Saturday, October 4, 2014

Spotlight series on Lacing Shadows anthology: meet author Andrea Stanet with guest post & giveaway @AndreaStanet

Every Saturday in October Reader Girls will be spotlighting one of the five authors from the Lacing Shadows anthology of New Adult paranormal romance. To launch this new series, we begin by focusing on the author with the first story in the collection, Andrea Stanet.

Lacing Shadows: Anthology

by Andrea Stanet, Tina Smith, Laurie Treacy, Lee Ryder, Alexia Purdy

New Adult paranormal romance

ebook, 191 pages
Published September 1st 2014 by Tina Smith Writers Co-op Anthology

Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Smashwords

Andrea Stanet: 
Three Things I Learned Writing Spirit of the Wolf

    1.        Never throw out a story--even if it’s terrible.

            Several years ago, I had a crazy idea for NaNoWriMo (national Novel Writing Month): a quartet of interrelated short stories to make up a novel-length work. The four stories involved vampires, shifters, zombies, and aliens. When I finished the first draft, in a moment of clarity, I said to myself, “What the hell were you thinking?” It was a complete mess, and I vowed it would never see daylight. Still, I didn’t delete it.
            Fast forward to this summer. I needed a story STAT. I didn’t have time to completely conceptualize something new from scratch, so I pulled one storyline from the mishmosh of the past and reworked it into a standalone story (read as: one that made sense). Spirit of the Wolf got a second chance at life. Had I destroyed the original file, as I was initially inclined, that would not be the case. You never know what inspiration might strike to fix a horrendous work-in-progress.

    2.        I am a sucker for the sidekick.

            What I’ve known about myself as a reader for years is that I am often more interested in the #2 character in a story than in the hero. When I read the Harry Potter series, I always cared more about Ron Weasley than Harry. On the Walking Dead, it’s always been Daryl over Rick (or in the case of the comics, Glenn over Rick, Michonne over Rick, Carl over Rick…). Those supporting characters always seem to call to me. Maybe it’s because they seem to, in some way, strive for that alpha position, and that creates a compelling pathos.
That fascination spills over into my writing, as it did with Spirit of the Wolf. In its first state, Asia was the only perspective character, but I noticed that the writing perked up when Nati’s scenes came up. I finally gave in and compromised to give Nati more free rein. Interestingly, a friend read the story and told me I seem to “like Nati more.” He was mostly right. If I decide to do more with these characters, I’d likely write Nati as the protagonist. I also discovered, in writing Jesse’s backstory, that there was a lot more to explore with him too. So I can see myself writing him as a main character too.

    3.        Discipline and support matter just as much as inspiration.
            I had spent about six months working on a story for Lacing Shadows, but about a month before our deadline, circumstances changed, and I needed to submit a different piece. With such a huge amount of work to do on a story that was only half a shell, and that had to be done in such a short period, I didn’t have the luxury of waiting for the days when the muse decided to visit. Sometimes, the muse goes on long vacations to Sedona, and leaves me hanging. Those are the times when writers just have to push through whether they “feel it” or not. I’m still amazed it all came together.
            That happened also in part because I had some great support behind me. My husband endured multiple drafts, sometimes of the same scene, over and over until it was right. My beta readers, Laurie Treacy (Into the Dark) and Lisa Carlomagno, gave me invaluable feedback on everything from plot holes to word repetitions (I may never use the word smirk again). Finally, my editor, Cynthia Shepp, was super-fast, amazing to dialog with, and encouraging through the entire process. It’s humbling to understand that while I’m the ‘author’ and writing is generally a solitary undertaking for the first draft or two, the finished product is really a collective effort.

Excerpt from Spirit of the Wolf:

Jesse picked Asia up on time as usual. They drove back to the park where they had discovered a favorite picnic spot, just off the hiking trail. They had to tramp through tall grass to reach it, but the same grass gave them privacy. Not that the park was crowded. Cloudless as the sky was, the temperature hadn’t even hit fifty.
Asia reached into the picnic basket. Jesse had packed sandwiches, a big thermos of coffee, and three fleece blankets. He spread one on the ground, wrapped one around Asia’s shoulders, passed her a ham and cheese sandwich on a roll—no seeds, extra mayo—and scooted next to her.
He threw the last cover around both of them. “So what’d you do all morning?”
She bit into her sandwich. “Came up here for a quick jog. Froze my ass off.”
“Yes. I am capable of taking care of myself.”
Jesse held a hand up in surrender. His mouth opened as if he might say more, but he took a swig of coffee instead.
When they finished eating, he brushed a crumb from the corner of her mouth, flashing the crooked, one-dimpled grin that always brought a warm sensation to the bottom of her belly. If he were a poker player, that would be his tell, and she knew exactly what was going through his mind.
Putting the empty thermos down, she shifted to fit a little more snugly against his side and tilted her face up to his. “Thanks. This was perfect.”
He leaned down, softly kissing around her mouth, over her cheeks, and down her neck. “I missed you today.”
He snaked a hand behind her back to pull her closer, teasing her with his butterfly kisses. Somehow, he rearranged the blankets around them. The next thing she knew, he’d lowered her to the ground beneath them.
“I really missed you.” His voice rasped.
Their kiss intensified, and soon, his fingers ventured down to the dip at her waist, around to her belly.
She stopped breathing.
His fingers traveled up her ribcage, stopping at her bra strap, stroking just under it, waiting for a signal. When she didn’t protest, even slower than before, he brushed his hand over one breast.
An electric current crackled through every nerve of her body. She had an impulse to arch her back, pressing that electric spot into his palm. But her brain shrieked to pull back.

About the author:

A freelance writer from upstate New York, Andrea Stanet has been published online and in print since the late 90s. In addition, she works as a tutor and editor. She is currently submitting a middle-grade fantasy novel and a new-adult, urban fantasy novella for publication. Other recently published works include “Under the Mattress” in the anthology Urban Harvest: Tales of the Paranormal in New York City and “Lucid” in the anthology Stalkers.

Author links: Website | Facebook | Goodreads

During this special series we will be giving away 5 eBook copies of Lacing Shadows in the format of the winner's choice (mobi/epu/pdf).
a Rafflecopter giveaway

1 comment:

  1. I've seen Feral on other blogs. Great job in getting the word out. As to sidekicks, they are the best!