Interview with YA author K.D. Van Brunt

I’m
featuring a special interview with K.D.
Van Brunt
today. He’s touring his debut young adult urban fantasy novel, Win the Rings with Goddess Fish Promotions.
During
his tour, K.D. will be awarding a $50
Amazon or /BN.com gift card to one randomly chosen commenter. To be entered to
win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free
to visit
other tour stops
and enter there, too.
Blurb
for Win the Rings:
Jace has been the property of the U.S. Army since they found out
about her when she was five, and now she has become one of its most valuable
weapons. But Jace is not the only one of her kind. Gray is one too, but with
the help of his sister, he has spent most of his sixteen years hiding from the
Army.
Now, the Army has found out about Gray and they cannot allow him
to roam free. Operating on the theory that it takes one to catch one, Jace is
sent out with a special ops squad to hunt Gray down. But Jace is not the only
one pursuing Gray, and the competition is after her too. What ensues is a
desperate chase through city after city as duty and honor collide with love and
sacrifice.
Excerpt from Win the Rings:
“I’m Mark,” he says.
           
“Tina,” I blurt out before I know
what I’m doing.
           
“Princess Tina from the kingdom of
Berwick,” Mark says with a wolfish grin.
           
I can’t help myself.  I shoot him a flirtatious smile.  I’m about to tell him that he looks like
Justin Bieber having a bad hair day, in a kind of blended compliment-insult
thing, when Nia’s words crash into my head.
           
Gray, I think it’s him.
           
Where?
           
By Au Bon Pain.  He has a dark green trench coat on, but I saw
a flash of the hoodie underneath.
         
“Shit,” I say out loud, grabbing the
wheel back from Tina.  I toss the paper
and bolt for the restaurant.
           
“Hey, wait a sec,” the Biebs shouts
to me.
          
As I turn the corner of the
newsstand, I hear Nia’s frantic words.
           
He’s pulling something from his
coat.
           
I see him now.  He’s standing in front of a plate glass
window looking in on a crush of people inside, sitting at tables and queued up
behind counters to buy lunch.  He’s
pulling back a slide on an automatic assault rifle, preparing to pump the first
of a hundred rounds of bullets into the crowded restaurant.  There’s no time to find a policeman.  In seconds loony tunes will be shooting.
           
We have to stop him, I say, and then
I see Nia sprinting at him like me.
           
We both slam into him at the same
time just as he’s leveling the gun to fire, and all three of us tumble to the
hard, icy concrete.  I’m lying on my side
facing Peter Eklend and he’s on his side facing me.  I’ve wrenched my shoulder and it’s too
painful for me to sit up.  Peter Eklend
shoots a glare of such hatred at me that I flinch.  Then I see that he still has the gun in his
hands.  Nia is on her feet now, but
before she can do anything, Peter pulls the trigger.  The explosion brings a sudden quietness to my
ears, as if I’ve just gone deaf, and I feel a stabbing hot pain in my chest, as
if I’ve been impaled on a red-hot fireplace poker.  I cough, sending a froth of blood spraying
out of my mouth.  I need to breathe, but
my lungs aren’t working.
           
Then my ears start working and I
hear Nia scream.  Others are now
wrestling with Peter.  Another shot goes
off.  It doesn’t hit me. 
           
Gray.  Shift. 
You have to shift!
           
I’m losing consciousness.  I can’t breathe.  My lungs are filling with blood.  This body is dying.  I can feel it.  I’m seconds away from the last, icy embrace
of death.  I have to get out of this
body, leave it behind and flee to another body—a healthy, unwounded body.  I need to shift now.  With one last shred of will power, just as
awareness winks out, I shift back to me.
           
A crowd has gathered around me by
now, and I hear a collective gasp when they see me shimmer and change.  I’m lying on the ground in a sticky, syrupy
pool of blood, but I’m back in my own body now—my own bullet-free body.  Nia is immediately at my side pulling me to
my feet.   Some of Tina’s blood stains my
pants and sweatshirt as I roll away from Peter Eklend.  I’ve shifted away from death in the nick of
time.  A strange exhilaration causes my
skin to tinkle and a rush of adrenalin floods through me.  I’ve evaded eternity by mere nanoseconds.
  
         
Run! 
Nia says, bringing me back to the moment.
What do you think
you’re really good at?
In
terms of my writing, I like my characters. 
I feel what they feel, I sense what they sense, I hurt when they
hurt.  It defines my writing.  I also like my plotting.  I try to keep it tight and focused.
What do you think
you’re really bad at?
Patience.  In my writing and everything else, I want
results now.  I find it hard to sit back
and wait, but sometimes that’s what you have to do.
Is your life anything
like it was two years ago?
In
many ways, yes.  The one big difference
is that it was about two years ago that I started this book series, and every
ounce of free time goes into that now.

Have you ever had an imaginary friend?
No.  I missed out on that one.

Do you have any phobias?
Heights
and spiders.  I can’t  watch scenes in movies involving people
teetering on the edge of a high building, and I avoid all spider movies.

Ever broken any bones?
Yes,
but all during a period of excessive clumsiness.  In 4th grade, I broke my wrist
playing football on our front lawn, in 5th grade I broke my nose
running into a post (that took a while to live down), and in 6th
grade I broke my thumb playing baseball.
Bio:
K.D.
Van Brunt has been writing professionally his entire career and has published
an extensive list of nonfiction works. Win
the Rings
is his first fiction book. When not writing, he reads and listens
to audiobooks during his daily drive through the sea of gridlock that is
commuting in and out of Washington, DC. A long time resident of Maryland, he
can often be found tromping around the many civil war battle sites in the area.
To find out more about K.D. Van Brunt, including bonus content relating to Win
the Rings, check out his website and follow
him on Twitter.
Other
links:

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