Today I am excited to be doing an interview with author R. Barri Flowers. Join me in getting to know Barri and afterwards, stick around for a rafflecopter giveaway at the end of this post.
Out For Blood (Transylvanica High #2)
Published November 3rd, 2013
Published by R. Barri Flowers
From R. Barri Flowers, the bestselling author of the young adult vampire novel, COUNT DRACULA'S TEENAGE DAUGHTER, comes the exciting book two in the Transylvanica High series, OUT FOR BLOOD.
Sixteen-year-old honor student Kula Lockhart is in her second year at Transylvanica High School in Harbor Heights, Michigan. It is one of several integrated pilot schools across the country where human and vampire students peacefully coexist.
Kula recently learned that she is the half human, half vampire daughter of Count Dracula. This has made her a target for those who hate her powerful Dad and vamps in general.
As she comes to terms with her heritage and newfound abilities, things begin to heat up between Kula and her mortal boyfriend, Eriq Pratt. She also has her vamp guardians Ivan and Amelia, as well as several human and vampire friends, to balance her evolving life and times.
When Kula suddenly finds herself being pursued by a new handsome half vamp at school, Sebastian LeBlanc, she is strangely drawn to him, even if her heart belongs to Eriq. Yet Kula can’t help but wonder if it is more than coincidence that Sebastian just happened to arrive in town at around the same time that a vampire or vampires began killing humans. Could Sebastian be behind these vicious attacks?
Another new vampire, Gabryela Roswell, befriends Kula, but has a hidden agenda.
In the meantime, Kula has competition from an attractive human girl, Yvonne Elwood, who has her eye on Eriq. She also has to deal with the gorgeous and mean-spirited cheerleader vamp, Jacquelyn Brossard, a member of the rival Doerzic clan.
As Kula grapples with these issues and the changes in her life, she tries to learn more about her mother, who died in childbirth, from the only person who can give her answers--her dad, Count Dracula.
Fans of popular teen vampire and paranormal fiction series such as Twilight, True Blood, Vampire Diaries, and Vampire Academy will love OUT FOR BLOOD in this captivating series.
Now in print, eBook, and audio. Buy it today!
And now for my interview with the great R. Barri Flowers
· When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
I knew I wanted to be a writer as a boy when I started reading the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Mysteries. I loved the stories and they helped inspire me to want to create my own fun stories someday.
Beyond that, while in college, I wrote some short fiction pieces for classes that gave me further inspiration that I had what it took to start writing novels and make a career out of it.
· What inspires your writing?
As a writer, I am most inspired by my love of reading. I read all kinds of fiction and nonfiction and love being able to lend my own voice to creative writing and those who enjoy reading great material as much as I do,
· What other jobs have you done or are still doing besides writing?
Before becoming a writer, I worked a number of jobs, including a researcher, security consultant, librarian, shelf stocker, and way back when, had several paper routes.
Today, I am very fortunate to be a fulltime wrtier.
· What genres do you enjoy writing, and why?
Actually, I enjoy writing in several genres, including young adult, thriller, mystery, romance, and true crime. The great thing about writing in different genres is that it allows you to tap into the creative juices on a wider scale. This means you get to be even more imaginative in constructing plots and characters that tailor to different audiences.
I am especially keen on writing young adult fiction. As with such great YA writers as R. L. Stine, Caroline Cooney, L.J. Smith, and Scott Westerfeld, this is a great genre with which to carve out entertaining storylines for readers eager to embrace.
With YA fiction, I write vampire, ghost, mystery, coming of age, and straight romance novels, giving me a broad range to explore and develop fascinating tales.
· What’s been the hardest thing on your journey as a writer?
Great question. The hardest thing on my journey as a writer has been the realization that nothing happens overnight. When I first started out, I expected that success would come right away, after sending off first novel to publisher. I learned that it takes time to hone craft, to build a brand, to develop an audience, and to establish oneself in the business.
Fortunately, through hard work and perseverance, I have gotten through the hard part and am now able to enjoy the fruits of my labor ad a bestselling author.
