• Who We Are

  • Schedule

    Mondays ~
    Tuesdays ~ Snarky
    Wednesdays ~ Dreamer
    Thursdays ~ Naughty
    Fridays ~ Dreary
    Saturdays ~
    Sundays ~

    Whenever ~ Smokey, Mighty, Eerie and Wicked

  • Snarky’s Tweets

  • Kinetic’s Tweets

  • Dreamer’s Tweets

  • Wicked’s Tweets

  • Eerie’s Tweets

  • Mighty’s Tweets

Goodreads Book Giveaway

goodreads

I’m a writer, not a marketing guru, so I feel like I’m constantly scrambling to figure out how to use all of the tools at my disposal. Today is the day my book giveaway should be starting on Goodreads, and I honestly have no idea how it will turn out. In my research, I found mostly contradictory “facts” about how to have a successful campaign. So, I chose the suggestions that worked best with my current situation, which are as follows:

  • Keeping my giveaway short. It’ll only last for one week. But by doing this, I should come up on Goodreads lists as both a giveaway ending soon and a new giveaway. Hopefully, this will bring me more exposure.
  • Giving away one copy of my book. Some authors gave up to fifty copies away, but most later decided to only give away one or two copies, saying the results were close to the same. And as a new writer trying to limit my expenses, I thought testing this marketing strategy with just one book was the smartest way to go.
  • Including an autographed copy. A lot of authors said this encouraged people to enter the giveaway. No idea if this will matter, but I thought it was worth a shot.

I plan to update all of you on the results of my giveaway, so you can benefit from either my success or my failure. If you’re interested in entering the giveaway, you can find it here: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway

YA is Not Just for the Young

Often in the swamp we are recommending books and swapping paperbacks. Like most readers, when you find something you love, you want to share. And as I feel the young adult genre is at times underrepresented in the swamp, I thought I would share some of my young adult fantasy favorites.

 The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black  Holly Black is one of my favorites. Great vampire novel where those infected are quarantined in “coldtown.” Tana races the clock to save those she loves, but once inside is there any chance for escape?

Graceling by Kristin Cashore    Action. Romance. A word where the color of your eyes can show the deadly gifts one holds within. Epitome of strong female character with an attitude.

The 5th wave by Rick Yancey  Aliens have attacked the planet. With rotating POVs Yancey, weaves a masterful tale of survival. I already have book two pre-ordered.  “Only the unlucky survive.”

Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers  French medieval time period. Ismae escapes an arranged marriage and flees to the convent of St. Mortain, where the “god of Death has blessed her with dangerous gifts and a violent destiny.” Robin excels at creating characters you don’t want to leave.  I’m reading the second book for the second time and loathed to put it down to blog.

The young adult genre does not lack suspense, action, or romance. Look at many of the latest movies that originate from this genre. So grab a chair, crack and book and enjoy.

What are some of your favorites?

 

Urban Fantasy vs. Fantasy or Girls vs. Boys Phoenix Comicon panels part duex #writingtips #rogues

Welcome to part deux of my ventures into Phoenix Comicon writing panels. I saved the best for last. The panel was titled “Writing Rogues” and man, the panelists fit that description to a ‘T’.  Recognize these names: Jim Butcher (The Dresden Files), Kevin Hearne (The Iron Druid Chronicles), Patrick Rothfuss (Kingkiller Chronicles), Pierce Brown aka Pretty Boy (Red Rising Trilogy), Sam Sykes (The Aeons’ Gate series), and Scott Lynch (Gentleman Bastards series). If you read fantasy, you know at least one of these. And yes, it did not escape my notice there were no females present (but more of that later).

This workshop focused on the role of the rogue in fantasy series.  You know the ones: Han Solo from Star Wars, Lynch’s Locke, Harry of Jim Butcher fame, Atticus from Kevin’s series, these male characters know how to work that line between bad boy attitude and hero.

