This week I am uber thrilled to have A.L. Kessler with me. So belly up, grab some liquid noms and join me as I pick Le Brain of pure Fab!
So, what inspired you to write your first book?
My first published book Midnight Symphony was a mix of an old NaNoWrimo novel and a short story. The nano novel had never been finished, but I loved the world of it, the short story had been rejected when I sent it to an anthology, but I loved the plot of it. The world came from a puzzle I had and fell in love with. That's where Cora's looks original came from. Once I put the world, plot and characters together things went amazing! It was like everything clicked and that's what was needed.
What were the challenges (research, literary, psychological, and logistical) during it? Did you find yourself daunted at all?
With Midnight Symphony it was building a world purely inspired by a simple puzzle image was a huge challenge to me. The need to keep things consistent and painting a picture for the reader. I found myself worried that it wouldn't come across to the reader. With In the Light of the Moon, I struggled with how much information was too much, or not enough. I had other things to worry about when I released that book, so I wasn't daunted by it. I just held my breath and let it go.
Do you ever find yourself torn between what YOU want for the character and what ACTUALLY ends up happening?
Yes! My characters and I get into constant arguments. I work by a loose outline, but rarely does everything go as planned. Sometimes they have a surprise for me. Midnight Symphony it was Theresa who surprise me, In the Light of the Moon Jax had his own plan, and my current work, well…let's just say everyone told me to screw the outline and plans.
Do you have a particular style of writing? Organized or do you wing it?
It depends on the project, for short stories, I'll normally wing it. Novels I almost always end up with an outline. My first thing I do is a brain map (you know those things you learned in elementary school?), from there I decide what ideas will work and key character details. Then I do a timeline for events I know need to happen (super simple, takes me like 10 mins) then I write down what will happen in each chapter, that is my outline. Sometimes things change, but I make notes so I know that they have changed. I have a character bible that I keep character bios, interviews, pictures and everything else in. That helps me keep things straight when I'm working on the series.
What's currently cooking in that amazing gray matter of yours?
Oh so much! ;) Currently on the plate is Of Fate and Gears in hope for inclusion again this year in the Penny Dread Tales Anthology. It's a short story with a different twist on fate as a character. It's not really a love story, but it's cute and sweet. Next up is Dance in the Moonlight, which is Renee and Coran's book in Dark War Chronicles then Midnight Shadows, Alaster's book. Cooking is: a highlander-like book, based in 1800's Scotland with a band of supernatural creatures. Lilly gets sucked back into time and thrown on their door step. There's a lot going on behind scenes on how she got there and why, there's love, death, and men in kilts. Can't really ask for much more! This is my nano project though, so I don't know if it will ever make it into readers' laps.
If you could choose any writer, who would love to have as a mentor?
Sherrilyn Kenyon, without a doubt. That woman is amazing, her struggle to become an big time author is an amazing one. She has amazing characters, a fantastic world, and without a doubt has touch people with her books. I would kill to have her as a mentor.
Time for the "randoms" as I call them:
Fave food group? Chocolate.
Tony Stark or Bruce Wayne? Tony Stark, never been much of a Bruce fan.
Celebrity Death Match...name your top two? Miley Cyrus and Lindsay Lohan
Historical, sci-fi or fantasy? Fantasy, but not high fantasy.
Of all your characters, which one is closest to YOU?
Tegan and Kassity are the closest to my heart. They are near and dear, there's just something about them.
Care to share an excerpt from any of your works?
Midnight Symphony, Chapter Three:
He studied her for a moment and seemed to stand taller. "You are not the same woman from last night."
"I swear to you I am. I am the Gypsy Lady in the true form. A spirit that changes at night." She held her arms out. "You like my other form better?"
"I have a hard time believing you are a spirit. What is your name?"
"Cora." The name dripped off her lips. "I have kept my word, now I must go. The village is expecting me."
He reached out and cupped her cheek, his hand felt rough against her skin, but the familiar feeling made her body clench. He leaned in to kiss her, but stopped just shy of her lips. "I will see you after. You have my word." He stepped away and marched up the hill to the street.
Cora's breath escaped her as she tried to process what happened. The desire to rush to him and run her hands through his hair and devour his lips with a kiss went through her. The clenching inside her stomach told her she'd be willing to go much further, because he didn't turn her away. A demon who wanted to be with a witch, it sounded like a joke. She replaced her mask and hood and went up to the streets, weaving her way through the crowd.
As she approached the square the energy in her bubbled. The bustle of the people around her, the exciting gasps as she passed by them and the hum of other witches in the area helped feed the thrill of being among them as the Gypsy Lady. She ran towards the stage and leapt on to it with her violin. Drawing the bow across the strings, a smile crossed her face while the note echoed though the square. With a toss of her head, her hood fell back around her shoulders and she started to dance across the stage while she played.
For more of this fantastic author, you can find her at:
Facebook: (author) https://www.facebook.com/alkesslerauthor
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/a.l.-kessler
Thank you so much for stopping by today and chatting a spell with me. I wish you much joy, luck and magic in your ALL your endeavors!