· What’s the most enjoyable thing on the journey?
The most enjoyable thing on the journey as a successful writer is to hear from fans in person or through social media about how much they enjoy my novels. I love how much readers get into the stories, know the characters names, root for the protagonists, and look forward to m y future books.
It is really the greatest job in the world and I never take it for granted.
· How much support do you receive from your family?
I receive a great deal of support from my family as an author. Indeed, I have been encouraged by family from the beginning and I know they can always be counted on to have my back, through thick and thin.
My wife is my greatest support system, keeping me on my toes as I put my best feet forward as a novelist.
· How do you manage your schedule to balance writing with other responsibilities?
I write at a set time daily – usually from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., and stick to this, while having plenty of time to balance with my other responsibilities with family and life in general. I always give top priority to family when it comes to crunch time, but am fortunate to be able to successfully write and life my life well outside of writing.
· What aspects of your life (such as hobbies or places you’ve traveled) have you included in your writing?
Another great question. As I love to travel, I often use places I have visited for inspiration in creating settings for my novels.
I am also into fitness and the outdoors, frequenting making use of these in creating likeminded characters.
I put a lot into establishing setting, character traits, and storylines, and am happy to use any aspects of my own life in this respect, if I feel it is appropriate for the book and will enhance its quality and positive direction.
· What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
I advise all aspiring authors to follow your dreams wherever they may take you. Don’t let detractors discourage you. Instead, take any criticism constructively and as a motivational tool to find success.
Lastly, be your own worst critic. Don’t be afraid to rewrite and rewrite your book till you get it right. The end often justifies the means.
· Plotter? Or Pantster?
Definitely a plotter. I tend to develop a lengthy outline of story and detailed character sketches before taking on the novel, as opposed to jumping right into the fire, so to speak.
· Describe your ideal “writing room” -- and your real one.
My “ideal” writing room would be a nice sized lanai that overlooks with ocean, giving me the perfect setting for inspiration.
My actual office is spacious with a great view of a wooded area and plenty of sunshine. It is a great substitute to my ideal writing space.
· The value of networking
Networking is an essential part of my writing program. It is so important that I cannot place a value on it, per se, other than to say that the blend of my professional and personal networking online and off is as much responsible for my success as the writing itself.
· Writer’s block and how you overcome it
Fortunately, I have never had writer’s block, so have never had to overcome. That said, the reason for this is that I have always been very focused. As such, I am able to keep my eye on the ball and see a project through from start to finish. I am also never short on ideas, continuously coming up with new ones to keep me going.
· Tricks you use to stimulate your thinking
Reading a lot, playing word games with my wife, refreshing my memory on previous novels, storylines, and characters; and playing attention to the world around me, latest news, prospects for the future, etc.
Fun Trivia about YOU:
· What is your favorite genre to read?
My favorite genre would have to be thriller fiction. I love the page turner qualities of the modern day and classic thriller and the ending when all the pieces of puzzle come together.
· Do you have a favorite author?
I do, indeed, only that would be three favorite authors: Robert Ludlum, Dashiell Hammett, and Daphne du Maurier.
· Do you prefer reading or watching television?
Though a close call, I think I enjoy watching television more for the visual aspects of the entertainment.
· Do you watch television? What are your favorites?
Yes, I do watch some television when I find the time. My favorite series are Revenge, Continuum, Once Upon a Time, Arrow, The Walking Dead, and Criminal Minds.
· Do you have a favorite car?
· A favorite pet?
Dog. But favorite animal is a lion.
· Besides writing, what excites you?
I am a huge fan of professional and college basketball and football, major league baseball, and thriller and comedy motion pictures.
As noted, I also love to read books, as well as travel to interesting places around the world.
· Favorite vacation spot - real.
Maui, Hawaii (in spite of living in Honolulu).
· Favorite vacation spot - ideal.
Australia and New Zealand.
About your book:
· What was the inspiration behind the story?
The inspiration behind OUT FOR BLOOD and is predecessor, COUNT DRACULA’S TEENAGE DAUGHTER, was my love for those classic Dracula vampire movies, with Lon Chaney and Bela Lugosi starring as the bloodsucker.
