Interview with Elizabeth Parkinson-Bellows, author of "Alexander Drake's Extraordinary Pursuit"


About Elizabeth Parkinson-Bellows

Elizabeth Bellows
Being the frizzy-haired tomboy with buck teeth gave Elizabeth Parkinson-Bellows a slight case of shyness as a kid. A colorful imagination meant escape and adventure at the drop of a hat.
Over the years she learned that the insecurities she carried around were a waste of time. Elizabeth still prefers a football game to a manicure any day of the week. That indispensable imagination has found its way into her writing providing a sense of joy and true purpose.
You can visit Elizabeth’s website at www.azraspithbooks.com

The Interview

Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life, Elizabeth. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how long you’ve been writing? 

 A: Thank you! I am the proud mother of two rambunctious youngsters. Most of my time is spent in running shoes (I need them to keep up) with a stiff cup of coffee in one hand and my laptop in the other. When I have a free moment I sit down and write. I started the Azra’s Pith series six years ago; and never looked back. I have so many ideas; writing serves as a wonderful outlet.

 Q: Can you please tell us about your book and why you wrote it? 

 A: Alexander Drake is a curious young man living alone with his father. His days were pretty uneventful until a stay at his grandmother’s cottage turned his world upside down. Alexander found strange clues tucked away in his father’s old bedroom. With a mysterious key and several maps in his pack he set off on an innocent search for answers about his family. When he discovered a secret passageway the search took a dramatic turn. He suddenly worried about what was searching for him. Alexander was being hunted by a sorcerer from his father’s past. Answers lead to more questions and the journey of his life. started writing stories to read aloud to my little ones. The Azra’s Pith Series took off from there.

 Q: What were some of the biggest challenges you faced writing it? 

 A: This being my first go around made the entire experience a welcome challenge. When the original draft of Alexander Drake was complete it needed a great deal of tightening. I took the advice of an editor and joined a forum to gather critiques from other writers. My biggest challenge was not letting on that I was a bit of a wimp. I worked through the constructive criticism with a lump in my stomach. Eventually I learned to toughen up and accept it as part of the process. Then I got back to work on a complete rewrite… with a much thicker skin.

 Q: Do you have a press kit and what do you include in it? Does this press kit appear online and, if so, can you provide a link to where we can see it?

 A: I have a pretty darn cool website (if I do say so myself)… www.azraspithbooks.com. There you can find links to my publisher, my blog, reviews, interviews, and many other tidbits.

 Q: Have you either spoken to groups of people about your book or appeared on radio or TV? What are your upcoming plans for doing so? 

 A: This is my virtual tour month; which means some fun guest posts and interviews… along with a few reviews (gulp). Please feel free to follow me on twitter (@lizzypbellows) for updates and information about my stops.

 Q: Do you have an agent and, if so, would you mind sharing who he/is is? If not, have you ever had an agent or do you even feel it’s necessary to have one? 

 A: Finding an agent is almost a challenging as finding a publisher. I can certainly see the benefits of having an agent; especially if you plan to submit to larger publisher. Most of the major publishing houses do not accept unagented material. Alexander Drake found a home with an indipublisher with out the help of an agent.

 Q: Did you, your agent or publisher prepare a media blitz before the book came out and would you like to tell us about it? 

 A: Shortly after Alexander Drake was released I did a Virtual tour similar to this one consisting of interviews and blog stops. It was a lot of fun! Most of the interviews can be found on my website.

 Q: Do you plan subsequent books?

 A: Alexander Drake is Part 1 in a series. Part 2 is complete and part 3 is in the works. I have a lot more ideas for the series dancing around in my head. There is still so much more to write. I love that!

 Q: Thank you for your interview, Elizabeth. Would you like to tell my readers where they can find you on the web and how everyone can buy your book? 

 A: Thank you for having me! Alexander Drake’s Extraordinary Pursuit can be found at www.wildchildpublishing.com as well as online retailers like Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

About Alexander Drake’s Extraordinary Pursuit

Alexander Drake version 2 compressed
Alexander Drake is not a typical “story book” hero. He’s awkward, insecure and introverted. His struggle to make friends has made him a bit of a loner. He is terribly fearful of not living up to his conservative father’s expectations of him, and always puts forth every effort to make him proud. At the same time, Alexander is a curious and wildly imaginative boy, who constantly craves adventure.
Up to this point, Alexander led a very sheltered life. He was raised solely by his father, a reserved distinguished gentleman with a rarely exposed soft side. His mother died when he was baby, and he has no memory of her. Many secrets of his family’s extraordinary past were intentionally kept from him; which has sparked his curious nature even more.
Alexander wants nothing more than to know where he came from; more specifically, his mother. The opportunity finally presents itself during a stay at his grandmother’s cottage deep in the forest. His father’s childhood bedroom contained some interesting clues and a special key that set Alexander on a journey that would change his life forever.
Azra’s Pith is a child’s imagination brought to life. Enchanted spells roam the forest where Julien, a peaceful Empyrean wizard lives. A deep river flows through the realm containing run off from the snowy mountains looming in the distance.
That is where an element of unspeakable evil dwells unsettled – a sorcerer named Imperius. It is feared by all who inhabit the realm. Alexander is oblivious of his own significance in Azra’s Pith. He is a threat to Imperius’s powers and its plans to control the realm, and therefore must be destroyed.
Alexander was being hunted by dark spells and vicious creatures every step of the way, but he was determined to complete his journey. His destination held the answers he longed for; and a surprise that was beyond his wildest dreams.
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