Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Interview with Tory Michaels!

I'd like to welcome author Tory Michaels to my blog! Welcome, Tory. I hope you're doing well. Congratulations on your newest release-Blood Mage Rising. This is your second published book, am I correct? And second in a series? How did you come up with the idea for the books?

Yes, you are quite correct. Blood Rage (book 1) came out of some old-time RPG characters from back when I gamed on Prodigy Classic (back just after the internet providers began providing for a monthly fee rather than an hourly one). Rising, on the other hand, came out of Rage when I finally wrote it, and I realized there was a whole lot going on behind the scenes that Anthony and Dara just weren’t aware of. In Rage we’re introduced to the idea of a war against the vampires (and other non-humans). In Rising, you get to see some of the nitty-gritty about how it’s coming about (and learn what the uber-villain is actually up to).

How long did it take you to write the FIRST rough draft of each book?
Hrmmm, Rage took about two months to do the first draft (and oh God, it was sooooo bad). I hadn’t learned many of the rules of writing yet (telling/showing, head-hopping, etc).  

Rising, on the other hand, took 32 days to do the initial draft. It was much better, though there were some plot problems with the first draft.

Are you a plotter or do you write from the seat or your pants?
Big-time pantser, though it’s proving to be a problem with Book 3.  I have to be careful not to break rules I’ve established in the first two books and of course I never wrote any of this stuff down.

Do you ever think of writing in a separate genre from the current?
I’ve considered a historical, but….yeah, research is not my favorite thing to do. I don’t like straight contemporary romance. Maybe some day I’ll try romantic suspense. Rage got classified as romantic suspense as well as paranormal-romance/urban fantasy. Rising’s the same way.

What do you do to celebrate release day?
Go to my day job. Try not to check the stats on Amazon too fanatically.

What are you currently working on?
Plotting (sort of) for book 3.

When you're not writing, what are your other hobbies and passions?
Being pregnant, taking care of my kids, and reading. Lots and lots of reading lately.

Who are some of your favorite authors?
Oh lord…Sherrilyn Kenyon, Christine Feehan, Gabi Stevens, Douglas Preston/Lincoln Childs, Julia Quinn, Tracey Ann Warren, and soooo many more.

What is something you'd like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
Two more books out, at least. I’m skeptical, but that could be my hormones talking (baby #4 on the way, due in November).  I’d also, just once, like to see a silver star on my books at All Romance (means they’re a best-seller in one of their categories).

If you could have one paranormal ability, what would it be?
Agelessness/immortality.  I want to see what happens in the centuries to come!

If you could keep a mythical/ paranormal creature as a pet, what would you have?
Ummm….a pegicorn? (Pegasus/unicorn)

Tell us a little about your latest release.
BMR is the second book in the Dream-Walker War series and overlaps Blood Rage. The blurb:
     In the eighty years since the Great Awakening, humans and non-humans have lived side by side, relatively at peace.  In an attack that leaves his wife dead, Jordan MacNaught is caught up in the start of a war meant to turn the other races against the vampires. He knows beyond a doubt the vampires of yesteryear are not involved in the attacks. They're all dead, except for him.

     Jordan asks for Chris Javert's help in hunting those who murdered his wife. She's no stranger to hunting vampires. After all, she nearly destroyed Jordan when she ended the reign of his Aristocrats in Europe two hundred years ago.

     Despite doubts about Jordan’s innocence, Chris joins forces with him, the man who once tried to kill her, to save the inter-species pace from the new Aristocrats before war consumes them all.

What is something that you absolutely can't live without? (Other than family members)
Technically: air.  But non-literally: chocolate.

Could you ever co author a book with someone? If so, who would you choose, and what would you write?
Hmmm, maybe. If they were willing to take on the sex scenes for me.

If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?
Pharaoh Akhenaten (Tut’s father, tried to make Egypt a monotheistic country – sort of – 1300 years or so before Jesus, some say he was influenced by or else he influenced Moses), just to find out what he was really like.

If you were a song, what type would you be? Upbeat, ballad? What genre of music would it be?
Something dark and depressing these days.

What is your writing process like?
Hrmmm, write for a few minutes, check email. Write for a few minutes, check facebook/blogs. When I’m actually in the groove, I can shut out everything. Lately though, with the moods I’ve been in, getting any words is like pulling teeth.

