Tuesday, October 20, 2009

NZ/Aus Authors: Erica Hayes - Shadowfae

We're continuing the series of guest posts by authors from my part of the world today. Please welcome Erica Hayes to the blog everyone!

Hi everyone, and big thanks to Nalini for inviting me on her blog. I attended Nalini's workshop on paranormal romance at RWNZ this year, asking all the silly questions like, "Is it okay if I kill my characters off after they've had their HEA?"

Wise woman Nalini assured me the answer was "Are you CRAZY? No way. Never. Not in a million years." Good advice, eh?

As a debut urban fantasy/romance author, I'm often asked: which idea came first, the characters or the world? In my case, it was the characters.

The first spark of an idea that eventually became SHADOWFAE came to me one night when I was faffing about on the internet (as you do) hunting for a cool paranormal creature to star i
n my newest steamy story. I was clicking through Monstropedia (what a fabulous time-waster… umm, I mean research site!) and I came across the entry for succubus: a female demon who seduces men and feeds off their energy when they have sex.

Awesome! I thought. A girl who eats souls. That's my heroine. But what if a succubus climbed in the window at midnight to steal a man's soul—and found him already dead? Who killed him, and why? Why did she want his soul in the first place? What if the killer's still there?

And though the story went through a dozen iterations since then, that's still what happens in the first few pages of SHADOWFAE. Jade, my heroine, is out on yet another sordid soul-drinking mission for her demon lord—gosh, don't get me started about the demon lord—and finds her potential victim already drained of his soul. And the killer is indeed still there: Rajah, a 400-year-old incubus with his own mys
terious agenda.

But now I needed a world for Jade and Rajah to play in. Somewhere their nefarious deeds would go not only unpunished, but virtually unnoticed. A place where getting your soul sucked out was an occupational hazard. A city where demons rule, and succubi are paranormal assassins. Warring vampire gangs own the streets. Fairies on the train, trolls in the coffee shop, angels and imps fighting in the gutters.

Add a shimmer of toxic fae glamour, so that we ordinary helpless humans can't see any of it, and the Shadowfae world was born. If you don't watch out, you'll lose your soul.

Which brings me back to my demon lord, Kane. Hello, sultry black-eyed blond :) Kane is my favourite secondary character, and he features in all three Shadowfae books I've written so far. His fight for control of his territory—and the souls that dwell there—has become the background theme of my series. The stories each feature a different hero/heroine, and Kane's the one jumping up and down in the wings, demanding his own book one day. He's a very persuasive man. He is a demon, after all…

So tell me: who's your favourite secondary character from a romance or UF series? Who would you like to get their own book one day? Me, I'm hanging out for a book about Riley Jenson's brother Rhoan and his BF from Keri Arthur's series ;)


The romantic query letter and the happy-ever-after said...

I love this blog so much I can hardly stand it. Just beautiful. I love the photos. Thanks for sharing.
All the very best,

Jammi said...

Oooh, I've been meaning to pick up this book though it's been bumped back to my Christmas list since in Canada it's $18.99. But since it's mid-term time, that's probably a blessing, lol.

It's always cool to see where people get their ideas [definitely going to check out monstropedia...when i'm not studying] and how they evolve.

The world building definitely seems fascinating from what i've seen so far.

Diane said...

It's lovely that you could drop in on the blog today, thanks to both Nalini and yourself for doing it.
I can't even think of a secondary character right now, though I'm sure if I had the time I would come up with lots of them. I think back to Nalini's Changeling series and there are a lot of characters I wish I knew when she would write about.
Congratulations on your books!

K said...

Great Post. I have Shadowfae on my tbr list too.And i love me a good villain

I never thought of Rhoan having a book of his own, but now i think bout it, it would be really cool, what with all the cases he deals in and stuff. I hope she does write one

I hope Patricia Briggs would do one on Samuel. That man/werewolf needs a HEA.

Aaaand i wish you'd write a full length book on Ashwini and Janvier..their short story has only fueled more curiosity. I really liked Janvier

Mandi said...

I can't wait to read Shadowfae!!

I wish Bran from Patricia Briggs Mercy Thompson series would get his own book..or his own series - yes, I'm greedy ;)

Tonberry Queen said...

I absolutely love Bran from Pat Brigg's Alpha and Omega books. Also I really like Torhment from the Black Dagger Brotherhood books by J.R. Ward

Eleni Konstantine said...

Hi Nalini and Erica,

Erica - you sure do come up with the tough questions...
It's 2am and the brain is a little fried. But I'll have to agree with Fuarie Ai, I've been waiting on Torhment's story.

Marnie said...

Great post!!! My favorite secondary character hmmmmm --- thats a hard one --- I love so many of them but I have to say Illium from Angel's Blood,seriously that is my new favorite book. The way he is described -okay blue is my favorite color- he just seems so yummy! I would also say Simi but is she really secondary :)

Tiona said...

Welcome, Erica! Great photos, Nalini!
Your series sounds very fascinating, Erica. It sounds like you didn't miss a character we woudl like to see, angels, fairies, demons!
Oh, secondary characters! Just love them. They just steal the scenes sometimes and you just can't help but demand, I mean, ask the author kindly by stalking, I mean, going to their blog and yelling "Hawke needs his story! Now! What do you mean we have to wait 2 whole years for his?" Or, so I've heard other people do. Right, Nalini?
Or, like Kresley Cole. Stalk...visit her forum and inquire discreetly *cough* whether Lothaire (melts my butter!) will get his Bride and who the heck she is? Nix? Carrow? One of the Wroth brother's sisters? Or one of Kaderin's full-blooded sisters?

orannia said...

Ohhh, your world-building sounds fascinating Erica! Hmmm...as for secondary characters, well, I've been hoping and hoping that Ria From Nalini's Psy-Changeling series would have a story..and I do believe she does *happy dance* I also finished reading Angel's Judgement last night and I'm quite intrigued by the various hunters we met... Yes, I know, I'm not very good at subtle hinting :)

Me, I'm hanging out for a book about Riley Jenson's brother Rhoan and his BF from Keri Arthur's series ;)

Me too! Move over Riley and bring on Rhoan I say *grin*

All the best with the release!

Una said...

Thanks for being here Erica! I have added your series to my TBR pile - your series sounds amazing!

My most desired story is a tie between Tohr from Black Dagger Brotherhood, Samuel from Mercy Thompson or Hawke from Psy-Changling!

Anonymous said...

"Hawke needs his story! Now! What do you mean we have to wait 2 whole years for his?"
^ Heehee, I ditto that! Also Illium & a lot of characters from the Dark Hunter series.

Erica Hayes said...

Hey, thanks for dropping by everyone!

Looks like Nalini has a few new books she needs to write :) come on, Nalini! on with it!

Anonymous said...

Good advice! - I`m still sad about Akkarins dead, after he and Sonea discovered their love, in Trudi Canavans "The Magician`s Guild". Her explanation about the "why" make sense but... there`s still a knot in my stomach....

My favourite secondary characters are e.g. Hawke(of course), Dmitri and (I know he needs a bit time) Ben.

Shannon said...

Hi Erica, Welcome!

I would love to see the following get their own full length stories:

*Illium and Jason from Angels' Blood
*Hawke, of course, from the Psy/Changeling series
*Tate, Ian, and Dave from Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series
*Dog from Lora Leigh's Breed series
*Brendan from Jacquelyn Frank's Shadowdweller series
*Tohrment from J.R. Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series
*Leah from Stephenie Meyers' Twilight series