Meredith Bond is the author of the Vallen series of which "Magic In The Storm" is being reviewed over at Unleaded: Fuel for Writers.
Meredith Bond is an award-winning author of a series of traditionally published Regency romances and indie-published paranormal romances. Her paranormal romances include “Magic In The Storm,” “Storm on the Horizon,” and "In A Beginning" (in the anthology “Tales From The Mist”). Her traditional Regencies include “The Merry Men Quartet” of which “A Dandy In Disguise” has just been released. Meredith also teaches writing. If you want a taste of her class, Chapter One is available at your favorite e-retailer. Want to know more? Come visit Meredith at her website, www.meredithbond.com or chat with her on Facebook (www.facebook.com/meredithbondfan) or Twitter (@merrybond).
I had the opportunity to interview Ms. Bond during my review of her first book of the Vallen series.
What inspired you to write your first book? Boredom. Honestly. I’d just gotten married and moved to Williamstown, MA where my husband was a professor at Williams College. I had newly minted master’s degree in secondary education and thought that I’d teach high school history and social studies. Williamstown is an absolutely gorgeous town in the middle of nowhere on the Vermont-Massachusetts-New York border. Basically, I was told that if somebody died, I’d get a job teaching. I had nothing else to do, but read my favorite romances… until I started to write them myself.
How did you come up with the title? Excellent question! I honestly can’t recall. It must have been my husband. He comes up with a number of my titles.
What are your current projects? Oooh, the question most dear to every author’s heart! I have just re-published a Regency romance, A Dandy In Disguise (originally published as Dame Fortune by Zebra Books), and now I’m working on a really fun post-Arthurian fantasy trilogy. I’ve got the first two books of the Children of Avalon series finished (but for editing) and am working on writing the third book. As soon as my editing is done, and a bit more of the third book is completed, I’ll start publishing them. I’m aiming to get the first one out in October. Keep your fingers crossed for me!
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book? I’m going to assume you mean in the book I’m working on right now, Air: Merlin’s Chalice, the first book of the Children of Avalon series. I’m currently changing the whole thing from third person to first – both I (and my critique group) think it’ll work much better that way. I’ll be able to get much deeper into my heroine’s head, which is always a good thing.
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing? Well, I have to say, my grammar has improved a great deal over the years – I’m no longer writing so many run-on sentences, except for this one, of course. J But definitely, remembering to include descriptions is always a challenge for me, and those dratted five senses. I never remember them and have to go back searching for them and adding them in as I edit.
Do you have to travel much for researching or marketing your book(s)? Sigh… I wish. I have gone to England a few times and deliberately toured Regency era homes there. And I had loads of fun doing research for An Exotic Heir in Kolkata, India, driving around the old British homes, the Governor’s mansion and, of course, going to the bazaar (which hasn’t changed as much as you might expect it to in 250 years).
What was the hardest part of writing your book? Balancing all the pieces. There are two major plot lines in Magic In The Storm as well as a couple of subplots, so balancing everything and making sure nothing got forgotten or dropped. Oh, and sex scenes! Sex is hard to write – at least for me. How much to do you describe (without using too many cringe-worthy clichés)? Why is it there? Does it have to be there? What does that scene do for the book? For the lives of the characters? For their stories? It’s always a challenge writing sex scenes.
What were the challenges (research, literary, psychological, and logistical) in bringing it to life? For Magic In The Storm, I had to create an entire world and a people. I had to decide on what magic could be done, and what couldn’t. I had to come up with the rules of the world and then stick to them. That is always a challenge when writing paranormal and fantasy.
Do you have specific tools to aid your writing? Yes, and in fact, I just wrote a two-part blog series on “My writer’s toolboxes”. You can find them here: http://meredithbond.com/blog/posts/
How would you characterize your experience with self publishing? Excellent, if sometimes a little frustrating. I love self-publishing. I love formatting my books (although Smashwords will always give me headaches). I love being in control of every aspect of publishing (from writing to formatting to designing the cover). I do not love marketing, but in today’s publishing industry, I would have to do that no matter how I was published. Other than that, it’s fantastic!
Who designed the covers? Su at Earthly Charms did the cover for Magic In The Storm. For its prequel, Storm on the Horizon, I copied her design concept and made that cover on my own. I love designing my own covers (with help from my husband who is great at picking out just the right fonts for my titles).
I want to thank Ms. Bond for taking the time to answer my questions. I am looking forward to more of her Vallen series!