I’m thrilled to have Shawntelle Madison on the blog today as part of her Coveted tour! She was kind enough to answer a few of my questions we’ve also got a copy of Coveted up for grabs, so be sure to check out the details at the bottom of the post!
Please welcome Shawntelle to the blog!
Shawntelle, you’re a web developer and have held a variety of jobs (I’ll grill you on those soon). What made you decide to take the plunge and write Coveted?
I already had a literary agent at the time, and a book on submission, so this story idea had been running through my head for a while. I could’ve sat on my hands and waited but Natalya started talking to me so I went ahead and got to work. It was a fun ride!
How did you celebrate when you found out Coveted had sold? Was there cake? Happy dancing? Squeeing? Any combination thereof?
When Coveted sold I remember my family going out to eat to celebrate. We had a great time at one of my favorite restaurants. I think I had a very delicious slice of cheesecake that night. I’m diehard chocolate cheesecake fan.
During the phone call with Jim my literary agent, I was so cool and excited about it. It was when I called my crit partner—the first one I told afterward—that I broke down in shock. I finally realized that I’d sold a book. Little ’o me.
Can you tell us a little bit about Coveted?
Coveted is about Natalya Stravinsky, a werewolf with a holiday trinket hoarding obsession whose life changes when her ex-boyfriend returns to town to save the South Toms River pack. Even though Thorn left five years ago, they still have strong feelings for each other.
How long did it take you to write Coveted?
This story came out pretty fast. I track my word count and according to my records this book took about five months to write.
I imagine balancing a job, a full writing schedule, and a family, is hard! How do you do it?
It’s very hard and tiring actually. At first I could balance it all, but now I depend heavily on tracking everything through Microsoft Outlook. As I get emails with things to do, I have to mark them or things fall through the cracks.
In your bio, it says that you’ve held a variety of jobs, including fast food clerk, programmer, and webmaster. What would you say your least fave of the bunch was?
My least favorite was my job as a fast food clerk. I was a horrible clerk. At the time, I had the memory of a goldfish. Give me a set of numbers/order of food and I often forgot. I worked at a chicken place (no need to give the name of that establishment) and went home smelling like freshly fried chicken. At first it was kinda cool. At the end of a week it got on my nerves. I wasn’t as good as the other clerks and I wished I would’ve applied at a local clothing store instead. For some reason I’m really good at folding clothes and arranging displays.
I read that you like cheesy horror movies. For you, what is the best of the worst?
The best of the worst is Night of the Creeps for me. It came out in the eighties. When it comes on television, I’m compelled to watch it for some reason, but it’s just so campy. I mean the deadly creatures are like these fast moving slugs/leech thingies. It is rather disturbing to see them run about and enter people—but then there are a bunch of scenes which make the horror aspects less scary. I say keep a dark tone like Halloween and you’re golden.
I see you’re also an anime fan! Who’s your favorite character?
This interview doesn’t have enough room for that answer. I’ve watched so many! I’d say right now the characters that keep coming back to me is from a series I really enjoyed. It was the Elric brothers, Edward and Alphonse, from the Fullmetal Alchemist series. I ate up those episodes like candy!
What’s something that makes you laugh out loud?
What gets me laughing every time is the dead parrot sketch from Monty Python. Hilarous! (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vuW6tQ0218) “It’s an ex-parrot!”
If you could pack your bags and travel anywhere in the world tomorrow, where would you go, and why?
I’d do a European tour. I’ve wanted to do that for the longest time. I’ve never left the US actually. Does seeing Canada from Detroit count?
What advice would you give to struggling writers?
Never, ever give up. Persistence and perseverance are the key. Write with passion and hunger. Cause when you aren’t hungry to get that agent or make that sale, you’ve already hung up the towel.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with us (guilty pleasures, fave ice cream, anything at all)?
Favorite ice cream flavor is chocolate chip! Jelly Belly Jelly Beans are the beginning and ending of everything—except for coffee and popcorn flavor. Who thought those tasted good? I’d love to know!
About the author:
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.
SOMETIMES WHAT YOU COVET IS IMPOSSIBLE TO KEEP.
For werewolf Natalya Stravinsky, the supernatural is nothing extraordinary. What does seem strange is that she’s stuck in her hometown of South Toms River, New Jersey, the outcast of her pack, selling antiques to finicky magical creatures. Restless and recovering from her split with gorgeous ex-boyfriend, Thorn, Nat finds comfort in an unusual place: her obsessively collected stash of holiday trinkets. But complications pile up faster than her ornaments when Thorn returns home, and Nat and Thorn discover that old flames still remain intense.
Before Nat can sort out their relationship, she must face a much hairier problem. Her pack is under attack from the savage Long Island werewolves—and Nat is the first target in the turf war. Toss in a handsome wizard vying for her affection, a therapy group for the anxious and enchanted, and the South Toms River pack leader ready to throw her to the wolves, and it’s enough to give anybody a panic attack. With the stakes as high as the full moon, Nat must summon all her strength to save her pack, and ultimately, herself.
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