J.C. Seal Interview Published on: 06, Apr 2020

Which is your most cherished memory from the beautiful Black Forest area?

Definitely childhood memories. My parents liked to drive up into the mountains, so we went there often at the weekend. I loved the open sky, the clouds touching the tops of the firs, the solitude. Plucking blueberries and blackberries on the way, without worrying about fox tapeworm contamination. Time always seemed to stand still, the sky so endless, you believed all your dreams could really come true.

Since how long have you been working as a lab technician in cancer research?

I’m having my twentieth anniversary in my current job this year. I love my job, possibly contributing a little to something that might save lives some day.

What inspired you to start writing in October 2018?

That’s a rather difficult question. The main trigger was a dream I had, of a man with wings, hanging in the air, cradling a woman with colorful hair in his arms. This scene can be found in Fallen Angels (Angels and Demons, book one) https://allauthor.com/book/35862/ in chapter 14.

Thinking back now, more than a year later, it actually started a bit sooner, during summer vacation. We visited a place I had been before, as a youth, with my parents. No idea at all what happened there, but at that point, I started getting angry at books with endings that, for me, didn’t wrap up all threads. That’s what spurred me into writing my first short story, Blood Moon, playing in Aimee Easterling’s werewolf world. Her ready acceptance to share my work in her newsletter and on Facebook was all I needed to continue this journey with a story of my own.

What was the biggest challenge while finally risking the step from reader to writer?

From reader to writer was no challenge at all, because all I planned was to write for myself. When the book was finished, I was happy, satisfied. It didn’t last long. The urge to share what I had written became stronger, until the thought of publishing didn’t seem so crazy anymore. That was the point when the challenge began, the step from writer to published author, a decision that hasn’t stopped challenging me every single day since then and will continue to challenge me to the end of my days. The challenge of promoting what I have written.

You can find me on Facebook, twitter, Instagram, and I my first book, Fallen Angels, has been accepted for the Author Academy Awards 2020. You can find it in the fantasy category on page four:
https://authoracademyawards.com/vote2020/ Please vote for me.

Who inspired the character of Jason Tim in "Angels Descendants"?

I wish I knew. Jason Tim, alias Iason Tychon Timaeus, main character in Angels Descendants (Angels and Demons, Book two) https://allauthor.com/book/37398/ chose me to write his story, not the other way around.

All my MCs appeared in my head, showed me snippets of their life, compelling me to sit down at the keyboard and write. The moment I have written down what I see in my mind, the story continues on its own, seemingly without my doing, often outside my conscious control. My characters never do what I think might be right, they have a life of their own, writing their own stories. I can guide them to some extent, making suggestions I think make sense, but more often than not, they surprise me with doing something else entirely.

What do you love the most about writing paranormal romance? Why did you choose this genre?

I never consciously chose the genre. When I started writing, I just put words down on paper, never thinking about fitting my work into a category. Actually, it doesn’t fit only one category.

I asked my editor after he had finished whipping my first book to shape, because I honestly had no idea where to sort it. His answer was: fantasy, paranormal, adventure with a bit of romance.

So, seeing it as multi-genre is probably more accurate than calling it paranormal romance. Amazon sorted it into paranormal romance after publishing, but putting it into fantasy or adventure wouldn’t be wrong, either.

How was your experience of writing "31 Overlook Hotel" with 30 other authors?

Thrilling, challenging, breathtaking. Writing all by yourself is one thing, needing to interweave your part of the story with others takes writing to a totally different level. I learned so much, and I found some very good friends. Thirty-one minds and personalities, working together on one grand story, each contributing one or two chapters. We were a wild mix, from experienced, well- known authors to newbies like me, to some not yet published.

My advice to other authors: If you get the chance to do something like this, go for it. It’s scary, it’s taxing, it might give you headaches, heartaches and sleepless nights, but it’s worth every second of the way!

Your book, “Fallen Angels”, features Bela, son of a Fallen Angel and a mortal woman. How do you come with character names?

Bela the Brave, the main character of Fallen Angels (Angels and Demons, book one) had a placeholder for a name until about halfway through the story. When searching for Demon names, I stumbled across Belial, described as deceptively beautiful Fallen Angel whose name means "without worth”. He ended up becoming Bela’s Demon father, Belial the Worthless, called Belial the Beautiful. Trying to show the family ties between father and son, I ended up calling the son Bela as a short form for Belial.

What is the best review you received for your book "Fallen Angels"?

