We are excited to have MaryJanice Davidson stop by on her blog tour for her newest collection of stories in UNDEAD AND UNDERWATER out now from Berkley. During this interview we talk about villains ‘n stuff and learn a little bit more about MaryJanice. Along with this very entertaining interview there is a giveaway for a copy of UNDEAD AND UNDERWATER!
The villains in the Undead and Underwater anthology are of the cackling, maniacal variety that the protagonist hardly finds intimidating. Is there a reason for that? Do you know anyone like that in real life?
I think we all know people like that—the ones who think they’re spectacularly complex but who are just run-of-the-mill asshats. As with vampires, I wanted to turn the villain trope on its head. In the movies and books, villains are almost always too cool, at times almost superhuman in their abilities to confound goodness. I think in real life, villains are like any of us: some are smart, some are not, but along the way they made bad choices, and rather than sucking that up, they make other people pay. I like my characters to call villains on their shenanigans. Betsy cannot take the vampire villains seriously because they always sound like they’ve watched one too many scary movies. Her rampant immaturity could be considered a super power in cases like that: “Look deep into your eyes? Did you really just say that? Bwaaaaaah-hah-hah! Oh, wow. Have you ever laughed so hard you almost fell down? Because I just almost fell down.”
Would you ever consider writing a story from the villain’s point of view?
I already have! Sorta. My first book, published by Brava, Under Cover, was three romantic novellas connected by a cutting-edge biotech firm (among other things, they developed PaceIC, which eliminates the need for pacemakers, and Faskin, artificial skin for burn victims the body doesn’t reject). The villain chasing the hero and heroine in the first novella becomes the (reluctant) hero in the second novella. Since I’d spent over a decade reading romance novels before getting a contract for my first full-length published book, I jumped at the chance to make a villain a hero. It was one of the few things I had never run across in any other book. I’d love to do it again.
Do you find it more or less challenging to write short stories than a novel?
I love the shorter length. It forces me to get busy in a hurry; I have to make every page count. What’s funny is, novellas don’t sell as well as single titles, but I don’t care: I’ll always write them. Love that lack of length
On that note, let’s do a Lightning Round!
Gah! Okay, I’m ready. Hit me! But not really. Gently tap me.
What’s your favorite holiday?
What’s your beverage of choice?
Coke with lots of ice
What is your favorite food?
Cannot pick just one! Unless it’s all smooshed together. Okay: my favorite food is a prime rib sandwich with extra lobster tail and a side of sushi served on top of a bowl of chocolate ice cream sprinkled with walnuts.
What is your favorite quote?
“Freedom lies in being bold.”
What was your favorite book growing up?
Nope. Can’t pick just one. A few contenders: The Girl with the Silver Eyes, Meet the Austins, D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths, The Secret Garden, everything EllenConford wrote (she was the first writer who showed me you could be funny and good), Killing Mr. Griffin, everything by S.E. Hinton, The Little House books, Jacob Have I Loved, Julie of the Wolves, A Ring of Endless Light, Space Station 7th Grade, Who Put That Hair on my Toothbrush.
And what are you reading now?
I just finished re-reading Mike Carey’s Lucifer graphic novels…what a talent. My God. When I read something like that, something so terrific and fascinating and imaginative, I just want to hang it up. “Okay, that was awesome, there’s no way I’ll ever come close to that, so I’m out. Done. No more writing for me.” (My husband had the same reaction when he finished Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. “I’m out!”) I always weaken, though…I’m also re-reading the North and South books by John Jakes, and just finished The Sociopath Next Door, a fascinating non-fiction book which points out 1 in 25 people are totally without a conscience, and how you can deal with such destructive people in your life. I’m a layman, but Dr. Stout did a wonderful job breaking it down for me. I also just re-read Laura Ingalls Wilder’s The Long Winter. I re-read that every winter, usually while standing in front of my fridge and reassuring myself that I’m warm and there’s lots of food.
Be sure to stop by scifichick.com tomorrow, March 12th, where MaryJanice will be talking superheroes!
Giveaway provided by Berkley
One copy of UNDEAD AND UNDERWATER by MaryJanice Davidson
Available now from Berkley
Betsy Taylor and the Wyndham werewolves are back in three all-new outrageous novellas from New York Times bestselling author MaryJanice Davidson.
MaryJanice Davidson “continues to put her own unique spin on paranormal romance” (Fallen Angel Reviews) in these hilarious and sexy new novellas featuring Undead Queen Betsy Taylor as she meets Fred the mermaid, an all-new female superhero, and Lara Wyndham, the daughter of the Pack leader of the Wyndham werewolves.
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About the author
- Deadly Destinations: Gina Rosati & win AURACLEAugust 8, 2012