Thursday, February 27, 2014

INTERVIEW: Saura Underscore

Today we are talking to the darling Saura_ (who wins the prize for THE most creative writing name on the planet!

Hello Saura and welcome to Home of the Sweetness <3 Thank you so much for subjecting yourself to the RANDOMNESS that is a Raine O'Tierney interview! Please don your best hat, and let's get started!

Tell me all about your very unique name ~ Saura Underscore!

Well first of all thank you for having me! It’s a pleasure to meet you and your readers!

“Saura” was the female principal character in my very first finished novel, back to when I was 14. She was a warrior and I put on her personality everything I wanted to be that I wasn’t. So I took her name the first time I had to use a nick (long time ago, when the internet was invented), and I’ve used it ever since. When I first came into the “Slash” world, I looked for “Saura” as my user, but it was already taken, so I decided to add something to the name that would make it unique. I turned out to be “Saura_”.

However, every time somebody wanted to mention me, they only wrote “saura”, and that wasn’t me, and I found myself saying things like “It’s ‘saura_’, with the little thing underneath”. Later on I discovered that “the little thing underneath” was called “underscore”. So, yeah. Hi. This is Saura Underscore (Saura_). *waves*

If you could go back in time and have a conversation with 13-year-old yourself right now, what would you say?

The first thing that popped in my mind was “keep on writing”. But the Saura of those days was writing my first novel ever (the one from which I would take the name from), and I’m 100% sure she’d never stop writing no matter what.

So I think I’d tell her: no, you’re not adopted but it won’t matter that much in the end, and don’t stop believing: you’d be able to do important things.

One of the things that I was more afraid of was the absolute certainty I had that I would never do anything important. I wasn’t going to discover the cure for cancer, I wasn’t going to be the first woman on Mars, I wasn’t going to find the way to stop wars or prevent hunger…  Now I realize that I didn’t know what “important” was, and I’d like to tell 13-years-old-Saura that “Important” is what you would have when you turn out 40: a house, someone who loves you in return, a kid that thinks you’re awesome, friends, two jobs and two published books. And yeah. Those are truly important things for someone who was born to be a no one.

What is your biggest, most wildest writing dream or goal?

13 years old Saura would answer to that question. I was in high school, learning Spanish Literature in the most boring way ever (just learning a list of dates, authors, titles) , and I realized that I had to learn a lot of dates for just one important author each. One important author worth to be known for one single novel. The one and only novel this author got published, and that had marked an era in the Spanish Literature.

I wanted to be one of those authors. I wanted to appear in high school’s textbooks for one unique book, so that high school pupils in 2100 had to learn my name and dates of birth and passing, just for it. Evil, I know. Probably that’s why I have two books already, none of which is good enough to get not even in any Spanish library for now.

Your thoughts on libraries: GO!

Errr –quick, quick, quick–, errr… They are full of books that are not my own because my own are only sold for e-readers??

Nah, now serious. Libraries are those places in which you can find thousand of doors to different worlds, all of them unique and special. When I was a kid I used to love it when my Mum allowed me to get into a library and stay there for a while, just looking at books and reading them randomly. Now that I’m older and I have my own kid, I read him every night a night-tale, I read to him every time he wants, no matter when it is –and I take him to take looks at library shops (no more public libraries in my town, unfortunately, but that was the first thing to close when the crisis stroke), and I buy him really pretty books when I can afford them. He already has double the number of books I did at his age!

Your new story is a historical! What draws you to writing historicals? Did you have any particular challenges writing Medieval Tales?

I’ve always loved historical novels. Well, let’s be precise: I’ve always loved historical fiction. There IS a difference between the two, and I’ve always found more enjoyable the historical fiction: novels that are set in a period of time more or less recognizable, but that are almost impossible to have ever occurred. The Medieval Tales is one like that.

What makes me enjoy this kind of fiction is precisely the fact that a lot of things that can happen in this kind of novel were impossible in a concrete real moment of history. I can take real events and twist them, make them new and favorable for my roles.

To make it clearer, let’s take my own story: my characters have to deal with the reality that was the Crusades: death, holly war, moral rightness, the tight noblemen and the ignorant servants. A true knight (the real ones) would never doubt their orders, or if God really send them to conquer Jerusalem. A proud nobleman would never thought of his king being unfair for not being on the desert with them. My characters do, and that’s what makes it (almost!) impossible to have really happened. History is told by winners: Christianity won (if not Jerusalem, it won our way to see history), so no Christian knight would ever look at an Arab as more than a soulless dog, an evil, an infidel! My characters do. One of my characters falls in love with an Arab.

