Interview with author J.K Coi
An Interview with J.K Coi, author of the Immortals series
Who has been the biggest influence upon your work?
I think both of my parents have been the biggest influence on my work. From before I can remember, they encouraged the written word. By reading to me, helping me to learn to read on my own, and by showing me constantly that they enjoyed reading themselves, my parents fostered a love for books in me that has never diminished, and it was only natural that my love for reading evolve into a desire to create my own stories—and in that respect, I have to credit the early storytellers in my life; authors like Mark Twain, C.S. Lewis and Tolkien and then later, more contemporary influences like Stephen King.
Who is your favorite fictional character created by someone other than yourself?
I love, love, love Jamie Fraser from Ms. Gabaldon’s Outlander series. What I wouldn’t do to get stranded in 1743 Scotland with him—although I could do without the witch hunts, and I’m rather attached to modern-day plumbing.
Who is your own favorite character?
My favourite hero is Gideon from book 4 of my series, which is still on the WIP pile. In the course of learning about these characters, Gideon is the one who sticks with me the most. He’s the brother of Amy—the heroine of My Immortal. I think I love him best because he’s a reluctant warrior but comes by it honestly. He’s most at home in a laboratory studying a petrie dish, but having been dragged into the world of the Immortals, he wants to make a difference. He’s learned quickly and he’s good at what he does, but he’s still a science geek at heart.
How long have you been writing? What made you start?
I’ve been writing for years. And years. And years. I wrote in high school and in university. I stopped for a while when my career was getting off the ground and then when I had my first child. But I came back to writing about two years ago. All of a sudden it was a need I couldn’t ignore and that wouldn’t be denied.
What are you enjoying reading at the moment?
Right now I have three books that I can’t wait to read. I’ve already started a historical by Amanda Quick (Jayne Ann Krentz) called The River Knows, The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray which is book three in a fabulous YA series, and Duma Key by Stephen King. I like to keep my reading varied. I read romance, but also horror and mystery and anything else that crosses my path.
Do you do anything to summon up inspiration – write to music, have a special writing hat etc?
Honestly, I can’t write to music. I can’t write with the television on. My desk is super neat and tidy—mostly because I’m distracted very easily. Too easily. It’s disgusting really. Sometimes I even have to disconnect the internet so that I’m not tempted to go online, or I’d be wasting hours chatting, blogging and otherwise wasting time that I should be using to write.
What do you do when you’re not writing?
I work. I have a full time day job working with a large law firm. I enjoy it and it gives me a break from the characters clamouring for attention inside my head. It pays the bills and gives me freedom to indulge the other thing I do when I’m not writing. Buy shoes.
What works in progress have you got on the go at the moment?
I’m just finishing up a novella. I started it as an informal way to give myself a break and had no intention of actually writing the whole thing. I had been working on my Immortals series for two years straight after all, and after finishing book 2 (Immortal Kiss), I decided I needed to distract myself with something just for fun, give myself a chance to refocus and reload before I started writing book 3 (Dark Immortal). But it turned out to be a really great story, and before I knew it, I had fleshed out the whole book and now I’m in the process of doing a final edit.
Tell us about the books you have out.
My Immortal is being released by Linden Bay Romance May 15, 2008. It’s the first in a paranormal series about a band of immortal warriors bound to protect humanity. Rhys is their reluctant leader, and he has spent hundreds of years on the front lines fighting a deadly war against evil. Amy is the woman who brings light and love back to his life after an eternity of darkness, but she brings a terrible destiny as well—of pain and blood—a destiny that Rhys glimpses in his dreams. He knows that of all the humans he’s saved, if he should fail this one woman, it will destroy him like nothing else has been able to.
Book 2, Immortal Kiss will be coming in July, 2008 and it is Baron’s story. He’s the youngest of the Immortals, but in no way is he the least experienced. He had already lived a dangerous life in the military, and those skills have proven to be very useful in this new occupation. Baron has embraced everything about being Immortal and left his old life behind without a second thought. That is until the only woman he’s ever loved shows up on his doorstep one night—rather, her battered and broken body is dumped on his doorstep by a brutal enemy.
What one thing are you the most proud of in your life?
I’m proud of my writing accomplishments, of course. But I’m most proud of my son. He is the light of my life, the fizz in my soda. He’s five now, and every day with him has been a joy and a blessing—even when I want to scream because he’s been driving me crazy. He talks a mile a minute, so fast half the time you have no clue what he’s saying, but it’s usually some obscure fact he’s learned about animals (which he loves). I love watching him learn new things. He takes on a challenge with such enthusiasm that I just know he’s going to do great things with his life, and I can’t wait to be there every step of the way.
Do you enjoy TV and movies? If so, what are your favorite shows/films? Do you find they inspire your writing?
I do have some favourite shows, but the writer’s strike this winter was a blessing in disguise since it left me with a lot more time to write, without the distraction of television. However, when I can, I like to watch Bones and House. I love the male characters of both these shows. Bones is an FBI crime solving drama that stars David Boreanaz (late of Buffy and Angel). Besides being too good looking for words, he does a great job covering up his character’s sensitivity with male blustering and jokes. Boreanaz has got a great presence on screen, and a witty, comedic style that goes well with his co-star, Emily Deschanel’s more literal, scientific character. On the other hand, I like Hugh Laurie as Dr. House for exactly opposite reasons. His character is rude, mean and completely devoted to his medicine not to save patients, but to satisfy his own curiosity. He’s an intellect trapped in an egotistical bastard’s body. It works perfectly and creates great television—although in real life I probably would have shot him by now, lol.
Please visit me at my website for more information about upcoming books, chats, interviews, reviews, and all things Immortal: www.jkcoi.com
I’ve also broken down and gotten a myspace page: www.myspace.com/jkcoi and I’m on Facebook
Thanks so much for having me, Alex. It’s been a lot of fun and I appreciate the opportunity.