Sunday, 11 December 2011

Author Interview: Paige Cuccaro

Paige Cuccaro has written Hellsbane.

1. What is your name and where do you call home?
Hi Rachel! Thanks for having me. My name is Paige Cuccaro, and I live near Columbus Ohio. Though at heart I think I’ll always be a displaced Pittsburgher. I grew up near the city and spent most of my life there.

2. What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 20 or less words, what would you say?
My latest release is called HELLSBANE. A twenty-something girl discovers her father’s an angel. Heaven wants her to hire her and daddy dearest wants her dead.

3. Do you have plans for a new book? Is this book part of a series?
Yes, and yes! HELLSBANE is the first book in a three book series (as of now). The second book, HEAVEN AND HELLSBANE will be out late next year, the third book will be out sometime after that. 

4. What or who inspired you to start writing? And how long have you been writing?
I read a book years ago called Interview With a Vampire, by Anne Rice and I was sold. I’d read lots of books before that one, but something about the way she told the story, the way she pulled me in and made me want to live there... I knew I wanted to do that too. I’ve been writing since I was in high school, but I didn’t start writing seriously until my first daughter was born. So I guess the answer is 21 years.

5. How did you come up with the cover? Who designed the cover of your book?
Actually my publisher provided the cover. I talked with the awesomely talented Heather Howland who designed the cover and discussed what the story was about, what the main character, Emma Jane, looked like and what her personality was like. She took what I told her and brought it to life.

6. Which is your favorite cover of all the books you have written?
I’ve been really lucky in that I’ve always gotten really great covers. It’s hard to pick a favorite, but I was THRILLED when I saw the cover for HELLSBANE.

7. Is there anything you would change about your book covers?
Nope! I think Heather really nailed it.

8. How did you come up with the title for your book?
Hellsbane was actually the very first thing that came to me. It came as too words originally, Hell’s bane, (i.e. something that is a pain in the butt for everything & everyone in Hell) and then I thought, that would make an awesome last name for somebody. And then I thought, what if the name wasn’t just a name, but a reflection of the person. And then, POOF, Emma Jane was born and with her, her story.

9. Do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hardcovers or audiobooks?
I prefer which ever medium is convenient at the time. I LOVE hard covers for my keeper books. They just look and feel nicer. Paperbacks are great because I can shove them into my purse to take anywhere, they’re cheaper than hard covers, and they come in handy as an invisible barrier against random creepers who try to start awkward conversations at the hair salon, or in line at the grocery store. But I love audio books when I walk. I walk for exercise so anything that distracts me from that fact is a winner.  Lucky for me it takes almost zero concentration to walk, so I can really focus on the book. And I also have a Galaxy tab, (it’s like an iPad, but smaller and with way fewer available apps. Yes, I have app envy.) Since I got it I’ve downloaded a TON of e-books and I LOVE IT!!! So my preference in format depends on what I’m doing at the time.

10. Are you a self-published / Indie author?
I’m published with a few different small publishers. They used to be called indie publishers—as in, independent of the big seven New York publishers—but I think the term as morphed into something a little different. I’m not self-published, but mainly because I haven’t had time to format any of my manuscripts that aren’t already in contract the way they need to be done in order to self-publish them. It seems very complicated and every time I think about learning the process, my brain kind of fogs over until the urge passes. 

11. Have you ever read a book more than once? And if so what was it?
Yep! Interview With a Vampire, Lestat, Queen of the Damn. I also read Storm Front, and Summer Knight, both by Jim Butcher, twice each. That’s a rare thing for me.  As soon as I read the first few words of a book I’ve already read, the whole book comes rushing back to me. Plus there are so many new books I want to read.

12. Have you ever bought a specific edition of a book because of it’s cover? (For example a UK, US or Canadian version)
Not foreign versions, but I’ve bought second copies of books that were re-released with a cool new cover.

13. Have you ever read a book just based on it’s cover?
No. I’ve picked up books because of their cover, but I need more than a pretty picture to make me buy.

14. Has the quality of the cover of a book ever put you off of reading it?
Nope. That saying, you can’t judge a book by its cover, is SOOO true.

15. What book are you reading at the moment? And in what format?
I’m reading the e-book, Ghost Story by Jim Butcher and listening to the audio book Counterfeit Magic, by Kelley Armstrong.

16. Do you have any advice for other writers? And what’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
My advice to other writers would be, first learn the rules, learn how to write well, then figure out which rules you can break and which rules you can only bend. It’s important to stay true to your voice and your passions, but in the end its good writing that readers want most. The best advice I was given is something I’m sure every writer has already heard a million times. Write, write, write and read, read, read.

17. Where can your readers follow you?

Twitter: @paigecuccaro

Thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview and allowing us a glimpse into your writing world!

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