We had the honor of interviewing Elise! We had so much fun! Hope you all enjoy the interview!
Question: So Elise our first question for you is, what inspired you to write the Amaranthine Blood series?
Elise: It was an actual dream I had! I woke up thinking what a cool movie it would make, then realized I didn't know how to write a script, LOL. So I decided to write a book. You see the dream in the first chapter
Question: Are any of your characters based on people you know?
Elise: I think I've taken bits of people and put them in my characters. For instance, Corinne is a lot like one of my best friends, Becky, blonde hair and all. None of the characters is exactly like someone I know, but a lot of attributes I like from friends has made it into their development.
Question: Is there a certain message you are trying to portray with this series?
Elise: Not specifically, but a lot of my views on things make it in there, and I think that's true of a lot of authors. I also wanted to portray embracing your dark side. Sanaan, for instance, is a good guy, but she has every capability of becoming a cold-hearted killer. Instead of trying to rid herself of that, she turns it to her advantage, and uses it against her enemies.
Question: Trying not to give away spoilers, but is there any chance that there might be a novella about Damon's life? And maybe more of Sanaan's?
Elise: Yes, there's actually a Damon novella planned, in which we'll get his back-story Ones for the other characters, including Sanaan, are bouncing around in my head, but they'll have to wait. Damon is the crowd favorite at the moment, LOL.
Question: So why vampires out of all the mythological creatures?
Elise: The simplest answer to that is because I love vampires, LOL. But on a deeper level, it’s because vampires, to me, represent both life and death, dark and light. They are immortal, yet they deal out death just by virtue of being what they are. They can use their abilities for good or evil--it is their choice as to how they ultimately live their lives. I think they represent each of us, in that they are trying to balance the good with the bad.
Question: If you could be any character for a day, who would it be? and why?
Elise: It would probably be Sanaan. As for why, well first, getting to hang out with DAMON for a day, lol. Seriously though, because she is, despite her demons, one tough lady who can stand up to just about anyone and anything without fear. Including her boss--I mean, seriously, how many of us have fantasized about telling our bosses exactly what we think of them? She does that without giving one damn about what John thinks about it.
Question: What is it like to have so many fans? And what is the most outrages thing they have done?
Elise: Having fans is AWESOME. I can't even begin to describe how awesome it is, lol.So far, nothing too outrageous has occurred, but from keeping up with other indie authors, it's just a matter of time before someone does something crazy, LOL.
Question: If someone wanted to turn Vendetta into a movie or TV. show, would you want to do it?
Elise: IN A HEARTBEAT. Especially a movie, I'd die to see it on the big screen, especially since that was how I'd first envisioned it when I had that dream. And actually, when I write, it plays kind of like a movie in my head--I can see the scenes like I'm watching them in a movie.
Question: If you could co write a book with any author who would it be and why?
Elise: My fantasy co-author would probably be Anne Rice, because Anne Rice is AWESOME. In real life, it'd be Helen Boswell, because she's a kickass author with great talent
Question: Besides the books you have listed above, what are your top 3 favorite books?
Elise: I don't think I can limit it to three books, so I'm going to aim for book series. The Dragon Prince series by Melanie Rawn is one of my all-time favorites. The Anne Rice vampire series, of course, and the Game of Thrones series.
I also have to say that Melanie Rawn is a huge influence for me. She was the first fantasy author I'd read that did horrible things to her main characters, and portrayed them as real people with issues, instead of just good guy/bad guy.
Question: If you could have one vampire trait what would it be and why?
Elise: I can only have ONE? OMG, this is tough. I think I would go for the vampire strength. If I had that, I could then be a superhero, saving people from disasters and criminals.
Question: What advice would you give someone who is planning on writing a book?
Elise: Don't get discouraged! We're none of us good writers when we first start. I've been writing short stories and poetry for YEARS before I ever contemplated writing a book. And I probably would have never even tried to write a book had I not had a creative writing course in college.
So, it's likely that the first thing you write will look like garbage. First attempts always do, but that's when the learning comes into it. Get advice, talk to other authors, and learn. Writing is a skill like any other--practice and patience are key. I've seen so many people get discouraged because what they write isn't perfect right off the bat. It's an unrealistic expectation to have, but a lot of first time authors don't understand that. I also think it's because people don't see the work that goes into writing a book. All they see is the finished product. They don't see the hours of frustration, tears, throwing things, and so on, nor do they see the endless revisions and rewrites. Too many people take it personally, and it's understandable why. Writing is a very personal thing, but if you look at it more like developing a skill than baring your soul, it makes it much easier.
I told my beta readers straight up that if I don't know what's wrong with it, I can't fix it. So PLEASE tell me what's wrong with it. And they did.
That's where you've got to develop a thick skin, and learn to tell the difference between helpful criticism and haters. There is no way under the sun everyone is going to like what you write. If you accept that some people are just going to absolutely hate what you do, and move past it, it all becomes much easier to deal with.
Everyone has the ability. EVERYONE. It just takes learning and practice to hone it. Some will naturally be better at it than others, but everyone can do it with the proper resources.
Question: If you could have dinner with anyone, dead or alive who would it be?
Elise: I think it would have to be Bram Stoker. The reason for that is because he is essentially the father of the vampire genre as we know it today, and I would DEARLY love to know what his inspirations and motivations were, and what he was thinking when he wrote Dracula. Getting inside his head would be amazing. He's the one who took what was, for centuries, a disgusting monster, made it into a person, and then threw that person into a tragic love story. Amazing.
Question: Tell us one thing about yourself that your fans would be surprised to know
Elise: Probably that I, just like everyone else, have my moments of severe self-doubt. Most of the time, I'm pretty upbeat and confident, but there are days when I'm not, and get pretty down on myself. My friends are great in telling me what a moron I'm being,LOL, but believe it or not, I absolutely have times when I tell myself I have no talent whatsoever and should just give up!
Question: If you had to pick a time period to go back to what would it be?
Elise: Probably the Victorian era. Not only were the clothes awesome (yes, I know, I have the strangest reasons for doing things!), but women's rights were beginning to get a firm hold on society. There were several prominent Victorian ladies writing about the issue, and it would be great to see the beginning of it all in action.
Thank you Elise, for letting us interview you! We had so much fun! XO
Jazzy and Meg