Michelle Rowen

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30 Days of Demons – Day 10 – Larissa Ione

***Thank you to all the commenters and thank you to Larissa for visiting! The winner of the signed copy of a published Demonica book or a Demonica tote bag is comment #35 — LinzReads! Congrats! LinzReads has been contacted by email to claim her prize.***

To celebrate the countdown to my new release, the first book in the Living in Eden series, THE DEMON IN ME, I’m blogging every day (except for the last two days, that is. *shifty eyes*) — and some days I have fabulous guests and prizes!

Today it’s New York Times bestselling author Larissa Ione, author of the addictively sexy Demonica series. She’s generously giving away a signed copy of any published book in the Demonica series OR a Demonica tote bag to a randomly selected commenter (US addresses only please). Winner will be chosen Tuesday, April 13th at 9:00 p.m. EST. Good luck!

***

ecstacy-unveiled_200What inspired you to write about demons?

Well, I’ve always been interested in the paranormal, and the stories I read about succubi and incubi were always fascinating. So when I came up with the concept of Underworld General Hospital, I decided to staff it with demons. Plus, at the time, vampires were all the rage, but no one was writing about demons. (At least, I didn’t think they were. By the time I had Pleasure Unbound written, authors like Gena Showalter and Jacquelyn Frank were already ahead of the game! *g*)

Demons — shades of gray or always evil?

Shades of gray, just like people.

What’s your demonically awesome book about?

Well, the whole series is set in an underworld hospital run by vampires, demons, and were-creatures, but the main characters are mostly demons. Think, “Buffy The Vampire Slayer meets E.R.” :) My newest release, Ecstasy Unveiled, is about a half-human, half-incubus assassin who has been pitted against his newfound family in a life-or-death situation. The very person he’s supposed to kill is his brothers’ best friend, and making matters worse, there is someone protecting the target — a gorgeous angel whose very wings are on the line if she fails.

Let’s say Jim Cameron calls and he wants to make Ecstasy Unveiled into a movie. Who are your actor/actress choices?

Honestly, I can’t answer that. I just don’t have anyone in mind for these characters no matter how hard I think. Okay, wait…maybe Milla Jovovich for Idess, the heroine. But the hero, Lore? I’m open to suggestions! *g*

What’s your one line of advice for aspiring writers (demonic or otherwise)?

Never give up, never surrender! What, no? Right, that’s taken. Okay, how about, don’t be afraid to break the rules. Learn them, know them, and then toss them out the window!

***

Thanks Larissa!

To learn more about Larissa and her fabulous books, please visit www.larissaione.com!

30 Days of Demons returns tomorrow!

It’s been a bit of a demonic weekend. Did I say I was going to do a blog post EVERY day? Perhaps that was a bit ambitious.

Come back tomorrow, though, because Day #10 features a Q&A with New York Times bestselling author Larissa Ione and another fabulous contest!

Till tomorrow…….

30 Days of Demons – Day 7 – Jill Myles

***Thank you to all the commenters and thank you to Jill for visiting! The winner of the signed copy of Gentlemen Prefer Succubi is comment #27 – Maria Pilipina Dias! Congrats! Maria has been contacted by email to claim her prize.***

To celebrate the countdown to my new release, the first book in the Living in Eden series, THE DEMON IN ME, I’m blogging every day (well, I’m going to try!) — and some days I have fabulous guests and prizes!

Today it’s the demonically delicious Jill Myles, author of the Succubus Diaries series. She’s generously giving away a signed copy of GENTLEMEN PREFER SUCCUBI to a randomly selected commenter (US addresses only please). Winner will be chosen Saturday, April 10th at 10:00 p.m. EST. Good luck!

***

CoverResize11-635x1024Welcome Jill! What inspired you to write about demons?

I wanted to write about a normal girl that had been turned into something awful, and see how she’d cope with it. Turning her into a succubus seemed like a pretty heinous thing to do to a character, and the rest played itself out from there.

Demons — shades of gray or always evil?

I have two kinds of creatures in my books – the real demons, and the succubi (which are actually not all that demonic). I like to think of my succubi as truly neutral. They’re only out for themselves and bounce between both good and evil. My true demons are always evil, and always up to no good.

What’s your demonically awesome book about?

Gentlemen Prefer Succubi is about Jackie Brighton, who gets turned into a succubus, and now she has to have sex to survive. It’s kind of a bad gig for her, because she’s not great with men. Plus, she has to answer to two very sexy, very different masters. And did I mention that she has to work as a go-between for the good guys (angels) and bad guys (demons)? Yeah. She’s definitely got her plate full.

