Okay, there's only one way to describe the author visiting our blog today and that word is "live wire!" Take it away Cassiel! (psssstt…and be sure and read Key of Solomon, I guarantee you'll love it, I did!)
1. I noticed you have a tendency to put your heroine and hero at odds in your books. What is it that you like about putting the two main characters at odds, and why do think this works so well (because we both know it does)?
Well, it should work well in romances, shouldn’t it? J I think there are few people who enjoy conflict in their lives. Maybe lawyers. And my husband. Especially in relationships, conflict is an integral part and takes many forms. For our fantasy, which is what I like to write, conflict in romance, unlike real life, has only one resolution – the happy ending. That’s why I and I suspect others, like our stories filled with conflict because we have the power to create those happy endings for our characters. These happy ending can be a wonderful love or it can be winning against the bad guy. We just don’t always get the chance to have such positive ends to conflict in our daily lives. That’s why I think, as a writer and a reader, romance fiction is so important. The happy ending.
2. Okay, I gotta ask, why fallen angels? I had the pleasure of reading Key of Solomon, and so I just wondered what made you think of a fallen angel as the hero?
Thanks for reading Key! I hope you had a good experience. As far as how I came up with the idea of fallen angels, I wanted to write something different then the market was doing at that time (now, there are so many) and I’d always loved the idea of angels but I didn’t necessarily want to write an “angelic” being.
Like many, I’d grown up thinking of angels as beautiful beings decked in white with blue eyes and golden hair. While I wasn’t opposed to that, I still wanted something different. I do like my dark heroes. I wish I could remember when I fell on the idea of fallen angels. It was probably from something I researched but once I had the idea, and later learned that the stories go that God wouldn’t let them back into Heaven no matter what, Mikos and his story was born.
3. What do you think about the phrase, "write what you know?"
LOL. I wrote a whole blog post on this subject. I think Valerie Sherwood, a romance novelist, says it best: “Don’t write what you know – what you know may bore you, and thus bore your readers. Write about what interests you – and interests you deeply – and your readers will catch fire at your words.” This is what I focus on when I write and why I love writing what I do. If I’m excited, I’m hoping my reader will be too.
4. What has been your favorite book to write so far, and why that particular book?
Well, can I say my favorite book is the one that hasn’t found a home yet? J I’ve loved all my stories and enjoyed creating the worlds. However, the one that is currently waiting for a home is a tomb raider-based romance featuring a Lara Croft-type heroine. Her hero is a study Egyptologist with a hidden side. It’s loosely based on Egyptian mythology and a large part takes place in Egypt. You can read the first chapter on my site. It’s at a publisher’s house right now so I’m waiting with fingers crossed. I do love Key of Solomon and Hit Me With Your Best Shot and I’m having a blast writing book 2 of my Relic Defender series but this one, tentatively titled Blood on the Moon is a favorite.
5. If you could do one thing differently on your road to publication, what it would be, and why that one thing?
Oh, this is easy. I would have started learning about promotion sooner and taken more interest when I had the chance. Instead of avoiding the classes at conferences, I would have taken them. I feel like I’ve had to struggle to keep pace and that can be both exhilarating but also frustrating. Time I need to take learning what I should have been learning is time I should be writing. Learn to promote and market before you are published. Even if you don’t think you have anything, you can still learn. Then, when you get the Call, you’ll be ready.
6. If you could meet one of your heroes in real life, who would it be and why that hero?
All of them? Oh, you said one. Okay, since I only have to pick one, I would love to meet Gideon in my newest release from Lyrical Press, Hit Me With Your Best Shot. He’s tough and tender with a wicked sense of humor. I love men that make me laugh. I must. I married one and 21 years later, he still makes me laugh.
7. What is your favorite thing about the process of writing a book?
Research! I’ve always loved learning but little did I know that my choice of career would let me do a lot of research as part of my job. It was a joy to discover how much I enjoyed researching as part of the creative process. I relied on the Internet and library research plus my own library is now filled with all kinds of reference books. They look so pretty sitting on my shelves. Happy sigh.
8. If you could give one piece of advice to a newly published author what would it be?
Enjoy the ride. Soon enough, you have to get off and start the hard work. Enjoy what it feels like to have your dream come true. You’ll never have the first time again. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve sold three and I’ve loved it every time. But none of them have come close to how I felt when I sold Key of Solomon to Samhain. So, enjoy it. All too soon you’ll have to think about the next book and next book and all the other things that come with being published. It’s grand, but it isn’t easy.
9. Please share your three top favorite free book promotions tips with our readers.
Twitter is your friend. Build your author presence on Goodreads. Find a great group like the wonderful staff at Heartfelt Promotions to work with. And this is a fourth but no less important – embrace the fact you have to promo if you want to sell. I know there are those out there who say they just have to write the next book or those who say they sell but don’t promo. Maybe. But I always have to wonder – how much better would they be doing if they were promoting? Something to think about.
10. What is your favorite paid promotions tip?
Starting thinking and planning about your promotion budget early. Don’t wait until you are sold.