Clarissa Johal: December 2013

Saturday, December 14, 2013

A Very Paranormal Holidays Blog Hop

Enter the Contests (at the end of this post) to win: 
an ecopy of BETWEEN
an ecopy of STRUCK (coming January 17th)

(and) an ecopy of COOKING WITH MUSA from my publisher
All in the format of your choice!
I'll post the winner on December 31st

Also Enter the BIG Contest to win a
Kindle Fire HD, 7", wi-fi, 16GB (no 'special offers' aka ads)

Falling for the Villain
by Clarissa Johal

Heroes and villains. Writing paranormal and gothic horror requires using both, but I cringe at those character stereotypes. In my opinion, they are in the eye of the beholder. Aside from that, I’m not so sure that a character can be 100% hero or villain. 
If you want interesting, complex characters, that is. 

Let's define hero and villain...and then proceed to rip those definitions apart. Just for fun.

Hero: a man of distinguished courage or ability, admired for his brave deeds and noble qualities.
Ignoring the obvious issue with defining hero as a man--courage, ability and brave deeds can go either way. I've read plenty of villainous characters who are quite brave. Let's use Captain Hook from Peter Pan as an example. It takes a lot of bravery to go against a boy who feels, "to die would be an awfully big adventure." Not only have the highest stakes been removed, but it makes you wonder where Peter's head was at. But the brave Captain Hook forged on and was eaten by a crocodile in the end. So sad.
We are left then, with "noble qualities." 
Noble qualities: an exalted moral or mental character or excellence.
That boils down to moral--a distinction between right and wrong. Was Captain Hook moral? He was obsessed with "good form" and being fair, all of which point to moral. Peter, on the other hand, was abducting young children from their bedrooms and would "thin" them out (ie. kill them) when they got too old. Hm. Doesn't sound moral to me.

So if the definition of hero is dodgy, let's talk about villains instead. They are my favorite characters to write, after all. *evil laugh* I fall for them every time. 

Villain: A character in a play, novel, or the like, who constitutes an important evil agency in the plot.
Evil: morally wrong or bad; immoral; wicked. 
Pretty cut and dry. Immoral is the opposite of moral, that good vs. bad thing...but completely in the eye of the beholder.
Did Peter feel he was noble, moral and justified in his actions? Of course he did! Did Captain Hook feel the same about his own actions? That would again, be a yes. So which was the hero, and which the villain? Makes you wonder...and also makes for interesting and complex literary characters.

While I understand the need for people to have their heroes and villains, I like to make people uncomfortable with that concept. One never knows which is which in my novels…and it’s all in the eye of the beholder.

Now onto the fun stuff...

How far would you go to redeem yourself?

As a young girl, Lucinda was able to see spirits, a gift that didn't come without its problems. Now, a dedicated young veterinarian, she is committed to the idea that every life can be saved.
After a devastating accident, Lucinda tries to escape her past by moving to a small town. There, she meets a newcomer and feels an immediate connection with him. But there is another mysterious stranger to the small town, one that stirs within her a mixture of unease and desire. 
As Lucinda is drawn into a bitter tug-a-war from the forces around her, she is likewise pulled into a dangerous twist of past and present events. Forced to make difficult choices, she finds that the two men are locked in not only a battle for her life...but a battle for their salvation.

*Second place in the Preditors and Editors Readers Poll 2012

BETWEEN buy links: 
Musa Publishing 

The shadows hadn't been waiting. 
The shadows had been invited. 

After a painful breakup, Gwynneth Reese moves in with her best friend and takes a job at a retirement home. She grows especially close to one resident, who dies alone the night of a terrific storm. On the way home from paying her last respects, Gwynneth is caught in another storm and is struck by lightning. She wakes in the hospital with a vague memory of being rescued by a mysterious stranger. Following her release from the hospital, the stranger visits her at will and offers Gwynneth a gift--one that will stay the hands of death. Gwynneth is uncertain whether Julian is a savior or something more sinister... for as he shares more and more of this gift, his price becomes more and more deadly.

Excerpt from STRUCK

*Coming from Musa Publishing January 17, 2014

Author Bio:

Clarissa Johal has worked as a veterinary assistant, zoo-keeper aide and vegetarian chef. Writing has always been her passion. When she’s not listening to the ghosts in her head, she’s dancing or taking photographs of gargoyles. She shares her life with her husband, two daughters and every stray animal that darkens the doorstep. One day, she expects that a wayward troll will wander into her yard, but that hasn’t happened yet.

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Enter the Big Contest to win a Kindle Fire
Authors Kallysten and Tricia Schneider organized this Very Paranormal Holidays Blog Hop to share their love for paranormal romance, help you discover new authors, win books, prizes... and maybe a brand new
Kindle Fire!

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