Stephanie Draven is currently a citizen of Baltimore, that city of ravens and purple night skies. She lives there with her favorite nocturnal creatures–three scheming cats and a deliciously wicked husband. And when she is not busy with dark domestic rituals, she writes her books.
Stephanie has always been a storyteller. In elementary school, she channeled Scheherazade, weaving a series of stories to charm children into sitting with her each day at the lunch table. When she was a little older, Stephanie scared all the girls at her sleepovers with ghost stories.
She should have known she was born to hold an audience in her thrall, but Stephanie resisted her writerly urges and graduated from college with a B.A. in Government. Then she went to Law School, where she learned how to convincingly tell the tallest tales of all!
A longtime lover of ancient lore, Stephanie enjoys re-imagining myths for the modern age. She doesn’t believe that true love is ever simple or without struggle so her work tends to explore the sacred within the profane, the light under the loss and the virtue hidden in vice. She counts it amongst her greatest pleasures when, from her books, her readers learn something new about the world or about themselves.
Stephanie also writes historical fiction as Stephanie Dray and has a series of forthcoming novels from Berkley Books featuring Cleopatra’s daughter.
Escaping a hellish Syrian prison, U.S. serviceman Ray Stavrakis emerged with uncanny mind-control powers and an eerie ability to morph into a mythical Minotaur. As a half man, half bull, Ray had legendary power, but only one woman could prove his innocence. The woman who'd driven him to the brink of insanity with her cool-eyed interrogation and her hot-blooded sensuality.
But Vegas psychologist Layla Bahset had no memory of Ray or her past. Only a feeling of being stalked by a nonhuman predator. Was it Ray…whose eyes condemned her soul even as his hands ignited her body? Or was another evil force at work? But nothing could stop Layla from remembering what she was…and what her evil creator had planned for her and her soldier lover….
Welcome Stephanie to Romance Author Buzz. Is there a back story to Dark Sins and Desert Sands?
What if the monsters of ancient mythology still walked the earth...and what if you found out that you were still one of them? That’s the premise that really grabbed me when I started writing the Mythica series and it’s certainly at work in Dark Sins & Desert Sands.
Do you plot your stories or lead your characters lead you?
I’m really a plotter. I like the intricacy involved in a tightly plotted story and leaving me to my own devices, I’m likely to go off in all kinds of directions!
How long have you been writing and what was your call story?
I’ve been writing since I was a kid, but my big call story can be found here. The quick summary: I had the stomach flu and when my agent told me that I’d just sold my first book, I said something like, “I think I need to throw up.”
What are you currently working on?
Right now I’m obsessed with the 1920s. I may write a ghost story for fun. But for money, I’m working on my third and final novel in a historical fiction series about Cleopatra’s daughter. I write that under the pen name Stephanie Dray.
Of all of your characters, do you have a favorite you identify with and why?
Oh, gosh. That’s a hard question. I think of the HQN Nocturne characters I’ve written, I identify most closely with Kyra the nymph of the underworld. But in this story, I came to love Layla, who is a modern day sphinx. She is a riddle, even to herself. And I tell you, there are days I just can’t even believe what I am saying or doing. More importantly, though, she suffered some very serious heartache. And I related to that.
What is the best thing about your job as an author? What is the hardest thing?
The best thing about my job as an author is that something I write can really touch someone. I love fan mail. I love reading reviews! But the hardest thing is how much of the job has nothing to do with writing. The social networking, the promotion, all of it gets to be a bit much.
What kind of daily schedule do you have? What types of things interrupt your writing? Describe a day in the life of.
I get up and answer my email first, which is probably a huge mistake because depending on what’s in there, it can derail my whole day. Somewhere after noon, when I’ve dealt with all the emergencies of my inbox, I start working on my writing. I rotate those two chores over and over until bedtime. I tell you, it’s not very glamorous.
If a movie was made about your life, who would you like to see play the lead role as you?
Angelina Jolie. Hey, wouldn’t everyone? I’d settle for Liz Taylor, but it’s too late now :P
What is something you definitely want readers to know about you?
That I love hearing from them! If you liked my book, tell me! If you want to tell me something that didn’t work for you, I like to hear about that too.
When the time comes for you to retire from writing, what would you like your readers to remember the most about you and your writing?
That I was provocative. That I challenged them to think about uncomfortable things. That I wrote very smart books for very bad girls.
What are you currently reading?
I’m reading Lisa Hendrix’s Immortal Outlaw. And loving it!
Color My World, by Chicago.
Before I let you go though, is there anything I forgot to ask that you want the readers and fans to know?
I want them to know that this book has a fantastic sex scene in it--that takes place on a subway, and should make your toes curl.
Thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview with me!
Stephanie at Facebook:
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