Interview June 18, 2012

by Cole Riann @ The Armchair Reader

Original URL

 

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I have been so excited about this day, ever since I started the blog last month. Carole Cummings is one of my very favorite authors, and such a sweet, funny, amazing lady that I just want everyone to read her books (…and I have told just about everyone — ask any of my book friends and they’ll tell you!). It is such an honor to have her on the blog today and with such a long-awaited release. Incendiary is out today at Dreamspinner Press, for those of you following the series. For those of you who don’t know of Carole, or haven’t read the series, I really hope you’ll consider picking up either series she’s written, Aisling or Wolf’s-own. And now that both series are released in their entirety, you don’t have to worry about cliffhangers!

I first came across Carole’s books when I was reviewing for Jessewave. I got the publisher email for new releases and needed to pick another book for review. At that time, I hadn’t yet even heard of Prizm, Torquere Press’ Young Adult imprint. But the blurb sounded fascinating and though I used to read tons of YA books, I’d yet to read a gay YA book. I was still a bit unsure though, and committing for a review is a bit more difficult, you can’t just quit reading if you don’t like it (well, you can, but I don’t like to). So for the first time I actually read a book excerpt. That little bit, the first part of the first chapter of Aisling: Guardian where Dallin interrogates Wil sucked me in. I loved that book. I mean LOVED. I pimped it out to all my friends. I had a blast reviewing it and I just couldn’t wait for more.

I almost feel proud to see how far Carole has come. This is her seventh release and her writing has only gotten better over time, in my opinion. And while we’re at it… I think that Carole holds to an online standard that I really respect. I never see her online, hovering over readers for review. I’ve never heard rumors of her being difficult to work with. In fact, I’ve spoken to her quite often over the past year and a half and I think she’s one of the sweetest, most wonderful people I know.

So, without me going on and on even more, I’ll get to the interview. The giveaway information will be at the end of the post, for all of you who want to win a book or two!

First, a note about this interview: When I sent Carole these questions I was halfway through reading Koan, the third book in the series. I think that worked, in the end, because it’s near the place most readers are before the release of Incendiary. Some of my responses, however, are colored by my knowledge of the end of the series (after some of Carole’s cryptic responses ;), so keep that in mind and I’ll make sure not to get spoilerish.  My questions and comments are in bold.

 

INTERVIEW

 

Q: Hi Carole! First, thanks so much for being here at TAR today to celebrate the release of Incendiary. I always have so much fun reading your books so I’m really excited that you’ve stopped by today.

A: Thanks, Cole, I’m excited too. And a little nervous. I’ll try to keep the shaking (and the word count) to a minimum.

Q: How does it feel to have released your 7th book now and completed your second series? Is it surreal that the private worlds you’ve created are available to everyone else?

A: ‘Surreal’ is probably a very good word for it. I’m a social person by nature, but not a public person, if that makes any sense. And I’m very protective of those I love, and my characters are people I love. So it’s a little disconcerting to see them ‘out in the world’ amongst strangers and having to fend for themselves. But I guess they’re doing okay so far, for the most part.

Q: Can you explain for everyone a bit about the Wolf’s-own series?

A: Well, take one part Evanescence, mix with an equal dose of Seether and sprinkle with a touch of Adele. Throw in some Rammstein, a dash of Godsmack and a pinch of Mazzy Star. Shake well then… back away slowly.

Okay, it’s not all that bad. No, really, I swear!

Wolf’s-own is a high fantasy series set in a world where the gods are aloof and yet watchful, where their agents act for them to keep a Balance, though that balance might not necessarily have anything to do with good or bad or right or wrong or fair or unfair. Caught up in the struggle for Balance is Fen Jacin-rei, an Untouchable afflicted with insanity not his own, and Kamen Malick—an agent of the god Wolf—who can give Fen silence. Fen’s people have been imprisoned for more than a century, since they lost a war over magic, and now his people are steadily being Disappeared and bled for the magic that runs through their veins. There’s manipulation (a ton of it), assassins and whorehouses and family and loss and prophecy in annoying riddle form and magic and lots of sharp stuff flying around.

But at its heart, the story is about Fen and Malick, and how they change and grow and eventually become two people who can be who they are and still be good for one another.

Q: I like the Adele parts, just sayin!

When the idea for this series first came to you, what was it that made you really want to write it? What was the impetus for the story?

A: I would like to say it was because I wanted to portray a character with the serious mental and emotional issues Fen has in a realistic way, and though that did become the point for Koan and Incendiary, it’s not how it started out. It started with a combination of a documentary on the moon and some nonfiction pieces I happened upon about the Untouchables of Asian and Indian cultures. Whatever goes on in the back of my brain when I’m not looking went to work for a while, and then Fen popped out of the ether with his physical image already imprinted on the backs of my eyelids and his backstory (all of it, including what’s revealed in book four) complete. And then Malick was standing there in the alley, watching Fen swirl down from the roof and thinking ‘I want that’, and I thought, oh Malick, you have no idea what you’re getting into there, you cocky bastard.

