Wednesday, 30 September 2015
Author Interview: Otter Chaos by P.D. Singer
About the author:
P.D. Singer lives in Colorado with her slightly bemused husband, two rowdy teenage boys, and thirty pounds of cats. She’s a big believer in research, first-hand if possible, so the reader can be quite certain Pam has skied down a mountain face-first, been stepped on by rodeo horses, acquired a potato burn or two, and will never, ever, write a novel that includes sky-diving.
When not writing, playing her fiddle, or skiing, she can be found with a book in hand.
Do you plan everything or just let the story flow?
I do a small amount of outlining: I have to know the starting point, the ending point, and a couple of high points in between. The rest of the journey comes as a surprise. The story has to flow, because I’m Linear Girl, and write everything in order. And I may chuck some of the high points if I decide they no longer fit.
Do your characters ever want to take over the story?
It wonderful when they do: it means they’ve come to life in my head. Lon, my otter shifter, is already chafing for new adventures, and he completely reworked the direction of his last book.
What drew you to the M/M genre in particular?
As so many of us do, I had a family member who complained of never finding books about people like himself. I also like that the power dynamics don’t have 4000 years of patriarchy to skew perceptions.
Where do you dream of travelling to and why?
I did a concert tour when I was seventeen, one of those “if it’s Tuesday, this must be Belgium” whirlwinds. We came into a major European city, rehearsed, played a concert, lingered a day or two to sightsee, rinse and repeat from London to Rome. After vowing to revisit these fascinating cities and get a really good look, I still need to spend a week, or two, or three, because of course one must get out of the city and into the countryside, in Venice, Florence, and Rome.
Do distant places feature in your books?
Much of my work takes place in Colorado, sometimes in Boulder, sometimes in the mountains. I sent poor Gary (Return to the Mountain) to New York City, where he had small-town-itis, as in “never been in a building with more than three floors”. Ricky from The Rare Event took mercy on him while he was there. Donal agus Jimmy took place in Belfast in 1912, where I set the title characters to building the Titanic. Jude, from Prep Work, travels the world eating local cuisines, but has learned to call London home. Half of Spokes takes place in Boulder, half in Italy.
Do you listen to music while writing?
My husband seems to have a problem with silence, so the radio or TV is often going, but I try not to listen to it. It’s distracting and I start typing lyrics.
Otter Chaos is a two-pack with Tail Slide, because not everyone has seen the short story that brought Lon and Corey together. Tail Slide started in the Out In Colorado anthology and became a standalone after that, but the characters had more adventures coming. Lon is an otter shifter and his lover Corey is a professor of economics. You might recall ECO 101 as less than exciting, but Corey has a werewolf for a department head. Nothing like conflicting interests over Lon’s job, Corey’s job, and Lon’s otterness when your opponent has fangs and buddies with fangs.
Lon as an otter was a ton of fun, because while otters are adorable, they get into everything and make you go Aw! while they trash your house. Lon tries not to wear his fur indoors for this very reason. Even outside, his otter nature sometimes plucks Corey’s nerves.
On the other hand, for some kinds of investigations, a very smart, slippery, twenty-five pound accomplice is exactly what Corey needs.
Otter Chaos is currently on preorder at a jaw-dropping 99 cents or near local equivalent at Amazon, Kobo, Apple, and All Romance eBooks, and will be available to read on October 9.
What have you learned about writing and publishing since you first started?
Since I came out of science writing, I had to master a different style. Yes, it may be efficient to write one paragraph on the merits of bear boxes, but it’s much better storytelling to show a bear getting into the food because the box wasn’t latched correctly.
Anything you would say to those just starting out in the craft?
Read widely, in every genre. It fosters plot bunnies and widens your horizons, besides giving you a look at different styles. If something grabs you by the throat and makes you finish it right now, figure out what made you react that way. Don’t try to write exactly the same, but fold that knowledge into your own arsenal of skills.
Blurb of your latest release or coming soon book
Otter Chaos (includes Tail Slide)
Wolves at the university, wolves in the bank—across Lon’s desk sits Professor Melvin Vadas and his hench-wolves, demanding a construction loan for the pack’s new lodge in the mountains. There’s just one little problem: the proposed building site is home to a breeding population of rare fish.
What do wolves care for stupid human rules, an otter who’d barely make a good snack, or one pesky man determined to protect the environment? Once they’re snout to snout with Corey and Lon there’s more than silverscale dace on the Endangered Species list.
Tail Slide (the short that kicked off otter madness)
Fresh powder snow and running water in the Colorado back country call Lon like the moon calls the wolves. Belly-sliding to a good time on the weekends makes up for a workweek at a desk, and meeting Corey adds a whole new level of fun to snowboarding.
It’s easy to slip away for time alone in the woods without raising suspicion, but how’s Lon to entertain himself when bad snow and a worse spill force them off the mountain too early?
Never give an otter a box of Cheerios.
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B015KDNQFW Kindle and paperback
All Romance eBooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-otterchaos-1893012-166.html
Barnes & Noble: will be active after October 9
Rocky Ridge Books: http://rockyridgebooks.com/titles/otter-chaos/
My other novels:
Fire on the Mountain
Snow on the Mountain
Fall Down the Mountain
Blood on the Mountain
Return to the Mountain
The Rare Event
A New Man
Any websites/places readers can find you on the web?
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