*This Contest is Now Closed*
Dragon*Con Breakfast with Shiloh Walker — the author you really should be reading
I had the honor of sharing my morning with Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy/Erotic Romance author, Shiloh Walker. We sat down for breakfast and discussed life and her upcoming release Veil Of Shadows, due to hit stores 9/7/10.
Let me just share that she is an incredible woman and great to talk with. I had such a great time getting to know her and discovering more about this author, who’s books I personally have just recently begun to read. I learned how her creative mind works and how she is not only an incredible writer, but devoted wife and loving mother of three, who maintains her nursing license by working at a doctors office during flu and cold season and still somehow finds time to feed her passion for reading!
An avid reader all her life, her love affair with vampires began in Elementary school when she read “Bunnicula”. She continues to read a wide range of genres and styles of books, and shares her love of reading with her children. After visiting and nibbling on our breakfast for an hour I knew I needed to get down to “Business”, so the waitress cleared away our plates and we began “on the record”…
Shi: *giggles* hmm..I love Bunnicula!
Day: You know, it was so funny when I was reading your bio, I came across the line that said your love affair with vampires began with Bunnicula, and I thought to myself…I remember that book! I remember waiting for it at the library because it was always checked out and that elusiveness possibly made me want it even more. Do you read it to your kids now?
Shi: I didn’t read it to my kids, but as soon as I was able to find it in stores I bought it. I gave it to my daughter…I think she was in the third grade…she’s read it, she’s read all of them. Well the original ones, I know there were more added on later, but she’s read them, my son’s read them, I have a third child that is too young for them just yet but I’m sure she’ll read them as well. So, yeah my kids love “Bunnicula” as much as I did.
Day: Aside from “Bunnicula” what else did you read growing up?
Shi: Oh, I read lots of stuff! In 2nd grade I would read “Little House On The Prairie”, “Box Car Children”, “The Sweet Valley Twins”…
Day: Oh my gosh-yes, and High too?
*giggles from both*
Shi: Yep, eventually I graduated to Sweet Valley High and in the 6th grade I began reading more adult books like Stephen King’s “It” and some Fantasy and Romance as well. I am a reader…
Day: So, really just anything…
Shi: Yep, I’m just a reader! I love to read.
Day: Now as an adult, what types of books do you gravitate toward?
Shi: Pretty much whatever catches my eye. Urban Fantasy, Romance, Paranormal…
Day: Do you have a breakdown of certain authors you follow and are favorites to read?
Shi: Hmmm….that is a really hard question to answer… Some favorites are Stacia Kane, Ilona Andrews, I love Jeaniene Frost, I LOVE JDRobb, Nora Roberts. Umm…SL Viel/Lynn Viel, I adore her stuff! That could be a list that goes on and on…
Day: And, I am sure it does, and probably changes from time to time?
Shi: Well those authors are my Die-Hards, the ones on my keeper shelf at home.
Day: What is the last- great book you read…one that was an all consuming read?
Shi:”City of Ghosts” by Stacia Kane.
Day: City of Ghosts is great! I have heard so many different people say great things about it too…
Shi- yes, it is awesome! I was up all night reading that book.
Day: It has some pretty intense scenes in it, what are some of the hardest scenes for you personally to write?
Shi: Hmmmm….depends on the book. Right now I’m working on the 3rd book in a Romantic Suspense trilogy that I’ve sold to Ballantine and it’s a different sort of book for me. I’ve written some R/S, but this book in particular, it’s a challenge to keep it going because of the way I’m doing it. I’m kinda carrying the mystery through all three books. So, this third book I’m tying up the loose ends, but I also need to keep the romance going and continue to build the relationship between the hero and heroine. So there is a lot of threads need to be tied up in order to finish it well. It really just depends on the book, but as of right now, I’d say the hardest scenes are the suspenseful ones, at least with this one. I mean, I’m comfortable with the romantic aspects, so with this one it would have to be building the suspense. So any scene that plays into building the suspense without being too hokey or making it hokey, and without giving away a lot of clues and that sort of thing.
Day: Which leads me to my next question, because that is what it was going to be – you write some pretty erotic scenes, some really romantic sensual encounters between some of your characters…
Day: So those aren’t hard for you….
