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Sunday, December 12, 2010

Author Interview & Contest with Christina Henry

My author guest this week is a new author to our blogs. Christina Henry is a new fish in an ever growing pond but I think she is making big ripples with her debut Black Wings.

Black Wings is one of the debut books on the Urban Paranormal scene that I have been eagerly awaiting for months. It arrived on my Kindle and I wished so much that I could hide somewhere and read it. As it is I am only 35% into Black Wings and well I would rather be reading it than blogging ;) Look out for my review because I am definitely going to be saying good things about it.

So here is your chance to get to know the author a little and maybe even win yourself a copy of Black Wings. It has debuted at #7 on the Barnes and Noble bestselling science fiction and fantasy paperback list! Enjoy the interview! I am off to see where those Black Wings are flying to next...


Amber - Welcome to Amberkatze's Book Blog! It is great to have you here as a guest! Could you start things off by telling us a little about your debut book, Black Wings?

Christina - Maddy Black is an Agent of death. It’s an inherited job with no pay. She’s broke, she’s stressed and she’s got to rent the apartment in her building if she wants to have some income. She takes on a new tenant who winds up bringing a whole host of new supernatural problems with him. She’s also got a very mouthy gargoyle with a bad popcorn habit who loves to express his opinion on everything.

Amber - Were you nervous about the release? What was it like reading the reviews?

Christina – I was more excited than nervous. The first time I saw the book in the bookstore I wanted to jump up and down! I restrained myself, though :)
The majority of the reviews for the book have been pretty good. Not everyone has loved the book but that’s OK – not every book is for every reader.

Amber - How did you come up with the idea for Black Wings? Was it a long process or did it just come to you?

Christina - I originally had an idea to write a story about the Grim Reaper. As I started writing and working out the mythology for the Agency I decided I could work in the Fallen – it seemed like a natural fit. Plus, at the time there weren’t really any fallen angel books out on the market and I wanted something to distinguish the book from all the vampires and werewolves (not that vampires and werewolves are bad – I just wanted to do something a little different).

Amber - What kind of research did you have to do for Black Wings? Anything interesting or is the research boring?

Christina – I didn’t really do too much research. I looked up the angelic hierarchy on Wikipedia and the definitions of the Grigori and the nephilim. I wanted the mythology of Black Wings to be my own so I tried to stay away from too much research – I didn’t want to be influenced by other sources.

Amber - How did you pick the names for your characters? Do the names have any special meanings?

Christina – Maddy was just a name that I liked. It seemed strong but also likeable. I picked Gabriel because it’s another of my favorite names. I wanted to name my son Gabriel but husband didn’t agree :)
Most of the other names were drawn from the angelic hierarchy list, but don’t necessarily match their biblical descriptions - I just picked the names that sounded the best or seemed like they fit the characters.

Amber - What is like being a new author on the writing scene? Wild parties with other authors or sitting at home writing more books as fast as possible?

Christina – There are definitely no wild parties unless you count the way we all comment on each other’s blog postings :) That’s about as wild as it gets.
Other than that, most of the time is spent on the business of writing – not just working on new books but also editing, proofreading, promoting and blogging. Most of my day is spent doing something writing-related.
The rest of the time I fetch snacks for my perpetually hungry four-year-old.

Amber - Why did you decide to start writing? And how long did it take to get published?

Christina – I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was 12 years old, but never really put in the time to achieve that dream until a couple of years ago. Once I finally completed a manuscript (Black Wings) it took six months for me to get picked up by Ace.

Amber - What is next? Are you working on any other projects you would like to tell us about?

Christina – I’m working on the third book of the Madeline Black series right now. Once I finish this I’ve got an idea for another book but I’m trying not to think about it too hard about it right now – I don’t want to get distracted until I’m done writing Maddy’s book :)

Amber - Why did you pick the Paranormal Urban Fantasy genre?

Christina – I picked urban fantasy because it’s a genre that I like to read. You have so many opportunities to play with this genre as a writer – with different creatures, different mythologies, different kinds of magic, different levels of action and romance – I think every urban fantasy out there really stands alone. There’s something for everyone!

Amber - What are you listening and watching lately? Is there any music or other media that influences your writing?

