Both Jessica McClain and Jane True are back this season with new books from Amanda Carlson and Nicole Peeler. In the first of a two part series, Nicole is here to interview Amanda about what’s in store for Jessica in HOT BLOODED (US | UK | AUS). Join us later in the week to get the full scoop from Nicole on the final Jane True novel, TEMPEST REBORN (US | UK | AUS).
Nicole Peeler: Hi Amanda! Love the series, and super psyched you’re doing so well. But how on earth did a nice girl from Minnesota come to write about werewolves?? ;)
Amanda Carlson: We love wolves here, but alas, they are of the timber wolf variety. There are so many forests up in northern Minnesota I always pictured it as a perfect setting for werewolves to lurk undercover. But this MN girl ultimately chose werewolves purely because of their hot blooded feistiness. Nothing like a hot blooded man to warm your bed. Something about them has always been primal to me.
NP: Obviously, werewolves are a much loved and much used mythology. So what did you think you could bring to werewolves that other people couldn’t? Or was that even an issue for you?
AC: I really feel like I’ve brought something new to the genre with Jessica, but when I started writing the first book years ago the market wasn’t saturated. I had no issues. I wrote the kind of story I wanted to read and nothing more. My biggest mistake was letting it sit for over a year. I suffered from the most common writer anxiety—is it good enough? Will people like it? So when I finally polished it and decided to query, there was a fear I may have missed the “werewolf” window, LOL! Being new to the game, I had no idea it took a year and a half to two years to get a book on the shelf. But my agent assured me there was always a market for a good story and I believe in that wholeheartedly. I’ve found that readers don’t really care who the protagonist is, or what their power is, most of them are just looking for a great read.
NP: How many books do you have planned for the series, and what’s coming up next for Jessica?
AC: Jessica continues her adventures in COLD BLOODED, which releases in October 2013. I’m so excited. As for more in the series, stay tuned!
NP: Pack is obviously very important to werewolves. But who would be in your dream pack?
AC: That’s a fun question. Let’s see. My dream werewolf dad would have to be Jeff Bridges, and with a full beard he almost fits the bill as a wolf already. I love me some Jeff Bridges. My brother would have to be Chris Pine. He’s a fine looking specimen, but he also seems like he’d look after his sister. Awesome pack mates would have to be Chris Helmsworth, Colin Farrell and Channing Tatum. And my main squeeze? It would have to be Tom Hardy. That man had me before hello.
NP: You obviously care very much for aspiring writers. What’s your advice to someone who wants to be where you are, now?
AC: Keep writing and finish. Finishing is the very first step in the very long road to publication. Make yourself accountable if you need to, but finish your story. Then reach out to other writers. You will find some amazing support.
NP: What’s been your favorite things about being a published writer?
AC: I love seeing my books in print. That has been an amazing milestone. I’ve been working toward that for sixteen years. I also love connecting with the fans. Readers are amazing and when they see your book the way you intended it, it’s a match made in heaven.