Charlaine Harris to visit Australia
We have tracked down some details for Charlaine Harris’s visit to Australia.
Saturday 28 July
Tru Blood event, John Niland Scientia Building, University of NSW, High Street, Kensington. Check their website for more details.
Sunday 29 July
Tru Blood event, The Spot Basement Theatre, 198 Berkeley Street, Melbourne. Check their website for more details.
Tuesday 31 July, 6.30 – 8.30 pm
An evening with Charlaine Harris
Perth Ballroom, Parmelia Hilton. Refreshments will be served. Tickets: $28 per person. To book: phone Dymocks Garden City 08 9364 7687 or 08 9364 7387 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday 1 August, 6.00 pm for 6.30 – 8.00 pm
An evening with Charlaine Harris—author talk and Q&A session, followed by book signing
Burnside Ballroom, 401 Greenhill Road Tusmore, Adelaide. Refreshments: wine provided by Fox Creek Wines, dessert by The Baker’s Dozen. Tickets: $10. To book: call Dymocks Adelaide on 8223 5380 or Burnside Library on 8366 4280
Thursday 2 August, 6.00 – 9.00 pm
An evening with Charlaine Harris—author talk, Q&A, then book sales and signing
Event Cinemas at Myer Centre, Level 3, Myer Centre, Elizabeth Street. Tickets: $20 ($15 for Booklover members). To book: visit Dymocks on Albert Street, call 07 3007 2800 or email email@example.com
An interview with Charlaine Harris
What kind of books did you love when you were a child?
I was as omnivorous a reader as a child as I am as an adult. I read the usual books: Nancy Drew, Trixie Belden, all the series books, though I wasn’t as fond of the Bobbsey Twins or the Hardy Boys. I also read Poe, Bronte, and anything else I could get my hands on.
How old were you when you knew that you wanted to be a writer?
I think I was seven.
When did you first sit down and start to write? How long after that before you were published?
I started to write in grade school. I was published when I was in my late twenties.
How hard was it to first get published?
Not hard at all. I know that’s disgusting. I took a creative writing class the one year I lived in St Louis, and the teacher was Shannon Ravenel, who had at that time just left Houghton Mifflin. (Since then, of course, she’s been with Algonquin Press, and very revered in her career.) Shannon liked what I wrote in the class enough to recommend it to an editor at Houghton Mifflin, and the book got published.
Once you were published, how hard was it to sell the idea of the Southern Vampire Mysteries series?
Very hard. At the time, crossover books were very rare, and no one knew how to classify Dead Until Dark. It took my agent two years to find a place for it.
What authors do you read and/or admire now that you’re an author too?
Being an author myself has little to do with it, except I hate having solutions (to the mystery) brought to my attention by the way the book is written. I read a lot, and I read across the board. I might name different writers in each interview, but I think Charlie Huston is great. So is Lee Child. I always enjoy Kim Harrison and Kelley Armstrong. Jim Butcher is wonderful. I read Laurell K Hamilton and Dana Stabenow, and I loved Sarah Monette’s series.
What was your inspiration for the Southern Vampire Mysteries series? What made you branch out into vampires, shapeshifters and telepaths?
Inspiration is a nebulous word and one I distrust. I planned the series around the character of Sookie, because I wanted to write about a woman who was dating a vampire, and why she’d do such a stupid thing. I branched out because I like to keep myself (as well as the reader, I hope) entertained.
The Sookie series seems to be popular with readers of a variety of genre. Were you expecting it to be so popular with romance readers? Was that planned, or just a bonus?
I didn’t expect it to be so popular with romance readers, but I certainly hoped it would be. Romance readers have a wonderful elasticity in their reading habits, and I find as long as love of some kind is involved, they’ll be on board. It’s a wonderful attitude.
Do you have a definite ending planned for the series, or is that quite a way off yet? How many more Sookie books will we be getting?
I’ve signed for a total of thirteen. I do know what the ending will be, and I am deciding now whether to extend the series further or not.
How has the True Blood series changed your life? What do you think of all the hype? Do you find you have less time for writing now?
I definitely have less time for writing because there’s a lot of business involved in just being Charlaine Harris now. It’s very strange. I’m always grateful, but sometimes also exasperated.
I’ve read that you watch and enjoy the series. Is it strange to have other people writing your characters? Do you sometimes wish a certain character hadn’t done a certain thing?
Yes, at first it was very strange to see other people moving my characters around. I’m constantly challenged by the series, but on the whole, I love it. They’re following their own path, and it’s going to be different from mine.
Do you think anything that happens in the TV series will ever influence what will happen in the books?
I hope not. Since I’m so far ahead of the TV show, I don’t think so.
Is there anything from one of the books that you are just dying to see in the TV series?
I’d love to see Pyramid explode! And I can’t wait to see Niall. That would be great.
I have heard you have a cameo in Season 2 of True Blood—is that true? What was that experience like?
Yes, I’m in the last episode. It was a wonderful day, eating lunch in a booth at Merlotte’s with Alan. And watching them work was fascinating.
You’ve both edited and contributed to a number of anthologies. Is it difficult juggling both hats?
Yes, but it’s good for me to do other things.
What’s next for you? Any plans to branch out in another direction?
Every day brings new things.
What are you most looking forward to doing while you are in Australia?
Meeting my readers and seeing their wonderful country.
Find out more about Charlaine on her website.