Crossing Genres with Alexandra Christian

My guest today is a writer and editor Jeanne and I met at ConCarolina last year.  Alexandra Christian, a South Carolina native, writes in various genres, including romance, and has published novels, novellas, and short stories. Recently, she become a small press editor.  

Welcome, Alexandra! What led you to start writing?

me-and-amy-2I come from a family of writers. My older sister is romance novelist Lucy Blue and the women in my family are incredible storytellers. We’re also avid readers in my family. My grandfather did not graduate from high school, but he read 3-5 books a week. So I grew up wanting to tell stories and imitate the people whom I held in such high regard.

Romance isn’t the only thing you write. Please tell us what your other interests are.

I prefer to call myself a “genre” writer rather than a romance writer because I like to use elements from the whole spectrum of speculative fiction. I’m an avid reader of horror, so I find myself blending elements of the supernatural in everything I do. Recently, I’ve also gotten into writing science-fiction and fantasy which was never something I set out to do when I began writing. I’m also a huge Sherlock Holmes fangirl and have become obsessed over the last year with writing Sherlock Holmes stories.

What is Huntress about?

Huntress is a story about a woman who really doesn’t have a place in the world. She’s consumed by guilt because of the death of her protégé and finds herself in the middle of political intrigue and ultimately confronting her own destiny.

Huntress_1_fullsizeWho are the hero and heroine of Huntress, and what keeps them apart?

Thalia, the heroine, is a dragonslayer and our hero, Malik, is a dragon. I know, I LOVE impossible love stories. Of course, Malik isn’t really a dragon, but a cursed prince who can take a human form. But naturally their relationship is volatile. Not to mention that Thalia is being used as bait by Malik’s conniving brother.

Oooh, dragons–fun! Would you like to share an excerpt?

“Come here so I might see you better.” As she approached, the dragon sniffed the air, taking in her scent. “Hmm… you smell of the Fae.”

“Is that good?”

“I’ve no idea. Perhaps. Fae are very tricky. Ungrateful little beasties.” He quieted, staring down at her with his head cocked to one side as if concentrating very hard. It made Thalia very self-conscious, and she shuddered again. “Are you cold, Mouse?” Not knowing what else to say, she nodded. “Well, why didn’t you say so?” Without another word he turned his head and breathed a plume of fire into the pit beside him. Immediately the coals inside ignited into a spectacular column of flame. Though she was afraid, Thalia moved closer in an almost involuntary movement. She was desperate to find warmth and held her hands out in front of her. “A thank you wouldn’t be inappropriate,” the dragon said.

“Oh,” she said, feeling her cheeks blush hot with embarrassment. “Thank you.”

“No need to be embarrassed. You are, after all a slayer of Tarkin and not used to being gracious to dragonkin.”

“You said yourself that you’re no ordinary dragon.” It was a bit disturbing that he could almost hear what she was thinking. She made a note to ask him about it later if she lived that long. Thalia had never encountered a dragon that could read minds.

“Indeed I am not.” He settled back down with a lazy sigh. Thalia stared at the enormous creature. He was definitely the largest dragon she’d ever seen. And certainly the most intelligent. She’d never encountered one that could speak, much less one schooled in etiquette. Now that the fire was high, she could see the dragon and was fascinated by its body. Glints of color shimmered on his scales in the changing light, but they did not look wet. Underneath, they lightened to the color of ashes but there was a dim illumination visible beneath the armor. It must be burning beneath the skin. Perhaps this was where he drew his fire from.

As she drew closer, she could see that his wings were like those of a bat: leathery with a hard ridge of veins that extended from the sharp talons. A number of horned protrusions highlighted his sharp, serpentine face that was surprisingly expressive. Suddenly, he opened one enormous eye and stared at her. Thalia could actually see the muscle in his eye expand and contract as it focused on her. She got the distinct impression that he was staring as his eye narrowed and his entire body stilled. Finally he spoke. “Do you plan on standing there gawking at me for the rest of the night?”

SHA_finalVery cool! Your release prior to this one was in a very different vein.   What was that project?

I’m so glad you asked! This past year I’ve been involved in editing a Sherlock Holmes anthology called “An Improbable Truth: The Paranormal Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” for Mocha Memoirs Press under the name A.C. Thompson. It was a labor of love and so much fun to work on! Every story is worthy of Conan Doyle but with an added spooky element of the supernatural.

What’s next for you?

Well I’m primarily publishing my romance in a joint self-publishing project with my sister called Little Red Hen Romance. We release 2-4 stories each month, normally short story length, and offer them for 99 cents. Huntress was LRH’s first full length release! But those stories keep me very busy. Later this month, we’re releasing two Sherlock Holmes mysteries with a romantic slant that should keep our readers busy. I’m also continuing to work on a sci-fi novel series that follows Cage St. John, a shapeshifting superspy.

For more information about Alexandra, check out her website and other social media links:

WordPress Site: http://lexxxchristian.wordpress.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LexxxChristian

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheSouthernBellefromHell/

Little Red Hen Site: http://lucybluecastle.wix.com/littleredhenromance

For now, though, let’s chat!  If you have a question for Alexandra, now’s the time to ask!  Or tell us about your favorite dragon, Holmes, or spy story.

 

 

 

 

 

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Comments

20 Comments

  • Amy Conley says:

    WOW! You sure are busy! My question is, as an editor and printer as well as a writer, how do you keep yourself from pulling from other people’s work? I would imagine just using a similar local or situation would be very easy to do without even realizing you are doing it.

    • Alexandra says:

      It’s actually very easy. My stories are usually so odd that no one would claim them…lol. Editing is something I don’t do often, as it is so time consuming. But I do manage to keep my stories straight and original.

    • Oops! Forgot to nest my reply. Sorry, Amy!

  • Hi, Amy–

    Looks like you got the Golden Rooster! I hope he’ll behave for you.

    Your question to Alexandra is one anyone involved in creative endeavors has to address. I can’t speak for her, but many of the people I know just try to be mindful.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Amy, that is a great question. It’s one o f the reasons I don’t critique for people I don’t know. Its also, as Nancy says, about mindfulness.

      Then again, Alexandra is correct in my situation too – most of my stories are so twisty, they come from my twisty brain alone. Snork!

  • Jeanne Adams says:

    Hey Alexandra! *waves madly* So glad to see you joining us in the Lair. :>

    Huntress sounds very cool – like you, I love those “impossible” love stories. Grins.

    I so wish I’d been fast enough to do something for the Sherlock anthology. I’m a big fan of Sir Arthur and would have loved to play in that world. :>

  • Minna says:

    Favourite dragon? I have a few, like the samurai dragon in Anna and the King of Dragons by KAREN HARBAUGH and Susannah Scott’s dragons.

    • Minna, I haven’t read either of those. I’ll have to check them out.

    • Alexandra says:

      Those sound great! I’m a huge lover of dragons (as you might have noticed…. 😉). Smaug from The Hobbit is my favorite. Some have told me that they can definitely see Smaug in Malik.

  • Jane says:

    Congrats on the recent release, Alexandra. I remember watching reruns of the Sherlock TV series with Jeremy Brett. I really enjoyed those shows.

    • Alexandra says:

      Brett is definitely my husband’s Sherlock and regarded by many as the quintessential Holmes. I’m pretty partial to Benedict Cumberbatch myself but I also have great love for Ian McKellan’s recent turn in Mr. Holmes.

    • Jane, we loved those, too.

      Alexandra, we’ve enjoyed Cumberbatch, but Basil Rathbone will always be my favorite.

  • Helen says:

    Hi Alexandra

    WOW you are a busy Lady and I have to say I haven’t read any dragon stories I think I may need to change that who is my TBR pile LOL

    Have Fun
    Helen

  • Alexandra says:

    Thank you so much to everyone who has commented AND to the lovely ladies at Romance Bandits for having me! It’s been a real pleasure chatting with you today. Happy reading!