April 1, 2019

Blog Tour: Iron Circle by Justin Joschko – Guest Post and Giveaway

Hello Readers! Welcome to our Tour Stop for

Iron Circle by Justin Joschko

presented by Month9Books!

We have Justin on the blog today sharing Writing Tips.

Click on the banner above to follow the rest of the tour,
and be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

The path west is long, but despite Selena’s progress, New Canaan is never far enough behind her. It was there that her parents were killed, forcing her and her little brother Simon to flee the tyrannical state. Now, New Canaan wants control over every last inch of America-That-Was. Only the Republic of California can stand against it—but not without the data stick in Selena’s pocket, rumored to contain vital information about New Canaan’s deadly new weapon.

As winter closes in, Selena races south in search of an open passage to the coast. She must pass through Nuevo Juarez, where a ruthless leader named Thorin has seized power. Selena runs afoul of Thorin’s men and is separated from her brother, captured, and auctioned off at the city’s thriving slave market.

Her only way out is through the Iron Circle, a fighting ring where the city’s most fearsome warriors pit their skills against one another. As the populace and Thorin watch Selena rise through the ranks, Selena earns a reputation she doesn’t want and the attention of man with the power to destroy her and what’s left of America-That-Was.

Iron Circle (Yellow Locust #2) by Justin Joschko
Publication Date: March 26, 2019
Publisher: Month9Books

Google Play | BAM | Chapters | Indies | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | TBD

Top 5 Writing Tips for Aspiring Writers

  1. Read constantly. Writing is your vehicle, and reading is your fuel. Without it, your prose will sputter to a halt before long.
  2. Read widely. It doesn’t matter if you write in a single genre or shared universe. A broad literary diet will help you draw influence form disparate sources and round out your voice as a writer.
  3. “Show don’t tell” is misleading. All novelists, with the possible exception of Cormac McCarthy, do a fair bit of telling. The novel, as a medium, is uniquely tailored to the exploration of psyches, allowing whole paragraphs to discuss characters’ thoughts and motivations. A passage that works beautifully in a novel could easily come across as ludicrous as a voice-over in a movie, where visuals and audio can and should shoulder much of the storytelling burden.  Where “show don’t tell” retains its value is as training wheels, as new writers can get lost in their voice and forget to provide the imagery and details necessary to propel a story forward. Better advice is simply “don’t be boring.”
  4. View even the smallest characters as having a life outside of the story. Unless you’re writing someone living in complete solitude, your book is going to include characters that get lower billing than your hero or heroes, and that’s fine. Providing every character’s full backstory isn’t necessary, or even desirable. If the hero exchanges two sentences with the shopkeeper, I don’t need to know her life story. However, that doesn’t mean she doesn’t have one, and you should be at least tangentially aware of it when you’re writing her scene. Maintaining this simple awareness makes the story richer, and can help keep smaller characters from feeling like tools to push the plot forward.
  5. Don’t worry if you hate it sometimes. Some writers feel unbridled joy as they set words to paper, and that’s great. For most of us, though, the actual process can be a slog. Don’t doubt yourself if your drive to write is undermined by occasional dread. If you’re truly driven, you’ll push through it.


Justin Joschko is an author from Niagara Falls, Ontario. His writing has appeared in newspapers and literary journals across Canada. Yellow Locust is his first novel. He currently lives in Ottawa with his wife and two children.

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1 Comment

  1. Gwendolyn Jordan

    I like the cover

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