Hey everyone! how are you all doing? In less than two day I’ll be on my way to starting over where my life began, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. I excited and nervous at the same time =)
Well, enough of that… Today i am very happy to have here Jenna Black. She is the author of the great Urban fantasy, Morgan Kinsley series and the upcoming YA Faerywalker series that starts with “Glimmerglass”, coming out in May.
I LOVE The Morgan Kingsley Series (Review coming up this weekend) and I’m really looking forward to her new one. Besides stopping by today, Jenna is giving a SIGNED copy of any book in the Morgan Kingsley series to a lucky winner, giveaway deets at the end of the post =)
Now, let’s get on with the interview…
- When did you first start writing?
I've been writing approximately forever. I wrote my first "book" when I was in fifth grade. It was an autobiography, written in pencil with crayon illustrations. I've been writing ever since.
- Why writing Urban Fantasy?
I write urban fantasy because it is one of my favorite genres to read. I love the juxtaposition of the real world and the fantasy world.
- Were there any Books, Movies or Writers that have inspired you?
There are many, but I'd have to give the most credit to Laurell K. Hamilton. As soon as I discovered her Anita Blake books, I was completely hooked on the genre and started reading everything I could get my hands on.
- Favorite Paranormal themed Movie?
I find it's hard for Hollywood to get paranormal movies right. I'd have to say my favorite I've seen is Wolf, with Jack Nicholson. It managed to be a good, intriguing character study without getting too bogged down in the fantasy special effects.
- Favorite Paranormal themed TV Show?
TV seems to do better with the paranormal shows. I'd probably have to say Buffy the Vampire Slayer is my favorite, but I also really enjoyed the recent British series, Being Human.
- Favorite Paranormal themed Book?
It's very, very hard for me to pick a favorite. There are so many I love. Some of my favorites are the early Anita Blake books (by Laurell K. Hamilton), as well as the Mercy Thompson books (by Patricia Briggs). Other books at the top of my list include DARK LOVER by JR Ward, ANGEL'S BLOOD by Nalini Singh, and WAR FOR THE OAKS by Emma Bull. But seriously, there are countless others.
- Favorite one of your Books?
My favorite of my own books is SHADOWS ON THE SOUL, the third book in my Guardians of the Night series. It was really hard to write, because I was trying to redeem such a dark hero, but I really enjoyed the challenge, and I feel that it came out really well.
- Favorite of your own characters? Why?
My favorite of my own characters is Gabriel, from SHADOWS ON THE SOUL. He's such a bad, bad boy, and yet there's a good heart buried under all the layers. It took a lot of work to strip all the outer layers away, and he was never going to be a nice guy, but I loved dragging him along the road to redemption.
- Which was the hardest to write? Why?
Each of my series was very challenging, for very different reasons. The Guardians of the Night series was challenging because they were my first published books. Everything was new and intimidating, so I felt a lot of pressure working on them. The Morgan Kingsley books were challenging because they were my first attempt to write in first person, and because I really pushed myself to write outside my comfort zone. (Believe me, if you'd asked me before I wrote THE DEVIL INSIDE whether I'd ever write a book that included BDSM and M/M sex, I'd have laughed myself silly. But sometimes I write better when I'm uncomfortable, so I decided to risk it.) The upcoming young adult series is difficult because I'm tackling some very personal issues. My heroine's mother is an alcoholic, and writing about the role of an only child with a single, alcoholic mother hits very close to home with me. Although the series is complete fantasy, there are a lot of thinly veiled personal experiences I'm writing about, and that's both scary and emotionally draining.
- What is your favorite part of the writing process?
The easiest part for me (and therefore my favorite) is writing the big climactic scene(s) at the end of the book. By the time I get there, I'm very comfortable that I know how the plot is going to work, I'm totally immersed in all the characters' heads, so I know what they'll do in any given situation, and I've got a good picture in my own head of all the action that's to come. I often have marathon writing sessions when I get to this part, because the momentum carries me right through my supposed break times.
- What is your least favorite part?
My least favorite part is trying to get by plot roadblocks. Sometimes, I know exactly where I want my characters to end up, but the logistics of getting them there leaves me stymied. I always have to write my characters into impossible situations that it seems they can't get out of (that's pretty much the basis of all suspense writing), but then I also have to get them out of it. Even if I have a plan in mind for how to do it, by the time I get to writing the scene, I often find my original plan doesn't quite work and I have to come up with something different. Sometimes, I can come up with a better solution quickly, but the times I can't are very frustrating. I always worry that this is the one time I'll get stuck and be unable to get myself unstuck.
-The Morgan Kingsley Series in your own words?
The Morgan Kingsley series is about an exorcist who is possessed by the king of the demons. As if being possessed against her will isn't bad enough, Morgan learns that Lugh, the demon king whose host she's become, is embroiled in a war for the demon throne, and it will be a bad day for humanity if his brother manages to usurp his power.
- Any plans for more Morgan Kingsley Books after The Devil's Playground?
Not at this time, although there will be at least one more Morgan Kingsley short story in an anthology coming out sometime next year.
- You also have an new YA series being released in May right? Can you tell us a bit more about that?
Yes, GLIMMERGLASS, the first book of the Faeriewalker series, will hit the shelves on May 25. The series is about a teen girl named Dana Hathaway, who gets fed up with her alcoholic single mother and runs away from home to find her Fae father in Avalon, the only place in the world where the ordinary world and the world of Faerie intersect. She's hoping to find something more like a normal life, but she gets way more than she bargained for. It turns out she's a Faeriewalker, a rare individual who can travel freely both in the mortal world and in Faerie. She can also bring magic into the mortal world and technology into Faerie. There are a lot of people--including her father--who see her as a potential pawn in a deadly game of Fae politics, and her life is about as far from normal as it's possible to get.
- What are you working on right now?
Right now I'm working on the first book of a new adult urban fantasy series, which will debut in 2011. I'm not free to share any details yet, but anyone who's interested should keep an eye on my website. As soon as I'm cleared to make an announcement--and I have no idea when that will be--I will put the information on the website.
- Do you have any advice or tip to those like me that want to become a published Author someday?
Never give up. That’s the best advice you’ll ever hear. It took me more than 16 years and 18 completed novels before I finally sold my first book. And the best way to keep your spirits up is not to buy into the conventional wisdom that you need some kind of lucky break in order to break in. If you’re hoping for the lucky break, then you’re putting all the power in someone else’s hands, and you’re entrusting your dreams to something you cannot control.
You don’t need to get lucky to sell a novel. You just need to write a damn good book. The better your book is, the better the chance that an editor will fall in love with it. And you can always do better. So, if one book gets rejected, then put everything you can into improving your craft. If you improve enough, the next book might get you that coveted contract. And if not, you can always do better with the next book after that, and so on.
- Anything you would like to say to your fans out there?
THANK YOU!!! My fans are what keep me going through all the tough times in this business (and believe me, there are a lot of those). I am so grateful that there are people out there who are willing to fork over their hard-earned dollars to buy my books so I can keep writing. Being a published author was my lifelong dream, one I spent many, many years pursuing. My fans make it possible for me to live that dream. So again, thank you all!
Thank you SO much for being here Jenna! You rock!
Now, on to the Giveaway!
A lucky winner will get a SIGNED copy of any of the 5 books out in the Morgan Kingsley series, including the new release (The Devil’s Playground).
It’s your choice!
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Ends on April 5th!
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