1) Welcome Hilari! I always like to start my interviews with a challenge. What color would you say best describes you and why?
I'm going to say hazel--a soft, mossy green with gold tints. It's a very relaxing, mellow color. Not boring, but it's not going to leap out and assault your eyes.
2) After reading your bio I noticed that you had many books written before you were first published. How did it feel to get that first book published?
Amazing, stunning, overwhelming, astonishing...and when my second book sold just a few months later, terrifying. It's interesting though, people sometimes ask, "Isn't it totally cool to see your name on a book cover?" And it's nice to see your name there, sure. But the real thrill came when I got my first, hardcover copy of Songs of Power, and opened it up, and there was my dialog, and my characters, and my story, bound into a real, published book! It's not about the name, it's about the work--and seeing my work become a real book, for the first time, was a thrill I'll always remember. It blew me away.
3) What draws you to write in the Fantasy/Science Fiction genre?
It's where I can tell the stories I think are the most fun, the most interesting, the most dramatic, intense, and, well, fun. And though I write a lot of fantasy, I have to say that Science Fiction really is "the literature of ideas." You can explore issues and ideas in SF in a way you just can't with any other genre. Fantasy is more about emotion--but you can explore cool ideas there too. And I just really love both genres.
4) I noticed that you like fantasy gaming! (Me too, actually.) What is your favorite game?
I like live D & D style games--though I've come to realize that's mostly based on the fact that the group I played with for years (now, sadly, folded) was a very clever, witty, creative group of people. There was one game in particular, we played around New Years Day called The Crimson 500. The guy who created and DM'd it described it a cross between the Indy 500, the Oklahoma gold rush and World War III. It included, among other things, a wonderful ring that turned you invisible...and made everyone forget that they'd ever known you. So the moment you took it off and told your friends "look at this cool ring I found" they saw a total stranger appear out of nowhere, and (this being a dangerous race) usually tried to kill you. And then you remembered this strange guy who just appeared out of nowhere, claiming to be your Uncle Bob, and you really wished you hadn't all been so quick on the draw.
5) What are your current projects?
I've just finished what I hope will be my final editorial revisions of Traitor's Son, the last of the two Raven books. And I'm getting ready to start a gypsy steam punk novel, tentatively titled The Fixer. But I've still got some research and pre-plotting left to do, and I probably won't start writing the first draft for another month. I'm also planning to do a second digital audio recording to join the one I made of Goblin Wood--which is now available (free!) in the Podcast section of the I-tunes store. It took a lot more time than I thought it would to produce MP3 files of me reading a whole novel aloud, but I do want to do it again, and I'm going to read A Matter of Profit for the next one. I'm going to work on that this summer, while my critique group is reading Fixer.