I’m hosting an interview with A.M. Dunnewin, author of fantasy romance “The Benighted”. Welcome to my blog, and thanks for answering my questions.
What’s the hardest part of being an author?
Writer’s block, and convincing people to read my book. It’s one thing to write a story, but it’s another to try to talk to people about it without giving away too much detail.
Can you give us a short synopsis ofThe Benighted?
The Benighted is basically a story of a young woman named Skylar Mandolyn who is the last royalty alive in her kingdom of Correnth. Her brother was mysteriously killed, pushing her into the role of Princess Royal and heir to the throne. When her father is viciously murdered, her knight and only ally, Sir Harlin Brien, is framed for the King’s death. She helps him escape the prison that he has been kept in, only to find herself locked behind the prison walls. Isolated and tortured, Skylar is given the only option of marrying the youngest prince of a rival kingdom in exchange for her freedom, which she repeatedly denies. This rival kingdom, known as Bellumortis, has advanced itself in technology and warfare, and Skylar’s only thought is of how destroyed her people would be if they controlled Correnth. While she’s isolated in darkness, she’s forced to remember the series of events leading up to her arrest: her brother’s death, the inquisition of her people, and the demise of the King’s advisor, Cross Lutherus. But behind the prison walls, Correnth is stirring, and Skylar feels the restlessness in the mysterious tremors that have started to crawl up the stone foundation. The mystery really was never how Harlin escaped; it’s how he’ll return.
What inspired you to write this book?
To be honest, I was playing the videogame Dishonored for the first time and couldn’t pass the first level where the player has to escape out of a prison. Because I couldn’t pass the level, I decided to take my frustration out in writing, which turned into a story about a girl trapped in a prison.
How many hours per day do you spend writing?
I’d say a couple hours a day, or at least every other day. When I was writing The Benighted, I had spent up to 5-7 hours per day writing. I can average about 40 hours a week when I’m on a roll.
Name your top five favorite books.
“Rebecca” by Daphne du Maurier, “The Looking Glass Wars” series by Frank Beddor, “Timeline” by Michael Crichton, “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?” by Peter Hedges, and anything by Edgar Allan Poe or F. Scott Fitzgerald.
What are you working on now?
I’m currently working on the sequel to The Benighted, called The Illusory. I’m also trying my hand out on a horror story, and am currently finishing a serial novel that I’m planning to have published in early 2015. The serial novel is called I, Assassin.
Author: A.M Dunnewin
Genre: Fantasy Romance
The King was dead. His body was found slain in his room, only months after his son had been brutally murdered. Skylar Mandolyn, his daughter, has now become the last heir to the throne. But instead of becoming Queen, she was imprisoned for helping in the escape of Sir Harlin Brien, her knight who was framed for the King’s murder.
Confined to darkness, Skylar’s captors have given her no choice but to yield to a new kind of enemy: a domain that has advanced in both technology and warfare. It’s only when she refuses that the prison uses other means of persuasion. Though unmerciful, the whip lashings and isolation can’t suppress her memories. She’s forced to face again both her brother’s death and her father’s emotional decline, though even the darkness can’t hide the deceptive hands that have tormented them all. Advisor turned adversary, Cross Lutherus has brought the ancient bloodline to its knees, and Skylar is the only Mandolyn left to feel his wrath.
With two kingdoms on the brink of war, and the end of her life drawing near, Skylar’s only hope is in the person who haunts her the most – Harlin, the knight who was sworn to protect her. His presence surrounds her when the darkness screams louder than the prisoners, when Death smiles a faceless grin in between the cracks of the stone. And it’s his strength she embraces just as the tremors start to rise from the deep, crawling up through the prison’s walls to terrorize the benighted realm and all its souls.
The mystery was never how Harlin escaped. It is how he will return.
A. M. Dunnewin inherited her love for mysteries and thrillers from her family, which motivated her to pursue a B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Criminal Justice. Although her stories cover a wide range of genres, she primarily writes historical fiction and thrillers. An avid reader at heart, she’s also a passionate collector of both antique books and graphic novels, and has been known to search for stories in the most random places. She lives in Sacramento, California.
My blog: http://amdunnewin.wordpress.com