Author bio: Cheryllynn's vivid imagination comes through in all she does in life. Her writing started in junior high, although she never truly shared her work until recently. They were kept hidden away in an old tattered orange folder. Original works she wrote as early as 1984 still hold ink on the pages and are just now coming to life. Paranormal and Fantasy are her favorite genres with Mystery and Thrillers close behind.
Born in Northwest Florida and raised in Southeast Georgia she developed a love for nature and the outdoors.
Her experiences outdoors allows her to create universes with vivid detail. After a detour of almost twenty years in the health care industry and obtaining her Bachelors of Science in Healthcare Administration/ Healthcare Information Systems she has returned to her love of writing.
Currently living in Central Texas with her family, she has begun a new chapter in life that has opened her heart and soul to many great adventures. Her hobbies include fishing, crochet, gardening...and of course reading.
Book title: Awakening Fate, The Chronicles of Elizabeth Fairbairn, Book Four
- Genre: YA / Fantasy / Paranormal
- Synopsis: Elizabeth thought the battles behind her were difficult until some of her past came back to haunt her. She struggles to determine what emotions she is feeling that is real or induced by the amulets of the original witches now when an unexpected person becomes the keeper of Prince Petre's items. Protecting a friend comes to the forefront of her newest goal while coming up against an adversary she didn't know existed was troublesome enough, but not to have her powers at her command...that is the true test of her will and strength. Will Elizabeth be able to accept the new keeper? Will Sorina and Prince Petre give their blessings? Can the young witch keep her friend safe as well as herself?
- Publish date: Feb 6, 2019
- Publisher: Self
An excerpt from Awakening Fate, The Chronicles of Elizabeth Fairbairn, Book Four
Of course, he gently wrapped his fingers in with hers, gave a small nod and looked to the ceiling. “Ready?” Reba asked as her and her sisters finished making the circle around them, she had every intention of keeping them safe. Elizabeth nodded then closed her eyes.
The ground was wet from dew, she had arrived in the morning time just as the sun was rising over the ridge of the horizon. Elizabeth felt the moisture seep through her socks in the high grass. She started to walk and realized Wesley was at her side, she had almost forgotten. Looking at him, her heart leaped when he smiled at her. “We have to find Sorina,” her words filled with determination.
“Lead the way, this is your territory.” He motioned a hand out as if to follow her lead.
Looking to her left, Elizabeth recognized the tree line as the same one Sorina ran into for safety when she was last here. She moved towards it quickly when she glimpsed the corners of a white gown between the trees. Stopping suddenly, Wesley almost ran into the back of her. “What’s wrong?” He whispered.
“She is here, watching,” Elizabeth whispered back. Craning to catch another glimpse she called out, “Sorina. It’s me Elizabeth. It’s safe, you can come out now.”
Moments passed before the soft voice of Sorina called back, “Why have you brought an elf with you? What is this about?”
Twisting her mouth in thought, Elizabeth knew she had to explain things. “Sorina, this is Wesley Roberts. He is Sire Levi’s son. He is… he is the keeper of Prince Petre’s items.”
Sorina suddenly was at the forest line, “No! Not an elf. They would never!” Her voice was filled with shock as she glided towards them in a rush. She circled Wesley, looking over every inch of his body. “You look like him, except for the hair.”
Wesley turned to watch the woman taking him in, “I am honored.”
She smiled at him, “I can see why the amulet chose you. Your heart is good. But I’m surprised, I never considered an elf to be a keeper. You have no magic.”
Lowering his head, Wesley considered her words. “Well, not exactly.”
Both women turned their heads quickly and responded more loudly than they intended and in unison, “WHAT!”
He chuckled. “When the coven was having their battle last year, we left as we are supposed to do. Well, I went to Southern Europe and was studying. My father wants me to take over his house one day, as expected, but he wanted me to meet a distant relative and learn from her. She is an ancestor of an elf and witch, both from Romania.”
That got a rise out of the women, Sorina instructed him, “Please continue.”
“Well, that branch of elves has magic because of their bloodline to you.” Elizabeth gasped and Wesley quickly recovered the conversation, “We would not be related. The bloodline has been so distant that none of that family would be closer than seventh cousins, at best.”
“You are the children of Leagh?” Sorina asked.
