Please welcome indie author Elyse Salpeter

Author Bio:

Elyse Salpeter is the author of six novels and a host of short stories. Her dark fantasy series, THE WORLD OF KAROV and THE RUBY AMULET are presently available on Amazon. Her two YA novels, FLYING TO THE LIGHT and FLYING TO THE FIRE are represented by Peter Riva of International Transactions.

Elyse Salpeter lives on Long Island with her husband, twins and a crazy ferret who loves to steal toys, socks and shoe soles and hide them in the closet. When she’s not writing, she’s eating crazy food in her Gastronaut club, reading or contorting her body in strange ways with yoga workouts.

Brief Synopsis: THE WORLD OF KAROV: Adam and Alec look like identical twins, but their personalities are as different as possible. Adam is gentle and kind, whereas Alec is the essence of nightmares. Always jealous of his twin, Alec does everything he can to destroy his brother’s happiness, including kidnapping Adam’s fiancée on their wedding day and disappearing with her deep into the Canadian mountains. Adam searches for them for months, but he never finds them. Just when Adam is at his most grief-stricken point, a stranger appears and offers him a chance for a new life in a land filled with magic, gems, and powers unimaginable; a world mysteriously led by a special tribe of children who have hidden themselves away from a great evil that is seeking to destroy them. Adam takes the chance and goes with the stranger, but his past is never far from his mind. Eventually, reality comes back to haunt Adam, resulting in a final showdown with his brother…. and this time, only one will win. 

THE RUBY AMULET: In this suspenseful sequel to The World of Karov, a ruby discovered in a mountain stream transports Joshua, and his best friend Sean, to the war-torn world of Karov. They are immediately caught up in a violent struggle between the people and their treacherous king, who is determined to find the legendary four-pound ruby hidden deep in the emerald caverns. But time is running out. The king is closing in on Joshua and the gem, and the boys must help the Karovites find it before the king does. For if the king gets to it first, he will become the most powerful being in the universe and the Karovites will be enslaved… forever.


What do you do to relax when you are not writing?

My friends and family will laugh at this question. Relaxation is not something in my vocabulary (though I would love one day to simply go to a beach and only have to decide on what pina colada or daiquiri I should drink before lunch). I find that when I have downtime, and am not writing, I’m usually doing chores, or cooking. I do love to cook and I tend to make things that take hours to create – like a stew or soup. I find the cutting and slicing of vegetables and the preparation of all the steps to actually be rather relaxing.

What, or who, inspired you to become a writer?

I was never considered a great writer when I was younger, but I knew I had all these stories in my head I wanted to get out. Stephen King was a huge early influence on me. I loved how he created the most incredible worlds. As I got older and more well read, the Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child books really spoke to me. They’re smart books and I find I have to look words up in these novels all the time - I’m constantly learning something new.

Current work

What or who inspired you to write your current novel?

This current novel that I published in November of this year is actually the very first novel I wrote, over twenty years ago. I tried to get it traditionally published and simply didn’t get any responses. A few years ago I did a nanowrimo event and wrote the prequel to this novel (The World of Karov) and I decided to self publish that one last year. So, after jumping already in the indie world, I decided to release Book #2 in the series and it takes place 400 years later.

Tell us three interesting facts about your book which are not covered in the synopsis.

1)  Book #1 ended 400 years before so no one that was alive in Book #1 is in Book #2 (well, not really.)

2) Women are extremely powerful in this novel.

3) The human spirit has a great ability to persevere.

What research did you need to do for this book?

I do tend to research a lot of things for my books because I tend to write about things I don’t know about. But in THE RUBY AMULET the entire book is in my head. I made up everything. I spent more time creating the world and making sure my rules matched up from Book #1 in the series to Book #2. The worst thing a fantasy writer can do is not be consistent with their rules which can throw the credibility of the entire series in question.

Are any elements/characters of your book based on real life experiences or people you’ve met/known?

Actually, yes. When I first wrote THE RUBY AMULET I actually based the main characters on myself and a boyfriend I had at the time. That boyfriend is long gone and I’ve updated the novel tremendously, changing names, how the characters appear and act, so while it started from real people, they morphed into the characters they are today.

Tell us a little about your current work-in-progress.

My current work in progress is an adult thriller called THE HUNT FOR XANADU and it’s about a girl on a mission to avenge the death of her parents, murdered on their quest to find the mystical land of Xanadu.

I’m really excited about this book. It has a Buddhist theme and takes place in international locations such as New York, Colombia and Tibet, so I had to spend a lot of time doing research. I wanted to create a “really smart book” and have this character, Kelsey Porter, be someone I can create a series from.

Writing/publication process

What process did you adopt from inception through to the finished book?

Honestly, I don’t know if I have a process. I get an idea and I just start writing. I do give myself the ability to stop, take breaks, work on other things if they come up, especially if I need to research or I’m stumped with a scene, but I don’t kick myself. I nearly always get back to the story. I guess the good part is I usually know how the novel ends, so if I can find a way to get there, I consider myself very lucky!

