Sunday, March 18, 2012

Q&A Interview and Contest with Dannika Dark


Dannika Dark Interview Intro:

Hello everyone!  LITERAL ADDICTION and Book Monster Reviews are happy to welcome Dannika Dark to our sites today!  
Dannika has a nice bio on her website so we thought we’d borrow it for her Event:
“Down in Texas, there's a woman who drinks copious amounts of vitamin water placed precariously closed to her laptop. Yeah, I know. I've got a drinking problem. Hi, I'm Danni.
When I'm not writing (which is all the time), I'm listening to obscure music, watching movies, reading, discovering new ways to humiliate myself bowling, and burning up my laptop battery on the internet. I live with a cat who thinks she is a dog, or a goat (she eats plastic, so I'm not sure which).
Some people count sheep when they have insomnia. My entire life, since I was little, I made up stories in my head. I could bore myself to sleep, then mission accomplished. The problem is, I'd get so wrapped up in my 'head stories' that I didn't fall asleep. Then the next night I would start over and change it up a little to make it more exciting. It never dawned on me until much later that maybe I should pen those down. So I created short stories, and then went on to writing poetry.
Lots and lots of poetry. It's almost embarrassing that I have an entire box loaded with spiral notebooks filled with furious, heartfelt, and blushing words. Apparently, I had a lot to say.
Another one of my hobbies is digital art. I designed all my book covers.  
I am finally doing what I have always wanted to: giving my characters a pulse through publishing. I write adult urban fantasy romance, but I don't like labels. I let the story tell itself, and color outside the lines. I am not a YA author, but I think its pretty great that there are so many books available to teens in Urban Fantasy and Paranormal. These are the future readers!
The work that goes behind self publishing is hard work, I won't lie. On top of my regular day job: I write, edit, format, create cover art and market. Who the heck has time to eat?
So wipe your feet, come inside, and make yourself at home.”
Danni is the proud creator of the MAGERI series which currently consists of “Sterling”.  “Twist” is book two in the Mageri series, and is now available for download on Kindle! 

For those of you not yet familiar with her work we thought we’d give you the synopses for “Sterling” and "Twist":

“Sterling”

Zoë Merrick leads a less than ordinary life. Late one evening, she crosses paths with a man who brutally attacks her. In one shattering instant--a stranger with a knife alters the course of her future.
Unconscious and covered in blood, Zoë is found by a man named Adam. She undergoes a physical transformation, and strange new abilities begin to surface. Without hesitation, he takes her under his wing and an unexpected friendship forms between the two. Unable to return to her former life, Zoë feels lost.
Serendipity leads her to Justus. He is handsome, arrogant, and not entirely human. Justus gives her the truth she has longed to hear--that she is a Mage. He offers her answers and protection, as a young Mage cannot survive on their own. Forced to trust him, she must come to terms with accepting her new life and identity.


“Twist”

Months after moving to the mysterious city of Cognito, Silver is developing her gifts as a Mage, and learning how to live under new laws.  Forced to give up her old life, she must now live in secret among the humans.  She finally has hope of leading an ordinary life...until Logan Cross walks into it.
Their chance meeting leads her close to discovering the identity of the nameless Mage who once stole her light and discovered the unique power she possesses.  That knowledge poses an unimaginable threat to Silver, fueling her search to find out who he is, before he finds her first.
Lives are at stake.  Truths are revealed.  And an unexpected passion ignites.

Sounds great right!!?  If you want to read LITERAL ADDICTION’s Review of “Sterling” you can find it HERE.  We know you want to get over to your favorite bookseller to buy it, but give us a few more minutes of your time so we can tell you some more about Danni and her work.

Dannika Dark Interview

LITERAL ADDICTION/Book Monster Reviews:  Hi Dannika!  We’re very happy to have you here today.  Congrats on the success of “Sterling” and the upcoming release of “Twist”.
DANNI: It’s a pleasure to be here! Thanks for having me, and giving me a break from writing. :)

LITERAL ADDICTION/Book Monster Reviews:  We always like to start out by getting to know our guest authors a little bit better.

Q1): Can you tell us 3 things about yourself that we couldn’t find out easily on the Internet?
DANNI: I have a tiny obsession over lamps. Not the traditional kind, either. If you walk into an Ikea or World Market, you’re most likely to find me in the lighting section. I love Rod Serling and own the Twilight Zone collection in its entirety. Taking toffee away from me is an act of war.

