Author Marata Eros
Today we are featuring another of our favorite authors! Recently we got the chance to chat with Marata Eros and get a behind-the-author interview.
Let’s get down to business…
Marata: Hey Caryn, thanks so much for taking time out for me!
Book Crush: Marata, We appreciate you taking the time out of your busy writing schedule! We are so very excited to feature you and share our love for your books!
Book Crush: What were your biggest challenges in bringing your stories to life?
Marata Eros: I don’t want to sound cavalier about writing- because I take it very seriously. It’s a job that comes very naturally to me; it’s not easy, but it feels right. I get an idea and it pings around in my head. Then at some future point, another idea strikes me and it combines with the first and new story is born.
A funny little side note: I never get ideas when I seek them. They just strike and- boom- there it is. One caveat: I always see things fantastically. So when my husband encouraged me to write A TERRIBLE LOVE, I kinda balked at writing a non-paranormal. After ATL’s success, it gave me confidence to continue in the same dark romantic vein. Now that I’m halfway through my other dark romantic serial, THE TOKEN, it’s liberating to have another genre to pursue.
BC: What is the hardest thing about writing?
ME: Making the time to do it! I’ve always been very disciplined so it wasn’t a hard transition to carve out a block of time and get busy writing. However, like a lot of women who work full-time, the press to do “all” is ever present. I’ve yet to make a perfect balance, but I’m grateful I don’t have the challenge of a young family in tandem with a busy writing career.
BC: What does your writing process look like?
ME: Wow—Awesome questions Caryn! I usually get up at 5:30 am when hubs is doing a 12-hour shift, then work until he returns at 7 pm. I go hard when he’s on his 3 day stint and coordinate my days off with his.
The routine goes as follows: Coffee (always the start to my day), then hit the following sites: FB, Blog, Twitter, I check my backlist, answer email correspondence, talk to my editor, cover and font artists, briefly browse goodreads (I like to post my reads and ratings like every other reader) and communicate with my agent. That’s not daily but one or all of those things happen each day. Every day.
What does this entail? I have two author names. My real name: Tamara Rose Blodgett and my pen, Marata Eros. That means two FB pages, Blogs and Twitters accounts. I post the latest things pertaining to WIP or upcoming releases on my FB Fan Pages and just began a “friend” account. The blogs: I look and see how people search me/my work. I learn what titles are interesting to readers and what people want to know and tailor my posts and direction accordingly. Blog stats told me I need to develop a Wiki page! It’s on the list. I respond to emails from readers within 24-hours. I have a newsletter for both names for readers to receive exclusive excerpts and updates when a new release publishes. As I get further into my writing journey, I discover and implement new ways to make things more efficient and get the word out about my work. I spend 4-6 hours writing each workday, minimum. When a work is done, I usually move on to reading through and when the manuscript is returned, I will drop everything to edit so that work can be released. A typical workday involves 75% writing, with the remainder taken up with correspondence and social networking. If I’m not writing in a given day, I’m editing and/or reading through a work.
BC: What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
ME: I have difficulty writing in silence. I always listen to music; louder than some would be comfortable with. There are songs I hear now that I associate strongly with certain projects; a real memory trigger.
BC: Do you ever get writer’s block?
ME: No, I know it’s a real thing for authors. I just sit down and write. I always have.
BC: What do you do when you’re not writing?
ME: I read. I read about 4 book per week. In good weather I garden. I like to tell myself I’m crafty and do some sewing and photo jewelry. I’m capable of pretty good trim carpentry and have a few projects around the house that keep me busy. The antics of my 4 older sons keeps things entertaining. I think it’s safe to say I like working with my hands…. Oh and I work out—which I loathe with a passion.
BC: What inspires you?
ME: This is another great question. I’m an odd duck. I’m one of those that will pause in the middle of chaos to reflect on beauty. If I see a rainbow, I stop and look. When there’s a harvest moon, I check it out. I watch people walk by the everyday stuff like busy bees (‘cuz we all are!) and there I stand, daydreaming about the beauty. So when everyone is scurrying around me, I’m thinking of that idea that won’t go away that I need to write about. I see things that some don’t. And it’s really clear to me, really obvious. So I write about it. It’s only after I’ve written about it that people are like—what? Mostly I write what I know. But sometimes, I write what I see, that others might have missed. It’s not good or bad, it just is.
