Jonathan Yanez

Jonathan Yanez: February 2013

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Inspiration for The Beast Within

Inspiration for The Beast Within

     Inspiration can come from anywhere; books, movies, music, and art to just name a few. The idea and inspiration for The Beast Within came from inside both you and me. I know this sounds strange but hear me out. There is something inside all of us that moves us forward and make us do things we wouldn't necessarily do if left inside our own bubble of comfort. There are many different names for it; will power, drive, determination, etc. It's that small voice inside of you that says, "You can."

     In one way or another everybody can relate to this feeling. Whether you are a race car driver grinding his teeth and pushing himself to make that tight turn, a student staying up and studying for a test until the wee hours of the night when everyone else is asleep, or a writer waking up before the sun to get a few extra words in your novel, we all have it. 

     It's that unrelenting force inside us all that pushes forward when we have nothing left to give. It's that inner beast that lends us it's strength as we push toward our own individual goals. I feel my own drive awaken all the time. Now I mostly focus my drive on working out and writing but before I would grit my teeth and grind through my sixty hour work week.

     The Beast Within takes the drive we all have and puts a name to it, a reason behind it and shows characters who possess an extraordinary amount of it. Although the book displays this "will power" or "drive" through fictitious characters, the truth is not far removed. A truth that we all possess as we reach toward our own unique goals and call on our own "Beasts Within" for the strength to continue on.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Beast Within: Teaser

The Beast Within: Teaser

     What if there were those among us that had been different since the beginning of time? I'm not talking about vampires, werewolves or your average run of the mill paranormal creature, I'm talking about something closer to reality.

     What if there was a mutation in your DNA? An extra gene that made you just a little bit faster, a little bit stronger, made it so you could live a little bit longer? Would you still be considered human or would that make you something else entirely? 

     Five families with this gene mutation have stood the test of time and banded together forming the Elite race. They have remained content to keep their identities a mystery and instead manipulate mankind from behind the curtains of history. But a darkness is soon coming that will force them to look outside their normal means of safety for a savior. 


Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Working/Writing Balance

How to Balance Work with Writing

     I get asked all the time how am I able to find time to write each day while still working? Let me begin by saying it's not easy but like everything else if you want it badly enough and your willing to put in the hard work it's definitely attainable. I've broken it down into three key part; write no matter what, no excuses and progress.

     You need to find a time in the day that works best for you. Since we are all different early morning might work well or if your a night owl, staying up that extra hour to get some quality keyboard time in might be a better option. But no matter what you need to write everyday. My schedule is different everyday but I try and write in the morning or midday. I find these are the times I am most productive.

     Don't make excuses for yourself. We are all tired, we are all overwhelmed. You need to get after it and remind yourself that no one is going to do it for you. It's time to take action, today is the day.

     Whether you write 1000 words, a paragraph, a sentence, heck even a word it's still progress. Remember the journey to your first book is a marathon not a sprint. Take comfort in the fact that everyday you are making progress towards your goal. It was the turtle that won the race, not the rabbit. 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Tough Mudder

     The Tough Mudder is a 10 -12 mile, 25 obstacle course challenge designed by the British Special Forces. A large portion of the registration fees go to charity. So far 5 million dollars have been raised to support the Wounded Warrior foundation.

     Along with growing out my hair to donate to Locks of Love I'll be running the Tough Mudder April 13th 2013 in Las Vegas, NV. I think it's not only a great way to challenge myself but an even better opportunity to support the Wounded Warrior foundation. I'll be running with a team of 12 friends and although I'm already a personal trainer, I'm making sure I kick my workout routine into high gear and yes... do more cardio. Below are some pictures of past Tough Mudders I think capture the spirit of the event rather well. 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Short Story: Little Red Riding Hood

     I saw the above picture in a magazine my wife brought home a few days ago. Apparently I couldn't get it out of my head because when it came time to write my short story for my writers group, Dime Stories International, this is what came out.