I didn’t realize until halfway through Weregild that Fen’s problems really couldn’t just be solved with the abrupt removal of their causes, because I hadn’t understood the extent of the damage those causes left. And I knew they were much more deeply rooted than the first two books could describe. I’ll refrain from actual diagnoses, because I don’t want anyone to think I’m playing fast and loose with real problems suffered by real people. But as a result of his life up until that point, Fen has several very real disorders that in our world would have landed him in a mental facility on a cocktail of medications and years of therapy; in his world, that’s not an option. And people don’t just get over what Fen went through and grow sanity out of psychosis. So from the point that I realized what lay underneath the surface issues, my motivation became allowing him to come to a place where he was capable of finding his own balance—one that would work for him, and not what anyone around him might think should work for him—and finally finding the will and the courage to make his own choices.

Q: I think that it would be easier for readers that are familiar with your work to draw similarities between Aisling and Wolf’s-own, but what do you think are the things that set them apart?

A: Ha! I could write a dissertation, but I’ll just stick to a few points. I can certainly see similarities in that they both deal with gods and magic and people caught up in events greater than they themselves at first seem. In all honesty, that’s where I see the similarities end. The worlds are different, the plots are different, the motivations are different and the circumstances are different.

I think the main differences are in the characters, though. I mean, technically, I could probably have plopped Fen and Mal into the Aisling world and given them the same sets of circumstances that Wil and Dallin had, and still have ended up with a completely different story. Though Wil doubted his sanity sometimes, he had a lot more of it at his disposal than Fen did. Wil knew from a very young age that he was being abused and used, where Fen had no idea until he was well and truly neck-deep into the machinations of the gods and the man he loved desperately. That kind of betrayal alters a personality, and considering that he was dealing all the while with crazy voices screaming in his head, the alterations are not good ones. Wil was an old soul from the start and his eyes were wide open about what people wanted from him; Fen had been very sheltered, had deliberate, manufactured illusions pounded into his not-quite-reasonable head and heart during his most formative years, and was very deep into rage and denial when his story began. Wil could be ruthless when he needed to be, but Fen’s default was ruthless and he didn’t always know when he should turn that off. Wil had a deep concern for the greater good, whereas I’m not sure Fen cared that there was one. On a superficial level, I think Wil is just a nicer person than Fen.

I’m not sure I have to go into the differences between Malick and Dallin, but I will say that I could see myself having a nice, interesting discussion over a quiet dinner with Dallin on first meeting, whereas I think a first impression of Mal would be Cocky Charming Guy in a nightclub that you don’t really want to go home with, but you think, eh maybe just once, he’s probably really good at it.

Q: a’hem, yeah.

In Wolf’s-own, I just adore Samin. Now, I love Jacin and Malick just as I loved Wil and Dallin (Aisling), but do you have a character other than those that is really special to you?

A: Aw, I have a giant soft spot for Samin, too. He turned out to be a reader favorite, and I think maybe that’s because he’s the archetypical Witness; he’s really the only one in the entirety of the series from whom you’ll actually get the truth. The other characters all have their own truths, colored by their perceptions and experiences and motivations. Samin sees things as they are and reports them accordingly. If his POV says one thing and another character’s POV says another, believe Samin.

It’s hard to pick just one. In Aisling, I always wanted to pinch Hunter’s cheeks and pat his head. And I would have loved to get inside Thorne’s head at least once. Locke was probably close to my top pick for that series, though, just because she was kind of cool and smart and honorable and seemed really settled in herself. In Wolf’s-own, I also tend to lean toward the crowd favorite of Samin, and Xari’s really interesting, too, and man, I absolutely adored Yori, but I think I have to go with Morin. It’s like he’s an amalgam of all the best things in his brothers and without all their issues mixed in with it. Squish Jacin and Joori into one entity, sift out all the problematic stuff, and you have Morin. I’d like to think I’ll one day go back and continue the story with his journey, but that was a difficult place for me to be in, so I’m a little gun-shy of that world right now.

Q: Take some time, then come back to it. ;) I agree though.  I will always love Samin, but when I finished Incendiary, I had a whole new appreciation of Morin.  I wouldn’t say I liked Xari, but I also think that she’s one of the more fascinating characters, especially since she often gets the shit end of the stick, even though it is sometimes of her own making.

I think it is sort of universally recognized that psychological pain is much more damaging than physical pain. Your “bad guys” for a lack of a better term are usually much crueler in that they’re ultimate manipulators. Is the reason for that the creation of the “tragic hero”, or is it simply the end result of too much power coupled with unchecked ego? Or are the two even mutually exclusive?

