Author Interview: Danielle Annett (Cursed By Fire Tour) ~ Excerpt/Giveaway

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Hello and Welcome All!

Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Danielle Annett author of Cursed By Fire.

Hi Danielle, thank you for agreeing to this interview. First tell us a little about your latest release Cursed By Fire?

Hi Angela, thanks so much for having me. I’m thrilled to be here.

Cursed by Fire_ebooklgCursed by Fire is my debut Urban Fantasy novel. The book takes place in Spokane, WA six years after the Awakening. An event that took place in which the paranormals of the world who’d always lived in the shadows, decided to come out of the woodwork and show humanity who was really on top of the food chain. In Cursed by Fire you’ll follow our MC Aria Naveed as she tries to track down the culprit behind a gruesome murder. Along the way she’ll face obstacles related to her personal live, her professional life, and a tiny tidbit of her love life in her quest to bring justice to those unable to seek it for themselves.

Was their any scene that you liked the most in Cursed By Fire and Why?

I really enjoyed the scene where James is introduced. It happens towards the end of the first chapter and I just get a kick out of Aria sticking her foot in her mouth. 

“Ari, I’ve got a bad feeling about this one. You wanted the kid to get justice and he’ll get it. You know how shifters can be, they won’t stop until they find the culprit so why don’t you let them handle this, okay?”

There was no way I was going to stand on the sidelines while the Pack took over. Not happening. This was my case. I’d already poured blood and sweat into it and was not stepping aside. I allowed my displeasure to wash over my face. 

“Ari don’t give me that look. You know I’m only looking out for you. What would happen if the Pack found out about you, about what you can do?” he said.

When I first began working with Sanborn Place, Mike had let me do my own thing, solve my own problems, take on the jobs I wanted to tackle. But recently his protective streak had begun to chafe.

“Mike you and I both know that isn’t going to happen. I’ll be careful. Why don’t you just tell me what fur ball they’re going to saddle me with?” I smiled when I found the directory buried in my desk’s bottom drawer. 

“Finally,” I said pulling the folder out and leaning over it as I scanned the pages within for likely candidates. It was doubtful the Pack would send an Alpha. There were six clans within the Pacific Northwest Pack I knew of. Clan Wolf, Clan Cat, Clan Feloidea which included hyenas, mongooses, and civets, Clan Muridea housed the rodent members of the pack, Clan Canidae was the fox, coyote, and jackals, and Clan Big. The last had an unusual name but I supposed all of its members were just, well, big. It encompassed the bears a handful of others like water buffalos and rhinoceros though from what research I’d been able to conclude, water buffalos, and rhinoceros were rare. It was rare to have any form of shifter that wasn’t known for being a predator and carnivore.

Mike noisily cleared his throat, “Uh hey, Ari…”

“God I hope whoever it is he isn’t a complete moron. If I’m going to be stuck with a Pack partner, the least they can do is send me someone competent,” I said.

Mike noisily cleared his throat again.

“What?” I looked up from my desk. 

I was greeted by a tall man standing just inside the office, casually leaning against the doorframe. He had tousled brown hair and steely grey-colored eyes. High cheekbones and a strong jaw formed his masculine face and a hint of stubble dusted his jawline, not enough to appear unkempt but just enough to give a roguish impression. Dressed in black jeans, a black tee, and a black leather jacket, he oozed tall, dark and handsome with deadly intent. I shoved my directory into the top drawer of my desk. Crap.

“That would be this fur ball right here,” he said, an arrogant grin lifting the corner of his mouth. 

I let my head fall to the surface of my desk, then for good measure, I none too gently knocked my forehead on its smooth surface, one, two, three times. Dammit I couldn’t believe I’d just called him a freaking fur ball! My cheeks grew warm with embarrassment and I did my best to hide it.

“You all done with the show?” he asked as I lifted my head from the desk. I glared at him for good measure and then allowed my head to connect with the desk once more before sitting up, rubbing the slight sting away. 

“Yeah, I’m done.” Well, at least this wouldn’t be as bad as I’d thought. James was the only shifter I knew personally and was one of the few individuals I considered a friend. I met James about six months ago at a shifter bar downtown, though at the time I didn’t actually know it was a shifter bar. Things got a bit out of hand when a group of coyotes started harassing me but…well, that story was for another day.

“So, you’re my partner?”

