Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Interview with Author Serena Clarke!

Interview with Author Serena Clarke:

*How did you come up with the idea for your series and how many books do you plan on writing for it?
I like the idea of destiny, fate, and prophecies.  That is the premise of my series.  Each of my characters has a destiny that they need to decide whether or not to accept.  These books are about their journeys to gain better understanding of themselves and the world they live in.  They need to figure out what is important to them and what they are willing to sacrifice to protect it.
Initially I did not plan on writing a series.  But as I was working on the first book, I thought about all of the characters that I really wanted to develop.  I put some characters in the book to help with the progression of my main characters, but I loved them so much that I wanted to know what was going to happen with them.  I realized that my plot as well as my characters needed three books to tell their stories.

*Which authors or books influence your writing?
    •    Fairytales have been a big influence for me.  The Grimms fairytales, the Disney versions, Fairytale Theaters.  I just love fairytales.  But they are so simple.  I always find myself wondering how the characters really feel.  That is part of why I enjoy writing.  To expand on the story and give characters real thoughts and emotions.
    •    Another influence of mine has been Gail Carson Levine.  She is one of my favorite authors.  I love her writing style.  Ella Enchanted is still one of my favorite books.  I love how she takes a simple fairytale and creates a whole new fantastical world and gives a whole new meaning to the story.  Her characters have such real emotions.  She made me want to read and write more fantasy.

*How do you come up with the names for your characters?
Sometimes I make up names that I think sound interesting.  Sometimes I use names that I have always loved.

*If you could be any character in any book, who would you be and why?
That is a difficult question!  I love all of my characters.  They become personal when you write about their life experiences and give them emotions and personalities.
I absolutely love Elani from The Treasure of Isian.  She does not understand how special she is and yet she is full of courage and determination.  She does not shrink away from her responsibilities.  She understands what needs to be done and she does it without complaining.  Elani was a very fun character to develop.

*What do you like to do in your spare time?
I have so many hobbies!  I love playing the piano, reading, drawing, painting, doing crafts.  I love DIY projects.  I love looking up ideas for arts and crafts projects.

*If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
I would love to live in Hawaii!  I went there after I graduated High School and I absolutely loved it.  The weather is always the right temperature.  The scenery is beautiful.  And because of the humidity you never need to do anything with your hair or even wear makeup.

*When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I always wanted to be an author!  I also wanted to be a concert pianist, but realized I didn't like practicing as much as I needed to!  :)

These are great answers and I really enjoyed getting to know Serena Clarke better!

The Treasure of Isian is the first book in The Isian Series. Prince Garin is a brave, proud, adventure-seeking prince. Elani is his most trusted servant and she would do anything for him. Their quest to find the mystical Treasure of Isian is immediately interrupted and they find themselves confronted by giants, elves, dragons, and a vengeful water-witch. Elani must face her greatest fears to save her prince and her kingdom. Will they be able to make a great sacrifice to save the kingdom?

“The Treasure of Isian was a stirring tale of an enchanted servant and a handsome prince,” wrote Author Charissa Stastny. “The adventures they face together as they search for the fabled treasure of Isian that will grant the bearer any wish they desire. Once I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down. The author did a wonderful job pacing the story and connecting me to the characters. Superb story that brought a smile to my face and helped me remember that sometimes, we can overlook the most valuable treasures in life if we’re not careful.”

In the second book in this series, The Alliance of Isian, Isian decides to make an alliance with their long time enemies.  Isian sends a proposal, offering their daughter to the prince, in order to ensure an alliance. Princess Gabrielle and Prince Alec must learn to work together and trust each other in order to triumph in the approaching war. With a mysterious beast attacking the kingdom, their lives in danger, and overcoming their vast cultural differences, will love grow despite their trials?

When we think of fantasy, we think of magic and mythical creatures, but it is not the same without some romance. Cheryl Larson wrote: “I am always intrigued by stories of arranged marriages and how they turn to marriages filled with love. There is plenty of action and intrigue in the storyline. I can't wait for the next book in the series!”

The Treasure of Isian and The Alliance of Isian can be found at local libraries, bookstores, and online. For more information and to read a sample chapter, visit http://serenaclarke.wordpress.com.

 About the Author:
Serena ClarkeSerena Clarke has loved writing since she was young and has taken several writing classes. She loves fantasy with a hint of romance and wishes to contribute to the genre.
Serena has a Bachelors Degree in Graphic Design and is a member of the Red Mountain Shadows Publishing team. She is passionate about learning, reading, art, and design. She enjoys designing her book covers as much as writing her books.

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