One of the pleasures I get from doing what I do is discovering new authors and then bringing them to you, the reader. This interview is with the paranormal romance author Ella J. Phoenix (I reviewed her novels Dragon Heat and Vampire Thirst for Books Make Me Happy earlier this month)
Ms. Phoenix brought vampires, dragons and other various paranormal creatures to new life in her books, and I am honored to have gotten a look inside of her mind with this interview!
Read on and below will be links to purchase her novels and interact with her on the Internet!
1. You say on your blog that superheroes started your fascination with the paranormal? How so?
They were my first inspiration, my introduction to the possibility that there is magic in the world.
2. Your first attempts in the literary world were writing plays. What made you start doing that? And how did you transition from plays to novels?
Don’t tell anyone but I was an actress and theatre director in my past life. After a childhood on the stage, I got my BA, majored in Performing Arts. That’s when I started writing plays, children’s play (yeah, can you believe it?). But it was really my mother who lured me into writing novels. I call her “my catalyst”. She’s always been the one to say, “Go for it!”
3. You say you have lived on different continents in your life. Where and which places were your favorites and why?
Oh, there’re so many! Okay, if you twist my arm, I’d say: New York (USA), Sydney (Australia) and Queenstown (New Zealand). I absolutely love living in Sydney--it’s beautiful, with great food, wine, beaches, the lot. I also loved experiencing the kiwi life style when my husband and I spent 2 years in Queenstown--it’s possibly the most stunning place in the world. But the Big Apple is my dream city. It ticks all the boxes. Period.
4. In Dragon Heat and Vampire Thirst, you have your characters travel the world over--from Romania, to the USA to England and even Spain. Did that come from your travelling?
Oh, yeah. I believe the world is a better place when there’s tolerance toward other cultures. In my opinion, tolerance is truly achieved when you experience other cultures for yourself, when you feel it, taste it, breathe it. That’s when the ugly barriers of ignorance and hatred can be truly broken.
5. You say your mother was a great writer, but when the opportunity came up for her to write a paranormal romance, she told you to take it. Do you think you would've written Dragon Heat at all?
I believe our crazy Gods/God/Holistic Energy above place people and situations in our lives, to give us a hand in choosing the best path, to give us hints on where to go next. It’s up to us to recognize these signs and take the opportunity by the horns. My mom is my catalyst because of that. She was the one who sold me the idea of starting my own novel.
6. Were you not writing amazing books, what would you be doing?
Singing, in a cheesy musical. :O)
7. In your books, you have an index in front explaining what the different names are (Apa Dobrý, the Soartas, etc.), which is quite necessary! What made you come up with some of the things that you did?
I have no idea! When I started writing Dragon Heat, there was just this inherent need to create a brand new mythology, unspoiled by preconceptions. It just came to me…
8. What made you decide to focus so much on Sam and Hikuro in Vampire Thirst instead of focusing more solely on Zoricah and Tardieh?
I have a really short attention span. I get bored when I read stories with the same couple book after book.
9. Instead of making your books center around humans and one sole species, you combine numerous creatures to create your unique stories. Why did you decide to do that instead of making them exclusively about vampires, shifters, etc.?
Wow, what a great question! Well, the world is made of thousands of different cultures and races, I just couldn’t think of creating a world with just two or three.
10. What authors inspired you when you were young? What authors do you read today?
Believe it or not, Shakespeare. Yep, I know he’s hard to get nowadays but back in the day, he was a true representative of awesome popular culture, but he didn’t stop there. He didn’t write about a boy named Romeo who fell in love with a girl named Juliet. He wrote about the flaws and attributes of human nature.
And then, we have the new modern, amazing paranormal writers – Anne Rice, J. R. Ward, Nalini Singh, Gena Showalter… so many!
11. In Manataka, you write about the powers of the ancient Native Americans. What inspired you to take that route with your characters?
Oh, Manataka is another completely different world all together! What made me start a new series, in the middle of writing Dragon Heat, was my obsession with history and mythology. The Native American cultures have amazingly rich folklore with several amazing heroes, great battles and terrible losses. The Last of the Mohicans! Say no more.
12. Will we see more from the creations you made in Dragon Heat and Vampire Thirst in the future?
Oh, yeah! Dragon Heat 3 is in the oven!
13. Is it hard to balance your personal life with your writing career or do they pretty much balance each other out?
Is there such a thing? Nah, it’s pretty hard, but hey, that’s “making your dreams come true”, right? It’s not supposed to be easy, otherwise we’d take it for granted. :O)
14. Where do you see yourself and your career in the next ten years?
Living by the beach, with my awesome husband, writing paranormal novels full time.
15.Thank you for participating in this interview! Can you please leave the reader with three things that might surprise them about you?
- I can live off cheese.
- X-Men is my favorite superhero series.
- English is my second language.
Purchase Ella's novels on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_athr_dp_sr_1?_encoding=UTF8&field-author=Ella%20J%20Phoenix&search-alias=digital-text&sort=relevancerank
Purchase Ella's novels from Barnes And Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/ella-j.-phoenix
Visit Ella's Site: http://ellajphoenix.blogspot.com/
Add Ella as a friend on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ellaj.phoenix