Little Red Riding Hood

“Your dog has an eye patch?”
“My wolf has an eye patch.”
I blinked again making sure I wasn’t seeing things. Nope the large grey and white haired creature let out a low growl in my direction as it padded across the deck and sat next to its master.
“So listen, if you are going to be First Mate on my ship there are a few rules you need to know.”
“I don’t want to be First Mate on your ship.” I said.
“Well, I’m sure Little Red Riding hood didn’t want a patch over his eye either but he’s making the best of it now isn’t he?”
I glanced over and the wolf paused long enough from licking itself to look at me, showing its large dagger like teeth in a snarl.
“You named your wolf Little Red Riding Hood?”
“Well I couldn’t very well name him wolf could I? That’s like naming you…” He paused as he ran a hand through his Mohawk like haircut. “That’s like naming you human and that wouldn’t be very nice now would it? What is your name by the way?”
I looked at the man in front of me who had known me my entire like with a raised eyebrow, “Uncle you know my name.”
“Quick refresher lad.” He said pointing a finger in my direction with a smile.
“It’s Jack.”
“And right you are John, from now on I’m just going to call you First Mate.”
I opened my mouth to protest my newly appointed position and that he had got my name wrong again but my uncle didn’t give me a chance, “Rule number one, there are no rules. Rule number two, you will never serve me beans or beanstalks, they make me gassy and create an overall poor working environment for everyone on board. And the last rule is… care to venture a guess?”
I shook my head squinting my eyes at my Uncle, “How can there be a rule two and three if rule number one was that there are no rules?”
“Ja… er… I mean First Mate please focus, what would you guess rule number three to be?”
I threw up my hands in a show of surrender. “I don’t know, never touch Little Red Riding Hood’s eye patch?”
My uncle took a step back and with huge brown eyes asked me, “How did you know that? Well I guess that’s why your First Mate.” He said answering his own question.
“Your first duty as my second in command it to find us a crew to man The Pandora. The ship will need at least a dozen crewmembers to operate efficiently.”
“Right,” he said placing both fists on his hips and taking in a large breath. Letting it out slowly he gave me a smile. “Well that’s a great days work for me I’m off for a nap. You can head into Granny’s Town and start signing up recruits. Take Little Red Riding hood with you and remember rule number three.”

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Giving Back

Finding Ways to Give Back

     With more clients then I thought possible at the gym and signed to a three book contract I feel blessed beyond belief. The experience in both my career as a personal trainer and as an author has been amazing and I'm not really sure its even sunk in yet. I feel humbled by how much I've been given and I've been thinking of ways I can give back.

     I started to grow out my hair as soon as I quit my previous job and was free of their grooming policies. It started out as just something fun I wanted to try and I thought it would be cool to follow in the footsteps of people like King Leonidas or fictitious characters like Sawyer from LOST or Cullen Bohanan, from Hell on Wheels.

     But now I want to do something more. I've decided that when my hair reaches the required ten inch mark that I'm going to cut my hair and donate it to Locks of Love. I'm only at five inches now after eight months and two trims but it's a start. I'm looking forward to my hair donation being just one way of me helping others. My mind is already at work with possibilities of how I can help in bigger ways as my career as an author progresses. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Guest Interview: Steven Vincent

Steven Vincent author of Dawn of the Knight

     Every few weeks I like to do a blog featuring another author and their novel or upcoming work. Today Steven Vincent has been generous enough to sit down with us and provide some insight to his book, Dawn of the Knight.

Question #1 - Let's start by talking about your book; why should people be interested in buying it?  
"I always tell people that Dawn of the Knight I - Xeltian Invitation is a 560 page fantasy novel. That's almost two books worth, so once you fall in love with the story you wont have to worry about it ending anytime soon!"
Question #2 - Can you describe your favorite character from the book to me?  
"Well, let's talk about Hamlet. Really early on, he appears as a sort of obstacle to Egon, but also a friend. His demeanor is almost impossible to describe, and he was the biggest challenge I faced, trying to put what I had envisioned into words! He skips, he vanishes, he rhymes, and he trips over the smallest things. He's one of my favorite characters I've ever made!"