A: In truth, I think everyone’s a manipulator in some fashion and to some degree. Some of it’s out of benevolence, some of it’s out of malice, and some of it’s just the mundane sort of petty manipulation that lets one get through the day without confrontation.

I’m not sure I can claim a motivation for writing them that way other than the fact that the sort of person who is on the other side of what we would call ‘good’ fascinates me. I was just talking about this with Kaje Harper the other day and I mentioned that I think that fascination began when I first read Beowulf, and then read Grendel. You have the exact same characters, the exact same sets of circumstances, and yet the stories are poles apart. Everyone is the hero of their own story, everyone can justify their actions, even the bad guys, and from the bad guys’ perspective, they’re the ones who are in the right—they’re the tragic heroes of their stories. Every sociopathic serial killer has the ‘right’ to take the lives of people who only exist to be the background buzz in their own life, every crooked banker is only ‘taking what they deserve’, and every convict in prison is ‘innocent’. And yeah, there’s probably some motivation on my part to see those guys forced to understand that they were wrong, and lacking that, at least get what’s coming to them. Unfortunately for my heroes, it appears the ‘tragic’ part comes along with that. *pets them*

Q: In this series in particular, there are some very interesting dynamics between the gods and their people. They’re removed, yet instrumental. They’re almost un-godlike at times in that their motivations and sometimes baser actions show them to be more like humanity. What particular reason or influence do you have for writing the gods that way?

A: Hrm… I’m trying to think of an answer for that one that won’t totally give away some things in Incendiary. Let’s just say that there is a quote by Voltaire that goes ‘If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent Him’, which is generally taken out of context and its original intent somewhat skewed, but in this particular case, it’s meant in the literal sense.

Q: Now that has a whole new meaning to me after finishing Incendiary… especially if you consider the gods as we know them, and the reflections that casts upon the worshipful.  And then in relation to modern theology, but I’ll leave that for now because that’s a whole different subject!

Okay, somewhat serious question: Why the hell do you torture your characters so much? Did you set out to create a tragic hero? If so, why? Or what other motivations were there?

A: Heh. Um, sorry about that. If it helps, they torture me just as much. The story arc in Koan would have been a lot shorter, and I would’ve been a lot happier, if Fen had just listened to me and stayed away from that damned alley.

I don’t intentionally make life miserable for my heroes, but I do think that wisdom, growth and strength come most effectively through adversity. And it’s always important to me that when I leave a character at the end of his story, he’s in a better, stronger place than he was when I found him.

It’s funny, because I know I have a different idea of what strength is than some people. I don’t think you need to be muscle-bound and carry an uzi to be strong, and I don’t think that accepting help or acknowledging a need or a want makes you weak. In fact, I think that a lot of the time, not admitting you need help is more of a weakness. So for me, Wil came into his own, and his strength was the most obvious to me, when he admitted that he was absolutely terrified, that he needed help, when he allowed himself to love and when he recognized that sometimes love means you might have to step back and be unselfish and open your hand, even if you’re half-expecting someone to lop it off. Fen’s real strength (at least as I see it) comes late, but there’s a scene at the end of Incendiary where he makes two separate statements that let me know that he will finally be all right.

That’s the point for me—breaking down the barriers in a person that stand between what he might see as strength and what really is. Fen fought and took out supernatural beings, but his fundamental strength eventually came through in different, quieter ways—that’s when he became a real hero to me. Bronwe athan Harthad—Endurance Beyond Hope. A protagonist can win through and kill the bad guy, but if that’s all there is to him, he’s not much of a hero. I’m not writing Bruce Willis movies and I have no interest in writing characters with the depth of an action figure. I care about what’s going on inside and how it’s going to change and blossom into a personality that can move on from the worst thing that’s ever happened to him. The events and the final battle are just the beginning in those cases—it’s the aftermath and what the protagonists do with it that makes them heroes to me.

Q: I was actually thinking along similar lines when I was writing up my review.  I couldn’t help but think that in all the books I’ve read, I don’t know if I’ve ever really come across a character that rivaled the will and endurance of Frodo.

Okay, now for a bit about your writing:

When did you start writing, and why?

A: I started writing as soon as I could write. It’s just something I’ve always done. And I don’t have a really good answer as to why. It’s just how my head works. Stories create themselves in there. I sometimes find myself narrating everyday life in story form. I walk down the road and see a playing card sitting in the gutter, and by the time I get home, a story about how it got there and who dropped it has swirled to life. Characters natter at each other and demand I pay attention. It’s just how I am.

Q: What made you decide to publish?

