Author Spotlight: R.L. Martinez

Name:  R. L. Martinez    

Author of: In the Blood; Beneath the Skin (Lakewater Press)

From: Oklahoma



Can you tell me about the first piece you remember writing? Yes, it was a story about a black horse that I also illustrated in this little white blank book my teacher gave me. I think I, or my mother, still have it around somewhere

When did you first realize you wanted to pursue professional writing? Umm.. not till pretty late. I never grew up wanting to be a writer. I guess around 2007 was when I really started to consider the possibility of selling my writing.

Do you exclusively write fantasy or have you written in other genres? I mainly write SFF, but I have also written literary fiction, contemporary romance, and poetry. I’ve also tried my hand at horror, but I’m not so adept at that.

What is your schedule like when you’re writing a book? Is it difficult to achieve a work, life, write balance? It certainly is for me! I envy those people who have and maintain really strict writing schedules. I’m kind of all over the place, stealing bits of time here and there. If I’m really into a project, though, I will write an average of 2,000 to 2,500 words a day. It usually has to be done at night after my kids go to sleep or at work between massage clients.

How long does it generally take you to write a first draft? How long do you spend on revisions? I like to get my very first draft of a book done in a month. Revisions are a much longer process. After writing the first draft, I usually put the book away from 1-6 months (sometimes longer). I drag it out, read through it, and do a near-total rewrite. Then I print the book, do a line edit. After that is all entered in there, I do another revision before sending it to my beta readers (one of whom totally tears it to pieces). I get those suggestions back, enter them in then send it on to my editor.

Can you describe the preparation/research—if any—you do for each book? I’m one of those people who simply cannot do a ton of prep work for a novel. If I do (because I actually really like to do that) I get so wrapped up in the planning phase that I kill any enthusiasm for actually writing the book. I do research as I’m writing (which people say you shouldn’t do), because that keeps me from getting too bogged down in thinking about details.

Do you have any quirky writing habits (the things you’d never want anyone to know)? Hmmm… no, I don’t think so. I’m pretty boring 😝

Have you ever done a pilgrimage—or any interesting research—for your novels? Or do you have a research destination bucket list? I haven’t, but my ultimate bucket-list destination, for a number of reasons, is the England/Ireland/Scotland/Wales.

Inspiration comes in many forms. Can you recall the exact moment of inspiration for each of your projects? I can actually. It usually starts with a rather off-the-wall idea that morphs into a totally different product when all is said and done. For instance, In the Blood started as a retelling of the fairytale “The Twelve Huntsmen”

Do you have a specific genre you prefer to read? What are your favorites? Well, I used to be much more into SFF but I find, the more I write it, the less I want to read it (shrugs). I’ve gotten more into nonfiction in recent years including memoirs. I also like historical and contemporary romance and steampunk.

Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find? I honestly don’t think I’m subtle or smart enough to do this well or consistently. But I think I tend to weave themes in there (like certain colors). I do it somewhat unconsciously. But I’ve never really had anyone mention it to me or in a review, so maybe it’s all in my own head ;P

Are your characters inspired—in part or whole—by people in your real life? In a way. I think I write parts of myself that are hidden or dormant. Or, I write characters I WISH I was like.

Name one book you think is entirely underappreciated. The Forest of App by Gloria Rand Dank. Such a good book! Last I checked, though, it was out of print and not many people even know about it anymore. Which is really sad.

Name one book that was a guilty pleasure. The Master by Kresley Cole. So hot! I’ve got a bit of a naughty girl in me 😉

Be honest: Do you Google yourself?: Maybe once a year or so. I’m rather uninterested in finding out about myself like that. And I mainly go on Goodreads/Amazon to check my reviews because I feel like I SHOULD be interested in that.

As a writer, which animal would you choose as your mascot/avatar/patronus?

A unicorn or horse.

Is there one thing you think you, as a writer, should be better at, but secretly struggle with? Worldbuilding, for sure. I feel like I’m terrible at it. I get so wrapped up in creating my characters that physical settings and social structures often suffer.

What is one word of advice you’d give to an aspiring writer? Stay humble and hopeful. There is ALWAYS someone out there who is more talented than you and someone who is less talented.

What is one word of advice you’d give to a newly published author? Don’t expect to find happiness in publication. Publication is a fickle mistress and today’s triumph and joy grows cold in the wake of future rejections or poor sales. Keep grounded in real life things and people. Find happiness in the craft itself, not the glory that can (possibly) come from it.

Where can people find more about you?


In the Blood (Witchbreed Book 1)

A snake. A lion. A return.
In a time when magic is feared, Lady Oriabel Dominax has no choice but to conceal her healing powers while she cares for her father’s struggling estate. One

touch of the Witch’s Tree shows her visions of witches hung and burned at the very hands of the people for whom she cares, the people who love her. But with the arrival of a new lord, a man hiding secrets of his own, falling in love might be one wrong move too many.

