Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Q+A with Faith Hunter + Haints Excerpt

Please welcome today's paranormal guest author Faith Hunter.  Faith writes the Urban Fantasy Skinwalker series, featuring Jane Yellowrock: Skinwalker, Blood Cross, Mercy Blade, Raven CursedDeath's Rival and two short story compilations, Cat Tales and Have Stakes Will Travel. Her Rogue Mage novels, a dark, urban, post-apocalyptic, fantasy series—Bloodring, Seraphs, and Host—feature Thorn St. Croix, a stone mage.  A role playing game based on the series, Rogue Mage, is due out in the fall 2012.  Under the pen name Gwen Hunter, she writes action-adventure, mysteries, and thrillers.  As Faith and Gwen, she has 20+ books in print in 27 countries.

Interview with Faith Hunter:

EJ:  When did you begin writing?

Faith: 
In tenth grade, a teacher told me I had a talent for writing, and that I should make my career. I believed her, and started researching the writing life immediately. It still took a lot of years to find an agent and a publisher, but all the prep time was worth it because, frankly, it took that long for me to hone my craft. Very few of us go into writing with all the skills that the art form requires. By the way: I tracked that teacher down a few years ago and thanked her. She has meant a lot to my life, probably one of the top 5 or 6 people to influence the person I am today.

EJ:  What brought you to the paranormal genre?

Faith: 
I always wanted to write fantasy, but I couldn’t find the voice. As Gwen Hunter, I wrote mysteries and thrillers and suspense for nearly 20 years. And then urban fantasy came along, and a tough female character voice—like that in thrillers—was perfect for the genre. Urban fantasy is a thriller, with vamps and weres and witches. Such fun working with twisty story arcs with magic in them.

EJ:  If you could be any paranormal or have any one supernatural talent, what would it be? Why?

Faith:
  Healing. So I could (sounds corny) help people.

EJ:  Tell us why readers will enjoy your new release.

Faith: 
Death’s Rival will be out in October 2012, and it takes Jane deeper into her own Cherokee past as well as introduces a new story arc for the series. The cover copy says it all!
Jane Yellowrock is a shapeshifting skinwalker you don’t want to cross—especially if you’re one of the undead…

For a vampire killer like Jane, having Leo Pellisier as a boss took some getting used to. But now, someone is out to take his place as Master Vampire of the city of New Orleans, and is not afraid to go through Jane to do it. After an attack that’s tantamount to a war declaration, Leo knows his rival is both powerful and vicious, but Leo’s not about to run scared. After all, he has Jane. But then, a plague strikes, one that takes down vampires and makes their masters easy prey.

Now, to uncover the identity of the vamp who wants Leo’s territory, and to find the cause of the vamp-plague, Jane will have to go to extremes…and maybe even to war.

The Rogue Mage World Book and Role Playing Game has been Kickstarted and is in production as I write this. I have 2 more Jane Yellowrock books to write, and then I have nothing. No contracts. But I want to do a few more Jane books, and maybe a couple of standalone spinoffs, one with Rick LaFleur as main character and one with Molly Everhart’s witch family. If I can find a publisher for them. The market trends will guide that, of course.

EJ:  If your book(s) were being made into a movie, who would you cast for the leading roles? Why?

Faith:
  I have no idea. I fear I don’t watch movies. Yeah I know. Gasp gasp gasp. But I’m open to any female actress Hollywood can find who is 6 feet tall, Cherokee, and has mad fighting skills. Oh – and yellow eyes.  (rolls my own)




Death's Rival (Jane Yellowrock, #5) by Faith Hunter

Jane Yellowrock is a shapeshifting skinwalker you don’t want to cross—especially if you’re one of the undead…

For a vampire killer like Jane, having Leo Pellisier as a boss took some getting used to. But now, someone is out to take his place as Master Vampire of the city of New Orleans, and is not afraid to go through Jane to do it. After an attack that’s tantamount to …a war declaration, Leo knows his rival is both powerful and vicious, but Leo’s not about to run scared. After all, he has Jane.


But then, a plague strikes, one that takes down vampires and makes their masters easy prey. Now, to uncover the identity of the vamp who wants Leo’s territory, and to find the cause of the vamp-plague, Jane will have to go to extremes…and maybe even to war.



