Thursday, September 13, 2012

Jennifer Harlow Guest Post and To Catch a Vampire Giveaway

At Christmas dinner this year, the entire family plus some of my brother's friends were around the table just chatting. Conversation turned to me and my book. My oldest youngest brother Ryan, who like all my brothers has not read Mind Over Monsters, jokingly said he was going to read it just so he could see what character I made him so he could sue me for defamation of character when I start making my millions. (If only.) Not missing a beat, I said, "But darling, you're not in it. None of you are." He seemed put off by this. All of those who hadn't read it seemed to feel the same. I just kept on eating.

One myth about writers is that we use our own lives and the people in them for material. In part this is true, but for me not to a huge extent. Sadly I don't run around every day with hot guys saving people's lives with a machete. (Only every other Sunday.) 

No, most of my life is spent in libraries alone writing, and the majority of my friends and family are equally as dull as I am. Us Harlow's are a lazy bunch who would much rather spend New Year's Eve watching TV together and drinking Absinthe then passing out before the ball even drops. (I still have a hangover.) The closest thing to a real person from my life I used was my best friend Shirley for Bea's best friend April, who is of Hispanic and a stylist. (Though when I wrote the book Shirley wasn't even in beauty school but has since graduated. Am I psychic? I hope not.) So no, I don't really use real people in my life as templates, but I do use real fake people. "Huh" you're asking yourself. Let me explain.

I have a very strange writing process to say the least. Since I was a child I've had insomnia. It usually takes me two hours to fall asleep every night, so in an attempt to stay sane I started creating stories in my mind that play like a movie. Movies need actors. So I cast my movie with actors I like at the time. 

So yes, Will, Oliver, Bea, even Andrew are at least in part based on real people, or at least the characters they play in movies or shows that captured my interest. Basically I ask myself if this was a real movie who would I want to play X?

Who best embodies X? Or really I ask myself, in my fantasy world, who would I want to flirt with/kill/shag tonight? And then once I cast it, I ask myself what about that actor do I like about them or the character they play that would translate into my characters? So though my characters are based in part on real people, up to this point I have not met said people, so I only have my construct of them so they're real but not real. An avatar of the actor waiting to be filled with what I want/need for the character, which let's face it is what an actor's job is. It's my fantasy, so I use my fantasy people.

So I do not see any lawsuits from friends and family in my future. And should my stuff ever be turned into a movie (God willing) I have the cast list ready. What about you? Do you use your friends and family as inspiration in your writing? For those of you who read Mind Over Monsters, can you guess who Bea, Will, and Oliver are? I'll give you a hint: Bea is a TV doctor in Seattle, Will is a Geek God, and Oliver is gonna look great in tights next year. Speculate away.

September 1 Tour Launch 
Fang-tastic Books

Sept 1 review 
WTF Are You Reading?

September 3 Guest blog

September 4 Review
Nazish Reads

September 6 guest blog and review
Keeping Up With The Rheinlander's

September 7 Guest Blog and review
Urban Fantasy Investigations

September 8 Promo and review
whoopeeyoo :D

September 9 Interview and review
Book Maven

September 11 Interview
Sultry Storyteller

September 12 Interview
Roxanne’s Realm

September 13 Guest blog
The Creatively Green Write at Home Mom

September 15 Guest blog
Just Another Rabid Reader  

September 18 review
Doctor's Notes

September 19 Interview

Sept 21 Guest blog and Review
Urban Girl Reader 

To Catch a Vampire
Jennifer Harlow
A F.R.E.A.K.S. Squad Investigation #2

Genre: Paranormal Mystery/Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Midnight Ink            
Date of Publication:  9/8/12
ISBN: 978-0-7387-2711-0

Number of pages: 288
Word Count: 78,000


F.R.E.A.K.S. Do Dallas

Beatrice Alexander, telekinetic special agent, is still adjusting to life among the F.R.E.A.K.S. while wiping out zombies and other supernatural threats. When Bea learns about her “special assignment” investigating a series of human disappearances with Oliver Montrose, her gorgeous but annoying vampire co-worker, she reluctantly agrees to go undercover.

Disguised as a married couple, they infiltrate the gothic vamp scene in Dallas. While sniffing out clues, Oliver's convincing public—and not so public—displays of affection have Bea swooning in her bustier and fishnets.

Between contending with her fake husband’s ex-lover Marianna and feeling guilty for hiding the mission from her werewolf crush Will, Bea discovers she’s not the only F.R.E.A.K. keeping secrets. Clubbing with the undead turns bloody when Oliver's old enemy, the Lord of Dallas, decides to seek his revenge. Caught in the crossfire, Bea is up to her neck in blood-sucking trouble.

About Jennifer Harlow:
Jennifer Harlow spent her restless childhood fighting with her three brothers and scaring the heck out of herself with horror movies and books. She grew up to earn a degree at the University of Virginia which she put to use as a radio DJ, crisis hotline volunteer, bookseller, lab assistant, wedding coordinator, and government investigator. Currently she calls Northern Virginia home but that restless itch is ever present. In her free time she continues to scare the beejepers out of herself watching scary movies and opening her credit card bills.

Visit Jennifer at

Tales From the Darkside Blog

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1 comment:

Phoenix Carvelli said...

I think it is great how you decide on your cast of characters. This series is on my TBR List. I can't wait to read them!
Thank you for the giveaway.