Interview with India Drummond

, by Kt Clapsadl

I had the pleasure of interviewing India Drummond. Her debut novel, Ordinary Angels was just released. You can check out my review here.
* In Ordinary Angels, the angels are well anything but "ordinary" as they don't follow the typical picture most people have of angels. How did you come up with the mythology behind them and what made you decide to eschew the normal "rules" about angels?

It all started when I was accusing my husband of some infraction and he gave me his best innocent look and said, “What? Me? I’m a perfect angel!” I retorted with something like: “If you are what angels call perfect, we’re all in a heap of trouble.” It got me thinking about what angels would be like if we removed the religious context and thought of them simply as beings with lives parallel to ours.

* Haha! I know all about that innocent looks hubbies can give. Mine is at his most dangerous when he tries to pull that one off. How many books do you have planned for this series. Any hints you can give us for what is in store?

So far, three. The second is called Familiar Demons, and it’s set in another of my favourite cities, Amsterdam. It has many of the same characters from the first book (including Zoe and Alexander, of course), but we also learn a lot more about Thomas, who I have to admit is my secret crush. Demons play a much larger role in this book (obviously!) and Zoe gets more of a handle on her abilities.

* Ooo Sounds interesting! I can't wait to check them out. If your book were to made into a movie who would be your top picks for the cast?

When I develop my characters, I like to have a concrete fix on what they look like. It makes describing them a lot easier, and I feel like I get to know them. So I often search photo sites like istockphoto, sneak through friend’s pics on Facebook, and places with candid shots like dating sites. But it’s important to me to choose photos of people I don’t know. So I never pick celebrities. This way I don’t have any preconceived ideas. This makes it very hard when trying to think of a movie star! I already know what my characters look like, so I guess we’ll just have to leave that up to a casting agent. =)

*I can understand that as the people we imagine in our minds just never seem to match up with the casting choices, we just have to hope they will do a good job in the end. So, what are some of your favorite books in the paranormal genre?

I read so many different authors that it’s hard to single out just a few. I really enjoy reading new authors. But if I had to name a couple that stand out to me, I love Zoe Archer’s Blades of the Rose series, and, like just about everyone else, I’m addicted to Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse books.

The Blades of the Rose Bundle: Warrior, Scoundrel, Rebel, & StrangerSookie Stackhouse 8-copy Boxed Set (Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood) 

*I haven't read Zoe Archer's books but I do love the Sookie Stackhouse books. Mmm Eric ;) If you could tell readers one thing about yourself or your books what would that be?

That I know how many thousands of good books there are to choose from, so I’m grateful any time someone picks up one of mine.

* As this is your first novel, what attracted you to this genre in the first place?

I love the infinite possibilities with the paranormal, fantasy (both urban and epic), science fiction… any type of story that starts with “what if?” really appeals to me.

*I think that is the biggest reason that I have become so obsessed with this genre, as you are right, anything is possible. Books are so much more fun when you can "bend" the rules. Next Question: Have you always wanted to be a writer, and how long did it take you to achieve your dream?

Like many authors, I started writing stories as a child. I penned my first novel (an epic fantasy) in my early twenties, and continued tweaking and playing with it over the years, even sending it out to agents and publishers. But breaking into the industry can take a long time. So I earned my living as a programmer and web designer for many years and writing went to the back burner. But when I got the idea for Ordinary Angels, I decided to give writing a serious go. I still had a lot to learn, but in the end, it paid off. I’m so proud of this book, and thrilled to be writing full time now.

* In our correspondence you mentioned a problem with your hands, so you use voice activated software to write. Did you ever want to give up writing, or was your passion always too strong?

Oh no. I can’t imagine a career that could be as fulfilling for me. And with tools like Dragon (the VOX software I use), I can write even faster with my voice than I could ever type. I just have to watch out for errors caused by my accent, for example the program might type “riding” when I say “writing”. I have to really pay attention and count on my beta readers, my editor, and proofreaders to catch mistakes the software might make.

* That is so admirable. I've used those programs in the past, but it was when they first came out and well lets just say that they didn't work very well. I'm glad the technology has come far enough to let you be able to achieve your dreams of writing. Could you tell us a little about yourself?

I was born in the US, but now I live in a small village at the base of the Scottish Highlands. It’s paradise. I can see why so many romance novels are set here! I’m married to a roguish Scot, and I have a teenaged son who has just started writing his first novel. (I couldn’t be more proud.)

* That is great that writing runs in the family. Good luck to him! Do you have any passions other than reading or writing?

I love to travel. My books give me a perfect excuse, because I feel that setting is so important in contemporary fantasy. When I first got the idea for Familiar Demons, my husband and I went to Amsterdam for the weekend. I must have taken a couple hundred photos and filled an entire notebook with descriptions of people, as well as the essence of the place—things that don’t come across in pictures.

*I'd love to travel. Perhaps once my munchkins have grown up my hubby and I might get to. How do you choose your character names?

I change my characters names frequently when I’m writing a book. Zoe was originally named Petula and Alexander was Andrew. I think the new ones are much better! Names are so important to me, but I don’t always have them right at the very beginning. As I get to know my characters better, the right name reveals itself.

*I'll have to agree that I like the new ones much better than the old!  Finish this statement: "You'll like Ordinary Angels if.."

… you like stories with adventure, steamy romance, supernatural twists and a bit of humour as well.

Thanks India!

Author Info:

"I knew from age nine that writing would be my passion. Since then I’ve discovered many more, but none quite so fulfilling as creating a world, a character, or a moment and watching them evolve into something complex and compelling. I have lived in three countries and four American states, am a dual British and American citizen, and currently live at the base of the Scottish Highlands in a village so small its main attraction is a red phone box. In other words: paradise."

Find India Online:

Book info:

Most of Zoe’s friends are dead, but she doesn’t mind because they died long before she met them. Then one Tuesday night an angel takes her salsa dancing and turns her world upside down. Grim reality closes in when she discovers a body in her company’s boiler room and Higher Angels accuse her best ghost friend of murder. Knowing she’s the only one who can stand against them, Zoe resorts to lying, stealing and summoning. In the end, getting blood on her hands forces Zoe to question herself.

1 comment:

  1. Nice interview! I'll be reading Ordinary Angels soon and I loved Zoe's Blades of the Rose series.


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