Friday, January 13, 2012

Interview with Connie Flynn

I’d like to welcome our guest today, our very own Connie Flynn. It’s a pleasure having you as a guest here at Much Cheaper Than Therapy, where chocolate is plentiful and advice is free. So grab some chocolate and a lounge chair. Your therapy session has begun.

I understand you have reissued two of your paranormal romances, SHADOW ON THE MOON and SHADOW OF THE WOLF. Can you tell us a little bit about your fabulous werewolf series?

My pleasure. This is my debut paranormal novel so it has a special place in my heart.

Psychiatrist Morgan Wilder was on a quest to discover the unrealized powers of the human mind. Quixotic Lily promises to reveal centuries old secrets, but instead she transforms Morgan into an inhuman monster. Rejecting his new state, he retreats to the Arizona mountains. Lily, intent on making Morgan her eternal mate, chases him down.

Wolf biologist Dana Morgan devotes her life to reinstating the wild wolf. After learning that a pack has been accused of the savage slaughter of humans, she races to the snow-swept mountains to prevent their destruction. Soon she and Morgan discover she is fated to lift the dark stain from his soul.

Dana puts her life in mortal danger to perform a ceremony of love and Lily uses every supernatural power at her disposal to reclaim Morgan's soul, ending in a violent showdown under the SHADOW OF THE MOON.

The werewolf books have interesting titles. How did you come up with them?

By drawing on the old Lon Chaney cliché that a full moon triggers the werewolves' transformation. I’m big on using clichés and giving them my own touch. In these books, the classic legend allowed me to build a redeeming ceremony which was dependent on the full moon and other astrological aspects.

What made you decide to write in this genre?

I've always loved the paranormal genre, which back then was populated with mostly horror or fantasy titles. Some sci-fi, sure but those titles still stuck to strict conventions. When Silhouette launched a line called Silhouette Shadows I went for it. Eventually, Silhouette rejected it but it sold to NAL and transformed my career.

Where did you get your idea for this particular book?

By asking questions. Ann Rice had broken big ground with her vampire books and she completely owned the species, so I asked myself which species were still fair game. I wanted something alpha, edgy, and dangerous, but also capable of being physically attractive. Beauty and the Beast came to mind and thus Morgan Wilder was born.

What are your favorite paranormal research books of sites, and why?

I have two favorite sites: Lady Gryphon’s Mythical Realm [www.mythical realm.com ] and Mythical Creatures and Beasts [www.mythicalcreaturesguide.com ]. There are several other sites I have found but failed to bookmark effectively enough to find them again. One is a site with mpg files of hundreds of animal cries and the other is a little app that helps you devise new names for locations in your story. If I ever find them, I’ll be happy to share.

Which characger did you like writing about the most, and why?

Lily, the villain in SHADOW ON THE MOON and White Hawk, the shaman. I gave them their own story in SHADOW OF THE WOLF.

The why is that I like quirky, flawed characters. Partly because I find them more interesting, but most of all because I love stories of redemption and true forgiveness which these kinds of characters cry for.

Tell us how you develop your characters. Do you create character sheets, do interviews, that sort of thing? How does your research and/or world affect your chaacter development?

I’m a writing teacher and I wish I could say that I do everything step-by-step the way I teach in my classes. While I almost always have my setting and story premise in mind, I generally write about thirty to fifty pages to discover the protagonist’s voice. When I've done that I begin pulling together the structure. I must confess that a few times I pretty much wrote the whole book before I discovered the protagonist's vital internal conflict. Let me tell you, that makes for some ugly rewrites.

How do you go about building your world if you use one? Do you use maps, charts or drawings?

Somehow I manage to keep much of this kind of detail in my head and I’m also willing to go back and make changes if something better comes to mind. I only make sketches and diagrams if I get stuck on the mechanics of how a scene will play out.

Do yo have any authors that inspired you?

Too many and in too many genres: Stephen King, J.R.R. Tolkien, Kathleen Woodiwiss, the poet Kahil Gibran, Richard Bach, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Charlaine Harris and, of course, J.K. Rowling. There are more among the 21st century authors but I'm afraid the list will go on and on.

What do you feel is the most effective promotion you have done for your book?

