Hello Lovelies! I was given the wonderful opportunity to interview one of my favorite RH authors, Brandy Slaven! I learned a lot about her personally and got some inside info on her upcoming releases! You can find out more about her, her books, and what we discussed below:
I was Georgia born and raised, now residing in the great state of Tennessee. True southern girl at heart. I have a wonderful supportive husband who, no lie, I honestly believe is my soul-mate. My two wild children consists of an 11 year old mini ball player and 5 year old little princess. We can’t forget about my fur baby, Primrose. She’s a Boxer/Boston Terrier (picture a tiny boxer) and yes she was named after a character from one of my all time favorite books, see if you can guess.
Lately, I’ve been glued to a screen writing. When I need a break you can find me hiking with the hubs at one of the many state parks, or if we have a long weekend, at the beach or in the mountains. I love all kinds of music and movies. I must say most of my favorites lists on both consist mostly of 80’s stuff. My favorite hobby is and will always be reading. I read every genre, but I am definitely a post-apocalyptic and paranormal freak. You’ll more than likely find me biting into a vampire novel or devouring a zombie book. Have more questions that I didn’t answer? Feel free to contact me via email or anywhere on social media. ~Courtesy of Brandy’s About page on her website
Books By Brandy Slaven:
Here are Goodreads links to each of Brandy’s books if you want to check them out yourself:
- Of Death and Darkness (Lady of Darkness #1)
- In Dreams of Despair (Lady of Darkness #2)
- Reviving Kendall (White Trash Trilogy #1)
- Refusing Kendall (White Trash Trilogy #2)
- The Aribiter (Divinely Damned #1)
- New Year Surprises
1) 𝑯𝒐𝒘 𝒅𝒊𝒅 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒅𝒊𝒔𝒄𝒐𝒗𝒆𝒓 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑹𝑯 𝒈𝒆𝒏𝒓𝒆? 𝑾𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒎𝒂𝒅𝒆 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒄𝒉𝒐𝒐𝒔𝒆 𝒕𝒐 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒆 𝒊𝒏 𝒊𝒕?
Years ago, I read these books based around this one small town. Within were all kinds of relationships that were accepted as a natural part of society. Normal even. I honestly think that’s what started my RH acceptance/obsession. Then, years later, I found myself wanting a kickass vampire with her own harem. There weren’t any that I could find, so I wrote one.
2) 𝑪𝒂𝒏 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒕𝒆𝒍𝒍 𝒎𝒆 𝒂 𝒍𝒊𝒕𝒕𝒍𝒆 𝒃𝒊𝒕 𝒂𝒃𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒑𝒓𝒐𝒄𝒆𝒔𝒔? 𝑾𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒂𝒓𝒆 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒇𝒂𝒗𝒐𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒅/𝒐𝒓 𝒍𝒆𝒂𝒔𝒕 𝒇𝒂𝒗𝒐𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒆 𝒑𝒂𝒓𝒕𝒔 𝒂𝒃𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒈?
My favorite parts to writing a story is always going to be letting the imaginary characters inside my head come out to play, hoping people enjoy them as much as I love writing about them. The easiest part for me is always the beginning and end. The in between stuff is harder for me. The process itself…. write every SINGLE day. Even if I don’t get many words in. If I don’t, I get distracted and binge TV Shows or books.
3) 𝑫𝒐 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒚 𝒇𝒖𝒏𝒏𝒚 𝒐𝒓 𝒊𝒏𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒆𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒔𝒕𝒐𝒓𝒊𝒆𝒔 𝒂𝒃𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒉𝒐𝒘 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒄𝒂𝒎𝒆 𝒖𝒑 𝒘𝒊𝒕𝒉 𝒂 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓 𝒐𝒓 𝒔𝒕𝒐𝒓𝒚 𝒍𝒊𝒏𝒆 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒃𝒐𝒐𝒌𝒔?
I can’t really say that there has been any particular person that inspired a character. However, there are a lot of places that will inspire a scene in a story. Such as Mel’s dream at the beach boardwalk in the first Lady of Darkness. On vacation I happened upon one, and decided right then and there that it was going to be a setting somehow.
