If you have no idea what a 'Kitty' book is then you really need to read this interview and then go order the first book. You are really missing out on an amazing series. Therefore I am giving away one Kitty book. Check the details at the end of the interview and make sure you enter quickly because you only have till Sunday.
Oh and apologies to Carrie! I actually said I was going to post this earlier on this week but it slipped my mind!
Amber - Carrie, Welcome back to Amberkatze's Book blog! Can you start things off by telling us what we all want to know! What does Kitty get up to in the next book? With the title 'Kitty Goes to War' I am dying to get hold of a copy!
Carrie - 'Kitty Goes to War' has two main plots. The first, she finally goes too far on her radio show and gets sued for libel when she discusses the possibility that a convenience store chain is the focus of a supernatural conspiracy. Second, she gets a call from the military -- a squad of werewolf soldiers is home from Afghanistan, and they've come very close to losing control of their wolf sides entirely. Kitty will try to help them.
Amber - Last time you were here you told me that you do have an end for
Kitty but still a lot more ideas to go. How close is the end looking? CAn
we expect more books in the Kitty series after this newest installment?
Carrie - Well, I think we're closer to the end than to the beginning now. We're still a couple of books away, though. I have a few more ideas to get out of my system first. I've just finished the ninth book, and will start working on the tenth soon.
Amber - Kitty has seen a lot of paranormal action so far. How do you decide what to throw at her in each book?
Carrie - I have an ongoing list of issues and ideas I want to cover. For each book I try to pick a big one to focus on -- like the werewolf soldiers in the current book. But I'll also add a few other ideas for subplots. I also like seeing how disparate ideas can fit together and make for a really interesting story. I've gotten to eight books in the series because I keep adding ideas to the list.
Amber - How long on average does it take you to write a Kitty book? Do you have a process you follow? or do you just start at page one and see what happens?
Carrie - It takes about 5-6 months. I start with a list of ideas, scenes -- a rough outline, basically. I like to know where the book ends before I start. Then I start writing. I'll usually have to rework the outline a couple of times when new details come up or the plot gets complicated. (It always gets more complicated than I was expecting.) I'll write a rough draft, read it over, ask my first readers to make comments, then revise it and send it to my editor. She'll give me more notes, and there'll be another big revision. Revision is a big part of the process for me -- it helps me make sure all the pieces fit together.
Amber - Earlier this year you made your Young Adult debut with Voices of Dragons. Will there be more in that series? Are you working on any other projects?
Carrie - I hope there'll be at least one sequel to Voice of Dragons. But I haven't written it yet so I don't know when it'll happen. I have lots of other projects -- my second young adult novel, Steel, will be out in March, and it's about pirates and sword fighting. This July, my first stand-alone fantasy book, Discord's Apple, will be released. It's about small towns, the Trojan War, family, storytelling -- kind of a near-future contemporary fantasy.
Amber - How do you pick the names of your characters? Are they just names you like, people you know or do they have some other meaning?
Carrie - A little of everything. Sometimes I want something specific, or I want a name that sounds foreign or exotic, or of a specific ethnicity. I have a baby name book that I use, and I'll often use the phone book for last names. I try to find the names that sound natural and interesting.
Amber - What kind of research have you done for your books? Anything interesting or is the research boring?
Carrie - I like doing research most of the time. I'm always learning new things. Most of the time I have to do research on "real world" aspects of the story rather than the fantastic elements. Like, how the legal system works, aspects of the military, research on the setting, and so on. I've done a lot of research on wolf behavior to give more depth to my werewolf characters. I also like discovering new folklore and stories from around the world to add new and interesting supernatural elements to the Kitty books.
Amber - Did you always wanted to be an author? Did you pick Urban Fantasy or did it pick you? How did the Young Adult book come about?
Carrie - Yes, I pretty much always wanted to be an author, since high school. Writing seemed to be the only thing I could do reasonably well, that I liked doing. Urban fantasy picked me -- no one was using that term for this kind of book when I started writing the Kitty stories. I'm not particularly drawn to the genre, I just happened to have this story I wanted to tell about a character who happens to be a werewolf. The young adult book happened because I had a story that wasn't working
right until I made the main character a teenager. "Voices of Dragons" has strong elements of rebellion, coming of age, growing up, learning to stand up for yourself -- those themes worked much better in a YA book. The story needed to be YA.
Amber - How much say do you have in the book publishing process? Eg. Do you get to pick the cover?
Carrie - Well, I write the book and get to approve everything in the editorial process, but that's about it, creatively at least. I don't pick the covers, and I don't handle selling to bookstores, the marketing/promotion, etc. Writings what I do best.
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?
Carrie - I'm on Facebook and I keep a blog. I'm also on MySpace but I don't use it very much. There's my website, too. I think some kind of online presence like a website is an absolute must, just to make sure that when people are looking for information about you, they can find it. I've found the blog and Facebook really useful for getting information out there quickly and interacting with readers. I can ask questions and usually get good discussions out of it -- I'm learning as much as my readers are. But I do try to limit what I do -- I don't post every day, and I don't spend very much time on other sites.
Amber - What are you listening and watching lately? Is there any music or other media that influences your writing?
Carrie - My listening and viewing is always a bit scattered. I'm loving "Castle" right now -- sharp writing, great characters. I'm also fond of "Doctor Who." I listen to lots of different music, always keeping my ears out for new things, but again it's not very consistent. As far as influences -- absolutely everything influences me. It's usually unexpected -- a clip from a reality TV show, a news article, anything can have the seed of an idea. Current politics is so crazy right now that if I put it in a book no one would believe it. There's got to be a way I can use it.
Amber - If you could be any paranormal creature, what would you be and why?
Carrie - Not really sure. It's not something I've thought about. I kinda like being human.
Amber - Thank you so much for being a guest on Amberkatze's Book Blog! I hope you will come back again ;)
I am giving away a Kitty book! That means that the winner of this contest gets to pick one book from the Kitty series. The winner can therefore choose to get the new release or one of the previous books if they haven't already started or are missing a book in the series.
How to Enter
I have always thought that Kitty is a brilliant name for a werewolf. What name do you think would be cool for a werewolf?
No Name = No Entry
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 Bookdepository.com links/Banners below and around the site!
The contest will stay open until Sunday 4th of July 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.