Monday, November 14, 2011

Q&A Interview and Giveaway with Katie MacAlister

Hello everyone!  LITERAL ADDICTION and Book Monster Reviews are very happy to welcome the incredibly talented Katie MacAlister to our sites today!  
Currently living in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and dogs and spending a lot of time online, bestselling author Katie MacAlister didn’t always know she would become an author. 
For as long as she can remember, Katie has loved to read.  She grew up in a family where a weekly visit to the library was a regular occurrence, and she spent most of her time with her nose buried in a book.  Despite her love for novels, however, she didn’t think of actually writing one until she was contracted to write a non-fiction book about software.  Since her editor refused to allow either witty dialogue or romance in said software book, Katie immediately resolved to switch to the fun stuff – fiction – where she could indulge in world building, character torture, and where she could fall madly in love and lust with all of her heroes on a daily basis.
Two years after she started writing fiction for real, she sold her first romance, “Noble Intentions”, Book #1 of the NOBLE series.  More than thirty books after that, she is printed in numerous languages, is sold in audio as well as print, and has received several awards for her work.  She’s a regular on the New York Times, USA Today, and Publisher’s Weekly bestseller lists, and even writes Young Adult fiction as Katie Maxwell.
The proud creator of several series, Katie can claim the NOBLE, SILVER DRAGONS, AISLING GREY:  GUARDIAN, DARK ONES and LIGHT DRAGONS as her very own. 
The NOBLE series has 3 books - “Noble Intentions” [Katie’s first sale], “Noble Destiny” and “The Trouble with Harry”. 
The SILVER DRAGONS series has 3 books as well – “Playing with Fire”, “Up in Smoke” and “Me and my Shadow”. 
The AISLING GREY series has a few more installments with 5 – “You Slay Me”, “Fire Me Up”, Light My Fire”, “Holy Smokes”, and the novella in the Anthology, “Death’s Excellent Vacation”.
Her two most recent series, DARK ONES and LIGHT DRAGONS, have 12 and 2 stories respectively. 
The DARK ONES series consists of “A Girl’s Guide to Vampires”, “Sex and the Single Vampire”, “Sex, Lies and Vampires”, Even Vampires get the Blues”, a novella in the “Just One Sip” anthology (re-released this year as “Bring Out Your Dead”), “The Last of the Red Hot Vampire”, a novella in “My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon”, “Zen and the Art of Vampires”, “Crouching Vampire Hidden Fang”, a story in “Cupid Cats”, “Confessions of a Vampire’s Girlfriend”, and “In the Company of Vampires”.  The 13th installment, “Much Ado about Vampires”, is due out on October 4th, and is one of the reasons we have Katie here today - to celebrate and promote. 
Her LIGHT DRAGONS series has 2 available titles, “Love in the time of Dragons” and “The Unbearable Lightness of Dragons”.  The 3rd book, “Sparks Fly”, is due out on May 1, 2012. 
A Girl's Guide to Vampires (Dark Ones, #1)All of Katie’s books are amazing!  They’re full of wit and incredible storyline, action, intrigue, and romance…  But for the sake of this intro, though it’s an admittedly feeble attempt, we figured we’d give any new readers the synopses for the very first and the upcoming DARK ONES novels, “A Girl’s Guide to Vampires” and “Much Ado about Vampires”, as well as the 2 latest LIGHT DRAGONS books, “Love in the Time of Dragons” and “The Unbearable Lightness of Dragons”, to acquaint them with her work a bit.
“A Girl’s Guide to Vampires” Synopsis:
Armed with only a wicked sense of humor and a bag of rune stones, an American woman untangles the threads involving a serial killer, vampires, and the handsome man who may or may not be what he appears.

    “Much Ado About Vampires” Synopsis:
Corazon Ferreira is one heck of a jaded woman. Not only did her husband dump her for a pretty, vivacious blonde, but her sister has lost her mind and married a vampire. Worse, it turns out that Cora herself was a vampire’s mate in a past life…the very same vampire she witnessed killing someone.