A: I kind of didn’t. Money was tight and I was looking for tax deductions. I read that I could write off my expenses if I could prove I was submitting my writing for possible publication. So I sent out a giant manuscript I knew no one would want. Because, you know—giant manuscript. I honestly didn't think the publisher would even read it; I thought they'd take a look at the size and throw it right in the 'no thanks' pile. Everyone wants formula, right? And in 60K words or less. No one wants character development as the main point in a story; no one wants plots you have to pay attention to or a romance that develops at a believable pace or action that consists of plot revelations and character growth, rather than explosions and space battles. Except someone did and offered me a contract to back it up. After the initial panic—and after my husband let me out of the headlock—I signed the contract.

Q: Do you have any tips for prospective authors?

A: Well, it depends on whether you mean ‘author’ or ‘writer’. To me, they’re two very different things. And I’ve always sworn I’d never give writing advice—unless you count ‘do what works for you’ as advice—because everyone’s process is unique and what works for one will likely not work for another, and may even hinder creativity.

But as far as advice to a new author, as in someone who wants to publish…? God, I’m still flailing, so I’m hardly qualified. Find yourself a PD Singer, who has been my role model in what I should be doing. And I do try, but I’ll never be as adept at it as she is. I have to retreat and regroup too often. (And when I say ‘find yourself a PD Singer’, I mean find your own. This one’s mine and you can’t have her.) All I can say is that the work is the most important part of it all, and don’t let it slide to take care of the things everyone else tells you you’re supposed to care about. Blogging is fun and promotion doesn’t hurt, but if you’re neglecting the writing to do it, what’s that worth in the end? You’ll have nothing to blog about or promote. As Malick would say: There is no right or wrong—there’s balance. So find your balance and go for it.

Q: Everything I’ve read that you’ve written has been incredibly involved on many different levels. How do you keep track of your ideas and plots, especially in the beginning of a story? Are you an outliner and a plotter, or do you write off the cuff?

A: I don’t know how it works either, but it’s all seat-of-the-pants and the characters direct everything. I have very little say in any of it and my Muse looks like Death, complete with cowl and scythe. I abhor outlines and any plot I might start out with inevitably changes as the characters take effect on the world and commandeer the story. I don’t really have any choice in keeping track. At any given time, I’ve got about three or four little teleplays rolling around in my head, and each time I switch my attention to one in particular, it will show me what it’s been up to while I’ve been paying attention to other things. I just take dictation.

Q: Did you do any specific research for writing Wolf’s-own?

A: Only enough so that I could be careful not to actually co-opt a culture. I wanted it to have an Asian flavor, but I didn’t want to abuse an entire culture while I was at it. So I read into religions and myths and traditions, and then made up my own that didn’t copy any of them but at the same time (hopefully) didn’t clash.

For the character development, I have a background in psychology and theology, so writing about twisty heads and freaky beliefs just sort of comes with the territory.

Q: Hmm, doesn’t that just make complete sense? ;)

Do you think you could ever write something that isn’t epic fantasy?

A: Sure. I’ve done it. Unfortunately, I lost most of it in a computer crash about… five or six years ago? Maybe longer, I can’t remember. But I lost a ton of stuff. I only still managed to have Aisling because I’d sent it to a friend the year before and she still had it on her hard drive. (I’ve learned my lesson on backing things up.) But fantasy, paranormal, even horror—that’s just where my head goes when I’m not using it for more practical things.

Q: I’m crying right now for those lost stories — I just want you to know.

Do you think you could ever partner and write with another author?

A: Absolutely. I have very little ego when it comes to a good story, and if working with another author—or even handing a story idea over to someone who I think could do it better—can make a story better, I’m there. What matters to me when I reach THE END is whether or not it’s something I would like to read, not who wrote it.

Q: What are some of your influences, fantasy and other genres?

A: Tolkien, because he showed me what a real hero is, and if you think Sam was the real hero, you shouldn’t be reading my stuff. Madeleine L’Engle, because she showed me that it wouldn’t even occur to a smart girl to pretend she’s stupid. Mary Stewart, because she showed me a completely different Merlin than I had imagined might have been; she showed me a Mordred who was just as tragically heroic as his father and bolstered my fascination with the flip side of the coin. Mary Renault, just because no one does it like she did, but it’s nice to know someone once existed who could. Stephen King, because he remembers vividly what it was like to be a kid, too, and showed me characters who are interesting because they fail. John Irving, because he understands that ‘action’ and ‘event’ don’t have to mean ‘car chase’ and ‘enemy invasion’ but can mean ‘revelation’ and ‘growth’.

Q: Are you working on anything now for the future? Do you have anything for us to look forward to?

