I recently got the chance to interview the author of BLACK CITY, Elizabeth Richards, and I am dying to share this interview with everyone. BLACK CITY was such a GREAT READ and if you read my review below you'll know just how much love I have for this book.
I am also sharing my copy of Black City with one lucky follower today! I wish I had millions to share, but unfortunately I just have one :-(.
Interview time :-D
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your upcoming novel, Black City.
Well, I’m a book lover and sci-fi geek, who spends her life walking around in a daydream, fantasizing about supernatural boys and post-apocalyptic worlds! I started my writing career as a journalist reviewing videogames before moving into travel editing, despite the fact I suck at geography and suffer from terrible travel sickness. Clearly it was time for a career change, and so I decided to try my hand at writing a novel, which was something I’d always wanted to do.
Black City is my debut novel, due out on 13 November 2012. Here’s the official synopsis:
A dark and tender post-apocalyptic love story set in the aftermath of a bloody war.
In a city where humans and Darklings are now separated by a high wall and tensions between the two races still simmer after a terrible war, sixteen-year-olds Ash Fisher, a half-blood Darkling, and Natalie Buchanan, a human and the daughter of the Emissary, meet and do the unthinkable—they fall in love.
Bonded by a mysterious connection, that causes Ash’s long dormant heart to beat, Ash and Natalie first deny and then struggle to fight their forbidden feelings for each other, knowing if they’re caught they’ll be executed—but their feelings are too strong.
When Ash and Natalie then find themselves at the center of a deadly conspiracy that threatens to pull the humans and Darklings back into war, they must make hard choices that could result in both their deaths.
2. What was the writing process like for Black City?
It’s been a real rollercoaster ride, that’s for sure. I’m the type of author who agonises over every word and constantly revisits scenes and revises them over and over, obsessing over the simplest line, until I’m happy with it. So in that sense it was a lot of hard, painstaking work. But I’ve enjoyed every second of it! Writing Black City was an absolute joy, especially working with my awesome editor, Stacey Barney, at Putnam/Penguin. She’s a miracle worker!
On a more technical level, I started writing the first draft of Black City back in Fall 2009...argh, god, was it really that long ago? Time has flown by! Anyway, I digress. That draft took around 5 months to write and then I redrafted it about a trillion times, based on feedback from my Beta readers, before querying agents. I then revised the MS again, based on my agent’s feedback and then, of course, the book’s had to go through the whole editing process at Putnam, which includes redrafting, revising, line edits, copyedits, first pass pages...you name it! It takes an awful lot of blood, sweat and tears to get a manuscript up to scratch, but it’s well worth the effort in the long-run.
3. Black City is told from two different point of views. Did you know that you wanted to write the book this way? Or was it something that just happened?
I always wanted to write it this way, as it was important for me to get inside Natalie’s head so readers could understand her motivations better...and also because I wanted to write the kissing scenes from her point of view, so I could describe Ash through her eyes! But I’ve always been a fan of dual narratives. It’s not to everyone’s tastes, but I love seeing two (or more) sides of the story.
4. It seems today that most authors have a soundtrack to their book. Was there a specific album and/or song that helped you while writing?
I love bands like Within Temptation and was listening to them a lot when I was writing Black City, and I think it comes through in the novel with its dark, gothic vibe. When I was doing the last set of revisions, I was also listening to the band Two Steps From Hell, and I think their song Freedom Fighters is a great theme for Black City.
However, I’m in a very fortunate position that my sister is a composer, and she’s been writing a soundtrack for Black City, which I’ll have up on my website nearer to the launch of the book, and I think those songs really capture the essence of the series.
5. What do you hope readers will get after reading Black City?
I really hope that they’re left breathless and want to immediately reread the book, just so they can experience the story all over again! I also hope readers fall in love with the characters, the way I did, and want to find out what happens next.
6. Is Black City a series, or is it a stand alone?
Black City is the first book in the Black City Chronicles. In total, there will be three books in the series, and I’m currently drafting book 3! The following two books will be released in quick succession, so you won’t have to wait long to read the next book in the series.
7. Can you share a small sneak peek into Black City for our followers?
I can do one better! Since Black City was selected as one of Penguin’s Fall 2012 Breathless Reads, you can read a sample of Black City on the official Breathless Reads Facebook fan page - https://www.facebook.com/breathlessreads/app_190322544333196. The sample also includes chapters from the other Breathless Reads books - Venom, Origin, The Innocents and Falling Kingdoms - so it’s well worth a read.
Thank you Elizabeth so much for taking the time to answer my questions. By the way... one, I love Within Temptation. Two, I was left breathless and want to reread Black City like 500 times. Three, I am so happy we don't have to wait very long for the sequel! *Squee* Okay done. LOL
I am giving away an advance copy of Black City! To enter all you have to do is follow the Rafflecopter below.
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* Contest Ends June 26th
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* Winner will be announced on our Facebook and Twitter page.