|Book three in the|
Of Witches and Warlocks series.
Since becoming a writer, what’s the most exciting thing to ever happen to you?
This is hard for me to choose because I’ve had a lot of truly awesome experiences since becoming a writer. Some of them have had me jumping up and down with excitement, like when I’ve received notice from different celebrities, authors, actors, A-list models, screen writers and producers. Other things that have made me totally giddy have been some amazing emails from fans of the series from all over the world.
BUT, if I’m being totally honest, I would have to say the best thing that ever happened to me as a result of my writing was meeting my very best friend in the whole world. She read my book and fell head over heels in love with Vance. She got a mutual friend to put her in touch with me through Facebook and we hit it off with each other. She ended up becoming my beta reader for the rest of the series and after a couple months of texting with each other we made plans to meet face to face and have been inseparable since.
She went on to start her own book review blog, and this was her very first post EVER:
“There’s a new bad boy on the block. I have just two words for you all ... Vance Mangum.”
It also happens to be the SHORTEST post ever written by the woman you all know as The Bookish Snob.
What scene in the book are you most proud of and why?
I’m most pleased with the end of this book. I won’t say the exact scene I’m speaking of so I don’t spoil it, but there is a scene near the end that was very traumatic for me to write. I was emotionally pulled into this scene because of events I’d experienced in my own life and I bawled my eyes out while I was writing it, pouring a lot of my emotion into the character.
I feel writing this scene was very helpful in overcoming some of the intense grief I was going through at the time, however, I did get very sick as a result of writing it. I cried so hard, three days straight, and I ended up getting pneumonia from it. I think the emotion in the scene reads very true though, since I’ve received numerous emails and messages regarding the end of this book and how it made the reader feel. There are definitely pieces of me in this book.
What was your journey in becoming a writer?
My journey has been a lifelong one. I fell in love with books before I could even read, when my mom read stories to me. I tried writing my first book at the age of nine. I think it ended up being two or three pages long! LOL!
I started dabbling in writing poetry after my baby sister passed away when I was 13, and then began writing romance stories about my friends in high school and whoever their current crushes were. I knew I always wanted to try to write a book “someday” I just wasn’t very sure how to go about it.
I finally started writing on a story in my 20’s intending to have it bound into a few copies for my brother and sisters. Because of the lack in technology during that time in my life, I only wrote sporadically. It took me 14 years to finish the rough draft of that story, which I finally did thanks to purchasing a laptop.
That same week I got the idea for the Of Witches and Warlocks series and I started writing it. I finished the 1st book in 6 weeks, the second in 7 days, then this book in 3 weeks, before going on to writer books four and five in the series.
I ended up getting signed on by a publisher and that was how I got my first book out. I eventually bought out my contract from that publisher and chose to go the indie route instead because I liked the control it afforded me with the books. It’s been quite the ride!!
Describe your cover in 3 words. The first four words that pop into your head when you see this cover.
LOL! My three words: Intense, Hot, Romance! The first four words: MEGA HOT VANCE KISSES!
What can readers expect from your book?
Blood of the White Witch is probably the most romance oriented of all the books in the series, because of what the characters are going through in their relationship at the time. It also leads up to some pretty intense changes in the story for Vance and Portia, which will end up taking their tale in a new direction. It’s truly a story of undying love and commitment between two gifted young people who were fortunate to find each other and realize what they have is worth fighting for. Sprinkle a little magic, terror, and betrayal in there and you’re in for one heck of a ride!
Have you read the WSJ article on YA books? If so what is your opinion of it?
I just went and read it when I got this question. I’d briefly heard some mention of it somewhere, but hadn’t seen it for myself.
My opinion is this ... we should all be our own “gatekeeper” and read only things we are comfortable with. I applaud the woman who chose not to buy the books for her nephew because they made her uncomfortable. That’s her right and her choice.
However, I don’t believe that most authors set out to cause conflict in the world of readership. Stories are just that ... stories. Yes, they are made with entertainment in mind, but there has to be conflict in these tales in order for them to accomplish something, or there is no story to tell. Just because I may have someone killed in my books does not mean I advocate killing. This is something happening to my characters who live in a different fictional world than I do.
I know a lot of the YA books I’ve read have a great underlying theme in them, and that is learning to survive whatever life throws at you. What a great message for teens today, and it’s delivered in an entertaining form.
But my first suggestion to anyone choosing a book ... if looking at or reading the book begins to make you feel uncomfortable, don’t do it. Everyone’s tastes are different, that’s what is so great about reading. There’s a target audience for everyone. Find the reading genres that make you happy and enjoy them.
Which came first, the title or the novel?
The novel came first in this case. This book was originally called The Awakening, but another popular author released a set of her books before mine and her titles were eerily similar to several of mine so I actually went back and came up with several title names and had my large group of beta readers vote for their favorite title for this book. Blood of the White Witch won that contest unanimously, I believe. There may have been one vote for another title, but I can’t remember for sure.
If your real life adolescence was a YA book…What would you, the main character, be like?
HA!!! I spent most teen years making out with lots of guys! I attempted to count the number of guys I kissed in my adolescent life and if I remembered them all then it was somewhere in the neighborhood of thirty-seven. The guys ranged in age from 13 to 21.
I had my first kiss when I was 8 from two boys at the same time, and my first “real” kiss when I was 13. I felt it was my duty to kiss all those wonderful handsome mouths out there until I found my awesome husband when I was 18. I’ve been kissing him ever since and I’ve pretty much enjoyed every second of it! LOL!
I LOVE KISSING! They say authors should write what they know, so now you know why there is so much kissing in Of Witches and Warlocks. I’m afraid a book with me as a main character would feature a crazy girl, (a “spaz” is what my husband called me when he met me in high school) on the varsity cheer/pom squad, who performed in choir, band, and drama, and loved any gorgeous guy with an awesome set of lips!!
What is your number #1 source of angst?
LOL!! I’ve had several in my life...but right now...watching my deadlines fly by me at the speed of light!! :D