Q2):  If you were told that the world was going to end tomorrow, what would you use your last 24 hours for?
DANNI: I always loved a good apocalypse. First, I would spend about five minutes weeping at my TBR pile. Then I would pay for a Lamborghini on credit (who knows, they might be having a “going out of existence” sale), and use it to visit all of my family. Loved ones are important, and I’d rather spend my time with them, eating home cooked food.

Q3):  What are some of your hobbies and/or things that you enjoy doing when you’re not writing or taking care of other author business?
DANNI: Digital art is one of my favorite hobbies and I can spend hours creating an image as a form of relaxation. I made the decision to design my own book covers because it gives me the opportunity to personalize my stories. I also love to read, watch all genres of film, and hit every button on the elevator. I’m a firm believer in laughter, and finding humor in everything.

Q4):  What are 3 things that always make you smile?
DANNI:  I love standing in line at the store behind little babies and making silly faces to win a smile.  Seeing a first glimpse of a book cover for a release I’ve been anticipating. Random acts of kindness.

Q5):  Who are some of the authors and/or titles that you feel have inspired your writing career?

DANNI: Emily Dickinson is one that immediately jumps out from early on. Not just her writing, but her life story interests me and that’s what started my love for poetry early on. Stand out classics include “The Mask of Red Death” by Edgar Allan Poe, and “Emma” by Jane Austen. I don’t think you could get more opposite on the spectrum than those two! Stephen King’s versatility has always been an influence. He knows how to take your hand and pull you along, even if what lies ahead looks frightening. Jeaniene Frost, Lara Adrian, J.R. Ward, and Gena Showalter are just a few among many that I enjoy reading. Each has their own unique style, and I love an author who knows how to breathe life into their characters.

Q6):  With Fantasy and Romance being such a popular genres these days, what made you choose it, and what about it fascinates you personally?
DANNI: The possibilities. You’re not just creating characters in Fantasy, but you are creating a new world with its own culture, laws, history . . . and magic. There is so much room for a creative imagination within this genre because it gives you the chance to explore old things in a new way. As a reader, I enjoy the escapism, but I also like that factor of “what if?” We all want to believe in magic again. As for romance? It’s what makes the world go ‘round, right? Books that focus on relationships –whether they are romance or UF – engage me as a reader when I get to dig below the surface. What motivates them? What happened in their past? Why is this one person right for them, or are they? As a writer, I get the opportunity to build upon that, and often their destinies take on a life of their own.

Q7):  What is a typical writing day like for you?  Do you have a routine that you follow?  Are there specific things that you have to have with you to get the creative juices flowing, etc?
DANNI: When I’m drafting and editing an existing book, my routine will be a visit to my favorite local taco shop and setting up my laptop the bar in my kitchen. When I’m writing a fresh series, I have a habit of turning on appropriate music to get me in the “zone” of the type of scene I’m about to work on, and I relax on the sofa and kick up my feet. The avoidance has become a bit of a routine; I flip channels on the TV and find things to distract me, with the laptop on the table and the cursor blinking at me. The ideas are there, but I can’t just sit down a write; it becomes like a dance. Once I’m ready to take a crack at it, I shut down all noise levels and write. It’s hard to stop once I get going, but I have to write in complete silence. I own a pack of earplugs, if that says anything.

Q8):  Was there any specific inspiration behind the creation of the MAGERI series?

DANNI: I began writing a vampire novel that quickly made its way into the “never to be seen again” pile. There was a character from that book that I couldn’t stop thinking about named Justus. He’s not an easy guy to get to know, either. Instead of taking on vampires, I decided to put a spin on what a Mage was. I was fascinated with the idea of creating an old world of Breed living among humans in secret, and the realities of what it would be like to be pulled into that world.

Q9):  How many books do you have planned for the series?
DANNI: Four are written, but require further drafting and re-writes. However, I’ve had a few ideas floating around for a book five.

Q10):  What can we expect as the series progresses?

DANNI: Expect the unexpected. ;-) You will learn more history and culture about this world, meet new characters, be introduced to new types of Breed, and your heart may even skip a beat. I don’t think that you’ll know what to expect when going from one book to the next, and I like that.

Q11):  Do you have anything else in the works right now outside of the MAGERI series that your readers can look forward to?
DANNI: I do! I’m so anxious to start working on them. I have written several series, but I will need to draft them out. Two of them are focused around new Breeds I have not yet introduced. A couple of them lean more towards PNR, but I’ve also continued with Urban Fantasy. Often, I skate the line in the middle, so I label it “Urban Fantasy Romance”. I’m not a huge fan of labels.

