Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Nova Sparks' THE DOME - Blogfest & Dome Party day 3

DOME PARTY AND BLOGFEST continues, Day 3...

● Author Interview
● Book Summary and Excerpt
● Chances to win copies of Nova's ebook, The Dome, through July 30

TO WIN - follow one of Nova's blogs (addresses below her interview) and email us at so we can notify winners. Up to five copies of THE DOME will be given away to lucky responders chosen at random!

Summary of The Dome by Nova Sparks

Genre – Science Fiction
Content – Language, drug references, sexual references

What if you knew the exact date and time the world will end, what would you do? Sam Tucker was faced with that dilemma when he began getting visions of the Earth's demise. Luckily for him, he was able to save his family and as many people as he could before the tragic event occurred, and he did so with the help of unknown visitors. With Earth now destroyed, Sam, his family and thousands of other lucky survivors must live the rest of their lives on a faraway planet in a Dome that simulates life on Earth. But Sam's mind can't seem to rest as a few questions arise. Why did the aliens save them? How did they know about Earth's sure fate? And exactly what are they hiding?

Emma Tucker begged for an escape from her boring life but never in a million years did she think it would come at the destruction of Earth. Living on a new planet and finding it difficult to get rid of her rebellious habits, Emma finds herself making friends with a member of the alien race and it soon develops into an unexplainable love; a love that is more dangerous than she could ever imagine. While her father is searching for his own truths, she has no idea that she is stumbling on a truth of her own.

Nova Sparks, author of The DOME

Sample or purchase The DOME (Book One of The DOME trilogy):

Author Interview with Nova Sparks

Recently Penumbra Publishing had the privilege of talking with author Nova Sparks about her first book in The Dome trilogy, The Dome. Here’s what she had to say about her writing and her book.

PP: What were you trying to achieve when you first started work on THE DOME trilogy?

NS: I wanted to write stories where humans are taken out of their comfort zone and forced to recreate what it means to be human. Too many times I’ve read a book or seen a movie or TV show where aliens come to Earth and invade, or there is a UFO sighting. I wanted to write a story where humans are taken from Earth and have to live on an alien planet with nothing but their memories to start over with. This forces humans to figure out what really makes them human, and if that’s all worth fighting for. It really makes us look at ourselves through the eyes of another species.

I wanted this trilogy to shine light on human potential and the human purpose. I really believe that we are a ridiculously cocky and arrogant race of people, and we are never really shown how small and insignificant we are in the larger spectrum of things. But, at the same time, I want this book to show how rare and precious we are as well.

PP: Explain how THE DOME trilogy got from idea to published book?

NS: THE DOME trilogy started out as a television show treatment that I tried to have produced on HBO. When I first wrote the treatment, I wanted it to contain elements of romance, mystery, thriller and urban fantasy all mixed up into one story. As far as the content, I think I’ve succeeded. Many of my readers have told me that the genre, although obviously sci-fi, seems like a hybrid of a bunch of other stuff.

The idea definitely didn’t hit me all at once. I started out wanting a sci-fi story about aliens taking humans away from Earth to a distant planet. That’s all I had for a while. Then I wanted to have this big mystery behind the aliens’ intentions, so I started giving my alien characters a bigger voice. I thought it was weird that humans were on an alien planet and barely spoke of any aliens. Of course, I’m a huge romance fiend, so I added the romance element between my main character Emma, and an alien boy, Ked. Emma and Ked were inspired by complex relationships, but with an added twist. In the end, I really wanted to write a book that, for once, made humans the weaker species.

