Monday, October 7, 2013

Interview with Author Nina Soden

My guest today is Nina Soden.  Hello, Nina!  Welcome to Writing in the Modern Age!  It’s such a pleasure to have you.

Can you tell us a little bit about your book? When did it come out? Where can we get it?

 
Beginnings is the second book in the BLOOD ANGEL SERIES. It was published on May 24th and is available online anywhere eBooks are sold. Links to the two main retailers are below: 

Amazon: http://amzn.com/B00D3G7RWM  
Booktango: http://bookstore.booktango.com/Products/SKU-000663439/Beginnings.aspx



If I had to describe BEGINNINGS in just a few words, I would say that it is a supernatural coming of age story, but it is so much more than that. We meet Alee, the lead character, in book 1: AWAKEN, and get to learn all about her history, where she came from, her struggles as a young child, and finally the truth about her bloodline. Then in BEGINNINGS, we watch as she deals with a recent tragedy and the realization that her life will never be the same. She is surrounded by a new world where the horror films she grew up watching have become her reality and she finds that the most unlikely characters have quickly become her lifeline. Newly armed with the knowledge of being half witch and half vampire Alee, the only surviving Dhampir in history, is forced to learn to control a lifetime of magic and vampire powers if she wants to survive.
   
Is there anything that prompted your latest book ? Something that inspired you? 

That is a hard question. I run the risk of sounding crazy if I say that my characters inspire me, but honestly they do. When I started writing the first book in the series, all I had was this idea of a girl. A Halfling – part vampire and part witch. Other than that, I had no idea what was going to happen. When I sit down at the computer to type, I think about the characters and they tell me where they want to go in the story. They were and continue to be my inspiration, and what drive me to continue writing. I wanted to learn what happens next in my books just as much as I want to learn what happens next in other books I’m reading.

So, when did you know you wanted to write?  Or has it always been a pastime of yours?


I’ve written poetry for years, as far back as I can remember. I also dabbled in screenplays. I wrote a full-length feature film called Pro Bono about a woman who killed her husband. It was a bad title and it never went anywhere except on my bookshelf, but it was a good learning experience. In 2005, I self-published a collection of my poems in a book called Private Words Unspoken, which is still available online. It was my first experience with self-publishing and it led me to start exploring some of my other story ideas. I started writing the first book in the Blood Angel Series in late 2010, and after a lot of rewrites I finally published it in July 2012. BEGINNINGS didn’t take as long to write. I think the idea was so fresh in my mind that I already knew what was supposed to happen. I wrote the first draft in about two months. It went through about seven rewrites before finally being published in May 2013.  

Do you have any favorite authors?


Yes… too many to actually list here. As a child, the first author that got me excited about reading was Dr. Seuss. The way he used words was so playful and fun that each page was more like a song than just words on a page. As a kid I enjoyed the Hardy Boys books, Nancy Drew, Encyclopedia Brown, and the Babysitters Club. However, reading didn’t actually become an obsession of mine until high school when I discovered Stephen King, Dean Koontz, John Grisham and Tom Clancy. Now I am pretty much addicted to the supernatural stories. I have fallen in love with the Anita Blake Series by Laurell K. Hamilton and can hardly put them down. I also really enjoy reading Rachel Caine, Lauren Kate, Stephanie Meyer, L. J. Smith, Suzanne Collins, and of course the inspiring indie-author Amanda Hocking.
 
Do you write in a specific place?  Time of day? 

I have a full-time job, two kids in elementary school, a husband, a house to take care of, and lots of hobbies so I write wherever and whenever I can find a few minutes of alone time. Since BEGINNINGS was published, I have been on somewhat of a hiatus. I haven’t had much time at all to write, but I’m working through book 3: REVENGE in my head, and have a feeling that when I start the typing, it’s going to go pretty quickly. 

Are there any words you'd like to impart to fellow writers?  Any advice? 


Don’t give up. If writing is something you really want to do, then do it. There are so many people that never finish, or worse – they never start, because they feel like they’ll never get a publisher or that people won’t buy their book. Sure, the dream of most writers is to get a great publisher, have a team of dedicated people marketing their book, do book signings around the world, and have their book on the best sellers list. But, if your dream isn’t the fame and fortune, but to just get your idea on paper and have your book published then there are options. Self-publishing is a great alternative to traditional publishing. Sure, you as the author have to do a lot of the legwork to market your book and get it seen, but believe me it’s a great feeling to finish your manuscript and hit [SEND] knowing that in just a few days your eBook is going to be available around the world for anyone who wants to read it. So, don’t give up. Know that it takes work, but also remember that anything is possible if you set your mind to it.


Here is the blurb for Beginnings.
Surrounded by a new world where the horror films she grew up watching have become reality Alee finds that the most unlikely characters have become her lifeline. If she thought hunting in the wild and drinking blood was bad, what will she think when she becomes the hunted? Newly armed with the knowledge of being half witch and half vampire Alee, the only surviving Dhampir in history, is forced to learn to control a lifetime of magic and vampire powers if she wants to survive. 
 