James nodded. “Yeah, I’m your partner.” He sauntered further into the room. The word coming to mind, swagger. He had some serious swag. If he weren’t the closest thing I had to a best friend I’d be drooling like the rest of society when he walked into a room.

“Ready to do something reckless?”

I smiled, he knew me all too well. 

“Absolutely.”

Grabbing my messenger bag I followed James out of the office, aware of Mike’s disapproving gaze on my every step.


Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

I’d say it is almost entirely imaginary. Some of the locations I mention in the book do actually exist in Spokane but the story itself if entirely fictional with no real life experiences tied to it.

When writing do you work from an outline, or just write?

I outline. I made the mistake of not outlining when I first started writing and essentially wasted two years. Once I started outlining, my book took an entirely new direction and I scrapped close to two years worth of work so I am a committed outliner now. I outline my entire novel from start to finish and write the first and last chapters before doing anything else.

Do you have a day job as well?

I do. I work as a supervisor at UPS which is a job I enjoy entirely more than you’d think. I have a pretty terrific schedule and work M-F, 4a-9:30a giving me lots of time to write and a lot of time to be home with my daughter.

How do you relax?

Usually, I’d say with a good book, a glass of wine, and a hot bath. Being six months pregnant, I can no longer have the wine and it takes entirely too much effort to get out of a bath tub so now I relax on my sofa with a good book.

Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors?

I read a ton! I started out as a book blogger, I run Coffee and Characters so I read anywhere from 50-100 books a year. There are honestly so many amazing authors out there but most recently I’ve become a HUGE Rachel Bach fan. Her Paradox series is to die for. You can also never go wrong with a good Patricia Briggs book. I’ve read everything she’s published and while I know she is best known for her Mercy books, The Hobs Bargain is pretty fantastic as well.

 

For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books?

I prefer paperbacks and hardbacks only because I love stuffing my bookshelves. I’m a bit of a book hoarder and have close to 700 print copies of books. The more I read though, the more I realize that ebooks are just entirely more convenient so while I also go to purchase a print book when available over the ebook, if I have the ebook, I’ll read it much faster. Between my macbook, ipad, and iphone, its just easier to read knowing I always have one of those devices with me instead of having to remember to toss a book in my purse. It also helps if I happen to reading something smutty and don’t want anyone to judge me for the books cover. Gotta love some of the covers from Lora Leigh’s early Breed series.

What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment?

My toughest criticism has been having my series compared to another much loved UF series in a negative light. A few readers have felt my book is too similar and I just have to take that in stride. I stand by my work and did a lot of research for it so I’m okay with people having their opinions because I know that my book is unique and as much as I love and adore my readers, I honestly write for myself.

At the same time, my best compliment is very similar. Some readers have said my book has a feel that reminds them of this much loved series but “not in a copy cat sort of way, more in a way as though you were visiting a distant relative and already felt at home.” Thats a huge compliment to me. There are many books I myself pick up to read because someone says something along the lines of, “Oh if you loved such and such, you’re going to love this series.”

What project are you working on now?

Currently I’m working on Kissed by Fire, book 2 in my Blood & Magic series. It was originally slated for a January 2016 release but I’m working double time to get it out sooner since I seem to get a lot of emails from readers asking me for the next installment. Fingers crossed it will be ready in time for October 2015. I’m also working on a PNR novel titled RED. A bit of a take on a red riding hood story only Red is a boy who happens to be a werewolf hunter. No official blurb or release date for RED yet but I just got the final proof for the cover and it is beautiful. I’m very excited.

10 Quick Things About Danielle Annett

Favorite Food? Steak and Mashed potatoes

Favorite Drink? Grasshopper (Whit coffee with white chocolate and creme de menth)

Favorite Color? In general, purple, ever since I was a little girl but I don’t wear the color much.

Favorite Book? I can’t pick just one, can I have a series? Lets say Rachel Vincent’s Shifter series.

Favorite Season? Spring

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Favorite Online Hangout? Facebook book groups

Favorite Animal? White Tiger (hint hint)

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Favorite Band or Musician? Rock: Thousand Foot Krutch or Breaking Benjamin, for POP: Taylor Swift

Favorite Vacation Destination? Seattle. I have an obsession with Pike Place and I can never get enough of the city

Favorite Movie or TV Show of all Time? Boondock Saints and the Italian Job for movies. Love Grey’s Anatomy for TV

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Thank you very much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to take part in this interview.

