Monday, October 27, 2014

Interview and Giveaway with Jen Colly

Please share a little about yourself, your genres, any other pen names you use.

Hey there, I'm Jen. I'm from a small town in Northwest Ohio, and get a kick out of the reactions from people when I tell them I write about vampires. That genre seems to be the last thing anyone would expect from me.

Tell us a little about your latest or upcoming release.

In the Dark is the first novel in the series, The Cities Below. When Faith discovers Soren is a vampire, both their lives are uprooted. By vampire law, Soren cannot allow a human to run free in the world with knowledge of his species. He must either keep her or kill her. Having no desire to kill an innocent human, he keeps her. Faith has no choice but to go with him, allowing him to lead her into his underground city outside of Paris. While Faith is certain she can pull off an escape from one man, escape from an entire city seems impossible. That doesn’t mean she isn’t going to try.

Are you a mom (or parent)?

Yes, I am a mother of two. Sofia is 9, and Roger is 3.

If yes, do you find it hard to juggle writing and parenting?

Absolutely. I work forty hours a week, and when I get home, I have two hours with my kids. That's it. Two hours to feed them, do homework, pop them into the tub, read to the boy, then toss them into bed. Once they're tucked in, I get about an hour and a half of writing in before I have to send myself to bed. Nobody likes grouchy zombie mom.  

Have you ever based your book or characters on actual events or people from your own life?

From my life...not intentionally. I've noticed similarities squeeze their way in, but since the people in my life are a massive part of my life experiences and perceptions, that's just bound to happen. Actual events? The Cities Below series is centralized in Paris, featuring underground vampires cities. With the phantom and a lake beneath the opera house, how could I resist? Don't worry, no one sings.

Is there a theme or message in your work that you would like readers to connect to?

Vampires fear humans and the destruction they are fully capable of bringing to their doorstep, and when the human heroine is brought into the vampire city, her presence causes quite the stir. While some are in an uproar, others are very accepting of the person she is rather than focusing on her species. They underlying theme is acceptance and understanding, and it runs throughout the series in one form or another.

What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?

I hated to read when I was in school, beginning with the first BOOK IT! program and continuing on through high school. My mother even attempted to pay me to read...I think she'd promised $5 a book. I dug in my heels and refused. I was stubborn. The whole thing wasn't about reading at all. I just didn't like being told what to do. When I was in my early twenties, I started reading again on my terms.  

When you're not writing what do you do? Do you have any hobbies or guilty pleasures?

Total pleasure with no guilt. I like to hop into my 1982 El Camino (Dukes of Hazzard orange, trimmed in black), blast some Poison, and pretend I'm cool.

Is there a genre(s) that you'd like to write that you haven't tackled yet?

Actually, not at this point. Everything I enjoy on a personal level, I'm already writing. Paranormal, fantasy, sci fi, western, historical, and contemporary. My plate is full right now, but one day I might stray into another genre.

Of all the characters you've ever written, who is your favorite and why?

This was a tough question. I almost picked my favorite kick butt heroine, but I have to go with Jovan Nicolen. You'll catch a glimpse of him in In the Dark, and later he'll have his own story. He's a favorite because I know him so well. Some days I feel as if I've raised him. I've watched him play through the corridors as a child, helped him through the loss of loved ones, dealt with his temper and rebellion, taught him lessons, cried when he ran away from home to seek vengeance, and... Well, I can't tell you that last part yet. Spoilers.  

If this book is part of a series...what is the next book? Any details you can share?

The second book of the The Cities Below series is Bound. This story takes you to a different underground city, and this one has problems. Not everyone believes the lady has the right to rule, and after an onslaught of attempts on her life, Lady Arianne came to Keir in prison, and they struck a deal. She secretly freed Keir from his cell, saved him from the executioner, but according to records he was killed in prison. Night and day, now he tracks assassins back to their beds, eliminating the threat to her. Secrets kill, and Keir is the lady’s darkest secret.

Cleopatra’s privileged life couldn’t prepare her for a man dropping at her feet, bleeding out and dying. Judging by his scruffy appearance, the man is a commoner. She is not to speak with, let alone touch, those of a lower class. She can’t watch his life blink out before her eyes, though, and so breaks the rules, risking her life and future to save the dying stranger. And when she finds out her handsome stranger is the lady's assassin? Well, you'll just have to wait and see.

What is next for you? Do you have any scheduled upcoming releases or works in progress?

No dates are set in stone right now, but the series will continue. Bound is next, followed by Beneath the Night, and Sheltered.

In the Dark
The Cities Below
Book 1
Jen Colly

Genre: Romance, Sci Fi & Fantasy

Publisher: Kensington Publishing/Lyrical Press

Date of Publication: November 3, 2014

ISBN: 9781616505196

Number of pages: 190
Word Count: 60,000

Cover Artist: Renee Rocco

Book Description:

Soren and Faith must find a way to survive the evil and darkness.

Faith’s spur of the moment vacation, meant to free her and boost her spirits, has left her lost on the streets of Paris. And apparently, Paris is populated with something more than just humans. Vampires, suave, seductive and oh so sexy, and one such warrior vampire has set his sights on her.

When Soren hears Faith’s terrified screams, he rushes in and saves her life without considering the consequences. Two problems: one, she’s a human and clearly aware of his vampire qualities, and two, the men who attacked her were not men at all, but demons. Their target, his beloved underground city of Balinese. He can never let Faith go home again, but can she learn to love his him?

Available at Amazon

About the Author:

Jen Colly is the rare case of an author who rebelled against reading assignments throughout her school years. Now she prefers reading books in a series, which has led her to writing her first paranormal romance series The Cities Below. She will write about anything that catches her fancy, though truth be told, her weaknesses are pirates and vampires. She lives in Ohio with her supportive husband, two kids, one big fluffy dog, and four rescued cats.

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1 comment:

Jen Colly said...

Thanks so much for having me. These questions were a blast to answer. :)