Interview with Author Lada Ray

Maddy: Today, I have the great pleasure of interviewing Ms. Lada Ray, author of her newly released metaphysical adventure, The Earth Shifter! Lada is also author of the ongoing Accidental Spy Series, including the bestselling Gold Train (Accidental Spy Russia Adventure), and Stepford USA; and creator of a new YA fantasy series, Earth Keepers Chronicles. Book one, Catharsis (Legend of the Lemurians) is currently available, and more books in this charming series of novelettes are on the way.
I’ve recently read The Earth Shifter and must say I was blown away by the characters, settings and multiple story lines which all worked so well together driving the story to a spectacular spellbinding conclusion. I was intrigued by the spiritual and moral messages, as well as the poetic descriptions of Siberia and metaphysical realms of our planet Earth. You can probably tell that I’m a big fan of Lada’s writing. Needless to say, I was happy to write a review in which I conveyed my impressions and feelings, which can be read here.
Let’s begin our interview. Welcome, Lada!
Lada: Thank you, Maddy, for such a glowing introduction. I’m very happy to be a guest on your wonderful spiritual blog, which I enjoy immensely!
M: I’d like to start by saying that Sasha, The Earth Shifter’s young protagonist, is a wonderful role model for teenagers and adults alike. How did you come up with this character? You attribute certain superhero qualities to Sasha, and she manages her responsibilities quite well. Is she reminiscent of a young Miss Lada Ray, our intrepid world adventurer? Casting that Twilight girl, twatzherface, is (ahem) interesting too.
Sasha
Sasha
L: For me, Sasha is a dream of a perfect human being – something perhaps we all strive for. Yet, as those who’ve read the book would notice, Sasha is all too human. A reader can relate to her struggles and trials, as well as her accomplishments. We can root for her as well as see ourselves in her shoes. It is this combination that gives her special credibility. I think every writer tends to impart certain personal qualities on her characters, and to a certain degree so did I. 🙂
Kristen Stuart so far came closest to Sasha’s image, but the search for a perfect Sasha is still ongoing, so let’s consider the pic above just a placeholder, shall we, LOL.
M: There is a strong spiritual message that Tengis, the shaman, brings to the book. He shares timeless wisdom as well as spiritual guidance. Tengis has an enormous responsibility, both as the Earth Keeper and mentor to the Key. Yet he’s very human and real, as are the other Earth Keepers. I love all the Earth Keepers’ characters in the book. In my opinion, the Earth being watched over by the Keepers would be a much better and safer place to live in. I wish they really existed, as I must confess, I’d sleep much better knowing they’re on the job. Alas, The Earth Shifter is a fantasy, but to paraphrase Voltaire: “If there were no Earth Keepers, then they should have been invented.” Oh awesome, you did invent them!
L: First, who said this was just a fantasy? How do you know there are no real Keepers watching over us right now from a nebulous realm located between Heaven and Earth? 😉 Remember the Comet of Karma? Seemingly, it was also a fantasy and my invention, yet look at the meteor that just recently exploded over Russia, as well as the comet that just missed the Earth only by 17,000 miles, which is a pittance by cosmic standards! The interesting thing was that both of these celestial bodies behaved exactly as described in the book. How’s that for fantasy becoming reality!
M: Touche. Yes those recent events blew my mind, it’s eerie but you certainly called it in your book. The comet put a completely new perspective on The Earth Shifter and your writing. But how did you come up with the character of Tengis and those of the other Earth Keepers?
L: Sometimes I see things and so several years ago, Tengis materialized before my eyes, just as he’s described in the book: a small, bowlegged man, with his rare, all-white Asian beard, squinty eyes, which are able to pierce into other dimensions, and smoking his perpetual pipe. He is a composite of the wise men our human civilization was able to produce throughout the ages.
The venerable institution of the Earth Keepers is another thing that just popped into my head. Chapter one, where The Earth Keepers met in 1908 to decide the fate of this human civilization just as the Comet of Karma was about crash into the Earth, was the original first chapter of the book. As a matter of fact, it was also the very first piece of real fiction I’ve ever written. Apart from some polishing, tightening up and editing, Chapter 1 of The Earth Shifter has practically remained unchanged. It was from this chapter that I built the rest of the story.
Some readers and reviewers have told me that Tengis is the most formidable character in the book and that they would love to see one of the future Earth Shifter books crafted around him. I’m happy to say that I intend to give Tengis much more prime time in the future books. But incidentally, my new metaphysical series, entitled Earth Keepers Chronicles, is about the origins and ancient history of the Earth Keepers. It’s a prequel and companion series to The Earth Shifter. A quick and easy read, this series throws a very intriguing new light on The Earth Shifter events. The first book in the series: Catharsis, (Legend of the Lemurians) is available now on Kindle. New releases of both ebooks and paperback are planned for April, 2013. Stay tuned!
M: The characters in the book are all so fascinating! I loved them all and could relate to many of them, but one especially stood out for me. Perhaps because of her mysterious/ mischievous  spirit, or because she’s a true “New Yorker,” so to speak. I’m talking about that wickedly wanton, sultry and seductive brunette simply known as “Red.” She is a really powerful, enigmatic chick with the secret agenda, and layers of intrigue as deep as her lair. How did you come up with such a man-eating siren who resides in this magical subterranean Underworld castle? Will Red be featured in the next installment?
L: I was looking for a character Kei could fall in love with head over heals, and also a character which would juxtapose Sasha. While Sasha and Red travel in parallel realities within THE EARTH SHIFTER, there will be much more going on between them in the following books. No spoilers, but I guarantee that it will super-explosive!
As for Red’s living quarters, I needed something spectacular and completely unexpected, with a certain amount of shock value; something unparalleled, and something that would fit Red’s personality like velvet evening gloves. Her Underworld castle became that thing.
