Friday, August 15, 2014

A View from Bonnie Calhoun's Window! Tremors and Thunder

Of all the interviews I've ever completed, I have to be honest and tell you that this one is very dear to me!!  Bonnie is a gifted writer, a savvy business owner, a magazine editor and, most importantly, my dear friend!   She loves the Lord and serves Him with passion and purpose!  Tremors and Thunder recently released, and I am thrilled to discuss this dystopian series with Bonnie!

Please give Bonnie a warm and hearty welcome to my window!

Young adult fiction is a genre in desperate need of lots of action, adventure and just good reading in general!!  Where and when was the concept of The Stone Braide Chronicles conceived?

The idea  for this series came to me about two years ago while I was looking at the internet. I’m an author with at least a dozen people in my head jabbering all at the same time, so I’m not sure what image online triggered the “thread thought” but it just grew from there. I find as I come up with complementary story threads, it tends to massage the story...LOL...until it’s grown to what it is today. So literally a story concept is an ongoing, growing, alive thing...until the series is done.

You create some pretty wild and futuristic medical concepts in Thunder.  Did you have to dive into research to make these concepts believable to your readers?  What did that entail?

Actually those are all REAL medical concepts. I just stuck a couple “what if’s” in there to bend them to my maniacal will...Mwhahahaha!

Why did you choose to switch from writing for adults to young adults?  How did the process differ from your previously published work?

Because young adults are more willing to read all kinds of situations and fancies whether futuristic or sci-fi, whether mystery or suspense and they love dystopian worlds and overcoming them...and they’re not much interested in bonnet books :-)

Young adults see the hope of overcoming grueling, life-changing landscapes, where adults today...and I mean mostly women readers...see enough grueling, life-changing landscapes just by reading the news and they want something sweeter.

Thunder contains some age-old concepts hearkening back to attempts at control – arranged marriages, medical deception and masking, relationship that are favored one over another, racial discrimination– and the rebellion that seems to always answer those attempts at control.  Selah feels those results keenly on many levels.  What do you hope readers will take away from the lessons Selah learns throughout her journey?

That there is always hope. That there is something better. That we’ve all been created for a purpose and if we’re receptive that purpose will manifest.

Does the mark of the Landers indicate anything spiritual, or is that my imagination?

Well...I could tell ya...but then I’d have to kill ya *snort-giggle*

Where on earth did you conceive the tornado concept toward the end of the novel?  Why was that group not able to be redeemed?  What is the significance of that?

Ha, ha...did you ever see the Helen Hunt movie Twister where they called the tornado, “the finger of God?” No one said they couldn’t be redeemed. It depends on what you mean by that. :-) Seriously...I’m not messing with you, but if I explained their situation it would give away the plot to the second book... and there’d be no reason for people to buy the second book. It’s another case of, “If I told you, I’d have to kill you.” Because a secret between two people is only a secret if one of them is dead. :-)

How does marketing for this series differ from the marketing you’ve done for your adult novels?  This is a totally different genre!

Marketing is basically the same with some minor tweaks. We’re also looking for the adult market because just like with The Hunger Games or Divergent series, plenty of adults read them too, mostly women though. The tweaks included more YA and teen book and reader sites and media interactions.

Can your give us a sneak peek into the next book of the series?  Where is that novel in the process of development?

The series was already done in my mind when I submitted the proposal. I needed to give a short synopsis for each book. I basically had three thread for each book, and what the “middle point” or point of no return would be for the character. The thing that was driving her actions throughout the book...and then how I wanted that book to end. for everything else in between...well that’s a work in progress and literally sometimes surprises me. But then’s all those people in my head vying to be heard on their ideas of where I’m supposed to go. I can tell you literally that where this series ends up is no where near where I was headed when I started. Those crazy people in my head took me on a wonderfully cool detour that you will never see coming!

What have you learned about yourself as you've written this series?  How has this series challenged you as a writer?

LOL..I wrote a chapter last night. Got done and read it over...B-O-R-I-N-G! Rewriting today, and tonight (since I had to stop to do this interview before you sent drones to blow up my house.) The challenges are the fun part of being an author. If we all stayed where we were when we started then people would get tired of us sooner or later *snort-giggle* I’d get tired of me sooner or later! But we always need to be stretching our writer muscles and thought process (and getting more residents for the funny farm in our heads). So always being on the lookout for a “what-if” or deviation from what people would expect next is the challenge that all writers accept...if they are to survive in this ever-changing industry.

What words of encouragement would you like to leave with your readers?

I would say don’t be too discouraged that I couldn’t give a lot of the direct answers that Kim wanted, but if I know the drill...I’d have had to kill you all. LOL...she has a great knack for going for the best of the details and I just can’t give away those things or you wouldn’t need to read the book, and you’d know all the secrets and it just wouldn’t be as much fun, or as many head-slaps when you got to the answers. blessed and keep reading!

You can read my review of Thunder Here!!


Bonnie S. Calhoun said...
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Bonnie S. Calhoun said...

Thank you Kim for hosting me and my crazy head on your blog! And thank you for the great book review!

Blessings on your life.