They started off with what makes a rogue–flaws, moral grayness (morally transgressive), never sure if they’ll side with you or leave you hanging in the wind, ambivalent, never committed to any cause, unless it’s themselves. They’re the characters you aren’t sure will show up, and when they do, you still aren’t sure what they’re going to do. They break the boundaries of their worlds, have to fight themselves before they fight their antagonist.  Want more examples? Think Snake Eyes from GI Joe, Stryder from LoTR, Cpt. Kirk of USS Enterprise–each one of these is what is described as a “chaotic neutral”.

The panel was an hour long and these guys are high caliber smart asses, witty without trying, and awesome to listen to. Then one of the audience members got up and asked a question.

“Why aren’t there any female rogues in fantasy?”

Silence descends for a moment, then Patrick dares to address the 15 minute rambling that I managed to get down to 8 words.  Because part of that rambling question were comments, such as “why does a female rogue have to be attractive, but a male one doesn’t?”, and “why are female rogues considered $itches”, and “how come its an all male panel?”, and so forth.

It was a big room with lots of people. My heart went out to the panelists. This is a minefield question. The questioner was on the younger side (no offense meant, but it may give insight into the whys behind the questions).

I won’t go into the debate that broke out, but I will boil some of it down:

1. In Fantasy, the world settings tend to model on medieval, which then extends to your world’s attitudes on genders. Patrick posed an interesting question, “If a fantasy author wrote a book where the lead was a mother, who decided to leave her hubby and kiddos, to undertake a heroine’s journey, would the readers be sympathetic?”  My answer as a reader–not me. First, I’m a mom and a wife, and somehow leaving behind the important peeps in my life to undertake some journey to find a magical object, would require serious incentive. Patrick pushed it further. “So say this mom does leave it all behind to do this journey, and say the sexual mores of this world were less puritan than ours, so she can now hook up with males through out her journey without worry of negatively impacting her family behind, would it still work for you?”  Again, me as a reader–um, yuck.

My take away from this one:  Fantasy is based on historical mores/values/cultures, and women, unfortunately did not play dominant roles in those, which is then reflected in high fantasy.

2. Many, many, MANY (did I say many?) times, each of the authors on the panel brought up woman writers who have kick-ass female rogues: Carrie Vaughan, Patricia Briggs, Ilona Andrews, Laurell Hamilton, Elizabeth Hand, etc.

After much back and forth, guess what I wanted to yell at the minor demon of debate castigating the panel: Yo, honey, you want rogue females? Then PICK UP A DAMN URBAN FANTASY BOOK!  Rogue female characters work in UF because it’s fantasy set in contemporary times, where moral trangsgressiveness is gender blind. You want to know what happen to rogue female leads, yeah they’re kicking ass a few hundred of years after the bad boys of fantasy.

Besides, you tell me, don’t Granuaile from Hearne’s novels, or Karen in Jim’s novels, nail the female rogues roles?

So I refrained from violence, barely, but I still had to vent a bit on this.

Tell me, as I haven’t read the newer High Fantasy lately, are there women rogues in lead roles? Ones that aren’t portrayed as hardened $itches?

Fall into Fantasy Giveaway #FallIntoFantasy #Giveaway #NewReads

Fall into Fantasy Giveaway…all with a little help from Ash Krafton!

So your To Be Read pile has shrunk since summer? Then here’s your chance to regrow it. 

Ash Krafton is joining forces with tons of Fantasy and Paranormal authors (including yours truly) to give you a chance to get your hands on some new titles.

Excited to roll the dice? Try out the Rafflecopter giveaway below for your chance to win some fantastic swag from a whole plethora of authors, like: 

The Swag List…
Readers can win one of several swag baskets from our authors, including:

Ash Krafton
Rhonda Parrish
Niteblade Fantasy and Horror Magazine
Jane Lebak
Sharon Saracino
Cathrina Constantine
The Jeep Diva book review blog
Nana Prah
Thomas Winship
Angela Brown
M Pax
Debbie Christiana
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a Rafflecopter giveaway

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for your chance to win!  Good luck!

Character Interview w/ @JadeKerrion and her #DOUBLEHELIX series… #newrelease #PERFECTIONCHALLENGED #scifi #fantasy

I’d like to welcome Jade Kerrion. She’s brought along one of her award winning characters, Zara Itani, from the Double Helix series.  Double Helix series 4

Today, on our character interview, we’re pleased to welcome Zara Itani, from the seven-time award-winning Double Helix series. Her author, Jade Kerrion, has insisted on sitting in on the interview. It’s not quite the norm, but we’ve agreed to Jade’s request. Let’s start with some easy questions, Zara. How did you first meet Jade Kerrion? Want to dish about her?

Zara: I think Jade was having a midlife crisis when we met. She was growing older, and realized that she was going to live out her life in the frantic corporate rat race of America, while being a mom with husband, two kids, and a mini van. She probably felt that she needed to live vicariously through someone else, namely me.

Jade: I am not having a midlife crisis!

Did you ever think that your life would end up being in a book?

Zara: I’m a mercenary, and I own an agency of mercenaries. No, I do not crave the spotlight or expect to make headlines, at least not with my name in print next to my unfortunate victims. Jade, however, appears to be a strong proponent of full disclosure—it’s amazing, though how her novels are full of people who never disclose anything to anyone else—and she decided to get my name out there.

Tell us about your favorite scene in the Double Helix series.

Zara: My favorite scene from the first three books takes place in the second book, Perfect Betrayal. It’s an intimate moment with Danyael Sabre. It’s especially memorable because, if you know Danyael, then you know that Danyael doesn’t do “intimate” often. Danyael, of course, swears the encounter never took place. He’s lying, of course. We have a daughter and five genetic tests to prove it. (smiles) Of course, I have many favorite scenes in Jade’s upcoming novel, Perfection Challenged. The closing scene is particularly memorable.

It sounds like you have a complicated relationship with Danyael. Tell the truth. What do you think of your fellow characters?

Zara (arching a perfectly tweezed eyebrow): They’re…charming, like black mambas are charming. Still, we’ve gone through a great deal together, and on a good day, I’d trust them, but not too much.

What do you like best about Danyael Sabre? What do you like least?

Zara: Do we have to talk about Danyael?

Well, your name is frequently mentioned in conjunction with his name and Galahad’s. How do you choose between two men who look alike?

Zara: Danyael is Galahad’s physical template, but in every other way that matters, they are nothing like each other. Galahad, the lab-created perfect human being, is eager and impatient to seize the world. On the other hand, Danyael, after a traumatic childhood as an undiagnosed alpha empath, wants nothing more than to be left alone to do his job as a doctor in a charity clinic. I used to think Danyael was evasive and a coward, unwilling to face his past or embrace his mutant powers. He isn’t really. He’s both courageous and compassionate, but most people don’t see him for what he is.

And what about you? What impression do you make on people when they first meet you? How about after they’ve known you for a while?

Zara: Ideally, they’d know me as a practical, levelheaded person who isn’t afraid of doing what it takes to get things done. After they’ve known me for a while, I hope they’ll continue to say the same thing.

Jade (in a stage whisper): Ask her about that compassionate streak…

Zara (shrugs an elegant shoulder): Not there. It doesn’t exist, and you can’t prove it.

Ladies, please. Zara, what would Danyael say about you?

Zara (flashes an amused smile): Ah, he’s much too polite to say anything, but if he did, I imagine he would say that I’m more abrasive than steel wool, and that I have a cruel and ruthless streak several miles wide. He wouldn’t say anything about compassion.

Jade (scowling): He wouldn’t have fallen in love with you otherwise…

Jade, if you don’t mind, I’m interviewing Zara here. Zara, if your story were a movie, who would play you?

Zara: Kate Beckinsale would do a great job. She’s beautiful, and she knows how to kick ass. She’s not Lebanese-Venezuelan, but nobody’s perfect.

