What is your working title of your book?
Where did the idea come from for the book?
The hero DAX first made an appearance DUST OF DREAMS (Guardians of Light Book 4). Pryseis was the heroine of DUST, a dream faerie. Dax is her grown nephew, son of her deceased brother. But Dax’s mother was a forest troll, making him a Halfling possessing the powers of both. I decided he really deserved his own book and FYRE MT was the result.
For my heroine I created a “primitive” tropical islander human named MAILI and created an ancient Polynesian world. Long ago—as in ages—a race of trolls lived in the island. Maili’s people worship them as gods, so when Dax mysteriously appears in the fyre god Afu’s temple, they assume Dax is Afu. When the local volcano threatens to erupt, they give Maili to Dax as a maiden sacrifice so he’ll be appeased and stop the eruption.
What genre does your book fall under?
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I confess I think JASON MAMOA has to be the hottest male walking around on Planet Earth today. He is totally my Dax! The one thing that pissed me big-time off in Stargate Atlantis was the utterly wasted chemistry between Ronan (him) and Teyla (RACHEL LUTTELL)—they were smoking hot together and the writers/producers never went anywhere with it! When you get two characters that “click” like that you RUN with it! So that’s who I had in my mental movie while I was writing.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
WORST CASEOF MISTAKEN IDENTITY EVER…
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I’ve never had an agent express interest in representing me. I pitched directly to an editor at the NJ RWA Conference several years back.
The Guardians of Light series is published by Samhain Publishing, and my editor is the fantabulous Linda Ingmanson. I’ve been blessed to have the same editor throughout my career, and we work well together. It’s wonderful to work with someone who loves fantasy as much as I do, and who believes in me and the Guardians. She’s been my mentor and advocate, and I’ve learned TONS from her.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
GOD OF FYRE MOUNTAIN was my first and only NaNo project—and I can say with complete certainty it will be my last. As a die-hard plotter, that whole 50,000-words-in-a-month-off-the-cuff thing was a nightmare—I successfully “finished” but it took me a full year to REwrite the garbled mess I created. It usually takes me a full year to write a book, working around a full-time day job, and I constantly polish and rewrite and tweak as I go.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Not books but authors.
I read a lot of fantasy, and my favorite writer in MERCEDES LACKEY. Even before I was published, I had RWA contest judges comparing my voice to hers, which I consider the ultimate compliment—although my love scenes are hotter! I think BIANCA D’ARC and I approach characters the same way, and have a similar informal style.
I find it funny that on the “Who Do You Write Like?” quiz, no matter what sample I use, I consistently get tossed in w/Shakespeare…
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
While I knew Dax had to have his own book, I found Maili the driving force behind the story. To balance her own hopes and dreams against the expectations of her family and friends, to confront what she thought she knew and believed, to accept new ideas and truths. She had the biggest character growth arc.
I’ve always thought volcanoes were the most awesome force of nature—beautiful and deadly, but also the catalyst for change. They destroy—and create. The end and the beginning. It was weird. We were out driving on Saturday, and my daughter said, “Look at Rib Mountain—it looks like a volcano.” And sure enough, the summit was smoking. (From the Rothschild paper mills BEHIND it, but the temporary visual was really cool.)
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
For those of you who are reading the Guardians of Light series, you get to follow along with the older, familiar characters from previous books—Dara and Loren, Brannan, Anuk, Pryseis and Benilo, the dwarf mage Pahn, the now-evil Lady Alani and her poor clueless father Lord Raun—as they try to figure out a way to get Dax back. There’s also a further introduction to Dara’s and Loren’s daughter Elyria, who’s destined to have her OWN book someday in my future “Daughters of the Guardians” trilogy—each book starring Braeca, Elyria and Piroska in turn.
I’ve already got “Braeca” plotted out—her hero is Flyn, a dark elf. I’m currently finishing up “Moonwitched,” starring Mari, Matteo and Valkyn from previous books. This will be the seventh and final book in the Guardians of Light series. Now on to The Next Generation…
And more author interviews from my friends:
KIMBERLY TROUTTE http://kimberleytroutte.blogspot.com/2012/11/the-next-big-thing.html
HELEN C JOHANNES http://helencjohannes.blogspot.com/