Today Nancy Holzner is my guest. She's the author of the really cool Deadtown series of which book 5, Hellhound, wil release next month.
Welcome to Pearls Cast Before A McPig, Nancy.
Could you tell a bit about yourself for those people who don’t know you yet?
I'm the author of the Deadtown urban fantasy series, which features Vicky Vaughn, a Boston shapeshifter who kills other people's personal demons for a living (while wrestling with bigger, badder demons of her own). I write both fiction and nonfiction, and I before I became a writer I was an academic, teaching English with a specialty in medieval literature. I grew up in western Massachusetts but now live in the Finger Lakes region of New York.
How many books will there be in the Deadtown series?
There will be six books. Hellhound, coming out in October, is book #5, and I'm working on the final book in the series now. It's going to end things with a bang, I can tell you that! But even though #6 will be the final book in the series, I may do some smaller projects set in Deadtown's world. I'd like to write a prequel about the zombie plague, for example, and some stories that focus on secondary characters, such as Tina, Mab, and Juliet. Maria, too.
Any chance Tina will get her own book?
See above. :) She's so much fun to write, I doubt she'll stay out of my head for very long, even after the series is officially "done." She's pushy that way.
Have you ever used people you know as characters in your books?
Not really. Certain character traits may come from people I know, but I see each character as a unique individual. For example, Tina gets some of her tendencies from high school students I've taught, but her personality is all her own. I've named a character or two after friends, but only with their permission. Even in that case, only the name and perhaps one trait comes from the real-life person. From that starting point, the character develops entirely on his or her own.
Are there any other projects you’re working on or thinking about starting in the near future?
Earlier this year I started laying some groundwork for a dark historical fantasy, developing some characters and wallowing in research. (As a "recovering academic," I'm a research junkie!) I've also done some work on a neogothic ghost story with a more romantic flavor than what I usually write. Right now, my focus is on making Deadtown 6 the best story that I can. After that, though, I do look forward to exploring some new settings and characters beyond Deadtown's world. I love writing urban fantasy, but I'd like to try some other genres, too, such as dark fantasy/horror and paranormal romance.
Where can you be found when you’re not at your desk writing?
For the past several months, the answer is in a hospital, unfortunately. My husband has faced some serious health challenges this year and of course I've been there to support him. In less stressful times, though, my favorite places to be when I'm not working are walking through my neighborhood and going to Friday happy hour with writer friends at a local wine bar.
What did you do to celebrate the release of your first book?
My husband took me out to dinner at our favorite restaurant. We did that twice, in fact—when I got the offer for the first two books and then again when Deadtown came out. Champagne flowed!
What is the best thing about being a published author?
There's a lot I enjoy about being published, including the thrill of seeing my books in stores, being on panels at conventions, and getting paid to do work I love. But without question the best thing is hearing from readers who enjoy my books. It's such a thrill to know that my characters and stories have entertained or touched someone.
What authors have been an influence to you? And have you read any books lately that you want to share with us or have you been too busy with writing to read?
I've always been a voracious reader, and I feel like I learn something from every book I read. I think there's a rhythm to good prose that you absorb through reading. So in a sense I'm constantly being influenced by everything I read. Lately I've been seeking out horror and dark fantasy by women writers, and two of my favorite authors have been Sarah Langan (Audrey's Door, The Keeper) and Caitlin R. Kiernan (The Red Tree, The Drowning Girl). Their books are wonderfully creepy, and psychological as much as supernatural. Great reads!
Thanks for dropping by. I'll keep an eye out for news about Tina's book ;)
They call it Deadtown: the city’s quarantined section for its inhuman and undead residents. Most humans stay far from its borders—but Victory Vaughn, Boston’s only professional demon slayer, isn’t exactly human…
Boston’s zombies have suddenly become inexplicably violent—horror movie-style—resulting in a catastrophic all-out battle against humans. More troubling to Vicky is that she’s had dreams and visions of herself fighting alongside the demons. At least, she hopes they’re just visions—otherwise, that puts her on the front lines of the wrong side of the war.
Vicky’s not surprised to discover that Pryce, her demi-demon cousin and loathed adversary, is behind the outbreak of the zombie plague, having formed an unholy pact with the Old Ones. Now, as the violence escalates and alliances shift, Vicky knows she’s the only one who can stop the plague. Unless the pack of hellhounds on her trail finds her first.
Nancy has kindly offered a really awesome prize to one commenter of my blog:
A Boston Gift Bag, containing a Boston tote bag, a signed Deadtown book (winner's choice) and some more goodies.
The winner is
First winner didn't respond, so I had to draw a new winner: Aurian!
A winner will be picked at random on October 3rd 2013.
Open internationally to everyone who's legally allowed to enter this giveaway.
Don't forget to leave a comment:
I decided to have an event wide giveaway on my blog for commenters.
At the end of this event I'll pick one commenter on any author post of this event at random and that person will win a book of his/her choice as long as bookdepository ships to where you live, you're legally allowed to enter, and the book costs no more than 10$
And drop by Between Dreams and Reality as well for more great author posts.