If only Cora hadn’t inadvertently been caught up in the ill-laid plans of a reanimated corpse and its master, she could deal with the distractingly gorgeous vampire. But it’s only Alec who stands between her and those who threaten her existence, and there’s only so much temptation a woman can bear before she starts taking her heart as seriously as her head…

Love in the Time of Dragons (Light Dragons, #1)

“Love in the Time of Dragons” Synopsis:
When it comes to love, one woman is scaling back her expectations...

Tully Sullivan is just like any other suburban mom-except she's just woken up in a strange place surrounded by strange people who keep insisting that they're dragons-and that she's one too.





The Unbearable Lightness of Dragons (Light Dragons, #2)“The Unbearable Lightness of Dragons” Synopsis:
Ysolde Bouchier is still coming to terms with the dragon part of her, while at the same time trying to free a friend of Baltic-her Black Dragon lover-from the weyr, get Baltic to meet with the dragons who want him dead, rescue a half-dragon damsel in over her head, raise the shade of the man everyone says killed her, and once and for all clear Baltic's name of the murder charges that continue to plague him.

For Ysolde, being a dragon is starting to bite.

We know, it’s not nearly enough, and we STRONGLY suggest that all new readers check out the synopses for her entire backlist by clicking on any of the incredible Cover Art images here:  http://katiemacalister.com/books/  ,  but for now, it’s going to have to do, because we would really like to get to the interview and learn some more about the amazing author behind these fantastic series, and hear some more about her books directly from her.

LITERAL ADDICTION/Book Monster Reviews:  Hi Katie!  We’re so proud to have you here today, and are very excited to help you promote “Much Ado about Vampires” and talk about the LIGHT DRAGONS series a bit as well! 
KATIE: Thank you for including me in the sites! I’m always thrilled to talk to readers about books, and especially so for those books that I know so well.

In the Company of Vampires (Dark Ones #8, Ben and Fran #3)
LITERAL ADDICTION/Book Monster Reviews:  We always like to start out by getting to know you a little bit better.

Q1): Can you tell us 3 things about yourself that we couldn’t find out easily on the Internet?
KATIE: Yak wool hates me (i.e. it refuses to let me spin it).
My favorite beverage of all time is Lemonade, followed closely by Fresca.
I sing Christmas songs all year long.

Q2):  Your bio states that you started writing fiction after writing non-fiction and finding it too….er….confining!? Limited!?  Was there any specific inspiration besides trying your hand at non-fiction that led you to the knowledge that being an author was what you wanted to do?
KATIE: Not really. Before I was asked to write the first non-fiction book, I was a dedicated reader, but it had never occurred to me to try writing my own stories. Once I did, though, it kind of unleashed the Kraken of my muse, and she started flooding me with story ideas.

Confessions of a Vampire's GirlfriendQ3):  What are 3 things that never fail to make you smile?
KATIE: My friends, my dogs, and squirrels hanging upside down off their nut wagon (AKA the squirrel feeder).

Q4):  What are some of your hobbies and/or things that you enjoy doing when you’re not writing or taking care of other author business?
KATIE: I spin wool using one of my sizeable number of drop spindles. Ostensibly, I also knit using the yarn I’ve just spun, but in reality, there’s more spinning going on than actual knitting. Plus, my knitting skills are pretty basic. I also enjoy doing Jacobean embroidery when I can’t spin due to wrist owies, and also I’m reproducing a freehand-drawn version of the Bayeaux Tapestry. Why? I have no idea. It’s just one of life’s mysteries.

Playing With Fire (Silver Dragons, #1)Q5):  If you could interview any of your characters, what are the top 3 things you would ask, to whom would they be directed, and how do you think they would answer?

KATIE: To Christian I would ask if he wouldn’t mind dumping Allie and taking me, instead. To Ben, I’d ask if he wouldn’t mind dumping Fran, and taking me instead. And to Iakovos, I’d ask him if he wouldn’t mind dumping Harry and taking me instead. Sadly, I know how they’d all answer, because I wrote them to be faithful and monogamous. Drat them.

Q6):  Who are some of your favorite authors, and what are a couple titles in your TBR pile/list right now?
KATIE: I have very ecclectic reading tastes, so my faves vary depending on what book I’ve got my nose in at the moment. But some of the people in my Keeper Bookcase are Agatha Christie, E.F. Benson, Barry Hughart, Georgette Heyer, William Marshall, and Jane Austen. Romance and paranormal author faves include Christine Feehan, Sandra Hill, Lynsay Sands, Jo Beverly, Amanda Quick, and Charlaine Harris.

Up In Smoke (Silver Dragons, #2)Q7):  With Fantasy being such a popular genre these days, what made you choose it, and what about it fascinates you personally?

KATIE: I love the worldbuilding possibilities that go hand-in-hand with paranormals. It’s one of those “if you can imagine it, and it makes sense in your world, then it can happen” situations that just sends my muse into overdrive. I love the ability to take something mundane and ordinary, and give it a twist to make it extraordinary and unique. I also love the ability to take traditional mythology and warp it into something that retains its roots while presenting a new face. So really, it’s all about creativity to me; paranormals allow me to be as creative as my muse wants to be, while still fulfilling my need to tell a story.

Me and My Shadow (Silver Dragons, #3)Q8):  What are the best and worst parts of writing for you?

KATIE: The worst part is always writing the first draft. I love to edit, but getting that first version of the book down can sometimes be a big ole pain in the patootie. The best part is watching readers tackle the books—nothing gives me so much pleasure as talking to readers about the characters, and hearing what they liked (or disliked), and how they interpreted things. There’s nothing quite so much fun as sharing a book that you enjoy. J

Q9):  What is a typical writing day like for you?  Do you have a routine that you follow?  Are there specific things that you have to have with you to get the creative juices flowing, etc?
KATIE: My dogs get me up early, so I’ve never been one to sleep in (despite my wishes to do so), which pretty much means I’m a morning person. I spend an hour or two just trying to wake up, and giving in to my dogs’ many and varied demands, then I stagger in to the computer and write for anywhere from three to six hours, depending on how many times I’m interrupted, etc.
I don’t have any routines that I have to do to write—if I started down that path, I just know I’d end up with some complext ritual that would take hours to complete, and which would leave me with no time to write. It would also probably include chocolate, but that’s neither here nor there.
I do sometimes listen to a soundtrack when I’m writing, depending on how distracted I am with things going on in the house. The soundtracks are unique to each book, and are made up of a collection of songs that I feel match the mood I want to be in while writing. They vary from classical music to Gregorian Chants, and everything in between (except country and western. I dislike C&W).

You Slay Me (Aisling Grey: Guardian, #1)Q10):  If they were to make a movie about your life, what do you think it would be called, and who do you think would play you?

KATIE: I think my personal motto would make a great title for a movie based on my life: Life is life, and fun is fun, but it’s all so quiet when the goldfish dies. I would be highly disappointed if I was played by anyone but Queen Latifah. We aren’t the same ethnicity, but hey, she’s a woman who is proud of her curves, doesn’t take crap from anyone, and has the most gorgeous hair. How could you do any better than that?

LITERAL ADDICTION/Book Monster Reviews:  O.K, now we’ll ask some questions directly related to books and your writing…  J
Fire Me Up (Aisling Grey: Guardian, #2)Q11):  Was there any specific inspiration that led to the concept and creation of the DARK ONES and/or the LIGHT DRAGONS series?
KATIE: The Dark Ones came about because I wanted to write a series with humorous vamps in it, and to make my own mythology. Plus I lusted after dark, tormented vampire heroes. I just needed to give them a huge sense of humor.
The dragon series came to me one day when I was musing over the idea of an anti-hero hero, who turned out to be Drake Vireo. The idea of having dragons in human form, and then later the whole politics of the weyr and various dragon septs, struck me as insanely fun, and something that wasn’t being explored in romance. So I let the muse free, and she ran with the idea.
Baltic and the light dragons came into being early in the Aisling books, because I had an idea that there had to be a big bad character lurking in the background pulling some strings that others didn’t know were being pulled yet. But as soon as I started working out who he was and why he was the dread wyvern, I knew he had to have redemption. He just had to wait a bit for it.

Light My Fire (Aisling Grey: Guardian, #3)Q12):  Do you have a personal favorite series of yours so far; maybe one that has deeper meaning for you, etc?

KATIE: I think probably the dragons are my favorite series, if only because they had no established mythology (as far as dragons in human form go), so they were really totally my creation. They also strike me as more humorous than the vamps, although that’s probably subjective.





