Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Mail bag!

It’s official. I’m closing in on the last 10k words of Sabrina’s next book, a sequel to Carved in Darkness, so I finally have a few minutes to breath... although I'm pretty sure my editor would strongly disagree. Anyway, I wanted to take a few minutes to answer some readers’ questions about the new book and well… me.

Do you have a title and release date for the new book?
As I’m sure I’ve mentioned before, Carved in Darkness was not my original title for Sabrina’s first book. That brilliant title 100% belongs to the creative genius that is Midnight Ink. The working title was, although appropriate, boring. Same goes for this one. The working title for book #2 is The Muse and I’ve got my fingers crossed for another spring/summer release, 2014.

Have you written any more books I can read to hold myself over until Sabrina’s next book comes out?
Nope. Carved in Darkness is my first book, written or published.

Will Michael be back in the next book?
Yes. I left things unresolved between them because quite frankly, there is no way I’d be able to resolve their issues/relationship in one book. Michael and Sabrina have a long, bumpy road ahead of them but they’ll get there in the end. I promise.

 Is the entire series going to be about Sabrina or are you going to bring secondary characters into the forefront?
Carved in Darkness was originally intended to be a standalone novel but as it usually happens after you spend years and years of your life with a group of people who live in your head, when it comes time to let them go, you just can’t do it. You find that they have more they want to say and do and you feel compelled to let them… I have 6-7 novels planned out in my head. Some of them feature Sabrina, some of them feature Michael… and some of them feature secondary characters. Let’s hope everyone gets a chance to have their stories told.

Do you have a twitter account?
Yes… you can find me on twitter @thrilllingwords. Or you can just go to my website and hit the button.

Where have you been hiding?
In the suburbs outside Phoenix, Arizona, buried under a pile of kids.

Seriously, I’m an Arizona native married to her high school sweetheart with 4 kids (two biological and two adopted). After a lot of soul searching and false starts I finally admitted that the only thing I ever really wanted to do in life was write… and be a criminologist. Oh, and Olivia Newton-John. I really, really wanted to be Olivia Newton-John when I was younger. The Olivia Newton-John thing never would’ve work (for obvious reasons) and while criminology fascinates me, school has never been my thang, so writing it is. This way I get to study what I love (crazy freaks!!) and do what I love (write about crazy freaks!!) all in one felled swoop. And I still occasionally watch Xanadu and pretend I’m Olivia.

Have a question? Hop on over to my website and drop me a line, I'd love to hear from you!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The First Rule of Book Club...

is you do NOT about Book Club.

Come on, you didn't really think I'd talk about my first Book Club experience without referencing what is arguably the best Brad Pitt movie of all time (12 Monkeys is a very close second...)


I'll be the first to admit that CARVED IN DARKNESS isn't exactly what I'd deems as "book club" material. I never imagined a group of readers gathering in someone's home or in a restaurant to talk about my book.
I just never thought of CARVED as that kind of book.
Apparently, I was wrong (it does happen from time to time...).

A few weeks ago, I met with a group of women who not only chose CARVED as their book club monthly read but were thrilled at the opportunity to discuss it with me. I can tell you, they weren't half as thrilled as I was! What an honor to be able to sit and talk about my writing with such a wonderful bunch who listened with genuine interest and asked some very thought-provoking questions. One woman in particular had some pretty hard-hitting questions that I'd like to share as I imagine she isn't the only one who's read CARVED that has wondered the same thing...

How do you reconcile the role of mother to young children with the graphic violence you write about? How are you able to transitions between such extreme roles so easily?

Much like my protagonist, Sabrina Vaughn, I'm able to compartmentalize quite well. It's probably a skill I acquired during my days working in mental health. No matter what is going on around you or inside you, there is a job to do in front of you and you do it. And while you're doing it, everything else gets put in the box. In action, this looks like me spending hours dreaming up gruesomely horrible murder scenes and then when the bell rings (I have to set an alarm or I'll forget to pick up my kids from school... don't judge me.) I close down my computer and become a mom again. That doesn't mean the other stuff isn't there... it just means I've put it away for later.

How do you feel about your contribution to the culture of violence against women in society?

I can honestly say that while CARVED is violent and yes, that violence is centered around women, I never thought that I was contributing to a "culture of violence against women".
And I still don't.
What I did was give this world something it can never have too much of--a strong female protagonist who not only survives what what done to her, she perseveres. She fights and she wins.

Of all the questions though, this was by far my favorite...

I've read other books  featuring what was billed as strong, female protagonists but it seems like every other page someone is calling  her "baby" or "sweetie"--and she lets them without even batting an eye.  I read CARVED very carefully and didn't find one such instance. Did you find yourself ferreting those exchanges out in the editing process to make Sabrina more equal to her male counterparts?

No. No, I never went through the book to weed out what I thought were instances that would make Sabrina appear less than equal to her male counterparts. I never did that because I never wrote them. It honestly never even occurred to me to write them because Sabrina is equal and all the men in her life know it. They also know that if they ever called her "baby" or "sweetie" she'd go ten kinds of Tyler Durden all over them.

so, my question is: In your opinion, what makes for a great book club read? What books have been among your favorite and why?

"Prepare to be overwhelmed by the tension and moodiness that permeates this edgy thriller. Beaumont’s ability to keep the twists coming even when the answer seems obvious is quite potent."
--Library Journal (starred review, Debut of the Month)

Maegan Beaumont is the author of CARVED IN DARKNESS, the first book in the Sabrina Vaughn thriller series (Available through Midnight Ink, spring 2013). A native Phoenician, Maegan’s stories are meant to make you wonder what the guy standing in front of you in the Starbucks line has locked in his basement, and feel a strong desire to sleep with the light on. When she isn’t busy fulfilling her duties as Domestic Goddess for her high school sweetheart turned husband, Joe, and their four children, she is locked in her office with her computer, her coffee pot and her Rhodesian Ridgeback, and one true love, Jade