Please help me welcome paranormal author Jennifer Estep to the blog today. Jennifer's latest book, Venom hit shelves September 28th.
1. For any new readers, please tell us about your Elemental Assassin Series.
JE: Sure. The Elemental Assassin urban fantasy series focuses on Gin Blanco, an assassin code named the Spider who can control the elements of Ice and Stone. When she’s not busy killing people and righting wrongs, Gin runs a barbecue restaurant called the Pork Pit in the fictional southern metropolis of Ashland. The city is also home to giants, dwarves, vampires, and elementals – Air, Fire, Ice, and Stone.
The first book in the series, Spider’s Bite, was released in February 2010. Web of Lies, the second book in the series, came out in June 2010. Venom, the third book, will hit shelves on Sept. 28.
Tangled Threads, the fourth book in the series, will be published in May 2011, while the fifth book (untitled at this point) will be released in October 2011.
The books are basically dark, fun, sexy, action-packed urban fantasies.
2. A strong heroine makes a story worth reading. How would you describe Gin?
JE: I would describe Gin as smart, sassy, and sarcastic. She also has a real killer instinct, since she’s an assassin. LOL. Sorry, I couldn’t resist the bad joke there.
All kidding aside, I would describe Gin as a tough heroine who does what she needs to in order to survive the corrupt, violent world that she lives in. In Gin’s case, her family was murdered when she was a kid, which led to her living on the streets and being taken in by an assassin. As a result, Gin tends to kill first and ask questions later, especially when it comes to protecting the people that she cares about.
3. You have created an exciting, yet complex world. How do you handle your world building? Are you a post-it kind of girl?
JE: I don’t really plot that much or use post-it notes or anything. I do a general outline of the story, sit down, and start writing. When I start a new book, I have a rough idea of the various characters/creatures and how the magic works, and I just go from there.
With every draft that I do, I go back through, see what’s working and what’s not, and refine the characters/magic as needed. I do this several times until the book and the magic are as interesting and entertaining as I can make them;
4. By day you are "an award winning feature page designer". Sounds like a busy job. When do you find time to write? And I have to know if you ever worked in a BBQ joint.
JE: I write after work and on the weekends. I pretty much devote most of my Sundays to doing book stuff, whether it’s writing, blogging, updating my website, or the thousand other things that authors do.
I haven’t worked at a barbecue joint, but I live in the South, which is full of great barbecue joints. In fact, there’s a terrific barbecue restaurant not too far away from my house – and they make the best baked beans around.
5. You have another series called the Bigtime books that doesn't seem to get as much attention as Gin and the gang. Please tell us about this Paranormal Romance series.
JE: Like you said, the Bigtime books are paranormal romances. Basically, they are comic book spoofs that fea¬ture sexy superheroes, evil ubervillains, and smart, sassy gals looking for love. Titles in the series are Karma Girl, Hot Mama, and Jinx.
The books are just goofy, campy fun, kind of like the old Batman show with Adam West or Wonder Woman with Lynda Carter.
6. Given the choice, which element would you like to control: air, fire, ice or snow?
JE: Actually, some folks think that I can control an element already – ice, because my hands are always so cold. LOL. Seriously, they are like ice cubes most days, and some of my friends have jokingly said that I have “ghoul touch” because they are so cold. So if I could control one element, I’d have to go with ice because of all that.
7. Lastly, you write about paranormal beings and powers. How far do your beliefs go? Do you believe in all those things that go bump in the night?
JE: I like to think that magic is possible – that there is good magic and that there are good folks out there who help other people.
As for the other things that go bump in the night, well, I hope the nasty ones aren’t real! There’s enough scary stuff in the world already without adding killer vampires or bloodthirsty werewolves to the mix. LOL.
Ok,well I agree with the killer vampires, but I wouldn't mind a werewolf or two, especially if he looked like Joe Manganiello- yum. Thanks for the interview Jennifer. Congrats on your new release!
For more information about Jennifer or any of her books, you can find her at her website, on twitter, or Goodreads. Venom can be ordered at booksellers such as Amazon.
Giveaway...Jennifer is giving away a copy of Venom to a lucky reader from the US/Canada! To enter, leave some love for Jennifer in the comments section (please include your contact email). For an extra entry, spread the word. Please leave the link in a seperate comment. Giveaway ends September 25th. Good luck!