Melissa’s Facebook Wall Chat!

Hey guys!

Did you miss Melissa’s Facebook Wall Chat on September 22nd? In case you didn’t know, Mel stopped by the Blue Bloods Facebook Page to answer YOUR questions about her novels, the idea of a movie in the future, and more!

Check out the questions and answers below!

My question is did Bendix Chase changed his name to Stephen Chase and if he did why?
Mel: His full name is Stephen Bendix Chase, and when he was in prep school, he went by Ben/Bendix and when he was an artist in San Francisco, he went by Stephen.

Will there be any new characters in this book?
Mel: Yes! There are a few, but only minor ones. The main focus is on the main crew. Sky, Jack, Ollie, Mimi. The cool part is a third of the book is about Allegra, Ben and Charles—> we get to see them as young people and find out what happened.

How many books do you plan on making for the Blue Bloods series?
Mel: There will be seven novels in the first “cycle” of the Blue Bloods series. Also, one companion book (Keys to the Repository, an encyclopedia) and a novella, Bloody Valentine, along with the graphic novel of the first book. Hyperion also bought 2 new Blue Bloods books, which will start a new cycle, a new story arc.

Does that mean the second “cycle” will be stories on new characters?
Mel: Some old characters and some new ones. 🙂

Will we find out about what happened in Florence?

Mel: Yes before the series ends, everything will be revealed. 🙂

And yes one more thing … How did Ben/Stephen die?
Mel: I can’t answer plot spoilers… but you guys will find out some stuff in Lost in Time that is pretty cool.

Would you ever take stories ideas from fans?
Mel: Not really, it just opens up the creative process too much, and while I love hearing what you guys think about the stories, I have to write them just for me. Stories by committee are never fun. But I think THINKING of how YOU would end the story, is always a fun jumping-off point. For instance, I hated that Luke and Leia were brother and sister in Jedi, I always thought they should end up together, I was not a “Han” girl. So when I was 12 I wrote tons of stories where they were not related and soul mates. 🙂
And I mean a jumping-off point for starting to think of your own stories and characters…

Is Kingsley coming back?
Mel: You’ll find out in Lost in Time! 🙂

What inspired you to write and what was your first book published?
Mel: I always wanted to be a writer, ever since I can remember. It was something I was naturally drawn to, I was very shy, and I loved to read. I was always reading. My first book that was published is an adult chick lit novel called Cat’s Meow about a broke fashionista in New York. It was a fun book but very different from what I do now. I wanted to write a PG Wodehouse farce about fashion.

What scene so far was the most fun for you to write?
Mel: There’s a scene in Lost in Time with Mimi that was really fun to write, I love all the Mimi scenes. The nightclub scene. I’ll leave it at that not to spoil it.

Are we going to find out more about the seven gates in Lost in Time?
Mel: Yes.

Is Wolf Pact a book about Bliss?
Mel: Yes. Wolf Pact—> with a “t” ! Not Wolf Pack (k) is about Bliss and Hellhounds.

Do you think that Schuyler puts herself in the situations that she ends up in, or do you think they are things that just happen to her?
Mel: I think she reacts to what happens to her, and sometimes she does make the wrong decisions. In Revelations, I really wanted to show how distracted being in love can make you. I was inspired by Stephen King’s Dark Tower book Wizard & Glass, where Roland is so distracted by his love for Susannah he loses everything. I always thought that was cool and tragic.

I saw that sneak peek about Oliver and Schuyler kissing, what’s up with that?
Mel: You’ll find out in Lost in Time. 🙂

Which book is your favorite?
Mel: I’ve always had a soft spot for Masquerade since it was really easy to write, it just flowed from my outline, and I was pregnant with my kid when I wrote it, so I would write it and then go take a long nap. It was a good schedule.

Is Bliss only going to be in Wolf Pact or will she be in Lost in Time?
Mel: Just Wolf Pact.

When will the title for #7 be released!? And the cover for Wolf Pact?
Mel: When you get your hands on a copy of Lost in Time, look in the back and the title of book seven will be on there! 🙂 We’re still working on the Wolf Pact cover so not sure when yet.

