Darlene Foster's Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Lada Ray

Just back from my travels and will be posting pictures soon. I am pleased to be the featured author on Lada Ray’s blog this week. Pop over and say Hi!


Hasta luego


What I love the most about blogging, is the wonderful people I meet in the blogging   world. Today I am featuring the author Lada Ray, an extraordinary individual with many talents who stops at nothing to pursue her dreams.

Thanks so much for being a guest on my blog Lada. I am always curious to learn more about other authors.

L: It’s my great pleasure to be your guest today, Darlene! Thank you for your gracious invitation!


You have a very interesting background. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

L: I was born in Russia, when it was still called the Soviet Union. Since the age of twenty, I’ve lived abroad. I studied linguistics (got M.A. in comparative linguistics) and traveled to a number of countries on most continents. For a while, I worked in Havana, Cuba as a translator. After coming to the USA, I worked as financial consultant at AIG and Smith Barney/Citigroup, after which I decided to travel to Asia to study Feng Shui and various metaphysical disciplines. I received my International Feng Shui Master certification from the famed feng shui author, Lilian Too.
 Presently, I write full-time at my Upstate NY residence. So far, I’ve written several books including mystery/thrillers Gold Train (Accidental Spy Russia Adventure), Stepford USA (Accidental Spy Small Town Adventure), Green Desert (Accidental Spy Iraq Prequel), metaphysical fantasy novelette Catharsis, Legend of the Lemurians (Earth Keepers Chronicles 1) and my new release, The Earth Shifter, a visionary fantasy/thriller, which is an epic novel. I will soon be releasing Earth Keepers Chronicles 2 and 3: Lemurian Crystal and Atlantis. I’m also working on The Earth Shifter sequel: Key of Destiny.

What or who inspired you to write?

L: I think I’ve always wanted to write. When I was a child, I often put together stories in my head. But my life developed in a different direction, or rather directions, until one day I realized that I had acquired much knowledge, wisdom, and unique experiences throughout my life’s many adventures, and decided to share them with the world.

When you were a child, who were your favourite authors?

L: This is easy. My father was a huge history and international adventure buff. We had a large library of classical literature, including complete Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, Scottish writer Sir Walter Scott, Alexander Dumas (how much I adored those Musketeers!), Shakespeare, Fenimore Cooper, and many others. I also read Russian sci-fi, especially Brothers Strugatsky, and Polish author Stanislav Lem, as well as the Russian classics: Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky. Later, I couldn’t get enough of Gabriel Garcia Marquez. My fave author as a teen was (still is) Mikhail Bulgakov, author of incredible fantasies and other books based on real events: The Master and Margarita, Ivan Vasilyevich Changes Occupation (hilarious time travel comedy of errors, featuring Ivan the Terrible), Dog’s Heart, White Guard (about the 1918 Russian Civil War). I think Bulgakov was a major influence on my writing.

Who are some of your favourite authors as an adult?

L: Oscar Wilde, Rumi and Mikhail Bulgakov. Of contemporary authors, I actually enjoyed J.K. Rawling’s Harry Potter. There are more, but these are the ones that came to mind immediately.

What has been the defining moment in your writing career?

L: I would say that publishing The Earth Shifter qualifies as one. I’ve published several books before this one, but it all started for me with the idea of The Earth Shifter several years ago. It took me a while to figure out how to tell this complex, fascinating and inspired story. In the interim, I wrote several other books, including mystery/thrillers Gold Train and Stepford USA. But in the end, it all came back to The Earth Shifter. Seeing it finally on digital shelves, and now also in print, is a huge milestone, and I’m very happy!

Your books are an interesting mix of mystery, intrigue, history, action, fantasy, philosophy, culture and spiritualism. Where do you get your ideas?

L: As I said earlier, I have accumulated many ideas and experiences throughout my life. These experiences are longing to be shared with the world. I have many more ideas and projects – if only there was more time in a day!

I love that your books take place in different parts of the world. Have you been to all the places you write about?

L: Yes, I’ve been to most places I write about. If I haven’t been to one, I still know enough, either from talking to others or from my own research and knowledge of similar places.

