A big welcome to Darynda Jones who is here to telling us about Interview and celebrating the release of Eighth Grave After Dark, Charley Davidson #8 (published on May 19, 2015 by St. Martin’s Press). Want to win a copy of the whole Charley Davidson series? Enter via the widget below.
Q&A with Darynda Jones
I was lucky enough to participate in a conference call with Darynda Jones and several other bloggers recently. Guys, let me tell you- it was super exciting for me. I think one of the best questions to start off with sharing was from Scandal from Scandalicious Book Reviews, who wanted to know if Darynda was going to introduce the Charley Davidson series to a “paranormal rookie” how would she do it?Her response sums up the series quite well, so I figured if there’s any readers out there who haven’t read it – maybe this will pique your interest!
Darynda Jones: I would introduce them how I did whenever we opened, that it was a female investigator who was born the Grim Reaper. But, I would also add that they’re more lighthearted than most paranormal books. And they’re more humorous.
Charley is completely irreverent to almost every situation. She doesn’t take a lot of things too seriously, except for her job to help people and to help the departed be on their way.
So probably something like that, just to let them know ahead that it’s not quite as dark as others, but, it has dark moments.
And the first thing I had to know was whether or not Darynda came up with the quotes at the beginning of each chapter all by herself, or if they were actual t-shirts and bumper stickers, and so on. I almost felt like it was a silly question but inquiring minds have to know! Darynda responded,
I actually do not come up with most of them. I come up with maybe one or two a book. But, for the most part, they are real T-shirts and real bumper stickers and real signs and Internet memes that have been forwarded 1,000 times.
They’re out there. I didn’t come up with them, unfortunately. I wish I were that clever.
Luckily, the next question I had on my list was a little more professional (this is directly from the transcript so you can ignore my reflexive like at the beginning of the second question please…).
Kate: I was wondering since now you mentioned that you’re a plotter, how far ahead do you plan your plot? Like, how–and how many books do you have planned for Charlie?
Darynda Jones: When I was writing Sixth, I came up with Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth. I had the main ideas for those. Normally, I don’t really go that far ahead. It’s normally when I’m writing the previous book, that’s when I kind of come up with the next one.
I’m working on Ninth right now, and actually just a couple days ago came up with the main plot of Tenth. When I wrote First, I had First, Second, and Third all figured out.
So it just depends at where I’m at. How long is the series? It’s ongoing, and we don’t know how far or how many we’re going to have. But I will say that I do have an ending. I know how I want it to end, the whole series […]
But I will say also that I love writing Charley, and I hope that she doesn’t end for a long time. I hope people don’t get sick of her because I love writing her.
Kimberly, from Caffeinated Book Reviewer, then followed up by asking whether or not the series had changed at all from what Darynda originally planned, and she had this answer:
Darynda Jones: It actually has. It’s changed immensely from my original idea. Basically, it was just going to be Charley doing her thing and solving mysteries, and it really wasn’t going to evolve as far as paranormally and the supernatural world.
The more books I wrote, the more I kind of dipped into that and gave a little bit more and gave a little bit more. The readers were just so fantastic and it was like the bigger the world got, the more they loved it. So it’s really evolved, even with Charley.
I’m working on Ninth now, and it’s getting bigger and bigger and I’m hoping that it just continues to grow.
But definitely the supernatural worlds that I’m putting in were not originally part of the plan as far as where Charley was from and what she really is.
All in all it was a very exciting call, and the bloggers came up with some great questions! Check out the rest of the blogs for more coverage:
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author DARYNDA JONES won a RITA Award for best first novel for First Grave On The Right. As a born storyteller, she grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by, annoying man and beast alike. Jones lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as Albuquerque, New Mexico, with her husband and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys.
photo credit: Donita Massey Privett
NO REST FOR THE DEAD prize pack: One (1) winner receives: A branded coffee mug plus the complete Charley Davidson series!
Prizes Courtesy of St. Martin’s Press
Eighth Grave After Dark by Darynda Jones
Available on May 19, 2015 by St. Martin’s Press
Sometimes I wonder if the purpose of my life
is to serve as a cautionary tale to others.
Charley Davidson has enough going on without having to worry about twelve hellhounds hot on her trail. She is, after all, incredibly pregnant and feeling like she could pop at any moment. But, just her luck, twelve deadly beasts from hell have chosen this time to escape onto our plane, and they’ve made Charley their target. And so she takes refuge at the only place she thinks they can’t get to her: the grounds of an abandoned convent. Of course, if hellhounds aren’t enough, Charley also has a new case to hold her attention: the decades-old murder of a newly-vowed nun she keeps seeing in the shadows of the convent.
Add to that the still unsolved murder of her father, the strange behavior of her husband, and Charley’s tendency to attract the, shall we say, undead, and she has her hands full…but also tied. While the angry hellhounds can’t traverse the consecrated soil, they can lurk just beyond its borders like evil sentries, so Charley has been forbidden from leaving the sacred grounds. Luckily, she has her loyal team with her, and they’re a scrappy bunch who won’t let a few thirsty hellhounds deter them.
While the team scours the prophesies, searching for clues on the Twelve, for a way to kill them or at least send them back to hell, Charley just wants answers and is powerless to get them. But the mass of friends they’ve accrued helps. They convince her even more that everyone in her recent life has somehow been drawn to her, as though they were a part of a bigger picture all along. Their presence is comforting. But the good feelings don’t last for long because Charley is about to get the surprise of her crazy, mixed-up, supernatural life….
Read an excerpt
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