Thursday, October 24, 2013

BLOG TOUR: Cracked by Eliza Crewe - Author Interview!

Hi all! We're really excited to be hosting Eliza Crewe for the Cracked blog tour today!  Eliza stopped by to chat for a little bit about her book and more. Cracked comes out on November 5th from Strange Chemistry, and in case you haven't heard about it, you can find the synopsis below. You can also find out what Ashley thought about Cracked in her review!

You can find the rest of the stops on the Cracked blog tour on Eliza's website, so make sure to stop by and check them all out!


Title: Cracked (Soul Eaters #1)
Author: Eliza Crewe
Publication Date: November 5, 2013

Synopsis: Meet Meda. She eats people.

Well, technically, she eats their soul. But she totally promises to only go for people who deserve it. She's special. It's not her fault she enjoys it. She can't help being a bad guy. Besides, what else can she do? Her mother was killed and it's not like there are any other “soul-eaters” around to show her how to be different. That is, until the three men in suits show up.

They can do what she can do. They're like her. Meda might finally have a chance to figure out what she is. The problem? They kind of want to kill her. Before they get the chance Meda is rescued by Crusaders, members of an elite group dedicated to wiping out Meda's kind. This is her chance! Play along with the “good guys” and she'll finally
figure out what, exactly, her ‘kind’ is.

Be careful what you wish for. Playing capture the flag with her mortal enemies, babysitting a teenage boy with a hero complex, and trying to keep one step ahead of a too-clever girl are bad enough. But the Hunger is gaining on her.

The more she learns, the worse it gets. And when Meda uncovers a shocking secret about her mother, her past, and her destiny… she may finally give into it.

About Eliza! 

Eliza Crewe always thought she’d be a lawyer, and even went so far as to complete law school. But as they say, you are what you eat, and considering the number of books Eliza has devoured since childhood, it was inevitable she’d end up in the literary world. She abandoned the lawyer-plan to instead become a librarian and now a writer.

While she’s been filling notebooks with random scenes for years, Eliza didn’t seriously commit to writing an entire novel until the spring of 2011, when she and her husband bought a house. With that house came a half-hour commute, during which Eliza decided she needed something to think about other than her road-rage. Is it any surprise she wrote a book about a blood-thirsty, people-eating monster?

Eliza has lived in Illinois, Edinburgh, and Las Vegas, and now lives in North Carolina with her husband, daughter, hens, an angry, talking, stuffed dwarf giraffe, and a sweet, mute, pantomiming bear. She likes to partially-complete craft projects, free-range her hens, and take long walks. Cracked is her first novel.

And now it's time for the interview! 


1. What was your biggest inspiration for writing Cracked?
The manuscript I wrote right before Cracked. I had just finished revising it for the millionth time, and the heroine in that one is a timid little mouse of a girl with low self-esteem. I really love her, don’t get wrong, but after months in her head I was ready for something completely different--and that’s how wicked-and-doesn’t-care Meda was born. At the time, it was all about what she wasn’t!

2. Which of your characters do you see the most of yourself in?
I don’t know that I see myself in any of them; I’m a bookish introvert, and they’re all loud and aggressive. More my alter egos than anything--the Hydes to my Jekyll.

3. How does your typical writing day usually go?
I get most of my writing done on Saturday and Sunday mornings, from about 7am to noon, but I’ll also write for a couple hours at night, propped up in bed with my laptop after the baby falls asleep. If I’m really short on time, or have a really good idea, I’ll sometimes squeeze in some writing on my lunch break, but usually I try to save that time for emailing, writing guest posts and interviews, or doing any of the other business-y type stuff.

4. If you could be any supernatural being, which would you choose and why?
I’m going to have to go with a shifter. It’d be pretty badass to be able to change into any animal I want (especially birds and fish--awesooooooooome). I wouldn’t want to be a vampire (too many limitations and I wouldn’t want to live that long), or angels (too good), or demons (too bad), or ghosts (too tragic).

5. What was the most difficult thing you faced when writing Cracked?
One challenge was writing an anti-hero protagonist.It’s tricky to make bad characters likeable. The reader wants to like a good character--they want the world to be saved, the cat to be rescued, and the good guys to win. But when your character murders people and eats their souls--and likes it--not so much! So you have to find other ways to make the reader turn the page.

Another challenge is that Meda is an unreliable narrator. What she thinks she feels isn’t the same as what she actually feels a lot of the time (if that makes sense). So I had to keep two storylines running in my head at all times--one of Meda’s actions which shows her true feelings, and the inner monologue which demonstrates what she thinks she feels. Both of those storylines each have to have their own motivations, as well, i.e. why she feels the way she feels, and why she thinks she feels a different way. And lastly, it has to be done subtly enough so the reader recognizes the conflict but doesn’t want to slam their head against the wall at the the main character’s inability to recognize something so obvious. It can get a bit tricky to keep it all straight!

6. If you could only use 140 characters (or less) to describe Cracked, what would they be?
Wicked, people-eating monster Meda pretends to be good so she can infiltrate a secret society bent on the destruction of her (evil) kind.

7. What book is currently on your nightstand?
I have a pile! One is The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepard. It seems an appropriately creepy read for October.

8. What three words would you use to describe Meda?
People-eating monster girl (or does that count as four?) 

9. What do you like to do when you aren't writing?
Right now, it's play with my baby. I work full time, my debut launches in two weeks, and the deadline for the sequel is looming, so I never get as much time with her as I like. So when I'm home, and she's awake, that's what I like to do.

10. Which books and/or authors made you want to become a writer yourself?
I read anything that couldn’t escape, so that’s a tough one! I loved L.M. Montgomery (Anne and Emily especially); the old vintage Nancy Drews handed down from my mom; fantasies like Mercedes Lackey and Tamora Pierce. Plus I raided my grandmothers 80s/90s bodice rippers and my brothers’ Dragonlance series. Pretty much if it had words, I read it.

11. Who was your favorite character to write in Cracked?
Meda. She is just awful--a truly wicked character who does what she wants and makes no apologies for it. Even though writing bad characters is hard, it’s loads of fun because nothing is off limits. As Meda puts it, she “gets to play the game without any rules.”

Thanks for having me!

It was our pleasure! Thanks for stopping by!! 

--Ashley and Paul

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