Friday, June 29, 2007

What's Fresh with Gena Showalter's Red Handed

She's been chosen to fight the elusive enemy among us....

Wildly imaginative, action-packed, and thrilling, Red Handed launches Gena Showalter's stunning new alien huntress series.

Hi Gena, thanks for agreeing to chat! Could you please tell us a little about your writing background and how you made your first sale?

Gena: I fell in love with fiction in the. . . fifth grade, I believe. Those Sweet Valley High books sucked me right in. A few years later, I graduated to Regency romances and I could not get enough. Through Jr. High and High School, I read constantly and dabbled with my own stories. In college, I could not decide on a major and dropped out three times. Finally I sat down and had a heart to heart with myself. What did I love? What could I see myself doing for the rest of my life? Always the answer was the same: writing. So I gave it a shot, wrote a book. It was B.A.D. But I tried again and again until I found my groove. I signed with an agent after completing six books and two years later we sold one – The Stone Prince -- to HQN. I haven’t looked back since!

Readers and writers often like to get a behind the scenes peek of an author's writing routine. It would be great if you could please share your typical writing day schedule.

Gena: Seems like my routine changes from book to book. Right now I like to write a chapter a day, five days a week, no matter how long it takes me. One hour or twelve, I don’t leave the computer until it’s done.

Please tell us about your latest YA novel, Red Handed, and what we can expect from your characters.

Gena: My latest book is Red Handed (out now!) and the publisher is MTV Press. It’s a young adult alien huntress novel set in near future. Here’s a little about it:

Phoenix Germaine has been trying to earn back her mother's trust after going into rehab and kicking Onadyn -- the drug of choice for New Chicago teens. But when a party in the woods turns into an all-out battle with the most ferocious aliens Phoenix has ever seen, she's brought home in what appears to be an Onadyn-induced state. Hello, reform school.

Except, what her mother doesn't know is that Phoenix has just been recruited to join the elite Alien Investigation and Removal agency, where she'll learn to fight dirty, track hard, and destroy the enemy. Her professional training will be rigorous and dangerous, and the fact that one of her instructors is Ryan Stone -- the drop-dead gorgeous, nineteen-year-old agent she met in the woods that night -- doesn't make things any easier. Especially when dating him is totally against the rules....

I can't wait to read it! What's up next? Do you have another project in the works? If so, please tell us about it.

Gena: Up next is Blacklisted, the sequel to Red Handed. While Red Handed focuses on teaching young kids to hunt aliens, Blacklisted shows them actually doing the hunting. Here’s the blurb:

High school senior Camille Robins and her best friend are determined to snag the attention of their crushes before graduation next month. Armed with red-hot outfits and killer hair, they sneak into the hottest nightclub in town —which caters to the rich and famous, both human and alien. They end up following Erik (who is human) and Silver (who isn’t) through a guarded door and are soon separated and under attack. . . and not the good kind.

Bad boy Erik spares Camille’s life, but the two are soon being chased by gun-toting Alien Investigation and Removal agents. Camille’s more confused than ever because Erik’s finally showing real interest in her, but the agents are accusing him of dealing Onadyn—a drug that ruins human lives. Suddenly, with the heat of his kiss lingering on her lips, Camille has to decide whose side she’s on . . . and whether she’s willing to put her life on the line to save Erik’s.

Thank you again for sharing, Gena, and I wish you the best with this cool new huntress series. Would you like to close with a writing tip?

Gena: Read, read, read and keep writing. The more you write, the more you learn about the process.

Gena Showalter sold her first book at the age of 27 and now, four years later, is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of thirteen books, with eleven more on the way in a thrilling blend of genres: breathtaking paranormal and contemporary romances, cutting edge young adult novels, and stunning urban fantasy. Her novels have appeared in Cosmopolitan Magazine, MTV, Seventeen Magazine, and have been translated in French, Italian and Korean. The critics have called her books "sizzling page-turners" and "utterly spellbinding stories", while Showalter herself has been called “a star on the rise”.

3 fresh comments:

TinaFerraro said...

What a catchy cover and title, Gena, and your book sounds like a terrific read! Thanks for joining us here at YA FRESH.

And am I right in remembering we have a common friend in one Kassia Krozser?!?

stephhale said...

I can't wait to read both of these. I think Gena is about the coolest chick ever!

Kelly Parra said...

I can't wait to read it, too, Tina and Steph! :)