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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Author Interview: Beth Fantaskey

Beth Fantaskey, author of JESSICA'S GUIDE TO DATING ON THE DARK SIDE (see review in post below) has been kind enough to answer a few questions for me. So, without further ado, my interview with her:
1. What was your inspiration for Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side?
BETH: The book was inspired by my experiences as a parent. My kids are both adopted from China, so their birth parents are a complete mystery. Sometimes we wonder, "What were they like?" I took those imaginings to the extreme by having Jess's birth parents revealed as vampire royalty. The rest of the story flowed from that...
2. Why vampires?

BETH: I think vampires are intriguing because they are so close to "normal" humans (although are there any of those really?) that it sometimes seems vampires could possibly exist. I wanted Jess's birth parents - and Lucius - to rock her very rational world - and yet still be within the realm of the possible for readers. That's why I changed some of the conventional thinking about vampires, to make it easier for Lucius to be part of the "regular" world.
3. Did you always want to be a writer?
BETH: That's actually a tough question! I sort of drifted into a career as a writer because it was something I was good at. I didn't have a conscious, burning desire. However, I remember getting my first job out of college, as a political speechwriter, and when my first paycheck arrived, it struck me, "Wow... I'm a writer. That's what I do." I was very proud. Since that moment, that's what I've been, either in public relations or as a journalist and now as a novelist. I would say my love of writing has actually grown over the years.
4. Is Jessica based off you, or anyone you know in any way?
BETH: No, Jess isn't really based on anyone. She does share my sister's very rational bent, but that's all.
5. Who is Lucius based off of? (I must say, he was my favorite character)
BETH: Lucius is REALLY his own person. I don't know anyone like him. (Although I wish I did!) The first time I sat down to write one of his letters, he just sprang to life. I'm glad you like him, too!
6. Do you plan on continuing your writing career? What can you tell us about future books?
BETH: Right now I'm putting the finishing touches on my next novel, Jekel Loves Hyde, as that gets ready to go into production. It's the story of two teenagers who discover they share a mysterious, possibly deadly, connection to the old Jekyll/Hyde novel. As they unravel the mystery, they become closer - and more dangerous - to one another. Beyond that, it's too soon to share anything... I am always very cautious about making promises or predictions. I think it's my superstitious side!
Thanks so much Beth for you interview, and I look forward to reading more of your books!

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