Author Interview: J.E. Taylor

Jane E. Taylor writing as J.E. Taylor

1. We’ll skip the “tell us about yourself” because coming up with something on the spot is, truly, the bane of an author’s existence. So, let’s start with something a little easier! Tell me what you’re working on at the moment.

A: I am working on two books at this moment. The first is a first in an Urban Fantasy trilogy about a vampire huntress who has gotten herself in a bit of trouble and needs to hunt down the bastard who turned her before the next new moon – or else she will become one of the hunted. The second is a first in a Fantasy series about three witches that bring forth and control dragons during the time of the pre-Mayan empire. And this series will have an ancient tie in to Season of the Dragon.

2. In as much detail as you would like, tell me about your book(s) that are already out/on the way.

A: My next release is due out on December 21, 2021 and it is the last of a post apocalyptic Urban Fantasy trilogy that takes place in New York City after a pandemic renders the earth quiet, which awakens the monsters. Season of the Dragon trilogy ends with Dragon Dawn and my main character’s rocky alliance with a rogue dragon.

Here is the teaser for Dragon Dawn:

Our short history together proved one thing. Trust is a four-letter word.

I doubt Mikhail St. Clare will ever truly trust me again after my colossal screw up that nearly led to his death. And I’m not sure I trust Mikhail now that he thinks humans are just as monstrous as our enemies.

The only thing we seem to agree on is our desire to annihilate the leviathans and unseat the Serpent King. Our personal futures depend on ridding the earth of these murderous overlords who have been hunting us since I escaped, and Mikhail betrayed them.

What they don’t know is that we have a plan.

Of course, nothing about our scheme is easy.

We thought the monsters were our most deadly hurdle. But building a bomb large enough to wipe out an entire species is tricky. One wrong move and we could destroy everyone living in New York instead.

3. As far as the writing process goes—including such things as conception of idea all the way through to money in the bank—what is the least favourite bit? (Everyone has one!)

A: Promoting my book. I’m not good at waving the “buy my book” flag. While I’m great at waving it for other authors, doing that for myself is awkward for me. I’ve never been a great advocate for my work. But I’m trying to overcome that particular hurdle.

4. Conversely, what is the bit of the writing process that gets your writery brain grinning?

A: Seeing stunning cover art. I’m a cover whore. I have amassed more covers than the books I have already written, so I have quite a long backlist of stories to write along with short ideas for the story for most of them. Covers spark ideas for me and that starts the process. It is rare now that I start a story without a cover already in the bag.

5. If you could steal any author’s ability to improve your own work, who would you steal from and why? (e.g. Tolkien’s language skills, Douglas Adams’ humour, etc.)

A: Because it is so fresh for me right now, I’d steal Laura Thalassa’s ability to suck the reader into the story. I have tried to dissect her stories, but every single time I do, her books just suck me into the story and that objective critic gets trampled. Besides, she can string together such beautiful prose.

6. Now for some fun! The main character of the book you’re working on (or have recently finished) has kidnapped you for ruining their life. How will you explain that what you’re doing is for the best?

A: Trust me, I know I’ve put you through the gauntlet, but you are strong and will eventually find your way out of all these hellish situations… well, maybe you will. Just look on the bright side. I haven’t killed you yet.

7. You, your main character(s), and the protagonist of the last book you read are playing poker. What are the stakes? Who will win and why?

A: All the shiny things including weapons. The dragon will win, because he covets shiny things, and he might just cheat to get them.

8. Let’s face it, writing is hard. What do you think are some traps to avoid in your particular area of expertise? (Whether that be your genre, your knowledge of plot, your character building, your world building, etc.)

A: Telling versus showing. That is one of the basic story-telling elements that new writers fail at. I certainly did when I started, but this falls back to question 5 above and the ability to suck people into a story which all stems from making the reader care about the characters or the situation and then hooks them with visceral elements to play with the reader’s emotions. It’s a dance of words that truly can make or break a story.

9. Anything else you’d like to add? Plots to take over the world, for example. Upcoming release dates, links and things, maybe even your favourite chocolate cake recipe.

A: Taking over the world is overrated. Too much responsibility for a girl who just wants to have fun. 😊


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