Welcome to our interview with SJ Wright, author of The Vampire's Warden. One lucky winner will receive an eBook copy of the book, so be sure to leave your email address with your comment to be entered into the contest.
SJW: I grew up in northern Indiana, the sixth of seven daughters. In the northern part of the state, the land is flat and boring as can be, but the southern section of the state is very beautiful. There are rolling hills covered with dense woods and a national park. I was married in June of 2002. Afterwards, my husband and I spent a few days in Brown County. I’ve always been a big fan of vampire fiction, so putting the two together seemed like an interesting idea.
PYN: Tell us about your protagonist, Sarah.
SJW: She grew up as an innkeeper’s daughter, learning the various duties of that position and believing that there were no secrets being kept from her. What she comes to find out after her father’s death is that she’s inherited a far more dangerous position than she could have imagined.
One particular characteristic that stands out about Sarah is her ability to stand up and face her challenges with a fiery temper. She can be rude at times and often doesn’t consider the effect her words might have on others.
PYN: How old is the vampire in The Vampire's Warden?
SJW: There are several vampires in the book. Michael is the main vampire in the story and was born as a human in the 1600’s.
PYN: Without revealing too much about the book, can you tell us why the vampire has a ‘warden’?
SJW: The vampire in question (Michael) was placed within the containment field on Sarah’s property because the vampire council determined it would be a logical course of action after he did something particularly offensive.
PYN: Have you always been interested in the paranormal romance genre?
SJW: Paranormal fiction has always been a favorite of mine. The paranormal romance genre itself is fairly new (to me). I tend to read more YA paranormal romance than the adult versions.
PYN: How long did it take you to write The Vampire's Warden?
SJW: I started it in October of last year. I took a month break from it over the holidays and started it back up in January. It went up for sale on February 15th, 2011. It was about three months.
PYN: Do you have a set schedule when it comes to writing?
SJW: No! I probably should, but I have a small child with special needs, so he comes first.
PYN: Tell us a random fact about yourself:
SJW: I bite my fingernails. Yes, I’m forty years old and bite my fingernails. It’s ridiculous, I know.
PYN: If you couldn’t be a writer, what would you be?
SJW: A graphic artist of some kind. I used to do a lot of digital scrapbooking. I hope I’ll have time to get back into that at some point.
PYN: Is The Vampire's Warden a stand-alone or will there be a sequel?
SJW: There will be a total of three books in the series.
PYN: Are you working on any new projects?
SJW: I just released the second book in the series called The Vampire’s Curse. The third book will be available in January 2012 and will be called The Vampire’s Redemption.
PYN: Where can readers purchase your book?
SJW: Both The Vampire’s Warden and The Vampire’s Curse can be purchased on Amazon as either a paperback or Kindle eBook. They can also be purchased on Barnes & Noble’s website as a Nookbook.
PYN: Where can readers connect with you on the web?
SJW: They can go to my website at http://www.sjwrightbooks.com/
PYN: Would you mind sharing an excerpt from your book?
SJW: I’d love to!
I felt like the world I had grown up in was suddenly falling down around me like some ancient relic, bursting into gray ash and tiny pebbles. I walked without thinking where I was going. My feet moved forward as my brain buzzed with questions and accusations against the woman who had abandoned me.
My grandfather had been mistaken, obviously. Vampires were a myth from the dark ages that Hollywood used to make money. I’d read some of the books, of course. I was not immune to the idea of it. However, that is all it was—an idea. They were just stories written to scare people who were into that kind of thing. Alternatively, they were cleverly written teen romances involving vampires as well as werewolves. I preferred that kind. Nevertheless, I knew better than to imagine any of it was real. I was too old to believe in fairy tales.
Looking around, I suddenly realized that I had walked farther than I had intended. Although most of the landscape surrounding me was blanketed in darkness, I could make out the sound of a stream gurgling and three huge white shapes in the field before me.
I was in the meadow. Panic pushed through me in waves and my heart began beating savagely inside my chest. No. Not here. I turned blindly to make my way back in the direction of the main house. That is when I heard the voice.
The voice echoed around me, unfamiliar and oddly seductive. The voice of a man. It was endlessly alluring, smooth and sent little hot shocks up my spine. However, I could feel the dangerous undertones, the hint of deception as my brain tried to process the way my body was reacting.
“Who’s there?” I called cautiously, glancing around. Fear congealed in my gut, rendering my legs and arms powerless. Whoever was calling me seemed to know me on a deeper level than I thought possible. It terrified me. There was a complete and deadening silence in the surrounding trees. A nothingness that brought the fear to a heart-stopping crescendo.
I waited and looked over the boulders in the dim moonlight. I was reminded of the last vision I had had when I had touched Alex. The woman in the meadow, waiting expectantly. However, there had been no fear in her such as I felt now. Only anticipation. What had she been waiting for? Who? Why hadn’t she been afraid?
It was then that I saw a figure step out from behind one of the boulders. His movements were as fluid and graceful as a jungle cat. He paused for a moment and then leaned back against one of the boulders, crossing his arms. I could not make out his features in the darkness, only the carefree stance and powerful build. Even without the validation of physically seeing his eyes, I felt them on me just as I felt the ground beneath my feet and the ragged breaths coming in and out of my chest.
Then he spoke.
“At last.” There was a breath of a sigh and I thought I saw his lips curve upward in an ironic smile, “My dearest Sarah.” Again, that same melodic voice captured my attention completely.
I found the power in my limbs suddenly and moved toward him, nearly desperate to see his face, “Who are you?”
“I’m sorry. I should have introduced myself.” He chuckled darkly, “I am Michael.”
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Thanks to SJ for stopping in and talking vampires with us. She will be our guest on this week's Blog Talk Radio, so be sure to listen in Wednesday at 3:30pm PST. If you'd like to call in and ask a question, the number is 619-639-4626.