Today, Susannah shares a little with us on how the Penton Legacy came about and what projects she will be working on next! For more about Susannah, or to connect, check her out in the following places:
1. What inspired you to write the Penton Legacy?
It’s kind of a boring writerly answer, I guess. I wanted to try my hand at writing paranormal romance (as opposed to my initial genre, urban fantasy), a vampire novel (because I find them incredibly sexy), and writing from multiple points of view. I’d come up with the idea of the vampire world being turned into chaos when human blood turns poisonous to them following a widespread pandemic vaccine, so that was what spurred me to write the first book, Redemption. Along the way, I fell in love with the characters in Penton and knew I wanted to see where all the conflict led.
2. How did you come up with the title of the series?
When I first began working on the series, the town the vampires lived in was the fictional Stockholm, Alabama, mostly because the first book touches on Stockholm Syndrome, and how we really know if what we’re feeling is real. But having the town with that name seemed over-the-top, so I took an afternoon drive through Chambers County, Alabama, where the fictional Stockholm was located, and ran across the community of Penton and the town of LaFayette—I sort of mashed those two places up, and threw in a few spots from my own hometown, and came up with my reimagined Penton. Which is a REALLY long way of saying the town is the spot around which the action takes place, so it made sense to name the series after the town.
3. I really enjoyed the character of Cage in Omega. Will he eventually get his own story?
Definitely! I love Cage too, so I’m happy to say that book four in the series, Allegiance, is Cage’s story. There’s a lot about his past we don’t find out in Omega, and we don’t really know what his feelings are for a certain woman he gets involved with in Omega. So all that will become clear. Allegiance will be out in late spring or early summer 2014.
4. The ending to the Penton Legacy series has resulted in a spin-off series called Omega Force. Can you tell us a little about what we can expect from the new series?
Originally, the plan was to take Penton and segue it into the Omega Force series, which is about a combined human-paranormal special ops team investigating domestic terrorism cases in the U.S. Storm Force was the first in that series, but really didn’t tie in with the Penton story.
When I finished Omega, however, I realized there were still stories I wanted to tell in the Penton universe—Cage’s story, for example, and how the fight between the Penton vampires and the Tribunal play out. So in Allegiance, I take two of the Storm Force characters, Robin Ashton the eagle shape-shifter and Nik Dimitrou, the human Army Ranger with psychic abilities, and bring them to Penton.
Whether there will be future Omega Force books apart from Penton or the two series will essentially be combined is something that hasn’t yet been decided. There’s definitely more of Penton that needs telling, especially after the events of Allegiance!
5. If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Well, I usually think of a “mentor” as someone who gives you hands-on guidance, and going by that definition, I’d say an Alabama writer named Larry Williamson. When I met Larry, I’d just begun writing my first novel, an urban fantasy that was eventually released as Royal Street, the first of my Sentinels of New Orleans urban fantasy series (written as Suzanne Johnson). I didn’t know how to craft a story, how to format a manuscript, or how one went about submitting a manuscript. He taught me those things, and invited me to become a part of a local writing group. Without their encouragement and guidance, I’m not sure I’d ever have had the nerve to submit, and for that Larry will always be special to me.
6. What book(s) are you reading now?
I’m reading a book about deep-water salvage diving, which is research for my upcomqing Collectors series that kicks off Dec. 24 with Lovely, Dark, and Deep. The series is about a group of ruthless collectors who have an international game to see who can be first to collect priceless lost treasures. In this first book, a marine biologist and a washed-up salvage diver get caught up in the race to recover the fabled ruby cross of the Knights Templar. So I’ve been reading about knights and deep-water marine archaeology and the shipwreck history of Nova Scotia—an interesting combination! Since I’m actively writing right now, I’m avoiding any type of fiction lest something inadvertently rub off.
There you have it from Susannah Sandlin herself.....we're getting another Penton book Whoo Hoo! I'm so excited about getting Cage's story and looking forward to reading that one next spring!
Check out our reviews of The Penton Legacy series!
Haven't read the series yet? Need to own it for your own collection? Guess what.....Susannah's giving away a copy! Leave us a comment explaining who your favorite vampire is and why, and Susannah will provide you with a copy of one of the books from the Penton Legacy series!
a Rafflecopter giveaway