Since this is a pretty big event, we are bringing you the interview in two parts. Continuing from where we left off yesterday, we give you the conclusion of our interview with Patricia Briggs!
Remember, we are also giving away a copy of Bone Crossed–details follow at the end of the post.
But now, back to the interview!
The wonderful Patty Briggs!
Thea: There’s also an overwhelming response to Bran, from Cry Wolf because he’s so powerful, and are we ever going to explore his relationship with Leah?
Patty: Absolutely. It’s really fascinating, that relationship. It’s kind of a lonely and an unhappy one, but one that he chose on purpose because it was unhappy. So it’s an interesting mindset to play with. I don’t know that I would do anything about it, we’d have to see how the story works and what I want to do with it. I think Leah in many ways is a tragic heroine but she also has a tragic flaw and causes her own problems. Bran really does care about her, and he doesn’t want to. So…yeah there’s a lot of potential in there.
Thea: The Alpha and Omega books versus the Mercy Thompson books, they seem much more romantic and relationship driven. Was that intentional?
Patty: Yes, that was on purpose. I actually envisioned it almost as a paranormal romance, but it’s not quite. It’s still Urban Fantasy, but it is much more relationship driven. We’ll keep that going because this is an important part about who she is.
And, this will come about in the Mercy books too. She and Adam have a long way to go, I mean, they have a LOT of problems. They have a lot of things to work out, because just something so simple as are they going to get married? Both of them are really uncomfortable with a non-married relationship because of their own personal issues. Adam because he’s older, and in his generation, people didn’t just shack up. It’s a ‘you are who you grow up to be’ kind of thing. Mercy because she grew up basically as an orphan in the wind, people passed her back and forth. Very good people and she never had any abuse issues or anything, but she just kinda got passed from one family to another to another, so she has some issues with it too. But if she does, if she marries him, then she’ll move into the house with him and leave Sam by himself.
Thea: Oh, she can’t do that!
Patty: She can’t. And he can’t live with her and Adam! I have to work that out.
Thea: Would Mercy want to move in with Adam? She’s so independent and she loves her cars and her trailer…
Patty: And her job! She’s not gonna give up her job. Yeah, so its real relationship stuff.
Thea: Verrrry interesting. So, you’ve written a lot of traditional fantasy, do you have any plans to return to that genre?
Patty: I’m under contract for the unpublished sequel to Masques with Wolfsbane, so I still have to do that. I have a story for Ward in my Dragon Bones series that I’m gonna have to do. I have Raven stories, a sequel for When Demons Walk in my head–
Thea: OH that was my favorite! [an inner aside: *squeeee*]
Patty: Mine too, yeah for many years it was. Until I met Ward! Ward is so different and such a fun character to write. He’s so different on the outside from what he is on the inside, so that’s fun. I can’t see not writing traditional fantasy. I still read it, I still love it, but I have a lot of books under contract that have to get done, so it will be a few years probably.
Thea: Well, it’s good to look forward to! Also, they’re pulling out new covers for your traditional fantasy books, right?
Patty: Yeah, and in many ways I’ve been blessed by the good cover fairy from the beginning. I’m really kinda sad to see the old covers go.
Thea: Oh I loved them, with the girl hanging off the pole dramatically–
Patty: [laughs] The girl cutting off her leg. My agent always joked, “that’s the one with the girl that’s gonna cut off her leg, right?” [laughs] But they are dated, and the new covers are great.
Thea: Plus, new readers will discover them too. So, how about you as an author. Who are some of your influences?
Patty: All over the board! When I die, if I keep getting better and I work really hard at my craft, I want to write as well as Lu [Lois McMaster] Bujold. Jayne Ann Krentz–I read her for conversations because her conversations just sparkle. When my people are talking and bogged down, I go and I read her work and try to see, “How do you do that?” and get that rhythm. I read everybody and most of them I like. I read cross genres, I read romance a lot, I read westerns. Anything by Louis L’Amour I’ve probably read thirty times because he’s a terrific storyteller! He tells the same story over and over again, and it just wouldn’t matter. The books had terrible typos, you know he would get up from fights twice or shred his shirt again, or whatever but it doesn’t matter. He was such a good storyteller, you didn’t care.
For mysteries, Dick Francis is a great favorite of mine. I love his mysteries. Anything with a character focus. I don’t read as much literature as I used to before I had kids, which was 20 years ago. With literary fiction, I need quiet and contemplative space, and I don’t seem to have that! [laughs]
One thing I really like, one of the perks is getting to read books before they come out. Nalini Singh has a terrific book coming out in March, Angels’ Blood. And Ann Aguirre has one coming out too with Blue Diablo and she’s a terrific writer.
Probably the biggest influences are the early people I read. Andre Norton, she was my first science fiction and first fantasy book and she made sure I made it through adolescence. She and Simon and Garfunkel. [laughs] Also, and things like The Black Stallion. Here’s this dangerous beast, and he loves me. He’ll take care of me, because he loves me. It doesn’t mean he’s not a dangerous beast. And to me that’s the essence of what a vampire is in the modern urban fantasy. Or a werewolf for that matter. Here’s something powerful and destructive, but because he loves then he can tone it down–even if it’s just for one person. It’s a very empowering thought; it’s a very empowering thing.
Then there’s Black Beauty, you know, do kind unto others and take care of the people around you.
So as you can see, it’s all over the place. [laughs]
Thea: If you were stranded on a desert island, what five books would you bring with you?
Patty: Oh that’s awful! [laughs] The Complete Works of Shakespeare just because it’s that big. The Vor Game by Lois McMaster Bujold, which is just awesome and I can read it over and over again. Laurell K. Hamilton, probably Bloody Bones […] anywhere from book 3 to Obsidian Butterfly. Anything by Jim Butcher, it doesn’t matter, I can read it to pieces. And then…I don’t know. Maybe an encyclopedia.
Thea: Any letter? “X”?
Patty: Yes! I would know more about the letter X than anybody else.
Thea: We Book Smugglers are faced with constant threats and criticisms from our dear significant others concerning the sheer volume of books we purchase and read—hence, we have resorted to ‘smuggling books’ home to escape any scrutinizing eyes. Have you ever had to resort to smuggling books?
Patty: No, because my husband is just a doll. After this last move, he bought me a Sony E-book reader because he said he’s really tired of moving boxes of books. [laughs] But no, he’s always been terrifically supportive. When I said, “No I can’t get a real job honey I have to write my books,” and making much less than I would working at Wal-Mart, he said that’s just fine, that’s ok. He’s just the world’s best guy.
Thea: And that’s about it! Thanks so much again for everything, Patty. It was a blast!
Me again, with the awesome “Mercy’s Garage” patch! I’m still recovering from the awesomeness that is Patricia Briggs.
Patricia Briggs lives in Washington with her husband, children and six horses. For more information about Patty and her books, check out her website: www.hurog.com.
And now for the Giveaway!
We are offering one more copy of Bone Crossed for a lucky winner. The contest is open to everyone, and will run until Tuesday at Midnight PST. To enter, leave a comment! We’ll announce the lucky winner on Wednesday.