Please welcome Linda to the blog!
Linda, you’ve been everything from a police dispatcher , a real estate agent, and a human resources consultant! Have you always been interested in writing?
Thanks so much for hosting me today, Kristin! I’ve been looking forward to this for weeks. To answer your question, I’ve been writing stories as far back as I can remember. My best friend in high school and I used to write romance stories and swap them for reading, and I took Creative Writing in my grade 12 year. Pursuing publication was never really on my mind, however—journalism was the only kind of writing that was considered a career option when I was growing up, and I simply had no interest in it. So until about 10 years ago, I guess I always thought of it more as a hobby than anything.
Can you tell us a little bit about your first novel, Sins of the Angels?
Sins of the Angels is the first in a dark urban fantasy series that pulls heavily on traditional angel mythology while remaining firmly grounded in a very real, very current world. The story follows Alexandra Jarvis, a homicide detective tracking a serial killer that’s actually a Fallen Angel seeking a specific soul that can transport him back to Heaven. When it turns out that Alex might be the soul he needs, Heaven assigns Aramael, a hunter of Fallen Ones, to protect her—without her knowing he’s an angel. Readers shouldn’t expect a paranormal romance, however. While the story does have a romantic element, it actually crosses a number of genres: it’s part police procedural, part suspense, part UF, and even a little bit of a mystery. Personally, I think it’s best described as a supernatural thriller, but UF was as close as I could come in accepted genres!
What are some of your biggest literary influences?
Yikes. Good question. I would be hard pressed to single out any particular names, I’m afraid. In past, I think I’ve learned mostly by osmosis…just absorbing lessons from my readings subconsciously without really thinking about it (I hated taking apart literature in school and don’t think I’ve ever recovered!). I will say that I’ve recently begun studying how other writers handle backstory in a series, however, and I love how Jim Butcher does that in his Harry Dresden books.
What’s on your nightstand right now?
Believe it or not, The Lightness of Being: Mass, Ether and the Unification of Forces by Nobel prize-winning physicist Frank Wilczek. I’m exploring an idea for another series once The Grigori Legacy is done…and given that I am not a physicist, I thought I’d better start early!
I’ve never been to Canada, but would love to go someday! Where would be some of the first places you’d take a first time visitor, and what do you love most about living there?
Oh, wow. Canada is such a massive country; I couldn’t hope to take a visitor to even a handful of my favorite places all in one visit! If I could, though (maybe we could charter a jet?), I’d include Vancouver with the ocean at its doorstep and the mountains at its back—gorgeous; the Columbia icefield in the Rocky Mountains; the rebuilt gold-mining town of Barkerville in the central interior of B.C. (I have such good memories of that place from when I was a kid); the badlands of Alberta (dinosaur territory); Quebec City (founded in 1608 by Samuel de Champlain); definitely Ottawa (Canada’s capital); almost all of Prince Edward Island (home to Anne of Green Gables); the Cape Breton trail in Nova Scotia…and those are just a few. There is just SO much to see here…and so much I have yet to explore.
What do I love most? Just about everything at the moment…though if you ask me again in January, I might not be so fond of our winters!
You’re a busy mom of three. How do you balance your writing schedule with having a family?
Balance? There is no balance, lol! My life is one long juggling act. My kids are pretty much grown up now (my twin girls are 20 and my youngest daughter is 17), so you’d think I’d have more time—I certainly thought I would!—but it doesn’t seem to be working out that way. Our youngest has just started high school (grade 11) after nine year of home school, so I do have a regular chunk of time available to me now that I didn’t have before. It’s nice, but not nearly enough.
I’ve had to learn to let a lot of things go. This year, for instance, harvest season coincided with the launch of Sins of the Angels and revisions to Sins of the Son, so for the first time in about ten years I’m not doing the canning and freezing I normally do. It kills me to walk through the farmer’s market and leave with a bagful of produce instead of bushels of it—and I cringe at how much the grocery bill will rise over the winter as a result—but I’m slowly learning my limits!
What are some of your favorite ways to spend your free time?
Time with family, breakfast dates with my husband, walking with my dog, coffee with friends, gardening.
What’s one of the most daring things you’ve ever done (that you’re willing to admit to)?
Hm…I once worked up the nerve to call a guy I’d met and ask him out for a drink (this was back in the early 80s, so that was actually quite daring!). Was I ever more daring? Yes. Will I admit to it? Absolutely not.
If you could pack your bags and travel anywhere tomorrow, where would you go, and why?
A seaside cottage. Location doesn’t really matter, as long as I’d have long stretches of empty shoreline for walking and beachcombing—oh, and I’d have to be able to bring my dog!
Is there any advice you would give to struggling writers?
Read. Take classes and workshops. Write. Write some more. Take the time to learn the craft. And persevere. Never give up, because the next story or the next query or the next idea might be the one that tips the scale in your favor. Every word you write brings you closer to your dream, even if you can’t see it at the time.
Do you have any news of upcoming projects or events you’d like to share with us?
I’m currently working on revisions to the second book in the series, Sins of the Son, which will be released six months to the day after Sins of the Angels. While there are a total of four books planned, I’ve only been contracted for the first two at this point—whether my publisher picks up the option for the remaining two depends on sales for the first (hint, hint, lol!).
Of course, the most exciting for me at the moment is tomorrow’s release of Sins of the Angels. I’ll be celebrating by staking out the local bookstore to see if it’s on the shelves (and taking pictures if it is!), and with a blog tour. You’re actually my very first stop on the tour—thank you again for having me!—and tomorrow I’ll be partying it up at Ex Libris. I hope you and everyone here will stop by to join me!
**GIVEAWAY DETAILS (please read carefully)**
1. Giveaway is for 2 copies of Sins of the Angels by Linda Poitevin
2. Giveaway is open to US/Canada and International addresses. HOWEVER, International winners will receive an ebook of Sins of the Angels. If you are an International winner that would like a hard copy of the book, please NOTE THIS IN THE COMMENTS and 3 international winners from all blog stops will be drawn at the end of the tour for a hardcopy version.
3. To enter, please leave a comment or question for Linda along with your email address. Following the blog is NOT required but is MUCH appreciated!
4. Giveaway ENDS 11/12/11
5. Giveaway books generously provided by the publisher
About Sins of the Angels:
When homicide detective Alexandra Jarvis is assigned a new partner in Aramael, a Guardian Angel who doubles as a hit man, they have only one thing in common: a fallen angel hell-bent on triggering the apocalypse. Now they have no choice but to work together-relentlessly, fearlessly, intimately. Because only they can stop the rogue angel from ushering in the end of days.