Abigail Owen - Dragon Shifter Firefighters
Abigail Owen is a multi-award-winning paranormal romance author. Other titles include wife, mother, Star Wars geek, ex-competitive skydiver, spreadsheet lover, Dr. Seuss quoter, eMBA, organizational guru, Texan, Aggie, and chocaholic. As our Author of the Day, she tells us about the first book in her dragon shifters Fire's Edge series: The Boss.
Please give us a short introduction to what The Boss is about
The Boss is the first book in my new dragon shifters Fire's Edge series that highlights a team of dragon shifter enforcers who masquerade as a hot shot crew of firefighters. Finn is their no-nonsense, slightly broken leader who does want a mate. Until Delaney shows up, plagued by freak fires that Finn knows are thanks to a dragon shifter who is stalking her.
Why paranormal romance? What drew you to the genre?
I love that anything goes in the genre. It's not constrained by the bounds of realism (up to a point). Magic and starlight and dragon shifters can and do exist. Add romance into the mix and...it's just awesome.
What intrigues you about the idea of dragon shifters?
I think dragons are interesting all by themselves--powerful, terrifying, magestic, magical. To be a human who can turn into one, can wield that power all the while battling contrasting dynamics of beast and human...I love it.
In which way is The Boss different from other dragon shifter books?
This series has different take on the world building, especially in terms of how dragon shifters find their mates. The politics of that, introduced and explored from the point of view of enforcers in this series, will continue in another series (first book is coming this August), that explores it form the point of view of the kings of the clans. Combined, the two series are a modern-day Game of Thrones meets JR Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood.
Tell us more about Finn and Delaney. What makes them such a good match?
Both Finn and Delaney have experienced a huge amount of loss. But Finn's loss also caused him to lose part of his soul and make a vow never to try to mate again. Delaney, meanwhile, just won't leave him alone. She stands up to him in a way even the enforcers he leads don't do. But with her life on the line, will she convince him to mate her? You'll have to read to find out.
In this book, turning into a dragon shifter comes with great risk. Why did you write it this way?
I wanted to balance out the incredible reward that comes with finding a soul mate. Just think if humans knew for sure they'd found THE ONE. And it's not just about finding that person, but the connection that results. A binding. An unbreakable, incredible bond. I think you should have to fight for that. At the same time, the conflict that will be a thread through the entire series is how that kind of bond--something dragon shifters want desperately--can also cause all kinds of problems.
The Boss is the first of a series. How do the other books in the series tie in with this one? Can it be read as a standalone?
Each book will be able to be read as a stand alone with a different couple as the main characters who get their own HEA. Probably best to read in order though, as themes tie them all together, with some overarching conflicts that don't get solved until the end.
Besides writing, what other secret skills do you have?
I am an obsessive organizer. :) In fact, I give a workshop to authors on organizing their writing lives. :)
What do you enjoy most about your work?
I love getting lost in the worlds with the characters I love. That and writing "The End" - best high ever.
What's an aspect of being a writer that you didn't know about going in?
The amazing network of lifelong friends I would make. I pictured it as a very solitary job, and it is day-to-day. But I've found my tribe. People who get me, because they're just like me.
In your personal life, do you believe that love conquers all?
I'm more of a realist in real life. I believe that it should conquer all. But I'm also pragmatic enough to know that there are some huge issues that can make that difficult. I've seen love take a back seat to money, to dreams, to career, to horrible loss, and more. I've also seen love make those things easier to bear. But the reality doesn't always work that way. It would be nice if it did.
Where do you think romance as a genre is heading? Where do you want it to go?
I think the romance genre has always evolved to reflect the world around it, often lead it. Romances (not all, but many) were adding things like consent and equality for women a very long time before the recent movements. At the core is the power of love written in a way where that power DOES make life, even the worst life can throw at you, something easier to bear. Something beautiful and meaningful. I want to see that continue, along with trying to reflect not just the reality of today's world, but maybe the possibilities of what it could become. A better world, thanks to love.
When working on a new book, what’s the first thing you do?
I start as a plotter. The first thing I do is a rough outline. Nothing super details, just jotting down some key plot points, key character development. For epic books like these dragon shifters, I also have lists of what has to happen (including hints/foreshadowing for other books) in a given book. Then, I turn into a pantser and just write.
What are you working on right now?
I've just finished all the edits on The Rookie, book #2 in the Fire's Edge series. I'm gearing up to promote that release in April, along with The Rogue King (Inferno Rising #1) in August. Literally tomorrow, I sit down and start writing book #3 in Fire's Edge (still working on a title for that one).