Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Meet Gloria Craw~ Author of Atlantis Rising!

Atlantis Rising
Atlantis Rising
Release date: 1/6/15

About the book:

What would you do to protect those you love? For Alison McKye, protecting her adoptive family means being as invisible as possible. To exist and yet never be noticed. It's the only way Alison can protect her family from who—and whatshe is...
Alison isn't exactly human. She's a Dewing, an ancient race of beings with strange and powerful gifts.She has the ability to “push” thoughts into the minds of others, but her gift also makes her a target for those who desire her power for themselves.
There's a war brewing between the Dewing, and humans are caught in the middle. If Alison's gift falls into the wrong hands, there's no telling what might happen.
And if they're all terrified about who she is, wait until they see what she can really do...

Buy links:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/17glMaJ
B&N: http://bit.ly/1wkq2vo


Author Interview
         First, tell me a little about your book and why you wanted to write this particular story…  Atlantis Rising is the story of Alison McKye, a girl with tremendous power and abilities, who is trying to protect the human family that adopted her. She’s being hunted by a man who wants to control her and her power. She’s been warned that he will torture and even kill those she cares for in order to subject her to his will. Thinking her best option is to hide in plain sight, Alison turns herself into an invisible girl at Fillmore High School. Things take a turn when Ian and Brandy Thane start school at Fillmore too. She discovers they are descendants of Atlantis like her, and they offer to teach her to use her powers better. But they want her assistance in exchange. They ask her to help them kill the man who’s been hunting her. Atlantis Rising is about Alison’s choice to fight her demons head on, it’s about her journey to power and strength, it’s about her struggle to trust and it’s about the possibility of falling in love with Ian Thane.  

I was inspired to write Atlantis Rising after taking an anthropology class that focused on undersea archaeology. The lost island of Atlantis is commonly accepted as fiction these days, but I had a fun teacher who took a day to discuss some of the theories people once had about it. That class got me thinking about a highly evolved, extremely intelligent subgroup of people who had to assimilate into the human world when they no longer had the Island of Atlantis to live on.

As far as the characters go, I wanted to write about an imperfect girl’s evolution. I wanted to show her journey through doubt and uncertainty as she grew into the kind of girl who takes control of her weird and sometimes frightening life. And I wanted to laugh a little along the way too.

2.       Do you recall how your interest in writing originated or did you always just know.

It’s a funny story actually. It revolves around being bored. I grew up in a really small town. I mean, I started kindergarten and finished middle school with the same fourteen kids. Because the population was so small, there was never much to do, and when school was out, the dullness was brutal. The summer before eighth grade, I nagged my mom probably to the point of insanity about having nothing to do. She tried everything, from having me mow the lawn to making me clean the bathrooms, to keep me occupied and out of her hair.

Eventually, she took a different tack. She slapped a piece of paper and a pen down on the kitchen table and told me to write something. She said I couldn’t complain until I’d completed a story with a beginning, middle and end to it. For probably the first time in my life, I wrote something that wasn’t a school assignment. That was her go-to solution from then on. It worked like training a dog. Eventually, I stopped bugging her and just wrote stories when I had nothing to do. I suppose what started out as a kind of reprimand turned into something I have a need to do now.

3.       What inspired you to write your first book and what was it.

The first book I wrote hasn’t been professionally published yet, but like Atlantis Rising, it was inspired by my interest in archaeology. It’s a mystery for a young adult audience that centers around Navaho artifacts being sold on the black market. I’m hoping to rework it later this year and try for publication.

4.       Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

There are some similarities in my heroine, Alison’s, experiences and my own. I wasn’t invisible in the high school I was bussed to, the way Alison chooses to be in hers, but my interests made me a little hard to relate too. I liked literature, debate and drama at a time and in a place where those activities weren’t cool. Unlike Alison, I have no firsthand experience with adoption, but my husband does. I was able to draw some inspiration from his situation. Most of my secondary characters are inspired by people I’ve met, but they all took on personalities unique to the story. How all the seeds of experience grew into unique people and an exciting story was the best part of writing Atlantis Rising.

5.       Out of all the characters in your book, who is your favorite to write? There’s always a fan favorite to read about but sometimes it’s the side characters that are the most fun.

Of course, I loved writing my heroine, Alison, but writing Lillian was so much fun. She’s grumpy and rude without realizing it, and her dialogue made me laugh out loud sometimes. Her character turns out to have surprising depth too. Uncovering what made her tick was bittersweet for me. I hope the reader will be amused by the way she says things, and ultimately they’ll see how deeply she’s hurting. Then hopefully they’ll understand and love her as much as I do.
  
7.       Is your book part of a series, and if so, how many will there be?

Yes. Atlantis Rising is the first in a three book series. I finished the second book this February. I believe it is due for release January 2016.

8.       What are you working on now?

I just finished outlining the third book in the Atlantis series. I’m really excited about putting the pieces together over the next couple of months.

9.       How do you chose when/which characters die in your book.
In this instance, I knew from the moment I sat down to write who and when one of my characters was going to die. Knowing didn’t make it easier, though. This particular character came to mean a lot to me. As the time to write the death scene got nearer, I tried to put an alternative situation in place to keep it from happening. It just didn’t work. Ultimately, the best I could do was write the death of this character with as much dignity as possible. I went through a strange period of mourning when I finished that scene. No joke. I’m still a little messed up about it.

10.   Who do you look up to as a writer?

A lot of people…but for different reasons. I admire the work ethic of Steven King and Nora Roberts. I respect the unique creativity of J.K. Rowling. And since I was fourteen, I’ve appreciated how Elizabeth Peters a.k.a. Barbara Michaels puts characters together.

11.   If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your book?

No, I don’t think so. Once I signed off on the last edit, I believed my story had its own legs to stand on. It could exist outside of me from then on. Of course, not everyone is going to get it the way I hope the will, but I’m at peace with what I created.

12.    Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Writing the last chapter is hard for me. I’ll write everything up to that point and then start editing before I’ll write the final ten pages. I think it has something to do with not wanting to give up a story that has been exclusively mine. I can be a good sharer, but it’s difficult to invite others into your head the way you have to do when you let them read your stuff.

13.   Who designed the cover? And do you help with them?

My editor Liz Pelletier designed this cover. We had a different mock-up in place until about two weeks before Atlantis Rising was due to go to print. Liz sent me an e-mail one night, saying she’d had second thoughts about the mock-up and suggested the current cover. I loved it and said… oh yeah, that’s the one.

14.   Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?

On a personal level, I learned the power of positive thinking. At times, I’d hit a wall or get to a point where I couldn’t decide which direction to take the story. I’d start doubting myself. After all, I majored in Anthropology not Creative Writing or English. When I realized I was second-guessing myself, I’d turn the self-doubt off. I made myself believe I’d figure things out as long as I kept moving forward in the writing process.

15.   If you could be one of your characters, who would you choose?

I would be the girl version of Ian. He is supremely comfortable in his own skin, he doesn’t get embarrassed and he doesn’t intimidate. If he has a weakness, it’s probably over confidence. Regardless, he faces every challenge with his chin up and no doubt he will conquer.
  
16.   Are there any books you think some of us should read, just because?

Villette by Charlotte Bronte.
Sunshine by Robin McKinley.
The Book of Ivy by Amy Engel
Darker Days by Jus Accardo

17.   We all love Supernatural, so which Winchester brother is for you?

Dean. He’s funny, and he looks like the guy I had a serious crush on my second year of college.

18.   Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Thank you! Thanks for giving some of your time to read my story. I really hope you liked it.

19.   This or that…
A.      Coffee addict?            Diet Coke addict.
B.      What’s your favorite alcoholic beverage?     I actually don’t drink.
C.      What is your favorite food?                                 Panda Express…I have expensive taste…LOL.
D.      If you had to choose Coffee or Chocolate?   Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate.
E.       Beach or mountains?             Hard one…I’d have to go with beach.
F.       Winter or Summer?                Summer.
G.     Vampires or werewolves.    It will always be vampires…thank you, Robin McKinley, for Sunshine.
H.      Cold or hot?               Hot.
I.        Favorite color?          Depends on the day…usually blue.
J.        Night or day?             Night.
K.      Moonlight or sunlight?          Moonlight.
L.       Bad boy or good guy next door?       A little of both please.

 Thank you SO MUCH for that wonderful interview! I loved the story about your mom telling you to write your own story! 

About Gloria Craw:

Gloria Craw grew up reading and daydreaming in the desert southwest. She attended the University of Utah and graduated with a degree in Anthropology. These days, she lives near Seattle, Washington. She creates alternate realities, featuring suspense, the supernatural and a twining of romance. When she's not writing, she's fangirling over Arrow and Grimm. Sometimes Sleepy Hallow and Covert Affairs too.

Find Gloria online: