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Monday, January 14, 2013

Author Interview - Gail Martin

Please welcome author Gail Martin to the Far Edge of Normal. You can find her at:
@GailZMartin on Twitter
Winter Kingdoms on Facebook
Blogging at
Podcast at
Gail Z Martin on Shelfari and Goodreads—new Goodreads discussions every month!
And, be sure to check out her Amazon author page!

Tell us about your writing - What genre do you prefer to write? What books, stories, other publications that you've written are your personal favorites? Anything new coming up?

I love epic fantasy!  I love the big, historic sweep of the story and the large-scale themes, with the fate of the world hanging in the balance.  I’ve got a new book and the beginning of a new series in January, 2013 with Ice Forged, book one in the Ascendant Kingdoms Saga—and the adventure begins just as the world ends.

I still love my Chronicles of the Necromancer series and my Fallen Kings Cycle books.  It’s hard to pick my personal favorite among them because there are story lines I really adore in each one.

What about you as a person? What do you do to relax? Favorite movies or tv shows? Hobbies?

I’m married with three teenagers, two puppies and a cat, so that doesn’t leave a lot of down time!  I do enjoy watching movies on Netflix with the family (or at the theater if it’s a big release), and I read for fun, especially when I’m traveling.  I’m a new convert to Dr. Who, so I breathlessly await new episodes, and I’m also getting caught up on Torchwood.

Sounds like my house, except with more children. What gets your creative juices going? Do you write to a music, and do you want to share your playlist?

I listen to a rather eclectic mix—if I’m writing the more supernatural parts, I love Midnight Syndicate’s music—perfect for getting in the mood!  I also like New Age, Gregorian chant and spa-type instrumental music just to stay relaxed while I write.

"All writers must have cats, especially if they write fantasy or speculative fiction." Do you have a stand on this one? Any cute pictures of your kitty or other pet?

I have a 9-year old Himalayan cat named Nicholas, a 6 month-old Golden Retriever and a 6 month-old Maltese.  The dogs are being trained to be writer’s dog, meaning that they hang out and sleep around my feet.

What organizations do you recommend for those wanting to become writers? Any advice you'd like to share about writing?

I devoured every book by Writer’s Digest Books before I got published, and they helped a lot.  Now, there are even more good resources online, as well as a variety of online communities for writers to get input and support. As far as advice goes, the biggest thing is to stay with it—don’t give up.  There’s an old saying, “What do you call a persistent writer?  Published!”  Advice #2 is read up on how to prepare a manuscript and a query letter so that your work looks professional.

What writers inspired you to become an author?

I grew up around books of all kinds.  My mother had been an elementary school teacher, so she loved to read to me and later, with me.  There were books all over the house, and then there was the library!  I was always reading.  Two of my best friends would come over and we’d each be reading—quietly but together.  My mother would come up to see what we were up to because we were too quiet!  And there one of us would be sprawled in a bean bag chair and one on the bed, reading!  Then I realized there were books that I wanted to read that hadn’t been written yet—and I figured if I wanted to read them, I had to write them!

Any special appearances or events coming up that you want to mention?

Lots!  I love getting out and meeting readers.  So I hope people will come and say ‘hello’ at my live or virtual events!

•    Arisia in Boston Jan. 18 – 20—Ice Forged Launch Party is Saturday night 9:30 – 11:30!
•    Also official!  I’ve been invited to Chattacon in Chattanooga, TN Jan. 25 – 27—Ice Forged Launch Party is Saturday night!
•    Feb. 1 I’ll be signing Ice Forged at the Barnes & Noble Morrowcroft (South Charlotte) from 1-3
•    Feb. 2 I’ll be signing Ice Forged at Park Road Books in Charlotte from 2 – 4
•    Shevacon in Roanoke, VA Feb. 8 – 10
•    Feb. 15 I’ll be signing Ice Forged at the Books a Million at Cotswold from 1-3
•    Feb. 16 I’ll be signing Ice Forged at the Barnes & Noble in Pineville, NC from 2-4
•    Roanoke for Mysticon Feb. 22 – 24—Ice Forged Launch Party is Saturday night!
•    Arizona Renaissance Festival (near Phoenix) signing books March 23-24
•    Ravencon in Richmond, VA April 5 – 7.
•    ConCarolina in Charlotte, NC May 31 – June 2
•    Dragon*Con Labor Day weekend!
•    The Hawthorn Moon Virtual Book Tour on my sites and on partner sites world wide on June 21—sneak peek of the next new book!
•    Be part of the conversation on Goodreads as I host a new discussion every month.  We’ll talk about writing, publishing, fantasy, favorite books and more—and you’re invited!
•    I’ll be bringing out all-new short stories throughout 2013—a new one every month on Amazon.  Explore my Deadly Curiosities universe of cursed objects and intrepid thieves (think American Pickers meets The Exorcist across 500 years).
•    Jonmarc Vahanian is back!  Find out how the brigand lord of Dark Haven became the most feared warrior in the Winter Kingdoms in my Cursed Champion series of short stories—new on Amazon!

That's quite the schedule. If you could travel to any time in history, when would you visit?

I was a history major, so as much as I love stories set in other times, I appreciate the convenience, air conditioning, medicine and sanitation of modern life!

If you could have dinner with any of your characters, which ones would you choose? What food would you serve?

I’d love to have dinner with the main characters in Ice Forged—I think they’d have some stories to tell that even I haven’t heard yet!  And considering the lack of temperature-controlled ovens and other conveniences in medieval times, they cooked some pretty amazing foods and pastries.  At least the nobility could really put on a yummy feast!  Roast fowl with stuffing made with dried fruits and brandy, pies and tarts with macerated or dried fruit, cloves, cinnamon and other spices, hot wassail, spiced wine, freshly baked bread…..they knew how to party!

If you could travel anywhere, on earth or off, where would you go?

I have a long bucket list!  I’d start with the United Kingdom and northern Europe, work my way east to Eastern Europe, take a river cruise down the Rhine and the other major rivers, then grab a flight to New Zealand and Australia, and end up taking the Trans-Canada railroad back home.

What color would you wear if you had only one choice?


Describe your dream writing spot.

Somewhere that overlooks the ocean and has unlimited hot coffee.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Good luck with your new series!

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