Monday, November 26, 2012

WINNER and Time Vortexes (Vortices?)

So . . . something weird happened last week. Last Monday I was walking down the sidewalk on my way home to announce a winner for the Lesley Livingston contest when suddenly a time lord (who looked remarkably like David Tennant) swooped down and carried me away! We had several amazing adventures that I can't tell you about (lest I have to kill you) but when David dropped me back onto earth is wasn't last Monday, but today! So a week of my life was sucked into some kind of time vortex, never to be seen again.

And that is why this announcement is a week late.

Honest! Do you doubt me?


Anyway, thank you everyone for reading and commenting on the STARLING giveaway! The winner is:

June G of Paranormalists! June, please drop me an email at aprilynne pike at gee mail dot com with you full name and address so I can get STARLING right in the mail to you!

I was going to tell you how my Thanksgiving went and how I managed to feed over fifty people at my house, but I can't, because that week of my life disappeared. *shifty eyes*


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Lesley Livingston's STARLING, Q&A and Giveaway!

I am so excited to have a Q&A today with one of my very favorite authors, Lesley Livingston! (Seriously, if you ever get a chance to spend a bit of time with her, do it! You won't regret it!)

Lesley has a new book out--the first of a new series, yay!--called Starling and I am lucky enough to be one of the stop on her blog tour!

 So let's jump right it!

Hi Lesley! Nice to have you here. What? Oh yes, I am looking lovely today, thanks for noticing. Oh, I look brilliant and thin besides? Your eyes are clearly working very well. But enough about me, for the moment, we're here to talk about you. And your book! 

It's looking quite lovely today too.

So I'm just going to jump right into setting, which most people think is boring, but not when it's New York City. This is your second series set in NYC (which I am completely in support of.) I just wondered if there was a reason you are so drawn to that area. Other than the subway which, in my opinion, is borderline magical.

The subway is a magical mystery tour, isn’t it? I’m always a bit mystified—and pleasantly surprised—when I actually arrive at the destination I intended by that method. It’s all terribly esoteric and (I suspect) involves travel between dimensions.

As for the city? Ah… You know what they say Aprilynne (aside from saying you really are looking quite lovely today—which is true!). “New York, New York…” It really is a hell of a town. Which, for the purposes of this particular series, is enormously useful. With the WONDROUS STRANGE series, during my research phase I would routinely stumble across real, historical details of the city that struck me with wonder and awe. With STARLING, my research filled me with… well, eerie tingles and foreboding (and wonder and awe). The history of the city is crammed with obscure factoids and tangled tales that make it such fertile ground for telling the kind of stories that I do—especially when I manage to unearth (quite literally, in some cases) real historical details that lend themselves nicely to the idea that a kind of arcane mystical “Bermuda Triangle” exists right in the heart of the city! Very handy!

So let's talk about Mason. I actually see a lot of you in her--maybe that's just because I am lucky enough to personally know you. Or maybe I see similarities where they don't actually exist.;) In what ways do you feel similar to Mason and conversely, how are you different?

You must mean my staggering good looks, yes? Why thank you! I do see a slight resemblance… the sparkling blue eyes… um… the… raven hair… the… tall… er… personality! Yes! The tall, plucky, quiet-yet-intuitive, subtle-witted, determined, do-or-die personality. Or maybe it’s just the fact that we both really like to play with swords *evil grin*.

And on to our brave hero. Tell us how hot Fenn is. I mean, tell us what you think makes him a great compliment to Mason.

Oh. Um. Do you mean, like, in Scoville Units?

*waits here while readers unfamiliar with spicy pepper terminology take to the google-nets*…

I’m gonna say “Ghost Chile” hot!

*waits for more google-pedia-ing*…

Now, I might be somewhat biased but, then, I also have an advantage. The Fennrys Wolf tends to hang around in my head a lot so I’m fairly familiar with his hotness factor. But I think the thing that makes him a great match for Mason is, for one thing, he respects her—her skill and her spirit. He also appreciates her dry, quiet sense of humor (it’s a good match with his own) and her willingness to go out on a limb to help a (naked) stranger. Fenn might not remember much about his past, but he does know he’s previously screwed up in the relationship arena—that much he remembers (vaguely)—and he’s determined not to jeapordize his tenuous bond with Mason in the hopes that it could develop into something more. Of course… they both have to stay alive long enough for that to happen…

Norse mythology. It's just an area of mythos that we don't see often in the mainstream. Or if we do, it's been very European-ized, if you know what I mean. So it's fun to see it come to life in Starling. What is it that drew you to the Norse mythology and what is your favorite part of it?

I do know what you mean! And I’m glad you enjoyed STARLING’s take on it! There’s something so intriguing to me about Norse mythology’s cheerful fatalism. It’s the spiritual embodiment of a people that clearly reveled in life and living but lived in a very harsh and unforgiving environment. It’s Life and Death, hand in hand, whistling and skipping along (and hacking the heads off anything in their way!), and it’s bizzarely alluring in that respect. The fact that it celebrates and, at the same time vilifies a guy like Loki—and never really lets you know which one is the real deal—intrigues me. Also, if you’ve ever seen pictures from those Icelandic volcanic eruptions, the ones where the sky is literally exploding with fire, ice, thunderclouds, lightning and the Aurora Borealis all at the same time, you can begin to understand where a lot of the imagery of these tales comes from.

I just spent a few days north of the Arctic Circle here in Canada and the landscape is so evocative. The Northern Lights are bewitching and the sky is full of ravens the size of pterydactyls. It’s easy to begin to grasp the origins of these myths in a place like that. But what was really fun for me was being able to take those primal, muscular tales and transmute them and filter them through the lens of a thoroughly sleek and modern setting like New York City.

And last but not least, and I mean that quite literally--let me take a calming breath first--Lesley, the ending. Seriously? Are you trying to kill me? Do you at least feel bad for torturing me? And, at the very least, can you tell me when the second book will be coming out so I get my hot little hands on it?

Oh. Uh… oh yeah. Sorry, Aprilynne. I really really feel… dreadful. For that. Sorry. What? I am not grinning diabolically. It’s… uh… face yoga. All the rage.

Is August 2013 soon enough? How about if I smile charmingly when I say that…? And give you a cookie…
It’s a good cookie…
It’s chocolate…

It had better be one seriously good cookie. Good. Cookie.

While Lesley is off baking the best darn cookie ever, you can win a copy of STARLING!!! Super-duper easy (because I am doing a bunch of traveling and don't have much time, eeep!), please comment with some rendition of "This is my entry for the contest" below. You have until Sunday night at midnight (because that is when i am getting home from Las Vegas, not seriously, it will be about midnight . . .) to enter and I will ship this baby internationally, so it is open to everyone! 

Lesley, is that cookie done yet?