Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011


Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011

Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011

Please welcome Nancy Holzner to The Qwillery.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Nancy:  I'm not terribly quirky as a writer. That's probably because writing was my day job (reference and how-to books) for several years before I published a novel. To me, writing means sitting down at the computer and getting the job done.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Nancy:  A little of both, but slightly more on the plotter side. I like to start a new project by writing a very loose outline that covers the big moments in the plot: inciting incident, plot point 1, midpoint, plot point 2, reversal, climax. At the early stages, I don't try to flesh it out more than that. My loose outline offers two benefits: (1) It breaks up the novel and gives me goals to write toward and (2) it allows room for surprises to arise during the writing. Those surprises—things you just can't anticipate during the early plotting stages—are the most exciting part of writing. They mean that the novel is alive and growing on its own. If I try to plot too intricately, there's no room left for surprise and spontaneity.

TQ:  What inspired you to write the Deadtown series?

Nancy:  Before I published any fiction, I used to read lots of agent blogs. One of my favorite features was when an agent would list pet peeves from query letters he or she received. I guess reading those posts made me feel like I wasn't too far out in left field. One day, an agent wrote that she disliked the phrase “So-and-so wrestles with his own personal demons,” because who else besides you would wrestle with your demons? I decided to take her question seriously, and I started thinking about a character whose job was to exterminate other people's personal demons. And so Vicky Vaughn was born.

TQ:  What sort of research have you done to create the Deadtown world?

Nancy:  Most of my research has to do with the series' background mythology, which is drawn from the stories and legends of the Welsh Mabinogion. Vicky's race, the Cerddorion, is descended from the goddess Ceridwen, who could shapeshift. I began my career as a medievalist (I used to be an English professor), so I have a background in medieval literature. But it's been a lot of fun digging deeper to get more background material for Vicky's story. In Bloodstone, for example, Myrddin Wyllt, one of the precursors to Merlin the wizard from Arthurian literature, shows up to give Vicky and her Aunt Mab some trouble.

TQ:  Why did you set the series in Boston, Massachusetts?

Nancy:  I love Boston. I went to college there, and I lived in or near Boston for several years outside of college. It's an interesting mix of liberal and conservative, traditional and cutting-edge. It's a compact but cosmopolitan city with very distinct neighborhoods. When I needed a setting where people would have to deal with the sudden creation of 2,000 “zombies,” Boston immediately leaped to mind.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Bloodstone (Deadtown 3)?

Nancy:  I always have fun writing the scenes that take place in Creature Comforts, a monster bar in the New Combat Zone (the area between the checkpoints into Deadtown and human-controlled Boston). In Bloodstone, Vicky goes to Creature Comforts on a very serious mission, needing urgently to speak with Axel, the bar's owner. When she steps inside, she finds herself in the middle of a werewolf bachelorette party. It was fun to see how she dealt with the dominance challenges of a female werewolf about to mate while not losing sight of her reason for going to see Axel in the first place.

TQ:  In Bloodstone, who was the most difficult character to write and why? The easiest and why?

Nancy:  Now that I'm three books into the series, I know the recurring characters pretty well. These characters—Vicky, Kane, Mab, Tina, Juliet, and others—are anchored in the previous stories. It's not that they're easy to predict so much as I'm quicker to recognize how they will and won't act. I guess that means that the hardest character to write in Bloodstone was Vicky's nemesis, Myrddin. Although he's grounded in mythology, it took some time to define him for my story. I had to rewrite his early scenes several times to get him right. There's something crazy about him—being cooped up in a yew tree for 1500 years has left him a little unhinged—but I need to work with him for a while to understand his mental state and not just make him a stereotype of “crazy.”

TQ:  Who is your favorite character in the Deadtown series so far? Has any character surprised you?

Nancy:  Vicky is my favorite character, which is a good thing since she provides the narrative voice. I admire her because she's smart and loyal and far braver than I am. Yet I can also relate to her because she has to make sacrifices and sometimes she's uncertain of herself. The character who surprises me the most is Tina, Vicky's teenage zombie sidekick. She's always saying and doing things I don't expect, often taking the story in a whole new direction.

