Friday, October 16, 2009

Interview with Lynn Crain

Today I'm interviewing author Lynn Crain whose SFR novel MORE THAN ROBOTICS was released by eXtasy on September 15th. Lynn is also a fellow RWA Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal member and I found her novel through the "upcoming releases" search feature on the FF&P website.

I was very excited to find a new SFR book that I didn't know about, so I wasted no time in asking Lynn if she'd do an interview to tell us a little more about her novel and her writing career.


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Hi Lynn, thanks for agreeing to do an interview for Spacefreighters. We're always on the lookout for interesting new SFR books and MORE THAN ROBOTICS looks like a fabulous read.

So first of all, is this your first SFR?
No, and it certainly won't be my last either...LOL!

Have you published other novels or e-novels? Yes, fifteen books and five of those went to print. What are the titles and genres or subgenres? There's lots of titles. Here's a quick rundown:
Atlantis Allure
Below the Sea

Blue Moon Magic Series
Night of the Blue Moon

Captive Illusions Series
Iain & Kelsey

Orchid Series
Fluke
More Than Robotics

Sanguinary Seductions
A Tale of Opposites

Santa’s Elves Series
The View From Santa’s Sleigh
The Thing About Elves
An Elf’s Desire
A Love for Eggther
An Elf’s Magic
Giselle’s Elf

Shopping Spree

Subtle Invasion

Summer Solstice Scorchers
A Lover for Rachel

Violet Visions
Private Dancer

That's quite a list. When was your first book published? October 2004

What inspired you to write MORE THAN ROBOTICS? I've always been a science fiction geek. I love sci-fi. When I started writing years ago, I started in the science fiction area and my first finished story was Fluke which ended up being the first book in the Orchid series. My love for sci-fi has been on a upward swing with such great TV shows as Battlestar Galactica, Caprica, Sanctuary, Stargate Atlantis, Bionic Woman, Fast Forward, Heroes and the list goes on and on.

Can you tell us the level of steam (sweet, spicy, steamy, erotica)? Most of my things range from steamy to erotic, with most being in the erotic area recently.

Do you have a blurb for MORE THAN ROBOTICS that you can share? Absolutely. Here it is:
There were only three things in life that Captain Bekka Taylor wanted: 1)Command of a Warrior Class Star Marauder, 2) To grow old gracefully and 3) A lover who understood her fiery nature. She was accomplishing two out of her three objectives very nicely when an internal IUA conflict begins to encompasses the whole world as she knows it. Then Lieutenant Javed Malik comes aboard, clearly younger than she, with dreamy eyes and a secret meant only for her. But letting him in means getting rid of years of frustration and anguish and maybe her career. Can she survive another war or the smoldering looks from her junior officer sent to protect her 24/7?

Tell us a little about the universe where the story takes place. The universe is obviously far in the future. I've made it so that Earth is considered planet 0 and everything evolves from here. It's a multi-universe, multi-planet system where almost anything is possible. Right now the IUA (Interstellar Universal Alliance) is fighting a group known as the UFF (United Freedom Front) for the controlling position of the known universes right back to the Milky Way. The UFF has found a way to infiltrate the IUA without anyone being the wiser. Or so they thought. Devlin Chapel, mad scientist type from Book 1 of the series, had developed clonedroids, biological cybernetic beings who could take the place of the human they were cloned from. In most cases. The heroine in Book 1, Fallon Montgomery, proves to be more than his match and equal. Book 2, More Than Robotics, opens when Fallon enlists the help of her mentor, Bekka Taylor to join the fight. One of the biggest allies that the people in both books have are the fact that the ships of this time are sentient. The AIs are fabulous and interface with the crew quite well and both adore their Captains.

How long did it take you to write MTR? It took about six weeks. And before anyone freaks, I work full time as a writer and write at a pace of about 1250 words and hour. This allows me to get a lot done in a short amount of time.
How much research did you need to do? I've been lucky in the fact I've been absorbing the science aspect of what I wrote about for years. The research was minimal on many aspects. I've really been putting in a lot of time on the space ships themselves recently as I want these to be the best I can make them. I have studied the cybernetics a lot as well as AI. All of it is like brain candy to me as I just lap it up.

Is there anything you'd like to share about the journey to get it published? Did you enter any contests or the RWA Golden Heart prior to selling it? I've been in RWA since 1983 and in the early years I entered quite a few contests. Contests are a good place to get one's feet wet because they help you to hone three chapters and the synopsis as in many cases that's all you'll submit. Now I think the greatest thing was when RWA implemented that you had to have your manuscript finished for the Golden Heart as up until that I was the Queen of the three chapters. LOL! And to be honest, I've had good and bad experiences with contests so you do develop a thick skin which is something you need in this business. Acting is the only other career which has a person getting rejected over and over again yet we come back for more.
My journey is pretty typical and my only regret is that I didn't push for it harder ten years ago. But I had a mother with early onset Alzheimer's and a father who needed me not to mention two boys and a husband whose job required him to travel. So after my national board stint with RWA, I had to retreat back to family. Some great writing friends encouraged me to come back after about five years and along with my Dad telling me Mom would kick my butt if she knew I gave up my dream to help him, I decided to come back. I took a slightly different route and went for the epublishing. And this really appeals to my scientific nature since it is the wave of the future. I've been blessed with really great publishers and will always stay with them even though I now have my sights on NYC and an agent for another go.

What would you like readers to know about MORE THAN ROBOTICS? I think that the readers will love the characters. Bekka Taylor is like many career women who knows there is something more in life but doesn't see the opportunity to grab it. All of us have flaws and she's no different. Plus she's a kick-ass heroine and I love her to death! Also, I actually wrote this book because I was missing Battlestar Galactica so much. There are a lot of similarities but I had developed this concept way before the new BSG came on the air. They did give me some ideas on direction of my stories though...which is a great thing...good TV or movies should do that to an author, stimulate your mind in new and different directions.

Do you have a favorite line from the book that you can share? There are so many...it's hard to choose...here's the one I like today!
Never tell me what I can and can’t do. Watch and see why I got the name the
Phoenix.


I think the cover art for MRT is gorgeous. So do I. Can you tell us a little about the cover and/or the artist? The cover artist is the award-winning Martine Jardin. Her website is http://www.martinejardin.com/ and she's just fantastic. Did you have input into the design? That is the great thing about eXtasy books. Authors have a lot of input into what their covers are like. Martine actually sent me to a couple of photo sites so I could pick out some some photos. The background is a combination of two I had found that I couldn't decide between. So yeah, I did have a lot of input into this cover and most of them.

Do you have any other SFR novels in the works? I have quite a few coming up. There will be more in the Orchid series, I have a WIP called Crusin' On The DIM Line about a VR cop who is on the trail of a drug dealer, another WIP called The Wizard of Skye which is a blend of science and fantasy but again about a futuristic cop and about a dozen more if truth be told. LOL!

For the aspiring SFR writers who follow this blog, can you tell us a little about your publisher? Well, I actually have four publishers but two are the ones I target for my FF&P stuff. One is Loose Id and MTR was published by eXtasy Books. eXtasy is the publisher who first put out my work so I'll always have a soft spot for them. They are great to work with and the author has a lot of say in regards to their career with them. They are very good for new authors as is every publisher I work with. eXtasy is always looking for new authors and they have a mainstream division called Devine Destinies I know is actively looking for work. Just check the website at http://www.extasybooks.com/ to see if they are reading new work right now.

Any advice for aspiring authors that you can share? The best advice I have to beginning writers is never give up. As long as you write well and are willing to learn every day, you will get published. The only other thing I can add is you must be committed to your craft. You need to write something every day and make writing a habit because the only way to accomplish a writing career is to plant yourself in the chair and write.

Anything else you'd like to tell us? I blog twice a week. On Wednesdays, I blog at http://www.themanyshades.blogspot.com/ and at least once a week at my personal blog, http://www.lynncrain.blogspot.com/. On Thursdays at my personal blog I interview two authors. And on all the blogs, I usually am giving something away. So drop by to see what's happening and you just might win sometime. I'm also MySpace, Facebook and Twitter. Hope to see you all around sometime. Ask me anything and most of the time I answer. LOL!

Thanks so much, Lynn, for the peek inside your SFR universe and for all your thoughts and insights on writing and publishing. MORE THAN ROBOTICS looks like my kind of story and I can't wait to read it.

8 comments:

  1. Sorry, I freaked when I saw the word count. Six weeks is fast for novel writing. Does that include editing time, or no?

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  2. That was very interesting. Thanks to interviewer and interviewee!! I saw the attraction of sci fi romances once I'd read Laurie's and yours sounds a fun read!!!

    www.barbaraelsborg.com

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  3. L, her 'speed writer' word count almost knocked me off my chair, too. Even if I didn't work full-time, I know I couldn't write anywhere near that fast.

    Thanks for stopping by, Barbara. I wondered if you two had 'met' before.

    Thanks again, Lynn.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Liana,

    And it depends. Most of the time I write clean and I have a critique group who can get back to me in fairly short order.

    Usually, after I turn in the book, here is at least a week of what I can intense edits then another week of line and minor edits. Again, it all depends upon the publisher.

    Lynn

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  5. Thanks, Flick!

    I just know they are very fun to write and I can't wait to step more into their worlds.

    Lynn

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  6. You're very welcome, Laurie.

    Believe it or not, it's only about twenty words a minute. Which is really much in the typing arena. The real key is to get your mind to work that fast and there are repercussions to doing things this way. And my daily goal is only 5K a day which when you write full time isn't much.

    One is that I will always be way ahead of my publishers as no one can be expected to publish that many from one author. Hence the many publishers.

    Two is that after goning this strong for two to three months, I do experience a couple of weeks of burn out where I just pray I can finish a 1000 words a day. It takes me about 3 weeks to recharge and then I'm off again.

    I'm just at the end of a recharge period right now and gearing up to write again.

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  7. Will your next project be a SFR, Lynn?

    I can probably kick out about 2000-3000 words on a day off, provided I can get my internal editor switched off (no easy task).

    I really wish I could earn enough income to write full time, but since I'm working on my first sale, I'll probably get there about the time I retire and start writing full time anyway. :)

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  8. I always have more than one WIP going at once. This allows me to not get bored and a day or two between writing to resolve any plot issue I have.

    Out of the current projects I have going, two are contemporaries, one is a ghost story, one is an elf story, one an epic fantasy series and the rest are SFR. In the first six months of next year, I will probably have 3 new SFR stories out, one of which is the next book in the ORCHID series called NOT QUITE HUMAN.

    Thanks for asking Laurie.

    And yeah, I am blessed in the fact I get to write full time. A lot of people I know wish they could be circumstance prevents them from doing so. Keep at it though and you'll get there someday.

    Lynn

    ReplyDelete

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Hosted by 5 Science Fiction Romance authors with 8 RWA Golden Heart finals and a RITA final between them. We aim to entertain with spirited commentary on the past, present, and future of SFR, hot topics, and our take on Science Fiction and SFR books, television, movies and culture.