New York Times, USA TODAY, and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author Yasmine Galenorn has over 75 books on the shelves. She writes paranormal women’s fiction, urban fantasy, paranormal mysteries, paranormal romance, and a mix of all of these. Her series include: the Moonshadow Bay Series, the Wild Hunt Series, the Chintz ‘n China Series, the Bewitching Bedlam Series, the Fury Unbound Series, the Otherworld Series, and a number of others, as well as metaphysical nonfiction books. She wrote for traditional publishers for twenty years, up until 2016, and now she’s moved into being an indie author to give herself more freedom. In April 2012, she won a Career Achievement Award in Urban Fantasy at the Romantic Times Convention. As our Author of the Day, she tells us all about Fury Rising.
Please give us a short introduction to what Fury Rising is about
I wrote Fury Rising—my first fully indie novel—back in 2016, partly because it was based on an idea I had wanted to write years ago but my then-editor in trad didn’t want, and it was also a reaction to what I foresaw potentially arising with the upcoming elections. Yes, it’s post-apocalyptic, but it’s also urban fantasy/paranormal romance.
Was there anything in particular that made you want to write this story?
I always wanted to try my hand at post-apocalyptic/dystopian and this felt like a good chance.
What inspired you to write about an acolyte pledged to the goddess Hecate?
I’m a priestess in the Craft, have been a shamanic witch since I was 19 (which was 41 years ago), and I love writing about the gods/mythology/ merging with modern/contemporary society.
Tell us more about Kaeleen Donovan. What makes her so special?
Her entire life has been molded around being kidnapped by a serial killer when she was young, along with her mother, and watching him kill her. The night she found him to wreak vengeance was the night Hecate re-named her Fury and branded her with the flaming whip that sits like a tattoo on her leg, and then when she needs it, she can pull it off her leg and use it.
Besides writing, what other secret skills do you have?
I paint to some degree, make masks, I’m a planner aficionada, I have a condition called Mast Cell Activation Disorder and have had to learn to live with a chronic illness, which is definitely a super skill! I make YouTube videos on writing, magick, chronic illness, and my books on a weekly basis.
Why did you pick a post-apocalyptic world as the backdrop for your story?
I just always wanted to try my hand at writing one and going indie gave me the chance.
What drew you to fantasy as a genre?
As a child, I grew up on SF/Fantasy. I have known I wanted to be a writer since I was three, and I started writing stories before I could even print them down on paper. I fell in love with a book called Space Cat, about a cat that goes with his human to Mars, Venus, and several other adventures. I was around five or six when I discovered Space Cat and it pulled me in to the fantasy genre.
This is book 1 of a series. How do the other books in the series tie in with this one?
There are four other Fury Unbound books—the series is currently complete, but I may in the future write a few more in it.
Does your book contain a hidden message? What do you hope readers will take away from this?
My biggest hope with all of my books (I’ve written over 75 books), is that my readers will take away a feeling that they’ve had a few hours to rest, to step out of their everyday escape. Genre fiction is so important, especially when daily life is tough and facing us down. I learned that early in my writing—my readers wanted to step outside of what was going on, into a world they could adventure in safely. But there are always social issues that play into my books—hate groups who can’t stand those who are ‘other’, in my worlds civil rights are a given—I had gay weddings in my books long before they were ‘legal’ because hey…love is love. I love giving my readers the sense of how important nature is. My settings always are rich and lush, and they almost become a character on their own.
Do any of your characters ever take off on their own tangent, refusing to do what you had planned for them?
I never try to force them. The characters create the story as we go along—they dictate what they do, how they feel. I never outline, (in fact, I make videos for “intuitive writers” who process subconsciously and then sit down and write when the story is there), so the story grows organically.
When starting on a new book, what is the first thing you do?
Make sure my office is clutter-free. Write the synopsis. Make my playlist for the book, Get the files ready, print out the synopsis (usually about 1 page), print out a calendar/calendars for the month/months in which the story takes place. And then, I sit down and type Chapter 1…and then I start writing.
Do you have any interesting writing habits? Favorite writing spot, the best time of the day for you to write, etc.?
Not really, that I can think of. I always work at my desk when it comes to the writing. I may make some notes on notebooks elsewhere, but most of my work goes on in my office. I have an extensive office for the space I have, and my picture of my desk here’s only one part of it.
I try to start each day with a morning meditation, most of the actual writing takes place in the morning, but I work constantly with the administration and marketing and promotion that needs done. I do have a few writing mascots on my desk—including Miss Kitty, who I’ve had since I was seven years old (I traded her for a necklace), and that doesn’t include our four cats who constantly try to help me while I’m working. Well, Brighid helps my husband more—she’s a daddy’s girl. The rest tend to focus on me.
What are you working on right now?
I’m writing book 16 of my Wild Hunt Series. Then I write book 17, then back to my new Moonshadow Bay series for book 4.
Where can our readers discover more of your work or interact with you?