|The Outlanders by Erin Rhew|
She has been on book blog tour since Friday and, of course, I wanted to participate, but what do I post about? Last year, when she released The Prophecy, I did an author spotlight on her.
So much has happened in the last 12 months, including changing her last name. But what to focus on? Being in a unique position, this year I thought I'd deliver a spotlight that only someone that lives with her would know. I'll deliver you the "dirt" on this brilliant lady, and I'll do it in a q-and-a format, where I am both the investigative reporter and her loving fiance. It's a bit of what goes on in my ADD-raddled brain anyway, so it's pretty much second nature. :-)
I've read about Hollywood starlets that try and project a down-to-earth persona while being anything but. Is Erin who she seems to be on her blogs, Facebook, and Twitter?
The quick answer to this is "No." In social media, Erin seems sweet and kind, smart, funny, and witty. The problem is that these only give you a glimpse into the wonderful person that she really is.
Think about it like going to the mountains. <stick with me, this is going somewhere, I swear>. You park your car waaaaay up high and get out on a viewpoint. Below and all around you is a vast range of beautiful trees and snow-covered peak that go on into infinity. The air is clean, and the sun is warm on your face, countering the crispness in the breeze that tickles your nose and ruffles your hair. It's about as close to heaven as you can get on Earth. So you take out your cell phone and snap some pictures because you want to share this moment with your friends back home. Only, when you pull the images up on your computer, you are disappointed. Even though the pics are pretty, they don't begin to capture the serene beauty of the experience.
That's what her social media presence is like. Completely amazing, fun, and loving, but it is pales in comparison to actually being with this beautiful lady.
She has recently changed her pen name to Rhew. What's up with that? Did you have anything to do with it?
Erin's maiden name is Rhew; that's where the name originates. We had been discussing changing my pen name from Jay Scott to something else because "Scott" is so common. One day I asked her if she thought her dad would mind if I "borrowed" his last name. To say the least, he was overjoyed and granted me permission. Erin and I talked about it some more, and she decided that she wanted to link our professional names like we are our personal ones. To say the least, I was overjoyed, so we started going through the process of changing hers as well.
Changing one's name is no small task, and we wanted to have it done before The Outlanders came out. We've just about got this thang wrangled now. You can find her on her new web site, www.ErinRhewBooks.com, Twitter: @ErinRhewBooks, Facebook: Erin Rhew Books, Google+, Blog, and GoodReads.
What future trials and tragedies to you foresee in Erin's future?
There is a huge one looming in Erin's future, and I'm not sure how we are going to get through it. I know we will cross this raging river hand-in-hand as we do with all things, but it will be touch and go for a while. So what is this event that will rock her world? We found a sticker next to the Diet Pepsi with Lime at our local Fred Meyer's that says the soda is on close out.
Yes, her beloved beverage of choice is being discontinued.
Yes, her beloved beverage of choice is being discontinued.
You get to proof Erin's interviews, posts, books, etc. What is your grammar nerd fiancee's grammar weakness?
She has trouble knowing where to place her hyphens.
That sounds vaguely dirty, but I don't know why.
Yes, re-reading that sentence makes me giggle.
Does knowing where to place your hyphens make you feel all powerful?
Yes. Every time I find one, I want to stand with my chest puffed out and my cape flapping in the breeze. It's really the only thing I can do grammatically that she struggles with. Otherwise, I'm just Jason Stackhouse, scribbling out novel-length emails full of run-ons, frags, unparallel sentences, and POV problems.
Do you have any grammar nerd jokes between you?
LOL! What a great interviewer you are! It's like you know us! As a matter of fact we do! Erin had to beat passive voice out of me. I've *almost* got it all out, but it has been a hard lesson. That being said, there are a couple of stubby little sentences I simply can't part with. If you ever say, "And it was short," I guarantee an eye roll and a chuckle from my lady.
