The Qwillery | category: Kalayna Price


The Qwillery

A blog about books and other things speculative

Interview with Kalayna Price

Please welcome Kalayna Price to The Qwillery. Grave Visions, the 4th Alex Craft novel, was published on February 2nd by Roc.

Interview with Kalayna Price

The QwilleryWelcome to The Qwillery. What is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

Kalayna Price:  Remembering to write the first draft for myself. Once the first draft is done I can worry about what my editor, readers, and reviewers will think, but if I get too caught up in thinking about “OMG, will everyone hate this direction I just took the story?” while getting the initial story on the page, I end up paralyzed.

TQAre you a plotter, a pantser or a hybrid?

KP:  I would have to say hybrid. I work from a rough outline, but if the story starts going in another direction, I give it the wiggle room to surprise me.

TQHave you enjoyed returning to Alex Craft's world?

KP:  Very much so. Alex’s world is steeped in folklore, which is a passion of mine. I always enjoy working with the world. And then there are the characters. While I put them through a lot, I love writing every single one of them.

TQTell us something about Grave Visions that is not found in the book description.

KP:  Alex visits Faerie several times in this book, but each visit she finds Faerie slightly changed. Layering the world building of the land itself and the dynamics of how it changes with the situations in the book was a lot of fun that I hope readers will enjoy exploring.

TQWhat appeals to you about writing Urban Fantasy?

KP:  Several different things. On the world building side, I enjoy working in a world that is recognizable but with a magical overlay. On the plotting side, I like the endless possibilities available to work with: add some mystery, some romance, some horror, etc. . . . anything goes. The readers of this genre are very well read and very accepting of other genre aspects in their stories.

TQWhat sort of research did you do for Grave Visions?

KP:  Folklore books are always on the top of my research pile. I also keep on hand books on police procedure and forensics (though I deviate where the story calls for it.)

TQIn the Alex Craft series so far, who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why?

KP:  The rather minor (thus far) character Kyran has been one of the easiest characters to write. He showed up in book two with this huge personality that just jumped off the page. I was thrilled to bring him back in Grave Visions.

The hardest characters are probably the Collectors when several appear on the page in a single scene. It is amazingly hard to have characters interact for any length of time without ever revealing their names.

TQGive us one or two of your favorite non-spoilery lines from Grave Visions.

KP:  (slightly modified for length)
“You seeing a unicorn? Because I am.”
I nodded, dumbfounded.
“Then it can’t be a unicorn because you sure as hell aren’t a virgin.”

TQWhat's next?

KP:  I’m currently working on the fifth Alex Craft novel—there is a short preview of it in the end of Grave Visions, so I hope you’ll check it out.

TQThank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

KP:  Thank you for having me!

Grave Visions
An Alex Craft Novel 4
Roc, February 2, 2016
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

Interview with Kalayna Price
The USA Today bestselling author of Grave Memory and Grave Dance returns with her bewitching heroine Alex Craft in a new novel of twisting urban fantasy where the secrets of the dead can wreak havoc on the living.

If you want to hear voices from the dead in Nekros City, you call Alex Craft. She’s a grave witch with reasonable rates and extraordinary powers who specializes in revealing the secrets of the dead. But she has her own secrets. She’s not human—and her newly discovered heritage is causing havoc for her both in the human realm and in Faerie.

Fae can’t survive without a tie to Faerie, and now that Alex’s true nature has awoken, she’s no exception. She must align herself to a court and soon. To retain as much freedom as possible, she makes a deal to track the source of a new glamour-infused street drug which causes hallucinations that kill—and not just the user. Her investigation entangles Alex in a conflict brewing in Faerie, and she must find answers before she’s dragged so deep that she loses not only her freedom, but her life.


Grave Witch
An Alex Craft Novel 1
Roc, October 5, 2010
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 336 pages

Interview with Kalayna Price
Not even death can save her now.

