Author bio: Alexes Razevich was born in New York and grew up in Orange County, California. She attended California State University San Francisco where she earned a degree in Creative Writing. After a successful career on the fringe of the electronics industry, including stints as Director of Marketing for a major trade show management company and as an editor for Electronic Engineering Times, she returned to her first love--fiction. She lives in Southern California with her husband. When she isn't writing, she can usually be found on a hockey rink or traveling someplace she hasn't been before.
Genre: Urban Fantasy
When a goddess gives you a job, failure is not an option.
Shay Greene’s specialty is rescue and recovery, and she’s damn good at it.
But she might just be over her head when the country’s wealthiest woman hires her to find a stolen necklace known as The Mermaid’s Lament, plunging Shay into a world of jealous goddesses, their half-human demigod offspring, and long-standing feuds.
Petty rivalries have a nasty way of escalating in that world. The dangerous lengths the goddesses take to one-up each other leave Shay wondering if they are completely sane. Even the demigods have more power—and more hidden agendas—than she’s used to dealing with.
Shay doesn’t have much time to learn how to beat them, though. If she doesn’t recover the Mermaid’s Lament by the looming deadline, it will cost her everything she loves.
Publish date: May 29, 2019
Publisher: Razor Street Publishing
Author Interview with Alexes Razevich
Kasper: Hi Alexes, welcome to the Readers Lounge.
Alexes: Thanks Kasper, I'm keen to take off on this levitating lounge ride.
Kasper: Hold tight, here we goooooooooooooo......
So Alexes, what made you choose this genre?
I’ve been in love with fantasy and the idea of magic ever since I read The Arabian Nights as a little girl. Urban Fantasy takes magic and brings it into our modern everyday world. I adore the possibility that the lady next door might be a goddess, the cranky bus driver might be an orc, or you could discover your parents were wizards. Or you could discover you had magic yourself.
Cool. I really admire how you can do that.
How do you develop your characters?
Characters are funny beasts. Sometimes they show up and demand that their stories be told. Those characters usually come fully formed in my mind. For characters who don’t show up fully formed, I have to figure out their true name. I can’t just pick one and stick it on the character. It has to be the right name. Once I have the name then I develop how they look and their backstory. It’s important for me to know why the characters do what they do, what made them who they are. No one is all good or all bad, and everyone has reasons why they see the world they way they do.
Makes me laugh when authors say, 'The characters made me do it.'
Have you used any real events or places as inspiration for your writing?
My urban fantasy stories are set where I live. For me, there’s a richness that comes with knowing what real stores the characters shop at, where they fill up their tank, what route they take to work. In my Oona Goodlight series, Oona is attacked in the parking lot at a specific Trader Joe’s. With The Mermaid’s Lament, the main character, Shay Greene, lives in a house loosely based on one a friend lives in, with landladies loosely based on the real ones my friend has. For me, the more reality I build in, the more believable the unreality of magic is.
Read. And write. And read some more. And write some more. Find people who know what they’re talking about to give you feedback on your work. Take criticism gracefully. Write the story you want to read.
Very good advice.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on two books now—a young adult magic school story and book two in the Shay Greene series. Both should be out this summer/fall.
What’s your writing routine?
I’m an early riser and early writer. My routine is wake up, have a cup of coffee (or three) and spend the next several hours at the keyboard. I write six days a week.
Wow, that's a lot of writing time. Excellent.
What do you do when you have writers’ block?
I don’t really get writer’s block, though I do get stuck from time to time. Usually if I’m stuck it’s because my brain needs a rest. Sometimes I’ll read for a while, but usually I play solitaire or some other easy computer game. Sometimes I do the dishes or walk the dog. For me, the trick is to not write until I’m ready to tackle the story again.
How did you go about developing your cover artwork?
The main character’s look is already established by the time I’m ready for cover art, so often it’s a matter of finding a model with the look and feel of the character. Then I decide what sort of background I want. I work with the fabulous designers at Deranged Doctor Designs. We’ve done enough covers together now that they know the look and feel I’m after.
Looking at your catalogue, I'd say it's a author / artist match made in Heaven.
List some great books you have recently read:
I just finished Rebecca Roanhorse’s Trail of Lightning and Storm of Locusts. Both were very good.
Who’s your favourite indie author and why?
Gosh, I couldn’t choose just one. Amir Lane, who is brilliant and not read nearly enough. E.A. Copen, who writes compelling characters entangled in great plots. Orlando Sanchez, because I love Montague and Strong. So many more.
What is your favourite quote?
From Dune: Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear.
What’s your experience of the Fantasy Sci-Fi Readers’ Lounge?
I love the lounge! I stop by regularly to see what’s going on and find new books to read.
Favourite thing to cook: pasta (I’m not much of a cook.)
Best holiday spot: The beach. Always the beach. Any beach.
With writing, are you a plotter or (seat-of-your) pantser? I’m definitely a plotter. Not that my carefully crafted plots don’t go off the rails because the dang characters have minds of their own, but I do plot everything in advance.
Do you prefer to read SciFi or fantasy: Fantasy.
Best superpower: Tough question. I’ll go with invisibility. There’s something appealing about the ability to be the fly on the wall.
Number one thing to do on your bucket list: To see the aurora borealis.
Kasper: Great answers. I'd love to see the aurora too. Thanks so much for stopping by today, Alexes and flying on the Readers Lounge with us. Let's check out your links.
Alexes Razvich's Links: