Guest Post: Randomness by Nastasia Peters (Plus Excerpt!)

Nastasia Peters is an illustrator and the author of Altors, the first book in the Zinc Trilogy, an epic tale of two friends forcefully separated after their legal guardian is killed. She was born in the Netherlands to a Dutch father (illustrator) and French mother (photographer), and moved to France when she was fourteen. Clearly, creativity runs in her blood. Recently, her drawings have been published in an Adobe MasterClass art book, and she is hard at work on Regius and Seers, the remaining books in the series.

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Originally I wanted to write a post about Regius, the second installment in the Zinc Trilogy, as it’s to be published soon, so I figured, awesome timing and good pre-promo! But it turns out it’s very hard to do this without spoiling both the first and second book. It ended up looking something like this:

Regius picks up right where Altors left off, when Solenum is ___ by ___ and she ___ and he ___. The Narrator’s identity is revealed, so you are introduced to ___ at this section of the ___. But before that, you will learn what happened to Datura, whether or not he ___ after he got ___.

I should make a list of funny words now and hope people will use them to enter the blanks and see what hell and chaos is created.

As you can see it wouldn’t have been a very informative post, holding great information. For those who have a wordpress website without a spam bot, the previous sentence would have been slightly amusing. I thought I’d share some random information about reading experience, writing, publishing and then I will share a completely new excerpt from Regius, never seen anywhere else before (except hidden away on mine and my editor’s computer).

Random share number one: I have never read Harry Potter (Blasphemy, I know). I did read Twilight. I say one out of two major franchises makes me a decent human being. Although, I did snort coke out of my nose when I read the part where Vampires sparkled. Coke as in the soda.

Random share number two: There is an italicized sentence in Altors that literally refuses to un-italicize. Seriously, I have tried everything I know, it will not undo. Which is ironic because the ebook version of Altors has no italics whatsoever as it, again, literally refuses to remain italicized the minute I upload the file to the distributor.

Random share number three: The key to making your editor’s heart beat faster (I have many, many skills in that area—write me an email if you need help terrorizing yours). I’d finished Altors, handed it over to Amber to read it, tell me if I’d missed obvious plot holes, technical stuff, etc. I don’t think I even gave her time to read the first chapter. I called her and told her to stop what she was doing as I had decided to scrap the ending and attach two more books. She let out a ‘WHAT?’ so close to the pitch of a person who’d just inhaled helium, I nearly died of laughter.

Random share number four: I sometimes read in my car. This habit stuck last year when I went to waitressing school (yep, that’s a real thing). During my lunch breaks I’d hide away in my car on the parking lot and read. One afternoon I was sitting quite comfortably, trying to read I am Legend (I never finished it, I was too scared—even with daylight and fellow classmates smoking special herbs and laughing at nothing across the yard), and I lean back. Now, I have an old car, some stuff doesn’t hold as well as it should when under pressure. My environment is moving, I’m confused, set the book down and sit up. By the time my car’s behind gently crashes into the car parked behind me, I realize that I was leaning down on the hand break.

Random share number five: It was recently discovered that I turn into a mad scientist wielding a marker and white board when I need to re-write certain parts of a story. After finishing all plot related edits with Regius, I decided to look over Seers. Amber warned me. She told me “Don’t look at it yet, you’ll only get frustrated.” Of course I didn’t listen. The next day I went out, bought a white board and a set of markers and spent an entire afternoon trying to figure out what was wrong with Seers. Turns out it’s a very simple error that  does not require me to re-write a lot of scenes, my moment of insanity/melt down/internal apocalypse was entirely unnecessary. Amber got such a kick out of it (she’s not mean, she just likes to tell me “I told you so”), she recorded me. I’m assuming she’ll show it to me whenever I go near that state again and need a clear “no.”

Random share number six: This post turned out longer than I thought it would. Thank you so much for having me, Robin. I can’t wait to host you and your stories in return over on zincuniverse with Amber!

Last share: The never before seen Regius excerpt, a little scene taken out of one of Solenum’s chapters, one of the main characters. In Regius she gets to spend time with the not-so-pleasant characters. Enjoy!

~ Excerpt ~

As we continued on our way, I noticed a change in scenery. Everything became darker, the blue tones vanishing with each step down the passage. Pale bricks turned dreary and there was a draft coming from the small gaps between them that smelled terrible. When we reached the end, Maya unlocked a rotten wooden door and then nudged me inside. I wrinkled my nose at the horrid smell assaulting me, blinking my eyes at the darkness. I turned around quickly, eying Maya.

“Take this.” She handed me a… flashlight? “And this.” A bottle of water. My stomach fluttered in warning and my Altor Vision came violently to life. “I bid you luck.” She added before swinging the wooden door shut, not leaving me time to actually process anything or try and make my way out. Staring for a split second, my heartbeat picked up in speed and I slammed one of my fists against the wood as hard as I could.

“Wait!” I shouted. “What’s going on?!” There was no answer though. “Let me out!” I screamed.

Leaving my fist where it was, I dropped my forehead against the door, sighing heavily before taking a step back and knowing full well nobody was going to let me out. I turned the flashlight over in my other hand, trying to locate the switch with my fingers. Once it was on, I turned around to see what my surroundings were. This was a dungeon. The stench came from the stream of water running in between a small gap that was centered and following the ground. It was just large enough to get my foot stuck were I to misstep. There were no windows here but there was a breeze flowing through the stone corridors. One I appreciated as it offered some freshness, making the bad smell hanging around in this place less horrid. There was the occasional stone arch opening, some were closed with bars.

I didn’t walk too far, wanting to know where the only exit known to me was and remember it. I walked back the small distance I’d gone, digging out some chalk from one of my many pockets Galax had sewn onto my pants. Thankfully, they hadn’t forced me to change my clothes or stripped me from all the things I had. Although I carried no weapons, a screwdriver could do damage.

As I drew a cross on the door to mark it, momentarily thinking of tying a rope to the doorknob but realizing it would be too short, I was interrupted by a low growl coming from the far right. Turning towards the sound, my Altor vision allowed me to detect two red glows. I couldn’t tell what they were though.

Pointing the light in that direction, my eyes widened and I fell back against the door in fear as I saw two large dogs crouching down threateningly, showing me their teeth as they continued to growl. They were still quite far away but there was nothing that blocked their passage to come get me if they wanted too. And boy, did they want to.

“You’re going to want to run now.” A voice said, coming from somewhere above the door. Looking up, I pointed the flashlight in the same direction. A loud speaker. “It’s called technology.”
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3 thoughts on “Guest Post: Randomness by Nastasia Peters (Plus Excerpt!)

  1. Thanks so much for coming to visit! Loved your post—and it was fun looking for artwork to include, too. I don't know if Amber told you, but I especially like your maps. And the castle! You do such nice work.

  2. I'm so glad you enjoyed it! And the artwork and maps too. Amber did mention it, yeah, she's a ninja. I saw you work with digital illustration as well – maps in particular – It's great to meet a fellow map geek!

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