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Author Guest Post: Kait Ballenger

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Today I have the honor of bringing to you debut author, Kait Ballenger. Kait is a full-time paranormal romance author, wife, bellydancer, graduate student, and soon-to-be-professor. She is the multi-published, award-winning author of the Execution Underground paranormal romance series. Kait believes anything is possible with hard work and dedication. One day, she hopes to be a bestseller and to see her novels on the big screen. Look for the next two books in her page-turning Execution Underground series: Twilight Hunter, book one (August 2013) and Immortal Hunter, book two (January 2014). For more information, please visit www.kaitballenger.com or follow her on Twitter @kait_ballenger.
Kait is here today to talk about inspirations for her writing. In addition, she tells us about her debut title, Shadow Hunter, the first story in her new Execution Underground series, found in the After Dark anthology.
Please help me welcome Kait toThat’s What I’m Talking About.
One thing readers often forget about writers is that, like them, we started out as readers and lovers of the genre we write. Paranormal romance is one of my three favorite genres to read—the other two being young adult and urban fantasy. Needless to say, as a reader of the paranormal romance genre, as well as many other eclectic genres, I’ve been exposed to a large variety of writing that inevitably influenced my own work. To credit one source of inspiration for the Execution Underground series and the characters would be like crediting one person for the work of hundreds. 
Inspiration for the series came not only from my love of the paranormal romance genre and books in general, but of course, from my own life experiences as well. While that may sound odd considering the genre that I write, unlike most paranormal romance novels, my main characters are almost entirely human. Naturally, people I know and love influence their characterizations, though none of my characters are based on people I actually know. For example, my husband is a lot like Damon in how introverted he is with his emotions. Likewise, I’m a lot like Tiffany with how extroverted I am with my emotions—I wear my feelings on my sleeve. 
Since there are so many factors that influenced the inspiration for my novels, rather than listing one main inspiration, I’d like to share with you this list. These are several things I love to see in writing and T.V, which I try to emulate in a unique way in my own work:
1. Male-centric work: My favorite paranormal romances are those which focus on the male character’s romantic development and journey. J.R Ward is an author I really admire in this aspect, particularly the earlier books of the Black Dagger Brotherhood—Zsadist was oh so amazing. I also love that same thing in my T.V. Supernatural is a major favorite of mine and the male bonding between characters like Dean and Sam Winchester comes to mind.
2. Strong heroines: As a reader of Laurel K Hamilton’s Anita Blake series from the time I was fourteen, I love strong and kickass heroines. At the same time, I like strong heroines who do have some vulnerability, like Sookie from Charlainne Harris’ Southern Vampire Series and Katniss from the Hunger Games.
3. Red hot romance: I’ll again reference Laurel K Hamilton here. While I’m not a fan of erotica, the spicier the love scenes the better in my opinion. 
4. Page-turning tension: I absolutely love when a book is so filled with tension I can’t put it down. Suzanne Collin’s the Hunger Games comes to mind.
5. Truly evil and threatening villains: Lord Voldemort and Bellatrix Lestrange from the Harry Potter series come to mind here. J.K Rowling really knows how to write complex and evil villains and I hope to emulate that in my own writing.
Shadow Hunter Blurb:
Vampire hunter Damon Brock’s newest assignment with the Execution Underground is Rochester, New York, a city crawling with the undead. But he isn’t the only hunter in town gunning for vamp blood. Tiffany Solow is fierce and ruthless when it comes to slaying the monsters that destroyed her family-and she works solo. But being alone is no longer an option when she meets the mysterious hunter who wants more than just her turf. Forced to unite against the local covens, the line between good and evil blurs when they must decide between their lifelong beliefs…and their newfound desires.
Kait on the web:
Website: www.kaitballenger.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kait_ballenger
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kaitlynschulzromanceauthor
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5989661.Kait_Ballenger
Be sure to stop back later today for my review of Shadow Hunter!

And for more on the Shadow Hunter blog tour, visit: http://kaitballenger.com/events/shadow-hunter-blog-tour/

 

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