Today, I would like to welcome Rhiannon Frater to the blog. I asked her a few questions about her new release, PRETTY WHEN SHE KILLS, book two in the Pretty When She Dies trilogy.
You once mentioned that a lot of your stories come from vivid dream or nightmares. I read your author note in the back of PWSK that this was the case for this series. Can you explain this dream to us?
You can read the dream in the first two chapters of PRETTY WHEN SHE DIES. It’s almost verbatim what I dreamed. It is probably one of the most vivid nightmares I have ever had in my life and it was terrifying. After I woke up, I had to walk around my home to feel “real” again. It really shook me up.
I also dreamed the opening scene of PRETTY WHEN SHE KILLS. It scared me, but I loved it. Originally the book was going to start with the scene that opens the first chapter, but once I dreamed the prologue I knew I had to write it.
How did you choose the names and/or origins for the characters?
Well, to sound like a complete lunatic, the characters usually tell me their names and backgrounds while I’m writing. Sometimes it gets a little scary. Cian’s history as a slave in the West Indies and his time in Mexico were things that just appeared in the story. I had to do the research to back up his story and discovered that a lot of the Irish had been sold into slavery by Cromwell in the 1600’s. So it all worked together, but it’s weird how my brain pieces things together and churns it out as characters.
For quite some time I had no idea what Amaliya’s name was. It drove me crazy. I kept tossing names at her and nothing stuck. Then one day when I was at work a woman called me and introduced herself. Her name was Amaliya and I had an a-ha! moment. I scribbled it down and when I plugged it into the story it fit her perfectly.
Necromancy is a character talent in this series. What kind of research did you have to do on this supernatural gift?
Necromancy is something a lot of fiction writers have played with. Brian Lumley comes to mind immediately. The early Anita Blake novels also had a lot to do with necromancy as well. When I realized necromancy was going to play a big role in the story, I did read up on the mythos around necromancy, but I settled on a very simplistic magical form for the book.
Amaliya’s affinity for the dead is something that is increasingly important to her. Not only does it allow her to protect herself, but she actually feels sympathy and compassion for the zombies she raises. In the PRETTY WHEN SHE DIES trilogy the zombies are neutral creatures manipulated by necromancers and not the flesh eating variety from my zombie novels. The Summoner abuses the dead and uses them for his own devices while Amaliya tends only to summon them when she needs their help. She’s not only a necromancer, but a vampire, so she craves blood and death. It can be a bit rough on her.
What character, if any, was the most difficult to write? What character makes you laugh the most?
Amaliya was the most difficult to write at first because she is so different from me. In the beginning of the first book she tends to run from her problems. She had a pretty horrible childhood so you can understand why in theory, but she was elusive when I was writing her. It wasn’t until she met Cian that I finally fully grasped her personality. It was through Cian’s eyes that I finally comprehended who she was at her core.
As for who made me laugh, in the first book I think it was Innocente, Amaliya’s grandmother. In the second, it was definitely Samantha. I adore Samantha. She really has a mouth on her.
The series is being made into audiobooks (SCORE!). Is this your first audiobook venture? Can you explain the process?
The AS THE WORLD DIES trilogy was the first set of books that were made into audiobooks and that was just an odd experience all around. I was able to listen to the narrator that the publisher picked before the recording sessions, and I thought she was perfect. Listening to THE FIRST DAYS was an intense experience because it was like the book was brand new again. I really loved that.
For my Indie books like PRETTY WHEN SHE DIES, I listed my books on ACX (Audio Creation Exchange), which is a part of Audible.com. An audiobooks producer spoke with me about producing a few of my books and I really liked the auditions he sent me.
So far Gregg Savage has produced three of my books: PRETTY WHEN SHE DIES, THE LIVING DEAD BOY AND THE ZOMBIE HUNTERS, and THE LAST BASTION OF THE LIVING. PRETTY WHEN SHE DIES and THE LAST BASTION OF THE LIVING are both narrated by Kristen Allison and she did a great job. Erik Sandvold did the narration for THE LIVING DEAD BOY AND THE ZOMBIE HUNTERS and his voices for the kids are amazingly well done. THE LAST BASTION OF THE LIVING should be out sometime in September. The other two are already available.
Another producer is doing THE TALE OF THE VAMPIRE BRIDE and is close to completion. Plus, I just entered a deal with another person to do all three of the AS THE WORLD DIES UNTOLD TALES volumes.
It’s very, very exciting.
Here are the links to the audio books!
For more awesome PRETTY WHEN SHE KILLS blog tour awesome, click here for participating blogs!
Firstly, you can enter a giveaway for ONE ebook of either PRETTY WHEN SHE DIES or PRETTY WHEN SHE KILLS.
- 16 and up, only.
- Winner will be chosen randomly using Pick Giveaway Winner plugin.
- Winner will need to respond to email within 72 hours or a new winner will be chosen.
- Ends 10/9/12
After you enter this giveaway, be sure to visit Bookish Brunette to enter in the awesome mega giveaway!
- PRETTY WHEN SHE KILLS paperback
- 6 bookmarks (2 autographed)
- Vampire fang earrings and necklace set
You can also watch and listen as Ashley interviews Rhiannon over Skype!
Meet Rhiannon Frater
Rhiannon Frater is the award-winning author of the AS THE WORLD DIES zombie trilogy and the author of several other horror novels. She was born and raised a Texan and presently lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and furry children (a.k.a pets). She loves scary movies, sci-fi shows, playing video games, cooking, dying her hair weird colors, and shopping for Betsey Johnson purses and shoes.
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