Today, on the release day of her second book, I had the chance to have a conversation with Heather MacKinnon, author of Changed, and now Shift!
I had a lot of fun talking to her and I'm looking forward to read more of her books!
Q. First of all, what was your inspiration? Your last book was a Vampire novel, wasn't it? What made you write a werewolf novel this time?
A. Yes, my last novel featured vampires! My first paranormal loves! I chose to write about werewolves this time because I love the passion and heat that these particular paranormal beings always exude. I had the idea that werewolves would be born as multiple births (small litters) and then had the idea of writing about a set of quintuplet werewolves. The rest of the story grew from that initial idea.
Q. All of the McCoy sisters have such distinctive characters. Were they by any chance inspired from people you know? Or were they all completely fictional?
A. Thank you! I really strove to make the sisters have individual personalities and not just be "one of the sisters", so I'm so glad that came across for you! And no, they're not based off of any real person I know, although I think I'd be great friends with each of them (well, maybe not Beatrice). Some of their characters were early ideas, like I knew Beatrice would be a tough cookie, and that Evey would be the bubbly, fun-loving youngest sister. The other ladies formed in my mind a little later on, and I couldn't be happier with how they turned out!
Q. Who was your most favorite character to create? And why?
A. That's like choosing my favorite dog! Some days it's one and some day's it's the other. I will say, it was a lot of fun writing Evey. She's so much fun no matter what she's doing. I also really enjoyed Abraham. Writing a strong alpha character who grew up with four sisters and therefore has a much softer side was complex and fulfilling. I hope their characters mean as much to the readers as they meant to me!
Q. If you had to, who is the first character from Shift that you'd kill?
A. Ben. Bye-bye. Haha. He's terrible, I pretty much had to think "what's the worst thing that could come out of this guy's mouth right now" in order to write his dialogue.
Q. Are you a planner or a pantser?
A. Pantser! The most planning I do is to write bullet points for different events or scenes I've thought up in advance. Then I'll arrange them in what I think their chronological order should be. That's the best I can do as far as planning goes. There's only a chapter or two in advance in my head at a time. Hopefully my style is working!
Q. What is your favorite time to write? Do you follow a specific schedule or do you write as inspiration strikes?
A. I like to write after work. I spend a lot of time during my shifts thinking of my story and what I want to write and it's almost bursting out of me by the time I get home. As far as schedules, I do attend a meeting every Monday night called Shut Up & Write that I try to always make because it really motivates me to write and I can usually get at least one chapter written there. Beyond that, I try to get another 1-2 chapters done per week when I have nothing else major going on. However, when I'm nearing the end, I'm usually writing 1-2 chapters per day.
Q. Which was the most difficult scene to write in Shift?
A. Her actual shift! If you're a fan of the paranormal, you've seen or read of shifters, but being inside the head of someone who's going through it for the first time is more rare. I had to really stretch my imagination for that scene.
Q. I loved Charlie the cat and his skidding nails. What inspired you to create the main man as Elizabeth calls him?
(I think that guy deserves some recognition, therefore the question 💖)
A. Charlie the cat is modeled after my own dog, Charlie! We've had him seven years, and he is just the sweetest little dog, and the biggest cuddler you've ever met. I wanted Elizabeth to have a companion, but knew with her work schedule, a dog would be out of the question. Therefore, she got a cat that's inspired by my dog!
Q. When will we get to read Howl, the book two? The suspense is killing me!
A. I'm so glad to hear you're excited to read Howl! I am currently writing, and plan to publish this year, hopefully sometime around the middle of 2018.
Q. What's your favorite thing about the Paranormal genre?
A. What you need to know about me, is I'm a huge sap. I am a sucker for anything romance--it's what drives me. So what draws me to the paranormal genre is the eternal aspect of their romance. With vampires, they live forever and therefore their love never dies. With werewolves, at least with my werewolves, there's such a thing as "fated mates" which is like a soul mate. That one person in the world they were meant to find and love forever. That's so magical to me and what will always draw me to this genre.
I love the paranormal genre too! Thank You for having a chat with me!
About The Author:
Heather MacKinnon is an author living in the research triangle in North Carolina with her husband and two troublemaking dogs. She grew up on Long Island and spent her young adult years in various states in New England. This led to her subsequent addiction to Dunkin’ Donuts latte’s and her gratuitous use of the word “wicked”. She’s tried her hand at many jobs throughout the years as she strove to find the one that made her happy. Heather has sold chicken, kitchen knives, auto body supplies, PR packages, and computer software. She’s been a cashier, a waitress, a cook, a hotel concierge, a phlebotomist, and an Uber driver. Though her jobs have been many, her passion has always been reading. She’d hide in the bathroom and read between sales calls, or find a lonely corner in the kitchen and whip out her kindle between waiting on tables. After a lifetime of enjoying other people’s words, she decided to write down some of her own. Her debut novel is Changed.
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Read my reviews of her books here:
You can follow her on:
Read my reviews of her books here: