Interview: Eliza Crewe and her character’s shenanigans

YES!!! ELIZA CREWE IS HERE! And she has a small excerpt from the third book of her Soul Eater Series. I didn’t actually think she was going to give me any snippets when I sent her my questions, but she did! And I’m so happy right now, I could reenact a carrie right now. Stephen King. Movie. Look it up. Be ashamed if you haven’t watched that movie.

The reason she’s here:

Meda’s back. This time she has a friend.
The battle is over; the choice has been made. Meda Melange has officially hung up her monstrous mantle and planted her feet firmly on the holy and righteous path of a Crusader-in-training. Or, at least, she’s willing to give it a shot. It helps that the Crusaders are the only thing standing between her and the demon hordes who want her dead.The problem is, the only people less convinced than Meda of her new-found role as Good Girl are the very Crusaders she’s trying to join. So when a devilishly handsome half-demon boy offers escape, how’s a girl supposed to say “no?”After all, everyone knows a good girl’s greatest weakness is a bad boy.

Let’s talk about her books. Things that make her books awesome:
1. The snark.
2. The morbid sense of humor.
3. The blood and guts
4. The female friendships
5. A heroine who’s evil and IS ACTUALLY EVIL.
6. No TSTL Main Character
7. No pity party
8. No insta love or insta lust
9. BLAH BLAH BLAH, just read my reviews:

Review: Cracked by Eliza Crewe
Review: Crushed by Eliza Crewe


Interview:

I’m enamored of Meda’s quick wit and morbid sense of humor. How long does it take for you to come up with all of these quotes? A second? A millisecond?

Eliza Crewe: Thank you, I’m so glad you like her. Fortunately (or maybe, scarily?) Meda’s thoughts and dialog come very naturally. Usually I’m doing some mindless task, like driving or folding laundry, and I’ll randomly “hear” a bit of Meda-conversation. I jot all these bits down on a sheet called “Crushed Random,” (or, now, “CIII Random”) then work them into the plot wherever they feel natural.

As someone who’s absolutely not religious what so ever, it surprised me that I loved Cracked despite the involvement of religion. Why did you decide to make good and evil, angels and demons, right and wrong such a contributing factor when so many other authors’ have tried to use this and failed?

EC: I’m glad it didn’t offend you. I think it probably has to do with my background. While I am a Christian, I didn’t become one until law school. I was raised in a very agnostic house–as in no religion, ever. Both my brothers are atheists, and their wives, if not atheists, are from non-Christian backgrounds (we’ve never really talked about it). So, while I am a Christian now, it’s a relatively recent development, and most of my family isn’t.

I always love it when author’s share their recent favorite reads: what are your top 5 favorite books you’ve read this year and why?

EC: The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey – Fast-paced and gripping with a killer ending. I couldn’t put it down.

The Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence (really the whole series) – I love a good antihero and Lawrence pulls NO punches.
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie – It was utterly unique. I loved her take on gender.
To the End of June: The Intimate Life of American Foster Care by Chris Beam – I like to mix it up and read some non-fiction once in a while. This one was very interesting, if heartbreaking.
Cinder by Marissa Meyer – A light fun read.

I have got to read Prince of Thorns then. I love main character’s without an ounce of B.S. to give.

Do you drink coffee? I’m testing you, just a warning.

EC: “Drink” is a bit of an understatement. “Love” or “live for” might be more appropriate. However, I also love a good cup of tea or hot cider.

ALL. HAIL.

Your favorite line from Crushed or something from the third book? I’m not trying to trick you this time. I swear.

EC: Hahaha. How about a little sneak-preview scene at the end of the interview? Of course, it’s subject to change during revisions and you’ll have to pardon its pre-copy-edited state….

As your fans already probably know, Strange Chemistry is no more. What are your thoughts on Strange Chemistry and what do you hope for yourself and the authors who experienced the fallout?

