Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Interview with Jeannie Holmes and Giveaway - June 21, 2011

Please welcome Jeannie Holmes to The Qwillery.

TQ:  What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

Jeannie:  I need two things in order to write effectively: music and an empty house. Complete silence actually distracts me. I know many authors prefer to work without music or noise, but I simply must have music. As for the empty house, it’s weird but I can’t concentrate knowing there is someone in the house. The cats (I have four.) don’t bother me, but if my husband is home – forget it.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a panster?

Jeannie:  I’m somewhere in the middle. When I start a new project, I like to plot out the main twists and turns but I always leave room for surprises. Characters have a way of taking over a story and sending it in new directions. I love it when that happens.

TQ:  What inspired you to write the Alexandra Sabian series?

Jeannie:  A life-long fascination with vampires, mysteries, and science fiction. Ever since I was six and saw Bela Lugosi as Dracula, vampires have fascinated me. I’ve studied the lore and legends from different counties and I’m always amazed by the similarities but also the vast differences. I also grew up ready Nancy Drew and Encyclopedia Brown and have been a science fiction geek for as long as I can remember – I’m a huge Doctor Who fan! When I first started writing the series, I wanted to be able to combine all of these elements. No one told me I couldn’t so I did.

TQ:  Why did you set the series in Mississippi?

Jeannie:  I set the series in Mississippi because it’s my home state. I grew up in a rural area where the nearest town was twenty miles away. It was very easy to imagine vampires and other supernatural critters running around in the dark. Plus, the South has a rich tradition of storytelling that often involves the paranormal, and I wanted to carry on that tradition but bring it into a modern genre like urban fantasy.

TQ:  What sort of research did you do to create the Federal Bureau of Preternatural Investigations?

Jeannie:  A lot! I spent a total of about two years researching police procedures, forensics, and other aspects of law enforcement. I’ve been very fortunate in that I’ve been able to make connections within the law enforcement community and they’ve been kind enough to answer questions. The most extreme bit of research I’ve done was to spend a twelve-hour shift riding shotgun with a patrol officer on a Saturday night. It was an experience I’ll never forget.

TQ:  Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Blood Secrets?

Jeannie:  That’s a tough question because every scene is a favorite in some way. If I had to choose, I would pick a scene between Alex and Varik that’s about mid-way through the book. Varik is attempting to prove a point but he uses some rather unconventional methods to do it. I also love the final scene in the book. I don’t want to give anything away, but I had a little too much fun writing certain events.

TQ:  In Blood Secrets, who was the most difficult character to write and why? The easiest and why?

Jeannie:  The most difficult character is the bad guy – the Dollmaker. I really don’t like being in his head. It’s a dark place and he’s just creepy. The easiest characters to write are Alex and Varik. They’re both very distinct personalities, and I don’t usually have much difficulty writing from their view points. When they’re together on a page, the conversations and arguments practically write themselves.

TQ:  Who should play Alexandra Sabian and Varik Baudelaire if the books become movies?

Jeannie:  Ben Barnes is Varik. Hands down. I had no idea Ben Barnes even existed until I saw a poster in a theater for The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian a few years ago. It featured Ben and I remember stopping in the middle of the theater’s lobby, grabbing my husband’s arm, point at the poster and saying (rather loudly), “That’s Varik!” Ben fits the image I’ve had in my head of Varik from the start so I would definitely want him to play that role. As for Alex, I honestly have no clue who should play her in a movie. I’ve heard suggestions of everyone from Jessica Biel to Jessica Alba to Felicia Day to Emma Watson. If the books ever became movies, I’d leave casting that role up to the experts.

TQ:  Is there a playlist for Blood Secrets and what is it?

Jeannie:  There is a massive playlist for Blood Secrets – everything from the Dixie Chicks to Marilyn Manson. A few artists made frequent appearances though: Godsmack, Motley Crue, Aerosmith, AC/DC, and Kamelot.

TQ:  How many books are planned for the Alexandra Sabian series?

Jeannie:  I plan for six books total, and hopefully, I’ll get to write them all.

TQ:  What's next?

Jeannie:  I have a short story appearing in an anthology that will be out this fall. The story is a steampunk-inspired romantic fantasy which is completely different from the Alex series, and I had a lot of fun writing it. Currently, I’m working on a couple of projects. I can’t say much about them right now, but I’m really excited about them. The next two Alex books are plotted and I’ll be returning to them soon.

TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery

Jeannie:  My pleasure and thanks for inviting me!

About Jeannie's Books

Blood Law
Alexandra Sabian 1
(Dell, July 6, 2010)
To stop a vampire killer, she’ll have to slay her own demons first.

A provocative and savvy vampire, Alexandra Sabian moves to the sleepy hamlet of Jefferson, Mississippi—population 6,000, half vampires—to escape the demons lurking in her past. As an enforcer for the Federal Bureau of Preternatural Investigations (FBPI), Alex must maintain the uneasy peace between her kind and humans, including Jefferson’s bigoted sheriff, who’d be happy to see all vampires banished from town. Then really dead vamps start turning up—beheaded, crucified, and defanged, the same gruesome manner in which Alex’s father was murdered decades ago. For Alex, the professional has become way too personal.

