Friday, December 7, 2012

Interview with Laura Diamond author of YA paranormal sensation Shifting Pride

Housekeeping first: my drawing for the free ebook of your choice had 14 entries out of 70 views: In order, they were E.J., Denise, Alex, Em, Tonja, Andrew, Joy, David, Elise, Cherie, L.G., Morgan, Susan, and Danette. And that's for any ebook which should have a broad appeal to most people. What do I get from this? Well, I think about 20% of the people who read my blog have electronic readers (or prefer reading ebooks). That's interesting, and I caveat that the percentage could probably move up by 5% if you factored in repeat visits (or those who are just swamped by books). Does 25% of blog readers owning e-readers or reading e-books jive with the national average? I have no idea, but it's food for thought.

Anyway, the winner of the great ebook giveaway is number 7. That person is Joy Campbell.

So Joy, when you read this, just leave a comment below as to what free ebook in the whole wide world (under 10 bucks) you want emailed to you from Amazon (that's Mobi format for the kindle, and I'll send it to your email as a gift). I'm sure I'll get around to pestering you on your blog about it. Alternately, you can choose just a $10 Amazon gift card if you want to say, buy a book that costs more than ten bucks.



Now, to my interview with Laura Diamond author of YA paranormal sensation Shifting Pride (I'm putting this up a day early as I don't blog on the weekend). My commentary/responses/questions are written in bold black print.
Blurb for Shifting Pride: Sixteen-year-old Nickie Leone has proof that
her missing (presumed dead) father is still alive. Receiving his watch in
the mail is the first in a line of clues bringing her closer to discovering his
whereabouts. But clues aren’t the only new thing in Nickie’s life. There’s the
Memorial Banquet her mother insists she help prepare for, there’s the new
kid/hottie, Xavian, and…well, the growth of whiskers and a tail!

Filled with secrets and a new love of tuna fish, Nickie must partner
up with Xavian (don’t you know he’s a shape-shifter also?) to rescue
her dad before she loses him forever. Oh, and she needs to figure
out how to be a cat, too. This guy on the cover is really good looking LOL-
stares at it some more. *Facepalms

Hi Michael! Thanks so much for hosting me today. I had a lot of fun answering your questions, and hey, you gave me some ideas for the sequel! ;) You're welcome, Laura. I'm good for a few ideas here and there.

Q: How did you hear about Etopia Press? One of the editors, Rachel Firasek, held a pitch contest on her blog. I’d heard of Etopia through Twitter, but didn’t know they accepted YA submissions until the pitch contest. I submitted my pitch, and Rachel asked for the first chapter that day. Then she asked for the full manuscript!

Q: Just to verify, are you a cat person or a dog person 'cause you seem like a cat person O.o? LOL! I’m probably more of a cat person. I have four: a ragdoll and 3 rescues, but I also adopted a Corgi last spring. She’s adorable and brought me much joy.

Q: If you were the MPAA, what rating would you give your book and why (I asked this question because I have Mormon friends who are 40 and have never seen an R-rated movie)? You know, at first I was going to say PG…then I remembered the scenes where the characters shape-shifted  When they have the time, they prefer to undress first so that a majority of their income doesn’t go to wardrobe replacement. Therefore, because of their, ahem, nakedness, I’d rate it at PG-13.

Q: Does the whole "cats have nine lives" thing come into play in your book? I'm curious because I don't think I could write a werecat book without doing the nine lives thing. Seems almost necessary. Hmm, that’s a good idea! It may come up in the sequel! ;) No, my shape-shifters don’t have nine lives, but they have extraordinarily long ones—like centuries. They tend to keep their teenage countenance until they find a mate, then they mature. Even then, the aging process is slow. They’re more likely to be killed in a battle than to die from old age, though. They like to fight too much.

Q: How would the cats in your book view the whole domestication of cats, cat shows, and cat groomers of the world? LOL! I’m not sure. I’ll have to ask. Actually, they’d probably say that they like pets. Nickie tried to help a stray kitty, but got into trouble. Also, some of the shifters in the book may be insulted if someone equated them to domesticated animals.

Q: Are you drawing any connection back to a cat goddess in your book? No cat goddess in the first book, Shifting Pride, or in the prequel, New Pride. However, I’m still developing a sequel and there may be something to that goddess thing. Stay tuned!

Q: What's your favorite book not written by you featuring cats? I like Rachel Vincent’s Shifting series. Her MC is in college in the first book, so it’s more new adult or adult urban fantasy, but the cat hierarchy is there…and so is the action! In Nine Lives of Chloe King, Chloe dies and then develops her feline qualities…kind of harkens back to your earlier question about nine lives. Such a great concept!

Thanks for answering all of my quirky questions, Laura!