Will you encourage your author to write a sequel?

Zara: She’s already written four Double Helix novels, five, if you include the Young Adult spinoff, When the Silence Ends. She insists that Perfection Challenged is the end of the Double Helix series, but that’s not to say that there aren’t other stories to be told about the world of the Double Helix. Knowing her, she’ll be back with another fascinating story about my world and the people who live in it.

What do you like to do when you are not being actively read somewhere?

Zara: You already know what I do for a living; I find ways to keep busy to pay the bills. I also have a two-year-old daughter, Laura. She’s learning her alphabet by reading Dr. Seuss and gun catalogs.

Jade (pulls Zara to her feet and drags her away): I am so sorry. This is why I don’t let my characters out unsupervised. I think they say stuff like that just to embarrass me.

Ah, okay, and that brings to an abrupt end our interview with Zara Itani today. Thank you for joining us for this character interview, and we hope you’ll take the opportunity to get to know Zara better in the DOUBLE HELIX series.

“The best of the four books…the perfect ending to an amazing series.”

Perfection Challenged, the thrilling conclusion to the multiple award-winning, bestselling DOUBLE HELIX series, is finally here. Grab your copy today.

If you’ve never picked up the DOUBLE HELIX series, keep reading for a special offer on the six-time award-winning novel, Perfection Unleashed.

perfection-challenged-600x800PERFECTION CHALLENGED

An alpha empath, Danyael Sabre has survived abominations and super soldiers, terrorists and assassins, but he cannot survive his failing body. He wants only to live out his final days in peace, but life and the woman he loves, the assassin Zara Itani, have other plans for him.

Galahad, the perfect human being created by Pioneer Labs, is branded an international threat, and Danyael is appointed his jury, judge, and executioner. Danyael alone believes that Galahad can be the salvation that the world needs, but is the empath blinded by the fact that Galahad shares his genes, and the hope that there is something of him in Galahad?

In a desperate race against time and his own dying body, Danyael struggles to find fragments of good in the perfect human being, and comes to the wrenching realization that his greatest battle will be a battle for the heart of the man who hates him.

E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple iTunes / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords

Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK

PERFECTION UNLEASHED Perfection Unleashed

“Higher octane than Heroes. More heart than X-Men.”

Recipient of six literary awards, including First place in Science Fiction, Reader Views Literary Awards 2012 and Gold medal winner, Science Fiction, Readers Favorites 2013.

FOR A LIMITED TIME, E-BOOKS AVAILABLE FOR JUST $0.99 (Discounted from $2.99)

E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords

Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository

Connect with Jade Kerrion: Website / Facebook / Twitter

Things You Didn’t Know About the Awesome Faith Hunter @hunterfaith #faithhunter #JaneYellowrock

Just when you thought you had a handle on what you know about your favorite writers, you discover there is so much more to know! Faith Hunter, author of the Jane Yellowrock Urban Fantasy novels and Rogue Mage Fantasy series, was sweet enough (and brave enough) to share a little of herself with us!  Dare you to take a peek!

If you were to hold a dinner party for six, who would you invite and share at least one question you would have for each? Your guests don’t have to be alive and if you really want to make it fun, you can use favorite fictional characters. 

Well, if they were dead, they probably wouldn’t come to the party. And, if they did, they probably wouldn’t help the ambience with their rotten stink. Or their rattle-y bones if they’d been gone a long while. And if they were zombies, they’d try to eat our brains, not the food I’d so carefully prepared. So I guess I’ll pass on this one. Oh. Wait. They can be alive???

           Wow, you’d cook for them? Brave, brave Faith.  I don’t think they’d still be breathing if I had to cook. Although that     would make some interesting dinner conversation…hmmm…

As children we tend to have an idea of what we want to be by the time we’re ten.  Before you decided to pursue the artistic dream of being a writer, what did you want to be and why?

