I’m so excited to have the lovely Lisa Shearin back on the blog as part of her tour for All Spell Breaks Loose, the brand new installment in the Raine Benares series! Also, I’ve got one copy of All Spell Breaks Loose up for grabs for one lucky winner, so be sure to check out the details at the bottom of the post!
Lisa, the 6th novel in your Raine Benares series, All Spell Breaks Loose, just came out! Did you have any idea when you started the series that it would be so successful, or that there would be this many books?
The sixth book of the Raine Benares series—All Spell Breaks Loose—is the culmination of a storyline that began in 2007 with Magic Lost, Trouble Found. The action contained in those six books cover a mere three-month period in the lives of Raine and her friends. Three months. It’s hard to believe. When I look back over the entire series, I think one of the biggest surprises for me was that the Saghred storyline extended into six books. I had expected three books max. But the characters kept growing, and they and their stories took on a life of their own. There was no way I could stop after only three books. I had to find out what happened.
Did you always want to be a writer? Can you tell us a bit about your journey?
I’ve been writing since I could put words together to form a sentence, and I have made up stories in my head for as long as I can remember. I was bitten by the novel bug in college. I was in a local bookstore and couldn’t find anything that I wanted to read. My roommate got tired of hearing me gripe about it, and asked why didn’t I just write my own? That’s what got me started, and I’ve been going ever since.
We’d love a bit of a teaser about All Spell Breaks Loose if you’re game!
Hmm, a teaser. Just that all of the plots, sub plots, and intrigues will be brought to a very satisfying conclusion. Oh, and there’s full frontal nudity by a particular character with no shame.
What are some of your biggest literary influences?
I think that reading Mary Stewart’s Merlin novels got the ball rolling for me. Her prose is just jaw-droppingly gorgeous. I read those books and said to myself: “I want to do THAT!” David Eddings and Raymond Feist were also big influences for me, especially for the Raine Benares series. Raine & Company were born from me wanting to do something as fun as Eddings and as action-packed as Feist.
What do you love most about writing fantasy?
That the sky is the limit. If you can imagine it, write it, and make it believable for your readers, then there’s nothing you can’t put on the page.
If you could read one book again for the first time, which one would it be, and why?
Jim Butcher’s DEAD BEAT (a Harry Dresden novel). I very rarely re-read books, but I’ve made an exception for this one. If I was on a desert island and could take one book, this would be it. It’s just so much fun.
What are you reading now?
At the moment I’m reading NOCTURNAL by Scott Siegler, MONSTER HUNTER ALPHA by Larry Correia, and LEGEND by David Golemon. I generally have more than one book going at any given time and bounce back and forth between them depending on what I’m in the mood to read. Oh, and waiting for the next Harry Dresden book to come out.
When you manage to find some free time in your busy schedule, how do you like to spend it?
Reading, reading, and trying to catch up on my sleep (if I can stop reading).
I saw that you have retired racing greyhounds! Will you tell us a bit about them? What do you love most about the breed?
Actually, personality-wise, greyhounds are very much like cats. My husband and I first saw greyhounds at the Renaissance Faire that our fencing group would perform at. We also saw a greyhound when we were doing fencing demonstrations at the Biltmore House in Ashville, NC. When we found out that there are so many retiring from the race tracks that need homes, we just had to adopt some. Greyhounds are the sweetest dogs! Derek and I would like to move out into the country so that we could foster dogs that have just come off of the race track and are looking for their forever homes.
What bit of advice would you give to struggling writers?
Believe in yourself, don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t write, and never give up your dream. And read everything you can get your hands on.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with us about upcoming projects or events (or anything at all!!)?
I’ve just completed a proposal package for an urban fantasy/supernatural thriller/comedy series. I have the series premise written, as well as the synopses for the first three books, and finished the final sample chapter last week (for a total of six). This project is just pure fun. I can’t wait until I can talk about it.
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