Michelle Rowen

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Interview with Molly Harper…with FABULOUS PRIZES

Molly Harper and I have never met. We’ve never read each other’s books. We’re basically two authors who don’t have much in common except that we both belong to the League of Reluctant Adults and our brand new vampire releases have remarkably similar covers.

tdfTALL, DARK & FANGSOME is the fifth and final book in my Immortality Bites series. Sarah deals with blackmail from the leader of the vampire hunters, a curse that turns her into a deadly nightwalker (aka: an evil sun-fearing vamp), and a masked vampire vigilante. Sarah has to fight hard if she wants that happily ever after with master vampire Thierry. Will she get it? Stay tuned.

deadmenMolly’s new release, NICE GIRLS DON’T DATE DEAD MEN, is the second in the Jane Jameson series. It follows Jane as she helps her friend, Zeb, plan his Titanic-themed wedding to the werewolf Jolene. Zeb’s mom seems intent on breaking up the wedding so Zeb can marry Jane. Her grandmother seems to be dating a geriatric Bluebeard. And her sire/boyfriend, Gabriel, is being deceptive and taking calls from a mysterious woman named Jeanine. With all these complications, Zeb’s nuptials seem as doomed as the gigantic ship.

So we sat down this week to chat about writing, characters, and Hugh Jackman. Enjoy!

MOLLY: You know, the last time I was in a chat room was in college.

MICHELLE: When I was in college, we didn’t have chat rooms. In ancient times the chat rooms were actually rooms. In which we chatted.

MOLLY: Ahh, the innocent preChris Hansen days…

MICHELLE: I hesitate to admit I have no idea who Chris Hansen is.

MOLLY: Chris Hansen is the guy who’s always busting sex predators on Dateline. … Well, there’s no graceful segway after that. Why don’t you tell me a little something about yourself. How did you get started in your vampire writing career?

MICHELLE: Sure. I always wanted to be a writer. But it took me a long time before I realized that in order to be a writer I needed to actually, uh, write. I played with a bunch of beginnings to books, but never had a real plan. It wasn’t until I was in mourning for the cancellation of Buffy, my fave show of all time, that I felt the need to express this on paper. Which is why I originally picked vampires. You?

MOLLY: I was a newspaper reporter. My schedule was crazy and I needed a normal job so I could take care of our little girl. I took a job as a church secretary. I had nights off for the first time ever and all this energy to write! It wasn’t being sucked out of me during my normal three-news story workday. We were living in this horrible apartment while we built our house. Something broke down every night and I was desperate for an outlet. I’ve always love vampire stories. I wanted to create the most embarrassing way to be turned into a vampire ever. Something a vampire would be embarrassed to tell another vampire. So my character is mistaken for a deer, shot, and left for dead. A handsome fanged fellow happens by and turns her.

MICHELLE: Was she shot by Dick Cheney??

MOLLY: Ha! No, but she meets a vampire named Dick Cheney. Somehow, I thought he would seem all the more evil. But he’s my favorite character. He gets all the good lines.

MICHELLE: My fledgling was turned into a vamp by her blind date from hell. That line seems to best sum up the series quickly, even though it’s only a small part of Sarah’s story.

MOLLY: Aw. That’s so much worse than waking up with herpes.

MICHELLE: I would imagine it is.

MOLLY: So what is your writing schedule like? (Tell me of life writing full-time? Is it beautiful there?)

MICHELLE: It is lovely and temperate here. However, there’s a lot more time for procrastination and internet surfing. When I’m in the midst of writing a first draft, I like to do 15 pages most days. I’m a binge writer. I finish my first draft in six weeks, take two weeks to recoup, then do the second draft in a month. Three months per book.

MOLLY: Whoa. No wonder you write 4 a year! I tip my hat to you, madam. I thought I was doing well writing 1,000 words a day.

MICHELLE: Every day?? I couldn’t write every day. That kind of consistency is just not in me. I’m way too flaky for that.

MOLLY: That’s where newspaper background has come in handy. I wrote every day, whether I was inspired or not. You can’t wait for the muse to strike when an editor is yelling at you.

MICHELLE: But 1000 words a day is a book every three months. Just like me.

MOLLY: Not the way I rewrite. It’s a long painful process. I think DEAD MEN is the most rewrites I’ve ever done on a manuscript. The changes were drastic. And the ending changed at least four or five times.

MICHELLE: My plots are fairly solid after first draft. I’m having a bit more trouble getting deep POV lately since I’ve been writing more third person POVs. I’m most natural in first.

MOLLY: So, how much of “you” is in your character?

