Q&A with Ashlynne Laynne!
Tell us about your newest release.
My newest release is also my first release. It’s the first book in a series about the unique love affair between a half-blood (half-human, half vampire) and a Wiccan human. It’s entitled The Progeny and will be followed by a sequel in June titled Blood Bonds. At its core, The Progeny is simply a story about a man and woman who fall in love. The fact that he’s a half-blood and she’s a Wiccan human are secondary factors.
The Progeny started as a dream about a gorgeous guy with the weirdest colored blue eyes and a strange necklace. When I woke up, I immediately started sketching his necklace. After that, the story kinda snow balled and gelled. October 8, 2010, with sketches of the strange necklace, a stack of research on the Salem witch trials and the names Shauna and Ascher running through my head, I decided to write a home for these characters.
In the beginning of the book, Ascher is grumpy. Frankly, who could blame him? He’s engaged to seal to Ursula—a cold and careless vampire who wants nothing more than to get her hands on a bloodstone— and he feels conflicted about his existence.
All of that changes when he meets Shawnette McCutchin. She’s beautiful, intriguing and possesses some of the most potent blood that he’s ever smelled. A war begins inside Ascher. He craves Shauna’s blood just as much as he craves her body and the closer they get, the harder it is for him to control his urges. After Ascher calls off the sealing to Ursula, the trouble begins. His family’s peaceful period ends when Ursula’s army attacks the Rousseaus. Kidnapping, some steamy love scenes and Wiccan rage complete the plot.
Can you tell us a little about your favorite scene in the story?
Hmmm...That’s a tough one. But if I have to choose, I’d say Shauna’s big raging scene in chapter fourteen was one of my favorite to write. Up until this point, I’m alluding to the fact that something’s going on with her. She’s making things implode and moving things with her mind but this scene is Ascher’s proof positive that his sweetheart is different. This is the scene where the reader and Ascher see the sheer strength of Shauna’s power. I did it from Shauna’s POV and Ascher’s because I wanted the reader to see what was happening inside her mind and body while she experiences this event that changes her character. I also wanted the reader to get inside Ascher’s mind when he comes to terms with the fact that the woman he loves is the one thing he’s been forbidden to be with.
Do you visualize your characters in your head?
I dream my characters and scenes that sometimes end up in my books. It really freaked me out in the beginning but now I’ve come to expect it. I dreamed Ascher so clearly that I immediately knew who he’d look like if he were a real person. This really helped when it was time to have the cover drawn. Most times, when I write, the scenes play out in my head like a movie. I usually write to music so it becomes a music video in my mind.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve written poetry and songs most of my life but I knew that I wanted to be a novelist once I dreamed about these characters.
Tell us a little about your daily writing routine. Are you a plotter or pantser?
I usually begin a project with a loose timeline of events. It never works out exactly as I plan. I’m writing book three of this series and these characters are rebelling against my “plotting.” I’ve had friends tell me that I should trust the characters to tell their story. I work full time so that leaves less time to write. I try to write at least two or three hours a day.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I don’t know if it’s a quirk but I prefer to only write love scenes for characters in loving relationships. It helps me to connect with the love scenes if I’ve set up a deep emotional storyline between two characters. (Sighs) Maybe I’m just a hopeless romantic.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
I learned that mouse gestation periods are usually twenty days. I spent a whole day researching this for a half page of dialogue and narration. I learned tons of things about Wicca and the occult. Even though my stories are fantasy, I enjoy rooting them in true events and facts.
This gives them a realistic base that makes the possibility of my world believable.
What authors or friends influenced you in helping you become a writer?
I’ve read romance novels since I was a teenager. My grandmother had several Danielle Steel novels around the house. I devoured them, barely understanding what I was reading. This sparked my love of the romance genre. My love of the horror genre was born when the same grandmother took me to see Creepshow when I was a pre-teen. It scared the crap out of me but it spurred my love of most things macabre. I later became a huge fan of Stephen King and I remain one to this day.
My husband and my best friend Tabetha were my first cheerleaders. They pushed and encouraged me when I wanted to give up. Once I started writing, I met author Leanore Elliott. I was scared to death and had no clue what I was doing. Leanore took me under her wing and helped me to sort things out. I don’t think I would’ve made it without her guidance. Brenda Dyer has also been an unselfish supporter. She and I write like genres and have similar views of our beloved vampires. We just understand one another. I jokingly call her my “literary soul mate.” These two ladies have unselfishly cheered me on and have made the transition into writing smoother.
What does your family think about your career as a published author?
I think my husband thought I’d lost my mind when I told him that I wanted to write about witches and vampires. The more he read and the more he saw me really immersing myself into what I was doing, he knew that this wasn’t just a passing phase for me. He gave me a laptop for my birthday last year. I know him well enough to know that this was his way of showing his support.
Besides writing, what other interests do you have?
I love cooking, reading and spending time with my husband and son.
Can you tell us about what’s coming up next for you writing wise?
The sequel to The Progeny—Blood Bonds—is set to release in June. I’m currently working on book three of the series and it has no release date at this time. I’m also outlining a few unrelated novellas for a different series I plan to start.
Connect with Ashlynne Online:
Facebook: Book Page- http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Progeny-Series/129418917161599?bookmark_t=page
Author Page- http://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Ashlynne-Laynne/118945981513261
Google + https://plus.google.com/102489030801377466225#102489030801377466225/posts
Author Blog: http://ashlynnelaynne.blogspot.com/
The Progeny by Ashlynne Laynne (Book One of The Progeny Series)
Publisher: Novel Concept Publishing
Release Date: February 15, 2012 Genre: Paranormal Romance
The Progeny Blurb:
“No fate other than the one I choose.”
The timeless creed, and tattoo, bore by the Rousseau’s— a vampire clan with the purest bloodline of any vampire family. Out of this clandestine group came one who was different, yet the same: Ascher - a half-bloodling— half- human, half vampire.
Ascher questions the purpose for his existence and which world he truly belongs to: the human world or the vampire world. Two months from sealing to Ursula— a prearranged union to a woman he abhors — he’s at his wit’s end. He knows if he calls off the sealing, the Romanian clan will strike with deadly force, but he cannot see eternity with a cold empty shell of a woman like Ursula.
Just when he thought life was complicated enough, he meets Shauna— a beautiful, bi-racial human Wiccan — and immediately develops an unshakable attraction to her. She makes him feel alive and vital despite his origins and Ascher makes a decision that turns his immortal world upside down.
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