Sunday, April 22, 2018

Whisper by Krystal Jane Ruin: An Interview

It's practically tradition by now, right? When Krystal Jane Ruin has a book out, soon after, there will be an interview on this blog about the book.

This time, it's for her New Adult supernatural novel WHISPER.

Check out Whisper on Goodreads and get it on Amazon! And visit Krystal at her website.



Jade has been hearing voices since she was five. No, not voices. One voice. 

After her twin brother is appointed vice president of their father’s company at the old age of twenty-two, the family starts falling apart. Her parents hate each other. Her brother is stressed. His girlfriend is a gold-digger if Jade’s ever seen one. And worse yet, it turns out she isn’t crazy—the voice in her head is real. 

If she ignores it, it’ll drive her off a cliff, like it has done to every single woman on her father’s side for over 1000 years. If she listens, she’s told something terrible will happen.

The choice should be simple.

1. I know you've said that a lot of your story ideas are "Franken-ideas." Can you explain to the people what a Franken-idea is? 

Haha. Yes. Stories often come to me in pieces. A lot of the time, I won’t realize I’m looking at different parts of the same story until the plots start overlapping. Sometimes, I’ll know that all the pieces go together, I just won’t know how. But part of why I call them Franken-ideas is because when they do come together, they form this beautiful monster that kind of moves around and breathes on its own. It’s like I’m Dr. Frankenstein and my stories are my little, sometimes monstrous, creations.


2. Would you say the root concept of Whisper is a Franken idea?

This one actually isn’t. Everything was pretty much there from the get-go. So, it was more like a giant puzzle that became clearer the more I got it together. 


3. How did the character of Jade develop? Was she always meant to be the daughter of a very wealthy family with a very messed up lineage? Were her personal issues always there?

Oh, yeah. Like, she showed up with a voice in her head. Since my characters and plots tend to develop together, I can’t get too far in any story without knowing what everyone’s baggage is. I didn’t know how old she was at first, but I knew early on where she worked and that she had a wealthy father, spoiled siblings, and a penthouse. As far as the lineage, I didn’t know everything from the start, but I knew where the voice was coming from and that at least two other women in the family had died because of it. Jade always had that shadow hanging over her head. 

4. Where did Aric come from because he grew shadier and creepier every time I read him?

Haha! I love him! ^_^ He was definitely shaped by my love for otherworldly things. From the start, I was super fascinated by his connection to this family and why the connection existed. I really wanted to go on a journey with this guy who’s been painted in this golden, selfless light on the surface but honestly just has warning signs tattooed all over his body. 

5. Not to spoil things, but there are elements of Arthurian legend in this book, which was very cool. How familiar were you with Arthurian legend before writing this book? Had you always planned to have that element in the plot?

Yes! I love it! Which made that part of the research easier because I knew where to find what I needed. This entire idea sprouted up because I’d watched one too many adaptions of the legend that summer, and it was kind of bothering me how similar they all were. LOL! I get it. They’re all telling the same story, but there were elements of the legend that I kept wanting to see explored, and it just wasn’t happening! I finally decided that, as a writer, I could just do it myself. I can’t say I know it inside and out, but I’m pretty familiar with it and some of the variations, so I was comfortable ripping it apart.




Krystal Jane Ruin is the author of supernatural and paranormal fiction, living in the Tennessee Valley with a collection of swords and daggers. When she's not hoarding stuffed pandas, hourglasses, and Hello Kitty replicas, she can be found in a YouTube hole or blogging about books, writing, and random things at KrystalSquared.net.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Gettin' Organized

At some point in a person's life, you look around your space and go, "Where did all this shit in this room come from?"

I get this feelng every-so-often and that usually results in papers being thrown out, clothes being sorted into "donate," "give to my aunt," or "used as rags until they perish" piles, and sending books I no longer have feelings for to the depths of Amazon so someone else can read and buy them.

I was getting that itchy "this pile of crap needs to be organized" feeling not long ago--and it was particular to this pile I've had next to my blue recliner (where I'm sitting as I write this; in fact, I do a lot of writing in this chair) on my botton bookshelf. The bottom part of the pile is my "writing archive"--a binder of college stuff, manuscripts, and notebooks--things I've worked on that I'm not willing to part with.



The top of the pile was a purple box in which I kept my Playbills, ticket stubs, and other "See, you leave the house sometimes" paraphernalia.

Well, the box with the Playbills had long ago exploded as I kept putting more things in there and I was looking for a storage option. My friend Jess mentioned that Playbill.com was having a sale on Playbill binders--they are heavy duty binders with plastic archival sleeves meant to keep your Playbills in place, unfaded. The binders I got take about 24 Playbills each.



I had to get two Playbill binders and there are still a few outliers I ran out of space for. But now everything's all organized! 

Then my cousin mentioned that he owed me a birthday gift, I asked him for two organization bins. 


So now all my "papers" are in the bigger bin. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

What I Actually Like About Romance Novels

This post is partially inspired by Krystal's Recently Read Rant.

Reading her post reminded me that I intended to blog one day about what are the things I actually like about the romance genre, since they've changed over the years. The reasons I read them now are not the same reasons I read them when I was 15.

