Interview with Melissa Sercia

by Sharon Buchbinder

When did you realize or decide you wanted to be a writer?

Thank you for having me!

I realized I wanted to be a writer when I was a teenager. I started out writing poetry, songs, and short stories. I was, and still am, an avid reader. I read all the classics as well as current fiction and non-fiction books. I was a bit of an introvert growing up and preferred books over socializing. I also wrote a short screenplay when I was in my twenties. However, I didn’t realize I wanted to be a professional author until I was in my mid-thirties. I had a story in my head that just had to be told. And I was ready to tell it.

Can you pinpoint the moment when you came up with the idea for your first novel?

It was back in 2013, I was sitting on my porch one night and my main character just sort of came to me out of the blue. I started asking myself all of these ‘what if’ questions and got really excited about the story. I wanted to explore a world about witches and vampires that was fresh and different. I also love taking real events that happened in history and giving them a supernatural twist. So, Blood and Magic was inspired originally by the Pendle witch trials in Lancashire, England. The more questions I asked, the more layers were added to the plot. And that was the beginning of the world of Blood and Darkness. Three books later and a spinoff series, I couldn’t be happier!

Why did you decide to write in the urban fantasy/paranormal genre? What drew you to it?

I am obsessed and fascinated with all things fantasy and supernatural. When I discovered Anne Rice’s books as a teenager, I fell in love with vampires and witches and Southern Gothic themes. I also read a ton of V.C. Andrews and Stephen King. I think because of those influences, my books tend to be a bit darker with more adult themes. The urban fantasy/paranormal genre is limitless. There are so many directions I can take my stories. For example, all of the origin stories for my characters can be traced back to the Greek gods. I love creating fresh takes on old tropes.

If your books were made into a TV series, which series would you pick (yes, you must choose between your children!) and who would you want to play your handsome leading men and women?

I would definitely pick my Blood and Darkness series! It is where my journey began and where the world was created. I actually have character boards on Pinterest, where I “cast” my books. I’m a visual person, so when I’m writing a novel it helps to have pictures and story boards to put me in the mood and tone of the story. My main character, Gray, would definitely be played by Katie McGrath. Gray is a strong character and I’ve seen Miss McGrath play those types of roles really well. I think she’d make a perfect Gray! I’d also love to see Charlie Hunnam as Aldric and Alexander Dreymon as Dragos!

Finally, tell us about your new book baby, Smoke and Ritual and where we can find it.

My newest book is called Smoke and Ritual and it is the first in my new spinoff series, Beautiful Dark Beasts. Without giving away any spoilers, Smoke and Ritual picks up ten years after Gods and Demons (Blood and Darkness Book 3), when their world is in an Age of Peace. The plot and main character are completely new, and you do not have to read the Blood and Darkness series first. However, it does give a bit more insight into the world if you do. I also have some fan favorite characters returning and playing a more central role in this new series. Smoke and Ritual is about a young witch named Arya who is an orphan and without a coven, so she was raised at a supernatural school called Sanctum. What she doesn’t yet know is that she actually belongs to a very powerful coven and has more powers than she realizes. When a sexy god shows up at her school with troubling news, it sends Arya on a crazy adventure of finding out who she really is and just how far she is willing to go to save the ones she has come to love. It’s a slight coming of age story set in a dark supernatural world with steamy romance, lots of twists and turns, and of course, plenty of magic.

Smoke and Ritual is available on Amazon in print, kindle, and free on kindle unlimited!