Author Ally Shields Character Interview and $40.00 Amazon Gift Card Contest LIVE Here!

Awakening the Fire (Guardian Witch) by Ally ShieldsMany thanks to Bitten By Books for inviting me to visit today and introduce my Guardian Witch series. Since meeting my 23-year-old witch seemed like a logical first step, I tracked her down at the Magic Hall, where she reports to her bosses.

“Wow, this is more impressive than I imagined!” I said, looking around. Even though I had written about the stone hall in my books, it’s imposing thirteenth century style took me by surprise. It was gothic looking.

The slender, athletic blonde striding next to me didn’t comment. I guess she wasn’t into chitchat, more the action type.

She threw opens a heavy wood door, and I sat at the conference table inside. Before joining me, she poured us coffee from a pot. “What exactly do you need to know?” she asked, her green eyes gleaming with speculation.

“Just tell our readers about yourself.” I opened my laptop on the table. “Start talking, and I’ll type.”

“My name’s Ari Calin. I’m a supernatural cop, and I catch bad guys.” She crossed one jeans-clad leg over the other. The jeans and t-shirt were black, matching the boots.

I looked at her. “More?”

She sighed, frowning slightly. “Okay, but isn’t this stuff in the books? I’m a practicing fire witch from an ancient bloodline of Calin witches. But I was also born with the birthmark.” She pointed to her ankle. “It’s a crescent moon. That meant I was destined to be a guardian for the Magic Council, the officials of the Otherworld. Besides witchcraft, I’m trained in martial arts and weaponry. Now I patrol the streets of Olde Town, the district where most of the vampires live.”

“Talk about the weapons, especially your witch fire.”

She shrugged. “When necessary, I can shoot magical fire from my fingertips.” Ari raised one hand and wiggled her fingers, producing a ball of sparks.

I nodded, suitably impressed.

“It’s handy, but mostly I use these.” She slid a silver dagger from a waist sheath and laid it on the table. While I paused my typing to stare at the wicked-looking blade, she retrieved a derringer from her ankle holster. “This is loaded with silver bullets. And, of course, I always carry protection charms.” She jingled her bracelet and identified each trinket. “Silver cross, vial of holy water, a healing seed, and these are amulets. My Great-Gran gave me this.”

“I can see you know how to take care of yourself. Do you always work alone?”

“Um, yeah, when I can. It’s easier. You get to make your own rules. But if humans are involved, I partner with this human cop. Actually, Ryan’s pretty cool. And cute.” Her eyes crinkled, and she grinned with mischief. “Be sure to write that last part down. He’ll hate it.”

I smiled and made a note. “So, what do you do when you’re not working? Do you date? Party?”

“Well, sure. I hang out with my BFF, Claris. Date now and then. But I’m always on call—24/7, and I get interrupted a lot.”

As if on cue, her cell phone rang. She looked at the ID, and her cop face slid into place. Several heartbeats ticked off as she listened to the caller. “Sorry,” she said to me, popping to her feet. “A fight on the vampire strip. I’m off.” She grabbed her weapons from the table and sprinted out the door.

I closed the laptop shaking my head. Getting Ari to talk was almost as bad as catching her. I couldn’t really complain though. Every time she got called away like this, I had the beginnings of a new story!

Author Bio:

Ally Shields was born and raised in the Midwest, along the Mississippi River, the setting for her urban fantasy series. After working as a lawyer and a juvenile court officer, she turned to full-time writing. When not at the keyboard working on the next adventure (or on Twitter), she enjoys family events, traveling or playing with her Miniature Pinscher dog, Ranger.

Awakening the Fire (available now) is the debut novel in the Guardian Witch series. Fire Within (Book Two) will be released Dec. 14, 2012.

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  1. Ally thank you for visiting here today, enhoyed your post 🙂

  2. a friend posted an author site once for me and I fell in love with PAranormal books

    • Dina, I was also introduced to paranormal by a friend, but it was through the Buffy TV show! 😀 I started reading books then and was absolutely hooked by the great writers!

  3. Robert L. Stubbs Jr.

    Hello Ally Thank you for stopping by.

