Today, I’ve invited Tamara Rose Blodgett to my blog for an exclusive interview where she talks about the thought behind her wicked cool series titles, a shocking Writer’s Block confession and about being contacted by an agent!
Leave a comment (with your email) about the interview here on this post to win a Kindle -or- Nook copy of any one of Blodgett’s novels! Your choice! (WINNER HAS BEEN CHOSEN 8/4/2012!!!)
Tamara: I’d like to thank Jessica for spotlighting me here today~
Jessica: Glad you have you! First off, tell us about your current WIP?
Tamara: Currently, I’m working on book two of the Blood Series, Blood Song, and have just crossed the halfway mark to completion. This is a new adult paranormal romance series about supernatural humans and their quest to protect their newly discovered Queen as she tries to fulfill her role of establishing peace and unity between her people, the werewolves and vampires.
Jessica: Can you briefly explain the meaning or intended significance behind your series titles Death, Savage, Blood and Reflection?
Tamara: I always had a clear picture of the theme I wished to convey in the writing of the four series mentioned above. The Death Series deals with zombies (hence, the death part) and teens who possess paranormal abilities. Savage is about a group of post-apocalyptic survivors who live a futuristic existence while facing great adversity by other groups who behave with primitive brutality. Blood is about genetics and how this rare, sub-species of humans live amongst the general population and are much sought after for what can be gained from them for the Were and vampire. A Blood Singer has the potential to free the Were from the cycles of the moon and allow vampires to walk in the sun. They live in secret for survival because their numbers are few. Reflection is about a group of inter-dimensional warriors named The Reflective. These soldiers rein in exploitation in worlds where technology has allowed those who control it to become power hungry and criminal, upsetting the natural balance of the thirteen worlds that coexist. Each series’ title directly underscores the story’s tone. In a more subtle way, the titles do as well.
Jessica: Out of your series’, which was the most enjoyable to write?
Tamara: Death has been the simplest as I was living the moment, with the dialogue used in Death spoken around me constantly. I’ve always been very aware of language and that series was a ton of fun. The most difficult has been Blood. I have determined that there is more description and internal monologue in that work and that is more challenging for a natural chatterbox like myself!
Jessica: As an Indie author, what have been the best and worst things about the self-publishing process?
Tamara: Oh boy! I adore the freedoms being Indie allows. I choose everything myself, from cover art to font to… everything. I especially love that I can price my books reasonably and still make a living. It is the best of both worlds. Readers get my work for a reasonable cost and I make money too. It is the classic win-win. That potential would not exist in any kind of large way if I were traditional. I totally love the way I can be myself and connect with the reader on a personal level. I believe that is more of a reality for the Indie and it’s a great fit for my personality. I think my works would have been “homogenized” and run through the laundry cycle a few hundred times and not been “my work” if I’d gone traditional. I’m so glad the vision I had for my books is there to be read. It may not be perfect but it’s unique and I’m grateful for that.
What I don’t care for is, I miss a team! When a “Big Six” publishing house backs your work, they promote you: book signings, travel, advertising- Line Editors, lol! In the world of Indie, we must compete against traditionally pubbed authors that have that arsenal at their disposal and it’s challenging. However, it is not impossible to overcome.
Jessica: What do you think the top three most important things are when it comes to self-publishing and why?
Tamara: Editor. Editor. Editor. I am completely and utterly beholden to my awesome editor, Stephanie T. Lott. She sees all my “stuff” and helps me be less klutzy with my syntax. As an author, for whatever reason, we don’t see our own mistakes (not all anyway). I highly encourage anyone who is going to publish to get a great copy editor. It will be money well spent.
Cover art. I think Jessica and I both agreed that a great, professionally executed cover reflects well on the work. I have seen all my books sell better after hiring a professional cover artist. Also money well spent. Put a great cover on your work, it’s worth it!
Social networking. I know this is tough for authors that are shy and just want to dig in and write! It can be done. Readers want to feel like they can count on you to update them and give them a deeper understanding of your work. It’s expected now. You are your work. Brand yourself, be accessible. In the sixteen months I’ve been out there, almost without exception, my readers are cool, smart and offer keen insight that they see because it’s through their eyes. Invaluable and rewarding to all.
Jessica: If an agent contacted you today (assuming he or she is an established agent) would you consider taking that route?
Tamara: I have recently been contacted and I was flattered! At the end of the day though, they can’t compete with the awesome bottom line I am realizing through the following vendors: Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Smashwords. The freedoms and lack of middle man is extremely attractive. It doesn’t mean that I’d never consider it but until the retail model changes to accommodate authors and readers reasonably in the eWorld, I’m sticking with Indie.
Jessica: Other than Writer’s Block, what is the most difficult part of the writing process for you?
Tamara: Okay, this sounds really braggy, and I don’t mean for it to. I have never had writer’s block. I know it’s a real thing because authors reference it constantly. I have the opposite problem: four different books vying for attention inside my head! So sheer time is my obstacle. If I could, I would beg for more time in the day… like everyone else! Time is my Achilles’s heel, I simply do not have enough to write all the glorious ideas that constantly buzz in my skull.
Jessica: Who are your all-time favorite authors and what one book by each of them is at the top of your list?
Tamara: I love The Stand by Stephen King. I was crazy for Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire and cried when I read A Dog’s Purpose. I laughed out loud when I read Sh*t My Dad Says. That’s a real cross-section from horror to contemporary romance to a main character who’s a dog and a comedic work about a parent that bestowed wisdom in non-traditional tornado. And finally, the non-fiction account of Lone Survivor, the story about one Navy Seal’s bravery and sacrifice for our country. I swear that last should be required high school reading.
Jessica: What is your guilty pleasure television show or movie?
Tamara: It’s been canceled now but I adored, Lie to Me. Dexter is some kind of sick awesomeness too!
Jessica: What’s your guilty pleasure book?
Tamara: Anything J.R Ward, I just love her. And I’m a sucker for any type of soulmate romance swoons
Jessica: Name one thing you can’t live without.
Jessica: Name one strange quirk that you have.
Tamara: Daydreamer. I tend to zone out a lot. Usually it’s those characters talking. It does me in.
Tamara Rose Blodgett is a “thinking-out-of-the-box” paranormal enthusiast who believes there’s a 95% chance zombies do not exist but loves to write as if they do. She’s also partial to the Alpha male in her work in its many guises. She enjoys living in Alaska and Mazatlan and has worked as a journalist.