Monday, June 20, 2011

Laura Kaye - Book Giveaway, Review & Author Interview

A heart can break, even one that no longer beats.

I stalk my new neighbors, a single mother and her child, drawn by the irresistible scent of their joy and love. I crave their blood, starved for some healing respite from my ancient grief. Now to lure them into my grasp.

But they surprise me. Little Olivia accepts me without fear or reservation—talking, smiling, offering innocent affection that tugs at my long-lost humanity. Her mother, Samantha, seeks me out when she should stay away, offering sweet friendship, and calling to the forgotten man within me. They lure me instead.

Ah, Dio, Lucien, run and spare them while you can…


My Review:

Wow who knew such a heart-warming story, could have you so on the edge of your seat. I absolutely loved this book! It pulled at all my heart strings, while kept me completely engrossed in the book. The characters I felt were well formed. I completely love little Olivia. This book did have a feel of 1st person narration, if you don't mind that. The pace moved well. The plot was good, I was hoping to see more background on Lucien. Maybe in the next book? Oh please say there will be another one. I would recommend this to anyone to read.

My Rating 5 stars.


Can you tell us a little about yourself?

Sure! First, let me start by thanking you for featuring me and my book today! I write paranormal, contemporary and erotic romance and have four books coming out in 2011. I’m a wife and mom, and a historian by training and occupation.

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

I wrote my first stories as a child. I was an only child and alone a good bit, so I became very good at entertaining myself, and cultivating a vivid imagination was one part of that! The first story I remember writing, although I doubt it was my first, was a paranormal retelling of A Secret Garden. I have no idea whatever happened to the notebook in which I handwrote the story, but I can still see the book in my mind’s eye. In high school, I won a prize for a story called “Peter Save the Tsar,” which was a time travel tale about a modern-day kid who stopped the assassination of the Russian royal family in 1917.

That story also reveals my interest in history, which is where my writing became concentrated once I went to college and graduate school. As a professional historian, writing has been a part of my life for my entire career. But it wasn’t until three years ago that the fiction bug hit me— literally! I hit my head on July 4th and after several weeks of severe headaches and other “post-concussive” side effects, I found myself wanting to write fiction. At the end of August, I started writing the book that became Forever Freed, and the draft was done by November 1.

What surprised you the most about the writing/publishing process?

That it’s a very slow process that takes a great deal of patience and perseverance. I mean, I knew that intellectually. But knowing it and experiencing it, living through the long wait periods until you hear back from a submission, or until you receive your edits or your release date is something else altogether!

How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula?

This is going to sound a bit weird, but it’s true: my plots and characters just come to me. Usually, it’s a character that starts speaking to me first. Once I get to know him or her, the plot just spirals out from there. Sometimes even a good title idea will come to mind, and that will spark a plot. I don’t feel like I’m making this stuff up at all, instead, I feel like it come to me or through me, and I just write it down.

What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?

You have to have the basics—the mechanics—of the craft down. And that takes a lot of work—it means reading a lot, it means having others critique your writing (and not just family or friends, but other writers pursuing writing as a profession, not a hobby), it means reading craft books or taking workshops to hone your craft, and it means revising, revising, revising. Once you have the mechanics down, then you work on creating a good story. To me, that consists of a beginning that grabs readers right away, compelling characters, and real conflict that will carry the story through to the end.

In Twitter Fashion use140 characters or less, sum Forever Freed for us.

A reclusive vampire falls in love w/a woman he planned to kill, then fights his guilt, bloodlust, lie by omission & an ancient vampire rival (This was not easy, by the way! LOL)

How did you come up with a story that was such a whirl wind of events?

I’m glad you found it such a whirlwind of events! I was playing with what if questions one day as I was deciding what to write, and out of nowhere I got this image of a vampire becoming a care giver for a human child, and Lucien Demarco and Ollie Sutton were born at that moment. The next thing I knew was how Lucien had become a vampire (to be shared in the planned prequel) and that he was trying to hide what he was from Ollie and her mother, Samantha. A lot of the conflict grew out of both situations, and Forever Freed was on its way!

How long did it take you to write it, and did you have any writer’s block along the way?

I wrote the first draft of this book very fast—in just 12 weeks. It literally spilled out of me (Lucien was a bit pushy in having his story told, LOL) I then spent the better part of a year revising it and querying (for example, that first draft was 145,000 words and the finished book is 95,000, so you can see how it changed…;). I don’t generally struggle with writer’s block—I always know what’s going to happen next—but I do often struggle with procrastination.

Will we be seeing a following book to this story?

There are two other planned titles in this series: a prequel to Forever Freed called Forever Damned, and a sequel called Forever Young. The prequel is drafted, though it will be the last to be published. Forever Young is in the outlining stages. I’ll keep everyone posted!

How did you come up with the character Little Olivia?

She and Lucien were the first two characters in my head, and I based a lot of her off my oldest daughter, who was five at the time I was writing and is now seven. I can’t even tell you how much fun she was to write, and how heart-melting I still find it to see the way she affects Lucien.

I always must ask, If you could pick one actor to portray Lucien on the big screen who would it be and why?

That’s SO easy! Alex O’Loughlin’s picture hung on the wall over my desk the entire time I was writing, back when his hair was a bit longer. And the cover artist did such an incredible job of finding a model with features similar to Lucien’s (and Alex’s!!!) LOL.

Was there anything you find particularly challenging when writing this book?

This was my first novel (first I wrote and first I sold), so there was a huge learning curve in terms of craft and structure—which is why I did so much revision. So, the writing part of it came easy, but making the book fully work was a much longer and more involved process. It was totally worth the work, though!

What were your feelings when you first saw the cover of your finished book?

OMG! OMG! OMG! LOL Seriously, though, seeing your very first cover is totally thrilling. And the cover artist at The Wild Rose Press, Angela Anderson, really gave me a lot of what I’d asked for in terms of color scheme, feel, focus on Lucien, use of the Detroit skyline, etc. Although, now that I’ve received three covers total, I can say that seeing a new cover is just as exciting each time!

Check out this author and her awesome book at:

One Winner will recieve a Ebook Copy of Forever Freed By Laura Kaye

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