• The Book Goat

Rena Barron: Kingdom of Souls

September is here! I'm very excited about September (gee I wonder why) but that's not what this post is about. This post is about celebrating my fellow debuts! I know you're going to love all the fresh books coming at you this month!

Kingdom of Souls

by Rena Barron

Born into a family of powerful witchdoctors, Arrah yearns for magic of her own. But each year she fails to call forth her ancestral powers, while her ambitious mother watches with growing disapproval.

There’s only one thing Arrah hasn’t tried, a deadly last resort: trading years of her own life for scraps of magic. Until the Kingdom’s children begin to disappear, and Arrah is desperate to find the culprit.

She uncovers something worse. The long-imprisoned Demon King is stirring. And if he rises, his hunger for souls will bring the world to its knees… unless Arrah pays the price for the magic to stop him.

September 3rd, 2019

Introduce yourself and your debut novel!

Hi! I’m Rena Barron, and I’m the author of Kingdom Of Souls, the first in a three-book epic fantasy about a girl who must trade years off of her life in return for the magic she needs to stop a terrible Demon King from destroying her kingdom.

What’s the most surprising part about your debut journey so far?

I’m surprised that authors have so much to juggle between writing while still trying to meet deadlines. There’s a lot that happens on the business side and always the next thing to do.

Give a shout-out to a fellow debut!

I’m looking forward to Ronni Davis’ WHEN THE STARS LEAD TO YOU, a contemporary story set in a high school that explores love and loss from the perspective of a college-bound biracial girl fighting for her dream career in science.

Who is your favorite character?

Arrah’s grandmother is one of my favorite characters. She’s the leader of her tribe, strong, iron-willed, patient, and always has a trick up her sleeve.

How long did it take you to write this book?

I originally wrote the story back in 2013 and shelved it after getting over a hundred rejections. I rewrote the book from scratch in 2017, and it took about six weeks.

Describe your main character in 3 words.

Arrah is resilient, stubborn, and determined.

What was the hardest scene to write?

There’s a turning point scene that rocks Arrah to the core, and to this day, it’s hard for me to read because I feel her sorrow through the page.

What advice would you give to a new writer?

Read widely and never stop learning.

Describe your writing space.

I usually write at home at my desk or on the couch. I like my space to stay clutter-free and quiet. I’m not someone who enjoys writing to music or in crowded cafes because I like to hear the beats of the story in my head.

How do you develop your plot and characters?

For Kingdom Of Souls, I outlined the plot, loosely pulled together some character profiles, developed the political structure, and set some of the rules of the world before drafting.

What are two of your favorite covers of all time?

City of Brass by S. A Chakraborty and The Bitch Witch by Rin Chupeco

Share a favorite recipe!

Overnight oats: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/244251/no-cook-overnight-oatmeal/

Share a favorite song!


Thanks for interviewing, Rena! Your book sounds so amazing! I'm so excited for it on 9/3/19!




#interview #novel19s #september

meet sofiya!

Sofiya Pasternack is a mental health professional, the highly-distractible author of Jewish MG and YA fantasy, and prone to oversharing gross medical stories.

Want Cool Stuff?

and get:

  • First looks at announcements, cover reveals, and more!

  • Access to exclusive ARC & book giveaways.

  • Free downloads for plotting, character arcs, and world building!

  • Free classroom guides.

  • Discounts on Zoom classroom visits.