A: There’s a fluffy little fantasy/mystery that I did because it made me laugh, and after Wolf’s-own, I really needed a laugh. There’s also something that ran me over like a freight train just this week and that’s looking rather steampunkish and not quite as much fun. There’s one about a mage and a military leader, and up until the maybe-steampunk thing walloped me the other day, I thought I’d have that done by the end of the summer. But now, maybe not. I’ve got a bunch of shorts I’d like to eventually polish and post, or at least do something with them, but Death-the-Muse is a bossy, persnickety bitch. But anything that looks like it might turn into a series will be smothered in its sleep, because they’re goddamned exhausting. (Fuck you, Death-the-Muse!)

Q: I’d love to see you write steampunk!  Though the mage and military leader hits my hot buttons for sure.

In the end, do you think that putting yourself out there and publishing your work is worth it?

A: Ha. Depends on which day you catch me. Some days it is and some days it’s kind of bizarre. Writing is the point for me, and ‘putting it out there’ is not a part of that process but a sometimes stressful (though in a lot of ways rewarding) corollary. I know I’ll be writing until I can’t anymore, but that’s really all I can predict with confidence.

Q: Thank you so much, Carole, for stopping by and answering my many questions. Also thank you so much for giving away some books from the series! I’ve loved having you here and as always, I really look forward to where your writing career will go in the future. :) Thanks!!

A: You’re the best, Cole. Thank you so much for having me, and thank you for letting me natter at you. It was really fun and I appreciate it. xoxo

 

Carole’s Website – carolecummings.com

Carole’s LiveJournal – carolecummings.livejournal.com

Twitter – @CummingsCarole

GoodReads Profile

 

GIVEAWAY

Leave a comment and one winner will be chosen Friday, June 22 at 10pm CST by Random.org for one ebook copy of Incendiary. If the winner has not read the series, only part of the series, or prefers to receive a different book in the series, the author offers 2 ebooks — either Ghost and Weregild, or Koan and Incendiary, or well, whatever strikes your fancy! WordPress requires an email to leave a comment, so I’ll email the winner as well as post an announcement on the site. Winner then has 48 hours after the deadline to reply to my email at armchairreader.coleriann@gmail.com for the copy of the book(s). Thanks for commenting and good luck!

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62 Comment(s)

1.                  DarienMoya

June 18, 2012 at 7:59 am

Great Interview Cole! I want to read this series so bad and would love to be entered in the giveaway!

Reply

 

o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 2:44 pm

Hey DM ;D It’s a really great series!

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2.                  littleflicker

June 18, 2012 at 8:34 am

I’ve been trying to decide whether to read Koan or not….now i HAVE to read it. Please count me in :D

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 2:45 pm

I will :)Yeah, now there’s nothing holding you back and you can read straight through. I think there’ll be a lot more people reading Koan now too cause I know lots of people waited.

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3.                  Tam

June 18, 2012 at 8:39 am

Great interview guys. This really hit me “You have the exact same characters, the exact same sets of circumstances, and yet the stories are poles apart.” Being rather low-brow and never having read Beowolf (LOL), I saw that in Wicked when I read it. After all, we all knew the Wicked Witch of the West was just pure evil and hated Dorothy. It was clear right? Oh wait, she put up with a lot of crap that got her to that point and was what she was doing evil? Was the wizard all so benevolent? I have to admit it was the first time I’d ever had my perceptions tipped on their ear and I loved it.

I’ve not read any of these yet but seems Cole is determined to convert us all. :-)(Oh, I also love someone else who just writes and lets the plot go where it will. I tried an outline, just did not work. Who know what they’ll do 100 pages later?)

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 2:57 pm

Yeah, that is a really good point. I admit that I’ve wanted to read Grendel for a long time now, as a companion piece to Beowulf, but then, I was never really fond of Beowulf in the first place, though I generally like reading sagas. I really want to read Wicked though! :D

Yeah, I want everyone to read them, but then I know you aren’t too big of a fantasy fan. Still, I actually think that the first books of each series are ones of the best, even though I think some readers prefer when the books where they get more answers. But I think Carole’s writing really shines in the beginning when she’s manipulating the information to the reader.

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4.                  melaniem

June 18, 2012 at 9:48 am

That was a wonderful interview and gave me great insights into an author who is totally unknown to me. I love having new series to read so this would be a wonderful way to start. Please enter me into the contest, thanks.
Melanie

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Thanks melanie! I hope you enjoy the series!

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5.                  LadyM

June 18, 2012 at 10:02 am

Great interview, Cole and Carole!

After the third book, I absolutely ADORE Morin. Death The Muse never stops amusing me and that long-ago computer crash breaks my heart every time. I shudder thinking that Aisling could have been lost to us as well. All those future stories look yummy and whichever you end up finishing, Carole, I am looking forward to reading it.

