Monday, June 6, 2011

The Dark Days of Supernatural: Interview with Tara Hudson

I'm hugely excited to be the official blog partner to Tara Hudson for The Dark Days of Supernatural tour, and today Tara is joining me for a question and answer session before her paranormal young adult novel Hereafter releases tomorrow (June 7th)! Please mark your calendars and run out and pick this one up, it's an absolutely fabulous read (you can check out my review HERE). The Dark Days of Supernatural tour is sporting a very impressive list of young adult authors, so be sure and check the bottom of the post after the interview for more details and information on Tara and the tour itself!

How do you get through a dark day?

I love dark days! I can’t wait for the opportunity to kill the lights, draw the blinds, and get some writing done while I listen to the rain outside. On emotionally dark days, though, I usually do what Amelia does: I overanalyze the problem until it either goes away or I have to fight some epic battle. (But maybe less of the latter than the former!)

How did you make the transformation from being a lawyer to an author?

For me, the two skill sets kind of go hand-in-hand. A good lawyer absolutely has to be a good writer, and an author should have an analytical side – especially when it comes to editing her novel! I also found that law school made me become more economical with my words, which is so helpful to my fiction.

What do you think makes a good supernatural read?

A good supernatural read has to have an element of mystery to it. The reader should always start with some essential questions about the main character: Not only who she is, but what she is; not only where she’s going, but where she’s been. And, of course, it never hurts to add some blisteringly hot romance.

Where did you get the inspiration for your story?

The idea for Hereafter came from a short story I wrote in college, told from the perspective of a young woman who doesn’t yet realize she's dead. I set the original story in a place I only vaguely remembered—a Choctaw Indian cemetery, to which my grandparents had taken me as a child. I could only recall how strangely quiet and overgrown the place was, and how I wondered whether anyone had visited those graves in this century. Only later did I learn this cemetery was where several of my paternal family members were buried, with graves dating back to the late 19th century.

One rainy afternoon, years later, I rewrote part of that ghost story to distract two of my best girlfriends on their lunch break. When they both demanded more from the story, Hereafter was born.

Do you believe in ghosts?

I believe that places and things have memories, just like people; that strong emotions linger in places and, over time, can change them, haunt them, just like ghosts. The cemetery in Hereafter is one such place, as is High Bridge.


How do you de-stress?

I’m always less stressed after I’ve had a good writing session, or after I’ve had a great plate of sushi.

Item you can’t live without?

My iPod! How does anyone accomplish anything without their personal soundtrack playing in the background?

Favorite flavor of ice cream?

It’s a tie between blackberry almond sorbet and chocolate with peanut butter cups. I’m not even going to confess how often the healthier option loses.

What would surprise people about you?

I used to own a chemically-grown frog who couldn’t survive outside water. The creatively-named “Gilly” lived 21 years. Seriously.

Favorite movie?

Another tie between 28 Days Later (zombies rule) and Ghostbusters, which my family watches every year when we decorate the Christmas tree. We’re a weird bunch.


10. Masons. All the mystery surrounding is creepy enough, but Oklahoma also houses the largest Masonic Temple in the country. Take that, Illuminati.

9. Okie Noodling. No, really. YouTube it. You won't be disappointed.

8. Indian Burial Grounds. As the last stop for the 5 Civilized Tribes on the Trail of Tears, Oklahoma was primarily Indian Country for a long time. So the state has many Indian cemeteries, all of which are sacred…and sometimes spooky.

7. The Flaming Lips. This awesomely weird indie band is from Oklahoma. Score one, Oklahoma's music scene.

6. Tornadoes. They're scary as hell.

5. Bigfoot. No, really (again). Southeastern Oklahoma has a huge number of Bigfoot sightings.

4. Ghost Towns. During the Great Depression and Dust Bowl, thousands of families had to flee Oklahoma. They left behind almost everything, including many of their towns. Many of these Ghost Towns still exist, empty of their inhabitants—or the living ones, anyway.

3. The Walking Dead. Every year, downtown Oklahoma City plays host to the Ghouls Gone Wild Parade, which includes something called “The March of 1,000 Flaming Skeletons.” How cool is that?

2. Robber’s Cave State Park. The place Amelia and Joshua first touch is a labyrinth of mountain caves, where Jesse James and his gang hid from the law.

1. And the number one reason Oklahoma rules: It’s the setting for Hereafter!

Thank you so much for stopping by Tara! For more information on Tara, Hereafter, and all the other authors who are part of the Dark Days of Supernatural Tour, just follow the links below!

Tara's Website
Tara's Blog
Tara on Twitter
Tara on Facebook


Official Website
Dark Days on Facebook
Dark Days on Twitter
Dark Days Trailer


  1. Very cool inspiration for the book! Then again, Hereafter has a pretty interesting concept so I guess it should be expected :)

  2. So cool!I have eagerly anticipated this book bot I haven't seen the first thing about Tara Hudson. I've heard of the Masons of course, but I'll have to google Okie Noodling. I have no idea what that is. I know the Trail of Tears and all the others except the caves so I'm glad to know that bit of info. Isn't it funny how some stories get their story? Oh and I agree- can't do anything without my iPod and love chocolate ice cream with peanut butter!

    Great Interview Jenny! And your review has me wanting to throw everything aside to read this as soon as it arrives!


  3. Awesome interview!! And I agree with Tara, I also love dark days! There is nothing better than rain and thunder and then curling up on the couch reading!

