Back in August author Jennifer Rardin contacted me and asked if she could be a guest again on Amberkatze's Book Blog.
I have a new book coming out on November 8th. It's the 7th in the Jaz Parks series, a real nail-biter in which the vampire, Vayl, loses all sense of reality during the most intense and important mission of his and Jaz's career. The book is called Bitten in Two, and I'd love to talk to you and your followers about it sometime if you have space for me.
Of course I was happy to have Jennifer back on the blog! We set up a date (today) and interview questions were answered (see below). Then one September morning I got an email from Orbit, her book publisher, telling me she had passed away.
I was shocked. I still am. I have no idea how she died but I know she will be missed immensely. Jennifer was a brilliant writer and the Paranormal genre has lost one of the best.
Now the date has come to post the interview. Bitten in Two is due for release on the 8th of November and the final book in her Jaz Parks series was completed before her death and will be published in June 2011.
It was a hard decision to post this but Jennifer and I made this date and I will keep to it. The interview is quite sad to read because in so many of the answers Jennifer talks about her future. However I hope my followers will still read this interview and that her fans will keep Jaz alive.
Rest In Peace Jennifer.
Amber - Welcome back to Amberkatze’s Book Blog! It is great to have you here as a guest again! Could you start things off by telling us a little about the new Jaz Parks release?
Jennifer - Hi Amber, it’s awesome to be back! Yeah, I’d love to give you some juicy details about Bitten in Two. The book, which releases November 8 in the US and December 2 in the UK, is based in Marrakech, Morocco, which is a fabulous location to write about. I just loved the vibrant colors and the unique scenery I found as I researched a city so ancient I could almost smell the history through my computer screen! Here are just a few of the images that inspired me as I wrote:
As you might expect, Jaz, Vayl, and the crew have embarked on their most important mission yet in this fast-paced story which puts them into direct conflict with wielders, demons, and extremely pissed off werewolves. Which would you rather face?
Amber - The series is growing! Did you expect Jaz to get this far? How much further are you going to take her?
Jennifer - I’m pleasantly surprised Jaz and Vayl have had the opportunity to travel so far and so widely. In the beginning I only expected a single adventure, which was called Once Bitten, Twice Shy. Now we’re planning for them to do eight all together. Will there be even more? I’ll admit, I’ve left the door open. Because you never know . . .
Amber - Jaz has seen a lot of action so far. How do you decide what to throw at her in each book?
Jennifer - A great deal depends on what has happened in previous books and where she is in her own, personal growth. I also don’t ever want the series to become stale, like a cartoon that follows the same plot arc over and over again, so originality is key to me. Despite the fact that each title includes characters readers have become familiar with and come to care about, my goal is to give them something fresh and new with each story.
Amber - How long on average does it take you to write a book? Do you have a process you follow? Or do you just start at page one and see what happens?
Jennifer - It really depends on the book and the amount of time I have between deadlines. Sometimes I only need four months. Sometimes I need eight. My process is to outline the entire plot, and then usually somewhere in the middle to rewrite that outline to conform with some major change my characters have decided to make that I didn’t foresee at the beginning. As you know, they’re pretty demanding types, so I’ve found it’s better to just give in and let them dictate to me. They haven’t failed me yet!
Amber - The series has some pretty cool titles! How do you come up with them? Do you always go with the first title, or is it hard to come up with the right one?
Jennifer - The first few titles were a group effort. The last three were mine, alone, and came to me almost instantly. Titles are very difficult, because they need to grab a reader whose eyes are scanning shelves of literally hundreds of books, they need to convey a wealth of meaning in very few words, and they need to make sense. Not. Easy.
Amber - If the series was going to be made into a TV series or film, who could you see playing the main characters?
Jennifer - I used to try to figure that one out, but recently I’ve realized I’m an awful casting director. Can I leave those choices up to your followers? What do you guys think? Who should play Jaz, Vayl, Cole, Bergman, and Cassandra?
Amber - What is next? Are you working on any other projects you would like to tell us about?
Jennifer - I recently signed with Orbit to do another urban fantasy series, a trilogy called Book Club of the Damned. As my agent so aptly put it, think Jane Austen Book Club meets Shaun of the Dead and you have a pretty good idea of where I plan to go with it. Yup, you can start laughing now. Just remember, I don’t plan on letting you stop until you read the words “The End.”
Amber - What are the good times and bad times of being an author?
Jennifer - The good times are when the words are flowing so fast my fingers can barely keep up with my thoughts. Aand I can type pretty dern fast!
The bad times are pretty rough, because I need a certain level of emotional peace in order to write. And if I’m not there, it’s like I never knew how to write a check, much less a paragraph full of creative nuance that progresses a plot. Well, we all have our crap days, right?
Amber - What have you been reading and watching lately? Do you have any recommendations for us?
Jennifer - I have such a difficult time sitting down to read it’s begun to get a little hilarious. I’ve been working on the same book now for six months. Me. The girl who used to inhale ten novels a week! Ouch! I’m still trying to plow through The Dwarves by Markus Heitz, which is much better than my reading pace shows. I also just got the first book in Marta Acosta’s Casa Dracula series, Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, which I think is going to be marvelous.
I haven’t watched TV in months. The last movie I saw was the Sherlock Holmes piece with Robert Downey, Jr., which I really liked. So I’m woefully behind in the visual media department. Maybe you guys can recommend some stuff to me?
Amber - If you could have any superhero powers, which ones would you want? Or would you be a villain?
Jennifer - I’m already a villain, girl, haven’t you heard?
Amber - Thank you so much for being a guest on Amberkatze’s Book Blog! I hope you will come back again!
Jennifer - It would be a joy, and thanks so much for having me! I’d also like to invite your followers to stop by and chat sometime. I’m kinda addicted to the Internet, so it’s a good bet you’ll find me at one of these sites sometime during the day…
I would like to thank Amber from Amberkatze's Book Blog for letting me use her interview with Jennifer. I really appreciate it, since i never got to interview the lady herself.
Leave a comment on this post for a chance to win the signed copy of Bitten in Two. I have also decided, for this post, that if you leave a comment on this post you can win any one of Jennifer's books. Whether it be book 1 or book 6. So you have a chance of winning two books! Please leave your preference of which book you'd like to add to your collection. Don't forget to leave your email, so if you win I can contact you. Giveaway ends December 2nd. (Book will be shipped from Book Depository, so please make sure when you enter they ship to you. Signed copy will be posted by me, so it will go pretty much any where.)