I’m Sybrina … Just one of millions of wannabe author/singer/songwriters out there but I hope, after reading or hearing my books and songs, you’ll think my contributions to the world have as much value as any other famous artist out there today.
Fame is all in being in the right place at the right time but at least with the internet and venues like this, all of us have opportunities to share our creativity with the world. I’m so happy that I am able to share my works with you. That is awesome!
The books I’ve written span a wide range between illustrated picture books, coloring books and YA novels to technical and how-to books. If you’re so inclined you can read a little bit about the inspiration for each one below.
My latest effort is The Blue Unicorn’s Journey To Osm. It is a book I started writing 30 something years ago and never finished. At the time, it was meant to be an epic fantasy along the lines of novels written by Tolkien, Piers Anthony, Ursula K. Le Guin and other amazing fantasy writers. I’ve pulled out my notes, dusted off the outline and began rewriting and expanding upon the 50 pages I had began. This story is now available as an Illustrated Book for teens and older readers in full color and in black and white, too. The black and white version is a “Read and Color” book. Read a chapter, then color the following pages. How fun is that? There is also a picture book for pre-schoolers called Unicorns From Unimaise – The Magical Metal-Horn Trobe. A longer version of the chapter book will soon be available as an Illustrated Novel with a companion glossary called, The Marbryn Compendium. All of the fantastic fantasy illustrations are by Dasguptarts. There is also a companion coloring/character description book, edited by Calyie Martin. It will introduce potential readers to the myriad of characters, places and things in the story.
Amazon Author Central –
YouTube (Book Trailers) –
My personal mottoes:
“Help yourself.” – More on that in statement 10.
“Just Do It!” – I always loved that Nike commercial. I’m sure it motivated lots of people in a multitude of ways.
“Teach a child a task in a fun way and they will remember it forever.”
- A typical (work) day begins with… writing or marketing my books for 30 minutes to an hour each morning before I go off to my 10 hour a day “real job” at an engineering company. Twelve hours later I arrive back home and jump right back on my computer to write or promote the different books that I am involved with. Many authors find themselves in the exact same circumstances these days because until book sales pay the bills, you have to make a living. It would be great if writing was the only task I came home to but marketing and promoting is key to any kind of success with books these days. If it wasn’t for social media and other writers who are willing to share their personal blog space to introduce their readers to other authors and their books, it would be very difficult to let many people know we even exist.
- I lose track of time… when I am researching for nuggets of gold on the internet. I start out with good intentions to stick with a particular subject but one thread of information leads to the next and before I know it I’m way off track from my original thought. For the Blue Unicorn, I’ve documented most of my research to use for a future book-length glossary. The “MarBryn Compendium” will be published simultaneously with the expanded full-length novel version of the blue unicorn story.
- I have always… wanted my name to be remembered fondly by masses of future generations. LOL I’m laughing but I’m not really kidding. When it comes right down to it, don’t we all???
- I have never… thought of so many ways to offer one story to the public before the “Blue Unicorn’s Journey To Osm Illustrated Book” for teens and older readers came to life. My original intention was to only make it available in full color but I was completely unaware that so many full color pages would make the printing cost exorbitant. I was particularly devastated when I found out how much the 188 page illustrated book was going to cost customers. That dilemma led me to the bright idea of having all of the illustrations reworked in black and white. The incredibly talented artist, Sudipta Dasgupta, and his team created what look like old fairy tale woodcuts. Those pictures remind me of the days when I was reading The Wizard of Oz books and daydreaming about faraway lands populated with fantastic creatures. I’m happy to say that my idea paid off because printing the black and white version of this book costs 1/3 the price of the full color. That price reduction puts it within the realm of most reader’s pocket books. Plus I now have the added benefit of promoting it as a “Read and Color” book. Read a chapter, then color the following pictures. What’s more fun than that? The story is also available in audio book form on most of the online audio book websites. I love how the narrator, Troy Hudson, brought the characters to vibrant life. There’s also a children’s storybook version titled “Unicorns From Unimaise – The Magical Metal-Horned Tribe”. It is meant to introduce little ones to the 12 member unicorn tribe and the land of MarBryn (where the story takes place). Soon, I’ll be publishing an expanded full-length adult fantasy version of the blue unicorn tale along with the companion “glossary” book, “The MarBryn Compendium”. Last but not least, unicorn lovers can find lots of book related unicorn bling on zazzle.com – just search for Journey to Osm to see nearly 100 items featuring pictures from the book. More will be coming in the future.
- Home means to me… the place where I can concentrate on the people I love and my books. Writing of course, is my favorite thing. Marketing is actually a close second. I wish I could devote more time to both.
- I am inspired by… others who work hard to achieve their life goals. I am especially inspired by people who think out of the box to accomplish their dreams.
