Friday, August 31, 2012

King Solomon's Wives: Hunted by Holly McDowell / Interview


The two thousand descendants of King Solomon’s ancient harem have the ultimate power of seduction: Their very touch is as addictive as any drug.

But that power comes at a price: Wives are only fertile until the age of twenty-four. They can bear only daughters.And they die giving birth.

Hunted for hundreds of generations by men who crave their touch and fear its power, the Wives have kept themselves safe by following three simple rules:

A Wife shall have no meaningful relationships outside the clan.

A Wife’saddictivetouch may be used only for procreation or to protect the clan.

A Wife shall sacrifice herself for her daughter at the age of twenty-four.

But tonight, the rules have been broken, and someone must pay.

In the blistering first episode of KING SOLOMON’S WIVES: HUNTED, we meet Sumarra on the night she plans to conceive.Instead, she and the other wives find themselves under attack from a group of male hunters, intent on destroying them. Sumarra has always broken small rules and indulged rebellious tendencies. And now that the Wives have been found, her defiance will either be their salvation or her own undoing.

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Welcome Holly!  It’s so great of you to stop by today!  Tell us about your current release.

King Solomon's Wives is a serial novel, released in 100-page episodes, about a group of women alive today who descended from Solomon's ancient harem. It's a contemporary story with plenty of historical context.


I've imagined a whole mythology around the women--living in the harem caused genetic changes that gave them an addictive touch. They die in childbirth and always give birth to daughters who carry their memories. It's fun to write, because I can reach back to any time in history to explore the Wives' stories.

Does travel play in the writing of your books?

Absolutely. Travel is always research for me, because my characters, the Wives, live as fugitives in small groups all over the world. I've got storylines in New Orleans, Chicago and Paris coming up.


Where do you dream of traveling to and why?

Well... considering I need to set a couple of later episodes in Istanbul, I would love to go there soon. I'd also love to see Morocco and Kyoto. I love history, and I'm fascinated by cultures that are so different from mine.


When in the day/night do you write? How long per day?

Every morning, 6-8am. I rarely miss a day. I get in a few extra hours on the weekends, too. My current serial schedule is pretty tight, so I have to stay focused.


Who are your books published with?

Coliloquy, a new experimental publisher who does "active digital fiction," meaning the books are interactive. Some of their offerings are choose-your-own-adventure. Some are serials. For King Solomon's Wives, readers get to vote on the direction of the series when they reach the end of each episode.


Do you hear from your readers?

Yes! This is what made me want to go with Coliloquy to begin with. Readers decide the fate of certain characters and how I'm going to address certain plotlines. I love getting reader feedback stats every Tuesday evening. The next episode ends with the question, "Which Wife would you most like to see fall in love?" This is a difficult fate for a Wife, because love is forbidden by the clan.


What book are you reading now?

I've been getting into comic books recently. I love anything by Brian K. Vaughn. I'm reading his Saga series now.


Are the names of the characters in your novels important?  How and why?

Absolutely. My characters descend from Africa, Persia and Jerusalem, and they pass down their names and memories to their daughters. The names are thousands of years old and quite important to them. Examples: Sumarra, Nezaket, Mehve, Aisha, Harika. Each Wife has a long history and a cool story to tell in their current life.



Holly McDowell lived in Colorado, Georgia and South Carolina before discovering the magical city of Chicago. Now, she can be spotted drinking glögg, searching for the world's best tapas bar and writing in coffee shops all over the windy city.

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Giveaway ends September 22nd 11:59 PM Central Time.

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