I am here with (or, according to Google maps, 3,670 miles from) Tiffany Allee, author of paranormal romance Banshee Charmer. Banshee Charmer is the first in her Files of the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency novella series, and was recently released by Entangled Publishing.
Let’s talk passion. Why romance, and why paranormal in particular?
First of all, thank you so much for having me here! I love your blog and read it regularly. J
Romance is a constant in most people's lives, whether they are currently in a happy romantic relationship, avoiding them because of a bad experience, or considering jumping into a new one. It fills out and complicates our lives.
Banshee Charmer, like most of what I write, is about characters that are striving for something—and that goal is further complicated by romance. The heroine of this story, Mac, is trying to find a serial killer. In order to catch him, she has to work closely with another law enforcement officer…who she is attracted to. This factor brings a whole new level of emotion into the mix.
As for the paranormal aspect, what can I say? I love me some monsters and magic. J
Your main character, Kiera “Mac” McLoughlin, in a banshee, sort of. Can you talk about researching and adapting the folklore to suit your contemporary world?
I wanted a character who was just a little different from what I've seen in books and on television, but still somewhat similar. A character whose species probably isn't the first to come to mind when a person thinks of the paranormal. And I needed a species that I could manipulate to suit my world.
Banshees are interesting in that there are a lot of different takes on them in mythology. They are sometimes thought of as evil and sometimes merely as messengers who bring words of warning. With so many mythological creatures generally thought of as either evil or good, I liked the idea of a gray area type of character.
Sexy, sneaky, good-with-locks Aidan Byrne is Kiera’s unconventional partner in her investigation. And they have rawr-worthy chemistry. Why do they work so well together, considering their differences?
I think they work so well together because Aidan is willing to look past Mac's gruff and at times hostile exterior to the vulnerable woman beneath. Mac sees the goodness in Aidan, despite how his actions may make him look. And I think that she likes having someone recognize that she's a bit of a softy underneath her toughness.
But above all, I think that they work so well together because Aidan sees things in a more positive light than Mac does, and uses humor to communicate. Mac—whether she'd ever admit it or not—needed a little humor in her life. And Mac gives Aidan something to care about, and hope for a future. Not to mention someone to trade verbal jabs with.
You kind of hit the ground running on the road to publication. Can you share a few of the a-ha moments along the way?
My a-ha moments have been so many that it's hard to pinpoint them all. I first really started on the road by reading and interacting with the fantastic people on the Absolute Write forums. Then—after trying my hand at a few stories—I got brave enough to seek out beta readers. That, I think, has been the biggest thing that has helped me get on something of a fast track to publication. The critiques I've received have been invaluable, and by taking and applying the lessons I've learned from my fellow writers, I've become a much better writer than I would have on my own.
I'd have to say my biggest a-ha moment was realizing that writing is a job. Oh it's fun too, don't get me wrong. But it's also difficult work that offers no secure reward at the end. If I didn't truly love it—even the ridiculously frustrating parts of it—I definitely wouldn't have made it this far.
So, what is next? Can you give us a briefing on the next in the Files series?
Find Banshee Charmer at Amazon Barnes & Noble
Find Tiffany Allee at Website Goodreads Twitter