Were-jaguar and TV personality, Riley O’Rourke, has been looking over her shoulder ever since she stole from the Dark Queen of the Unseelie faeries. When Riley is contacted by an informant with knowledge that can blow the lid off the story of the year, she can’t pass up the opportunity to investigate. What she finds instead is something that puts her at the mercy of the Dark Queen, who is not known for her compassion.
When Riley’s boyfriend, David, realizes she’s missing, he’ll do whatever it takes to get her back, including starting a war with the Unseelie. The balance of power among the Fae courts is shifting, and if David makes one wrong move, Riley could end up crushed in the struggle. But after being the subject of the Queens’s legendary cruelty, will there even be anything left of Riley to save?
The second book in the Revelations Trilogy continues the story of Riley O'Rourke, David Lo, and Neve MacAlpin. Buy it here.
Taming Shadows is the first book in the Revelations Trilogy and introduces us to Riley, David, and Neve. Buy it here.
Welcome Author Fiona Skye...
It was a combination of things, really. I have wanted to be an author since I was probably five or six years old, but my career went sort of in the opposite direction. I worked as a journalist for years—both as a staff writer and in the editorial department—for two different newspapers and a magazine. Then I discovered National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and only wrote fiction during the month of November. I never went back to those books despite crossing the 50,000-word finish line with all but one. But in November of 2012, I decided that it was time to make my childhood dream true and picked a character who had been living inside my head for more than ten years. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Tell us a little bit about your character, Riley O’Rourke?
Riley has lived inside my brain since 2001, when my husband introduced me to Laurell Hamilton's Anita Blake series. I was very intrigued by the lycanthropes and wondered what sort of were-animal would do best in Southern Arizona. Then I discovered that there were wild jaguars living here and decided, yeah, that could work.
Riley has gone through a few permutations since she was first born. She was a lawyer when I first met her, then a ballet dancer, and finally a journalist. Most of the rest of her—her heritage, her involvement with the Fae and David, where she lives and where she's from—has stayed the same, though.
What would be her theme song? Who would you cast for her in a TV/movie?
She's had a few theme songs throughout the years, but I think the one that most fits her is “Scars”, by Rush. And she's Maggie Q in my mind.
What’s your writing process like? (Any routines: time of day, snacks, music) Plotter or pantster?
When life and the day job (which would be an epic name for a band, by the way) allows, I like to write as soon as I get up until around lunch time. I always try to get at least 1,000 words a day if I can. My choice in music usually depends upon what sort of scene I'm writing that day—I have Spotify playlists for everything from love scenes to fight scenes. As far as snacks go, I've been trying to go for healthy stuff, so on the snack shelf of my desk, I have everything pretzel thins and trail mix from Trader Joe's. Of course, I wouldn't be me if I didn't have some gummis as well.
I am definitely a pantster, much to my detriment, I think. I know how stories start and end, but it's the middle stuff that bogs me down. Lately I've been trying different outlining techniques to see which is the best fit for me. We'll see when I get finished with my experiment stories.
Favorite character to write/least favorite character to write and why?
My favorite character is Riley. She's so much like me, really...well, except for her Jaguar side and her shoe budget. But her snarky attitude and her outlook on life are very similar to mine.
My least favorite character to write is...well, no one. I really do love all my characters.
Any suggestions for the author embarking on series writing?
Make sure you know where you're going and approximately how many books it will take to get there. Pepper your books with things that will be explained in the next installment to keep your readers interested and wanting more. And please, for the love of all that you hold holy, answer ALL the questions in the final book in the series!
Biggest mistakes fantasy authors make (in your opinion)?
Adhering to cliches. Yes, elves and dwarfs and orcs are established winners, but maybe you could write about something different? Dryads, golems, and goblins maybe?
You’re also an editor—what are the most common errors you find writers make?
Not taking advantage of an editor's services. I've run across so many indie and self-published authors who think that hiring a professional editor is a waste of their money. They can do everything else themselves. And then then get a ton of one-star reviews saying they needed to run the manuscript past an editor. Don't be that guy! If you can't afford a professional, turn your manuscript over to someone you trust—a friend who is a fellow author is the perfect choice.
What books have influenced your life the most?
The Hobbit, Peter Pan, and the Chronicles of Narnia. If not for them, I'm pretty sure I'd be writing either high-falutin' literary fiction or trashy romance novels.
Is there anything particular you want readers to take away from your books?
I just hope they enjoy them. I honestly did not write these to be something with a message or a moral. These are not high-falutin' literary fiction novels that can change your life. They're fun, escapist literature, and I hope that people read them with that in mind.
Ups/downs of Indie publishing?
People still not considering me a “real” author or my books “real” books. I've put just as much—if not more—effort into getting these books into the hands of my readers than have traditionally published authors, and frankly, I'm a little sick of being told I'm not a real author.
Tell us about your upcoming adventures—more fantasy? Have you written/plan to write in other genres?
I've written a pirate-themed historical romance that will be coming out under a pen name in the fall, and I have a YA dystopian sci-fi thing that will be coming out next year. I'm still looking for something so epic that it will require multiple books to tell, because I like writing series and I think a lot of readers prefer series to stand alones.
Any predictions for the publishing world in the next decade?
I think with the overwhelming amount of self-published authors and independent presses, the Big Five publishers are going to have to change their game even more. I also hope that there will eventually be some sort of standards for self-published authors, so that our reputations will stop being harmed by people who churn out sub-par garbage.
I am an adventurer living on a homebody's budget.
What kind of paranormal/preternatural creature would you choose to be?
Maybe a magic-user of some sort, like Orla Brown in my own books.
You’re stranded on a deserted island. Which author would you choose as company and why?
I actually have a list! Here they are, in order from top to bottom:
1. Diana Gabaldon
2. Neil Peart
3. Kevin Hearne
4. Jim Butcher
5. Brandon Sanderson
In 2050, _______ will rule the world.
The cynical idealist part of me says greed, because I don't see that changing any time soon. Then the optimist pipes up and says compassion, because if we don't change the way most of us are living, we won't be around in 2050. Wow, that's kinda heavy. Um... Dog lovers will rule the world in 2050. Because dogs >> everything else.
Favorite guilty pleasure?
Chick flicks. My favorites are PS I Love You, Say Anything, Love Actually, and anything with Doris Day and Rock Hudson.
About the Author
Fiona’s passion for story telling began early in life. She loved playing make-believe and inventing elaborate fantasy worlds for her friends and her to play in. At age twelve, she wrote her first short story, which was based on a song by a 1980s hair band. After giving it to her English teacher for editing and rewrites, she learned to love the entire writing process, and has dedicated her life since then to writing, only to be occasionally distracted by her insatiable love of yarn and crochet, and the dogged pursuit of the perfect plate of cheese enchiladas.
She counts Diana Gabaldon and Jim Butcher as her favorite authors and biggest influences. Joining these two on the list of people she would wait in queue for a week to have a coffee with are Neil Peart, Kevin Hearne, and Brandon Sanderson.
CONNECT WITH FIONA HERE:
Website & Blog: http://fiona-skye.com/