STORY OF THE WRITER
Featuring Danielle Rose
Welcome back folks for another session of the Story of the Writer series! Today we’ll be featuring romance novelist and owner of editing company Narrative InkDanielle Rose. If memory serves me correctly, I remember Danielle from the 2015 NaNoWriMo Wahoo! To learn more about Danielle please check out her blog: danielle-rose.com
~Welcome aboard Danielle~
Glad you’re with us.
Did something or someone influence you as a child to be a writer?
I consider myself to be a late bloomer. While I do remember writing stories as a child, I didn’t start taking my writing seriously until late-2009. At that point, I wrote on and off for several years, while pursing my education, until I started to publish in 2015. In 2008, I began reading religiously, which is what prompted me to write my Blood Books trilogy. After reading at least a hundred books, I couldn’t find, what I considered to be, the perfect story. So I wrote it.
I love your story! It seems that in your hunt for the perfect story, you had a great realization. You had to write it yourself. Epic. If you’d like to explore Danielle’s complete story on becoming a writer click here. Quite fascinating.
Where did you go to school and what was your major?
I obtained my Bachelor of Arts in English and certification in professional writing from the University of Wisconsin—Parkside. I then obtained my Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine.
That’s awesome! I’ve always admired the one’s who’ve actually studied this stuff in college. Flunked technical report writing with flying colors, whoo-hoo! Somehow giving presentations and speeches gave rise to panic attacks. Arrggh. Eventually passed it online. Whew. Got an A in creative writing though.
Obviously you’re a cheesehead, how many packer games have you been to?
Hmm, honestly, I’m not sure. We have season tickets. I go to games every year, and when I can’t go, I watch the games on TV.
Would love to come to cheesehead country and go to a game. Supposedly I’m 49’ers fan, but they need some serious resuscitation. Somebody call the paramedics.
What’s it like being an editor?
It’s the second best job I’ve ever had. The first, of course, is being an author. Narrative Ink has a fantastic client base, and I’m honored to be trusted to edit their manuscripts.
Amazing. This must keep you pretty busy !
List your favorite writing books or novels.
Some of my favorite authors are Sylvia Day, Lauren Blakely, Meredith Wild, Chloe Neill, and Richelle Mead. I collect books on the craft of writing, but it’s difficult to say which are my favorites. In a way, they’re all my favorites, because they’re all equally important. Some describe experiences, some give advice, and some discuss the basics. In my opinion, a good writer won’t turn away a good source. So I read and collect.
“a good writer won’t turn away a good source” YES, you hit the nail on the head with this one. Absolutely LOVE reading and collecting craft books. Can’t get enough of them!
The idea of the “perfect” story is subjective. My idea of the perfect story changes constantly. It usually depends on the genre I’m writing. Sometimes, the perfect story depends on the right balance between action and romance. Other times, the perfect story depends on strong, dynamic characters and dialogue to drive the plot.
I always write the story I need to write, which in and of itself is the perfect story for me. However, I still believe I haven’t written my best work yet. In time, I hope I will.
Love you outlook on this. Your idea of the perfect story is constantly evolving with the right balance of particular elements. Whatever seems to meet the need at the moment. “I always write the story I need to write.” This seems to resonate with me as well for some reason. Should print this out and stick it on my wall.
You mainly write romance, paranormal romance, and romantic suspense? Are locked into this genre or will you branch out?
Yes, I mainly write romance (contemporary, suspense, paranormal, new adult, erotic, etc.), but I don’t limit myself. I have a horror short story published, too, and my paranormal romance trilogy, Blood Books, is heavily urban fantasy. There is just as much action (if not more than) as romance. I’d love to write psychological thrillers one day, too.
Psychological thrillers definitely sound like a must. I’d read it! Here’s a short story by Danielle.
Check it out: Daemon Academy: A Horror Short Story
Tell us about the Blood Books trilogy leading up to the final installment, Blood Promise, due to be released June 28th 2016.
My Blood Books trilogy follows the harrowing journey of Avah Taylor, a mortal witch in the midst of a centuries old war against the immortal vampire species. Avah’s intense journey is fueled by blood, sex, jealously, betrayal, murder, and revenge. This trilogy is meant for new adult/adult audiences.
I read a few pages into Blood Rose book and I can tell you’re a skilled writer. Your idea sounds well developed, crafted and flows well. Should be a great read!
Check it out: Blood Rose (Blood book 1)
Blood Promise (Blood Book 3) Releases June 28, 2016!
Click here to add Blood Promise to your reading list on Goodreads.
At this stage in your career, what is your goal (s)? (GOAL)
I have many short-term and long-term goals. I believe in the power of setting and reaching goals, so I always strive to add more to my list. I actually have a writing group (We formed our group after meeting in graduate school.), and we check-in with weekly goals. We also do daily writing sprints/stints, which are extremely helpful for writers who struggle with procrastination.
I’m finding that without goals nothing practical happens. Our dreams aren’t coming around knocking on our front door, we have to make it happen.
Many of us see publication as the only lofty goal, but the lack vision afterwards.
