Welcome CJ! Thanks so much for this opportunity to find out a little about you and how you work. J Has someone helped or mentored you in your writing career?
I was very lucky to be mentored by an Australian children’s author, Ann Harth, when I started to take my writing seriously. She helped shape my writing style and storytelling abilities into what they are today, and I’ll be forever grateful for what she’s taught me.
When in the day/night do you write? How long per day?
I basically block out a whole month/month and a half to write (depending on how long the book is—I can do 70,000 words in 6 weeks), so I write all day until I feel I need to stop (usually around 3pm, starting at 8am). Some writing days are better than others, of course.
Does your significant other read your stuff?
I don’t have a significant other, but my bird Kaleb sometimes reads over my shoulder haha ;)
Plotter or Pantser? Why?
Definite plotter! Most of my outlines nowadays consist of 3-5,000 words by themselves, and I outline because if the details aren’t clear in my head, I have trouble putting them on paper (or screen). I plot scene by scene and try to write down as many details as possible. This way, I can see exactly what I need to write, and what is coming up next.
Do you use a pen name? If so, how did you come up with it?
C.J. Hart is a pen name. My goddaughter’s initials are C.J., and ‘Hart’ came from a book I have been working on for years—the main character’s last name (an adult book, which I write under a different name). I went through lots of variations before settling on this one. Both of my pen names have a special meaning for me :)
Do you listen to music while writing? If so what?
Yep! I listen to a variety, and it depends on which book I’m writing. But usually it’s a mixture of Blue October, Florence + The Machine, Sara Bareilles, P!nk, Melanie C, Evanescence, Avril Lavigne, and more.
Mostly crime shows like NCIS, SVU, CSI, and others like Charmed, Supernatural, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and Smallville.
What songs are most played on your Ipod?
I don’t have an iPod…but the most played song at the moment is “Yellow Flicker Beat” from Lorde (or anything from the Mockingjay part one movie soundtrack).
ABOUT THE BOOK
Title: The Forsaken
Series: The Abandoned Series, Book 2
Author: C. J. Hart
Published: November 2nd, 2015
Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing
Genre: YAm Paranormal Romance
Content Warning: Violence and Language
Recommended Age: 13+
Synopsis: Fear. Uncertainty. Wonder. Those three things are thrumming through me, pounding in my ears and coating my tongue with acid. All words that escape my mouth are wrong; I can’t explain how it feels to not remember—for chunks of my memory and hours of my night to have been erased. Erased? No… forgotten.
How do you forget whether you killed a person or not the night before?
Cassie Spencer’s human life is over, and the resulting consequences are flooding in. As she learns to adapt to her new life, pieces of her honorary family are unraveling. Every day is another spent worrying who Ash will take from her next. Though he’s not the only danger she should be concerned about.
A man turns up dead. Eaten.
The Hunters suspect Ash is behind it—one of his sadistic games. But who is really at fault?
And then there’s the mystery illness Cassie contracts, a disease unheard of by both her father and the elders. Can they find her a cure before her condition worsens?
Not every hero wears a cape. Some wear gray beanies.
Grab a copy of book 1, The Hunted, for FREE on Amazon!
Excerpt from The Forsaken by CJ Hart:
Excerpt from The Forsaken by CJ Hart:
Almost five months ago, our dear leader traded his life, his alpha status, for a human. A weak, pitiful thing barely worth the energy—but good enough to eat, in my opinion. I kept asking myself, Why doesn’t he just slit her throat? Humans are annoying. Wasn’t he bored already? I couldn’t comprehend why, after endless days of playing the doting boyfriend, he hadn’t killed her yet.
But I was wrong.
Even more months ago, years ago, Sebby decided to quit munching on humans and chose to hunt animals instead. That’s when he went soft, lost his spine. He got a job at a record store. What does he think he is now—human?
At the same time, some major changes were snowballing.
The elders decided to allow Seb’s allegiance to the mortal race.
Kat sided with them.
And I decided to torture those they loved the most. Starting with Seb’s new girlfriend. An added bonus was that her father was a Hunter. Anything I did to her, directly and indirectly, he would undoubtedly feel. But when I saw her at the café that day, when Sebby was drooling all over her, I realized the best way to get to her father was to play a little game with her. And how do you make a teenage girl miserable? You kidnap her best friend.
I don’t recall her name, but I do remember her scream. She was a fighter, and she loved to squeal as I peeled her skin off strip by strip. Oh, what a treat it was to smell her fear.
I smirk at the memory, and then I grimace.
Cassie Spencer thinks she’s better than us. Better than me. That she’s good and honorable. It’s laughable, really. Now that she’s one of us, we’re equals. It’s only a matter of time before she screws up again. And I only have to be in the right place, the right time, to catch it.
And it will happen.
She’s the same as the rest of us—whether she likes to admit that or not. She’s a monster. A freak.
The only one who gets under my skin.
About the Author:
Renée Shearer writes young adult fiction under the name of C.J. Hart. Renée is a full-time writer who lives in Sydney, Australia, with a crazy pooch named Abbey and a boisterous, somersaulting rescue budgie named Kaleb. Her days are spent living in her fictional worlds and consuming way too much caffeine. She has an (unhealthy?) obsession with all things cupcake- and coffee-related plus Kerouac and YA dystopia/fantasy books. Renée can often be found surrounded by books, marathoning crime shows and munching on vegan goodies, on Twitter (@Renee_Shearer), Pinterest, or dancing in a rainstorm.
Renée hopes to one day visit Rio and is currently learning Brazilian Portuguese.
Clean Teen Publishing Links:
There is a tour wide giveaway. Prizes include the following:
- If US, the winner will receive a mystery box from Clean Teen Publishing
- If International, the winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card.
Ends November 22nd at Midnight (EST)
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