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Berenice-Marlohe-Skyfall-Photo-02
Berenice-skyfall
M: I couldn’t agree more, the castle really does compliment her underground lifestyle. Did you find an actress to play Red?
Bérénice Marlohe, the gorgeous French actress who played Sévérine in the latest Bond flick immediately came to mind, she has this classic timeless quality about her.  What do you think?
L: Yes that’s an excellent choice! I think she would suit the part admirably!
M: One more question: I’m sure readers are dying to know, how old is Red really?
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L: You never ask a Lady about her age ;). And make no mistake, Red’s a real Lady! So, I won’t betray her secret here… but I can tell you, she really is timeless. And I promise, much more will be revealed about this enigmatic character in future books!
M: In the book you address the topic of bullying, which Sasha handles in her usual resourceful fashion. You’ve also addressed this issue in Catharsis, Legend of the Lemurians. This important topic presently concerns many, generating avid debate in our society. Sasha’s handling of the situation with bullies rely neither upon force, nor negotiation skills. Instead she uses a fascinating spiritual/metaphysical technique, which turns out to be much more effective. How did you come up with this idea?
L: Without giving away the plot, I can just say that Sasha’s handling of any conflict is based on the spiritual principle that higher energy always wins, and that light always drowns out the darkness.
M: I am sure, many readers would love to know: what was it like to create the Earth Shifter Multiverse?
L: It was a wild, wild ride. I imagined The Earth Shifter concept, including the Comet of Karma, the dual Key, Sasha, Maxim, Tengis and the Earth Keepers in a brief moment of inspiration, but it took me several years to flesh out the characters, the plot’s multiple story lines and to write first half of the book. Due to the complexity of the book’s message,  characters and storyline I sometimes  seemed to hit a wall. In such case, I’d meditate and take breaks from my writing.
During one of my breaks lasting, oh, something like two years, I created the character of Jade Snow, a sexy journalist and super-sleuth turned spy extraordinaire, having written one by one, STEPFORD USA, Green Desert and GOLD TRAIN. Stepford USA, the first novel I’ve completed and published, was initially intended as a comic relief of sorts when I hit the wall with “my serious book,” as I called The Earth Shifter. However, before I knew it, my comic relief and Jade Snow materialized into a promising new series, entitled Accidental Spy Adventures.
Apparently, the experience of writing the Accidental Spy Adventure books was necessary for me to complete The Earth Shifter as with my newly acquired confidence, I completed the second half of the book in one month! In 2012, I became obsessed with finishing and worked literally day and night. I am very happy with the result and I hope my readers love the story as much as I do! That said, The Earth Shifter saga has only just begun. There will be many more adventures awaiting Sasha, Tengis, Kei and Win, as well as Red and all the other endearing characters! Stay tuned!
M: While reading The Earth Shifter, I felt this was one of those rare books quite suitable and interesting for all ages. In your opinion, who should read your book?
L: The Earth Shifter is a true young adult crossover, suitable for most ages, early teen through adult. It is a great read for anyone interested in fantasy/scifi, with superhero and quest themes. There is also a very interesting Underworld fantasy twist in the story. It’s also great for those who enjoy reading about Russia and Siberia, its history and present day events, about oligarchs, spies, geopolitics, secret societies and world conspiracies. As many have noted, the descriptions of Siberia and Sacred Lake Baikal are quite poetic and spiritual, as these fascinating destinations become the book’s characters. There is a strong metaphysical/spiritual element to the story. Anyone who likes indigenous cultures, shamanism and healing will also find it very enlightening and uplifting. And let’s not forget Remote Viewing and the Russian & American psychic spies, which is another major theme in the book! If you like stories with fully fleshed out characters that possess true depth and enigma – characters you can really root for and miss after you’re done reading – then The Earth Shifter is also for you!
M: What are you working on now and what are your future plans?
L: As pointed out earlier, in April-May I am releasing Lemurian Crystal (Earth Keepers Chronicles 2) and Atlantis (Earth Keepers Chronicles 3). These two novelettes will come out as separate ebooks. Simultaneously, I will release Catharsis, Lemurian Crystal & Atlantis together as EARTH KEEPERS CHRONICLES: ORIGINS. It will come out as both ebook and paperback.
I am also happy to report that The Earth Shifter is coming out as paperback ahead of schedule, in the second part of March! Also, I’m finally releasing Stepford USA as paperback, and last but not least, simultaneously, I will be releasing the second edition of GOLD TRAIN paperback, which has been re-edited and additionally polished.
Look for all these new editions from March 18th onward!
I am also starting to work on The Earth Shifter sequel. Stay tuned for the book title release and other interesting details.
Also, it is my pleasure to announce that on March 18th, at 6pm EST, I’ll be a guest on the Vinny Eastwood Show which is broadcast on American Freedom Radio. Watch it there, or at  vinnyeastwoodshow.com and guerillamedia.co.nz.  I will also post the show on my Youtube channel and blog (find all my links below). Please tune in to listen, ask questions and comment! Hope you enjoy it, and please stop by to let me know what you think!
Maddy, in conclusion, I want to thank you and your readers for this fabulous opportunity to connect. I enjoyed it tremendously!
You are very welcome, Lada. The pleasure is all mine, and I’m sure my readers agree!
Friends, check out Lada’s amazing books! I’ve read most of them and wrote reviews as well – planning to post all my reviews shortly. Till then you can find my reviews and those of her adoring fans at:  Lada Ray’s Goodreads Author page.
You can purchase The Earth Shifter at:
Amazon US     Amazon UK       Barnes&Noble      Smashwords      Kobo
Find out more about Lada’s books: LadaRay.com
Follow Lada:
Twitter: @LadaTweets
Like LadaRayBooks on Facebook
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49 thoughts on “Interview with Author Lada Ray

