Today on the blog we author Lisa Llamrei for an interview. Her book Reflection of the Gods is our spotlight stop for the day. Lets get to it!
Did you always wanted to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
No, I didn’t. In high school, I wanted to be an actor. At some point, I wanted to be a writer, too, and had fantasies about starring in the movie adaptations of my own novels.
When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?
In late 2008 I joined the Writer’s Community of Durham Region. Their belief is that if you consistently spend time writing, then you are a writer, regardless of whether you have ever been published.
How long did it take to get your first book published?
From the time I finished the final draft, until publication date was about a year.
Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?
My mother and I have our own business running a distance education program for a school of holistic nutrition. My duties include anything to do with website maintenance and bookkeeping. I also oversee the academic advisors and occasionally take on that role myself when a student needs help with the sciences.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?
Reflection of the Gods. Boy meets girl; girl turns out to be the focus of a Sidhe civil war.
Who is your publisher? Or do you self-publish?
How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?
With Reflection of the Gods, it was about four years from initial idea to the end of the first draft. I’m nearing the end of the first draft of my second novel, The Divine Measure, and it has also taken about that time.
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
The books I am planning at this time will be, more or less, in the same genre as the first.
What genre would you place your books into?
What made you decide to write that genre of book?
I didn’t really decide what genre to write. I had an idea for a novel, and it turned into urban fantasy. The Divine Measure probably leans a little more toward science fiction, but still has a fantasy element. The third novel, in the planning stages, will probably be mainly fantasy with elements of horror.
Do you have a favorite character from your books? And why are they your favorite?
Nora from The Divine Measure. She has this wonderful, sarcastic sense of humor. She says the things I would love to say, but don’t have the nerve.
How long have you been writing?, and who or what inspired you to write?
I first started writing in high school, so more than twenty-five years now. At about fourteen, I fell in love with ancient Egypt, and I wanted to write a novel about the life of Tutankhamon.
Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
I have four children, two teens, a tween, and a toddler, so routine does not exist in my house. I do have a desk in my room, but sometimes end up at the kitchen table. I try to stick to a schedule, but all too often it’s catch as catch can.
Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?
Yes, I do. A well thought out review, even a negative one, especially a negative one, can help me to do better next time.
Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?
I write the book first, and choose the title later.
How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
I look up names from the relevant culture and search for one with an appropriate meaning. For example, Aislinn is an Irish name that means dream or vision, or in some sources fairy dream, which made it perfect for the half-Sidhe character. With the exception of the town of Kells, every place in Reflection of the Gods is a real place. I chose the name by looking for an Irish town name that wasn’t already in use in the province of Ontario.
Are character names and place names decided after their creation? Or do you pick a character/place name and then invent them?
I have the idea for the character first, then choose the name, then I develop the character.
Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
For all major characters, I do complete character sketches before outlining the plot. Minor characters I might figure out as I go along.
Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")
I don’t use hidden messages or morals. I do tend to hide small nuggets of information. Hidden treasures that add a layer to the story if you catch them, but don’t take anything away if you miss them. For example, in Reflection of the Gods, which is partially set in old Ireland, there is one scene with a leprechaun, but you need to be familiar with Irish folklore in order to recognize him.
Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?
Ebooks. Definitely ebooks.
What is your favorite book and Why? Have you read it more than once?
The Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley. I love it because it tells the familiar Arthur story from a female, pagan point of view. I’ve read it three times.
Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favorite/worst book to movie transfer?
I think most books have the potential to transfer to movies well; unfortunately, often the execution of the transfer falls short. All of the Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings movies were very well done. The Shining was horrible.
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Thanks for joining us today Lisa Llamrei.
Remember to check out today’s spotlight and find out more about this fabulous author.