Inkwell Guest: Jami Gray
Hi, everyone! Today I’m pleased to welcome urban fantasy author, Jami Gray. She’s published with Black Opal Books and she’s here today to talk about her latest release!
Honestly, I wasn’t really given much of a choice. I was adopted at the age of fourteen and when I moved in with my soon-to-be-adopted family at twelve, the state mandated therapist suggested I keep a journal. Funny thing, it got boring so instead I started creating stories and characters that were much more interesting than reality at the time. I started in earnest as a freshman in high school. Back in the dark ages, typing on an actual typewriter was a required class. My parents had invested in an electric typewriter so the six of us in high school could practice our typing skills. Needless to say, I would hover over siblings until they finished then I would commandeer the typewriter for my own nefarious purposes. By the time I began to pack for college at eighteen, I had almost 200 pages of YA fantasy novel done. And no, it will never, ever, see the light of day again. After that, writing was something I had to do.
Why write this book?
Again, not my choice. Raine McCord, the main heroine of Shadow’s Edge, was pretty persistent in putting her story out there. I was world crafting and she snuck in and took over. How could I refuse? Better yet, I wouldn’t dare refuse Raine, the woman is a bit scary.
What’s your writing process?
Seat of the pants. I know…I’m a type-A personality so you would expect detailed outlines, character sheets and PowerPoint graphs, but nope, I start with an overall idea, some appealing characters and an intriguing problem and let it go. It’s a frightening way to write, but I’ve found it works best for me. The more I outlined a plot, the farther away from it I went. My characters want to make their own stories, so I let them.
Who influenced you the most?
When I was younger I would get lost in the worlds of Lloyd Alexander and his Taran the Wanderer series, or Susan Cooper’s The Dark Is Rising series. As a teenager I found Terry Brooks’ Shannara books, Anne McCafferty’s Dragonriders of Pern books and Andre Norton’s Incarnations of Immortality. All of them wove such believable worlds which could suck you in and never let you go. I still have all of these on my bookshelves, tucked securely next to their newer companions of Hamilton, Butcher (both Mr. & Mrs.), Ward, Feehan, Murphy, Showalter, Kenyon, Estep, Andrews, Briggs and many, many others.
Having magic exist in the real world has always fascinated me. I think the concept of standing out from the crowd drew me. As a writer, I love to people watch, but my characters…no they’re much more outgoing. I’ve always been drawn to heroines who have survived the crucibles of challenging pasts and emerged like finely honed blades on the other side, much like Raine McCord. However, even the most beautiful weapons forged in searing heat have their own hidden flaws. I think these flaws make a character much more human. And you can’t have such strong women without providing equally strong partner to walk beside them.
Release and Blurb?
Shadow’s Edge is the first book in the Kyn Kronicles and was released November 1st, 2011 through Black Opal Books. It’s available in paperback and ebook format.
It takes a monster to hunt one, and for Raine McCord, forged in the maelstrom of magic and science, she’s the one for the job. In a world where the supernatural live in a shadowy existence with the mundane, a series of disappearances and deaths threatens the secrecy of her kind and indicates someone knows the monsters are alive and kicking. Partnering up with the sexy and tantalizing Gavin Durand proves to be a challenge as dangerous as the prey she hunts.
When the trail points back to the foundation which warped Raine’s magic as a child, her torturous past raises its ugly head. Gavin and Raine sift through a maze of lies, murder and betrayal to discover not only each other, but the emerging threat to them and the entire magical community.
Where can people find you?
You can find Jami and her books here:
Buy Link: www.BlackOpalBooks.com
Growing up on the Arizona-Mexico border, Jami Gray was adopted at the age of 14 and suddenly became the fifth eldest of 37 children. She graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor’s in Journalism and three minors-History, English, and Theater. Shortly after marrying her techie-geek hubby (who moonlighted as her best friend in high school) she completed a Masters in Organizational Management from University of Phoenix Oregon.
Now, years later, she’s back in the Southwest where she’s outnumbered in her own home by two Star Wars obsessed boys, one Star Wars obsessed husband, and an overly-friendly, 105-pound male lab. Writing is what saves her sanity.