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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Ask The Author

I’m so happy with the responses and feedback from those who have read LIVING VIOLET. But I’ve notice this is creating some questions about characters, plot, and what’s to come. So I’m opening the floor for anyone with questions, and I’ll do my best to answer them without spoiling the story. Ask any question you want: mythology, character motives, writing habits, my shoe size; whatever. I’m all ears!

Okay there are a few FAQ’s I’m getting lately so I figured I’d post them to get the ball rolling.

I noticed that your main protagonist, Samara (Sam) is biracial. Was there a particular reason you made your main character a person of color?

The supernatural and the world of weird can happen to anyone, so why the controversy? We live in a world where there are all walks of life. Interracial dating and biracial children are very common and have every right to be addressed in fiction. It doesn’t have to be a major plot point, nor should it be, but it’s good for young people to find variety in what they read.

Caleb Baker is an interesting character and pretty average considering his ability. Is there a reason for that?

Caleb’s no pretty boy with a body of a Greek god. Samara doesn’t even think he’s good-looking, except for his purple eyes. He’s just a normal kid with not-so-normal circumstances. His plainness is what stirs Samara’s curiosity, because honestly, no one that average can attract so many women. Plus, writing a super gorgeous guy seems pretty shallow and would bore me really quick.

What was your motive behind creating these characters?

Sam: she's the (very snarky) voice of reason in all the madness around her. I wanted a heroin with spunk and common sense. She doesn’t have to be book-smart, but she knows how to hold her own in conversation and in a fist fight. She her world does not revolve around a guy and she’s not into self-pity. She knows who she, understands that not everyone gets her and moves on with life, someone girls can look up to.

Mia and Dougie: Everyone knows that couple that makes-up and breaks up every week. They add an extra flare to the story and reinforce Samara’s view on dating and how stupid it is. And it’s so fun to watch the train wreck unfold.

Sam’s mom: she plays a huge role in the story and throughout the following books. I like the mother daughter dynamic and I wanted to write a believable story where parents are involved in their children’s lives. Usually the parents are conveniently dead, distracted, dimwitted, or just out of town. That’s not real life. Kids have curfews and responsibilities at home and showing otherwise is misleading.

Sam comes from a broken home and her parents had her when they were teenagers, and they never married. I wanted to portray the relationship with both parties in a positive way. No deadbeat dads, no manipulative mothers. Not all blended families are bitter and hostile and they’re more common these days, unfortunately.

Nadine: she’s kind of a goth in her own right, but without the clichéd, all-black garb that comes along with it. There is a reason behind her dreary mood, which is explained in book 2 --Burning Emerald. I love writing about her, she’s so fun and her broken English in the book (she’s Polish) only makes her more adorable.

Living violet has its supernatural moments, but it’s also a satire. What made you come up with that idea?

I wanted to poke fun of paranormal YA and all the tropes that flood the genre. Love triangles, super villains, break ups, soul mates, and angst. It continues throughout the series but with a twist, really messed up twists.

Are the stories mentioned in the book meeting real? Will we see more in the following books?

They are all made up, but it would be cool if they were real. They were fun to write though. There will be more book-sharing, but not as frequent in the next books.

What are we to expect in the following installments of the Cambion Chronicles?

A lot of twists and intrigue. Everything is connected. I mean, EVERYTHING, so no chapter-skipping or you’ll be totally lost. Things in book 1 will come back full circle in books 2 and 3. Every character has a motive crucial to the plot, and everyone has a secret. It’s gonna come fast and when you least expect it. Cliffhangers, ‘oh Snap’ moments, sexual tension, and kick ass fighting. If mysteries and who-done-it books are not your thing, it might be a rough, but fun ride. But you have to wait until June to find out.

Leave your questions below. I’d love to hear what you have to say. Ask anything you want. I’m open to just about anything.

Remember NO SPOILERS please!


  1. Hey Jaime,

    I haven't seen any posts on it (though I may have missed them), so I was wondering--what was your querying experience like? I'm almost to that stage on two different projects, and am basically scared to death. LOL.

    Thanks so much for doing this! :)

    1. Hi, Lee,

      There are a few interviews with me where I talk about querying. Short & sweet: it was terrifying, tedious, torturous. The waiting, the second-guessing, the vague explanations as to why your work was rejected, the waiting, the research for more agents to submit to, the waiting, the temptation to self-publish, and the waiting. I received over 30 (paper) rejects and over 100 (email) rejects for my earlier project. So I decide to take a break and write something else and LIVING VIOLET was born. On a whim, I submitted a query to like 4 people, including my current agent. 2 rejected it, the other I never heard back from, and I got signed by my soul mate. :P

      My story is TAME, rainbow and kittens, compared to what others go through, but it still a painful experience. As the norm, you will get several, possibly hundreds of rejections letters without an explanation. I am NOT trying to scare you, it’s a rite of passage, a hazing ritual to toughen you up. It’s an all-out war, a screen test to see how far you’re willing to go for your work. It will help build muscle you didn’t even know you had. So do your best, and I wish you the best of luck.

  2. Hi Jaime,
    How old were you when you made the decision to become a writer? What was your inspiration behind Living Violet??
    I appreciate it!!

    Thank you,

    1. Hi Kristi-Lou,

      I always liked writing as a kid and at first I didn’t think anything would come of it. But life is funny like that.

      Living Violet was my vacation book, something to get my mind off another story. There was no outline, but a “what if” question. What if looks didn’t matter and you could have any man/woman you wanted? What if it was a power that you couldn’t turn off? What if that power came with a price? Those and a few other questions made up the sum total of Living Violet. No big master plan and it was more fun that way.

  3. Hi,
    Okay,two questions:

    1. I haven't read Living Violet yet, (but, it is on my bookshelf !). I'm sure it will be great and I wanted to know if you plan on doing any touring or speaking, even locally ? I live in VA and think it would be awesome to meet you one day !

    2. I love covers ! Was this always the cover of Living Violet ? Do you have any draft covers you can show or tell us how you had imagined the covers before the final product ?

    Love your blog and twitter, they are too funny !

    1. Hey Kat and the magic sorting hat!

      There aren’t any tours at the time being, but I’m pretty certain things will get pretty this summer when Burning Emerald comes out. I’m enjoying the quiet right now, but I also can’t wait to meet other people.

      The Publisher liked the models for the cover, though it wouldn’t have been my first choice. I personally never been a fan of books with faces on the covers and the models are a little TOO attractive for this story. But the main focus was the eyes. It’s an important element of the book, which works really well on all the covers. The final cover had that basic idea from the beginning and it’s pretty effective.

  4. Okay, I'm late to the party, but based on the teasers you've posted, I've got to go check this out!

  5. HEY Jaime loved your book living violet cant wait for may for burning emerald but I have to ask at any time do Sam and Caleb ever go all the way must know it seems like that is always the elephant in the room

  6. Hey Jaime,

    when will burning emerald be published in Germany?




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