MICHELLE: Good question. Originally I would have said a lot. But as the series progressed, Sarah became her own person. We share the same sense of humor, same speech patterns, mostly. In fact, a lot of people I know who read the series say she sounds just like me. Only Sarah’s way hotter and she has gorgeous men after her a bit more than I do. Just a bit.

So, now in your writing, do you find your heroine’s starting to make the rules? Sarah started fighting me on lots of things, especially when it came to her choice in the love triangle I set up for her. She was very stubborn.

MOLLY: Not really, I always had a trajectory in mind for where Jane was headed. My problem is always my secondary characters. I have these wacky fun side characters, and while they’re compelling, they ultimately distract for the story. So they are ruthlessly deleted. Which is why I am adding a character graveyard to my web site to honor all the characters deleted from my original drafts. There’s always at least one that gets the axe.

MICHELLE: Funny. My secondary characters are fairly well behaved, but Sarah’s been a regular PITA for me. Then again, if Sarah had chosen the guy I’d originally picked for her, it would likely have been only one book, not five. So I guess I can’t complain too much. Do you picture any actors in the roles of your characters?

MOLLY: I always picture a “cast” before I start writing. To me, Jane is Jenna Fischer from the Office. Who is Sarah in your head?

MICHELLE: Sandra Bullock. No question. Who’s your hero?

MOLLY: Gabriel is based on Gerard Butler in Dracula 2000, at least appearance-wise. I have no shame.

MICHELLE: Mine’s Hugh Jackman. Angsty, non-jazzy Hugh Jackman.

MOLLY: Nothing as off-putting as a supernatural creature with jazz hands.

MICHELLE: Word.

MOLLY: It’s funny, though, because I used Hugh Jackman as a template for the hero in my non-paranormal romance coming out in summer 2010

MICHELLE: Oooh. New project. Do tell.

MOLLY: The untitled book- I absolutely stink at coming up with titles, it’s a curse- is about a woman who finds out her husband is cheating, so she announces their impending divorce in a DETAILED mass email to family, friends and clients. She’s exiled to a little lakeside cabin, where she meets a crime writer with an unfortunate buttock-related nickname. And he happens to look just like Wolverine, sans the muttonchops, which stirs her closet comic-book movie geek soul.

MICHELLE: Claws?

MOLLY: No claws… hmmm

MICHELLE: I’ve got you thinking about the fabulous claw potential.

MOLLY: Yes, yes, I am.

MICHELLE: Will there be more Nice Girl books?

MOLLY: Right now, I’m contracted for three. Who knows what the future will bring? I think I’ll always be wiling to come back to Jane. So how about you? Any non-vampire related projects forthcoming? (Werewolves? Humans? Mutants?)

MICHELLE: I have a bunch of stuff coming out that’s non-vamp related. A YA series about demons, a paranormal series about demons, a Harlequin Blaze about paranormal investigators. Uh… and right now I’m starting to write an urban fantasy duology about, well, vampires. But it’s dark, not comedic.

MOLLY: Is it difficult for you to turn off the humor? I just can’t seem to do that.

MICHELLE: You know… the humor thing is strange for me. I don’t try to write funny. In fact, I sent my most recent book to my agent thinking it might be a bit dark, and he emailed me commenting on how hilarious it was. I might be paraphrasing, of course. I like to think he said it was hilarious. It’s subject matter, mostly. Lighter, less deadly situations have room for humor. Deadly and dangerous stuff…less so. I always say that the situations my characters are in aren’t all that funny, but the characters themselves are funny. If that makes any sense.

MOLLY: I apparently have no gauge for dark/deadly situations. I just finished a werewolf-based romance set in Alaska. I was all excited when my agent read it, because I thought it was a new, darker territory for me. Not so much. I must have watched too much Brady Bunch growing up.

I feel myself pulling away from going too dark, though. I don’t want to scare people in my Sunday School class. I already feel weird enough that people have “seen inside my head” when it comes to love scenes. Does is it ever weird you out that people you know read your books?

MICHELLE: At least not yet. My books, at least the ones in my vampire series are kind of tame. One of my biggest reader complaints is that I close the door to the bedroom, but to me it suited the series to keep things more on the sweeter side. But I’m not afraid of spicing things up in the right place. I’m curious to see what the reaction will be to my Blaze in November, both from readers and from my family (no bedroom doors are shut in this one!). I always figure, I read mega steamy stuff written by my friends and I’m never shocked and apalled. I’m all “more please!” LOL. So hopefully, sexing things up in my future books won’t freak anyone out too badly.

MOLLY: How do you feel about our books being “cover twins?” And then, to ad insult to injury, they’re both released on August 25. (That’s right people, August 25.)