    What places do you find that you are your most creative?

    • I never seem to have trouble writing about these characters, but if I get stuck on a scene, I hop on the treadmill and put on the headphones of my MP3 player. It gets me going every time!

  4. Hey Ally!

    I’m curious. Did you base Ari off of anyone you know? I always love that question because there are so many amazing people out there who influence our lives, often times characters are tiny pieces of our favorite people all mashed together! 😉

    I RSVPed a few days ago! woot!

  5. Stops in for a big Etopia hug! Congrats, Ally! 🙂 Where does your witchy inspiration come from? Er….you know what I mean! 🙂

    • Ari invented herself! I didn’t start out to write a paranormal, but when Ari announced she was a witch – well, what’s an author to do?!?! Of course, I read the genre, and I have a wiccan friend or two! 😀

  6. Robert L. Stubbs Jr.

    If I could have only one supernatural power what would it be?

    I would choose either teleportation or phasing through objects..

  7. I would want to be a shapeshifter! That would be amazing, to live as a tiger or a bird of prey for a day.

  8. If I could only have one supernatural power, I think it would be the ability to heal sickness. There are so many wonderful people out there who are battling illnesses that modern medicine can’t contend with. It would be a great joy to keep families together. 🙂

  9. My English teacher in high school introduced me to paranormal creatures when we studied The Odyssey. It was the first time I was ever really interested in literature.

    • I applaud your creative English teacher. Too many get hung up on traditional books and genres. I love to see someone think outside the box!

  10. I love the sound of this series. I’ve definitely been missing out. And Ari sounds like just my kind of kick-butt heroine. 😉 So let me ask, Who are some of your favorite authors that you might sometime in the future enjoy having an anthology with? Congrats on Awakening the Fire and Happy Holidays.

    • Oooh, this one is easy! Laurell K. Hamilto (if she’d stick with early Anita), Kim Harrison, Patricia Briggs. Okay, I’ll stop there, but I could go on and on. There are so many really good ones!

  11. My pick for supernatural species is vampire. But being a shapeshifter is a close 2nd.

  12. If I could have one power, I would pick the power to heal others. I have so many friends and family members who could benefit from that power. Not to mention the wonderful feeling I would get from walking through the children’s ward at the hospital and sending them all home for Christmas.

  13. My folks encouraged me to read early. My father actually taught me using comic books. From there I read Nancy Drew, etc. When I got older I looked for fantasy, paranormal books on my own. My favorite became and still is Paranormal Romance/ Urban Fantasy.

    • Sorry, LadyVampire, that reply should have gone to you. I’ll try again –

      Reading opens so many worlds for kids. I come from a family that encourages reading and put no restrictions on what I read. I love paranormal, romances, mysteries, & thrillers. I guess that shows in what I write!

  14. Reading opens so many worlds for kids. I come from a family that encourages reading and put no restrictions on what I read. I love paranormal, romances, mysteries, & thrillers. I guess that shows in what I write!

  15. I would love to shapeshift. Lol real original right?

  16. How long did the story bug you for before you gave in and wrote it down?

    • Since I didn’t sit down to write this story, this is a hard question to answer. I thought I was going to write a regular mystery, and this story just evolved. The first draft took me about four months, but re-writing and revising, including switching from lst to 3rd person took me almost three years, off and on. I was also writing two of the sequels during that time and a couple of thrillers. I can do a draft much more quickly now. 🙂

  17. Ally, Ari is one fascinating MC. Of all her traits, which are your favorites!

    • Now that’s an interesting question. Thanks for asking. I think it’s her loyalty to her friends and her job. Anybody can be a bad-ass, but Ari does it with heart! Her ‘cases’ as a supernatural cop are personal for her.

  18. How many books will there be in the series?

    • Hi, Joanne!
      Right now I have a story arc for seven books and four of them are written. I have completed a few chapters of number five. Book two, Fire Within, will be released next Friday, and book three sometime in the Spring. Thanks for asking!

  19. I have to agree with you about loyalty in Ari. Makes her one appealing character.
    How about hunky Andreas? I just will NOT ask what is your favorite part about him. I won’t.
    Really what is his most appealing trait to you?