Wesley nodded, “No ma’am, not Leagh but Randolph, her twin, he married an elf… During their marriage, they had six children. One was my father's grandfather and one the grandfather of Tiffany. And the rest is history.” As he spoke Sorina covered her mouth with her hand. Randolph and Leagh was the first set of twins born after the magic was gifted to Petre and Sorina, both had returned to Romania after a few years in Northern Europe. They had said they had to be in a place they felt at home.
“Did you know this before you met Elizabeth?”
“No. I only found out when I went to train. Tiffany filled me in on the entire family history and started teaching me spells that we could work.” He turned to Elizabeth, “I wanted to tell you everything.”
She pulled back from him, angry that she hadn’t listened to him. “It was my fault. I was being stubborn and hard-headed and I… I didn’t want to listen. I wanted to be mad. How foolish!” She snipped.
Sorina took Elizabeth in an embrace and whispered in her ear, “My child there was no way anyone would blame you for your actions. You were kept hidden from the world you belonged to and when thrown in did the best you could.” Tears escaped down Elizabeth’s cheeks. Sorina held her tighter, “You are so strong even when you think you are weak.”
Wesley stood watching the two women embrace. He had wanted to be there for Elizabeth, but he knew she had been through so much emotionally, there was no way he could stay angry at her. Sorina pulled back from Elizabeth and took one of each of their hands and smiled, “You two will do great things for our people.” Looking to Wesley, “One day, you will need to meet Petre but not until he is ready. He is not as forthcoming as I am.” She released their hands and began to turn away gliding towards the woods, just at edge she turned to them one last time, “You have our blessings,” then she shimmered into nothingness.
Sitting straight up, Elizabeth turns to see Wesley slowly waking up. She turns to her mother, “He is it. He is the keeper. We have Sorina’s blessings.” Releasing Wesley’s hand, Elizabeth starts to stand when she hears him mumble. Looking back, she realizes he is having trouble coming out of the dream and put a hand on his shoulder to shake him, “Wesley, wake up.” She calls out trying to get him to come around.
He turns his head back and forth like he is fighting something, then suddenly calms down. Inside the dream, Petre came to talk to Wesley but only after Elizabeth and Sorina had gone.
Wesley tried to follow Elizabeth. As he was moving towards her, he felt something grab his arm. He turned to find a man holding onto him and looking quite angry. "Who are you?"
"You say you are the descendant of Randolph?" The man stood tall with broad shoulders holding onto Wesley's arm with a tight grip, nearly cutting off the circulation.
Wesley turned to face the man who wouldn't let him leave. Ripping his arm from the man's grasp he asked with a growl, "Who are you and why have you held me back?"
"Answer my question elf. Are you the true descendant of Randolph?" the man asked once more.
Not in the mood for games, Wesley took a step back. Sorina had said Petre wasn't very forthcoming, could this be him? He was told Petre's personality lacked compassion but this was absurd. "I won't answer anything until I know who you are? I'm thinking you're Petre, Prince Petre!" The man's face softened. The elf was smart and easily figured out who he was without over reacting.
"Walk with me my child... we have so much to discuss."
Author interview with Cheryllynn Dyess.
Kasper: Hi Cheryllynn, welcome aboard our levitating Reader' Lounge. Here, take a cushion and get comfy.
Cheryllynn: Thanks Kasper. Nice to be here in my fave group.
After being friends with you for 6 years, I reckon I know the answer to this first question. Do you have a pen name and why?
Yes I do. I write under my maiden name, Cheryllynn Dyess because that is what I first published under. When I got married I asked my husband if he had a problem with me continuing to do so because I’m very proud of my family’s name and very much wanted to keep it as my pen name. He was fine with it and so it was! This lounge seems to be having a rocky day today, Whoa there!
Yes indeed, that's my dog: Nyx. Named after the Greek Goddess of the night. She must have snuck on behind me when we were arranging the cushions.
No worries at all. I like dogs. But um, we're a mile up in the air over the Pacific. I hope she knows how to stay.
Yes, she'll be alright, I'm sure.
Alrighty. What was the defining event that made you start writing?
That’s tricky. I started writing when I was a teen as an outlet for the things going on in my life that I couldn’t talk to anyone about that were dark and very emotional. Fast forward to 2011, when I met my future husband and he read my earlier writings and couldn’t understand why I wasn’t doing it for a living. So he made things in our lives so that I could come live with him and write full-time and be a stay at home mom to our teen boys (teens at that time) and got married shortly after.
He really is the best thing to happen to you. I know you have such a close and loving family.
What other writing have you done?