MICHELLE: I’m fine with it. I loved your first cover. I may have even been a bit jealous. And the simultaneous release date is not an insult in any way. That’s a light vampiric bonanza for readers who want a DOUBLE DOSE OF FUN FUN FUN!

MOLLY: Speaking of which, shall we tell our dear readers what they could win if they leave a comment on our blogs…

MICHELLE: Absolutely. Leave a comment on either (or both) of our blogs. Molly and I are both giving away a signed copy of TALL, DARK & FANGSOME and NICE GIRLS DON’T DATE DEAD MEN to two randomly selected winners. That’s two sets of signed books to two winners, one chosen on each blog. Good luck and happy reading!

32 comments to “Interview with Molly Harper…with FABULOUS PRIZES”

  1. Vanessa
    Comment
    1
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:12 am · Link

    I love both of these series. Thank you for the wonderful ‘interviews’



  2. Angela T.
    Comment
    2
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:17 am · Link

    I love the Immortality Bites series! I’m going to miss Sarah and Thierry. I haven’t read the Jane Jameson series yet, but it sounds like something I’d like. I’m always willing to read more vampire books. :)



  3. debby
    Comment
    3
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:21 am · Link

    You guys rock. As i stated on Mollys blog, i love reading you guys. books and blogs. I cant wait to read your upcoming books Michelle. Especially about the investigators. bring on the steam:) oh, i have no problems recieving free books. i might donate them to my work at the library when im done. or i might donate them to my bookshelf at home. hmmm…



  4. Teresa W.
    Comment
    4
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:26 am · Link

    So glad you had her here today, looks like another series I need to check out!



  5. Caroline Allard
    Comment
    5
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:29 am · Link

    I feel like i’m repeating myself (maybe because i am) but that’s a really great interview. I haven’t read Michelle’s books but now i’m really curious, even more after that Hugh Jackman statement, so i added these book to my TBR list.

    I’ve always been attracted by the cover of Dark Tall and Fangsome on the League’s blog, i think it’s time i put my hands on these books!

    I’ve read the first 2 Nice Girls… and i can’t wait to read book #3



  6. Sabrina
    Comment
    6
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:35 am · Link

    Great Interview! Love both covers even if they are similar :)



  7. Allison
    Comment
    7
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:37 am · Link

    I understand Molly’s hesitation in thinking about her friends and Sunday School classmates reading her stuff. I have a friend who is diving into the writing world and said she’d absolutely have to write under a different name so she wouldn’t get dirty looks when she went to Mass.

    And oh my! I somehow totally missed Dracula 2000 when it came out… never heard of it. But I have a personal requirement to see anything Gerard Butler is in, so I must add it to my Netflix queue ASAP. Thanks!



  8. Deborah Blake
    Comment
    8
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:56 am · Link

    I read Molly’s first book and LOVED it! I love paranormal romance with humor (the dark sexy stuff is fine, but I am seriously maxed on it!). Of course, that’s what I write :-)

    I’ll definitely look for Michelle’s books :-)



  9. Wendy
    Comment
    9
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:58 am · Link

    Oooh, Gerald Butler. My mind kinda wondered on that part.

    But hey! Fun interview, I’m definitely reading both of you guy’s books. :)



  10. Marie
    Comment
    10
     · August 26th, 2009 at 11:36 am · Link

    Hi ladies,

    I haven’t read Molly yet but Michelle knows i’m a fan and love the genre. I have just sat down with my sister and ordered our Christmas presents (I know already!) and Mollys first book was amongst them. I’m afraid Tall Dark and Fangsome wasn’t Michelle, drum roll, because I can’t wait until Christmas!

    I love books and would love two more on my shelves. There are presently 476 unread ones on my shelves, perhaps I will crack 500 by Christmas.

    By the way incase you were wondering, I do read them (on average 1 a week) but I buy more than I can read!

    Keep writing lovely ladies,

    Marie x



  11. Elie N
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    11
     · August 26th, 2009 at 11:42 am · Link

    I am a huge Michelle Rowen fan and Molly is on the top of my wish list (I was waiting for the second book to come out before I started). Michelle I love Sandra Bullock for Sarah. Great interviews!



  12. Shanna
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    12
     · August 26th, 2009 at 12:30 pm · Link

    Michelle and Molly – thanks so much for doing this! It’s always great to be introduced to new (to me) authors!



  13. Natasha A.
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    13
     · August 26th, 2009 at 1:09 pm · Link

    I really am going to have to get started on these series. They sound like a fun fun read! Great chat!



  14. Terri W.
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    14
     · August 26th, 2009 at 1:14 pm · Link

    Congrats on both of your new releases!

    I’m a huge Michelle fan but haven’t had a chance to read Molly’s series. I would love too though and always on the lookout everytime I go to the library.