I like that little bit about how/why you started publishing (headlock included XD). Stephen King, because he remembers vividly what it was like to be a kid, too, and showed me characters who are interesting because they fail. YES. I see Roland all over this. ^^

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 6:14 pm

I love what Carole said about Samin and Morin because it makes complete sense. Plus, these books are half insanity and half manipulation and it’s nice to find those characters that are the rocks among the storm :)

Ah, and poor Joori. No matter how frustrating he became it’s hard to not feel sorry for him.

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6.                  Trix

June 18, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Mazzy Star reference FTW! This sounds like an amazing series…love those KOAN and INCENDIARY covers, ohh.

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 6:14 pm

I know, I love these covers. Anne Cain is brilliant!

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7.                  Hope

June 18, 2012 at 1:13 pm

Thank you for this wonderful interview, I love your epic fantasy books and hope we will see some more in the future. Is the fourth book the last one or do you plan to write a sequel?

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 6:17 pm

I’ll let Carole field that one when she gets here (she mentioned having some internet problems), but I’m pretty sure this is definitely the end of this particular series. Hopefully she’ll go back to the world for some of the other characters later down the line, though :)

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8.                  Jess

June 18, 2012 at 3:47 pm

This was a good in-depth and interesting interview. I’ve never read any of these books but have been considering them, since I know they’re very good. Your posting helped clarify many things about the series for me.

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 6:22 pm

I think that the way she wrote here is pretty evocative of her work and how much care she takes with her characters. That’s what is the real draw for me to her books because a lot of people can write a high fantasy world. They’re definitely good :)

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9.                  Penumbra

June 18, 2012 at 4:02 pm

I haven’t read any of these. Please count me in for the giveaway :)

penumbrareads(at)gmail(dot)com

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 6:22 pm

Sure thing!

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10.              Chris

June 18, 2012 at 5:04 pm

I haven’t read any of these, either! But, as Tam notes, Cole is trying to convert us all…

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 6:23 pm

Well, I just think that you all should take a chance you know? I mean, I obviously know what is best for you!

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11.              D

June 18, 2012 at 5:53 pm

This is AWESOME! Great interview. I have the first three in this series, but haven’t read them yet. I was waiting on this one so I wouldn’t have to deal with cliffy & his hangers. Put me in for this one, please.

Thanx!
D

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 6:24 pm

Oh man, you’re going to do what I did aren’t you? I read all four in a row, even though a couple were re-reads. Still, it’s a pretty intense adventure that way! It is nice to not have to wait though :)Thanks

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12.              Graeme

June 18, 2012 at 6:02 pm

Sounds like I’ll need to buy the earlier titles if I win this. Oh well there goes the budget (again), but I would really like to win this as a great escuse. LOL

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Hey Graeme, if you win you can actually choose any of them. Since the offer is coming from Carole, she offered that if anyone hadn’t read the series they could request the first two books or similarly, the second two if they’ read the first two. Since the books go together 1 & 2, 3 & 4 :)

I know what you mean about that budget though!

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13.              Carole Cummings

June 18, 2012 at 7:25 pm

Dang, I wish I had copies for everyone. Good luck to all and thanks for the interest and support.

@Tam–Wicked is a perfect example. And in my opinion, the wizard was kind of a douche from either side of the story. ;)

@LadyM–YES! OMG, Roland! I saw so many people lamenting about the final book and where his story ended, but all I could think was how exceptionally perfect it was. Heartbreaking and somewhat horrifying, but just bloody perfect.

@Trix–Mazzy Star just doesn’t get enough love. Ever.

@Hope–Thank you! I’m so pleased you enjoy them. I just got the warm-fuzzies. :)Book four is the last in the series. As with Aisling, there is room to grow and add, because the story is never over, you know? Unless everyone dies and the world blows up, a story doesn’t end, but merely the chapters I’m compelled to tell do. I generally end at a beginning, because that’s how life works. But I’m definitely done telling this story for now and have no plans to pick it up in the future. I actually kid of wish I could get another author to pick it up and run with it, because I’d like to see Morin’s story–I just don’t want to write it!

@Cole–Next time you listen to ‘One and Only’, think Mal and Fen in that last alley scene. Especially when you get to the bridge. *dies* And I want to tell you who I think of when I hear ‘Set Fire to the Rain’ but it’s too spoilery for public. Does H/R mean anything to you? ;)*hugs*

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 7:50 pm

Listening now, OMG One and Only is perfect! Man, now this makes the visual stronger, you know? That really was when I think I let all my breath out — I felt like I’d been holding it in for days, lol. Man that bridge is genius, Adele is so brilliant.

Okay, you’re being too cryptic for me, I’m just going to email you, lol.

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§                     Cole

June 18, 2012 at 7:54 pm

Nope, I got it! As soon as I turned the song on again and listened I knew immediately what it meant, then H/R made sense. Perfect accompaniment. Poor H.

