Books-n-Kisses is pleased to welcome Hanna Marine to the blog today to chat about her newest release A TASTE OF ICE.
Hanna, can you please share with us a little about yourself
Sure! Some random tidbits … I do not like practical jokes or pranks. I was on a competitive college dance team. I can’t stand mixing crunchy foods with soft (granola in yogurt and chocolate chips in ice cream are the worst offenders). I think Before Sunrise and Before Sunset are two of the most romantic movies ever made. I met my husband in a bar.
Have you always wanted to be an author?
Always! I remember writing stories and plays in grade school–as early as third grade–and thinking that the only career that would ever make me happy would be a writer. I thought it would be so easy to accomplish. How little did I know! But the sweat and (literal) tears have been worth it.
What is your most interesting writing quirk?
Hmmm. I edit on paper and I have to use a really, really sharp pencil to do it. It’s labor intensive and takes a long time, but it’s the best way for me to really examine the structure of the story, to see where I’ve made all my changes, and to concentrate best on the prose.
My newest book is A Taste of Ice, the second in my paranormal romance series, The Elementals. Xavier is the last of his race left on Earth. He wants nothing more than to fit into the human world, and to do that he has sworn off magic and women. Enter Cat, a gorgeous artist, who tests his resolve and ignites a desire he never thought he would feel. Only he suspects her of being a water elemental, the very race that held him in slavery before he escaped. Just when they begin to trust each other, a new threat emerges, one that hunts them both and puts their entire secret world at risk.
It’s an emotionally intense story that, at times, wrung me out while writing it. I’m very proud of it.
You can read more about it here (including the first two chapters): http://www.hannamartine.com/taste-of-ice.php
How did you come with the idea for this story?
The world of the Elementals is based on classic elemental magic (earth, air, fire, water), which has always fascinated me. I wanted to write about subversive cultures and hidden worlds mixed in with our own. With Xavier, I challenged myself to write a paranormal hero who wasn’t all muscled out and whose biggest battles were not fought with his fists. For A Taste of Ice, my goal was to heal a man who seemed impossible to reach. I love when opposites attract, find common ground, and lift each other up, so I knew I had to make Xavier’s true love wear the face of his former enemy.
For each Elementals novel, I switch locales and make the story self-contained. A Taste of Ice is set in a snowy mountain town during a big film festival. The setting (ice, snow, etc.) really helped push the plot into areas I might not have considered before.
Can you share with us your current work(s) in progress?
I am writing my first contemporary romance, Long Shot, which is set against the backdrop of the Scottish Highland Games in the mountains of New Hampshire. It releases October 2013 and I’m really excited about it! It’s about Jen, a big-time event planner in New York City who is called back to the New Hampshire town of her youth to save the local Highland Games. When she returns, she finds Leith, the boy she left ten years earlier to chase her dreams, is still there. A local hero and former athletic champion of the games (throwing giant stones and hammers and long tree trunks carved into cabers), he is finally leaving his hometown to start a new life elsewhere, until the love of his life suddenly reappears, begging him to compete again and kickstarting his heart.
I know I’m not supposed to play favorites with my fictional men, but Leith MacDougall might be up at the top of my list of heroes. It’s all about the kilt, baby.
Who is the one author that you would love to meet someday and why?
This is actually a funny story. I did, sort of, meet my favorite author. I adore Jacqueline Carey–her Kushiel series pretty much changed my life–so when I learned she was going to be at WorldCon this past Labor Day (as was I), I got giddy. The day I was set to sign my first book, Liquid Lies, I was approaching the table where the previous signing authors were vacating their spots. Ms. Carey was getting up from her chair right in front of me. She looked right at me, smiled and said hi … and I just said hi back, ducked my head, and shuffled on. Completely starstruck. Completely humiliating. My one good chance and I squandered it. I can laugh about it now. Sort of.
What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?
Find amazing critique partners. This can take some time, but it is so, so worth it to find those precious few fellow writers who not only get you and what you want to do with your writing, but who aren’t petty, who genuinely want to help you, and who are smart as hell. It is important you learn how to take constructive criticism, how to step back and apply it to your writing, and not automatically get defensive.
Can you share with us something off your bucket list.
Go on an African safari! It just seems so incredibly exotic.
What is in your To Read Pile that you are dying to start or upcoming release you can’t wait for?
I can’t believe I haven’t yet read Endgame, the final Sirantha Jax book, by Ann Aguirre. It downloaded on my Kindle the day it came out and I have yet to read it. I think I’m scared to finish the series. I don’t want it to end. I want to savor it.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
I also dabble in erotic romance, and I have a short story out next week in the Cleis Press anthology Only You: Erotic Romance for Women.
Thank you so much for having me! I love hearing from readers.
There is an untapped world of magic that any man would covet…
Five years ago, Xavier escaped from the Ofarian Plant. Today he calls a Colorado mountain town home. It’s there he buries himself in his work, swearing off magic and relationships—until a woman threatens every promise he’s made to himself.
Cat has always known she is different. Water speaks to her on an uncanny level, and she channels this gift into beautiful painted waterscapes. Now, a gallery is debuting her work in Colorado—and it’ll reveal far more about her than she imagined.
The spark between Cat and Xavier is enough to throw both of them off balance. Every tantalizing moment sends them dangerously close to a rising flood of desire. Dangerous because Xavier comes to suspect that Cat is an Ofarian—his people’s enemy. But they’re both about to discover a far greater, more malicious power at play.