Today I am so pleased to welcome Sam Burns to Joyfully Jay. Sam has come to talk to us about her latest release, Wren and Oak (Rowan Harbor Cycle #9). She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!

Going to Plan

I get asked a lot if I planned to write a nine book series, or if it just turned out that way. The answer is, well . . . complicated.

I started working on the Rowan Harbor Cycle three years ago. It started as the tiniest plot bunny: we all love a few certain hunters of the supernatural, but what about the other side of the equation? What about innocent supernatural beings who just want to live their lives in peace?

During December of 2016, in a fit of inspiration, I made Rowan Harbor. The tight-knit families, the town council, the important places—heck, I even drew a map. (It’s wrong now and I’m no visual artist, you don’t want it.) By the time I was done, I had fully fifty character sheets of intertwined families and relationships. It felt like a living, breathing town.

As the town expanded, it became clear that I wasn’t writing a story about just Devon and Wade, but something much bigger.

So I decided to go all the way. If I was writing an epic, I was going to the classics: I’d write a story of Claidheamh Soluis, the sword of light, and include every Celtic mythological connection I could fold into it. I won’t go into the mythology here—though I thoroughly recommend it, it’s fascinating to research—but suddenly, I was dealing with a whole mythological cycle instead of a single romance. It wasn’t one book, it was nine of them, each with its own plot, a small part of the overall quest to find the sword.

Three years later, here I am, at the end of that cycle. Nine books, two novellas, and nearly half a million words have gone into Rowan Harbor and her residents. So did I plan for that?

Yeah, I guess I did.


Jesse’s only priority in life is protecting the people he loves, so he’s determined to see Rowan Harbor’s wards rebuilt. There’s just one problem: they’re missing an ingredient that can’t be ordered online.

Jesse volunteers to search for the missing component in the realm of the fae, but his boyfriend, Sean, isn’t letting him go alone. The town has an enemy among the fae, so they’ll need to keep a low profile. Along their way, they find unexpected allies, surprising enemies, and a whole host of problems.

The journey is a test of their endurance, but also of their relationship and their faith in each other. Can they find what they need and get back home in one piece in time for the summer solstice?


Sam wrote her first fantasy epic with her best friend when she was ten. Like almost any epic fiction written by a ten year old, it was awful. She likes to think she’s improved since then, if only because she has better handwriting now.If she’s not writing, she’s almost certainly either reading or lost down a Wikipedia rabbit hole while pretending to research for a novel.


Sam has brought along a great giveaway for one lucky reader on her tour. Follow the Rafflecopter below to enter. 

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FILED UNDER: Giveaway, Guest Post
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