Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Q&A with Melody Johnson, author of Night Blood Series

Available now from Kensington Publishing/ Lyrical Press is the paranormal romance series Night Blood by Melody Johnson.

The author has taken a few minutes out of her busy schedule for a Q&A about her series.

When did you become interested in storytelling?

Storytelling has been a lifelong passion, especially when devising something fantastic to spin my way out of trouble—which was never successful—but I considered myself a “real” writer my junior year in high school when I took Creative Writing with Miss Doyle and wrote my first short story. I finished my first, full-length manuscript my senior year in college, and it wasn’t until then that I really considered myself an author.

What was your first book/story published?

The first book I ever published was actually my third full-length novel I’d ever written, and it was The City Beneath, Night Blood #1, in April 2015.

What inspired you to write the Night Blood Series?

I’ve always been a huge fan of the vampire genre, especially the darker classics, like Anne Rice, and her contemporaries, like Laurell K. Hamilton’s early Anita Blake novels. I wanted to bring something fresh to the table, in a world parallel to our own. So many vampire novels are either based on vampires already being “out of the closet” or a secret that the main character agrees to protect. I wanted to create a world in which the main character was desperate to expose their existence; Cassidy’s struggle to protect her loved ones, protect herself and act with honor and truth has been a delicate journey I’ve very much enjoyed weaving.

What character in Eternal Reign is the most/least like you, and in what ways?

Meredith resembles me in many ways: I prefer to separate myself from life in books and behind a computer the way she does behind a camera and with her computer software. We’re both passionate about out work, quick to forgive, and we cherish our friendships. I often feel like life is nothing but running on a hamster wheel; the faster I run, the harder I work, the more tired I become, no matter that I haven’t actually moved. I don’t think vampires are erasing my memory and making me start from scratch, like Meredith, but beside that minor detail, we certainly have a lot in common.

What is your favorite part in Eternal Reign?

Without a doubt, my favorite part in Eternal Reign is the moment when after two and a half books, all the tension, angst, lust, longing, and frustration between Dominic and Cassidy finally collide.

What was the hardest part to write?

Pivotal moments in any book or series have to be written with care. I don’t know if they’re necessarily more difficult, but they have to be written gently and edited delicately and read and rewritten and reread until they shine with an essential truth that not only reverberates throughout the story but with everyone who reads it. That’s how I felt about this book’s ending.

What would your ideal career be, if you couldn't be an author?

I would have been a professional flutist. When I was a high school junior, deciding my college major, I made a deal with myself. If I made district orchestra, I would major in music performance, and if I didn’t, I would major in creative writing. I’ve always loved playing the flute, and at risk of sounding cocky, I was very good at it. My senior year, I made district band and district orchestra, I was first chair flutist all through college, earned the seat for woodwind quintet, and was showcased in several solo performances. But Junior year, I did not make district band, I wrote my first short story in Creative Writing I with Miss. Doyle, and decided to seriously pursue writing.

Do you read reviews of your books? If so, do you pay any attention to them, or let them influence your writing?

I do read my reviews, but I take them with a grain of salt. My books aren’t for everyone—someone who enjoys sweet inspirational romance will not like my novels—and everyone had different tastes and triggers. However, if several readers who all love dark paranormal romances have a consistent complaint about a scene or character or plot thread, I will work to see what they’re seeing that I missed, and either fix it if I can, or if the book is already published, keep that morsel of insight in mind for the next book.

What well-known writers do you admire most?

Karen Marie Moning, Jennifer Crusie, Laurell K. Hamilton, Chloe Neill, R. Lee Smith, and Elizabeth Hoyt.

Do you have any other books/stories in the works?

I’m currently working on the final installment in the Night Blood Series, Day Reaper, Book #4!

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About the Author: Melody Johnson is the author of the gritty, paranormal romance Night Blood series set in New York City. The first installment, The City Beneath, was a finalist in several Romance Writers of America contests, including the “Cleveland Rocks” and “Fool For Love” contests. Melody graduated magna cum laude from Lycoming College with her B.A. in creative writing and psychology, and after moving from her northeast Pennsylvania hometown for some much needed Southern sunshine, she now works as a digital media coordinator for Southeast Georgia Health System. When she isn’t working or writing, Melody can be found swimming at the beach, honing her newfound volleyball skills, and exploring her new home in southeast Georgia.

For more information about the author, visit her website at: authormelodyjohnson.com/

Follow Melody on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

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