Part horror thriller - part tender romance, Beginnings will leave readers wanting more! 
Here is an excerpt from Beginnings.
 
The blaring of the alarm could have woken the dead, but Alee didn’t even flinch. It was the pounding on her bedroom door that finally jolted her back to life. “Aleerah, wake up. You have to leave in twenty minutes.” It was her mother. Not the mother she had known and loved all her life, no this was the mother that she never even knew existed until a few weeks ago… until the man she called daddy, the man she knew as her father died… suddenly and way too early in life. 


She rolled over, turned off the alarm, and struggled out of bed. What to wear? It was the first day of school, and Alee was once again the new girl. The new girl in her senior year at a school she had attended the previous year. Something about that just didn’t seem right. She had already reinvented herself once. Why should she have to do it again? Oh yeah, because her life had been turned upside down. She was now the daughter of a vampire, and a witch. Aside from that everyone she ever knew or loved in life thought she was dead. Yeah, that’s as good a reason as any. 


Kyle and Alee had gone over the plan a thousand times, with her parents Eric and Loraline, in the two weeks prior to school, but she still wasn’t sure if she was going to be able to pull it off. Pretending not to know anyone was going to be hard, but keeping herself from running up to her best-friend, Dani, telling her everything and apologizing for lying to her, was going to be the real test. Alee saw Kyle every day, and she knew that it would suck not being a couple at school, but at least she knew that would change in a few weeks. They just had to play the game making everyone believe their relationship was just starting. It might even be fun to play the role of a brand new couple in a fun new relationship; flirting, passing notes and having their first date all over again especially since they never really had a “first date.” 


The bathroom was thick with steam, and yet the air was cold on her exposed skin, as she stepped out of the shower wrapped in a plush warm towel. Her bathroom was huge with marble countertops, a glass sink, and natural stone flooring and shower. Her closet door was just to the left of her shower, and inside was a wardrobe that made the local department store she was used to shopping in look like a thrift shop. 


Her new life was going to take some getting used to, not that she minded the idea. Not entirely anyway. 


Her parents hadn’t had time to put together all of the paperwork for her new life. Everything had just happened to quickly. Although they did promise to have her driver’s license made within the month. However, without a license, or even a car to call her own anymore, Alee had to drive to school with her cousin, Phoebe. Phoebe had just gotten her driver’s license a few months before, but drove as if she had been driving for years. Phoebe sped around the corners without even pretending to break. Alee gripped the edges of her seat and just concentrated on breathing without throwing up, rather than looking out the windows around her.


“Take it easy, I know what I’m doing.” Phoebe’s lips curled up in a wicked smirk and the fact that she was looking at Alee, instead of at the car they were quickly gaining on, didn’t really put Alee’s mind at ease. 


Alee just nodded, gripping the edge of the seat even tighter, “Yeah… I can tell. Just get me there without killing me please.”


Phoebe just laughed, but after one more quick right turn she slowed to a crawl. Atlanta High School was just up ahead on the right, and she pulled into the parking lot and eased up to the walking path that led to the main entrance to let Alee out.


“You’re not parking?”


“Nah, you have new student orientation…
Author Bio
  
Nina has always been creative, be it art, theatre, film – anything but singing – you don’t want to hear that! She earned her bachelor’s degree in Theatre and Military Science from EMU where she spent most of her time either on stage, rappelling down buildings, or working one of three jobs. After college she moved to Los Angeles, like so many other actors, in pursuit of her dreams. In 2008, after some major life changes, Nina self-published her first book PRIVATE WORDS UNSPOKEN, a compilation of poetry. Since then, her dreams have gotten bigger and she likes to think her storytelling ability has gotten better. She has done everything from secretarial work to business development to being the Director of a private preschool. She has fired a M16, jumped out of a C130, and given birth – TWICE - but she always returns to her art.

Though she’ll forever be a Michigan girl at heart, she now lives in Alabama with her husband and two beautiful children. If she’s not working on her latest story, you can find her lounging with a good book, playing with her kids, or indulging in her unhealthy addiction to Starbucks coffee.

Blog: www.ninasoden.wordpress.com
Facebook:
www.facebook.com/BloodAngelSeries  Twitter:  @Nina_Soden 
  

 
 


 

5 comments:

  1. The book cover is intriguing and the story idea unique: hybrid vampire-witch! Nina's not crazy: Characters should inspire writers; after all, it's their story authors are telling.

    Enjoyed the interview!

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    Replies
    1. Linda thank you for reading and enjoying the interview. Not sure about the crazy part... there are days I feel totally crazy, mostly when I have a thousand ideas flying through my head and I just can't seem to find the time to get them into the computer. Anyway, thank you again. If you would like to continue to follow my journey please visit me at www.ninasoden.wordpress.com
      Have a beautiful day,
      Nina

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    2. I wanted to post here so anyone that visits the interview and likes it knows... My books are now available to purchase in paperback directly from my website at:
      AWAKEN: http://wp.me/P1Ft9W-4K
      BEGINNINGS: http://wp.me/P1Ft9W-7J

      I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed writing them.

      Nina

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