Hi Maidens! Today we are pleased to introduce you to Urban Fantasy author, Amanda Carlson! Amanda has a brand new funny and kickass urban fantasy series called Jessica McClain! We got a chance to chat with Amanda recently about herself and her new series. Fans of Kate Daniels and Patricia Briggs would definitely like Carlson’s writing style. But to find out if this new series is your thing, why don’t you read the interview and find out for yourselves! You can find more info on Amanda and her books on her website here.

Hi Amanda! Thanks so much for coming to UTC! Welcome! As a new author on the block tell us five things about yourself that may surprise us!

  1. I attended the 8th grade in Haleiwa, HI
  2. I’m an only child, but have a large extended family
  3. I’ve traveled all over the world, but I’ve never been to Europe
  4. I drove without a license with my parents blessing at age fifteen
  5. My favorite smell in the entire world is a Magnolia 

What can we expect from your new Jessica McClain series? 
Lots of action and humor! My two favorite things to read. They say you write what you love, and Jessica McClain is a true testament to that. I wrote a character I’d love to take out for a beer. It’s been a joy to go on an adventure with her and each time I write a new scene that surprises me I’m giddy!

Congratulations! This is your first book, what was your experience like trying to get getting published? 

It was a whirlwind once I finally reached the end. I let the book sit for almost 8 months, and from the first line to the last, it took over two years to complete. I started querying agents with the intent to stop writing and get a “real” job if this didn’t pan out. I started getting interest fairly quickly, which was an amazing feeling! I signed with Nicole Resciniti, of the Seymour Agency, in January. We extensively revised before submitting. This is something aspiring writers need to be aware of—no matter how wonderful your manuscript is (or you think it is) it always needs more. We sold it to Orbit in late May. It was a banner day, and one I will never, ever forget. So much fun! I feel incredibly lucky to be at Orbit. It’s a dream.

Do you have a writing process? Do you have to listen to music, have complete silence, where your shirt backwards and eat only rice pudding? 

HA! I love that!! Hmm, I don’t have dietary issues, and I don’t wear my shirt backward, but I do wear yoga pants that have never been to yoga almost daily! Why? Because they’re comfy as hell. I can’t write with music and I even have an industrial sized pair of earmuffs next to my computer. If there is any noise in the house (I have three kids so that is often) or noise outside my window I whip them on. I do play music to get me pumped up on occasion and it’s usually something with a kickin’ beat. I recently got a stability ball as a chair at my desk, so imagine me in yoga pants (that have never been to yoga), a messy binder for my hair, green earmuffs, bouncing on my ball. It’s a glamorous picture.

Is writing something you have always dreamed of doing, or something you have grew to enjoy?

I’ve always love writing. I wrote stories as early as junior high. I still have the notebooks! I’ve been writing seriously, as in trying to get published, for over ten years. I’ve had non-fiction projects, I’ve written for a small food and wine publication, I was writing contemporary romance, but finally finding my voice in urban fantasy was the ticket! It’s so much fun!! I’ve never enjoyed writing anything more than this genre. It’s exciting, fast-paced and you get to invent stuff. Seriously, what’s better than that? I LOVE it.

Who are your favourite authors? Have any authors/books that have inspired you?

When the Lord of the Rings move came out in 2001, I dove into Tolkien. I was anxiously awaiting the next Harry Potter and was amazed I’d never read Tolkien before. The novels were so utterly amazing; I was lost for days reading them. I don’t write anything like Tolkien, lol, but his world, voice and characterization were so vivid and rich—it was right after that I was hooked back into fantasy as an adult. After than came urban fantasy. I read anything and everything I could get my hands on. I hit a dry spell in late 2008 and decided to try my hand at creating the kind of a novel I’d want to read shortly after that. Four years later—here it is!

Okay some fun questions!

If your Jess from your series had a dinner party what other UF chicks would she invite?

Man, if she could, I’d imagine her out with all the heavy hitters: Kate Daniels, Rachel Morgan, Mercy Thompson, Jane Yellowrock – that would be an amazing table to sit around. I want to go too!

If we were unforgivably rude and pulled at random five things from your hand bag, what would we find?
  1. Mints (I have two or three different kinds)
  2. Lip gloss. The only makeup I ever reapply
  3. A handful of receipts
  4. A reusable bag
  5. A fabric swatch for my couch. I’ve been meaning to buy accent pillows for months.

What was the last movie you watched? What was the last you hated?
Last movie was The Hunger Games. LOVED! We love movies and we’ve had a streak of winners: 21 Jump Street, This Means War, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Horrible Bosses (rental), but maybe…Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol? I didn’t hate it, but it wasn’t great.

Tell us the first thing that comes to mind:
* Shifter: Jessica
* Vampire: Creepy
* Tattoos: Have one (inside left ankle, Anasazi symbol)
* Piercings: Hate the gages (huge holes)

Thanks so much for the chat!!!

Jessica McClain was born the only female in an all male race. The only problem is-she’s no wolf. Called a curse, a witch and the Daughter of Evil by the superstitious wolves, Jessica decides to fight for her freedom, at age nineteen, the only way she can-in the ring.

When she’s brutally attacked right after her fight, is it enough to finally earn her freedom off Compound, or will she be forced to endure the hatred even longer . . .


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  1. This was a great interview! I definitely added Amanda’s books to my TBR! I love the question & answer to her writing process. I wear yoga pants too that have never been to yoga! LOL!

    Yay to Kate Daniels, Mercy Thompson & Rachel Morgan! They are definitely on my list of favorite female characters 🙂

    Thanks very much for the giveaway!

  2. Congrats! Your book sounds like a fun read. And yeah your character does sound like someone it would be fun to sit and have a beer with =)

  3. Thanks for stopping by, everyone! So glad you liked the interview. I hope you’ll like the novella even more! I love writing kickass, and I’m so glad people out there love reading it.

    Good luck to everyone! Can’t wait to giveaway the downloads.


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