Monday, March 12, 2012

Authors After Dark Author Spotlight Interview - Adrian Phoenix

Please welcome Adrian Phoenix as part of The Qwillery's Authors After Dark Author Spotlight Interviews.

TQ:  What inspired you to become a writer?

Adrian:  I loved reading. From the moment I learned to read, I constantly had a book in my hand. I read everything—fiction, non-fiction, how-to books, you name it. In elementary school, I would start with the As in the room library (and the school library) and grab the first book on the shelf. Subject matter or genre didn’t concern me. I read it all. And learned a lot of things I didn’t really want to learn in the process. LOL.

In junior high, I refined my approach and started reading more fiction—mainly angsty teen fiction. I fell in love with The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton and yearned to write about characters that tugged at my heart (making me wish the story would never end) the way Ponyboy and his friends and brothers did in Hinton’s book.

I’d written little short stories in elementary school, but in the 8th grade, I started to get serious and began writing my own angsty teen stories. Lots of them—to the despair of my family who had to listen to them. :-)

TQ:  What is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

Adrian:  Battling critical mindset—the inner critic and editor. Every writer needs to be in creative mode for the story to flow and for the plot to twist. If you find yourself pondering word choice or stopping to delete, then rewrite a scene, then you’re caught in the steel teeth of the critical mind-trap. It kills creative flow and momentum dead. This is a constant battle with me, but it’s getting easier. Every time I find myself pausing or my finger hovering over the DELETE key, I force myself to go on, promising I will fix whatever needs fixing AFTER I’ve finished that first crucial and creative draft. Duct tape that critic and toss it into a deep and dark closet. Dare to be bad.

TQ:  What writing achievement are you most proud of?

Adrian:  I’m proud of each and every book, but I think my proudest achievement was when my first novel, A Rush of Wings, was named as number seven on’s Best Paranormal Fantasy Novels of the Last Decade (2000-2009). I was both stunned and damned happy.

TQ:  What one thing should everyone know about your writing?

Adrian:  Good question. I guess it would be that character comes first, then I build the story around the characters. I’m also often inspired by music, Nine Inch Nails in particular (anything by Trent Reznor).

TQ:  Please tell us about your latest and upcoming works.

Adrian:  I’m finishing book five of The Maker’s Song series, On Midnight Wings, which will be out the end of 2012. It picks up where book four, Etched in Bone, leaves off with both Dante and Heather in dire situations. Here’s a little bit about it:

As Dante Baptiste’s true identity as both True Blood and Fallen ripples throughout New Orleans, he and Heather struggle for their lives against different foes, fighting their way back to each other. To free herself from her father’s treachery, Heather accepts help from an ally—and steps into even greater danger. Dante, lost to his brutal past, wavers between his own sense of self and the Bad Seed-programmed S that lurks within, between the never-ending Road and the Great Destroyer. And the danger of becoming both.

Then it’s on to book three of the Hoodoo series featuring fiery Cajun hoodoo Kallie Rivière and sexy nomad Layne Valin, Black Moon Mojo. I’m also planning another series about a pair of brothers who aren’t quite human fighting the forces of evil and fighting their own dark heritage called Sons of Darkness. It’s like Sons of Anarchy meets Supernatural meets Call of Cthulhu. LOL.

TQ: Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Adrian:  Thank you so much for having me! It’s been a pleasure. You can also find me at:

Website, Facebook , Facebook Fan Page, Twitter, MySpace, Goodreads, Pocket After Dark

You can read a chapter from the first book in The Maker’s Song series. Here’s a link to the first chapter of A Rush of Wings.

Here’s the first chapter of Black Dust Mambo. (Hoodoo Book 1)

And the first two chapters of Black Heart Loa. (Hoodoo Book 2)

The Maker's Song

A Rush of Wings
The Maker's Song 1
Pocket Books, February 24, 2009
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 512 pages
Originally published in Trade Paperback (January 2008)


Dark. Talented. Beautiful. Star of the rock band Inferno. Rumored owner of the hot New Orleans nightspot Club Hell. Born of the Blood, then broken by an evil beyond imagination.


F.B.I. Special Agent Heather Wallace has been tracking a sadistic serial murderer known as the Cross Country Killer, and the trail has led her to New Orleans, Club Hell, and Dante. But the dangerously attractive musician not only resists her investigation, he claims to be "nightkind": in other words, a vampire. Digging into his past for answers reveals little. A juvenile record a mile long. No social security number. No known birth date. In and out of foster homes for most of his life before being taken in by a man named Lucien DeNoir, who appears to guard mysteries of his own.


