Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Interview with Alyson Noel, author of Shadowland



She always believed he was her destiny—but what if fate has other plans?

Enter the realm of The Immortals—and experience the extraordinary #1 New York Times bestselling series that has taken the world by storm.

Ever and Damen have traveled through countless past lives—and fought off the world’s darkest enemies—so they could be together forever. But just as their long-awaited destiny is finally within reach, a powerful curse falls upon Damen…one that could destroy everything. Now a single touch of their hands or a soft brush of their lips could mean sudden death—plunging Damen into a bleak afterlife in the Shadowland, an eternal abyss for lost souls. Desperate to break the curse and save Damen, Ever immerses herself in magick—and gets help from an unexpected source…Jude Knight.

Although she and Jude have only just met, he feels startlingly familiar. Despite her fierce loyalty to Damen, Ever is drawn to Jude, a green-eyed golden boy with magical talents and a mysterious past. She’s always believed Damen to be her soul mate and one true love—and she still believes it to be true. But as Damen pulls away to save them from the darkness inhabiting his soul, Ever’s connection with Jude grows stronger—and tests her love for Damen like never before…


Marlene: Tell us about your book

Alyson: SHADOWLAND is the third book in THE IMMORTALS series and it picks up right where BLUE MOON left off, with Damen and Ever unable to touch due to a poison that turns their touch lethal, prompting Ever to turn to magick, hoping to find a cure. Along the way encountering the mysterious Jude Knight who will test her love for Damen like never before . . .

Marlene: What was your inspiration for this story?

Alyson: The inspiration for the series was grief. A few years ago I lost three people I loved in five months, and shortly after that I nearly lost my husband to leukemia (he’s in full remission now!). Experiencing that sort of loss got me thinking a lot about life and death, mortality and immortality, the bonds that tie us even after a loved one is gone, and how our youth loving culture sort of seeks physical immortality by trying to remain youthful looking for as long as we can—and yet, what would happen if we really could achieve it? What would it mean for us, our loved ones, society in general? And since I’ve been interested in all things paranormal since I was a kid, Ever and Damen’s story seemed like the perfect vehicle to explore all of those themes.

Marlene: Do you remember writing the first words? Are they still the same?

Alyson: Yep—and it’s the same routine with each book. Before I start the actual writing, when I’m still in what I call the “organizing stage,” where I’m outlining, researching, and getting my notes together, that first sentence always just pops into my head, and so far, oddly enough, it’s never once changed!

Marlene: What kind of research did you have to do for this story?

Alyson: The research I’ve done for this series has been eye opening, mind-blowing, fascinating, and fun! I took a three-day, psychic development course with world famous medium James Van Praagh that exceeded all my wildest expectations, and I went under hypnosis for a past life regression with best selling author, Dr. Brian Weiss where I saw things I never could’ve imagined! I also read a ton of books on psychics, mediums, ghosts, reincarnation, near death experiences, past lives, chakras, crystals, you name it! And I took a few field trips as well, like one to The Getty museum where I checked out an exhibit I reference in SHADOWLAND, as well as a really fun trip to the “Shake Shack” in Crystal Cove where I pretty much had no choice but to consume a variety of milk shakes to ensure I got the flavors in EVERMORE right. Oh how I suffer for my art!

Marlene: What is your favorite line, passage, chapter from this book?

Alyson: Well, without giving anything away, I have two favorite scenes in SHADOWLAND. One that takes place in The Getty Museum in LA where some secrets of Damen’s are revealed, and one that takes place in an art gallery and Amsterdam that actually made me tear up!

Marlene: Was there any part that you struggled with or avoided writing?

Alyson: My deadlines are such that I have no time for avoiding or prolonged struggling—I just plow my way through no matter what!

Marlene: What's on your nightstand right now?

Alyson: The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits—research!

Marlene: I have that book too!

Marlene: Besides writing, do you have any other passions?

Alyson: Travel, Travel, Travel, reading, art, food, wine, movies, music, TV, shopping, and did I mention Travel?

Marlene: Have you ever wanted to quit writing? Why?

Alyson: Nope, not once. I’ve had so many jobs I either disliked or hated, and this is not one of them. In fact, it’s not even a job—writing books is still a dream come true for me!



For more information about Alyson and her books visit her website at http://www.alysonnoel.com

Readers, now it’s your turn. Ask a question! Leave a comment. Alyson will pop back in for one week to respond. You’re up!

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I would love to know what that unchanged first sentence was.

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