Monday, August 1, 2011

READERS CHOICE AUTHOR - D. B. Reynolds!! Book Review, Author Interview, & Giveaway!


The Pacific Northwest . . . home to lush forests and constant rain, to lumberjacks and computer geeks, especially those of the vampire kind.

Sophia, beautiful and deadly, has spent the last hundred years dancing her way through the balmy nights and hot-blooded men of South America. But when her Sire sends an urgent summons, Sophia rushes home to Vancouver only to find he has disappeared, leaving nothing behind but three dead vampires and a letter with Sophia's name on it.

Colin Murphy, a former Navy SEAL, came to the Northwest seeking a quiet place to heal the scars earned in more than a decade at war. But when someone starts killing local vampires and torturing their mates, Colin takes on the mantle of a warrior once again as he sets out to find the killers and do whatever it takes to stop them, even if that means hunting with vampires.

Following her Sire's trail of death to a small town in northern Washington, Sophia unexpectedly discovers the heat of a South American night in Colin's arms. But too soon Sophia and Colin find themselves in a race to uncover the killers before the next dead vampire becomes Sophia herself.

Author Interview
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
Hmm. Well, I'm a writer now. But once upon a time, I was pursuing a career in academia. That was short lived, because I decided if I was going to deal with backstabbing politics, I might as well get paid well for it. So I went to Hollywood and became a television sound editor. I was nominated twice for an Emmy award and have received numerous other awards/nominations in my field. But I love writing books more than anything else I've ever done!

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I've always loved to read, but I discovered when I was about 13 that I could write pretty well, too. My interest was piqued in high school when I was part of an experimental writing program and had a pair of great English teachers. I knew then that I'd like to write, but the realities of life intervened and I never had a chance to try it in any meaningful way until just a few years ago.

What surprised you the most about the writing/publishing process?
It's a lot of work. Somehow I thought (like many others) that I'd write my story and send it off and that would be it. But it's much more complicated than that. There are revisions and edits and galley proofs and all sorts of things to consider. It's not just sitting around late at night and writing stories!

How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula?
With my Vampires in America series, the rules and structure of the world are already set, so I work within that context. I try not to have every story be a replay of the last, and not to have every character be the same person with just a different name. I think a lot about my stories and plotlines before I ever put anything on paper. But when I'm ready, I do an extensive outline with back stories for the main characters that include far more detail than will appear in the books. And then I outline the specific plot of the book and write out rough sketches of some of the major scenes. Actually, some of those sketches aren't so rough. By the time I reach that point, most of the major scenes are already full blown in my head.

What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?
Grammar and spelling are much more important than some beginning writers realize. Without that, your story will never see the light of day, so nothing else matters. But once you have that, you need the ability to make the reader see the world you're describing, to transport the reader into that space for duration of the book.

Can you share a little of your current work with us?
I just finished the fifth book in my Vampires in America series, and that's DUNCAN. There's a lot of anticipation for this book, because Duncan is a very favorite character in the existing books. But I'm not giving away anything about the plot. No teasers, no hints. Not yet, anyway, and probably not for a while. I will say that the sixth book, which is still at the "playing in my head" stage, will be LUCAS, and he's my cowboy vampire.

In Twitter Fashion use140 characters or less, sum Sophia for us.
Someone's killing vampires. When Sophia's Sire goes missing she and her lover Colin team w Raphael and Cyn to track the killers & make them pay.

How did you come up with a story that was such a whirlwind of events?
It all started with the opening scene of RAPHAEL, when Alexandra is kidnapped and she tells her kidnapper that Raphael will kill him for this. She's absolutely certain of the outcome, that Raphael will rescue her and that her kidnappers will die. I wanted to create a character who could live up to that certainty---that character was Raphael and Vampires in America was born!

How long did it take you to write it, and did you have any writer’s block along the way?
Fingers crossed, I've never suffered from writer's block. I have days when the words just don't flow and I can't get any writing done, but that's far less serious than true writer's block. As far as writing the books, RAPHAEL went really fast, because I'd had so many months to think about it and it wasn't as long as the subsequent books. The books now take me anywhere from 4 to 6 months to write, depending on inspiration and other commitments to the previous books.

Will we be seeing a following book to these stories?
The series is currently contracted to eight books, and I don't know if there will be any books beyond that. I'm currently thinking of a brand new series unrelated to the Vampires in America, except in a very tangential way.

How did you come up with the character Sophia?
Sophia was a challenge. I needed her to be as strong as any of the male Vampire Lords, but still feminine and sexy. Plus, I didn't want her to dominate Colin. Even though he's human, he needed to be alpha in his own right. Penelope Cruz was sort of my inspiration, because she's beautiful and sexy, but still tough as nails--at least that's how I see her! :)

I always must ask, If you could pick one actor to portray Colin on the big screen who would it be and why?
I rarely think of real people when writing my characters, and even more rarely of any particular actor. It would have to be someone very big and very fit, and he'd have to have black hair and blue eyes. Is there anyone out there like that? I'm open to suggestion. Although working in the industry, I know if the books ever got picked up, the characters might end up looking nothing like I wrote them.

Was there anything you found particularly challenging when writing this book?
The biggest challenge was Sophia herself. It's always easier for me to write the male POV for some reason.

What were your feelings when you first saw the cover of your finished book?
I drove the artist nuts on this book. She puts a lot of effort into my covers, and I appreciate everything she does. Especially her willingness to put up with me! LOL

This Author has been a READERS CHOICE Author, Suggested by Christy!!
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Signed copy of any one book from the Vampires in America series, winner's choice. Plus bookmarks!!
Please leave a comment and/or Question for the author to be entered into this giveaway.

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