I started thinking about the concept for THE DOME in 2009. A few months later into the year, I started writing a loose outline that was really basic. Periodically throughout the months ahead, I would go back and change some stuff or add some stuff until it became a fairly complete story line. Some time during 2010, I started writing it as a treatment for a TV show. When my efforts to make my dream into a reality failed, I started expanding on the idea a little more. I began doing pages of character profiles and then pages upon pages that broke down every episode from Season 1 until Season 3. I really worked hard on this because I believed in it so much. Then I heard about self-publishing (didn’t even consider traditional publishing because the process seemed all too similar to trying to get a TV show picked up), and I decided to make THE DOME into a book trilogy. That didn’t take very long because everything for the book was already done. I had the character profiles, their back stories, and the complete story line. I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it. The most difficult part was deciding who would be the main character between Sam (the father) and Emma (his daughter). I decided to do something a little unorthodox and make it a two-point-of-view story because main characters are just another way of saying this person is more important than everyone else. I didn’t want to make that decision – both Sam and Emma are equally important.

After about three months of converting the treatment into book form and editing, I was finally ready to publish in March of 2011. The book cover art took about a month to do, so that was the delay, and I published officially in April of 2011. So, all in all, it took a total of two years for the idea to produce itself into a book. I was also working on five other books during the same time period, so that interfered a lot.

PP: Book 1, THE DOME, is out now. Tell us a little about Book 2.

NS: Book 2, THE DOME REVELATION, basically picks up where the THE DOME (book 1) left off. I’ve gotten some really great feedback about the first book, so I’m really excited about putting out Book 2. Emma, one of my main characters, has evolved into a mature woman. She’s still the same Emma, but after reading Book 1 and then going into Book 2, readers will see a change in her personality and how that reflects in the decisions she makes moving forward.

Sam, Emma’s father, has some serious issues that he has to work through. This book starts off with him and Emma being bonded by a bone-chilling secret, and they are both torn about whether or not they should tell people what they know.

Kris, Emma’s mom, has a much bigger voice. She actually becomes involved in this world instead of always being oblivious and left out. I was excited about giving her a chance to show what she is made of. Of course, I introduce a few more human characters. Their purpose is to remind Emma of what she is missing from the human world, and to give her the opportunity to experience something other than her ‘new-found norm.’ Her interactions with these humans plays a big role in a lot of the decisions that she makes throughout the book. And the lovely alien boy, Ked, will definitely return.

Now I have to stop myself; otherwise I will tell everything. All I will say is that I’m very excited!

PP: Thank you, Nova, for sharing your writing experiences and insights with our readers.

NS: Thank you for the opportunity.

