Award-winning paranormal romance author Bianca D’Arc and I share several firsts. She was the first author bought by Jessica Bimberg, my first editor at Samhain. Hers was the first novel I copyedited at Samhain, and now we share her first blog tour—her first tour, my first time as a destination.
Today marks the release of her first mass market paperback from Kensington Brava, Once Bitten, Twice Dead, a sizzling hot romance with zombies. No, really. You don’t have to take my word for it. At the end of this post you’ll find proof in the form of the jacket copy and excerpt, plus information about a sweet contest Bianca’s running to promote the book. Better yet, I have the words of the lady herself, because I couldn’t let the occasion pass without asking her a few questions.
What's the one thing you'd like readers to know about Once Bitten, Twice Dead?
That it's not horror. It's really an action packed romance. Okay, there are zombies in it, but they're the bad guys. The hero is a military bad boy and the heroine is a strong, modern woman who's right there with him, working with him as a team to keep the world safe for the rest of us.
To be brutally honest, because that's what my editor asked for. She knew me for my paranormal work and wanted something with zombies in it. I was surprised by the request, but happy to give it a whirl. I figured I could go the traditional voodoo zombie route or give it a twist with the science experiment run amok angle. Because of my science background, I chose the latter. It's been a fun world to play in!
How'd you get started writing?
I've pretty much always written for my own amusement. I used to think of it as a cheap form of therapy. I was first published in 2006 with a fledgling publishing company called Samhain Publishing. I was lucky enough to be one of the first authors signed to the new company and the rest, as they say, is history.
What would you say was the biggest turning point in your writing career so far?
Getting my first NY contract last June was a big step in my career. While I continue to write several series for Samhain, I'm trying something new, on a bigger stage, as it were. With any luck, it will lead to more books for bigger publishers and I hope to at some point have my books come out in mass market paperbacks rather than trade paperbacks, so I always have something to work toward.
Your e-pubbed and small press fiction has won many awards. Do you think that helped your transition from small press to mass market?
I'm really not sure. It certainly has helped with credibility, but I think more than anything, submitting books and being willing to write fast and under an editor's direction has been most helpful.
What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about publishing before you started writing?
That writing the book is the easy part! All the marketing and promotion that goes along with making your book a success is exhausting. I didn't realize how much work there was behind the scenes when I decided to write full time.
What are you reading now?
I don't have a lot of time to read lately because I've been on deadline and trying to recover from the loss of my beloved Mom just before Christmas. But when I do read, I tend to look for either old favorites like Suzanne Brockman, Christine Feehan, Diana Palmer, Rachel Lee, etc, or I browse the ebook sites for anything that looks good. I like to find new writers and support small press as much as possible.
Any hints about your next project?
I'm writing zombies now until I meet all my contractual obligations for those books. There will be five stories in all - two novellas and three novels. After that, I have plans to work on a new Were story for Samhain. I also need to write a new dragon book and the last in my Resonance Mates series. I have a lot to choose from, so I'm not sure exactly what I'll be working on after the zombies are done. It's good to have choices. ;-)
Anything you'd like to add?
I just want to thank JeanMarie for having me here today and also to thank the readers for their support. The past few months have been the hardest of my life since losing my Mom. Without my readers and the friends I've made through my writing, I don't know how I would have survived. I love you all.
*Once Bitten, Twice Dead
March 2010 - Kensington Brava
When police officer Sarah Petit investigates a disturbance in an abandoned building, she expects to find a few underage drinkers. Instead, she's attacked by creatures straight out of a horror movie. Waking a week later in a hospital, Sarah is visited by Special Forces soldier Captain Xavier Beauvoir. The zombies who attacked Sarah are the result of military research gone terrifyingly wrong, and Sarah's immunity to the virus makes her the perfect person to help Xavier eradicate them. But his smooth Cajun accent, whiskey-colored eyes, and dizzying kiss are risky to her in a very different way.
Sarah attracts danger like a magnet—and the smart, fearless cop attracts Xavier too, instilling a bone-deep need that's undermining his steady façade. Enlisting her aid is a necessary gamble, but vicious undead creatures are not the only enemy they face. And the only way to keep each other safe is to trust in an instant connection that could be their greatest strength--or the perfect way to destroy them both...
Read an Excerpt
Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/Once-Bitten-Twice-
Amazon Kindle version: http://www.amazon.com/Once-Bitten-Twice-
As a special thank you to readers, Bianca is giving away a prize pack of SWAG and romance books. (For details on the prize, check out her blog contest page (link: http://biancadarc.com/blog/about/).) All you have to do to enter is send an email with OBTD Blog Contest in the subject line to BIANCADARC at gmail dot com, with your mailing address, before March 31st, 2010. The drawing will be held April 1st and the winner will be announced on her blog at http://biancadarc.com/blog/.