Where is one place you have not been to that you would love to visit?

L: Tibet and Machu Pichu.

When you are not writing, or thinking about writing, what do you like to do?

L: I love hiking, walking and traveling. I also love working on my blog, playing with my kitty, doing photography, meditating, and doing various metaphysical experiments and studies.

Now for a few fun, personal questions, which do you prefer:

 Cats or dogs? Love all animals. I have a very cute kitty, but I equally love dogs.
Coffee or tea? Love the scent of coffee, but can’t drink it – maybe on special occasions. I’m primarily a tea drinker, with a large collection of Oriental green teas in my cabinet.
Lakes or oceans? Oceans and seas. I grew up on the Black Sea and some of my best memories are associated with it.
Cake or pie? Cake.

Now that we have that out-of-the-way, what advice would you give someone who is starting their writing career?

L: I like this quote: “A successful writer is the one who doesn’t give up.” Keep writing and keep sharpening your writing saw.

Anything else you would like to add?

L: Check out my new, top-rated fantasy/thriller THE EARTH SHIFTER! The ebook is available now, and the paperback is coming to Amazon in a few days. Gold Train second edition paperback is coming to Amazon in a few days as well. And Stepford USA paperback will be available at the same time.

For more about my books and other projects, visit my blog: LadaRay.wordpress.com.

Also, I wanted to add that I just started a new project called YA Revolution.


This is a grassroots movement for books with message and meaning. To find out more about it and to join go to the official YA Revolution Page on my blog. All readers and writers are invited!

In conclusion, thank you very much, Darlene, for this fabulous interview! I enjoyed it tremendously!

Book links:


The Earth Shifter: Amazon B&N

Read my review of The Earth Shifter on Goodreads


Gold Train : Amazon B&N


Stepford USA: Amazon B&N

These and other books are also available at Sony, Apple, Kobo and Smashwords.

Check out this amazing author:

Author blog: LadaRay.wordpress.com
Geopolitcs/predictions blog: Futuristrendcast.wordpress.com

Twitter: @LadaTweets
Youtube: Lada Ray Channel
Facebook: Like LadaRayBooks


Maybe not the one you are thinking of but a delightful award nonetheless! The Booker Award  was recently given to me by  Lada Ray  author of a number of well written, exciting books. Because this was awarded to me by another author, I feel extremely honoured. Lada’s books include the accidental spy stories, Gold Train and  Green Dessert and soon to be released  YA fantasy/thriller The Earth Shifter . Check out her books and blog at http://ladaray.wordpress.com/lada-ray-books/ Not only is she an amazing writer, she is a wonderful person.

To accept it, I am asked to list 5 of my favorite books and pass it on to 5 other authors, which I’ll gladly do.

To pick only 5 favourite books is very difficult for me as I have been reading for a long time and the list grows every year. But I will try.


The first favourite book has to be Jane Austen’s Emma. I love all of her books but if I have to pick, Emma has to be the one I enjoy the most.  Emma is a flawed character who realizes her shortcomings after a series of total mess ups. It is also very funny and timeless with great characters.

Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maude Montgomery.  Anne Shirley has to be the most memorable young girl who makes the best of her situation as she strives to belong. She is a very real and strong young woman. I read this book over and over and use it in my English as a Second Language classes.

Little Women By Louisa May Alcott is another long time favourite. I love the bond between  the March sisters in spite of their differences.

The No. One Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith. Precious Ramotswe strives to earn a living as a detective in Botswana, upholding the traditional values of her dear departed father. When I read these books, and I have read all of them, I feel like I am in Botswana. I feel the dust, the heat, the struggles and the joys. These books are written with a wonderful sense of humour while respecting the people of this nation.

The Red Tent by Anita Diamant. This familiar story from the old testament is told from the point of view of  Dinah, the only sister of the twelve sons of Jacob. This richly told story of the ancient Jews, from a woman’s voice, brings a new perspective and appreciation of the role of women in early history.  This is a book that sticks with you for a long time.

I realize now that I have compiled the list that there is a theme here. All of my favourite books have strong female main characters. I also realize I have missed so many others but 5 is all I could share this time. Thank you so much Lada for this award.

