INDIES IN THEIR UNDIES: Shannon Morton (@redheadsread)

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JENA @ PURE TEXTUALITY [JENA]: Welcome to the 2014 edition of Indies In Their Undies, a month-long interview series with 31 indie authors! Today we are sitting down with 2014 Pure Textuality Convention Featured Author Shannon Morton!



[JENA] We have readers all over the world and I am always curious to see where our favorite authors are from. Where do you call base camp?
SHANNON MORTON [SHANNON] Bakersfield, California.
[JENA] A common trend as of late is cross-genre authors. It has become relatively uncommon to come across an author who only writes in one specific genre. It seems there are a lot of writers who like to dip their toes in all sorts of pools. Which genre or genres do you write?
[SHANNON] My first love will probably always be urban fantasy/paranormal, but I’ve been playing around with romance lately and having way too much fun!
[JENA] Writers get inspiration from all over the place. Movies, books, music, people in their life, their own life, etc. Who or what is your most common muse?
[SHANNON] Music and people-watching. Sometimes simultaneously. One simple song can generate a flood of emotion the same way that a look on a random stranger’s face can create a compelling character.
[JENA] Are you 100% independently published or do you have traditional contracts as well? If you are 100% indie, would you ever consider a traditional publishing contract? Why or why not?
[SHANNON] I’m indie all the way and I can’t imagine giving up the control that comes with it. However, I learned a long time ago to never say never.
[JENA] Writer’s block sucks. What do you do to overcome the blank stare when it hits you with everything it has got?
[SHANNON] Usually, I go back to my notes. Clearing the block could be as simple as creating a more detailed outline for the scene or as complicated as scrapping it altogether. If I’m writing something I’m not excited about, that’s a big red flag to me that maybe I shouldn’t be writing it.
[JENA] Let’s gab about your books. What fictiony goodness have you already unleashed on the general populous?
[SHANNON] So far, the first in a YA paranormal trilogy called Tempted by Evil, co-authored by Amber Lynn Natusch.
[JENA] What’s next for you and your writing? Any new titles coming out?
[SHANNON] I’m currently working on a contemporary romance with a snarky main character, which I hope to finish before summer. And, eventually, the second book in the Light and Shadow trilogy.
[JENA] The latest trend with the indie author world is massive book signings and conventions featuring anywhere from 20 authors to 200 authors. What has your experience been at these events? Do you enjoy them? Or do they make you twitch and sweat?
[SHANNON] I’ve only been to a couple of book signings but I really enjoyed them. I love chatting about books with readers and going all fan-girl on my favorite authors (I met Shelly Crane and Tarryn Fisher—and they were AWESOME!!!).
[JENA] Do you have any appearances coming up? If so, tell us when and where (provide links if you have them).
[SHANNON] My next signing is Penned Con 2014 in St. Louis in September. Can’t wait!!
[JENA] Now it’s time for some just-for-fun questions! If you were digitized like Tron and put on the internet what site would you visit first?
[SHANNON] This is SO lame but I’d hit the John Hughes archives and insert myself into the last scene in Sixteen Candles in place of Molly Ringwald. You know, the part where Jake Ryan (Michael Schoeffling) is waiting for Sam at the church and then they sit on top of the table with a birthday cake between them. And then they kiss. The PERFECT happily ever after.
[JENA] Have you ever Googled yourself? If so, were you surprised or shocked by any of the results?
[SHANNON] Surprisingly, no, considering I’ve Googled everything else on the planet. Seriously, I’m probably on some government watchlist.
[JENA] What would you do with a million dollars?
[SHANNON] I wish I could say I’d do something really original or over-the-top generous, but in reality, I’d probably just have a nice house built and put whatever was left over in the bank.
[JENA] If you were trapped on a desert island with one CD that you could listen to for the rest of your life what would it be?
[SHANNON] That would be impossible because I have split musical personalities. Florence + The Machine’s “Lungs” would probably come closest to satisfying all of them, but I’d still feel musically starved. I would be happy if I could mix my own CD with songs by Flo, Macklemore, Matchbox 20, U2, The Head & The Heart, The Bangles, The Civil Wars, Billy Idol, Mumford & Sons, Nirvana, Garth Brooks, Fun, Lana Del Ray, Van Morrison, Smashing Pumpkins, Madonna, Rage Against the Machine, Gwen Stefani, Prince, Bush, Aerosmith, The Black Keys, The Cure, Lauryn Hill, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nas, and Britney (old-school). Let’s hope this doesn’t happen, though—I’m sure I’ve forgotten stuff I couldn’t live without.
[JENA] How do you consume – read the book then watch the movie or watch the movie then read the book?
[SHANNON] I’ve always been a read then watch girl, but more often than not it has led to disappointment. Most movies are unable to live up to the amazing things my imagination does with the books I read. I’d probably stop seeing the movies altogether before I’d wait to read the book, though. I feel like seeing the movies first would make me feel less involved in creating the world and characters in my head.
[JENA] If you could live forever, would you? Why or why not?
[SHANNON] I don’t know about this one. I think part of what makes us human and drives our emotions and motivations is the knowledge that our time is limited. The ability to live forever would change us in ways I can’t even imagine. That said, having all the time in the world to build relationships, make contributions, read books, listen to music, dance, run, eat, and travel the world would be amazing. If offered the chance, I’d probably take it.
[JENA] If you were faced with the zombie apocalypse and had to pick five people to be on your survival team, who would you pick?
[SHANNON] MacGyver (from the 80’s TV show) – he can do ANYTHING
Daryl Dixon (the guy with the crossbow in The Walking Dead) – hello, CROSSBOW
Frederick Courteney Selous– probably the world’s best hunter
Adam Levine – he can sing to me…and probably help me repopulate the earth
Amber Lynn Natusch – she writes books I love and she’s a badass

[JENA] Imagine the concept of reincarnation is real, who or what would you hope to come back as in your next life?
[SHANNON] Hmmm…can I pick myself?? I wouldn’t mind a second chance at being me…not to mention an opportunity to do it all a little better. If I can’t be me, though, I’d be happy with any of the Victoria’s Secret Angels, preferably Miranda Kerr, Adriana Lima, or Behati Prinsloo. They have the coolest job in the world.
[JENA] Thank you for participating in Indies In Their Undies!

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