Author/editor/blogger Jolie Du Pré is the creative force behind For Love of the Vampire, a boxed set of paranormal romances launching today with novellas from eight writers including herself. She stopped by Kattomic Energy to talk about vampires, books in general, and the challenges of the writing life
Who’s your favorite on-screen vampire?
Damon Salvatore of the The Vampire Diaries!
If you could be any paranormal creature, what would you be?
I would be a vampire! They’re strong, sexy, and they live forever!
Do you have a writing ritual? For example: Do you have a set page/word goal of writing a day? Do you write on your birthday? Do you ever work on two or more projects at once?
I write with a set number of words per day. Plus, I always give myself a deadline.
Do you have a favorite among the books you’ve written?
My favorite of the Pierce series is book 4. I love the sex scene I created. LOL!
What are you working on now?
Actually, I’m working on books for a new pen name. They are not paranormal related.
What’s the last good book you read? Or: What’s on your TBR pile?
Prosperity for Writers: A Writer's Guide to Creating Abundance by Honoree Corder. She gives simple, yet effective solutions for getting you back on the right track, mentally, for achieving your goals as a writer.
The usual vampire in PNR seems to be a pale white straight male (whether sparkly or not) and a lot of readers seem to like it that way. Do you venture outside the paranormal norm with your characters?
Yes, but I’m not sure that’s the way to go to reach sales. I’ve learned that you have an easier time if you just give readers what they normally want.
You’re a full-time writer/blogger. Was there a “tipping point” where you knew you could make a living at writing without a “day job” as a backup?
I’ve been writing full-time since 2000 as an article writer. Eventually, I wanted to write fiction as well. I’ve never quit my article writing, and I’ve always had my husband to back me up. Thank goodness. This is a tough business for most authors. Only the strongest authors will survive the dark days, because for most of us, there are a lot of them.
I love that you have a “world’ where characters overlap in the stories even though each is a stand-alone. Do you think that helps keep your story-telling fresh?
I hope that it does.
You’ve edited a number of anthologies. When you have your editor’s hat on, what do you look for in a story?
When I used to edit anthologies, my role was to choose the stories. Other editors would correct for grammar, punctuation, etc. Therefore, spelling and grammar errors weren’t my concern. That said, I looked for stories that were original and fresh - the kind that never bore you.
You’re running a promotion with ILVN offering signed copies and a $10 Amazon gift card in return for sign-ups on your newsletter. Do you ever find these promotions attract “junk” subscribers who are just in it for the SWAG?
One word - YES.
How important is social media to your marketing plan? Do you run FB ads? Use mail dumps? Rely on Twitter/Instagram? Or is it all about the mailing list? How do you feel about conventions? Any you’d like to attend this year?
Social media is very important to my marketing plan. For example, I’ve found many of my ARC readers through social media. I like Facebook and Twitter, the best. I also have a mailing list. Many of my ARC readers came from my mailing list, as well. As far as conventions, I used to attend conventions. They were an excellent way to meet fellow authors face-to-face and to learn about the industry. Also, back when submitting to publishers was the only viable way to go, I went on a national book tour for one of my anthologies. I did readings in New York, Los Angeles, Austin in Texas, and Chicago. That was fun. Today, there are many options other than the traditional ways. Plus, I don’t go to conventions much anymore. I’d rather stay home. LOL!
You published books one and two of Pierce on the same day (December 5, 2015). And the next three will come one a month after that. Do you feel pressure from the marketplace to constantly be putting out something new?
If you don’t keep up with readers’ voracious appetites, you’ll have a hard time achieving full-time fiction author status.
What book of yours has received the most reviewer love?
Benton: A Zombie Novel, Volume 1. In fact, my entire zombie series did well. I didn’t appreciate what I had. I’m desperately trying to return to the glory days.
What’s the last show you binge-watched?
Amazon has come out with some excellent original programming. Two of the series I recently binge-watched are Mad Dogs, and Catastrophe.
As a reader, do you prefer stand-alones or series?
Stand-alones. I’m weird.
Do you have international editions of your books? If so, what language(s)?
DC or Marvel? Neither
Dogs or Cats?
Did you ever write a fan letter to a writer?
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