The fabulous writing team of Killion Slade joins us, with the release of their new book, the first of a horror trilogy. They were kind enough to spend some time with us.
Devon Ellington: What was the inspiration for this trilogy?
Killion Slade: The 2012 impeding apocalypse that did not happen. While living in Montana and being secluded from many people, it tends to make you think about the “what ifs” in our man- made society. In learning how to become more self-sufficient, we began to incorporate that into our storyline more and more. Overall, the vampire apocalyptic event and the struggle for humanity is what drove the inspiration for this series.
DE: How did you decide it was a trilogy, and not just a single book?
KS: After we outlined the entire story, we realized there was way too much to cram into one book. When we rewrote the outlines to fit screenplay beats, the series had to expand into four books. In this way too fast world of instant gratification, we wanted to slow down the stories just a smidge, so we could enjoy the character development arcs and allow their personalities to truly shine.
DE: What frightens you the most?
KS: Spiders! No seriously, I won’t speak those words aloud they frighten me so much. I don’t wish to give any energy to my fears. We do however, ask this question of our characters as they are faced with each of their own. Much of the premise is based on the real fears of people and will continue to be a theme throughout much of the series. We address very difficult fears such as kidnapping, rape, loss of a loved one, and losing your mind.
DE: Which character’s voice came to you most easily?
KS: Our heroine, Cheyenne O’Cuinn came extremely easy to us. She’s quirky, she’s smart, and she’s a lot of fun.
DE Which character was the most difficult to develop?
KS: One of our dragons, Torchy Gravenor. He is a Welsh dragon with a Scottish accent. Finding the cadence and just enough vernacular to get his voice to come through was a challenge, but we love him.
DE: Will you tell us a bit about how you work together as a team?
KS: Working as a team is very rewarding, and it has its challenges. We get an opportunity to talk about people who don’t exist and bring them to life. It’s exciting to hear how people care about our characters. I once had a reader explain to me how she was so concerned for both Roxas and Cheyenne [our H&H], that she had done her entire Saturday’s grocery shopping feeling worried about them until she could get back to the story. That to me was a fantastic compliment and a testament to how well try to craft the characters together.
As far as our challenges, we find that most of that is worked out in the outline process when we are brainstorming. Sometimes, while editing the battle is on, but those are silly, niggily things that we put aside quickly. It’s more important to us to work together as a cohesive team than to get stuck on a pride issue. We will finally ask the character how they would handle it and it usually isn’t long before they reveal the answer. It’s usually while I’m in the shower. So it becomes a moot point. ☺
DE: How do you split up writing tasks?
KS: We don’t really split up tasks. We discuss each scene before it is written. What are the objectives of the scene? What is the GMC for each person in the scene? Then we outline it together. With that kind of roadmap, it is easy to allow the words to flow out through my fingers.
DE: Do you switch off chapters?
KS: We used to switch up chapters, but for this book, we stayed consistent with the planning and the writing. In the third book, we have a subplot that is primarily written from his style. Often times Mr. Slade will write a draft of what he is trying to convey and then from there, we modify as needed.
DE: Are you ever each responsible for writing from one particular POV or the other?
KS: We might plan on doing that in a different series, but for Exsanguinate, we’ll most likely stay the on the present course.
DE: How do you split up research?
KS: We each take sections that intrigue us. We’ll take the deep dive down the rabbit hole and show the other what we found. We always want our stories to be a lot of fun, so we go where it’s good for both of us.
DE: Do you know what you want to work on once this trilogy is complete?
KS: The screenplays for the World of Blood series. Actually we have a couple of ideas that have been mulling around in our heads. We are torn between an alternate reality government conspiracy and a high fantasy science fiction. We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.
Thank you very much for having us today as your guests. It is always a wonderful pleasure to work with you. ☺
A Halloween scream night theme park adventure for software gaming developer Cheyenne O’Cuinn reveals a hidden supernatural reality she never dreamed existed. Recovering from a vicious attack and her sisters’ abductions, Cheyenne must rescue her sisters from vampiric kidnappers before they’re used to breed warmongering dhampirs.
Betrayal lurks in every corner. Cheyenne must evade attackers by unconventional means through her online role-play game. She must navigate through virtual, tortuous clues and mailed body parts, which cross over from her virtuality into reality. Can a team of dragons, vampires, and werewolves come together to help her? Who can she trust? Will the help from her virtual lover become compromised when he learns of her new immortal existence and crush the fragile love they share?
Amidst an impending vampire apocalypse, Cheyenne finds herself both in conflict for survival and for her heart. Will her immortal self derail any hope of solving the multiplying puzzles before time runs out to save her sisters, herself and her humanity?
Official Book – Interactive Second Screen Website: http://www.worldofblood.com/
Official Author Website: http://www.killionslade.com/
Publisher: Draconian Publishing – Spirit Imprint
US Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/Exsanguinate-Vampire-Urban-Fantasy-Series-ebook/dp/B00H6WI71Y/
Print book will be available on December 20th at Amazon.
Video Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WAZPxbWyJoA
About the Author
Killion Slade is a married writing team who met in the virtual realms of Second Life and virtually enjoy everything. Members of the Horror Writers Association and the Paranormal Romance Guild, they storyboard their characters inside Second Life as their avatars reveal their stories. Tucked away in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Northern Montana, they stay busy chasing kids, corralling horses and cats, and enjoying the harvest from their garden. Married on Halloween – they love to live life to the fullest and embrace one another each and every day.