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Here's a summary of Beacon:
Tsunamis reduced the USA into a shell of itself, called The Fold. Surviving humans and vampires joined forces to form The Colony, where registered citizens do as their told.
They donate blood quarterly and dream of being chosen as Attendees for the Jubilee celebrations, that is, everyone except Macie Breen. With high school graduation near, she’s anxious to ditch the rules in hopes of starting a new life with Thane, an unregistered and also her best friend.
Her hopes fizzle when Macie is selected as an Attendee, forever registered. Any future with Thane…impossible. Being chosen comes with another unexpected price.
Truths about The Colony blaze into ashes and lies when she discovers the vampires haven't kept their part of the bargain. Worst still, Macie’s life unravels as her stint in the city of Bliss forces her to face daunting truths about who, and what, she really is.
And now, take it away, Angela!
Tell us a little about your main characters
Macie Breen is seventeen-years-old and knows she is the odd-girl-out. Her parents’ disappearance eight years ago, along with her uncanny healing ability, have helped shape the person she’s become, which is a bit of a rebel with a cause, always questioning things when others so easily went with the flow. Thane is Macie’s unregistered best friend, the only person, other than the township’s mayor, who was there for her when her parents vanished, quite possibly the only person Macie didn’t question… and she should have. He has a few secrets of his own.
What is their biggest challenge or quest?
They started believing their biggest challenge was helping Macie survive her last year of high school so she could properly revoke her citizenship and go unregistered, like Thane. But once Macie is chosen as a Jubilee Attendee, their biggest challenge becomes surviving the explosive consequences born from her selection.
Give us your favorite line from your protagonist
This is from when Macie is getting ready to give her blood donation:
Part of me wanted to resist, just because. Another part wanted to belt out a good ‘moo’ for the cattle I’d become.
From an antagonist
This is from when the antagonist is sharing thoughts about how things turned out after the Jubilee parade. The ‘we’ referenced is Macie and her friends:
We all nodded––though I highly doubted any of us could really understand her position. “As you agree with that, I’m sure you can understand I would do anything I needed to care for my kind.”
An emblematic, teaser paragraph
“We’re not kids anymore, Macie. You’ve learned what little The Colony had to say about the vampeer, wights and devil spawn. There’s something else they’ve hidden from you. From all registered citizens. I’ve wanted to tell you for a long time why we met. Just how special you really are. But you won’t want to be my friend anymore once you know the truth. Losing you would be…”
Words trickled from my mouth unfiltered. “I, what do you mean I wouldn’t…”
He turned to me, chewing his bottom lip. The last time he did that was the day I broke first blood.
What keeps you going when your inspiration flags?
I wish I could say my inspiration doesn’t flag, but that would be such a terrible lie. So truthfully, when I find myself feeling stuck, the inspiration spinning its wheels, I turn to another project. That forces me to abandon that rut I’m in, opens the creative juices and winds up bringing different ideas to mind. Ideas that I could use in the new project, but it also acts as a springboard of inspiration for the other project I put on pause.
What truly inspires you and fires up your vision?
Knowing that what I’m writing will be something I’ll grab to read one day, sit down wrapped in a snug blanket, and fall in love with the story all over again. That’s one of the reasons I write, to create something that intrigues the reader in me.
Best words of advice you ever received?
Read. Read. And then read some more.
I can think of advice that may not have been well thought out, but had good intentions. It was to “publish as quickly as possible and know readers will forgive a few mistakes.” As a reader, I want to know what I’m reading is something that was well worked through, not tossed together for the sake of getting a lot of publications out quickly. I approach my writing projects with that same mentality, knowing I want to produce the best product I can for my readers.
Where’s your favorite place to write?
My favorite place only exists in my imagination: a corner of a wraparound porch, relaxing in a porch swing. Until then, my bed will have to do.
Can you offer some writing advice to new-ish authors?
Read everything you can. Writing craft is something that spans across genres. Whether you’re writing historical romance, a mystery or a military thriller, the basics can be found in a good book, things like tension build up, intriguing dialog, active forward progression of the story, and character development.
Which do you enjoy writing most: action, romance, setting, dialog?
Dialog. There’s something wonderful about character vocalization. It’s a great way to get character voice across as well.
A hint of what you’re working on next?
I’m working on Beacon’s sequel, tentatively titled BEYOND. What Macie endures and in Beacon is only the beginning. More secrets await discovery.
Born and raised in Little Rock, AR, Angela Brown now calls Central Texas home. She's a lover of Wild Cherry Pepsi and chocolate and chocolate covered delicious-ness. Steampunk, fantasy and paranormal to contemporary - mostly YA - fill her growing library.
Mother to a rambunctious darling girl aptly nicknamed Chipmunk, life stays busy. Her favorite quote keeps her moving: "You may never know what results come of your action, but if you do nothing there will be no result." ~ Mahatma Gandhi. She's released Neverlove and They All Fall Down of the Shadow Jumpers series, Frailties of the Bond and Atone of the NEO Chronicles, and BEACON, a YA urban fantasy dystopian published by Evernight Teen publishing.
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