Ask Cat: Edition 1

Introduction from Catherine Gardiner: As mentioned on my website, Ask Cat is a feature I've decided to run where I will answer questions sent to me about my novels, and writing in general. I've selected a few I can answer but I hope that this is just the first edition of many. Thank you to everyone that directly sent a question in; I really appreciate your interest and patience!

By email, Lana asked: "Do you have a newsletter to sign up for new releases?"

Answer: Thank you for the email, Lana! Right now I don't have a newsletter, but I will seriously consider creating one if there is interest in it. Until then, I try to keep everyone updated on my blog which can be followed through Wordpress (if you have an account). You can also follow my blog by adding the address to a feed reader, such as Google Reader. I know this isn't ideal for everyone so I will give more thought to your suggestion. If I implement it I will mention it on my blog and my website.

By blog comment, Chrissy B wanted to know: "When will you have the second book out?"

Answer: I gave a reply to Chrissy on my blog comments, but for everyone that doesn't read the comments but would like to know the answer, I answered that book two is taking longer than I thought to complete so I'm unsure when it will be released. However, I'm hard at work on it (as well as other connected projects), and I can tell you that it will be called "Masquerade (In The Shadows, Book Two)" which might give you a clue as to a theme in it. I will keep adding teasers and give updates on my progress on my blog. I'd also like to thank everyone that asked a similar question to this one, and I am so happy about the enthusiasm shown so far. I hope that those who enjoyed book one will like book two just as much, if not more!

Although these weren't specifically asked directly, I still think these next few deserve answering.

By review, Christina said: "I wonder if the two sisters will ever meet? And what is Marcus all about?"

Answer: I don't want to give away too many spoilers, but I can say that the sisters in Forgotten will meet again... although you'll all have to wait and see to find out in what circumstances their meeting will be! As for Marcus, things are never quite as clear cut as they seem and all will be revealed about him, and other characters, in the sequel.

Also by review, Miranda wondered: "Why would a vampire and a werewolf want to be cheerleaders?"

Answer: In case others wonder why this would be my answer is that, out of the vampire and werewolf, one doesn't want to be a cheerleader at all and the other is neutral to the idea. They are only going along with it as Marcus, their guardian, wants them to fit in with the other students their age. As alluded to in the novel, they've all been in trouble in the past and he would prefer that they don't draw too much negative attention to themselves so the best thing they can do is be like everyone else. More will be explained about the cheerleaders themselves in a sequel.

I realize this question was asked as though it's a ludicrous concept for a vampire or a werewolf to be a cheerleader, but my book isn't the first to have examples of them.

Miranda also asked: "How does a werewolf have amnesia?"

Answer: I'd like to apologize if anyone read the review I've quoted and were given the wrong idea about my novel, but I have to say that a werewolf does not have amnesia in my novel; although I wouldn't think there would be anything wrong if one did. In some books, the vampires sparkle, in some books the werewolves turn into wolf-men. As authors we write our own mythology and take bits that we like, while disregarding what doesn't fit with our ideals. My "monsters", for example, have not lost all humanity that they are invulnerable and cannot suffer from human ailments (particularly when attacked without being able to defend themselves). If you'd like to take a look at a new series of posts on my mythology that I wrote recently, I explain how my vampires in high stress situations will shut-down and mimic human behavior as a defense mechanism to protect themselves (for example, a human would find a pulse and a heartbeat if they found an unconscious vampire). I will be discussing my other creatures from my series in future posts on my blog for those that are interested.

Other authors and readers are entitled not to agree with what I write, and not everyone will like it either, but I hope that everyone respects my wish to write my own ideas and add to an ever-evolving mythology as others have done before me and many will do after.

Thank you for reading the first edition of Ask Cat! It's been fun answering the questions sent in and I hope to do it again soon!