Please join us in welcoming author Shannon K. Butcher here today to Dark Faerie Tales. The sixth book in her Sentinel Wars paranormal romance series, Dying Wish, was released back in March. You can read an excerpt from the book here. We are also featuring this series in our UF/PNR Reading Challenge 2012.
Thanks to Shannon, you will have a chance to win a signed copy of Blood Hunt and a handmade glass bookmark (made by Shannon herself!). As always, giveaway details are listed at the end of the post.
Since launching her career in 2007, award-winning author Shannon K. Butcher has penned more than eighteen titles, including the paranormal romance series, the Sentinel Wars; the action-romance series, the Edge; and a handful of romantic suspense novels and works of short fiction. Being a former engineer and current nerd, she frequently uses charts, graphs and tables to aid her in the mechanics of story design and to keep track of all those pesky characters and magical powers. An avid beader and glass artist, she spends her free time playing with colored glass and beads.
Want to read more from Shannon K. Butcher?
DFT: Could you start things off by telling us a little about Dying Wish?
Shannon: Dying Wish is the sixth book of the Sentinel War series, and focuses on Jackie and Iain, one of the Theronai (one of the three Sentinel races) who has lost his soul. He knows there’s no hope for him, but he continues to fight the evil forces creeping across the countryside because there are so few left who are able to do so. For him, the war is merely habit—routine left over from a sense of duty ingrained so deeply it shaped his every move. So far, he’s been able to maintain enough control to fool those around him, but he knows it’s just a matter of time before his control cracks and he becomes just like the monsters he’s sworn to fight.
Jackie was held as a prisoner of the Synestryn for two years. She’s free now, and all she wants is a normal life. The demons know she’s out there now, and they will stop at nothing to find and capture her again. The closest thing she’ll ever get to a normal life is one guarded by one of the male Theronai. As much as she hates being tied to anyone, she agrees to allow the only man she can stand to be near to guard her. Iain is that man. He’s too cold to harbor foolish dreams, and too cynical to hope for things she knows can never be.
Once they run into trouble, all plans fly out the window, and they’re put into a situation where what they want no longer matters as much as the lives at stake.
DFT: Dying Wish is the sixth book in your Sentinel War series, what can you tell new readers about your series as a whole?
Shannon: It’s a dark, complex world with lots of characters with their own agendas, and a large, overarching plot. I really love painting people in shades of gray, and developing character-driven plots where the consequences of actions and events in past books come out in later books.
While each book focuses on one couple, there are other things going on as well. I bring back in old characters and introduce new ones along the way. In my head, this is all one big story, with a planned beginning, middle and end. I try to write each book to stand alone, but a reader will definitely encounter spoilers if they read out of order.
DFT: Do you have a favorite scene or line in Dying Wish?
Shannon: I’m not sure if it’s my favorite, but the scene near the beginning where Jackie chooses a man has been in my head for a long time—probably before I even wrote the first book in the series. After looking forward to writing that for so many years, it was really great to finally put it on paper.
DFT: Do you have a long term plan or goal for this story universe?
Shannon: I know how the whole thing ends, so this isn’t going to be one of those series that goes on forever. I have too many other ideas in my head that I want to write to let that happen.
I’d love to do 12-15 books in the series, but I’ve designed it so that I can shift the end one way or another if necessary. So far I’m on track, so I guess we’ll just have to see how things play out.
DFT: How do you maintain a story arc though the course of a series while still delivering a conflict and resolution in each book?
Shannon: For me, I do this by focusing on one couple in each book. The main source of conflict involves them during that book, but in the meantime, I’m setting up for future conflicts down the road. Besides, conflict isn’t hard to find when people are involved, and these books have a whole lot of people in them.
DFT: Do you have a particular writing process or ritual?
Shannon: Other than coffee, I pretty much just get up every day and do it. For me, this is a full-time job, and I treat it as one. As long as I have a keyboard, some caffeine and some quiet, I’m good to go.
DFT: What influences and inspirations (both literary and non-literary) do you draw from while writing?
Shannon: I get most of my inspiration from music. For me, it’s all about the emotion, and there’s nothing that evokes strong emotion the way music does. I can’t count the number of story ideas I’ve come up with from a single line of lyrics in a song. I don’t listen to it while I’m writing, but I often have it on when I’m not working.
DFT: Which genre do you prefer to read? Do you have any favorite authors or series?
Shannon: I don’t read nearly as much as I’d like to, but when I do, I try to stick to romance. I’m currently reading a lot of Lisa Marie Rice. I also love Lori Foster, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Shannon McKenna, JR Ward, Lora Leigh and a whole pile of others. There are so many great books out there, and so little time to read.
DFT: What can you tell us about any other projects you are working on?
Shannon: I am working on something new, but that’s all I’m ready to share at this point. I know that’s a horrible tease, but I have to get my fun where I can.
DFT: What is your favorite faery tale? Why?
Shannon: The one I read over and over as a kid was The Little Mermaid. I had the version where the heroine turns to sea foam at the end and doesn’t come back. I thought that was really cool. As much as I love my happily ever after, as a kid, this was the first book I’d run across where the good guys didn’t win. I found it completely intriguing.
DFT: I want to thank you for taking the time to answer these questions.
Shannon: Thanks so much for having me over to play! I wish you all happy reading!
This contest is provided by Shannon K. Butcher
One winner will receive a signed copy of Blood Hunt and a handmade glass bookmark by Shannon K. Butcher!
Handmade glass bookmark by Shannon K. Butcher
Published August 2, 2011 by Penguin/Signet
About the Book:
They are the Sentinels. Three races, ancient guardians of mankind, each possessing unique abilities to protect humanity against their eternal foes: the Synestryn. Now, for one Sentinel, the only way to reclaim her forgotten past is to follow the blood.
Hope appeared out of nowhere, naked and alone, a woman without past. The only thing she knows is that she is imbued with a strange power. It’s in her blood. And two men want to possess it.
One is Logan, a Sanguinar demon-fighter who needs Hope’s essence to survive. As a vampire he’s well-equipped to find her a like-blooded mate whose progeny could sustain his race for generations. The other is Krag, a Synestryn lord whose desire is to enslave Hope, and drain her of the lifeforce. With it he could control humanity forever.
When Hope and Logan both fall prey to Krag, a powerful desire grows between them. But is it enough to thwart their captor’s diabolical plan and his demon warriors, and survive a vampire’s destiny written in blood?
Click HERE to read an excerpt
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