I’m happy to be included in the book tour for Scapemaker by Steve Cypert, put together by Jaidis Shaw of Juniper Grove Book Solutions. I have an excerpt, an interview with Steve, and a giveaway to share with you. First, let’s take a look at the book:
Matthew is the son of Mr. Nicholas Namely, a local high school teacher. However, Matthew does not know that his father is a dreamscaper, whose classroom is connected to the dream-world. From his classroom, Mr. Namely’s students enter the halls of Scapemaker, a dream-world high school for young and inexperienced dreamscapers.
Following a couple of tragic events—his father’s sudden comatose condition and the unbelievable mysteries surrounding the unexpected death of his best friend, Dobian Brown—Matthew is compelled to investigate and is propelled into a whole new world. Matthew and his mother, Mae, are soon coerced into moving across the country for his father’s strange medical needs. While attending his new school, Matthew comes to know the secrets that Daedree, an annoying girl from his former high school, has locked away. Matthew also meets Amber, a beautiful enigmatic girl who leads him to Mr. Xoner’s classroom. While there, he learns the art of dreamscaping (which, unbeknownst to Matthew, has been in his bloodline for thousands of years). This new life will lead Matthew to unbelievable characters with the most extraordinary abilities he could have ever imagined—and the most deadly and wicked villains he never thought he’d be up against.
Matthew will come to know of Nox Celare, otherwise known as The Sandman, who is after a special element called Magineum. He must not only solve the mysteries surrounding those tragic events, but he will also have to protect the Magineum with his life and find a way to be with the girl of his dreams. Neck deep in skinwalkers (shape shifters), sandsleepers, zombies, goblins, soul feeders, ghosts, ogres, dragons, dream-world criminals known as “night terrors” and more, Matthew learns he is in over his head. With the help of his friends, Mr. Xoner, and a determined FBI agent, Matthew will learn more about his father than he ever hoped to—or wished to know. He soon uncovers the reason for his father’s comatose condition; with vague implications of a traitorous act and a possible connection to Doby’s death, Mr. Namely had been convicted and his mind held within the notorious Sandstorm Prison inside the dream- world. Matthew must now prove his father’s innocence as a helpless victim of Nox’s plan to escape Sandstorm Prison.
Excerpt (slightly altered to avoid spoilers – altered potions in brackets):
“Matthew, step back!” cried Mr. Xoner. “Quickly, step away!” Matthew was petrified as he watched in complete fear. “Run,” shouted Mr. Xoner, joined now by the rest of the students with voices of their own, “run, run, run!”
Now much larger than any two students combined, [it] burst from [its] skin, emerging like a reptilian monster from [its] shell complete with fire lit eyes. [Its] teeth were long and sharp. [It] reached for Matthew with arms that were now twice the size of Matthew’s torso.
All the students in the room screamed chaotically and ran through the dreamgate. Matthew tried following the students through the door but was tackled by Mr. Xoner. “No, Matthew, not there. Not yet.”
“I don’t know what’s behind that door but I’ll take it over that thing any day,” said Matthew as he tried to squirm away from Mr. Xoner’s grip. Although he was smaller and frailer than Matthew, Mr. Xoner held him against the floor boards next to the ornate door.
The windows high on the wall began to shake along with the walls as [it] approached. His every step fractured the floor sending cracks through the foundation.
“Matthew, stay here,” instructed Mr. Xoner. “Do not move a muscle.”
Here’s the man behind the words:
Steve V Cypert was born in Los Angeles, California. At twenty-four he moved to Salt Lake City, Utah, where, two decades later, he continues to live. At age 34 he found and married his beautiful wife, Katie. Today, at age 40, he and his wife still live in Utah with their baby and their 4 year old Shih Tzu. Steve graduated from the University of Utah in 2003 where he graduated with a 4 year degree.
