Wednesday, July 3, 2013

{Tour Stop} SHUDDER by Samantha Durante—Author Interview + Giveaway

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Shudder
by Samantha Durante

Book 2 in the Stitch Trilogy

It's only been three days, and already everything is different.

Paragon is behind her, but somehow Alessa's life may actually have gotten worse. In a wrenching twist of fate, she traded the safety and companionship of her sister for that of her true love, losing a vital partner she'd counted on for the ordeal ahead. Her comfortable university life is but a distant memory, as she faces the prospect of surviving a bleak winter on the meager remains of a ravaged world. And if she'd thought she'd tasted fear upon seeing a ghost, she was wrong; now she's discovering new depths of terror while being hunted by a deadly virus and a terrifying pack of superhuman creatures thirsting for blood.

And then there are the visions.

The memory-altering "stitch" unlocked something in Alessa's mind, and now she can't shake the constant flood of alien feelings ransacking her emotions. Haunting memories of an old flame are driving a deep and painful rift into her once-secure relationship. And a series of staggering revelations about the treacherous Engineers - and the bone-chilling deceit shrouding her world's sorry history - will soon leave Alessa reeling...

The second installment in the electrifying Stitch Trilogy, Shudder follows Samantha Durante's shocking and innovative debut with a heart-pounding, paranormal-dusted dystopian adventure sure to keep the pages turning.

Genre: New Adult, Dystopia, Paranormal/Science Fiction
Add the book(s) on Goodreads here!
Purchase Stitch: Amazon / B&N / Smashwords (JUST 99 CENTS!)
Purchase Shudder: Amazon / B&N / Smashwords

**READ MY REVIEW OF STITCH HERE**
**READ MY REVIEW OF SHUDDER HERE**
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with Samantha Durante


LM: What was different about writing SHUDDER than STITCH?

Samantha: The main difference in writing Shudder for me was all of the background was out of the way – coming into the story, the reader already knows who the characters are, what’s going on in their lives, and what challenges they’re facing. So that really freed me up to dive right into the action. It was a lot of fun!

LM: Where did you get the idea/inspiration for this series?

Samantha: I actually didn’t realize at first that this would be a dystopian series. I started with the idea of a college ghost romance, but couldn’t figure out how to get the main character and her non-corporeal love interest in the same place at the same time for a happy ending. The Stitch Trilogy basically ended up being a *very* out-of-the-box way to answer that question, haha.

LM: What can readers expect from SHUDDER in terms of romance?

Samantha: MORE OF IT! There are a handful of steamy scenes between Isaac and Alessa – nothing graphic (sorry, Fifty Shades fans!), but enough to make my beta readers blush (though then again, one of my beta readers is my dad, so take this from where it comes… lol) – and you get to spend a lot more time with them just doing stuff side by side, seeing their relationship and how they depend on each other in different ways. After spending almost the entire book apart in Stitch, it was really nice for Alessa and Isaac to get to be together in Shudder!

LM: Can you share with us your favorite quote or scene from SHUDDER?

Samantha: Oohhh, so hard to pick a favorite, but here’s a quote I love (it’s from when Isaac and Alessa are talking about Isaac’s brother and Alessa’s best friend, Joe, whom they lost prior to the beginning of the series):

“The ones we love most never really leave us, do they?” he said, squeezing her hand. “They just hole up deep inside us, where we couldn’t get rid of them even if we tried.”

I think that’s a really positive way of looking at loss and remembering the people we care about who are no longer with us. It makes me think of my dog. :-)

LM: Was there anything particularly challenging about writing SHUDDER?

Samantha: The hardest part was satisfying readers’ expectations, particularly around the desire to give them a big twist. Stitch really kinda set the bar high in that respect, lol… If I tried another genre-bender again, I think the series might have “jumped the shark,” if you will, so instead I tried to focus this book on pumping up the action and romance, and building in a few big (but not quite as mind-blowing) twists to keep things exciting.

LM: I love the cover art for this series. Who designed it?

Samantha: Why, thanks so much! All my cover art is by the amazing Damon at www.damonza.com.

LM: How do you "get in the mood" to write?

Samantha: Since I write fiction on the side, I have a schedule I need to stick to for writing (mainly squeezed in on weekends), which means I always know when I *have* to be productive well in advance of when I sit down to write. So to prepare, often the night before I’ll look over my notes about what I plan to write (since I always work from a very structured chapter-by-chapter outline) to get my creative juices flowing. I find that if I do that, I usually wake up in the morning full of ideas and ready to get a few thousand words down on paper. Using this method, I’ve been lucky enough to avoid the dreaded “writer’s block” thus far!

LM: What is your biggest pet peeve?

Samantha: Smoking in public, and not being able to get away from other people’s smoke. Ugh, it’s the worst. I’ve always been sensitive to it and now that I’m pregnant I basically want to kill anyone who smokes in my vicinity. Sorry, smokers, I know it’s a free country and all, but seriously, smoking is just inconsiderate to everyone around you (and particularly to those you love who don’t want to watch you slowly kill yourself!). PLEASE don’t smoke if there’s a pregnant lady in your range of vision!!

LM: If you could speak to your past self, what would you tell her?

Samantha: I spent WAY too many years putting off pursuing writing professionally because I didn’t think I could make any money at it, and I didn’t realize that ultimately, making money wouldn’t make me happy anyway. So I’d say, “Guess what – you CAN actually be a successful author! Now stop whatever else you’re doing and get writing, biznatch!!”

LM: Is there anything you'd like to say to your readers and/or potential readers?

Samantha: THANK YOU!!! I feel so incredibly blessed to have found such an amazingly supportive group of readers and fans. Hope to hear from many of you during the Shudder Blog Tour this summer – be sure to follow me on Facebook/Twitter/Goodreads/my blog to get all the latest updates! And thank you again to Sarah for hosting me today!!

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Samantha Durante lives in Westchester County, New York with her husband, Sudeep, and her cat, Gio. Formerly an engineer at Microsoft, Samantha left the world of software in 2010 to pursue her entrepreneurial dreams and a lifelong love of writing. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Jerome Fisher Program in Management & Technology, Samantha is currently working full time for her company Medley Media Associates as a freelance business writer and communications consultant. The Stitch Trilogy is her debut series. Learn more about Samantha at www.samanthadurante.com.

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Thank you soo much to Samantha Durante for answering my questions so thoughtfully & for inviting me to participate in the tour for Shudder!

Readers, keep going for the giveaway ~
 


Giveaway courtesy of myself. :)

Good luck & thanks for stopping by! Happy Reading!