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Books with Buzz: Colleen Gleason Interview and Giveaway (Contest Closed)


On March 22nd, those of us who’ve missed Colleen Gleason’s historical vampires will have reason to celebrate.  On that date, The Vampire Voss, the first in her new Regency Draculia series, is released.  The next two entries will follow in May and June.

To mark the occasion, we’ve got an interview with the author and five early copies of The Vampire Voss to give away.  To enter for your chance to win, simply comment to this post by 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, March 17th.  A few rules: Due to high postage costs, this contest is open only to readers in the U.S. and Canada. Multiple comments are welcome, but please note that you will be entered only once.  This giveaway is designed to get early copies of books into the hands of readers who otherwise wouldn’t have access, so if you review for another Web site or blog, please don’t enter.  Winners will be notified by email on Friday morning and if no response is received within 24 hours, a new winner will be chosen.

Before we hear from Colleen, a personal note from me: I read a digital ARC of this one without the cover. Lucky me because this one just blows. Voss is a handsome and seductive vampire, not a young Boris Karloff with really bad contact lenses.  I don’t know what the publisher was thinking, but I’m just saying, don’t let the cover scare you.

Now, here’s Colleen:

Colleen, I was lucky enough to get an early look at The Vampire Voss, the first in your new series, and I loved it.  While it’s Regency-set as your Gardella books are, it features a differing vampire mythology and, perhaps most significantly, the primary POV is a vampire and not a vampire hunter.  Could you tell our readers a bit about the book and give us a preview of the next two installments?

I’m glad you enjoyed the read! It’s definitely very different from the Gardellas in the sense that each book in the series is more traditional in the romance aspect. What I mean is, each book focuses on one hero and heroine, unlike the Gardella Vampire Chronicles, which are about one woman and her journey (and is basically a five-book romance novel).

Although the Gardellas and The Regency Draculia are set in the same general time period—Regency-era England—they are actually about fifteen years apart, historically speaking. The Draculia are set in 1804, well into the Napoleonic Wars and a bit earlier than Victoria & Co.

Because I wanted to write vampire romance novels this time around, meaning I wanted there to be a romance with the vampires, the mythology had to be different. In the Gardellas, there are no good vampires. Kind of hard to have a romance with an evil vampire, ;-) so I had to think about the mythology and come up with a way to make it different from the Gardellas, yet not to completely destroy the world I created with them as well.

In this series, the vampires are part of a secret society, a cabal, that belongs to Lucifer. Each member of the Draculia has sold his or her soul to the devil at some point, and now they are living an immortal life with everything they could ever want: Pleasure, money, power, and all without the fear of death.

Each book is about one vampire in particular who falls in love, and, in this context, that his/her soul belongs to Lucifer and is no longer their own.

But along with the vampire aspect, readers can expect everything else one loves about the Regency-era: Balls and masquerades, the haute ton, titled bad boys, and brooding earls.

The first book, The Vampire Voss, is about the playboy of all playboys. If a man were to live forever with all the power and pleasure and money he ever wanted, I believe he would be just like Voss: Selfish, hedonistic, and, at some point, bored with it all.

In The Vampire Dimitri, we meet a tortured, brooding vampire who has come to strongly regret his bargain with Lucifer and who is trying, in vain, to break that bond. Too bad the woman he falls for is fascinated by his Draculean bent.

And in The Vampire Narcise, we meet a damaged female vampire who believes that love isn’t for immortals—because nothing can last forever, especially for someone whose soul is not their own.

Colleen, you took a detour in writing a new series of books under the pen name of Joss Ware and for a different publisher.  Are you planning on continuing to write under the name of Joss Ware as well as Colleen Gleason? I also know our readers enjoy behind-the-scenes looks at how the publishing process works, so I’d bet they’d be interested in why you took a pseudonym.

As it happens, I am currently working on a novella for the Joss Ware series that I hope will be released before the end of the year. This series was such a departure from historical vampires—I went to writing about a futuristic world set in a dystopian society, with a strong paranormal element that doesn’t include vampires. That’s part of the reason that I decided to use a pseudonym. The publishers like to differentiate such vastly different series.

So, for now, my “brand names” will be Colleen Gleason for historical vampires (although I have also published Siberian Treasure, a Clive-Cussler-type of action adventure novel under that name as well) and Joss Ware for the futuristic/dystopian paranormal series.

Colleen, I know from following you on Twitter, that, like a lot of us, you’re a die hard pop culture junkie.  What are you watching and listening to these days?

Ooooh! Fun question! Yes, I do play around on Twitter (though I’m not as consistent there as I am on Facebook), and yes, most of my posts do have to do with pop culture.

My current totally favorite show is Castle. Love, love that show! I just hope that they don’t ruin it like they did Moonlighting—and every other show that seems to fizzle once the guy and girl get together. It has great dialogue, decent mysteries, and, of course, Nathan Fillion!

I also like 30 Rock (Tina Fey rocks!) and occasionally watch Glee—although I have to admit I’m getting a little bored with the latter. Hopefully it will pick up again.

I am also catching up on the amazingly well-done Friday Night Lights. The final season is just out on DVD (and will come to network TV in April), so I am catching up. I adore Kyle Chandler, and let me just say that if you aren’t watching FNL, you totally should be. It’s not what you think.

As far as movies go, anyone who hangs out on my Facebook page knows that Robert Downey, Jr., as Sherlock Holmes is my current favorite. So hot. So smart. So sharp and witty. Can’t wait for Holmes II.

I also like to ask authors I like who they like to read.  So, who are you favorites?  What books are you looking forward to?

While I don’t read as much as I used to, I do manage to get quite a bit of reading in between books. I recently re-read the entire Harry Potter series (over the holidays; it was my gift to myself after a year of brutal deadlines).

I also really love Kylie Brant’s Mindhunter series, JD Robb, Julie James and Robyn Carr. My all-time favorite author is Elizabeth Peters/Barbara Michaels, and I recently really enjoyed reading The Mistress of the Art of Death by the recently deceased Ariana Franklin.

I don’t read a lot of paranormal simply because I write in that genre, but some of my favorites in that realm are Jeaniene Frost and Nalini Singh, as well as Lara Adrian.

I know you’ve got two more books to follow in your new series over the next few months.  What’s next for you?

I’m starting to think about/plot the next books in the Draculia series, as well as my next Joss Ware project. I also have been messing around with some other ideas totally unrelated to either. J I find that whatever I’m working on tends to lean toward the historical, though, so look for more of that from me hopefully in the future!

Thanks to AAR for hosting me here today!

And thanks to Colleen for joining us today. Remember, to enter for your chance to win one of five early copies of The Vampire Voss, just comment to this post by 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, January 17th.

– Sandy AAR

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