In the Author Spotlight: Madeleine Ribbon on Faire Protector release (contest)



spotlight on booksIn the Author Spotlight Today –MR_FaireProector__coverin

Madeleine Ribbon, author of the Ren Faire series






I encountered Madeleine Ribbon through her first story, Faire Fugitive almost a year ago.  Recently I sort of ran into her again and asked about how the series was doing, where the idea came from…those sorts of questions.  My answer from Madeleine was that the sequel, Faire Protector, was getting ready for release shortly.  That news prompted all kinds of anticipation and ideas, including having Madeleine Ribbon here to talk about the series inspiration behind Faire Fugitive and Faire Protector.

To help celebrate the release of Faire Protector,  Madeleine has brought a book giveaway with her, a choice of either book to one lucky reader.  To enter to win, leave your email address and a comment at the end of the post.  As usual, must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Contest ends July 8 at midnight, Winner to be announced on July 9th!

The Maryland Renaissance Festival starts August 23, Chances are you can find both myself and Madeleine in attendance at some point in time.  Wave a turkey drumstick or pint at us if we happen to walk on by….



A Trip to the Faire by Madeleine Ribbon 

When I first started writing the Faire series, my entire goal was finding an excuse to get my ass into costume and flounce around any and every Renaissance festival I could manage to get my grubby little hands on. Luckily, all that Ren faire visiting (and subsequent note taking, because I had to justify ticket prices somehow) led to some perfectly reasonable ideas, and Devin and Max’s stories were born while I was in the midst of half-hour Shakespeare skits, jousting tournaments, bagpipe concerts, corsets, steak on a stake, and copious amounts of ale and mead.

A Renaissance faire is like the bastard child of a seventh-grade world history book and the most amazing circus ever. The festivals all try to recreate a romanticized version of history, and in doing so, they create a place that’s almost magical in its other-worldliness. At the faire, you can get lost in a new world for a day. You have a chance to marinade yourself in everyone else’s weirdness—and just about every sort of weird is acceptable there. My Faire takes these bits and kind of pushes them to the next level by making the magic real.

I gave the main characters for both Faire Fugitive and Faire Protector rather unfortunate histories, and since I didn’t want to go full-on angsty in this series, I needed something to balance the darker sides of the story out. Using the Ren faire has been a great way to create a peppy, wacky, unique, can’t-take-yourself-seriously environment to balance out the harsh realities of my characters’ lives.


MR_FaireProector__coverinMax’s soul has become a virtual slave to the magical Renaissance Faire, and he can’t leave the grounds. He’s very, very attracted to the Faire’s brewmaster, but Shepherd wants nothing to do with him. Shepherd thinks Max is the reason his cousin got back into drugs, and Max has a bad history—dealing, a prison term, and last but not least, a little four-year stint as the personal assassin of a drug kingpin. For once, Max didn’t do it, but Shepherd isn’t about to believe him.

When Max’s old boss becomes a threat, the Faire that had been his prison becomes his protection. Max hides out at the brewery. As he deals with Shepherd’s bad attitude, the physical and mental side effects of having his soul imprisoned, and guilt over the people he’s killed, he finds himself falling for the sexiest man to ever hate him. But the only way he can keep Shepherd is if he can find some sort of magical redemption for his past.

Buy Link:   Loose id

Book Details:
Author: Madeleine Ribbon
Book 2 of the Faire series
Length: Novel, 90,000 words
ISBN: 978-1-62300-406-4
Cover Artist: Fiona Jayde

Contact Madeleine Ribbon:

Twitter: @muddyribbon
Goodreads author page:


Author Spotlight: Chase Potter, author of The Race for Second (Giveaway)



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A Scattered Thoughts Spotlight Interview with Chase Potter

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Author of The Race for Second



ScatteredThoughtsandRogueWords is happy to welcome Chase Potter, author of The Race for Second, a marvelous story of one young man’s pivotal year in Germany.