What Heather does know about Dante is that something links him to the killer -- and she's pretty sure that link makes him the CCK's next target. Heather must unravel the truth about this sensual, complicated, vulnerable young man -- who, she begins to believe, may indeed be a vampire -- in order to finally bring a killer to justice. But Dante's past holds a shocking, dangerous secret, and once it is revealed not even Heather will be able to protect him from his destiny.... 

In the Blood
The Maker's Song 2
Pocket Books, August 25, 2009
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 480 pages
(Originally published in Trade Paperback (December 2008)


Vampire. Rock star. Begotten son of the fallen angel Lucien. Dante Baptiste still struggles with nightmares and seizures, searching for the truth about his past. It is a quest as seductive as his kiss, as uncontrollable as his thirst, and as unforgiving as his determination to protect one mortal woman at any cost.


FBI Special Agent Heather Wallace now knows the extent of the Bureau corruption that surrounds her, but worries she is losing the battle. And when Dante and his band Inferno come to Seattle on tour, Heather can't help but be drawn back to the beautiful, dangerous nightkind. But what Heather and Dante don't know is that new enemies lurk in the shadows, closer than they think...and even deadlier than they fear.


Shadowy government forces have pledged to eliminate all loose ends from Project Bad Seed -- and Heather and Dante are at the top of the list. Elsewhere, the Fallen gather in Gehenna, intent on finding their long-awaited savior, the True Blood nightkind whom Lucien DeNoir would die to protect. And a damaged and desperate adversary, with powers as strange and perilous as Dante's own, plots to use Dante as a pawn in a violent scheme for revenge. But only one of these lethal forces holds the key to Dante's past -- a key that could finally unlock the secret of his birth and the truth of his existence...or destroy him completely.

Beneath the Skin
The Maker's Song 3
Pocket Books, December 29, 2009
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 432 pages


The dark pieces of vampire rock star Dante Baptiste's past are violently emerging, and it is only a matter of time before the Fallen discover he is the creawdwr they have sought for thousands of years. The destruction he left behind in Oregon threatens to reveal his identity as Fallen Maker and True Blood, exposing the young nightkind to shadowy predators -- mortal and supernatural -- who will do whatever it takes to win his favor...or destroy him.


When beautiful FBI special agent Heather Wallace went AWOL on assignment, she chose irresistible Dante over the shady government forces that now stalk them both. Heather has her own secrets of the past to uncover, but she is also the only one who can hold her nightkind lover together when his dangerous quest for the truth threatens to send him over the edge. And as she and Dante fi ght for their survival, she realizes they must work together to protect their future -- before his mysterious destiny tears them apart....

Etched in Bone
The Maker's Song 4
Pocket Books, February 22, 2011
Mass Market Papberback and eBook,



More beautiful and powerful than any creature the world has ever seen, Dante Baptiste has become the supreme target of the three worlds that spawned him. The mortal agents of the Shadow Branch have tried to control his mind through psychological torture. The vampire elders who guide nightkind society have plotted to use him in their bloodthirsty bid for power. And the Fallen have waited for millennia for Dante to claim his birthright as their Maker. But Dante belongs to no one—except the woman he loves. . . .


Determined to face the Fallen and the world on his own terms, Dante hopes to piece together his shattered past and claim his future, with FBI agent Heather Wallace at his side. But in Heather’s human family awaits an unexpected enemy. One who could rip Heather from Dante’s heart and fill the holes with bullets. One who could force Dante to choose his darkest destiny—as the Great Destroyer. . . .


Black Dust Mambo
Hoodoo 1
Pocket Books, June 29, 2010
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 384 pages


"There will be times, girl, when all your magic ain't going to be enough, times when it will seem to dry up like mud under the noonday sun, or even make matters worse. . . ."

Kallie RiviÈre, a fiery Cajun hoodoo apprentice with a talent for trouble, finds herself smack-dab in the middle of one of those times her mentor warned her about when she visits New Orleans to attend the Hecatean Alliance's annual carnival: her hard-bodied conjurer hookup ends up dead in her blood-drenched bed. And he was killed by something that Kallie would never dream of touching—the darkest of dark juju, soul-eating juju—a black dust hex that may have been meant to kill her.

