Monday, July 16, 2012

Karen Hooper - YA Fantasy

Karen Hooper
YA Fantasy

     I hope all of you are enjoying the fantasy authors who have been my guests this month. There are so many great books out there. This week we're chatting with Karen at the Black Cow CafĂ© in Sedona, AZ, a great coffee shop with a view of the Arizona landscape and cacti!

Deanna:  Hi Karen! What a busy little cafe! I love the smell of brewing coffee!

Karen: Hi! Maryah and I just finished meeting for hot chocolate and talking about book 2 of her series. Deanna, you really should try the hot chocolate. It’s amazing.

Deanna:  Well I do love hot chocolate! Readers, let's pull over a few more tables so we can all chat with Karen and Maryah. Karen, tell us a little about yourself so our readers can get to know who you are and what makes you tick.

Karen:  I’m a self-proclaimed twisted little pixie. I believe that magic and true love really do exist, even in a world that can be ugly at times. I like to dance down rabbit holes and ride shooting stars while playing a never-ending game of “Imagine If…” Then I write about my impossible and fantastical musings and call myself an author. Honestly, I can’t imagine doing anything else. I love storytelling way too much.
     I was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, but I’ve also lived in Colorado. Eventually, I had to move to a place where I’d be surrounded by water, so I now live in Florida.
     When I’m not writing I can be found reading, people watching at Disney World, hanging with my amazing friends and family, listening to music, dancing, traveling, pondering the Universe, or enjoying breathtaking sunsets and a good glass of white wine.
      Readers, I hope you stick around to enter my contest at the end. I'm picking three winners on the 21st!

Deanna:  Tell us a bit about yourself  that our readers might not know.

Karen:  I’m scared to drive in the rain. I have no idea why. It’s a fear that developed about a year ago, and it’s ridiculous, but I become filled with anxiety and usually have to pull over until the rain stops. I love skydiving, yet I’m terrified of hydroplaning. Go figure.

Deanna:  Do you prefer wine, whiskey, scotch, or ice tea?

Karen:  I do like white wine, especially Riesling, but I recently discovered loose leaf tea and I’m loving it.  Plus, the green and white teas are so good for you!

Deanna:  Riesling is one my favorites, too. As authors, we’ve sometimes been accused of being several people. How many personalities live in your mind?

Karen:  Ha. Well, I’m a Gemini, which is the sign of the twins. They say Geminis have two personalities, but I think I’m more of a triplet or quadruplet.  Add two book series with LOTS of characters in each, and my mind is a very crowded place.

Deanna:  How many plots do you include in one of your books?

Karen:  However many show up. I’m not a plotter. I write by the seat of my pants and I don’t even write in order. Somehow, maybe by universal magic, the pieces all end up connecting nicely. And usually subplots show up that I never planned or anticipated.

Deanna:  What one thing would you pass on to new writers?

Karen:  I can’t pick just one. Can I pass on three? Write what you love. Always be a work in progress (meaning never stop trying to be better). And if you really love this, don’t give up.

Deanna:  Perseverance is important in this business. Do your books have a common theme or are they all different?

Karen:  They all focus on the power of love. And I adore my secondary characters and the support and strength they provide to the main characters because I believe those people are so important in real life. Friends and family mean the world to me, so that’s reflected in all of my books.

Deanna: That's a great tie-in! Tell us about your latest book and the type of reader it may appeal to.

Karen:  Grasping at Eternity is a magical love story about soul mates with superpowers. I think it would appeal to romantics, readers who enjoy stories about reincarnation (but with a new spin), and anyone who ever wished they were one of the X-men.

Deanna:  Tell us about Nathaniel, the hero of your latest book.

Karen:  Poor Nathan. He’s such an amazing guy, but he’s heartbroken worse than any of us “normal humans” could ever fathom. Imagine spending nineteen lifetimes with your soul mate and then they erase any and all knowledge of you. He deserves a medal for getting out of bed each day. I couldn’t do it.

Deanna:  Tell us about Maryah, the heroine of Grasping at Eternity.

Karen:  Oh, Maryah. She’s so frustrating, but also oblivious as to why she’s so frustrating, so it’s hard to stay mad at her. Plus, she has such a big heart. She has more strength and power than she can even begin to comprehend, and an incredible and emotional journey ahead of her.

Deanna:  Many young people today have more power and strength than they know they possess...they can follow their own path and go after what they want in life. If your characters from Tangled Tides met up with your characters from Grasping at Eternity, would they get along?

Karen:  They would adore each other. I’m sure they’d share and compare their magical powers, and swap their amazing stories of the adventures they’ve had. Treygan and Yara, and Nathan and Maryah, could go on double dates and inspire innocent bystanders with how sweet and romantic they are.

Deanna:  I must say how beautiful your covers are, wow! Love them! What are you working on right now?

Karen:  I’m currently writing book 2 of each series. However, most of Taking Back Forever, book 2 of The Kindrily series was written years ago, so now I’m trying to clean it up and make it better. My writing has come a long way in two years (Thank goodness!)
     Also, several reviewers have said they wished there was a prologue to GAE where they could have seen Nathan and Maryah’s love before she erased, so I’m working on a short story that will be my free gift to readers.
      Readers, I hope you click over to my website where you can grab and bookmark the other places to find me! You can keep up with the progress of my new books as I go. I love chatting with readers so feel free to drop me a note!

Deanna:  That's a great idea. Readers love when we can give them free books! I'm sure your readers will love that so they can learn more about Nathan and Maryah's life. Karen, thank you for hanging out with us all week!

CONTEST:   Karen will pick THREE winners who leave a comment with their email addy so she can easily contact you. Winner’s choice of Grasping at Eternity or Tangled Tides so please let her know what choice of e-book you'd like if YOU are picked as a winner. What do you enjoy most about reading fantasy fiction? Good luck everyone!

 Readers, if you love historical romance,
please be sure to scroll down and meet Erin Quinn!