Monday, August 10, 2009

Author Interview: Lion in the Land

1. Why set our favorite fictional characters in the 1980's? And why Chicago?

Why the 80s? The music and the hair. I thought Edward would look good in a mullet, and I just had to see a punk Jasper. I had to. But truthfully, it was simply a matter of me being nostalgic for that decade that was like no other. I'd been in touch with my college roomies and constantly listening to my 80's playlist, and the story just kind of came together. It has been a riot to have readers relive some of their old 80's memories in their reviews. It’s also totally fun to see that younger readers are getting a kick out of it, too.

As far as Chicago goes - write what you know, right? I've lived in the Chicago suburbs my whole life and went to college in the cornfields of Illinois. CIU is heavily based of my Alma mater, Eastern Illinois University. Go panthers! But it seems that certain truths of college campuses are universal. Right now, someone who went to school in New York is reading and reviewing the story, and she swears I'm describing her University - our histories are matching bar for bar. Yeah, that's right - I consider the bars as part of campus.

2. Do you write outside of the Twilight fandom? Do you harbor aspirations to write on a larger scale?

I do write outside the Twilight fandom. My very first fanfic was actually a Harry Potter, "Professor Burbage and the Potions Master." And I've recently been turned onto the anime/manga, Hellsing, which depicts a whole different breed o' vampire, so I've been experimenting in that arena with a couple of stories. That fandom is completely different from the Twilight fandom; as a matter of fact, it's pretty much the anti-Twilight fandom, but since I've got a love/hate relationship going on with Twilight, I have no problem straddling both groups. Also, last fall I won an original fiction contest at Twilighted with my story, "Impressionism 101," written for the Silly, Sexy & Supernatural competition.

It would be amazing to be a published author and get paid to do what I love, but I don't have any serious aspirations in that area. Oh, but I do get paid to write marketty stuff for my company's website. It's for a family of fashion boutiques - Alice would love it!

3. What do like in a review and what are some memorable ones that have been left for you?

I love reviews in all shapes and sizes. I am not picky when it comes to that. I greatly enjoy the reviewers that take the time to check in along the way with their reactions. It's always wonderful to get a review on the last chapter that says they loved the story - I completely dig that - but reviews take on a whole new meaning when you get to hear a reader's reactions to specific parts of the story. I love it when they quote back the lines that really struck home with them. I appreciate the constructive criticisms, too. They are never fun to read at first, but I learn something almost every time. And it means a lot to me when someone puts themselves out there like that. It's nice to know that they care enough about the story and me as a writer to want to help me improve.

I have been extremely fortunate to have connected with readers that leave me the most amazing reviews as far as detail and energy. But my first ever reviewer - IloveNeville over at harrypotterfanfiction - will always hold a special place in my heart. She was my only reviewer for a while, and she faithfully chimed in every chapter with such enthusiasm for my Burbage story that she kept me going. If not for her, I may have given up on this whole fanfiction business a long time ago.

An individual review that stands out is the one in which Master of the Boot asked me if he could use my OC, Elie from "B.I.T.E.," in his crossover story, "The Big Hellsing: The Forks Affair." It was a thrill to know someone liked my character that much, and it's been a blast to see how he expertly fits her into an entirely different universe.

One of the most memorable quotes from a review was from Metro Kid when he said: "I actually really liked this. I’m surprised." It made me laugh, because it felt good to know that I had won someone over who was skeptical at first.

4. Who is your favorite Twilight male (or female I suppose), and why?

That would have to be Mistah Jasper Whitlock. He's got that dark edge and interesting history, and he just seems like he's the one who is most accepting and realistic about what he is - a vampire.

Second would be Mike Newton. I'm not kidding. He was a nice guy - Bella should've given him a chance.

5. What kind of Twilight fanfics do you prefer to read, and what do you have coming up in the future in terms of writing?

I honestly don't read a lot of Twilight fanfiction on my own, but I've been exposed to a variety of stories as a validation beta over at Twilighted. I tend to prefer the stories that take a fresh view and set the characters in a totally new universe or situation. That's what I like about Twilighted - they allow for completely original stories with their AU, AU-Human, crossover and crack-fic categories. I'm also drawn to the more irreverent stories that are heavy on sarcasm.

I'm currently in the midst of writing a little somethin' I call, "Survivor: Vampire Island." It's a Twilight/Hellsing/Survivor crossover, and it's completely silly. The best thing about it is that there is reader participation - readers get to vote for who they want out next. I'm posting over at fanfiction right now, and Edward desperately needs your help! So far I've got mostly Hellsing fans reading. Also, I've been invited by talented fanfic author, geophf, to write the Garrett chapter in his story, "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird," which explores the Denali coven. Guess I should start working on that before he gets mad at me. Any and all guidance/advice on Garrett would be much appreciated - PM me!

1 comment:

  1. No, I did not become angry with her, and you won't either when you read her chapter. It is the "Icicles - Garrett" chapter for the "story" "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird." You should do yourself a favour: read her stories. Read "Impressionism 101," have fun with "S:VI" ("Survivor: Vampire Island") and see why she received so many awards and recs for "Add It Up." You'll see that the Garrett chapter is one more reason why to love the wonderful author LiLa is, and, if you are fortunate enough to develop a relationship with her (BY LEAVING SUBSTANTIVE REVIEWS OF HER WORK!) you will find that this scintillating author is a sweet, warm, and, okay, I'll say it, kind lady of the first class.


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