Now Kallie has to use every bit of hoodoo knowledge and bayou-bred mojo she possesses to clear her own name and find the killer—even as that dark sorcerer hunts Kallie and her friends. But Kallie's search for the truth soon leads her in a direction she never anticipated—back home to Bayou CyprÉs Noir, and to Gabrielle LaRue, Kallie's aunt, protector, and hoodoo mentor . . . who is looking more and more like she just might be the one who wants Kallie dead.

Black Heart Loa
Hoodoo 2
Pocket Books, June 28, 2011
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 432 pages

"An eye for an eye is never enough.”

Kallie Rivière, a Cajun hoodoo apprentice with a bent for trouble, learned the meaning of those ominous words when hoodoo bogeyman Doctor Heron targeted her family for revenge. Now, while searching for her still-missing bayou pirate cousin, Kallie finds out the hard way that someone is undoing powerful gris gris, which means that working magic has become as unpredictable as rolling a handful of dice. The wards woven to protect the Gulf coast are unraveling, leaving New Orleans and the surrounding bayous vulnerable just as an unnatural storm—the deadliest in a century—is born. As the hurricane powers toward the heart of all she loves, Kallie desperately searches for the cause of the disturbing randomness, only to learn a deeply unsettling truth: the culprit may be herself. To protect her family and friends, including the sexy nomad Layne Vallin, Kallie steps into the jaws of danger . . . and finds a loup garou designed to steal her heart—literally.

About Adrian

As a writer, a person, and a mother, I’ve always believed in following your dreams, following your heart. It’s also important to keep your heart, so I also believe in being prepared for zombie attacks and can’t stress enough the importance of having regular family drills so every member of the household is zombie-ready. One never knows. Make sure the sofa is ready to push in front of the door. Be clear that if a member of the family is on the wrong side of the door when the zombie action goes down. They remain on the wrong side of the door. The greater good, etc.

I live in Springfield, Oregon in a zombie-free home (except when meeting deadlines) with four cats, Amiga, Diabla, Keats, and Ember and have two sons and three grandchildren and two granddogs. I’m the author of The Maker’s Song (A Rush of Wings, In the Blood, Beneath the Skin, Etched in Bone) and Hoodoo series (Black Dust Mambo, Black Heart Loa) and short stories, including the critically acclaimed Hoodoo short, “Caught Forever Between.”.

Adrian's Links

Website, Facebook , Facebook Fan Page, Twitter, MySpace, Goodreads, Pocket After Dark

The Giveaway


What:  Two commenters each will win his/her choice of a signed copy of one of Adrian's novels - A Rush of Wings, In the Blood, Beneath the Skin, Etched in Bone, Black Dust Mambo, OR Black Heart Loa - from Adrian!

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

What book or books did you fall in love with in when you were a teen?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)   Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2)   Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3)   Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. You MUST leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Monday, March 19, 2012. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*


  1. I became a big Jackie Collins' fan when I was in my teens!

    +1 comment
    +1 follower

    Tracey D
    booklover0226 at gmail dot com

    1. I read a few of Jackie Collins' books too as a teen, even more fascinated since they were (at the time) considered racy. ;)

      Thanks for dropping by!

  2. I didn't read when I was a teen. Just something I fell in love with when I got in my twenties. The first books I really got into were the Harry Potter books though.
    GFC follower After Dark

    1. Love the Harry Potter books! So glad you fell in love with reading in your twenties!

      Thanks for joining us!

  3. I loved Robin McKinley when I was a teen (still do!) but I read all kinds of books, including classics and regency romances by Georgette Heyer.

    +1 comment
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    +1 Tweeted (!/RebeLovesBooks/status/179246154066829313)


    1. Thanks for dropping by and sharing your love of books, Rebe! I enjoy Robin McKinley too.

  4. I used to love visits to my local library when growing up. I remember falling in love with a book called The Island of Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell - I used to check that book out all the time in order to re-read it. A girl left behind on a island has to fend for herself - something just spoke to a teenage me! I then grew into the Christopher Pikes and Point Horror.

    +1 Comment
    +1 follower - GFC name - Mel S


    1. The library was one of my fave hangouts too, Mel Mar.

  5. There is such a thing as for than one love when it comes to books, thankfully. Mine was everything from Anne of Green Gables, Little House on the Prairies, Sweet Valley and Fear Street. Also fell for some Jane Eyre, Little Women and Briar Rose. I liked reading just about anything regardless of genre which opened my world to so much more stories.

