Tell us something about your book.
Releasing Her Power Within is the first book in the Fae Shifters series. It follows Liz as she takes a leap of faith to change up her life. She is tired of being overworked and has struggled with her mother’s death. She moves into her family’s cabin to pursue this change of pace and discovers a massive family secret that may cost her life. She wanted a peaceful and slow-paced life after the move but is thrust into a brand new world of magic she had no idea existed.
Liz is a strong female character, and in this story, she also meets someone she discovers is her mate. He balances her out, and they tackle everything this new life throws at them together.
Who is the ideal reader for your book?
The ideal reader is someone who loves fantasy with a bit of romance mixed. Shifters and Fae, as well as other paranormal beings, are in this story. Anyone interested in those things would genuinely enjoy curling up with this book and drinking their favorite beverage.
Share the best critique/review of your book.
“When I began reading Releasing Her Powers Within: Fae Shifters I by Madilynn Dale, I was fully ready to find a teenage protagonist coming of age, awareness, and powers. I really love that this book has more teeth than that. The protagonist, Liz, is in her twenties instead of a teenager, but that leads to a great deal of maturity and a more complete adult. For example, more adult versus coming-of-age themes are included with Liz considering a career change and clearing out her mother’s property following her death.
The book builds tension all the way through, but about the time of the panther fight in the woods and the mysterious note from “J”, the action is high! The story is racing along at this point, very fluidly, and the reader hates to veer off and pause to do anything but finish reading.The book ends in a natural pause, but the reader is left hanging wanting to know more about these dual roles that Liz now has.
I just recommended this book in a book group I am in because it’s not the typical teenage protagonist. I really like that the story focuses on adults who have started their careers, but are still finding their place in the world.” -Rachel Roy (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3525449944?book_show_action=true&from_review_page=1)
What inspired you to write it?
The idea for this story came from a part of a dream I had. The characters presented themselves with an idea, and it went from there. As I began to write, the characters took over, and the story just seemed to flow. It was too good not to share.
What message would you like readers to take away from your book?
I want readers to know that it is never too late to take a leap of faith and change your life. It’s difficult and has challenges, but in the end, it is worth it if you stay the course. Liz’s life went from being an overworked woman to finding a life filled with magic and love.
Share an excerpt from your book.
I am pulled roughly into this person’s chest upon reaching the back corner of the alley. It is solid muscle, and I realize it must be a man. I try to look up or around me to get a better look.
“Stop moving!” he yells. I feel a sharp pain and realize he is holding a knife against my neck. I hold my breath and try not to flinch. I can already feel the blade pushing into my skin. It’s cold and sends chills down my spine.
I finally look up and hear Cam yell, “Liz!”
He runs into the end of the alley and freezes. He must be able to see us in the corner. I don’t know how he can see us, but I am incredibly thankful. The man grips my arm tighter but thankfully does not move the blade any closer.
“Hey man, don’t hurt her. Whatever you want, we’ll give it to you. Just let her go.”
“Stay where you are, or I will hurt her. I want both of your wallets and whatever valuables you have. If you move, this knife will go into her throat.”
I feel him push it into my throat more. I feel a small cut open up, and blood slowly trickles down my throat. I feel the warmth and pain, and my mind seems to stop working. I stand in horror and feel as if this will be the last moment of my life. I don’t even flinch when the man gropes my ass.
I look up to meet Cam’s gaze at the end of the alley as I sense some type of change in the air. It’s almost as if there is an electrical current moving through the air. I try not to whimper as the pain from my neck throbs and itches, and more blood runs down. I blink rapidly, fighting back the tears keeping Cam’s gaze, and notice a strange glow that seems to come from his eyes. He tosses his wallet at the man, and it lands a few feet away. I watch as it falls and glance back up at Cam. At that moment, the man roughly shoves me to the side, and I skid across the dirty concrete floor of the alley.
Before the man has a chance to reach the wallet Cam tossed, he is yanked up by the collar of his shirt and shoved into the wall across from me. A loud growl comes from Cam as he begins to pummel the man with his fist. Blood droplets fly through the air, and a reverberating crunch echoes in the alley.
Finally, what has only been a few minutes, but has felt like hours later, Cam lets the now unconscious man drop to the ground. He briefly looks at me with what seems to be golden-colored eyes that glow. He walks toward me, and it’s as if the glow fades the closer he gets. I stare in bewilderment, not comprehending what just went down.
“Are you okay? Hey, look at me. Do you have a concussion? Here let’s put something on that cut. It doesn’t look too deep.” He quickly pulls his t-shirt over his head and presses it into my neck. He reaches down and grasps my hand placing it over the shirt.
“Here, hold it steady. I think you’re in shock. You aren’t talking.” I am momentarily distracted by his luscious six-pack.
“Huh?” I manage to get out as I push the shirt against my neck.
“That’s a bit better. I’ll call the cops, and I’m going to step over here to do so. Just keep the pressure steady.”
I watch as he moves away toward the end of the alley. He seems to be just out of earshot, but I know he has called for help. He frequently glances over at me while relaying information to whatever dispatcher he is speaking to. It warms my heart but doesn’t seem to help me shake free of this stupor. I also can’t figure out why his eyes were glowing. Was that part of the shock I am experiencing?
He comes back toward me, placing his phone back in his pocket. I watch as he stops to pick up our wallets before coming over to me.
“Here, let’s get you up and move back toward the streetlights. I don’t like being back here right now.”
He reaches down to help me to stand, and I let him guide me back toward the street. I love the way his arms around me feel, and it seems to help me relax a bit.
“Thank you for saving me. I was terrified,”
(Chapter 6 An Unusual Date)
Did you dare to believe that your book will be published when you started writing?
Honestly, no, but I hoped to find a way to publish it. It was an exciting learning experience.
How many times were you rejected?
I think it was three. I quit waiting to hear back from others after that and started looking into self-publishing.
Was the process of looking for an agent/publisher discouraging?
Yes. I had a lot of anxiety on top of my regular anxiety while looking. I was also still a new mom during the time, adding more stress to my stressful life.
How long did you write the first draft? And how long did the editing and re-editing take?
I think the total time ended up being 7-8 months in the end.
Can you share your writing rituals/habits/process?
I did a lot of writing for this book late in the evening and into the early hours of the morning. Now my writing habits are a bit different. I do a lot of writing on my son’s days in his early preschool program and when I’m not completely exhausted at night. I always have something to sip on while I write, usually water, coffee, or wine. A crunchy snack helps me focus as well.
When I first start writing stories, I do a lot of brainstorming and use Pinterest images to begin forming my idea. I also plan out a list of characters for the story and write out their personality and other character traits. It helps me refer back to them as I am writing to keep each of the characters consistent. I also do a rough outline for how my story will play out. It doesn’t always stay on track with it because my characters take over, so I try to make it a flexible one.
Who was your first literary crush?
This is a difficult question. I honestly can’t remember who my first literary crush was. I have read so many books over the years. One of the earliest I can remember was Stark from the House Of Night Series by P.C. Cast.
Did you imagine yourself as an author in your teens?
I did, but I never dreamed that I could do it. My family always pushed my siblings and me to go for higher-paying jobs, and I had written off writing at one point because it didn’t bring in that much money. My husband was the one that encouraged me to give it a try and just see where it goes. I was terrified to do it, but I’m pleased I took that leap of faith.
What was the first book that made you fall in love with reading?
The Magic Tree House series by Mary Pope Osborne were some of the first books that got me hooked on reading. I loved their magical stories, and I hope my son does one day too. They were so fun and creative. I think that’s where my love for fantasy books originated.
Did a book ever make you cry? (Which one?)
Yes, there have been a lot that have made me cry. So many. The last book I read that made me cry big tears was by Ivy Smoak, Empire High Betrayal. Another that gets me every time I read it is Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J Maas.
Which literary character did you want to take to bed as an 18-year-old?
I am not sure I had one at that time in my life, but I had a crush on Stark from the House Of Night Series at that time. Maybe him?
Do you sing under the shower? Or to your plants?
Yes, to both. I like to play music and work around the house, so my plants get sang to a lot. When I am in a good mood, I sing whatever is stuck in my head while I shower.
Do you like to cook? What is your specialty?
I enjoy cooking. It can be relaxing and fun. I enjoy cooking pastas, baked goods, and casseroles.
Do you have a pet?
Yes, I have five. Two dogs and three cats. Most of them are rescues, and they make life fun.
What is the most romantic thing you ever did?
Hike to the top of a mountain and kiss my husband. We could see for miles out in every direction around us, and it was peaceful. It was a quiet moment where we stood together and just looked at the large world around us and felt our love for each other as we watched the clouds move by.
What is the most romantic thing someone did for you?
My husband took me to my favorite place, which is in the middle of a state park on the edge of the river that runs through there. It’s a beautiful park, Beavers Bend State park in Hochatown OK. He took me out onto this small piece of concrete that goes out into the middle of the river. I loved looking off the edge of it as a kid and watch the bass swim about and an occasional snake. We were out there looking at the cliffs across from us, and he proposed to me. It was peaceful and not over the top, which is perfect for me. I think that is one of the most romantic things he has done. He isn’t a huge romantic.
Do you believe in love?
Social Media Links
Book Links: All Amazon Links
Breaking Traditions: The Shifter and The Mage: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B087TJJ5HF/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i2
The Fae Shifters Series
Book 1, Releasing Her Power Within: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08682JFSP/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i1
Book 2, Unleashed: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08KGLWR1Z/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i4
Book 4, The Blood King: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08YKL5Q42/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i0
Dog Park Epiphany: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08CNML3V7/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i5