It’s seriously hard work being a fashionista and one of the most powerful undead, unless you’re Gina Covello. In Lucienne Diver’s Vamped series, Gina charms and disarms readers as she learns to navigate living – or pseudo-living – as one of the undead. A cross between Cher from Clueless and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Gina Covello is an effortlessly charming protagonist, and her adventures are easy to gobble up and oh-so hard to put down. Vamped is a must-have for YA readers desperate for a spicy love story with a side of paranormal and dash of suspense.
Do you choose your stories or do they choose you?
Actually, my characters find me and begin having conversations with each other. Eventually, to save my sanity, I create a plot for them and throw tension and suspense into their world to keep them busy and give them something to worry at besides my mind. Yes, I know how crazy that sounds, but truth is so often stranger than fiction!
When did you first consider yourself a writer? An author? Were the two synonymous?
A writer writes. An author writes for publication. To me, that’s the difference. You must be a writer to be an author, but you don’t have to be an author to be a writer.
A very good friend of mine, who’s and I have had many discussions about this. She thinks writing should be done for its own sake, and I can’t quite argue. I couldn’t stop writing if my life depended on it, because it wouldn’t be worth anything without my happiness and aforementioned sanity. However, I’m also tremendously goal-oriented and see the creation of art as only half of the process. Without an audience to connect with, there’s no completion of the circuit and no satisfaction in the emotional response to your work.
If you had to live inside one story for the rest of your life, what would it be? Why?
Oh that’s so difficult! Most of the books I read have tremendously resilient heroes and heroines who live through things I’d never survive, like The Hunger Games. But I think if I had to live inside a series, it would be Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum books, because I’d absolutely love to meet Ranger (extra steamy bail bondsman love interest). Oh, and Morelli, though I have to say the bad boy steals my heart every time.
What is the most important lack in your life?
Time. I love my life – my husband, son, puppies, job…everything. But, I work from the time I get up in the morning until the time I go to bed at night with only a few short breaks. I wish I had more time to stop and smell the roses. Or even do the dishes!
Reading is a subjective beast, and inevitably you can’t please all the readers all the time. What has been the toughest criticism you’ve been given as an author. What has been the best compliment.
I actually don’t mind fair criticism, because I don’t think I’m perfect. Oh, how I wish I were! I’m more challenged than hurt by a tough love review, because I’m ornery and it makes me more determined to get it all right the next time. The toughest review I ever received was for a novel in my Vamped young adult series that made me wonder what book the reviewer had actually read. She talked about my heroine waiting for people to save her, which is so far from the truth that I was stunned. I make a point of writing very self-sufficient characters, who are more likely to lead the charge than cheer from the sidelines. I think strong female protagonists are extremely important as role models, and anyway, those are the characters I’m most attracted to. So yes, my heroine goes from chic to eek when she becomes one of the undead and yes, she bemoans the damage to her manicure from having to dig her own way out of the grave. But she never lets that stop her.
Chocolate or vanilla?
It depends—chocolate for pudding, vanilla for ice cream, dark chocolate for bars!
Dogs or cats?
Dogs! I love cats, and they love me…to death. Dogs are much less hazardous to my health.
Hard/paperback or eReader?
Print. I’m a throwback. I love my Kindle for work, but for relaxation, I still want a bound book.
Tea or coffee?
Light side or dark side?
I like walking the tightrope in between!
Be sure to visit Lucienne Diver: http://www.luciennediver.com/