Thank you again for having me, this was a lot of fun!

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Danielle AnnettDanielle Annett is a reader, writer, photographer, and the blogger behind Coffee and Characters. Born in the SF Bay area, she now resides in Spokane, WA, the primary location for her Blood & Magic series.
Addicted to coffee at an early age, she spends her restless nights putting pen to paper as she tries to get all of the stories out of her head before the dogs wake up the rest of the house and vye for her attention.

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Website – Facebook – Twitter – Goodreads

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Cursed by Fire

Blood & Magic #1

Cursed by Fire_ebooklgAuthor: Danielle Annett

Release Date: January 28th, 2015

Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal

Designer: Mae I Design

Blurb: 

It has been six years since the Awakening and peace in Spokane, Washington is still tenuous at best. The vampires and shifters are all vying for control of the city and the humans seem to be the ones suffering the consequences, or so it seems.

Aria Naveed has spent the last two years of her life fighting to make the many wrongs of the world right, but soon finds out that the humans aren’t as weak as they appear and may be a more terrifying foe than any of the other races combined.

When a stranger rolls into town with trouble on his heels, Aria finds herself trapped in the middle of a battle that could cost her more than she has bargained for as a fight for justice turns into an unexpected fight for her life.

Buy links: Amazon – B&N

Behind the scenes look at how Cursed by Fire’s cover came to be

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The light began to fade from his eyes as I crawled across the floor in an effort to reach my father. My nails were raw and bloody as I struggled to carry myself closer to him, digging into the rough wooden floors with each drag of my body.

“I’m coming,” I panted in between breaths. “Just hang on, Papa, I’m coming.”

I woke gasping for breath, drenched in a cold sweat, clutching the hilt of my dagger as if my life depended on it. I frantically looked around the room in search of our attacker while also taking stock of any injuries. I was perfectly whole.

“It was just a nightmare,” I told myself, though that did little to ease the ache in my chest over the remembered pain. I miss you so much.

Rubbing my hands over my face, I pushed back the wet, loose tendrils of hair that had escaped my braid during my fitful rest and returned my dagger to its resting place beneath my pillow. Taking another deep breath I registered a hint of smoke.

Shit! 

My eyes roamed over the room, frantically looking for the source of fire.

“You have got to be kidding me!”

I untangled my body from the sheets, tripping and falling into a heap on the floor before I was able to crawl out of my covers and retrieve an old shirt. I frenziedly swatted at the bedroom curtains with the old t-shirt but the flames continued to rise. Deciding there was no other choice, I ripped the curtains from the window and rushed to the kitchen.

Throwing the curtains into the sink and turning the faucet on all the way, I watched as the flames were snuffed and steam began to rise. The curtains ruined.

Turning the water off, I allowed my body to slide down the smooth wooden cabinets until my bottom met the cool tile floor. I folded my arms across my knees and rested my forehead against them. Closing my eyes I took several deep breaths, my heart still racing from the effects of the recurring nightmare. This was getting out of hand. I had thought the nightmares were fading, but something was bringing the memories back with a screaming vengeance and this was the third time this week they’d plagued me. I missed my parents but it’d been over six years now. They weren’t coming back and I needed to let it go. My subconscious needed to let it go and I needed to let Daniel’s death go. Not the case, no, I wouldn’t let that go. But his death was affecting me in ways I couldn’t allow to continue.

I breathed deeply in an effort to calm my nerves. Small tremors racked my body, the nightmare had shaken me more that I’d like to admit. My skin was covered in a fine sheen of sweat. A physical reminder that I needed to relax before I accidentally caught something else on fire.


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Print Copy of Cursed By Fire

eCopy of Cursed By Fire

$10 Amazon Gift Card

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I was born and raised in Northern Indiana. I’m an outdoor sun loving reader living near San Fransisco. I’m a mother, wife, dog owner, animal, and book lover. I’m the owner, reviewer, and mind behind Angel’s Guilty Pleasures. My favorite animals are horses & dogs. As for reading I love all things paranormal & urban fantasy. My favorite shifters are dragons!

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2 comments on “Author Interview: Danielle Annett (Cursed By Fire Tour) ~ Excerpt/Giveaway

  1. The book sounds interesting .