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Jena Baxter Interview

Welcome to Ink & Magick. I'm your friendly neighborhood witch. What kind of spell can I get for you (or your character) today?

More energy for writing, singing, dancing, and playing with my dog.

Life sometimes throws a lot at us, doesn't it? I suggest getting plenty of sleep, taking a thirty-minute meditative walk every day, and drinking green tea. So, tell us a little about your fantasy novel, Reflections.

When Juliette has a domestic servant beaten for pursuing a young man above her station, she finds herself cursed by a witch to live in a world behind her own mirror. She is unable to leave except on the first night of a full moon.

Juliette is forced to seek what food and shelter the new world provides with the help of a unicorn, a man who is half bear, and a centaur. Together they struggle to survive against lions, wolves, and the challenges of watching their friends live and die through the back of the mirror as their own world moves on without them.

Reflections begins in Regency era London, and ends in Clover Springs, California, an all but abandoned Gold Rush town.


Colors were richer, the flowers brighter, the lake was royal blue. I hope it doesn’t flavor the fish…or poison it. Twigs crackled and an almost imperceptible growl sounded behind her. The line on the pole went taut. She ignored the fish and turned around. A white lion with bright blue eyes and a huge white mane, stared at her with its fangs exposed and lips pulled back in a snarl. Eight feet of fur and muscle poised to spring.

The lion roared, the sound deafening. Juliette threw her hands in front of her face and fell to the ground as it sprung. Before the cat landed, a brown blur crashed into it with the speed of a cannon. The two animals rolled and fought in a snarling mass of fur. Juliette swiftly scooted away, then managed to get to her feet, but her legs wouldn’t move.

With a terrible roar and a swipe of its claws, the lion turned and ran. Juliette finally managed to flee. She ran for the cottage, but it was too far. The muscles in her legs burned. She couldn’t breathe and tripped over a log, crying out when she landed on a bed of rocks in the creek. Pain seared her hands and knees. Juliette held her breath against the pain. The huge dark animal that fought the lion splashed into the water. Long claws attached to a human hand tugged at her. Juliette fainted.

Wow, your blurb hooked me right away! What inspired you to write such an intriguing story?

History intrigues me. I was researching the Victorian era and learned about some of their theories about death. They covered their mirrors, so the dearly departed wouldn't get trapped in them if they got lost trying to find their way out. In the end, the timeline required me to back up to the Regency era. That required a few culture changes.

Both eras are fun to learn about. Which one of your characters surprised you?

Tolor. He is half man and half bear. I had the concept in my mind and let him form as I went. I'm really happy with the character he became. He was always fighting blood lust, so it was a little challenging sometimes.

I bet! Making a vicious character sympathetic sounds like quite the job. Who is your favorite or least favorite character and why?

I don't really have a least favorite. I think my favorite would actually be Brayden. My romance comes late in this story, and it's via a film producing teenager that has the world in his hands, and foolishly loses it.

"Our lives are in your hands and you have butterfingers?" Sorry, I can't resist a good Jurassic Park quote. It sounds like you're into history as well as fantasy. If you could time-travel, would you travel to the future or the past? Where would you like to go, and why would you choose that time period?

I would go to the past. In another one of my stories, The Carriage, I did a scene of Charles Dickens' last performance. Prior to writing, I didn't know he liked to do recitals and act out his stories. He was an impressive man, who had a passion for his work. It's said he was like a rockstar, with women fainting at his performances. You never know though, it could have been because of those damnable corsets.

The theater has burned down since the recital, and I couldn't find images for description. In the end, I had to use a pencil drawing.

Corsets are kind of evil, but I can see fainting in Dickens' presence. What can readers who enjoy your book do to help make it successful?

Tell your friends, and their friends. Visit my pages and read more about Reflections and my other books. I post a first draft chapter of a story I'm working on called The Covens of Misty Haven, in the newsletter and on my website.

Ooo, that's a special treat for subscribers! What can we expect from you next?

I just finished a story called Seasons. It's for a Yuletide Anthology. The main character is Father Time. His brothers are Kris Kringle, and the Grimm Reaper. One of Father Time's servants is hit by a car, and Acronical, Father Time's real name, begs his brother Grimm not to harvest his soul. But, Grimm takes him anyway, and it sets in motion a Christmas without the spirit and cheer the season requires. I'll have a novel to follow, hopefully next year.

Sounds fun. Well, thanks for stopping by to chat. I wish you good luck in your future endeavors.

Thank you so much for having me.

A prolific writer, Jena Baxter creates characters with depth and stories filled with action, emotion, and a little bit of romance. She loves building fantastical worlds and cultures.

Living in Northern California with her husband, Jena enjoys soapmaking, her pets, and writer's conferences. She also reads for a screenwriting contest on an annual basis.

You can connect with Jena on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads, Amazon, her website, and her newsletter.

You can purchase an ebook of Reflections on Amazon US and Amazon UK, an audiobook at Audible, or a paperback on Createspace.

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    D. Lieber has a wanderlust that would make a butterfly envious. When she isn’t planning her next physical adventure, she’s recklessly jumping from one fictional world to another. Her love of reading led her to earn a Bachelor’s in English from Wright State University.

    Beyond her skeptic and slightly pessimistic mind, Lieber wants to believe. She has been many places—from Canada to England, France to Italy, Germany to Russia—believing that a better world comes from putting a face on “other.” She is a romantic idealist at heart, always fighting to keep her feet on the ground and her head in the clouds.

    Lieber lives in Wisconsin with her husband (John) and cats (Yin and Nox).

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