For as long as he can remember, Steve has loved to come up with creative and far-fetched stories. In 2011 Steve finished his first novel, a work of historical fiction. He wrote Port of Errors in just three months. However, it took him ten years of research, editing and putting the missing pieces together. In 2012 he wrote a second novel, the first in a series of four. Though, this time it was a YA paranormal fantasy. The title, at first, was The Son of Nicholas Namely, but Steve soon changed it to Scapemaker, which is also the name of the 4 book series. As of January 2013, the outline for the second book in the series was completed.
Steve loves photography. He shot weddings for a few years, but loves wildlife and landscape; he also loves volleyball and hiking; he has a mountain bike, but never rides it; finally, he is a self-professed indulgent and fanatically addicted big screen movie junkie. His favorite color is green. He loves steak and prime rib – medium rare or rare. His “lucky” number is 4. His favorite ice-cream is mint chocolate chip. And he loves horseback riding and country swinging – which he is very good at… sloppy, but good!
Connect with Steve in the following places:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/myfiction or @myfiction
Amazon Author Page: www.amazon.com/Steve-V-Cypert/e/B005CFE3OM
What was the inspiration behind this story?
There were a few inspirations that came to me once I decided to write a YA paranormal urban fantasy adventure. But first, I need to tell you why I decided to write this long winded genre.
I was looking to write something a little more mainstream and adventurous a few years ago. I knew I wanted to write something with high adventure. I knew that young adult novels were very popular and on the rise and I love YA movies. I did a little investigation into the elements that seemed to accompany the most popular novels. Although there was no real research or science behind my investigation, the most popular reads appeared to be paranormal or fantasy. I also found that they had teen students learning from some sort of training, schooling or apprenticeship. It seemed reasonable and logical to me that the place for the a teenage reader to most relate was high school since the majority of their daylight hours are spent in school, doing homework, extracurricular high school activities, or hanging out with friends from high school. However, I didn’t want to write about the same exact things that the most popular novels wrote about since most readers like something refreshing and new.
Inspiration 1: I recalled a story I had partially written when I was a teenager about a boy who saves his father from the dream world and its ruler – the Sandman. And then it hit me like a ton of bricks and it never felt so right… a dream-world high school where there are endless possibilities.
Inspiration 2: The next thing that came to me as a very strange and scary sort of inspiration for the book was at the expense of my dear wife (bless her heart).I came home late from work on one particular night/morning. My wife was asleep. I walked into the room and within a few seconds she sat up and started screaming… a blood curdling type of scream. I think he was shaking and she had the blankets held in her arms tightly. She was looking at me as though I was someone lese and she kept screaming even though I told her it was me and I held her tight. It really freaked me out. She was nearly breathless. She’d had a night terror, though never before or never since. That experience stuck with me for the following days and even weeks; I’m sure it stuck with her as well. The opposition to the hero in Scapemaker was never so clear. It was a night terror; not an intangible event, but a criminal element of the dream world; an actual being. I decided to make night terrors being that were criminals of the dream world, which also meant that there needed to be a dream world prison. The story really bloomed from there.
I knew there had to be “rules” to make it work and certain limitations and opposition. I quickly started chicken scratching my ideas down on business cards and scratch paper and anything else I could find. One thing led to the next and before I knew it, I have a begging and an end to what seemed to be a series, more than a stand-alone.
Tell us about your main character.
Matthew Namely is my main character. He’s really just your everyday regular 16 year old high school football jock with an attitude and a little self-centered. But when it really comes down to it, he tries to make the right choices and he stands up for those who are unable to stand up for themselves. Although, I think when he does stand up for others… subconsciously he’s doing it for his own reputation and popularity. He’s a tall, strong young man and confident about himself. But, Matthew is also a dreamscaper, who doesn’t know he’s a dreamscaper. He’s a little prideful when he has to be the one taking lessons from those who are younger than him or those he would usually not even hang around. But, Matthew also learns to deal with many other changes and challenges in his life. He’s the kind of kid who steps up to the plate when needed and goes the extra mile, even at the cost of breaking a few rules. He loves both his father and mother but grew up closer to his mother. Matthew is more open to his mother, though he doesn’t like being treated like a kid. He’s smart and usually carries good grades, but mostly just to make sure he can stay on the football team and actually play, rather than stand on the side lines. He’s the MVP type, with the title just beyond his reach, but he fights for it even when the odds are against him. He is quick to show pride when he is on the winning end, which is a known weakness of his. Matthew is tough, but when he is afraid or frustrated, he shows it… though not always on purpose. When taken too far he becomes somewhat sarcastic, pouty and argumentative. He’s sustains his likability but can be unlikable at the most inopportune times. He’s the son of a stay at home mom, forced to work during hard times and a father who keeps secrets from him and stays a little distant at times.