    • Hmm, since you’ve excluded certain answers :-D, I guess I’d have to say the feeling of mystery that surrounds Andreas. Aren’t we all intrigued by the unknown? I’m also fascinated by how he has retained large pieces of his humanity. I’m still learning things about him, and as I already mentioned, I’m currently writing book five!

  20. Looks great, Ally. What project are you working on next?

    • Thanks, Sara! Next project is to keep writing this series. I’ll finish writing book five, and edits on book three will be starting in the new year. When I have time, I also dabble with a thriller series.

  21. Do you have fun doing character interviews? They always seem like so much fun. I really like them because they give me a better idea of the book. Thank you.

  22. I’m very excited about five Ari books!!!
    Got to admit I just sent Awakening to my sister for Christmas. She’s not yet a paranormal fan, but she’s going to fall in love with strong Ari, and hunky Andreas!

    • Thank you, Kath! If you sent book one to your sister that must have been the new paperback version that is just out today! I was thrilled to see it listed on Amazon!

  23. Yes. I can’t resist a book you can hold in your hands.
    No pressure, but her birthday is in March. More of Ari’s series in paperback by then?

    • I’d love to help you with your gift giving, but I don’t control the time table! 🙂 It would be great!

  24. I don’t suppose Ari could have a ‘word’ with your wonderful publishers? 😉

  25. If you had the silvertongue ability (think of the movie/book – Brendan Fraiser) what would be the first book you’d grab? Who/what would you read out or would you read yourself in?

    • Oh, wow, now you’re making me think. Since Hamilton’s Guilty Pleasures is one of my favorite books, I might grab it and write my witch Ari in. I’d love to see Ari and Anita working together!

  26. Answer the Author’s Question – I’ve often thought being a supernatural with their incredible powers would be awesome, but choosing among them is hard. Would you want to be a witch or shapeshifter or something else, and why?

    Actually I would want to be an elf. But then I’m an elf geek (love drow and sylans) like dnd. OR I would want to be a druid. Friend tells me that I was a druid in another life and I’m so drawn to them

  27. Along those same lines, if you could only have one supernatural power, what would it be?

    TOUGH question. This changes from day to day. I think it would be neat to be able to heal… then I think it would be neat to have a gift as one character of mine. She cannot do magic but she can drain magic from a person or object. Mostly she focuses on evil or negative magic. She cannot keep the magic inside her overly long or else she gets really sick. She must purge the magic into something. By doing this the magic is pure. I think that would be a neat gift

  28. Who introduced you to urban fantasy or other paranormal fiction? Friends, movies, books, TV?

    Book friends. They showed a page to Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Talon character. I voiced an interest and viola. After that I was hooked. But then I was always into fae, druids, elves (friend introduced me to that)

    • Books open a lot of worlds for many of us. Tolkien’s middle earth and its inhabitants were friends of mine (thanks to ‘real’ friends) long before the movies.

  29. If you could travel back in time to an era to draw inspiration from, what would you choose?

    • There are many, but I am fascinated by Regency England and have incorporated than in minor ways in my series. It would be interesting to see the real thing.

  30. Who are your favorite paranormal writers?

    • Thanks for stopping by, Bonnie. I have many, but Laurell K. Hamilton (early Anita), Kim Harrison, Patricia Briggs, Charlaine Harris and Tanya Huff are some of my favorites.

  31. I was introduced to paranormal fiction through books and book reviews. It is my favorite type of fiction.

  32. If I were a supernatural, I would like to be a witch with multiple abilities. Mixing potions, casting spells, and flying would be a lot of fun.

    • Would you want a broom or wings or just a magical ability to teleport in some fashion? Any of them would be really fascinating to do – especially to have a birds-eye view of everything!

  33. If I could only have one supernatural power, I would like to have the ability to time travel.

  34. latisha depoortere

    What a great interview I love reading about paranormal it is my favorite!
    This sounds like such a great book can’t wait to read it!

  35. While doing reasearch for the book, did you learn any magic spells? If so, did you give any of them a go?

    • Actually, I read a ton of spells, but I haven’t tried any. I wonder if I could make my little dog talk . . . ?