    GFC follower.

    1. I'm with you, I love reading just about anything. Thanks for dropping by!

  6. I totally fell in love with R.L Stine books...seems kinda funny now that I look back on it...but hey I was a teen :)
    +1 comment
    +1 Follower: Kristina Parmenter
    +1 Tweet:!/harley_chick883/status/179262176907890688

    Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

    1. Nothing wrong with R.L. Stine's books at all. Thanks for joining us, Kristina!

  7. thanks for the giveaway and the interview, always very interesting! Well it's difficult to choose but I think I would pick the Harry potter (I'm sure everyone will), otherwise I would say the Stephanie Plum series by Laurell K hamilton or even for UF books the ANita blake's series by Laurell K Hamilton.

    I'm a gfc follower



    1. Glad you enjoyed the interview, Melliane! I really enjoy the Stephanie Plum series too. She makes me chuckle.

  8. Thanks for the great post and giveaway!

    I fell in love with the Lord of the Rings. I read them I don't even know how many times :)

    +1 gfc: erin
    +1 comment

    1. Thanks for joining us, Erin! Glad you enjoyed the interview. LOTR is another love. Though I liked the movies better than the books because there seemed to be more characterization. Still, enjoyed the books as well.

  9. I loved Mari Mancuso's and Kody Keplinger's novels. edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom
    GFC Krystal Larson

  10. S~ don't enter me.. I had the great pleasure of meet Adrian over the summer and bought ALL of her books.. Just wanted to stop by and show my love and support.

    I started my love of reading with Danielle Steel.


    1. Hugs, Kelly! I really enjoyed meeting you and chatting. Thanks so much for your support! <3

  11. Thank you!

    I was obsessed with "Gone with the Wind" and Anne Rice during teen years.

    1. Thanks for joining us, Sally. I loved the Vampire Chronicles as a teen too.

  12. Hi

    I love your books - have read the Hoodoo series and working my way through The Maker's Song series. Great interview.

    I fell in love with historical romances when I was a teen, I think some of the first were Johanna Lindsey books - so long ago :)

    Thanks for the giveaway!


    1. Thanks so much, Pam! Glad you enjoyed the interview and the books. More is to come!

      Hugs <3

  13. I was obsessed with Christopher Pike although i guess that was earlier then my teens. Also loved Piers Anthony and Anne Rice!

    1. So many great books, Annie. I'm loving seeing what everyone fell in love with!

  14. One of the series I most loved when I was younger was the Empyrion series by Stephen R. Lawhead. Fantastic fantasy series. I still love it to this day.

    1. Forgot contact info: starfall(at)gmx(dot)net

  15. The books I loved the most as a young teenager was Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys. Then I got into Mills & Boon.

    +1 Comment
    +1 gfc: Lynn Worton

  16. I enjoyed Gone with the Wind and there were some early romance authors - Rosemary Rogers I think. Love the covers
    debby236 at gmail dot com

  17. As a teenager I absolutely loved Lois McMaster Bujold's series about Miles Vorkosigan (hopefully I spelled it correctly because I was reading these books in Russian ;) ). My another (a little bit more adult) love is Terry Goodkind's series about Sword of Truth :)


    1. Wonderful books, Irene! Thanks so much for joining us!

  18. I really enjoyed The Kinsey Millhone sereis by Sue Grafton. I think your books sounds amazing. I have a couple of them on my wishlist. Thanks for the chance. I can't wait to meet you at AAD!

    I am a follower
    sariahwalters at gmail dot com

    1. Thanks so much, Sariah! I'm looking forward to meeting you too!

  19. Congrats on A Rush of Wings being on the B&N list! Well done!

    As a teen I loved the series that started with Dealing With Dragons. I fell in love with the magic of it, the humor, and the dragons. I still love the Enchanted Forest Chronicles =)

    GFC follower Lexi
    eyesofblueice (at) gmail (dot) com

  20. I remember reading a lot of Christopher Pike and Dean Koontz when I was younger.
    I'm a gfc follower.


  21. Unfortunately, I wasn't much of a reader when I was a teen unless it was school work mandatory. It wasn't until my teenage sister later on introduced me to Twilight that I found my love for reading.

