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Author Interview - Melanie Card + Giveaway

Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Today, I'm excited to be interviewing with Melanie Card, author of Ward Against Death, book one in the Chronicles of a Reluctant Necromancer.

Book Synopsis
Twenty-year-old Ward de’Ath expected this to be a simple job—bring a nobleman’s daughter back from the dead for fifteen minutes, let her family say good-bye, and launch his fledgling career as a necromancer. Goddess knows he can’t be a surgeon—the Quayestri already branded him a criminal for trying—so bringing people back from the dead it is.

But when Ward wakes the beautiful Celia Carlyle, he gets more than he bargained for. Insistent that she’s been murdered, Celia begs Ward to keep her alive and help her find justice. By the time she drags him out her bedroom window and into the sewers, Ward can’t bring himself to break his damned physician’s Oath and desert her.

However, nothing is as it seems—including Celia. One second, she’s treating Ward like sewage, the next she’s kissing him. And for a nobleman’s daughter, she sure has a lot of enemies. If he could just convince his heart to give up on the infuriating beauty, he might get out of this alive…

Author Bio
I have always been drawn to story telling. In fact, I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t telling a story in my head or on paper. In grade school, we had journal writing time which I turned into story telling time, weaving tales of magic and adventure that mimicked the fairy tales and myths that I loved to read. It was there, with the help of two very special teachers, that I nurtured this love and started my journey as a writer.

I write fantasy, paranormal romance, and everything in between, seasoned with a good dash of adventure and mystery. Join me on my tales of magic, adventure, and romance.

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Thanks for joining us today, Melanie. Would you tell readers a little bit about yourself and how writing impacts your life?
Thanks for inviting me on your blog today, Kris. I’m excited to be here. I write stories with dark magic, thrilling adventure, and sweet romances. I’m addicted to theatre and chocolate… coffee, too, and I have a serious weakness for my husband and my cat. Writing for me has been a constant, I just may not have realized that at the beginning. There have been peaks and valleys in my writing, times when I’ve written like crazy and times when I’ve had no words at all, but regardless of what’s going on in my life I always return to writing. In a way I wish I’d come to this realization sooner—I certainly would have taken fewer detours on my way to embracing a career as a writer. But I think those detours were important and helped me realize how, when everything around me was in chaos, I always came back to writing.

I'm glad that you always come back to writing because we readers get to read your books! What is the best writing environment for you?
At the moment… any place away from the internet. Facebook and Twitter can be addicting, particularly when I’m trying to figure out a difficult scene.

Social media is very addicting. I can testify to that myself! What draws you to the fantasy genre? Will you always be writing fantasy, or do you have plan to branch out into other genres?
I’m honestly not entirely sure what draws me to the fantasy genre. I think, like writing itself, it’s in my DNA. Growing up my house was filled with books and every member of the family had a well-used library card. There were books of all kinds available to me but I always picked the fairy tales, the myths, and the fantasies. I loved the feeling of being immersed in another world where magic was real and where heroes had swordfights with terrible villains. I loved the sense of adventure and olden-times and—if I look back at it with what I’ve learned from school—the romanticized sense of good defeating evil, love conquering all, and an ordinary person becoming extraordinary. I will never say I will always write fantasy, but at the moment I have no plans to branch out into other genres. Fantasy is pretty broad. I can write in any setting, historical or contemporary, I can have lots of magic (like in a more fairy tale type setting) or little magic (in a more magical realism type story), and I can have just about any plot structure I want (like in Ward Against Death I have a mixed mystery/adventure plot with a sweet romance.)

I love reading fantasy for the same reason. It has the most potential for diversity out of all the genres, and I love reading about whole other worlds. How would you describe Ward Against Death in ten or less words?
Reluctant necromancer tricked into helping undead assassin solve her murder.

Haha... I love that line. It describes Ward and his situation perfectly. Having explored fantasy and magic from a young age, you must have come up with many ideas.
Lol. There are sooo many ideas and so little time. And actually for me, it’s more like there are so many characters and so little time. When I start a book I usually have an idea of the type of world it will take place in (low magic vs high magic, historical vs contemporary), and a character or set of characters whose lives I want to turn upside down. It’s those characters and their troubles that draws me to story telling.

Ward's story drew me in from the beginning with its delightful cast of characters and the situations they get into. What about his story impacted you to write about it and submit it for publication?
What made me write Ward’s story is Ward. I have a huge crush on Ward, although you’d never know it by the terrible things I do to him. What I love about Ward is that he’s an average guy who accepts the challenges thrown at him and meets them with determination and integrity. I also love that he’s honorable and respecting and is willing to do just about anything to make sure the right thing gets done. I submitted the story for publication because I had decided I was going to pursue a career as a writer. It took Ward a long time to find a publisher. Ward is not your typical hero and he received many rejections over a number of years before I found a publisher who loved his quirks as much as I did.

I adore Ward, and I'm really happy that you found someone who loves him, quirks and all, or I would never have gotten to meet him! If you were to visit Ward and Celia's world, where would you go sight seeing (assuming you could get away with anything unscathed, even visiting the lair of infamous criminals if you so desired)?
I would want to see everything! Even the stinking sewers just to see if the witch-stone veins are as I imagined them. I would want to dance in the prince of Brawenal’s court at a great feast, I would want to sneak in and overhear a session of the Grewdian Council. I’d want to take sword fighting lessons in the Collegiate of the Quayestri, and I’d want to have lunch on the patio of the Three Ships CafĂ©. And then, I’d pack up my bags and explore the other principalities in the Union.

That sounds like quite the tour! I'd really like to pick up on some of Celia's skills if I wouldn't get mixed up in any funny business. What do you enjoy most about hearing from readers?
I love hearing from readers in general. I love how everyone enjoys something different about the book. It’s wonderful to learn about favorite character and scenes and why. But that’s something I love about writing in general: everyone sees things differently and the story is always just a little bit different for everyone.

Thank you, Kris, for inviting me here today!

Thanks for joining us!

Melanie Card has offered an e-copy of Ward Against Death to one international winner! The giveaway is open through August 6th.

To enter, follow Imaginary Reads and leave a meaningful comment on the interview (in the comment, also let us know if you're entering for the U.S. copy or the international copy). Extra entries for tweeting about the giveaway and commenting on my review of Unraveling. Then fill out the form below. Do not leave your email in the comments section.

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8 comments on "Author Interview - Melanie Card + Giveaway"
  1. Great interview! Ward Against Death sounds really good! Thanks for the chance to win! U.S. copy would be great.

  2. The synopsis sounds good, and the author likes chocolate, so it must be a good book.

  3. I loved the reluctant necromancer and undead assassin descriptions. That's hilarious. Also, reading Ms. Card's descriptions of what she'd do in the world she created lets me know that she loves that world and tends to make me think it's bound to be a good book.

  4. Thanks Natasha, Catalina, and Melissa!

  5. This sounds like a great book would love to read it! Thank you for the great interview and giveaway! I live in the Us.
    Latisha D

  6. I haven't really heard of this novel before but now that I've read the interview I'm more than excited.
    It seems that the author incorporates a rich cast of characters which is something I would definitely welcome. Too many YA books focus on a boy and a girl and everyone else is merely incidental.

  7. "Reluctant necromancer tricked into helping undead assassin solve her murder." This line alone makes me want to read this book and continue to explore Melanie's other works.

  8. Great interview~ Necromancy and assassins? Instant love.


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