You guyyyyyys The Book Hookup is thrilled to be a part of the
Authors are Rockstars Tour
Harelquin Teen is giving away a finished copy of Ms. Rowen’s Dark Kiss, so keep reading and enter the rafflecopter at the end of the interview!
National bestselling author Michelle Rowen writes paranormal romance, urban fantasy, and young adult fantasy, both light and dark, sexy and sweet, long and short — it all depends on the story! She’s won a Holt Medallion for Best First Book and a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice award for Vampire Romance. Michelle lives in Southern Ontario.
Today we are lucky enough to have the awesome and talented Michelle Rowen stop by and answer some of my questions. Michelle is definitely a rockstar. As soon as I started Dark Kiss, I devoured it. I’m a huge fan and totally squeed when I found out I was going to be able to interview Michelle. If you don’t recall, I reviewed her YA book Dark Kiss here and LOVED it. Here’s how I summed it up : “This novel was written in a beautiful, yet dark way….and I loved it.” (also, lookie lookie at that cover!)
♥ What was your inspiration for Sam and Bishop in Dark Kiss? How did you pick the name Bishop? I love it!How about Kraven?He was one of my favorites besides the 2 main characters.
Sam and Bishop evolved as characters over time (which I’ll touch on in the next answer) and they were inspired by my take on the tortured alpha hero-type and my favorite kind of heroine to write, which is the seemingly “normal” girl who has a lot more about herself that she needs to discover. Two total opposites that need each other in more ways than one. I chose Bishop as the hero’s name since I wanted a single name that was unusual but not too unusual – Bishop can be a last name, Bishop has a religious connotation, and Bishop is a piece in a chess game, which is a nice metaphor. Kraven’s name originally came from an intriguing “bad guy” character in the first Underworld movie. I just liked it because it sounded hard-edged, yet kind of sexy. So I borrowed it and it stuck and my Kraven has become one of the more intriguing characters I’ve ever written.
♥ How did the storyline for The Nightwatchers series / Dark Kiss come to surface? Did you have it in your head for a while? How did you decide it would be YA and not adult?
Believe it or not, Dark Kiss started its existence in my imagination and on the page as an adult paranormal romance about a team of sexy angels and demons who had to work together to save a doomed city and each of them, in separate books, were to find their true love. However, it didn’t feel quite right so I set it aside to work on other projects. When I finally realized what was wrong with it a few years later, I fixed it. I don’t write books about alpha males who find their soulmates. I write books about girls who discover who they are down deep – the good stuff and the bad stuff – and the adventures they have along the way, which can most certainly include falling for a sexy fallen angel. Once this focus was in the right place – on Samantha – the book came together great.
♥ When will Wicked Kiss (Nightwatchers #2) be published? When do you think you will have a cover for it? What has been easier with the second book? What has been harder? I saw you are only contracted for 2 books, but do you have an outline in your head to go farther? I hope so, I love these characters and story.
Wicked Kiss will be out March 2013. I just saw the cover the other day – and here it is.
The second book was a bit easier to write because I worked VERY hard in revisions on book one to better understand the characters and the world. And yes, I definitely know what happens next in the story when and if I’m given the opportunity to continue past book two. Fingers crossed!
♥ How do you feel about the cover of Dark Kiss?I love it! Rawr! Does it represent the book well? I think so ~ it totally caught my attention. What was your first reaction when you saw it? Who is the cover model? Out of all your books do you have a favorite cover?
I absolutely love the cover for Dark Kiss. I think it represents the book perfectly, actually. Sorry, no idea who the model is – but he sure is hot, isn’t he? My first reaction when I saw it was HOLY MOLY! The only thing I didn’t like about the original cover was that Bishop had a more stylized hairdo, which happily was fixed to something far more character appropriate for the final version. I think Dark Kiss is my favorite cover so far – and probably my cover for Something Wicked is my second favorite. Book covers with cute supernatural boys FTW!
♥ I saw you have more than one series ~ how is the writing process different? Is it hard to keep them straight in your head? Do you work on more than one at a time?