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  11. This is so fascinating and esoteric. Scifi with a vision is a heady cocktail for me. I remember Robert Heinlein’s The Moon is a harsh mistress and Starship Troopers.What is it that makes you write in this genre’?

    Look forward to reading Earth Shifter.

    Shakti

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    • Thank you Lada, what an honor! I look forward to my very own copy when the paperback comes out, very soon I hope. ♥ Thanks for giving a spectacular interview, you’re an amazing writer! Much love.♥

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  14. Hehehe! Maddy gets a sister!
    And whilst at it, she successfully got me fascinated by the interview. I already like the fictional Tengis. Seems an amusing fellow. All from the interview. Good work here, girls.

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  16. Great interview, Maddy. So many of the characters sound intriguing. Like Rohan, I also applaud Sasha’s approach to conflict resolution.
    Lada, I can’t believe you completed the second half of the book in one month. Wow, that must have felt like you were in instrument in God’s hands.
    Looking forward to reading this book. {{{Hugs]}} kozo

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  17. Great interview Maddy and Lada! I especially love this: “Sasha’s handling of any conflict is based on the spiritual principle that higher energy always wins, and that light always drowns out the darkness.”

    Very cool and very true 🙂

    Oh man, now I can’t wait to see Red and Sasha’s head to head moments hehe!

    Good luck with your busy year Lada, and thanks for sharing Maddy 🙂

    Rohan.

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  18. That was such a great interview! Red is a real person??? I especially loved the backstage knowledge about how you developed Tengis (my fave). And, OF COURSE I’ll be there watching you on the Vinny Show March 18th! (And so should everyone else)!

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    • Thank you, Mark! 🙂 Yes, I’m very excited about the Vinny Eastwood Show. It should be really good! Also, I’ll be a guest at Rohan Healy’s http://rohan7things.wordpress.com/ blog on Monday. It’s a very different interview, which compliments this one. We discuss my predictions, my encounter with Fidel Castro and Cuba and advice for writers. Check it out!

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    • Hi Sunshine 🙂 The Earth Shifter has only a small element of scifi. It’s mainly a visionary/metaphysical fantasy/thriller, which will also delight the lovers of history and spy adventures. Check it out and thanks!

      Lada Ray

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♥Thanks for sharing♥

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