Incarcerated for an unspeakable crime, fearless warrior Lady Ottilde Dominax is plagued by mysterious dreams of her sister’s death. When a hooded figure offers her the chance of escape, although untrusting, she does not hesitate. Racing across nations to reach Oriabel, her journey is cut short by an encounter with a wedowyn, a formidable beast which she has no chance to overpower alone. Though it is not death that greets her, but something far worse.

Blackmail, betrayal, and murder are only the beginning as a darker magic is awakened. And someone has plans for the Dominax twins, plans more terrifying than anything they could ever imagine.

For fans of THE THRONE OF GLASS and QUEEN OF TEARLING, the WITCHBREED SERIES is an upmarket saga that is “creative and imaginative beyond belief” and has “everything a fantasy lover craves.” Not to be missed.

Get In the Blood right now on Amazon or from Barnes & Noble

Beneath the Skin (Witchbreed Book 2)

Abandoned, betrayed, and wanted for murder.

Lady Oriabel Dominax is a witch on the run. The deadly magic now awakened inside her is hungry, and it is all Oriabel can do to control it. With no choice but

to trust strangers as her guardians, she quickly discovers not everyone is who they say they are and the very magic she fears might be her only weapon to protect those she loves.

Since rescuing her sister from certain death, Lady Ottilde Dominax’s only goal is to keep Oriabel safe and alive. Not an easy task when both the enemy and their so-called allies are hunting them. Placing all her trust in the very man who held her prisoner, Ottilde must open her heart and mind to a future she could never have predicted, a future guided only by love and survival.

Life, death, and tragedy lie ahead as the Dominax twins set out on a perilous journey to safety. But knowing they are mere pawns in someone else’s game means fighting for family is all they have left.

For fans of Sarah J. Maas and Juliet Marillier, The WITCHBREED series is a “magical and spellbinding” epic tale of witches, warriors, and “a sisterly bond like none other.”

Get Beneath the Skin right now from Amazon or from Barnes & Noble 


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Lakewater Press Holiday Blog Hop (Day 8): R.L. Martinez


For the holiday season, we at Lakewater Press thought it would be a good time to share who we are with a little holiday blog hop.

Between December 1 and the 24th we’ll share holiday interviews with our authors and the Lakewater Press staff. It’s an excellent opportunity for us to get to know each other a little better, and to give our readers a peek behind the scenes–or pages!

Perhaps you’ll even find a new blog to follow, or your next favorite book!

(Be sure to read all the way to the bottom for our holiday giveaway!!)


Today’s interviewee:

Name and LWP affiliation: R. L. Martinez, LWP author

Your blog (url):

Where do you live? Central Oklahoma

What are your chances of having snow on Christmas Day? Meh, Oklahoma is tricky. So, I’d say about 50%, just to be on the safe side.

Do you have any favorite holiday traditions? When I was a teen, we started having two holiday celebrations. On Christmas Eve my mom would cook a big Asian-inspired meal: gyoza, teriyaki steak kebobs, and lots of desserts. We were permitted to open 1 present that night and then we would play board games (Monopoly mostly). It actually was more fun than Christmas Day!

Egg nog: Yes or No? Yes! but I can’t have eggs any more so now it’s a wailing NOOOOOOO!

Are you an artistic gift wrapper or a basic “paper & tape” warrior? Uh… gift bags all the way. I’m horrible with gift wrap

Do you have any special holiday memories that include books? Are there any specific titles you  remember? 

One year I received  a blue duffel bag (with yellow straps) filled with books. I believe The Neverending Story (all-time favorite) and Matilda (another favorite) were among the offerings.

What is your earliest book-related memory? I actually remember writing my own book when I was in elementary school. Our teacher gave out thin, white blank books and I wrote (and illustrated) a story about a black horse. I’ve still got it somewhere!

Do you write/work during the holidays? Sure. Since moving to Oklahoma, we don’t have any family nearby. So our holidays are very low key and casual.

Can you share what you’re working on now? Book 3 of the Witchbreed

What are your goals for 2018? I have a lot of WIPs to finish. Projects that I’ve been putting off. I have one contemporary fantasy romance novel that is finished and just needs to be cleaned up. I’d like to start sending it out to more agents & publishers. I have a fantasy-romance featuring dragons that I’ve been trying to finish for years now. And several other books that have pieces written but nothing more. My ultimate dream goal would be to break into the romance genre by securing a traditional publishing deal.

Continue reading “Lakewater Press Holiday Blog Hop (Day 8): R.L. Martinez”

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Book Tour & Giveaway: In The Blood by R.L. Martinez

In The Blood Banner 540 x 200


In the Blood: The Witchbreed, Book One by R.L. Martínez

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Lakewater Press

Date of Publication: March 21, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-9944511-0-1
ISBN: 978-0-9944511-1-8

Number of pages: 370
Word Count: app. 122,000




The Warrior

The war between Dosalyn and Roanaan has ended, but a new battle begins for prisoner-of-war, Ottilde Dominax. Dreams of her witchbreed twin sister are visions of death and betrayal. Driven by their grim warning, she escapes her captors and races across nations to save her sister.