As a grave witch, Alex Craft can speak to the dead-she’s even on good terms with Death himself. As a consultant for the police, she’s seen a lot of dark magic, but nothing has prepared her for her latest case. When she’s raising a “shade” involved in a high profile murder, it attacks her, and then someone makes an attempt on her life. Someone really doesn’t want her to know what the dead have to say, and she’ll have to work with mysterious homicide detective Falin Andrews to figure out why…

Grave Dance
An Alex Craft Novel 2
Roc, July 5, 2011
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 400 pages

Interview with Kalayna Price
After a month of down time, Grave Witch Alex Craft is ready to get back to solving murders by raising the dead. With her love life in turmoil, Alex is eager for the distractions of work. But when her new case forces her to overuse her magic, it might be the last mystery the Grave Witch ever gets to solve…

Grave Memory
An Alex Craft Novel 3
Roc, July 3, 2012Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 384 pages

Interview with Kalayna Price
When the dead need to talk, Alex Craft is always ready to listen…
As a Grave Witch, Alex solves murders by raising the dead—an ability that comes at a cost, and after her last few cases, that cost is compounding. But her magic isn’t the only thing causing havoc in her life. While she’s always been on friendly terms with Death himself, things have recently become a whole lot more close and personal. Then there’s her sometime partner, agent Falin Andrews, who is under the glamour of the Winter Queen. To top everything off, her best friend has been forever changed by her time spent captive in Faerie.

But the personal takes a backseat to the professional when a string of suicides occur in Nekros City and Alex is hired to investigate. The shades have no memory of the days leading up to their brutal endings, so despite the very public apparent suicides, this is murder. But what kind of magic can overcome the human will to survive? And why do the shades lack the memory of their deaths? Searching for the answer might mean Alex won’t have a life to remember at all…

About Kalayna

Interview with Kalayna Price
Kalayna Price has always been an avid reader and dreamer. At ten she raided her father's fantasy fiction bookcase and her already active imagination went into hyperdrive. Her first love was for the epic adventures and mythical races and creatures of high fantasy, but she has always been drawn to things that go bump in the night. It is that darker side of fantasy where she currently devotes her words.

Kalayna is the USA Today Bestselling author of two dark urban fantasy series: the novels of Haven and the Alex Craft novels, both of which have been translated into several languages and are available all over the world.

The Haven Novels, consisting of ONCE BITTEN (January 2009), TWICE DEAD (February 2010), and THIRD BLOOD (August 2012), follow the story of Kita Nekai, a kitten shapeshifter on the run from her clan and responsibilities, who is turned into a vampire and entangled in the supernatural underworld. The Alex Craft novels consist thus far of GRAVE WITCH (October 2010), GRAVE DANCE (July 2011), and GRAVE MEMORY (July 2012). The novels follow series title character, Alex Craft, who is a broke magic-eye for hire who speaks to the dead. In the first book, Grave Witch, a case with a sexy reaper, a dark cop, and a ghost-silencing killer has more than Alex's rent on the line—it may cost her soul.

Kalayna draws her ideas from the world around her, her studies into ancient mythologies, and her readings of classic folklore. Her stories contain not only the mystical elements of fantasy, but also a dash of romance, a bit of gritty horror, some humor, and a large serving of mystery.

When not writing, she can be found reading for both pleasure and research, locked in her studio with a paintbrush, out in nature with her camera, or just about anywhere with a hula-hoop. Yeah, you read that correctly. Kalayna thinks hoop dance is about the most entertaining form of exercise on the planet, and has been known to hoop with fire.

Website  ~  Facebook  ~  Twitter @Kalayna

Grave Dance, Alex Craft 2, by Kalayna Price - Cover Reveal - February 1, 2011

Today at her blog Kalayna Price revealed the cover and blurb for the 2nd Alex Craft novel, Grave Dance.

Grave Dance, Alex Craft 2, by Kalayna Price - Cover Reveal - February 1, 2011

Whoever said dead men tell no tales obviously never met Alex Craft.

After a month spent recovering from a vicious fight with a sorcerer, grave witch Alex Craft is ready to get back to solving murders by raising the dead. With her love life in turmoil thanks to the disappearance of Fae Investigation Bureau agent Falin Andrews and a shocking “L” word confession from Death himself, Alex is eager for the distractions of work. But her new case turns out to be a deadly challenge.

