Monday, August 12, 2013

Interview with the author of the newly released paranormal romance, Running Home. Meet Julie Hutchings!

Today I have a very special surprise. As the Books of the Dead Press’s recently acquired books have been published, you might have noticed that I’ve been inviting the authors over for brief interviews. Well, in addition to John Taff’s The Bell Witch, which has been doing quite well, another book was released last week titled Running Home. It even topped 25th place in the Dark Fantasy category on Amazon with its initial release. Readers seem to be loving it, so I’m glad I’m not alone in my opinion. Another surprising fact, not only is it Julie’s first published book, but the first in a trilogy. I got a chance to read Running Home and couldn’t help but be pulled in. Here’s the summary, a few comments other authors have made after reading it, followed by my review:

Death hovers around Ellie Morgan like the friend nobody wants. She doesn’t belong in snow-swept Ossipee, New Hampshire, at a black tie party––but that is where she is, and where he is: Nicholas French, the man who mystifies her with a feeling of home she’s been missing, and the impossible knowledge of her troubled soul.

Nicholas followed an abomination that is one of his own, but finds that fate has driven him to New Hampshire. He is a being of the Shinigami, a heroic vampire order that save their victims from more tragic ends. And he knows why Ellie is human repellent… why physical agony grips them when apart.

"Running Home by Julie Hutchings is set to be one of the leading debut novels of its genre."
~ Dylan J. Morgan: best selling author of Hosts and the Blood War Trilogy

"This is like the Dark Knight of vampire books. Up there with not just Anne Rice, but Stephen King."
~ Phil Cone, author of Paddy Nemesis

"Running Home has a dark beauty which entwines the mundane and the magical."
~ J.C. Michael, author of Discoredia

"A fascinating take on vampires, unlike anything I've seen before, filled with a rich and beautiful culture. I was left simply begging for more."
~ J. Liz Hill, author of Bound

"I can't remember a time I've enjoyed a vampire novel so much. The blend of self-aware characters and unique, fresh mythology made for an engaging, addictive read. I believe I have found my new favorite urban vampire story."
~ Frances Button, Opening Line Literary 'Zine

"Forget about creatures that glitter, change forms, or howl under the full moon bathed in the blood of their victims. They aren't nearly as important as the human element...and it is the human element Julie Hutchings never forgets in Running Home."
~ Lydia Aswolf, Host of Lydia's Literary Lowdown

My Review:
Eliza's story in Running Home is one of intrigue, vampires, love, hate, and destiny. Eliza, Kat, Roman, and everyone else are so real and vivid that you can't help but feel for them, their troubles, and their growing inner turmoil. The pain and events within this story can best be described as a cursed blessing that pulls you from one line to the next, never letting go. If you are a fan of the Twilight series or Amanda Hocking's Trylle trilogy, Running Home is right up your alley.

And so I am very happy to welcome Julie Hutchings to the party today. This is a great start to an exciting writing career for Julie and the writing pair known as the Undead Duo. They even blog at I hope you enjoy our little diatribe.

WK: Thanks for joining us, Julie. That’s a great book you wrote, but the question on most people’s minds after reading Running Home is, what are you working on now?

JH: Thanks. Editing a novel called The Harpy about a girl named Charity whose terrible life and emotional turmoil evolve her into a vengeful monster with a very questionable mission. I will soon be editing The Animal as well, a novel that I needed to break up with for a little while. I finished it, and it needed some alone time before editing. And of course, I’ll be diving head first into the sequel to Running Home.

WK: Wow! Sounds like you have a variety of projects underway. Can you tell us what inspired Running Home?

JH: Sure. It was the product of having a baby. I suddenly had a capacity for fear that I never had before, just a bone-crushing horror of ever losing that child somehow made me bring my forever fear of death to life through Ellie in the novel. She has a really close connection with death, not by choice. We’re a lot alike that way.

WK: I see. I would never have guessed that was the inspiration, but it certainly makes sense. I couldn’t help but notice that this is geared similarly to another very famous collection of stories. What do the inevitable comparisons to Twilight mean to you?

JH: I have no issue with being compared to Twilight. The books are very different, and Twilight  was the first book I read on maternity leave, in that haze you find yourself in, and I fell in love with it. I loved the way this really awkward girl in a beyond ordinary life had a hidden extraordinary one where it didn’t seem possible. I wanted that feeling, but for grownups. Twilight gets a bad rap for the writing, but it’s writing that appeals to every age, across the world. The woman is living the dream! I’m not afraid to like what I like, I don’t give much of a shit who disagrees. Turns out millions of people all over the world agree with me.

WK: Good point. There is a lot to be said for reader’s preferences. In the end, they determine which books succeed or fail based on their opinions and reviews. I’m sure if every author could, they’d develop a writing routine to make every book a success. So what does your writing routine look like?

JH: When it’s not summer, when the entire world seems to implode on me, I get up for 5AM Writer’s Club on Twitter, and get a couple of child-free hours of work in then. I tend to write a bit all day, a paragraph here, a page there, and edit as I go. A couple of nights a week I go to my childhood friend Kristen Strassel’s house to write. I do listen to music, always different for each work. I try not to overwrite my first draft just to have to go back and pull a bunch of unnecessary crap later.

WK: Now that’s a bit unusual. How has having a writing partner helped you get Running Home off the ground?

JH: Kristen was the first person to ever read any of the book. She was one of the first people I told, and when she told me she had a book idea she’d been toying with, we became The Undead Duo. We committed to each other. Running Home was already finished by then, but completely handwritten, all in a hundred notebooks. Kristen encouraged me not only to transfer it to a laptop, but to query it, and go to conferences, and get on Twitter to promote it, and start Deadly Ever After with her. Without that once or twice a week commitment, and constant talking to each other about our writing, I don’t think I would have ever done with it what I have. Kristen also convinced me to quit my 10 year job to focus more on my writing. Best decision she ever helped me make.

WK: Quitting your job for writing is a difficult decisions, especially with finances on the line. I’m glad you made the leap and hope it works out for you. If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?

JH: Teaching karate. It’s the other place I feel completely at home.

WK: LOL. Again, not quite what I expected. Julie, you are certainly full of surprises. What can we expect in the sequel to Running Home?

JH: Running Away brings Eliza closer to her fate, to Japan, where we meet a lot of new characters, and see a whole new side of our girl. I have the first draft done, but I want to change quite a bit of it. The last book in the trilogy is going to be Crawling Back, and I’m really looking forward to giving you something unexpected there. Nobody is really what they seem to be. I’m a jerk like that.

WK: That sounds like an exciting story and one I’d love to read more of. Keep in touch, and try to keep that little one of yours away from the Shinigami. The last thing you need is them taking note of the little tike.

So readers, if you enjoyed Twilight or Amanda Hocking’s Trylle series, you need to check out Julie Hutching’s new release, Running Home. You won’t regret it. It’s available in e-book right now at a great price.

To follow Julie Hutchings and keep in touch with her upcoming releases, here are a few methods of contacting her:

Weston Kincade ~ Author of the Altered Realities series, A Life of Death collection of novels, and Strange Circumstances