Q: What advice would you give to writers just starting out?
That no matter what people say is the right way to write a book, you’ll find a million examples that prove that what people said about the “right” way…well, it isn’t right. Clear as mud? Learn the rules, but also be aware that established authors often break the rules. If you try and emulate a certain author rather than striving to write your own story, you’re likely to get a rejection from a publishing house or an agent.
Q: Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
In my case I have to take some time to analyze why I’m blocking because it isn’t for the same reason every time. Is it because I’m pushing myself to write too fast? Then I slow down. Is it because I’m doing too much outlining or over thinking plot and characters? My muse works much better if I am free flow and don’t try to over structure my stories. I’m a true by the seat of my pants writer. Also, if I am listening too much to the inner critic, I have to remind myself it is perfectly fine to write a crappy first draft.
Q: How did you deal with rejection letters, if you received any?
I received MANY, MANY rejection letters. I won’t kid you. They all hurt. J Luckily for me, I had the drive to continue regardless of rejection. It isn’t always easy. I still get rejections, and each one can wittle away at me if I allow it. I think I’ve become better at rolling with the punches. It all comes back to reminding myself why I’m writing, and if I stopped writing, what would I do? I find that the alternative…working another job…well, I really don’t like the alternative.
Q: How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula?
No set plot or formula…formula and structure in the initial writing of a story can be a death blow for my muse. My only exceptions to that are historical romances. Because there is a ton of research involved before I start a historical, I will read through a lot of books/research items on the internet and take notes that might jump into my head about something I’d like to include in my novel. This gives me inspiration and sparks ideas.
Q: What were your feelings when your first novel was accepted/when you first saw the cover of the finished product?
Total amazement. I think I was more astounded that it was happening than anything.
Q: Are you working on any books/projects that you would like to share with us? (We’d love to hear all about them!)
Oohhhhh, there are so many. Right now I’m finishing up the last story in my HEART OF JUSTICE SWAT series at Liquid Silver Publishing. This new story is called WITHIN HIS EMBRACE and features Craig MacGilvary and Leigh Strong. Both characters showed up in the earlier stories in the series. Taken under the wing of SWAT officer Justice MacGilvary when they were teens, Mick, Trey, and Craig learned the meaning of truth, integrity and a desire to protect the innocent. When Justice died in the line of duty, each man worked that much harder to carry on the lawman’s SWAT traditions. Their affection for each other runs as deep as if they were blood brothers.
When they encounter Celeste, MaryJo, and Leigh, these three men discover nuances within themselves they never expected. Capacity to love, strength in any storm, and heated passion more intense and thrilling than any dream.
The series is four stories. The first story is actually a novella featuring Dace Banovic, a friend of the three MacGilvary brothers. I’m also contemplating writing a story featuring another SWAT character…a short story or novella. Not sure which yet.
Q: Any recent appearances that you would like to share with us about/any upcoming ones?
None right now.
Q: Do you have a favorite hero in all your books? For any particular reason?
I’d have to say that the heroes in my historicals (which are out of print right now) are my favorites. I’ve also got a time travel hero that I love…his name is Tynan of MacBrahin. He’s a Highlander from 1318 Scotland. I’ve gotten so many fan kudos on him…he’s barbaric, raw, a hunk of course, yet so honorable.
Q: Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
You can find me at my regular website at www.deniseagnew.com . You’ll also find links there for two blogs I participate in. J Please stop by and say hello!
Thanks Denise! Join us Saturday for a Sexcerpt from one of Denise’s stories.