I’ve just recently started reading this author. Karilyn Bentley’s books in the Demon Huntress Series keep me laughing and on edge at the same time. When she comes out with a new one, I’m thrilled. All three of these I’ve read, and simply loved her world of demons, minions, mages and a magic bracelet that gives lip! Gin Crawford is a character you will come to love, along with her mage protector, Aidan Symthe.
Karilyn, thank you for joining us here at Booktalk with Eileen and giving your fans an inside seat to what makes you the writer you are. This interview will hopefully let other readers see the kind of books you write.
Thank you for having me on today Eileen! I’m glad to be here!
Before we get to the nitty-gritty questions, can you tell us something about your other series the Draconia Tales? Lots of my blog readers love dragons, as do I.
Dragons are wonderful, aren’t they? They were a lot of fun to write! The Draconia Tales was the first series I wrote that I meant to be a series. I had a novella published (I later wrote another novella in that world, more on this coming up), but Magical Lover (the first book in the Draconia Tales series) was the first novel I had published. It took several attempts before my editor would accept it (yep, I was a newbie writer then and looking back, don’t blame her in the least for not wanting the original manuscript. It was awful!). The books take place in the fantasy land of Draconia and was originally written as a trilogy (in reading order: Magical Lover, Warrior Lover and Dragon Lover). I later took the young boy from that trilogy and gave him his own story (The Detective’s Dragon), which means the trilogy is now a 4 book series.
Would you say your books can be read by both young adults and adults?
It depends on the age of the young adult. I’d say age 16 and up. My dragon and werewolf stories are racier than my urban fantasy.
Do you have any other books you’ve written?
I do! The story that launched my writing career was Werewolves in London, a novella that won a contest and became part of an anthology. The anthology is no longer in print, but the story is. I wrote another novella in the werewolf world, Wolf Mates. Both of those novellas can be found on their own, but my publisher also put them together in one anthology: After the Moon Rises.
I want to now shift gears and discuss your writing path. What is your preferred genre to write in? What sparks that interest?
I got my start in paranormal and fantasy romance and then shifted into urban fantasy. I like this sub-genre because it combines my love of a HEA (happily ever after) with my love of (almost) all things paranormal.
Do you ever think of writing in another genre?
I would love to be able to write mysteries. Those were my favorites to read as a child but I have yet to be able to write one.
When you begin a story, the seed of the story if you will, does it grow from a character’s personality, certain outside forces or a time and place?
So far all my books have grown from a what if. What if these two people fell in love? What if an ER nurse, who was also an empath (there’s that paranormal thing edging in!) found a bracelet that gave her demon-killing powers? I guess that means I grow a story seed from outside forces.
Are you methodical in your writing, certain hours of the day, certain rituals you may perform before you sit down? Or are you one of those writers who binge write when the mood is upon you?
I like to drink hot tea while I write. The muse fails to show up if I don’t have a cup of tea next to my laptop. As far as writing at certain times, I tend to write whenever I can squeeze in a minute. When I used to work FT at the day job, that meant my writing hours were between 8 and 10 at night. I don’t function if I don’t have enough sleep, so waking up early was out of the question. I am more of a slow (make that extremely slow), plodding writer as opposed to one who binges when the muse strikes.
Are you comfortable weaving any of your personal experiences into a story? Is there one story you’ve written which is emotionally closer to your heart than others?
I try not to put in characteristics of people I know in my stories. Nor have I taken an entire personal experience and put it in a story. That said, I have put in some nursing experiences of my friends and used my sole experience as a patient in the ER as one of Gin’s patients. Those are the funny stories.
I would say Gin is closer to my heart than my other stories. I really enjoy writing about her!
Are there particular tropes you are fond of using?
Not to my knowledge. If they are in my books, it’s not a conscious decision.
What is important to you when creating characters? Is your story more plot driven or character driven?
The characters have to be believable within their world. They don’t necessarily have to be likeable. But if they aren’t believable, your reader will chunk the book across the room. J I would say my stories are more plot driven, but the characters also have to go through changes that are hopefully for the better.
I’ve enjoyed our time together, Karilyn. I hope the readers out there have enjoyed it, too.
It was a pleasure. I always enjoy connecting to readers.