Storm of the Gods
An Areios Brothers Novel #1
by Amy Braun
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Twenty-four-year-old Derek Aerios is a war scion, a descendant of Ares, the God of War. He and his brother, eighteen-year-old Liam, capture mythological creatures and rogue scions as part of Ares's elite military force. As he struggles to cope with his violent powers and the scars of a traumatic childhood, Derek tries to keep the two vows he has made: protect his brother, and never kill a human again.
But when Ares forces him to hunt and kill four rogue scions under Athena's control—by threatening Liam's life—Derek chooses to go after the scions in order to save his brother and keep his promise to himself.
Yet the closer Derek gets to the scions, the more he realizes that his orders are part of a deeper conspiracy that put him at odds with his mission and his conscience. Athena may not be the enemy, a traitor could be in their midst, and the Titans could be closer to freedom than ever before.
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When she isn't writing, she's reading, watching movies, taking photos, gaming, struggling with chocoholism and ice cream addiction, and diving headfirst into danger in Dungeons & Dragons campaigns
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There’s no one thing that makes a good story. It’s often a culmination of many different elements. I can’t get into a book unless I love the main character and side characters, especially the love interest. If I can’t get relate to them or find something endearing or sweet or interesting or fun about them, then it’s extremely difficult for me to carry on with the books.
In a similar vein, I love books that have some humour in them. I’m not saying it has to be a comedy, but I need reminders that the world I’m visiting isn’t all grim and bleak, and that some sarcastic or dry wit is called for from time to time.
Another very, very important part of a good story is the world. I like settings to be as inventive as possible, with lore and laws and all manner of world building elements to be complex and detailed, yet also to feel like I could be there witnessing it.
I also want to be invested in the story. If I love the characters and their humour, I want to follow them on compelling and complex adventures. The more twists and surprises and interconnected plotlines, the better. I like stories where every character has a purpose and adds to the overarching narrative. It isn’t always easy to do, but it makes for an even more complex narrative and deeper characters.
I’m also big into visceral, brutal action. I like my characters thinking they are in the final fight of their lives. By then, I’m usually invested in them as people and want to root for them to overcome their enemies and obstacles.
These are just the largest parts of stories that I love. They all have these things to varying degrees, and every time I read a story that combines them all, they act as inspiration for my own writing projects. If you find a story with all those elements above, you can guarantee adventure and fun are on their way.
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
When you’re younger, it’s hard to know what you want to do with your life. I spent a couple years not really being sure what I would do, going back and forth between careers until I realized that writing was the only thing I wanted to do, that suited me. I spent my first few writing years working on short stories and my two first independent novels, Demon’s Daughter and Path of the Horseman.
In hindsight, I would have told myself to focus on a single project and perfect it to send it to literary agents. Writing and publishing is not an easy thing to do, especially for someone who didn’t go to school for it. It takes dedication, trial and error, and above all, patience. I would have told myself to take more stock in all those things.
Finally, I would have told myself the same thing I tell myself every single day, and more importantly, after every mistake I’ve made: Keep going. Keep writing and creating and trying. There are countless authors who have been in the same position I’m currently in, who’ve made similar mistakes and have overcome them to become intensely successful. I know there will be more query rejections, more mistakes, and more disappointment in myself. But I also know that it will be worth the struggle, and that literally creating magic and monsters for a living will be worth every moment of it.
What can we expect from you in the future?
2018 was a busy year for me, and I’m hoping that 2019 will continue to be so. I’m thrilled to release Hunt of the Gods, and I plan on writing the first book of a young adult fantasy that I’ll send to literary agents in hopes of having it bought and maybe published. I’ll also be working on the third book in the Areios Brothers series. Lastly, I’ll be looking at possibly re-releasing a collection of horror stories from my early publishing days now that some of the rights have returned to me, as well as my standalone story Path of the Horseman. I’m not planning on getting all of this done this year, and will be focusing on the first two projects more than the others.
Do you have any “side stories” about the characters?
I do! There will be a mini story included in Hunt of the Gods told from Selena’s perspective, as well as a collection of stories from Selena and Liam’s POV’s that will be released in an anthology, but I have no idea when the release date will be.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I suppose it was when I had my first short story published by a small publishing house called Mocha Memoirs Press. It was a story about a necromancer who gets roped into working for the mafia to raise a ghost assassin. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not much, but it was the first time I considered myself a professional.
What are you passionate about these days?
I have a big love for coloring books to help me relax, and I’m huuuuge into anime right now. I haven’t seen all the classics yet, but my current favorites are Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood, Castlevania, Berserk, Fate/Zero, and Hellsing Ultimate.
Describe yourself in 5 words or less!
Witty, creative, nerdy, fun-loving, and friendly.
If you could spend time with a character from your book whom would it be? And what would you do during that day?
If I had to pick, I would go with Liam from the Areios Brothers series. He’s a guy who likes fun and is easy to laugh with and talk to. Liam loves the beach, so I would probably want to go to the beach and hang out there with him. Being from Canada, any day in the sun is the best kind of day!
Do you see writing as a career?
Absolutely. While I’m not doing it now, one of my goals this year is to at least be signed by a literary agent. Writing is the only thing I can see myself doing. I’ve briefly wondered what else I would do if being a professional fiction author wasn’t something I wanted to pursue, but I literally can’t think of anything else I would rather do with my life. I believe that hard work and commitment bring success, so I am determined to do just that.
Do you prefer to write in silence or with noise? Why?
I can do either, but I prefer to write with music in the background. I usually pick hard rock or epic music, though it depends on the scene. It helps me focus on the action and gets my blood pumping, so I often write faster and, in first drafts, I’m more “in the moment.”
Do your characters seem to hijack the story or do you feel like you have the reigns of the story?
Yes! They absolutely do. I usually take lots of time planning the plot and writing the characters, half the time, they follow the basic storyline. But the other half of the time, they do whatever they want to do. Verbally, I gripe about it a lot, but in all honesty, I enjoy when characters go their own directions. It often brings out their personalities and quirks and leads to more engaging action and storylines.
How long have you been writing?
If we’re counting years since I’ve been writing professionally, about four years. If we’re talking about since I started writing in general, about six or seven. I started when I was in my early teens, then took a break for a couple years before finally discovering it was what I wanted to do with the rest of my life.
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