AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT: CIARA LAKE
Extremely busy writer and lawyer Ciara Lake has taken a few minutes to talk about writing with the bunnies at JR…
What is your most current work out ?
The Ketchikan Man with eTreasures Publishing out in September 2011.
Ciara please tell us a little about your recent releases…
I love shape shifter stories. Kael, the hero in Xihirah is the quintessential alpha male, proud and dominant as well as gorgeous shape shifter. I wanted to avoid the same old shifter type story, and so I placed him on another world. My aim was to have new world, new rules, new problems, conflicts and new motivations. I like action in my stories and Xihirah has plenty of action.
With the increase of cell phones, texting, and virtual dating, I thought a story about it would be interesting. I had Leea and Lucan first date via text and on line…she decides to leave Oklahoma to go meet him in the wilds of Alaska.
When you start writing, do you already have the story plotted out or do you let the characters dictate what will happen?
When I wrote The Triaxen and Xihirah I let the story flow. But, now I have a list of books I’m working on and I have each book plotted with an outline. However, I do allow it to change if I feel the flow going in a different direction. Writing is like living with the characters and life is not predictable… it changes every day and sometimes you don’t plan for it. I like the story to have a life of its own.
What inspired you to write in your genre? Is this the genre you started writing in or have you morphed to this one?
I enjoy reading sci fi and paranormal. It is my favorite thing to read. I enjoyed it so much; I wanted to create my own. I enjoy these genres because anything can happen. Your imagination can be endless. I also like these as romances because no one can love you like a sci fi man or a paranormal man. Tell me it’s not true?
I really get into the one true mate concept or something of that nature. I guess it’s because of what I encounter every day… divorce. I’m a family law lawyer and it’s refreshing to write about characters who will never betray the other and will love them til the day they die. Or maybe they won’t die?
Do you have a favorite character you have written?
Krevan Vallex in The Triaxen. That was my first published book. I love Krevan. He is strong, fast, intelligent, a protector, and a deadly enemy. Don’t mess with him! Yet he can be loyal and a great friend. His character is extremely complex. He comes from a walk of life that is elite and ends up in prison changing him, hardening him. His life events cause him anguish. But out of his anguish he finds a gift of true love and he is redeemed.
Who was the toughest character for you to “get right” that you have written so far?
Leea in The Ketchikan Man. I wanted her to be strong and smart; however, she was bold enough to go all the way to Alaska to meet a man she’d never met. I did not want her to seem stupid or silly… but adventurous and following her heart. In a short story, it was more difficult to portray her or any character. Writing a short story is harder in my opinion.
Do you draw inspiration for your characters from real life? Any fun stories you could share?
Yes I do. The texting in The Ketchikan Man I got from real life. Not the exact story, but I’m aware of how involved and vested you can become while daily communicating with someone via text or e mail. It can be a really intense relationship.
What do you find the hardest part of writing?
Finding the time in our busy world and promoting your writing. When you write you want people to read it and enjoy it. Getting your stories noticed and desired. For example, I love my characters. I really like them, as if they truly exist. I want the reader to love them too. Like who couldn’t love Krevan, Kael, and Lucan? They are the mate every woman should want, at least from my prospective.
Name one thing that your readers would be surprised to know about you.
I like jungle settings. This was influenced from my living on Guam. Hello Guam, I love you all! My oldest son was born on Guam!
Do you have a guilty pleasure?
Sure, I do, I’m only human.
What do you need before you start writing? Anything that is just a must have or the creative juice don’t flow?
Coffee is great starter. In fact, I made Triaxens crave coffee, it actually helps Triaxens. I got that idea while waiting for my beloved cup of coffee as I was writing.
Chocolate is a great helper too!
Does music influence your writing? If so, do any of your stories have a theme song?
Sometimes I listen to music while writing. I like the artist Kalai. At times, I listen to his music repeatedly while writing. I don’t know why. I just find it soothing. I love his guitar playing and his voice is sexy!
If your story was optioned for a movie, who would play your characters?
I need to think this over for the females. I do know for Krevan Vallex from The Triaxen would be Alexander Skarsgård. Lucan from The Ketchican Man would be Lou Diamond Phillips. Kael Braeden from Xihirah would be Hugh Jackman.
Where were you when you got your first contract? Who did you tell first?
I was at my computer in the kitchen. I told my kids and my parents as I was jumping up and down.
How old were you when you read your first romance book?
Probably thirteen years old and I never stopped. Thank goodness, there are e books now; I have too many tubs of books I’ve saved over the years.
What author causes you to “go fan girl”/ squeal over/anticipate upcoming books?
Lora Leigh, Sherrilyn Kenyon and Christine Feehan. These three authors inspired me. And when their books come out I run to get them.
If you still have one of those pesky non writing jobs what is it?
I’m a family law lawyer.
What are you currently working on, and what else is in the wings?
I’m working on the Forsaken Vamp Series with Author Patricia Bates. They are stories about vampires, dragons, trolls, gods and goddesses, Mer people, and other fantastical creatures.
Also, I’m working on a Christmas story about an Angel and a chef. Plus, I am working on the next in the Xihirian series.
I actually have about ten books on my list that I have outlined and just waiting to bring to life.
If you could co-write with another author who would it be?
Right now, I’m working on a great series with Patricia Bates, The Forsaken Vamps series. It’s going to be awesome!
How do you pick your characters names?
I think about the names a long time. The names are really important to me. Many times the story starts with the name. Kael Braeden means warrior from a dark valley. The other names I choose I simply thought they matched the tone of the character.
Do you prefer the love at first sight approach or a steady growth throughout?
I like attraction at first sight. The attraction that pools in your gut and shimmies down your spine; an irresistible pull is nice way to start a love affair. But I like the love to grow as the story unravels.
What is your reaction to people who say one of the following…”Oh you write romance, I thought you were a real writer”, “Romance isn’t a real writing career” or the ever popular “Oh, one of those books”.
I think it’s too bad that don’t see the joy in our books. Life is hard and we soften it with our stories. It’s nice to read about love and sex between people who have happiness. And I think… I bet (the person saying that) would like to be a writer too. To each it’s own!
Where can readers find you?
The Triaxen youtube http://youtu.be/h4iGsx8z_Pc
Xihirah youtube http://youtu.be/2uAKALeWOrY
The Ketchikan Man http://youtu.be/DNzc0AZ69oQ
And for the silly side – What is your favorite type of chocolate?
Chocolate kisses of course!