Author Interview with Theresa DaLayne
Did you always wanted to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
No, not even close. In fact, in grade school I was a terrible reader and had very bad grades. I had to go through additional tutoring in order to read simple stories and struggled for years with literacy. Only when I was in high school did I fall in love with writing. It started in journalism and branched out from there.
When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?
When I read an article—can’t remember which one—that said, “If you love to write, you’re a writer. You have something important to say. Something others want to hear. Don’t ever forget that.” I had to believe that or I wouldn’t have made it through some of the struggles I faced as a self-taught writer. And you know what they say: If you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right.
How long did it take to get your first book published?
I wrote my first book in 2011 and it was published in 2012. It was a very accomplished moment because I’m a self-taught author with no professional training, and I was still very new to the literary industry.
Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?
Yes. In addition to writing, I also manage an online Amazon store, and I also write the official book blurbs for Limitless Publishing. It’s a fun mix and I love it.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?
My most recently published book is Mayan Blood, book 1 of The Stone Legacy series. Twenty words? That’s tough. How about…Disturbed teen discovers Mayan bloodlines and faces the grueling decision of embracing her destiny or running for her life.
Who is your publisher? Or do you self-publish?
I have two fantastic publishers. Bloomsbury Spark who published my new adult contemporary romance, THE EDGE OF YOU.
Limitless Publishing has both of my series—The Stone Legacy series and a new young adult inspirational series, The Five Pillar series.
How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?
I’d say about nine months. That is from an idea to a clean draft. But that’s just me. Everyone is different. It also depends on my kids’ schedule and how much extra time I have.
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
I have a ton of releases coming up, which is SO exciting!
- Book 1, Mayan Blood releases 12/29
- Book 2, Interlude, releases 1/12
- Book 3, Lights of Aurora, releases 1/26
- Book 4, Anarchy, releases 2/23
- Book 5, Birthright, releases 5/19
Also, in February, I have another release of a young adult inspirational under my pen name, Theresa Mae—If All Else Fails. There will be two more books to follow.
What genre would you place your books into?
Mature young adult paranormal romance.
What made you decide to write that genre of book?
I fell in love with that genre from being an avid reader. I love diverse books and interesting, unique characters. I couldn’t imagine having started in any other genre, and I don’t see myself branching outside of the young adult or new adult genre any time soon.
How long have you been writing, and who or what inspired you to write?
I started writing in 2011, after reading a chain of heartthrob young adult books that left me feeling hollow when they were over. I started to write in journalism back in high school, but after I realized how much I hated being confined I branched out into fiction writing.
Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
To write I generally go upstairs after my kids are in bed and write while I’m tucked in. I like to turn on the lamp mounted to my wall, which gives a soft glow to my bedroom, and sometimes turn on the noisemaker beside my bed that mimics a thunderstorm. Other times I’ll turn on a show I’ve seen a thousand times just to have the background noise with no temptation to actually watch the show.
Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?
Yes. Some authors don’t think it’s important, and some even say they would never read their reviews with a ten-foot poll. It’s all an individual preference, but I like to hear what my readers have to say. I take their feedback under consideration and look into ways I can improve my writing.
Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?
I generally write the book first and then give it a title. I feel like you can’t really title a book until you know what it’s about. But again, that’s just me. Every author is different. Some authors I know actually start with a title and then write the book.
How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
I try to pick unique names that are diverse and fun. Ethnic characters are especially fun to name. Just for fun, here are some name samples from The Stone Legacy series:
- Marzena—seemingly young dreamwalker
- Zanya—heroine of The Stone Legacy Series and destined Stone Guardian.
- Arwan—hero, timebender, and something else entirely.
- Grima—Viking and petrifier (not introduced until Lights of Aurora)
Fun, huh? J
Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
Usually I have a good idea with my main characters, but my secondary characters always take my by surprise.
Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of “The moral of this story is..”)
I think the overall moral of the series is to believe in yourself, be a loyal friend, understand that everyone has different needs, wants, and desires, and not to be afraid to follow your heart. Every book does highlight its own moral or theme.
Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?
I always love a paperback over e-book. Kindles run out of batteries. Paperbacks don’t. J
Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favorite/worst book to movie transfer?
Oh gosh. It’s the million-dollar question, isn’t it? Book or movie. Movie or book?
The answer: Book. Always book.
Worst movie ever made based off a book? The Mortal Instruments movie. I saw it with my mom and was cursing under my breath when we left. So mad.
Your favorite food is?
Chocolate cake and coffee.
Your favorite singer/group is?
I love The Ataris and Taylor Swift.
Your favorite color is?
Blue. Blue. It’s the color of the ocean—I know not technically, for all you science buffs out there, but still—and it’s a lot of color with variations for my wardrobe. 😉
Interlude (The Stone Legacy #2)
by Theresa DaLayne
Summary from Goodreads:
Tara may have spent years in an asylum, but that doesn’t make her crazy–just fearless.
Dropped in Moscow with a the group of enchanted Mayan descendants, seventeen-year-old Tara is forced to wait on the sideline while her best friend—the Stone Guardian— battles to reclaim a friend’s soul trapped in the underworld.
It sucks being ordinary when everyone else is superhuman…
A mortal girl with a tainted past, Tara is left to deal with an overwhelming sense of inadequacy. Her boyfriend, Peter, is a healer. Her best friend is The Guardian, and everyone else is a powerhouse of awesome strengths. Meanwhile, she struggles to leave her childhood of abuse in the past, and while Peter picks her up every time she falls, it becomes clear he deserves better.
When they opened Pandora’s Box, hell came pouring out…
When she’s given a chance to aid in the group’s mission, Tara is eager to pull her own weight, even if it means uncovering buried memories of being held prisoner by the underworld general. Now haunted with flashbacks of torture, Tara wanders from the safety of Peter’s arms into a city of depravity and corruption. And amidst all this evil is a young man with an agenda of his own, who leads her down a road that will either prove she is a hero at heart, or drag her into a world she’s always feared.
He wants revenge, she wants redemption. And in an underground ring of missing girls and bloody sacrifices, only the fearless can survive…
Always on the lookout for a new story, Theresa is a shameless eavesdropper and will take anyone who provides inspiration and mold them into a character without a second thought. She enjoys writing both paranormal and contemporary stories, considering her mind wanders between worlds of fantasy while she’s forced to live in the real world, very much against her will.