I have a book of poetry and a cookbook out. I plan to put out some short stories in my future as well.
What makes your writing unique compared to others in the genre?
I’ve been told I have a poetic style of writing but I like to feel that my ability to describe the world in which everything is going on let’s me stand out among the others.
Awesome feedback, congratulations.
What made you choose this genre?
The Paranormal and Supernatural subgenres in Fantasy are very personal...I’ve had spiritual experiences all my life and I’m drawn to those types of works. It feels natural to me!
Awesome. A little birdy (or was that a phoenix?) told me you are one of the hosts for Fae Week in the Readers' Lounge. I can't wait to hear more of your real-life tales.
What’s the story behind your book title? Awakening Fate is the fourth book in The Chronicles of Elizabeth Fairbairn and is about Elizabeth finding that fate plays a larger role in our lives than we’d like to believe. In Awakening Fate she has to accept things that are very irregular and unexpected among her people.
Overcoming adversity and obstacles, to be simple and short really.
Which scene from your book do you like best and why?
Oh goodness that’s a hard question. Let me see… Okay, without giving away too much about the story I’ll say the scene where Elizabeth finds herself in trouble and her magic isn’t accessible and she figures out how to get out!
I'm having visions of Buffy the Vampire Slayer over here...seriously I love strong female leads.
Which is your favourite character and why?
Other than the main character, I’d go with Wesley. He’s an elf shifter who is fated to be with Elizabeth and they go through some quite difficult situations in these stories. He’s fun and always supportive of her.
How do you develop your characters?
They grow with each story. I don’t really plan that out, they tend to write themselves.
Have you used any real events or places as inspiration for your writing?
Oh all the time. I grew up in Southeast Georgia and that area shows up in the Born of The Veil. In The Chronicles of Elizabeth Fairbairn, I created the area from when I stayed in Virginia. In a book coming out later, The Forgotten Soul, I used the town I was born in. Another book I’m working on called After The Storm, I am using my current hometown as a basis.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to write a book?
Just do it! Write it out and then go from there. Don’t hesitate or overthink it!
What music do you listen to when writing?
Rock mostly and then some pop. I like something with a lot of energy.
What do you do when you have writers’ block?
I crochet or garden or clean! Something with lots of detail to make me not think of the story. Sometimes reading helps too!
How did you go about developing your cover artwork? I love this Awakening Fate cover.
This particular cover is art from Stella. She also did the cover for book three, A Moment of Darkness, and I asked her to keep with the same theme
Who are your five favourite authors?
C.L. Gaber, RS McCoy, NK Jemisin, Ally Shields, and Jennifer Malone Wright would be in my top favorites.
What do you write about in your Behind the Pages blog?
Things that affect me daily or in my life. I like to be very personal there so readers can get to know me as a person rather than me as a writer.
What are your writing plans for this year?
My goal is to get 6 more books out this year and have 9 more completely written.
Oh my goodness, you'll be busy!
What’s your experience of the Fantasy Sci-Fi Readers’ Lounge?
As a member, I’d like to say it’s been fantastic. I’ve met new readers and new to me authors! It’s been fun and exciting. I hope we continue to grow as much as we have already!
Which one of your characters would you like to be?
Jewel! She is a fairy. This is a photo of what I envision her to be.
Oops! your dog Nyx has eaten my interview questions, I can see shreds of them blowing away into the ocean. Oh no.
Don't worry. I think I can summon Jewel to help us. (Cheryllynn whispered something, which caused the hairs to rise on the back of my neck. Next thing I know a gorgeous fairy appeared. She nodded her cute bobbed head and the interview questions appeared as good as new in my hand).
Gee, thanks so much, Jewel. I sure wish I had friends like you. (The fairy gave a shy smile and disappeared into thin air).
Favourite thing to cook: chicken
Silliest saying: This is a PG interview...so I’ll skip this one.
Best holiday spot: Beach
Most played song: Rolling in the Deep by Adele
With writing, are you a plotter or (seat-of-your) pantser? Pantser for sure!
Do you prefer SciFi or fantasy: Oh...Fantasy.
Best superpower: Reading minds.
Number one thing to do on your bucket list: visit the Highlands of Scotland where my ancestors are from.
Kasper: Thanks Cheryllynn. It sure has been an adventurous evening. Please wait until we land, Nyx.... too late! I hope she's OK after that big leap.
She'll be fine. I think it's time for her dinner. Thanks again for having me. Bye.
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