Browsing articles in "Kitten Jackson"
Jan 21, 2016

Paranormal Author Takeover Interview – Kitten Jackson

KittenHere is the interview that I had the pleasure of doing with Kitten Jackson for the VF Presents Paranormal Author Takeover Event. Thank you Kitten for doing the interview with me.

What made you choose to write in the paranormal genre?
I have to say that Elaine Barris was a big influence on me. Before I edited her first book, I hadn’t ever read vampires before! I didn’t particularly care for the genre. But after editing her next book and a couple of vamp books for Gena D. Lutz, I fell in love with vampires. An idea came to me for a great story, so I told Elaine about it, and she encouraged me to write it. On my way to Dallas to see her, I saw signs for cities named Camden in two states, and that name seemed to be calling out to me. I had noticed it in SC, every time I had gone back and forth from Wilmington, NC, to my hometown of Muscle Shoals, AL. And that’s where I got my vamp’s name.

How many books do you currently have available in the paranormal genre, and what are the titles?
Right now, I only have Forever Camden, which is the first book in my Romantic Bloodlust series. I plan to have three books, but if the story dictates, I’ll write more! I’m in the process of writing the second book now. I’m about an eighth of the way in. It’s going to be even better than the first! Woohoo!

What is your favorite paranormal creature and why?
Vampires! The promise of eternal love, with a creature who has the ability to love on a much deeper level than humans do. It’s the romance. And the vampire sex is pretty awesome, too. 😉

If you could live in any paranormal book, what book and character would you choose?
Mine, of course! I’d love to be Melanie in Forever Camden. Cam’s emotions for her are so strong, and he has an all-consuming desire for her, but he also has a desperate need to protect her… from himself. It’s beautiful.

Can you share information with us about any projects that you are currently working on?
As I mentioned before, I’m working on the sequel for Forever Camden, the second book in my Romantic Bloodlust series. I’m keeping the title a secret for now, because it’s so hard to find a good one that hasn’t been used by lots of authors. This book will have much more action. Forever Camden is very hot and has some emotional scenes and suspense, but overall, it’s light, compared to my Keeping Secrets series, which is extremely dark and NOT paranormal. (Well, book 3 is, but it’s ghosts.) The second book, however, will go a lot darker and will be much more emotional. It’s a continuation of the first book. I’m really excited about it.

What do you think is one of the biggest misconceptions that people have about writers in general?
That we have money and we’re famous! LOL! I’ve had Facebook friends I went to school with say things like, “I can’t believe I know somebody who’s famous!” I have to laugh. Maybe someday (that would be awesome!), but certainly not now!

If you could change something within the author/reader community, what would you change and why?
The back-biting/troll behavior.
I don’t understand it. I’ll admit, I’m a little jealous, when I see authors who have thousands of great reviews and make the NYT bestseller list, but that doesn’t mean I wish them anything but success. It only means I’d like to have that kind of success, too. But some people seem to be determined to bring them down. That really bothers me.

And the trolls… don’t get me started! I can’t fathom why anyone would enjoy hurting people. Some of the reviews they leave are nothing short of cruel. Granted, some books do suck. I’ve tried to read some of them myself, but if I don’t like them, I don’t go and leave an ugly, hateful review. I’m not saying it’s wrong to leave an unfavorable review—just that if you’re going to leave one, be tactful and give the reasons for your opinion of the book, without being cruel and mean. Sometimes, negative reviews can help authors correct their errors, so they can be a good thing if the criticism is presented in a helpful way.

Who is your biggest supporter?
That’s a tough one, because some of the ladies in my street team, Kitten’s Feisty Felines, work really hard for me, and more importantly, they love my stories. But I think that my PA, Shanna Blanton, probably loves my books more than anyone else, and she pimps me like a little crazy person! Ha! Love & big hugs to Shanna and my team!

Of all the books that you have written, are any of them based on real-life experiences?
Yes. Well, parts of them. In Keeping Secrets, Abbie was raped by a close friend back in college. Then she is attacked and beaten by her ex-boyfriend. I’ve experienced both rape and domestic violence. Murder plays a big part in that series, and though I haven’t been involved in that personally (thank God!), two of my grandfather’s brothers were murdered ten years apart.
(I’ll be finishing my NOVEL about that hopefully later this year or next year. While doing research for it, I found evidence that confirmed my beliefs that people in power back then, including the police, played a part in the cover-up and possibly the murder itself of one of those men. For that reason, I decided it could be dangerous for my family and me to write it as true crime.)

What advice would you give to new authors that are just starting out?
Don’t let anything stand in your way. If you have that burning desire in you to write, do it. Make time. But don’t publish anything you don’t feel good about. If you don’t think it’s awesome, chances are pretty good that no one else will, either. Keep working on it, until it feels good.

And get a GOOD editor. Get references from them and check their recent work. And remember that overall, you get what you pay for. You can get a book ‘edited’ for $100, but your chances of getting a good edit for that are zero. You have a better chance of being struck by lightning. Editing is a time-consuming project, which takes a lot of concentration, and no editor is perfect. But there are many people out there who are calling themselves ‘editors,’ ripping off unsuspecting authors, allowing them to publish books that look completely unprofessional. That really makes me angry. So beware.

Oh, and your cover is extremely important, too! Unless you’re a good graphic artist, have your cover professionally created.

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