I was truly mesmerized by those depictions of Count Dracula and wanted to try a new take on the vampire in a modern day setting.
· Who is your favorite character from the book, and why?
My favorite character in the book is Kula Lockhart, who discovered in the first book in series that she is Count Dracula’s teen daughter. I love her growth from being human to a half vamp and how she faces the challenges that present themselves along the way.
Honorable mention would have to go to Jacquelyn Brossard, a cheerleader vamp from a rival vampire clan, who proves to be a thorn in Kula’s side in both books of series.
· How did you choose your title?
I wanted a title that made a statement, while also being true to the plot and vampire culture. I also felt it was a great follow up title to the first book in series.
· What research was involved?
Much of the research involved watching some of the classic vampire tales again to refresh my memory on the dynamics; as well as reading about the vampire mythology, so that I had the tricks of the trade down pat to work with in constructing my own plot.
As the series revolve around teens, I also consulted with my nieces to make sure I was on target with teenage verbiage and school situations.
Finally, as I have written a number of other teen novels, I looked at some of these to further acquaint myself with the teenage psyche and angst.
· How does the setting play a role in the story?
The setting plays an important role in story, in that much of it takes place at Transylvanica High, which is one of several schools around the country where human and vampire teens coexist.
The town itself, Harbor Heights, Michigan, is small and a great setting for teens to hangout and for vampires to cause trouble and be the targets of humans who aren’t as keen on seeing in their community.
· What do you hope readers will get from your novel
I hope that readers will enjoy a new take on teen vampire fiction from other popular series with OUT FOR BLOOD. The protagonist, Kula, is very likeable, as are supporting characters.
The fact that Kula is the teenage daughter of perhaps the most well-known vampire of all time, Count Dracula, is a big plus for the novel that should captivate fans of the genre.
As there are also plenty of twists and turns in the plot, that should also keep readers entertained and looking forward to what comes next.
· Will there be a sequel? If so, tell us about it.
Indeed, there will be a sequel, It is entitled, KULA’S REVENGE, and will be the third book in series.
I am really excited about KU’LA’S REVENGE, which will pick up where the end of OUTR FOR BLOOD leaves out, as Kula has to deal with an unexpected tragedy and a surprise person who enters her life.
There will also be some entertaining storylines with supporting characters that readers are sure to find captivating.
I believe that the Transylvanica High Series would make a great movie or television series and perhaps will happen someday.
Give me the blurb for the book in 140 characters or less:
OUT FOR BLOOD is a sequel to COUNT #DRACULA’S #TEENAGE DAUGHTER, a bestselling #youngadult #vampire #novel by @RBarriFlowers #school #horror
What’s next for you?
Well, another new release is TEEN GHOST AT DEAD LAKE, the second title in my Young Adult Mystery series.
Next up for me in KULA’S REVENGE, which should be out in the summer of 2014.
Also slated to be released in the spring of 2014 is my teen coming of age and adventure novel, SUMMER AT PARADISE RANCH, in which a teen has to spend the summer in Maui, Hawaii, with a mom who left her and her dad to be with a man she met online.
R. Barri Flowers is the bestselling author of teen novels, COUNT DRACULA'S TEENAGE DAUGHTER, TEEN GHOST AT DEAD LAKE, GHOST GIRL IN SHADOW BAY, DANGER IN TIME, and CHRISTMAS WISHES: Laura's Story. His novels can be found in print, eBook, and audio.
The author has also written a number of bestselling teen and young adult related nonfiction books as well, including RUNAWAY KIDS AND TEENAGE PROSTITUTION, KIDS WHO COMMIT ADULT CRIMES, and CHILDREN AND CRIMINALITY.
Follow R. Barri Flowers on Twitte (@RBarriFlowers), Facebook, Pinterest Goodreads, Google+, LinkedIn, YouTube, LibraryThing, and http://www.rbarriflowers.net/. And learn more about the author in Wikipedia.
OUT FOR BLOOD Amazon book page: