Sunday, September 4, 2011

Author Interview: RJ Gonzales!

I got to ask RJ Gonzales, author of Mundahlia, a few questions about his new novel, upcoming novels from him, and don't forgot to read each question, he's shared great advice about writing!

1)How did you come up with the idea of Mundahlia? 
Mundahlians came about from greek and roman mythology and Egyptian deities/hieroglyphics and Native American stories of skinwalkers. They all had these fascinating tales or images of creatures that were half human and half animal. Mermaids, Centaurs, Minotaurs, Gorgons, Sirens…etc. The Egyptians worshipped deities such as Horus, Sobek, Anubis…etc. who were also creatures that had qualities of both an animal and human. I thought they were fascinating and so I wanted to give a story to where they went, and why the disappeared all of a sudden. 

2) Who was your biggest influence while writing Mundahlia? 
Legends, Mythology & Fairytales. In fact there are a few fairy tale references riddled throughout Mundahlia if you really pay close attention. 

3) How many books will be in The Mundahlian Era series? 
I had originally wanted it to be a trilogy, but honestly, trilogies are almost everywhere now-a-days. So I shortened it to just "The Mundahlian Era" because I could either end it in the second book or carry it on for as long as my characters are willing to. It's really as much as my decision as much as it is theirs. Why yes, that does sound a bit crazy, but it's the truth! lol The tagline for the series is "When our era ends, theirs begins." 

4) How did you come up with the cover to Mundahlia? 
The cover image (hourglass) is by photographer Mark Wragg. I though it was the perfect image because it showed that time really is running out. The tiger's reflection watching the sand fall came as a later addition, and portrays a very nasty villain that you will meet in the book. 

5) When did you first start to write Mundahlia? 
Mundahlia started out as a 5 page story I wrote sprung from a dream. I put that story away my freshman year of high school and didn't really see it again until senior year. After looking over it I realized I had something and spent half of my senior year as well as the summer and part of the following year adapting that 5 page story into a novel. So I guess if you'd add it up from start to finish, idea wise it was about 4 and a half to 5 years. If you only count writing wise, it took about a little over a year. 

6) Who was your favorite character to write about in Mundahlia?

Rini was definitely fun to write about. She's bookish, sassy, sarcastic, and doesn't let herself get bullied. She was definitely interesting to write with. Jett was a hoot to write with too. There are many characters in Mundahlia, not one is the same. I love all my characters and can't wait to see what they have in store next.

7) Let’s talk about a new novel by you coming in the future called Some Call Me a Witch. How did you come up with the idea of this novel?

I can't really say too much since it'll be a while until I publish it, and things could change. But what I can say is that it will be an Upper YA novel. There will be action, adventure, magic, fantasy, and most of all romantic elements involved. As if the title doesn't already give it away, the main character of the novel is named Emilia, or "Emmy" McBane and well, we can just say that some call her a witch. lol

8) When is Some Call Me a Witch suppose to be released?

I am working hard on it as we speak, but am also working on several side project such as "Unearthly" my standalone novel and a prequel novel to The Mundahlian Era called "The Heart of a King" which is the story of Jett's mother's relationship with the King up until the prologue that is at the beginning of Mundahlia. Currently I am hoping "Some Call Me a Witch" the first in the Emmy McBane novels, will be ready for publication sometime in 2013. However, I am going to take some time off to query some agents or publishers about it. I really recommend this to everyone out there wanting to get their book out there. You never know, you could have the very story that an agent or publishing house is looking for! :] Even if you get a few rejections, never ever stop querying agents or publishers.

9) Do you have a cover in mind for Some Call Me a Witch? If so, when do you think you will release it?
I do have a cover in mind, but it could change. I am going for something subtle like the cover to Mundahlia, or something "magical" looking. lol If anything I will probably end up releasing the cover sometime next year. 

10) Are you working on any novels that you’re willing to share on BookYAReview?

Yes I am. I am currently working on Unearthly and a prequel novella to The Mundahlian Era as mentioned above. But I am also toying around with a few ideas that could possibly blossom into a full novel. But for now those are pretty hush, hush :] lol

11) What has been your favorite novel to work on so far?

I have to say that Mundahlia was fun, I loved working on it so much and didn't want to stop. I hope the second one will be as fun to write as it was with the first.
Some Call Me a Witch is another one that is getting pretty fun. The characters are equally as awesome to write with as Rini and Jett are.

12) What is your favorite book of all time?

Don't make me choose! I love many books. Perfect Chemistry, Shiver, Hush Hush…Ah too many! :] haha. I've loved reading ever since I can remember. I grew up with "The Bailey School Kids" "Goosebumps" or "Hank the Cowdog" books when I was younger, that's probably what propelled me to develop an addiction to reading.

13) Did you like or dislike the editing process for Mundahlia?

I had a love/hate relationship with the editing process. I edited as much as I could, then had my cousin go over very minor things in the first 12 chapters. And still some things probably got through. I couldn't really afford an editor at the time, which is why I am taking my time with any other books I put out. I want them to be as checked as possible and will look into some local editors. On the other hand, I was able to add a few things in and take some things out so it was a very stressful process, but much needed.

14) What will be the name for the sequel to Mundahlia?

It will be another Mundahlian word which of course will be translated and defined like it is in Mundahlia. I don't really want to release the title yet, but if you look REALLY close in the blurred out un-final cover on Goodreads, you might be able to decipher the first few letters. What I can tell you is that the next books will be Upper YA/New Adult instead of regular YA. Mundahlia deals with older characters that are either at the end of their YA years or at the very start of their New Adulthood (19 and 21) also it will get edgier and steamier. 

15) How many books will be in the Emmy McBane series?
At this point, it's pretty much the same as it is with The Mundahlian Era, I will go on for as long as my characters will let me.

16) How did the inspiration for the cover of Mundahlia come to be?

I wanted something that showed that our time was running out, and when I saw the hourglass I knew it was perfect. If you look closely you will see the reflection of a tiger in the top portion, as though it is watching the sand fall, waiting for it to run out. That was a final little touch I added right before I published the book.

Thanks so much Brad! :]

Thanks to RJ Gonzales for answering my questions! Click on the links below to find him in different spots around the internet!: 

His Goodreads Author Profile
His Youtube Channel
His Amazon Profile (Don't forgot to order his book!)

1 comment:

Thank you so much for stopping by! I read every comment and truly appreciate them. I would love to hear your thoughts! If you leave a comment, I'll be sure to leave a comment back on your blog ASAP! -Brad