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Friday, November 8, 2013

Taking Tea with...Krystal Shannon

Today's tea guest walks on the wild the wolves and bears sense... Paranormal writer, Krystal Shannan

Krystal Shannan, lives in Texas and is married to the love-of-her-life. They have a spunky young daughter who believes in fairies. Krystal professes to loving shoes, but avoids wearing them at all costs. She teaches in the public schools and writes as much as she can in her free time. If any more spare time can be squeezed from her day, she enjoys reading romance in all genres, but especially paranormal. If it has a 'Happily Ever After', she's on board!

Hi Krystal, welcome to my tea table.  Whenever George, my butler, knows I am entertaining Texans he pulls out the coffee dripolator thingy… what is your preference,  tea or coffee?  If you don’t mind a good old fashioned cuppa tea, do you have a favourite?

I enjoy a good cup of tea. Thank you. (AS: George, you can put away that coffee thing...and brew us a cup of Australian Afternoon Tea)

You are my first “paranormal” writer…What attracted you to the world of shapeshifters and magic?

I think I’m attracted to the escape. It’s a completely different world. I’m such a science fiction and magick geek. I’ve always like Star Trek, Star Gate, Merlin, anything to do with fantasy. Shapeshifters and magickal creatures are just an extension of that fantasy. Plus they are just awesome! And SEXY. 

(AS:  Magick? KS: It's just a quirky old english/celtic way to spell it and I spell it like that in all my books.)

I’ve read quite a few shapeshifter stories and it always bothers me…what happens to their clothes?

Well, depends on the author’s lore. Some have magical rings or enchantments that take care of the clothing option. My books keep it natural. They have to strip. Transforming in clothes isn’t an option. So in one of my stories the newest werewolf makes a comment about all the little stacks of clothes they have stashed around the outside of the mountain inn where they are living. It’s quite a comical moment when she realizes ‘why’ there are clothes laying around.
(AS:  I'm very relieved to hear that!)

What did you do to celebrate Halloween this year?

I stayed home and watched movies with my husband, just like I do every year. We aren’t huge Halloween celebrators. I know, shocker, right? (AS:  Even I donned a cute little halloween fascinator and waited in vain for some trick or treaters!)

What are your interests away from your writing?

I love to read… play with my 3.5 year old daughter… we used to have a dog, but she passed away. I really like to garden, but I’m terrible with plants and constantly have to buy more because somehow I invariably kill them. (AS: Me too...I am death to anything in a pot!)  My husband and I enjoy going to the local aquarium and zoo for outings. Movies are good, too…when there’s something good releasing. Mostly we are homebodies. I spend a lot of time at my mother’s. We are very close.

You are writing in 2 series: “Vegas Mates” and “Pool of Souls” (Love the title of that series!). What is the difference between them and what was your inspiration for them both?

Vegas Mates was inspired by a photo. I saw this picture of a gorgeous woman staring off into the distance. She seemed sad, but strong, and Samantha Demakis was born from that. Usually the characters tell me the story and I build around them.

Pool of Souls was inspired by my obsession with Greek mythology. I’ve always wanted to write a story about Aphrodite and Ares, so I just dug through mythology until I found a hint of a reference to two versions of Aphrodite. One, the daughter of a titan and one, the daughter of Zeus. My Aphrodite in Pool of Souls is the first, the daughter of a Titan and the only one still on Olympus. The only one the Pantheon couldn’t get rid of. She is a such a fun character and I look forward to getting back to her story later next year. (AS:  What a terrific source of inspiration!)

Your latest book, WAKING SARAH, is the 3rd in the Vegas Mates series. What is the premise of this story and where did the idea come from?

This story came from one of Samantha’s (CHASING SAM) friends in high school who was the descendant of a werewolf, but nobody knew. I wanted a ‘coming-of-age’ type story where a human who had struggled with something finally felt whole when the truth about magick came out into the open for her. The magick from her lineage completes her. She gets to feel the wholeness that she’s missed her entire life. Both the hero and the heroine are dealing with the loss of a loved one and both are able to reach each other and help heal the other. I really feel that it ‘takes one to know one’. If you’ve never experienced that loss, I don’t think you truly can understand a person who has.

