Monday, December 21, 2009

Author Interview ~ Paris Brandon

Today on the Menagerie we are so happy to welcome author, Paris Brandon to the couch.

Paris, thanks so much for joining us today. Why don’t you tell us a bit about your journey to being published and then we’ll jump into the questions.

Thanks so much for inviting me to spend some time on the couch. Sounds heavenly. What’s that? I don’t get to rest? Oh well, maybe after my next project is completed. I can’t honestly remember a time I wasn’t writing but in September 2008, I opened an email from Ellora’s Cave telling me that they were buying my Older Woman/Younger Man novella, NO HOLDS BARRED. My first sale!

I had been writing for thirteen years and on February 13, 2009, NO HOLDS BARRED was published as an ebook. My second novella, IOU, A Carnal Reunions Tale was released in November, by Resplendence Publishing. My first full-length erotic paranormal, Book One of the Jaguar Assassins series, ASSASSIN’S KISS was released in ebook format on September 25, 2009 and is now available in print.

I’ve just completed another novella and I’m planning Book Two of the Jaguar Assassins series. Are you sure I don’t have time for a nap? Just kidding. Now, what was it you wanted to ask me?

Wow, how cool is that! Do you see writing as a career?

I’ve always viewed writing as a career. If you don’t consider yourself a writer chances are no one else will either. A dear friend and mentor once told me that if I didn’t put my butt in the chair and work at writing as if it were my job, it probably never would be. There may be someone lucky enough to have an editor snap up their first story as “the next best thing” but that wasn’t the case for me. I worked very hard to get published and come to think of it, so did everyone else I know!

That’s a great way to look at it. So many times we think, “Well, I’m not really a writer… yet.” It’s far better to be positive and consider yourself a writer from the start. What is your work schedule like when you're writing?

LOL! Crazy. I’m an early bird. I start most mornings between five and six a.m. (if not earlier) and get in a couple of hours before breakfast. If whatever I’m working on is flowing, chances are I’ll grab a bite at my desk and then eat a big lunch when I stop for a break. I can get a little obsessive, especially when a scene is flowing and everything is falling into place!

I try to save answering email and blogs and connecting with the outside world until I have at least four hours of work after lunch. If the story is flowing or I’m doing a book in a week for the first draft, I’ll also work several hours after dinner. Did I mention that I was obsessive?

Ugh… have I mentioned I hate mornings? I have… oh, well, I’ll say it again… I hate mornings! My brain refuses to work in the morning… I’m lucky to get my kids out the door with their socks on and shoes on the right feet each morning let alone write anything. What do you think makes a good story?

The one thing that will keep me riveted, are characters that are so interesting I can’t wait to find out what happens to them. After that, I’d have to say that believable conflict is next in line.

Both are great qualities in a good story. Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

Thirteen years ago, I was lucky enough to be asked to join a critique group that met once a week. I jumped at the chance even though it meant a three-hour round trip and I’ve never been sorry. Even as hectic as life gets now, we still try to get together as often as possible. I love them all dearly and can always trust them for an honest opinion!

You can’t put a value on friends like that. Crit partners who are honest with you and still supportive are golden. What do you like to do when you're not writing?

These days I almost have to schedule free time, LOL! But I’ve made it a ritual to read at least thirty minutes before I fall asleep at night. And I love watching movies, anything from old B-list monster movies to the newest action/adventure/romance that I can find on DVD.

LOL, your movie interests sound as eclectic as my own. And I can so relate to scheduling in free time… which sort of defeats the purpose… And now for the “absolutely-nothing-to-do-with-writing” questions: What animal do you think makes the best pet and why?

When I was a kid we lived in a very rural area and people were always dumping dogs. They always “followed” my little brother home and we ended up keeping them. I guess I’ve carried on the tradition because I can’t remember a time when I haven’t had a dog that’s wandered in looking for someone to love. What can I say? I love a mutt!

Our current “mutt” weighs in at eighty pounds and is most likely a yellow lab/bloodhound/chow mix. She sort of outgrew her surroundings and came to live with us.

LOL, hey, they obviously are in the right place if they stay with you after wandering from somewhere else. :-D Do you like thunderstorms?

I love thunderstorms! There’s nothing like all of that crackling energy that comes with the force of nature. Very sexy.

Yep, always makes me feel so little in comparison to that awesome power. When you looked in the mirror this morning, what was the first thing you thought?

When was the last time I had a haircut? LOL! I could have sworn it was just the other day but I’ve been working on a new project and I have a tendency to lose track of time. Anyhooo…my hairdresser is used to me calling in a panic because I’m starting to resemble a yeti.

ROTFL, yeah, the way my life has been lately I can certainly relate to wondering where the time went and realizing that I need to see my stylist. Are you a morning person or a night person?

I’ve always loved early morning, when the house is quiet and I can have a cup of coffee without a phone ringing. My brain just seems to “fire” better at that time of day, which is probably why I do my best work before noon.

Well, we already know my opinion on mornings… What stereotype would you label yourself as?

Oh boy. The only one that springs to mind is the classic Italian mama. You know the one who thinks that anything can be made better with food. A little pasta, a little wine…a lot of tiramisu, or my personal favorite, apple strudel.

This has been a lot of fun! Thank you again, Kealie, Mysti and JennyKat for letting me hang out with you!

Nothing wrong with that… and the same goes for Irish families too… just saying. LOL It’s been great hanging out with you today, and getting to know you better as well, Paris. Thanks so much for letting us torture you… umm… I mean interview you. :-D

You can keep up with Paris online at her website and at her blogs: Six Sexy Sirens and Shapeshifter Seductions.

Paris will be giving away a copy of her latest release: Assassin’s Kiss to one lucky reader. Winner’s choice between eBook or Print version (Print version may take several weeks to receive as they’ve just been ordered). She will choose her winner from those who comment today on her interview.

Assassin’s Kiss by Paris Brandon

Book 1 in the Jaguar Assassins series.

Kira, a two-natured jaguar shifter in heat, desperate for sex with her own kind, is moments from death at the hands of a band of rogue shifters when another jaguar rescues her.

Sebastian, a lone Jaguar Council Assassin, knows he’s in trouble when he chooses to neglect his duty to kill the rogues he’s been following and instead rescues the female whose scent intoxicates him. He can’t resist the first touch of her naked flesh or her heated demands for the sex they both want.

But Kira is the forbidden halfling of prophecy, the key to a secret that the Jaguar Council will kill to keep and their ancient enemy, the Brotherhood, will kill to possess. Tortured by a desire that neither can deny, even sex with Sebastian becomes dangerous for Kira, they fight their way through a growing list of enemies for the chance to be together.


Anonymous said...

I am so glad you are writing a series( Jaguar Assassins). I adore series! I like knowing who some of the characters are, liking some and disliking others.I can't wait to read Assassin's Kiss so that I can get into your series.

Paris said...

I do love following my favorite characters in a series! I'm so glad that you are looking forward to it;-)

Cindy Spencer Pape said...

Paris, it was so much fun working with you on the Carnal Reunions anthology! Great interview!

Paris said...

Cindy, I had so much fun and I loved working with you too;-) Thanks!

susan said...

Paris, your new series sounds good. I am just getting in these genres but so far I liked them. I also want to say I like your name. Is is a pen name or your very own? My daughter has two very expensive puppies named Paris and China. They are not name for the places but the products ( plaster of Paris for figurines and china dishes) I am waiting for her to get one named Crystal yet. ha ha I am now wishing your series to go big..everyone likes series these days.I know I work retail and see the series going out by register line every day. Merry Christmas

Paris said...

Merry Christmas to you, Susan! Yes, Paris is my pen name;-)I love a series because there's always that character that I want to know more about. And thanks, I'm hoping the series goes big, too!

DR. NORM said...

Great interview. You are wished continued writing success in the coming new year.
Norman W Wilson

Lynne Roberts said...

Great interview ladies!

Wow, Paris, I'm in awe. I can't formulate a sentence let alone write before 9 am. (and two cups of coffee)

I love the advice your friend gave you. Writing is work! You'd never tell your boss you weren't in the mood to do you job.

Assassin's Kiss sounds wounderful!



Tina Donahue said...

Great interview, Paris - your book sounds wonderful - can't wait to read. Tina

Fran Lee said...

Don't put me into the drawing...I bought this the day it came out! LOL! Just wanted to say hi, and tell everyone how great Paris is!

Paris said...

Thank you, Dr. Norm! I wish you all the best, too;-)

Paris said...

I think it was probably the best advice I've ever received! LOL! Did I forget to tell you that I start drinking coffee the minute my eyes are open;-) Thanks for stopping by!

Paris said...

thank you;-) and thank you for stopping by and checking out the interview!

Paris said...

You doll! What would I do without you? You're an auto buy for me too, sweetie;-) thanks for stopping by!

Lia Slater said...

Hi Paris and Kealie! Fun interview! I envy your obsessiveness, Paris. LOL So wish I was a morning person.

Paris said...

Hi Lia! Thanks;-) LOL! I think you hit on it, obsessiveness! I just love telling stories;-)

booklover0226 said...

Hello, All.

I enjoyed the interveiw; it was great. I also enjoyed the book trailer. I look forward in reading your book, Paris.

Tracey D

Paris said...

I'm so glad you liked them both! Thanks for stopping by!

Paris said...

JennyKat, Kealie and Mysti,

Loved my time on the couch! I've loved being a guest and I'd like to thank you for helping me celebrate Assassin's Kiss print release!

The winner of tonight's drawing is Cindy Spencer Pape! Drop me a line and let me know where to send it;-)