Excerpt from The Dome by Nova Sparks

The best thing about school is that even though it’s boring as shit, I always manage to make a quick buck. About two years ago after watching a documentary in school called Cocaine Cowboys, I got the idea to start making and selling my own drugs.
I live in a small town surrounded by bored white kids just looking for a way out. And I’m more than happy to give it to them. For five bucks a pop I can get you high as a kite and keep you coherent enough to make it through a full day of school without anyone so much as looking in your eyes for signs of intoxication. I’m that good. Becca and Tim are cool, but if it was up to me I would’ve never included them in this. But like any good operation, you need people to keep it going.
Becca can get the supplies we need because her father works at a hardware store, and Tim (since he is a wee bit older than me) has his own spot with his brother so I have a “warehouse” to operate from. Other than that, Becca is an idiot. You never get high off your own supply. That is dealer 101. Ask anyone who knows and they’ll tell you. But Becca can’t seem to keep her fucking hands out of her own shit.
“Yo! Are you gonna help me bag this up or are you gonna sit there and watch me do everything?” I yell across the room. Becca and Tim get up and start slowly walking over to the table. Sweat is pouring down my back because of the heat coming from the Bunsen burners. This only infuriates me more because it reminds me that not only am I the only level headed one here, but I’m also the brains of the whole operation. Becca doesn’t even understand math let alone science so I wouldn’t dare let her anywhere near my lab.
“Babe, relax. You’re too young to be stressing yourself out.” Tim says, with a fake ass Italian accent. Tim and I go way back to my freshman year of high school. When I was fourteen he was seventeen and should’ve been in his senior year, but he dropped out in the tenth grade, before I ever met him. If his parents weren’t dead, I’d imagine they wouldn’t like that. He never talks about them but when I saw his house for the first time I came up with the conclusion that they had money. His older brother never encourages him to do a damn thing with his life and I hate the way he just sits around not saying anything like a deaf mute. He just stares at Becca with those piercing gray eyes. I swear if he ever gets a chance, he would have his way with her.
“Okay so if we’re done here, I’m going to go to school.” I say to no one in particular.
“Okay well…I’m going to stay here for a while and then head back home.” Becca says looking at the ground.
I turn to leave but Tim grabs my arm and twirls me around so I fall into his chest.
“Come over later okay? Becca’s gonna leave soon and Thom is working tonight.”
I smell marijuana and mint on his breath and wince at the odd combination.
“Yeah sure, I’ll be here.” I reply, instantly regretting it. He kisses me rough and hard and let go of my arm to release me. I walk out of the garage, grab my bike and head down the street. When I’m sure no one can see me, I wipe whatever is left of Tim’s dried spit off my mouth.
I’m not exactly sure when, but all my feelings for Tim started to fade away a little while ago. All the things that drew me to him in the beginning now seemed to get on my nerves. I hated his knack for skinny jeans and message shirts like, Your Girl Thinks I’m Hot or Everything’s Bigger in Texas. I hate how warm his skin always feels even in a well air conditioned room.
I hate how his breath always smells of marijuana. I think he’s starting to notice because he always pops an Altoid in his mouth right before he kisses me. But that just makes it worse. Even more, I hate the way he touches me. His touch isn’t like a boyfriend who loves and needs me. It’s weird because I’ve never really been in love or felt like I needed someone before, but whatever it’s supposed to feel like isn’t happening between me and Tim.
I mostly get the vibe that he desperately wants to take my virginity, like I’m some score and the past three years have just been a really patient game he’s been playing. Although he never really made any promising advances in that way, I figure it’s only a matter of time before he either leaves me or fucks Becca. But after coming to terms with everything I feel, I never could muster up the courage to break up with him. My parents hate him and I do enjoy pissing them off so maybe that’s it.
After a long day of school, making money and sitting through lectures about shit I already know, I hop on my bike and head home. I know I told Tim I would come over but I don’t feel like it, not tonight. When I get home I drop my backpack on the floor by the front door and head straight to the kitchen for some orange juice. Coming home from school is so peaceful because no one is ever home and I have the house to myself. My mom works at an elementary school near the city and Sam leaves for work at an engineering plant about an hour before I get out of school so I’m always coming home to an empty house.
After I finish drinking I head up to my parents room to see if there is any money lying around and I’m shocked to see Sam sitting at the edge of the bed.
“Oh- what are you doing home?” I ask trying to seem genuinely concerned.
I wait a second for him to answer and turn to leave.
“Hey, Emma.” He stops me in my tracks.
“Hi, Sam. What are you doing home?”
“Emma, would it kill you to refer to me as Dad?”
“When you treat me like a prisoner instead of your daughter, it does become a little difficult to call you Dad.”
I start to say something else but I notice he hasn’t looked up at me once. The dude was seriously starting to freak me out so I decided to end it there and take Tim up on his offer. Anything would be better than being stuck home alone with Sam acting all weird.

Nova Sparks, author of The DOME

Sample or purchase The DOME (Book One of The DOME trilogy):

TO WIN - follow one of Nova's blogs (addresses below her interview) and email us at so we can notify winners. Up to five copies of THE DOME will be given away to lucky responders chosen at random!


  1. Nova's book sounds terrific. I loved the excerpt! Thanks so much for the post. I appreciate you sharing and bringing this book to our attention!

  2. I loved the interview and the excerpt makes me want to know more about The Dome. Thanks for posting!

  3. You guys are awesome, Terri and Wanda!

    I love Penumbra...they were great!

  4. Nova's a terrific author and her book does sound great - wish we'd published it!

  5. *virtual tear*

    Thanks so much! That means a lot!


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