Christina – I always put together a playlist for each book that I write. I start off with an 8-10 song playlist and then I add to it as I get further into the novel until I’ve got about 20-25 songs that I listen to while I write. Every time I sit down at my laptop that playlist brings me right back into the story and the overall emotional arc of Maddy’s character. When I get to a point where the writing feels stuck or stale, I’ll put the playlist on my iPod and just listen to the music while I run errands or bake something in the kitchen. If I let my mind wander while still staying inside Maddy’s world through the music the next piece of the story will usually occur to me.

Right now I’m finally getting around to watching “The Walking Dead” – the whole six-episode season is in my DVR because I’m terrible about keeping up with TV shows. It’s a really fantastic series so I’m glad I get to watch the whole thing in one shot!

Amber - If you could be any paranormal creature, what would you be and why?

Christina – Definitely a werewolf. You get to look like an ordinary human being but transform into something incredibly fast and powerful…I’ve always had a soft spot for werewolf stories.

Amber - Thank you so much for being a guest on Amberkatze's Book Blog! I hope you will come back again ;)

Christina – Thanks so much for having me!

CHRISTINA HENRY is a graduate of Columbia College Chicago and enjoys running long distances, reading anything she can get her hands on and watching movies with samurai, zombies, and subtitles in her spare time. She lives in Chicago with her husband and son.

Visit her website!


Contest Time

This week the contest is limited to US/Canada only. The winner will get a copy of Black Wings and you really do want it :)

How to Enter

What are you watching or listening to lately?

No Answer = No Entry

Earn more entries for each link you place about 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 entries in one post.

Advertise Amberkatze's Book Blog on your site and get an extra entry for this and every other contest!

Amberkatze's Book Blog

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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!

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The contest will stay open until Sunday 19th of December 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.


LSUReader said...

What I'm watching lately on TV is Bones and football! Thanks for visiting today.

Janet said...

I am watching "Walking Dead" but, it does creep me out some. I keep saying - I'm not watching this again but, I do.

Audra said...

I am watching Castle and Criminal Minds.

elaing8 said...

great interview.
I watch a lot of tv,Supernatural,Bones,Criminal Minds,CSI's,Big Bang Theory and some Christmas movies.


throuthehaze said...

I've been listening to a lot of TOOL lately.
throuthehaze at gmail dot com

Vickie said...

I am catching up on my DVR shows, mostly Psych, Castle, Hawaii Five-O, Burn Notice....I love having a DVR.

Pamk said...

listening to a lot of xmas music. and watching Bones, House, NCIS, and with hubby Daniel Boone lol.

Barbara E. said...

I'm enjoying Burn Notice, Psych, Castle and Hawaii Five-O. Not listening to much of anything except when I walk, then my iPod is on shuffle so I listen to whatever comes up.

debbie said...

I have been watching the walking dead and dexter, which is an odd mix, because I am also watching all the christmas shows.

Jessica @ a GREAT read said...

My top TV shows to watch are Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries, Psych and I do like Bones and The Closer, plus The Simpsons! Can't ever get enough of that show!

Have banner on my blog


E.J. Stevens said...

Wonderful interview! I'm listening to Imogen Heap and have been watching Vampire Diaries and Bones.
From the Shadows

Julie S said...

Watching a lot of awesome stuff on TV, including Supernatural!


Daelith said...

I've been watching Walking Dead, Sons of Anarchy, Leverage, Human Target and Hawaii Five-O.

Thank you for the interview.

cheleooc at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

I have been watching Bones and Law and Order SVU and Los Angels. Please enter me in contest. Tore923@aol.com

tetewa said...

My favorite show is Supernatural, I have a group of friends who come over every Friday night. I also love Dexter, just watched the finale last night.

Persephone said...

I have been watching tons of TV lately. I am watching Law and Order: SVU, so far I have watched season one through three and starting the fourth (watching on Netflix). I am also watching L&O: LA. I am watching new stuff (Outsourced, Conan, Chase, Hawaii Five-O) and old(er) stuff (Oz, Miracles, Jericho). It has been a TV binge.

Sharon S. said...

I never miss Supernatural. I need to get all the Walking Dead episodes so I can watch those too. I also love Raising Hope. That cast is hilarious!

