Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Q and A With Marta Acosta - Book Giveaway Too!

Hello there Readers!  Marta Acosta, the author of the Casa Dracula series, and Nancy's Theory of Style, is visiting with us today.  Feel free to ask her a question in the comments, or simply leave her some fan love.  A lucky commenter will winner's choice in winning one of the first 3 books from the Casa Dracula series!  Be sure to check back on September 29, 2010 to see who the winner was!

Hi Marta!  It's always a pleasure to visit with you, thanks so much for joining us today for this Q and A. 

Thanks for having me here!  Darque Reviews is one of the first paranormal/urban fantasy review blogs I discovered, and it’s still required reading for me.

DR:  Saying goodbye to Milagro is tough for us fans who have really grown to love her.  I can only imagine how difficult it is for you.  What will you miss most about Milagro?

I’ll miss her optimism and happy-go-lucky nature.  She may grumble and snark, but she’s generally so cheerful no matter what she’s suffered.  I love that about her.  I’d want to hang out with her and hear her loony ideas.  I want to go hear a band with her and read the crazy horror stories she writes.  Many times when I was writing, I’d have to stop myself and think, “No, that’s how a normal person reacts.  How would Milagro react?”  She finds the good side of things.

DR:  You did an amazing job of answering questions and wrapping things up in Milagro's world.  How did you know it was time to end the Casa Dracula series? 

I wrote the first book, Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, as a stand-alone.   I never expected to write a series, or even to stay in the same genre.  When my editor asked for another, I thought, “How in the heck do I say anything else?”  These additional books have been both a challenge and a treat for me, because I was always discovering more that I wanted to say.  Milagro’s quasi-friend Thomas Cook tells her, “You’re a happy ending sort of girl,” so I wanted to give her a wildly happy ending for this part of her life.

I think the temptation of writers and publishers is to keep going forever with a series and to churn them out so fast that the books rapidly decline in quality.  I didn’t want to do that to Milagro.  I wanted her to go out at her strongest. 

However, if any publisher asked for a few books about Milagro’s adventures with her fabulous husband, I think I could manage that!  You know, a little like Nick and Nora of The Thin Man – parties, danger, clever banter, mayhem. 

DR:  With the Casa Dracula series coming to a close, we're all curious about your future plans.  Can you share what you're working on now, and/or what we might see in the upcoming year?

My next big project is working on my young adult gothic, The Shadow Girl of Birch Grove, with my editor at Tor Books.  This book will come out in 2012.

Next year, one of my stories will be published in The Mammoth Book of Scottish Romance.  I’ve never written romance before, so I hope readers like it.  I was researching romance websites to find out how graphic sex scenes were supposed to be!  I settled on “really sensual, but no clinical details.”

My other big project is a gritty, sordid adult gothic that takes place both in the present and in the 1850s.  I don’t want to give out any more yet, except to say that it’s a very dark tale and one I’ve been wanting to write for years.

DR:  One book that fans can expect to see in print is The Shadow Girl of Birch Grove.  What can you tell us about it?

Thanks for mentioning it!  I love this story of a foster girl who is accepted into the elite Birch Grove Academy for Girls.  Jane is quiet and watchful, but determined to make a better life for herself and she believes she can do that through excelling at school.  She works really hard to achieve a security that most kids take for granted.

Jane is finally able to escape her dangerous neighborhood and miserable foster home for a place that’s not only attractive, but safe.  Or so she thinks.  Even though Jane is stunned by being at a school which offers her so much academically as well as living quarters and spending money, she wonders why she’s been brought there.  She discovers that the headmistress has secrets – but so does Jane.

DR:  Just for fun...What one guilty pleasure do you wish you could give up?  Why?  (a T.V. show, a snack food, a drink, etc)

I have a love-hate-hate relationship with reality shows, like Project Runway, even though I know they’re heavily scripted and edited.  I’d love to turn them off and do something productive, like going through all my filing.  Also, can Michael Kors please wear something besides the same black jacket, black t-shirt and black pants? 

DR:  Is there anything else you'd like to share with us before you go?

Just that I hope that readers will pick up my Casa Dracula series and follow the adventures of smart, sexy, quirky Milagro.  These are romantic comedies, so while you won’t find a brooding alpha male who solves all the problems, you will find a lot of laughs, eccentric characters who will entertain you, and heroine who grows and matures, while still retaining her sense of fun.  The comment I get most from fans is “I want Milagro as my friend,” and I think new readers will feel the same way.

Where to find Marta:
Marta's website:

Thanks so much for spending some time at Darque Reviews, and thank you to the readers for making Marta feel welcome!

Kimberly, thanks so much for having me here!


mariska said...

Hi Marta,
you are a new for me author. i would really like to read your books ! please please pick me, as that lucky winner :)

uniquas at ymail dot com

tetewa said...

Enjoyed the post, I'm always looking for new authors to read!

Marta said...

Hi, Mariska, good luck in the contest! I'll have Kimberly pick a winner at random because that's fair.

Tetewa, nice to see you here! I hope you'll read ALL of my books, because, you know, they are hi-larious. (You have to say hi-larious like Mr. Burns of The Simpsons.)

Elizabeth Kolodziej said...

I am new to hearing about this series. But it sounds interesting. I gotta tell you that I LOVE the cover. Very alluring. :)

tina werner said...

love, love, love all your books marta!!! i'm so looking forward to reading haunted honeymoon! but i'm also really sad to see the series come to an end. boo hoo :(

stampitchick at yahoo dot ca

Unknown said...

Hi Marta and Kim!

I'm glad I found the Casa Dracula Series, Milagro is such a great character, even when she snarky, she's so funny. I will be sad to see the series end, but I'd love to revisit her life a few years down the road. She's someone I'd like to share stories with!

I'll be looking forward to your two new series you'll be working on.

As for Milagro, if I get lonely for her, I can always re-read the series, it's definitely a keeper!

Dottie :)

Marta said...

Hi, Elizabeth, I love the new cover. I think it gets across the feeling of the books, which was missing from the earlier covers. Hope you'll try my series!

Tina, it's bittersweet to let Milagro go. I'm gonna get all teary now, but she's going to have fun and adventures with her husband, I'm sure of it.

Hi, Dot! My next books aren't intended as series. Well, I never intend to write series...but I'm always happy to follow my characters where ever they lead.

Ashley said...

I'd love to read this series.

hewella1 at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

Hi Marta! I am one of your humble "minions" at Vampire Wire. I am looking forward to reading the last installment of Casa Dracula since I havent read it yet. Thanks.

samantha.1020 said...

I've got to say that I like the idea of the series ending at its "strongest" as you put it. There is a tendency for series to go on and on where they start to become redundant. This was an interesting interview..thanks for sharing!

Unknown said...

One of my friends is addicted to this series! I would love to try it!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Marta, I love reading your books. THis one sounds great and I can't wait to add this one to my TBR pile.

Marta said...

Hi, Ashley, if you'd like to read a sample of my books, Simon & Schuster has first chapters available on their website.

Sue, nice to see you here! You'll love this new book.

Hi, Samantha, thanks for commenting! I had favorite series that just went on and on and I could tell the author had run out of steam. The publishers are pushing these really successful authors to turn out books really fast...and it's hard for the author to say no.

TV Addict, well, if you're friend is addicted to the series, you should check it out.

Kimmy, I love all my books, but I'm glad I finally get a cover that conveys some of the spirit of the story and Milagro, too!

Vickie said...

Marta: I love your blog, required reading each the videos and...sigh...the Naked David Boreanaz Club...

Marta said...

Vickie, I'm cracking up! Every time I go to clean up the design of my blog, I wonder if I should take down the Naked David Boreanaz Club badge...but then I come to my senses and leave it there!

heatwave16 said...

Hi Marta!!! I have to say that I love your blog. I was just wondering if you are going to do a 'hawt female vamp' to go along with your 'hawt male vamp' poll. It is important to appreciate hawtness in all of its forms.

Adult goth series sounds very interesting...when will you be able to release more info?


Marta said...

Hi, Heatwave, glad you enjoy Vamp Wire! Yes, I'm going to have a poll, but since there are so few female vamps in shows, it nominees will include hunters, weres, allies, etc. Otherwise great characters like Buffy Summers would be left out.