Chase has brought with him a copy of The Race for Second to giveaway.  To enter to win, leave a comment below and an email address where you can be reached.  Contest ends 5/9. That’s it!  Now on to the interview.

I had quite a few questions I wanted to ask Chase after reading this wonderful story and it evolved into this interview with the author:

STRW:   1. What made you set the story in Germany?

I wrote what I knew. The setting and pacing (but not so much the plot) of The Race for Second drew from my own year abroad in Freiburg. Moving to a foreign country is an emotional rollercoaster, no matter how prepared you are. I wanted to capture both the feeling of isolation and the satisfaction of eventually assimilating into a new culture and learning a new language.

STRW:  2.  Some might say this is a “Gay for You” story, how do you see this “coming of age and coming out” novel?


I think that “Gay for You” is an interesting and enjoyable sub-genre, but generally these books are hard for me to identify with. I have a lot of straight guy friends, and I’ve even had crushes on a few of them over the years. But no matter how much you want something to be true, you can’t change someone in that way. I think that this is a common fantasy – wanting to “turn” your straight best friend – but life rarely works out this way.

Is it fun to read about the “closeted” star of the football team falling for the out skinny guy? Absolutely, because that skinny guy was me in high school. But is it realistic? Probably not so much. (The music video “All-American Boy” by openly gay artist Steve Grand is a great example of this)

I wanted to tell the story of what happens when our interest isn’t reciprocated the way we want, and I wanted to show how difficult it can be to get past our feelings, especially the ones we try to bury. It’s only when we pick ourselves up afterward that we see our own strength and resilience. This is the struggle and the triumph that I wanted to explore, and it’s how I ultimately see this novel – as a triumph of spirit.

STRW   3.  What is the hardest part of the writing process for you?


Editing, by far. I can create an outline and hammer out a first draft in a couple months, but the rounds of editing really get me. I know it’s worth it, though. The final product of The Race for Second might not be perfect, but it’s barely recognizable when compared to the first draft.

STRW  4.  Which character was the hardest to write/conceive?


Ethan was definitely the hardest for me to work with. There are a few reasons for this, but the biggest one is that since the story is told from his perspective, we are in his head during every single moment. As a result, we get to know Ethan better than any other character.

Another reason was that Ethan experiences a lot of personal growth, sometimes quickly and often unwillingly, and it was challenging to make sure he was always true to himself through these changes.

STRW:  5. Is any of the plot based on real events?


My close friends who have read The Race for Second will sometimes accuse me of this. Yes, I studied abroad in Freiburg, and yes, I leveraged my own experiences to be able to tell the story of a college student living abroad, but the vast majority of the story is purely fiction. There are a few exceptions – one being the incident where Ethan trips and smashes an entire case of beer on the stairs in his dorm. This actually happened to me, except there was no Daniel to help clean it up.

 STRW:  6. The ending is somewhat open-ended. Do you have plans to continue their story in the future?

In short, yes. I’ve spent enough time with Ethan and Daniel that the idea of letting them go makes me sad in a way. I’m really looking forward to telling the story of what happens to Ethan after his year abroad ends. Currently I’m just finishing the first draft of my second novel, which isn’t about Ethan and Daniel, but the third book will include characters from both The Race for Second and my current project.


You can connect with Chase Potter through any of the following ways:

The Race for Second Cover smallGiveaway:  To be entered to win this wonderful ebook, just leave a comment, your name and an email address where you can be contacted .  The contest ends 5/9, 12am EST.

Buy link on Amazon:
Book to be released May 1st, 2014.

Book Details:

The Race for Second is a gay coming of age novel about an intense friendship that develops between two college students – an American studying abroad and a young German man. Told from the first person perspective of the American student, this story relates the hardships of adapting to another culture while exploring the intersecting lines of a relationship that struggles to define itself as somewhere between friends, brothers, and lovers.