  36. I’d be a witch, becuase then I could also be a shapeshifter with the right spell.

  37. Ari sounds like an interesting character! So what was your favorite scene in the book to write? (And I love the cover, btw!)

    • I can’t seem to hit the correct reply button, so I’m giving this a second go.

      The hardest scene to write was the initial meeting between Ari and Andreas, but my favorite was probably a scene in the vampire caverns under the city very late in the book. Without giving any of the story away, something happens there that I didn’t anticipate. I love it when my characters surprise me!
      (I had a wonderful cover artist, Annie Melton.)

  38. The hardest to write was the initial meeting between Ari and Andreas, but my favorite was probably a scene in the vampire caverns under the city very late in the book. Without giving any of the story away, something happens there that I didn’t anticipate. I love it when my characters surprise me!
    (I had a wonderful cover artist, Annie Melton.)

  39. I enjoy stories about witches. I find their special abilities really fun and I like how it’s used in your book. Being a cop that has special powers must come in handy indeed.

    • Ari was raised to rely on her Guardian powers rather than her witchcraft, so she’s just beginning to explore her witch powers. New things are emerging that she had no clue she could do!

  40. Ari, which power do you use most often in your pursuit of bad guys?

    • Sorry, Na, but Ari’s still out on that vampire call, so I’ll have to answer for her. Since her powers are still emerging, she hasn’t had a chance to test them all. So far, she likes the witch fire best, especially the stuns that she can use when she needs to get a bad guy’s ‘attention!’

  41. I would like to be a witch because it would be easiest for me to adjust to. I can focus on controlling my powers.

    I would love the power to time-travel. Of course, I’d also want to be able to travel back to my own time whenever.

    I’ve always liked paranormal stories and one of my earliest memories is being hooked to Buffy.

    • I think many people first walked through the paranormal door opened by the Buffy series. Were you an Angel or Spike fan? (Angel here!)

  42. If I could have one power, I think it would be to be a witch.

  43. I enjoyed your post. This character sounds great!

    • Thank you! She’s fun to write! Even though Ari is often impatient to get on to the next problem that needs to be solved! 🙂

  44. Where do you get your inspiration from? Is it clip, a mental image, something you hear or read. Your imagination?
    What’s your writing process?

    • Susan, it’s all of the above. It can be a single word that reminds me of something or gives me an idea totally unrelated. It could be another book or movie that causes me to think “what if?” When it gets hard, I brainstorm with someone – my son, a writer friend, etc.

      My writing process is to write every day! Sometimes its three hours, and others it’s fifteen plus, but it has to be every day. I even make writing time when on vacation! I start with the characters, and they walk me through it! Maybe not quite that easy, but close enough!

  45. If I could have only one supernatural power I’d like it to be healing.

  46. The library introduced me to paranormal fiction.

    • I spent half my childhood summers in the library (the other half was at the pool, my aunt’s farm or on a horse!). I took armloads of books home with me!

  47. What movie and/or book were you looking forward to this year that satisfied or surprised you the most?

    • The one I really want to see is The Hobbit, and I expect it to be extremely satisfying! I loved all of Tolkien’s books, including this one, although it wasn’t as good as the trilogy. I have high hopes for the movie!

  48. What’s the scariest thing you’ve ever done?

    • I’ve done a lot of scary things, Lisa. Most of them involve rescuing abused children.
      I can think of one or two pranks that turned into squeaky situations, but I’m not going into those! 🙂

  49. I’ve often thought being a supernatural with their incredible powers would be awesome, but choosing among them is hard. Would you want to be a witch or shape-shifter or something else, and why?
    Definitely a vamp. Then I might have a chance to read everything on my bookcases as I’d live forever

  50. Along those same lines, if you could only have one supernatural power, what would it be?
    To be invisible, then I could slip into a book store before they closed and spend all night reading.

  51. Who introduced you to urban fantasy or other paranormal fiction? Friends, movies, books, TV?
    I’ve read books since I was old enough to check them out at the library. And just naturally progressed to the paranormals after years of reading Gothic novels.

  52. I love Witchy books. LOVE LOVE LOVE!!
    Did you have to do much research to write this title? Know any practicing witches

    • Most books take research – the setting, weapons, cars, etc. Sometimes you do several hours of research for one paragraph in the novel.
      Yes, I know a couple of practicing wiccans, but I didn’t use them for research on the book, other than my observations over the years. I also have friends who dabble in the “New Age” area, which has some similarities. I have a collection of crystals I’ve gotten as gifts, and I have some protection stones.

  53. I’m glad you found the paranormals, Lisa, and I want to thank you for stopping by tonight.

  54. Stepping away from all things literary for a second- why did you name your dog Ranger?

    • He was named after the guy my friends and I thought Stephanie Plum should have chosen (from the Evanovich books)! 🙂

  55. What are your thoughts on audiobooks? Do you listen to them? Do you want yours to be available in that format?

    • I have listened to audio books on the treadmill or on long auto trips. I would love to have my books available in audio, but nothing is currently planned.

  56. Do you have any release day celebration? Dinner out, drinks, buying yourself a small gift, etc?

    • Release days are busy trying to get the word out, so there’s not much time for celebration. About a week later I will have dinner out with friends to toast the new book.

  57. Do you have writing rituals? Certain music…time of day…lucky piece of jewelry you wear when you write…etc.

    • If I’m on a deadline, I can write anytime, anyplace, but when I’m not under pressure, I prefer my office and a pot of coffee. The TV would be on in the background providing “white noise”, and I definitely prefer to write on my desktop, rather than the laptop. I sometimes use music to get in the mood for particular scenes, but generally it’s too distracting. I tend to sing along!!

  58. “I’ve often thought being a supernatural with their incredible powers would be awesome, but choosing among them is hard. Would you want to be a witch or shapeshifter or something else, and why?”

    I’d be a shapeshifter, for sure! I’ve always thought it would be so cool to become an animal for a while… 🙂

  59. “Along those same lines, if you could only have one supernatural power, what would it be?”

    -When I was younger, I always pretended I could momentarily stop time. Imagine how much easier that could make life!

  60. “Who introduced you to urban fantasy or other paranormal fiction? Friends, movies, books, TV?”
    Books! For sure. Charles DeLint and Emma Bull were among the first UF authors I read during my teen years, but I read UF-type books geared toward younger readers way before then. Can’t recall all their names, though.

  61. Great interview, Ally. I love this character and can’t wait to read the next book!!

  62. are the vampires the bad guys in this?
    and how many different types of creatures?
    love lots of paranormal creatures in books.

    • There are good and bad vampires and werewolves, and a few other types of shapeshifters, plus a wood nymph. The MC is a witch, her cop partner is human and the “other” guy is a vampire.

  63. I Would like to be a Shifter of some type and if you could shift into more then one creature then it would be really cool.

  64. if I could have just one power I would love to heal myself and others.

  65. Has your experience as a lawyer and a juvenile court officer helped you in your writing (character, plot, etc) in any way?

    • Absolutely! It has given me the background for the police procecural aspects and given me a peek into the criminal mind. This series is a blend of mystery and paranormal. While I can’t say I’ve met any vampires or shapeshifters, I have met some pretty unusual characters! Thanks for asking.

  66. Between witch and shapeshifter, I’d choose to be a shapeshifter as I could transform without needing to speak or rely on anything other than myself.
    If I could have only one supernatural power I’d choose healing as I could help so many others.
    My interest in paranormal started when I used to watch Twilight Zone and NIght Gallery on TV.

  67. I was a fan of the Twilight Zone, too. In fact, if it was strange or spooky, I probably watched it. 🙂

  68. Apart from writing, what other creative outlets do you pursue?

    • Writing takes up most of my “creative” time, but I love music and the occasional concert. When I can squeeze it in, I travel, especially to historical sites.

  69. Hi! 🙂 The first thing to pop in my head – was there ever a time where she popped off, and the adventure was something you soooo wanted to write about… but alas, she wouldn’t let you? 😉


    • Ooh, more questions! 🙂

      Powers – honestly, none (yeah, I’m boring even in a what if discussion! LOL). I figure being human is tough enough, why throw in any sort of supernatural power?

      type of being – but I guess if I had to pick one, I’d go with a witch – they can dress pretty darn nice (of course, this will depend on the type of witch – The Wicked Witch of the West, ah, just not my look) 😉

      who introduced – probably no one, per se… I mean, there was always some form of paranormal or fantasy type in my life, going back to the Wonder Woman reruns early on… but my true introduction to paranormal as it is really thought of – someone kept talking about this show they watched in this one college class I took, so I said, fine, I’ll check it out – and loved Fox Mulder ever since. And no, I’m not a shipper… probably the only one out there, but there you go. 😉


    • No, she does that to Eddie, the reporter in the series, all the time, but I’m managed to retain editorial control over her adventures! 🙂

  70. What was your favorite childhood book?

    • That’s actually a hard question because I read so many. Maybe The Black Stallion by Walter Farley. I devoured the entire series!

  71. Have ever written fan fiction? For what fandom?

  72. What introduced me to UF and paranormal fiction? I think it was Buffy TV series. I loved it and then started reading tie-in novels, and I fund that I liked reading paranormal as much as watching it, so I went looking for more.

  73. I think I’d like to be a witch, because casting spells is just so cool, and I would look like any other human:)

  74. I’ve always wanted to be able to move things with my mind.

  75. Do you write any other genre ? You must have a terrific imagination. Were you in trouble for zoning out into your own little world when you were a child?

    • Lol. I was in trouble for a lot of things when I was a child but it wasn’t for zoning out. I grew up in a neighborhood of all boys, and I could run and fight with the best of them. I’m afraid I was a trial to my mother who every Christmas bought me dolls when I wanted guns and swords! 🙂 I lived out my imagination!

      I am working on a thriller series with a female MC who is a former assassin for the CIA now working private black ops. It’s not even close to being published, and I’ll be busy with the fantasy series for quite some time.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  76. This looks like its going to be fun series. I look forward to reading it. Is it suitable for teenage girls? A friends daughter likes this type of thing but she’s only 14.

    • Hi, Petula!
      Yes, I have a lot of YA readers (including my own relatives). I rate the series PG-13 because of a few swear words. Thanks for asking & for stopping by!

  77. I think I’ll like this series. Going to go buy the book as soon as I post this. Thanks for sharing your story.

  78. If I had to choose, I would like to be a witch with unlimited power. That would cover just about anything I wanted to do. I don’t think I’d want to be immortal because living forever would probably be tedious after a while. I wouldn’t mind being a shapeshifter as long as I could change into whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I would not want to be a werewolf because they are so tied to the moon phases and that would be very inconvenient. I would never want to be a vampire. I would hate the restricted diet and I quite like sunshine.

  79. If I had to choose one supernatural power I think it would be teleportation. It would be handy to be able to travel wherever you’d like in an instant.

    • I love this power too, only I’d like something to keep me safe from whatever I find on the other end! 🙂

  80. I have loved fantasy and sci fi since I was in elementary school and read The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Then I devoured the Lord of the Rings and have read those two genres ever since. It is only natural that I’d love paranormal fiction but I think I must been introduced to it when trolling book stores. I have always loved hanging out in book stores.

  81. Not sure if you were asked this yet or not, but what made you decide to write paranormals and have a witch as you main character/heroine? Was it a big jump from your first jobs as a a lawyer and juvenile court officer?

    • Making the switch from law to a fictional cop wasn’t really such a big jump, even if Ari is a paranormal. As for deciding to write about a witch, I didn’t. Ari just kind of evolved. I set out to write a mystery and the supernatural just worked it’s way in. I’ve always read both fantasy and mystery, so I guess it was a logical blend.

  82. Loved the interview! I was wondering if have considered co-authoring with anyone. If so, who would you like to?

    • I have a critique partner named Kath who would make a great co-writer! Our writing styles are different, but I think they would fit well. Maybe I’ll suggest it sometime. It would be fun to try!

  83. Being a shape shifter would be very tempting. However, a witch has more possibilities for a variety and combination of supernatural abilities and gifts. Therefore, a witch would be my choice.

