We are one of the tour stops for the Forbidden Mind Blog Tour hosted by Innovative Online Book Tours. We interviewed author Kimberly Kinrade below and we enjoyed her responses. Have a nice Thursday.
Forbidden (Forbidden #1) by Kimberly Kinrade
YA fantasy*Paperback, 134 pages*Published September 6th 2011 by Evolved Publishing
She reads minds. He controls minds. Together, they might get out alive.
Sam thinks she's months away from freedom. After spending her life in a secret school, rented out to the rich and powerful as a paranormal spy, she is ready to head to college like any normal eighteen-year-old.
Only Sam isn't normal. She reads minds. And just before her big going-away party, she links to the mind of a young man who changes everything.
Drake wasn't raised as a 'Rent-A-Kid.' He was kidnapped and taken there by force. But his exceptional physical strength and powers of mind control make him very dangerous, especially to Sam.
When they meet, Sam is forced to face the truth of her situation, and to acknowledge that not all is as it seems in her picture-perfect world. For what awaits her on her eighteenth birthday isn't a trip to college, but an unexpected nightmare from which she may not be able to escape.
To survive, they must work together.
But will their powers be enough to save them before it's too late?
Forbidden Mind has been compared to X-Men meets Dark Angel and Alias, with extra romance, and I think that's a fair comparison. It's a paranormal adventure/thriller/romance for Upper YA or, as some are calling it, New Adult readers.
2) Can you share how you created and developed the world of the Forbidden trilogy?
The concept for the book first came to me in a dream many years ago about a girl named Sam who could read minds and was raised in a secret school and rented out as a spy to the rich and powerful. I made a few notes about my dream and put it away for a long time, then pulled it out last fall when I wanted an idea for a short story.
It obviously didn't stay just a short story, and so Forbidden Mind, the first draft, was written in a week. The world developed quite a bit from there as I thought about how something like Rent-A-Kid would have been created and what the bigger plans for something like that would be. Each book in the series expanded the world and the characters, and now that the last book in the trilogy is out, it's clear that these three books only reflected a small bit of the world that wants to be created.
So next year my husband, Dmytry Karpov, and I will be writing a new trilogy, The Fallen Trilogy, that expands this world with a new plotline, new cast of characters, and some favorites from the Forbidden Trilogy as well. It's a standalone series from Forbidden, but fans of Forbidden will really enjoy the new direction of this spin-off trilogy, I hope!
3) Which parts were challenging for you? Easy?
The hardest part for me is outlining. I prefer to just write, but with an increasingly complex series, I had to be really careful that I didn't write myself into a corner. So I have adopted the outlining process kicking and screaming. The easiest part for me is the actual writing. Once I'm in the flow, it's like I'm dictating a story being told to me.
4) Which characters or situations surprised you during the writing process?
I was surprised at how strong Lucy's voice became during the course of the series. She has her own POV in Forbidden Fire and even more in Forbidden Life, and now she's going to have her own series with her twin!
5) Are you a "pantser" or "plotter"?
As you can see from my above answer, I'm a reluctant plotter who harbors fond memories of my pantser days. :)
6) There has been criticism about YA books being 'too dark'. Any thoughts on this and how it ties in to your novels?
I believe there's a difference between teen novels and YA novels. To me the term Young Adult clearly indicates an adult, 18+, whereas teen books would be for the 12 to 13+ crowd.
Given that, I don’t think it's a problem to have dark themes in YA, since that age group is presumably mature enough to handle it. Even younger teens deal with dark issues in their lives, to sugar coat it and expect that they won't be able to handle those realities in their books is to underestimate what their real lives are like. They deal with bullying, school shootings, pregnancies, drugs and so much more.
And not only that, but most classics that are required reading have some pretty dark themes and mature subject matters. Murder, adultery, abuse, racism, slavery—these are all present in books that are required reading for youth.
As far as the Forbidden Trilogy goes, it does get darker with each book, and there are mature themes at play, which is why I don’t consider it a young teen book as much as a young adult book. However, as the saga continues, future books will be listed as adult to avoid any confusion, though I still think they will be very appropriate for most of the 18+ YA crowd to whom they are written.
7) What can we expect for Sam and Drake in book two?
Sam and Drake go through a lot in Forbidden Fire (book 2). They are finally together physically and have to sort out what that means for them and their relationship, and Sam is still struggling with the ethics of Drake's powers. On top of that, Lucy and Luke and all her friends are still trapped in an increasingly dangerous situation, and Sam and Drake have to save them.
In Forbidden Fire, Lucy also has a POV, so we can see what life is like at Rent-A-Kid after the fallout from Forbidden Mind's climax!
8) With the advent of e-publishing, it's an exciting time for authors in publishing. How has your journey to publication been like and do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
It is an exciting time! I self-published my first book, Bits of You & Pieces of Me, just to test the waters and see what it would be like, while I worked on my novels. This was an eclectic collection of short stories, poetry and essays, and I knew it would be impossible to market (and it is!) but I learned a lot in the process.
When Forbidden Mind was ready to publish, I still hadn't decided which direction I was going to take, but I knew a few things. 1: I wouldn't skimp on editing. If I couldn’t afford to hire an excellent editor, then I wasn't ready to self-publish. And 2: I didn't want to skimp on cover art either.
Since I didn't have much money at the time, I decided to explore a more traditional publishing approach, so I would get professional editing and cover art for my books.
I was approached by several small to mid-sized publishers, but none of them quite grabbed me until I talked with Evolved Publishing. They had the best business model and offer I could hope for, and I'm so glad I signed with them.
My advice to aspiring writers is to not cut corners in the publishing process. Self-publishing is a wonderful opportunity for many, and I know some incredible writers who invest the time and money into pro editing and cover art, and spend a lot of effort on marketing and do well. However, if you can't do that, then don't self-publish. You don’t want to put something out that is poorly designed and edited, just to say you did it. Better to wait, save or look for other publishing options.
Also, never give up learning your craft. Study, read and practice, practice, practice!
About the author:
Kimberly Kinrade was born with ink in her veins and magic in her heart. She writes fantasy and paranormal stories for children, YA and adults and still believes in magic worlds. Check out her YA paranormal novels Forbidden Mind and Forbidden Fire and her illustrated children’s fantasy chapter books Lexie World, and Bella World, all on Amazon.
She lives with her three little girls who think they’re ninja princesses with super powers, her two dogs who think they’re humans and her husband, also known as the sexy Russian Prince, who is the love of her life and writing partner.
Kimberly's next tour:
Nov 26th as a review blitz followed by 6 weeks of ongoing tour.
Paranormal teens with unimaginable powers. A secret organization with deadly intentions. When Sam, a girl who reads minds, meets Drake, a boy who controls minds, they discover their lives aren't what they thought.
Together, they must escape their fate and free their friends, before they lose everyone they love.
This special edition omnibus includes the entire Forbidden Trilogy--Forbidden Mind, Forbidden Fire and Forbidden Life, as well as extensive bonus content. Meet the author in an in-depth Q&A, get to know your favorite characters better, enjoy never-before-revealed interlude scenes and so much more.
Available through Evolved Publishing November 26th, 2012
Look for it in ebook, paperback and hardback.
Next stops on the tour:
10/5 The Avid Reader