Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Diana Rozevskis

Author of: Crystal Waters – It Began in Europe

Book Blurb:

Down in the depths of the Cellar at Fowesby Hall there lies a secret . . . a doorway to ancient worlds. These lands and all its strange and wonderful inhabitants are threatened by a simple mistake caused by Emma and Grace’s Gran.

The girls soon discover the fate of the ancient land of Crete rests in their hands and they are thrust onto a journey, along with Robert, Herman and his purple dog Ceber; a perilous quest full of magic, mythical beasts and unexpected twists. Will they be able to conquer the challenges that lie ahead and find what they seek, before it is too late? . . .

Join Emma, Grace and their friend’s in the first book of this epic tale of mystery and suspense that takes themes from some of the greatest legends of the world.

As an introduction, could you tell us a little bit about yourself?

My abiding love of mythology, fantasy and reading children’s books to my two daughter’s inspired me to begin writing ‘The Crystal Waters Series’ six years ago.
A multifaceted career includes graphic design, child minding and working in top salons in London; Selfridges and Harvey Nichols as a Beauty Therapist. I also studied the ancient art of Crystal Healing and my passion and fascination for Crystals soon developed.

Canadian born, I lived in Toronto until I was five years old until my British parents, yearning to be closer to our family, made the decision to move back to their hometown; Middlesbrough in the north east of England. This is where I live today with my husband David and two daughters Emma and Grace.

. . . Oh and my favourite colour is indeed purple.

What is your book about?

It’s an adventure story, mixed in with a bit of ancient legends of the world.  This first Crystal Waters book (It Began in Europe) takes two sisters, Emma and Grace, back in time to ancient Crete, after they discover their Gran’s magic crystal and the secret doorway down in her cellar.

They have a quest: to save the Gi-fyli tribe (Earth tribe) from the hideous monsters that terrorize and force them to live in the underworld caves. There are some well-known legendary beasts and some that are quite new, but there is never a dull moment for Emma, Grace, Robert, Herman (the gardener) and his purple dog, Ceber.

Along the way, they make friends with the Mer-people and the Fyli-thentro (tree tribe) who help them with the certain tasks, which they have to conquer, before they can move on.

They must find and destroy Gran’s hairbrush, which she had left behind many years ago, thus creating the monsters. Emma and Grace, having similar DNA to their Gran, are the only ones that can do this. So, the search is on to seek it out and rid the land of these creatures, once and for all.

When and why did you start writing?

I was a late starter really. I always seemed to live in my older brother’s shadow in a way, with him being so much more academic than I; straight A’s in most of his exams at school and then on to Uni to take his chemistry degree. I, on the other hand, didn’t work hard at school, as I should have, and my mum would remind me and say ‘Well, I suppose you’re definitely a more practical girl kind of girl.’

However, I always liked to tell a good story. With a good imagination and an eye for detail I was approached, on many an occasion, by my older brother, to help him with his essays for school. I would come up with the story and he would put into, what he called, ‘proper English.’

I started to write seriously six years ago, after I had taken a home-study course in Writing for Children. This course gave me the confidence I very much needed. I wasn’t getting straight A’s like my brother but I received many B plus’ which I never thought I could achieve and so it all began from there really.

Which genre do you prefer to write in?

Although I do like many different genres, I do love writing for children with themes of fantasy, legend and adventure. But I have also been known to write horror stories, with psychological ghostly twists and a bit of gore thrown in for good measure.

What inspired you to write this book?

I started writing this book when I was pregnant with my second child. Whereas some mothers-to-be crave certain foods or go off on their hormonal tangents of uncharacteristic behavior, I, on the other hand, decided to write a book.
The funny story is; I was convinced I was having a boy and so when Grace was born, Adam, in my book, was quickly changed to Grace lol.

Who is your favourite author, and what is it about their work that strikes a chord with you?

Hmm, this is a rather tricky one. I have so many: Tolkien, Lewis, Austen, Grisham, Herbert, Patterson. But I think it must be said, I love JK Rowling’s work most of all. She, to me, can really tell a story in such a way that I get totally lost within the pages. Her dramatic plots and her exceptionally interesting characters, that jump from the pages and shake you firmly by the hand, are without a doubt more superior than I’ve ever read before.

What book are you reading now, and would you recommend it?

I usually have more than one book on the go. It depends entirely on my mood which one I choose to read that night.

I’m reading at the moment:
• Kiwi in Cat City (First book in the Kiwi series) by Vickie Johnstone. This is a fun and magical book.
• Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling. A great engaging book.
• All the Little Children by Christine Sutton. An extremely scary novella that keeps you on the edge of your seat at all times.

Three great books and although they are different in many ways I would still recommend them all.

What are your current projects?

With this book literally on the verge of publicity, I’m trying to organise a book launch for it. This is of course in-between writing book two (Crystal Waters – And on to North America) in this series of seven (each covering one of the seven continents of the world.)

Where and when do you do most of your writing?

Mostly in my dining room when the kids are at school or in bed. However, I’m soon to get my garage converted into another room and so I’ll be definitely claiming that as my den.

What would you say was the hardest part of writing your book?

Although I usually enjoy doing research for a book, it can be at times very time-consuming and sometimes frustrating. I am a stickler to try and get facts right, with not only eras, geography facts, legendary stories and cultural languages. I also like to cross-reference so it all fits into place within the story.

For instance the crystals I have chosen for each book not only comes from the countries origin but they are also used in the crystal healing procedure and placed on the right Chakra of the body. And just in case there are any crystal healing therapist here, that really know their stuff, I will confirm that ‘the Crown’ was used first, instead of ‘the Base,’ as my story does go back in time and felt right to reverse the crystal placing also.

Of course when people read a book, they probably don’t realise just how much goes into it. But, for me, it makes my story feel complete, and only then I will be satisfied with it.

Who designed your book cover – and was the cover something you deemed important?

I painted my lady (Iris) long before I started to write the book and so she has been with me the whole process. It seems on fitting to use her on the front cover really.

Did you try to go down the route of traditional publishing first – or did you feel that self-publishing was right for you from the beginning?

I tried numerous times to go down the traditional route but I, like many others, received many rejection letters to tell me I was unsuccessful.

I even, at one point, came second in a new author competition with the promise of publication. This was of course before the company announced they were going into liquidation and they could not fulfil their obligations.

That’s when I decided to take matters into my own hands and self-publish. I have a story to tell and I don’t want to waste any more time. I just want to get it out there for people to read.

On the whole, how have you found self-publishing?

I must admit, up to now it’s been quite smooth sailing and I’m now thinking why didn’t I do this before?

Where can we buy the book?

You can buy my book at Feed A Read, Amazon and other major book suppliers.

Do you have a website or blog where we can keep tabs on you?

Yes I have a Blog page: and a Facebook page.

Do you have any advice for other new writers?

If you have a passion for writing and have a story to tell, that you think people will want to hear, get it down on paper and get it out there. But above all, believe in yourself and I’m sure you will one day have the success you deserve.

And, finally, do you have anything else that you’d like to say to everyone?

I think all I would like to say to everyone is; I hope you enjoy reading my book as much as I have enjoyed writing it.

Oh, and thanks for listening!

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