But she may arrive too late…

The Witch

Oriabel Dominax has kept her healing magic secret while she cares for her family’s struggling estate. But the arrival of a new lord with secrets of his own, the discovery of a dark and addictive magic, and threats from a cruel blackmailer push Oriabel closer to disaster. Through it all, the Witch’s Tree calls…

Cover Artist E.L. Wicker








Angry hisses and mutters rippled through the assembly at the announcement of Ottilde’s number.

The guard at the front of their formation watched with a bored expression as the other inmates spat at her feet. “King Killer,” the woman next to her hissed. Ottilde swallowed and her grip on the heartstone tightened. Chroy had not been a king when she threw her knife into his throat, not yet. But he had been their future, their hope.

Ottilde raised one hand into the air. “Here.” The commotion died down after he called a few more numbers and Ottilde let out her long-held breath. She loosened her fingers from around the heartstone. They came away aching with the force of her hold.

When all the prisoners were accounted for, several inmates broke formation to walk to the dining house for breakfast. The guards, however, growled at them to remain in line, shoving some of the slower ones back into place.

Ottilde frowned at the change in routine, and peered around. Prison Chief Wilder Coomb strode towards them on the other side of the wire fence that formed the front of the yard, his adjutant close at his side. One of the guards unlocked the yard gate and stood back as the Chief entered.

Wilder Coomb was a formidable man. He might once have been handsome, but life had bullied him viciously. His shaved head sported a deep, curling scar on one side of his scalp, while his face and neck carried similar gruesome marks. One earlobe was missing, which gave his head a cock-eyed appearance when viewed straight on. A jagged horizontal line along his neck indicated someone had tried to cut his throat at one time. But Ottilde believed the most impressive scar lay behind the patch over his left eye. The silvery tail of the wound snaked down his cheek and neck to disappear in the stiff collar of his forest green officer’s coat.

Upon reaching the front of the prisoner formations, he folded his hands behind his back and swept a contemptuous eye over them. Ottilde could only imagine what he saw as he stared at them, the ragged unlucky soldiers taken prisoner during the recent Pleinour War. For a moment, Chief Coomb’s hard, dark eye settled on her and she lifted her chin, refusing to show him how much he intimidated her. But his gaze moved on, and she sensed the subtle shift of discomfort in the prisoners around her when one of them felt the whip of his gaze

He held up a sheaf of folded papers; a letter, judging by the regular creases.

“Queen Kuonrada has fled and Deauxerr has vanquished her armies.”

The prisoners shuffled and muttered. The cold air warmed with the force of their anger and humiliation. Ottilde kept her eyes on Chief Coomb’s face, though she felt a good portion of their collective rage focused on her. She knew she held blame for breaking the back of Roanaan’s fighting spirit.

“Over the last several weeks,” Coomb continued, “those with authority in such matters have considered what to do with you all. I have a list of officers and knights to be traded for Deauxerr soldiers now held by the remnant of Roanaan’s military as an act of diplomatic faith. Step forward when I read your number. You will be readied immediately for transport to the exchange point.” He snapped his fingers and his adjutant took the letter from his hand, replacing it with a single sheet of dark paper. Coomb scanned it and shouted out prisoner numbers.

Ottilde’s breathing grew irregular with hope as each man or woman came forward in answer to the prison chief’s summons. But he reached the last number on the list without calling hers. Her stomach soured as she watched a contingent of guards escort the fifty or so fortunate prisoners from the yard.

Once the yard gate had shut again. Chief Coomb’s adjutant handed him another paper. “Now, King Talin of Deauxerr has decided to offer those of you with reports of good conduct and no criminal past the opportunity to swear fealty to the Deauxerr crown. Talin has granted you permission to return to Roanaan or settle in Deauxerr; also, you will be given a small subsidy to start your new life. If you wish to accept this offer, step forward when I read your number.” He sounded off another list of prisoners. Again, Ottilde listened tensely for her number, though she knew how unlikely it was she would hear it this time.

Coomb must have called a hundred numbers or more, but Ottilde estimated only forty prisoners stepped forward. They averted their eyes from those who remained in the formations. Another handful of guards led this group from the yard.

“As for the rest of you,” Coomb said, “you are to be moved to a civilian prison facility where you will no longer be my concern.” He folded his arms behind his back. “Remember, as long as you remain in this camp, or in the custody of my staff, you will obey Lachlas regulations. Everyone will appear for morning roll every day. You all know what will happen should even one of your numbers go missing.” He gave them a last menacing glare then stalked to the yard gate.



About the Author:

SONY DSCR.L. Martinez writes fantasy and science fiction with dark edges and corners. She began writing when she was in the seventh grade when her teacher assigned a creative writing project. She lives in Norman, OK with her husband, two young sons, a mouse-killing cat, and two naughty pooches.


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Tour giveaway, enter HERE!


1 swag pack (book, bookmark, postcard, heartstone necklace) and


3 ebook copies


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