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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Author Interview: Roberta Hoffer

Interview with 
Roberta Hoffer, 
author of 
The Silent Vampire Trilogy

Welcome, Roberta Hoffer, to the Happy Book Reviewer! I'm excited to talk to you today about your Abbott saga, The Silent Vampire Trilogy!

In the first book, Silent Heart, mortal Sarah Abbott finds herself in a forbidden relationship with immortal Carter, her person Guardian vampire. Carter's creator, Victor, is not pleased with their new-found love and makes it his mission to destroy them.

Now, this book has an interesting back story! While doing some research on your ancestors, you found for really intriguing information that inspired you to use them as your characters. What has your family thought of seeing old family stories turned into fresh new fiction?

Hoffer: My family was thrilled that I was able to use information about deceased members and bring some life into personalities we never knew.

Did you start out with Silent Heart as a stand-alone book and then the characters wouldn't leave you alone, or did you always plan for it to be a series?

Hoffer: I always had a three book set in mind.  I knew once I began that the story wouldn't be played out in one book.  It would be over 600 pages!

Silent Madness is the second book in the trilogy, and Carter is given an unexpected gift of a brief return to life. During this time, he and Sarah conceive a child. However, Carter soon finds out that, as a mortal, he is incapable of protecting his pregnant wife from immortal evil that is bent against them. I love this dark, sinister cover (complete with gorgeous guy)! Did you have an idea of this cover, or did the artist (Dawné Dominique) pitch this idea to you?

Hoffer: I wanted to make the cover intriguing as well as a bit sexy.  Vampires are usually portrayed as sensual.  Dawne asked what I wanted to see and she delivered perfectly.  Pant, pant!!

Sexy is right! (I had to use this cover for the top of the post.) 

Silent Blood, the final book in the trilogy, centers around the kidnapping of Parker, Sarah and Carter's baby son. Writing about the quest for a missing child must have been emotional, especially as a mother yourself. Did you have to put yourself in Sarah's shoes to write her in a realistic frame-of-mind?

Hoffer: It was difficult to write about having a child lost and still trying to maintain life in a near-normal capacity.  The hardest part to write, though, was the loss of the baby born to Patricia.  I had to take a few breaks during those chapters.  Her loss and the kidnapping of Parker was simultaneous so it did take a lot to create the scene.

Without giving too much away, I know the final chapters of Silent Blood take a dramatic turn! Did you know from the beginning that you wanted the books to all lead the characters to this kind of finale? Or did this idea sort of surprise you along the way?

Hoffer: The ending of Silent Blood was always in my head.  I needed to add the fast forward of five years and catch my readers up to their lives before ending it.  Then when I did, I felt I owed my readers more to the story; hence a sequel.

A sequel to the series, eh? You'll revisit Sarah, Carter, Parker and the rest of your cast? Have you already started it? 

Hoffer: Yes, There is already a sequel in the works.  I was sad to say goodbye to such a romantic couple just when their existence had taken a turn.  Now it's up to you who have read the trilogy to be left in question as to which direction Sarah and Carter will go.  The sequel will probably be out in late 2014 with Eternal Press.

How exciting! Do you work on a couple things at once, or are you fully engrossed in one book at a time?

HofferAlong with the sequel, I am currently in the rewrite process of a children's chapter book series.  I have written a book each year for my grandson on his birthday for the past eleven years.  I felt this new chapter book would be a good start into another area of writing.  It's still fiction but on a different level.  I enjoy my vampires but I wanted to give back to children the joy that they gave me over my twenty-nine years of teaching.  I hope I can do just that.

Those books will be such a treasure for your grandson (now and such a keep-sake when he's an adult and has kids of his own).  What would you say is the most difficult part of being an author?

Hoffer: The most difficult part of being an author is... all of the aspects!  

Ha ha! Elaborate!

Hoffer: Ideas, writing them down in story form that will capture a reader, creating characters and their unique personalities, and putting it all into a package that will bring entertainment to a reader.  The submission process can be as easy or difficult as you want.  If you are comfortable with a small press then it will be easier.  If you are determined to start at the top; you have your work cut out for you.  I chose to go with a small publisher but one that is established and well known in my type of writing.  I just happened to be fortunate enough that they took a chance on me and we worked well together.  Publication is really up to the time line of the publisher and the marketing is mostly up to the author.  With that said, it is all very worth it if it is your dream to be published.  Whether you are a New York Times best seller or sell a few books a month, if it's what makes you happy, then keep writing!

So what is the most fun?

Hoffer: The most fun of it all is creating the characters to your specifications.  They can be anything or anyone you choose.  The ultimate happiness is holding the book in your hand for the first time and seeing your name in print.  It's quite a euphoric feeling.

Last question and I'll let you get back to your vampires so you can get another book in hand! All writers are readers first. What book have you read that you wish you'd written?

Hoffer: I love Anne Rice and her vampire series.  Charlene Harris is good but her books do get a little more risqué that I like.  There's many more that have sparked my desire to write my own.  Then, there are some that I think, I can do a better job than that. :)

Thanks again for joining us! Readers can find The Silent Vampire Trilogy at:

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