Tuesday, 1 February 2011
#1 – What's "The Count's Lair" about?
STEPH: It's a paranormal romance set in Budapest, Hungary during Christmas 1901. Count Anton Varga and Lady Amelia Andrássy have experienced the painful depths of loniliness and are now willing to embark on a courtship. Anton, however, has a dark secret. He'll give Amelia 3 clues. Will she discover his secret and can she accept him for the man he is?
#2 – "The Count's Lair" is book two in the Budapest Moon series. How does it fit into Book one, "The Hungarian?"
STEPH: Toward the end of "The Hungarian" Amelia faints in the Duma's bookstore and its Anton who catches her. A spark of attraction passes between them. In "The Count's Lair," Anton and Amelia dare to fan that spark into a flame.
#3 – Why did you choose Budapest, Hungary for the novel's setting?
STEPH: Budapest is in Central Europe. The country has a rich history. The architecture is unique – and blend of old and new. Budapest hints at mystery. You just might believe a paranormal creature exists in Budapest.
#4 – If you could cast the movie, who would you have play the characters?
STEPH: A young looking Ralph Fiennes for Anton and Amy Adams as Amelia. Emmy Rossum would make a great Esmé. Christopher Plummer for Georg. Daniel Radcliff would be Tomas and Geoffrey Rush as Bryant.
#5 – Have you been to Budapest?
STEPH: Yes, in Sept 1997. It was truly an international city, and there was a lot to do and much to see. I loved walking through Fisherman's Bastian. It's a ½ mile long and on Buda Hill overlooking the Danube and Parliament Building. The 7 towers represent the 7 Magyar tribes that settled in Hungary.
#6 – How long did it take you to write "The Count's Lair?"
STEPH: Approximately 4 months. I wrote during Dec 2009 which is not a month where I get much writing done. I began in NOV 2009. The novel was my 2009 NaNoWriMo project and is dedicated to my NaNoWriMo writing buddy, Jenifer Ranieri, who I just adore. Her laughter, thoughts, and feedback is food for the soul for the writer in me. I finished in FEB 2010.
#7 – Did you do a lot of research for the novel?
STEPH: I did research some of the history of Budapest and werewolf myths. I researched what life was like in 1901. They had autos and it would be common for the nobility to have them. They had phonographs, but no radios. The Austrian-Hungarian Empire was still in existence. It was an interesting time, full of modernization and growth.
#8 – Are you a plotter or a panster?
STEPH: A little of both. First I research my topic, my setting, my genre, and draw inspiration form that. I draw up characters, work up bios, and print off pictures for visual reference. Then I come up with a rough plot – outlining the first 3 chapters and the ending, leaving for flexibility in the middle. I try to stay true to the plot.
#9 – Do you have an ebook reader?
STEPH: Yes, I have a Kindle 2 and I love it. I especially enjoy using the text to speech feature on it.
#10 – What was the last movie you saw?
STEPH: Harry Potter and the Deadly Hallows, Part 1