Welcome to my very first author interview and give away on my new blog! Cue music!
PERSONAL DEMONS is Lisa Desrochers debut young adult novel. It was released in mid-September and already getting buzz. I read her book back in the Spring and give it this blurb: “Fun and entertaining . . . the fight for Frannie’s soul isn’t going to be easy, and the excitement doesn’t stop. Good versus evil shouldn’t be this much fun, but it is! A hot debut.” Uh... I tend to be wordy with my blurbs...
Leave a comment and/or ask Lisa a question by Monday, October 4th if you'd like to win a signed copy of PERSONAL DEMONS. I'll chose one winner using Random.org. I also have the good luck to be meeting Lisa in person next Sunday where we will both be on October 3rd over at the Orange County Children's Book Festival (http://www.kidsbookfestival.com/index.html). We will be at the Teen stage.
Frannie Cavanaugh is a good Catholic girl with a wicked streak. She's spent years keeping everyone at a distance--even her closest friends--and it seems her senior year will be more of the same...until Luc Cain enrolls in her class. No one knows where he came from, but Frannie can't seem to stay away from him. What she doesn't know is that Luc works in Acquisitions--for Hell--and she possesses a unique skill set that has the king of Hell tingling with anticipation. All Luc has to do is get her to sin, and he's as tempting as they come. Frannie doesn't stand a chance.
Unfortunately for Luc, Heaven has other plans, and the angel, Gabe, is going to do whatever it takes to make sure that Luc doesn't get what he came for. And it isn't long before they find themselves fighting for more than just her soul. But if Luc fails, there will be Hell to pay...for all of them.
And now on to the interview:
1.) Why this book? What made you want to write this story?
Honestly, I didn’t have much choice. Luc’s name (Lucifer Cain) popped into my head one day and I thought to myself, what a fun name for a demon. He and Frannie started having conversations in my head. I had two choices: write them down or go totally insane. I opted for the first.
2.) Which authors inspire you? Has that changed over time?
I have some core favorites, but I’m always finding new ones. Melissa Marr recently said on her fan site that Luc reminded her of Irial (from Ink Exchange), which makes sense, I suppose, because she’s always been my biggest inspiration.
3.) Why fantasy? Is there something special about fantasy that draws you to write in the field?
Personal Demons was my first crack at writing urban fantasy. I really enjoyed it. I found it really liberating to be able to explore options that aren’t possible in the real world. In fantasy, there’s a real sense that anything can happen.
4.) What do you find most interesting about Frannie and Luc?
The double entendre title refers to Frannie’s own personal demons, as well as the demon who’s trying to get personal. (That would be Luc, in case you didn’t catch that.) She’s experienced some pretty hard knocks in her young life—the death of her twin brother among the hardest. Because of this, she lives within carefully constructed walls to keep anyone from getting too close. It was interesting to be in her head to get her reaction when Luc started to break through those walls.
One of the things that makes Personal Demons different is that we get the opportunity to hear Luc’s side of the story from his first-person POV. Because we’re in his head, we’re in on his inner dialogue as he muses about things from the unique perspective of a demon. He’s lived a dual life, moving between two worlds, so his perspective is going to reflect that. Through the course of the book, we also get to see how Frannie messes with that perspective as he struggles to define feelings he’s never experienced before.
5.) What else do you enjoy doing besides writing? Interests? Hobbies?
With a day job, a night job, and a weekend job I’m a little short on free time. I enjoy being outdoors and we live very close to Yosemite, so we do some hiking. Other than that, I spend time with my oldest daughter and her horse, and watch my youngest play volleyball. And read, of course.
6.) Did you have to do any special research for this book? What did you learn that you didn't know before?
I did some research for Personal Demons. As the trilogy progresses it dives deeper into angel/demon lore. I find cultural differences surrounding some of our common lore very interesting. The beauty of writing fiction, however, is that you can make up your own lore. A lot of Luc’s history comes from putting a different spin on things I’ve read. Such as his origin. When Luc’s name popped into my head, I started researching the biblical story of Cain and Abel. I found an on-line article that kept using the phrase “creatures of sin,” and it occurred to me that, in my fictional Hell, there could be actual creatures of sin. Luc was never human. He was borne in Hell from sin. He’s a true Creature of Pride.
7.) How did you become a writer? Is this what you saw yourself growing up to be? Or did it take you by surprise?
Surprise would be an understatement. Up until two years ago, the only thing of any length I’d written was my doctoral dissertation. Suffice it to say that ripping my toenails out one by one would have been a more pleasant experience. I didn’t have the slightest desire to write. But, sometimes the universe has other ideas. Along came my daughter, who is an insane reader. (read each Twilight book in a day) I don’t really understand how it happened—a brain aneurysm maybe—but I got the crazy notion to write her a book for her birthday last year. And I did. Without telling a soul, I wrote her a 100K word thriller. She loved it and I caught the bug.
8.) Do you have a writing routine? Talk process for a moment, how do the words get on the page?
I really don’t have much of a routine. My characters have conversations and I write them down. It’s a great system except for when they decide to have those conversations when I’m in the shower or trying to sleep.
9.) Office? Closet? Corner of the living room? Do you have a set place to write? A favorite?
I have my spot. It’s like hallowed ground. Okay, really it’s a loveseat in my family room. I’ve got all my references stacked at one end with just enough room left at the other end for me. (A stack of references sounds better than a “mound-o-crap,” which is what it really is.) My TBR pile is also stacked there for easy access when I need a break from writing. It’s big.
10.) What are you writing now? What's coming out next?
Original Sin, the sequel to Personal Demons, is finished and I’m working on the last book in the trilogy, Hellbent. I don’t write with an outline, and I have to say, Hellbent has taken some twists I never saw coming. I’m a little nervous about it.
Links for Lisa:
Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0765328089/ref=s9_simh_gw_p14_d0_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=1DEN2C44JN1EZ831RVMR&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=470938631&pf_rd_i=507846