Question #3 - What would you compare this work with?  
"In a way, like Lord of the Rings, since Egon faces an uphill battle just like Frodo. The only real difference is that Egon can fight, and the foes along his path are a lot tougher than Gollum! Just picture Lord of the Rings on hard mode, with a more modern voice."

Question #4 - What are some of the main struggles in the story?  
"Change is the first. Egon must learn to become a stronger, more reliable person if he hopes to succeed, but he must also stop trying to fit everyone else's standards. He has to learn to walk his own path. Aewulf's struggle is that he's an elf well over a hundred years old, but somehow he's lost his memory. Adela is the princess of Hemford, but at the hands of the Xeltian Knight she's lost everything, and must rediscover who she is, and who she wants to become."

Question #5 - Now let's talk about you; what makes you the most qualified person to write this book? 
"I grew up playing video games! Games are meant to be pure fun, or at least they used to be. It seems like games, books, and movies now aim to depress you and show how rotten the world can be, but I never got into that. So, you can rest assured that my book(s) may leave you on the edge of your seat, might scare you at times, but you'll never feel gloomy when you put it down!"

Question #6 - Did you learn anything during the publishing process? How about the writing process? 
"Yes, as a matter of fact, and relearned for that matter! I used to want to make comics, so I learned how to do a little drawing and computer coloring way back when. When the time came to publish my book though, I needed cover art and did not have the budget to have someone make it for me. So, I made my own, and I'm always happy when people ask me who did it!
There's so much else you learn along the way. You get better at writing with every chapter. You learn the market more and more as you become a part of it. I've by no means figured it all out. Life is about learning; that's what makes it interesting."

Question #7 - What would be your advice to someone just about to publish their book?  
"If you can, publish it a little later than you planned. This way you'll have time to gather your wits and make sure everything is in order. My biggest regret was publishing before I began to network with other readers, writers, and bloggers. You need friends in this business, and you have to make sure your cover, the book itself, everything is how you really want it."  
Question #8 - What other works helped inspire you?  
"As I mentioned earlier, I grew up with video games. Literally, I started playing Sonic when I was 2, had won Super Mario Bros. when I was like 3? But most importantly, I started playing the Legend of Zelda when I was 5 years old, and that game, even with all the broken sentences and 16-bit graphics, helped inspire me to love fantasy, and later on I drew a lot of inspiration from the things I imagined while playing it."

If you would like to find out more about Steven or his book you can reach him at anyone of the following links:
True Knights Blog: 

Steven Vincent's Amazon Profile: 

Steven Vincent's Twitter: 

Steven Vincent's Facebook: 

Steven Vincent on Goodreads: 

Friday, February 1, 2013

The Beast Within Cover Art Reveal

The Beast Within Cover Art 

     I usually reserve blogging for Tuesdays and Thursdays but I think I can give myself a pass. Today the amazing team at Limitless Publishing has released the cover for the first book in The Elite Series, The Beast Within and I couldn't be happier. Below is a teaser for the book coming March 2013, hope you enjoy.

"The Beast Within" 

If only it were as simple as love triangles, werewolves and vampires...

Once eighteen-year-old Connor Moore stumbles across an almost human species, he is faced with history’s darkest secret, a daunting future, and a love life he can’t even begin to explain.

Concealed throughout the pages of time, there has been a powerful race of human-like creatures manipulating mankind. This Elite race is made up of five ruling families, who have obeyed The Law and remained content to keep their identities a mystery. Now after centuries of secrecy, an ancient foe is forcing them out of hiding.

When a dark-haired mystery woman named Laren crosses Connor’s path his life is turned upside down. Soon Connor is taken on a heart-pounding journey that leads to a startling discovery of who he really is and a daunting future of what he is to become.