Fellow Wild Rose, R.E. Mullins returns to Awesome Romance Author Wednesday to tell us about her latest novel, Cold Hearted Vampire which brings to a close her Blautsaugers of Amber Heights Series.
But first, she shares some fascinating things about herself and offers some important writing tips.
Can I tell everyone a little about myself.
Okay, this sounds easy enough although I can’t think of a more boring subject. Well, here goes. I’m a city girl at heart transplanted to the boonies of Missouri where I see more deer than people and there is no pizza delivery.
What interesting jobs have I had and did it affect my writing?
I worked as a phlebotomist for ten years and helped teach the practical applications of drawing blood samples at a continuing education class for four years. No, blood doesn’t bother me. In class, I even stuck myself to demonstrate ‘fishing’ techniques. To me, going from sticking needles into veins to writing about vampires seems a natural progression.
Is anything in my books based on real life experiences or is it purely imagination?
I believe genetics and environment are reflected in everything we do. That means, even in the most outlandish worlds ever created by an author, all writing and actions are, somehow, influenced by life. As I said, I came up with the idea for a vampire story while working with blood.
My town of Amber Heights is fictional but it’s placed in Missouri and loosely based it on a couple of areas I’ve lived.
The description of my character, Morgan Maguire, was inspired by an image on a tarot card. For other characters, I might have taken a poke at a friend or relative by adding one of their traits or some physical aspect. In such cases, the roasted—I mean toasted, because it’s an honor, dammit—has been told.
However, I will caution prospective authors to steer away from naming a character after a relative. I made this mistake by asking my Mom and brother-in-law if I could use their names for secondary characters. Now the bro-in law is demanding I write a book featuring his namesake character as the hero, and he wants lots of sex scenes. Needless to say, this also goes for the lab assistant named after my mom, I am not writing naked scenes featuring anyone I actually know.
How much research do I do for each book?
Lots and lots. I love researching. The great thing about vampires is their extended lifespan. A backflash can send me looking back centuries to make sure the scene is accurate. For instance: my she-vamp lead gets a message in the latter 1800’s. Is it through telegram or telephone. I don’t just need to know what year the telephone was invented—I need to know when phones had become common household items. I also needed to know when did the use of telegrams decline. All this for one tiny part of a scene. I find it all fascinating so the hardest part comes when I’m forced to boil down all the interesting information I’ve discovered into something succinct that fits into the plot.
Do I ever get writer’s block?
The short answer is yes. I don’t know how any writer escapes the ‘well is dry’ syndrome. So far, I’ve been able to overcome the blank page by getting away from the computer for a bit. From the moment the grass is over an inch high in the spring until all the grass is dead in the fall, I go out and mow. I live on 32 acres and now mow about 5 of them. In the winter, I carry wood and clean rather obsessively. When writing is going well, you can guess, the grass can get pretty high and there’s a blanket of dust on everything in the house.
Can you tell us about any other upcoming books, series, or writing plans?
Cold Hearted Vampire finishes the original Blautsaugers in Amber Heights series but I’m not quite ready to give up Amber Heights. With the novella, Diaper Duty Vampire, now available, I’ve bridged the gap into a new series called Vampires of Amber Heights. This will deal with some of those secondary characters (not my bro-in-law) and newcomers to the town’s vamp community.
Additionally, I was asked to write the novella, Vampire Girl: Back To Hell for Kindle Worlds. I enjoyed the experience and plan to write more things outside my vampire series. Eventually, I’ll turn my hand to contemporary romance as I would like my characters to actually live normal lives like occasionally sitting down to a real meal.
In The Blautsaugers of Amber Heights series, you first meet Cailey and Gabe in It’s A Wonderful Undead Life. Then Gabe’s younger brother, Rafe falls for Morgan Maguire, Cailey’s mysterious friend in Vampire In The Scrying Glass. Next we learn the truth behind Metta Blautsauger’s ditzy demeanor in A Vampire To Be Reckoned With.
Finally, it’s Michaela’s turn in my new book Cold Hearted Vampire. All her life, Dr. Michaela Blautsauger has fought an uphill battle. Born at a time when females were considered chattel, she bucked the system to be one of the first she-vamps to earn their medical degree. I’ve always seen Michaela as a female Sheldon Cooper. She’s brilliant, a know-it-all, and she’s lacking in social skills.
Then Detective Seth Whitehead walks into her lab and challenges her on every level. For her part, she’s suddenly found a male (human no less) that interests her as much as the slides on her microscope.
Dr. Michaela Blautsauger, a Nosferatu vampire, is considered an expert in her field of work. However, her skills when it comes to dealing with others and showing emotion is almost non-existent. When Detective Seth Whitehead barges into her lab, she discovers the human is just as interesting as the blood formula she is working on.
Seth’s tenacity to find who is committing crimes in Amber Heights pits him against vampire aristocracy as well as Toltec vamps who are nasty to say the least. When the she-vamp he is falling heart over fangs for leaves the country to find the blood plant she needs, he follows and discovers his cold hearted vamp truly has a heart.
When they both fall into Toltec hands, Seth knows he will do anything he has to do to keep Michaela from suffering harm. But will he be able to keep his own life in the process?
I also post on the 20th of every month at: http://rosesofprose.blogspot.com/