Faith Hunter is New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. Under the pen names of Faith Hunter and Gwen Hunter she has over 33 books in print in 30 countries.
I am very excited today to welcome Faith Hunter to the blog for an exclusive Q&A! She is here to discuss her new book, Blood of the Earth, which is the series starter for the Soulwood Trilogy. I was thrilled to be an early recipient of her latest novel and it gives me no small thrill to be able to share this interview with you.
Q & A with Faith
Tell us a little about yourself, who are some authors in your genre that inspire you?
I’m a slightly plump, middle-aged, blond woman with a love of whitewater kayaking and jewelry making. I am a work-alcoholic, have two rescue Pomeranians, and a husband who (very oddly) adores me. I have a big mouth, which I try to rein in, so that I think first and spout off later. And I LOVE the work of Patricia Briggs and Rachel Caine and Ilona Andrews and Charlaine Harris. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!
If someone is brand new to your work, what book do you think they should start with?
SKINWALKER, if they like the idea of more traditional urban fantasy. BLOOD OF THE EARTH if they like magic and crime and fighting the bad guys.
Out of all the books you’ve written, do you have a favorite?
Not really. I usually just hate the one I am currently writing. HATE IT!!!!
BLOOD OF THE EARTH, the first installment of Soulwood series, is a spin-off from the Jane Yellowrock/Skinwalker series. What were the thoughts behind choosing to feature Nell Nicholson Ingram?
Nell was a very challenging character to write. Broken characters are always difficult and when I added in her social ineptness and awkwardness, that made it even harder. For me, the most important thing in writing is character voice, and it was tough to get all the elements about Nell into the story. It was so difficult that my editor gave me an additional six months to get it right. An extra hair-pulling, softly-cussing, six months. Ultimately, Nell was very satisfying!
What sort of research did you have to do to make this story come alive?
Nell is a sort of an earth elemental-type character. She can make plants grow and thrive, though the way she does it can be deadly to bystanders. So my greatest need research-wise was gardening and botany and growing things. The green thumb of my youth has withered and I needed help. Fortunately I have knowledgeable friends who are willing to beta read. That was really valuable!
What are your thoughts on writing a book that is a spin-off from another series?
In many ways it made it easier. The world building and world history were done, the magic systems were in place. But I didn’t want another Jane Yellowrock-type spinoff, a two-souled woman with fighting skills and a taste for killing rogue-vampires. I wanted a unique character with her own weaknesses and strengths, a woman broken by her upbringing and her marriage and by society. A woman who found it difficult to fit in anywhere because (despite herself) she still held onto the residue of the past. I wanted a woman who had magic that was deadly. So a spinoff, in this case, was both harder and easier.
If your novel were being made into a movie, whom would you pick to play the lead roles?
I never even think about this. The film industry is so very different from the literary industry and any producer will not care one iota about my hopes, choices, or thoughts for casting characters. The only thing I would insist upon would be that a tribal American woman be cast for the part of Jane. Her ethnicity is so much a part of who she is. For Nell Nicholson Ingram … A skinny hillbilly chick—or a woman who can make the hillbilly accent real!
Are there any nuggets of wisdom you can impart to aspiring writers?
Take a gander at www.magicalwords.net . It’s a website for and about writers that I started with Misty Massey and David B Coe years ago. The archives are FULL of wisdom and practical advice for writers.
My sincerest thanks for your time!
Thanks for having me here. 🙂
About the Author:
USA Today and New York Times Bestselling author Faith Hunter was born in Louisiana and raised all over the south. The Skinwalker series, featuring Jane Yellowrock, is dark urban fantasy, and comprises Skinwalker, Blood Cross, Mercy Blade, Raven Cursed, Death’s Rival, Blood Trade, Black Arts, Broken Soul, and Dark Heir, with more novels under contract. Her Rogue Mage novels, a dark urban fantasy / post apocalyptic series—Bloodring, Seraphs, and Host—feature Thorn St. Croix, a stone mage in a post-apocalyptic, alternate reality, urban fantasy world. These novels are the basis for the role playing game, Rogue Mage. The upcoming Soulwood Trilogy, composing Blood of The Earth, Wound in The Earth, and one other (untitled) novel, will feature Nell Nicholson Ingram, a spin-off character of the Jane Yellowrock/Skinwalker series.