Friday, February 19, 2010

Dead, Undead, or Somewhere in Between

Interview -

Where did the idea for this story come from?
I was sitting on the couch, watching television with the hubs (I think we were watching the now cancelled Moonlight), trying to decide what I wanted to write next. I’d just wrapped up Crimson Moon, which I thought would be a one-time thing (never intended to seek publication), but the mind just won’t “stop”.

They say to write what you know about, and I was ready for a ballsy heroine versus a damsel in distress. Rhiannon was born of all those things. She’s loud, she’s abrasive, and she’s unapologetic. The rest of the story came into being after I had her down, which didn’t take long. It was just one of those things that happen sometimes – you get an image, you go with it, and it takes you on the journey.

Have you attended any book conventions or signings and if yes, where? Please let us know if you have any public appearances planned for the future.
I have not, and to be honest, I’m very nervous about the prospect. Don’t get me wrong, I love people. Gabbing is something I do well (and drives the husband batty when we’re having dinner or shopping and I start a conversation with relative strangers) but not when it’s about me or promoting something I’ve done. I’ve been advised of a gathering September and am considering making the trip. If things fall into place, maybe I’ll take the plunge.

What's next on your writing agenda?
Currently, I’m editing my newest full-length erotic romance which will release at Loose Id (under the Aline Hunter pen, entitled Eternity and a Day). Afterward, I have four stories to complete – Omega Mine (erotic romance), Dark Hunger on a Killing Moon (follow up to Eternity and a Day), The Company of Wolves (new UF series), and the second story in Rhiannon’s journey, The Renfield Syndrome.

What's more important to you when you're in the writing mode?
Peace and quiet, comfort, background noise, time...and why? Something not mentioned? With a household consisting of four children and a braying basset hound, it’s safe to say I don’t notice a lot of noise anymore. However, when I’m in the mood to write, I usually retreat to my writing cave and close the door. I’ll turn on my itunes, choose a list of music, and get to work. The major thing for me is no interruptions. When I’m the zone, interruption can ruin the entire scene.

What kind of hero/heroine do you like to write about?
Tortured ones are always good. There is a kind of darkness in uncovering what makes them tick. I also love writing heroines who aren’t afraid to get to pony up to the plate. Strong female protagonists are popular for a reason, and I totally dig them.

What's one thing readers won't find in your stories?
You know, I once said you’d never find certain things in my work…only to eat the words when I started getting contracted and began striving to stake a place in the market. As needs change, so does your opinion on artistic integrity and stretching yourself past limits you never believed possible. A fantastic example would be sex. I once swore I’d never write it, but as I got past my own insecurities, I found out it’s not only fun to do, but there is some great material out there to be enjoyed.

So I guess you won’t find limitations in my stories. If I feel the work needs to go there to make it the best it can be, I’ll do it.

Who is your favorite author and what's the last book you've read?
My favorite author is John Steinbeck, and the last book I read was Tangled by Karen Erickson.

Please fill in the blank. If I didn't write, I would Teach.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be and why?
Honestly, I’m happy right here in beautiful Alabama. I get the natives, know where to go when I need something, and my home is out in the boonies where it’s nice and quiet. Just like the old Alabama diddy proclaims, “My Home’s in Alabama”.

What advice or inspiration can you offer to aspiring authors?
Chin up. This isn’t necessarily a nice or easy industry. Rejection is just a part of the business. Don’t let it get you down. Be sure to research when submitting, and do your homework. Nothing promotes your work better than you. By being as informed as you can, you’ll exude confidence, which is a powerful tool that gains attention and notice.

What are you wearing right now?
I’m snickering as I answer because you caught me at my hood-rat best. I’m in my old ¾ sleeved Alabama football jersey and a pair of grey fleece pants. Thank you for having me by! These questions were a ton of fun! ;)

Dead, Undead, or Somewhere in Between Blurb -
One bad corpse can ruin your whole day. No one knows that better than Rhiannon Murphy.