At the moment, I’d say Bookbuzzer and probably a Twitter barrage, but I’m still learning how to self-promote in this new marketplace. What I have learned is that it's terribly time-consuming. So if y’all have tips on how to use my time more effectively in this area, I’m listening . . .

What do we have to look forward to next?

It was early last year that I decided to self-publish my previously published books and to launch my mysteries under the pseudonym K.C. Flynn with a romantic suspense called THE MAN IN THE STETSON.

I’m also in the processing of reissuing two more of my paranormal backlist. Next up is THE FIRE OPAL, probably in April for the ebook version. I've also planned a number of personal appearances this year. What's coming is the Chocolate Affaire. I'll be there Friday, February 3rd and Saturday, February 4th with the newly designed print version of SHADOW ON THE MOON.

For those of you who prefer straight romance, I'd like to announce that last fall Harlequin Superromance reissued two of my earlier romance. A third will show up in 2012.

Thanks, Connie!

To celebrate the print reissue of SHADOW ON THE MOON, Connie is offering a free copy to one lucky commenter on today's blog. The only catch is that printing is still in progress so you will probably have to wait until the end of January to get it. If you're the impatient type or if you just prefer ebooks, she will alternately give you a coupon for a free download compatible with the ereader of your choice.

(please check the blog Monday night to see if you won. Chances of winning determined by the number of entries.)

She will be around all day today. I'm sure some of you have questions or comments for her, so please ask away...

Check out author’s website at www.connieflynn.com or at her author page on Amazon www.amazon.com/Connie-Flynn/e/B000APBBD0/ to buy SHADOW ON THE MOON and SHADOW OF THE WOLF.

12 comments:

Kim Watters said...

Good morning Connie. Thanks for stopping by on your off day! It's always a pleasure showcasing one of our own. I'm so glad you joined the world or reissuing your back list. Your talent needs to be seen by the world! Did you make any changes or update your books before reissue? If so, what were the biggest things you noticed between now and the original pub date? Enjoy your day. Your chocolate will be out shortly.

Andrea I said...

Happy Friday the 13th! I'm glad I stopped by and now have another author to check out.

Linda Andrews said...

I love those old Lon Chaney movies, Connie. I'll definitely pick up your books. Have you ever considered adding more books to the series?

Rebekah E. said...

Thanks for stopping by today. You series sound like really great reads.

Connie Flynn said...

Thanks for inviting me, Kim, and for the welcome for my back list. I did do a small bit of editing on the books (Moon had an unfortunate analogy having to do with a stallion and a mare that begged to be cut), but the process of converting a book that has no current digital file is daunting enough, so I thought I might leave the rewrites to another decade.

Plus, and please don't think I have a big head, I found the books surprisingly contemporary so . . . I'll just let them stand and see how the 21st century judges my one-time bestsellers.

Again, thanks for the opportunity.

Connie Flynn said...

Andrea,
Thanks for dropping by and reminding me it's Friday the 13th. How very appropriate for paranormal romances. I hope you like my books.

Connie Flynn said...

Linda,

Yes, Lon Chaney was the quintessential werewolf wasn't he? Those sad droopy eyes. I wanted Morgan to have the same angst but be hunkier. I think he's sexy and I'll wait to see if others agree.

Connie Flynn said...

Rebekka,

It's a pleasure to be here and I hope you'll let me know if you like my books if you read them. Thanks for stopping by.

Donna Marie Del Grosso said...

Hi Connie!
So glad you're here today. I always learn a lot from you. It's good to know that I'm not the only one to almost finish a book before i know my protagonist's deep-rooted issue. Looks like I'm in great company. Congratulations on the re-reases!

Connie Flynn said...

Donna,
Nice to see you here, and that's what nice about knowing other writers. They know what you're talking about when you say you heroine had no true inner conflict.

H.D. Thomson said...

I'm so glad to hear you're re-issuing your Shadow series and they are available again. I remember really enjoying them, so I went and just bought a copy along with liking and taging Shadow of the Moon. :)

Connie Flynn said...

Well, heck, H.D., you look a whole lot like Carol Webb, and I never knew. Your web site is cool and thanks for the compliments on my SHADOW books, not to mention the purchase and the 'like' button.