Rocky Mountain Outlook for the two-page spread in their August 26th issue. You can read the full article here: https://www.rmotoday.com/mountain-guide/banff-authors-fantasy-turned-into-reality-4251498

xx Live Magically,
Jordan

Welcome to the PW US Book Show

June 2021.

On May 27th, 2021 I was lucky enough to be one of the authors featured on CamCat Books’ panel Writing Debut YA at the PW US Book Show. It was such a surreal and wonderful experience chatting with these amazing women, learning more about their worlds, and how they wrote their inspiring female leads. If you have a cup of tea ready, watch the full thing below and enjoy the show!

Also, if you look really closely, you can see a sneak peak of my book cover for Contest of Queens!

For your second cup of tea, check out these two wonderful authors:

Aamna Qureshi can be found on IG @aamna_qureshi and Twitter @aamnaqureshi_, or on her website: https://www.aamnaqureshi.com/

The Lady or the Lion

He sunk his teeth into her heart and she let him.

As crown princess of Marghazar, Durkhanai Miangul will do anything to protect her people and her land. When her grandfather, the Badshah, is blamed for a deadly assault on the summit of neighboring leaders, the tribes call for his head. To assuage cries for war, the Badshah opens Marghazar’s gates to foreigners for the first time in centuries, in a sign of good faith. His family has three months to prove their innocence, or they will all have war.

As Durkhanai races to solve who really orchestrated the attack, ambassadors from the neighboring tribal districts arrive at court, each with their own intentions for negotiations, each with their own plans for advantage. When a mysterious illness spreads through the villages and the imperialists push hard on her borders, Durkhanai must dig deep to become more than just a beloved princess—she must become a queen.

To distract Durkhanai from it all is Asfandyar Afridi, the wry ambassador who tells her outright he is a spy, yet acts as though he is her friend—or maybe even something more.

Gold Spun

If Nor can’t spin gold, she can always spin lies.

When seventeen-year-old Nor rescues a captured faerie in the woods, he gifts her with a magical golden thread she can use to summon him for a favor. Instead, Nor uses it for a con—to convince villagers to buy straw that can be transformed into gold. Her trick works a little too well, attracting the suspicion of Prince Casper, who hates nobody more than a liar. Intent on punishing Nor, he demands that she spin a room of straw into gold and as her reward, he will marry her. Should she refuse or fail, the consequences will be dire. Desperate for help, Nor summons the faerie’s aid, launching a complicated dance as she must navigate between her growing feelings for both the prince and faerie boy and who she herself wishes to become.

Brandie June can be found at www.brandiejune.com and follow her @brandiejune.