I wanted to be a nurse so I could help people. Then I found out nurses sometimes have to wash people’s butts, and I decided to become a lab tech. I only later discovered that lab techs have to do tests on poop. My bad.

         *snort* Yeah, that might take some getting used to…

If your character(s) came with a warning label, what would it say?

Warning! Warning Will Robinson! Warning!   (laughing) You have to like old scifi to appreciate this one.

         Hey! Who you calling old? I love that line…actually used it on my Knight in Slightly Muddy Armor the other day *grin*

Personally, I tend to be a bit on the introverted side so the thought of being in the actual presence of one of my favorite writers makes my heart race, my knees shake and tangles my tongue (yes classic fan girl behavior).  Who could reduce you to such a level and how do you imagine your initial meeting?

I adore two actors: George Clooney and Mark Harmon. A-D-O-R-E! If got to meet either actor, I’d probably blubber like I was having a stroke. And then cry. And then pass out. All of which could be worse.

           Only if they didn’t catch you. Think of the possibilities if they did, though…

Growing up, what was your favorite book, comic, game or movie and did you create a character/player that might resemble you?

Wonder Woman. She was tall and skinny and athletic and had big boobs and wore a big cape. I was successfully psychic in the boobs part. And I do love scarves which might be considered a type of cape. As for the rest, I guessed totally wrong.

Share one uniquely strange experience you’ve had that remains crystal clear to this day.

I remember a 4 day trek up to Nantahala. It was cold and raining and wet and miserable, and the RV was full of river-stinky wet gear, and wet, cold, stinky river paddlers (some of whom didn’t feel like showering because it was only Wednesday). And I was stressed and exhausted. Deadlines looming. Needing to get home. And because I had promised to join everyone, we geared up in our cold wet river gear and went down the river.

We were the only people on the water.

Mist fell down the sides of the gorge like a waterfall of clouds. Birds sang like they were calling for the last warm days of summer to return, and to remember them. The water called back with a muted roar of joy and power. The river carried us along like the veins of mother earth. I got out front at one point, and a bird flew along beside my boat, just us, alone on the water. Wings outspread in a slow glide, he watched me with one quirky eye, sharing some great bit of bird wisdom about flight with his water-bound cousin. Rain fell and dimpled the surface of the river in the places where it was smooth. Raindrops mixed with my tears until I couldn’t tell the difference between the tears of the earth and my own.

And I was restored.

That river trip was a thing of great worth, a priceless, un-match-able experience. I returned home relaxed and calm. And I met my deadline. I carry that river trip in my memory like a precious thing. And when I’m stressed, and having panic attacks, and feeling like a failure, I remember that trip. And that bird, gliding beside me, sharing the experience of the cold and the wet.

             Wow, Faith, that actually made me tear up! It sounds so incredibly beautiful.  It’s those type of moments that restore your creativity and sense of wonder.  Something every person needs! Thank you for sharing.

What’s the one genre you won’t ever try and why?

Erotica. My sex scenes suck. Wait. That came out aaaaaall wrong.

     *snorting coffee through nostrils* Seriously, you are a dangerous woman when hot beverages are involved!  I know I feel like the closet perv when doing my scenes.  Hunched over the keyboard, office door closed, continuously checking to make sure the Knight, the Hellhound or the Prankster Duo aren’t lurking behind me.

Now it’s time for our favorite bullet questions!

Blades, guns, fists or feet?

Yes.

Favorite Fairy Tale of all time?

Snow White and the 7 Dwarves, of course. Wait. Was that not politically correct here?

No worries, what is said in the Swamp, stays in the Swamp!

Three titles and their authors sitting on your nightstand/bookcase/table/floor waiting to be read? 

I only have two waiting: 1. Kim Harrison’s Ever After. 2. Patricia Briggs’ Frost Burned.

Greatest one liner of all time?

Go ahead … Make my day.

Sarcastic witticism, Southern sweetness or Geeky disdain?

Yes. Each as appropriate.

Strangest item currently taking up space in your writing cave?

