Author of the Immortalis, Chronicles, and Little Werewolf Series, Las Vegas native, Katie Salidas is a Jill of all trades.
Mother to three, Wife to one, and slave to the craft of writing, she tries to do it all, often causing sleep deprivation and many nights passed out at the computer. Writing is her passion, and she hopes that her passion will bring you hours of entertainment.
TDBW: When did you start writing?
Katie: I’ve always been a writer. As a kid I would make up silly stories and jot down things in my notebooks. I never did the journaling thing. My life was never interesting enough, but I could imagine lives much more interesting and escape into their world for a short time.
TDBW: What was the first story you remember writing?
Katie: I was in 9th grade and had set out to write a vampire story in the vein of Vampire Diaries. Kind of a fan fiction if you will. And just after completing it, my parents told me we were moving to Las Vegas. I lost the manuscript on that move. Good old floppy drives in those days were not too sturdy. It set me back a bit, losing my first completed manuscript, but I never stopped writing.
TDBW: What genre is your most preferred?
Katie: I like to play in all the genre pools but one thing I almost always have in my work is paranormal creatures. I love vampires, werewolves, shifters, the fae, and really anything that is beyond the norm of society. And when I do write them I like to give them a little twist to make them stand out from what most people expect to see. In my Little Werewolf book, I have a teenage wolf who’s lived her life in hiding in the foster care system. In the Chronicles, I have all vampires as the slaves of humanity. Little things that change your expectations and give you new perspective. All while still being firmly paranormal.
TDBW: What challenges you the most in your writing?
Katie: Keeping up with reader demand. I want to give my readers the best I can, and do it as quickly as possible to keep them happy. That often means late nights, tight schedules, and time spent away from my family, locked in my little office. I take off about a month in between book projects to make up that lost time, but in order to keep up with a 3-4 month publishing schedule, I have to log a lot of time at the keyboard.
TDBW: What is your favorite thing about being an author?
Katie: Those little notes and emails from readers who loved a book I wrote. It means the world to me knowing someone truly enjoyed the story I wrote. And it pushes me to write more.
TDBW: What do you like least about being an author?
Katie: Writer’s block. Those moments when you just can’t get the words out. It’s terrifying really. You wonder if you will ever write again. If you’ve exhausted all your creativity. And those moments happen more often than you’d think.
TDBW: How many books do you currently have available?
Katie: Right now I have two completed 6-book series and another series in the works.
The first series I created was the Immortalis series, and Urban Fantasy tale that follows Alyssa a newly turned vampire struggling with the reality that life as a vampire is not as sparkly as Hollywood might have led her to believe.
The second series I created is the Chronicles of the Uprising. A dystopian paranormal mashup about the rebuild of society after the apocalypse. Where vampires have become the slaves of humanity and are used for bloodsport in the gladiatorial arena, and one vampire, Mira’s search for freedom.
The final series I am working on right now has two books published to date and is a YA fantasy coming of age story about a Little Werewolf who had been lost in the Foster Care system her whole life and finally has a chance to become part of a real wolfpack.
(Chronicles of the Uprising)
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(Immortalis Vampire Series)
Visit Katie Salidas’s Amazon author page for more exciting books
TDBW: What projects are you currently working on?
Katie: I’m working on the third book in the Little Werewolf series right now. I like to work each series individually and having just released the second book in this series, I need to keep the pace quick in order to keep my readers happy. The next book is expected to release around Halloween time this year.
TDBW: Do you have any books coming out soon?
Katie: I just released Curious Little Werewolf on May 24th. That was the Second book in the Little Werewolf series. Next up will be book #3.
*** Get your individual copy from the “Little Werewolf” series or grab the set ***
TDBW: Which book, or series, is your favorite?
Katie: I shouldn’t pick a favorite. Books are like my children. But if you twisted my arm, the Chronicles series is my favorite. I had so much fun writing it, and was so sad to write the final book. I may still have to find a way to return to that series as it was really special.
TDBW: Who are some of your favorite authors?
Katie: Oh man. There are way too many to list. I find something wonderful in every story I read. I admire the creativity of everyone who takes up the mantle of author. It can be a rough gig.
TDBW: Which book(s) inspire you the most?
Katie: I find inspiration everywhere. Life inspires. People inspire. Stories, tv, etc… it all provides inspiration. Hard to say what specifically sparks that flash of an idea. But as an author, reading is essential. And I love being able to take the time to sit down with any good book I can.
