Hi, I’m Carla Roma and welcome to Bandit Creek, a small town with a mountain of secrets.
Up here in the mountains, May is the time of year when you might have to shovel snow one day and be out in your shorts the next. It’s that wonderful month when anything can happen. While I’m all for getting out in the sunshine whenever possible, I didn’t mind our last rainy day because it gave me a chance to read the latest Bandit Creek paranormal romance, Witch in the Wind, by Brenda Collins. Afterwards I had to call Brenda to find out where she came up the new magical dimension for Bandit Creek.
Carla: I hear you’ve been a closet writer for a long time. What made you finally take the leap to publication now?
BMC: I’ve wanted to be a romance writer since I was twelve years old, but didn’t start seriously studying the creative writing craft until middle age. As for finally releasing something, I have the Bandit Creek gang to thank for taking me on this wild ride called e-publishing. The authors who’d given it a try were so energized by their experience, they just drew the rest of us into the Bandit Creek project.
Carla: How do you feel about the growing popularity of e-books?
BMC: I’ve spent most of my career working in high tech so I appreciate the benefits of digital publishing and was an early adopter when it came to eReader devices. But I also love the feel of a traditional book and the experience of snuggling under a blanket on the couch with a good book on my lap. It doesn’t have to be either, or. There’s room for both in the marketplace.
Carla: What is the biggest benefit in your opinion?
BMC: For both the reader and the author, it removes a lot of the restrictions that limit how the story is told. EPublishing lets me blend, and cross, genre lines so I can tell the story in the best way possible for the readers to experience it. My hubby described ‘Witch in the Wind” as a paranormal romantic adventure with mystery elements. Where would that fit in the tradition book publishing market?
Carla: When we first met back in the day, you were writing murder mysteries. Why the flip to fantasy with this one?
BMC: The Wizard of Oz captivated me as a kid and, even as an adult, I read all of the Harry Potter and Twilight books as they were released, so writing fantasy isn’t that big a leap for me. Witch in the Wind did start with a murder but then the story just took on a life of its own. A powerful warlock showed up to investigate the murder, and a stray dog arrived with some very strange characteristics. Before I knew it, the heroine’s whole world was not what she thought and she was fighting for her life while trying to figure out who killed her parents.
Carla: I thought your story did have a touch of The Wizard of Oz meets Twilight to it. Seems to me, I’ve read something about your hero earlier in the Bandit Creek series. Has he been living in town all along?
BMC: My warlock, Marcus Egan, is not from Bandit Creek but we met him very briefly in Shanna Gekko’s story, Skin Deep (Jan. 2012). When Shanna’s hero, Kai Hunter, needs magical help he calls Marcus from The Otherland.
Carla: The Otherland? That doesn’t sound like Montana.
BMC: You’re definitely not in Montana anymore. And any dog in The Otherland named Toto would have to be a magical creature like a familiar.
Carla: (Laughing) And Dorothy isn’t anywhere to be found?
BMC: Absolutely not! My heroine is Avalon Gwynn. She grew up in Bandit Creek and has no idea she’s an extraordinary, hereditary witch.
Carla: Where on earth does your imagination come from?
BMC: Newfoundland, where I was born, is definitely on earth although far enough out in the North Atlantic to forget at times. Its history dates back to the Vikings and leans heavily to Irish. Folktales are bred into my family genes.
Carla: Do you see yourself writing another story about Marcus and Avy.
BMC: Who knows? The Otherland is a complex world so there’s lots of room to develop more stories if readers are interested.
Carla: Congratulations on your first publication, Brenda!
Witch in the Wind will be available on May 1, 2012 from Amazon.com and Smashwords.com.