I found in historical fiction a way to make history fairer. I don’t pretend to show any historical lesson; my accuracy must have to be enough to make it believable to have happened, but it’s not real. It couldn’t have happened. I don’t lie on that, and I really appreciate those who have read the Tales for now understand them for what they are: Tales that make an ugly reality, slightly better.

What is your superpower? What is your Kryptonite?

I think one “superpower” (if you want to call it like that), is that I learn quite quickly. I was very lazy as a young girl to learn to cook, but when I had to do it, I learned and now I love it (and my kid says I cook better than grandma, and that’s amazing!).

My Kryptonite is my own sense of failure. I always think that I’m going to fail no matter what I do to prevent it. My councilor says it has to do with a low self-esteem and my kid is working on that too (you cannot have low self-esteem when someone so young depends on you for believing in themselves).

You have 200 words—Make. Me. Swoon. (PLEASE!)

[From Medieval Tales: Battle Front]

Omar's mouth was hot and wet around Wyon's cock as the younger man took him deep, distracting him effectively from the pressure of oiled fingers on his entrance. Pleasure built up fast, and even more when Wyon dared to look down and saw the brown eyes shining bright with lust, looking at him.

Wyon panted breathless at the view of that delicious mouth sucking his very soul out of his cock, and the thought of that this was a King, the most beautiful King in the world and an enemy, who was giving him so much pleasure, was almost impossible to bear. Then the two fingers that had been rubbing arousing circles around his puckered hole finally breached him easily, and Wyon nearly lost it.

"Oh. Omar. I. Oh!"

Wyon struggled not to succumb to his orgasm, but the fingers inside him, which felt as odd as they did good, touched something that made the Captain see white hot light under his eyelids, and the pleasure exploded deep within him. He noticed Omar's throat muscles working around his member, drinking from him until he was empty.

Sated and panting, Wyon received Omar's mouth on his again with a deep moan.

(And those were EXACTLY 200 words. Sorry!)

What is one mistake you’ve made during your writing career that you’ve learned and grown from?

I took my first critics really at heart. I took them personally, like an attack to me and to my book. I hid, licked my wounds, and swore never to write a word again. Big mistakes all of them.

With the great help of other authors and dear friends I learned to LEARN from every single critic (and to ignore those that attack me personally, regardless of what I write or how I do it). I think this made me grow as a person as well as a writer. I cannot write to be liked by everybody; I just can hope to enjoy it when I read it back, and give it away so somebody might enjoy it as much as I did. Some would hate what I do. But some would find my work worth a constructive critic; they would point out my mistakes and help me not to make them again.

What quote are you most inspired by?

Oh dear. Every quote I read inspires me for something. I even have a “quotes” board on pinterest because they are SO amazing.

If I go back in time I can hear my philosophy teacher, in my last year at high school saying 18 years old Saura “The only limit in life is the one you put yourself. Push it, cross it, and you’ll be free”. I’ve never been able to be truly free, probably because I love to have limits to push, so I only push them a little. But that quote marked my life at college. Nothing could stop me!

And finally, for THE most important question of all: what kinds of dachshunds are the BEST kinds of dachshunds?

Oh right. I’m going to say the best kind is the one on a picture, because I’m TERRIFIED of dogs. Yep, even of dachshunds. Sorry about that!

When Duncan of the Gents leaves for the Crusades, he promises to return to his friend and lover, Adam Gordon, but he never does. Three years later, upon learning that Duncan died in an ambush, Adam travels to Jerusalem to join the Cross Knights, seeking revenge.

Wyon Eastman, Captain of the Cross Knights, meets Caliph Omar on the battlefield and in peace parliaments. But discovering the cruel, heartless infidel is human forces Wyon to struggle with growing romantic feelings and religious loyalties. 

As the English army sweeps across the Holy Land to conquer Jerusalem for the Christians, four men fight for true love in uncertain times.

About the Author:

SAURA UNDERSCORE (Saura_) was born under a dictatorial regime, only daughter of the typical tight-minded family. Taught to be revel at a progressive school, she never learned to cook, sew or spot-clean, but as soon as democracy arrived she participated in as many concentration defending women and gay rights as she could, which earned her several disinherit threatens from her father.

Her head has always been full of birds and dragons (at the same percentage), and she soon learned to set them free using her writing.

In her teenage stories you could always find a gay reference, but still Saura always thought that something was amiss. That Prince Charming didn’t have his whole heart on it. It wasn’t until she discovered Prince Charming and his squire at it on the barn of her mind, that she realized what exactly was the right thing to write.

She learned English and all about “slash” on the internet, and she travelled all around the world. She has friends from the six continents and it’s said she could travel the world finding one good friend to have lunch with, in every country.

Saura is married to a man that looked for her a second “perfect paring” when the first died away, has a kid and is allergic to dogs, cats and dust.

You can contact Saura Underscore at:

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