Thursday, March 31
Meet Ms. Mona Karel
Hello, Everyone. Today I’m interviewing debut author, Mona Karel. Let’s give her a warm welcome. So without further ado, meet Ms. Karel. 1.Tell us a little about yourself. Where are you from? I was a Navy brat, which might lead you to believe I lived in many exotic places. For the most part we were in Florida and Maryland until my last year of high school, when my father was stationed in Japan. In many ways I've lived my life backwards, first working in stables and kennels then joining the corporate world when I was thirty five. Then again I knew when I was very young my life wouldn't really get going until I was thirty five. Which, by the way, was a long time ago, and also right around the time I married. So maybe younger me knew something after all. 2.How Long have you been writing? The first thing I remember writing was a forgettable Gothic with suspense overtones. Even then I couldn't keep my genres straight. I wrote my first full length romance right around that thirty five year mark. It was typed on a barely functioning portable typewriter on any clear paper I could find. My writing seems to have progressed by fits and starts. I wrote several books then stopped, wrote a few more, and took a "short" break of we-really-don't-need-to-get-into-it years. 3.Congrats on your new book. Tell us about it. Thank you! "My Killer My Love" - The working title was "Into the Woods," for no reason other than I couldn't very well call it "The three thousand year old man" book. Especially since invariably someone would ask if it had anything to do with Mel Brooks. In one sentence, "My Killer My Love" is about an immortal enforcer and the woman he's been sent to punish. More than that it's about personal growth and the ability we all have within ourselves to do extraordinary things to protect those we love. 4.When will it be released? Where do we go to buy it? My target release date is May 17, and it will be available through Black Opal Books: http://blackopalbooks.com/wordpress/ 6.Where did you get the idea for the story? Unlike most of the stories I've written, "My Killer My Love" came to me all at once, or enough so to keep me writing non stop until the first draft was done. We were living in Southern California at the time, where every serious gardener wages constant war against the snails. I had given up on the beer treatment, run out of salt, and was going to the "hard stuff" - squirt bottles of really nasty stuff. As I was about to lay down a line - I called it "serving the buffet" (mind you I really really hate snails) - I heard someone say "You don't want to do that, do you?" And for just a minute I was in a dark forest, I was about half my actual size, and faced with a man of unearthly beauty. Then reality clicked back into place and I was in the back yard in ancient shorts and a torn t-shirt. But the story stuck, and for the next however many months I was up all hours of the night writing, then back up in the morning for work. 7. Have you always written paranormal or did you start with another genre? "My Killer My Love" is actually the first paranormal though Andre Norton is my all time favorite writer. Going back to examine the six books I've finished I find with the exception of one relatively normal romance, my underlying them is the damage done to those who put themselves in harm's way to protect our way of life. Call it PTSD, call it shell shock, give it any kind of fancy name, we send people out to deal with the most unearthly atrocities and somehow expect them to get off the plane and immediately return to their former life. The cruelest part of "Saving Private Ryan" was learning Tom Hanks' character had taught school. And knowing even if he survived he would probably not go back to that life. 8.What was the first thing you did when you found out you were going to be published? Stared at the screen in stunned joy. Printed out the message. Read the printed words. Blocked out the part that said: "If you'd like us to publish your book---and sent it to the people who have supported me even when I know they thought I'd never really have the nerve to send in another book. 9. What's the one thing you have to have at your side while you write? Oh, hard to say. Time for one thing. I always seem to be robbing Peter to pay Paul's bills. 10.Do you have anything else on the horizon? The relatively normal romance needs a point of viewectomy then I'll send it over for consideration. I can't call it a "normal" romance since the back story has to do with the heroine being sold in marriage very young to an aging aristocrat - and this in present day! She gets out of that situation and makes a life for herself as a writer for a lifestyle type magazine, then meets her destiny in a wildlife photographer who was a part of the crowd around her former husband. I'm also planning a story about a woman who doesn't believe in Gaia until she finds out she was supposed to be one of Gaia's assistants, if she hadn't been lost on Earth as a baby. Then there's the lost heirs story, more of an epic fantasy. And so on and on. 11. Do you have a blog site or web address? I have a pathetic start of a blog with WordPress: http://monicastoner.org/ that I'm adding to piece by piece. 12. Is there an excerpt you'd like to share with us? This is one of my favorite scenes (other than the love scenes) Mykhael is starting to open up to Kendra about his life, and his purpose in her life. * * * "You did well, learning from your grandmother, and it seemed the area would remain secure. Then the watchers sensed a disturbance in the area, a violation of the space. I was called to take care of the situation." "Why you?" "A heritage. Some are watchers, some are guardians, some are...enforcers. Alastor, my clan name, was misinterpreted with all the different translations throughout history." "Alastor..." she mused, searching for an elusive nugget of information. Then the book opened in her mind's eye, and the answer appeared. "It was the duty of Alastor to ensure that the sins of the father were visited upon the son." "Not precisely. It is the duty of the clan of Alastor to ensure that the sanctity of the places and balance of power is maintained at all times. When violations occur, a member of my clan is called, and we are given an image of the person responsible for the violation." His eyes were even more remote, with that far away, almost sad, look she'd seen so many times before. A chilling premonition came to her and she lifted her chin, seeking the strength to ask the next question. "Quit the games, Michael. Why exactly are you here now, in this place, at this time?" He looked at her directly, and she saw the agony he had to be feeling. "Darling, I've been sent here to kill you."