IT IS OUR PLEASURE TO HAVE WITH US TODAY….
~SMOKE, WINGS, AND STONE!
Welcome, Marijon!!! What a glorious cover!!
MBA&M: Please give our readers some insight into the wonderful world of Marijon Braden?
MARIJON: It actually is a pretty wonderful world. I’m happily married with two daughters, a very spoiled dog and great friends. I’m writing full-time, which was what I’ve wanted to do since I was a kid – it just took me a bit longer to get started than most people. I have a great garden, love to cook – and eat – and read whatever I can, whenever I can.
MBA&M: What made you want to write Young Adult stories?
MARIJON: I actually had no interest in writing a Young Adult novel. I write adult romantic comedy under my real name – Marijon Braden is a pen name. I had an idea for a rom-com that I really liked, but could never quite get past the second chapter. My story was about a type-A 40-something business woman who gets drunk at a convention and wakes up in bed with a charming stranger who also happens to be a Fae prince. A far as he’s concerned, they’re married, and she spends most of the book trying to figure a way out.
MBA&M: What was your inspiration behind writing “Smoke,Wings, and Stone”?
MARIJON: I looked at my original idea and thought, what if I make the heroine a teen? No sex, of course – she just says the wrong thing at the wrong time – which teen girls do all the time anyway – and she finds herself ‘bethrothed’.
MBA&M: What made you chose a “Prince of an ancient race of gargoyles” as your hero,setting and storyline?
MARIJON: My original hero was going to be a prince of the Fae. When I started doing research on the Fae and faeries, I was overwhelmed – there’s so much out there! Winter Queens and the Seelie court – I spent about three days trying to figure out where I could fit in my character into the existing mythology, and I was literally reduced to a quivering pile of blubber. So, I decided I needed a different kind of hero. Vampires and werewolves have sort of been done to death. I don’t remember exactly how I decided on gargoyles, but when I looked them up on Wikipedia, there was the original story is about the Bishop of Rouen. Then – not much else. I realized I could start there and make the rest of it up. So, that’s what I did. It was a lot of fun.
MBA&M: Why write about high school,the world of the gargoyles, and vampires?
MARIJON: I’ve always been a huge Buffy fan. I loved the idea of dealing with high school issues and, oh yeah, saving the world. So I took that idea (thank you, Joss Whedon) and went with it. I wrote about two sisters, both in high school, who have to deal with an unexpected reality – gargoyles exist, vampires exist, magic exists – while still trying to figure out all the things that most teen-age girls are dealing with. I do give Buffy the credit – there’s a reference to the ‘Scooby gang.’
MBA&M: What a beautiful cover, by the way! Which character was the most challenging to write?
MARIJON: Thanks! Renu Sharma did the cover – amazing job! I’m so happy with it.
Writing the boys, Kevin and Ethan, was hard. I have girls, and I have no idea how teen boys think (does anyone?). Since Luc was essentially a fairy-tale kind of character, I felt more comfortable writing him. But I wanted Kevin and Ethan to be ‘real’ boys. I kept asking my daughter – ‘would a guy say/do this?”
MBA&M: What was your favorite scene to write in “Smoke,Wings and Stone”?Why?
MARIJON: I’d never written an action scene before. There are not a lot of car chases in romantic comedy! The scene where Luc is driving and they’re being chased by vampires – that was great fun. I was very careful about how I wrote it. I could see it in my head like a movie. I wanted to be sure it was written so that the reader could know exactly what was happening.
MBA&M: What can readers expect to see next for you?
MARIJON: I’m working on the second book in the world of Smoke, Wings and Stone. I’m also hoping to get out a few shorts about some of the secondary characters – Deanne, for one.
MBA&M: Do you have any regrets as an author and what advise would you give any aspiring writers?
MARIJON: There’s a huge learning curve, especially if you’re self-pubbed. The first few things I put out there were not professionally edited, and that really came back to bite me in the butt. It is impossible to edit your own work – I don’t care how good you think you are. Invest in an editor.
MBA&M: Please tell our readers where they may find “Smoke,Wings and Stone” and where to connect with you?
MARIJON: My website is www.marijonbraden.com, and there’s some really cool stuff there – character bios, and beautiful artwork. If you’re interested in purchasing, Smoke, Wings and Stone is available everywhere!
Thank you, Marijon for spending time with us and our readers!
SMOKE, WINGS, AND STONE
He wasn’t an ordinary prince.
He wasn’t fighting an ordinary evil.
And Carrie and Sara were about to step
into a world they could
Amazon Kindle – http://amzn.to/10LwpH4
Barnes&Noble – http://bit.ly/15z3Rty
Kobo – http://bit.ly/12l85QA
iBookstore – https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id647371507
A bit about the author…..
Marijon was born and raised in New Jersey, which may help to explain her attitude towards charlatans and idiots. She started writing stories at an early age, her first literary influences being Walter Farley, author of the ‘Black Stallion’ series, and Carolyn Keene, of ‘Nancy Drew’ fame. That’s probably why her earliest efforts involved a young girl detective who solved crime on horseback. She had a very happy childhood, did well in school, and was a fairly obedient daughter until she went away to college. The original plan was to major in journalism. She wrote for the college paper until she realized that wasn’t the kind of writing she wanted to do when she grew up. So she switched to education. That was not, perhaps, the smartest move. Then, life happened. Jobs, rent, husband, baby, another husband, another baby, until she found herself a stay-at-home mom, about to chew her foot off if she had to watch one more episode of ‘Barney.’ So, she started to write again. She still lives in New Jersey with her husband, daughter, two cats and a very spoiled cocker spaniel. Her older daughter is off in Oregon, fighting the good fight for the homeless. She loves to cook – and eat – and plays RPG games on her Xbox when she needs to decompress (Skyrim alone cost her months of her life). During the past few years, she has lost, and tragically found again, the same twenty pounds. Life is all about trying, failing, and trying harder. She writes in her downstairs office, surrounded by her growing collection of gargoyles. Smoke, Wings and Stone in her first YA novel. Marijon Braden is the pen name for Dee Ernst, who writes adult romantic comedy, and has lived an almost identical life.
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