Things get even more complicated when the FBPI sends in some unnervingly sexy backup: Alex’s onetime mentor, lover, and fiancé, Varik Baudelaire. Still stinging from the betrayal that ended their short-lived engagement, Alex is determined not to give in to the temptation that soon threatens to short-circuit her investigation. But as the vamp body count grows and the public panic level rises, Varik may be Alex’s only hope to stop a relentless killer who’s got his own score to settle and his own bloody past to put right.

Amazon : B&N : Book Depository : Borders

Blood Secrets
Alexandra Sabian 2
(Dell, July 5, 2011)

Alex allowed a case involving murdered vamps to get personal and is suspended from the Federal Bureau of Preternatural Investigation. Now she’s facing an official inquiry but has a chance to redeem herself. The catch: She must once again work with Varik Baudelaire, her former mentor and ex-fiancé, as he spearheads a search for a missing college student. But Varik has been keeping secrets from Alex, and his mysterious past is on a collision course with his present.

When Alex and Varik discover a carefully handcrafted doll at a crime scene, neither of them can see how close the danger really is or that a killer known as the Dollmaker has made Alex the object of his horrific desire. Now the only way out of the Dollmaker’s lair is through the twilight realm of the Shadowlands, where all secrets—for better or worse—will be revealed.

Amazon : B&N : Book Depository : Borders

About Jeannie

Jeannie Holmes is the author of the Alexandra Sabian series, and fears spiders, large bodies of water, and bad weather. She moved from the backwoods of southwestern Mississippi to the Alabama Gulf Coast where she now lives with her husband and four neurotic cats. She enjoys art, exploring old cemeteries, traveling, and when she isn’t writing or has her nose stuck in a book, she spends her time searching for a really good cup of coffee.

Jeannie's Links

Jeannie Holmes Fan Forum
Wayward Muses & Shiny Objects (Blog)
Facebook Fan Page
Criminal Minds (Contributing poster)

The Giveaway


What:  One commenter will win a copy of Blood Law (Alexandra Sabian 1) and Blood Secrets (Alexandra Sabian 2). Please note the books will not be sent until on or after the release date of Blood Secrets.

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

What is your favorite vampire movie?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Tuesday, June 28, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*


  1. My favorite vamp movie is the Lost Boys.

    Qwillery follower


  2. I have to agree with Ruth... Lost Boys all the way! It was my favorite as a teenager and is still a favorite now.

    +1 GFC follower


  3. The books look fabulous, and she is a redhead! I love redheads :)
    Favorite vampire movie has to be Queen of the Damned - I can't resist vampires and metal together. Plus, Lestat is so damn hot!
    +1 GFC follower

  4. My fav vampire movie would still have to be Interview with a Vampire. I loved Anne Rice's series and when it went movie I was so pleased. This looks like a great series.
    terilhack at gmail dot com

  5. A fav vampire movie of min would have to be the Underworld series. I really enjoyed them through college and they keep looking better.
    That was a great interview, now I cannot wait to check out this author. Thank you.

    kasuranna at yahoo dot com

  6. Twilight!!! I also love the Underworld movies. I adored the TV show Moonlight while it was on.

    I am a follower.

    robin [at] intensewhisper [dot] com

  7. I love Lost Boys as well. The soundtrack remains my favorite movie soundtrack, and I loved the ambiance they were able to create. Interview with the Vampire was great, although I thought Tom Cruise was woefully miscast. If it had been Rutger Hauer as originally intended, that would have been sublime.

    Q follower

  8. I have a few I have enjoyed not really a fave though, The Underworld Movies, Twilight and Priest


  9. My favorite vamp movie is Interview with a Vampire, because (and this totally ages me) all the girls on my floor in my college dorm went to see it together!

    +1GFC follower


  10. These books sound awesome.

    I have to admit that I'm not a huge fan of vamp movies. They tend to be more horror than I prefer. Can't stand the Twilight films... so while it's far from my favorite movie, I'm going to choose "Dracula - Dead and Loving It" as my fav vamp film. Mel Brooks films always make me laugh. :)

    Jen K.
    GFC follower as Romancing the Book
    admin.bookblog AT gmail.com

  11. Seems like forever since I read Blood Law, glad the sequel is being released soon.

    My favorite is Fright Night. Christopher Srandon is gorgeous and I like the humor and the relative lack of blood and violence.

    GFC Anne38


  12. I love Queen of the Damned! GFC Krystal Larson edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom http://www.facebook.com/MikeDellosso?sk=app_112078882147346#!/profile.php?id=100000547840483 Facebooked it!

  13. I loved The Lost Boys, but my favorite Vampire portrayal has got to be Stuart Townsend as Lestat in Queen Of The Damned...boy, that dude was hot!

    I must admit...I am not a fan of the sparkly vampires.

