Paranormal romance is fast emerging as a very popular ebook genre. Some people consider it a subgenre of fantasy and others of romance. However, I think it deserves its own separate niche since it blends elements of not just these two previously distinct genres of fantasy and romance but also often science fiction and even horror. It grew up out of gothic fiction. Probably the most common feature is a romance between humans and ghosts, vampires, shapeshifters or other fantastic creatures. Also, psychic powers often come into play.
So you couldn’t wish for a better introduction to this exciting genre than a book by Hope Welsh. I have just read her book Linked, and it’s a brilliant read. It’s about Lana, a feisty young woman with psychic powers and a sad secret, and shapeshifter Cole, a private detective with special powers. There’s a third crucial character, The Evil One, who poses a terrifying threat and has a connection with Lana. The book is very well written. The hero and heroine are persuasive and likeable, and their relationship is neither predictable nor plastic, as can be the case with the romantic thread of a story sometimes. There are interesting twists and turns in the plot. I ended up reading the book in one go, leaving my youngest son dissolving in the bath (it’s OK, he’s 10 and he was quite happy to have an hour-long bath!) and the bedtime hot chocolate unmade. I’m sure you’ll enjoy this book as much as I did. And if you do, then please put up a review in all the usual places. Authors need reviews!
Hope kindly agreed to do an interview for me and so I’ll hand over to her now.
1. What inspired you to write Linked?
Linked was written for a contest, but I liked it so well, I decided to publish it instead. It was offered on by the first publisher that read it, but I decided to self-publish on Amazon instead.
2. Which character from the book are you most like – Lana, Cole or The Evil One?
Hmm… I’d have to say I’m most like Laura, Lana’s mother. Certainly not The Evil One! Unlike Lana, I’d love paranormal abilities.
3. Linked has a great cover. Did you design it yourself?
I knew what I wanted – to show the evil and time running out on the lovers – but my daughter did the design. She did an awesome job, didn’t she?
4. Would you like to be a shapeshifter? What animal would you turn into?
Oh, definitely a panther, I think. Sleek and beautiful. Although, I’m rather partial to tigers…
It was a dream. Most of my stories start that way. My daughter worked on it with me, though. SHE did all The Evil One. It was written very fast – less than a month. I was obsessed and wrote non-stop for days and days.
6. Please tell us a little about your other books, The Storm Within, Forbidden and Once Bitten.
The Storm Within is a romantic suspense. The heroine is running from a boyfriend that’s framed her for murder. I loved writing it – another of those that kind of just took off with a spark of an idea.
Forbidden & Once Bitten are a little more risqué. They are connecting stories with vampires, but not your traditional vampires. One was a born vampire, and the other was created. I had a blast writing them, though. I can’t wait to get my rights to them back so I can put them up at a more reasonable price – and put up the third story in the series.
As an author, it’s very important to get reviews. As I’ve struggled for my own reviews, I decided to offer a site with honest reviews of books I’ve enjoyed.
8. Does reviewing books help your writing, do you think?
I don’t think reviewing helps my writing – but reading does. I read in many different genres. A good writer has got to be a voracious reader in my opinion. I’m lucky that I’m a very fast reader. I can easily read a book in two hours.
9. Are book reviews important to authors?
Book reviews are imperative for authors. It’s how we know that our work is enjoyed – and how we let others know about our books. They are also helpful in that we can learn; sometimes we just don’t hit the mark and we learn how to improve with future books.
10. Do you have any strange or quirky writing habits?
When I’m on a roll – I write sometimes up to 24 hours non-stop. I’ve been known not to eat or sleep when I’m really in a story. I also tend to let my characters tell me the story. I rarely have an end in mind when I start. I have never plotted a book – I just write and see where it goes.
11. When did you first realise you wanted to be an author, indie or otherwise?
When I was eight. I wrote a play for school at age eight, and have been hooked ever since. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t write.
12. What one snippet of advice would you give to aspiring self-published authors?
Read before you write. Learn to promote your work and to take constructive criticism – and for goodness sake, please learn to format and edit! I’d also suggest a writer join either a critique group or a writers’ group. Beta Readers are very important as well.
13. OK, enough of the serious stuff. What are your three favourite foods?
Chocolate, Butter Pecan Ice Cream–and steak. Can I add Diet Coke? Cannot survive without Diet Coke.
14. And finally, what would you not be seen dead wearing?
Leather – or a bikini, LOL. My character in Once Bitten is wearing a leather number I affectionately call her “Sluts R Us” outfit in the book. It’s actually similar to an outfit a friend bought my daughter when she was 18. I was less than enthused – though I must admit she made it look good.