Q13):  What were the challenges (research, literary, psychological, logistical, etc) in bringing the DARK ONES to life?

KATIE:  There weren’t a whole lot of challenges, to be honest. I did some research on various mythologies related to vampires, but I love research so that was more fun than anything. At the time I started writing the books, no one was doing humorous vamps, so I really didn’t have to work to keep my voice distinct from other authors. And the characters worked well in the growing Otherworld, so I didn’t have too many logistical challenges to cope with in that regards. It’s kind of boring to admit that they weren’t problematic to write, but that’s really the truth.

Holy Smokes (Aisling Grey: Guardian, #4)Q14):  Is there an underlying message in the LIGHT DRAGONS series that you’re hoping your readers will grasp?

KATIE: The Light Dragon books are all about the power of love, and how that can endure even when it seems like there’s no hope, but that said, my books are meant to entertain, to give readers an enjoyable few hours filled with some fun, adventure, a few laughs, and dishy guys. I don’t really expect people to take away from a book a great message or deep meaning—if they do see an underlying theme, that’s great. If they don’t, but still enjoyed the book, I’m just as pleased.
As a reader, I tend to prefer books that entertain me rather than ones to speak to a deep well of enlightenment, and that same preference powers my writing. So long as people enjoy the books, I’m happy, regardless of whether or not they see deeper meanings.

Q15):  How many books do you have planned for each series (the DARK ONES and the LIGHT DRAGONS specifically)?

KATIE: The Light Dragons have three books in their story arc; there is no limit to the number of books for the vampires. They basically will keep going so long as they have readers.

Q16):  Do you plan to write any more in any of your other series; AISLING GREY, SILVER DRAGONS, or NOBLE?
KATIE: Oh, I always have PLANS. Plans are easy to come by, it’s actually putting them into action that is quite, quite difficult.
I would LIKE to write another Noble book, and have considered writing one-offs for both Aisling and May, but it all depends on whether or not I can find the time to do them in between scheduled books.
So the quick answer is yes, I hope to do another historical book sometime in the somewhat near future; the others may have to wait until the time is right.

Q17):  What can we look forward to as the DARK ONES and LIGHT DRAGONS series progress?
KATIE:  The third and final Baltic book will be out in May with what I hope is an exciting (and satisfying) resolution to the issues pestering him and Ysolde. The next dragon book will most likely continue a few remaining story threads, but with another dragon sept.
The next vamp book, which I’m writing now, promises to be a good one with a look in the past of Ben’s life, and will feature his father as the hero, so it should be awesome fun to write. After that…it’s anyone’s guess. It all depends on what my muse wants to do. J
Q18):  Way in the future, when you decided to stop writing and retire, what do you hope your thoughts are, and what do you hope other people’s thoughts will be, about the legacy you’re leaving behind?

KATIE: As I’ve mentioned, I write to entertain people, so my hope is that my books are remembered with much fondness for the hours of laughs and entertainment that they bring. I also wouldn’t mind being remembered for genius, and my ability to do a fabulous Edward G. Robinson impression, but I don’t hold out much hope for either.
Q19):  Is there a question that you’ve thought it would be great to be asked in an interview but have never been asked?  How would you answer that question?
KATIE: Yes. My question would be: What is it about the Tour de France that holds you in such thrall? And the answer would be: thighs. It’s all about the thighs, baby.
Q20):  Is there anything specific you would like to say to your readers while we have you here today?
KATIE: Thank you, dear readers, for hanging on during this interview when you could be off doing other things like laundry, or planning dinner, or having fabulous sex. I much appreciate the attention, and hope that everyone enjoyed reading the interview as much as I enjoyed participating in it.

