Welcome to Rabid Reads Thea! Thanks for squeezing me into your busy schedule, especially with the recent release of your novella, True Colors, on December 13th.
Thea Harrison is the pen name for author Teddy Harrison. Thea has traveled extensively, having lived in England and explored Europe for several years. Now she resides in northern California. She wrote her first book, a romance, when she was nineteen and had sixteen romances published under the name Amanda Carpenter.
She took a break from writing to collect a couple of graduate degrees and a grown child. She experienced waitressing as a teenager, has worked as an activist for a non-profit consumer rights organization, has been a receptionist, an office manager, a penniless graduate student, a director of development and research, and a single mom.
Her graduate degrees are in Philanthropic Studies and Library Information Science, but her first love has always been writing fiction. She’s back with her paranormal Elder Races series. The release date for her first paranormal, Dragon Bound, is May 3, 2011.
She adores animals and currently resides with several small pets that have very large personalities.
Thank you for having me on your blog today, Carmel! I’m excited to be here!
About You & Writing:
Where do you do most of your writing?
I write in a home office. Since I put in so many long hours, it’s important for me to sit at a desk in a (more or less) proper position. As a change of pace, I have very occasionally worked in a coffee shop, but mostly that has been for note-taking or fleshing out ideas, not really for intense narration.
Why do you use pen names instead of your real name?
I started out with a pen name when I was nineteen—I felt like I was venturing into an unknown and scary place, and I wanted a layer of anonymity, rather like a security blanket! Now I use a pen name for marketing purposes. Besides, Thea is a goddess’s name. Hard to go wrong with that!
Why did you take a break from writing romance novels and branch out into paranormal romance?
There are sooo many answers to this question. I guess it all comes down to one thing: life happened! My return to writing, roughly fifteen years later, was something I always wanted to do, and trying my hand at paranormal romance seemed to be the right thing, since I had the background in writing romance and I loved sci-fi/fantasy so much.
Is it easier or harder to write a novella instead of a full length book?
Personally, I find writing a novella more challenging. But who am I kidding, they’re both challenging. And it is so very rewarding to reach an end point in a draft and feel satisfied with the project.
Eeuumm… Do you seriously own a tricycle!?
*Laughing* You read my bio! I do not seriously own a tricycle any longer, but I do have fond memories of the one I had as a child. I never did end up finding where “Work” was. My mother caught me at the end of our driveway before I could pedal onto the road.
From bio: I taught myself to read when I was four. That was around the time I tried to ride my tricycle to work. I wasn’t sure where work was, but I knew it had to be interesting if people went there every day. Now I combine my love of books with work, and I don’t have to ride my tricycle to get there.
About the Books:
What would you say to newcomers to your Elder Races series as to what they’re in for?
A lot happens, and it’s really, really fun.
How many books do you anticipate there being in the Elder Races series?
Currently I’m contracted with Berkley through book six. I also have the Elder Races e-novella True Colors with Samhain Publishing, with a release date of December 13th. I think there’s plenty of room for more stories, as long as readers remain interested.
There’s no description available yet for Oracle’s Moon; can you give us a hint as to what to expect?
An arrogant, child-loving Djinn, Khalil, makes a promise to look after two human children, despite what their guardian Grace has to say about it. Khalil and Grace were utterly wonderful to write about, and they cracked me up many times during the rough draft! The story is an intimate one about family, responsibility and commitment.
Which character do you enjoy writing about the most?
I love quirky characters. If I try writing a character that is too much of a “straight arrow” sooner or later something happens to change that. They end up with a secret, a smart mouth, an obsession, or something.
Which character is your favorite in the Elder Races series?
All right—THIS ANSWER IS NOT A COP OUT… I do mean this sincerely: my favorite character is always the one I am currently writing about. I think it’s something about getting so far into a character’s persona and motivations, that I develop a real sympathy for their reality. Right now I’m writing about Dragos and Pia again (the main characters from Dragon Bound) so they are my favorite characters of the moment.
Why did you choose to cast two practically unknown characters (Gideon Riehl and Alice) in your True Colors novella?
I felt that it was important to write outside the main storylines in the series, so that readers who were unfamiliar with the books could connect with and enjoy the novella as a stand-alone. I think the enjoyment of the novella may be enhanced if you’ve read the books, but you don’t have to have read them to enjoy the novella for its own sake. I feel pretty confident about this, since my Samhain editor made an offer for the novella before she had read any of the books.
On your website you mentioned having “just finalized a new contract for two dark romantic fantasies”. How far away are you from publishing the first book and what can we expect?
Argh, I love this question but it’s so hard to answer. We’re in the process of working through what the revisions will be for the first book. We are also going to rename it, so I don’t even have a title—yet—that I can give you. Sorry! I hope to have some of these answers by the first of the year, and readers can look to see these books released sometime in 2013.
Anything to add?
I am in the process of getting a new, expanded and improved website off the ground. We hope to have that by the end of December. In the meantime, my apologies that my “old” website is not being updated regularly, since we’re focusing our energy on the new one. If readers would like to connect to the latest news, I am active on Twitter @TheaHarrison, my Facebook page, and I am posting updates on my Goodreads author blog.
It’s been a real delight to visit with you! Thanks again for having me!
An eBook copy of True Colors is being given away by Thea. International. Please read my Giveaway Policy before entering.
Meeting your soulmate? Great. Preventing your possible murder? Even better.
Alice Clark, a Wyr and schoolteacher, has had two friends murdered in as many days, and she’s just found the body of a third. She arrives at the scene only minutes before Gideon Riehl, a wolf Wyr and current detective in the Wyr Division of Violent Crime—and, as Alice oh-so-inconveniently recognizes at first sight, her mate.
But the sudden connection Riehl and Alice feel is complicated when the murders are linked to a serial killer who last struck seven years ago, killing seven people in seven days. They have just one night before the killer strikes again. And every sign points to Alice as the next victim.
Product Warnings: This book contains a hot police detective, a violent murderer on the hunt, and a heroine that can blend in anywhere…