Let’s say that Jim Cameron calls and he’s interested in making Gentlemen Prefer Succubi into a movie. Who are your actor/actress choices?

Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) as Jackie, Charlie Hunnam (Sons of Anarchy) as Noah, and Chris Pine (Star Trek) as Zane. Yum.

What’s your one line of advice for aspiring writers (demonic or otherwise)?

Play up your strengths. If you’re not great at writing knock-down-drag-out fight scenes, write quieter stories. If you’re really good at writing dialogue, or mystery, write those. Not only will it feel more natural, but you’ll feel more confident about what you write. Confidence is a big must in this business.

***

Thanks Jill!!

To learn more about Jill and her fabulous books, please visit www.jillmyles.com!

30 Days of Demons – Day 6 – Clips

Tomorrow the hilarious and talented author Jill Myles joins us for a Q&A and she’s giving away a signed copy of Gentlemen Prefer Succubi. See you then!

A couple clips that feature demons. Today: TV’s Charmed and the 80′s movie My Demon Lover

I never watched Charmed that much because I found the witches themselves to be very annoying, but I loved the demons! (especially Cole).

I remember seeing “My Demon Lover” movie in the eighties. I wasn’t too impressed, but it’s the only all-out demonic comedy I can think of!

30 Days of Demons – Day 5 – Research

Don’t forget to comment on yesterday’s post for a chance to win a $10 gift card for Barnes & Noble courtesy of author Michele Bardsley! Contest closes tonight at 9:00 p.m. EST.

DemonInMe_coverSomething I didn’t do much of in my earlier books was research. I wanted my ideas to essentially come out of my imagination and down on the page without being led by anything in particular other than the magical ether that surrounds me. La la la.

I was a lot more naive five years ago than I am now.

I research now. Not a huuuugge amount, but more than I used to. This would be evident (I think) when you compare THE DEMON IN ME to ANGEL WITH ATTITUDE. I wrote AwA without knowing much of anything about demons except what I watched on, say, Buffy or Angel. I didn’t realize, when I wrote that book, that Nathaniel, the tempter demon, was basically an incubus — a demon meant to seduce women and take their souls to hell. Since I was ignorant to most of the mythology and was writing in a bubble, I just called him a tempter demon and gave him a different set of rules.1164919692_DemonAnime

And that’s okay! I think he worked quite well. That was a rather tame book and an actual “incubus” might have been a bit too…hot to handle. But that was then and this is now. ;)

I wouldn’t say that the world building I’ve done in Living in Eden is strictly based on any one set of mythological guidelines. The joy of being a writer of fantasy is that I can make stuff up, make it my own, and bend some rules, amend some rules — and really, when it’s fantasy, there are no rules that can’t be bent.

Just like my heroines, I like to trust my gut. If something feels right, then I know it’s right. If something feels wrong, then I try to avoid it at all costs.

Some of the things I researched for THE DEMON IN ME that may give some hints on subjects touched on and characters you can expect to meet in the book/series:

Tarot cards

Seven Deadly Sins

Amulets and talismans

Salem witch trials

Clairvoyance

Demonic possession

Exorcisms/Exorcists

Fairies

Demons and fallen angels — hierarchies

Witches

Good times! I actually love doing research and learning new things. Of course, with this subject matter sometimes the internet research will take me into…uh…uncomfortable territory. Demons are not always shiny, happy heroes! I don’t stay at those websites very long. *shudder*

30 Days of Demons continues tomorrow…

Till then, happy reading!

–Michelle xoxo

30 Demon Days – Day 4 – Michele Bardsley

***Thank you to all the commenters and thank you to Michele for visiting! The winner of the $10 gift card to Barnes & Noble courtesy of Michele Bardsley is comment #13 – Christa! Congrats! Christa has been contacted by email to claim her prize.***

To celebrate the countdown to my new release, the first book in the Living in Eden series, THE DEMON IN ME, I’m blogging every day — and some days I have fabulous guests and prizes!

Today it’s the fabulously talented Michele Bardsley, author of the Broken Heart Vampires series. She’s generously giving away a $10 gift card to Barnes & Noble to a randomly selected commenter who will be chosen tomorrow, Wednesday, April 7th at 9:00 p.m. EST.

***

chohw1Welcome, Michele! What inspired you to write about demons?

I never thought I’d ever write about demons, not after my traumatic childhood experience of watching “The Exorcist.” When I was very young, my parents went to the drive-in theater in our stylin’ ’70′s van (it was brown with porthole windows and shag carpet), opened the back doors and watched the movie. They probably thought I was too young to even understand what was going on, much less have the attention span required to watch it. Oh, I remember all right. Thanks for the trauma, parental units!

Eventually I stopped worrying about being possessed by Satan (although, those formative years in Catholic school certainly didn’t help much), and as I started writing paranormal tales, there was no way to avoid demons. They made good instant villains. Then later, I expanded my viewpoint … okay, I romanced it up. A lot. The hero in my latest novel, COME HELL OR HIGH WATER, is a half-demon. Connor Ballard didn’t choose his parents, or to have powers derived from the Pit. Other than that penchant for lying and lusting, he’s an all right guy. I mean he falls in love with a demon-hunting vampire, so you can see he has standards.

Demons — shades of gray or always evil?

Shades of pink, really. Maybe some flames. Anyway, I think demons can be moral creatures—although their methods may not exactly be on the up and up. It’s the end game that’s important.

What’s your demonically awesome book about?

When vampire and single mother Phoebe Allen allows lust to override her common sense, she finds herself mated to sexy half-demon Connor Ballard. Now she’s helping him search for an ancient talisman, fighting off his evil stepmother and her demon minions, and protecting Broken Heart from an underworld take-over.

Let’s say Jim Cameron calls and he wants to make COME HELL OR HIGH WATER into a movie. Who are your actor/actress choices?

I think Megan Fox would make an awesome vampire demon hunter. So, yeah, definitely her for Phoebe. As for Connor, Jensen Ackles with a Scottish accent. *swoon*

What’s your one line of advice for aspiring writers (demonic or otherwise)?

Don’t fall in love with your words.

***

Thanks Michele!

If you want to learn more about Michele and her fabulous books, please visit her at www.michelebardsley.com.

30 Days of Demons – Day 3 – Inspiration

Don’t forget to enter my giveaway for an ARC of THE DEMON IN ME. Contest closes tomorrow (Tuesday) at 9:00 p.m. EST.

And head’s up — tomorrow I have the fabulous Michele Bardsley here for a demonically delicious Q&A and she’ll be giving away a $10 gift card for Barnes & Noble.

***

Today I wanted to talk a bit about inspiration. And when I talk inspiration, of course I’m talking about hot actors! :) I usually cast the characters I’m writing in my head so I can see everything play out like a movie. Then, ideally, I just write down what I see. Sometimes this works smashingly, and sometimes it doesn’t. But I find having a set image in my mind of who my heroes are doesn’t hurt!

I’ve written two demon heroes thus far. The first, Nathaniel, in my 2006 release ANGEL WITH ATTITUDE was easy to cast. At the time I was a bit infatuated with Jude Law, so there you are. Jude was the Nathaniel in mah little brain. A little somethin’ like this:

Jude law

Sign me up, tempter demon!

Now for my Living in Eden series, Darrak’s the name of the demon in residence. And he is the first character EVER that has not had any one actor who’s been right for the part. I’ve waffled on this several times, casting and recasting in my imagination, but to no ultimate success. Darrak’s that mix of humorous cracks/sarcasm, hotness, angstiness (occasionally, but not nearly as much as my previous heroes), and demon-next-door — it just didn’t gel together for me with any one look. Some of the boys that have been in the running include:

colin_farrell041

4517599_gal

brendan-fraser2

cookdane

Each of these actors had a quality I thought was right for Darrak, but it didn’t quite mesh for me. Finally I settled on the perfect mix of hot physique and quirky/fun personality:

scan_gq07_023

This isn’t exactly how Darrak looks in my imagination, though. I was surprised by how much of a perfect match the cover model chosen is to how I pictured the character in my head. So it’s a nice blend of the two.

I’ve said before that Darrak is my favorite hero to date to write. I think it’s that fun mix of humor and supernatural alpha hero. In any case, he’s been tons of fun to write in both THE DEMON IN ME and SOMETHING WICKED. I hope readers connect with him!

So, my question du jour if anyone would like to answer it — when you’re reading a book and if you have a favorite hero, do you picture an actor in the part? If you were casting a movie, do you have the perfect person for the role?

30 Days of Demons – Day 2 – Snippet + ARC!

DemonInMe_cover

***Thank you to everyone who entered. The randomly selected winner of the ARC of THE DEMON IN ME is comment #72 – Erin Copeland. Erin’s been contacted by email to claim her prize.***

Today I want to give away one of my last ARCs of THE DEMON IN ME to a commenter I’ll choose at random on Tuesday, April 6th at 9:00 pm EST.

Have I mentioned that Publisher’s Weekly calls this book “funny, suspenseful, and frequently hot”? Yes, indeedy! :)

Here’s a short excerpt as my heroine Eden readies herself for bed while dealing with the difficulties of having an inner demon.

***

Eden pulled off her shirt and jeans, kicking them over onto her fuzzy pink bathmat, and then reached around to unhook her bra. She let it fall to the floor.

“I’m feeling much better now,” Darrak said.

She stifled a scream and clamped her hands over her bare breasts. “Don’t sneak up on me like that!”

“Did I interrupt something?” There was a short pause. “Oh, I see. Don’t let me stop you from getting naked. Please, continue.”

Eden scanned her reflection with wide eyes. Could she see the demon inside of her? A shadow in her eyes? Did she look possessed?

Nope. There was nothing noticeable. Other than the deep voice in her head only she could hear.

“This should be interesting.” Darrak sounded amused. “As I said before, I’ve never shared living space with a woman before. I honestly never would have guessed black lace panties for you. But I do approve.”

She glared at her reflection, feeling equal parts anger and embarrassment from being caught half-naked by the demon. “I think we’re going to need to set some boundaries.”

“Then I suggest you don’t look at yourself in the mirror when you’re in a state of undress. It’s the only way I can see you—all of you, at the moment.”

She turned away from the mirror. “Fine.”

“Isn’t it a little early to have Christmas hand towels out? Or do you use those all year round?”

She looked at the floor instead. The last thing she needed was a demon critiquing her lousy decorating skills.

“Darrak—” she let out a shuddery breath “—I need my privacy.”

“That’s going to be difficult. For obvious reasons.”

30 DAYS OF DEMONS begins!

DemonInMe_coverTHE DEMON IN ME, the first book in my new Living in Eden series, is out exactly thirty days from today — May 4th. Hooray!

I plan to blog every day for each of these thirty days about the subject of the book and about DEMONS in general. There will be snippets, inside info about my writing process and this book in general, discussion of demonic entertainment (think Buffy and Supernatural!), and also I have some fantastic GUESTS AND PRIZES lined up — authors who also like this particular subject enough to include demons in their books.

I’m still gathering some guests, but right now I have the following fabulous ladies scheduled (check back to this post as I’ll be adding more guests as they’re confirmed):

April 6th – MICHELE BARDSLEY – Michele is giving away a $10 Gift Card for Barnes & Noble!

April 9th – JILL MYLES – Jill is giving away a signed copy of Gentlemen Prefer Succubi!

April 12th – LARISSA IONE – Larissa is giving away winner’s choice of any one signed book in her NYT Bestselling Demonica series or a Demonica totebag!

April 15th – CHARLENE TEGLIA – Charlene is giving away a signed copy of Wicked Hot and Claimed by the Wolf!

April 19th – JACKIE KESSLER – Jackie is giving away a signed copy of Hell’s Belles!

April 22nd – Q&A with urban fantasy author of The Mage in Black JAYE WELLS

April 26th – JACQUELYN FRANK – Jacquelyn is giving away a signed copy of Noah!

My 30 Days of Demons will culminate on May 4th when I’ll be throwing my usual virtual release party right here on the blog. You know, virtual drinks, chocolate fountain, munchies, PRIZES, the works! I spare no expense, people. None. I throw a fantastic virtual party and you’re all invited!

So that’s what’s up for the month. Hope you can join me to celebrate the darker side of heroes (and, yes, sometimes villains!) — the great thing about demons, in my honest opinion, is that they’re the ultimate bad boys (or girls), a step beyond the somewhat defanged vampires of late. I don’t see them as being true evil — this is a fictional take on a very interesting subject not a religious discussion.

I believe (fictional) demons can be conflicted about right and wrong. In my books it’s all about the choices characters make (and this included my Immortality Bites series). Anyone, no matter what they are or where they came from or what their past includes, can choose good if they want to. Writing about demons doesn’t mean you’re glorifying the bad, it means you’re talking about redemption and hope even in the darkest corners of the heart. Shut off from heaven (aka: the embodiment of “good”), can someone still choose to do the right thing? I think so. And when a demon falls in love….well, watch out. You’re never going to find a more protective hero than that. At least, that’s how it rolls in paranormal romance.

I also write about demons in my YA Demon Princess books. In that, the 16-year-old heroine is half-demon. She’s not evil, of course, but she needs to deal with powers that could get out of her control and the true nature of good vs. evil. If she’s half-demon is she auts4_lorne3omatically evil? Do other people’s perceptions of who you are shape the person you become?

Ah, my themes. Gotta love ‘em. They keep showing up time and time again!

I wanna know, to kick things off with a question. What is your favorite TV show, movie, book that features a demon character? I’ll throw one out here — I loved Angel because among many other demonic characters, it featured Lorne. He wasn’t that much of a romantic hero, but he was funny, charming, a kickass singer who owned a nightclub, and not the least bit evil unless he was pushed to the breaking point. So….what’s yours?