Please welcome author Mina Carter to the SkylarVerse! She’ll be giving away a copy of her new Summerhouse Publishing release, Vixen, to one commenter on her blog tour–check below for all her stops!
Decisions, decisions, decisions…
Same as anyone else, life for a writer is full of little decisions. Laundry or that favourite show on TV? Workout or the chocolate? Walk the dog or cuddle on the sofa? So many of them, which all build up into a seamless whole that makes up general day to day life. For me, and any writer out there, there’s another, over-riding ‘thing’ that means a lot of these decisions have a third option. TV, Laundry or write? Walk the dog, cuddle on the sofa or write? Workout, choc…okay, that last one doesn’t work so well since most writers I know live on a staple diet of coffee and chocolate. (and cake, but that’s another story)
Writing for me is not an option, it’s something I do to stop the stories in my head driving me crazy (or crazier anyway :P). So that means I have to juggle a fair amount to make sure I do the work thing, then the mom thing and make sure the laundry is done, the fish get fed (and not to the cat), etc etc.
This means I get up at an ungodly hour of the morning (commonly referred to as stupid o’clock) to get some peace and quiet so I can write before work. This is the common writer in its natural state and plumage (i.e.–pj’s and looking like it’s been dragged through a hedge backwards), not a sight for the faint of heart. I also take advantage of a quiet canteen at work and write furiously for half an hour with no net access (which can be more productive than an hour with full net access strangely. I blame twitter for this). My work colleagues think I’m mad but they’re kinda used to it now. Evenings I split my time between writing and family. If I’m in the middle of a book and it’s grabbed me, they know they won’t get any sense out of me at all until I’m done. I’m very lucky that they’re understanding 🙂
Making time for hobbies can be a struggle, but I try to make sure I do. Hobbies are essential as a writer and I’m a very curious person to boot. Most come from looking at something and thinking ‘how did they make that?’, like with corsetry and chain-maille. More recently I’ve taken up target shooting again, which is a bit of a return to an old hobby rather than a new one. My husband shoots as well, so we bicker and try and outshoot each other on a regular basis (I always win but he won’t admit that!)
I use a lot of the experiences I gain from hobbies in my writing. I use the sights and smells of everything I experience to add depth wherever possible. I visit places I can use as settings and take numerous photographs. I’m lucky to live in the middle of the English countryside so you can’t go more than a few miles without tripping over a castle or something. The barrow in Vixen, the second in the Kyn series just re-released by Summerhouse Publishing, was based on a room at Conwy castle in North Wales. There was just something so evocative about the room…it just had to have a story of its own!
Whatever else he was, she had to admit he had guts. She wouldn’t want to be shut up in a room with an angry Kyn either. Whilst his pixie heritage might have protected him from being turned into a vampire, it did buggar all to protect him from being dead.
The only vampire warrioress in existence Vixen has spent most of her life proving herself in a man’s world, but she’s never been able to squash some very feminine thoughts where fellow warrior Kalen is concerned. Kalen however, has sworn off love, preffering to deal in lust instead.
But a passionate encounter blows their carefully constructed indifference to each other and when Vixen is kidnapped will they be prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice to give their love a chance?
She met his gaze as he pulled her into his arms, their bodies moving slowly to the music that filtered out onto the terrace. Slow and seductive, under any other circumstances she’d never have agreed to dance to it with anyone, much less Kalen. Rock and heavy metal were more her style. But the romance of the occasion mellowed her and she relaxed in his arms.
They fit together well, moving so naturally it was as if they were made for each other. She sighed softly, the unaccustomed champagne flowing through her veins. It wasn’t enough to make her tipsy, she was too experienced to make that sort of mistake, but it was enough to relax her guard several notches.
When the music changed to something slower, more romantic and Kalen pulled her closer, she didn’t argue. Instead, she sighed in pleasure and gave into the temptation to lay her head on his shoulder and close her eyes, luxuriating in the feel of his hard male body against hers.
She had no idea how long they stood like that, moving slowly to the music with his arms around her, hers around him. She felt safe and protected, a feeling Vixen had never experienced before. It was a feeling she found she liked. Eventually Kalen stopped moving and murmured her name.
She looked up, blinking as her eyes readjusted to the darkness, only to find he’d moved them farther into the shadows at the edges of the terrace, well away from the ballroom doors. “I’ve wanted to do this all night,” he whispered, tilting her chin up to claim her lips.
Mina Carter was born and raised in Middle Earth (otherwise known as the Midlands, England). After a slew of careers ranging from logistics to land-surveying she can now be found in the wilds of Leicestershire with her husband and young daughter…the true boss of the family.
Suffering the curse of eternal curiosity Mina never tires of learning new skills which has led to Aromatherapy, Corsetry, Chain-maille making, Welding, Canoeing, Shooting, and pole-dancing to name but a few.
She juggles being a mum, working full time and writing, tossing another ball in the air with her cover artwork. For Mina, writing time is the wee hours of the morning before anyone wakes up and starts making demands, or any spare minute that can be begged, bought or conned.
Her first stories were penned at age 11, when she used a stationery set meant for Christmas thank you letters to write stories instead. More recently, she wrote for her own amusement and to save on outrageous monthly book bills. Now she’s totally addicted and needs her daily writing fix or heads roll.