Thea Harrison – Author of Elder Races Series
Thank you so much for joining us today to talk about your Elder Races series. I had an opportunity to read Lord’s Fall and when I mentioned it to a friend I was told “You have to read that series, but you HAVE to start at the beginning.” Well, I am soooo happy that they recommended that to me. I LOVE this series. Not only do you have such great characters but you have such a great writing style that draws you into the story and I am constantly asking myself, “What did that mean?” “Where is she going with this?” and the next thing I know I’m already done with the book. I have already convinced my “Paranormal Gang” at my office that they have to read it so there are a lot of whispered conversations going on about Elder Races throughout the day. :)
Hi, thank you for having me! And thank you so much for your kind words. I’m delighted you and your friends have been enjoying the series, and especially delighted to be here with you today.
Tell us about yourself. Have you always known you wanted to write?
I think I have always known it. I taught myself to read when I was around four years old, and I’ve had my nose stuck in a book ever since. In my teens, one of my aunts had romances in the house when we visited, which turned me onto the genre, and I wrote my first Harlequin when I was nineteen. After writing category romance for sixteen or so years, I turned my attention to other things—single parenthood, returning back to college, and nonprofit work. But I always knew I wanted to continue with writing fiction somehow, so I was absolutely over the moon when Executive Editor Cindy Hwang at Berkley Publishing offered me two multi-book contracts for the Elder Races series.
Can you tell us briefly who are the Elder Races?
The Elder Races are those creatures that predate humankind on an alternative Earth. They are quite diverse—there are Wyr, Demonkind, Elves, Dark and Light Fae, Nightkind and, eventually when humankind came into existence and some showed an aptitude for magic, witches.
In this series, the Elder Races live openly alongside humankind. Currently I have a goal of getting up on my website one background piece per book (there is also one background piece for the four novellas), which you can find here, so there is a lot of information about each Elder Race for those who are interested.
I am absolutely fascinated by the fact that your first book featured Dragos, the Lord of the Wyr, and Pia, then your next three novels and four novellas, go off and feature other members of the Elder Races. Now, Lord’s Fall is bringing us back again to feature Dragos and Pia. I LOVE this! They were great characters and sometimes I just want more from certain characters in a series, not just a drop in. What made you do this and how do we get other writers to do this too?
I’m excited that you love this—I loved the idea too, and so did Cindy when I pitched the idea to her. I feel exactly the way you do. Sometimes I want more from characters than just a drop in or cameo in another book, and Pia and Dragos had so much story left to tell. I was so happy to get the chance to tell it. But I’m afraid I don’t know how we get other writers to do this too. Perhaps if Lord’s Fall is successful, it may happen more! After all, it’s one of the things that I really enjoy about urban fantasy series that feature a couple in several books.
In Lord’s Fall, Dragos needs to fill the open spaces left by his sentinel guards. He sets up the Sentinel Games which is an epic gladiator type battle between the Wyr. Why the Games? Why can’t he just go “You and You”?
Dragos could indeed go “you and you” and pick whomever he wants, but he’s actually not interested in taking that path—and he wasn’t interested with the original seven sentinels either. What he IS interested in is finding who exactly ARE the strongest Wyr in the world. And he’s exceedingly interested in making sure that the rest of the world knows that he has the strongest Wyr working for him. The Games are not only the result of a fact finding mission, but they are blatant showmanship.
And while the games go on, Pia goes off to the Elven demesne on a diplomatic mission to end an embargo, but that doesn’t go so smoothly, does it?
No, I’m afraid it doesn’t go smoothly! The Oracle (from the fourth book, Oracle’s Moon) had given Dragos a cryptic prophecy, so Pia and Dragos knew something was impending on their horizon. They didn’t know quite what, and they didn’t know when, but they DO decide to act from their strengths and not live in fear. And the problems with the Elves, which developed when Dragos broke treaties, simply weren’t going away. So Pia decides to confront those issues, and she convinces Dragos to agree to the plan. And Then Things Happen!
If I can ask, where will you be going with your next story in the series? Will this feature a new character or will we be revisiting with another character? Do you think you will ever do another Dragos/Pia story?
The next story is actually written, and it’s under submission to my editor. It’s Aryal’s story—I won’t mention the hero’s name just yet—and, like the books that follow Dragon Bound, Aryal’s story follows directly after the events in Lord’s Fall.
I’ve done some plotting for general story arcs for the next three books, and I’ve included the possibility of another Dragos and Pia story, should my editor and the readers show enough interest. I can’t wait to find out what happens next!
At the end of Lord’s Fall, you include a look into your upcoming new series, A Game of Shadows, specifically the first book,Rising Darkness. Can you give us an idea of what to expect in this series?
The Game of Shadows series is actually a duology, and currently there are no plans to take it further. Both books are a departure from the Elder Races in that I focus on four points of view in the story, not just the hero and the heroine. It’s based in another alternative Earth, and the mythology of the two books is quite developed. I’ve seen a draft of the cover art, and I can’t wait to share it with folks!
Thank you so much for stopping by and talking with us today. We look forward to reading more Elder Races stories and checking out the upcoming Rising Darkness.
Thank you again for having me today! It was a pleasure to visit with you!
A question for readers: which stories have you read where you would love to revisit the hero and heroine in future books?
Congratulations to our winner, Mary Jo. Hope you enjoy your copy of Lord’s Fall.
Check out our Elder Races reviews (so far). I can’t wait to get to the short stories:
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Thea Harrison is the pen name for Teddy Harrison. Thea has traveled extensively, having lived in England and explored Europe for several years. Now she resides in Colorado. She wrote her first book, a romance, when she was nineteen and had sixteen romances published under the name Amanda Carpenter.
She took a break from writing to collect a couple of graduate degrees and a grown child. She experienced waitressing as a teenager, has worked as an activist for a non-profit consumer rights organization, has been a receptionist, an office manager, a penniless graduate student, a director of development and research, and a single mom. Her graduate degrees are in Philanthropic Studies and Library Information Science, but her first love has always been writing fiction.
Her paranormal Elder Races series began May 3, 2011 with Dragon Bound, which won RT Book Review’s Book of the Year Award, and the Romance Writer’s of America RITA in the paranormal romance category.
All five of her full length novels in the Elder Races series have won Top Picks from RT Book Reviews. Book two, Storm’s Heart and book four, Oracle’s Moon, hit the USA Today bestseller’s list, while book three, Serpent’s Kiss, hit the New York Times extended bestseller list.
She adores animals and currently resides with two small dogs that have very large personalities.