What do you need (or not need) around you whilst writing?

I really need silence when I’m writing, but in my house, that’s a near impossibility. There is always someone walking into my room when I want to write. I could shut my bedroom door and it doesn’t matter. I’ve found that taking my computer to work with me and typing on the train or at lunch is the best thing for me. Though cleaning out the attic and making it my “writing lair” may be in the very near future.

What prompted you to self-publish your current book?

My writing history is interesting. My first novel, a YA novel called, FLYING TO THE LIGHT was picked up by a small publishing company and published in November, 2011. Unfortunately, they folded in March, 2013 right when Book #2 in the series was coming out. Since then, I have been lucky to get those books picked up by an agent, though he has yet to be able to sell them.

So, in the meantime, I decided to learn the self-publishing industry and learn how to build a marketing platform. I used THE WORLD OF KAROV to do that and then continued on with THE RUBY AMULET.

What were the three biggest challenges you faced when writing your book?

1) Rules: In fantasy, the rules of worlds must be correct because if they’re not, it’s completely unbelievable.

2) Editing: I’ve found I can look at a book a million times and still find mistakes and changes.

3) Time to write. Life has been pretty hectic and getting the time to do this novel was definitely a challenge.

Every author seems to suffer with writer’s block at some point. How do you overcome it?

I always put the book down if I have writer’s block and then write a short story or a piece of flash fiction. Sometimes my muse simply needs some space from the tale. I might take a few days, or a week and I just think about the book. When I return to it, I’m usually better for it.

What single piece of advice would you give to any aspiring writer?

Just write for yourself first and foremost and not for publication. I hear so many people so worried about what to write because they want to make sure it sells. I’m here to tell you, even if you get a bestseller, there are no guarantees in life you’ll make more than a few thousand dollars. I have friends who are best sellers and they still have their day jobs. So, write first what’s in your heart and then do everything you can so that it’s the best it can be. What does that mean? Get it professionally edited, pay for a quality cover, publish it… and then start the next book.


What genre does your book fall into?


How did you get interested in this specific genre?

I love “make believe” worlds and I like to say that when I write “I mix the real with the fantastic.” I couldn’t write a memoir if I tried. I’m sure some alternate dimension or alien would make an appearance!

You as a reader

Which three authors have inspired you the most, and why?

1) Stephen King – because he writes the craziest stuff ever! And because I love how he writes little notes to us, his Constant Reader, in his books.

2) Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child: I put them together because they co-author the Aloysius Pendergast books – a recurring character in their novels that I find absolutely intriguing. (maybe even a little borderline obsessive if I were to be honest) I love how they mix historical and real world issues into their novels and their work is simply so incredibly intelligent and thrilling.

3) Denise Vitola. She has written the Ty Merrick series, but she’s also an editor/teacher. She is the reason I am the writer I am today and she’s taught me so much.

What was your favourite book as a child?

Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden and Dr. Suess’s Happy Birthday to You.

What is the best book you’ve read in the last 12 months?

White Fire by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. It just came out and I’ve been chomping at the bit to read it – got through it in two days.

What was the last book you recommended to a friend, and why did you think it was worthy of recommendation?

White Fire, since I just read it, and Catching Fire for my daughter, who is loving it.

Kindle (or other e-reader) or paperback, and why?

I love them both. Paperbacks because I love to bend the pages and snuggle up with them. Ebooks because I can bring a ton of books on a plane with me and it weighs practically nothing.

Hollywood is calling

You’ve had the call from Hollywood and they want your opinion on who should play the leading roles in the film based upon your book. Who would you choose, and why?

Oh, I already made a 26 page character sheet, with photos, of the characters of THE HUNT FOR XANADU. Right now Serinda Swan would be Kelsey Porter, my main character. She’s smart, sexy, beautiful and athletic and I love that this actress can morph into all those roles.

The film of your book is now going to need a soundtrack. Which musician(s) would you want to write and play it?

That’s a hard question. This book is a thriller but has an international flavor – it takes place at Buddhist monasteries in Tibet, in NYC art museums and in the Colombian forest… maybe some good international underground musicians with a unique sound the world hasn’t been exposed to yet.


Drink – Coffee – preferably a Starbucks Grande Pumpkin Spice Soy Latte, no whip, extra shot

Meal –  Lobster, sushi or Skyline Chili (this is a sweet chili that originated in Cincinnati Ohio and you eat it over spaghetti or little hotdogs – ok, now I’m drooling – no really, it’s really, really good)

Holiday destination – a beach, anywhere warm

TV programme – Top Chef or Big Bang Theory

Film – The Princess Bride

Method of travel – Cruise Ship

Sport – I have a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, have done bootcamp and yoga but I love to watch Football on television. Go Giants! (though maybe not this season)

How can people connect with you?



Twitter: @elysesalpeter

Facebook: elysesalpeterauthor

Where can readers find your book?  


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