Hi Donna! I think this is the first time we've 'met' so it's great to meet you and have the chance to get to know you better. The main reason I interview is so both me and my readers can discover different writers and how they work/live. So relax and enjoy!
1) What is your writing routine?
Since I work full time at The-Job-That-Pays-The-Bills, I write during the evening and on weekends. I have several wonderful critique partners who help me at every stage. I’m sort of a pantzer in that I develop a basic plot outline (very basic) and then flesh it out as I write. I have a general idea about my characters and then I “get to know them” as the story unfolds. That seems to work the best for me, so that’s my process.
2) Which author/s inspire you to write?
Lisa Gardner’s simple, but impactful style inspires me the most. I dislike flowery prose that goes on and on and doesn’t move the story along. I like reading fast-paced stories, so my writing reflects this as well.
3) Which is your favorite romance subgenre to read? To write?
I love to read historical romances, especially ones with strong alpha male heroes and stronger heroines. A good, suspenseful contemporary is also at the top of my To-Be-Read list. I write what I love to read, so I have written several historicals and several contemporary suspense stories.
4) How do you deal with criticism/rejection?
Like most people, any criticism stings. We’re only human, after all. I usually set aside those comments and let the sting ebb. Later, I come back and am able to look at the suggestions with an open mind. I’ve found that nine times out of ten, the criticizer was right. I make adjustments and my story comes out the better for it.
5) What do you expect from an editor?
I try not to have any expectations. I’ve had several different editors over the past five years and each one had a different method. As long as I’m happy with the editorial input, I’m flexible.
6) Tell me about your latest release.
My latest release is a contemporary suspense set in Los Angeles. It’s the latest in the “Jewel of the Night” series at The Wild Rose Press. This series features thieves and blue diamonds and of course -- romance.
7) Tease us with a blurb or short excerpt:
Reformed jewel thief Addison Hayes wants to make a fresh start. A new television series featuring rehabilitated thieves staging break-ins seems perfect. The only snag? Her handsome co-host Garrett Powell—his Texas drawl makes her body sing. But seven years behind bars taught her that romance and business don’t mix.
Garrett Powell only signed on for the TV show to satisfy a debt and get his life back on track. Fellow inmate Jimmy Patterson once saved his life and in repayment, Garrett agreed to secretly look out for Jimmy’s protégé, Addison. But Addison’s spunk and intelligence soon have Garrett wishing there could be more between them.
When a rare blue diamond necklace they stole for the show goes missing, Addison and Garrett have to join forces to clear their names. With gun-toting thugs and the law after them, can they find the jewel—and each other—before it’s too late?
8) Which is your favorite character in the book? Why?
My favorite character is Addison Hayes. She’s strong, yet vulnerable. Feisty, but with a soft edge. She’s full of contradictions, and she has the hero all befuddled. A gal after my own heart.
9) What are you working on right now?
Right now I’m working on a synopsis for a full length historical romance set during the period when President Lincoln was assassinated. My hero and heroine become embroiled in the hunt for the killer. I have a submission at Harlequin Historicals that I’m hoping they will contract soon, so I’d like to have another story ready to offer them.
10) Your biggest piece of advice to aspiring novelists?
Read. Read. Read. Take one of your favorite books and take it apart. See how the author crafted the story.
11) Where can readers find you?
I have a website at www.donnadalton.net and I’m also on facebook.
Great interview, Donna and wishing you all the luck in the world with Harlequin! What stage at you at with them? Don't they take forever? LOL! Okay, over to you guys for questions and comments!