Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Guest Author - Marta Acosta (Interview & Giveaway)

I have been conversing with the funny and talented Marta Acosta almost since I began blogging in mid 2008 and discovered her wonderful Casa Dracula series. I haven't a clue why it has taken so long to have Marta here as a guest, but the day has finally arrived. We had some fun with the usual Q&A format and we hope you enjoy the rumble interview.

Marta has donated a signed copy of Happy Hour at Casa Dracula to be won by one random commenter (giveaway details at the end of the post). Marta will be dropping in to answer your questions or comments in the spirit of the interview so be ready. You can also enter by telling us your favourite vampire joke. As an additional prize and incentive, I am going to choose the joke I like best and I will send a regular copy of the book anywhere The Book Depository ships. And now since I went to all this trouble... here's Marta!

SFG: I know I invited you to guest over here at the illustrious SciFiGuy.ca blog, but for the life of me I can’t remember why. Can you refresh my memory? Did you bribe me?

That’s a ridiculous and insulting accusation. I didn’t bribe you. I may have threatened the safety of your striped cat, Señor Pickles. Also, you should do something about his hairball problem. He’s ruined the shag carpeting in the closet where I’ve locked him.

SFG: I hear that you are an author. Did you apply for that job? Have you written anything I might have heard of (or anyone else for that matter*snicker*)?

You heard wrong. I am not an author. I am an aspiring animal cloning scientist. In fact, I now have several replicas of Señor Pickles. Some of the clones are not quite right, if you know what I mean. However, until my business takes off, as it undoubtedly will, I have scribbled some books to earn money for test tubes and Petri dishes. They are Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, Midnight Brunch, and The Bride of Casa Dracula. Haunted Honeymoon at Casa Dracula will be released in October 2010.

SFG: Your vampires drink fine vintages of assorted animal blood and wine. Why so wimpy?

I’m not going to be trash-talked by someone who served Molson at his disastrous “Party Like It’s 1999, Eh!” new Millennium party! My vampires aren’t savages. They have degrees from Fancy Universities, second homes in the country, and fabulous wardrobes. They can appreciate the subtleties of blood blends – the herbaceousness of bunnies, the hints of juniper in deer, and the mineral and grass notes of spring lamb. If they’re not as gentile in the privacy of their luxury master suites, that’s not your business.
I actually thought of how superstitions start, from ignorance and fear of anything different, so my vamps are human with a genetic anomaly. Their enemies have used their difference as a reason to try to eradicate them and take possession of their property.

SFG: Milagro is the leading lady in your series. Didn’t Robert Redford play opposite her in the movie the Milagro Beanfield War? Is she a good girl or a bad girl?

Robert Redford is way too old for Milagro and so not her type. (Her type can be narrowed down to “not too old.”) Milagro is better than being merely a good or bad girl. She’s a fun girl. Being fun means that you make more complex moral decisions, instead of just relying on one set of standard rules. Is it okay to ditch your boring prospective in-laws and hang out with drunken handsome tourists? Sure, sometimes it is. Is it okay to go out with someone nicknamed The Dark Lord when your fiancé is out of the country? Absolutely, if you have to attend a wedding full of snobs.

SFG: Casa Dracula is in all your titles except Midnight Brunch (Book 2). Memory lapse? Also I thought Dracula was from Transylvania not some casa. Am I being obtuse?

Yes, you’re being obtuse. You’re all things that begin with O. Obtuse, Obstinate, Ornery, and at that bad Millennium party you got all Origami on us by the end. It took hours to unfold you.

Midnight Brunch was going to be called Midnight Brunch at Casa Dracula. My editor at that time changed it. I don’t know why. It might be changed back, but I’m not sure. No one tells me anything. And, you know, Dracula’s castle is sometimes called Casa Dracula. It shows up on my Google Alert for the title.

SFG: Your next book is Haunted Honeymoon at Casa Dracula. Will there be lots of sex (nudge nudge wink wink)?

Yes, more sex! In fact, there’s sex right from the start. There’s some perverseness, some exhibitionism, and lots of bloodplay. Milagro is a little slutty, but I come up with a justification for that, which allows her to seem worthwhile and still do it with the hot guys. And by “it” I mean the hokey-pokey.

SFG: You’ve said you like the colour green on book covers, even suggested I make a video of them *raises eyebrows*. Are you some sort of environmentalist or is it envy of my blog?

Now you’re being Oblivious. I never said I liked green on book covers. I said I was seeing a lot of green covers. I don’t like green covers. Too zombie-ish.

SFG: Speaking of blogs. Vampire Wire. Semi-naked guys. Dracula 2000 tribute videos. What’s with that. Eeew. You don’t actually expect guys to visit do you, especially us manly Canadian Dudley Do-right types?

Hey, I put a video with two chicks kissing each other last week! I’m trying to be equal opportunity. Anyway, when I got my first book deal I noticed that I was listed as a writer of women’s fiction. I was all, “What’s up with that?” because my newspaper columns and features were read by men and women. But that’s how publishers market books. Anyway, when I finally accepted that men weren’t going to read my books because of the covers and marketing, I just thought, what the hey, so I pretty much reach out to women exclusively. And “Dracula 2000” is totally awesome. I fully intend to watch the whole movie someday. I am happy for the few male readers I have.

SFG: You seem intimidated by my interest in Olympic curling and term me an evil Canadian. You do recognize that the latter is an oxymoron? What do you do for fun in California?

We surf and get plastic surgery. We grow medical marijuana and wonder where Ohio is. We practice nutty religions and recycling. We play Six Degrees of Separation from Kevin Bacon. (I’m two degrees.) We consider moving to Ohio, but we’re not sure A) where it is, B) if there’s good surfing and access to medical marijuana, and C) if we’ll have to do our own Botox injections there.

SFG: I heard a rumour that you like to play Flight of the Bumblebee on the tuba, your favourite instrument. Any truth to that? I of course prefer the trombone.

Not at all true. I am an excellent zither player. A zitherist, to use the technical term. I love playing the zither soundtrack to “The Third Man.” Tragically, the zither is not appreciated by cultural barbarians (Editors note: Is she talking about Canadians?). Zither music is featured in my second novel, which also references “The Third Man.” That way I get to write-off my new zither on my taxes. My last zither got busted up in that damn party of yours, which you would remember if you weren’t so Obliterated.

SFG: You’ve been accused of being funny. Challenge time. Give us your best vampire or werewolf walks into a bar joke.

A vampire walks into a bar and sits down at the counter. The bartender says, “What can I do you for?” The vampire says, “I’m feeling like a little Jack Daniels?” The bartender says, “Sorry, you drained him dry last week and his body is rotting in the back alley. How about Jim Beam?

Werewolf walks into a bar. Bartender says, “Sorry, we don’t serve dogs or animals.” Werewolf says, “I’m a werewolf. I’d shapeshift, but I don’t want to throw all the ladies into a mad frenzy when they see the python between my legs.” Bartender says, “Dogs, snakes, I don’t give a damn. Get the hell out of my bar.

SFG: Living, dead or undead, what author would you most like to take on a date?

None. Authors are cheap SOBs who will always stick you with the bill. They’re egocentric and whiney. “Why can’t my book sell like The DaVinci Code? Whaa, whaa, whaa!

SFG: Finally, any new projects you would like to tell us about *glances impatiently at watch*?

I’ve got a fabulous young adult gothic, The Shadow Girl of Birch Grove, which is with a few editors now. If they don’t buy it, I may self-publish. If I self-publish, I’m going to rewrite it with lots of gratuitous sex scenes and blood-drinking and maybe I’ll throw in a few more murders.

Also, there’s Haunted Honeymoon at Casa Dracula, coming out in October. It rocks. It’s funny, but sad, but happy and all that stuff. There are scenes that make me cry, but in the good way, and then there are literary allusions that no one will get and some post-modernism, but no one gives a damn about that. I just write that way because it amuses me. Also, there’s a cat named Señor Pickles.
I should be writing about angsty Alpha vamps that are 400-years old and dress in leather with washboard abs and they’ve never been in love before, and then I’d sell better. Hey, Doug, if you pay for dinner out, I’ll tell you all about that.

Marta, if I'm ever in California, you are the first one I'll call!

Haunted Honeymoon at Casa Dracula (Book 4) releases in October, so if you haven't had the chance to read the series, then hustle down to the bookstore and get the first three books.

You can visit Marta at her Official Website and at her blog Vampire Wire.

Vampires, Cocktails, Mayhem - Casa Dracula Book One
Gardener and writer Milagro is struggling to pay her rent and can't find a worthwhile guy. When a passionate kiss with a fabulous man named Oswald causes her to become extremely ill, she hides at his country estate with his snobby family, who claim they aren't vampires. Oh, and her ex-boyfriend wants to drive a stake through her heart.

Secret Rituals, Desert Spas, and Movie Stars - Casa Dracula Book Two
When her vampire boyfriend's family excludes Milagro from a mysterious midnight ceremony, she sets out to learn more about the vampires. She doesn't expect to find herself listed on the menu, though. A screenwriting job takes her away from danger -- or so she thinks -- and to a lavish resort with dark secrets of its own.

Wedding Jitters- Engagement Rings - Sabotage - Casa Dracula Book Three
Milagro and her vampire fiance have announced their wedding date, but her wedding coordinators make her crazy, the Vampire Council interferes, and she keeps running into the too sexy vampire who once saved her life. Is someone trying to make sure Milagro doesn't walk down the aisle?
  1. Grand prize, one signed copy of Happy Hour at Casa Dracula to giveaway courtesy of Marta Acosta to be drawn randomly and a second copy (unsigned) for the best joke to be selected by me.
  2. Leave a comment or question for Marta or tell us your favourite vampire joke.
  3. Open to US and Canada for the signed copy and open internationally for the best joke.
  4. Leave a way to notify you if you should win.
  5. Blog, tweet, post on Facebook or other social network sites for an extra entry. Leave a comment here to let me know.
  6. Giveaway open until Midnight, March 16, 2010 EST.


  1. Omg, this is one of the funniest interviews i have ever read!

    Can you tell us a little more about your YA book, i like the title. :)

    my favorite vampire joke is:

    Which flavor ice cream is Dracula’s favorite?

    thanks for the fun interview and giveaway.

    van p.

  2. that interview was awesome! thanks for making me laugh this early in the morning!

    i'd also like to hear more about your new YA book.

    Here's my joke:

    A vampire bat flies back into his cave after a big night...he has blood all over his face. Perches himself on the roof to try and get some rest. But before too long the other bats smell the blood, and start to gather around him. They ask feverishly where he got the blood from. Knowing that they will not let up till he tells them "OK, follow me!". He flies out of the cave, across a valley, over a river into a dark forest. Deep in the forest he stops, all the other bats gather round in an excited frenzy. "OK", says the bat, "see that big oak tree over there?". "Yeah yeah" reply the other bats, drooling in anticipation. : "Well I *@#$en didn't!", said the bat.

    thanks for the chance to win... i've been wanting to pick up this series.

    stampitchick at yahoo dot ca

  3. Funny interview.

    How many more books do you plan to write in the Casa Dracula series?

    sgiden AT verizon DOT net

  4. Thank you kids for the frickin hilarious interview this morning. However, my office mate is now staring at me very strangely.

    I have to tell you I love Marta and her books since I found a link to enter a contest for Spider Bite and look forward to all her posts and books(which I will review when I come back from Vermont) but she is sparing with a fellow Canuck and I MUST defend the right to cheer on curling (Marta, check out some of the boys who curl -- smokin hot I tell ya, as long as you don't look at their pants)and for Molsons -- hands down it is a much better beer than any American swill (sorry you don't mess with Cdn's and their beer or hockey -- its all we got darnit eh)

    Seriously I love Canadians and Americans and pretty much anyone else as long as they don't hurt children or animals.

    I found these while looking for my fav joke about Canada and the US http://www.indefual.net/canada/jokes/grttobe-cnd.html
    Couldn't find the joke, but the jist was the UN tells the U.S that they can go to war but they HAVE to take Canada with them and the US says Ah, do We have too(like we are the US's little brother) If I ever find it, I will send it to you both
    Fav Vampire Joke: This is just because my dad used to tell it over and over and its the anniversary of his death this week "Son: Mommy, Mommy! are we really vampires?
    Mom: Shut up and drink your soup before it clots!

    Thanks for the chance to win a signed copy : ) And honestly I prefer Corona too any Cdn beer -- sorry I cannot lie I AM CANADIAN LOL

    contestmom AT hotmail DOT com
    Loved that my word verification was stake

  5. Don't enter me in the contest, but I'm just stopping by to say that I absolutely loved this interview -- or whatever it was. I thoroughly enjoyed Happy Hour when I read it -- it was very smart and funny, and I was very impressed that Marta worked Milan Kundera references into the novel (though I don't expect a Canadian to know who that is ;-).

    Loved the Milagro Beanfield War reference, too! ;-) Great interview, Marta, and what a way to stick those pesky Canadians in their place (though Keanu and Kiefer do some justice to their breed ;-). Very much looking forward to reading Midnight Brunch!

  6. Wonderful interview.

    Marta, if you're really an (evil) animal cloner, why did you say later in the interview that you're a writer of women's fiction? Are you just trying to confuse us or throw off the animal activists? And just how many copies have you made of Pickles? And why on earth do you have shag rug in your closet? Are you some sort of closet disco queen? (Get it? Closet? Shag rug in the closet? Never mind.)

    Anyway, love the series! Can't wait to read about the honeymoon =)

    Zita(at)dal(dot)ca (yes, another Canadian)

  7. Great interview : ) There once was a vampire named Mabel, who's period was notoriously stable So one night in June she sat with a spoon and drank herself under the table. <<< I know oh so wrong but funny


  8. Hi, everyone!

    Van, my YA book is about a foster girl who is given a scholarship to an elite all-girls school, the Birchwood Academy.

    It's the opportunity of a lifetime -- and her life has been tragic so far. But the elegant headmistress and her handsome sons are hiding secrets. Another scholarship student left mysteriously, and everyone is a little too friendly to the newcomer.

    Tina, Mountie, Van, thanks for the laughs!

    Sandy, right now I'm concluding the series with Haunted Honeymoon at Casa Dracula. That doesn't mean that there won't be books based on some of the characters. A few people have said that they'd like to see a book based on Edna, the grandmother, when she was young and wild.

    Nicole, thanks for the kind words.

    Zita, if you want a clone of Senor Pickles just say so! I'll have to do a home visit to make sure you'll be a responsible pet owner.

    I had to put shag rug in my closet because when Doug visits, he likes to hide in there, drink Molson, and listen to Corey Hart songs. That way, if he passes out, he doesn't hit his head on the hard floor and sue me.

  9. ouch Corey Hart - now that is a low blow - we kicked him out of the country years ago, along with Alan Thicke,Hayden Christensen & Bill Shatner -- However we want Ryan Reynolds back PRONTO!

  10. Okay, what is going on here? LOL. I think I need a Molson and some botox now, too.

    What a great interview! So fun. Don't enter me, I'm up to speed on Casa, and nonCasa titles in this series.

  11. Tina good one!

    Mountie points for grossness!

    Nicole Hah! I saw Unbearable Lightness of Being when it was first run... so there :)

    Angeleyes have to say you outdid Mountie :)

    Marta hey you can't be a Vampirephile without knowing the lyrics to Sunglasses at Night. I never pass out, merely rest my eyes.

  12. Guess I'm her token male reader then. And I'm not only reading her books because of the outrageous bribes, honest. She also forwards me all of the naked pictures women send her.

    Marta, is there any way you could stop the latter, by the way? My eyes are still stinging from the peroxide after I found out in the most traumatic way possible that my mother is also a fan.

  13. Pick me! Pick me! ;)

    Love the series! My friend suggested I read the books because she claimed Milagro reminded her of me... after i read the entire series, I wondered to myself whether it was because I was "latina, neurotic or slightly trampy?" haha! Regardless, I take it as a compliment! Can't wait for the next book in the series!

  14. oh contact info!! lipglossforever @ hotmail (dot) com

  15. Mountie8, I'd like to say thanks for Ryan Reynolds and Bill Shatner. Bill Shatner is all kinds of awesome. I was at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and they had an exhibit that played great scenes from the original Star Trek. He's that great.

    Carolyn, Molson and Botox -- now that's a good Happy Hour!

    Doug, I will never admit that I know the lyrics. Or that there was a time when I wore sunglasses at night.

    TMB, there are at least three of you! Dr. Derek Tatum, reknowned curmudgeon and vampire historian, also comes by my blog to point out inaccuracies and sloppy sentence construction. Also, sorry that those photos of your mother slipped through. They were supposed to go to Doug who likes her "saucy smiles and cheerful poses."

    Nicole Cee -- so you're another Milagro! Can't tell you the number of young women who really identify with her.

  16. Marta- I think Senor Pickles could be part of a new series, maybe a childrens' book or something. I'm sad that this will be the last Milagro book- I love her and all her trampy clothes:)

    This was hands down the best and funniest interview ever!

    And to all Canadians- You may not have Ryan Reynolds back!

  17. oops! Forgot my email addy, again.


