Friday, November 9, 2012

Spotlight: Carolyn Crane

As promised, we have a treat for you today -- that's right, we're bringing Spotlight, and sexy, back! Awesome author Carolyn Crane is here today to talk about her newest release, Mr. Real, Code of Shadows #1, AND do a giveaway! I know, it's too happy to be true!

For those who may not know, Carolyn Crane is the author of the Disillusionists trilogy and assorted novellas. She lives in Minneapolis with her husband and two cats, and works a day job as a freelance writer. During rare moments when she’s not at her computer, she can be found reading in bed, running, or helping animals. She's also hella fun. So, welcome, Carolyn, and thanks for taking the Spotlight!
CC: Hey, thanks so, so much for having me here!! 

GK: What prompted you to become a writer? Was it voices in your head, a burning desire to tell a story, or just too creative for your own bad self? 

CC: You know, I just love working on stories, and kind of wrestling and tussling with them. Sometimes I hate it, or I’m not in the mood, but when I don’t do it, I feel all sludgy and barely human. So I keep on. 

GK: What was the first book or piece that you wrote and why? Is it published, being shopped, on the shelf waiting for you to get back to it, or in a heap of ashes at the bottom of the fireplace? 

CC: My first book, a full novel written entirely in seven super gossipy letters from seven officemates to be placed in a time capsule, will never see the light of day. I know that must be so shocking. Please, take a moment to recover!! 

GK: No way. I can't believe it. At all. That never happens to any of us, ever. ;-D 

CC: The second or third books I wrote will also never see the light of day. They live in my computer in a dark, dark hole!! 

GK: So, so far, you're a normal writer. Well, as normal as we get. Give us a funny story about writing your latest release. It’s okay if your funny story involves a nervous breakdown as the deadline loomed, btw. I like to relate to my guests. 

CC: OMG, doing a full book on my own was completely harrowing. I had ten nervous breakdowns, seriously. The learning curve was so intense. I made so many mistakes. I had three different covers made! I think my husband nearly had me committed by the third one. Okay, funny, funny. Here’s one thing: I got to use this punctuation?!  I so always wanted to. Would that ever be allowed in a NY pubbed book? No. But I find it a very meaningful form of punctuation. 

GK: It's the little things you treasure. What’s your most and least favorite things about being an author? 

CC: I really love when a story is coming together, sort of hitting its stride and it feels suddenly like its own awesome and fiery little universe of characters. Usually on a later draft. My least favorite thing is how organized and detail oriented you have to be about the business and promo side of it. I was that kid with mismatched socks and dirt in her desk, staring out the window. I so suck at details. 

GK: Aww, you weren't alone, trust me. What’s one fact about you that someone who didn’t know you well or hasn’t read this blog wouldn’t know? Make it juicy -- my readers expect. 

CC: I am frequently wracked by guilt. I think everybody has their go-to bad emotion, and I’m totally in the guilt camp. I can be wracked by guilt for days for wronging a person. It really affects me poorly when people are mad at me over the Internet. I can easily let myself get haunted by things I’ve done. When the Disillusionist trilogy was coming out, I was petrified that there would be this whole subset of people who’d lost loved ones to aneurysms, or like, Lou Gehrig’s disease, and think I was making fun of them with my fake diseases, and making light of disease. This had occurred to me only after I wrote it, and it sort of haunted me. Okay, now I probably sound crazy! Stop this interview! Gini! You stop laughing! Put away the popcorn!!   

GK: Not to worry. My go-to emotion IS worry, so you don't have to. Believe me, I can relate to taking an emotion to ridiculous heights for no good reason at all, and welcome to the Writer Girls Neuroses Club! We have cookies! And booze. So, while you're getting a drink and a box of Thin Mints, can we get a description of and a short excerpt from Mr. Real? 

CC: Sure!

From the back cover:
The woman of his dreams…with the secret agent of his nightmares

Alix Gordon is a woman who doesn’t take life too seriously. What’s the fun in that? So when she stumbles across occult software that can bring any computer image to life, she conjures up lots of awesome outfits and accessories. And then, on one drunken, horny night, she conjures up Sir Kendall, the sexy TV ad spy . . . who looks exactly like Paul Reinhardt, the hot martial arts teacher who kicked her out of class a few years ago.

