The truth about Sonya Bateman

A shroud of mystery has surrounded new league member Sonya Bateman...and, well, that won't do. Because, if the league of reluctant adults is anything it's a TOTALLY NOSY group of individuals. I volunteered to welcome our newest member and get the truth. What makes Sonya tick? How does she write those books? Does she have powers? Party tricks?

Sonya! Welcome! Welcome to the league. Hopefully the hood and robe have arrived in the mail, and I trust that you wore both when you placed the bag of ping pong balls in the night deposit box of your local bank, and also as you placed the “monster-head of success pentacle” decal on your front door per league diagrams. Mothicus will be looking for it.
Now that that business is over, Congrats! 
First off, can I just say, I love the concept of your book. You’ve got this unlucky small-time thief, and in an amazing, fun way, he gets a Djinn. LOL. But the Djinn has plans of his own. Dude, everybody and their brother seems to be loving this book.

People were freaking on Sonya's book.
In a good way.

“…witty and smartly written, Bateman puts her own spin on djinn magic. Plenty of action and memorable characters add up to an entertaining read that's tough to put down." ~RT Magazine
And okay, you went for writing about a DJINN. What possessed you??

Thank you! I’m so pleased to be here. And by the way, is Mothicus ten feet tall with a mouth full of razor-sharp teeth? Because I think I placed the success pentacle upside-down, and now he’s moved into my bedroom and is eating all my Cheez-its.

Anyway...djinn! Well, they were under-represented in urban fantasy, and they weren’t too happy about it. So they came to me – I’m still not sure why – and said that if I didn’t write about them, they were going to start having poker night at my place. Let’s just say they don’t bet with money, and when they get drunk, sometimes their you-lose, five-minutes-of-pain-for-you spells can misfire and hit the wrong target. I had to protect my cats.

Plus, I’ve always been fascinated with the djinn. Not the big blue goofy kind, but the kind that when you wish to be happy for the rest of your life, they give you a chocolate bar and then shoot you dead while you’re still smiling about it.

* scribbles on list of what not to ask for when djinn appears *
Oh, hey, your video is great. Did you make this thing? It’s humorous, and it gives a fabulous sense of story.

Thanks! I did make the video – it was my first production with the fancy video editing software I bought just for book trailers. I spared no expense. I scoured the Internet for the best (free) film footage, procured (free) high-quality background music, and hired a professional voice actor (my husband – also free) to narrate. And it only took me about 50 or 60 jillion hours to put together (I blame the software learning curve).

For my next book trailer, I’m planning a title screen overlaid on a picture of my cats, and the sound of my head banging on the table. I’ll call it avant-garde (or, you know...easy).

Like me, Sonya used to work at McDonald's.
Let's just say, 'we know certain things' and leave it at that. 

OMG, I hear you on that video stuff. The learning curve is huge, and then on the other end, I personally got into microsecond adjustments. That is why the quality is so amazing on mine. lol

So, is the rumor true? About when you got the call? The blood and the French fries and all that? 

Sadly, I can’t deny the rumor...

I’ll spare you the long, grueling details of my writing “career” before my first sale – the short version is ten years, eleven novels, a thousand rejections. Obviously I wasn’t making a living at writing, so I had a few extra jobs. Most of them were at McDonalds.

My second agented novel (the first one hadn’t sold) had been out on submission for quite a while, and I’d given up on it months ago. It was after the holiday season, the middle of winter. I reported to McDonalds just before noon for a four-hour shift. While I was putting my coat and purse in the crew room, the office phone rang. One of the managers said it was for me.

No one ever called me at work with good news. Only house emergencies merited a work phone call, because they hated letting employees use the phone (too many of them abused the privilege). I picked up, and it was my husband. He sounded...odd. He said, “You have to call your agent. Right now.”

It doesn't look sinister, does it? But wait until Sonya
gets her hands on it... 
At that moment, I’d been eating a red-jelly-filled donut that one of my co-workers brought in. My hands started shaking so badly that I smeared the filling all over myself. We couldn’t make long-distance calls from the office phone, and I didn’t own a cell phone (still don’t), so I ran out of the office with red jelly all over my hands, screaming, “A phone! I need a phone, right now!”

The grill manager panicked and thought I was bleeding to death. There was a long moment of confusion before someone finally lent me a phone.

I called my agent. I didn’t hear much beyond “two-book deal with Pocket Books”. Shaking and crying, I called my husband back and shouted something unintelligible, which he miraculously understood.

Then I washed the jelly off my hands, and proceeded to spend the next four hours making double cheeseburgers.

So, you live in upstate New York with your husband. Do you have any pets? Kids? Other?

Sonya's kitties!
All of the above. There’s my husband and our son (14), my sister and her two boys (14 and 13), six cats, one dog who really wants to be a cat (apparently because the cats have all the fun), a part-time horse (he lives next door but prefers the taste of our grass), and a weekend son (16) who would rather hang out with my son and nephews than his younger brothers, and spends all his time here when there’s no school. He’s, like, in the Son Reserves.