    And since I didn't know any jokes, I asked my brother and his reply was, "The only ones I know really suck!" No, he is not Canadian:)

  18. I have no jokes. I have read all of Marta's books and they are laugh out loud funny. I impatiently wait for the October release of the next book.

    Question: Marta don't you have another book coming out this year? Or is that just Blog-Rumor?

    Gotta love your GVDs!!

  19. Also forgot to mention another Canadian we want back - Nathan Fillion (Castle, Firefly, Buffy, Waitress,etc) -- I'd be willing for getting him back to let you all keep Ryan Reynolds

    Doug: forgot to mention how much I like your blog (thanks to Marta for recommending)

    Marta: I go between liking and disliking Shatner. Loved the original star trek tv show and movies (In our house we call it chick tv, since hubby not a fan of Sci-fy -- I know its disgusting but at least he cooks)

    Looking forward to reading the second casa book as well as Spider Bites on my vacation to Vermont next week
    contestmom AT hotmail DOT com

    No Vamp jokes for you today, but just some of my fav quotes from Buffy (Hey, I am a Librarian, quotes are what I do best)

    "To make a vampire they have to suck your blood. And then you have to suck their blood. It's like a whole big sucking thing." -- Buffy

    "Vampires are creeps."
    "Yes, that's why one slays them." -- Buffy and Giles

    "Halloween quiet? I figured it would be a big ol' vamp scareapalooza."
    "Not according to Giles. He swears that tomorrow night is like dead for the undead. They stay in."
    "Those wacky vampires. That's why I love 'em. They just keeps ya guessing." -- Xander and Buffy

    "Buffy, when I said you could slay vampires, and have a social life, I didn't mean at the same time!" -- Giles

  20. Great interview...so much more entertaining than the joke I have to offer:

    Three vampires walk into a bar and sit at a table. The waitress comes to take their orders. "I'll have a mug of blood," says the first vampire. The second one nods, and says, "The same." The third vampire rolls his eyes at his friends, faces to the waitress and says, "A glass of plasma, please."
    She turns to the bartender and calls out their order: "I need two bloods and a blood lite."

  21. Anna, great idea! Senor Pickles doesn't really have a personality yet, but I can imagine the hijinks he could get into.

    Dot S., actually I do have another book coming out. I shall reveal more later!

    Mountie, sorry, we've got Nathan Fillion and we're keeping him in case Joss Whedon needs him in another series. Thanks for the Buffy memories!

  22. Q: What does Dracula say when introduced to someone?
    A: "Hello, pleased to eat you!"

    patronus8913 at yahoo dot com

  23. This series sounds fabulous. I'd love to read some less serious vampires. I'll definately have to pick it up.

    I've posted on my livejournal as well.


    sleepingaurora at hotmail dot com

  24. Marta!!! ::waves::

    Fave vamp joke? I totally googled this, but it's hilarious:

    What are a vampire's favorite snacks?
    Adam's apples and nectarines.

    ::snort:: I must use that some time!

  25. And before I forget, which is exceedingly likely, the origami line is classic. So classic, in fact, that it may find its way into our morning staff meeting tomorrow. Thank you!

  26. justpeachy36@yahoo.com

    Please enter me in the giveaway.

    What does a Vampire fear most?

    .... Tooth Decay.... LOOOOOLLLL

  27. I totally look forward to reading Marta's novels! They look so cool!

    Q: What kind of ship does Dracula own
    A: Blood vessel.

    faked_sugartone at hotmail

  28. Fabulous showdown. I wish I had a good vamp joke, but I don't. Although, I would like to see a round 2 interview at Vamp Wire with Marta interviewing Doug. :)


    +1 tweeted - http://twitter.com/Heatwave316/status/10497152553

  29. Q: What does a baby vampire say before going to bed?
    A: Turn on the dark. I'm afraid of the light!

    aikychien at yahoo dot com

  30. Tweeted:


    aikychien at yahoo dot com


  31. شركة تنظيف خزانات بالمدينة المنورة وشقق بالمدينة المنورة شركة غسيل خزانات ومكافحة حشرات بالمدينة المنورة ونقل عفش بالمدينة المنورة مؤسسة صفوة المدينة
    شركة تنظيف خزانات بالمدينة المنورة
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالمدينة المنورة مؤسسة صفوة المدينة انها الاولى فى مكافحة ورش الحشرات بالمدينة المنورة رش البق رش الصراصير مكافحة النمل الابيض بالمدينة المنورة
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالمدينة المنورة


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