Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Author Interview: Missy Jane

I would like to thank Missy Jane, author of They Call Me Death and Resignation for taking time out of her schedule to talk to me about writing and about her new series that has stemmed from They Call Me Death.

Ms. Missy Jane is the alter ego of a Texas mother of four who has been married to the same wonderful man for thirteen years. About five years ago Missy finished reading a book by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory, titled The Outstretched Shadow, and thought “Now, what if…” and a monster was created. Missy now spends most of her time lost in worlds of her own making alternately loving and hating such creatures as vampires, shape-shifters and gargoyles (to name a few). When not writing, she spends her time reading, taking photos of her four beautiful daughters and training her husband to believe she’s always right. 

SW: You say (on your website) you got into writing about five years ago, did you start writing paranormal right away or did it take some time?
MJ: I actually began by writing a straight fantasy novel that is more YA than adult themed. I'd read the Mercedes Lackey/James Mallory book and felt inspired by their characters and world. My fantasy novel isn't exactly the same, but it's definitely different from my paranormal romance. I didn't start on They Call Me Death until a year or so later.

SW: When did weres and shifters come into play?
MJ: When I first began reading romance I started with paranormal. A good friend of mine handed me Angel Knight and Laurel K Hamilton and I was hooked! Anita Blake was a big inspiration for Alexia Williams, though I tried to make her nicer to men ;-)

SW: I love the whole idea of a future when the world is overrun by shifters. What led to the idea of America being at war with them?
MJ: It's kind of strange the way I become inspired to write. They Call Me Death was born when an image of a woman standing atop a concrete wall with a machine gun in her hands popped into my head. I mulled over it for a few days and the story slowly took shape. I honestly didn't know what would happen next until I was writing it.

SW: Would you fight the shifters, or side with them?
MJ: Lol! That's a great question and you're the first one to ever ask me. It probably depends on the day. Right now I'm in a shifter frame of mind because I'm fleshing out Emily's story. I'm in her head and her motivation for doing things makes sense to me. However, if I choose to write from a human's POV next I might change my mind. There really is no bad guy in my world. Just different POVs and motivations.

SW: If you could be a shifter what would you be?
MJ: Hmm, I'm really partial to cats. I haven't written them yet because lots of authors have done werecats and werewolves. I decided to start with birds since I'd never read them before. In researching the Golden Eagles I learned a lot and think they're just amazing. So from one extreme to another, I might like to be a bird. But I'm afraid of heights ;-)

SW: How many books do you think there might be in the Shape Shifters series?
MJ: After Emily I already have Kotori's and Sandulf's stories on the back burner. I've gotten at least three chapters done on each with a definite focus of where they're headed. My ideal goal would be to do three humans and three shifters. Since I don't want to give any spoilers I won't tell you where I'm at on that right now.

SW: How long did it take you to write They Call Me Death?
MJ: Total probably about a year and a half. I'd nearly completed it when I took it with me to the Romantic Times writer's convention and was lucky enough to have it critiqued by Judi McCoy. She was very helpful and her encouraging words prompted me to finish it within two months and submit it to Samhain.  

SW: Where did the names of your characters come from? Do they have any special meaning?
MJ: I'm very picky with names, especially for the shifters. I like for my characters' names to have meaning and tell a little something about them, so I use the 20,000 names website to research the meaning of each name. For the shifters I usually go to the animals page and look for the appropriate species. I tried to make sure they also made sense for their heritage and era they were born into.

SW: Any other comments?
MJ: I just hope you and your readers enjoy my book and I can't thank all of you enough for reading! I know with rising prices how hard it can be on deciding which ones to buy when the author is new. I sincerely appreciate you taking a chance on me. Be sure to visit my website where I have links to free short stories both contemporary and in my world of shifters.Also, since I decided Sandulf is much more interesting than I am, I created a blog just for him. Go to http://www.theodereikspack.blogspot.com to read his thoughts and rules. Feel free to post questions and he will answer ;-)
Thanks again!
-Missy Jane

Thank you once again Missy Jane for taking the time to reply to me.

You can also find her at: http://www.msmissyjane.com/home 

I will be posting my review of They Call Me Death tonight. Check back to see the giveaway I will be holding later in the week of Missy Janes two fantastic books AND some signed swag!


Lori said...

It was a good review.:) Fun questions and informative answers. I have They Call Me Death on my Wishlist. So, I will definately be back for the giveaway. :)

Alex Bennett from Electrifying Reviews said...

Congrats on your first interview!

Sarah said...

Great interview :o) I don't think I've actually read anything with bird shifters in it so that really appeals to me. I'm going to have to check this series out!

Unknown said...

Great interview.
I like the covers!
Both the books sound great.
I cant wait to read them!

Author Missy Jane said...

Thank you everyone for reading my interview! I had a blast answering the unique questions :-)

Unknown said...

Great interview. These books are definitely going on my wish list.

Sharli said...

I love hearing how writters build up a book in their head. It's always interesting to know what inspires them :)
Very cool interview! Book added to my TBR!

Unknown said...

Great interview! Definitely adding this books to my wishlist :)

Rae Reads said...

Picking the names sounds like it was a lot of work. lol Great interview.

Beleth said...

Nice interview :D
I like that the shifters are something else than wolves and cats. Im sure this could be a very good read!

Author Missy Jane said...

Lol, I definitely had a time of picking out names. Sometimes it was easy other times...not so much. But writing They Call Me Death was a blast. Thanks everyone for the comments!

Van Pham said...

Great interivew! I've been dying to read TCMD, looking forward to read it!

Persephone said...

I am definitely putting this author's books on my TBR list. Great interview, btw! And I think bird shifters are fun too!

buddyt said...

I think you did great on your first published interview.

Only comment would be that maybe it should be a bit longer in future.


Carol T

Cherry said...

I love the Obsidian trilogy and eagerly awaiting the prequel series, Enduring Flame. But haven't started reading nor buying the Enduring Flame yet because my greatest gripe with Obsidian trilogy was that I had to wait one year and a half intervals!!! from reading the first book to the second book to the final book! Hell, I'm not going through that again!! So I'm waiting until the last book is released before starting to read it.

Is They Call Me Death going to be a series? Do I need to wait for the final book to get released too before starting to read it?

mischivusfairy-warrior [at] yahoo [dot] com

MarionG said...

It was great. I will be checking out the blog and website. The book sounds like one I'd enjoy. Cheers.

bookaholic said...

Congrats on your first interview :)
She searched 20000 names and even more to name her characters? God! Writing really is such a strenuous process!!
I would probably choose to be a bird too if I was a shifter! So I totally side with her :)


EVA SB said...

Great interview.
I like the idea of a shifter rich storyline and these books are added to my tbr list.
I is interesting h#to have the shifters change in birds rather than the usual mammals.

Unknown said...

Missy Jane is another author I discovered thanks to book blogs!

I haven't read anything by Missy Jane yet, but definitely will! It is interesting to see bird shifters, I agree, I can't recall I ever read a story about them! It is always wolves, cats, horses, etc.

Yay! Can't tell you how good it is to find a kindred spirit! I love researching names, their origins and meanings, as I feel it is just as important what a name means as how it sounds! Can't wait to see which names you chose for your characters :-)

And congratulations on being published and wishing you lots of success for the future, and many more books for us readers! ;-)

Unknown said...

ps: I forgot to add my e-mail, so here it is: stella.exlibris (at) gmail DOT com

susan said...

It's hard to believe this was your first interview..you done a great job and answered some good questions. You are a new to me author but now that I found you..I am hanging around. Thanks so much for sharing so much with all of us. susan Leech garysue@dejazzd.com


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