There are only seven reviews for Fallen Angels (Angels and Demons, Book one) so far. Six on Amazon, some of those also on Goodreads, and one on Goodreads only. Six of them are Five-Stars, the other is a Three-Star. All of them have their merits, pointing out strengths, but also weaknesses of my work. I know it’s far from perfect, being my first novel, and I never expected to get any Five-Stars at all. The one I love most is the review from Helena Viana on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3046835823) because it’s the most heartfelt, including the tale of how she ended up reading my book.

What kind of audience do you hope to appeal to with your books? Would you let your daughter read your books?

Ahh, categories upon categories. I really have trouble getting them straight. Some call it YA or New Adult. The romance part is about falling in love, finding the right partner, making a relationship work. So, I guess they are right.

I would say it’s 16+, but there’s no reason why older readers shouldn’t enjoy it, setting the focus not on romance, but rather on the mythological part of the story. My daughter is 14, and yes, I would let her read it, if she had the necessary English language skills. As explanation, I write in English, but it’s my second language. My native language is German. We live in Germany and it’s the language we speak at home.

What makes this particular genre you are involved in so special? What, according to you, is the hardest thing about writing romance books?

The hardest part is the scope of possibilities. There is no such thing as “love”. There are myriads of facets of love, all condensed in a four-letter word. As with every word that conveys a feeling rather than a fact, there are numerous ways to describe it. The hard part is to convey those feelings to the readers, make them feel what you want them to feel, make their hearts speed up or clench in despair, their blood pressure rise, their breathing turn to gasps, or make them feel the tranquil bliss of joined hearts and minds, the silence of a special moment, expressing more than a thousand words.

As an author, you need to be able to let the desired feeling rise to the surface of your thoughts at will, to see, feel, smell, taste what you want to put into words. I can only assume I’m getting it right, because as some reviews state, I managed to make the reader fall in love with my characters.

When you're running low on ideas, what do you do or who do you talk to for inspiration?

My husband once described it quite correctly, when I was strangely quiet in the evening. He said, my word reservoir was used up. He was right. There was simply nothing left to say, no more ideas bubbling to the surface, like a well run dry.

To refill it, I need to read, often devouring several books in one week. In addition, I tend to binge-watch series on TV. When the reservoir is filled up again, the ideas come back. The first time it happened, it scared me a lot. Thoughts about writers’ block crossed my mind, fear of losing my ability to write. It appeared out of thin air, why shouldn’t it just vanish again? During the last year, I learned to keep a balance of reading, watching and writing, in addition to discussing ideas with some close friends.

Do you ever leave book reviews on other author's books? What do reviews mean to you?

I do, though not as often as I should. Authors live from receiving reviews, from being seen and acknowledged by their readers.

Being reader as well as author means walking a tightrope when writing reviews. You need to balance your thoughts about the storyline with the insights into the creating process. Will you overbalance, seeing mistakes no reader would notice? Are you too lenient, because you can relate to all the efforts the author has gone through while creating the story? I’m trying my best to keep the balance, to leave a reliable review that will help the reader make a choice.

What are you working on at the moment? What is it about?

My third book, Angels Nemesis (Angels and Demons, book three) came back from editing and has been submitted to my publishing platform. Sadly, it’s stuck in distribution to amazon somewhere, so I can’t provide the link, yet. I have an idea for a new WIP, currently at about 15k words. A friend told me about a Portuguese curse directed at young women singing at the Passion play. I love using mythology as foundation for my fictional stories, so, I’m currently writing and researching, trying to integrate the curse into my Angels and Demons universe, with its possible origins and the impact on humans and the Angel community.

How did you first come across AllAuthor and what are your thoughts on it?

The first time I stumbled over AllAuthor was on Facebook. I had just opened my Facebook account and page, after publishing my first book. I had joined several groups from other authors, trying to find my way around in a social network I had never used before. In one of the groups, I was asked to vote for the cover of a book on a platform called AllAuthor, so, I logged in with Facebook and voted, unaware that I had also created an account. Stumbling over the welcome e-mail sometime late while sorting my inbox, I decided to check out what I had signed up for. I ended up getting my reader account changed to an author account, currently featuring my first book, Fallen Angels (Angels and Demons, Book one) on AllAuthor. Never regretted it. I like the review gif option and regularly update my tweet scheduler. This February, I submitted the cover of the book collaboration, 31 Overlook Hotel
https://allauthor.com/book/37399/ for cover of the month, making it to the final round.

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