I understand you do not fly on planes. Could you elaborate?

I don’t have wings. Therefore, I’m not meant to fly – so I don’t.

Whenever I say “I don’t fly,” people start quoting statistics at me about how it’s safer to fly than it is to drive, because more people are involved in auto accidents than plane accidents. They tell me it’s not at all frightening to be suspended a few miles above the huge rock we call Earth, in a contraption that weighs a few tons and should not be able to get airborne.

Here’s my theory. Yes, I have a better chance of getting into a car crash than a plane crash. However. I have no chance of surviving a plane crash. I’m not Bruce Willis in Unbreakable here. The car crashes, I’ll probably live. The plane crashes, I’m toast. No planes for me.

Sonya claims not to be like Bruce Willis in the
movie Unbreakable, a movie many hated but I loved it. 
You make a good point. And, if you’re an alert driver, that must help even out those car statistics. Hey, FYI next time you do book seats on a plane, the over-the-wing section is suppposedly the safest.

 When we spoke about this post, you noted that cameras do not work properly in your vicinity. You said, “Even my husband says pictures of me look like someone else entirely.” Huh...

Yes – apparently I’m possessed by the spirit of a buck-toothed, empty-eyed drooling moron who is attracted to shiny things, like the flash of a camera. Exorcism attempts have been unsuccessful.

August 21, 2017. Does this date mean anything to you? 

There are a few things on my list of stuff I have to see with my own eyes before I die. These include the aurora borealis, Japan (it’s going to be a really long swim), and a total solar eclipse. This date is the next eclipse with a path of totality that prevents me from having to fly to get to it (also, I can vacation at Myrtle Beach while it’s happening).

I plan to bring a few accessories along for the viewing. These may or may not include candles, occult symbols, and ground eye of newt.

Does Sonya have an evil plan? You must read this entire awesome interview to learn the answer.
Well, now, please don’t take this the wrong way, Sonya, because lord knows we have all kinds here in the league, but here’s the thing: Cameras don’t work in your vicinity. You don’t fly (is it possible that it’s really because planes don’t work in your vicinity?)  and also, you are strangely fascinated with these celestial events: the aurora borealis and the total solar eclipse happening in 2017.

Please don’t take offense, but is it possible you are actually a dark, supernatural being whose destructive powers destroy machines like cameras and planes, but your coup de grace of world domination will be the total eclipse? Seriously, not to cast aspersions. I guess I’m okay with it if the league members get a seat in your evil chamber.

Well, I’m not saying I’m imbued with dark powers or anything *hides Magical Amulet of Doom(tm) and assorted suspicious-looking dolls* but world domination might be in the realm of possibility. Oh, pay no attention to those gremlins over there. They don’t work for me, no matter what the little bastards might tell you.

Let’s talk about next projects. What are you working on these days? What can we expect from you next?

For my next trick, I’ll pull a rabbit out of a hat. Or maybe a demon out of Hell. I get confused about which one, sometimes.

The sequel to Master of None (Master and Apprentice) will be unleashed – er, released March 29, 2011.

The hotly awaited Master and Apprentice.
Is it March 29th yet?
Beyond that, I have the aforementioned demon (or of those) planned, and this rather industrious undertaking concerning the Fae, and I’ll probably develop some other ideas I have kicking around. I am determined to some day write a novel about a circus, despite my husband’s assurance that it’s “the dumbest idea I’ve ever heard, and if you write it, I’m never talking to you again.”

Sonya, excuse me but that sounds VERY mysterious! I am going to watching you, little missy. Hey, thanks so much for taking the time to clear all these matters up! And congrats on your awesome series!!

Learn more at Sonya's site!


Mario said…
Great post! Loved the "bloody jelly donuts and making double cheeseburgers" anecdote. What, the world didn't stop rotating on its axis when you got published? Another illusion shattered.
Tez Miller said…
Aw, Sonya's snuggling kitties are adorable :-)
Bronwyn Green said…
I think that might be the best "call" story I've ever heard! :D

I was lucky enough to meet (and photograph) Sonya last September at AAD and I can't wait to see her this year because she's freaking awesome!

For the record, I would actually read a novel about a circus. But only if it was written by Sonya and only if she warned me ahead of time about the parts with clowns so I could deftly avoid them.
Oh my, I'm trying hard not to grin like a creepy psycho here, but how often does it happen that one's two absolute favourite authors get to do an interview together? :-D Anyway, thank you Carolyn for the fun and great questions and Sonya as always, you crack me up!! :-D ROFL Thanks for brightening a quite gloomy and gray Monday morning Ladies! :-)

ps: and can't wait for Master and Apprentice!!! woohoo! :-D

ps2: I just stumbled on this blog by chance, I'm SO subscribing! :-p

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