She’s left behind the flash and sass of Miami for the no-nonsense groove of New York City, eager for a clean slate and a fresh start. A bartender by trade, a loud mouth by choice, and a necromancer by chance; she’s managed to keep her nifty talent hidden from those around her – until now.

The deliciously good-looking vampire Disco knows her secret, and when he strolls into her bar to solicit help investigating the mysterious disappearances of his kind from the city, she discovers he’s not the kind of person that appreciates the significance of the word no.

But in a world where vampires peddle their blood as the latest and greatest drug of choice, it’s only a matter of time before the next big thing hits the market. Someone or something is killing vampires to steal their hearts, and unlike Rhiannon, this isn’t their first stroll around the undead block.

Excerpt -

My shoulders drooped in defeat. Of all the shitty luck.

The only way my life could get worse is if I got my throat ripped out. Coincidentally, I was due to leave my place of employment and enter into a darkened alley to meet up with a vampire. So the odds weren’t stacked in my favor. Not at all.

My boots squeaked on the linoleum as I strode past the coat rack, walked down the hall, and entered the narrow concrete hallway. The big steel door at the end distorted, appearing too close and then too far, invoking images of The Shining. I finally reached it and limply grasped the knob.

I stood there, fingers loose and flaccid. Once I turned the knob, I was sealing my fate. My pride wouldn’t stand for beating on the door and screaming like a pansy to be allowed back inside. I exerted my backbone, grasped the knob, and twisted. The door opened with a protest of metal against metal.

I scanned the area quickly and then sagged in relief. The alley was empty. Thank you God, hallelujah! The door slammed shut behind me as I rushed down the narrow street. I was dodging a bullet, and I knew it.

The moon wasn’t out but the streetlights lit the way decently enough, the circular swells of white shining bright against the darkened concrete. The air was slightly chilly, sending prickles along my skin. I’d have to break out the jeans and sweaters soon.

I hooked a right, keeping my ecstatic pace, until I glanced up.

Disco was propped casually against the wall, his broad back braced against the red bricks. He was standing beneath a nearby street light that shone off his hair, the pale honey blond intense. Pulling out a cigarette and lighting up, he waited as I approached. I watched the red tip brighten as he took a long puff, lifted his head, and exhaled slowly into the darkened night.

So much for dodging a bullet.

Some girls get to be prom queen, others get a perfect SAT score, but not me. I was the biggest winner on The Price Is Right, and Johnny just told me to come on down.


J.A. Saare said...

I just wanted to thank you for having me by the blog! ;-) Thanks for hosting me on the tour.


Cari Quinn said...

I'm still laughing at your hood-rat best. ;) And I love how one image can spark a story...especially a great one like Dead!

Tory Richards said...

My pleasure J.A.:)I wish you much success with your book.

J.A. Saare said...

Hey Tori and Cari ~

I would not be me if I didn't slum about in my hoot-rat best. Seriously, it's my mainstay! ;)

Thanks for stopping by Cari! Oh, and Tori -- LOVED Wicked Desire. Fantastic story!


s7anna said...

Hey J.A.,
I'm having a blast reading your interviews during your blog tour for your latest release.

Happy Reading
Anna Shah Hoque

Nancy Bristow said...

Hi Jaime...Fun interview. I'm a regular here on Tory aka Debbie's blog and I love a ballsy heroine. I think women who have self-esteem are sexy as are the heroes that dig them. I'll be sure to check out your work...both as J. A. Saare and Aline Hunter. I'm a book a day reader and erotic reads across all the genres and sub-genres are at the top of my hit parade:)

J.A. Saare said...

Hey Nancy ;)

Always great to meet someone who enjoys reading as much as I do. I hope you like my "smut" as much as my other stuff.

Thanks for stopping by! It's great to meet you!


Shelley Munro said...

It sounds as if you have lots planned for your eager readers with all those projects on the go.
Re the hood-rat - that's pretty close to what I'm wearing, but a summer version. :)