  4. Love the interview. You always do such a brilliant job Jenny. I completely agree with Tara's answers as what makes a good supernatural read :)

  5. Terrific interview. I loved the fact that when Hudson turned from law to writing that she used her Oklahoma background instead of her law background to write.

  6. Now I miss Oklahoma. There seems to be so many books out now or coming out shortly about Oklahoma, but as she mentioned there are so many things about Oklahoma that makes it a great backdrop for spookiness.

  7. Fun interview! I love the sound of Hereafter and will definitely be picking up a copy soon!

  8. That is one longlived frog o_O But then I do not know how long they usually live ;)

    Eeek tornados! I am scared to death of them and we do not even have them here

  9. Great interview! I am so excited for this book. Hopefully I can add it to my summer reading list. I always enjoy a spooky summer read.

  10. Aylee - I loved her take on the hereafter:)

    Heather - Ice cream + peanut butter = Best. Thing. Ever.

    Danny - Rainy days (and snowy days) are my favorite, it's just such a great excuse to not do work and sit on the couch to read:)

    Nic - Thanks! Wish I could take credit for this one, but the questions and answers were sent to me by Harper, but I had fun reading the interview! O_O :)

    Jan - I agree, I love when authors write about places that mean something to them:)

    Rie - I've never been to Oklahoma, but after reading her tens list I kinda want to go:)

    Leanna - Hope you love it!

    Blodeuedd - Right? I don't know either, but that seems like a really long time. I wish my dogs would live that long!

    Christina - It would be a great summer read, I just adored it:)

  11. Oklahoma rules? Umm... Texas would have to disagree! Hook 'em Horns! :P

    But I do agree that The Flaming Lips are AWESOME!

    Great interview. I also believe that memories linger on places and things. And R.I.P. to the beloved Gilly. I bet he was one cool frog.

  12. *Hangs head in shame*
    I haven't read this book yet! It hurts my heart because it is totally calling out to me on my Kindle!

  13. Great interview! I love any book that mixes mystery with the supernatural. I can't wait to read Hereafter!

  14. Missie - You are hilarious, that is all:)

    Avery - I hope you read it soon! It was really different I thought and was a good balance between romance and mystery.

    Misha - Me too! And I really liked Amelia, she was a great character:)

  15. Oooooh I absolutely CANNOT WAIT to read Hereafter... and dude- OK is totally creepy. (Parts of it anyway!)

  16. Great interview! It's so awesome that you're Tara's official partner for the tour! I had no idea she was a lawyer--she makes great points about her experience being beneficial to her writing career!

  17. Fun interview!! I loved the top ten! Ive alwasys wanted to see a real ghost town, I may have to visit Oklahoma..:)

  18. I am from Oklahoma so I know of all that she is talking about. =P My brother in-law is a big fan of The Flaming Lips! Also, didn't realize that she was a lawyer! That is so cool!!

    Great interview!!

  19. Can I tell you how much I'm squeeing over this tour coming to Arizona!!! I think I already did, but I'm telling you again...because they are AZ...and I get to see them! It's so much better than Christmas! :D Great interview Jenny! You always rock the best questions. (also, sidenote: when do we get more Friday cover critiques?)

    In the Closet With a Bibliophile

  20. Ashley - I think you'll love it, it's made of WIN:)

    Lauren - I was really excited to be asked, hopefully I do Hereafter justice:)

    Tina - I'm such a wimp, I say I'd like to see a ghost town, but I'd probably work myself up into such a frenzy just thinking about ghosts that I wouldn't be able to set foot in it:)

    Bailey - Nice! I'm thinking I need to visit there now:)

    Jen - I wish it was coming a little closer to me! Can't wait to hear all about it when you go. And the cover critique will be back this Friday I promise!

  21. I loved this interview! As soon as I'm done I am going to google that Okie noodling. I love ghost towns they have so much history to them.

  22. Never heard of chemically grown frogs before. Now I'm wondering what they look like.

  23. This sounds interesting. I need to read it. Oh, and I will forgive you for having the setting in OK. ;) j/k

  24. Awesome interview! Now I'm curious about Okie noodling...

    *runs off to YouTube*

  25. I didn't even know you could create a chemically grown frog and for it to live 21 years?! Wow, that's awesome. I love how the inspiration of this story came from a short story and the idea of a girl not knowing she's dead. I'm definitely intrigued and can't wait to start this book!

  26. Another great interview! Fab top tens list!! I'm definitely going to have to Google Okie Noodling. When I was younger, I belonged to a sister organization of the Mason's for a while. I can see why the Mason's would be seen as creepy! They are kind of a strange group. Interesting on the ghost towns! I'm looking forward to reading this book as well.

  27. Great interview, Jenny. I wouldn't want a frog as a pet but Tara's sounds kind of cool.

  28. Great interview! I'm going to check Tara out now since she's an Oklahoma author. That's where my dad is from. Nice to see Oklahomans getting some credit.

  29. I totally agree that a great supernatural has mystery to it! I have never heard an author put it that way but it explains why I like paranormal and mystery/thrillers, they kind of interact!

    Great Interview!

  30. Best interview ever! No, seriously. Tara has totally the right idea with the dark days. I love to just close all my curtains and curl in bed and listen to the rain or thunder. Yes, I am that melodramatic, and yes, I need this book. Stat.

  31. I love dark days too! Well, not the emotional ones :) Romance is a must in supernatural, I agree! THAT FROG!!! WHAT?! That seems crazy!