  15. Amanda
    Comment
    15
     · August 26th, 2009 at 1:14 pm · Link

    Thanks for the wonderful books. I love both of your series!



  16. Renee
    Comment
    16
     · August 26th, 2009 at 1:40 pm · Link

    Y’all already know I want to read Tall, Dark, and Fangsome…now I’m VERY interested in Nice Girls Don’t Date Dead Men too! You ladies are just too funny! A vampire named Dick Cheney, LMAO!!! And who doesn’t heart Hugh Jackman??!! Personally I started crushing on him when Kate and Leopold came out…I’m a sucker for Hugh in the “Duke” costume!!! But he’s super hott in X-Men too!



  17. Colleen G
    Comment
    17
     · August 26th, 2009 at 2:18 pm · Link

    I loved this interview – you guys came up with some pretty cool questions to ask one another. Gives a good insight to a writer’s mind!!

    I have read the whole series so far about Jane – I will be definitely getting Tall Dark and Fangsome – I’ve been bittingnails waiting for it to come out.And I am looking forward to your YA and adult demon books.

    Of course I have read the first book for Molly. It’s in my bookcase getting lonely waiting for the next book to sit next to it. I am also now looking forward to reading the untitled book!! Your summary has peaked my curiosity!!

    Great interview with each other and thanks for the great books that I can get lost in!



  18. Bea
    Comment
    18
     · August 26th, 2009 at 3:02 pm · Link

    Great interview. Can’t wait to get these!!



  19. Laura Mac
    Comment
    19
     · August 26th, 2009 at 3:03 pm · Link

    Haha Funny Interview :)
    I Like Both Book Series Equally
    Hard To Pick A Favorite
    Thanks
    xoxo



  20. Amanda S
    Comment
    20
     · August 26th, 2009 at 4:25 pm · Link

    Molly and Michelle,
    To date I have read both of your complete series. I love both of your writing styles. I never realized the covers were similar. I guess it just goes to show great minds think alike.



  21. Rafaela
    Comment
    21
     · August 26th, 2009 at 5:49 pm · Link

    I really have fun with Sarah and im really curious to know how she and Tierry end up!!!
    I havent read any of Molly books yet but it sounds intresting though!
    Loved the chat :D

    :**



  22. renee
    Comment
    22
     · August 26th, 2009 at 5:59 pm · Link

    I would just like to say i love both serris michelle i’m very sad that this is your last book in this serris.



  23. Jennifer Lauren
    Comment
    23
     · August 26th, 2009 at 6:12 pm · Link

    I love both of these writers. The books are so addictive and both Molly and Michelle are hilarious. The interview had me laughing. Keep up the great work, both of you.



  24. Kelsey
    Comment
    24
     · August 26th, 2009 at 7:18 pm · Link

    Great books & great interview. I love the title of your new book- it’s great! (:



  25. Barbara Elness
    Comment
    25
     · August 26th, 2009 at 7:34 pm · Link

    I love the Immortality Bites series, but Molly’s series is new for me. I’m looking forward to checking out her books, it sounds like I’ll enjoy them.



  26. Jen Cooke
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    26
     · August 26th, 2009 at 7:46 pm · Link

    Even though I wanted Sarah to end up with Quinn at the beginning, I’m now a total Thierry fan. ;)Can’t wait to get my hands on both of these new books!



  27. amy
    Comment
    27
     · August 26th, 2009 at 9:05 pm · Link

    i love your series Michelle! I’m sad this is the last book, but it looks like I’m going to havea new series to get into when I’m not studying for finials. Got to have those A’s! Love the chat, it gives a look in to your lives as real people, not just the author behind the story.



  28. Donna S
    Comment
    28
     · August 26th, 2009 at 10:17 pm · Link

    Great interview. Please include me. I cant wait to get the chance to read both books. Congrats on the releases!



  29. Karen W.
    Comment
    29
     · August 26th, 2009 at 11:42 pm · Link

    I enjoy both of your books and am excited about the new releases!

    Thanks for the contest. :)



  30. Lori T
    Comment
    30
     · August 26th, 2009 at 11:57 pm · Link

    Great interview! I am really looking forward to reading both of these books…I love books that have humor in them. I would love to be entered.



  31. Mariska
    Comment
    31
     · August 27th, 2009 at 12:59 am · Link

    That’s the coolest interview Girls! Both of your books are great. Coz paranormals, vampires are my favorite genres, Yum :)
    I’d love to win both books..



  32. Rebeca S
    Comment
    32
     · August 28th, 2009 at 11:49 pm · Link

    Great interview! Not only do you have similar bookcovers, but I think your styles are very similar. I love both series.



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