  14. Mine is also The Lost Boys.
    +1 comment
    +1 GFC follower

    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

  15. Not sure I have a 'favorite' vampire movie. I loved Lost Boys, Interview with a Vampire (I thought Tom Cruise did a great job), Bram Stoker's Dracula (Gary Oldman FTW) and even the original Dracula with Bela Lugosi.

    +1 for GFC
    +1 for Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/Teawench/status/83254081510051840

  16. Underworld is my favorire vampire movie. I loved that movie.

    +1 comment
    +1 facebook follower
    +1 twitter follower

  17. Love at First Bite ( really dating myself here!!) George hamilton was Dracula. Hilarious vampire movie.

    follow on gfc

    mlawson17 at hotmail dot com

  18. My favorite vampire movie is Interview with a Vampire. (There's more but this one is what I remember best).

    These books look great! I also share the same quirk -I need music to work.

    I'm a gfc follower.

  19. I have to go with Bram Stoker's Dracula. This is just classic.
    Follow email and GFC
    linda at gordonvalley dot com

  20. I like vampire TV shows better than movies but let's say Bram Stoker's Dracula.

    +1 GFC follower

    musmekipi at gmail dot com

  21. I have to go very far back to answer this because my favorite was the first I ever saw namely the Hammer Films version of Dracula starring Vincent Price and Christopher Lee !

    Thanks for the giveaway.

    Carol T

    buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

    +1 for comment
    +2 I follow via GFC (buddyt)

  22. The favorite movie has to be the great original Dracula. I not a big fan of vamp movies they do not tend to meet my expectations. I love to read about them and color the background in my imagination. Thank you for this wonderful giveaway opportunity and interview today, I really would love to read these books!
    +1 GFC follower

  23. Have to admit to a soft spot for Buffy the Vampire SLayer - I know it's terrible but I like it! For atmosphere though Interview with the Vampire is fabulous - with plenty of eye candy! :)

    +1 GFC Follower


  24. My favorite is and I think will always be Dracula directed and co-produced by Francis Ford Coppola.

    Thank you for the interview and giveaway! :D Fingers crossed!

    +1 GFC follower

    Giada M.

    fabgiada (at) gmail (dot) com

  25. Great interview!
    Favorite vampire movie - I'm picking 2, so sue me.
    1st - Dracula, starring Bela Lugosi. It amazes me every time I watch it. So much is conveyed with just acting and atmosphere.
    2nd - Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter. The best worst movie ever made. Ever.

    I follow The Qwillery and posted the contest:

  26. INTERVIEW WITH A VAMPIRE stayed with me long after I had watched it. I am not a Tom Cruise fan but I thought he was brilliant in this.


  27. Follow GFC +1


  28. My fave is The Lost Boys.

    I'm a gfc follower
    books (dot) things (at) yahoo (dot) com

  29. There have been quite a number of fantastic vampire movies, but I think I'd choose Underworld.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com
    GFC follower

  30. I don't think I have a favorite vamp movie, but I'd say it's between Lost Boys (a real clasic) & The Forsaken (yeah I'm crazy like that).

    I'm a Qwillery GFC follower!!!

  31. My favorite vampire movie is Underworld. So epic.

    +1 comment
    +1 GFC

    thegirlonfire27 at gmail dot com

  32. This comment has been removed by the author.

  33. My favorite vampire movie is Interview with the Vampire!!
    +1 GFC follower (Rachel Leigh)
    +1 comment

    Rachel Leigh
    TheOneRing111 at gmail dot com

  34. I think my favorite vampire movie is Underworld.
    I'm a follower.


  35. I really enjoyed Interview with a Vampire. Still think it is one of the better ones that has been made.

  36. My favorite vampire movie is definitely Lost Boys. That was the first time I thought vampires were extremely sexy (thank you Jason Patric!).

    GFC follower: Julie Witt
    I tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/jwitt33/status/83656568628985857

    jwitt33 at live dot com


  37. My favorite vampire movie? Uhm.. The Underwold movies :)

    GFC Follower
    Tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/petit_sayumi/status/83949453043695619


  38. my favorite is lost boys! i love it!

    shadow_kohler at att dot net

  39. My favorite is twilight and the underworld movies! What a great giveaway thank you so much!
    +1 comment
    +1 GFC/latishajean
    +1 Tweeted
    tishajean@ charter.net

  40. My favorite vampire movie is Vampires Suck. This movie is epic and hilarious.

    +1 comment
    +1 GFC follower


  41. My favourite Vampire movie is The underworld series.

    GFC - Gabbie

    Gabbie-ethela AT hotmail DOT com

  42. Interview with the vampire is just plain wonderful!


    aliasgirl at libero dot it

  43. Its a tie between The Lost Boys (original) and Bram Stokers Dracula.

    GFC follower
    tweet - http://twitter.com/#!/DonnaS1/status/85557155167600640
    link - http://donnasbloghome.blogspot.com/2011/06/qwillery-interview-with-jeannie-holmes.html

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

  44. Great answers, everyone! Thanks to all for stopping by to read and comment on my interview. And huge thanks to The Qwillery for hosting me.

    Good luck, everyone, and I hope you enjoy the books!