Friday, May 13, 2011

Author Interview and giveaway!

I want to start off by saying a huge thank you to B, she's been incredibly kind to me and I love 'Familiar Origins' so it was amazing for me to do this interview! : )

1.   Where did your inspirations come from when writing Familiar Origins? 
My inspiration came from the time I lived in England. Learning about medieval history and visiting castles and cathedrals gave me many ideas for short stories. I am also fascinated by dragons. After I returned to the US, I came up with the plot of Familiar Origins out of a group of short stories I had written over the course of a few years.

2. Besides writing, what other things do you enjoy doing?

I like reading. Fantasy and Science Fiction are my favorite genres, but I’m open to reading anything. Unfortunately most of my reading lately involves research for my stories. I also like to garden, but no one would believe that if they caught a glimpse of my backyard right now!

3. While writing 'Familiar Origins' did you ever have any kind of writer's block? If so, how did you overcome that?
I never had writer’s block for that particular book. I wrote ‘Familiar Origins’ while I was working full time and finishing up college, so I would write whenever I had a few free hours, and I always had tons of ideas and scenes in my head just waiting to end up in my word processor.  I do get writer’s block at times; when that happens all I can do is just set it aside for a week or two and move to another writing project. But a good workout on my elliptical machine has broken down more than one writer’s block spell for me.

4. Is there any messages that you would like to convey to your readers and/or fans?
Yes!  Thank you for giving my book a chance, and I promise there is much more to follow.

5. Is there anything in particular that you have to have with you while you are writing?
I must have music playing while I write. It doesn’t matter what kind of music. I will listen to just about anything.

6. Is there a certain character that you enjoyed writing about more than the rest?
Galen is the character I have the most fun writing about. I love them all, but Galen’s point of view is a bit different from the rest. Being one of the younger characters, she looks up to the others, and sees things in a more innocent light, at least for now. And sometimes she seems to have more common sense than the older characters. But she is still very much a young girl; even though she is so incredibly powerful, talented and courageous, she is also a little insecure, ingenuous and a bit of a crybaby. I like the challenge of balancing those characteristics in her.

7. Are you currently working on anything else?
Most of my writing time is going into this series. I have a science fiction story I am also working on, but I have not even finished the first draft yet, so I am not sure if I will look into having it published. I am also writing backstories about some of the supporting characters in ‘Familiar Origins’ as well.

8. Finish this sentence: "I can't live without..."
COFFEE! I was going to say chocolate but I have gone several days without it in the past. I can’t say the same for coffee.

9. You’re clearly passionate about writing (it shows in your work), is there anything else that you are equally as passionate about?
I have been thinking about this question for a bit, and I have to say no, nothing comes close to the feeling I get when I start writing and end up with a story out of basically nothing except an idea and a few prompts. I like doing other things, like playing video games, growing flowers and veggies, and cooking, but really, it doesn’t compare to writing.

10. Do you enjoy reading? If so, what are your favorite books?
I do enjoy reading. I don’t think I would have started writing if I didn’t read as much as I do (or did). As I mentioned before, Fantasy and Sci-Fi are my favorite reads. My favorite books are the Wheel of Time books by Robert Jordan. I would recommend them to anyone. It’s a wonderful saga!

11. What's a normal day like for you when you are writing a book?
That is a great question. Most of my writing happens at night. I am home with two preschoolers, and I have a teenager as well, so there’s not much time for day writing. Sometimes in the afternoon I can take an hour or so and sit at the computer, but usually I am doing other things. My writing time is usually between 10:30PM and 1AM. Saturday nights I will pull a late night or sometimes an all-nighter, if I’m not too exhausted. And some Sundays my husband will take charge of the kids and I can spend Sunday afternoon on the computer. But mostly the writing stuff I do during the day is either research, editing, or revising. The creative stuff comes out at night.

12. Are any of the characters in 'Familiar Origins' based off of yourself or anyone else that you know?
No, the characters pretty much developed on their own as I wrote the story. There is only one character that I can say I came up with based on another character. The king in The Thirteenth Warrior gave me the idea for Ben at first. And Ben was originally supposed to be the central character in the book, but as the story developed, a different character took over as the central figure, which I found amazing, even as I wrote it. But none of the other characters were truly based on anyone, real or fictional.

Now for the giveaway!
Courtesy of the ever fabulous B. Pine, I am giving away an amazing prize pack of:

  • A copy of 'Familiar Origins' signed by B. Pine and the illustrator!
  • A bookmark and a promotional postcard signed by the author and illustrator
  • A 4x6 magnet of the cover art of 'Familiar Origins'
Rules of the contest:
-You must be at least 13 to enter
-Contest is open to the US and Canada only, sorry guys!
-You DO NOT have to be a follower but it is greatly appreciated.
-Contest deadline is May 21st

To enter the contest, simply go here and fill out the form.


  1. Great interview, I entered the contest :)

    kate the book buff

  2. Great interview! Never heard of this book before, but now it's on my TBR pile.

    Thanks for the giveaway!