Fighter Paul Reinhardt has good reason to hate Sir Kendall, the character he brought to life to land a part in a TV ad; he’d do anything to forget him. A cross country road trip seems just the thing . . . until Paul finds himself inexplicably drawn to Minnesota and is shocked to discover Sir Kendall – in the flesh – with the girl he’d once loved from afar. He barges into Alix and Sir Kendall’s love nest, determined to stop the madness – somehow.

But is super spy Sir Kendall transforming into something more dangerous anyone can imagine? And what will Sir Kendall do when Paul and Alix finally give into their mad lust for each other?

Excerpt from Mr. Real
Sir Kendall was so much more than a TV spy, so much more than the Denali man. He was the ultimate dark stranger in a tuxedo, a magnificent male animal whose blue eyes twinkled with secrets as he lingered in dark doorways, always just back from some exotic place. Sir Kendall exuded a predatory charm; his sense of entitlement was arrogant, and slightly humorous—you would give him exactly what he wanted, and you would give it breathlessly. And you knew that giving Sir Kendall exactly what he wanted would be an unforgettable experience.
And that’s when it hit her: A sexy visit from Sir Kendall…it was totally within her reach now!

GK: I've had the pleasure of reading Mr. Real, and I can tell you, it's totally fun and totally sexy. And one of you gets to totally win a copy! Check it out below. Carolyn, thanks so much for being here and relaunching Spotlight! Anything you want to say to the readers? 

CC: Hey, thanks so much for stopping by! And Gini, thanks for having me. Leave it to another writer to ask the crazy questions. 

GK: Hmmm...I may have to TAKE OFFENSE at that. (Heh. She's gonna be sending me chocolate for DAYS now. ;-D) So, while I haze the newest member of the Writer Girls Neuroses Club, let's find out what all y'all need to do to win.

Carolyn is giving away one (1) ebook copy of Mr. Real, to one (1) commenter chosen by the Gods of Random. Yes, this is open internationally. You have until Friday, Nov. 16, 2012, to comment in order to be entered to win. Winner will be announced the week of Nov. 19th; winner will have a week to reply before the Gods of Random demand a new sacrifice and that a new winner be chosen.

In order to actually GET the prize, you must: 1) Leave a name by which we may call you and to which you will answer; 2) Provide a working email address that we can send the prize to; and 3) Answer this question -- If YOU had the power, what character would you choose to make come to life? 

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Blogger Sullivan McPig said...

Not entering, but I just wanted you both to know you did a great job on this fun interview *hugs*

November 9, 2012 at 1:59 PM  
Blogger Denise Z said...

After much thought and palavering it was determined the one character to bring to life would be Tony Stark. Think of what could be accomplished with this awesome hunk of bad ###. Oh changes they do be a-coming. Thank you for taking the time and effort to share with us today. This was a fun post and I am glad you have brought back this feature. I am going to be looking forward to more blah, blah, blah in the spotlight :)

November 9, 2012 at 2:48 PM  
Anonymous Kent said...

If i could make a character come to life it could be a nightmare of a different sort in that I would most like one of my female created fem versions of myself. This could be off the wall in what if realized online fem self didnt connect to me the real me. What if she wanted to go off into the life i created in fantasy? It would be interesting to see wht i got right or wrong and scarry like the movie already made that kids did much the same thing but it was their fantasy ideal. What i created includes the face, the eyes, all aspects of physical in order to do images. My limits are the lower level Poser so some positions do not make real physical positions. More then any character i have ever read, i think i would rather see my fem self real. it would be wonderful, strange and extremely frightening.

November 9, 2012 at 4:12 PM  
Anonymous Readsalot81 said...

I'm not sure what it says about me that I'd choose brainy guys with beautiful eyes that are perhaps just a tad messed up.

I'd choose Patrick Jane (ie: Simon Baker) from the Mentalist.. or Dr. Greg House.. from the aforementioned name.

*sigh* Something about that particular combo just gets me.. and the conversations would be
fascinating as hell. :D


November 9, 2012 at 5:24 PM  
Blogger Lisa Dovichi said...

Lisa "The Head of Team Gini" Dovichi -- and yes, I expect to be called all of that and while it would be epic if that were my e-mail address -- sadly it's not as you well know. :)

Do I get extra points if I say it's a guy from the Alien Series? I never win these contests. I need all the help I can get. And does it have to be one? I mean, really how awesome would it be to have Capt Mal AND Castle, huh? Huh? I know you're feeling me on this one!

Great interview!!

November 9, 2012 at 5:44 PM  
Blogger JC Jones said...

I would love to bring any of the sexy cat shape shifters from Nalini Singh's Psy/Changling series to life. They are all to die for.

Jo Jones
jonesjar at

November 9, 2012 at 6:03 PM  
Blogger Barbara E. said...

I'd bring to life Captain Mal Reynolds from Firefly, he's such a sweetheart and a bad ass as well, everything you could want in a fictional character come to life. :D

Barbara Elness
Barbed1951 at aol dot com

November 9, 2012 at 6:49 PM  
Blogger Andrea Rittschof said...

Oh, so many to consider and choose, you have to ask the difficult questions but if I must choose one and only one, I have to go with Wolverine. I have loved him since I was a young teenager and if given the power to have one character be alive, it has to be him. Cigar, claws, and healing factor, what more can you ask for?
Andrea Rittschof

November 11, 2012 at 1:03 AM  
Blogger Lynn Crain said...

I too am not shipping is just toooooo much...hey, I have to pay people to send me books over here. LOL!

Wonderful interview, Gini and Carolyn! It is always so very, very fun to look into another author's writing habits.

Thanks for sharing!


November 11, 2012 at 10:17 AM  
Blogger Stella Ex Libris said...

Thanks for the terrific, fun interview Ladies! You are both favourite authors of mine and putting you together ensured great fun! :-D

Carolyn congrats again and hope that Mr. Real is out now you can get a break to breathe a bit from all the worrying and guilt-trips.

I would like to make Mr. Thornton from Elizabeth Gaskell's North and South my Mr. Real, he is even better than Mr. Darcy ;-) lol

Thank you for the chance and all the fun!

stella.exlibris (at) gmail (dot) com

November 12, 2012 at 9:17 AM  
Blogger Aurian said...

Lol, thanks for this fun interview, I really want to read Mr. Real now!
I would have my very own Captain James T. Kirk (the young version please, not how old William Shatner is now, though still handsome), and he would take me with him on the Enterprise. Of course, I would never ever wear a redshirt ... those are the ones that die.
Sigh. To share his love with the Enterprise would not be too hard for me.

auriansbooks at gmail dot com

November 12, 2012 at 3:57 PM  
Blogger Carolyn Crane said...

I'm just laughing grinning these comments. Great picks, you guys!

November 13, 2012 at 8:47 AM  
Blogger evening-green said...

It took me a while to decide. There are tons of characters I love, but to be honest I'm not sure it would be good to make them come to life. Anyway if there's one character I would choose it would probably be Quinton from Kat Richardson's Greywalker series, he's awesome and has brains :)
Come to think of it Seth from Richelle Mead's Succubus series would be great too...I see a pattern there.
While most of the time I love alpha-males in books, I'm not sure if they would translate well to real life.
Thanks for the chance to win!

eveningreen AT gmail DOT com

November 14, 2012 at 5:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If I could bring a character to life it would be Derek from the Kate Daniels Series by Ilona Andrews aftervhis terrible accident. I would like to help him recover mentally from it as I really adore him!


November 14, 2012 at 7:37 AM  
Blogger Brenda Hyde said...

Man, this is such a hard question. SO many cool characters. First, I just can't decide on a guy-- no way-- so, I'm going with a girl's night out, but even that is a toss up. If I say Kitty I would just be accused of sucking up, but she is at the top of my list. I would love to bring Mina Wentworth from Meljean Brook's Iron Duke. Man, she'd be so cool to have tea with:)

wayfaringwriter at gmail dot com

November 14, 2012 at 9:01 PM  
Blogger Blodeuedd said...

If I made Martini come alive, could we make that he loved me then? ;)

booksforlife01 at gmail dot com

November 16, 2012 at 3:17 PM  
Blogger Mariann Asanuma said...

Man that's a tricky question. There's so many cool characters. Maybe one of the hot ACs that isn't already attached ;)

November 16, 2012 at 11:50 PM  

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