Earlier this year, I read a sizzling little book called “Beauty in His Bed,” a contemporary take on “Sleeping Beauty,” by L.K. Below. If you’ve read it, don’t expect more of the same from the author, who writes in different genres, from YA and MG to adult urban fantasy. Her latest book, “Hellish Haven,” shows yet another facet of her writing: dystopian romance. In this article, 24-year-old Below talks about her eclectic tastes as a writer, what makes “Hellish Haven” different from her other books, and why writing a book based on trends alone is a bad idea.
Q: What is “Hellish Haven” about?
A: "Hellish Haven" is a story about hope, love, family, freedom, second chances, and perseverance in the face of all obstacles.
Q: What’s different about “Hellish Haven” compared to your other books?
A: It’s my first dystopian romance. It contains a military hero, who was fun to explore, and a Latina nurse heroine. I had to turn to my sister, a registered nurse, for some answers regarding the medical knowledge bandied about in this book. This book takes place in a unique near future I crafted to draw some similarities with one of my favorite classic books, Orwell's “1984.” It's also the first book I've written containing a couple who are married from page one, and who have a son. It was a lot of fun to write!
Q: Can you tell me a little bit about yourself?
A: I'm a young author who has been published since the tender age of 20. I like to read just about any book containing words, so my writing tastes are just as eclectic. My Web site showcases all my books and is separated into two sections. I use my full name, Lindsay Below, for young adult and middle grade books. My steamier stuff is separated into the L.K. Below side, along with my adult urban fantasy trilogy “The Order.”
Q: How many books have you written?
A: I've written over 30 manuscripts, but my early works were mainly practice. Some I may eventually revise, but I have countless other stories in me to tell. “Hellish Haven” will be my 14th book available for purchase, including novellas and short stories.
Q: What's the most important lesson you've learned as a writer that you wish you knew before you became a published author?
A: Most aspiring authors don't realize that having your book accepted for publication is only passing the first of many obstacles you strive toward in order to "make" it. Other hurdles like sales, bad contracts, and promotion can eat away at your time and perseverance. The biggest mistake I made, for a little while, was to try to follow trends instead of writing the books of my heart. I found submission calls and blasted out books tailored to those sought-after trends. In doing so, not only did I write what are, in my opinion, some terrible books, but I lost some of my passion for writing. Eventually, I stumbled my way back onto the beaten path and managed to rekindle my love of writing. Write the books you love so you will continue to love writing, not to mention it will show in the quality of your books.
Q: When will "Hellish Haven" be available and where?
A: "Hellish Haven" will be available on Nov. 17, 2014, from the Lyrical Press imprint of Kensington Publishing Corp. You will be able to purchase it from all major e-book retailers, including but not limited to: Amazon Kindle, Apple, Nook, and Kobo. If you'd like to know the second it's available for preorder, subscribe to my Kensington author's page: http://www.kensingtonbooks.com/author.aspx/29525
To learn more about L.K. Below, go to: www.lbelow.net