The Allie Beckstorm series has really impressed me and the fourth release, Magic on the Storm, is sure to be another great read. So I couldn't resist asking Devon to stop by this week and tell you all a little about the series, the new release and herself.
Enjoy the interview and make sure you enter the contest! Devon is giving away three signed copies of her new release to three lucky readers!
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 my readers a little about the Allie Beckstrom Series?
Devon - Allie Beckstrom’s books take place in current-day Portland Oregon where magic is a resource anyone can use. The price for using magic? Pain. Allie Beckstrom is a Hound, and uses magic to track illegal spells back to their caster. However, when her powerful and rich father is killed, the darker side of magic is revealed. Allie must learn, quickly, who to trust, who to love, and how to survive in the dangerous high-stake world of magic.
Amber - The fourth book in the series, Magic on the Storm, has just been released. What does Allie get up to this time?
Devon - With a wild magic storm bearing down on the city, Allie not only has to fight alongside the Authority to stop the storm, but she also discovers that there are even more dangers threatening the people she cares about. Technology her father invented to make magic less painful has fallen into the wrong people’s hands. Things get pretty intense in this book, and Allie must make one of the hardest choices in her life to save the people she loves.
Amber - Allie has seen a lot of action so far. How do you decide what to throw at her in each book?
Devon - Well, it’s a nine-book series, which means there’s a lot of things that need to happen to tell the whole story. In order to cover everything, I don’t so much decide what needs to happen to her next, as just try to get it all on the page as quickly and well as I can so I can see how each event builds up to the next event. One thing I’m always hoping for is that each challenge Allie faces and each decision she makes helps her to grow as a person.
Amber - How did you come up with the idea for the series? Was it a long process or did it just come to you?
Devon - These books started out as a short story written for a themed anthology. The anthology asked for stories that blended magic and business. I thought about what would happen if everyone could use magic. What would we use magic for and what price we would pay to have it? Then I started thinking about the illegal things we might do with magic. Allie stepped up on the scene to help a little boy who had been hit by magic, and the story began.
Amber - Will there be more books in the series? How long would you like to see things continue for Allie ? Do you see an end in sight?
Devon - I do see this as a nine book series. I think everything that begins in book one will be answered by book nine. That being said, I wouldn’t totally rule out Allie getting into more trouble in the future. It’s a rich world, and Allie and the crew are a lot of fun to spend time with. So, who knows? :)
Amber - What kind of research have you done for your books? Anything interesting or is the research boring?
Devon - I don’t do a lot of research. I do make sure I get all my places and street names right. Even though the books are set in a magical “alternate” Portland, Oregon and I’ve taken some liberties with re-naming businesses, or settings, I want to make sure I get the real life basics correct. So sometimes I’ll take a quick trip to check out a chocolate shop I was thinking about mentioning, or to stroll through a cemetery to read the gravestones. Things like that.
Amber - How much say do you have in the book publishing process? Eg. Do you get to pick the cover?
Devon - I don’t get a lot of say about the cover, which is probably for the best since I am not an artist or a graphic designer. ;) I do offer a list of cover ideas so the artist knows Allie’s hair color, where her magic tattoos are, a few Portland land marks, and the weapons Allie uses. I feel so lucky to have the amazing artist, Larry Rostant, bringing Allie to life on the covers.
Amber - What are the good times and bad times of being an author?
Devon - The best times are when the words and story are flowing and I’m excited and surprised about where the book is going, and also when readers send an email or blog to say they enjoyed a part of the book. The bad times are when I’m pushing hard to hit my deadlines and feel like I’m falling behind in everything else, like brushing my teeth, and remembering to go grocery shopping, Lol!
Amber - What is next? Are you working on any other projects you would like to tell us about?
Devon - My short story collection A CUP OF NORMAL* will be out this year through Fairwood Press. The stories are a little darker and more fantastical than the Allie Beckstrom books. Many of them have been published in magazines and anthologies, but there are a few new stories too. I hope readers will find a gem or two they enjoy.
I am also working on a steampunk series which I believe will come out 2011 and 2012. The first book in that series is tentatively titled, DEAD MAN’S MOON, and the idea behind it is: “In the steampunk America of the 1800’s where strange creatures, machines, and magic aim to claim the same scrap of land and sky, sometimes all a man can count on is his honor, his word, and his claws.”
*May Contain Giant Robots
Amber - There are alot of online sites taking up peoples time lately. Are you on Facebook or any other sites? Do you think the sites are useful or do they just take up too much of your time?
Devon - I am on Facebook and Twitter and also have a Live Journal blog, a web page, and I am part of the group web page The Deadline Dames. Oh, and I’m on the knitting site, Ravelry too! So, um, yes, I love all those ways to keep up with people. I do tend to answer questions and comments the quickest on Twitter and Facebook.
Are they a time sink? They can be. But I also find them to be a perfect quick break during my writing day.
Amber - What are you listening and watching lately? Is there any music or other media that influences your writing?
Devon - I’ve had my head down for the last couple months, revising MAGIC AT THE GATE and writing book six, which is currently untitled. I guess I haven’t been very media influenced lately.
Amber - If you could be any paranormal creature, what would you be and why?
Devon - I love this question because it makes me imagine being a vampire, a werewolf, a ghost, a fae, and more. Imagining being something you’re not is one of the fun things about being a writer. But I can’t think of a favorite creature I’d want to be. I guess the creature I would most dislike being is a zombie. Rotting flesh and a steady diet of brains? I just don’t think I could pull that off with much panache, Lol!
Amber - Thanks for visiting Amberkatze's Book Blog again!
Devon has been very kind and said she will send three winners each a signed copy of her new release 'Magic on the Storm'.
How to Enter
Allie Beckstrom has some really cool tattoos (see the book covers). My question this week is....Do you have tattoos? If Yes, how many, where and anything else you feel happy telling us! or if you don't what tattoo would you consider having done?
No Tattoo = No Entry
To make things even I will say...I have five. Stars around my left wrist, Stars on my right foot, leo sign on wrist wrist, Cool Cat on left leg and a 'family symbol' on my left leg. Would like to have at least 2 more...maybe more stars (seeing a theme here?).
Earn more entries for each place you link this contest on the net. You can post on Facebook, Twitter & MySpace but make sure you add links here for me to confirm your entries! However please do not make individual postings for each entry. Please post all your info in one post.
You can also earn extra entries by emailing your friends about the contest. Just make sure you send a copy of your email or receipt to me at Amberkatzes_book_blog at gmx dot net.
Make sure you post your links here so I can confirm your entries.
Keep the contests going by using the Amazon link below and around the site!
The contest will stay open until Sunday 23rd of May 2010 4pm CET and the winner will be picked by a randomizer. Entrants should check back to see if they have won. I do not hunt down winners and will pick new winners for any prizes not claimed within 7 days.