Friday, March 1, 2013

The Next Big Thing Blog Hop

I'm so excited to be a part of this! I was tagged by the amazing Jacqueline West who writes the super fun (and deliciously dark) MG series The Books of Elsewhere. Did I mention there were talking cats?!?

If you don't already know, the Next Big Thing Blog Hop gives authors the chance to discuss their works in progress. What I'm currently working on is SHINOBI--book three of my KATANA series. 

What is your working title of your book (or story)? 

SHINOBI--which means shadow warrior. It was used as another name to describe ninja.

Where did the idea come from for the book? 

For as long as I can remember, I've been fascinated with Japanese history and samurai in particular. I guess you could say the character Senshi was directly inspired by a real-life samurai Tome Gozen. 

According to the Tale of the Heike:
Tomoe was especially beautiful, with white skin, long hair, and charming features. She was also a remarkably strong archer, and as a swordswoman she was a warrior worth a thousand, ready to confront a demon or a god, mounted or on foot. She handled unbroken horses with superb skill; she rode unscathed down perilous descents. Whenever a battle was imminent, Yoshinaka sent her out as his first captain, equipped with strong armor, an oversized sword, and a mighty bow; and she performed more deeds of valor than any of his other warriors.
What genre does your book fall under? 

I think my publisher has it listed as a supernatural action-adventure.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition? 

That's a really good question. I go back and forth all the time on who I'd want to play my main character Rileigh. But there is no question in my mind who would play Gimhae Kim. 

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? 

Hmm...since it's book three of a series, it might be easier to start with book one. After being attacked in a parking lot, seventeen year-old Rileigh Martin is possessed by the spirit of a fifteenth-century samurai. 

Are you signed with an agent or publisher, or are you planning to self-publish?  

This book will be published March 2014 through Flux.  

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? 

I'm three-fourths of the way done and hoping to be completely finished in the next couple of weeks, so that would be two months of writing and I'll need another month to edit. 

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? 

Another tough question. The School Library Journal compared recommended KATANA for fans of SAMURAI GIRL.

Who or what inspired you to write this book? 

When I was seventeen I found myself living out of my car for a couple of weeks with books my only source of comfort and entertainment. If my own books can help a suffering teen forget about their problems even for a little while, then I accomplished what I set out to do. 

What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?

How about some reviews? 

Praise for KATANA:
"This action-packed novel has a unique and compelling plot...even readers who dislike supernatural story lines will enjoy this tale of modern samurais." ~ School Library Journal

"An action packed page-turner tempered with slow-burning romance." ~ Booklist

Praise for SENSHI:
"...with a twisty plot and death-defying action, this romance delivers teen yearning with martial arts kicks." ~ Kirkus 

Now it's my turn to add to the chain. Next week make sure to check out Brad R. Cook's blog. Brad is a good friend of mine as well as a critique partner and president of the St. Louis Writer's Guild.

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