TQ:  How many Deadtown novels are planned?

Nancy:  I currently have four novels under contract but hope to keep the series going for six or seven books. The fourth Deadtown novel, Darklands, will be out next summer. In it, Vicky travels to Annwn, the Welsh realm of the dead, to prevent the resurrection of a Hellion.

TQ:  What's next?

Nancy:  I'm currently putting the finishing touches on Darklands. When I've turned in that manuscript, I want to write a prequel that explains what happened during the zombie plague that created Deadtown. I envision that as a novella, which I'll release as an ebook along with some other short stories set in Deadtown's world. Outside of urban fantasy, I'm working on a sequel to Peace, Love, and Murder, a contemporary (nonparanormal) mystery that was my first published novel. PLM is currently available as 99-cent ebook, and readers have been asking what happens next. So as soon as I have time, I'll answer that question with a followup mystery.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Nancy:  Thank you so much for inviting me! It's been a fun visit, and I enjoyed the interview.

About the Deadtown Novels

Deadtown 3
(Ace, September 27, 2011)
Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011
They call it Deadtown: the city's quarantined section for its inhuman and undead residents. Most humans stay far from its borders - but Victory Vaughn, Boston's only professional demon slayer, isn't exactly human...

Boston's diverse South End is known for its architecture and great restaurants, not its body count. So when mutilated human corpses begin turning up in the area, the entire city takes notice. The killer-dubbed the South End Reaper-uses a curved blade for his grisly work. And even though there's no real evidence pointing to a paranormal culprit, the deaths are straining the already-tense relations between Boston's human and inhuman residents.

As the bodies pile up, Vicky, her formidable aunt, Mab, and her werewolf boyfriend, Kane investigate, only to find that the creature behind the carnage is after something much more than blood...

Deadtown 2
(Ace, December 28, 2010)
Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011
A demon is stalking Vicky's dreams-just as several of Deadtown's zombies are viciously attacked and become really dead. And when Vicky realizes she is the only connection between the victims, she suspects that the demon is somehow working through her dreams to become Deadtown's living nightmare.

Deadtown 1
(Ace, December 29, 2009)
Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011
First in a brand new urban fantasy series that's "fresh and funny, with a great new take on zombies" (Karen Chance) and "full of dangerous magic and populated with characters so realistic, they almost jump off the page" (Ilona Andrews).

If you were undead, you'd be home by now...

They call it Deadtown: the city's quarantined section for its inhuman and undead residents. Most humans stay far from its borders-but Victory Vaughn, Boston's only professional demon slayer, isn't exactly human.

About Nancy

Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011

Nancy Holzner is the author of the Deadtown urban fantasy series featuring shapeshifter Victory Vaughn. After beginning her career as a medievalist, Nancy has worked as a high school teacher, corporate trainer, freelance editor, and technology writer. She lives in New York's Finger Lakes region with her husband, Steve. Besides writing urban fantasy, Nancy also writes mystery novels. Peace, Love, and Murder is the first book in her mystery series set in an upstate New York college town.

Nancy's Links

Website and blog
Facebook author page
Dark Central Station, a group blog for authors of urban fantasy and horror

The Giveaway


What:  One commenter will his or her choice of a signed copy of Deadtown, Hellforged, or Bloodstone from Nancy!

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

If you were a demon slayer what sort of paranormal/supernatural being 
would be your sidekick? 

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Wednesday, September 28, 2011. Void where prohibited by law. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

49 Comments on The Qwillery: Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011

  • Marguerite Hall
    on September 21, 2011 | 08:30 Marguerite Hallsaid :
    "I always imagined myself having a werewolf sidekick or maybe a cheetah shifter. Something about those shifters that just intrigue me.

    Thank you for giving me another author to check out :)"
  • Sinnaye
    on September 21, 2011 | 09:04 Sinnayesaid :
    "I would want a Pixie like Jenks (Kim Harrison), cause he is epically awesome! Since I got to know him, I got to have him :)

    Thank you for the interview + giveaway!