Day: No? Well, there you go
Shi: One thing, I was asked to write a short story for the mammoth book of special ops romance and when I turned it in and she sent it back for edits, she goes “I need you to turn it down just a little bit right here, your melting my face off its the mammoth book of special ops romance not the mammoth book of erotic romance” so, yeah, I had to tone it down a lot.
Day: I’m new to the whole erotic genre, I mean, I’ve read books before, that have those types scenes in them but I think categorizing it and actually going to a specific section in a bookstore to pick up a book by an author that is purely classified as that, what are your thoughts on how everything is being categorized now? There are so many genres that are sub-genres of paranormal romance?
Shi: Well, paranormal romance is kind of…encompassing a lot different things…and I bounce around all over the place. Most of my stuff tends to be pretty hot period. I don’t tend to write as much straight erotic romance as I used to, still hot, but the thing with romance is a lot of the lines are just starting to blur. In one of the panels I was on the other day they asked what’s the difference between urban fantasy and paranormal romance, and those lines they’re really just started to blur with all the sub genres and everything that you’re seeing.
Day: Have you, with this being your first D*C, we’ve talked earlier a little bit about all the crazy outfits, but has there been any author, or celebrity that you’ve followed, that you’ve had a fan girly moment with?
Shi: Well, I really wanted to meet Mercedes Lackey, but it doesn’t look like that will work out. I did meet Josepha Sherman, and I had read some of the books that she had read with Mercedes Lackey, some of my favorite books are books that she had co-written with her, so that was really cool. I enjoyed getting to meet her, and I actually had to take a few moments to get my babbles under control before I introduced myself.
Day: Aww, thats fun! What other Cons have you attended?
Shi: I tend to stick to the more romance related ones, I go to RT (Romantic Times) every now and then, and I’ve been to RWA(Romance Writers of American National Convention). I do a couple of the smaller ones like Lora Leigh’s RAW or Lori Foster’s reader and writer get-together those are the smaller ones. Honestly, I enjoy the smaller ones better, they’re a lot more intimate you get to spend a lot more one on one time with the readers, I like those better, they’re a lot less brain melting and my brain’s very prone to melting.
Day: Which leads me to my next question – what is probably, your most self annoying habit that you have that affects your writing somehow?
Shi: I’m so easily distracted it’s not even funny.
Day: Oh my! And with all the different social network things that authors do these days.
Day: You get on and 45 minutes have passed and you’re like what have I been doing? What do I have to show for myself?
Shi: Well, I don’t tend to write as well in the morning anyway, so I let myself have that morning just to do my busy work, I’ll answer my emails, update my website, just get my blogging done, that sort of thing, just take care of it then, I’ll let myself do most of my tweeting in the morning, or I’ll let myself play in the morning, I don’t fuss at myself so much about it, I just cannot focus as much in the morning. But after around lunchtime, that’s when I write better, and that’s when I’m able to focus better, so I don’t let myself play as much in the afternoon anyway, but I’m so easily distracted. That’s my worst work habit, or what interferes with my writing worse than anything else.
Day: You had mentioned earlier, that you’ll see a scene on TV and it will just spark a story inside your head…
Shi: Yes! I get sparks…
Day: …so when these stories come, does it just happen? The reason I ask is because Laurell K Hamilton yesterday talked about hearing voices in her head, do you see it more as imagery…?
Shi: I’ve had voices kinda come in my head before its almost like silent movie reels in my head. For Hunters: Heart and Soul when I was putting together the plot for that book, I’m not really a plotter per se, I tend to kind of write more by the seat of my pants, but when I was putting together the proposal to sell that book, I had entire scenes flowing through my head, one night I got up and I was literally just jotting down notes for that book.
Day: It was flowing that well…
Shi: Yes, it was flowing that well. I’m working on an urban fantasy project right now, and its my first straight urban fantasy – I had a short story that’s available online, but this is the first full length straight urban fantasy that I’m going to try and sell, and that one I’m not going into details about what the idea was, it’s too new…
Day: It’s under wraps.
