Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Author Interview: Martha Bourke, Jaguar Sun

I have the great pleasure of featuring indie author Martha Bourke. She has written a beautifully-penned novel called Jaguar Sun. What follows is my interview with her. Enjoy!

Tell us a little bit about your YA paranormal, Jaguar Sun. Jaguar Sun is the story of Maya Delaney, a typical sixteen-year-old high school junior of Mayan descent. She’s busy dealing with exams, her soon to be ex-boyfriend and fitting in. But Maya’s got bigger problems. She’s hiding a major secret from her dad and having strange visions she can’t control. In her struggle to figure out who she is, she learns that she is meant to fulfill an ancient Mayan Prophesy and bring forth a New Age on earth. Maya finds herself at the very center of a plot over the transition to take place when the Mayan Calendar ends on December 21, 2012. And on top of that, she and her friends are beginning to develop strange powers. Faced with learning to harness her new abilities in time to bring the world to a positive transition, Maya must reevaluate her relationships, identity, and her place in the world. But will the spirit magic she wields be enough to defeat Toltec, an evil society bent on keeping Maya from her destiny? Or will that destiny destroy her?
Is writing your side job or do you do this full time? Currently, I’m on sabbatical from teaching. So writing is my full time occupation at this time. I hope that will continue. I probably won’t make that decision until after the release of Book 2. I’ve planned for the series to be 3-5 books.
How long have you been writing--what is your inspiration? I’ve been writing since the third or fourth grade. It started with poetry and then short stories by middle school. By high school I was writing novellas for my friends. My inspiration is my imagination, which is very vivid to say the least! I have to do something with it or who knows what could happen!
How did you get the idea for JS? I was a Spanish teacher for fifteen years. So I taught Spanish language and culture. I had always wanted to write a book with lots of Hispanic characters and a strong female protagonist. So my interest in foreign cultures and mythology, and my love of YA came together and JS was the result.
I couldn't help wonder while I was reading: What's up with the mom other than being a dead beat? Are Maya's father and mother Mayan? Will you explore more of their characters in later sequels? I hope so. I want to know more about them. Maya’s loser-mom, as she calls her, is out of the picture completely and will stay there. Maya’s maternal influence comes from her grandmother, Rosa, and that will remain the same. It is possible we will see more of Maya’s father in future books. You never know! Maya’s indigenous roots come from her maternal grandmother. So Maya’s mother would be half Mayan. We know that Maya’s father is at least half Irish from the surname Delaney. He is neither Hispanic nor Mayan.
I love the way you describe the energies that flow around Maya--you're very articulate--it seems the energies are flowing thru me as I read the story. So now my question: have you dabbled in tarot, spirituality, or just researched them. (My guess is you have some experience in that area.) I actually have no real experience with tarot. That was all from research. I love to write YA paranormal books and I love researching for it. It’s so much fun. I am a very spiritual person, with both a Yoga practice and regular meditation. I also have a very strong connection to nature. A lot of that probably comes from growing up in Vermont. So I suppose it’s not surprising that I used a lot of earth-based magic in the book.  
Have you written in other genres? Do you have other books that you have written or are in the process of writing? I wrote one stand-alone novel about five years ago. It’s a Middle Grade paranormal. I doubt it will ever see the light of day, but I think it was an important stepping stone for my writing. I’m more suited to YA. Right now I’m writing Book 2 in the Jaguar Sun Series, Jaguar Moon. It’s due out in the fall.
Where can readers connect with you?
Buy Jaguar Sun: Amazon Kindle and paperback

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