The police hire Alex to consult on a particularly strange investigation in the nature preserve south of Nekros City. The strange part: There are no corpses, only fragments of them. A serial killer is potentially on the loose, and Alex has no way to raise a shade without a body, so she’ll have to rely on the magic of others to find leads. But as she begins investigating, a creature born of the darkest magic comes after her. Someone very powerful wants to make sure the only thing she finds is a dead end—her own.

Grave Dance will be published on July 5, 2011. Kalayna stopped The Qwillery the day after Grave Witch, Alex Craft 1, was released. You can read the interview here.

Pre-order Grave Dance:, Barnes & Noble, Borders

Interview with Kalayna Price & Giveaway

The Qwillery is delighted to have author Kalayna Price as our guest today. Grave Witch, the first Alex Craft novel, was released yesterday.

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

Kalayna: Once upon a time, this would have been a really simple question because when I first graduated from college I was so accustomed to writing academic papers I didn’t use contractions. At all. So after I completed my first novel, I had to go back in and add contractions. I’ve grown out of that quirk, so now this is a much tougher question.

TQ: Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

Kalayna: My list of favorite authors is ridiculously long. If you picked another author in my genre, he or she would probably be on the list because there is a lot of great talent writing urban fantasy right now. To name just a small handful I’d have to say: Ilona Andrews, Karen Chance, Patricia Briggs, Chloe Neill, and Kim Harrison. As far as who influenced my writing, I’d have to point to Laurell K. Hamilton as sparking my interest in the genre back when the genre didn’t even properly exist yet. Since then, the other authors in the genre (and many in outside genres) have inspired me to aim to entertain readers the same way their books have entertained me.

TQ: Are you a plotter or a panster?

Kalayna: I’m a plotter who pantzes a lot. I create extremely detailed outlines before I begin writing a book, but as I write my process becomes more organic and I have to update the outline as I go along. I keep the outline though, because the actual structure rarely changes. I just tend to add in a lot of extra scenes and characters as I see how ideas play out on the page.

TQ: How many books are planned for the Alex Craft series?

Kalayna: Well, right now three novels are under contract in the series, but I have ideas that span beyond those three so I hope I get the chance to continue. Currently I have no definite end planned for the books but I do know where the characters are headed.

TQ: What sort of research did you do for Grave Witch?

Kalayna: Since the world building in Grave Which is based on a magical awakening that occurred when Fae of folklore revealed their existence to the world, I had the opportunity to really indulge my love of folklore in the guise of research. I spent a lot of time reading collections of lore which had been only oral traditions until the late nineteenth century. Most stories were European, but not all were. I also did some forensic and police procedural research

TQ: Do you and Alex Craft have anything in common?

Kalayna: Of course—We both talk to the dead! Er, wait. No. That’s not true.

I think all characters share some aspects with their authors, but it is mostly little things. With Alex, the only big similarities we have are a shared penchant for boots and the fact I gave Alex a breed of dog that is one of my favorites. Her dog, PC, is a Chinese Crested, which if you’ve never seen one, is a small dog with hair only on their heads, paws, and tails. A lot of people think they are hideous and sickly looking, but I find them pathetically adorable.

TQ: Are there any other genres in which you would like to write in addition to urban fantasy?

Kalayna: Before I started writing seriously, I was afraid I’d run out of ideas one day. I no longer have that fear because I have more story ideas queued in the back of my mind than I could write in the next couple of decades. The big contenders outside urban fantasy are a Cyber Punk novel, a YA, and a steampunk idea.

TQ: What's next?

Kalayna: New adventures for Alex and for Kita, the heroine of my Haven series. The Next Novel of Haven will be out the first part of next year, and the next Alex Craft novel is scheduled for summer of next year.

Thanks so much for having me here today, Sally!

TQ: Thank you for joining me at The Qwillery!

About Kalayna's Books:

Alex Craft Novels:

Grave Witch (Alex Craft Novel 1)
Interview with Kalayna Price & Giveaway

Not even death can save her now.

