Sunday, January 19, 2014

"Princess Madeline and the Dragon" by Kirstin Pulioff

Princess Madeline and the Dragon
by Kirstin Pulioff

Princess Madeline and the Dragon is on tour with Mother Daughter Book Promotion Services. The tour stops here for my interview with the author. You can also enter the giveaway for your chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash. Be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.

The Princess Madeline Trilogy consists of the following books: The Escape of Princess Madeline, The Battle for Princess Madeline, and Princess Madeline and the Dragon. You can read more about each of the books in my previous blog post. This series is recommended for children aged nine and up.

After a season of battle and rebuilding, the Kingdom of Soron is exhausted. With the return of the exiled wizards, the Spring Faire, and her upcoming wedding, Princess Madeline is looking forward to a peaceful season of celebration.
When the mysterious green dragon reappears, threatening the kingdom and the king, Princess Madeline and Prince Braden won’t rest for long. Faced with this incredible new danger, Princess Madeline and Prince Braden must find a way to lead their kingdom and secure their future.
Can they find the answers hidden within their mother’s cryptic messages from the past, or will the dragon destroy everything they hold dear? Follow Princess Madeline as she embarks on a dangerous new adventure to save her kingdom and her family.

The Buzz
"The story is engaging on many levels, as is Pulioff's writing, but on this occasion I was mostly drawn into the action and the mystery as how to prevent the worst from happening. This is great entertainment and should do well across a wider age range." ~ 5 Star Review, ChristophFischerBooks, Amazon
"Kirstin Pulioff has saved the best for last. Princess Madeline and the Dragon is the final instalment in the Princess Madeline Trilogy. I thought the first two books were finely wrought stories, but this novel surpasses its predecessors. Prophesies, family tragedies, magic and - of course - dragons, combine to produce a tale that is an instant classic. Written with a great deal of charm, Princess Madeline and the Dragon will not disappoint Ms Pulioff's young fans. I look forward to seeing where next her imagination will take this natural storyteller. " ~ 5 Star Review, Diogenes, Amazon
Princess Madeline and the Dragon is an exciting and thoroughly satisfying final chapter in this fantasy/adventure series. As she did with books one and two, the author has created a fantasy world in a rich medieval setting that we can believe in–and want to visit, over and over…Along with adventure, a sweet romance, and a theme that centers on the power of love, you may find a surprise or two! If your tween or teen loves princesses, brave heroes and fairytales of daring-do, they shouldn’t miss this one!” ~ 5 Star Review, Ally S., Goodreads

Interview With the Author
Hi Kirstin, thanks for joining me today to discuss your new book, Princess Madeline and the Dragon. It looks like this is the exciting finale to the Princess Madeline series. I am happy to have you here today!
Which writers have influenced you the most?
Hmmm… you’re starting with the hard questions. ;)
There are so many to choose from. I’ll have to talk first about the first series that I hoarded, The Baby-sitters Club. Ann M. Martin found a way to take something simple, childhood friends and babysitting, and cover a variety of themes and issues in a thoughtful manner. I collected each and every book and read one every night in elementary school.
After that, my taste drifted to fantasy, and David Eddings, Piers Anthony, Tad Williams, and Orson Scott Card played important roles in influencing my writing and philosophical thinking.
I am always on the lookout for new authors with new stories, ideas, and ways to approach issues.
What age group do you recommend your book for?
The Princess Madeline series is geared for the upper middle grade/tween audience, between 9-14. It was my intention to create a fun series that could bridge a gap between the chapter books for younger readers, and the darker YA fantasy.
Which comes first? The character's story or the idea for the novel?
Ohhh… you know, it can go either way. For me, generally the inspiration comes as an idea of the story, followed by bursts of scenes and character development. After I write my general feeling for the story, and overall outline, the specifics of the character take over. There needs to be both a drive from the character, but also a compelling story to keep the momentum.
What was the hardest part about writing this book?
The hardest part for me has always been time management. I am a stay at home mom to a 6-year old and a 4-year-old, so during the day, my time is focused on my family and balancing schedules between school and activities. At night, my author cap goes on, and I can focus on writing, marketing, and connecting on social media… which you can image leaves little extra time.
I can see that! How do you hope this book affects its readers?
Ultimately, I hope that the reader can relate to different aspects of this book and apply them to their life. The first book, The Escape of Princess Madeline, focused on themes of parent/child conflict, coming of age, and first love. The second book, The Battle for Princess Madeline, focuses on bravery, friendship, and taking responsibility for your actions. The new book, Princess Madeline and the Dragon focuses on family relationships, growing up, and the power of love.
There is something different in each book, but the underlying theme of believing in yourself and finding your inner strength resonates throughout all three.
How long did it take you to write this book?
This book took me three months to write, three months of editing, and another three months of pre-marketing before its publication.
What is your writing routine?
I would love to say I had a good routine, but it is one area that I lack - which is surprising since I am pretty organized in the rest of my life. My main writing time comes either at night after the kids’ bedtimes, or in the morning before they wake up. I write at least 30 minutes a day, sometimes hours when the muse and the coffee flow.
How did you get your book published?
I am lucky to have found a great publisher in Caliburn Books. They are an independent publisher, and have been great at working with me with the Princess Madeline series. I found them through the standard querying process.
What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published writer?
I would tell them to never give up. Writing and publishing is a process, with many different steps, and roadblocks along the way. It is important to keep going, keep your head up, and keep writing.
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I like to say that when I’m not writing an adventure, I am living one. Our free time is spent hiking, biking, playing outside, and exploring different areas. We are moving to Colorado next month, and I am looking forward to the new adventures that await us there.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I have always wanted to be a writer but didn’t know that I could actually go about being one. Growing up, I saw writing as a hobby, and something I loved, but it seemed too “abstract” to me for a career. It wasn’t until recently, as I was teaching my children not to limit themselves and to follow through on their dreams and the careers that they loved, that I realized how I had limited myself.
When that moment of clarity hit me, my life changed.
That's great! What can we look forward to from you in the future?
My current work in progress is Dreamscape: Saving Alex. Think Tron meets Super Mario Brothers, and all the awesomeness that that conveys in your mind. This YA fantasy will have the fun flair I enjoy writing, with some darker tones for the older audience.
Thank you for taking the time to stop by today, Kirstin. Best of luck with your future projects.
Thank you so much for having me! You have been a wonderful host, and it has been fun talking to you.

About the Author
Kirstin Pulioff is a storyteller at heart. Born and raised in Southern California, she moved to the Pacific Northwest to follow her dreams and graduated from Oregon State University with a degree in Forest Management. Happily married and a mother of two, she lives in Oregon, and enjoys being a stay at home mom. When she’s not writing, she is busy with her kids and church.

Enter the shared giveaway with a prize consisting of a $25 Amazon gift card (or PayPal cash).