4) 𝒀𝒐𝒖 𝒄𝒂𝒏’𝒕 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒄𝒐𝒏𝒔𝒕𝒂𝒏𝒕 𝒉𝒂𝒑𝒑𝒊𝒏𝒆𝒔𝒔 𝒐𝒓 𝒏𝒐 𝒄𝒐𝒏𝒇𝒍𝒊𝒄𝒕 𝒊𝒏 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒃𝒐𝒐𝒌 𝒐𝒓 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒔𝒕𝒐𝒓𝒚 𝒃𝒆𝒄𝒐𝒎𝒆𝒔 𝒖𝒏𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒍𝒊𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒄 𝒐𝒓 𝒃𝒐𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒈. 𝒀𝒆𝒕 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒌𝒏𝒐𝒘 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒅𝒆𝒓 𝒅𝒐𝒆𝒔𝒏’𝒕 𝒆𝒏𝒋𝒐𝒚 𝒄𝒐𝒏𝒇𝒍𝒊𝒄𝒕 (𝒃𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒌 𝒖𝒑𝒔, 𝒇𝒊𝒈𝒉𝒕𝒔 𝒃𝒆𝒕𝒘𝒆𝒆𝒏 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒔, 𝒑𝒂𝒔𝒕 𝒎𝒊𝒔𝒕𝒂𝒌𝒆𝒔). 𝑯𝒐𝒘 𝒅𝒐 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒃𝒂𝒍𝒂𝒏𝒄𝒆 𝒘𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒅𝒆𝒓 𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒌𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒚 𝒘𝒂𝒏𝒕 𝒕𝒐 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒅 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒘𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒘𝒂𝒏𝒕 𝒕𝒐 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒆 (𝒐𝒓 𝒏𝒆𝒆𝒅 𝒕𝒐 𝒈𝒊𝒗𝒆 𝒖𝒔) 𝒊𝒏 𝒐𝒓𝒅𝒆𝒓 𝒕𝒐 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒂 𝒈𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒕 𝒃𝒐𝒐𝒌?
This is really difficult and not just as a question. Everyone has their own opinion as to what makes a good book. Some people like funny. Some like the suckerpunch to the feels. Others like midnight dark. I’ve had to learn to accept that not everyone will like my books and that’s ok! I allow the characters to speak and write their own stories. I step in occasionally to say, “Nah that won’t work,” or “Hell yes, I like where you’re going with that.” This will likely make me sound insane, but I treat my characters like real people, putting myself in their shoes.
5) 𝑾𝒂𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒚𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒘𝒂𝒔 𝒆𝒅𝒊𝒕𝒆𝒅 𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒐𝒇 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒃𝒐𝒐𝒌𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒌 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒅𝒆𝒓𝒔 𝒘𝒐𝒖𝒍𝒅 𝒘𝒂𝒏𝒕 𝒕𝒐 𝒌𝒏𝒐𝒘?
Honestly? I try to leave all content for the reader to get the full effect of what I may have been feeling at the moment. Have I gone back after edits and added a scene or extended a scene? Yes, lol.
6) 𝑾𝒉𝒐 𝒉𝒂𝒔 𝒃𝒆𝒆𝒏 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒇𝒂𝒗𝒐𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒆 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓 𝒕𝒐 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒆 𝒂𝒃𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒔𝒐 𝒇𝒂𝒓 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒂𝒓𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒚 𝒐𝒇 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒔 𝒃𝒂𝒔𝒆𝒅 𝒐𝒏 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒍 𝒑𝒆𝒐𝒑𝒍𝒆?
Another difficult question, because anyone who knows me, knows I don’t ever pick favorites. I loved writing Mel from my Lady of Darkness Series, because she is a kickass female who accepts life as it comes to her and is willing to go straight to battle for the ones she cares about. The second book in that series follows Alivia, and there’s some really dark stuff that made her a super interesting character to try and share headspace with. Imma from New Year Surprises was so much fun. She’s quirky, sarcastic, and down right awkward and I love it. That cast will be getting a full length novel coming January 2020, and I cannot wait to write with her again. Kendall from my White Trash Trilogy was probably one of the most real characters ever to take a place amongst the many in my head. Her story touched a place in my soul none of the others have. Just the fight she has to put forth is one that a lot of people struggle with every day. Hopefully her story has helped at least one person realize that it can get better. Never ever give up. Last but not least, every single one of the main male characters will always hold a special place in my heart. My personal harem has been well over the double digits for a while now lol. Secret interview reveal…there has been only one set of people that were based off real life people. The band in Lady of Darkness when I first started writing was an actual band. Before publishing, I changed everything up. I wanted them to play a larger part in the books with no reference to the real world.
7) 𝑯𝒐𝒘 𝒅𝒐 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒅𝒆𝒄𝒊𝒅𝒆 𝒐𝒏 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓 𝒏𝒂𝒎𝒆𝒔 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒏𝒈𝒆𝒅 𝒂 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓’𝒔 𝒏𝒂𝒎𝒆 𝒃𝒆𝒄𝒂𝒖𝒔𝒆 𝒉𝒊𝒔 𝒐𝒓 𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝒔𝒕𝒐𝒓𝒚 𝒎𝒐𝒓𝒑𝒉𝒆𝒅 𝒊𝒏𝒕𝒐 𝒔𝒐𝒎𝒆𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒘𝒆𝒓𝒆𝒏’𝒕 𝒆𝒙𝒑𝒆𝒄𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒈?
