What inspired you to become an author?
I don’t think there was any one person or thing that inspired me; I’ve always adored reading great stories and watching them on film and TV, and I had an overpowering urge to express some of my own ideas. I wrote my first novel aged 8, and then created my own comic series when I was 9; it just seemed the thing to do.
Do you write in different genres?
I have two non-fiction books published on my specialist subject of horse training.
My first novels were Science Fiction. I’ve never published any of those, though I wouldn’t rule it out in the future.
THE PRINCE’S MAN, my fiction debut, is Epic Fantasy, whereas DESPRITE MEASURES is Urban Fantasy; different sub-genres, requiring very different approaches in style and setting.
If yes which is your favorite genre to write?
You know, I don’t really have a favorite. SF and Fantasy are both playgrounds for the imagination, and that’s what I love about them – building my own worlds, my own laws of physics, allowing my mind to create fantastical scenarios to test my characters and challenge them in ways not possible in a contemporary setting.
How did you come up with the title for your latest book?
I grew up in a house full of people who loved puns and caught the habit at an early age. So when I picked the type of supernatural character – a sprite - that I wanted as my central character for Desprite Measures, the title came naturally!
Do you title the book first or wait until after it’s complete?
Usually I find the title after I’ve written the book, but DESPRITE MEASURES came first, and I already have the title for the next in the series: SPRITEFUL LIES.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Yes. Although on the surface Desprite Measures is an urban fantasy adventure, it is designed to highlight certain ecological and environmental issues – a theme that will be ongoing throughout the series.
If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
That would be David Gemmell. I met him at a writer’s conference. He was taking a session on writing fantasy and we were invited to send in a sample before the event. I assumed everyone would, but only about 5 people did, and he commented and advised on each piece. After chatting with him at the end, he offered to help a bit more, and we corresponded for a while before his untimely death.
What book are you reading now?
Water’s Blood, by Elaine Calloway. When I saw it was about a water elemental, I just had to read it!
What is your current “work in progress” or upcoming projects?
I’m currently writing the second part of my Epic Fantasy trilogy, THE PRINCE’S SON, picking up where events left off at the end of THE PRINCE’S MAN. I’ve been overwhelmed with the enthusiasm of people who bought the first book, and their demands for the second. It’s also scary when reviewers pick out strands they expressly want to see developed, when I hadn’t thought of going down those particular avenues!
As soon as I get TPS to beta reading stage I will be starting the sequel to Desprite Measures – already in the planning stages.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Read, read, and read! And while you do, study story construction – I still believe that a good novel should have a beginning, a middle and an end. This last often gives me anguish, as (to my mind) too many self-published authors leave their books on an out-and-out cliffhanger, like a serial. I get really irritated when I’ve invested the time in reading someone’s novel, only to find it has no resolution. I understand the marketing idea behind it – you must buy the next book to see what happens – but I don’t believe it is an honest way to keep readers coming back. It’s always good to leave hanging threads for a sequel, but every novel should have a climactic ending.
And to understand how to create tension – watch TV soaps! They may not be to your taste, but soap writers are seasoned professionals at creating tension – well worth the education.
The Caledonian Sprite Series
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Word Count: 95,000
Cover Artist: Alexandria N. Thompson
On the surface she's a cute and feisty blonde, a slender pocket rocket fitness coach. But Cassiopeia Lake has a secret; she's really a force of nature – an elemental.
Water sprite, Cassie, has lived undisturbed in her native Scottish loch for eons. Now, one encounter too many with modern plumbing has driven her to live in human guise along with her selkie boyfriend, Euan. It’s all going fine - until a nerdy magician captures Cassie to be an unwilling component in his crazy dangerous experiment.
Escape is only Cassie’s first challenge.
She’s smitten by her fellow prisoner, the scorching hot fire elemental, Gloria. But how do you love someone you can never touch?
And what do you do when your boyfriend starts to hero-worship your persecutor? Not to mention that tricky situation of being the prize in a power contest between two rival covens of witches.
So when Gloria’s temper erupts and she sets out to murder the magician, can Cassie keep her loved ones safe from the cross-fire, or will she be sucked into the maelstrom of deadly desires and sink without trace?
About the Author:
Deborah Jay writes fast-paced fantasy adventures featuring quirky characters and multi-layered plots – just what she likes to read.
Living mostly on the UK South coast, she has already invested in her ultimate retirement plan – a farmhouse in the majestic, mystery-filled Scottish Highlands where she retreats to write when she can find time. Her taste for the good things in life is kept in check by the expense of keeping too many dressage horses, and her complete inability to cook.
Her debut novel, epic fantasy THE PRINCE’S MAN, first in a trilogy and winner of a UK Arts Board award, was published in July 2013, with THE PRINCE’S SON due out summer 2014.
Urban fantasy, DESPRITE MEASURES, is the opening novel of the five book CALEDONIAN SPRITE SERIES.
She also has non-fiction equestrian titles published in her professional name of Debby Lush.
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