Saturday, 2 November 2013

Interview with Andrea R. Cooper, author of The Garnet Dagger

At the Other End:
Everyone knows what happens when a vampire bites a human…but what if the victim is Elvin?
Forbidden to cross the Elvin barrier into human lands, Brock cannot sate his curiosity. Cursed by a vampyre bite that forces him to feed on the life-essence of others, he is unable to touch another without taking their life. Chained by prophesy, he must find a witch, pierce her heart, and draw her blood for his cure. 
Celeste must escape the monks who have held her prisoner for years. Her magic has been kept dormant by her captors. An ancient powerful Warloc craves her powers. If he succeeds in devouring her magic, she and his world will die.
When Brock falls in love with Celeste before realizing her demise is his cure, will love triumph over his desire to be healed? Will he risk everything to save her from a Warloc, an oath breaker, who also wants her dead?

Shhh....... Don't Tell:

I’ve known death. For over half a millennia, I escorted many to death at the end of my sword. In the eyes of the dying, I watched it shroud them. Foolishly, I thought many more eras would pass before death came for me. It came so swiftly that I could not run; I could not escape. At a village, dressed in human clothes, I took in everything. By observing for eons, I understood and spoke their language. The world of mankind fascinated me. Their hobbled homes burrowed into the ground.
Rocks crunched on top one another with thatched roofs woven from straw. Never had I seen a home or inn that was higher than three levels, as if they were afraid of the sky. I delayed my return to my people as I watched human jugglers bounce torches and knifes. It was autumn equinox and the festivities would continue well into the night. Children laughed as they chased each other. A trail of leaves from their costumes twirled after them. It was dark when I reached the forest. Since I was already late, I hiked uphill to a shortcut rather than take the long path back home. I didn’t need to alert any of my kind near the barrier at this hour. Liana would wonder why I was late.
Tonight was the two month anniversary of our hand twining ceremony. One more month as was custom, and then we’d be wed. A gasp rustled through the trees. The roots shot a warning through to me with stifled caution. Adjusting my pack, I continued on instead of changing back into my Elvin clothes. After I passed the border which kept humans from entering our land, then I’d change. In the distance, I heard a groan. Curious, I spun in the direction of the sound. The autumn wind breezed through my worn human clothes, chilling me. But someone needed help. I turned in the direction of the sounds. Whatever made the noise should be a few yards ahead.
I hiked slower than my normal speed, so as not to startle whatever human called out. My leather boots crunched upon dried, diseased leaves and bark. Horrified, I glanced up. Branches twisted around each other to suffocating. Lifeless limbs cracked in the wind. Flesh of the trees sloughed off in layers, exposing its bones. Gashes hollowed out chunks of warmth. Fragments of leaves clung to finger tips, marking sepulchers of the dying trees. Trees mourned with wails like splitting wood, and I brought my hands over my ears. I must flee before I became infected, they told me. Flee before the stain of this defilement creeps into you, they warned. Trees spoke to my kind, always had. Yet these trees were in such agony of death that I could not breathe. Felt as though my lungs had folded in on themselves, like a moth unable to break loose from its cocoon.
Nothing I could do for them, and if I lingered too long, whatever disease gnawed upon them may choke me. Where would I go if I carried something so foul as to devour trees from the inside out? I’d never return to Tamlon if I brought this infection with me. I drew away, but a movement at the base of a decaying tree to my right caught me. My night vision picked up the sight of a human. His sallow face seemed to glow in the moonlight. Poking out from rags lay his arms and legs, which resembled skin stretched over sticks. So cadaverous was his face, I’d have thought him dead if he hadn’t moved.

“Please,” he said and his voice sounded like cicada’s vibrations, “help me.”

“What ails you in this troubled place?” I wondered if my voice, foreign to my ears in speaking the human’s language, revealed my nature.

“I am lost.” His dark eyes crinkled around the corners. “Without strength to rise. If you would but assist me up, I’ll be on my way.”

