Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Interview & Giveaway: Inherited Damnation Series by Claire Ashgrove

UFI welcomes Author Jennifer Allis Provost. Thanks for Joining us!!

What can you tell my readers about yourself that they might not know from looking on your bio or reading in another interview? 

I’m really an intensely private person.  I don’t particularly come off that way, I don’t think – I’m social and outgoing and have a lot of fun connecting with readers in various ways, particularly in person.  But “letting people in”?  Not so much.  I keep things close to the vest, and I don’t trust easily.  I’m more comfortable with small groups of close friends than I am large groups of acquaintances.  Which doesn’t always make my author job easy.  Laugh!

What do you enjoy doing on your down time? 

Down time?  What’s that! :Laugh: Hm.  I love spending time with my chickens, as incredibly boring as that sounds.  If someone had told me ten years ago that I’d be crazy about birds, I would have laughed in their face.  But chickens are fascinating.  And friendly.  And they make me laugh.  Particularly when they are Banty roosters who think they are top dog and “ankle-bite” everything in their path.  I have over forty, and each one has a different personality, a different attitude.  Each trip to the layer house is like Easter, the egg colors fascinate me.  Ducks are equally amusing in different ways.  And turkeys have now claimed a soft spot in my heart…which is ironic considering as adults they are intensely ugly.  But personality?  Oh my.  Amazing beasts.

My boys and I are hoping to get into quail this year as well, and maybe some pheasants.  We’re also hoping our preservation breeding program can get off the ground with the infusion of some quality birds and some isolated coops.  It’s a work in progress, but one I absolutely love.

What is your Favorite part of writing? 

By far it’s the world building.  I love creating rules, boundaries, and tomes of useless information that will only ever be used in tiny bits.  Running a close second is the research that goes along with that.

Do you have any certain routines you must follow as you write? 

Anymore, I find I’m not so good at blocking out the world around me and have to have quiet.  Other must haves are coffee (and endless supply, thank you very much!) and something to snack on.

What are some of your Favorite books or Authors in the Urban Fantasy/ Paranormal Genres? 

Oddly enough, I don’t often read these genres, truth to tell.  I will say I find Myra Lang’s SPARK RISING absolutely fascinating (and full disclosure, yes I edited it, but she did all the hard work, not me☺).  The world building is what suckers me on a good UF read and hers is fantastic.  I really, really enjoyed Aldred Chase’s ALL THINGS TO EVERYONE.  It’s more middle grade, definitely not romance, but it captivated me.

How would you pitch the Inherited Damnation Series to someone who has not heard of it before? 

A speculative twist on the lost ancient Celt tribes blended with a splash of demon mythology.  It’s full of danger and darkness with just enough romance to keep things perfectly spicy!

Can you tell us a little bit about the world that the Inherited Damnation Series is set in? 

It’s completely set in present day, but the eight siblings are immortal descendants of a lost Celt tribe, the Selgovae.  So while their “normal” is the same as yours and mine, in so much as every day life, their roots run far deeper and they have broader experiences to build upon.

However, throughout the series, I visit different places.  You’ll start in Maine, and stay on the east coast for a while, then venture to Scotland, the mountains, England and even Paris, France.  Each of the siblings lives in different areas of the world, and I try to bring those brief forays to far-away places to life as much as possible.

There’s also a definite historical feel in certain areas.  I really tried to grasp the sense of “old” as much as possible.  Although, if you’re familiar with my Templar series, there aren’t any heavy accents to wade through ;)

Do you have a favorite scene in Cursed to Kill?  

I do!  There’s a scene where Cian, the hero, is struggling with the truth of his existence.  He knows Miranda will never believe he’s over two thousand years old and his blood is demonic.  He also knows he’s done the unforgiveable and fallen in love, making her a target for his bloodthirsty side.  He’s standing in his bedroom thinking things through and she wakes up.  I don’t want to reveal any spoilers, but the emotion in the exchange they have is one of my favorite scenes in that book.  I find what he tells her both noble and heart-breaking.

Which character was your favorite to write about? What about the hardest to write about? 

Oh, goodness… that’s tough.  And honestly, it boils down to the same answer—Taran, the hero in the last book.  He’s very dark, and in the initial books I hadn’t fully plotted out where he was going.  So it was very easy to assign every horrible deed to him—he was my scapegoat and I enjoyed truly hating him.

Until about the time my initial editor remarked she had no idea how I was going to redeem him.
By that time I knew his plot, but even going into the book I realized it wasn’t going to be a cakewalk.  He does some very unredeemable things throughout the series and I needed to make readers like him.  Somehow.  That ended up being the hardest part and the hardest character to shape.  But during that process he became my favorite.  I finally understood why he did the things he did…as well as some of the secrets he harbors.

Before he came along though, it was so Dáire.  Lol!

What Other Projects can we look forward to reading from you? 

At the moment, I confess, what I’m working on isn’t under the Claire Ashgrove name.  I have contracts to fulfill as Tori St. Claire, and I’m presently embedded in Romantic Era British working class with the Sharrington Chronicles, written as Sophia Garrett.  (Historical romance.)

I do hope to set the next Windwalker story loose this year, and the Templars will come to a final end.  When those will happen, exactly, I can’t say – I really don’t know how time will play out with the contract demands.  The best advice I could give if someone wants to know right away, is to sign up for my newsletter.  I don’t send it out often, only when there’s something important to say, but that’s usually my first go-to for announcements.  And this year, I hope to include some newsletter-only content that’s fiction.  I’m working on some ideas there for a short serial.

INHERITED DAMNATION is an 8 book paranormal romance series being released as one book every three weeks between January 27th and June 23rd, 2015.

Damned at birth, eight immortal children of a high priestess are compelled to kill the one that holds their heart. They can never fall in love. Driven by the need to finally destroy their evil sire and break the curse, each struggles to balance their desire for innocence against the dark needs of their conflicted souls.

The series contains mythos shared between the volumes, but each book stands on its own with a newly featured couple.

The first volume, Cursed to Kill, is available now!

Cursed To Kill
Inherited Damnation #1
 One of eight children born to an ancient Celtic priestess and sired by a demonic incubus, Cian McLaine suffers from a centuries-old curse. Though his immortality allows him to enjoy the pleasures of mortal life, he is plagued by the desire to kill. As long as he doesn't fall in love he can keep the compulsion at bay.

When Cian walked into her rare bookstore months ago, Miranda Phillips never imagined she'd lose her heart to the handsome playboy. Her reward for doing so was abandonment. Cian left as mysteriously as he appeared, in the middle of the night with no explanation, no goodbye. Now he's back, and passion flares just as hot. But Cian has secrets. If Miranda is to survive, she must uncover the truth and free his darkened soul.
Building on a background of fantasy game design, a fascination with history, and a lifetime love of books, Award-Winning Author Claire Ashgrove brings to life action-filled, passionate journeys of the heart. Her paranormal series, The Curse of the Templars, marries the history of the Knights Templar with the chilling aspirations of the most unholy--a must-read for speculative fiction fans. For romance fans, she also writes as the National Bestselling Author Tori St. Claire and historical romance as Sophia Garrett.

In her non-writing time, she owns and operates Finish The Story, a full-scale editing house co-founded with Bryan Thomas Schmidt. She lives in Missouri and enjoys cooking, studying ancient civilizations, and spending downtime with her two sons and too-many horses, cats, and dogs.

To learn more, visit her at: or For all the latest updates look for the Untamed Spirit blog, via any of her websites.

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