Hi everyone. Even though I am participating in Nano (1950 words so far), I still decided to conduct an interview with my pal Kelly Meding, before her book relsease. Kelly’s book titled, THREE DAYS TO DEAD, will be released November 24, 2009 from Bantam/Dell. You can pre-order it now. 😀
Along with her book coming out, Kelly has some wonderful giveaways on her website and other places, and if you click on her name, you will be redirected to her awesome blog.
If you still need convincing, you can read the first chapter here. Click on the “read an excerpt” line underneath her book cover. It’s awesome and you’ll want a copy of the book. 😀
Also, I’ve conducted an interview with Kelly that you can read below: Kelly Meding
Demon Hunter: 1.) What first piqued your interest in writing?
Kelly Meding: I’ve always been a voracious reader. For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved books and stories. But as a child, I never thought about where those books came from. Authors were names on a cover, they weren’t really people yet. Then my English teacher (5th grade, I think) asked us to each write a fan letter to our favorite author. At the time, my favorite book was A Rat’s Tale by Tor Seidler, so I wrote him a letting telling him so. Imagine my shock when he wrote back. I still have that letter somewhere, and it was the first time I consciously thought about the people who wrote the books I loved.
I didn’t start writing my own stories down until around seventh grade. I decided, in the way that twelve year-olds do, that it didn’t matter that I wasn’t an author. It didn’t matter that I was just a kid. I was going to write down my stories, too. So I did, and I haven’t stopped.
DH: 2.) What is your favorite genre to read in? Write in?
KM: Can I just say Speculative Fiction for both answers?
As a reader, I go all over the map. I’m a huge Stephen King fan, but I don’t always consider his books horror—some are fantasy, some are just paranormal. I also love and adore reading both urban fantasy and paranormal romance. If it’s speculative or paranormal, chances are it’s something I’d want to read.
For writing, right now I’m firmly planted in the same realm. My upcoming debut, THREE DAYS TO DEAD, is urban fantasy. I have another series in the works that superhero fiction, so still fantasy. Most of the ideas rattling around in my head are Spec Fic of some sort. It’s where my heart has always been.
DH: 3.) Who are some of your writing influences?
KM: I mentioned Stephen King. I love his ability to transcend genre and write just about anything. His long, epic books (The Stand, IT), are some of my favorites, but I also adore his short story collections. He writes people well, and has just a brilliant imagination.
I also worship at the feet of Joss Whedon. He isn’t a novelist, but he is an amazing writer. “Buffy, the Vampire Slayer” is truly what drew me into urban fantasy with the notion of the strong, capable heroine. It took me a while to find her in books, but I do believe that Buffy spoke to a lot of other women my age, who went through high school and college at the same time as she did. Joss is such a terrific scriptwriter; I’d love to see him tackle a novel.
DH: 4.) What are you looking forward to careerwise?
KM: At the moment, I’m most looking forward to surviving November. Career-wise…I don’t want to get ahead of myself, but all I want is to keep writing and keep getting paid for it. I’d love a chance to continue Evy’s story past the two currently-contracted books. I’d love a chance to explore some new characters and new worlds. It’s a tough market right now, and while I’d love to think I have it made now that I’ve sold, that’s just not true. I have to stay positive and keep writing the best novels I can; that’s all any of us can really do.
DH: 5.) Are you planning any tours for your first book?
KM: Nope. I have a handful of guest blogs scheduled and some online promo stuff lined up for November, but no real-world tours. Tours are very rare, and usually reserved for the people who will attract crowds. I’m content just being little old, unknown me for now.
DH: 6.) How did you come up with the idea for THREE DAYS TO DEAD?
KM: The idea came about two ways. The first was simply a desire to write something very paranormal. Before I wrote Three Days to Dead, I’d written other speculative novels (one about psychic powers, another about superheroes), but nothing that was straight paranormal—vampires and werewolves and ghouls and goblins, etc… I hadn’t gone there yet, and I wanted to. Only I wanted to put my own spin on the critters, so my vampires are very different than most others out there (definitely not sexy or sex objects), as are some of my other monsters of choice.
The second part of the idea was a scene that never ended up in any written form. I had recently read Jackie Kessler’s Hell’s Belles and had concepts of heaven and hell on my mind. I had a flash of a scene in which a woman is stuck in Purgatory, but is then summoned by someone (an archangel, maybe). This someone makes her an offer of sorts—go back to Earth and help do something, and you get a free pass to Heaven.
I started brainstorming this, trying to answer a few questions: Why her? What could she do that would prompt her getting this deal? What’s happening back on Earth? As I worked on these questions, it occurred to me it wasn’t what she could do, but rather something she knew. She wasn’t being sent back, someone brought her back with magic. As the heroine and her circumstances began falling into place, that initial Purgatory scene became useless. The story begins when Evy, my heroine, wakes up in her brand-new body, with no clue as to what’s going on or where she is. Once I had that initial scene, and a vague idea of the world, I started writing.
DH: 7.) How many books do you have planned for the series?
KM: I don’t have any specific number planned at this point. I’ve brainstormed as far as four books, but there could easily be more. The complexities of the histories and the political machinations happening behind the scenes with the various species could keep me in Evy’s world for a while.