Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Guest R Phoenix with Owned

It's extremely exciting for a new author to be able to say, hey, I HAVE A FAN! Ahem. Anyway, Brandy Newton--a fan who's been a great beta reader and friend as well as my new cover artist as of Owned!--agreed to ask me a few questions of things she wants to know about me/my books.

What inspired this amazing world where humans have been pushed to the bottom of the social ladder by supernatural beings?

As flattered as I am for it to be called amazing, I can't claim credit for the idea--even though I do try to make it my own instead of copying what others have done. I discovered Obsidian Butterfly by chance, and I devoured all of the books leading up to it. Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake series was the first one I read where supernatural beings were out in the open, and the idea fascinated me. (Granted, Obsidian Butterfly was the first I read and the one I stopped liking the series at, so I have no idea how it's progressed.)

I know other authors have experimented with varying shades of it over the years, though I'll admit I haven't read many of them. When Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse books followed, I kept wondering why they would settle for a struggle for integration--and what would happen if they decided that wasn't good enough.

I know there are other books out there, but I haven't read most of them! I read mostly fantasy books. I didn't even read a book in a universe like this until after Recoil and Ravel were published and I was working on Bought--and then I found Nicholas Bella. It's so cool to see the different way people take the idea.

I've also wondered what would happen if the Death Eaters had won in Harry Potter, so hey, maybe I'm just a sucker for the bad guys.

tl;dr: I have a sick mind and I love watching characters squirm. If they were real, I would be so in for it.

When writing your first book "Recoil," what were the challenges in bringing it to life?

So here's the embarrassing truth: Recoil is the second story/book I have ever finished in my life--and the last one was when I was in college taking a fiction writing course.

The biggest challenge was in getting over that block of "I've never finished anything before. How am I going to finish this?" I really wanted to play around with characters I knew very well and go with the "what might have been" path. I struggled a little until I threw out what I'd been taught about writing--outlining, writing in order, detailing the world out first, plotting, and so on. When I started writing what I wanted to write in the moment, it seemed to flow from there for the most part. I write by starting with something I want to write; I write until I'm out of ideas/inspiration for that scene. If I want to write another scene, I mark it as a ***TBC*** with any notes I want to include, then I skip ahead or go back.

There are reasons editing takes me longer than actually writing!

Beyond that, I'd never had anything published before. I'm still stumbling through the process, and I had no idea what I was doing. I'd been told not to write about vampires because they're "out," and I was under some pressure to try to write what was "popular" instead of what I wanted. I was afraid the characters weren't good enough, that the story wasn't strong enough... and then that I'd get a lot of flak for the ending. Ahem.

I did some research and found eXcessica, and I submitted to them not expecting anything to come of it.

To my shock, they accepted me into the author co-operative. From there, it was a journey of "oh, shit, am I really doing this?"

The world of your "Ripples in the Status Quo" series has seen vampires, werewolves, witches, and of course humans. Will we be seeing any other supernatural beings in your future books?

"Of course humans." Feh. Who needs humans?