EC: Ha, not a question with a quick answer. I have mixed feelings. I’m grateful I had the opportunity to publish with them because that’s how I was introduced to all my readers. I probably wouldn’t have nearly the readership I have now if I had self-published the series. On the other hand, as they say, breaking up is hard to do. Angry Robot, Strange Chemistry’s parent company and who my contract is actually with, has not been forthcoming with information, at all. They never paid me for my entire advance for Cracked, nor have I received any royalty statements, even though they’ve been happily selling Cracked for over a year. I met all my delivery deadlines on Crushed, and, of course, they never paid me for any of those either. My agent was able to get my rights reverted, but it took a lot of time and effort, and the weeks and weeks while we waited were really stressful. Angry Robot could have filed for bankruptcy and it would have been years before I got my rights back, if ever. Thousands of hours of my work could have just disappeared, and there’s nothing I could do about it. Now Angry Robot’s been purchased, but we still haven’t been told anything. I found out about the sale like everyone else–through the news. I just really hope the new owners let the Strange Chemistry authors have their rights back, and finally pay those of us who they owe. Selling books without paying the authors royalties is just flat-out stealing–and they’ve been doing it for almost a year now, without any shame.

Ouch. Not so sure I’m cool with giving my money to any Angry Robot titles now…

What is the trope you hate more than most in the YA genre? Mine is insta-love and
“Love Interest: I’m breaking up with you because you’re too good for me *sulky eyes*
MC: WHYYYY!!!!! My life is nothing now. I’m dead. Jkfljfklfuil”

So I’m a little over-dramatic about it. Any thoughts, Eliza?

EC: I’m with you on that one. SO OVER IT.

Dystopian, High Fantasy, or Paranormal? Which sub-genre in Young Adult literature appeals to you most and why?

EC: High fantasy. It’s my heart.

Explain the ending of Crushed. I demand to know this.

EC: Haha, and you will know–in about 10 months :-D.

What do your fans have to look forward from you in the future? More snippets from book three?

EC: Most likely ☺. I’ve also toyed with a short-story or two about Armand and Meda’s shenanigans while they were footloose and fancy-free, but it depends– I have a book to finish!


Sneak Peak Preview to Soul-Eater Book III
I push into Jo’s room without knocking, preferring to be on the offensive. She’s sitting on the bed, leaning against the headboard. Her pant leg is hauled up to her thigh and she’s working the strap of her leg brace. I don’t often see her leg. She tries to keep it covered, as if she thinks if no one sees her injury, we’ll all forget it’s there. She jerks at my sudden appearance, habit sending her hands skittering to pull her pant leg back down. But she stops when she realizes it’s me, and just sends a peeved look before going back to working the strap. She doesn’t seem mad, or at least, especially mad, so I move deeper into the room.
She gets the first, then the second, strap undone and makes a groan that’s both pain and relief as she pulls the brace off. There’s a faint noise, a soft pop of release, and I smell blood. She tosses the brace aside and shoves a pillow under her tattered leg, elevating it. Even from across the room I can see how swollen it is, the bands of scar tissue standing out, divits where the skin can’t expand with fluid. She once told me that the non-swollen parts feel worse than the swollen—like thumbs pressing a bruise. That, when she gets a chance to elevate it, she feels the fluid glug out of her leg. Like an IV bag turned upside down.
Where the brace attached, the skin is a raw, bloody red, flecked with thin white flaps of ruptured blisters.
“I think you need a new brace.”
“You think?” She’s too tired to bother putting much sarcasm into it. Then she sighs. “The guy who made this one is dead. Apparently the whole advanced medical team is dead.”
“There are normal doctors, you know.”
“Yes, but I’m not a normal girl, am I? The doctor might notice the way it starts to instantly heal.” She waves at her leg. It’s true, already the shiny-smooth edges of the wound have started to spread, knitting over the raw places. It will take a several hours, maybe all night, but the progress is fast enough to see. “Or should I show him when it’s already healed and try to explain why there’s a problem?”
“I could steal you one.”
“How would you get one that fits?”
“I could steal you a hundred.”
She smiles, and her eyes linger on my face. “Thanks, Meda, but I think this sort of thing is a custom job.” She blows air out through her lips. “Besides, who’s got time? You heard the Sarge. We have a world to save.”
***

Thanks for having me Brigid!


I have so many feelings right now. Jo and Meda are two of my girl crushes.

Go, scamper off and read her books. They’re so worth it.

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