Tell readers something they would be surprised to know about you?
I hate summer/hot weather and yet I (mostly) willingly live in Florida!

What is a talent you wish you had, but don't?
The ability to sing, maybe.

Favorite color?
Dark green.

Weather: Hot or cold?
Cold! You can always put more clothes on to keep warm, but it’s hard to strip off your skin to cool down.

Favorite place to read?
Anywhere I don’t have kids trying to eat my book/iPad.

Favorite meal
Wow, I don’t know. So much sounds good these days. Probably cheesy bread with garlic dipping sauce from Little Ceasar’s. Erm, that’s probably a pregnancy thing though. I absolutely love my husband’s General Tsao’s chicken. Unfortunately, we lost the recipe when our older twin killed the old computer by falling on it and breaking the fan. Heh, dang it.

Favorite non-alcoholic drink.
Awwwww, no alcohol? But fine – egg nog or else cherry coke!

If you could travel anywhere and do anything, no limits or money holding you back, where would you go?
Japan and maybe the Middle East.

Do you have anything you want to say to readers?
Thank you so much for coming and I hope you enjoy my books! I love hearing from you all.

I can be found at the following locations:

Twitter: @ToryMichaels

Blurb for Blood Rage:
For eighty years since the Great Awakening, humans and non-humans have lived in relative peace together. The peace is threatened when three bodies turn up less than a mile from the Bureau of Non-Human Affairs in Tampa, all bearing the signature of vampires who once terrorized Europe.

The Bureau’s chief liaison to the vampires, Dara MacKechnie, learns that the Tampa victims are not alone when her ex-lover, and head of the vampire’s Great Council, Anthony Caldwell comes calling.

The pair discovers the lie that separated them two centuries ago only banked their passion, not extinguished it. Dara must decide whether she can trust Anthony with her heart a second time as they try to head off the war that threatens all they hold dear.

Excerpt for Blood-Mage Rising:
Despite the disturbing turn to her daydream, the shower centered her. It certainly ended her bout of the hornies. When she exited the frosted glass enclosure into the steam and gardenia-scented room, Chris could face the world, and Jordan, again. Cool marble tile provided a sharp contrast against the balmy miasma blanketing her. She needed to get dressed and back to work.
“It’s about time you got out,” Jordan said as he materialized, seated on the edge of the counter between the sink bowls. His legs dangled over the edge.
“Son of a—” Chris yelped and leaped for her towel.
He blinked slowly, warning, and she just caught herself before the last word slipped out. The last time she called him a son of a bitch, he buried her alive for disparaging his mother. For some reason, he objected to the pejorative, even though rumor had it he’d killed his mother at some point. She clutched at her towel like a shield.
“What are you doing in here?”
“To quote a certain someone, I should think that it’s fairly obvious. I wanted to talk to you.” He flashed a smile, fangs just barely showing, and leaned his weight back on his palms. “You know, Chrissy, if you’d just given me a bit longer, you wouldn’t have had to resort to alternative methods.”
She might be claustrophobic, but right then she wanted the floor to open up and swallow her whole. Dear God. Her reflection turned a nice, brilliant, beet red, and she looked around for her bathrobe, finally finding it slung over the door that separated the toilet from the main portion of the room. “Mother of Lorminstra, you perverted jackanapes!”
Jordan blinked again, the picture of innocence. “I am the perverted one? Which one of us just masturbated in the shower?”
This absolutely can’t be happening. Please let this be a continuation of the weird-ass dream. Chris snatched her robe down and yanked it on, surreptitiously pinching her side in the process. Pain flared and dissipated. Unfortunately, the bathroom invasion continued unabated.Damn, no dream. She belted the flimsy scrap of silk, not feeling much more secure than with the towel. “You could have waited five minutes.”
“I did. Then, when you still didn’t emerge, I thought I’d wait in here.”
Since the universe didn’t see fit to rescue her by sending a great bolt of lightning or a tsunami to kill her, she needed to brazen the situation out. And had her shower really taken that long? Good lord.
“What was so important you couldn’t wait? And while there’d better not be a next time, next time let me know you’re there. I could have finished...ah, I could have gotten, ah, ….”
There really wasn’t a good way to end that statement, and she floundered. He didn’t seem inclined to rescue her either, judging by his grin. Asshole. The recently departed headache began to squeeze her temples again.
“I wouldn’t have enjoyed it half as much if I had interrupted, unless I joined in.”
“Well, why didn’t you?” In her brief glimpse before she bent at the waist and flipped her hair over her head to begin toweling it dry, she got good visual confirmation that he definitely enjoyed the view. Must have been in mist form to see much, given the frosted glass that surrounded the shower.
“And get my clothes wet? Don’t be absurd.”
“A normal person would join me.” She wrung her hair out with more force than strictly necessary. “Now, explain what was so important you felt the need to become a Peeping Jordan, and then get out!”
“I think you need to have another go in the shower, if you’re still this waspish.”
Anthony would thank her if she killed him.
“I’ll make this brief. You’re fond of gambling, aren’t you?”
“What of it?” She continued to rub viciously with the towel, not sure she followed him yet. “I’m fond of lots of things.”
“Earlier, you propositioned me.”
Chris choked. “I did no such thing!”
“Then what would you call it?”
“Losing my mind.”
Jordan chuckled. From her upside down position, she saw his legs stop swinging as he leaned forward. “I propose a bet. Just to make our time a little more interesting, although I doubt it will beat what I just saw.”
She purposely ignored the latter half of his statement. Finished with her scalp she moved on to the longer portion of her hair.
“If you win, I will walk the straight and narrow for, hmmm. Two decades should be impetus enough, even for you. While not admitting to having done anything that might get me in trouble under your country’s Rights and Responsibilities Act, I promise not to indulge in any of my more exotic entertainments for that period. No murder, no torture, nothing of that nature.” Her eyes widened, and she stood, towel held loosely in her right hand. “I thought that might garner your exclusive attention.”
Mouth dry, she swallowed hard. For that offer, he wanted something big in return. “And if I lose?”
“I get your blood. More specifically, we forge a blood-bond.”
No chance in hell.
Though she wanted to say the words, she didn’t. If she rejected him out of hand without a good reason, he might wonder. Vampires commonly shared blood. It wasn’t safe for her to do, since most people would feel obligated to turn her over to the Circle for execution if they figured out what she was.
She couldn’t dismiss the possibility he’d offered the bet to see how desperate she was to avoid sharing blood. In that case, she should say yes and win, no matter the cost.
“Quite the stakes. What’s the bet?”

