Book Pushers: Hiya Grace, and welcome to the blog. Can you tell us what you have planned for your next release?
Thanks for having me!
Well, I decided I’d try the self-published route with a novella length steampunk romance/gaslight fantasy called GASLIGHT HADES. I’m using the framework of the Hades/Persephone story and adding in the neo-Victorian element. It’s been a challenge to write but a lot of fun too. I hope to have it available in digital format on Amazon, B&N and Smashwords by the end of May. If my schedule permits, I’ll follow it up shortly with a novel length work tied to it called THE BONE KEEPER. I’m also working on a retelling of Beauty and the Beast titled ENTREAT ME. The cover artist I’ve commissioned for that one is the talented Louisa Gallie who also designed an alternate cover of MASTER OF CROWS for me.
Book Pushers: Will you explore any more stories set in the Master of Crows world? (Ericka and Has adored this book and are hankering for – please say yes!!!)
Yes, at least one story. ***spoiler here*** It will center around Silhara’s daughter who falls in love with a Conclave priest skilled in alchemy. I’d really like to revisit the world I created in MASTER OF CROWS and expand on it. Plus, the chance to write a scene in which Silhara blows a gasket at the news his only child has fallen for a most hated enemy is something I just can’t pass up.
Book Pushers: You have written primarily fantasy romances, but you have also written a historical book and contemporary romance book. Do you have plans to write more books in those genres? Yes to both, but they’ll still be populated with a fantasy/paranormal element. One focuses on King Macbeth of Scotland, the other on one of the fallen Grigori named Penemue. The first is 80% complete, but I’m still undecided on the title. The second is still in its beginning stages, and I’m set on that title – A DARKNESS OF GODS. I would really like to tackle a contemporary paranormal one day that centers on a mother with an autistic child. I love to read straight historicals and like a lot of straight contemporaries; however, I don’t feel like I have the “voice” to do either in their pure forms so leave that to others.
Book Pushers: Can you tell us a little about yourself, and how your publishing career started?
I’m about as boring as it gets. Let’s see…if I steal from my bio on my publisher’s website I can tell you I’ve ridden in small-time competition rodeo, lived in Spain for almost three years, earned my undergraduate degree in Russian Studies, honeymooned in Scotland, hiked the Teton mountains ages ago, work as a retirement plan audit coordinator in my day job, have three rather strange but still awesome kids and a husband with the most fabulous, waist-length white hair. ~grins~ My only minute claim to fame is having a great great grandfather who was once the president of Nicaragua.
As for the road to publishing, I give credit where credit is due. I wrote (and still write) fanfiction. That really is how my publishing career got started. In 2002, I began writing my first fanfiction. At the end of 2004, I felt confident enough to try my hand at some original work and submit it for publication. I submitted a short story based on contest criteria as presented by Amber Quill Press. I think I nearly passed out when I received the e-mail that I was one of the winners. The story was contracted and THE KING OF HEL was published in spring 2005. I’ve been banging on the keyboard nonstop ever since.
World building. There’s no denying the high you get at playing God in your universe. You set the rules and act as creator. The trick is to play by the rules you set and build a solid foundation of practical believability while still infusing it with that wondrous sense of magic. Fantasy allows the writer to do these things. I’ve loved fantasy since I can remember and have embraced it as a reader and a D&D player (I’m dating myself here when I say I fondly remember weekends of sleep deprivation as we played with character sheets and dice for hours on end at a card table).
Book Pushers: Can you tell us who some of your favourite fantasy authors are?
Some of the older authors remain my favorites: Andre Norton. I cut my teeth on fantasy with her. Julian May, Barbara Hambly (I can wax rhapsodic for days of my love for Antryg Windrose in her Windrose Chronicles), Louise Cooper (R.I.P.), R.A. MacAvoy, Gael Baudino and Michael Moorcock.
Book Pushers: Describe your day when you’re writing? Do you plan an outline for your book or are you a panster?
I am a pantser to the bone. It’s why I keep an emotional distance between me and the words I write. I never know when I might have to throw something out and start over. I can’t get too attached to something that might end up in the garbage and replaced. I’ve tried outlining, but it’s not for me; I wish it was. I don’t usually write to music but will often associate a specific scene to a specific song. I’ll play the song multiple times as I tap out the rough draft of the scene. I’m very visually inspired and will tape illustrations or movie stills of anything and everything to the top of my desk to use as reference or motivation.
With my schedule, writing is catch as catch can. I write very early in the morning (4:30 a.m.) or very late at night—basically during the hours the family is asleep. If I’m lucky and have a lunch hour at work to myself, I’ll write then as well.
Book Pushers: We have seen other authors mention that their writing style seems to naturally flow with a certain word count. With The Master of Crows as your longest published work so far, have you noticed that you have a particular length that is easier for you to write? Or is the length based on other factors?
I am solidly in the novel-length camp, though I don’t have a problem with writing novella length works. However, I like to take my time building relationships between characters, and a novel’s more expansive word count allows me to do that.
Book Pushers: If you were going to invent your own biography (About the Author) what is the most outrageous line you would include?
Ack! You’ve put me on the spot! Let me get back with you on that one.
Book Pushers: Silhara, the hero from Master of Crows, can be a grumpy mage at times. If he had the chance to go on a vacation with Martise, where would he take her ?
Since he’s a border line misanthrope, he’d probably take her some place isolated and devoid of people—the Canadian wilderness, a deserted island, the moon if it was possible. I imagine his version of Hell would be a cruise ship during spring break. ~smiles~
Thank you so much Grace for taking the time to answering our questions! Grace has also graciously offered four digital copies of her books. Draconus, Wyvern and two copies of Master of Crows in PDF format will be up for grabs.
To enter just comment who is your favourite romantic fantasy hero and choice of book you would like to win?
Giveaway ends next Tuesday 2nd of May at midnight GMT!
Note: The artwork is from Phuriedae and will be the new cover for the rerelease of Master of Crows later this year and Grace will be offering the winners of the book the new editions with the covers as well. – (please check out her artwork!)