    +1 comment
    +1 follower

  • Bastard
    on September 21, 2011 | 09:18 Bastardsaid :
    "Hmm, I think I'd want Jack Bauer, but I'll probably just be his sidekick. He's kicked terrorism's ass for years, I think he's up for a new challenge.

    +1 comment
    +1 follower
    +1 ReTweet

    If anything, I'd be interested in Bloodstone, already got the other two."
  • Michele
    on September 21, 2011 | 10:17 Michelesaid :
    "It would definitely be a Gargoyle, one that is relatively young (just developing its powers)and keeps blundering its magic (but periodically calling forth immense power)!! I would call him Alexander (the NOT SO GREAT)! I can't wait to read Bloodstone."
  • kara-karina@Nocturnal Book Reviews
    on September 21, 2011 | 11:19 kara-karina@Nocturnal Book Reviewssaid :
    "I don't know. I would love a nice, good looking, sarcastic as hell guardian angel as my sidekick. AS we are fighting demons anyway :)
    impy80 at hotmail dot com
    +1 comment
    +1 follower
    +1 shared on my blog"
  • Anonymous
    on September 21, 2011 | 11:30 Anonymoussaid :
    "a lion shifter. great giveaway!!!

    im a gfc follower"
  • Rebe
    on September 21, 2011 | 12:23 Rebesaid :
    "I'd definitely have a hellhound as my sidekick! Maybe he'd have acidic drool or something. His breath would be pretty rank, though. Hmmm... maybe I should rethink this...

    +1 Comment
    +1 Follower"
  • Teril
    on September 21, 2011 | 12:29 Terilsaid :
    "Ohh my sidekick could be a sylph or a were.
    I love the Deadtown series. Nancy has created a fabulous host of characters and a rich world.

    terilhack at gmail dot com"
  • Kaya H
    on September 21, 2011 | 12:31 Kaya Hsaid :
    "I would love me a shapechanging sidekick.
    Bloodstone I cannot wait!

    + comment

    kasuranna at yahoo dot com"
  • booklover0226
    on September 21, 2011 | 12:39 booklover0226said :
    "I would want a side kick who could teleport; we may need a quick getaway if things got too hairy!

    +1 comment
    +1 GFC follower

    Tracey D
    booklover0226 at gmail dot com"
  • Anonymous
    on September 21, 2011 | 12:57 Anonymoussaid :
    "Hi, everyone! Thanks for stopping by. I love the sidekicks people are coming up with. I agree with kara-karina that sarcasm is an essential quality in a good sidekick. Tracey's teleporting idea would come in handy, too. Interesting to see sylphs and hellhounds both mentioned--those are both likely to show up in future projects of mine. :)"
  • Janhvi
    on September 21, 2011 | 13:01 Janhvisaid :
    "I'd love to have a shapeshifter sidekick as they are usually very fierce and protective so I'd obviously get a lot of help.

    +1 comment
    +1 GFC follower-Janhvi Jagtap

    justjanhvi at gmail dot com"
  • Melliane
    on September 21, 2011 | 13:08 Mellianesaid :
    "Thanks for the giveaway ! It sounds a really great series.

    If I were a demon slayer I would love to have an hellhound as a sidekick.

    I'm a follower

  • Tore923
    on September 21, 2011 | 13:25 Tore923said :
    "Thanks for the giveaway. I would want a vampire as a side kick. They are very strong and handsome. Please enter me in contest. I am a follower and email subscriber."
  • alainala
    on September 21, 2011 | 13:41 alainalasaid :
    "i would have to go with some sort of cat shifter.. puma maybe or jag..
    ive read the first book and absolutely adored it! thanks for the chance to win more!

    +1 for being a follower

    alainala@ hotmail DOT ca"
  • Anne
    on September 21, 2011 | 13:44 Annesaid :
    "My first thought was vampire, but that would leave me alone 12+ hours of the day. So, I'd go with a large cat shifter (a wolf has movement limitations a cat wouldn't, plus there's no pesky 3 days a month having to change).