How did you come up with the idea of Blue Bloods?
Mel: I wanted to write an epic fantasy in the vein of Lord of the Rings, the Dark Tower and Harry Potter. And I wanted it to be as modern as Sex and the City. I loved the idea of NYC rich-kid vampires and I took it from there.

Where is Lost In Time located?
Mel: Mostly in Egypt, New York, and the Kingdom of the Dead.

Who’s your favorite author?
Mel: There’s no one favorite, there are so many authors I loved as a child, but I don’t read them as an adult. When I was a teen I read a lot of Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Anne Rice. I still read some Stephen King but not so much Koontz or Rice anymore. I love Diana Wynne Jones but discovered her as an adult and so I still read her. Right now I mostly read Jennifer Weiner, Tom Perotta, Kate Christensen. I read books in genres I don’t write in, because I need to escape. 🙂

Did you put a lot of thought into naming your characters? Or was it just something where you just went to a baby book and picked the first name you saw?
Mel: Oh no, naming characters is SO important. You can’t just pick out a name from a baby book! 🙂 I had a friend named Schuyler, a guy, who came from this old rich NY family, and I always liked his name and how he spelled it. I always loved the name “Mimi” and for years I’ve tried to publish novels with a hero named “Jack” so I finally got my Jack in Blue Bloods. I loved the name Blythe from Blythe Danner, but I thought Blythe was too unique and tagged to her, so I came up with Bliss. In Wolf Pact, the main guy is named Lawson, which is the name of one of the cutest guys I knew growing up, and also it’s the name of a convenience store chain in Ohio, which is where it’s set, so I thought that was cool. For naming, I also like to do research on many different languages, cultures, etc.

Is Bloody Valentine essential to read before you read Lost in Time?
Mel: Not essential, it’s an extra, so it’s nice to read it if you want and if you do WANT to read it, you should read it before Lost in Time. But, you don’t absolutely need to, to understand Lost in Time. I’m very sensitive to cost and I don’t want people to feel they HAVE to do anything. For instance, some Blue Bloods characters also pop up in Witches of East End, but you don’t need to read Witches either. I like having lots of fun extras.

Do you think a movie series can come out of this?
Mel: Sure, the door is open—I was more guarded about movie and TV rights while I was still writing the series, but now that I have a finale with book seven, I feel like I “did my job” on it, and now someone else can take a shot. I would love to see it in the big or small screen, and I would like it not to suck.

Something i’ve always wanted to see is Sky and Mimi actually getting along. Will we ever see something like that in the books?
Mel: That’s interesting, I think it’s why I like the Oliver/Mimi dynamic a lot, because it seems so improbable from the earlier books. I don’t think this will ever happen though, but we’ll see. Anything could happen in the finale.

How did you come up with who was who as an angel?
Mel: It was easy with Michael, Gabrielle, Abaddon and Azrael. I knew those from the start, then with the others, I did a lot of research on many angel myths, from Hebrew, Muslim, Chinese and Indian texts and religions and then matched them up.

I want to know will Wolf Pact be a single book or series like Blue Bloods?
Mel: It was planned as a series, but I’m still tweaking with the overall story for the books, so I’m not sure yet how many there will be. There will definitely be two books, but I don’t know if there will be three or four or five in the end.

Is book 7 the last one for this cycle, then?
Mel: Yes. It ties up the Charles/Allegra, Jack/Sky/Mimi/Oliver story lines.

What character from Blue Bloods do you consider to be most like you?
Mel: They all have part of me, I would say the closest to my own teen experience in the first book is definitely Schuyler, but I think a lot like Mimi, I just don’t say it out loud. 🙂 Bliss is the least like me, but I have a lot of affection for her. I’m a lot more like Oliver than Jack and Kingsley. I think maybe lately Oliver has a lot of my voice especially in Lost in Time.

Do you think you’ll be writing a spinoff to this series?
Mel: In a way Wolf Pact is a spinoff, but the hounds have their own mythology and adventure.And the second cycle is sort of the spinoff I guess.

