As an SFR writer, I’m used to seeing stars, but I have to admit the sight of all the Bestseller stars next to Jianne Carlo’s books is amazing. From Vikings to paratroopers to the supernatural, Jianne offers a rich array of stories to choose from. Since I’ve only experienced the wonders and challenges of writing one series, I wanted to know how Jianne manages so many. With her book Death Blow (Viking Vengeance II) soon to be released, I decided this was a good time to ask her. How does her series writing work? How did she get started? A real trooper herself, she agreed to share. Without further ado, please welcome my friend, Jianne Carlo.
The notion of writing a series of romance novels is more than daunting to an author or this one anyway. It’s therefore grand that I never set out to do so. Yet, almost all of my 21 books are series. I have one standalone novel.
A romance series begins for many reasons. Sometimes it’s because the audience will love one of the secondary characters. Or maybe the author herself has become enamored of the friend of that hero or heroine. I’ve actually known authors who have become obsessed with the villain.
In my case it’s because the characters demand to have their story told. My non-writing friends think I’m absolutely insane. My first novel, Manacled in Monaco, began as a standalone tale. But I kept thinking about Rolan’s (the hero) best friends, Terrence and Harrison, and what happened to them after Manacled ended. Turns out that a whole bunch of my readers were curious too, and my editor was one of those readers. And that’s how my first romance series was born.
My latest series, Viking Vengeance, features three brothers on their journey to claim lands and wealth, who bump into half-mortals, the three daughters of different Viking goddesses. Malice Striker, the first book in the series, is the tale of the oldest brother, Brökk and Skatha, the daughter of the goddess, Skaði, and King Kenneth of Scotland.
Death Blow, the second of the trilogy, is about the middle brother, Konáll, and Nyssa, daughter of jötunn (a giantess goddess).
Here’s a small excerpt from Death Blow:
A thunderous roar deafened Konáll and jerked him out of his stupor. He grit his teeth against a stabbing agonizing pain spreading from ear to ear and forced his eyes open.
He had died and been sent not to Valhalla but to Niflheim.
Not a hand’s breadth from his nose stood a blue beast, with the body of Sleipnir, Odin’s giant, eight-legged horse, and a massive head like those of the lions he had encountered in the great eastern city of Miklagard during his service to Emperor Ioannes Tzimiskes.
Loki’s balls! Konáll tried to rise from his position on the floor and stifled a howl when ropes tied around his wrists and ankles sliced into his skin. His arms and legs were stretched wide and bound to wooden staves dug into the dirt. He heaved with all his might, but could not budge.
The formidable creature sat back on its haunches and licked a paw.
Konáll nigh pissed himself in relief.
The beast snarled again, a booming growl which echoed off the stone walls in what Konáll now recognized was a cave. He scanned the dark cavern. Naught but rock, moss, and shadowed crevices. No weapons met his line of vision. His chest was bare, but he wore hose and boots.
How had he come to be here, encroached on the animal’s lair?
And who had laid him out, ripe to be eaten?
“I hear you, Mús. ‘Tis not necessary to repeat your call.” A female appeared behind the creature. “How feels your head, Viking?”
Was she witless? Did she not see the evil monster? Had she not heard its roar?
“Run! Race as far and fast as you can! I will distract the beast afore he makes a meal of you!” He arched and tugged on his fetters.
“A meal of me?” She rolled eyes the hue of glittering steel. “Nay warrior, Mús would have you, not me.”
Mús? The female had lost her senses. She thought the cat a mouse?
“Mayhap, the Viking tastes better than he looks. What say you, Mús? Should we carve a chunk of his flesh for the stew?” She winked at the lion.
“Have you lost your wits?” he yelled. “Run!”
I hope you enjoyed that short teaser. There’s a full excerpt on my website at:
Thank you, Allie, for having me as a guest on your fantastic blog. Oh – almost forgot – don’t forget to enter my Kindle Fire contest – details at: http://www.jiannecarlo.com/Contest.aspx
I hope everyone’s thoroughly enjoying the holidays. Stay safe!
Buy Links for Death Blow
For a full listing of Jianne’s books, visit http://www.jiannecarlo.com/BookList.aspx