Monday, November 21, 2016

Interview with Rosemary A. Johns, BLOOD SHACKLES

Do you ever wish you were someone else? Who?
Firstly – thanks for having me on your site today!

When I was a child, I’d daydream I was someone exciting like a British spy:  a James Bond type. Always in peril. Always fighting villains. And always quick with the one-liners. I guess it’s not a surprise that now I write urban fantasy with a thriller edge. Except with vampires. And Light? He’s more leather jacket than black-tie. More pint than vodka martini. And he definitely doesn’t need a license to kill.

What did you do on your last birthday?
Had a wild party, danced all night and ate a huge chocolate cake with candles. Did you spot the lie in the last sentence? OK…lies. Plural. Three of them… I wrote. Like most days. But I did get cake. It wasn’t chocolate. Inside I died a little.
I always say please feed me reviews because they’re better than chocolate. See how much I love reading your reviews?

What part of the writing process do you dread?
None of it. If I dreaded it, I couldn’t do it. If anyone thinks this is the easy option, they don’t know what goes into it. I’m passionate – all right – obsessed with writing. I always have been. It tells the stories, which are rushing through my mind, like…speeded up movies, which I need to get down. Before they’re lost. I only write about what matters to me. I care about it. It’s from my…whatever it is that wiggles inside us. Deep down.

In the first book in my new fantasy series Rebel Vampires - Blood Dragons - the idea was sparked by my autistic son, who has a photographic memory. Light – the Blood Lifer in both books – has one too. I wondered what it would be like to live through the centuries witnessing glorious wonders and devastating horrors. And remembering everything with the clarity of a photograph.

Rebel Vampires is set in the supernatural world of Blood Life, where vampires are both predator and prey. I love vampires. But I wanted to write a vampire book for adults. Where they were not simply the hunters but also the hunted. Vampires, rebels and romance. Don’t leave out the romance.

In this latest book – Blood Shackles – the idea was sparked by freedom. Or the loss of it. Human trafficking and slavery. But what would happen if it was the Blood Lifers, who could be trafficked? Like Taken with vampires.

I was also fascinated by the different types of freedom we have. Mental, as well as physical. How we give it up when we’re in love – or how love can free us.

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
Touch wood – I’ve never suffered so far. My brain’s too busy. If you’re authentic to who you are – and what you want to write – writer’s block is less likely. Know yourself and all that. It’s not easy but you have to stick to what you believe in. Write what you want to read. I love intelligent, dark, subversive books. With antiheroes at their hearts. So that’s what I write.

Tell us about your latest release.
Blood Dragons (Rebel Vampires Volume 2) is the standalone second book in my new fantasy series.

It explores a hidden paranormal world in London, where vampires are both predator and prey. It’s a story of redemption and love in a divided world beneath our own. Blood Lifers are a camouflaged species, who use venom to paralyse and mimic heart attacks in First Lifers (humans). Yet they fear the First Lifers they prey on.

I loved the idea of a novel, which was written from the vampire’s perspective in the style of a slave journal.  But which also had a British vampire front and centre. The ultimate anti-hero. A vampire book truly for adults.

What happens when SPARTACUS meets VAMPIRES? Welcome to the Blood Club…


Light is a Rocker Blood Lifer with a talent for remembering things. He’s meant to be the predator. It’s been that way since Victorian times. But not now. Not since someone hunted him. Enslaved him. Ripped out his fangs. Who are these ruthless humans? Who’s their violent leader? And who betrayed the secret of the Blood Lifer world?


London, Primrose Hill. Grayse is the commanding but alluring slaver’s daughter. The enemy. She buys Light, like he’s a pair of designer shoes. So why does Light feel so drawn to her? Especially when his family is still in chains. Will he risk everything – even his new love – to save them?


Does a chilling conspiracy lie behind it all? A stunning revelation leads Light to an inconceivable truth. If he can face his worst terrors, he can save his family and his whole species from slavery.

Maybe he can even save himself.

The third book in the series, BLOOD RENEGADES, will be out Spring 2017.


AUTHOR Bio and Links:
ROSEMARY A JOHNS is a traditionally published author of short stories under the name R. A. Johns. She is the author of Blood Dragons the compelling first installment of the Rebel Vampires series.

Rosemary A Johns wrote her first fantasy novel at the age of ten, when she discovered the weird worlds inside her head were more exciting than double swimming. Since then she’s studied history at Oxford University, run a theatre company (her critically acclaimed plays have been described as "uncomfortable, unsettling and uneasily true to life"), and worked with disability charities.
When Rosemary’s not falling in love with the rebels fighting their way onto the page, she heads the Oxford writing group Dreaming Spires

To sign up to Rosemary A Johns’ VIP Email Newsletter with news of hot releases, promotions and the free short story “All the Tin Soldiers”, click here:

Twitter: @RosemaryAJohns


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