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§                     Carole Cummings

June 18, 2012 at 8:10 pm

*grin* They do fit amazingly well, don’t they? I knew you’d get it. *hugs you*

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§                     Cole

June 18, 2012 at 8:12 pm

You know, this reminds me of something I forgot to mention before. More than any other character, the one I wondered about the most when the book ended was Goyo.

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§                     Carole Cummings

June 18, 2012 at 8:43 pm

Heh. I wouldn’t be able to say for sure unless I actually wrote it, but I think Goyo is going to happily be a persistent burr under Malick’s saddle for as long as he possibly can. I don’t think there was anything more than friendship between he and H, because I don’t think R would’ve stood for it. But I bet Goyo wanted there to be. I also think that if Snake ever told Goyo he needed to get rid of the Incendiary, Goyo would switch gods in a heartbeat. And wouldn’t Malick be annoyed if Wolf took him? *snort*

I’m not sure Fen would be open to a renewed friendship, though. That would be interesting to find out. On one hand it would probably be too much of an ‘in your face’ reminder. On the other, it would annoy Malick, and I bet when Fen lets himself have a sense of humor, it’s pretty evil.

I really need to find another author who’ll write a book five for me. Sigh.

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§                     Cole

June 18, 2012 at 8:53 pm

I’m glad you said that because that last POV we get from Goyo, looking into Fen’s eyes, I figured that if it came down to Snake’s orders he’d look for another god as well. Until then I wasn’t quite so sure. But you did a good job with him because I fully expected to not like him, and he ended up being someone I really liked.

I’m actually a bit curious because I felt like Fen just might slowly start to open up to that part of his life. I’m trying to be circumspect. I think he would always hold tightly to “himself” but I could see him opening up a bit.. well, unless his hand is forced, then he’d clamp it down again :)

LOL I suspect Malick will be frustrated for the rest of his life!

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§                     Carole Cummings

June 19, 2012 at 9:30 pm

You know, now that you’ve got me thinking about it, I think any possible avoidance of Goyo would be out of discomfort, and maybe even a wish not to hurt him. Fen’s got to know how Goyo felt about H.

I really do see Fen being somewhat Zen after this. I think his attitude at the very end is how he is, he just had too many other things crowding ‘him’ out before. You might be right–he might open up some–but I don’t ever see him as being anything other than quiet by nature, and to those who don’t know him, probably aloof.

There’s a cut scene where Morin’s chiding Jacin, and he says, “You need to watch the glares. Not everyone understands that you’re socially hopeless with a retarded sense of emotional expression. People who don’t actually know you might think you’re just an asshole.” To which Jacin just stares for a minute and then asks, “Did you just call me retarded?” And then walks away and smirks when Morin cracks up. That’s how I see him in the aftermath and I don’t think it’s a new thing–I think it’s how he was and now he’s found his way back there.

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§                     Cole

June 19, 2012 at 11:14 pm

Man, I love Morin. I almost never use my highlighting function on my kindle, but I was marking up Morin’s dialogue like crazy just because he’s so damn funny!

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14.              arella3173

June 18, 2012 at 7:38 pm

This really does sound so good! I have the first two but have yet to read. The covers however are enough for me to buy. lol…

Thanks so much for the contest! please count me in! :))

Judi
arella3173_loveless(At)yahoo(dot)com

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 7:44 pm

You got it! And I know, if I hadn’t know of Carole’s work before I would have bought them anyway too, those covers are gorgeous!

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15.              chellebe

June 18, 2012 at 9:05 pm

I haven’t read any of Carole’s work before so it would be awesome to win and srart off this way. Thank you, Mi

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o                    Cole

June 18, 2012 at 9:43 pm

You’re counted in, good luck!

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16.              Lana A

June 18, 2012 at 11:41 pm

Oh you know what you described about a plot and character development, slow paced romance is what I always search in m/m books, so glad you decided to send the manuscript in!
Can we look forward to some new books this year?

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o                    Carole Cummings

June 19, 2012 at 9:35 pm

Thank you, Lana. I’m not sure about this year. I’ve had seven releases in the last eighteen months, and it was a little exhausting. Right now I’m just concentrating on the writing, because all of the publishing stuff does actually get in the way of it sometimes. I may have some things ready to submit by the end of the year, but I doubt I’ll have anything coming out by then. But thank you for asking. :)

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17.              Anastasia K

June 19, 2012 at 10:35 am

Count me in please, I love this series! The covers alone are very nice, indeed and then the lovelly writting. :)

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o                    Cole

June 19, 2012 at 10:41 am

You got it ;)

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18.              Pea

June 20, 2012 at 1:24 pm

Hi Cole,

I came to you from Chris at Stumbling over Chaos and Carole Cummings website. I used to read your reviews at Reviews for Jessewave, too (in fact, am I correct in remembering you did the review for Aisling over there? That was what started me reading Ms. Cummings work from the start). Anyway, congrats on your new venture! And please count me in!

