Please give a warm welcome to fellow Muse author Annika James. Her paranormal YA Wanted came out last Friday (check out my sparkly review over on Goodreads). To win a copy of Wanted in the ebook format of your choice, simply leave a comment below. Winner will be randomly chosen. UPDATE: The giveaway is over and the winner has been chosen.
First, I have to thank Katie for having me here today!
Wanted is full of vampires and witches. In fact, not one of my characters is fully human. I choose to write paranormal because it is the genre that interests me the most.
Ever since I was younger, I have been interested in reading books about other beings. The first books I can remember reading were L.J. Smith’s The Secret Circle and The Vampire Diaries books, along with books by Christopher Pike and R.L. Stine. I think those early influences helped inspire my characters today.
As I got older, I expanded into Laurell K. Hamilton, Kim Harrison, J.R. Ward, and so many more authors. I loved the worlds of the previous three authors – how the paranormal was normal. That is what I strove for when creating my characters. I wanted a world where vampires and witches lived side by side with humans and no one thought anything about it. I wrote my characters like I would if were writing something not paranormal, then I simply added in their supernatural abilities.
With Ash, I did research on modern Wicca, and tried to add true elements of witchcraft into her character. She references the goddess several times, she casts circles, and she is affiliated with the elements. I wanted her to be a realistic witch, though with more power.
My vampires are different. They are not dead, that we know, and they do not have many limits – they can be out during the daytime, they only need to feed every couple days, they can eat and drink like humans, they age up to a certain point. I didn’t really have a formula when I began writing Wanted. I wanted my vampires to be mainstream, yet still have that romantic lure to them. Conor and Matt are simply dudes I created who I would like to hang out with. They just happen to drink blood.
When I was writing them, I thought of them as any other character, then added in the paranormal elements as I went. Tre was easier to write because he’s the bad guy. To me, he was the stereotypical bad vampire, so the vampness in him came easy.
For me, writing the paranormal was mostly natural, because it is what I’ve loved for so many years. My characters are a mish-mash of so many inspirations, along with my own ideas. It was so fun to write about Ash, Conor, and Matt, and I’m pretty sure we have not heard the last of them. After all, we all want to know what will happen with the knowledge they gained at the end of Wanted.
The vampire world I created still has secrets yet to be revealed. In Wanted, we really only get to know the young vampires, we don’t yet know how they stop aging, or what happens after they do.
I hope you enjoy reading Wanted as much as I enjoyed writing it. Please feel free to contact me with questions or comments, I love hearing from readers!
Attacked as a young witch and left for dead, Ashlinn is deathly afraid of being bitten again. Having survived until she’s almost eighteen without donating blood to any of her vamp friends, Ashlinn figures she’ll continue to live bite-free. After her crush reveals how powerful she is, however, the Vampire Council declares she be claimed as a familiar, which requires biting. Ashlinn doesn’t want to be owned, even by hot vamp, Conor. Luckily, her best friend, Matt, volunteers for the job. She is given one week to choose her protector, and the list of willing biters keeps growing. Will she go with best friend Matt, hot vamp Conor, or someone else to protect her? Will she be able to get her power under control by then? Will she overcome her phobia of being bitten? And who says she needs to be protected, anyhow?
Annika James lives in small-town Wisconsin with her husband and two beautiful kiddos. She spends her days working to pay the bills and her nights dreaming of more fun ways to do so. Her passions include writing, reading, music and traveling with her family. She dreams of a world where vampires and powerful witches really exist, because life would be so much more interesting. For more about Annika visit her blog, Facebook page, or Goodreads page.