One more thing to add before we wrap this up. I have a review for Blood Rage. :)

BLURB: For eighty years since the Great Awakening, humans and non-humans have lived in relative peace together. That peace is threatened when three bodies turn up less than a mile from the Bureau of Non-Human Affairs in Tampa bearing the signature of vampires who once terrorized Europe.

The Bureau’s chief liaison to the vampires, Dara MacKechnie, learns that the Tampa victims are not alone when her ex-lover, and head of the vampire’s Great Council, Anthony Caldwell comes calling.

The pair discover the lie that separated them two centuries ago only banked their passion, not extinguished it. Dara must decide whether she can trust Anthony with her heart a second time as they try to head off the war that threatens all they hold dear.

MY THOUGHTS:   Blood Rage is a great start to a new series! I am intrigued by the world building, and the different spin put on vampires. It's unique, original and fun. Dara and Anthony are a great couple, and reading their story kept me intrigued. They have a past, which makes the angst between the two even stronger, expecially now that they are working together.  There's some suspense mixed in the paranormal, and all around I enjoyed it. I am looking forward to what's next in the Dream-Walker War series. Tory Michaels is an author to watch, as her blend of great writing, strong world building, and likable characters is bound to cause a great stir in the writing world.  Don't miss this book if you love paranormal/urban fantasy stories, and want something unique. 

Thanks for stopping by! Tory, good luck with all your writing ventures, and congratulations with your pregnacny. Sounds like this is a big year for you. I hope all your dreams unfold into what you'd like them to be.

Until next time,

Storm Goddess


  1. Interesting interview. The covers of these books are gorgeous! Loved the excerpt.

    1. Thanks for coming by! I absolutely adore my covers. :)

  2. I have B.R now I have to purchase B.M.R.
    I love the covers!

    1. Muahaha, good. Love to hear that, Brenda. :P Thanks for coming!

  3. Great interview. Will have to check your books!

  4. Interesting interview. I enjoyed reading the excerpt too! Thanks for sharing.

    1. Glad you enjoyed it. You can see the first two chapters on Amazon.