I’d never touched a human on purpose before. Was it that that gave me pause, or dread that stilled my heart? My feet itched to flee. As soon as I helped him, then I’d leave. I gritted my teeth and reached a hand down.
His gnarled fingers snapped on my arm, making me wince. Jerking me forward, his face contorted. Surprised by his strength, I fell beside him. Blackness curled around me. Teeth, fangs, broke through the skin on my neck. Then I knew him for what he was, a vampyre.

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Author Bio:
Growing up in Houston, Texas, Andrea has always created characters and stories. But it wasn't until she was in her late twenties that she started writing novels.
What happened that ignited the writing flame in her fingers? Divorced, and disillusioned by love songs and stories. They exaggerate. She thought. Love and Romance are not like that in the real world. Then she met her husband and realized, yes love and romance are exactly like the songs and stories say. She is now a happy wife, and a mom to three kids (two boys and a girl).
Andrea writes paranormal and historical romance. When not writing or reading, one may find Andrea dancing in Zumba. 
She believes in the power of change and counting each moment as a blessing. But most importantly, she believes in love.
Handy Hinty Links:
Website                                 Facebook                             Twitter

Take A Seat. Get Strapped In. Let's Go For A Ride:

1. Where have we seen you before? (previous projects/works)
Since I’m a debut author, none of my previous works are available to the public yet. Although, if you snag my usb file, you will find eight finished novels, two of which have been published, and five other novels in various stages.

2. What goes through your mind after your novel has been on sale for the first week?
Amazed and awed. I wanted to be an author for years. I was so ecstatic to see my novel in print and with sales (though they were mostly copies my family and I bought at first).

3. What inspired you to write this novel?
The Garnet Dagger was inspired by the movie Underworld. I saw it at the theatre and loved it. Then I started thinking why stop (spoiler alert  - turn back now if you’ve never seen the movie) at a werewolf/vampire hybrid? What would happen if a vampire bit an Elvin? A creature of light and magic?

4. What do you think about when getting/seeing negative reviews?
Negative reviews give a mixture of emotions. Sad: because sometimes they didn’t enjoy the novel as I intended, and Eager: because I received a review and maybe it’s something that will help me be a better writer. Then I grab a big piece of chocolate and read all my favourite authors’ bad reviews and try not to mope about my negative reviews while remembering that it’s all perception like art.

5. How long was the writing/planning process?
I thought about The Garnet Dagger for a few months, then wrote it in about six. It is the first book of a trilogy. I wrote the second book, Son of Dragons in less than three months (fastest book I’ve written so far) and that was while working full-time and chauffeuring my eight year old to school, karate class, etc.

6. What was your reaction to the cover art when you saw it for the first time? Did you have any ideas from the days of writing/inspiration?
I loved it. I’ve never had a book cover before, so I thought my publisher, Crimson Romance, did a wonderful job especially since we couldn’t get Eduardo Verastegui. If you’ve never heard of him, he’s worth checking out. I’ve got his pictures and other actors for my dream cast on pin-interest:

7. Any plans for future writing projects? Any being worked on now?
I’m working on revisions to Son of Dragons, book two in The Garnet Dagger trilogy. I’m also writing a YA shifter book and adding a paranormal element to a historical romance novel I wrote years ago.

8. Top 5 books

  • Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind
  • The Hallows series by Kim Harrison
  • The Black Jewels series by Anne Bishop
  • The Indigo Court series by Yasmine Galenorn
  • House of Night series by P.C. & Kristin Cast
Sorry, I know there are all series rather than books, but I love all the books in each series – I can’t narrow it down to one

9. What book/s from other authors do you wish you had written?
Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling or Carrie by Stephen King. Seriously, even my husband has said I relate to Carrie being shy all through school (still am) and raised by strict conservative parents – she and I would have been best friends ;)

10. Why read your novel?
The Garnet Dagger merges paranormal elements with fantasy. It’s the first book I wrote that became a trilogy continuing with the two main characters from book one and adding others in books two and three. Even though it’s a romance, the driving force is the plot and characters – were the romance adds sweetness to a fantasy adventure.

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