Q12):  What were the challenges (research, literary, psychological, logistical, etc) in bringing the MAGERI series to life?
DANNI: Some of these immortals are centuries or more old, and carry very old beliefs and customs. They tolerate the human world, but do not always embrace their beliefs. Writing about a human forced to live in this world was difficult, because even I would grow frustrated with some of the antiquated beliefs among these immortals. I had to take into serious consideration the ones that were “made”, and what era they grew up in, and how that heavily influenced them. Creating abilities for a Mage also became a challenge. I had to analyze each ability, and what its limitations were. A Mage may be able to extract energy from an outside source, but anything taken must be given back, so they have to consider when it’s to their advantage to use their gifts. No one should ever be “all powerful”.

Q13):  What about the series are you the most proud of?

DANNI:  How the characters evolve.

Q14):  Is there a question you thought it would be great to be asked in an interview but have never been asked?  How would you answer that question?

DANNI: “If your house were on fire, what books would you grab, and why?”
I think I would take the books that held meaning, because the rest can be replaced. I was fortunate enough to stumble upon a first edition, first printing, mint copy of “Rosemary’s Baby” for a couple of bucks at a used bookstore. I also have a children’s book with my name printed throughout, as a character in the story. The third would be “Night Shift” by Stephen King. The only thing special about that copy is the spine is worn, the pages are falling out, and it’s been read to bits – as a book should. It was given to me when I was twelve or so, and was my first book in adult fiction, outside of required reading in school.

Q15):  Is there anything special you would to say to your readers while we have you here today?

DANNI: I can’t thank you enough for the constant support I’ve received through personal e-mail and otherwise. It’s great to see people who are genuinely excited to tell you what it was about your book that touched them. The sequel to “Sterling” is out, and is called “Twist”. Keep checking out my blog or facebook page for updates on future releases!

LITERAL ADDICTION/Book Monster Reviews:  Thank you so much again for being with us today.  We’d love to have you back to promote Book #3 if you’d be interested!
DANNI:  That sounds fantastic, I would love to return. Thank you again for having me; this was a lot of fun!

If you would like to keep up with Danni, you can find her online here:

 *********************************************
CONTEST:
Dannika is graciously offering up an ebook copy of “Sterling” to a winner from Book Monster Reviews and another winner over at the LITERAL ADDICTION Website. 

TO ENTER:
Make sure you are a member of the Book Monster Blog (by clicking on the “JOIN THIS SITE” button at the top left hand corner of blog page), and then post a comment on the interview with your email address. 

*Any comments without an email address will NOT be entered into drawing.

Don't forget to drop by the LITERAL ADDICTION website (http://www.literaladdiction.com/) and follow the directions and links to enter their contest for an extra chance to win!!!

10 comments:

Kristen Heyl said...

You are the first person I have heard of that has a lamp obsession but I think that everyone in this world has something that they are obsessed with and it is good to be different

sweetreaderma at comcast dot net

Tina said...

Great interview..I like how honest and laid back you are, how you create your ambiance for writing...your books have peeked my interest, i am checki.g them out.
Beads_33@yahoo.com

jbon said...

Beautiful covers, putting the books on my to read list. jbonoma4@comcast.net

Merisha28 said...

I am obsessed with hearts! Your books sound great and I would love to read them!

MerishaAbbott@gmail.com

Barbara E. said...

HI Dannika, your books sounds fascinating and I love the covers, you're very talented. I'm looking forward to reading Sterling and Twist.

Barbed1951 at aol dot com

Chrisbails said...

Great interview. You are a new author for me and would love to win this book. I love to read and always lookign for new authors to check out. Thanks for the giveaway.
christinebails@yahoo.com

Linda said...

I love learning of new authors from this blog & I'm delighted to add you to my watch list. Mages & magic are my fav!

Thanks for the opportunity to win.
thumbelinda03@yahoo.com

Siar said...

I was impressed by the sentence "live with a cat who thinks she is a dog, or a goat". It's funny.


flash flipbook software

SdyLion said...

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to get to know you and your novels a little better. sdylion(at)gmail(dot)com

Dannika Dark said...

Thanks for the kind remarks, everyone! I hope the series has something to offer, and a story or character to connect to.

Btw...
Three things light our way in this world: Love, hope, and lamps.

;-)