Tuesday, November 08, 2016
Begin the waiting game.
Fleshlings and darklings… Rune-weavers and demons… When you walk in the land of the Reaper, who will survive?
Serenity Walker has cast runes for as long as she can remember. Her teachers call her a prodigy, and her secret studies hold the key to unlimited potential. Once an orphan left on an old woman’s doorstep, Serenity finally belongs. But when her mentor is murdered right in front of her, her hopes of a home die with him.
Her quest for vengeance leads her into a dangerous deal with a demon. Armed with its dark power and her own talent with the runes, she blazes a trail across the lands where ranchers and railroad men are kings, where the prevailing law is the law of the gun. To find the man who reshaped her past, Serenity offers up her future. She’ll face a world where weavers are hunted down to be hanged, whipped, or burned alive...but she won’t face it alone.
As Serenity’s mission takes her farther than most weavers are willing to go, she’ll have to decide who her true enemy is: the wicked men of the world, or the powerful demon inside her.
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The monk stood in wait for her, halfway up the aisle. He'd appeared out of nowhere again, quick and quiet as a scavenging rat, and glared at her with eyes full of mean shock and disgust.
“Witch,” he spat. “I knew it as soon as I saw you. Devil! Bride of—”
Serenity threw the sigh of fehu at him, the sign of the cattle’s horns, and it caught him high in the chest to send him stumbling backward. The power issued forth a bit weaker than usual. Her demon felt suffocated in the holy place, sapped by the wards against their kind and hollowed out by the ravaging spells she’d twisted back in the tavern. But it cast the insufferable priest to the stone, striking him down with a callous resentment, and she stalked across the aisle at him.
“How dare you come into this place of worship!” he sputtered, crawling backward on his behind as she came closer. “How dare you—”
“How dare I?” she snarled.
“All I wanted was a place to rest for the night,” she muttered. “A room and a bed, and to be left alone. I didn’t come here to harm anyone. But somehow I get you, chastising me in the street, thinking to tell me what I can and can’t wear even while you sit there ogling, and I get your servants breaking into my room and burning years and years’ worth of study, and then I get a mob of your people screaming for my blood, planning on hanging me in the middle of the night. And you, padre, you have the gall to call me a murderer?”
“The Lord will repay you in kind!” the priest shrieked. “When you come here, doing the devil’s work! Wearing his symbol upon your breast! Whore! Devil’s whore!”
She leaned down and grabbed him by the front of his robes, pulling him up to meet her eyes.
“You’re right,” she hissed. “I do the devil’s work. I wear his mark. I traffic with demons and I command their power. So it might have been wise of you and your people not to piss me off.”
When she isn't visiting the worlds of immortals, demons, dragons and goblins, Brantwijn fills her time with artistic endeavors: sketching, painting, customizing My Little Ponies and sewing plushies for friends.
She can't handle coffee unless there's enough cream and sugar to make it a milkshake, but try and sweeten her tea and she will never forgive you.
She moonlights as a futon for four lazy cats, loves tabletop role-play games, and can spend hours on end sketching characters and scenes in her secret notebooks.
This new series, called Books of the Pact, started out as a fun, paranormal adventure, and that’s what I want readers to enjoy. I think there are deeper messages, different themes that come to play throughout the books, but first and foremost, this is a story about a quest. It’s meant for readers to fall in to, and follow, and hopefully to love.
Was there an Author who inspired you to write?
So many! Topping the list, though, must be Stephen King, Joss Whedon, Jennifer Roberson and Jim Butcher.
How did you come up with the characters in your books?
Most of them originate out of music that speaks to me. Serenity, and in fact the first gem of her story, was inspired by Moonlight Shadow.
What are your current projects?
Again, so many! During November I’m working on the third book in my Blood and Fire series, which is calledWinter Hearts. After that, it’s a cycle of working on the next sequels in each of my main series. Hopefully, fans of Goblin Fires will soon have a new Four Courts read to enjoy!
Do you see writing as a career?
I do. Though I have a day job and that’s the job that pays my bills, I consider myself an author first and foremost. This is who I am.
Do you ever picture yourself and one of your heroines? If so, which one?
Lately I’ve found myself in the headspace of my Lady in Chains heroine, Sadira. I love the dichotomy of her character: she’s a strong soul, a fighter underneath everything, a woman with a clear view of what she wants and needs; but in her most intimate, vulnerable heart, she seeks out a master who can touch the wild storm of emotion and strength within her, and help her to calm it. I love that she’s strong, and yet she’s deeply submissive, and she’s able to understand that duality in herself very well.