In addition, I have made it my life's work to get her to use the word "snicked" in one of her books. As in, "The door snicked shut." I am flagrantly abusing the word here, using it in a way that the creators never intended. And since she's called me on it, I have vowed to use it at least once in each of my novels.
I accept 99.99% of her grammar corrections in my work, but this one--which I suspect grates on her nerves like fingernails on a chalkboard--I am holding fast. Muhahahahahaha!
Give us an insight into her books. Share a smidge that has not been released to the public.
So, here is a little tidbit that no one else seems to have picked up. She has said over and over that one of her favorite authors is Rick Riordan and that Percy Jackson is her, albeit under-aged, book boyfriend. Here is what you haven't read in the papers nor heard in the the news.
Her character, Samson, is a nod to Rick's Percy. She has always enjoyed Percy's whit and sarcastic bite, and she gave Samson just a smidge of this same flavor.
In addition, Rick helped Erin fall in love with Greek mythology. Her characters Haddey, Zed, and Poden are a nod to Hades, Zeus, and Poseidon.
Lastly, in her interview with Honest Book Club, she talks about her love of Shakespeare and how she gave a nod to the great man:
I'm a HUGE Shakespeare nut. So, the way Jesper behaves around his wife is my "hats off" to Shakespeare's observations of uncontrollable jealousy within the marriage from Othello.
Erin claims to not like antiques, that she's a "modern girl," yet recently you moved into a 1895 Victorian house. Wut? Wut?
Right? It's completely crazy! But we saw the house for rent, and no matter what we looked at, we kept coming back to it. Even more nuts, the owners are supposed to come back in June of 2015, so we may have to move again in a few months. But we love the house, the warmth, and the history. It felt like "home" even before we moved a stick of furniture or placed a single picture in it. The little town we live in has less than a 1000 residents and is charming and quaint. We just love the place, so we going with our hearts and enjoying this adventure together.
You and Erin are engaged to be married. It is rumored that you met online. Truth or fiction!
LOL! Oh, Deek, you know that rumors are rarely true, but in this case, it is completely accurate. Erin and I met on Twitter of all places! We became part of the same critique partners group, and I asked her to fix the grammar in my short story. Her passion for helping the handicapped made her agree. We started talking online, and in the comments of my book, and we never stopped. We communicated long-distance over FaceTime, and for a while, I was living on two coasts--Erin is a born and raised North Carolina girl. Now she lives with me in a rainy pocket of the Pacific Northwest. We are engaged and going to be married soon.
Here is the deal, Deek. You never know where you will meet your soulmate. It could be in a cafe, in line at the grocery store, or on Twitter. The journey with her has been amazing, the best of my life. Even better, I am blessed enough to get to love this lady and spend the rest of my life with her. You don't know what's going to happen tomorrow, next week, next year, or heck, even later today. So, I'm embracing this lady and my journey with her, letting her know every day how much I love her and trying to give back just a bit of all that she's given to me.
You are a very luck man!
You have no idea.
So you are in love with the author, does that make you biased about her writing?
Probably a little, but really Erin's just an amazing author. Her storytelling leaves me breathless at times. Read chapter 20 of The Outlanders and then listen to My Immortal by Evanescence--this is the song she listened to over and over when she wrote the chapter--and try and not shed a tear. OMH! I limped away from that chapter torn and bruised.
Her writing is strong and solid, her stories are creative, and her characters are relateable and real. So often I read her stuff and I'm like, "Damn, that's good. I wish I could write like that."
So, yes, I may be a little biased, but really her writing is just amazing.
Well, that concludes our interview. Thanks for joining me Deek!
Thank you, Deek. I have greatly enjoyed our interview. You are an amazing conversationalist--funny and witty--and might I say, devilishly handsome.
Back at you, my friend!
Be sure to check out Erin's books, The Prophecy, and The Outlanders, on Amazon and follow her on Twitter, Google+, and Facebook. Also, add her books to your Goodreads "To Read" list!
For the latest and greatest, visit her web page: