Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Interview with Anne Marie Andrus, MONSTERS AND ANGELS

Thank you to Two Ends of The Pen for hosting the Monsters & Angels blog tour!

Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book?
Monsters & Angels is the story of fledgling nurse Sorcha Alden’s journey into the unknown. Only days after graduating from nursing school in New York City, Sorcha suffers a tragic personal loss. The drive to honor her family’s heritage takes her on a railroad adventure across America, a voyage over the Pacific Ocean and a trek through the brutal jungles of Nepal.

Sorcha stumbles into the brilliance of young love one night and the path of a deranged killer soon after. Set against the backdrop of 1930’s New Orleans, her unplanned future is graced with friends, family and the counsel of a charismatic mentor. She’ll need every one of them to survive the cutthroat, mystical underworld of the Crescent City.

Do you have a favorite character?
Dr. Raimond Banitierre was always planned as one of my leading men. He is a former French soldier and Sorcha’s charming mentor. Dr. Banitierre has managed to balance his human and vampire sides well enough to remain the medical director of a major hospital. His role grew and changed so much during the writing of Monsters & Angels that I’ve nearly finished a novella, The Vampire Raimond, based on his compelling backstory.

I firmly believe that setting can play a leading role in any story. I’ve been intrigued, mesmerized and enchanted by New Orleans for many years. She may be my ultimate, favorite character.

Have you ever had a minor character evolve into a major one? Did that change the direction of the novel at all?
Steven Banitierre started out as an unplanned, minor character. Initially I wrote him as one of Sorcha’s flashy, funny friends. By the time Monsters & Angels was finished, he became the center of several plotlines. Steven struggles with his sexuality, childhood demons and severe asthma that mysteriously didn’t disappear when he became vampire. Steven has the potential to become a New Orleans power-player.

If you used a graphic designer, how involved were you during the creative process for your cover?
I teamed up with cover designer and graphic artist Magali Frechette of Storm Owl Art . I discovered Magali’s page through a Facebook author group. As soon as I saw her work I knew I wanted that look for my cover! The concept and vision was sparked by a picture of me (taken by my husband Scott), looking down night-time Royal Street from a lace-iron balcony.

I was very involved with the cover from start to finish. Magali is a pleasure to work with and I’m absolutely thrilled with the result!

Do you belong to a critique group? Have they helped improve your writing?
I had several critique partners and beta readers for Monsters & Angels. Without the input of my critique partner, Raquel, this novel would still be a messy manuscript jammed in a drawer.
Going forward with the sequel and my standalone novel, I’ve been invited to participate in a more formal critique group, but Racquel is still getting the first look!

Did you hire an editor to review your manuscript before publishing?
I would never have been able to complete Monsters without the help of editor Jordan Rosenfeld . I met Jordan through an on-line, creative writing workshop. She edited my manuscript twice. The first was a developmental edit, when she suggested I change from first person POV, to third person. That advice allowed me to incorporate my large cast and multiple POVs. She also did my final copy-edit. I believe having extra eyes on your manuscript is absolutely essential.

What kinds of marketing are you involved with for promoting your book?
I’m currently promoting my book through Twitter, FaceBook, Instagram, WattPad, GoodReads, my WordPress blog and Xpresso Book Tours.

Besides writing, do you have any other passions?
My passions outside of writing include, music, sports (mostly baseball and football), and spending time on our boat Glory Days at the New Jersey shore.

Some fun facts about you, which do you prefer –
1.      Dogs or Cats?  I love all pets, but we have 2 beautiful cats, Duncan and Tempe.
2.      Chocolate or Vanilla?  Chocolate. Vanilla is a waste of calories.
3.      Coffee or Tea?  If I had to choose one beverage to drink for the rest of my life, it would be coffee. Strong, New Orleans coffee.
4.      Talk or Text?  Text. Who talks anymore?
5.      Day or Night?  Night. There’s a calm power in the dead of night that is nowhere to be found during the day.

What’s next for you?
The ending of Monsters & Angels—Sorcha’s final word—is the perfect set-up for a sequel. I’m hard at work on that sequel, with a working name of Blood & Diamonds.

I’m also a contributing author in Dan Alatorre’s scary story anthology, The Box Under The Bed !

Monsters & Angels
Anne Marie Andrus
Publication date: October 11th 2017
Genres: Historical, New Adult, Paranormal Romance

Fledgling nurse Sorcha Alden knew she had the skills to save lives, but she never dreamed that her own life would be the one in danger.
Driven by tragedy to honor her family name, Sorcha embarks on a journey that takes her from the bleak but familiar streets of New York, through the sultry and seductive city of New Orleans, and into the brutal jungles of Nepal. Forging friendships and carrying on her mother’s mission of healing was her dream. Plunging into a love affair with the mysterious Dr. Ashayle could have been a fairytale.
Being murdered and waking up as a blood-thirsty monster—became her living nightmare.
Torn away form a life that had just begun, Sorcha returns to New Orleans as a newborn vampire, forced to start over in a cutthroat underworld of devilry and decadence. Complicated politics, bitter rivals and jealous ancestors stand between her and the promises she’s still determined to keep.
In a realm where the boundary between good and evil is as murky as the Mississippi River and immortal does not mean invincible, will Sorcha ever risk her shattered heart and love again? Can the magical harmony of the Crescent City give her enough courage to fulfill her eternal destiny?

Author Bio:
Anne Marie has been an equestrienne, chorale singer, candy-striper, EMT, and baseball fan. Roaming the back roads of New Jersey with her family, she found great respect for antiques, historical locations and the stories they hold. Her current list of favorite pastimes include coffee, bourbon, and Les Miserables--which requires more bourbon. She has been known to attend sporting events just for the flyover. The boat she and her husband christened Glory Days, is her escape from the chaos of everyday life.
The inspiration for Anne Marie's debut novel, Monsters & Angels, is her fascination with vampires and her passion for everything New Orleans. When she isn't writing, she can be found working nights with the critical care team in a busy trauma center.

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