Today we're visiting with Lori Parker, author of the upcoming novel, Feral. Lori reviews books, has a fun sense of humor on Facebook, and is easy to approach. If you haven't visited her review blog, ContagiousReads, try it!
Hi Lori. Thanks for agreeing to tell me (and my readers) more about your book, Feral. Let's get to the meat of the interview!
J.E. : Feral is New Adult Contemporary Romance, correct? Can you tell me why you decided to go with New Adult?Lori: Thanks for having me! I’m excited and nervous!
I read a lot of New Adult, and enjoy most of it. It seems like a great place to examine issues in a mature way that can be read across the board. There is a fine line between all of the age groups and an even finer one between YA, NA and Adult. With my foul mouth and dirty mind I could never write a YA novel and have it be authentic to my voice. I also write about younger adults. So it’s just more fitting.
J.E.: Your heroine has such a broken life. Is this any reflection on your own life? We've all felt hopeless at one point, can you say you're pulling the story from your own loss of someone?
Lori: I like broken characters because I can relate to them. I pull a lot of my life and put it into Feral. I wasn't abandoned as a child, but I certainly felt that way a lot when I was a teen. My parents had their own lives and issues that they were dealing with. My sister had moved out, so I was left on my own a lot. I wasn't a social person in my teen years either so that didn't really help my feelings of being alone. I also, like a lot of people, suffer from depression. Throw in my anxiety issues and I was a mess for many years, before I got diagnosed and treated.
I recently lost one of my good friends. She was one of my co-bloggers as well. She was young. 28, and a mother to three very beautiful kids. I have a lot of pain, and anger left from her death. Losing someone that young no matter how they died is horrible. She had so much life left. It actually stopped my world for a while. I couldn't read, or write. And to anyone that knows me books are the air I breathe. Right now I can say that I am dealing with her loss, and a lot of the feelings of hurt and anger are being put into Feral.
But there are some happy times in Feral too. The book is dedicated to my daughter, my friend Kami who is the one who died this summer, and my college roommates. I use a lot of my college experiences in the book. I had a blast in college.
I can’t tell you if it has a Happily Ever After, I have two separate endings written for the book, and both are completely possible. We’ll see how the cards fall as I write.
J.E.: Do you believe true love exists and if so, have you met anyone that exemplified it?
Lori: This is actually a hard question for me to answer it. I have two answers. Yes I think it exists, but I am doubtful that it exists for me. My former college roommate and her husband, both friends, have the most solid relationship I have ever seen. So they give me hope that there is a such thing as a real life happily ever after.
J.E.: I love the cover for Feral. Did you come up with the scene or did your cover artist?
Lori: I would say thank you, but that is all Staci from Red Pen Kisses, and the cover model Miranda Hedman aka Mirish. Staci was great to work with. She asked me about ten questions, and then made me get more specific, because I can be kind of wishy washy. Then she found Mirish’s Black Cat series. I picked a pose, and she worked her magic from my responses. I also gave her links to the Pinterest board for the book.
The cover is beautiful. It’s been a real kick in the butt to finish the book. I actually have another book that is closer to completion than Feral, and Staci is doing the cover and edits for that one! My friend and author Emily Goodwin is going to pose as my MC Blake. I’m excited.
I admit I am a woefully slow writer.
J.E.: You review books on your blog, Contagious Reads. Did you want to be an author before reviewing or did you become inspired after becoming a reviewer? If after, who do you think inspired you the most?
Lori: After. I was very much content to live in other peoples’ books. I never realized that my penchant for daydreaming could turn into writing, until I started talking to my friend Lindsay Galloway about this idea I had for a book (The Hand that Feeds) and she kept asking me if I was writing it. Finally I sat down and wrote, and then she read it. And told me I didn’t suck.
I said on my Facebook the other day that it takes a village to write a book. And for me that is very true. I have some really great supporters out there. Lindsay obviously, but also my friends Annie Walls, Elyse Schramm, Ren Reidy, Emily Goodwin, Megan Gullickson, Rhiannon Frater, Kody Boye, Staci Hart, Claudia McKinney, Tamara Rose Blodgett, Amy Joy Mryc Lutchen, and Heaven Flores have all been around for some serious hand holding.
I am always improving as a writer. As you can tell my natural inclination is to write like I speak, which doesn't work in fiction writing. It’s not grammatically correct. So I am learning as I go.
J.E.: Who in your life would you say supported you the most during the formation of Feral?
Lori: My family, both in real life and online! I have a group of girls most of whom are listed who are really part of my family too. They are there day and night.
J.E. : Thank you again for sharing. Do you have anything you'd like to say that we didn't cover? Let everyone know where to find you and Feral!
Lori: Thanks for having me. I hope I didn’t ramble too much. You can add Feral to your TBR here: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18584726-feral
Goodreads Author Profile: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7056548.Lori_Lea_Parker
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/LoriLeaParker
Blog FB: https://www.facebook.com/ContagiousReads
Twitter: @ContagiousReads Red Pen Kisses (my cover artist and editor): https://www.facebook.com/redpenkisses