- I would like to meet… Piers Anthony, author of the Xanth fantasy series. It was his books that first ignited my interest in intelligent colorful unicorns and in my use of word play in the blue unicorn story. In fact, even if I could never actually meet him, I’d like to at least go back 15 years or so ago and join his online newsletter. Little did I know, he was already expounding upon the virtues of self-publishing when Createspace and Kindle came into existence. CreateSpace (Print On Demand) was founded in 2002 and was acquired by Amazon in 2005. The first Kindle was released in 2007. I can’t help wondering – If I had only known then, what I know now, how much further ahead would I be today? A lot can happen in 10 to 15 years. Createspace, Amazon and Kindle are certainly testaments to that.
- My worst character trait… Depression hits me hard sometimes. I think feeling insecure or unsure after one defeat or another is a trait that many creative people have in common. We let our perceived failures get us down and we listen to those voices inside (and sometimes outside) saying, “Why bother?” or “You’re not good enough!”or “No one is ever going to care…” and a million other negative thought demons. Sometimes, it’s hard to make yourself try just ONE MORE TIME..
- My best character trait… I’m glad this was the next question so that I can tell you, luckily, I don’t stay down long. I try to learn from whatever knocked me down and try to avoid doing that again. I’m an eternal optimist…a glass half full type of person. I can’t help but try just one more time.
- The best advice I was given… ”Help Yourself” – In fact, I wrote a song with that philosophy many years ago. It starts like this – “The best place to find a helping hand is on the end of your own arm. Success can be at your command if you believe in number one. Help yourself and you will go far. Believe in your capacity to reach the highest star. Think of all the possibilities to make your dreams reality. Nobody can do for you what you can do for yourself.” You can listen to the song here if you wish – http://www.phrasethesaurus.com/index_Help_Yourself_Publish_Book.htm. That attitude has been my motivation for whatever I may try to achieve in life. To me, it doesn’t matter if you know everything you need to know to start doing something. Just think of what you want to do and then find a way to do it through research and other means of learning. That’s how I started with my self-publishing journey. I wrote a book that I wanted to make available to anyone who might want to read it. I quickly learned that competition for the attention of potential readers was immense. And the possibility of finding a traditional publisher was so far out in the cosmos that only a select few would ever attain that lofty aspiration. So, I decided that the self-publishing route was my best option because at least that way, I could reach those in my immediate sphere of influence. I went through a lot of trials and errors but I’ve gathered and catalogued all the information I came across as I went along. I even eventually put it all in a book to help other authors easily do what it took me a long time to figure out. I titled that book “Help Yourself – Learn To Produce, Publish and Promote Your Book On Your Own”. The best thing about this particular book for other potential authors is that half of it shows how to do most of those three things absolutely free.
The Blue Unicorn’s Journey to Osm
“The metal horned unicorns are doomed!” That’s what Lauda Lead Horn wailed when she first saw the tribe’s new savior. OK, so his horn was not metal … and he did not have a magic power … and he was really a puny little runt. But doomed? Were things really that bad?
Well, things were pretty bad in the land of MarBryn. Magh, an evil sorcerer utilized unicorn horns and hooves to create his magical potions and spells. Those he used, to increase his power and to conquer everyone in his path. All of the unicorns from the Tribe of the Metal Horn were now gone … except for twelve survivors.
Before the blue unicorn was born, Numen told Alumna, the aluminum-horned oracle, that he had a plan to bring the tribe back home to Unimaise. His prophecy was, “Only the blue unicorn can join with the Moon-Star. Until then, no new unicorns will be born.” Blue was the last unicorn born. Twenty years later, his horn was still covered with a plain blue colored hide. There was not a glint of metal to be seen on it or his hooves. And he still didn’t have any magic. But he was no longer scrawny and he had his wits. Though no one else in the tribe thought he had a chance, Blue felt ready to make Magh pay for his evil deeds. And he went off to do it alone. That was Blue’s first mistake. If the entire tribe was not standing horn-tip to horn-tip at the proper time and the exact place to help usher the Moon-Star Spirit into Blue’s horn, he would die. Then, the rest of the tribe would really be doomed.
Readers will follow along two journey paths in this book. Blue is joined in his travels by his mentor Gaiso, the Stag and his friend, Girasol the Firebird as they try to find their way across a danger-filled MarBryn to Muzika Woods. The rest of Blue’s tribe is forced to follow another route due to Nix Nickle Horn’s unfortunate incident with a Manticore. Nix, the great unicorn defender must safely lead the way for Ghel, the Golden-Horned unicorn; Silubhra Silver Horn; Cornum the Brass-Horned unicorn; Steel Horned Style; Cuprum the Copper-Horned unicorn; Tin-Horned Tinam; Dr. Zinko; Iown the Iron-Horned unicorn and the others in an action packed adventure to their destination in Muzika Woods. Both journey paths converge there in the Nebulium Circle.
Print length: 236 pages
Ebook (Looks like printed book) –
Audio book (Listen to free sample) –
Black and White Print Book –