Will there be an epic battle in the series towards the end? That’s all I really want to know and it’s kept me awake for so long. And if I can ask…did you ever expect to have fans all the way across the world? Like me, in Egypt?
Mel: Oh yeah, of course! You can’t write an epic without an epic battle. Hello Egypt! I would have to say world domination has always been a goal, and I grew up in the Philippines, a million miles away from New York publishing center, and now I get to publish books, so I don’t think the world is “small.” I grew up reading the same books as everyone in America did, so I think it’s a world culture, not necessarily an American one.

Will Sky get a angel name?
Mel: I don’t think so, because she’s half human, she’s not a fallen angel. It’s more like she has a “title”, she’s the Dimidium Cognatus.

Will we get to know anything else about Cordelia , Lawrence, and Dylan?
Mel: In future books, I think they might make appearances in future books – if I set a story in the past, when they were alive. It could happen. There is a fun Blue Bloods cameo in Wolf Pact that I really enjoyed.

If it was made into a movie would you want them to follow the way you wrote it or change it like they have done to other vamp movies/ tv series?
Mel: I would probably want approval on any changes, and if they could stay true to the spirit of the story.

You write about different places and cultures. Have you ever visited these places and seen this cultures first-hand? Or did you research them?
Mel: I always try to do both, I had bought my tickets to Egypt and then the revolution happened, so I didn’t get to go, but I plan to go at some point. I always hire a research assistant who is local to the country I am writing about.

When can we expect to hear more about the Beauchamp family?
Mel: Witches of East End 2: Serpent’s Kiss is out June 2012!

What advice would you give future writers? Is it more important to start writing from a young age? Or is it more important to live you teenage life to the fullest, so you have something to write about?
Mel: I think you should always write of course, do both. Live life to the fullest and have something to write about, and keep writing poems and stories and in your journal. I had a lot of “novels” I wrote in my teen years that never went anywhere, and then I wrote my first novel when I was 22, but I had to write two more until they finally accepted one, when I was 27.

Will the second “cycle” still bear the “Blue Bloods” name?
Mel: Probably. It will probably be in there somewhere, but my editor and I haven’t talked about it yet. Right now we’re focusing on Wolf Pact and finishing off the Blue Bloods series with a bang. 🙂

When will the Blue Bloods finale come out?
Mel: January 2013. Probably around December 26th. I love after-Christmas shopping, don’t you? 🙂

Will Schuyler ever be able to become pregnant?
Mel: This will be answered at the end of the series, and there’s a hint in Lost in Time.

Everyone seems to have on opinion on who the best guy is for Schuyler. Do you?
Mel: I don’t know how to answer this question, I love Jack and Oliver equally. Hmm. This will be answered in the finale.

My friends and I love Blue Bloods and would love to meet you, but you never seem to come to Florida. Why?
Mel: I’ve been in Florida twice now—I was in Miami with Ally Carter two years ago and I did the big signing in Orlando at RWA last year. I think the best way not to miss me, is to subscribe to my newsletter.

How has the Blue Bloods books affected your life?
Mel: It changed my life, in that now there are more events, more pressure, but also more fun, so it’s all been for the good. It’s amazing to me, I had a huge ambition for the series and to see it take off and so many people read it, is a dream come true.

You’re a fantastic writer and, even though you’re writing a series, it doesn’t seem to drag on. How do you manage to keep it fresh?
Mel: Each book has to be different for me, I have an idea of how each book will be about, will be structured, and I like to keep it changing so it keeps me engaged too. I would never want to write the same book over and over again.

The title of the seventh and final novel in this Blue Bloods cycle is…THE GATES OF PARADISE! It is set to be released in January 2013!

Melissa has also had an amazing time on tour and loves meeting all of you! The second leg of her Lost in Time Tour kicks off next week! Check the EVENTS page to see if Melissa will be visiting a town near you!

I hope everyone is enjoying Lost in Time!

-Kady (Mel’s assistant)