A few days ago, I finished reading the twelfth, penultimate book in the entertaining confection that is the Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire series. It took me about a month to get through all twelve—not bad. If you don’t know, the books are the basis for the HBO series True Blood. And if you don’t know True Blood, then you are missing out on funny, sexy, gory goodness! Of course, it’s not for everyone. I can think of a few grandmothers who wouldn’t be pleased to watch it.
The 13th book is out May 7, 2013
The books are different although the voice of the heroine, Sookie, stays true in the TV show. While I was reading the series, it struck me how tiring it must be for author Charlaine Harris to have to repeat information in each and every book. How many times did I get introduced to Sookie’s telepathy or the fact that she’d killed a major nemesis in her kitchen with a shotgun or a description of her gorgeous yet scary vampire boyfriend’s long blond hair and blue eyes?
Since I’m working on a sequel to The Flower Bowl Spell, I think about how much old information I’ll need to relate. I kind of want to approach the new book as a stand-alone, but I think that can be tricky as well. To use an example from a totally different genre, Louise Erdrich recycles characters and settings all the time in her novels—they are like real people living their lives on a different plane of existence, and Erdrich drops in now and then to record for readers in her lyrical prose when something dramatic happens to them.
It’s a fine line a writer has to straddle in giving too much away or not offering enough information. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to stop over-thinking and just write.
By the way, there’s still time to enter my Amazon gift card giveaway! Click on the Giveaways link above or here. The drawing in this Sunday, February 10, 2013.
Happy 2013! This post is a chain self-interview about my next book project. I’ve read the blog chain started on She Writes a few months ago. My author pal Dina Santorelli tapped me to take part, and I want to thank her for thinking of me. In return, I’ve asked my writer friends Siobhan Fallon and Roger Colby to post their own interviews next week, so be sure to check out their answers.
- What is your working title of your book (or story)?
I have a few irons in the fire including a short story collection, an upmarket women’s fiction novel, and a sequel to The Flower Bowl Spell. I’ll talk about that even though it’s in the crappy first draft stage. The working title is The Flower Bowl Ghost.
- Where did the idea come from for the book?
The idea comes from my first book about Memphis Zhang, The Flower Bowl Spell. She’s an intriguing character, and there were some unanswered questions in the first book. I think it’ll be fun to find out what happens next.
- What genre does your book fall under?
Good question! I guess it falls under urban fantasy, although I’m not really sure. It’s too plot-driven to be magic realism, I suppose.
- Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
A fun thought. I think Memphis could be played by Olivia Munn. Bradley Cooper could be Cooper! (Kismet!) Harry Shum, Jr. would be fantastic as Tyson.
- What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
A young, powerful San Francisco witch discovers her dark side—and likes it.
- Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
- How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
Um, too long? But I was able to get it all out with the help of NaNoWriMo last November.
- What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
A Discovery of Witches, the Sookie Stackhouse series.
- Who or what inspired you to write this book?
My fount of inspiration bubbled up from my Wiccan research. I wanted to get to know that culture beyond what I had seen in TV shows and books. Then I decided to write my own fictional account of a Wiccan. It seemed fun, and it was!
- What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
I published The Flower Bowl Spell almost a year ago as an e-book and then later as a paperback. To celebrate the upcoming first anniversary, I’m planning a giveaway. Stay tuned!