Saturday, 5 November 2011

AUTHOR INTERVIEW - JAMI GRAY



Shadow's Edge out November 1, 2011 from Black Opal Books
"...one of those books where you get to the end and scream 'More!'” Regan Murphy 4.6 out of 5 stars
"...a tightly written, jammed packed paranormal that will have you enthralled right from the start." Taylor Jones  4.5 out of 5 stars




Did you always want to be a writer? If not, what did you want to be?
Strangely enough, nope.  Initially I wanted to be a judge, but when I learned how long law school would be I move on.  Next up was veterinarian, but the first time I helped set a dog’s hind leg, I figured out that was not an option.  Then it was on to theater, but that would require moving to New York and I’m not that kind of girl.  I hit on writing after being adopted at the age of fourteen, my state mandated therapist suggested I keep a journal.   Funny thing, it got boring so instead I started creating stories and characters that were much more interesting than reality at the time.  I started writing fiction in earnest as a freshman in high school. Back in the dark ages, typing on an actual typewriter was a required class.  My parents had invested in an electric typewriter so the six of us in high school could practice our typing skills.  Needless to say, I would hover over siblings until they finished then I would commandeer the typewriter for my own nefarious purposes.  By the time I began to pack for college at eighteen, I had almost 200 pages of YA fantasy novel done.  And no, it will never, ever, see the light of day again.  After that, writing was something I had to do.

Did it take you a long time to get your first book published?
Yes and no.  Yes, because any length of time is long for me. No, because it the overall scheme of things, five years is about standard from what I’ve heard.  “Shadow’s Edge” was picked up by Lauri Blasch at Black Opal Books from a three line pitch contest by Savvy Authors.  Before that, I had non-fiction pieces published on National Public Radio and part of charitable anthologies, but my fiction—that took five years—more or less.

Do you work another job as well as your writing work?
Oh yeah.  The dream is to achieve the point where your writing can cover your bills.  Until then, I have a job-that-pays-the-bills.  The biggest benefit of my job is that I can telecommute, so I can squeeze in a few sentences here and there.

What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?
My first and latest book is “Shadow’s Edge: Book 1 of the Kyn Kronicles”.  I’d say it’s a story about facing the monsters within and without and deciding where your own personal line lies.

What genre do you place your books in?
Urban Fantasy or Paranormal—I’ve seen it done both ways.

Who is your publisher?
I’m part of a great group of writers at Black Opal Books.

Who designed the cover of your book?
The kudos for that goes to Kim Killion at Hot Damn Designs.  I knew I wanted something edgy, but didn’t want the standard Urban Fantasy shot of the woman with weapons and all you see is her back or shoulder or whatever body part is keen at the moment.  I took a risk using a face shot, but Kim worked with me and came up with the beautiful cover I have now. 

Which format of book do you prefer, ebook, hardback or paperback? 
That’s a hard one. I actually do all three.  I have my library scattered across two huge bookcases, my Kindle and my nightstand.  I love to hold the actual book and I don’t think that will ever change, but ebook is great, especially as it means I don’t have to listen to my hubby grumble how the books are taking over the house.

What are you currently reading? Do you enjoy it? What format is it?
Right now, my reading is on hiatus until I finish the edits for my second book coming out in Summer 2012.  However, JR Ward’s Envy is staring at me with soulful eyes from my nightstand.  Unfortunately, it has company…Charlaine Harris, CE Murphy, Eileen Rendahl, Juliana Stone, Kerrlyn Sparks, Kelly Gay, and Katie MacAlister—are all fighting for attention.  I love all of these and so many other authors.  The sad fact is I could go on for pages about the writers I read.   Right now I’m at 50/50—paperback/ebook.

Do you think ebooks will ever totally replace printed books?
Probably not.  Too many people like actual books.  However, in this electronic age, the convenience of ebooks is being able to carry hundreds of books on one small electronic bookcase.  Beats trying to figure out if you want to pack another book or more clothes during vacation.  In my case, the book generally wins.  There’s always a washing machine or river or something nearby.

What piece of advice would you give a new writer?
Even if you don’t want to, you need to give a critique group a chance.  It took me almost three years to discover the best critique group in the world—the 7 Evil Dwarves.  Not only do they become some of your closest friends, but they’re the ones pushing you forward to pitch to this agent, try that contest, submit to this publisher, and so on.  They are there to help ponder the questions only other writers would ever understand, to hone your writing to levels you only dreamed about, but overall they are there as your cheering section.  Writing is a solitary occupation, but it doesn’t hurt to have people to talk to you when you poke your head back out of your cave!


Where can people find you?

You can find Jami and her books here:

Buy Link:    www.BlackOpalBooks.com 
Website:     www.JamiGray.com
Twitter:       http://twitter.com/#!/JamiGrayAuthor  

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