Friday, July 6, 2012

Slippery Souls by Rachael H Dixon: Interview & Excerpt




Libby has hit a bad patch in life, and just when she thinks things can’t get any worse she's killed in a car accident alongside her dog Rufus. During their transition to the afterlife’s Sunray Bay, Rufus somehow manages to absorb her soul – which, in turn, gives him human-like qualities and renders her soulless.

Accompanied by her now talking dog, Libby tries to unravel the mystery of her slippery soul, encountering many setbacks and dilemmas along the way. She has no idea why a group of monster slayers, headed by an ex-convict, are hunting her down, and when she teams up with rogue Peace & Order Maintenance Officer, Grim, she’s shocked to discover that there’s a mob of disgruntled vampires and a very angry mayor hot on their heels too.

Libby has never felt so unpopular, and begins to wonder whether it’s possible to die twice in one day...

* Suitable for readers 16+

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If she’d known she was going to die that day Libby Hood would have worn her best lace underwear. Hell, she would have put on more make-up too. Her mother said you should always wear nice underwear. Nothing in the world would be more embarrassing than being involved in an accident, resulting in a trip to the hospital, only for doctors and nurses to discover shamefully mismatched, or old and holey, bra and pants. Perish the thought. And Libby interpreted this notion to be applicable also in the event of death. Of course, it hadn’t been her intention to become entangled in the freakish foxtrot Death was now leading her – she’d only popped out for a bottle of milk. So, along with uncoordinated underwear, her final look consisted of If she’d known she was going to die that day Libby Hood would have worn her best lace underwear. Hell, she would have put on more make-up too. Her mother said you should alwayswear nice underwear. Nothing in the world would be more embarrassing than being involved in an accident, resulting in a trip to the hospital, only for doctors and nurses to discover shamefully mismatched, or old and holey, bra and pants. Perish the thought. And Libby interpreted this notion to be applicable also in the event of death. yesterday’s dishevelled clothes and a light smattering of lip-gloss and mascara. She hadn’t even showered or brushed her teeth.
Now, ridiculous as it may sound, the whole tragic incident and subsequent chain of events came about because Libby couldn’t start the day without a cup of tea...




Welcome Rachael,  it's great to have you here.  I'm excited for this chance to find out a little more about you.  What can you tell us about your debut release?

Slippery Souls is urban fantasy…by the seaside. It’s a tongue-in-cheek story about a vampire with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, a pack of chain-smoking werewolves, a talking dog, an agoraphobic witch who lives in a lighthouse, and a fairly ordinary twenty-something-year-old called Libby Hood.

It’s the first book in the Sunray Bay Series, and was short-listed for the Writing Magazine’s Self-publishing Award earlier this year.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

An Arthur; that is, an author - I just couldn’t pronounce it properly back then. Ever since I could read and write I just knew that’s what I wanted to be. I particularly loved to read James Herbert - which is where I drew most of my inspiration from.

What was the scariest moment of your life?

On a pirate ship fairground ride at Skegness - even though this was years ago, the thought still brings me out in a cold sweat! It was early one Sunday morning and there were only three of us on the ride - me, my husband and my brother. We decided to sit at the very end (because, as you know, you go higher at the end) - however, the security bar didn’t seem to latch into place and, as the ship started to climb higher and higher, we found ourselves slipping out of our seats. We linked arms and held on for dear life, screaming our lungs out - but, unfortunately for us, the ride operator misinterpreted this as an ‘Argh, we’re really scared but thoroughly enjoying this’ kind of fairground scream - so he kept us on there for ages.

I’m sure I lost around ten years from my life expectancy that day. And although I absolutely love fairground rides - to this day, I still won’t go on a pirate ship (unless it’s in the middle where all the parents and toddlers sit!)

How do you develop your plots and your characters? Do you use any set formula?

For Slippery Souls, the idea for Libby and Grim (the two main characters) came to me in a dream. This is often the case for me - I dream vividly every night, and when I sift through the nonsensical silliness there’s sometimes a gem of an idea in there.

I knew from the beginning that it was going to be a not-too-serious book - I mean, there was just too much fun to be had with a talking dog. So I thought, wouldn’t it be great to locate the whole thing at the seaside! Make it all a bit quirky, you know. After all, I’d never read a book about vampires, werewolves, beach huts and ice-creams before - so why not?

As for character development - I like to sift through photos of people (usually actors, so that I can imagine how they move and talk) to pick out ones that best reflect the characters in my head. That way I never forget the small details - like what colour eyes they have, how straight their teeth alignment is or whether they have a dimple on their right or left cheek.

What future projects are you considering?

I’m currently working on the second book of the Sunray Bay Series, The Forgotten Ones. My aim is to have it launched in early 2013. I plan on having three books altogether in the series, so as soon as The Forgotten Ones is complete I’ll begin work on the final instalment.

In between those, I’d like to steal time away to work on my work-in-progress horror novel Little Blue Eyes. And eventually I’d like to write a YA horror, which is currently fermenting in my head.

Do you have a Website or Blog?

Yes, I have both:

http://www.slipperysouls.co.uk

http://www.rhdixon.blogspot.com

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

Yes. Always remember to wear your best undies!


Rachael H Dixon is an Urban Fantasy & Horror writer who lives in the cold and windy northeast of England. She craves sunlight and warmth, and as such her skin is so white it's almost translucent.

She's been writing ever since she could hold, albeit strangely, a pen. Her love for the macabre stems from reading James Herbert novels and watching Vincent Price films when she was small.

As well as writing, Rachael loves reading, walking the dog (her own, not just anybody's), drinking red wine and Gil Elvgren artwork. And she often wonders whether she's the only writer in the whole world who doesn't like coffee.

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Enter to win a Smashwords coupon code for a Free Download
of Slippery Souls in the format of your choice.
Comment on this post for a bonus entry.
Follow Rachael Dixon on FACEBOOK for another bonus entry.
Giveaway ends July 28th 11:59 PM Central Time.




4 comments:

Joanne said...

Thanks for the great interview. I found it funny that Libby remembered what her mother said about always wearing clean underwear and thinking she should have worn lace.
This book sounds intriguing. Can't wait to read it.
Thanks for the giveaway.

e.balinski(at)att(dot)net

Urban Fantasy & Horror Writer said...

Thanks Joanne, the underwear thing is something that my mother would always say to me, and her mother to her and so on - still makes me smile :-)

Good luck with the giveaway, and I hope you enjoy Slippery Souls!

Rachael
x

Anonymous said...

I love your giveaways!

Sarah Elizabeth said...

I think my mum used to tell me the underwear thing too! Don't think I'd want to die in nasty underwear either! Love it ☺