To kick off our Spotlight On with fantasy authors week is Michele Bardsley. I met Michele at a book signing in August. I’d never read her books before, but I found myself cracking up at the premise of the first book. If you’ve never read Michele Bardsley, I encourage you to pick up her books today. They are well worth the read. You will find the first book of her Broken Heart series I’m the Vampire That’s Why in our Trick or Treat prize this month.
So without further ado, here’s Michele!
A vampire soccer mom and a paranormal PTA. Where did that idea come from? I could make my own arguments for the Zombie PTA and the Third Reich PTAs.
LOL. Well, when I thought about the idea of undead motherhood, a paranormal PTA was a natural extension of what a new vampire mom might do as she figures out the new rules of her world.
How hard is it to bring the funny to your writing? Do you have to ‘think’ about it or is that how the words flow?
The simple truth about writing comedy is that either you can do it or you can’t. Authors who write the funny do so because it’s part of their style. Even when you go into the dark places, something smart ass or snarky will still find a way into the scene. Laughter is the easiest way to break the tension, too, but it has to come naturally.
What is the most challenging part of writing the relationship dynamics of your characters?
Well, I write romance, which has an expectation of a formula (boy meets girl, loses girl, wins girl back). Granted, I throw in a lot of paranormal elements and I tend to break so-called “rules” of romance, such as the hero and heroine meeting on the first page. Um, no. I’d say the challenge in the relationship dynamics really depends on how strong the conflict is. Romance is about overcoming the internal to
conquer the external.
What is the first element of the character that comes clear to you?
I start with dialogue, how a character talks, the vocabulary, the accent, the conversational tone. Once I can “hear” them, I can build on their personality.
What do you enjoy reading?
I love paranormal fiction, mystery, thriller, fantasy, science fiction, romance, and young adult.
Right now, I write all night and sleep while my son is in school. I get more done in the evening hours because there are no distractions, no errands to run, no phone calls to make, no cooking or cleaning to do. It’s quiet and I’m alone.
As a writer, what’s the most difficult part of the process for you? The creating? The editing? The submitting?
The writing can be difficult especially if I get stuck in the manuscript or I don’t get it “right” in the first or even second drafts. Some novels have better flow than others. I’m a totally pantser … I just write until the book is done, and if necessary, I rewrite it.
What are you working on right now?
Book 7 in the Broken Heart series. It’s called CROSS YOUR HEART and it will be out in September 2010. Book 6, COME HELL OR HIGH WATER, will be out in January 2010.
Author to Author
Standalone vs. series. What is better for an aspiring author to shoot for?
Obviously, selling a series is the better deal because multi-book contracts mean more money. But really, an aspiring author should just finish a book and get it out there.
Rock Band vs Guitar Hero – which is better?
Rock Band has way better songs. And the Beatles. So yeah, Rock Band rules.
Want to learn more about Michele and her books? Check out her website!