I am bringing you another Spotlight Interview, this time with the author EJ Divitt and her novel Ghost of a Chance.
Thank you to EJ for allowing me the chance to interview her and find out more about her novel.
1. Can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Of course! I’m tea over coffee, dark chocolate over milk chocolate and I like to bake. I’m also part of a large family. I spent my childhood outside Boston, Massachusetts with a lot of time spent in Canada. I’m a long time reader. My mother introduced me to the library at an early age and I became a convert. To this day, the local librarians know me on sight. My library card is on my list of things worth fighting for.
2. What inspired you to write Ghost of a Chance?
I was playing around on Wikipedia and I followed some links—you know how that goes—until I ended up on a page about Chinese mythology. I found the story of Zhong Kui fascinating. Here is this brilliant man who gets turned down for his dream job and kills himself. But then he ends up with an even bigger job. He ends up being responsible for really everyone who came after him.
3. What is the genre?
I would say it is paranormal fantasy. I know there is some debate between urban and paranormal fantasy. Personally I think of urban fantasy as being grittier.
4. What draws you to this genre?
Paranormal fantasy is my favorite genre to read so I’m drawn to it as a writer. I think it’s natural to want to write the kinds of books you want to read.
5. How did you develop your plot and your characters?
I like to play “what if?” For example, what if I had a character who was descended from the king of ghosts? Who would they be? How would it impact their lives? And then, inevitably, I end up thinking, “What could go wrong?”
6. What inspired your protagonist?
I started with the idea of Zhong Kui and I thought about what impact he would have on the world around him. The story says he came back after his death and gifted his sister’s hand in marriage to his good friend Du Ping. That means Zhong Kui’s bloodline still existed which means he had family to help him. If I was given dominion of spirits, I would totally make my sisters help me.
7. How did you get in touch with your inner villain?
I put on a cape and laugh maniacally. Just kidding. There are a lot of truly great villains in fiction from which to draw. I have to think about what kind of villain they are and what motivates them. For example, whether they are a psychopath or a predator. It also helps to look at examples. Disney has some of the best like Cruella or the evil stepmother.
8. What was the hardest part to write in the book?
I don’t want to give any spoilers—I hate those!—but there is a scene where Jenny and her mom have it out that was very hard for me. I knew what needed to happen but I also feel for my characters and I knew this would hurt Jenny.
9. What was your favourite part of your book to write?
I enjoyed the scenes with Jenny and her father the most. My own father died many years ago and I think it would have been nice to have a chance to see him and talk to him after he died.
10. Are you a full time or a part time writer? If part time, what do you do besides write?
I’m a part time writer. I have a day job as a customer service representative for an insurance agency. I’ve written several nonfiction books and most of them stemmed from this customer service background of trying to help people and give them useful advice.
11. What are you currently reading?
I’m currently reading Night Shift by Charlaine Harris in hardcover as my before-bed-time book. I’m also reading Magic Shifts by Ilona Andrews in paperback as my carry-around-in-my-purse book. Finally, my current audiobook for my commute is Orphan X by Gregg Hurwitz. I’m a bit of a player when it comes to books. I’m rarely faithful to one book at a time.
12. Who would you say are your favourite authors?
I adore Jim Butcher, Ilona Andrews, Patricia Briggs, Kevin Hearne and Nalini Singh. I would consider almost any of their books to be an automatic read.
13. How about your favourite books? What would be your top 5?
The list of my favourite books is a bit of a moving target. There are so many great ones! I’m going with Cry Wolf by Patricia Briggs, Magic Bites by Kate Daniels, Hounded by Kevin Hearne, The Gift Of Fear by Gavin de Becker, and Grave Sight by Harper Connelly. I know, I know, that’s a lot of fantasy books. I have an addiction.
14. What are your future projects, if any?
Right now I’m finishing up the final edits for book three of the Ghost Protector Trilogy, Ghost Of A Memory, which comes out June 1st. After that, I’m not sure exactly what I’ll be doing. I have a few ideas for another paranormal fantasy book. I’ve been playing around with a sequel to my Daily Writing Prompts To Spur Creativity book. All I can say for certain is, I will definitely be writing something else.
15. What is your preferred method for readers to get in touch with you and your books?
16. Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
It’s not exciting advice but I’d say read and write. Read the kinds of things you’d like to read so you can see what works well and what doesn’t. Write so you get better. Writing is like any other skill; the more you use it, the better you’ll get. I’m better than I was when I started and I think I’ll keep getting better.
Where to Buy:
Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound | Book Depository