TDBW: Do you listen to music when you write? If so, what band(s) do you play?
Katie: I’m odd in the fact that I need almost pure silence to work. I have terrible A.D.H.D so I can be distracted by even the smallest thing. A song with lyrics might make me question a word I heard, and then I am off to the internet to look up lyrics. Then I’ll see something else during my search that will remind me I haven’t checked my email. Then I’ll spend an hour going through answering emails and realize I haven’t checked my messages on facebook. Checking facebook , I’ll catch a funny meme or joke and then waste another hour reading other people’s statuses. Eventually I realize I was supposed to be writing and now I have wasted my entire day. So I stop right at the beginning and leave myself in silence if I truly want to give writing a good go. And when I hit my daily word count, I allow myself playtime online.
TDBW: Any hobbies?
Katie: How sad would it be if I said that I don’t have time for hobbies? Between writing and mom-ing… I’m truly spent by the end of the day.
TDBW: Tell us some more about yourself including your website and where we can find you on social media sites:
TDBW: Care to share a bit of one of your books with us?
Chronicles of the Uprising (Book 1)
April 17th, 2210 – New Haven City. Westernmost Province of the Iron Gate, Pacific Coast
The roar of the crowd, all twenty-five-thousand people in attendance, rose to a thundering crescendo when Mira delivered a bone-crunching blow to her opponent’s ribs. Standing only five feet tall, she might not have appeared a formidable warrior, but the thin, spiky-haired waif of a vampire could hold her weight and more when put to the test. Amplified by the superb acoustics, the sound of bones cracking echoed through the Superdome arena. The defeated, a red-headed male vampire staggered, punch-drunk, and then dropped to his knees. Dirt and sweat coated his face but could not mask the fear in his icy blue eyes. His was a look Mira had seen so many times before. Her opponent’s immortal life had finally come to an end, and he was ready to take the final deadly blow.
Above her, Mira knew the fifty-foot mega screen showed her hapless victim in brilliant resolution, ensuring that all who were attending, and those watching from the comfort of their homes, could see these last gruesome moments in crystal clear high-definition.
Mira gazed down at her opponent’s blood-soaked face. Though he was her enemy for the moment, she did not relish having to end him. No one should be forced into the arena and told to kill or be killed. It wasn’t right. But it was what was demanded of her, and given the choice between her life and someone else’s… well, there really was no choice. No matter the cost, Mira was a survivor.
She glanced up to the large private box overlooking the arena. A well-dressed man in deep-purple robes sat, enjoying what appeared to be a dinner of filet mignon and roast potatoes. Even here, in the dusty arena below, Mira’s enhanced senses picked up the tantalizing scent of very rare, bloody steak. She could hardly believe that a human could not only watch the murder about to take place, but also sit and eat the dead flesh of a once-living being while doing it. From the smell of it, the poor beast was practically still bleeding on his plate. Who was truly the more savage creature?
Over the crowd’s roar, an announcer introduced the well-dressed man, Lucian Stavros, Regent of the Iron Gate. Lucian gently and purposefully slowly set down his knife and fork. He took another moment to wipe his face clean and then smiled, acknowledging the roaring crowd.
Chants of “Death, death, death” rang out from the throng as a single unified demand.
The Regent listened for a moment, making a show of putting his hands to his ears to hear screaming hoard’s request, and then held a hand out, with his thumb pointed to the side.
As if the next moment were the most important, the anticipating mass hushed. Eerie silence filled the arena as everyone watched for the Regent to make his decision.
From her vantage point below, Mira saw the steely look of determination cross the Regent’s face. If she didn’t know better, she might have thought he took this decision seriously; but then, he was human, and they never cared much if her kind lived or died. Lucian Stavros took a cursory glance down at Mira. Their eyes met. It was only a brief moment, but in that short time, Mira saw him waver.
Could it be true, she wondered, or was it just a trick of the light? No human actually cared about the lives of vampires. The moment faded, and the fleeting thought left.
Mira saw the Regent’s decision. He turned his thumb down. Death!
The crowd went wild.
The last hope for her defeated opponent had vanished; Mira had to finish him. “Sorry,” she whispered to the half-dead vampire on his knees before her. Though her fangs tingled at the prospect of tasting his final dying moments — her reward, if you could call it that, for living through another battle — she did not enjoy what she was about to do. Like her, he was a slave, forced into servitude to the humans as they saw fit. He had not asked for this, and neither had she. But, despite what either of them wanted, it was the will of the crowd, the humans, that had to be served.
