Interview with Dawné Dominique, Author of The First Series
A multi-published and award-nominated author of paranormal erotic romance and fantasy, Dawné Dominique's novels instantly hook readers until that last page is read. Although published in the US, she's a Canadian author through and through. The second novel of her vampire series, Dark Diary, II: The First, is set in Winnipeg, Manitoba, where she resides with her family, and Gunkers, a stray cat she recently saved, and Chumbly, their newest addition to the feline household. She embraces life with one simple rule: “Everything in life happens for a reason, be it good or bad, and it’s because of this we learn to never take anything for granted.” Drop by to pay her visit at: www.dawnedominique.com or www.DusktildawnDesigns.com.
Where did you grow up?
I was born in a small Ontario town called Alison Simcoe Co. People used to ask me if I was born in a baby factory. *chuckles* It was an army base way back when. My sister and I were the first set of twins born there. For the record, she's forty-five minutes older than I am. That's why our mom likes her more. *smiles*
What is your fondest childhood memory?
The very first time I ever saw my mom and dad kiss. I was about twelve years old, and I've never forgotten it.
When did you begin writing?
Since I was old enough to hold a crayon, then I'd draw pictures to go with the stories, but it wasn't until the late 1990's early 2000's, after I joined a writing site that I seriously began to hone my craft.
Do you write during the day, at night or whenever you can sneak a few moments?
Well, I'm a contracted paralegal three days a week, and a cover artist for the rest. I write primarily at night because that's when my mind is the most creative. The week leading up to a full moon, my creativeness explodes. Whether it's writing or cover art, it doesn't matter. Some people have called me a were-author. *blushes*
What is this book about?
Crimson Cries is my most recent release and the fourth novel in my vampire series called The First. It blends biblical facts with fiction to give readers a very logical explanation as to where and how the first vampires and wolves came to be. Eden's Hell, the novel that begins the series, was nominated for an EPIC because of its uniqueness from all the other vampire novels out there. This series is definitely not your ordinary bloodsucking series.
What inspired you to write it?
You may get a chuckle out of this, but I entered a writing contest. The prompt was to write a chapter length story about a "unique" vampire. I won the contest, but every critique I received said "it's too short." Thus, Daniella Rolfe was born. She doesn't have to feed every night like other vamps. Only once a month. Like a woman's period, instead of expelling blood, she has to replace hers. So she hunts for a large man for one night of suck and, well, you know. It is erotica after all. Daniella has three days in which to do so. If she doesn't, the hunger can lead to blood madness wherein she risks losing herself in the feeding and can rip the victim apart. Daniella kills, but she's discriminate about who lives and who dies.
Who is your biggest supporter?
I have some very dear friends who have been with me right from the beginning. My associate at the office hadn't read a book since she was a junior high student. After she picked up my series, she told me that it has prompted her to begin reading again, except... she hasn't found an author she likes as much as me. That statement has had a profound effect on me. I lost my big brother a couple of years back. After he died, my joy and love for writing disappeared into sadness. She brought me out of my despair in more ways than one.
Are you a member of a critique group? If no, who provides feedback on your work?
Indeed, I am. There was a time I also moderated a Young Adult novel group in there, but my time right now is too consumed with my own writing and my cover art business.
Who is your favorite author?
I have a lot of them, but J.R. Tolkien and Anne Rice are two of my favorites.
Do you have an agent or are you looking for one?
I don't have an agent. I shopped around for one for a time, but didn't really pursue it too strongly. I should have. I'm a Canadian author published in the US. Everything I do here, such as book signings,promotions, etc., I have to do on my own. It would be nice to have some clout and backup.
Was the road to publication smooth sailing or a bumpy ride?
My very first two submissions to publishers were accepted. That was the smooth part of the ride. However, one of those publishers ended up being absolutely horrid. The experience left me scarred for life. It's also a big reason as to why I became a cover artist too. But I believe that everything that happens in life, be it good or bad, happens for a reason. Even though it was a terrible ride, I learned so much about the publishing business. In the end, it was a great experience, if that makes any sense.
If you knew then, what you know now, is there anything you would have done differently?
The good, the bad and the ugly...it's all a learning curve, and I wouldn't change it for the world. I've met some wonderful authors and publishers along the way, and I've learned invaluable lessons.
What is the best investment you have made in promoting your book?
I'm still working on that. Between my paralegal job and my cover business, I don't have a lot of time to promote myself, so Pump Up Your Book may turn out to be my best investment. *crosses fingers & toes*
What is one piece of advice you would like to share with aspiring authors everywhere?
Never give up. Be unique. And grow thick skin. You're going to need it.
What is up next for you?
This May or June, I'll be releasing a fantasy novel that I wrote many moons ago called The Tears of San'Ferath. It's about a land called Allanoria, with Druid Knights (who are good) and Nongéva Druids (who are evil). When the mage'ic begins to disappear because of the evil taint left by the Nongévas dark mage'ic, all the mage'ical creatures begin to die. When the last Druid Knight invokes a spell called The Undying Sleep on San'Ferath, the king of dragons who, incidentally, is the last dragon left, they do so in the hope of preserving whatever mage'ic is left in Allanoria. Then an illness called the Blue Fever sweeps through the lands and begins wiping out the humans. The prophesy of "The Cleansing" has begun.
Some five hundred years later, a freelance mercenary and dancer hold the key to restoring Allanoria's mage'ic, but it's a Nongéva Druid who awakens more than he bargained for.