DEB: Renee, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
RENEE: Certainly. I'm an Official Court Reporter by day. That means I'm in charge of creating and maintaining a verbatim of all superior court proceedings. By night, I'm a Paranormal Romance, and Urban Fantasy, author. Yes, I truly am obsessed with the written word!
DEB: Tell us a little bit about your book, Moonlight Bleu?
RENEE: Moonlight Bleu is a new paranormal world where an immortal woman's search for her genetic origin places her squarely in harm's way, not one but two men possess amazing psychic abilities that help keep the mortal population safe from other preternatural creatures that don't play by the rules, and a love triangle that offers soul mate's a match - if they're brave enough to take a chance.
DEB: What was your inspiration for this book? Have you always been interested in Psychic abilities or the paranormal?
RENEE: I'll answer the questions in reverse order. Yes, I've always been interested in psychic abilities and anything having to do with the paranormal phenomenon. As a child I devoured books about time travel, magic, faeries, and otherworldly creatures. With so many unexplained things happening in our world every day, how could I not believe?
The inspiration for Moonlight Bleu was combination of things. I read. A lot. And I read quickly. So about five years ago, I ran out of books to read by my favorite authors and decided to write a book I'd want to read. (Remember, this was before the paranormal wave hit. Now there are many fantastic authors writing in the paranormal genre!)
Then a close friend of mine gave me a picture of Priest Lake. It was a night shot. A full moon hung over the water. Trees lined the shore. Everything sparkled with blue light. My imagination caught fire, and a scene in the book, as well as the book's title, were born.
DEB: What type of research did you do for your book?
RENEE: Oh my. I read books about gems and crystals and their use in healing. Books about human aura and chakras. Books about color energy, out of body experiences, and reincarnation. Herb encyclopedias and dream dictionaries were also helpful. Then of course, I read as many fiction books in the paranormal genre I could get my hands on. That part of the research counted as mixing business with pleasure!
DEB: What is your normal writing day like? Do you have things that have to be in place for you to write comfortably?
RENEE: I don't know that I have a normal writing day. My schedule is pretty hectic. So, I squeeze in writing time every chance I get. Some days I write early in the morning, while my family's still asleep. Other days I type away furiously during my lunch hour. Occasionally I get a little time after dinner - if I'm not doing anything with my family.
I'm definitely a sensory writer. Whenever possible I like a vanilla or cinnamon/cranberry scented candle. It's not a necessary ritual in order for me to write, but the flame and aroma are soothing. Helps me relax and slip into the other space in my head.
DEB: What was it like when you got the word that your first novel would be published?
RENEE: I drew a breath and utter stillness filled me. All my senses shut down. A few moments passed, and a sob of laughter broke the well of silence. Validation. After all my hard work and nearly a hundred rejection letters, I'd found a publisher that loved my book and wanted to publish it. I rode a high of all-encompassing joy for weeks.
DEB: Do you have any advice for new writers?
RENEE: Stay true to your voice.
Learning technique and craft is essential to create a well-written story. Technique and craft can be taught and that part of writing is a never-ending process - especially when an author always strives to improve as a writer. But don't ever compromise your voice. Your imagination. The part that allows a writer to tell a story that's uniquely their own. The market drives sales. Stories drive the market. Tell your story.
DEB: When you're not writing what kinds of books do you like to read? Do you have a favorite author?
RENEE: I love to read Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance. I also read horror and suspense. I don't have a favorite author. There are too many to choose just one. I do have a "keeper's" shelf. Those authors include: Rachel Caine. Jennifer Estep. Patricia Briggs. Gena Showalter. Rachel Vincent. Dakota Banks. Jacqueline Carey. Maria Snyder. Shannon K. Butcher. Laurell K. Hamilton. Margaret George. Dean Koontz. John Sanford. (Of course, then there's the YA shelf!)
DEB: What are you working on right now?
RENEE: The second book in the Tueri Psychic series has already been written and is in the editing stages right now. Saari, Dhelis, and Brogan are working on their Trigonal Match, and Josie has definite plans to interfere with their burgeoning relationship. I've started writing book three of the Tueri Psychic series. Maurika's character is back and plays a larger part of this storyline.
I'm also working on a young adult paranormal novel. A teenage girl sees things reflected in mirrors or glass. She doesn't talk about what she sees. Then a boy at school gets hurt and starts to see things too. They discover together, that they might be able to make them go away.
DEB: Tell us one thing people may not know about you?
RENEE: I'm terrified of walking on piers. Looking between the planks and seeing the ocean water move freaks me out. Maybe I shouldn't have read Jaws when I was nine!
The author has generously provided an autographed copy of her book, Moonlight Bleu for giveaway. This book will be sent out from me to one lucky winner, chosen by random.org. The rules are simple:
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3.) The giveaway deadline will be Midnight EST, November 24th.
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