I write in a variety of genres, including mystery and paranormal fiction for both adults and young adults. The second in my young adult series is called UNFORSAKEN and it will be out in October, following BANISHED. My AFTERTIME series kicked off in March. The second in the series will be out in July from Harlequin Luna, and is titled REBIRTH.
Can you introduce us to the world that you have created?
AFTERTIME tells the story of a young woman named Cass Dollar who is living in what was once California, before bioterrorist attacks destroyed much of the earth. A new plant source sustains survivors, but a mutant strain turns them into zombie-like cannibals called Beaters. In the first book, Cass searches for her young daughter and recovers from a Beater attack.
BANISHED and UNFORSAKEN follow sixteen year old Hailey Tarbell, who lives with her cruel drug-dealing grandmother and foster brother in rural Missouri. Hailey lives a miserable life of poverty and social ostracization until a mysterious stranger shows up and reveals that she possesses an extraordinary gift: she is able to heal the sick and wounded. But evil forces want to use her gift for their own purposes, and threaten her life and the lives of everyone she loves.
What should readers know before stepping into your world?
BANISHED is suitable for teen readers, but AFTERTIME is definitely for a mature audience. There are elements of sensuality and some pretty scary – and occasionally gory – scenes as well. My favorite review quote for AFTERTIME compares it to a well-known Steven King novel, calling it “THE STAND in bra and panties.”
In UNFORSAKEN, Hailey’s relationship with Kaz develops into a full-fledged romance, which is something my readers have been clamoring for!
Will this be your first time attending BEA or are you a veteran? Any advice for those who are going for the first time?
I’ve attended BEA twice before. The first time, I was not yet published, and I had a wonderful time exploring all the booths, checking out new books and publisher catalogs, and meeting authors at signings and just wandering around. My advice is to wear comfortable shoes and *pants* – there is never enough seating and at some point I always find myself sitting on the floor, which is challenging in a skirt Also, bring a big handbag, or pick up one of the giveaway totes, because you’re sure to accumulate a big stack of free books. Publishers are moving towards offering electronic versions of swag, and giving away CDs and “keys,” but there are still plenty of paper books to be had.
Are you speaking on any panels during BEA? Are there any you are looking forward to? What panels are you planning on attending?
I’ll be signing in the Harlequin booth on Tuesday, May 24th at 11:00am. Please come by and say hello and get a complimentary copy of one of my AFTERTIME books!
I’ll also be signing free copies of the second in my Stella Hardesty mystery series, A BAD DAY FOR PRETTY, at the Mystery Writers of America booth, but I don’t yet have my time slot. (A schedule will be posted at the booth and I’ll put it on Facebook as soon as I find out.)
As for attending panels, I try to squeeze in as many of the fantastic authors as I can, but I haven’t made my plan yet. (I’m usually figuring that out on the crosstown bus on my way over!)
If someone wanted to meet up with you at BEA, who should they look for?
Yikes! They should look for the most awkward person in the room Seriously I’m hopeless at these things. I’m usually tripping over someone or something and balancing a cup of coffee, cell phone, and eleven books. But I *will* have my name tag on at all times, and I imagine that I’ll be stopping by my publishers’ booths – Harlequin, Saint Martins, and Delacorte – fairly frequently. And I do love to cool my heels at the MWA booth!
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