Tell us about your latest novel.
When Abigail’s supposedly immortal faery mother is found murdered, her human father sells her in to slavery. Bought by a young and wealthy landowner named William, she is whisked away to a Grecian island to play caretaker for his baby sister. However, the island has a deadly secret connected to Abigail’s past. Her budding romance with William is shattered by Abigail’s intimate, unwanted connection with the island’s faery prince. Meanwhile, the Faery King is planning revenge upon the family. Abigail must join forces with the very race she’s sought to deny, to save the humans she has learned to love.
How did you get the idea for your novel?
I don’t remember! I started “Abigail” when I was 18 years old, during my first semester of college. I wrote a couple chapters with no real idea in mind of where I was going with it. It wasn’t until I returned to it nearly 6 years later that the story took on the shape it has now. Most of my books have an “Ah ha!” idea moment, but from there, they just kind of trickle in as I type. I just can’t remember what my “Ah ha, Abigail!” moment happened to be.
How did you come up with the title?
“Abigail” is named for the protagonist, a feisty fairy with magickal powers.
Who created the cover and how did you choose that image?
My good friend Julia Crane, a YA author, found the image of the girl on a stock photo site. Knowing I was about to commission my new cover artist for the cover, Julia sent it to me with a note–“This is how I picture Abigail.” Well, the girl must be psychic because when I saw the picture for the first time, I literally squealed. She is exactly how I envision Abigail to look in her human form! So I sent off the image to my cover artist, Stephanie Mooney (who designed the cover for my first novel, The Temple) and said, “Can you use this??”
Stephanie is a wizard with cover art. I am in LOVE with my “Abigail” cover!
What genre is your book?
“Abigail” is Paranormal Romance.
Why does that genre appeal to you as a writer?
The paranormal in general is what appeals to me–ghosts, fairies, demons, etc. Those are the things I enjoy writing about, whether in hardcore horror like my short story “Underneath” or in lighter, more romantic pieces like “Abigail”. Most everything I write has some element of romance in it, simply because I’m a romantic at heart. I believe in true love and soulmates 🙂
Describe your book in 15 words or less.
An island with a deadly secret, a half-faery, and a faery prince determined to have her.
What is your favorite chapter of your book, and why?
What a hard question :/ I’ll pick chapter 5–I introduce a character in this chapter that I adore. The interaction between her and Abigail is so real. I only wish I had utilized her more in the first book. She’ll be a prominent part of book two, more than likely! Plus, Abigail’s run-in with William at the end of the chapter is quite memorable 😉
Who are your favorite writers and why?
Laurell K Hamilton – her worlds are incredible. I have revered her and loved her from the day I read the first Anita Blake novel, about six years ago.
Jennifer Crusie – her humor. She is by far the BEST writer I’ve ever read, and her personality is killer. She’s in constant contact with her fans, which is something I would do (if I had fans, lol!). Jenny is my idol.
Jim Butcher – his ability to craft a character I fell in love with. That is something I can only hope to be able to do.
If you could have written any novel in the world, which would you choose and why?
Madeleine L’Engle’s “A Wrinkle in Time” and its subsequent follow-ups. Her imagination is top-notch, her writing eloquent, and the novels are timeless classics.
What is your favorite childhood book?
I would go with Madeleine L’Engle’s “A Wrinkle in Time” except I was over ten when I read it for the first time. To dig a little younger, I’m going to go with R.L Stine’s entire series of “Goosebumps” (the original).
What is your favorite quote about writing?
ooo. Hard question 🙂 I’ll go with this one– Writing is the only thing that, when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else.
How old were you when you made the decision to become a writer?
I was ten years old 🙂
What prompted that decision?
It was a combination of boredom (because I needed a new hobby to pass the time) and the first time my daddy showed me a book he was writing. I was an avid reader at that age, and I suddenly realized there were people behind the books I loved. And maybe I could do that.
Are you a full time writer, or do you still have a “day” job? If so, what is your day job?
My dream is to be a full-time writer. Maybe one day. My “day job” isn’t so much a day job–I’m a third shift police dispatcher. I work eleven p.m. to seven a.m.
What is your next project?
I am currently finishing up my first young adult novel, “Heaven Below”, under my pen name, Nolia McCarty–tentatively to be released at Halloween. After that, I’ll be finishing up the first in a witchcraft mystery series titled “Hedgewitch” with a tentative release date at the end of November or early December!
What do you love most about writing?
Creating the characters! I put a lot of thought and care into my characters; they drive the stories 🙂
What do you hate about writing?
I hate that the writing doesn’t consistently flow. People like to say that Writer’s Block doesn’t exist, but if that’s the case, then I must be broken. Some days, I can knock out five thousand words and other days, I’m lucky to hit 500.
What advice would you give to a new writer?
Don’t give up. Don’t stop writing. Even on the days when you think you’re a no-good hack who will never make it (and trust me, those days are prevalent), DON’T STOP.
What is the best book you ever read on writing?
This is a tough question because I’ve never read a BAD book on writing. Each book I’ve read has contributed in some wonderful way to my knowledge. I think I’ll have to go with Chuck Wendig’s “250 Things You Should Know About Writing” — but it’s not for the feeble minded! Chuck is rude, crude, and socially unacceptable, but I LOVE HIM. His advice is spot-on and delivered with humor and grace.
What is the key to realistic and memorable characters?
Write from life. Notice everyone around you; mark their idiosyncrasies, their habits, their patterns–if you emulate the people you see and hear, you’re bringing realism to your fictional characters.
Describe a typical writing day for you.
I don’t have good writing habits–my life doesn’t give me the opportunity to do so. Most of my writing is done at work, on my mini-laptop, in between radio traffic and phone calls. On off-days, I’ll post up at the kitchen table (I don’t have a desk right now) with a cup of coffee and my computer. I’ll peck away until I can’t peck anymore, then I’ll check my email. Then I’ll go peck away again…rinse and repeat. I usually do this overnight when I would generally be working.
Did you have to do any type of research for your book?
I didn’t do any research for “Abigail” beyond asking a friend to translate “Light” into Greek for me! “Abigail” came straight from my imagination.
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