Can't wait to read Black Wings.

lingeorge said...

Although I read mainly Urban Fantasy (I need Black Wings) with a little Science Fiction and traditional fantasy thrown in, What I mainly watch are Drama/Mystery: The Closer, NCIS, Bones, Criminal Minds, etc. I also love The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men.
What I find I am listening to lately seems to be Christmas Carols and other Holiday music.
troublelore at gmail dot com

Taffy said...

This month has been all about the Hallmark channel and Christmas movies! LOVE IT!


BrigidsBlest said...

Listening to - "Spiritchaser" by Dead Can Cance.

Watching now - just got a subscription to Netflix and I'm working my way through the second season of Doctor Who.

Watching tonight - the season finale of Dexter.

BrigidsBlest at yahoo dot com

Bethany C. said...

I watch a lot of primetime tv, but I pretty much just have ESPN on all day. My daughter will probably grow up thinking that Sportscenter is 'the news.'
Thanks for the chance to win!


Stephanie said...

I'm watching Castle and just watched the season finale of Dexter last night.


Sweet Vernal Zephyr said...

Right now I am in the middle of listening to Hungry for You by Lyndsay Sands on audiobook. :D Thanks for the interview and the chance to win.

JenM said...

I haven't watched much of anything lately (too busy reading), but two bands that I've been listening to lately are Mumford & Sons, and Airborne Toxic Event.


Chris J. said...

Hi Amber and Christina,

Great blog and Black Wings sounds wonderful. The cover is so cool. :)
I am watching the Vampire Diary's first and 2nd season, as they are taking so long to finsh up season 2. Also saw Dead walking and would like to catch up on that as well, heard they have already signed on for a season 2 of that series. :)
Best Wishes to you Christina.

Amber I emailed my friends about the contest and cc'd you. :)

Amy said...

I've been watching Supernatural and some old episodes of Castle lately.


SiNn said...

lately i been waitching supernatural and listening to country and j rock i dont have one spacific song or group really

Laurie T said...

When i get a chance to watch tv it's usually an episode of Supernatural from my DVR. I've really been listening to Linkin Park's latest, A Thousand Suns. I refuse to listen to the naysayers-this is an incredible album:) And a lot of Breaking Benjamin.

Read for your future! said...

I have started watching border wars and Wild Justice. Both new shows. on Natural geographic channel. I addedhttp://readforyourfuture.blogspot.com/ your widget to my site.

Michelle M. said...

loving Top Chef all stars right now and I just discovered Law and Order UK. I've been on a Red Hot Chile Peppers kick in my car.

Unknown said...

Thanks to my daughter I am watching a lot of Mickey Mouse Club house...but when I need to regain my sanity I watch Lie to Me/NCIS/Bones. And I am currently listening to B101 which plays Holiday Music non stop from Black Friday till New Years I think! :)


Bookyurt said...

Fringe, which has started getting good, finally - and Nikita, which is just fun :)

sablelexi said...

I'm watching a lot of bad disaster movies on the Syfy channel, just can't get enough of them lately...lol

jlynettes @ hotmail . com

Anonymous said...

I've been watching Ellen's 12 days of Christmas. XD And listening to any Christmas music I can get my hands on.

Anonymous said...

I've been listening to Metric and watching way too much crap reality TV. Oh, holidays.

-Michelle, wookieecookie7 at sbcglobal dot net

Cynthya said...

I just saw Black Wings today when I was browsing on Amazon so it was great to see an interview with the author. I had already put it on my wish list, though. I am really looking forward to going on a shopping spree after Christmas.

I hardly ever watch TV, and haven't seen anything lately. I'd much rather be reading. I don't listen to music, but I do listen to podcasts when I'm on the computer.

Taffy said...

I'm hooked on Castle right now! Love the wit in that show!

Andra Lyn said...

I've been watching the Walking Dead lately. Sad that the first season is over so soon! And of course, I'm getting in the christmas spirit with some favorites...Mariah Carey's All I want for Christmas Is you for one :) Thanks for the contest!

hense1kk at cmich dot edu

donnas said...

Im watching Boardwalk Empire. Catching up on the last few episodes.