Friday, March 12, 2010

Interview with Dara Girard

I’d like to welcome our guest today, Dara Girard. It’s a pleasure having you come visit us at Much Cheaper Than Therapy, where chocolate is plentiful and advice is free. So grab some chocolate and a lounge chair. Your therapy session has begun.

I understand you have a new release out called WORDS OF SEDUCTION. Can you tell us a little bit about your fabulous new book?

The back cover blurb says it best:

From housewife to hot novelist...her real life is igniting more sparks than her stories!

When it comes to disastrous relationships, Suzanne Rand wrote the book. The frumpy-housewife-turned-superstar-author has come home to North Carolina to sell the family house—then hightail it back out of town.

But there’s an unfinished chapter in her life: bad-boy-turned-successful-businessman Rick Gordon. Suzanne’s been burned before and can’t let the roving playboy play fast and loose with her heart again...even if he is the sexiest thing on two legs. And once passion reignites in Rick’s arms, she has no idea where this story’s going...

Rick could write the book on how not to get hooked. But he’s never forgotten Suzanne, and now’s his chance to pick up where they left off. That’s why he’s plotting a course of seduction she’ll never be able to resist. But will their rekindled passion lead to love...and the happy ending they both crave?

WORDS OF SEDUCTION is a very interesting title. How did you arrive at that name?

The credit has to go to my editor. When I proposed the book it was called “Suzanne’s Seduction.” Fortunately, I’m used to titles changing (my January 2009 release Body Chemistry was originally “Body Talk” and my October 2008 release “Sheer Pleasure” became A Gentleman’s Offer).

Where did you get your idea for this particular book?

I was inspired by the novel Peyton Place. I was intrigued by its premise of scandal in a small town and a woman coming home to face it. I also liked the thought of secrets and my two main characters, Suzanne and Rick, have layers of them, which I hope readers will enjoy seeing revealed.

What’s your writing routine?

I don’t really have one. I admire those writers who are remarkably disciplined and write at the same time every day and have a word count or page quota. Although I treat my writing career as a business, I have a more flexible routine. The mornings and evenings are my best times for writing so I leave the middle of the day for more mundane activities such as copyedits, reading my email, paying bills etc…

What comes to you first? Character or plot? How did it affect the writing of this book?

Usually the character comes to me and basically says ‘Have I got a story for you!’ and I immediately jot down whatever pops up in my mind at that point. That doesn’t mean I do free-writing the entire time, but initially my work isn’t very structured. I’ll get a sense of the character arc and write towards fulfilling it. In WORDS OF SEDUCTION I knew that Suzanne had to learn to trust again and developed scenes so that the reader could see that growth. Also, using the title as my base, I tried to show the power of words--how they can hurt and heal.

What about writing do you find difficult?

I have never found writing difficult. It’s re-writing that I find difficult at times. Having to attend to detail, expand on an idea that I thought I’d made clear, or having to remove a scene that isn’t pertinent. But the initial creative rush is always a thrill for me.

You presently write category fiction, but started off writing single title romance. Do you prefer one over the other?

No, I have fun writing both. To me they’re like art, but one is a charcoal sketch while the other is an oil painting. One needs a big canvas, the other a smaller one. With my category work I’ve been lucky to have an editor who allows me to deal with deep themes--betrayal, abuse and suicide--so I don’t feel that my creativity is being hampered.

Do you work with a critique group? Why or why not?

No. I’ve always had one Ideal Reader who sees my rough drafts and this reader is the only one to see my completed manuscript before I send it to my editor.

What do you feel is the most effective promotion you have done for your book?

It’s been a cumulative effort consisting of things done both online and off. I work with a brand and marketing specialist who has provided me with ‘measurable results’. However, I strongly believe that the best promo an author can truly focus on is the work. I like what Mickey Spillane said, “The first page sells that book; the last page sells your next book.” I always hope that those who enjoyed my last book will be eager to buy my next book.

What do we have to look forward next?

WORDS OF SEDUCTION is the first book in a trilogy about three novelists who learn that desire goes beyond the page. The second book in the series, PAGES OF PASSION, will be released October 26th 2010. It’s a story about a cynical romance novelist whose life changes when she meets a real life hero.

Thanks, Dara!

To celebrate her book release, Dara is offering a free book of WORDS OF SEDUCTION to one lucky commenter on today's blog. (please check the blog Monday night to see who won. Chances of winning determined by the number of entries.)

She will be around all day today. I'm sure some of you have questions or comments for her, so please ask away...

Bio. Dara Girard is an award-winning author of thirteen novels that feature strong heroines, sexy heroes, family dramas and romance. Her writing has been praised for its deft plot twists, witty dialogue and humor.

Check out author’s website at Buy


Anonymous said...

Good morning Dara, Thanks for joining us again today. Your chocolate is almost ready. I love returning home stories and yours sounds yummy. Many sales:)

Ladysilver said...

I enjoy Dara's work and look forward to reading this series. I have a serious addiction to Kimini books(or at least my husband calls it an addiction).

The story sounds like it is one that will provide for some excellent reading time.

Dara Girard said...

Thanks for having me here and the chocolate is heavenly (I added some whipped cream). I appreciate the good wishes:)

Dara Girard said...

Wonderful to see you here. Thanks for your kind words.

As for your addiction...I hope you never recover (big grin).

queen said...

I have enjoyed your book and hopes this latest novel turns into a series. Out of all romance novels published my favorite company is kimani press, they make me believe in love again, and helped me through my divorce.

Linda Andrews said...

Hi Dara. One of my favorite concepts in stories is the healing power of love. I keep hearing that song lyric "only love can break a heart, only love can mend it again." I'll definitely look for your books on the shelves.

Estella said...

Sounds like this will be an awesome trilogy.

Dara Girard said...

Yes, this book is part of a series and I feel honored that you've taken such joy from our books at Kimani.

Linda A,
I really liked the song lyric. Hmm...there might be a book in that.

Thank you!

Sue A. said...

I already had some chocolate today, but if you insist I guess I could have some more. Books are like chocolate, addictive, leaving you wanting more so it's good this is the first in a trilogy.