Aiming to sever the carotid artery with her fangs, Mira dove at her opponent’s neck. His death would be quick. At least she could afford him that luxury.
Hot, sweet, and energizing, his blood flowed freely down her parched throat. She’d been starved for so long. Denied the one thing she needed. And now, free to drink her fill, it was all she could do not to let the beast within her take over. Blood was everything: food, drink, life-giving essence, and pure ecstasy. Even the smallest amount could provide healing nourishment and pleasure all at once. But Mira could not let herself take pleasure from it, knowing the source. This was no willing donor. This was a fallen comrade. A fellow vampire. One of her own kind. His death ordered by the command of the humans. No matter how good his blood tasted, it was not for her to enjoy. She’d take only what she needed to heal from her wounds, and let his death come quickly.
More cheers erupted around Mira. The crowd, despite being entirely human, proved more bloodthirsty than she. The irony of it was sickening. Distantly, she heard the announcer proclaim her the winner.
With a roar, she threw her head back, ripping out her opponent’s throat, spraying what remained of his blood out into the air. They wanted carnage – they could have it. She had to keep her adoring fans happy lest they turn on her. In the arena, the life or death of a gladiator often came down to the will of the crowd. And though she was repulsed by what she had to do, she knew how to play the game.
The satisfying flush of fresh blood in her system and the heady rush that came with it was short lived. The reality of her situation was always close to the surface. Above, the giant dome roof parted, sending a hot blast of UV light down around Mira like a cage.
Not wanting to let them regain their strength, the humans were quick to remind vampires where their place was and who their masters were. Not even afforded a moment’s respite for her victory, Mira was already enduring the painful reminder that she was a slave. Worse, a prisoner.
Her skin singed where the light touched. Instinctively, she held up her hands in surrender. The faster she let them haul her away to the prison level, the better.
The crowd around still roared with applause. But were they cheering for Mira, or happy to see her being tortured by blinding light? A bit of both, probably. Humans loved to see any bit of vampire suffering. Though it angered her, Mira would not show it and invite their ire.
Two humans, one male and one female, approached Mira, both wearing standard issue black Kevlar body suits and hoods with a wooden stake and hammer emblazoned across the chest. Handlers. Specially trained to deal with vampires and equipped to kill if necessary. Among their weapons were UV torches, quick blasting light sticks able to direct a powerful beam of ultraviolet light at the push of a button. The female’s hand inched towards her UV torch as they approached Mira. She was a new appointee as Mira’s handler, who preferred to shoot first and ask questions later. Mira hated the mocha-skinned Amazon wannabe and would have loved nothing more than to rip her to shreds. Few females were allowed to be handlers, and this one had wanted to prove herself from the moment she’d been assigned to Mira.
Once Mira might have acted on her desire to kill the nuisance handler and take whatever punishment she’d be given, but after years in this prison Mira had learned her lesson. Fighting back was best done strategically. Immortality was not invincibility, and she was no fool.
“Arms out, slave.” The largest of the two handlers, a male with a deep voice, barked the order at her.
“Come to congratulate me on my victory and adorn me with jewelry?” With a cocky smile, she held out her hands, awaiting the silver cuffs with which they’d restrain her.
“Silence!” The male refused to look at her. He fastened the cuffs around her wrists and pulled back quickly, almost as if he feared what Mira might do.
Silver stung her skin, but Mira wouldn’t let on that she was in any pain. “I always did have a thing for the strong silent types.” She smirked despite the discomfort the cuffs were already creating. Hives were beginning to pepper Mira’s smooth alabaster skin. An annoying allergic reaction, but she’d never admit how much it bothered her. Any sign of weakness could be exploited.
The male handler refused to acknowledge her or engage her further. He continued to work shackling her feet and then connected another silver chain between the two sets of restraints. When finished, he pointed toward the door at the edge of the arena. The female handler pressed a few buttons on a small communicator device around her wrist. Above, the dome began to close, and the shafts of light surrounding Mira vanished.
Thankful to be back in the dark, Mira nodded to her handlers as if to say, “Lead on,” and followed as they directed her away from the arena, down to the pens.
Her moment of fame was over.