Interview: Kerry Schafer author of Wakeworld

February 5, 2014 Author Feature, Blog Tour, Giveaway, Interview 9

There are dreams and then there is reality, but what happens when the lines between those two worlds blur? Check out this series to find out. Oh yes, and Dragons, I mustn’t forget those! *wink*

Enter to win a copy of Wakeworld & Enjoy my interview with the author, Kerry Schafer!

Between seriesRead my review of Book 1: Between

Read my review of Book 2: Wakeworld

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Kerry – welcome and be warned – here we love dragons! =)
Thanks so much for agreeing to this session of soul stealing, it won’t hurt much I promise.

~side-eye~ You leave my soul alone. Just remember I have connections. Don’t make me sic a dragon on you. Or Zee.

I love hearing a short pitch from the author themselves on their books – can you give us a 140 character pitch for BETWEEN and WAKEWORLD? That’s right twitter style my dear.

Between: When a patient spontaneously combusts, ER doc Vivian must confront dark family secrets in a place called the Between, where dreams are real.

Wakeworld: Locked into Wakeworld by a power hungry dragon, Vivian joins forces with a rogue dreamshifter to rescue her lover and save the dream worlds.

Lets fall in head first shall we? So dreams and dragons, love them both and of course both equally hard to do well I think. Tell us – since dreams feature largely in the fiction you’ve released thus far – just how much inspiration do you take from your own dreams?

For the most part, my dreams don’t make enough sense by light of day to be allowed into any sort of logical plot. Although, there have been times in my life when the symbolism in my dreams was fantastic and meaningful. The thing I find particularly fascinating about dreams is the way they affect what we call reality. My subconscious is full of dream memories, and I know they affect my day to day decisions and behaviors, and yes, I’m sure my writing. Most of the time I’m not even aware of why something that should be new seems vaguely familiar, and then I’ll have a sudden aha! moment where I realize I’ve dreamed this moment, or at least something very like it. It’s a short jump from there to a world where what happens in your dreams is as real as what happens when you’re awake.

Ever use any particular daydreams of nudging that mean spirited driver next to you in a ditch? Oh wait that’s me daydreaming those things. Ok maybe you can’t cop to desires of indulging road rage (course I probably shouldn’t either – lets strike that from the record…shhhh).

I will confess that in nearly every first draft of every book I write, there is a character with a certain name to whom I do all sorts of mean spirited and vengeful things. But she’s always been revised out in later drafts. Sad, but plot must come before revenge.

Did you do any kind of specific research on dreams when writing your books? Any choice tasty bits you found that you’d love to share?

Not a lot, actually. I’d been fascinated by dreams for years, and had done some research on them during grad school (Masters in Counseling). That was where my interest really got piqued, I think. There is such a huge contrast between Freud and Jung, who placed great importance on dreams and their significance, and the modern Cognitive Behaviorists who think dreams are merely the brain processing chemicals while you sleep. And then there’s the whole lucid dreaming concept, and the aboriginal people and their Dreamtime and the people who have precognitive dreams. How does that all work? When I get thinking about it I get chills.

*ROAR, hiss, screech – whatever sounds dragons make?* Now onto my favorite creature in fantasy. DRAGONS! I dare say there just aren’t enough dragon books coming out lately, I can always use more! So tell us a little about your dragons – that’s right get these readers hyped up and foaming at the mouth to read about them.

Not giving too much away, I can tell you that due to the history of Wakeworld and Dreamworld, dragons were once very wise and powerful. Now there are only a few of these left, and the rest are somewhat lesser, although they are still intelligent and have magic. Dangerous, though, and generally hungry. Dragons are all about hunting and eating and the glory of flight.

Back to the research again – where do you stand on dragons? What is your favorite bit of dragonlore? Or maybe a favorite dragon book?

I’ve always been rather fond of dragons. As a child I was deeply saddened by Puff the Magic Dragon’s losses and appropriately fearful of Maleficent. As for dragon books – I very much love Ursula LeGuin’s treatment of them in her Earthsea stories. The Pern dragons are delightful as well. E. Nesbit spun some fun tales for children in his Book of Dragons, although he has a tendency to ruin them by layering in preachy lessons about obedience and what not. I suppose all of these things influenced my preference for dragons who are scary smart, but dangerous. When I started writing Between I had no idea that Vivian was going to turn out to be a dragon shifter, as if being a Dream Shifter isn’t enough for one woman! But when I recognized the inevitable, author friend Laura Bickle introduced me to the “dragon lady” tales from the east and these definitely influenced the development of my dragons.

I often find throwing out a quote here and there in my reviews works to thoroughly get people excited about the book.  If I find a particularly marvelous one – I love sharing it. Do you have a favorite quote or two from your books? I always wonder what lines an author favors most!

Yikes. I have become suspicious of favorite quotes because they so often are “darlings” that don’t really belong in the book and should be thrown away. But let me see…

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Between: “For Isobel, all times, all places are as one.
That she should be engaged one moment in a fruitless search for razor blades in the bathroom and the next moment find herself in this blood-spattered kitchen with no chain of events, no passing of time in between does not seem strange. Both are prisons of a sort, outside either her desire or her control.