  84. I think I would like to be able to transport myself instantly anywhere I wanted.

  85. I was introduced to paranormal fiction by books.

  86. As far as a supernatural, it is hard to choose. I love shapeshifters, so I would most likely choose that one. I love how loyal, strong, and family oriented they are.

  87. If I could have one supernatural power, I would want speed. There are many things that you can do with super-speed. You can use it as momentum for strength, too.

    • That’s a good thought. My vampire has the advantage of speed, but I haven’t made much use of it yet in the stories. I’ll have to consider use it better in a future plot! Thanks for the comment.

  88. I have been reading those types of books since middle school and if I remember correctly, I think a friend introduced me to them.
    I was re-introduced to them by a co-worker about 5 years ago. I am very thankful too!

    • That’s kind of the same route I took – early interest and later re-introduced to the genre. Not only is it fun to read, I love creating the world and paranormal characters!

  89. What is your favorite part of the story process?

    • The first draft. It’s much like reading a book – I write to find out what will happen next. I’m often surprised! 😀

  90. Ally, you have over 2300 entries! Whoa! Awesome job! 😀

  91. I’ve never read a paranormal mystery before, but I’m getting more and more curious. Your character sounds lively and really engaging. How did she first come to you?

    • I read a lot of women’s fiction of all kinds, especially paranormal, mystery and thriller. I just sat down to write and Ari presented herself on the computer screen! 🙂 I didn’t know for a couple of days that she was a witch!

  92. Ally, The excerpt from your book has me hooked. will have to go get the first one asap! I’m glad I found this post!!

  93. I’ve always loved Fantasy and discovered Urban Fantasy when searching the internet and stumbled across Charles de Lint! He’s fabulous!

  94. Just have to say, the first book was amazing, and I can hardly wait until the 14th!!!

  95. YOur books sound very interesting — I am adding them to my wish list!!

  96. Ally, where did you and Ari first meet? Was it in the pages of something you’d already begun or did she come to your mind before you began and then grew on you, so to speak?

    • I have to admit that Ari started out as Samantha, and she was some sort of a cop or PI – I hadn’t decided which. About the second or third day of writing, she let me know she was a witch, which temporarily brought the novel to a halt. If she was going to insist on being a witch, I had world building to do before I could proceed, including setting up other supernatural creatures. It wasn’t until book two that Ari told me her real name! 🙂 I’m glad you asked so I could share that story!

  97. Have you always liked paranormal fantasy? Or do you just like to write that genre? For me I like fantasy and have always been drawn to it.
    Was it like that for you?

    • I wrote you an answer earlier, Shannon. Unfortunately I hit the wrong reply button, so you didn’t receive it. So here it is again –

      I have always read fantasy and mystery, but the paranormal was something I picked up over the years. It’s not such a big leap from hobbits to shapeshifters!

  98. I have always read fantasy and mystery, but the paranormal was something I picked up over the years. It’s not such a big leap from hobbits to shapeshifters! 🙂

  99. If I was to be a supernatural, I think I’d want to be a witch. Depending on which “craft” you follow, there are some super cool powers out there, but I’d def try not to unbalance anything.

    • Very wise for real living. Of course, in fantasy we tend to play on the lack of balance and the need to re-establish it.

  100. As for which power, now that’s a tuff one. I think I’d want the power to transport myself to anywhere, even anywhen. Then I’d have to train myself to be a total badass since I would have no other powers to protect myself with.

    • I’m with you. If I’m going to be teleporting somewhere, I want to know I can defend myself when I arrive!

  101. What motivated you to be a writer? It’s definitely not an easy career.

    • The short answer is books. I tend to be a series reader and I devour everything an author has written. When I run out, I tend to make up new stories in my head. Kind of like fan fiction, I suppose. Eventually I move on, but I wrote my first full length novel when I just only 9. Then life intervened, and I’m just getting back to it. It’s been a long time coming!

  102. How long did it take you to write this book?

    • Which time? 🙂 The first time took about four months to draft, rewrite, revise, but I kept tweaking it now and then. Two years later I rewrote it completely in about three months. Each book seems to go a little faster now.