Yasmine Galenorn, Interview by Michelle M. Pillow (Originally published in Paranormal Underground Magazine)
Yasmine Galenorn, Interview
By Michelle M. Pillow
There can be no doubt that New York Times bestselling urban fantasy author, Yasmine Galenorn, leads an interesting and magical life. Author of both the Otherworld series and the upcoming Indigo Court series for Berkley, she has written in both paranormal mystery and nonfiction. Her latest titles, Bone Magic and Inked, both release this month.
A shamanic Witch, Yasmine has been in the craft since 1980 and has been considered an elder in the Pagan community. Along with her husband, Samwise, she legally changed her surname to Galenorn, which translates from the Elvish language in Lord of the Rings to ‘Green Tree’. According to Yasmine, they wanted something, “that would be ours alone and that would mean something to us.” She is also a teacup collector, tattoo enthusiast and a theater major.
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Q: In your Otherworld series, you have three heroines—sisters: Camille, a witch; Delilah, a werecat; and Menolly, a vampire. What inspired you to create such diverse characters?
Yasmine: Well, they sort of created themselves—they just showed up, full-blown, in front of me one night while I was watching TV and boom…new series was born. I think my background in mythology and modern-day magic (actual magic-not stage magic) is one genesis of this series, also my life-long love of fantasy and science fiction, my passion for movies & TV in this genre.
Q: When world building, do you base your story off of known myths throughout history?
Yasmine: Much of my world building has a basis in the mythology of our world, but skewed—very much—in my own warped fashion. I liken Otherworld to “the U.N. of Faerie Land.”
Q: What myths or legends inspired you?
Yasmine: Japanese—the youkai (my interest there was sparked by InuYasha and other anime series); the Celtic Sidhe, the Finnish Talon-haltija (house sprites), the banshees, the Norse light and dark elves—you name it, and I’ve probably got a version of it in my series.
Q: Why do you think readers, and society in general, are fascinated by the paranormal?
Yasmine: I believe that people need to escape from what they perceive as a very unstable reality, into a land where common people have the power to affect the destiny of the world.
Q: What are your favorite paranormal shows, movies and books?
Yasmine: Far too many movies to list here! But TV: I love Buffy, InuYasha, Fringe, Medium. Authors: Charlaine Harris, Ray Bradbury, Rachel Caine, PC Cast, Jim Butcher, and many more.
Q: Do you believe in the supernatural?
Yasmine: I’m a shamanic Witch, so I’d have to say…yes. But I also am firmly grounded in much of what science has to teach us—I consider myself a practical and realistic magical worker.
Q: Have you ever had a paranormal experience?
Yasmine: Many. I’m a shamanic Witch and have been considered an elder in the Pagan community. My life has been steeped in both paranormal and mundane adventures. I tend to attract a lot of spirit kitties—our home is a magnet for departed furbabies and they pass through, I’ve seen them a number of times, and sometimes they rest for a bit before moving on.
Q: What kind of paranormal creatures do you wish you could meet?
Yasmine: Hmmm…dragon shifter (my Smoky for one). Werepanther. Owl Shifter. Full-blooded Fae as portrayed in my world.
Q: If given the chance, would you become a witch/vampire/werecat?
Yasmine: Well, I AM a witch, but Camille’s kind of witch? Sure! A vampire like Menolly? Nope—not into being dead. And a werecat, like Delilah? That might be fun, too.
Q: How would you react if you came face to face with a ghost?
Yasmine: I have. As I said, I’m very sensitive to ghosts and spirits of many different types. I’ve worked to clear houses before, I’ve been contacted by spirits—some not so nice and some just fine. My reaction, since this is an everyday part of my life, is that I’m more afraid of coping with a psycho on the physical level than I am of any spirit or ghost.
Q: What does the future hold for your writing?
Yasmine: Well—most likely more Otherworld books—I’m happy writing them. And also a new urban fantasy series starting next year called the Indigo Court series, which will be darker and a bit edgier than the Otherworld series.
Q: Have you ever been to a psychic or had a past life regression? What did they predict for you?
Yasmine: I have done past life regression on my own—since I am a shamanic witch and have written on the subjects of witchcraft, tarot, meditation, etc, I’m well acquainted with this topic and have discovered several interesting lives through the use of it. Was never an Egyptian princess or Queen Elizabeth, but I did lead some interesting lives—and had some pretty gruesome deaths at times.
Q: Have you ever been abducted by aliens?
Yasmine: No, but some of my friends qualify, I think. ~grins~
Thanks for joining us, Yasmine!
Yasmine’s latest books, Bone Magic (book 7 in the Otherworld series) and Inked (a multi-author anthology) both release Jan. 5, 2010 and are available at all major bookstores. You can learn more about Yasmine and her books at her website, www.galenorn.com.
Interviewer Michelle M. Pillow is an award winning author writing in many romance fiction genres. She can be found at www.michellepillow.com.