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o                    Cole

June 20, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Hey Pea! You got it :)Yeah I did review Aisling there, that’s when I fell in love with Carole’s writing too :)

Thank you!

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19.              SarahM

June 20, 2012 at 6:38 pm

Great interview! I LOVED Ghost (I know, I’m a little behind) and am so glad the rest of the series lives up to the first book :-)Can’t wait to read them!

smaccall AT comcast.net

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o                    Cole

June 20, 2012 at 6:42 pm

LOL that’s okay, you can go ahead and read them all now without worrying about delays :)Ghost was actually one of my favorites of the series, but then that’s because I prefer Carole’s writing in the beginning — I just think that she’s so crafty at slowly spinning a story. I hope you like the others too!

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20.              Samantha

June 21, 2012 at 3:39 pm

Hah! I loved the questions. A really fun interview. Please count me in for the contest!

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o                    Cole

June 21, 2012 at 3:42 pm

Thanks Samantha! :D

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21.              Pingback: Stumbling Over Chaos :: Linkity languishes in the dark

22.              SueM

June 22, 2012 at 5:15 am

As I already have all of Carole’s books, please don’t include me in the giveaway, but I did want to say ‘thank you’ for such a great interview! I think Wolf’s-own will be in my top 10 reads for the year. Ghost hooked me from the beginning (and made me cry – a lot!), and that was it – I needed the rest of the series. Of course, the gorgeous covers look great on my favorites shelf too. And now I know I can look forward to a fluffy fantasy/mystery, a steampunk novel and something with a mage and a military leader! Brilliant! :D

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o                    Cole

June 22, 2012 at 6:43 am

Hey Sue! I know, I feel the same way about them. I just bought the three Aisling books in paperback and I’m going to buy copies of Wolf’s-own next. It will be SO nice to have them available to hold in my hands and read over and over. I love the tangibility of paperbacks and now that I don’t buy them much anymore, it makes it special when I do :)

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§                     SueM

June 22, 2012 at 5:06 pm

That’s an excellent idea! And I know exactly what you mean, although I am also buying the ebook versions (where I can) of my favorite paperbacks, as some of them are getting rather fragile…

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23.              yganoe

June 22, 2012 at 1:59 pm

Awesome interview. I do not have any in the series so if I win I will be getting them to read them in order. Thanks!
Yvette
yratpatrol@aol.com

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o                    Cole

June 22, 2012 at 6:43 pm

You bet :)You’re entered Yvette, good luck!

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24.              PaParanormalFan

June 22, 2012 at 8:57 pm

Excellent Interview Cole, Carole Cummings is a new Author to me as in her Series, Wolf’s Own, but you have definitely convined me that I am really missing out on not only a Fantastic Author, but a Great Series. I would very much like the opportunity for a chance at this very generous giveaway to read the start of this Series. Thank You.

Take Care & Stay Naughty,
PaParanormalFan Renee’ S.
paranormalromancefan at yahoo dot com

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o                    Cole

June 22, 2012 at 9:00 pm

You made it in just in time! Good luck :D

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§                     PaParanormalFan

June 22, 2012 at 9:17 pm

I’ve been so behind on visiting my favorite Blogs & keeping up with email because my darn computer is still being fickle & only wants to work occassionally, it like it has a mind of it own. Maybe I should whisper sweet nothings to it. LOL I’m glad I made it in on time, either way, this LQQks like a a really Series, thanks for bringing it to Us. :)

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25.              Ashley E

June 22, 2012 at 9:01 pm

Wonderful interview. Thanks for sharing with us! I’ve seen the books before, and loved the covers, but after this I am really interested! Thanks for the chance to win. ;)

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o                    Cole

June 22, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Thanks Ashley! I hope you like the series :)

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26.              PD Singer

June 23, 2012 at 8:37 am

Hey, Carole! I just found this, and now I’m crying fat tears wanting to spend days doing nothing but catching up on Wolf’s Own. **big smishy hugs** You’ve kept me sane too.

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o                    Cole

June 23, 2012 at 10:28 am

Hi Pam!

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27.              edenwinters

June 23, 2012 at 8:41 am

I’m late to the party, but wonderful interview Carole. I’m a huge fan of both your series, and am reading Koan now. It’s nice to get a peek inside your writing methods.

Loved your reviews, Cole!

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o                    Cole

June 23, 2012 at 10:41 am

Oh, Koan. That book mostly broke my heart. Thanks Eden, enjoy the rest often series!!!

 

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