Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Author Spotlight: Jennifer McDonald

 
Into the Veil
Introducing Jennifer McDonald, author of the YA Urban Fantasy trilogy The Veilwalker Trilogy:

Q: Tell us a little about yourself.

A: There isn’t a terrible amount to tell. I’m married with two children and three cats. Most of my free time is spent arguing with my characters in front of the computer. I’ll read just about anything but my favorite books are those I can share with my friends and family. While literature has been the first love of my life, music is definitely the second. My tastes range from classical (which I listen to when writing) to punk and metal.

Q: When did you start writing, and why? A: Inspired by the horror novels I read as a teen, I spent a lot of time writing short stories in school. They were always quite dark and twisted though, and my teachers were always trying to curb me toward contemporary ideas. They really never took.

Through the Gloom
Q: What do you write, and why? What do you enjoy about what you write? A: I write Young Adult Urban Fantasy. Books for me have always been an escape, so I think it’s natural that I was seduced by the imagination and worlds of impossibility that fantasy offer. Though I enjoy adult novels, the YA genre allows me to explore minds still growing and maturing. The teenage years are a powerful time. Characters are learning who they are, beliefs are forming and changing, and the future is wide open to an abundance of possibilities.

Across the Blood Red River
Q: What is your latest book or series? Any forthcoming books? A: Across the Blood Red River was released in August 2014 and marked the end of my Veilwalker Trilogy. Completing my first series was gratifying, but after nearly two years of writing about Lyric and Lincoln, it was a little sad to say goodbye. I’m now working on a multi-book series titled The Helios Chronicles that follows a rebel warlock clan as they fight against the archaic royal families of the magical world.

Q: "Welcome To My Worlds": Tell us a little about the world of your latest book or series. A: The Veilwalker Trilogy is a YA Urban Fantasy that takes place in modern day. The mythology goes…
Magical creatures and humans once lived together in peace and harmony. But six thousand years ago, when the humans were most brutal and magical folk most arrogant, a great war broke out. Humans had always possessed vast numbers, and the magical factions lost the earth because they couldn’t work together.

Their kind faded from memory over the generations—becoming history then legend and myth and fairy tales. Now they live as a secret civilization hidden amongst the humans and still locked in eternal battle.

Into the Veil
Q: Introduce us to some of your characters. What do you like about them? A: Lyric is a teenage veilwalker. This means she has the ability to cross realms and enter the land of the dead. Along with her twin brother and father, Lyric has been hiding from those who seek to use her gifts for their own gain. She’s a driven young woman, focused primarily on being a good little soldier and keeping her family safe. Her brother Lincoln is the charismatic of the pair. He’s easy-going, calm, and a bit of ladies’ man. Then we have Gemma – the ghost who was accidentally enthralled and trapped in the living world. Gemma is certainly the most fun to write. She’s snarky and sarcastic, and constantly at odds with the twins. But when things get tough, Gemma makes for a great ally.

Q: A fun fact you would like your readers to know about you or your book. A: Lincoln and Lyric had actually appeared in an unpublished book I wrote years ago. They were only children then, about seven or eight, and played a small role. But I loved the other character’s reactions whenever the twins were around. Everyone was intrigued - fascinated by their odd presence and eerie demeanor. Little by little, Lyric and Lincoln’s roles grew until I realized I was writing about the characters.

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Across the Blood Red River (Veilwalker Trilogy, #3):

To lost souls, the veil is a cold, tragic existence. But for Lyric Yama, the living world is so much worse.

Lyric has finally uncovered the truth of her mother’s brutal murder. Now her hands are stained and her mind is plagued with the bitterness of regret.

Soon she will have bigger problems. A grieving warlock is closing in. He’ll stop at nothing to reap vengeance on the young witch.

As the consequences of her past march closer, and the illusion of safety is abandoned, Lyric must decide whether to run or stand and fight.

But when the full power of a veilwalker’s magic is unleashed, no one—living or dead—will ever be safe again.

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Excerpt:

I smirked at the melancholy in her sigh, and tossed in a twenty to kick off the betting. “Tell us about yourself, Ray-Anne. I barely know anything about old souls. Or incubi and empaths for that matter.”
Sure, I’d heard rumors like everyone else—the unfair and untrue reputations tacked to each race in a blanket stereotype. Veilwalkers were spies, conjurors thieves, and werewolves were mindless beasts. Succubi were sluts while seers were nothing but trouble. But I hadn’t heard much about empaths or old-souls, good or bad.

“What would you like to know?” She draped her arm over the back of her chair, watching me with eyes that held far too much knowledge.

I shrugged. “I don’t know. Do you look the same in every life? Are you always a girl?”

“Heavens, no. I’ve been born into families of every skin color on every continent, and though I’m usually female, I’ve spent four lives as a boy.” She grinned as if conveying top secret information. “Being a boy is amazingly fun, Lyric. A hundred years ago, women couldn’t do anything without everyone getting a bug up their asses. But men? Opium and orgies were expected of men. I can’t begin to tell you how many fresh young maids I defiled…”

“Whoa!”

The Veilwalker Trilogy is available at Amazon

About the Author:
Jennifer R. McDonald resides in Canada with her husband, two children, and three cats. Urban Fantasy is her favorite genre to write but she enjoys reading Horror, Science Fiction, Fantasy, and anything with great antiheroes, cunning villains, and flawed characters.

Jennifer’s first YA Urban Fantasy series, The Veilwalker Trilogy follows the misadventures of a young witch with the power to separate her soul from her body and cross into the land of the dead. After its completion, Jennifer began work on a spin-off series. The first installment of The Helios Chronicles (still untitled) will take a darker turn and feature a teenage witch raised within the treacherous warlock royal palace.

When not writing, Jennifer loves to read, paint, create music, and watch old horror movies.

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