Hmmm. That would be either the boar skull (complete with tusks) or the free rang anole lizard named Longfellow. He is sleeping in an orchid as I write this, but he spent today running up and down the shelves that hold the orchids.

Favorite supernatural creature?    

Angels. Not the pretty lady kind, but the warrior kind — mean brutes with the swords of justice and armor. I mean, really. Kickass gorgeous males with wings and swords? How cool is that?

Intrigued are you? Good, because here’s a look at Faith’s latest release, BLOOD TRADE:

Blood Trade Cover

The Master of Natchez, Mississippi has a nasty problem on his hands. Rogue vampires—those who follow the Naturaleza and believe that humans should be nothing more than prey to be hunted—are terrorizing his city. Luckily, he knows the perfect skinwalker to call in to take back the streets.

But what he doesn’t tell Jane is that there’s something different about these vamps. Something that makes them harder to kill—even for a pro like Jane. Now, her simple job has turned into a fight to stay alive…and to protect the desperately ill child left in her care.

Available now at AMAZON  and  BARNES AND NOBLE!

FaithHunter8Small

Faith Hunter has written the Jane Yellowrock series and the Rogue Mage series, as well as the RPG Rogue Mage. Several of her novels have appeared on the New York Times and USA Today Bestseller lists, and she has four new books under contract. Under the pen name Gwen Hunter, she has written action adventure, mysteries, and thrillers. Under all her pen names, she has over 25 books in print in 27 countries.

Faith writes full-time and works full-time in a hospital (for the benefits). She’s a workaholic and playaholic who makes jewelry, collects orchids and bones, travels in her RV with her hubby and two dogs, and white-water kayaks.  Once upon a time, she also tried to keep house and cook, but since she started writing two books a year, she may have forgotten how to turn on the appliances.

Want more? You can find her:

Website   Facebook   Twitter: @hunterfaith

The Amazingly Wonderful @CE_MURPHY is Here for a VISIT!

Red Dwarf:  Psstt…Wicked?

Wicked *looking up from current reading choice RAVEN CALLS*:  Mmm? What? I’m kind of in the middle of a really good part here…

Red:  I’ve brought you a surprise.

Wicked *looking up, squinting*: OMG! Is that…? Where did you…? How did you…?

Mighty *hushed awe*:  It’s C. E. MURPHY!

Smokey: What? Did I see a Smurphy? What the hell is that?

Wicked: Not Smurphy, MURPHY! You know, awesome authoress of URBAN SHAMAN, TRUTHSEEKER, Belinda, Joanne, Margrit…any of these ringing any bells?

Snarky *w/contemplative look, running newest supple whip through hands*: This aught to be fun!

Eerie w/Mischevious on his shoulder:  Are you sure those bonds are going to hold her to that chair?

Quirky: Yeah, if she falls, Eerie’s pets are going to have a feast.

Dreamer:  Umm, guys, I think perhaps you might want to consider that kidnapping and imprisonment might not be the best way to make new friends.  *under breath* Or have them come back.

Wicked *dancing manically with uber Fangirl glee*:  It’s CE Murphy, CE Murphy and she’s going to talk to us…we are soooo cool!

**Swamp disclaimer: We promise to release Catie as soon as we’re done and no harm was done to this or any writer during this interview**

Catie was nice enough to answer all our questions, so sit back and enjoy the visit!

As children we tend to have an idea of what we want to be by the time we’re ten.  Before you decided to pursue the artistic dream of being a writer, what did you want to be and why?

…a writer. 🙂 No, seriously, my earliest memories of job ambitions are that I was going to be the first woman Senator from Alaska (I may have grown up in a somewhat political family *wink* ) and a writer. An astronaut and a writer. A fireman and a writer. A laywer and a writer.

The writing stuck. The other things, not so much. 🙂

                                            We’re glad the writing stuck, we’re kind of partial to it as well!

If your character(s) came with a warning label, what would it say?