Shi: It’s under wraps, I’m holding it very close to my chest, but that one it was words that were in my head. These words.. it was four lines, and it just appeared in my head just as clear as day, and that’s where the entire idea came from. It’s about 150 pages now and I just started working on it about three four weeks ago.
Day: That’s crazy! So you just really have all of this creative stuff coming to you, a muse must really love you.
Shi: I’m not one of those writers who really thinks I’ve got a muse, I know a lot of writers who say well, my muse isn’t really with me today, they’re always talking about their muse. I don’t have a muse, for one, I don’t really want to share the credit. I like thinking the ideas come, they’re mine, not the muse’s. Sometimes I think if an idea isn’t going the way I want it to, and if an idea isn’t going where I need it to, it’s not the muse, it’s me. I did something wrong, I’ll fix it. I’m a control freak, it’s not the muse, it’s me.
Day: That makes absolutely perfect sense. Well, you have a new book coming out on Tuesday…
Shi: Yes I do. Veil of Shadows, it’s the second book in my veil series. Its not exactly urban fantasy, its not exactly Science fiction, its kind of a mix up of all of them. It’s based on a premise that there are three worlds that are all separated by a veil of energy, and the action all takes place on the central world. We’ve got our world, there’s a central world which is Ishtan and then there’s a world passed that which is Anqar. Anqar had raided Ishtan for years and enslaved the women because the women of their world were dying out. This is the second book in the series, and its focused on the heroine of the book, she was the leader of the rebel army, they were finally able to disrupt the forces that were letting the slavers come through to kidnap their women. They [kidnappers] can’t do that anymore and that’s because of the gates, that’s what allowed the raids to happen, the gates are gone, but they still have a lot of chaos from being raided for hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of years, their world was devastated by it. So, now they’re trying to rebuild, but the still have demons going back and forth through the gates, so they have to get the demon population under control, they’ve got this going on they’ve got that going on the last thing she needs is to fall in love and in to her camp falls this big brooding bastard and lo and behold she falls in love.
Day: …or lust
Shi: Well, lust…
Day: Well, its a Shiloh Walker, so …
Shi: It’s both!
Day: …so we know that there will be some steamy scenes, well that’s exciting! Actually, the book that I’m on right now is Through the Veil.
Shi: I hope you’re enjoying it!
Day: I am enjoying it! If I can sit down and just have the world shut off around me so I could really get into it!
Shi: I know what that’s like!
Day: Well, there is some really great world building going on so, I’m excited about it! So, what’s next for you after this book?
Shi: Well the next book I have coming out is going to be the print release of a couple of my fairy tales, its called The First Book of Grimm.
Day: Really excited about that.
Shi: I am. There an e-book right now, but they’ll be released in print in October, and there’s also going to be the fourth book in the series which will be released in e-book form in October as well, and that’s Tarnished Knight and it’s a bastardized version of Rapunzel.
Day: So exciting! So exciting!
Shi: Yes, I like my fairy-tales, they’re not your normal fairy tale.
Day: Well, and that’s what I like the most, is the retelling of them that are not the same story just taken in a different order.
Shi: Oh, this is nothing at all like the same story!
Day: I’m excited! I’m so excited! Everybody go and get the e-books right now so we can talk about them. Well, I won’t take up anymore of your time, I so appreciate you meeting with me, I know that this is a really busy time here at D*C, with all the distractions around everywhere, and I know you have your family to get back to so thank you so much!
Shi: Well, thank you for talking to me, I appreciate it.
Day: I appreciate it more! 😉
Shiloh’s latest book Veil of Shadows goes on sale September 7th! For more about Shiloh Walker, visit her website Here
~*~*~*~*~*VEIL OF SHADOWS Giveaway!!*~*~*~*~*~
Day was one lucky woman to get her hands on a signed copy of Veil of Shadows and she’s offering it up to one lucky winner!
A rebel army has been established to win back the land from demons-and a ne soldier named Xan has appeared out of nowhere to join them. Beautiful army captain Laisyn Caar is shocked by the powerful, all- consuming desire she feels in his presence, but when she discovers the dark secrets of Xan’s agenda, she’ll have to determine whether the man she’s starting to love is a friend of her people-or a dreaded enemy.
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