Publication was definitely a long-term goal for me when I started writing in 2009. After achieving this goal in 2015, I updated my list. Some of my goals include publishing a certain number of books each year, perfecting my marketing plan, reaching a bestseller list, attending certain writing conventions as a signing author, and seeing my books on the shelves at major retailers. Honestly, my goals are similar to what most writers strive to achieve.
This is very specific. My goals are very short sighted like, finish my WIP. Not much of a planner so drumming up goals is work for me. I really like your mindset on this though. Maybe if I talk to enough planners it’ll rub off. Hah!
Do you have any major conflicts hindering you from attaining your goals? Once you’re published what’s the next hurdle? (CONFLICT)
I absolutely do. I think conflicts are the main reasons behind why these are goals and not reality. My biggest hurdle is reach. Without readers, I can’t do what I love, and I couldn’t obtain my goals/dreams. This is actually a common problem most writers face.
Very true. Somehow I believe you won’t have any trouble with this one. They’ll come with zombie fueled voracious eyeballs, trust me.
What keeps you motivated? (DESIRE)
Readers, my writing group, and bills. (Ha!)
That’s actually a good list!
What’s the main antagonist in your life or career?
I’m the main antagonist in my life. Like anyone, I can fall victim to my own self-doubt. In my opinion, the mind can be the biggest advantage or hindrance to writers.
This is all too true. We’re our own worst enemy. Every day is different and changes like the wind. Actually, our days are pretty much the same. The mind is what turns on a dime. Heads or tails? Who knows? The best thing we can do is show up every day and be consistent.
You have your own editing company. What made you want start it?
Honestly, there’s no exciting story here. I have a strong background in editing, and I’ve always wanted to start my own business, be my own boss. I took some entrepreneurship courses in undergrad, so it was fairly easy to branch out and form my own LLC, Narrative Ink Editing.
That’s great Danielle. We’ll always need Samurai editors to slice and dice our manuscripts, for sure.
As an editor, what are some of the major problems that affect writers and their careers?
In my opinion, self-doubt, shortcuts, and marketing are the three biggest problems writers are facing today.
Self-doubt: There is a fine line between self-doubt and self-pride, and many writers can’t walk that line without stepping over. Writers who experience self-doubt constantly question their writing. When this happens, the book rarely makes it to print.
Shortcuts: On that same note, self-pride can ruin a career. Having pride in your work is great, but at some point, you have to step aside and bring in professionals. Don’t take shortcuts. While you may believe you can do it all alone, the truth is, not everyone can be an editor or book designer or interior formatter or marketing guru. Writers who take shortcuts are hindering their growth. Readers judge books by the cover, design, and editing first. The plot comes second.
Marketing: Many writers believe they only need to write the book. Once it’s published, they can sit back and watch the sales come flying in. This is never the case. Even major authors, like Stephen King and Nicholas Sparks, have a marketing team to ensure the news of the impending release reaches readers. Sure, the name alone will sell the book, but marketing is still involved. Don’t sell yourself short. Invest in a good marketing plan.
I really appreciate the inside scoop on this. Writing and publishing books is only half the battle, while marketing is an oft forgotten element in the equation. The business side of writing is lacking with a lot of writers. Just taking up writing a novel is a huge endeavor, but the business side of matters is another animal altogether.
What made you want to switch from pre-law to English and creative writing?
I was actually pre-med first. For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be a doctor. I was never the kid in class who said she wanted to be a princess. But after my first year of pre-med, I knew that wasn’t the right route for me, so I switched to pre-law and changed my major from biology to English. That’s when I fell in love with literature and the written word.
This is so fascinating. I’m so glad you found it!
Having studied writing in college, what top 3-5 things did you learn about the craft?
The biggest lesson I learned in college was how to write. I first learned the rules of writing. I learned the technical skills, like spotting dangling modifiers and proper placement of punctuation. And then I learned how to break the rules to discover my own style.
I long for the day when I discover my own style. Guess you have to learn the box first before you can think outside it right?
What writing books do you highly recommend?
I have never come across a writing book that I wouldn’t recommend. I believe writers should read as many as they can get their hands on. I collect books on writing and reread when I have time. Some of the books sitting on my shelves are Stephen King’s On Writing, Carol Fisher Saller’s The Subversive Copyeditor, Caroline Taggart and J.A. Wines’ My Grammar and I… Or Should That Be Me?, and William Zinsser’s On Writing Well.
I have a couple that you mentioned here. The others I’ll have to look into! Thanks for the pic.
If permissible, can you tell us about some of your clients you helped at Narrative Ink?
I’ve had the pleasure of working with immensely talented authors, who continue to surprise me with their stories. I’ve recently edited manuscripts by Rachel Amphlett, Jackie Parry, and Liam Saville. I’ve also worked with Andrea Cefalo, Taylor Lavati, Margaret Bucklew, and Matt Jordan.
Thanks so much Danielle for joining us! Please come again, and if you’ll recommend anyone for an interview let me know.
This is the Writing Train signing off. Happy reading and writing everyone!
~A writer is a world trapped in a person~
SOMEONE OUT THERE NEEDS