Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Guest Blog and Giveaway with Marta Acosta

Marta Acosta is with us today with a guest blog, and to give away one copy of Happy Hour at Casa Dracula. I had asked Marta how it is that she wrote a comedy and ended up with all of us Urban Fantasy fans following her. Don’t forget to comment for a chance to win!

Here’s what Marta had to say:

Okay, so there’s a woman in a posh bar and a handsome man approaches her. After a pleasant talk, he says, “Will you sleep with me for a million dollars?” She blushes and says yes. Then he says, “How about twenty bucks?”

“What kind of girl do you think I am?” she asks angrily.

“We’ve already established that,” he says. “Now we’re just negotiating a price.”

Sometimes I think of that joke when I’m telling people that I’m not a vampire writer. Sure, I’ve got a four-book deal for a series featuring vampires, and, yes, I’ve got a blog that’s called Vampire Wire, and it’s true that my book covers have characters of the fangy variety.

So why the denial?

When I wrote Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, I wrote it as a comedy and incorporated a vampire theme to spoof the conventions. I wanted a funny hip cover and a different title that would signal to readers that my book was primarily humorous. So I lost that battle, and then I found that I was being categorized in unexpected ways. I was suddenly a writer of “women’s fiction,” even though I’d always had lots of male readers. People were introducing me as a “vampire writer” and asking if I’d always been obsessed by vampires and if I wore a cape.

Man, I totally should have ridden that wave, but I’m the sort of person who will cut off my nose to spite my face; and I’ve never crossed a bridge without asking someone for a pack of matches and a bottle of gasoline. I resented being labeled, even thought the labels were perfectly lovely. I should have had “Vampire Writer” and “I Heart Dracula” tattooed on my forehead and embroidered on the back of a black satin cape that I could wear to the grocery store and book events.

Since the publication of my first novel, Simon & Schuster/Pocket has released Midnight Brunch and The Bride of Casa Dracula. Readers and even bookstore staff have no idea where to find my books. (They’re in the general fiction section of the bookstore, under Acosta and conveniently close to the anthologies of erotic short stories.) I accept some responsibility in the confusion since I kept insisting that I wasn’t a paranormal/fantasy writer, or a romance writer.

The other night, I pulled a can out of the cupboard in the dark and took a sip. I thought it was a soda, but it was beer and I practically spit it out. It wasn’t that the beer was bad; it just wasn’t what I expected. Those expecting genre conventions in my books sometimes have that reaction because they just see my books as Not Soda, instead of yum Delicious Beer!

During the last few years, I’ve encountered many wonderful paranormal romance and urban fantasy readers, writers, and bloggers. I have more fun on my Vampire Wire blog than I should for someone who’s supposed to be focusing on her fiction. I really wish I was someone obsessed by the paranormal so I could really fit into the group.

Kimberly tells me that I should be promoting my own books more, so here it is: my books are the hilarious, well crafted, smart, and exciting adventures of a bright, impetuous, sexy heroine and a pack of snobby vampires. Milagro has a weakness for fabulous men, parties, lunatics, con artists and tacky clothes. If you like flawed and sometimes clueless characters like Bridget Jones, you’ll like my books.

My next novel is a romantic comedy without vampires (I’m calling it Nancy’s Theory of Style, but the title isn’t confirmed) and then the fourth book in my Casa Dracula series will be released. I hope that people will buy my books so I won’t have to get a real job.

Thanks, Kimberly, for letting my ramble. One of the best things about being a sort of vampire writer is meeting all the wonderful reviewers like you!

Thank you Marta, and thanks so much for agreeing to share your thoughts with us. It’s always a pleasure. :)

To learn more about Marta Acosta and her books, please visit her: HERE

You can also read my reviews of her books: Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, Midnight Brunch, and The Bride of Casa Dracula.

