Hey everybody! Welcome back to another ParaYourNormal author interview. Today we are talking with Courtney Conant, author of The Blood Moon of Winter. This is a page turning, paranormal/fantasy romance that we're sure you're going to love.
Courtney is feeling generous with her book and is giving away four eBook copies to some lucky people who leave us a comment. Make sure you leave your email address at the end of your comment so we know how to reach you to deliver your prize. Now, for the interview.
PYN: What inspired you to start writing?
CC: I started reading around the age of 3. I guess I figured that if someone else could do it, so could I. I couldn't resist, as I had a very active imagination. Writing is just something I’ve always done (except when dealing with writer’s block…) and always will do.
PYN: What is your creative process like, do you have goals per day, or do you write when you’re inspired?
CC:There doesn’t seem to be much of a process. The only thing that I require is a comfy seat, candy and a good bottle of wine. If I’m comfortable, then I know I can relax and let the words flow naturally as opposed to trying to force them out just to meet a word count goal.
PYN: Do you reward yourself when you meet word count or chapter goals?
CC: When I was writing The Blood Moon of Winter, I promised myself that if I could finish it, then I could do anything. My goal was to finish the book and then move on to my next goal in life. I had always wanted to run a half marathon but never did. I always put it off. My treat to myself was to achieve that next goal. As soon as I finished the book, I started training and a month later, I succeeded in running 13.1 miles. I know it seems like a strange treat, but it was a big one for me!
PYN: What inspired the storyline of The Blood Moon of Winter?
CC: My mind and my characters were my inspiration. I didn’t plan or plot anything. I sat down and started writing and let the words take control. I refused to allow myself to think about what I was putting on the pages. If I thought too hard while working, I would lose where the story was going. When that happened, I would have to stop and do something else for awhile. I’d go back to the book with an open mind and just pick back up where I left off and lose myself in the story. I let the characters write themselves.
PYN: Is there any book on the market that is comparable to your story?
CC: I’ve been told by every reader so far that my story is completely unique, at least compared to all the books that they have read. I’ve personally never read anything of it’s like.
PYN: Tell us a little about Lily.
CC: Lily is average in the most simplistic sense. She’s a good looking girl with a decent job and a quiet life. She lives her life the way she wants. The only experiences she truly wishes to have in her life are the ones that she can read about. She loves fantasy novels that let her escape into a life into which she doesn’t have to chance getting hurt herself. Her entire life flips upside down when she finds a chance for love and discovers that she herself is living something straight out of a fantasy novel. I’d go into more detail but I don’t want to give away too much about her. Keep in mind that she grows so much and learns about life and love throughout the entire book.
PYN: How do you visualize your characters as you write them?
CC: So when it comes to Jason, I see James Caviezel… I spent quite some time thinking on this and James embodies Jason to a T. While coming up with the design for the 2nd cover, I had to find ‘Jason’, and I did. Caviezel has the look and the personality to pull it off. He has the ruggedly handsome looks and a disarming smile that can melt hearts. He is the ideal ‘Jason’.
Alexis Bledel strikes me as the perfect Lily. She has an innocence about her and a striking beauty that is also subtle and very natural. With her porcelain skin and sweet demeanor, I think she is the ideal Lily.
PYN: Will there be a sequel to The Blood Moon of Winter?
CC: I’m currently working on the sequel, Beyond the Known Horizon, right now along with a short story that will be coming out in the next couple of months (still untitled). Book Two picks up right where Book One left off. In the sequel, the reader gets to follow both Lily AND Jason, not just Lily anymore.
PYN: Where can readers purchase your book?
CC: It’s available on http://www.amazon.com/dp/0615439403 in print and Kindle format. It’s also on http://search.barnesandnoble.com/The-Blood-Moon-of-Winter/Courtney-Conant/e/2940012624642 for the Nook. The eBook is at https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/38966 in all formats, including the previously listed.
PYN: Where can readers connect with you on the web?
CC: My official website is http://www.courtneyconant.com/ but I also have a blog that I update regularly with what I’m reading and what I’m doing in my daily life. It’s at http://courtneyconantreading.blogspot.com/ and of course I can be found on Twitter (@Courtney_Conant) and I have a page on Facebook. www.facebook.com/courtneyconant is the link to find me there.
PYN: Can you share a small excerpt of The Blood Moon of Winter?
The light of the fire flickered. She opened her hand and blew a powder toward the flames. The fire was the only source of light in the underground cave where she lived. Her lips moved ever so slowly, muttering the necessary words, the words that would bring about the change. The ritual she was performing was the only way to bring about the revival of the world.
As she chanted, the flames danced and began to grow. She rose from where she had been seated to stand at her full height, all three feet. She might have been lacking in height, yet she dominated every room she entered. She was the Oracle that all looked to in times of need and desperation. Now was the time for another to take the lead role, yet she still had one task ahead of her. It was her job to bring the Goddess back into the world again. The Goddess would fix all that was wrong, once she finally returned.
Her robe fell away from her tiny body to reveal her pale white flesh. Her dark green hair almost brushed the floor as she walked about the room. After the initial circuit was complete, she began to dance. Each motion, executed so fluidly as if she were a part of the pyre growing in the center of the cave, representing a portion of the spell she had to cast.
As her movements increased in speed, the color of the blaze began to alter, developing into a multitude of different shades of green. As she continued to chant, the flames slowly transformed. Once separate flames from a single base, they started to blend and grow together into something more tangible.
Her voice grew in pitch as her arms rose toward the roof of her little home. The creature that was sprouting in the fire began to take shape. It coiled itself about the base of the hearth, watching her as she moved about the room. The flames were giving birth to something that did not belong in their world, but it was not there to stay. She would bring it into being and send it to where its presence was necessary.
She closed her eyes and continued to circle what was left of the blaze. Her chanting became guttural as she swirled about. A low hissing began to rise at the center of the room stemming from the creature maturing in the flames. Her words cut off as she collapsed to the ground before the fire pit. When she opened her eyes, another set were staring back at her.
The creature flicked its tongue at her and hissed again. The birthing was complete. The time had finally come to bring her home. The Goddess would soon be where she belonged. She would return home and save them all.
We'd like to thank Courtney, for taking time out to talk with us. Be sure to tune in to our Blog Talk Radio show this Wednesday at 3:30pm PST. That's right, we have a new time, new day, but we're still at the same place. Call in and ask Courtney a question if you'd like.
That's it for us. Thank you for stopping by our blog and reading our interview. If you would like a chance to win one of the 4 ebook copies of The Blood Moon of Winter, leave us a comment with you email address.