As a grave witch, Alex Craft can speak to the dead-she's even on good terms with Death himself. As a consultant for the police, she's seen a lot of dark magic, but nothing has prepared her for her latest case. When she's raising a "shade" involved in a high profile murder, it attacks her, and then someone makes an attempt on her life. Someone really doesn't want her to know what the dead have to say, and she'll have to work with mysterious homicide detective Falin Andrews to figure out why...

The Novels of Haven:
Once Bitten (Novel of Haven 1)
Interview with Kalayna Price & Giveaway
Kita Nekai, on the run and the smallest of her shifter clan-a calico cat among lions and tigers-is being hunted. She was expected to accept her role as her father's successor whether or not her cat was up to the task of leading the clan. She disagreed. Now she's less than a step ahead of the hunters, bone-tired, cold, and living hand-to-mouth in the city of Haven. And that's the high point of her day. She's also drugged, "accidently" turned into a vampire, and sentenced to death for recklessly creating a rogue shifter who tortures its human prey. She's got seventy-two hours to find the rogue, evade a city full of hunters, prove she's not responsible for the rogue, and keep the vampire council from killing her. All while sorting out an apprentice mage, a married ex-boyfriend shifter-hunter, and the vampire who made her.

Twice Dead (Novel of Haven 2)Interview with Kalayna Price & Giveaway
Newly undead shifter-turned-vampire Kita Nekai is coming to grips with the reality that her cat has not awakened since her change.
What she needs is a little time to adjust to her new liquid diet and the increasingly complex attraction to her sire, Nathanial. What she gets is a headless harlequin. With the body count rising, Kita is dragged into a dangerous game of vampire politics. Her involvement draws the attention of an ancient vampire known as the Collector who has a penchant for acquiring the unusual - like a pureblood shifter-turned vampire.
Kita still has unfinished business of her own and finds herself deeper in magical debt.
It's a bad time to be a kitten who can't slip her skin.
Kalayna Price's debut novel, ONCE BITTEN, earned rave reviews and reached #1 on's "Fantasy Bestseller List." TWICE DEAD returns readers to a dark, seductive world where magic rules and ancient loyalties collide with modern challenges..

Third Blood (Novel of Haven 3) will be released in 2011:
Going home after five years is difficult. It's harder still if you've changed species in the interim.

Kita Nekai, once the smallest shifter in Firth but now the newest vampire in the city of Haven, has no intention of returning home or informing her father and clan what she's become. Not that she has a choice. When the mage who holds her death certificate in his hands demands Kita return to Firth as his errand runner, she has to comply. Of course, there is no leaving her sire, Nathanial, behind. Which means introducing daddy dearest to the man—well, vampire—she may be falling for and confessing that she's lost the ability to shift. Talk about awkward.
Her homecoming goes from bad to worse when an attempt is made on her life, and Kita finds herself facing an unknown threat in a hostile world she never fit into in the first place. Can she survive long enough to complete the judge's task, stand trial before the elders for the rogues she created while on the run, and help defend her father's territory from an encroaching band of misfit shifters? Or is this cat down to her last life?

About Kalayna:
Interview with Kalayna Price & Giveaway
Kalayna Price is the author of the Alex Craft Novels, a new dark urban fantasy series from Roc, and the author of the Novels of Haven from Bell Bridge Books. She draws her ideas from the world around her, her studies into ancient mythologies, and her obsession with classic folklore. Her stories contain not only the mystical elements of fantasy, but also a dash of romance, a bit of gritty horror, some humor, and a large serving of mystery. She is a member of SFWA and RWA, and an avid hula-hoop dancer who has been known light her hoop on fire. To find out more, please visit her at

The Giveaway:

What: A copy of Grave Witch (Alex Craft Novel 1).

How: Leave a comment telling The Qwillery which author from the past you would talk to if you had the power to talk to the dead?

You can 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 & 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, October 13, 2010.
Interview with Kalayna PriceGrave Dance, Alex Craft 2, by Kalayna Price - Cover Reveal - February 1, 2011Interview with Kalayna Price & Giveaway

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