Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Interview with Susan Gourley

I want to welcome Susan Gourley, fantasy and fantasy romance author!

Sue, you have two romance series (The Chronicles of Solonia and The Tigers of Salubria, under Susan Kelley) and a fantasy series (The Futhark Chronicles, under Susan Gourley). You're also a teacher and mother of four VERY active kids. How on earth do you do it all?

Well, the kids are a little older now. The youngest earned her driver's license a few weeks ago. That frees up lots of my time. I usually write in the evenings and on weekends. The first book of The Tigers of Salubria is available now, and the second one is coming out in March. Promotion is the biggest drain on my writing time but it has to be done.

The second book in The Futhark Chronicles came out January 1st. Tell us a little about it.

Beyond the Gate takes up the tale of Cage Stone and Sabelline Shelton moments after the first book, The Keepers of Sulbreth, ended. As the duo travels into the cave system where they must reset the magical seals keeping the demon invasion from Futhark, they discover their mission has been complicated by unexpected obstacles and the ignorance of the people who trained them. Cage will discover things about his past he would rather have never known, and Sabelline faces a decision that could save the world but destroy her. The kingdom of Futhark, in the meantime, is rocked by a civil war when the king is at his most vulnerable. Only Cage suspects it is all connected by an evil stalking Futhark beyond any they could have imagined.

I have a whole page on my own website dedicated to my obsessions passions. They include Harry Potter, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, and the New England Patriots (but we're not talking about them this week). What are your own obsessions passions?

I wouldn't think of mentioning the Pats. (Thank you!) I really don't obsess about things. Despite the large role of athletics in my family, I'm not a fan of professional sports. I like various shows, books, music, but I don't obsess over them. Even my hobbies are extremely varied. There are so many things I like, reading, writing, jigsaw puzzles, gardening, baking, hiking, and many more. I love what I'm doing when I'm doing and only wish for more hours in the day so I could do more.

You build really amazing worlds in your storytelling. How do they come about? Do you figure out details as you go, or develop the world before you start writing?

I'm actually doing a class on that later and I've blogged on it a number of times. I do general details before I start and add more as I need them. The most important thing in a fantasy world is to know how the magic works. The magic influences nearly everything else—government, commerce, medical care, weapons, society and class distinctions. Geography can also be a big factor. I always draw a map before I start even though I'm not much of an artist.

What's next for you?

I have another fantasy romance coming out from New Concepts Publishing in March and am working on the next one in that series. Beyond the Mountain, Book #3 in the Futhark series, is due out in early 2012. I also have a second fantasy series I'm determined to find a publisher for this year.

Thanks for having me, Natalie.

I have no doubt you'll find that publisher, Sue! Keep those awesome books coming! :)

Sue's been doing a blog tour this month, so you can find out more about her here, here, here, here, and here! Check out yesterday's post for her website, Facebook, and Goodreads links.

Thanks for guesting, Sue!


Vicki Rocho said...

Great interview! I suddenly have an urge to do a jigsaw puzzle. I had to stop doing them because my kids (toddlers at the time) would knock the pieces on the floor and it's soooo frustrating to get to the end of a puzzle and discover there are missing pieces!

Colene Murphy said...

Awesome interview!! I just finished a puzzle this weekend! Love puzzles...Awesome to get to know more about Susan! And great to "meet" you!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Vicki, I remember when I also stopped when the kids were little. Worse was finding a piece that had been chewed and wouldn't fit anymore.
Colene, who could know there were so many puzzle fans around. My sister and I exchange them for our birthdays. We try to stump each other with the most difficult puzzle we can find.

Lydia K said...

Great interview, thanks! It's always great to see how other people do their world building.

Mary Vaughn said...

Wonderful interview. It's fun to learn all about the authors. Sue, you're so busy, you've made me tired.
Best of everything to you.

N. R. Williams said...

I make maps too. I use the computer draw thing, (sorry, I don't remember what it's called), to create the map. That makes me wonder if I can put it on my blog. Hmmm, something to think about.

I enjoyed the interview.
N. R. Williams, fantasy author

Christina Lee said...

Wow reading all of these interviews, Susan, makes me feel like I'm slacking--get writing, me!


Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Thanks, Mary and Christina. I feel like I've been slacking because I've been doing so much blogging I've had less time for my WIP.
I would be interested to see what your maps look like, NR. I'll watch your blog for it.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

If you discover more hours in the day, Susan, let me know!

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

Thanks for stopping by, everyone!

I can't believe there are so many puzzlers here. :) The last one I did was a Pirates of the Caribbean one, which fell apart before I could affix it, and now I don't ever have time. I enjoy them, though! They're very soothing.

Add me to the list for notification when you find more time in the day.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Thanks for having my, Natalie. When I discover those extra hours I'll let you know, Alex. It would probably take a change in the Earth's rotation when might cause all kinds of other disasters.

Chary Johnson said...

Hi Susan,

I was wondering if any of your books are in Kindle format? I looked for the Futhark Chronicles and could only find it in paper format.

Great interview, by the way!

Ava Quinn said...

Great interview, guys! Can't wait for your world building workshop, Sue.