I love a well written paranormal you say it takes you out of a safe world into a world of raw animal instinct and endows a human with extraordinary powers so if you are looking for something a little different, try Krystal's stories and why not join Krystal and I for a chat... 

Vegas Mates, Book 3

Council threats and Renata’s deadly attack leave the Vegas pack scrambling to regroup… 

Heartbroken over the death of her fiancé and tortured by a voice in her mind that’s haunted her since childhood, Sarah McLain learns her true ancestry after attending her best friend Margaret’s wedding. Can the pack save Sarah from the darkness that threatens to overwhelm her? Or will the wolf inside drive her over the edge before they can show her being a supernatural being is a good thing?

Chris Michaels is in charge of training the new latent werewolves at the O’Hearn mountain inn, now known as Woodhaven. His focus is tested when he finds out the beautiful but sad redhead, Sarah McLain, is his trainee.  The connection he feels to her is strong but not magickal, and his wolf claims it foolish to listen to his human instincts.  Can Chris heal her broken heart in time, or will he lose the woman he knows is perfect for him.

~ Excerpt ~


Sarah’s mind drifted as her friend Margaret Taylor recited her vows and became Mrs. Scott O’Hearn. She stood silently holding the bridal bouquet. Calla lilies. She would have been carrying calla lilies two weeks from today. They were her favorite, and Brad always got some for her on her birthday.

Her thoughts moved to the unworn wedding dress hanging in the back of her mother’s closet. Cream colored with Spanish lace. A sweetheart neckline and long flowing sleeves. She never wanted to see the dress again, but her mother refused to part with it. A quick glance at Scott made her gasp. The look of adoration he was giving Margaret nearly broke her heart all over again. 

Brad used to look at her like that.  

Margaret had begged her to stand as the maid of honor. And, Sarah wanted to be here for her friend’s wedding. She really did. But her heart wasn’t here. Neither Margaret nor Sam knew she’d been engaged to Brad. None of them knew she and Brad had picked out a wedding date. Or that it was two weeks from today. September twenty-second. They hadn’t had the time to tell anyone…

She shook her head and sniffed quietly, clearing the image from her mind.

Now he was dead. That future they’d been so excited to share with their friends –stolen.
Nearly six months had passed since she’d gotten that life-altering knock on the door from two Houston police detectives. Sorry to inform you, but life as you know it has just ended. That’s not what they’d said, but it might as well have been. 

She’d dropped out of college and come home to Vegas to find Sam already married and Margaret in a rapidly-becoming-serious relationship and now married as of today. Margaret had told her earlier that day she’d wanted to get married in May, but somehow her big bear of a fiancé convinced her September would be better. 

She’d listened to Margaret ramble on, but most of it had fallen on deaf ears.

The happiness in the room was suffocating. She should be happy for her friends, but she wasn’t. Then she felt guilty. Their lives weren’t perfect. Both Sam and Margaret had both recently lost their fathers. She couldn’t imagine losing her dad, but right now, her mind kept circling back to only one thing: they both had their soul mates. 

Hers was gone.

The forests outside the inn called to her soul. Dark thoughts of disappearing into the forest crossed through her mind. It was a big mountain. Her dreams over the last few days here had tortured her sleep, and she’d doubled up on her prescription just to make it through the night. The pills helped silence the voice, but no treatment or therapy had ever successfully gotten rid of it.

She was so tired of the pain.

Krystal has a gift of an autographed bookmark for the first 20 readers to leave a comment and tell us:  If you had to be a paranormal or mythological creature, what would you choose and why? 

AS:  Personally I would like to be a cat...I like their devil may care attitude and the ability to scale tall fences in a single bound.