    +1 Comment
    +1 Follower of The Qwillery
    +1 Tweeted:!/yadkny/status/179381021647712256

  22. I remember reading the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon when I was a teen and I fell in love with a good series then! Thanks for the amazing interview and giveaway:)

    +1 comment
    +1 blog follower
    +1 tweet:!/jwitt33/status/179390660867133440

    jwitt33 at live dot com

  23. I discovered the Ian Fleming James Bond books when I was a teenager and loved them. Then I read Robert Heinlein and that started a life long love of Science Fiction.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com
    GFC - Barbara E.

  24. The Secret Garden. It was almost magical

    +1 comment
    +1 follower
    +1 tweet -!/DonnaS1/status/179409488904859649
    +1 link -

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

  25. I read a lot of Anne McCaffrey's books when I was young. Thanks for the awesome contest! I have read A Rush of Wings, Black Dust Mambo and Black Heart Lao. I loved them all and would love to read more of the Makers Song Series. Thanks for the great giveaway!

  26. I did not read a lot as a teen, so no favorites. That's just sad.

    I follow.


  27. I've always been a Stephen King fan as a teenager I read a lot of his novels. As I grew older I started to get into more supernatural and fantasy novels. But a book that really stands out for me was "Go Ask Alice" which was recently re-released. Also the worst with series when I was a bit younger or any Ronald Dahl books!


    1. Oops typo "the worst witch" kids books by Jill Murphy

  28. Harry Potter series was my favorite.

  29. Thank you for sharing with us today, I really enjoyed the spotlight. I love the Black Dust Mambo and Black Heart Loa series and would love to dive into the others as well. As a teen I pretty much had a pleasure reading hiatus due to the amount of mandatory reading in my studies, but in my elementary years I was a reading loving the Boxcar Kids and then as an adult started up again with Johanna Lindsay and historical genre. Now I am a pretty eclectic reader with a primary interest in the urban fantasy series! My fingers are crossed here and I thank you for the awesome giveaway opportunity. I absolutely love Adrian Phoenix's writing style!
    +1 comment
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    +1 tweeted=!/ZDz59001/status/179483208306532353

  30. As a teenager i don't very much buy book, for in my country was only a little book in print. I remember i buy first book Harry Potter, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, because only that book was interesting for me.

    +1 comment
    +1 GFC as Filia Oktarina
    +1 Facebook =

    filiafantasy at gmail dot com

  31. As a teenager, I read anything and everything. We did weekly trips to the library, and I'd check out 10 books (the max) at a time. My early teen favorites were the Narnia books, A Wrinkle in Time, and many more. I also got totally hooked on the Dragonriders of Pern at about age 13. One final mention, my mom had the book "The Mirror" by Marlys Millhiser. I think I read it at 14 and I really REALLY wanted to figure out how to switch with someone and go back in time!

    I retweeted the link on Twitter (@antinmitchfield), and I have subscribed by email using my gmail account that this comment is linked to. I would love to read one of your books!

  32. Pride and Prejudice, Tom Sawyer

    I follow the blog.


  33. It was Harry Potter. Those books still are my Linus' blanket for hard times, when I feel lost and confused


    aliasgirl at libero dot it

  34. The book I fell in love with is Nora Roberts Angels Fall. I love the story and the characters' situation.

  35. Thanks for taking the time to do this. It is fun to read about the book series and hear about what books got people hooked on reading!! As a teen I only read what I had to. I did enjoy Great Expectations, so I suppose that was the 1st book that didn't cause me physical pain to finish. Ha ha!! I didn't actually fall head over heels for books until my 30's. Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse books were the ones that won me over to hot and hilarious paranormal books. I've lived happily ever after... ;)


    follow on google+ Amanda
    follow on twitter @freeman11246
    goodreads Amanda

  36. Robin McKinley, Anne McCaffery...I could go on and on. Once I discovered fantasy I was hooked!

  37. When I was a teen I loved anything RL Stine, Christopher Pike, LJ Smith, and Piers Anthony. Definitely thriller and fantasy books sucked me in.

    GFC: ML
    mljfoland AT hotmail DOT com

  38. I had this really cool hippy english teacher that introduced my class to beatnik writers instead of the classics. It was at that point that I discovered Kerouac, Hemingway, Ginsberg, etc. I do have to say that "On The Road," was definitely my fave at the time.

    +1 comment
    +1 blog follow/GFC: Molly Frenzel
    +1 Tweet:!/dg_molly/status/181847769047236608