Today I have the lovely and slightly eccentric author Liz Long with me! Liz Long has been writing fantasy stories since she could spell the word “unicorn” (second grade). She fears a zombie apocalypse, though admits it would give her a good reason to stay inside and write as long as she wanted. She is a proud graduate of Longwood University with a degree in English. Liz lives in Roanoke, VA with her husband Jason and their Jack Russell terror, Fisher.
Hi Liz, it’s a pleasure to have you here, welcome to my blog.
*waves frantically* Hi! Thanks so much for having me!
It’s a pleasure to have you here. Okay, random question first! You mention on your website that you ‘post nerd-related things’ on Twitter…what is the nerdiest thing you’ve ever tweeted?
Oh, gosh. I post a lot of nerdy things, from Pac-Man wedding cakes to my Harry Potter/Wizarding World honeymoon. I’ll go with either posting my photos with all the Marvel superheroes on my honeymoon (I tried to run away with Captain America) or tweeting about how I made a 12 year old cry over XBox Live (He wouldn’t stop singing over the mic while we played Halo, so I yelled at him and called him Justin Bieber. The teams laughed, he got upset, haven’t seen his screen name since. Still don’t regret it.)
That’ll teach him! *Looks nervously out of the window towards a passing children’s choir, and quickly offers Liz a cookie, momentarily distracting her* (Best way to distract authors, by the way) *As Liz nibbles on the cookie, I ask* When did you realise you wanted to be a writer? Do you remember what inspired you?
Like most authors, unicorns talked and my heroine saved the prince’s hide when I was only eight or nine. I was always pretty introverted–not shy, but I preferred to escape into a book over any other hobby. It made me dream of my own stories–I wanted to provide that escape to other people.
You also say on your website that you narrate life in your head. (same as me!) Can you narrate what you can see right now as if it were a story?
She sighs, looking around her office. The clock reads 3:45 and 5pm can’t come fast enough. “I can’t wait to go home and get in pajamas and write,” she says. The radio sings back to her, the only sound heard in the quiet publisher’s building.
I swear, I do that ALL THE TIME. Like, I narrate out loud to myself at home or talk to my dog as though he were reading my actions. It’s bizarre. I don’t talk about myself in 3rd person to other people, but it’s just a weird habit that I have (and thank god I now know I’m not the only one or someone might commit me after this interview).
Nope, we’re all slightly mad! You probably shouldn’t be on the same blog as me lol! I’m only out on writers-day release 🙂 Your novel, Gifted, sounds really cool. Can you tell us more about it?
Sure! It’s a fantasy novel that takes place in the modern-day world, but inside a circus. There’s an entire magical community that call themselves Gifted and gifts can come in any shape, form, or size. Lucy is a Firestarter, which means she can control and create fire. After she loses both her parents, she rejoins with the Donovan Circus, traveling home to more Gifted beings than in any other circus or area. Just as Lucy begins to settle in–making friends, learning the ropes, meeting hot boys–a beloved circus member turns up dead. Lucy, being the new girl and because of her gift, becomes Prime Suspect #1 and must figure out how to prove her innocence. Problem is, this world has a history, some of it very ugly, and Lucy’s about to get caught in the middle. She has to figure out who to trust in addition to finding the murderer.
Sounds amazing! So what inspired this novel?
Well, don’t go around deeming me an arsonist, but I’m an Aries/Fire sign and have always had a bit of a thing for fire. When Lucy came knocking on my head, I knew immediately she was a Firestarter and would join the circus to hide her identity with everyone else. It was important that I write an action-adventure story with supernatural elements (rather than vice versa). I like romance and relationships, but I wanted Lucy’s relationship with herself to evolve first. I probably also watched way too much Law and Order those days, hence the murder mystery aspect!
Arsonist! I mean…*ahem*… Where can we find your novels?
Gifted is on sale for both Kindle ($1.99) and paperback ($9.99) on Amazon!
Cool, so what can we expect to see from you in the future?
I’m currently working on a YA piece that’s based in the same Gifted world, but with a completely different stories and characters. It’ll have more of a superhero feel than Gifted, but I really enjoy the different spin on the world I’ve created-I have tons of characters demanding to tell their story in the Gifted world from their perspective! I’m also working on the 2nd book in the Donovan Circus series–they’ll each be stand alone novels, but with Lucy and the gang on new adventures (sort of like the Sookie Stackhouse series)
Final question of randomness…you like Harrison Ford and hate zombies. What would happen if the two came into contact?
I will not accept anything less than “Harrison Ford kills zombies; saves world.” Don’t even ask me to consider him becoming a zombie or I might bawl my eyes out Right. This. Minute. I’m getting teary just thinking about it!!
*Quickly hands Liz a handkerchief, murmuring soothing things about Harrison Ford…the children’s choir starts up again, so I decide to wrap up quickly* You can find out more about Liz Long on Facebook , Twitter and on her blog. Thank you for being here, Liz, any parting words?
Thank you so much for having me. For those who are interested in checking out Gifted, I really hope you dig it. Enjoy running away to the circus–just watch out for fireballs! 🙂
Great having you here. 🙂
Even in a world of freaks, being a Firestarter is considered a dangerous Gift.
Lucy was born with the ability to create and control fire. She longs to leave the human world for one filled with Earthshakers, Transporters, and Chameleons, to name a few. When she rejoins the circus, it’s everything she hoped it could be—new friends, a potential love interest or two, and a place where she can be herself.
When troupe members begin turning up dead, however, Lucy is suspected of foul play. She must not only prove her innocence but also realize the full extent of her power. To find the real murderer, she must uncover the truth behind her father’s fiery legacy while figuring out whom to trust within her new circle. Little does she know the history of the Donovan Circus and its enemies might actually destroy the entire gifted world.