LITERAL ADDICTION/Book Monster Reviews:  Katie, thank you so much for being with us today.  We’re VERY excited for “Much Ado about Vampires”!  We’d love to have you back to promote the next installment of the LIGHT DRAGONS series, “Sparks Fly”, in May if you’re interested.  Maybe we can even plan a date with Baltic, Ysolde, Jim and the crew for an interview if they’re free and would be willing!??
KATIE:  They would be delighted, hams that they all are. And so would I. J
 *********************************************
CONTEST:
Katie is graciously offering up a Looming Moon gift certificate to 2 lucky winners from Book Monster Reviews.  Looming Moon on Etsy is one of Katie’s favorite shops, and she wanted us all to check it out as well.  J 
To Enter: Make sure you are a member of the Book Monster Blog (by clicking on the “JOIN THIS SITE” button at the top left hand corner of blog page), and then post a comment on the interview and make sure you leave a valid email address. Any comments without an email address will NOT be entered into drawing.
Don't forget to drop by the LITERAL ADDICTION website (http://www.literaladdiction.com/) and follow the directions and links to enter their contest.  Katie is giving away 2 more gift certificates on their site too!

21 comments:

NoraA said...

I've read almost all of Katie's books. She is a wonderful writer with the gift of pulling her reader directly into the story so they are experiencing it first hand. I love it.

NOT ENTERING CONTEST

Emily Tardy said...

I have also read most of Katie's books and I've loved every one! Thank you for the awesome giveaway =D

emilytardy@yahoo.com

Johanna R Jochum said...

I have been reading the Dark Ones series! I'm loving it so far! Thanks for a great interview and for sharing a bit with us!


evjochum[AT]aol[DOT]com

Cathy Ward said...

Thanks so much for the interview. Somehow I missed the Dragon books. I'll have to pick them up. They sound interesting and I love the covers.
Wow, the Bayeaux Tapestry. I love it. I have pictures of each panel in my family history since William the Conqueror was my ancestor. Never thought of drawing them. Might have to give that a try.

aunttackyx18 AT verizon DOT net

Jennifer Mathis said...

I just started the "Dark Ones" series and hadnt hear of the Dragon books but now that I have I have them dowm on my TBB list . Great interview

meandi09@yahoo.com

Megan@Riverina Romantics said...

What a great interview! It made me laugh! I've only read 1 of Katie's books before and I chuckled my way through it!

rootml1 AT hotmail DOT com

Victoria said...

Another new to me author - thank you. I love the titles of your books :). Did you come up with them all? I think I'll begin with your dragon series and work the rest inform there.

vsloboda(at)gmail(dot)com

Na said...

I love world-building in paranormals because so much is possible. Your books sounds great and you're a new author I'm looking forward to reading from.

Cambonified[at]yahoo[dot]com

Mary said...

I've read so many of Katie's books and have loved each one that I have read. I'm a huge fan. There a re a few that I still need to read but I have read all of the Light Dragon and Dark ones books that are out. I love those series.

miztik_rose@yahoo.com

Mierke said...

You sound deliciously insane - I really should check out those books!

devries.mcc(at)gmail.om

Chrisbails said...

I have read the Aisling Grey series, but none of her other books. I have a couple of her other books, but have not read them yet. I love to read and always looking for new books to check out. I love the covers of her books, very sexy men on them. Thanks for the giveaway and the chance to win.
christinebails@yahoo.com

Kristina said...

Okay ***Serious Katie fan here***

I have read all of her books and am anxiously awaiting the new Dragons book! I so can't wait!

Thank you for the awesome giveaway!

kristinaparmenter51(at)gmail(dot)com

alainala said...

ohh i love the dragons! yay for possibly more dragons! i just wonder which ones will be the focus..

alainala AT hotmail DOT ca

Patti P said...

Loved the chat. Can't wait to get my hands on those Dragon books.
Patti P
musicalfrog at comcast.net

Barb P said...

I am a long time fan of Katie's and I loved the interview. Thanks for the fantastic giveaway. bpatrick64113@sbcglobal.net

Schrock said...

Wow, thanks for the interview, looks like I have another author to add to my TBR list! hschrock24112@yahoo.com

Sharon said...

Your tattooed men covers light my fire! That is all ;) thanks for the interview

K33p3rofViolence said...

I've only read a couple of Katie's books and I can't wait to read more! They are very good books!

charmed_sphere_mage69@hotmail.com

SdyLion said...

Dragons and vampires, oh my! Some of my favorite topics, how can I resist. You are the best, and thanks for a rockin' interview. sdylion(at)gmail(dot)com

blackroze37 AT yahoo.com said...

love katie books. she writes good storys

Liesa Manis said...

Love the cover!!
More TBR books!

liesa008@comcast.net