Names are very, very important. It can make or destroy a character I feel. I’m always careful picking them. With the genre getting so large, it’s hard to avoid clashing with others. However, it’s like the real world. Do you know how many Brandy’s I know? Lol I can honestly say, I’ve never changed a name due to characteristics, or morphing of their story.
8) 𝒀𝒐𝒖 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒔𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓𝒂𝒍 𝒎𝒂𝒍𝒆 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒔 𝒊𝒏 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒃𝒐𝒐𝒌𝒔 (𝒐𝒇 𝒄𝒐𝒖𝒓𝒔𝒆 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕’𝒔 𝒑𝒂𝒓𝒕 𝒐𝒇 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒔𝒐𝒏 𝒘𝒆 𝒍𝒐𝒗𝒆 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒎 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒈𝒆𝒏𝒓𝒆) 𝑫𝒊𝒅 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒇𝒊𝒏𝒅 𝒊𝒕 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒆𝒏𝒈𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒕𝒐 𝒅𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒍𝒐𝒑 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒊𝒓 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒔 𝒐𝒓 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒆 𝒊𝒏 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒊𝒓 𝑷𝑶𝑽𝒔?
This one takes us back to the response on question four. I don’t find it particularly difficult writing about, or in the guy’s POV. They’re all different people to me. They all have their own quirks and faults like we do.
9) 𝑨𝒓𝒆 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒚 𝒂𝒖𝒕𝒉𝒐𝒓𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒊𝒏𝒇𝒍𝒖𝒆𝒏𝒄𝒆𝒅 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒐𝒓 𝒔𝒕𝒚𝒍𝒆 𝒐𝒇 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒈?
I’m most certainly a reader first, but I try not to let anyone influence my style. Do I strive to be on the same level as some of my favorite authors? Definitely! Do I want to write like them? No ma’am! It’s one of the things that makes a book grand to me, individuality and uniqueness.
10) 𝑾𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒊𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒎𝒐𝒔𝒕 𝒊𝒏𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒆𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒅𝒆𝒅𝒊𝒄𝒂𝒕𝒊𝒐𝒏 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓 𝒘𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒕𝒆𝒏 𝒐𝒓 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒅?
The most important one will always be to the readers. Without them, I couldn’t do what I love. I’ll never stop being grateful for them. My very first book Of Death and Darkness was dedicated to my father. He was always my biggest supporter of finishing it and trying to get it published. Unfortunately, he passed away before he was able to see it happen. I finished it within a year, publishing, and dedicating it to him.
11) 𝑫𝒐 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒚 𝒂𝒅𝒗𝒊𝒄𝒆 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝒖𝒑𝒄𝒐𝒎𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒂𝒖𝒕𝒉𝒐𝒓𝒔, 𝒑𝒂𝒓𝒕𝒊𝒄𝒖𝒍𝒂𝒓𝒍𝒚 𝑹𝑯 𝒂𝒖𝒕𝒉𝒐𝒓𝒔?
My advice for new authors? Write! If you have a story sitting in your head, on your chest, or within your soul, write it. Never doubt yourself and remember, we’re all different. There’s always going to be one person out there who doesn’t like it. Don’t let that influence your decision on giving up.
12) 𝑨𝒏𝒅 𝒇𝒊𝒏𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒚; 𝑾𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒂𝒓𝒆 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒄𝒖𝒓𝒓𝒆𝒏𝒕𝒍𝒚 𝒘𝒐𝒓𝒌𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒐𝒏? 𝑪𝒂𝒏 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒕𝒆𝒍𝒍 𝒖𝒔 𝒂𝒏𝒚𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒂𝒃𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒂𝒏𝒚 𝒖𝒑𝒄𝒐𝒎𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒓𝒆𝒍𝒆𝒂𝒔𝒆𝒔 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒘𝒉𝒆𝒏 𝒘𝒆 𝒄𝒂𝒏 𝒆𝒙𝒑𝒆𝒄𝒕 𝒕𝒐 𝒔𝒆𝒆 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒎?
Ha! That’s a loaded question. I just finished the last book in the White Trash Trilogy. It should be releasing at the end of April. I’m rewriting the Lady of Darkness Series seeing as it was my first books and all. I’ve learned so much in the past two years and want to make it better. They’re being revamped inside and out, hopefully to be released by the end of May. I’ve got a couple anthology stories in the works that’ll be out this year. One or two co-authored projects, with no due dates as of yet. I’m writing a standalone releasing in October. Keep your eyes peeled for that one, because it’s going to be a doozy. Then there is a series and a saga that I’ll be working on for release in 2020. Many exciting things happening soon!