For the chance to win a copy of Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, please share with us the supernatural being you’d like to see more of in books. (vampires, faeries, ghosts, werewolves, dragons, etc) Don’t forget to share a name if you’re leaving an anonymous post. Deadline is midnight Friday March 20th, 2009, and the winner will be announced Saturday the 21st. Good luck and happy reading!

Kimberly Swan, Darque Reviews


Jenny J. said...

Ooh, Happy Hour at Casa Dracula sounds fantastically fun! Since falling in love with the tv show Moonlight, I've been a big vampire fan, but one type of supernatural being that I feel deserves more love are the djinn--there just aren't enough lonely, attractive, single genies running around out there, y'know?

Marta said...

Hi, Jenny, I hope you will try my books.

Hmm, you're right about djinn. Maybe I'll think about a genie character in my next Casa Dracula novel.

Kara said...

Look forward to reading your books - I won all three of them on another blog (I can't remember which one) so please don't enter me in the contest.

I'm a big vampire fan - but would like to see more ghosts. Ghosts that have a chance to come back when they find true love.

Good luck on the contemporaries coming out - They will be on my radar.

Chris said...

I think that a lot of paranormal writing could be improved by being smarter, funnier, and less paranormal!


More butt-kicking wizard stories would be excellent.

Unknown said...

Hi Marta!

I love vampire romance, especially if it's comical. Can't wait to check out your books! They sound just like my cup of tea (or should I say beer)!


Cecile Smutty Hussy said...

Thanks Ms. Kimberly for having Ms. Marta on your blog! I already have put her series on my TBR list, so I would love for a chance to win one!!! YEA!!

I would love more gargolyes. There was one in Alexandra Ivy's Embrace the Darkness... and he was hiliarious! Although, I do love faries. But I can't see a man written as a fariy... hmm no! But I do love human's with quirks (like reading mines and things like that!)

Marta said...

Hi, Kara, what you haven't read them yet! You know, it's very possible to read books at work by hiding them on your lap and scooting your chair close to your desk if anyone approaches.

One of my very favorite old movies is "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir." There's a happy ending, but not typical. You might check out Amanda Ashby's You Had Me at Halo.

Chris, do you mean that you want to see more stories with wizards that kick-butts, or more stories where wizards get their butts kicked? Poor Harry Potter!

Hi, Dottie, yep, the funny is there. The traditional vampire, not so much. A few reviewers have said my books are like Bridget Jones's Diary crossed with a vampire theme.

Hi, Cecile, author Esri Rose is on a mission to write about hawt elves. Her first elfy romance is Bound to Love Her.

StyleVamp said...

Hey Marta...Loved the interview!

Please don't include me in the giveaway. I already have series which I cherish. I'm also going to buy a set for my 17 year old niece who wants to read the series. But I am so not lending her my collection lol

I can't wait for the 4th book just to see where you're taking Milagros..

If you haven't read her series, do so it's a great read...

Unknown said...

I can never get enough of vampires!


Unknown said...

I'd love to see more ghosts. I absolutely adore a good ghost story:)


Cecile Smutty Hussy said...

Thanks for the tip Marta on Esri! I wrote her name down on my list. I have so many books on my wish list at Amazon, I think my hubby is actually looking into a Kindle for me because we have a very small house and he jokes that it will soon become a library at the rate me and my daughter read. And looking at the wish list getting longer and longer!

Anonymous said...

This does sound like a fun read. I think what I'd like to see more of in this genre of writing is believe it or not Trolls. I haven't read many books of dark fiction that focused on them.

espressogurl at hotmail dot com

-.- said...

Loved the guest post! That joke is actually one of my favourites.

Hmmm that's a tough question. I'd like to see more mermaid fiction and unicorn. There isn't enough of those two and it would be fun to see a comedic route with those two supernatural creatures.

~ Popin

tetewa said...

I've become addicted to vampire books since I discovered Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dark-Hunter series.

Marta said...

Hi, Tanya, what I can tell you about book four is that Milagro runs into that wily old scamster Don Pedro and she also meets a sexy, fun new guy and learns more about how to live as a vamp.

Bridget, well, none of the other paranormals can really compete with vamps.

Nherte, I think there's a new ghost movie out. Have you ever seen "The Frighteners" with Michael J. Fox? It's funny, spooky, and I adore MJF.

Cecile, you have to let go of the books you won't reread. There are a few online sites that let you do exchanges with others who enjoy the same genres. That way you get new books and someone else gets to enjoy yours.

Ally, I'm very concerned about this Troll obsession of yours. I'm not a psychiatrist, but I highly recommend watching "Lord of the Rings" five times and two cocktails.

PopinFresh, I also like the variation of this with a hooker who tells a guy, "Give me $100 and I'll do anything!" He pulls out his wallet, counts out five twenties and says, "Okay, paint my house."

Patricia Altner said...

Hi Marta, Hi Kimberly

Just dropping by to say hello and tell everyone how much I have enjoyed the Casa Dracula series. So looking forward to book 4!

No need to enter me in the contest I have all the books.

BTW My favorite supernatural critter - Vampires of course!

Michele P. said...

The book sounds great! Hmmm, I would love to see something written about La Llorona or La Chupacabra-both mysteries but something my hubby and his culture believe in!

micaela6955 at msn dot com

Michele Pineda

Julie Soul said...

Hi Marta,
Thanks for the great interview (and rambling!). Until this blog I was unfamiliar with your books, but, since I am heading to the bookstore in a few days, I will be sure to pick up your first - although I enjoy the darker side of vampires, right now I think the world needs comedy!
As for what I'd like to see more of, I would love to see a well-written book with a zombie heroine (or hero). Or perhaps a mummy!
Good luck with your writing!

Donna said...

Cute joke :)

I am forever a fan of vampires, they are my first love out of all the supernatural beings. I love to read about vampires, especially when humor is involved. Your books sound books like a they would be a very enjoyable series to read.

Anonymous said...

I wish there were more books about gorgons. Imagine what it would be like to never get to look anyone in the eye. I see a hardcore awesome chick with sunglasses on. :D


Carla Ribeiro said...

I'm sort of a vampire addicted. I love their darkness, their obscure fascination... Won't get tired of them!

carianmoonlight at gmail dot com

Kristin said...

Marta! I love to read your ramblings! :)
Your snarky humor is one of the best parts of your books...having read quite a few parnormals...it is utterly refreshing to have some humor infused! :)
I'm not obsessed with the paranormal either...does that make you and me just 'normal'? :o
You've got your other obsessions...you know like GB & RA to focus on! ;)
Geesh Marta...I sure hope you don't have to go out and get a real job, but EVERYONE SHOULD READ YOUR BOOKS...they're FANTABULOUS!!! :)

Marta said...

Hi, Patricia, for all those who don't know, Patricia has a great newsletter called Patricia's Vampire Notes. It and Darque Reviews are among my top fave resources.

Michele, I have a running joke in all of my books about La Llorena, and chupacapras come up in my second novel. But, uhm, no one I know actually believes in them.

Soul Trekking, Mark Henry has a comedy, Happy Hour of the Damned (his editors got the title from my book) with a zombie heroine. If you like fashion and brain-eating, this is the book for you.

Fantasy Dreamer, hope you enjoy my books!

Valorie, I'm guessing your a fan of Leila in "Futurama," a chick who can kick ass and rock the one eye.

Silent Raven, the vampire myth is worldwide, so there is definitely something that intrigues us on a universal level about vamps.

Unknown said...

Oh! Contest! And for a book I really want to read! Super.

Okay, I would like to see more dragons in books. I have seen a few recently, but they are in paranormal romance books, which kind of ruin it for me. Dragons who have a human shape and use it to pick up chicks: no. Dragons who have a human form and use it for other stuff: yes!

I would also like to see more selkies. Would be so cool to be able to swim underwater all day and then get out and be human again...

80slady said...

Putting the "Vampire" aside how are you and Milagro alike?
I would still read about her even without the vampire theme. You bought her to life and what a life she lives :)
Looking forward to the new book.

Meljprincess said...

Just got your newsletter, Marta. I could definitely use some cheering up. I have an infected toe which has given me flu like symptoms. I'm taking Keflex. *groan*

I'm very attracted to the vampire.
There's something erotic about biting the neck. The romantically tragic figure of the vampire, cursed to haunt the night, hunts or seduces his quarry seeking to quench the eternal thirst. Then at last, that moment of surrender when the tender neck is submissively revealed and the victim's willingness to be possessed, body and soul, ends in a climax with penetration and blood. This sensuality is what attracts me to the vampire.

Mel K.
Meljprincess AT aol DOT com

Unknown said...

It's kinda hard to limit to ONE fantasy critter I'd like to see more of, in writing. So I won't. Vamps and Werewolves have been done ad nauseum. Fairies, well, that's SO politically incorrect these days. I like a good, old fashioned Harpy - something to remind me of my mother in law, where you'd happily chew off your own leg to escape riding in the car with her.

Then there's the Basilisk - cuter than Medusa, with the same "turn to stone" abilities. That's sure to be a party stopper - or at least, freeze the hors d'euvre trays long enough to eat your fill.

I really like what Yarbro has done with Ghouls. Loyal pals, who do the stuff during the daytime that vamps can't do. Awesome personal servants. Never ask for a raise. Messy eating habits, though, which does a number on your clothes. I hate drycleaning bills.

Lastly, and most impossibly - there's always the Loch Ness Monster. Of course, that kinda limits the location to, well, Scotland . . . which doesn't have much to brag about, besides old drafty castles, lots of sheep painted in bright colors (I'm not joking), and Nessie. Unless you're there for the few weeks of the Edinburgh festival (where, last time I went, there was a four hour one man rendition of "Dracula". He was great, but I was tired, and fell asleep halfway through.)

Jackie Uhrmacher said...

Evil gnomes with strange British accents!

Marta said...

Hi, Kat, I've heard about a few dragon books, but you're right, they're mostly romances. Shana Abe, Meljean Brook, Sherrill Quinn and Deborah Cooke have all included dragons in their novels.

Hi, 80s Lady, hmm, ways Milagro and I are different. She doesn't really have a family and I can't get away from mine. She's always cheerful and I'm frequently cranky. And a crank.

Hi, Mel, I prescribe a nice Irish coffee for the toe. (Not to soak, but to drink.) Yes, the parallels between sex and a vampire's bite go back centuries. There's a German poem from the 1700s that compares the two.

Meribeth, I like the idea of the Basilesk and I've never heard of one before.

Jackie, evil gnomes make me think of the cult classic "Don't Look Now," which was as evilly gnomey as they get.

vampiremama2 said...

I love all the books and can't wait for the new one to come out!!!
I would love to see more vampires and maybe werewolves!!!

Margay Leah Justice said...

That's a funny story at the beginning. I love the line, "Now we're just negotiating price." Great line. I think vamps are cool and shapeshifters are interesting, so I'd like to see more of them.

Roxanne Rhoads said...

I can't get enough of vampires. Ever since I Interview with a Vampire I've been hooked.

Of course I love all things creepy, dark, mysterious and otherworldly. You name it I love to see them in books, movies, whatever...especially in books. Even with CG and special effects movies can't hold a candle to the imagination.

Anonymous said...

Marta I just have to say that I LUVVVVV your series! I happened upon it totally by accident because of the cover on Happy Hour and it just looked not like your run of the mill Vampire fiction. As soon as I passed the first page, I was cracking up and don't think I put it down for hours!

I love Vampire series and especially those that are funny like yours, can hardly wait for number 4!


Anita Yancey said...

I would like to see more of ghosts in books. You just can't beat a good romance ghost story. Thanks for having the giveaway.


Unknown said...

But if you're looking for a Daisy replacement, Mil could really use a kitten - a gryphon kitten. ::grin:: part lion, part eagle. Just imagine the trouble THAT kitten could get into! Litterbox training would be the least of your worries.

The Brunette Librarian said...

Marta, you're becoming such a great, strong voice in romance! I have really enjoyed your books, they make me giggle and at the end I'm always smiling. Love it! :)

80slady said...

Since you are writing about Nancy, any others getting their own story? Maybe a young Ian? I have to admit he is my favorite :)

Anonymous said...

I like the idea of a comedic Vampire story. I don't like the "campy" style of vamp...like "Dracula:Dead and Loving It". I will be checking out this book asap. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Marta

AlishaV said...

Marta, I just discovered your books a couple of months ago and adore them. I love the traditional vamp books too, but Milagros is a great change of pace. She's just so fun. I really love the Latin flare as well. It's so refreshing to have a heroine that isn't the normal stereotype.

I'd like to see more stories featuring the Fae. There are a few out there, but there's so many ways to take them.

Anonymous said...

Hello Marta,

I have just gotten to your name on my MUST read authors, so I can't say I have readany of your books, so a free one would be great. I have read your excerpts and they sound fantastic. Love that you write about Vampires, they take the phrase "Bite Me" to a whole other level. I love any book that has to do with wolves, large cats (tiger, lion, panther and cougars), coyote's too. Your writing is very intriguing and I will definitely hit the book store to get your books. Keep writing your fans will always be there for you.

Marta said...

Hi, Vampire Mama, I'm working on that fourth one! I like Carrie Vaughn's were stories.

Margay, it's good to have a few clean jokes.

Roxanne, you'll be happy to know that the live action "Blood: the Last Vampire" just got picked up for U.S. release.

Hi, Natasha, thanks so much! Funny and creepy are a nice combo, because the humor is a release from the tension.

Anita, I think ghosts are scarier than vampires, weres, anything else.

Meribeth, Milagro has adopted a dog she calls Rosemary, after the plant which symbolizes remembrance.

RachelG, thanks! Now all you have to do is convince romance readers of that.

80s Lady, a young Ian? Hmm, that's an idea. I have thought about a young Edna, running wild in the city and breaking hearts.

Scott, Christopher Moore's BLOODSUCKING FIENDS is a very funny, but not campy, vampire tale.

Hi, Alisha, so glad you liked Milagro! Most people tell me that they want her for their best friend.

Hi, Moilara, if you don't win today, you can always check your local library. You can also sign up to my Vampire Wire blog, www.vampirewire.blogspot.com, because I announce contests there and have lots of news about paranormal entertainment.

Rosie said...

I loved Happy Hour at Casa Dracula.
I can't wait to see where you take these characters.
Have you ever thought about throwing in maybe a witch or werewolfe?
Just a thought....LOL
Keep up the funny stuff

Suzanne McLeod said...

Great post, Marta, and there was me thinking you did *heart* Dracula :-)

I'd like to see more gargoyles in supernatural fiction!
Suzanne xx

Marta said...

Rosie, so glad you enjoyed Happy Hour! You may find what you're looking for in the second book in my series, Midnight Brunch.

Suzanne, I heart Dracula in video tributes of "Dracula 2000," the best worst vampire movie ever! What I've realized on responding to comments here is that, gasp, I've somehow become really knowledgeable about vampire and paranormal fiction. I hope you'll come visit me on my Vampire Wire blog and tell us more about your book, The Sweet Scent of Blood! (Or tell Kimberly, since I read her every day.)

Lori T said...

I would love to see more stories with witches in them. Although, it is pretty hard to beat the vampires in my mind.

HockeyVampiress said...

I will give any and all vamp/paranormal books a read and there have been only 2 that I can think of that I had trouble reading through.....but I did anyway. I am definately going to be checking your series out they sound wonderful.
Shell the Hockeyvampiress