With rebel leader Darian free at last, the humans and outsiders on Ixeos must find a way to join forces and defeat the Firsts. The problem? All slaves are tracked with GPS, the Firsts are the only ones with power, and roving gangs hate the rebels just as much as they hate the aliens. As Darian and the outsiders from Earth travel the globe through the mysterious tunnels in Paris, they learn that the Firsts are preparing to launch another wave of biological warfare. With a transporter that will allow the aliens to target any city, anywhere on the planet, the rebels know they must stop them at all costs.
As things get more dangerous on Ixeos, the outsiders find that they’re pushed to their limit. Will they fight for freedom, no matter the price?
The McClellands are enjoying a lazy summer vacation at the beach when they are lured from our world into Ixeos, an alternate Earth. Finding themselves lost in a maze of tunnels under Paris and surrounded by strangers, they discover that they have been brought to Ixeos for one purpose: to take the planet back from humanoid aliens who have claimed it. With the aid of the tunnels and a mysterious man named Landon, the teens travel the world seeking the key that will allow them to free Darian, the long-imprisoned rebel leader. But the aliens aren’t the only problem on Ixeos — the McClellands have to deal with brutal gangs, desperate junkies, and a world without power, where all the technology is owned by the aliens, and where most of the population has been killed or enslaved. The worst part? There’s no way home.
What’s your story? How did you get into writing?
I have always written, although I didn’t consider myself a writer until a year and a half ago. I really didn’t think I was very creative! I did a lot of non-fiction stuff, editing, journaling, etc. But I did NaNoWriMo in November, 2011, and that was when I realized (much to my surprise!) that I really did have a few creative bones, after all.
What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Write. A lot of aspiring writers talk about writing and publishing, but don’t actually write anything. So first and foremost, write! Secondly, look at all your options when it comes to publishing. Just like with music, the indie realm is no longer for people who “can’t make it.” It’s for entrepreneurs, people who like to be outside the box, people who don’t want to be confined by one genre. Do some research before you decide what will work best for you.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on Darian’s War, book 3 of the IXEOS Trilogy.
What has been the most challenging part of publishing or marketing your book?
Marketing is the most challenging. I’ve learned a ton since my first book came out in July, 2012, but as much as you learn, there’s ten times that you don’t know. Plus, things are always changing. Amazon changes their algorithms, advertisers change their criteria, promotions evolve. I wish it was the kind of thing, like maybe playing guitar, that once you knew it, you’ve got it down. But marketing is definitely a moving target!
What has been your favorite part?
I love talking to fans, or getting that letter begging me to tell them when the next book is coming out. But my favorite part has actually been mentoring other writers. I’m a long-time homeschooler – I guess that teaching mode sticks with you!
Who are your favorite authors?
I am very eclectic when it comes to reading. I love Dick Francis and Martha Grimes (English mystery); Janet Evanovich (humorous mystery); James Rollins and Steve Berry (action adventure/thriller); Rick Riordan (YA fantasy). My all-time favorites are JRR Tolkein and CS Lewis.
What gave you the idea for your current work?
IXEOS came about through a strange mixing of an article in National Geographic Magazine about the miles of tunnels under Paris, and a kayaking adventure I had last summer with my daughter, where we found, then lost, a flock of ducks. She and I texted for weeks about “where the ducks went,” and one day I had the ducks disappear to those tunnels in Paris. And that was the beginning!
If you could be any character in the book, which one would you be?
That’s hard! No one has an easy time in IXEOS! I love all my main characters, but I’d probably want to be Hannah, who is a secondary character. She’s smart, capable, fearless, and loyal. Or Clay, one of the main characters. He’s pretty smart, too.
What other books have you written and/or are working on for the future?
I have written 2 action adventure treasure hunts featuring Rei & Gideon Quinn. Those are Solomon’s Throne and The Hoard of the Doges. They’re good, old fashioned treasure hunts, suitable for age 13 and up. Just a great romp. I have an inspirational romance set in the Civil War called Undaunted Love. And, of course, IXEOS and IXEOS: Rebellion.
What’s your favorite quote?
“It’s never too late to be what you might have been.” George Elliot
What’s your favorite supernatural creature?
Oh, hard one! I’ve always loved dragons. Puff the Magic Dragon was my favorite song as a child. (I can’t wait to see Smaug in the next installment of The Hobbit!) But elves are pretty great, too!
Clay was lying in the old bed, his hands under his head, staring at the ceiling. He was exhausted, almost overly so. He was having a hard time settling down. Riley seemed restless, too.
“You awake?” Clay asked.
“What happens if Marty really does get the satellites disabled or out of orbit or whatever? I mean, where will be put all those people? Look what happened today, and it was just one little girl.”
“I guess it would be like the raid. We’d have to tell people ahead, give them enough time to prepare. Obviously, the Firsts aren’t going to let them go that easily. They’d kill them in a heartbeat… It’s all going to have to be timed to have the least amount of casualties.”
“Casualties. You mean deaths.” Clay sighed. He was twenty years old. He’d been a typical beach bum back in North Carolina. His transition to a soldier had been from necessity, not temperament.
“Yeah, deaths. We have to trust that Darian will come up with a plan for them. After all, it’s his army we’ll be setting free. He obviously cares about them surviving at least as much as we do.”
“True,” Clay said. After a moment he asked, “Is he one of them? I mean, they think he is. But clearly Landon isn’t human, and Darian is his son. And Darian is the only human from this planet who can use the portals. So…” He didn’t finish the question.
“I don’t know, man. All I know is, he’s the only hope for the people on this planet, including us. Wherever he’s from, whatever he is, he’s all we’ve got.”
Author Jennings Wright
Born and raised in Florida, Jennings spent her early years reading anything she could get her hands on, when she wasn’t spending time in and on the water. She won a prize in the 6th grade for her science fiction stories.
Jennings attended the University of Tampa, graduating with a B.A. in Political Science, and almost enough credits for B.A.s in both English and History. She attended graduate school at the University of West Florida, studying Psychology. She spent time over the years doing various kinds of business writing, editing, and teaching writing, but mostly having and raising her family, homeschooling her children, owning and running a business with her husband, and starting a non-profit.
Thanks to a crazy idea called NaNoWriMo Jennings got back into creative writing in 2011 and hasn’t stopped since. She currently lives in North Carolina with her husband, also a business owner and writer, and two children, and travels extensively with her family, and her non-profit in Uganda.
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