Authors Rebecca Zanetti and Kat Martin are both launching new series this month—Zanetti with her Scorpius Syndrome series featuring a band of post-apocalypse survivors in LA, and Martin with her BOSS Inc. books about a private security firm set in present-day Seattle.
Rebecca Zanetti: I loved reading Into the Fury! What awesome romantic suspense! The hero, Ethan Brodie, is a tough hottie with a side of yummy. Did you have him sketched out before you started writing, or did he come together on the page?
Kat Martin: I had more trouble getting into Ethan’s head than I usually do. Maybe because it was the first book of a trilogy and I needed to set things up. He grew with the pages. I prefer to be with the characters from the start, but it doesn’t always work out that way. In the second book, I was able to just leap in.
So, what gave you the idea for Mercury Striking?
Rebecca: Right before I started writing, I had been watching Transformers: Dark of the Moon. There’s a scene in the movie where the Decepticons blow up Chicago, and the hero drives through the demolished land into what looks like gang territory. I started wondering: If the apocalypse occurred, what would happen if a gang survived? Would the members become the heroes or the villains of the new world? Former gangbanger Jax Mercury was born at that point, and then I added his soldier background because he really needed it.
Whoa. That was a long answer. Let’s go back to Into the Fury, because I have more questions! The beginning of the book takes place in Seattle at a fashion show, and the details were all so crystal clear. Have you spent time involved in fashion shows, or did you dive in to research this book? Also, the Seattle scenes are so realistic. Did you visit Seattle to prepare for the book?
Kat: I always end up having to do a lot of research. I get to Seattle on occasion because it’s the closest city to where I live in Montana, so I was comfortable with the setting. I spent a lot of time researching the Victoria Secret models, their lives, how the fashion show is produced. Google is my best friend.
Let me ask you this: As an author, was it difficult to live in Mercury’s dark, post-apocalyptic world for the months it took you to write the novel?
Rebecca: Seattle is the closest city to where I live too and I’m pretty sure you go through my town on your way—we have to meet for coffee! As for Mercury’s world, I think once I was into the story I was all right, but when I conducted all the research into the end of the world, I got a little freaked out. The smartest minds of our time pretty much agree a massive disaster is coming, and it’s a matter of when, not if.
So, what inspired you to create your exciting new series?
Kat: I was writing Brodie men—hunky guys who had great morality and courage—and I fell in love with them. It’s as simple as that. I wrote Ty Brodie, a private investigator in Against the Mark. Dylan Brodie, his cousin from Alaska, showed up and I loved him. I gave Dylan, his brothers, Nick, and Rafe, all stories. Ethan showed up in Nick’s story, Against the Sky, and well, he just had to have his own book! That gave me the idea for the BOSS, Inc. series.
Jax Mercury is a hard, disturbing hero and super hot! Was there anyone in particular who inspired you to write a man like that?
Rebecca: Thanks! I think it would take an incredible person to not only survive the apocalypse, but lead and protect many of the other survivors. Jax Mercury took shape from a logical perspective, and then when the heroine meets him, he becomes hot.
Can you tell us a little more about the thrilling, dangerous new world you’ve created and what’s in store for your characters?
Kat: Brodie Operations Security Services, Inc.—or BOSS, Inc., as the guys call it—is a company that provides bodyguards and private investigators. Seattle is a city of great diversity, which makes for a wide variety of crime, so the opportunities for stories seemed endless.
I love the name of your heroine: Lynne Harmony. I believe choosing the right character name can be a great tool. How do you think Lynne’s name defines her?
Rebecca: I chose Harmony for Lynne’s last name because it’s the opposite of the environment she’s suddenly living in, and I liked that. She’s the calm in the middle of Jax Mercury’s world, and he needs that balance.
What do you think romance readers are looking for in the romances they read today?
Kat: I think there are a wide variety of readers, and they’re all looking for something different. Some are looking for a lot of dark heroes—super hard, super alpha, like Jax in Mercury Striking. Some readers want heroes who are more politically correct. Those guys aren’t really for me. I think my guys are somewhere in between.
Rebecca: I loved your hero, Ethan, and saw some definite alpha tendencies. My favorite scene is the one with the dog washing. I won’t say more because I don’t want to give anything away.
What draws you to romantic suspense as an author?
Kat: I’ve always been a suspense/mystery/high-action fan. I love movies like Taken and Mission: Impossible. It’s a natural choice for me.
Do you think the apocalypse could really happen? And how many books will there be in your Scorpius Syndrome series?
Rebecca: I have no doubt an apocalypse could happen. What I didn’t know before doing all the research was how easily it could happen. I mean, there are viruses, bacterium, asteroids, meteors, black holes, super volcanoes... it’s amazing we’ve lasted this long. Of course, I’m a romance author, so I really believe we’ll survive and triumph… and find love. As for the other books in my series, I’m not sure. We’ll have to see how the first three books do. If readers like them, I’d love to keep writing this series.
Okay, Kat: Describe your series in 15 words or less.
Kat: A bodyguard, a P.I., a bounty hunter. The men at BOSS Inc. are down for the job.
What’s next for you?
Rebecca: Right now I’m knee deep in the Scorpius Syndrome books as well as the Realm Enforcers, a spin-off of the Dark Protectors series featuring hot male witch enforcers. This is a year of production and continuing series for me, and I’m really looking forward to it!
Thanks for the fun questions, Kat! What’s next for you?
Kat: Next for me is Into the Whirlwind, Dirk Reynold’s story, followed by Luke Brodie in Into the Firestorm. These have been two of my all-time favorite books to write, so I’m really hoping readers will enjoy them, too. After that, I’m off to Texas for a new trilogy, and I can’t wait to get started!
You might also be interested in:
- Subscribe to Omnivoracious: The Amazon Book Review for our picks of best books of the month, author interviews, reading recommendations, and more from the Amazon Books editors
- Spring into Binge-Reads: Five Series to Obsess Over
- American Heiresses Conquer Jolly Old England