Sometimes it’s a bit of a juggling act, but I really REALLY like having more than one series, especially when those series are so different from each other. It helps to keep me busy, keeps my writing fresh, and I’m definitely never bored! Currently, I’m writing the Nightwatchers books, which are YA urban fantasy with romantic elements, and I also write a funny vampire cozy mystery series, the Immortality Bites Mysteries. And under the name Morgan Rhodes, I’m writing a YA high fantasy series called Falling Kingdoms. When I’m working on a book I basically immerse myself in that world and do my best to avoid distractions, so I don’t have a huge problem keeping characters/plotlines straight.
♥ Do you think you’ll always want to write stories that have supernatural elements? Why or why not?
Absolutely. I keep trying very hard to get ideas that don’t have magical and supernatural elements. No luck so far. I was born to write fantasy novels!
♥ How long did it take you to write Dark Kiss once the storyline came to you? What was the process like?
Well, since I wrote the original version in 2006 – I guess that’s five years? LOL! The actual writing of any book on my currently tight schedule takes me three to four months. Add in extra time for editorial revisions and proofreading. Sometimes those three or four months are easy and sometimes they’re darn hard. Depends entirely on the book.
♥ When you finished writing Dark Kiss, did it turn out the way you expected it to? What were the biggest changes in the book from when you first wrote it to when you finished it? Are there scenes you wish you had left in? Do you have any deleted scenes you might release one day? *fingers crossed*
I was happy with it, but I knew it needed work. Luckily, my editor at Harlequin Teen worked very hard with me to help make it better. In fact, a couple very key elements were changed or added to the second draft – including a certain surprise relationship between two main supernatural characters that wasn’t in the first draft…and this has become an integral part of the series itself and its mythology.
♥ Do you have a favorite character in Dark Kiss, including the secondary characters? I loved Sam and Bishop, but also so many of your secondary characters as well….
Sure, I’ll admit it. I love Kraven. He’s so much fun to write, even if he is a total jerk. And, of couse, he plays a very big role in book two.
♥ What was your favorite chapter/paragraph/phrase to write (from any of your books) and why?
My favorite thing to write is usually the sarcastic quips characters give that make me laugh out loud, but also help to reveal their character more. Here’s one from Dark Kiss delivered by none other than that snarky demon, Kraven:
His eyes narrowed. “You’re devious and manipulative. You’re right, maybe I do like you.”
♥ What things do you like to do when not reading or writing?
Is there more to life than reading and writing?? I guess I like going to the movies, I’ve become a bit of a gym rat lately so I like being FINISHED my workouts, and I love traveling. I’m headed to NYC in October for ComicCon and I can’t wait.
♥ What is your favorite genre to read? Who are some of your favorite authors?
Currently my favorite genre is paranormal/urban fantasy, both YA and adult. My top two favorite authors right now are Richelle Mead and Karen Marie Moning.
♥ What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment?
I try not to read reviews if I can avoid them – the good or the bad. They’re distracting and meant for potential readers, not for authors. However, I think the most difficult criticism is when readers don’t seem to connect to a character as much as I had hoped they would. That said, it’s an excellent learning experience for me on what to do better next time. My best compliment is when I get an email telling me that a reader never liked reading before they read my book – and now they love reading!
♥ How do you feel about your fans? Have they surprised you?I love that you interact with us (the readers) ~ it makes the whole process of enjoying a book even sweeter!
I love my readers. I love interacting with them on Twitter and Facebook. The only thing I’m surprised by is how much they rock!
Thank you so much, Michelle, for stopping by. I loved reading all your answers -I feel like I got to know you and the book even more. I absolutely can’t wait for the next book.
Now time for the giveaway!
Harlequin Teen is offering a finished copy of Dark Kiss, just click on the rafflecopter below. This is an active rafflecopter so click away! It will take you to a new window in our Facebook page. You don’t have to “like” us but we might give out extra hugs if you do! This is open to US/Canada only. See our complete contest policy here.