Thursday, 7 March 2013

Book Birthday and Interview with Carrie Butler

Today, we have Carrie Butler here to talk about her New Adult Paranormal Romance, STRENGTH, which releases today! 

Happy release day, Carrie! 

Thank you, Elizabeth and Dorothy! I'm so happy to be here. :)

We're happy to have you. Tell us a little about yourself.

Right now, I'm focusing on my writing career and doing freelance graphic design on the side. It's a little scary, but the job market has been less-than-stellar for daydreaming marketers in Appalachia. Go figure. *Grins* At least I'm doing what I love!

You're right about that! It makes things much easier when you're doing something you love! 

How long have you been writing?

STRENGTH is my debut novel, but I've been writing "seriously" for a few years now. Before that, my stories went on and on, defying all word count ranges... *shudder*

Ha! I think the ability to "kill your darlings" is one of the last things to develop, as a writer. But, it's such an important step. 

What’s STRENGTH about?

Category: New Adult
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Sapphire Star Publishing

When college student Rena Collins finds herself nose-to-chest with the campus outcast, she’s stunned. Wallace Blake is everything she’s ever wanted in a man—except he can’t touch her. His uncontrollable strength, a so-called gift from his bloodline, makes every interaction dangerous. And with a secret, supernatural war brewing among his kind, there’s no time to work it out. To keep Wallace in her life, Rena will have to risk a whole lot more than her heart.

Interesting premise, and Wallace Blake sounds absolutely swoon-worthy! How did you come up with the idea for this story?

For years, I'd been toying with the idea of a unique, supernatural race. (Okay, three races.) One night, for whatever reason, I couldn't stop thinking about the concept of balance. I started jotting down notes while listening to music, and "All I Know" (the 2005 Five for Fighting cover) came on. The lyrics sparked something, and the next thing I knew, the romance element had fallen into place.

*Sigh* I love that song...

Okay, now you have to scoop me up off the floor. I love that song, too. And I can see how it was an inspiration.

STRENGTH is considered New Adult. The genre has been getting a lot of press lately. What are your thoughts on the New Adult genre in today's market?

In September, Publishers Weekly reported that over half of young adult sales were coming from adults. Even more surprising, 78% of those adults were buying for themselves! Since new adult (NA) is a category that bridges the gap between YA and adult fiction, it's starting to tap into that lucrative market.

Dozens of publishers—from small presses to the Big 6—have opened their doors to new adult submissions. Some have even launched lines dedicated to the category. I think we're witnessing a period of tremendous growth for NA.

I think you're right! It's an exciting time for NA and NA writers. 

Tell us a bit about your writing process. Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit? 

I had seven critique partners and four beta readers for STRENGTH. Whew! It was a lot of feedback to take on, but it really helped me grow as a writer.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?

These days, I'm more of a plotter. I started with Post-It notes and copier paper, moved on to Excel spreadsheets, and then finally found my stride in Scrivener. Now I can't start a book without it!

I hear Scrivener rocks, but I'm still stuck in my pantser ways. Call me stubborn. What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

Waiting to get to the "good parts". I never write scenes in order.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?

H2O. Gotta keep the ol' brain going.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

"I belieeeeve I can fly!" Seriously, I can't imagine how liberating that must feel.

(Plus, I'm terrified of airplanes.)

Flying would be pretty cool! What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

Oh my goodness. I’m probably on so many “watch lists” I remember Googling how to remove bloodstains from sidewalks. That was awkward...

Hehehe! Well, there are LOTS of reasons why you might google that, right? ... Right?

Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: anniversary, jumping jacks, and hallucinating.

“Was I hallucinating, or were my parents doing jumping jacks on their anniversary?”

(Because we all know that’s what parents do behind closed doors on their anniversary—jumping jacks.)

I know that's what I'd do on my anniversary,  if I were married. 

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably... 

...thinking about writing. Sad, isn't it? ;)

It doesn't matter what I'm doing—sketching, designing a book cover, doing target practice, etc. My characters refuse to shut up! Thankfully, that seems to be a good thing in this industry.

Yes, it's a very good thing. Who would you like to thank for supporting you and your writing. Let's hear your shout outs.

Oh, what a cool idea! So many people have helped me get to this point, and I would have never made it without them. Let's see...

*Takes a deep breath* Shout-outs to: God, my folks, my sister, my brother-in-law, my nephew, my niece, other family, friends, my publishers (Amy & Katie), my editors, my SSP family, my critique partners, my beta readers, the blogging community, the Twitterverse, my Facebook fans, #NALitChat regulars, book reviewers, and the ever-popular Dorothy Dreyer and Elizabeth Holloway!

And finally, where can people find you and your books online?

In March, they'll be able to find STRENGTH on Amazon, Kindle, Barnes & Noble, Nook, iBooks, Sony Reader Store, Kobo, Diesel, and Baker & Taylor.

Where to find Carrie:

Where to find Strength:

Thank you for joining us today, Carrie! And congratulations!


Carrie Butler said...

Thank you so much for having me over, ladies! I appreciate it. :)

Stephsco said...

I've been using Scrivener for awhile, but there are so many features I've never even touched! I am also reforming from pantser to plotter. I'm glad to see more writers making progress with NA. I think it will take awhile for mainstream publishing to catch on, but hopefully indie sales will be convincing.

Nicky Wells said...

Whooop! Happy Book Birthday, Carrie, this is a totally awesome release. Fab interview.... You got me singing here! Wishing you all the very best! XX

Carrie Butler said...

@Stephsco - It took me a while, too, but I'm really starting to love it!

@Nicky - Thank you very much! :D