I’m thrilled to present another guest for you on my blog today, and this one is extra special because it’s my first-ever interview, too. 🙂 Shawntelle Madison, author of the recently released COVETED, has graciously agreed to answer some of my questions…I hope you enjoy!
Linda: Hello, Shawntelle, and thank you so much for stopping by my blog today! I have to admit that I haven’t quite finished Coveted yet, but I’m thoroughly enjoying the book so far and can’t wait to see how things turn out. I’m so hoping Natalya comes into her own and really kicks butt by the end…I’m loving these little glimmers of something that I’m seeing in her (I’m about halfway through). It’s very much an uphill battle for her though, and that’s quite an issue you’ve given her. What made you decide to make her obsessive-compulsive?
Shawntelle: Before Coveted came to life, Natalya as a character was born first. I was reading a physician magazine with an article about obsessive compulsive disorders on the front. As I was reading the article what if scenarios ran through my head. One of the questions I asked myself was what would happen if a werewolf had OCD? What issues would they face with their family and their pack? What would force her out of her comfort zone and make her stand up to achieve the one thing she desires the most: to feel and have the things everyone else takes for granted.
Linda: You describe OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) with remarkable intimacy. Do you know someone who lives with the condition?
Shawntelle: I’ve actually been told that before a few times by readers. I don’t know anyone exactly like Natalya. I’ve met others who prefer a very clean home or they are bound and determined to perform a certain activity in a particular way. I guess when they say write what you know I found that I “knew“ Nat. She just flowed out of me naturally. Living in her head is a definitely a place I slide into comfortably.
Linda: I’m intrigued by your take on werewolves and how you’ve attributed so many wolf-like behaviors to them, even when they’re in their human form. What made you decide to take this approach? Do you have any first-hand knowledge of wolf packs through studies?
Shawntelle: There is a statement Thorn says to Natalya in the book, “You’re not a human. You’re a woman who runs as a werewolf.” What I meant by that statement is that Nat and her inner wolf are two parts of one being. She is not just a human. She can’t separate herself from the feral part of herself. Thus, the mannerism of her werewolf side come out naturally as she goes through her daily life. I’ve had a bit of an introduction into pack dynamics, but nothing extensive.
Linda: I love that Natalya’s family background is Russian (so is mine on my father’s side!). Why Russian?
Shawntelle: I love studying foreign languages. One of the languages I studied in college was Russian. It was so much fun to learn not only the language, but the culture. As the story unfolded in my head, I just saw these characters come to life. They just happened to be Russian as I wrote. Okay, I’ll admit it, if you’ve read the story, you’ll notice I like the food too. Just a little.
Linda: COVETED is your first published book. Are there any others lurking in your desk drawer that didn’t make it? (I have several, lol!) If so, any chance you might dust them off in future?
Shawntelle: I wrote a few other books that sit in the fault. Maybe someday when I have spare time (I still find it funny when I write those words.) I’ll dust them off and rework those stories.
Linda: What can readers look forward to next from you? A sequel to COVETED, perhaps?
Shawntelle: The next book in the series, KEPT, will come out in late November. I love writing colorful characters within a large cast so you’ll likely see more of that from me.
Thank you so much again for joining me on the blog today, Shawntelle. I wish you every success with COVETED and can’t wait for KEPT to come out this fall.
If readers have anything they’d like to comment on or ask Shawntelle, she’ll be checking in over the day…so ask away! 🙂
Shawntelle Madison is a web developer who loves to weave words as well as code. She’d never admit it, but if asked she’d say she covets and collects source code. After losing her first summer job detassling corn, Shawntelle performed various jobs: from fast-food clerk to grunt programmer to university webmaster. Writing eccentric characters is her most favorite job of them all. On any particular day when she’s not surgically attached to her computer, she can be found watching cheesy horror movies or the latest action-packed anime. She lives in Missouri with her husband and children.
If you’d like to connect with her, you can find her on Twitter as Shawntelle, on Facebook, as well as through her website. She also does blog posts on Wicked Authors (Mondays) and Magic & Mayhem Writers (Wednesdays).