The authors I would like to nominate for the Booker Award are:

Laura Best http://lauraabest.wordpress.com/

Linda Cassidy Lewis http://lindacassidylewis.com/

Diane Tibert http://dianetibert.com/home/

Michelle Isenhoff  http://michelleisenhoff.wordpress.com

Ellen Ekstrom http://www.amazon.com/Ellen-L.-Ekstrom/e/B004NQOG8Y/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

Please check out their blogs and books. You may discover a new favourite author.

Would you have difficulty narrowing the list down to 5 favourite books?



I haven’t been blogging much lately, and there is a good reason. I have been busy working on my WIP. I am now pleased to announce that Amanda in England– The Missing Novel is complete and sent to the publisher.  The launch should be sometime in August, all being well.  

I had a lot of fun writing this book, the third in my Amanda travel/adventure stories.  Some great new characters have shown up including Rupert, the Maine Coon cat, who lives in a bookstore.  I think my readers will like him.  Here is the cover so far







In the meantime, I have been fortunate to receive some awards which I would like to acknowledge and pass on.


I was so kindly granted One Lovely Blog award by Lada Ray   Her blog is wonderful, with great photos of Moscow and other amazing Russian cities.    Lada is a talented writer and an inspiring person. Please check out her blog and her trailers. You will not be disappointed.  Thank you Lada, it was so kind of you to think of me.







On the very same day, I was bestowed the Reader’s Appreciation Award by my east coast blogging friend, Pauline at NewfoundlandTraveller

Pauline’s blog is as friendly, warm, cozy and informative as you would expect from an east coaster. She makes you feel like you have been best friends for years.  Check out her blog for some down home, east coast entertainment.  You will be glad you did. Thank you Pauline, I value our friendship.


As per usual, these awards have rules (I have combined the two)

  • Thank the person/people who nominated you and link back to them in your post
  • Share 7 things about yourself
  • Nominate  six  to ten  blogs you admire
  • Contact your chosen bloggers to let them know

Let’s start with the 7 things about me that you don’t already know (maybe)

1. My middle name is Dale. My parents were fond of Dale Evans and Roy Rogers

2. I was raised on a farm/ranch but never learned to milk a cow or ride a horse. ( I let my brothers tend to the livestock)

3. I love all vegetables except cucumbers.

4. I hate rhubarb and tried desperately to kill a rhubarb plant in my back yard once. Lesson learned, when fighting a rhubarb plant, the plant always wins!

5. I am a hopeless romantic and an eternal optimist

6. I am not shy (OK you may have figured that one out by now)

7. My greatest wish is to see much of the world before I leave it.

I am giving both of these awards to the following blogs.  Pass them on if you like – or not.

Writing Sisters   Writing tips, inspiration, great quotes and pictures

Simple Country Life  Great stories and photos of country life. Makes me remember my days growing up on a prairie farm.

Slappshot   Musings of a single Dad, often very funny and always down to earth

Keli Gwyn    A beautiful blog about romance and all things Victorian. Keli has a book coming out soon so watch for it.

Patti   at http://pattisjarrett.wordpress.com/ Inspirational, family stories and lovely pictures

Ellen at http://ladyelogos.com/  The blog of an amazing author, lots of medieval posts and book reviews as well as author interviews.

Libby at Let Them Grumble   All things Tudor, book reviews, writing tips and amazing pictures.

Beth at http://www.bethstilborn.com/  Great posts on writing and reading

Alison at See my Travels. Fabulous travel writing and photographs. Alison is traveling in Canada right now and has some great posts about the west coast. You may even recognize someone on one of her recents posts.

Check out these blogs and say Hello from me.  I love all my blogging friends and everyone deserves an award!!!


Last bit of news is that made the short list for the West End Writers Writing Contest. I was invited to the awards ceremony at Barclay Manor last week.  Barclay Manor is a restored heritage house inVancouver, BC.  I had a lovely time and was invited to read my entry, “Ghosts in the Attic”.  I did not win any of the top three prizes but the winning entries so deserved to win.  It was good to be included among such talent.

That’s all folks and happy blogging !!






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