Which is your favorite minor character and why?
I love Tristan. He’s eccentric and a little different. He’s the kind of person that Matthew would normally shun, but becomes friends due to certain circumstances. He also seems to have some sort of mental disorder—always talking to himself in different voice.
Were you surprised by the behavior of any of your characters or the direction of your plot at any point while writing?
There were several eye opening moments for me that helped to take the story in a direction I hadn’t planned on in the beginning. There aren’t many I can say without spoiling the story for you. One I can mention is the use of a paranormal substance called mer-water. I had originally used chloroform as a chemical Hunter, the antagonist in the first book, uses to cross his victims over into his dreams. But, I came up with mer-water in a classroom setting to explain that elements in the dream world don’t always act like they do in the real world. I explain that you can breathe in mer-water, but not in the air immediately surrounding it. There is an opposite type of effect around mer-water when it comes to certain elements. Mer-water also helped me to gain the right traction with the means by which “dreamgates” work in both the real world and the dream world – in connection with crossing over. That’s all I can really say about that. I hope that doesn’t confuse too much.
Please share a few favorite lines or one paragraph.
Okay! There are a few Scapemaker quotes I set aside to place on Goodreads. So, I hope it’s okay if I use them. Here are some of my favorites:
- “With the right imagination this is an easy fix”
- “That’s very creative and cunning of you… playing on my sympathies won’t get you far. I’m smarter than that. I won’t fall for it.”
- “In football terms… I’m stealing home.”
- “Bullies will not be tolerated here,”
- “…If I bite I promise you it won’t be fatal.”
- “…He’s as cute as they come and we don’t get many of them in here.”
- “I admire anyone that stands up for someone who can’t stand up for themselves.”
- “If I keep telling myself that nothing’s wrong, things will just get worse.”
- “I’m with the FBI. I know how to make people disappear.”
- “…if you’re going to tell me all the reasons why we shouldn’t be together then I don’t feel like talking right now.”
- “…I’m struggling inside to do the right thing. But right now I’m really confused about what the right thing is.”
- “That awful place felt so empty and alone… I don’t know if I can go back. There’s not one good thought in that place. There’s nothing but waste and want. I can feel his selfish cravings and an abyss of secrets I hope to never know.”
On to the giveaway!
There is a tour wide giveaway. You can enter using the Rafflecopter form on any of the participating blogs.
The prize is: 20 eBooks – Kindle copies or Smashwords Coupon
Giveaway is International.
Follow the blog tour to learn more about Steve and his writing.
Scapemaker by Steve Cypert Tour Schedule:
- June 3rd – Flora @ From the Bootheel Cotton Patch (Spotlight)
- June 3rd – Katie @ DoingDewey (Review)
- June 4th – Sophia @ Bookwyrming Thoughts (Spotlight)
- June 4th – Jaidis @ Juniper Grove (Interview)
- June 5th – Vicky @ Deal Sharing Aunt (Interview)
- June 6th – Darcia @ A Word Please (Interview)
- June 6th – Laurie @ Laurie’s Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews (Special Excerpt)
- June 7th – Sabrina @ Sabrina’s Paranormal Palace (Review)
Thanks for reading.
Tags: author interviews, Blog Giveaways, Blog Tours, book giveaways, Book Tours, ebook giveaways, Jaidis Shaw, Juniper Grove, Juniper Grove Book Solutions, Rafflecopter Giveaways, Scapemaker, Steve Cypert, Urban Fantasy, Writing Inspiration, YA Authors, YA Fantasy, YA Fiction