celestialgldfsh (celestialgldfsh) wrote,

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An Interview with Cassie Alexander, author of the new urban fantasy NIGHTSHIFTED

I'm talking today with author Cassie Alexander. Her debut urban fantasy, Nightshifted, is published by St. Martin's Press on May 22nd, with other books in the series forthcoming. I was lucky enough to read an advanced copy of Nightshifted, and I enjoyed it immensely. I love urban fantasy. I love medical realism. Bring those elements together, and I'm one happy reader.

1) Congratulations! First of all, can you tell everyone about Nightshifted and what inspired the book?

Nightshifted is the story of Edie Spence, a nurse who works on a ward for vampire exposed humans -- and I happen to be a nurse in real life, so the medical parts are real.

The first inspiration for the book was me being freaked out by my first year of nursing -- writing Nightshifted helped me to process the almost PTSD you get when you're thrown into a critical care situation that no one could have prepared you for. Your nursing school tries to prepare you, but it can't really, your parents/friends/husband have no idea what you're actually seeing at work, nor do they want to hear about it really, and your coworkers are so blase because they've already seen with and dealt with everything, for years, that it's pretty lonely being new on your own. (Even if you do like weird things, like seeing people's lungs. God help you if you don't like weird things, you'll never make it as a nurse.)

The second inspiration was a doctor blowing me off. When I realized that no one ever believes nightshift, a book was born.

2) I'm curious about your journey to publication. How is it that the book was released in Germany first?

Nightshifted was supposed to be released in the US in Dec 2011, but they pushed it back to June (don't ask me why, no clue ;)) but since everything was turned in Germany, they went ahead with their publication schedule.

3) You must work long hours as a nurse. How do you balance the job and writing time?

Nursing is very physical, it's exhausting, and I do work nightshift, so I lose out on a lot of time sleeping in before shifts, or sleeping up after them. I wrote Nightshifted during my first year as a nurse while I was working full-time, but luckily I'm part-time now, which helps immensely. Other than that, I'm pretty possessive of my writing time, and my husband and cat are very supportive and understand I need to be at the computer a lot ;).

4) Okay, now to shift the topic somewhat. What were your favorite books and authors when you were a kid?

When I was a kid, Andre Norton was like unto a god. Other biggies included CS Lewis, David Eddings, anyone who wrote a Star Trek tie-in novel ;), and when I ran away from home I took a copy of Neuromancer with me.

5) What was your most recent favorite book?

I'm reading Discount Armageddon by Seanan McGuire right now, and loving it. Any book that can keep me on the elliptical machine for an extra twenty minutes sheer magic.

6) What comes next after the release of Nightshifted?

Moonshifted comes out in late November, and then Shapeshifted next summer, and then after that, we'll see! :D

Thanks, Cassie!

If you want to learn more Cassie, you can take a look at her web site and Twitter. On May 22nd, Nightshifted is available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Powell's, and other booksellers.

Tags: cassie alexander, interview

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