– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –
Today I’m on the ‘Blood Awakens (Book 1 in The Awakened Quartet)’ blogtour, organised by Fraser’s Fun House.
To promote this book I have a Q&As post, but b
About the Author :
Jessaca is a fantasy writer, with an inclination toward the paranormal, dystopian, dark, and horror sub genres.
Jessaca studied social work for both her undergrad and graduate degrees and incorporates themes from her education (i.e. systems of oppression, family dynamics, mental health) into her writing. She is a self-proclaimed nerd who loves cosplay, video games, and comics. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her partner and their human- and fur-babies. She is an amateur trapeze artist (though currently, she’s on hiatus after having a baby).
Genre: Post-Apocalyptic Fantasy
Word/page count: 392 pages
People called Sean a blood guide, though he never fully understood why. As far as he knew, he could hear heartbeats and heal people. It wasn’t until he walked in on his brother’s brutal murder that he learned of the darker nature of his power: blood speaks to him, and he to it. With a simple song, he can command it to do whatever he wants, and in that moment, he showed his brother’s murderers no mercy. Now Sean must fight to keep his inner demons in check and his path to redemption begins with the establishment of sanctuary for people like him, people with powers, the Awakened.
Graciela is one of many who did not Awaken, but she’s watched as her brother’s power as an empath—the ability to sense other’s emotions—has brought him to the brink of death. Together, they set across Central America in search of a cure, or at the very least, safety. What they find is a sanctuary called Hope, the same one Sean governs.
But they soon discover that even from within the compounds of the sanctuary, no one is safe. Not when there are people in the world with unimaginable power and insatiable bloodlust.
First of all thank you very much for taking the time to answer my questions, I really appreciate it. Here we go! 🙂
Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
I’d love to! I see my career as an author having two starting points. The first began when I was in the 1st grade. My teacher did something called “Writer’s Workshop,” where students got to write stories for a half an hour each day. It is where my love of writing began and I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for that class (thank you Andrew Storedahl!). The “real” beginning of my career started in January of 2015 though. I was six months into my graduate program studying social work, I had just returned from a volunteer trip to Guatemala, and I was finishing watching the television series, True Blood. I know, at first glance, none of those things seem to have anything to do with each other, but it was the perfect storm of events to motivate me to write my first novel, Blood Awakens.
Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
The series that got me back into reading was J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter, but as an adult, I also really enjoyed Terry Goodkind’s Sword of Truth series.
Is there a writer whose brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
My go-to for this question is to usually say Stephen King because he has clearly mastered the craft and is a wealth of knowledge. However, today I’m really feeling Sarah J. Maas because she has her finger on the market’s pulse and since 2012 she’s published at least two AMAZING series and I just really admire her and her work.
If you could, which fictional character (from your own book(s) or someone else’s) would you like to invite for tea and why?
I would love to meet Luna Lovegood! I just think she would be one of the nicest people and I need her positive energy in my life.
Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
Wait…rituals? Is that why it takes me so long to edit, because I don’t make a blood sacrifice before writing?
Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
Most of my ideas come from my dreams, which is my subconscious processing things that happen in my life, so I guess in a way they are based on my life and the people I know should be worried. *insert devil grinning emoji* No, but really, I have always had very vivid, kind of disturbing dreams and so I try to put them to good use! Blood Awakens and the entire The Awakened series is really the only book idea I’ve ever had that came to me while conscious, and it mostly just started as a list of cool supernatural abilities.
Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
Plot, plot, plot, and plot some more. Granted, About halfway through writing the first scene, the plot is revised to the point of being unrecognizable, but I still follow a plot.
Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
I’m no expert in the field or anything, but when aspiring authors ask me for advice, the first thing I tell them is to find their community of writers. I started attending a weekly writing group (where all we did was write) four years ago, then I followed a writing group on Facebook, and now I’m connecting with the #WritingCommunity on Twitter—all of these social connections help you learn and grow as a writer and, during the rough days, they keep you motivated to continue.
What are your future plans as an author?
I just finished writing the first book in a new YA Dark Fantasy series called Soul of the Crow (that’s the book title, not the series title). I’m hoping to pitch it to literary agents sometime this summer or fall!
Last, but not least: Can you give my readers one teaser from your book, which is featured here on my blog, please?
Something that I can share with you all that not everyone knows is that the title has a double meaning. So keep your ears open—erm, I mean your eyes peeled!
Isn’t that a great reason to pick up this book and to find out more?!
Thanks once again for this lovely interview, Jessaca Willis.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds
P.S. Are you an author (or publisher) who also wants a FREE interview like this? You can always contact me via e-mail!