Please tell us a bit about yourself:
I’m on a journey to create the most kick-ass heroine romance fiction has ever known and the hero who can take her. A believer that big, audacious goals spice up life, I rely on coffee, red wine and laughter to make those goals (and my characters) come alive. When not at the computer, you can find me wrangling vegetables and extra helpings of homework into my fashion-loving progeny, kowtowing to a fat cat and reading, a lot. Since it is more fun to travel in packs, I’m always looking for people to come along with me for the ride. Contact info provided below.
Tell us about Thirteen Nights (Book 1: Divine Temptation):
Thirteen Nights is an updated Greek myth centered on the Amazon warrior Antiope. In Greek lore, the Amazons would mate once a year with the Gargareans, their male warrior counterparts, to bear children. Female children stay with the Amazons, males are given back to the Gargareans. Couples would do the deed for 13 nights, believing that increased the likelihood of conception. In this book, that ritual has been recreated as a speed dating event in modern day Washington, DC. Our heroine, Antiope, chooses, and finds herself paired with, Tai. What starts out as a love fest, becomes a love story.
Unfortunately, Amazons are forbidden to marry. And Tai, an expert hacker, who switched the Thirteen Pairings to have Annie, may be subject to death for switching around the couples, which are actually allocated by optimal genetic match. Needless to say, they have to overcome a lot of obstacles to find a way to pair off for a lifetime.
What inspired you to write this particular story?:
I started this story initially as a group exercise with some of my crit partners with the intent of developing a joint anthology. We never did the anthology, but I fell in love with my story. I had so much fun writing it. I hope it shows.
Please share a favourite snippet from your book:
Here’s one of my favorites. It shows Tai pushing continuously pushing Annie out of the box of what it means to be an Amazon, to question the rules and rituals that don’t allow them to partner for life. The first obstacle Tai must overcome is Annie herself. I also liked it because I tried to really use the city where I live, Washington, DC, as part of the story, which you can see in this snippet.
He picked up Annie and brought her to the outdoor skating rink at the National Gallery of Art. Her face puckered up like a fish. “A date at a hotel, I got. But this is a real human date, isn’t it?”
“I’m half human.”
Her eyes still bulging out, she nodded and a hint of a smile tugged at lips he couldn’t resist kissing. Since she broke the kissing taboo, he figured he could now do it as often as he liked.
“I loved skating as a child,” she murmured as if to herself. Skating for warriors, he knew, was a full-contact sport that made NFL hockey look like a teddy bear tea party.
Which comes first for you – a character's looks, personality or name?:
The name in conjunction with a few key physical characteristics, such as hair color and height, especially for a woman. So many of these features influence (not determine) personality that I generally find it easier to start with them. Also, I'm saying this with a big smile on my face, nicknames (or their absence) play a role for me when I evolve a character's personality. These more than anything else, can reveal core components of a person--what they actually call themselves. While we receive our names from our parents, we still can choose how we use that name—long or short form.
For this book, I searched for Amazon names that I could shorten into a more modern name. In my search, I discovered the story of Antiope, who is the only Amazon recorded ever to marry. How perfect was that! In Thirteen Nights, Antiope calls herself Annie, to distinguish who she really is from who her culture has forced her to be.
Any tips for aspiring authors?:
Don't give up, open your mind and heart, toughen your skin and recognize that you get better with every book. To really grow in your craft, you have to be open to feedback—some can be hard to swallow, others may force you to give up parts of your story that you loved. Equally importantly, you also need to know when to accept the feedback and when to go with your gut on something as well. This just takes practice. Remember, no matter how good your story is, someone won't like it. And it doesn't matter because someone else will love it—and not just your mother.
Questions for fun:
What super-power would you choose?:
Mental ones—telepathy and telekinesis. They do not just stop things, they can actually change them by altering how people think and what they do.
Coffee, tea or wine?:
Coffee for breakfast, tea for lunch, wine for dinner. When writing, all three depending on time of day and mood.
Pink. The odd thing, I'm not a girly girl and never have been. But I still love pink.
Upcoming news and plans for the future?:
I have two more books contracted in the Divine Temptation series, Life Reignited and Hope Restored, which delve deeper into the fantasy world of the modern Pantheons. Life Reignited is a little different, like Annie. It’s a sexy love story about a couple over 50, which is the new 30, so they say. Whoever they are. Age is another way to explore love and its physical expression between a hero and heroine with less than perfect bodies. I'm having a great time writing it. Hope Restored will look at the healing nature of love, with a focus on two fractured characters, who put the pieces of their lives and their psyche back together with the help of the other.
And then there is Race to Redemption, my SFR. It’s fully drafted, with crit partners at the moment, and I'll be submitting it soon. You can find more information about it here. http://sabrinagarie.com/wips/
Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to us!
Thank you for having me.
Blurb:Annie’s always been different. An empathic Amazon, she hides her emotional anomaly beneath her legendary fighting skills. To avoid passing on her genetic disorder, she’s always avoided the Thirteen Nights Ritual—the annual breeding rite among the warrior races of the Greek Pantheon. Only months away from 30, she is now duty-bound to participate. When she meets Tai, a half-human warrior who revs her up beyond legal limits and nurtures the gentleness she’s had to keep secret, thirteen nights of pleasure don’t seem nearly enough.
As a half human, Tai has survived by being faster, more lethal, and a whole lot smarter than his brethren. While the male warriors accept him for his achievements, the Amazons have never given him a second look. Until he meets Annie, whose smile is warm and real and whose body shudders with desire—for him. Determined to have her, he hacks into the Thirteen Nights database and rearranges the pairings to make Annie his breeding partner. Together, their strength and tenderness combust into pure love.
But Tai’s actions are forbidden under Amazon law, subject to a death. To stay together and alive, they must take on the Greek Pantheon and win.
Find me on the Web:
Ellora’s Cave: http://www.ellorascave.com/thirteen-nights.html
Amazon: Not available yet
Barnes and Noble: Not available yet