Jenna Black is the author of several Adult and YA paranormal and urban fantasy series. She will be giving away a signed copy of her latest, Dark Descendant.
Jenna Black is your typical writer. Which means she's an "experience junkie." She got her BA in physical anthropology and French from Duke University.
Once upon a time, she dreamed she would be the next Jane Goodall, camping in the bush making fabulous discoveries about primate behavior. Then, during her senior year at Duke, she did some actual research in the field and made this shocking discovery: primates spend something like 80% of their time doing such exciting things as sleeping and eating.
Concluding that this discovery was her life's work in the field of primatology, she then moved on to such varied pastimes as grooming dogs and writing technical documentation. She writes paranormal romance for Tor and urban fantasy for Bantam Dell
Hot Cocoa or Apple Cider?
Hot cocoa, hands down!
Favorite holiday story?
Don't know if I can separate this one from the next. Let's just say A Christmas Carol for both.
Favorite holiday movie?
Best gift received for the holidays?
When I published my first ever short story, my father had a coffee mug made with the title page of the story on it. It was the first time I actually thought he "got" how important writing was to me.
Favorite holiday song?
Mostly, I hate holiday songs because they get so horribly overplayed. I generally like the old traditional Christmas carols, and I also love Carol of the Bells.
Do you find it difficult to switch between writing YA and Adult novels?
I actually don't find it difficult at all. I treat YA and adult novels about the same. The difference is just in the characters, and since I'm used to writing about lots of different characters anyway, it's not that big a struggle.
I saw on your website that you are going to write a new dystopian YA series. With this genre becoming more popular (especially with the upcoming release of the Hunger Games movie), how do you plan on making yours “stand out” from the crowd? What is your current favorite dystopian novel?
My current favorite dystopian is definitely THE HUNGER GAMES. I loved that book and am really looking forward to the movie. My dystopian, however, is completely different. The first book, REPLICA, revolves around a murder mystery. The United States has been bought out by corporations, each of which is run like a hereditary monarchy. My male protagonist is the 18-year-old heir to the largest and most powerful of these corporations, and he's murdered in chapter 1. It's then down to his lab-created Replica and the girl who's been his presumptive fiancee since they were children to find out who killed him and why before an innocent man is railroaded for the crime. I think it will stand out because of the uniqueness of the world and the technology I've created, as well as the tight focus on the two main characters and the twists and turns their lives take.
What do you enjoy doing that isn’t book related?
I've been an avid ballroom dancer for more years than I'd like to count. I've also relatively recently become an avid knitter. I love having something to do with my hands when I'm watching TV.
How does your family like to spend the holidays? Any special traditions?
This is kind of a tough question for me, because I have very little family left, so holidays aren't really family time for me.
What is your favorite thing that you like to treat yourself with during the holidays?
Chocolate. Yes, I like to treat myself with chocolate at other times, but during the holidays, I often receive chocolate as gifts, and I have to eat it just to be polite, right? (The rest of the year, I'm very careful to keep limited amounts available so I won't be tempted to overindulge, but I give up that caution during the holidays.)
If you could buy yourself anything you want for the holidays, what would it be?
Generally, if I want something, I buy it. I'm not a terribly materialistic person, so I don't want extravagant things I can't afford. That makes it hard to come up with an answer to this question. (It also makes it terribly hard to make a Christmas list!)
What is your favorite part of the holiday meal?
Mashed potatoes with gravy. It's something I never make for myself and that I generally won't order when we go out to eat because it's too fattening for an ordinary meal, but during the holidays, I indulge. (I'm pretty sure I had more mashed potatoes than turkey on Thanksgiving.)
Dark Descendant, available now!
Sirensong, available now!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
PS - Don't forget to check out Pawing Through Books & Alaskan Book Cafe to see what authors they are featuring today! Also, check out the main post HERE for links to the grand prize giveaways! Also, make sure you check out the previous days for other guest posts/interviews and giveaways!