BC: Is there a certain type of scene that’s harder for you to write than others? Love? Action? Racy?
ME: Love scenes and action scenes are hands down the most simple to write; they play out in my head like a movie and I’m frantically hitting keys to catch it all. Internal monologue is very difficult (comparatively). And I know that’s what most readers want to “hear.” My dialog is stronger. I really practiced my hand at internal monologue in ATL and TT. I keep working toward strengthening areas that are more difficult but all works are different and call for a different style. It depends on the project. It dictates what will be written.
BC: What is your biggest writing weakness?
ME: Oh… my editor could come right out and say!!! I think vague antecedent and repeating myself (who, me?) would be the biggies! It used to be homophones but I think I’ve pretty much conquered that one. However, there’s always something waiting to take its place…
BC: What is your biggest writing strength?
ME: That’s a hard thing to quantify, but I’d say speed. I can write really fast. Probably my readers would do better answering that question. I’m way too subjective to give a decent answer!
BC: Of all your books, what was your favorite chapter or part to write and why?
ME: I love to kill off the bad guys and take great pleasure in their demise. Most recently, the ending chapter of THE TOKEN 3. I felt like crying, it was so painful to write, and so devastatingly simple. If it evokes emotion from me as the author, I feel like I’ve hit the mark. I love my job.
BC: Of all your books, what was the hardest chapter or part to write and why?
ME: Oh that’s almost too simple. The only love scene I wrote under my real name for the last Death book, UNREQUIETED DEATH. It was the hardest chapter ever. I went over it four times before it was just as I want it to be and I was proud of the result (that’s rare, I’m not prideful about my work).
BC: If you gave one of your characters an opportunity to speak for themselves, what would they say?
ME: Mick McKenna: Love shaped me into what I’ve become, what I can endure and what I endeavor to do.
Clyde Thomas: The times we live in don’t change our values, we do.
BC: If your books were made into a movie ~ which actor/actress do you see playing: (you can pick one or all of your books) I personally would love to know who you see playing Mick & Faren from The Token and Cas and Jess from ATL & ABT……..
ME: I think if Vin Diesel had a little hair he could be Cas in a hot minute. And the lovely Scarlett Johansson with red hair could be our Jewell to a T. Faren is lanky and should be played by Deborah Ann Woll who is more red haired than Faren but is the right body type/face, Amber Heard is a close second but a little short. I’m also crazy about Karen Gillan, who is Faren if a little red (see my issue with digging red hair). I’m a fan of Henry Cavill for Mick, he would need some modification for the unusual coloring Mick possesses but it’s doable. His on-screen intensity and emotive range are so Mick.
BC: Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them good or bad? Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad? What are your thoughts overall on reviews good or bad?
ME: I [usually] check all my reviews. I rarely respond. I don’t want readers to think I’m lurking over their shoulder! Lol. However, I do feel there is constructive stuff to be gleaned to improve your craft. If I see the same praise or criticism three or more times, it’s like a magic number—I know I’ve either hit a resonate note, or I need to improve something. I’m really pleased when readers take time out of their busy lives to read my work and post a review. As far as the bad? Books are an art; not everyone likes the words I paint.
BC: What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment?
ME: Head hopping! (Here’s the big secret—I still want to really bad!) My editor is flogging it out of me. Writing in first person is a huge challenge and I always think in-you got it-omniscient POV. That’s what my editor calls it. So I’m working on writing all those shifting POVs… more neatly! The biggest compliment? All the little ones add up but a few that I love hearing is how I got the teen dialog right in Death. Or, how my scenes are so real to people who visualize them while reading—and peeps dig the action/pacing. I’m a little bit of a “freight train” writer. I really get after the pace. It’s not deliberate, it’s just my speed.
BC: What books have influenced your life most?
ME: The Stand. The Chronicles of Narnia. Twilight.
BC: If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor and why?
ME: Oh… Stephen King. He’s been a huge influence from when I was young. His style of writing was the exact “flavor” of what I wanted to read. His style just spoke to me, was varied, interesting and touched that buried part of my humanity.
BC: Name an entity that you feel supported you outside of your family
ME: I know this sounds a little cliché but when I was [finally] tossing out my report cards from my years in school, there were many comments from teachers who recognized some of the aptitudes I use in my writing today (I was sort of surprised it was that obvious). They believed in and encouraged me. I didn’t pay much attention at the time but it instilled a latent confidence I’ve drawn on later. I wish I could tell each one how much their words meant.