    I'd like Bloodstone,

    GFC Anne38"
  • Petaldew
    on September 21, 2011 | 13:57 Petaldewsaid :
    "Supernatural sidekick? I'd have to go with a Sam Winchester. Adorable beings.
    +1 for being a GFC follower."
  • Krystal Larson
    on September 21, 2011 | 14:07 Krystal Larsonsaid :
    "I would choose a Carpathian-the vampires that Christine Feehan creates...if he's tall, dark,and handsome? Who am I to complain ;) edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom
    GFC Krystal Larson
  • Arianne
    on September 21, 2011 | 14:25 Ariannesaid :
    "I think it would be cool to have a fairy as a sidekick :)
    GFC: Arianne Cruz
  • Scorpio1974
    on September 21, 2011 | 14:39 Scorpio1974said :
    "Great interview! I think I'd want a Vampire or a White Were-Tiger for a sidekick. =)
    I follow this blog, I also shared this post on FB. =) Great giveaway, thanks for the chance to enter!!

    Valerie Long (Scorpio1974 on GFC)"
  • Anonymous
    on September 21, 2011 | 15:00 Anonymoussaid :
    "I would love a cheetah smooth and sleek..definately cool! tahnks for introducing me to a new author!
    +1 follower
    +1 comment
    +1 blog

    +1 facebook!/profile.php?id=100000169851693"
  • Sharon Stogner
    on September 21, 2011 | 15:11 Sharon Stognersaid :
    "oh, that is an easy question. My sidekick would be a demon ;) cause it would be ironical and they would have some inside info on how to dispatch one the quickest.

    don't enter me, I just wanted to play"
  • Reading Mind / The Loyal Book
    on September 21, 2011 | 16:58 Reading Mind / The Loyal Book said :
    "I'd choose a Buffy. Yeah, this means I'm better than her, but hey, let me dream a little bit!

    aliasgirl at libero dot it

    +1 comment
    +1 gfc follower"
  • erin
    on September 21, 2011 | 17:10 erinsaid :
    "I love, love, love thi series! I can't wait for and desperately want, Bloodstone :)

    If I had a sidekick, I'd want it to be a shapeshifter who is very strong and fast to protect me! :)

    Thanks for the great post and giveaway!

    GFC ~ erin

    Total points = 2"
  • Sariah
    on September 21, 2011 | 18:22 Sariahsaid :
    "I think I would want a siren(Kelly Gay) or a sorcerer/sorceress(Chloe Neill). I am really liking them right now. :) Thanks for the giveaway. I am a follower.

    sariahwalters at gmail dot com"
  • Bethany C.
    on September 21, 2011 | 19:21 Bethany C.said :
    "I think if I were a demon slayer I would want a witch sidekick. For binding/summoning and what not. I just think because of their often mentioned connection they would be most useful.
    I'm a gfc follower.

  • Barbara E.
    on September 21, 2011 | 19:56 Barbara E.said :
    "If I were a demon slayer, I'd have a ghost sidekick who could help me with demon lore so I could kick some demon butt.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com
    GFC follower"
  • Na
    on September 21, 2011 | 20:27 Nasaid :
    "I would want a witch as a sidekick if I was a demon slayer. A witch can with healing powers would come in handy should I ever get hurt.

    I am a GFC follower.
    Cambonified (at) yahoo (dot) com"
  • Anonymous
    on September 21, 2011 | 20:36 Anonymoussaid :
    "Just wanted to say I really appreciate the comments from people who've enjoyed the series or are eager to start it.

    I have to admit that Tina the zombie isn't always the most useful sidekick for my demonslaying protagonist to have, but I kinda like her. :)

    Good luck in the giveaway. And thanks so much to Qwill for inviting me here today! Watch for Bloodstone in bookstores on 9/27!"
  • msmjb65
    on September 21, 2011 | 20:47 msmjb65said :
    "First, congrats on the books.Second, I would definitely want my sidekick to be easy on the eyes and very smart, but the type? Perhaps a rehabilitated demon!
    +1 comment
    +1 GFC follower as MJB

    Thanks for the giveaway!
    msmjb65 AT gmail DOT com"
  • TheGirlOnFire
    on September 21, 2011 | 21:12 TheGirlOnFiresaid :
    "I would want a witch/wizard side kick. They always seem to have a spell for everything!