For those of you who do not know Laura, here's a little about her:

Laura Diamond is a board certified psychiatrist and author of all things young adult paranormal, dystopian, horror, and middle grade. Her short story, "City of Lights and Stone", is in the Day of Demons anthology by Anachron Press (April 2012). Another short story, "Begging Death", is in the Carnage: After the End anthology volume one by Sirens Call Publications. Her Young Adult Paranormal Romance novelette New Pride and novel Shifting Pride debuted late 2012 from Etopia Press. She has just signed with Pugalicious Press to publish another Young Adult novel, Zodiac Collector. When she's not writing, she is working at the hospital, blogging at Author Laura Diamond--Lucid Dreamer, and renovating her 225+ year old fixer-upper mansion. She is also full-time staff member for her four cats and a Pembroke corgi named Katie. live in a 225 year old mansion! I want to know about that!

Where to find Laura Diamond on the web:

Her Blog is HERE
Her twitter is HERE
Facebook is HERE
Facebook Author Page is HERE
Website is HERE

Amazon author page is HERE
Author’s Den page is HERE
Goodreads author page is HERE

DRAWING: I will be gifting one lucky person who comments on this post with Laura's ebook (it's in Adobe pdf format) New Pride, which is the jumping off point for this series.

As of this blog writing, Laura's book has six five-star ratings on Goodreads with an average of 4.86 % (that's frickin high). Have a great weekend!


  1. Finding a mate matures you? My God, that's just like real life!
    Congratulations, Laura!
    And congratulations to Joy.

  2. I already read the prequel novella so at some point I should pick this up.

  3. Congrats to Laura and Joy! Someday I want to get inside your brain, Michael, and figure out how you always have so many great posts. I see your name a lot in blogosphere too, with how many people LOVE your blog. :D

  4. Yay for Joy:)

    Thanks Michael, for introducing Laura to all of us blog readers. Having one five star rating is a tremendous deal, let alone six Wow.

  5. I know Laura! And that cat looks awesome.

  6. Ooh, cool sounding story. For some reason I'm drawn to shapeshifting stories. Very cool. And congrats on the release!

  7. Thanks, Michael!!! I had lots of fun answering your questions. And, yes, the dude on the cover is HOT! I stare at him frequently, LOL!

    Thanks, everyone, for all the support! Please let me know your thoughts if you happen to read Shifting Pride! :)

  8. Any book with shapeshifters gets my vote! Thanks for posting this!

  9. I had to forego my usual lurking to say I'm still laughing at your rating question. It's not me!

    And then Alex's comment got me going again and I forgot anything intelligent I planned on saying.

    sounds like a fun book, and great interview!

  10. And yet another interesting book. Ah, so many books, so little time...

  11. I just found you on Karen Gowen's blog post -- I think that's where I did. I'm browsing a bit right now! Anyway, a lucky thing for me. I don't read much paranormal, but every genre intrigues me, depending on the story, and Laura's Shifting Pride has piqued my interest. You've piqued it, too, Michael. Partly because you're from Salt Lake and that's where I was born and grew up, and partly because I think your profile description is one of the most original I've ever read. And so, I AM interested in reading your stories!

  12. @Anne: Thank you so much! Always great to meet someone new.

  13. Great interview, I quite like cats so I'll look out for this, Laura.

    Congratulations to Joy for winning the ebook giveaway!


  14. Congrats to Joy! And congrats to Laura. This book definitely caught my eye. I've gotta read it!

    I hope you're doing well, Michael. :)

  15. Great interview but too much about cats. (Sorry, I'm not a cat lover)

  16. Congrats to both Laura. I've seen your book around. Great premise and really love the cover:)

  17. I like the 9 lives question. Excellent interview.

    Mike: sorry I missed your drawing yesterday. But, I have many very own Laptop now and can comfortably blog away, thanks to your good advice to my son. We both thank you.

    Have a good weekend.


  18. Congrats to both Joy and Laura! Laura's book sounds great, love the premise and the blurb sounds like something I'd enjoy reading. (:

  19. I know I've told her before but sounds great. Great questions that made me bump it up on my to read list.

  20. Um, yeah the whole ancient mansion thing is pretty freaking cool.

    Shape shifting to panthers is very cool and I'm sure teen readers eat it up. Good for you, Laura! Best of luck!

    And Michael, I think so many of us are inundated with books that ebook giveaways start to blur. WHile, it's awesome to win them, I had to stoop entering cuz it didn't feel fair to win something I wouldn't have a chance to read for many months. But I absolutely believe in holding those giveaways cuz it's exposure and you never know when it will reach that one person who spreads the word after reading it.

  21. Hat's off to the winner -- and a mighty fine interview.

  22. I've only read some paranormal books but now I'm starting to get deeper into them and enjoy their imaginative details. Shifting Pride (as in a pride of lions?) sounds like a good one to add to my list.

  23. Nice interview! I love cat/shifter stories.