Interview with Amber Garr Author of The Syrenka Series

by | Aug 14, 2012 | Author Interview, Spotlight

Can you tell the readers a little about yourself?
I’m a marine biologist, writer, dance teacher, and animal lover.  I grew up in Pennsylvania and after attending school in Maryland and North Carolina, I now live in Florida.  My husband and I have been married for four years, we work at the same place, and have three furry kids (Noodles, Screamie, and Bitsy Cat).
Do you write full time?
No, writing fiction is my second job.  I work full time as a research marine biologist, so I have to squeeze in all of the “fun” writing at night and on the weekends. J
What are 5 fun/interesting facts about you?
1. I can’t whistle
2. Ants creep me out
3. I am a Dr. (Ph.D.)
4. I hate to fly
5. I drive a Jetta
What are the “must haves” for you when you sit down to write a book?
Music!!  Even at work, I don’t function without music in my ears.  In college I used it to help me study, and now I use music to focus on my writing.  My playlists vary, and depending on the mood I’m in, I’ll either listen to the same album over and over, or shuffle through all of my songs.
What made you decide to become a writer and how old were you?
I didn’t really start writing fiction until a couple of years ago.  It began with short stories which quickly turned into full novels and a trilogy.  Now I’m completely addicted and wish I had more time to write all of the ideas swirling around in my head!
Who or what was your inspiration for writing “this book”?
The Syrenka Series was inspired by my love of all things ocean related and a fascination with mythology and folklore surrounded water creatures.  Some of the other books I’ve written/started have been inspired by a fleeting thought or event that I’ve twisted into my own story.  The first chapter of Promises started out as a short story.
Do you feel that you can relate to one character in “this book” more than any other? And why?
I think that even though I didn’t have the same types of choices to make as Eviana, I can relate to her struggle to do the right thing even when you know it may hurt someone.  Especially when you are young and still naive…and have so much more to learn about the world.
What do you Love most about writing?
Seeing the characters come to life on paper.  I love it when I go back and read my chapters and think “Yes!  That’s good!”  The stories evolve from a random thought in my brain to a complicated plotline, and when it works, it’s the best feeling in the world.
What is your biggest challenge when you write?
Finding time.  Once I have the story plotted out in my head or in my notebook, it’s all I can think about.  So I hate it when days go by before I have time to sit down and write.
Do you have any advice for any other aspiring writers out there?
Read!  I’ve learned so much about what does and doesn’t work when I read other traditional or indie authors.  Read in your genre, outside your genre…anything.  Just make the time to do it.
What do you do when you are not writing?
Well, if I’m not working or reading, I teach dance classes and am a co-chair of a statewide youth writers program.  So I stay busy!
When you’re not writing what kind of books do you like to read?
My go to books are urban fantasy, but I also enjoy murder mystery and detective type crime novels.  I’m trying to catch up on some other mermaid books right now since I’m finished with my series. J
Since becoming published, what has been your favorite part of the process?
I loved working with the cover artist.  I wish I could create a book for every one of her designs.  Other than that, I’ve enjoyed learning that other people like my stories.  It’s still surreal to see readers and reviewers discuss the series because it was such a scary decision to put my writing out there in the first place.
If you can, tell us what is up next for you?
I wrote another novel called Touching Evilbefore tackling The Syrenka Series, so I am currently going back over that and making some editorial changes.  I’ve also started two other books: a YA paranormal and an Adult abnormal (is that a genre?).  It’s not supernatural, but is has a protagonist that you might not want to meet in a dark alley.
The Syrenka Series
Book One
Sometimes following your heart can end up destroying the ones you love.

When seventeen-year-old Eviana Dumahl is faced with the responsibility of an arranged marriage and clan leadership, she is forced to choose between the life required of a mermaid and one of a teenage girl simply infatuated with the wrong guy. Kain, her devoted fiancé, would make a wonderful husband except that she’s been in love with Brendan, a shape-shifting selkie, ever since they were kids. Choosing to abandon her family, her clan, and her life with Kain will have dire consequences far beyond anything she could have imagined.

A war is brewing amongst the clans and Eviana unwittingly becomes a pawn in the intricate schemes of a twisted mastermind. With Brendan’s life on the line, she has no choice but to involve those she once considered friends. Amidst encountering senseless tragedies and immense loss, Eviana discovers that she is more valuable as a clan leader than anyone ever suspected. Her survival is not only dependent upon the loyalty of her friends, but also on her acceptance of a life she so adamantly tried to escape.

The Syrenka Series
Book Two
Life as a mermaid can be suffocating.

Eviana Dumahl has returned home as a clan leader, an orphan, and a heartbroken teenage girl. Her parents are dead and her boyfriend, Brendan, has decided that he needs some time away. While battling her inner turmoil, Eviana is forced into the war that Lucian Sutherland has incited amongst her own kind. With the help of Kain, her friend and formally betrothed, the two work together to prove that they deserve their birthrights as young merfolk leaders.

When The Council requests a demonstration of Eviana’s mermaid powers, she finds herself with an opportunity to win back Brendan’s heart. But her orders to train with a repulsive merman and the presence of an attractive new suitor challenges Eviana to embrace her leadership and resist temptation. Lucian is after her, and no one seems to understand why. Loyalties are tested as the casualties increase, showing Eviana that sometimes it is impossible to delineate between friends and enemies.

The Syrenka Series 
Book Three 
With power comes the responsibility to accept its consequences.

After the betrayal of those closest to her, Eviana Dumahl struggles to cope with her new reality. Kidnapped, broken, and confused, she is forced to engage in a war that will alter merfolk politics forever. With her estranged father leading the charge, Eviana has no choice but to stand by his side. Her continued existence hinges on the acceptance of the power growing inside her, even when that means embracing the family’s dark lineage.

Kain Matthew will sacrifice the world for Eviana. And he is not alone. As time runs out, her friends fight to save her life and theirs. An unlikely alliance gives them the edge they need to take a stand, although it keeps Eviana’s heart trapped in the past. A new discovery explains some of her previous mistakes, but it may not be enough to stop her father’s plans. Merfolk, selkies, and water sprites work together to save their kind, only in this final battle, not everyone will survive.

In the striking series conclusion, Eviana will learn the true meaning of power, sacrifice, and love.

Amber Garr spends her days conducting scientific experiments and wondering if her next door neighbor is secretly a vampire.  Born in Pennsylvania, she lives in Florida with her husband and their furry kids.  Her childhood imaginary friend was a witch, Halloween is sacred, and she is certain that she has a supernatural sense of smell.  She writes both adult and young adult urban fantasies and when not obsessing over the unknown, she can be found dancing, reading, or enjoying a good movie.
Connect with Amber
Follow the rest of Amber’s Tour & Enter the SWAG Giveaway
Disclosure: This Interview was provided by the Author as a part of the Bewitching Book Tours. This is NOT a compensated post.


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