Interview with Author Alisha Costanzo

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Can you tell us a little about your main protagonist, Ria, and what’s gotten her here?

Ria is a bit of a smart mouth. She’s independent because she’s needed to be—after losing her grandparents and never knowing her parents, but now, she has to cooperate and think of much more than her own survival.

In book one, Ria is made into a vampire and discovers that she was never really human: born half-human and half-phoenix, although there’s some complications that come with this. She’s also her maker’s Mina Harker. Cue the drama because the queen of the vamps has claimed him.

In book two, her maker is punished, and Ria has been claimed by a stranger for an intense mentorship. Neither of them knew how connected they were before they were thrown together at her maker’s request. Ria rebels, seeks out her humanity, and lures a young human into her life. Her world falls into a serious shit show.

So, in book three—if we’re sticking strictly with her story line, which really, you should read LOVING RED, “Untamed,” and “Rainbow Sprite” to see how all of the stories interact, any-who—Ria’s being trained for a new round of battles between the Celampresians (the vampire queen’s army) and the Assetato (Rosalie’s rebellion), and it’s not going well. Besides, tracking a traveling pack of wolves, the camp has a new renegade, Julia, who Ria connects with immediately, but she’s not allowed to help like she wants to.

I wish I could just keep explaining, but the books are fast-paced with a lot of action, so it’s hard to hit every issue Ria faces in them all; however, let me say that someone finally gets their comeuppance. Maybe more than one person.

 

What did you edit out of this book?

I didn’t really edit anything out of the book, but I had a few false starts for both the beginning and a few scenes littered throughout. Ria’s first drive for example didn’t happen in the first version of that scene. Instead of the group piling into a church van to track the wolves in Syracuse, where Ria gives up the keys to her commander, the four of them run along the highway and catch the scent downtown. Only after Ria’s made a mess of things, does Tahe lure her into the driver’s seat of a car, which she eventually crashes.

 

Do you know who ultimately wins the war between the Celampresians and the Assetato?

Kind of? I have a lot of novels planned for the Broken World series beyond the Blood Phoenix thread. People are going to fall, lots are going to die, but I don’t think the war will truly end until everyone dies. Besides, neither of them are perfectly good or evil. In fact, I have a series started where they’re the main badies. I suppose, I’ll have to wait until I get there to see how it ends.

 

As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?

Ha! My husband and I just had this conversation the other day. And you’ll probably think I’m as crazy as he did, but Betty White is my spirit animal, just like Tina Belcher is my soul sister.

 

What is your least favorite thing about humanity?

Our tendency to be greedy. I feel that it is the antithesis of happiness. Love and happiness is the are my main factors for my own success.

Alisha Costanzo is from a Syracuse suburb. She earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of Central Oklahoma, where she currently teaches English. She’s the author of BLOOD PHOENIX: REBIRTH, BLOOD PHOENIX: CLAIMED, BLOOD PHOENIX: IMPRINTED, and LOVING RED, and co-editor of DISTORTED, UNDERWATER, and AFTER THE HAPPILY EVER AFTER. She’s currently editing her new 2017 fire-themed anthology, writing about Ria’s father, and crafting her new YA novel for its 2018 release. In the meantime, she will continue to corrupt young minds, rant about the government, and daydream about her all around nasty creatures.

 

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. Great interview, Alisha. I love Betty White too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Lorraine. She’s who I want to be when I grow up…in spirit. I’m certainly no actor or comedian. ❤

      Like

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