“Hi, Kylie,” I say, giving her what I hope is a reassuring smile. I know it’s always disconcerting for my characters when I summon them to the office in my mind for a chat. If they’re not already freaked out by the idea of talking with their creator, there’s always the décor of my office. Let’s just say my mind is scary place to be. I’m talking abandoned plot devices sitting inside a broken basket next to the wall, smidgens of ideas I haven’t fully developed yet bouncing around the corner of my brain. Then, in the dark shadowy corners something is hiding, and even I can’t quite figure out just what that something is. Oh, and the occasional dead body that I haven’t decided how to use.
“I hope you don’t mind,” I tell her, “but I wanted to interview you for my blog to promote the release of Taken at Dusk.” I motion toward the sofa. “Have a seat. This won’t take long, I promise.”
She glances over her shoulder, looking for the exit. “You are one freaky, strange, and a few French fries short of a happy meal ol’ lady.”
“Now that hurts,” I tell her. “I’m not that old.”
“Sorry. I’m sixteen, everyone past thirty is old to me.” She frowns. “I don’t like being interrogated.” She wraps her arms around her midsection.
“This isn’t an interrogation,” I say, speaking calmly. “It’s an interview. Big difference.”
“Feels like an interrogation.” She takes her seat on the sofa.
“People are curious about you and Shadow Falls, and they want to know more about you.”
“People think I’m a freak,” Kylie says. “Even the other supernaturals at Shadow Falls.”
“No, they don’t,” I correct her.
“You made me glow in that last scene in Whispers at Moonrise. Believe me, they think I’m a freak. Fredericka called me a glow worm. Della said I looked like a firefly. Can’t you write me a few chapters of easy stuff?”
“You know it doesn’t work that way, Kylie,” I say, keeping my voice calm. “Easy stuff is boring.”
“And serial killers and ghosts are interesting?” She slumps back on the sofa.
“What’s interesting is seeing you stand up to the challenges. Besides, I write some good scenes. Remember the one in Taken at Dusk when you woke up and your entire room was filled with roses that some special guy had brought you. And then he–”
“That was a great scene.” She smiled. “But I’m furious at that guy right now.”
“That’s life,” I tell her. Men always do things to piss us off. If there not leaving the toilet seat up, they’re leaving their dirty socks everywhere.”
She sighs loudly. “Let’s get this over with so I can leave this whacky place. What do you want to ask me?”
I pull out my notes. “In Taken at Dusk, your ghost has amnesia. This must make helping her cross over even more difficult.”
Kylie nods. “Every spirit is a challenge. Like with the one I’m working with now. Spirits are supposed to be dead. This person isn’t dead. How can I–”
“Sorry,” I interrupt her. “We can’t talk about Shadows at Moonrise. This is about Taken at Dusk.”
She frowns. “You bring me here and then tell me what I can and can’t talk about. That’s not nice.”
“Sorry.” I wait a minute to continue. “Now. Without giving too much away about the plot, I want to ask you about the big game changer in Taken at Dusk. Namely, when someone you think is your enemy turns into a friend who’ll do anything to save you. How did that make you feel?”
A shadow crosses her face, and she folds her hands in her lap. “That . . . that was really an emotional scene. I honestly never thought. . .” She takes a deep breath. “It was a lot for me to digest, and I think I’m still trying to understand it.”
I decide to move on to a lighter subject. “I have to ask you about Burnett . . . and the kangaroo.”
Her face dissolves in a grin. “Poor Burnett. He was . . .”
“Hopping mad?” I suggest.
“Yes!” Then, she laughed. “Of course, he didn’t find it that funny.”
“Yeah, but vampires aren’t known for having great senses of humor,” I point out.
I nod and then flip the notebook closed. “Okay, that about does it for my questions. Thanks so much for giving me a few minutes of your time.”
“No problem.” Then, her forehead starts to scrunch up in concentration. “Okay, I have a question for you.”
“Why is there a bunch of rusty iron and herbs in the middle of your mind? I know that’s about me, but I can’t figure it out. What does it mean?”
I shake my head. “Oh, that’s for a scene in Whispers at Moonrise. Sorry, but we can’t talk about that because it hasn’t happened yet. But I promise you’ll find out in the next few scenes.”
She stares at my forehead again. “Uh-huh. Well, nothing personal, but I don’t think I want to find out. Change that scene!”
I smile. “Trust me, Kylie. This will all work out well in the end.” I rise to my feet.
“That’s what you always say.” She stands up and starts heading to the door.
“Mmm. And I’m always right, too, aren’t I?”
Kylie turns back. “Good point.” She pauses. “Can I have some more roses? And more of those kinds of scenes.”
“I’ll try to work one in,” I say. She heads out the door and back to Shadow Falls in a flash that sends a stack of papers on my desk fluttering to the floor. As I stand there, I realize that I’m almost done with Whispers at Moonrise, and that means I only have one more book in this series left to write. One more and I’ll have to make a lot of decisions. Like who is Kylie really going to end up with, Lucas or Derek? Will Miranda and Perry stay together? Will Della find her true love? Will Burnett and Holiday finally stop fighting and admit they love each other.
And then . . . then, I have to say goodbye to them to all. To all my Shadow Falls characters. But dang it, that’s sad. Very, very sad. I’ll end it on good note, I tell myself. I’ll leave them all in happy place.
Okay, I had my interview with Kylie, so now it is your turn. If you could ask Kylie a question, what would it be. And remember, I’ve only written the first four books, so her knowledge is limited. As for Lucas or Derek–don’t even ask!
Anyway, I will give a $10 Amazon gift card to the person who asks Kylie the best question. So, come on, what are you dying to ask her??