Thursday, January 16, 2014

Talking with Author Julie Johnstone! With *Giveaway*

Let me welcome one of my favorite people, Julie Johnstone a talented writer and gracious person. I was excited to see her new book, a paranormal was out and I had to bring her on to chat!
Thanks so much for having me on your blog today! I always love the opportunity to meet new readers and writers and I hope I get to today!

You originally wrote historical, what drew you to paranormal romance?

I was enticed by the idea of writing characters that I could give cool supernatural powers. I was also lured by the prospect of making myths come alive that I had always found fascinating while creating my own new legends to go with those myths. I love stretching boundaries of the norm and I think there is a lot of freedom to run with that in paranormal/urban fantasy books.
I agree there is a freedom you have to stretch the boundaries in Paranormal/UF its one of the reasons I love it so. One of the many things I like about your book is exactly what you said, you took myths and made them your own.  

What was the hardest thing about paranormal to write, easiest?

This question is actually easy for me to answer. The hardest thing about writing this paranormal/urban fantasy was making sure my characters’ pasts were believable and then making sure all the timelines matched up since one of my characters is hundreds of years old! The easiest thing was the research! As a writer of historical romance, I am used to months and months of research and endless research every time I sit down to write. It was so liberating to write a book set in the present time and in a place I had actually lived and a secondary city I visit frequently. I still had to do research but a lot less than I am used to!
I enjoy reading Historical books, but I find I loathe the research involved--I admire you do this. I have heard from other authors who have said the same. I must say--welcome to the dark side!

Tell us about your book! 

I’d love to! Here is the back cover copy!

The saying Love Kills could be the epitaph on Alyse Estes’ tombstone if only she could die. An immortal descended from a mythical Siren race, she’s fated to find her soul mate in the race of her sworn enemy, the Cordisi. As if that’s not troublesome enough, she's also destined to bear him the daughter who will eventually kill him. Alyse knows just how inescapable the curse can be. After all, she killed her own father. But all of her attempts to make a perfectly normal, perfectly respectable, perfectly safe life for herself come tumbling down when she meets Maximillian Rheinhart. 

One graze of Max's hand brings the reality of her dark past―and her darker future―rushing to the surface. He's mysterious, alluring, unaware Alyse is a Siren...and he wants her. Death roulette is not exactly the kind of foreplay she wants with love, but Max is a force of nature. He's everywhere―at the law firm that just hired her and the club she goes to, in her inexplicably realistic daydreams and the dark nightmares that haunt her sleep―and he's very convincing. He's also the Cordisi whose father is a Hunter intent on wiping out the Siren race.

Despite her efforts to resist Max, he captures her heart. She has one chance to save herself and the man that she's come to need, but to guarantee Max's safety, she might have to lose his love or succumb to what she’s fought all her life―accepting the Siren within.
This was fun read (I can say so myself!)

 Is this a series? How many books are you planning?

This is a series! I’m planning three books. Tentatively titled: WHISPERED LIES (BOOK 2) and BLARING TRUTHS (BOOK 3). Awesome, this will be fantastic!

What is the next book about?

The next book is about Alyse and Max fighting against Jack and another demi-god to save someone special to Alyse and Max and to break the curse on Sirens and Cordisi so they can be together without fear. The third book will be a war between the Sirens and Cordisi, and you know some really hard choices are going to have to be made! Oooh, so you are upping the stakes. Will we see more of some of the interesting secondary characters you've introduced? I hope so!

You are one busy person---how do you fit in writing? Are you early morning? late evening? Afternoon?

Ideally, my most productive time to write is when my kids are at school, but that is not always possible. Then it becomes a juggling act. I juggle a little writing in the morning with my chores and then I will write at night after the kids are in bed, but that can be tricky because my mind is not as sharp and I want to be lazy! I agree, the hardest part about writing at night is the urge to just relax. But it's good you have the ability to write some during the day--that is fabulous.

Do you plot extensively or do a mix of plot/pantser?

I am currently a plotty-panster which causes me all kinds of extra work. I have tried pre-plotting extensively a book, but it took my mojo out of my desire to write the book. Still, I really want to push how much I plot or rather I think I might try to do more extensive interviewing of my characters.
I think that writing each book takes something different--some more plot, some more characterizations. I bet even more so, since you changed genres.

You also like to work out--what is your favorite method? (You know I'm going to infer about kettle bells here!)

I’m a yoga fanatic! I love hot yoga and vinyasa flow yoga! I also love classes like total conditioning and no limits cardio. My husband is die-hard crossfit addict, so I will occasionally do a crossfit workout. Exercise completely keeps me sane! I am with you--I used to love, love, yoga. I need to get back into it. You are inspiring me!

What is the last book you read? How did it inspire you?

The last book I read was SWEET ENEMY by Heather Snow. Heather is an amazing Regency writer who has a gift for creating extremely unique characters. I did find myself thinking I wanted to really find something unique for my next heroine to be transfixed by and Heather’s book inspired an idea in me that I hope to use in my next Regency novel.  That is great--I love reading something that makes me pause and puts an idea in my head.

Coffee. Tea. Wine--what's your favorite beverage .(Besides water..*grin*)

I drink one cup of coffee in the morning, followed by enormous amounts of water, then one glass of iced-mint tea with lunch, followed by more water and I usually end each night with a single glass of wine! For my coffee I like lots of creamer, which is bad! And for my wine I prefer expensive wine, also bad! Ha! But you drink it all with moderation--excellent!

Thanks so much for having me! This was fun. I’d like to know if any of you paranormal readers ever hop genres and read things like historical romances or contemporary romances. One commenter will win a ecopy of my book ECHOES IN THE SILENCE. I will announce the winner on Saturday, January 18th, 2014. Please put your email in the comments like so  name at whatever dot com.  Thanks!Congratulations to jmcgaugh; you won the giveaway!!! *yay*  Thanks for stopping by and entering.

It was a pleasure to have you Julie!  I hope to have you on again! 

Author Bio:

Julie Johnstone is a bestselling author of Regency Romance who one day heard a song that left her imagining an entire world that had nothing to do with the Regency period and everything to do with mythological creatures and wars brought on by forbidden fated love. The song that triggered the spark of the idea which spanned into the Siren Saga is “Chloe Dancer/Crown of Thorns” by Mother Love Bone.

Julie has been an avid music lover her entire life, and her strongest memories are associated with songs. As a child, Julie listened to music or read books and imagined herself in the song or story. As an adult, Julie is one of the lucky few who lives her dream by writing about the worlds she creates in her imagination.

When Julie is not writing she is chasing her two precocious children around, cooking, reading or exercising. Julie loves to hear from her readers. You can send her an email at or visit her at

You can buy the book at Amazon     Barnes and Noble     and  Smashwords. 


  1. I read paranormal, contemporary, YA, and erotica. I am not a huge fan of historicals. All of my friends read historicals so I must have a mental defect. Ha! I purchased this book already but wanted to show my support. I was excited to see that you took on this genre.

    1. Thanks so much for showing me your support! That really means a lot to me! And you absolutely don't have a defect! Ha-ha!

  2. Hi! to both of you! I love your books Julie and I find it interesting that you decided to write another genre other than historical romances. I would love to read your new book Echoes in the Silence, I love paranormal, I find them refreshing and fun to read.

    1. Nicole,
      Thank you for stopping by here! I love that you read historical books and paranormal books! A cross-over fan! I love it!

  3. I read a lot of historical romance (mostly Regencies and Scottish) and occasionally will read fantasy romance, too. I used to read a lot of science fiction and fantasy, but it's pretty rare for me to do so, now.
    jmcgaugh (at) semo (dot) edu

    1. jmcgaugh,

      I love seeing that people have eclectic taste, even if you don't read a lot of different things now, you sound open to it! Thanks for stopping by!

  4. This book looks great. Can't wait to read it.

    1. Tammy,

      Thanks for stopping by! Hope you love it.

  5. I'm so excited for your new venture, Julie. I think you read a snippet of this at my very first SM meeting. It's so cool to see it has come to life (so to speak). I write contemporary, but love to read paranormal and urban fantasy. Best wishes.

    1. Meda,

      I may have! I don't remember anymore. Thanks for stopping by! I love to hear about cross genre readers!

  6. This is awesome to see everyone here--and Julie, you are a fabulous person to have. :) It was a fun book to read!

    1. Thank you, Mary and thanks so very much for having me!

  7. I read paranormals, historical & contemporary romances, fantasies, sci-fi, mysteries, & westerns...LOL! A bit of everything... Thanks for the giveaway! lindalou (at) cfl (dot) rr (dot) com. Thanks for friending me on Facebook too!

    1. Oh, you're in for a treat. :) Julie is a talented writer! Thanks for stopping by and good luck!

    2. Lindalou,

      Absolutely and I'm so glad to see you here! You are my kind of reader! I'm a total eclectic reader myself!

  8. I still want this book. Yep. :)
    Shameless giveaway entry ---> right here. ;)

    1. Angela,

      You are completely cracking me up! Thanks for stopping by!

  9. I heard people who write series earn more money than those that don't. If its a great book, I love the fact there will be more for me to read.

  10. Geri,

    I do thinks series can help authors earn more money, because they lure in the readers who liked the previous book in the series and people do get attached to characters, as do we authors! Thanks for stopping by!

  11. jmcgaugh is the winner! Someone will email you soon!