Today we have the privilege to spend a little bit of time with one of Black Opal’s authors, award winning Aneta Cruz, and her latest release, THE GUARDIAN. If you’re looking for a psychological thrill ride, pick this up! In the meantime, stick with us because you’re going to love who she’s bringing to her dinner party. Swear, I’ll be crashing it. I have a few questions of my own for Mr. Edgar A. Poe. I bet Mischievous and Eerie would gladly help cater. We promised our raven would stay on his best (or the best we could manage) behavior.
Dr. Josef Stein was trained as a man of science and rationality, but after a tragic experience, he believes that there is something within—or even without—the human body sciences cannot explain. And Stein would do anything to witness it! When his patients begin seeing a ghost, and a woman suspected of killing her child even accuses this spirit of the crime, Stein takes it upon himself to investigate. Unexpectedly, evidence of a supernatural phenomenon starts to mount. The good doctor’s quest to seeis ignited with fervor. He thinks he is on the verge of uncovering the veracity of a thousand-year-old myth when his research gets interrupted by the Gestapo. Stein turns to his colleagues and friends for help, but they begin to suspect that the doctor’s determination may have unhinged his mind. Has Stein, after years of treating the crazy, gone mad himself?
We managed to lure her with the promise of visiting Snarky’s Dragons, then we whipped out our questions…
If you were to hold a dinner party for six, who would you invite and share at least one question you would have for each? Your guests don’t have to be alive and if you really want to make it fun, you can use favorite fictional characters.
I think I’d like to have the cast of FRIENDS over for dinner. And I don’t even have to be at the table. I can just sit on the couch [get it] and watch their shenanigans without the remote. I’ll have Monica prepare the food, Rachel whine about how she and Ross were on a break, Chandler can smoke by an open window, Joey must come wearing everything Chandler owns, and Phoebe has to sing the Smelly Cat. And when they leave, I’d like to dig up E. A. Poe, re-heat the leftovers, look into his mad eyes, and ask, “What the hell happened during the days you went missing?” I’d take notes of course, so I can write a book about it. Then I would thank him and say, “The Raven really isn’t all that good.” But I think I would have to quickly throw him back into his grave so he can roll over in it.
–I do believe you’d get a few extra guests…me, Eerie, Mischievous we promise not to embarrass you. Okay, not too much!
As children we tend to have an idea of what we want to be by the time we’re ten. Before you decided to pursue the artistic dream of being a writer, what did you want to be and why?
I wanted to be an astronaut. I’ve been infatuated by the cosmos ever since I looked up at the night sky and realized that we are no more than a speck of star dust. I wanted to be the first woman in space (missed that one). Still, space travel is on my bucket list, so I’m not allowed to die until I take a trip through the cosmos. Oh, and I would really like to meet an alien. Really.
–You know, we might luck out and find a few aliens down here. I could’ve sworn that guy at the coffee shop was from a totally different planet.
If your character(s) came with a warning label, what would it say?
Jeez, so many come to mind. But this one is definitely true: “She [meaning me the author] can’t control us. We control her!” Yup, no matter how I try to steer my character, they always do what they want to do, say what they want to say, and when I don’t want to let them have it their way, my writing sucks.
–Yeah, those damn characters get so testy when they don’t get their own way. *looking over my shoulder* But you didn’t hear it from me.
What’s some of the funniest/sweetest/strangest things you’ve heard from your readers?
I’m not sure whether one would consider this funny/sweet/strange; however, my readers say countless times that I must be crazy to come up with the stuff I do. Little do they know…I hear voices [insert wicked laughter].
–Just voices? Darling, wait until you start holding entire conversations in public with your “imaginary friends”.
What is some of the best advice you were ever given?
“Just make up some good shit.”
–Hmmm, I detect overtones of Chuck Wendig here…
What is the best advice you can share with others?
“In order to make up some good shit, you must read a lot, and I mean a lot, like a whole pile of shit.”
–Yep, Wendig all the way!
Poor Aneta, we even subjected her to our bullet list. The girl is quick, so don’t miss these…
Blades, guns, fists or feet?
Neither. Quick wit.
Favorite Fairy Tale of all time?
The Mysterious Mandolin by Yours Truly. I’m not bragging. I really, truly love it!
–bragging rights are totally allowed here in the Swamp.
Three titles and their authors sitting on your nightstand/bookcase/table/floor waiting to be read?
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro, Beloved by Toni Morrison
Greatest one liner of all time?
Atheists have the best sex.
–Okay, that’s the best one I’ve heard this year!
Sarcastic witticism, Southern sweetness or Geeky disdain?
Sarcastic wisecracks with a pinch of geeky disdain.
Strangest item currently taking up space in your writing cave?
My husband’s fishing poles. WTH!
–I have a hubby that appears in mine sometimes. I ask the same question.
Favorite supernatural creature?
Lucifer, Frankenstein, Grendel, Dracula, Hunchback, Veelas, Witches, Ghosts, Dragons… did I mention I love monsters?
–You’re in good company on this one!
Much love to Aneta for stopping by and bringing THE GUARDIAN with her. You too can bask in her presence, just find her in the following places:
Aneta Cruz was born and raised in the Czech Republic. She spent most of her childhood hiding in the library because her friends called her a liar. In her defense, she was only “telling stories.” There Cruz fell in love with books and vowed to become an author. She’d heard that dreams come true in America, so she packed her suitcase and got on the plane shortly after her twentieth birthday. Since then Cruz has earned a BA in English Literature, MFA in Creative Writing, and published a-Muse-me[a]nt, a Collec-tion of Poetry and Prose, Heartbreak Hotel, The Mysterious Mandolin and took part in the anthology, A Touch of Winter. Her works can be found in Bad-lands, the GNU, the Global Alchemy Forum, and Mused. Cruz is the winner of the 2011 Desert Literary Society Fiction Award.