Tag Archives: Interviews

On writing Horror AND Children’s tales

Author Mayra Calvani is launching two very different books this Fall: Dark Lullaby, a Horror story about merging reality and illusion and an unborn child, and The Magic Violin, a children’s story about self-esteem and magic.

Huh, you’ll say. Horror and children’s stories. How can they be compatible? In this guest spot, a new feature of this blog I’ve decided to start, Mayra Calvani gives us her take on writing both… and not confusing them together. Here’s what Mayra had to say:

A lot of people ask me how I can write chilling horror and sweet children’s picture books at the same time. Somehow they cannot imagine a writer doing that, switching from two absolutely different modes and wandering in such dissimilar imaginary worlds at the touch of a mouse. That question flatters me to some extend, but it also makes me wonder… am I weird? Is there something wrong with me? Do I have split personalities? I hope not!

Nah, I’m just a multi-genre, multi-faceted person who is inspired by many things and who feels the need to bring those ideas to life. I don’t think I could ever write in only one genre, as many authors are able to. For me, it would feel claustrophobic! I simply write what I love and I love paranormal, suspense, satire, mystery, modern fantasy, literary, romantic comedy, picture books, tween and young adult fiction, and even nonfiction. Each genre transports me into a marvelous, different dreamland where everything is possible and where I set the rules—except, of course, when my characters take over, as sometimes they seem to think they have control over me.

darklullaby.jpgI can write a scary story in the morning, have lunch, then work on a sweet picture book in the afternoon. It’s like switching modes and happens pretty much automatically, though my mood changes as well. Of course, although the actual writing process is the same for all fiction (after all, it doesn’t matter what you write, it all must contain a good plot and flow, compelling characters, sparkling dialogue, etc.), the actual ‘atmospheric’ aids I use for writing change. For instance, I like to listen to haunting, mysterious music when I write horror and paranormal suspense. tmvcvr-3×100.jpgDuring the writing of latest horror novel, Dark Lullaby, I spent months listening to the music score of the movie The Village. On occasions I even lit candelabra on my desk. It goes without saying that I would never do this while writing a picture book! During the writing and editing of The Doll Violinist and The Magic Violin, both children’s picture books, I selected soul-filling, sublime violin music.

In the end, there is that absolute need to put those thoughts to paper, to convert those ideas to the ‘reality’ of my fictional world, yes, to bring those dreams to life until they become so real, I find myself thinking about the story and conversing with the characters day and night—no matter the genre. This is the way creativity works.

Mayra Calvani is a multi-genre author and reviewer. For her horror and paranormal suspense novels, visit www.MayraCalvani.com. For her children’s books, visit www.MayrasSecretBookcase.com.

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Reviewed By Liz » Featuring M. D. Benoit

My series, the Jack Meter Case Files, is featured during the Summer Mystery Reading Challenge at Reviewed by Liz. Thanks, Liz, for a great write-up!

dynastic_queen has posted an interview with me on her LJ blog. She’s starting a new feature, LJ Writers’ Block, where she’ll interview authors. I was honored to be her first victim… ah, I mean interviewee. Thanks, Stephe!

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Eight Stop on Synergy Virtual Book Tour

I had a fantastic time at SciFiChick on Monday! Lots of people stopped by. Great interview, Angela, thank you so much.

Today, I’m stopping at Planetalyx Information Bureau where I’ve talked with Alyx about the themes occurring in Synergy. Alyx is a fellow SFCanada author whose novel, Indigo Springs, will soon be released by TOR Books. You can read one of her stories in Strange Horizons. Here’s a little more about Alyx:

A. M. Dellamonica

A.M. Dellamonica, author of “The Town on Blighted Sea,” (a *2006 Year’s Best SF* pick) and numerous other SF and fantasy stories, has published fiction in *Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine*, SciFi.Com’s *SciFiction*, and *Strange Horizons*, as well anthologies including the upcoming PASSING FOR HUMAN, edited by Steve Utley and Michael Bishop. A 2006 Canada Council Grant recipient for her current work in progress, THE WINTERGIRLS, she teaches writing through the UCLA Extension Writers’ program (www.uclaextension.edu and writes book reviews for *Science Fiction Weekly*. Dellamonica maintains a web site at www.alyxdellamonica.com.

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Seventh Stop on Synergy Virtual Book Tour

Thanks for Absinthe & Cookies for hosting me. Unfortunately, there was a problem with the comment process, so I hope those of you who tried to leave a note weren’t too frustrated.

Today, I’m stopping on SciFiChick, who has a nifty blog and talks about, you might have guessed it from the blog name, science-fiction. There are comments about TV shows, book reviews, and commentary. Here’s a bit more about Angela:

SciFi Chick

SciFi fan, portrait artist, avid reader of all genres.

Angela has a fulltime desk job for a Fortune 500 company. And occasionally, she does drawings of buildings/homes and portraits on commission. She reads every chance she gets. And she’s always up for getting books and ARCs from authors and publishers in order to review them on her blog. (Thanks to all that have!)

Portrait drawings usually take her about five or more hours to complete, depending on the level of detail/extras. She’s currently open to producing drawings from pictures on commission. Feel free to contact her for details.

She can be reached at: angela (at) scifichick.com

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Sixth Stop on Synergy Virtual Book Tour

Thanks to Robert Runté for hosting me on his blog yesterday. I got a kick out of seeing my face, which he’d cut out from my photo, appear in front of landmarks in Lethbridge, Alberta. Robert put it a lot of effort in the interview he did with me, and I’m very grateful to him. Robert split the interview in smaller posts: an Introduction, M. D. Benoit on Publishing, M. D. Benoit on Cover Art, M. D. Benoit on Authors on the Web, M. D. Benoit on Synergy, M. D. Benoit on Jack Meter Series, and M. D. Benoit on M. D. Benoit. So if you haven’t read the interviews, you can always go back.

Today, I’ll be at Absinthe & Cookies, where we’ll be discussing the themes of the book and you’ll be able to read the first chapter of Synergy.

Absinthe & Cookies is a cool, eclectic site, and one who participates to the Gathering of the Blogs, where all the blogs who gather on Tartan Day, April 6th, will have something Scottish as a post. Here’s a list of participating blogs.

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