BC: Do you read much and if so, who are your favorite authors?
ME: I don’t read as much as you book bloggers! But I get 3-5 books in per week. It probably won’t come as a surprise but I read extensively in the genre I write. Dark urban fantasy is a big fave; works by Stacia Kane, Dannika Dark, and Laurell K. Hamilton. I love all works by Stephen King. I dig JR Ward for what I consider dark romance. I find I’m not drawn to “light” works.
BC: What do you think makes a good story?
ME: If I can’t put it down, that qualifies as a good read. If I daydream about it during the day when I’m trying to work, or look forward to my quiet time of reading in bed—it’s good.
BC: When choosing a book to read, what do you look for? What grabs you?
ME: I hate weak men (Alpha males—bring it!), love heroines that embrace being female and are empowered by their gender. I like good against evil. I like characters that evolve as people; action and violence are faves. Romance is awesome but not essential. If it’s shoved in there or contrived within the story it becomes a comedy when that wasn’t the intent of the author.
BC: Favorite motivational quote?
ME: Keep writing. Whenever I have a low point, it never fails me.
BC: Favorite positive saying?
ME: “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent,” Eleanor Roosevelt.
“Be Kind, for Everyone You Meet is Fighting a Great Battle,” Plato
BC: Favorite book and why?
ME: THE STAND. I love these masterful saga length novels. I also dug UNDER THE DOME for the same reason.
BC: Favorite quote?
ME: “Above, the stars shone hard and bright, sparks struck off the dark skin of the universe.”
BC: Favorite film/movie and why?
ME: The Last of the Mohicans. A great people fighting against impossible odds for just the promise of love.
BC: As a writer, what is your biggest fear?
ME: Something unforeseen will happen to make it impossible for me to continue to write.
BC: What literary character is most like you?
ME: None. I never write myself. Although people that know me well say they “hear” me in my work.
BC: What are 4 things you never leave home without?
ME: Handbag, mascara, credit card and a bra.
BC: Laptop or desktop for writing?
BC: Where and when do you prefer to do your writing?
ME: I do my writing on my couch in the morning and early afternoon. I would be hard-pressed to write at night.
BC: Who is your secret author “crush” ?
ME: I don’t really crush on other authors but I do dig some of their works. My last read that I adored was REAPER’S PROPERTY. The author broke rules and I loved it- totally captured my attention.
BC: What’s your favorite love story (movie or book) ?
ME: I’m going to go with The Last of the Mohican’s [again] and I was also nuts over LOVER AWAKENED by JR Ward, I read it twice.
BC: If you had to describe yourself using 3 words, it would be…
ME: Engaging, straight-forward, driven.
BC: If you were to write a book about yourself, what would you name it?
ME: Don’t Major in the Minors: Living Life with Humor
BC: What’s the one thing you can’t live without?
BC: Favorite song(s)?
ME: Right now I’m digging: Driving Toward the Daylight by Joe Bonamassa. I listen to it a couple times a day while writing.
BC: What do you hope a reader will take away from your writing?
ME: That it allowed an escape and entertainment. However, I’m grateful that some have written and told me my books eased them through difficult times, and that is priceless.
BC: Do you have anything specific you’d like to say to your readers?
ME: There aren’t enough words in the world to convey the depth of my gratitude for your support. Know that I write each and every story for you. Every book. Every word.
BC: Do you have anything specific you’d like to say to the bloggers?
ME: Hell yes. I love you guys big time! I thank each and every one of you wonderful people that take time away from your busy jobs and fams to read my work, post reviews and spread the word so my stories are read by more people. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
ME: Caryn, I do believe you left no stone unturned- Bravo! Thank you so much, Marata xo
Kindle copies of A Terrible Love, A Brutal Tenderness, The Token 1-3, and The Darkest Joy ENTER HERE
A Terrible Love Review
The Token Review
The Token 2 Review
The Token 3 Review
About the Author
Marata Eros is a mixed-genre writer of dark erotica and fantasy with elements of romance and horror. She has completed her first contemporary romance, A TERRIBLE LOVE as her next new release. Marata is a passionate reader who loves interacting with her readers and is more grateful than she can express for their support.