    +1 Comment
    +1 GFC follower

    thegirlonfire27 at gmail dot com"
  • ML
    on September 21, 2011 | 21:33 MLsaid :
    "I think I'd want a wise-cracking gargoyle as my sidekick. They are pretty impenetrable and I think I'd want the humor to help through tough situations.

    mljfoland AT hotmail DOT com"
  • ML
    on September 21, 2011 | 21:36 MLsaid :
    "Oops forgot-
    +1 GFC: ML
    +1 Twitter:!/Rogue237/status/116686916442791936

    mljfoland AT hotmail DOT com"
  • Dinda
    on September 21, 2011 | 23:32 Dindasaid :
    "Thanks for the giveaway !!!
    I would choose angel as my sidekick. He can work his magic to help me.

  • Mary Preston
    on September 22, 2011 | 00:10 Mary Prestonsaid :
    "An Angel. Angels can slay Demons & protect me.

    GFC: Mary Preston

  • Denise Z
    on September 22, 2011 | 04:44 Denise Zsaid :
    "Thank you so much for this awesome giveaway opportunity. I recently read Deadtown and it was a great read and I have the rest of the series on my wishlist:) My side kick would be a very strong witch.
    GFC follower

  • Jolene and Family
    on September 22, 2011 | 19:09 Jolene and Familysaid :
    "I would want a werewolf sidekick, I would need someone to watch my back :)

    +1 comment
    +1 GFC follower
    +1 tweeted-!/joleneallcock/status/117012215969755137

  • RachaelM
    on September 22, 2011 | 22:00 RachaelMsaid :
    "I would want a shifter as my sidekick. It would be nice to have strength, speed and teeth to help get us out of trouble.

    +1 Comment
    +1 GFC Follower
    +1 Twitter!/ERachaelM/status/117054542461407232"
  • winnie
    on September 22, 2011 | 22:06 winniesaid :
    "I would choose a shape shifter as a sidekick because they're strong and can become stronger when shifted into a fierce animal!

    +1 comment
    +1 GFC follower

  • Anonymous
    on September 23, 2011 | 05:59 Anonymoussaid :
    "I would like A shadowhunter to be my sidekick !!

    +1 comment
    +1 follower

  • In Julie's Opinion
    on September 23, 2011 | 14:34 In Julie's Opinionsaid :
    "I would definitely want to have a witch by my side! That could definitely come in handy :)

    +1 comment
    +1 GFC follower
    +1 tweeted:!/jwitt33/status/117305715651129345

    jwitt33 at live dot com"
  • Misusedinnocence
    on September 25, 2011 | 22:44 Misusedinnocencesaid :
    "I would want a vampire as my sidekick. ;)

    +1 Comment
    +1 Follower"
  • Natasha Areena
    on September 26, 2011 | 02:24 Natasha Areenasaid :
    "Ehmm.. The Goddess? Yes I want Goddess. :)
    +1 Comment
    +1 Follower
  • orchid7
    on September 27, 2011 | 11:34 orchid7said :
    "A sidekick? A sidhe fairy- a powerful one.

    I'd love a copy of Deadtown. I've been meaning to try this series.

    +1 follower"
  • Lisa Richards/alterlisa
    on September 27, 2011 | 13:32 Lisa Richards/alterlisasaid :
    "My sidekick would have to be my feisty Jack Russel "Chloe", she has separation anxiety and would never leave my side--except to save my life of course.

    +1 Comment
    +1 GFC- Lisa Richards


    alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com"
  • Laura H.
    on September 27, 2011 | 21:54 Laura H.said :
    "Thanks for the giveaway! My sidekick would be a HOT vampire!

  • Laura H.
    on September 27, 2011 | 21:55 Laura H.said :
    "Already follow via GFC (MamaHendo3).

  • Laura H.
    on September 27, 2011 | 21:55 Laura H.said :
    "Tweeted giveaway:!/MamaHendo3/status/118866150011572224

  • Danielle
    on October 01, 2011 | 05:16 Daniellesaid :
    "I would have to choose a dragon ."
Interview with Nancy Holzner and Giveaway - September 21, 2011

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