Haints Excerpt:

Haints is a short story taken from the e-book compilation released in September 2012 HAVE STAKES WILL TRAVEL. It is written from Molly Everhart Trueblood’s point of view, the story giving us a vision into who and what Jane is, early in her career. 


Haints
by Faith Hunter

“Nothing unusual here, Molly,” she said.
I watched Jane Yellowrock as she crawled across the floor of the old house on all fours. Most adults looked foolish or ungainly when crawling, but Jane was graceful, her arms lifting and moving forward with feline balance, her legs raising and lowering, toes pointed like a dancer, even in her western boots. My friend moved silently in the hot, sweaty room, easily avoiding the bird and mouse droppings, the holes in the old linoleum, and avoiding the signs of recent reconstruction—the broken plaster walls, large holes in the floor, and the shattered remains of the toilet, tub, and kitchen sink in the corner. Her shoulder blades lifted up high with each crawling step, visible beneath her thin T-shirt, her head lowered on the thin stem of her neck, moving catlike. I envied her the grace and the slenderness, but little else. Jane was more alone than anyone I had ever known.
Now she breathed in with a strange sucking hiss. Flehmen behavior, she called it, using her hypersensitive senses to smell things the way a cat would, the way a mountain lion would, sucking air in over her tongue and the roof of her mouth, her lips pulled back and mouth open. Mostly, she did it only when she was alone, because it sounded weird and looked weirder—not a human action at all. But because I had asked her for help, and because no one but me would see her, she did it now, scenting for the smell of . . . of whatever.
As I watched, Jane crawled out of the half-renovated kitchen and into the dining room beyond. We were both dressed in old jeans and T-shirts, clothes that could get filthy and be tossed into the washer, and already Jane looked like something the cat dragged in, which was funny in all sorts of ways. Jane Yellowrock was a Cherokee skinwalker, and her favorite animal form was a mountain lion. She called it her inner beast, which I still didn’t understand, but I figured she’d tell me someday.
I’d met Jane in the Ingles grocery store, when a group of witch haters caught me in the frozen foods section and harassed me. None of us Everharts were officially out of the closet then but most townspeople were okay with my family maybe carrying the witch gene. It was the out-of-towners who had the problem—a group that wasn’t from the religious right, but were just as rabid. I still don’t know what Jane did—she stepped in front of me so all I saw was her back—but the haters departed. Fast. I gave her my thanks and a card to my family café and we parted ways.
The next morning Jane came into the Seven Sassy Sister’s Herb Shop and Café, and nearly cleaned us out of bacon, sausage, and pancakes. The appetite of that morning was because she had just changed back from an animal form and needed calories to make up for the shift, but I didn’t know that then. I just thought it was a crying shame that a woman who was so skinny could eat like that. If I tried to shovel in that much food, even half that much food, I’d weigh four hundred pounds. I think I gained three pounds just watching her eat, that first day.
And then the group of witch-haters from the day before started picketing out front. I guess they were in town and figured they should make the most of it. They were carrying signs about not suffering a witch to live—the usual crappola—and chanting, “Save our children! Save our children!” Two cars pulled by and slowed, as if to turn in, and then pulled on away. This kind of attention was going to be damaging to business.
Jane paid her bill, went outside, and revved up her bike. And revved up her bike. And revved up her bike again. At which point I realized she was doing it on purpose. Then she did something to the engine, and revved it up again. And black smoke came out. So Jane rode in circles around the parking lot, shouting to the witch haters, “So sorry about the noise! I have engine problems!” After about ten minutes of noise, the witch haters left. It was so cool! I thought the twins, Boadacia and Elizabeth, were going to have twin cows.
That’s Jane. A loaner with a cause. Any cause, as long as it’s protecting someone.
She sneezed, bringing me back from my daydreams to my friend crawling around on the floor of a deserted, possibly haunted house.


Thank you Faith for joining us here today at From the Shadows!

To learn more about Faith Hunter and her books, please visit her website.

2 comments:

  1. I have a few of the Jane Yellowrock books and the rest on my wishlist - they look GOOD...

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  2. Enjoyed reading last year's interview...would love to see another one done with her since her newest book Blood Trade is coming out on April 2, 2013... see http://www.faithhunter.net/wp/books/blood-trade/ for more info on the Jane Yellowrock books if you're interested.

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