Joanne Walker, from the Walker Papers, would probably have one that says, “WARNING: TENDS TO SAY THE FIRST THING THAT COMES INTO HER HEAD. RESULTS ARE NOT NECESSARILY PRETTY.

Margrit Knight from the Negotiator Trilogy would have one that says, “DON’T GET HER STARTED, BECAUSE SHE NEVER BACKS DOWN.”

Belinda Primrose from the Inheritors’ Cycle’s warning would just be that: “WARNING! STAY AWAY! DANGEROUS!”

If you turned your laptop/computer/pen/typewriter (yes, some of still use these!) over to your character(s), how would they describe you?

I would not care to have my characters describe me, given the things I put them through.

We all have favorite characters, either main or secondary, and there are always bits and pieces of them we don’t share with our readers, but keep close to our hearts.  Choose your favorite from your cast of characters and tell us a couple of things that you haven’t shared in your books/writing.

Dude, if I was going to tell you those things, they’d be in the books!

                                       Awww man, c’mon, we promise it will stay just between us!

Personally, I tend to be a bit on the introverted side so the thought of being in the actual presence of one of my favorite writers makes my heart race, my knees shake and tangles my tongue (yes classic fan girl behavior).  Who could reduce you to such a level and how do you imagine your initial meeting?

Meeting Guy Gavriel Kay pretty much turned me into a gibbering idiot. The worst part was that he’s kind of shy, so after I babbled at him I literally couldn’t figure out a way to keep–or more accurately, *start*–an actual coversation. “I love your books!” I said to him. “They make me cry!”

“Everybody says that,” he responded, a little wryly. “I’m afraid that’s what they’ll put on  my gravestone: “He made me cry.””

Me: *inane attempts to assure him I meant it in a good way, followed by slinking off feeling silly*

Really, though, I mean–shortly after I got published I ended up on a mailing list with Mercedes Lackey, for example. I managed to keep my cool, but then I was invited to be in an anthology with her. At that point I emailed her privately and I was like, “Okay, look, I know that to you you’re just Mercedes Lackey, but to me you’re MERCEDES LACKEY AND OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG *SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE* I GET TO BE IN A BOOK WITH YOU *flails like an idiot fangirl*”‘

She was very nice about it. 🙂 And most writers are, really, so at this point it’s much more difficult to think who I’d become incoherently fangirl at (I did it to Marjorie Liu fairly recently, though, again via email, and in a CLASSIC MANUEVER, I sent it to THE  WHOLE MAILING LIST instead of just her. *dies in a pit*).

                                         Yes, they are, much like the graceful patience you showed me as I demonstrated my best airheadedness (yes, it’s a word) when you *gasp* spoke to me! *squeeee*

Growing up, what was your favorite book, comic, game or movie and did you create a character/player that might resemble you?

Of course I did. 🙂 Some of the most lingering ones–ones who’ve spun off their own stories that I might tell someday–were from the Highlander tv show universe and, well, from the breadth and width of Marvel comics. My online moniker, Miz Kit, comes from that. 🙂

                                          Oooohhh, Highlander, loved that show!  Marvel universe…Wolverine, Gambit…’nuff said!

Many writers have that first novel which will never see the light of day. Out of curiosity, do you have one stashed somewhere?  Inquiring minds want to know: what was  your first attempt at writing and how old were you?

My first attempt at a novel was when I was 8. Sadly, I don’t have it anymore, but it featured red-headed twin girls and their 3 best friends, all of whom together were a mystery-solving cadre a la Trixie Belden or the Happy Hollisters. It was intended to be a long, on-going series like those books. Even at age 8 I grasped how success in writing worked. 🙂

My first full novel I wrote when I was 19, and I’m afraid to look at it again. 🙂

OMG, Trixie Belden, that was a great series and sadly not many recognize it nowdays! Can’t forget Lloyd Alexander’s Book of Three or Susan Cooper’s Dark is Rising though…

 

Whether we’re plotters or pantsers (outlines not needed), creating our stories takes us on very memorable journeys.  Sometimes we may be part way through before we realize some major aspect of our story is just not working (plot, character, setting).  Have you ever hit this sharp, pointy snag and if so, how did you escape? We’re you battered and bruised or a bloody mess?

