Welcome to the Virtual Book Tour of The Otherling by Heather M. Walker! Hosted by Goddess Fish Promotions. Heather M. Walker will be awarding a hand painted set of two wine glasses, painted to resemble stained glass and a ten card tarot reading (US/Canada only) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Follow the tour by clicking on the banner image above and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning.
by Heather M. Walker
Genre: Paranormal Romance
The Otherling will be $0.99 during the tour.
In the deep south of Doltree, Georgia, not everything is what is seems. Long accustomed to life as an outcast, the beautiful and demure Annaleah Grace has learned to stand apart from the crowd with dignity. Being the daughter of a white witch and a white witch herself, living in a town of devout Christians, has earned her more than a few raised eyebrows.
When she meets the handsome, yet snarky, Professor Bainbridge with whom she will be teaching at the local University, everything in her life abruptly changes. Something about him seems intimately familiar to her in a way she can’t totally identify. Even though he’s brusque and intimidating, Annaleah is drawn by his otherworldly eyes and foreign mannerisms.
With the help of angels, both Holy and fallen, she discovers just how unique she truly is. Dreams become a meeting place between this reality and the next, and Professor Sebastian Bainbridge’s true identity is revealed.
When her dreams begin to be more than dreams and she wakes up with Georgia red clay she walked through during a nightmare still wet on her feet, Annaleah knows something intense and powerful is going on, and that somehow, Professor Bainbridge is part of it. She is determined to embrace the profound destiny that awaits her and the Professor, even if that means taking up a sword to fight the Devil himself.
How do you research for a story? What works best for you?
I find that research is the most important aspect for me, writing wise. Nothing works better to rouse a sleeping muse than diving into research. Most of what I do is online, trying to find obscure, in depth links written by people whose knowledge is unfathomable and deep. When I learn something new, it opens up worlds within worlds for me, new possibilities of ideas to weave into my stories. I do like to buy and check out books from the library, but there is a different energy I feel with online research.
I also like the possibility to have interaction with the people who are writing the articles or blog posts I am reading. The chance to ask questions and further my knowledge is awesome. I also enjoy forging new friendships with people who are interested in the same things I am, and being able to bounce ideas off of them.
Which character was your favorite to write? Least favorite?
That’s really tough to say. I feel a special connection to all of my characters, even the bad guys. I like to get into my character’s heads, and their hearts too. I have to, to write them well. When you spend enough time feeling what your characters are feeling, it is hard not to feel a bond with them. That’s one of the amazing things about being an author. You get to create worlds, and people and creatures too. You get to know their moods, their dreams, their aspirations. I enjoyed writing all of my characters.
Do you outline before you write, or do you just dive in?
I always just dive on, and go on the journey the muse takes me on. Sometimes I have an idea of where I am going, and I keep that idea in my mind as I write. Sometimes, however, there is this magical moment when the story takes on a life of it’s own, and the characters let you know if they don’t like where you have them headed. The piece just wont work, the writing comes out stifled and choked. Nothing will come out right until you write what the characters have in mind. That is when the piece really takes off, and becomes something special.
Which one of your books would you visit in person and why?
That would have to be The Otherling. SO much love and effort went into this book. I absolutely love anything to do with angels, and for a chance to meet some angels, especially the ones in this book, I think that would be just about as amazing as it could get.
I would love to sit down and talk with Annaleah, and to tell her how amazing and inspiring she is. I would love to give Uncle John a huge hug, I think he is just about as lovable a character as can be written. I also would love to ask him more about his personal backstory. Sebastian would be a bit intimidating, for sure, but I would love to shake his hand and hold an in depth conversation with him anyway. Seth would be fin to hang out, as would Rachael. I would even love to talk with Satanael, as evil as he is, I know he has an interesting story to tell as well.
Do you base your characters off real life interactions with people?
I think it is kind of hard not to. Everyone you meet has some sort of impact on you. For instance, Uncle John was based very loosely off of my father, who died of Hodgekins disease. Annaleah has a lot of my traits, as well as the ones I wish that I had. I think when someone means a lot to me, be it painfully or lovingly, then that emotion trickles into my writing wether it is intentional or not.
Is snacking something you do when I write, if so, what is your weakness?
I think the one thing I have at my side the most is coffee, with lots of cream and sugar. I also have a weakness for sweets.
What is the one thing you can’t live without?
The love and support of my family and loved ones. That, and being true to myself.
What are your hobbies?
I am an avid crafter. I love DIY projects, and spending time with my daughter making things together. My favorite medium is glass. I have a microwave kiln I like to use to make pendants, and I am hoping one day to be able to have the time and space for a big kiln to make both glass works and pottery. It is one of my dreams to one day learn how to do glass blowing. I have a deep affinity for glass, as a medium and as an art. I collect glass as well, from carnival glass to Fenton, Tiara and Depression glass. I have more glass than I have space to put it!
I do have special paints that I use to paint on glass, to make it resemble stained glass. I also hope to one day be able to learn the fine art of making real stained glass, the kind you see at churches and other fancy buildings. I have lots of it just taking up space, though I hope to sell at crafts fairs in the near future.
I also like to make handmade jewelry. I think crystals have their own magical energy, and I like to make both beautiful and functional jewelry.
Who are your celebrity inspirations and who would you cast to play your characters?
I have to say as far as celebrities in general, David Bowie by far has inspired me more than anyone else. He was my first crush, my first album, my indoctrination into womanhood. I could go on for hours about how he has inspired my life, but for the purpose of this interview, I will stick with the people who have helped to inspire this book.
I have to be honest when it comes to Sebastian. I did take a lot of my inspiration from him from the character Snape from the Harry Potter books. I wanted him to seem untouchable and extreme, but to have something undeniably human and relatable to. I didn’t want the readers to like him right away, he is something of an acquired taste, and he has a deep backstory. Alan Rickman did an amazing job playing Snape, and this is my tilt of the hat to both JK Rowling’s amazing character, and to Alan Rickman’s astoundingly poignant portrayal of him.
I think as far as people to play my characters, I can see a younger version of Trent Reznor from Nine Inch Nails playing Sebastian. Evanna Lynch, the actress who played Luna Lovegood in the Harry Potter movies, would play a fantastic Annaleah. I have often thought who would make a good uncle John and Seth, and truth be told, I can’t think of anyone! I do think Fairuza Balk would make a great Rachael.
If you were presented with an opportunity to travel through time and visit any time period, which time would you choose and why?
I have always had an affinity in my heart for the Renaissance. I believe in past lives, and I truly feel that in one of my past lives, I was a well to do upper class woman of nobility, who lived in a castle and had a very happy life. I even dream about this lifetime occasionally, and I have taken some of Annaleah’s characteristics from these dreams.
Heather M. Walker will be awarding a hand painted set of two wine glasses, painted to resemble stained glass and a ten card tarot reading (US/Canada only) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.