Willa Okati talks All Along and I Would Write (Five Thousand Words) And I Would Write Five Thousand More ~ Blog Tour, Guest Blog

Prism Book Alliance would like to thank Willa Okati for taking the time to talk with us today.

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Title: All Along
Author: Willa Okati
Publisher: Totally Bound
Cover Artist: unknown
Genre/Sub-Genre: M/M Romance, Paranormal

Blurb:

This is book five in the Soulmarked series

Nathaniel’s been keeping a secret—even the most improbable soulmates can be drawn together.
Nathaniel, youngest of the brothers, has been keeping a secret. He knows the identity of his soulmate, but he hasn’t told anyone—because it’s not just impossible, it’s improbable. No one has more than one soulmate in a lifetime, but his new mark has drawn him to Abram—a widower who had, and lost, his mate long ago. It cannot happen, and yet it has…and Nathaniel’s falling in love, fast.
Abram is charmed by the adorable amber-eyed man, but not fooled. Falling for Nathaniel would be a one-way ticket to Heartbreak Hotel. Abram’s twenty-five years older, and he’s had his time with his soulmate. He knows there are no second chances, but every time Nathaniel enters his life, he wins another piece of Abram’s heart. Even if Abram knows better, he’s beginning to wonder if dreams can come true.
Or if miracles might just have been real all along.

I Would Write (Five Thousand Words) And I Would Write Five Thousand More:

Okay, so this is how it usually goes—

Me: I’ve got a great new idea for a story. Clown herders in space. Together, they fight crime. And have sex. Really a lot of sex. Sex in Zero-G. Imagine the possibilities. Anyway, what do you think? Should I go for it?
Individual Who Got Roped Into This Conversation: That could be interesting. Have you developed it past the concept?
Me: Oh yes. I’ve got about…five thousand words, so far? Closer to six, but nobody’s counting except for the little thingy on the bottom of the word processor window.
Individual: Five thousand words? That’s a good start. How many chapters?
Me: Um.
Individual: Um, what?
Me: That’s all for the outline. It’s an outline of twenty-four chapters, if that helps? Some dialogue, some choreography—zero G, how was I supposed to resist that—and a few monologues from various character viewpoints. Also it’s in first person present tense.
Individual: Are you nuts?
Me: I get that question a lot. But hey, I know what’s going to happen in each chapter. And how it’ll end. Probably.
Individual: Probably?
Me: Well, yeah. It’s likely to be completely different by the time I actually get to the end depending on how the characters decide to surprise me. Sometimes I swear they’re autonomous thinkers. I mean, it was originally about cupcake bakers in New Jersey—mmm, frosting—but life is change. I can roll with that.
Individual: *head desk*
Me: *beams*

I’ve often heard it said that the journey is worth more than the destination. If I look at it that way, I’m actually quite Zen.

Thing is, I’ve always been an obsessive outliner. Paper-clipped story schematics written in purple ink make up the bulk of my carefully saved files from the 1980’s (life motto: keep your friends close, and the embarrassing minutiae of your teenaged self closer.) I was hooked from an early age on the absolute thrill of taking a story from concept to plan and then, then the thrill of execution. Even during the years when I didn’t write, I still dreamed in bullet points.

The really fun bit is learning how to go with the change when it happens. Twists hit you broadside, and changes alter the path forward. Characters and circumstances that you had no idea belonged in the world pop up the way mushrooms do after a rain. Sometimes chanterelle, sometimes amanita.

That’s how it happened with Nathaniel and Abram in the upcoming Soulmarked: All Along. When I started this series, I had absolutely no idea those two would end up together. It was in the rules of the world, after all! Abram was a widower. Soulmates only happened once. I told him this. Repeatedly.

Like that was going to work.

Nathaniel, who might be the youngest but is nobody’s fool, told me that as a librarian he would suggest I check my facts and try again. That it could in fact happen, even if it wasn’t supposed to. That it had been happening when I wasn’t looking, and it was the one thing he had his heart set on. That I had to figure out how to make it work.

(See? Autonomous thinkers. It happens.)

So I went back to the drawing board, and you know what? It made sense. Because after all, the Soulmarked series is about how things work when what’s expected doesn’t go to plan. Those who find their soulmates still have a lot of work to do, and those who try to dodge find themselves running home. Like Abram and Nathaniel, who know where their hearts are directing them, but have to jump through a hell of a lot of hurdles to get there.

Life, and storytelling, are so much more rewarding when you enjoy the journey. Impossible dreams can come true, and they’re worth the risk. Be willing to adapt, and it’ll be amazing where that takes you.

So my hypothetical cupcake bakers who became space clowns are by now rodeo riders trying to save the ecosystem. I might be pulling my (rapidly graying) hair out in giant clumps, but it keeps me entertained.

And hopefully the reading audience, too.

About the Author:

Willa Okati can most often be found muttering to herself over a keyboard, plugged into her iPod and breaking between paragraphs to play air drums. In her spare time (the odd ten minutes or so per day she’s not writing) she’s teaching herself to play the pennywhistle.
Willa has forty-plus separate tattoos and yearns for a full body suit of ink. She walks around in a haze of story ideas, dreaming of tales yet to be told. She drinks an alarming amount of coffee for someone generally perceived to be mellow.

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Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

Brandilyn
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