*snorts* It happens all the time. I’m suffering from a bad bout of it right now, in fact, which is why I’m enthusiastically answering interview questions instead of stabbing a knife through the heart of the book I should be working on.

The fastest I’ve ever gotten through that is about seven minutes, when I once wrote Joanne Walker into a corner from which she could not be extricated. Like, if the scene happened the way I wrote it, that was the end of the series. No, she didn’t die, but somebody else did (no, nobody you’re thinking of), and there was *no way* the book or the series could continue with that person’s death. So I had to reverse, throw things out, and start again. Usually it takes a lot longer than 7 minutes, but being on deadline helps.

Seriously, though, you escape by gritting your teeth and accepting it and going back to fix it. It’s the only way you can escape. It sucks, but it’s all you can do.

What’s some of the funniest/sweetest/strangest things you’ve heard from your readers?

I’ve had some utterly lovely commentary over the years. My favorite is always when people email to say they stayed up too late reading one of my books. I love that one particularly because I know just what that’s like, so from my perspective it’s the greatest compliment ever. 🙂

But there was one guy–this was quite wonderful–who was standing in line for the 6th, I think, Harry Potter novel, at, y’know, 11:30 at night at all, and as he wound his way through the SF/F section, he picked up URBAN SHAMAN and started reading it. And kept reading. And bought it along with the Potter book. And went home and started reading Harry Potter, but then couldn’t take it and had to put it down and finish reading URBAN SHAMAN first because he JUST HAD to find out what happened!

It’s the only time in my life I’ll ever trump JK Rowling, so I’ll totally take it. 🙂

What’s the one genre you won’t ever try and why?

Straight-up industry romance, not because I disdain it, but because I have tried it and I flat-out don’t have the skill set to write it. People belittle industry romance, but honestly, it takes real knowledge of how that style of romance works in order to tell a story that way.

What is some of the best advice you were ever given?

About writing? Get the character’s motivation on the page. It makes them much more relatable and much less cardboard. In general? Forgive me for going all -Galaxy Quest- on you, but “Never give up! Never surrender!” I think it’s a good mindset. 🙂

What is the best advice you can share with others?

You can’t get what you don’t ask for. Always let the other guy say no.

Blades, guns, fists or feet? 

Feet! Run away! Run away!

Favorite Fairy Tale of all time?

Beauty and the Beast.

Three titles and their authors sitting on your nightstand/bookcase/table/floor waiting to be read?

UNSPOKEN by Sarah Rees Brennan, THE GODS OF MARS by Edgar Rice Burroughs, and AGATHA RAISIN & THE VICIOUS VET by MC Beaton.

Greatest one liner of all time?

Ron Perlman, Aliens 4, “I am not the man with whom to fuck.” I get a lot of mileage out of that one, anyway. 🙂

Sarcastic witticism, Southern sweetness or Geeky disdain?

Depends on what’s called for. 🙂

Strangest item currently taking up space in your writing cave?

…there is nothing in here I would consider strange, but perhaps from another’s POV the 15+ Rogue and Gambit figurines would be a little odd…

                         I wouldn’t call that odd, Catie, but if some of your Gambits went missing, I have no idea where they could have gone….

Favorite supernatural creature?

Oh, Dean Winchester, definitely. No doubt abo…that’s not what you meant, was it…

                          Yummm….Dean…what? Oh no, that’s okay we’ll take that answer!

Huge THANK YOU to the lovely C.E. Murphy for taking time out of her busy day and spending some fun filled moments with us!  Want to see what makes her such a great writer? Come over to Amazon and check out her Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/C.-E.-Murphy/e/B002D656ZI/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1351208530&sr=8-2-ent 

or feel free to stop by her place for a visit!

CE Murphy.net

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