Tuesday, June 9, 2009
AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT: J. HALI STEELE
Jenny: Hi, Joann. Why don't you introduce yourself and tell us a little about you.
Joann: Hi, Jenny, I'm really excited to be here. Where should I start? I was born and raised in SE Pennsylvania. Worked most of my life in the clerical end of the corporate world. I have a grown son and four furfriends. Guess the cats are my new children. Or I'm their child. We're still working that one out! *g* I like to travel and when I'm home I spend most of my time writing or reading and when I'm not doing that I'm with my sisters just hanging out.
Jenny: What inspired you to write your first romance?
Joann: Don't laugh. The TV series Beauty and the Beast. I know it's weird, but I always felt the leading character, Vincent, who looked like a lion, should have had a much better girlfriend. My first serious work started out getting him an honest to goodness heroine but it morphed into vampyre cats. LOL I've always loved writing and started with poetry and it grew from there.
Jenny: What's currently on your iPod/mp3 player/cd player?
Joann: I have an iPhone without a song on it! I listen to Soundscapes a lot. It's my favorite music to write by. Something about the sound of nature that's inspirtional and soothing. On my cd player at home and in the car it's my techno tango collection which includes Gotan Project and Tanghetto. Nina Simone's usually mixed in there somewhere. And then there's Enigma. I guess my taste veers all over the place. LOL.
Jenny: Describe a typical (or non-typical) writing day?
Joann: Lately I've had a few of both, what with jury duty and a fried computer. But typical would be up early, start the coffee pot, feed the cats and then I'm at the computer. I try to stick to a schedule but it doesn't always work. I usually begin by going through email, visit facebook, myspace. I have a few blogs I like to check on and then I start writing. Lunch gets fit in there somewhere.
Jenny: What's the one question no one ever asks that you wish they would?
Joann: "What's your feeling on spay and neuter?" I'm one hundred and ten percent for it. Just something I believe in strongly.
Jenny: What's your favorite setting from one of your novels?
Joann: I'm working on a novel now that takes place around the everglades. The swamp with Spanish Moss is so mysterious. I've visited that area a couple times and really thought it was beautiful and romantic. And there's the high desert. Cactus, Joshua trees, flat and wide open. Snakes and spiders. *g* I'd be hard pressed to pick a favorite between the two of them.
Jenny: What do you think makes the idea heroine/hero?
Joann: The ideal hero? Hmm... Strong, handsome, lots of hair on his head and some on his chest. He's got to have just a few morals, enough to keep him 'good'. He's got to be a little sarcastic and above all not take any mess from anybody. A heroine, well, she's just got to be whatever the hero wants her to be. But she's got to give him hell now and then.
Jenny: What are you working on at the moment?
Joann: Archangels. Erotic angels. They're a pretty interesting group. They've got to come spend time on earth to better learn to deal with humans who've made quite a mess of what the good lord gave them. They have to become more like men. Which isn't a good thing for an angel.
Jenny: Which comes first--the plot or the characters?
Joann: Character's come first for me. I get an idea in my head about a character that lives and brews there for a while. When I'm ready to let them out, I'll usually jot down a brief outline, a synopsis, of their story. Once I start writing, the characters certainly take over.
Jenny: Any new releases coming up?
Joann: As it happens, I have two this month. SCREWED, a menage where my heroine, Purple P Rose, is a private eye whose boyfriend is bi, and she has a run in with a vampyre who decides he wants her to be his. She's quite the interesting character and together the three of them are pretty exciting. It will be released by Changeling Press on June 12th and there's HARD CASE from Ellora's Cave arrives on June 17th. Case is a white lion infected with vampyre blood. He has the ability to be both but has lived most of his life as a vampyre. He's the owner of a string of voyeur clubs and has found himself falling for the manager at his newest place. She's a snow leopard shifter who doesn't like lions. Two very exciting and different stories.
You can see more of J. Hali Steele at www.jhalisteele.com
Read on for a brief excerpt from J. Hali Steele's new novel, Screwed...
Purple P. Rose is a brash private investigator. Her latest case has her visiting the city’s seediest nightspot, the Mons Venus, with partner and boyfriend, Richard E. Rection. Their new case is full of surprises. Dick discovers he’s bisexual and is worried Purp won’t like it.
They are both unaware there’s a new and sinister being in town -- Peter Hard, a vampyre who enjoys the taste of women and men alike. He’s chosen Purple to be his. Ready to claim her, he uses his powers to coerce Dick to bring him in as a partner.
Their lives will never be the same again.