Most of the romance novels I've read are historical romance, because that's just what I gravitate towards. I've always loved the idea of people living two hundred years ago, wearing what we think of as pretty clothes, getting into adventures, mining and healing their hang-ups and issues, becoming better people in order to keep or win or feel worthy of the love of another person. Plus, add in heavy doses of the lack of women's rights, residual issues from Waterloo or other Napoleonic War battles, social classes, poverty, Actual Historical Events and it all adds up to a dramatic, full-of-feels novel. Sometimes you just need that.

Now granted, when I was 15, I was mostly reading them because I was a history geek and because of the sexytime passages in those books.

By college, I was still firmly in historical romance land--I would climb out to read Lord of the Rings or the assigned reading for classes, but yeah, I was almost exclusively reading historical romance. And when you read so much of the same genre category, the books get repetitive. Okay, so some duke is running around the English countryside chasing after a disreputable heiress instead of...I don't know...doing whatever it is dukes actually do? Not to mention that as I grew more aware of history, upper class characters lost their shine.

Their tea plantations in India, mentioned in a throwaway line? The plantations in Jamaica, mentioned in a dialogue aside. A black servant they might have in the household. Connections to Ireland. Mentioning these aspects of English colonialism might have a step towards representing more of actual history, but after a while, simple mentions weren't cutting it for me anymore.

And I think that's the thing now: I want to read books in my fave genre that represent more of the world I live in, which is a very diverse corner of the globe. And most that is reflected in contemporary romance these days.

I'd read contemporary romance here and there. Contemporary romance has just as much conflict, but it's different. In historicals and other sub-genres of romance, couples are maybe easier to keep apart with certain tropes. Contemporary romance has to take different angles to keep the tension and the draw between the characters high but not let them get together too quickly.

But actually, I've come to like the interpersonal and psychological conflicts between characters in contemporaries. Sometimes there are social barriers, other times the barriers of working together or being long time friends or not wanting the same things are the conflict in contemporary romance, like in real life.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

IWSG April Showers


It's the first Wednesday in April, which means it's time for IWSG! The Insecure Writer's Support Group is a cool writing group. Do check them out hereThe awesome co-hosts for the April 4 posting of the IWSG are Olga Godim, Chemist Ken, Renee Scattergood, and Tamara Narayan!

The IWSG Question for April is:

When your writing life is a bit cloudy or filled with rain, what do you do to dig down and keep on writing?

I'm really not sure how to answer this question, mostly because my writing life the past month has been measured in tiny drips and drabs. So there hasn't been much in the way of "digging down to keep writing." I will keep writing--or not writing, if time is a bit short, and thinking about writing--no matter what happens. So I'm not worried about keeping the writing going. 

Outside interests help a ton, though, in keeping inspiration and new ideas sparking off in a writer's mind. So whenever I'm feeling particularly uninspired or like everything I'm writing is crap or I'm just not getting there, there are books to read and podcats to listen to and music to dance around to...


Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Whisper by Krystal Jane Ruin--Book Blitz!


Whisper
Krystal Jane Ruin
Publication date: April 3rd 2018
Genres: New Adult, Paranormal
Jade has been hearing voices since she was five. No, not voices. One voice.
After her twin brother is appointed vice president of their father’s company at the old age of twenty-two, the family starts falling apart. Her parents hate each other. Her brother is stressed. His girlfriend is a gold-digger if Jade’s ever seen one. And worse yet, it turns out she isn’t crazy-the voice in her head is real.
If she ignores it, it’ll drive her off a cliff, like it has done to every single woman on her father’s side for over 1000 years. If she listens, she’s told something terrible will happen.
The choice should be simple.
EXCERPT:
Logan jokes loudly at the other end of the lobby, entertaining a group of men with lewd jokes and wild stories from their recent trip abroad. My sweet, idiot brother leans against the wall grinning over at him, his stupid gray eyes full of trust.
My leg bounces under my desk, spreading irritation through my body. There are no words for how pissed I am. I wish I could bring the ceiling tiles down on Logan’s head. My water bottle teeters in time with my agitation, and I clamp a hand over it to still it.
Of course, I could. Probably. But if my father suspected me of being responsible, he’d have me carted off in a straitjacket.
“Don’t worry about Logan. He will suffer. Come back and open the door.”
“How?” I force my eyes away from Logan and try to keep my voice low. No one is paying attention to me that I know of, but it’s awkward, talking out loud in an open space. For a second I wish the stupid voice could read my thoughts, but then I think better of it.
Honestly though, how crazy am I that the voice in my own head can’t hear me think?
“Sacrifice.”
“Yeah, you said that, but—” I cut myself off. David walks towards me with a small rectangular box full of padded envelopes.
He drops it on my desk. “This is for Juliane.” He speaks slowly and stares at me hard like he’s trying to read my mind. He caught me talking to myself, I know it. And likely not for the first time.


Author Bio:
Krystal is the author of supernatural and paranormal fiction, living in the Tennessee Valley with a collection of swords and daggers. When she's not hoarding stuffed pandas, hourglasses, and Hello Kitty replicas, she can be found in YouTube hole or blogging about books, writing, and random things at KrystalSquared.net.

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