November 2nd, 2006

International Kittens of Mystery

Virtual Book Tour: Sarah Hoyt at the Astraldome

Following the great success of the inaugural astral interview (i.e. no one died. Well, no one important...) the Astraldome has had its walls hosed down, the drains unblocked and ... welcomes fantasy and mystery author Sarah Hoyt.

Sarah has two books coming out this month. Draw One in the Dark - a shape-shifting urban fantasy - and, writing as Sarah D'Almeida, Death of a Musketeer - an historical mystery starring four very famous musketeers.

So, same format as before, with the help of two mediums strapped to a supercomputer we are going to astrally project Sarah from her home in Colorado to a place very close to your computer screen. Same warning as before. If there is any ectoplasm leakage - which I'm assured there won't be - don't let your cat lick it up.

Ready? Okay, Windows ESP is loading, the quantum computer may or may not be on. Now concentrate on Sarah's picture below. Will her across the astral plane. And keep concentrating. Hold that image. The astral plane is a slippery place to cross - her spectral image might snap back. Or shape shift. We are dealing with an author who uses pseudonyms.

Can you see it? Sarah's spectral form? Then let the interview commence...

Q1. I read in an interview that you've had a crush on Athos since the age of eleven. But why Athos? Wasn't Aramis the Musketeer heart throb?

Oh, probably. But one falls in love with characters for different reasons. Besides, quite frankly, if I met Aramis I'd probably think he was too smooth by half.

Athos is different. Perhaps because of his guilt over his wife's death -- though of course, Milady isn't dead but he doesn't know that -- or because of a strict moral fiber with stoic overtones. The thing is, when Athos -- at the beginning of Monsieur Dumas books -- disciplined himself past physical pain and weakness to make his way to Monsieur de Treville's office to defend his friends, I fell headlong in love with him. There is a self-contained darkness there, a discipline and loyalty that transcends mere physical limits. Hard not to fall in love with, in fact.

Q2. In DOITD Kyrie is a werepanther. Which sounds cool but are werepanthers house trained? If I were to visit Kyrie's home would I find a large litter tray in her bathroom?

Um... I have no doubt if Kyrie saw this she would glare at you. Kyrie only shifts when she wants to or needs to. Oh, one or two accidental shifts might happen when she is stressed or in trouble -- but I have no doubt she takes care of the minutia of daily life in the ordinary way. :)

Q3. Given the choice which animal would you like to shape shift into?

One of my cats. This thing about sleeping all day, eating at will and being adored for your troubles HAS to be a good deal. If something more ferocious were desired, probably a tiger. However, my alter ego in Baen's Bar is an ocelot, and I guess that will have to do.

Q4. You receive a phone call from a serial killer. He asks you the same question he asked his previous victims. "You have 150 words to sell me your book. 150 words exactly. If I like what you write I'll buy the book. If I don't you die." What would your 150 words be?

Well, first of all I would yell at the serial killer for being so uninformed. After all, I have TWO books coming out practically one on top of each other.

So, my first talk would be about Draw One In The Dark --

Draw One In The Dark is hip without being illiterate, edgy without being dry and sexy without being sex laden. It does shape changers as you've never seen them before. They are not the cursed creatures of legend, bound to their unwitting fate. No, rather they are humans -- humans whose inner beast is made visible and external and therefore both harder and easier to control. Their battles with themselves are those we all engage in, only magnified. Besides, it's non-stop rollicking adventure with looming danger and a breath-taking payoff.

A quick pause for a reaction ... he's not sure about the word count - he's had to take his shoes and socks off. But he doesn't like the look of that spectral panther ... so, yes, it's an ectoplasmic thumbs-up from our serial killer. So, on with the next question...

Q5. I heard that "Draw One in the Dark" is diner slang for a cup of black coffee. Are you going to continue that theme for the sequel? Will book two be Draw Two in the Dark or maybe A Blonde with Sand Dragged through Georgia?

The second one, which I'm hoping very much will sell is Gentleman Takes a Chance, old diner slang for Hash, the third one Blonde with Sand and the fourth one Bowl of Red. :)

Thank you, Sarah. The mediums power down, the quantum computer's in a state, and Sarah's ghostly presence slithers back along the plane, pauses at the duty free and disappears.

Now for feedback - did everyone see Sarah? Did anyone sober see Sarah? Did Sarah's astral form billow out and grasp a pen? And if it did, did it sign anything? Enquiring minds need to know.

Meanwhile, Draw One in the Dark can be bought from all good bookshops including Amazon in the US and UK