Do you have a favorite heroine/hero from one of your books? If so, who?
I think Rhiannon, from my Blood and Fire series, is probably the one I’m most endeared to. I can’t put my finger on why but Rhiannon is my girl.
What kind of research do you do for your books?
I do lots of research through many, many channels, and I usually find myself intrigued enough to do more research than I need for the project. Wikipedia tends to be my starting point these days, just because it’s such a great place to find the first nugget of information, and further research on other websites, cultural forums, hard-copy books, and so on.
What is the hardest part of writing your book?
I have trouble with “Point B” scenes—as in the ones that get the character from Point A to Point C. Little scenes with little action and little emotional charge…I have trouble working through them. At the same time, though, I get very frustrated with authors who skip over these slower-paced scenes, leaving their books with an unequal balance of action and rest. So I make myself write through these slower parts…and usually they end up being scenes I love. I also have trouble with fight scenes, but I make myself write through them until they feel full and balanced as well.
If you could say anything to your readers what would it be?
Today I happened to read over an old favorite in my list of inspiring quotes. Seems appropriate to share it now! So I’d say to my readers, remember that ‘life is not about finding yourself. It is about creating yourself.’
What is your favorite Genre and why?
I enjoy most genres, but if I have to name a favorite I think it would have to be urban fantasy. I enjoy the different ways authors of urban fantasy can incorporate and re-imagine classic folklore, myth, and legend.
Do you prefer to write alone or do you like to collaborate with other authors?
I’m not sure I’d know how to write a collaboration! Though I think I’d like to give it a try one day. However, I tend to prefer to write alone, on my own time, and at my own pace.
Do you ever get writer’s block? If so, how do you get through it?
I get writer’s block all the time. At times, I can overcome it by switching to another project temporarily, or taking a chance to break for some silent meditation on my own. One fairly good way to jog my mind is to put on some inspirational music and go for a long walk with my dog.
When you are reading a book, who is your favorite author?
I have a lot of favorites, usually favorites for different reasons. I think my all-around favorite is JK Rowling, however. I think her talent for storytelling is amazing on many, many levels, and in fact I’m not sure she gets quite as much credit as she deserves. Other favorites are Stephen King, Jim Butcher, and lately Sarah Waters.
Do you come up with the cover or does someone else do it?
I am very, very excited that the cover for The Pact is my own work! It’s funny because, of all my books, The Pact is the one I felt least capable of creating cover art for. I’d jump at the chance to do artwork for just about any other book, but The Pact always felt too daunting. I had no idea what sort of cover I wanted...no clue where to even start. Then, one day—one exceptionally frustrating, stressful, ugly-crying day—I sat down to try and ease my mind by working on some digital art, in anticipation for the book’s release. When I mentioned to a few of my support network that I thought maybe, maybe I had a cover idea, even though I was sure it wouldn’t be used, they urged me to go through with it anyway. In the end, I came up with something I can’t believe I hadn’t thought of before, and I really loved it. The icing on the cake was, my publisher approved it for the official cover!
If you could change anything in your writing what would that be?
It’s hard to put into words exactly what I would like to change, though I can identify it in my mind easily enough. Sometimes I feel my voice is not as “just right” as some of the writers (especially erotic authors) I admire, like Remittance Girl or Sarah Waters. Their stories move almost seamlessly for me, in terms of prose. I feel I’m not at that level, and I would love to be.
What book if any would you want to be made into a movie?
Most of the books I want to see as movies are already made into movies. There’s one I always hoped they never make into a movie, and that was The Dark Tower series. And, as you may know, they officially announced the film this year. I love The Dark Tower, don’t get me wrong. But there’s so much about the books that, in my opinion, would never transfer to the screen very well. I think it would cause more people to dislike the series, rather than win it new fans. I just think there’s no reason to try and force it into a film format. Though I will say, since it’s already in the works anyway, I’ve really fallen in love with the idea of Idris Elba as Roland!
Everyone uses computers, tablets, phones and no one uses handwritten form or typewriters, what do you prefer to use?
I actually do write by hand. At least in my earliest forms. Since I work 40 hours a week at my day job and I can’t use the computers there for writing my personal projects, I collect notebooks and do a lot of hand-written first drafts. I do quite enjoy this, actually… it’s very versatile.
Is there a ritual you do before you begin your book?
It’s always a quest to find the perfect title, and the perfect opening quote. Before that’s done, I can’t write a thing.
What do you do when you finish your book and turn it in to the editor?