Monday, February 10, 2014

Andy Smithson: Venom of the Serpent's Cunning, Book Two by L. R. W. Lee: Interview



Welcome! Thanks for being with us and agreeing to answer a few of my questions. Does your significant other read your stuff?

Funny you should ask. Most authors complain that they can’t get anyone from their immediate family to read their work. I am pleased to say that (after threatening severe consequences J), I am an exception. Kidding… Actually, my husband read my first book on vacation and my daughter read it just last month. I’m still working on my son. I think he’s afraid he’s going to find himself in the pages in the character of Andy (and he would be partly correct J).

Do you use a pen name? If so, how did you come up with it?

I do… and it came out of a problem only modern day writers face. I went to grab a domain name for my website. My name is Linda Lee. Do you have any idea how many hundreds of Linda Lee’s exist in the world? Several. I tried all sorts of derivations… using middle initials and more… Linda W. Lee, Linda R. Lee. Everything was taken. So… I decided that if Mr. Tolkien could use three initials and his last name, who was I to argue with success? Hence, the pen name L. R. W. Lee was born.

Do you listen to music while writing? If so what?

Absolutely. When I’m writing chapters, I have to have music without lyrics or I suddenly find myself humming or having others near me asking where the animal is they hear suffering and in pain. If I’m revising, I love Pandora’s Film Scores station. Some film scores inspire me to invent more conflict or make the rising action more intense. You try writing to the theme from Star Wars or The Hobbit sometime and see if you don’t experience the same.

What group did you hang out with in high school?

I hung out with the geeks and nerds. You could usually find me in a Math League competition between schools, debating world policies at a Model U. N. meet, going to a ballet or play with Academic Achievement Society, or doing something with National Honor Society. Yes, call me Hermione Granger… I just wish there had been Dumbledore’s Army back then!

Are the names of the characters in your novels important?  How and why?

It depends on the role a character will play. I love inventing character names. The names of my main characters all have significance. The series protagonist is named Andy which means brave or hero. Andy’s best friend is Alden which means helper and describes his role. Another character is Imogenia which means innocent and gives insight into her past. The 500-year-old king was originally Kaysan before he became ruler. Kaysan means wise. Given the opportunity to add depth to my stories, I always take it. Of course, some character names are just humorous, like the giants whose names all rhyme… Zank, Tank, Blank and more. Or the king’s wizard who is an endearing, but bumbling guy, I named Mermin as a takeoff from Merlin.

What are the most important attributes for remaining sane as a writer?

LOL! Oh you know writers well, Laurie! Yes, I live in two worlds most of the time and sometimes my brain gets a bit confused. You know, I’ve wondered if fantasy writers are more prone to Alzheimer’s because we’re just nuts J I can picture  myself in my 90’s with only a few marbles rolling around and I wonder which world I’ll be living in most of the time. Those of us who invent fantasy have more options than other…  I say all this to say, there is nothing I do to help myself stay sane. I go with the flow and remain in a mood of wonder as to what world I’ll find myself in one day J.

Is there a piece of advice that you have received that has really stuck with you? If so, what was it?

The hardest working people are the luckiest people.



Synopsis of Andy Smithson Series: Venom of the Serpent’s Cunning, Book 2

Eleven-year-old Andy Smithson returns to Oomaldee to retrieve the second ingredient needed to break a 500-year-old curse enacted to punish the current ruler for murdering his older sister when she was 15. Not one to forgive easily, Imogenia’s spirit is bent on thwarting Andy to preserve the curse and naively aligns herself with the evil, scheming Abbadon. Things go from bad to worse when a creature Abaddon conjures from the darkest magic steals the Stone of Athanasia, the source of the ruler’s immortality, causing the king and his wizard Mermin to fall gravely ill. Andy is forced to choose between retrieving the stone to save those he loves or obediently going after the second ingredient. What will he chose? Will he be able to save the King and Mermin?

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Smithson Series: Venom of the Serpent’s Cunning, Book 2 is available at:

Amazon Paper:
Amazon Kindle:
All other eBook versions:
From the After Life, ten-year-old Andy Smithson’s relatives initiated a curse 500 years ago. Now they no longer agree it should continue and one is willing to sacrifice Andy’s life to end it. Unaware of the disagreement and with no say in the matter, Andy is unexpectedly and magically transported from his home. He finds himself in the Land of Oomaldee, facing mortal danger at every turn as he seeks to find a scale from a rare red dragon, the most ferocious of dragon species, to break the curse and save his life.

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Andy Smithson: Blast of the Dragon’s Fury, Book 1 is available at:


L. R. W. Lee is excited to announce that the free serialized podcast of book 1, Andy Smithson: Blast of the Dragon’s Fury is now available at:
 iTunes store  and
Her website
Since the age of eight, L. R. W. Lee wanted to write a children’s book, but felt she did not have anything significant to share; she sought to change lives while entertaining. A degree in Accounting did not provide riveting fodder for a best seller, so she waited. Over a decade, she founded and grew a company, during which, she worked closely with a mentor from whom she learned uncommon thinking that changed her life. After selling her business in early 2012, she had time to write and, more importantly, something significant to share.

L. R. W. Lee lives in scenic Austin, TX with her husband, daughter and son.

As well, as part of the book launch tour, you have the opportunity to win 9 fantasy adventure ebooks from highly acclaimed authors. To enter go to L. R. W.’s website at!giveaway/chq4.


Linda Lee said...

Laurie, Thanks SO much for hosting a stop on my book launch tour!! I appreciate your support and encouragement as well as the great questions you asked!

Martha Lancaster said...

Your books sound interesting and full of adventure. Can't wait to read them. I am also a writer for this age group, so I love to see what others are writing.