Before I Wake
Banshee Kaylee Cavanaugh was murdered and then brought back - but not to life. She now works for the Reclamation Department in the afterlife, repossessing souls from those who shouldn't have them. She's falling in love with her new boyfriend, reaper Tod, and is struggling to pretend to be human while helping her ex-boyfriend - Tod's brother Nash - battle a drug addiction. Then she receives her first assignment: to repossess a stolen soul from Avari, the hellion who's been after her all year - and has finally discovered a way out of the Netherworld.
Before I Wake is the 6th book in Vincent's Soul Screamers series. This young adult series is about a teenage banshee trying to balance a normal high school experience with the terrifying, hidden world she's just discovered. Rachel Vincent's Soul Screamers digital prequel My Soul To Lose and ebook novella Reaper have garnered high download numbers.
Rachel Vincent has had short stories in the Mammoth series of Vampire Romance Immortal, edited by P.C. Cast, Kiss Me Deadly, a YA paranormal collection, and Enthralled, a YA paranormal collection edited by New York Times bestselling authors Kelley Armstrong and Melissa Marr.
Rachel has a vast internet presence - including her own websites and group sites such as www.deadlineedames.com among others.
Before I Wake
Author: Rachel Vincent
Interview with Rachel Vincent
Question: What originally inspired the Vincent's Soul Screamers series?
Rachel Vincent: Kaylee herself. Bean sidhes are prominent in Gaelic folklore, but not much had been done with them in YA fiction, so I knew the idea had room to grow. Once I knew who and what the main character was, the rest of the first book kind of fell into place around her, and the series grew from there, each story building on the previous instalment.
Question: What do you enjoy most about writing for a teenage audience?
Rachel Vincent: I love that even for the most jaded teen, everything can feel new and fresh and exciting, even if it's also scary and painful; if that makes sense. Teens are either just embarking on the rest of their lives or (often in fiction) facing a premature end to it. Both situations tend toward very intense emotions, which, for me, are fun to write.
Question: How do you go about the change when writing for different audiences and genre?
Rachel Vincent: I really don't change much. It's actually just a matter of perspective. Teens think about things differently than adults do, and they talk differently than adults do sometimes (though some teens communicate in very mature ways, and some adults are really just big kids). But other than that, not much changed about my style and language.
Question: What's the best thing about creating the character of Kaylee Cavanaugh?
Rachel Vincent: Watching her grow and evolve. She's always been a highly moral person. Kind of driven to do what's right, even if that gets her in trouble. But over the course of the series, she's had to make decisions in situations where there is no right answer. All the choices are bad, but one has to be chosen, and she has to live with the fallout, both literally and in the sense of facing her own guilt. She's matured a lot, because of the choices she's had to make, and that's interesting for me to watch.
Question: Are any of your characters based on people you've met?
Rachel Vincent: No. A couple of the minor names come directly from friends who asked years ago to be put into a book, and one is a variation of a name of someone I once knew, but none of the personalities are actually based on anything real. They're fictional. Born in my head.
Question: What's next for you?
Rachel Vincent: Soon I'll be writing a new adult project for Mira, and at the moment I'm working on the first in what will hopefully be a new YA series. I can't discuss details of either project just yet, though.
Question: Can you talk about your writing schedule - when, where, how?
Rachel Vincent: Um...all the time. Everywhere. However it works. ;) Seriously, though, I spend most of my time either writing (or editing, revising, going over proofs), maintaining my internet presence, or doing the other business-but-not-writing parts of being an author. And when I'm not actively doing any of that, I'm usually plotting in my head or working through some problem in a manuscript or plot. I really live in my work. I can count on one hand the number of days this year when I didn't at least work on a plot in my head. And those days are all family birthdays and my wedding anniversary.
Interview by Brooke Hunter