She remembers continuity, long stretches of it, days, maybe even years, where events seemed to follow one another in a logical sort of way. But mostly there is no narrative to tie it all together, and she knows, besides, that nothing is ever what it seems. Everything in this room, all that she can see and touch and smell, is nothing more than a collection of particles. If she believes here is floor, here is chair, the particles will hold together so she can stand, or sit, but floors and chairs come and go without reason.”

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Wakeworld: “He was propped up against the stone wall beside the mouth of a cave. Her heart turned over at sight of his face, so changed from that first glimpse of him, sitting in a ray of golden sunlight in A to Zee Books. All of the artist had been beaten out of him, nothing but the warrior remaining. His head leaned back against the stone, eyes closed, but his face was tight and hard even in repose. The scars left by the bear were healing into long red welts. Both eyes had been blackened, and a greenish swelling marred his jaw. His right arm was bloody. A laceration ran along his rib cage; his belly and chest were marked with vivid purple bruises. The strong hands were bound together, resting in his lap.
Vivian’s eyes blurred with sudden tears.”
Alright, I need a sneak peak of tasty info we can look forward to with the next book. *bats eyelashes – didn’t work? Proffers a homemade iced spiced pumpkin cookie* Alright if you really can’t then how about are there any details or info that you would’ve loved to put in the past two books but you had to scrap for fear of the dreaded ‘info dump?’

I’ll do a lot for a really good cookie. That is homemade icing, right? So let me tell you this: in Book Three of the Between, the dreamworlds are dying, and if you happen to be in the middle of a dream connected to that particular world when it dies – well, it’s not so good for you. In order to stop this Very Bad Thing, Vivian has to persuade both the Giants and the Sorcieri to give up ancient secrets. Since all they really want to do is kill her this gets a little complicated. Not enough? How about if I tell you that more very bad things happen to Jared?

Doom, The End is Nigh! – Beware the balrogs! The big magic whammy is coming I tell you, not the zombie apocalypse, not the end of all electricity, or some outbreak – but some whackadoo mystical bomb is going to hit us and then we’ll all morph into…smurfs. Ok lets really hope not on the smurfs point. Say it did happen what creature would you end up as or heck WANT to be?

Please God, don’t let it be smurfs. You know, if it comes to that, I wouldn’t much object to being a dragon. You’re at the top of the food chain, you’re equipped with chain mail, you can fly, if the ice age cometh you can always light things on fire to stay warm.

This is the question you must have known was coming. Confessions – we’re all about them. The more devastatingly embarrassing the better. Trade you? Alright well I lied, witches named Tabitha do that you know, I’m plum out of embarrassing confessions – guess that means you’ll have to give me two to make up for my deficiencies. You don’t mind now do you?

Well, I’ve already confessed to writing revenge drafts, so that counts as one, right? As for the second – I’m such a space cadet I once not only drove into the wrong garage but actually walked into somebody else’s house and then stood there wondering for a minute who changed the linoleum and why the cat was the wrong color. I got out of there pronto before anybody saw me…

In regards to Between, tell us … What is up with the penguin!?? And “The penguins are coming, the penguins are coming!” #evillaughter

I confess to a fondness for penguins. See? A bonus confession! A few years back, my work partner found a website devoted to a group of penguins rescued from an oil slick. They were equipped with transmitters and turned loose as part of a research project with the expectation that they would all swim south to the breeding grounds. What was really cool about the site was that the penguins were all named and their progress was tracked on a daily map. One of them – he happened to be named Vivian, by the way – never did swim south. He swam in circles for a while and then headed due north. For my friend and I, “swimming north” became our catch phrase for going your own way and doing your own thing.  I didn’t realize until after I’d sold the book that penguins are actually considered the totem animal for dreamers. As for “the penguins are coming”, that’s just my twisted imagination being amused by the idea of a bird most people see as cute and funny turning into a creature of nightmare.

*pats Kerry on the shoulder* It wasn’t so bad now was it? Maybe don’t answer that…
I really appreciate you being a sport during this interview and hope the books do marvelously!

Thank you! I appreciate you having me over and grilling me with all sorts of difficult questions. Wait…
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Vivian Maylor is trying to hold it together. But her attempts to build a life with the man she loves seem doomed by the dragon inside her yearning to break free. Vivian is a dreamshifter, the last line of defense between reality and the dreamworld, and the only one of her kind.

Weston Jennings also believes he is the only one of his kind. He fears his powers as a dreamshifter, and resists learning to control them. After suffering a tragic loss, Weston heads deep into the woods of the Pacific Northwest to embrace a safe life of solitude. But when a terrible mistake leads to an innocent’s death, his guilt drives him to his former home, where he encounters what he never thought he would find: another shifter.

Now Vivian and Weston must work together to defeat a new threat to the dreamworld.

Wakeworld (The Between #2)

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Tabitha (Pabkins)

When I'm in the zone I can flip book pages faster than the eye can see - screaming "More Input!" I'm a book, yarn, & art supply hoarding goblin who loves to draw, make toys and craft all sorts of creepy cute things. My current habit is to listen to audio books while I'm arting it up!
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9 Responses to “Interview: Kerry Schafer author of Wakeworld”

  1. Melliane

    I really love the sound of this one and I just need more time to read book one! And just so you know because of you I just ordered Cinder!