TQ: What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?
Dianne: I like to alter the media I use to write my manuscripts. I’ve found it a very effective way to remedy writer’s block. My first two manuscripts (a medieval romance with paranormal elements and a time-travel romance not yet scheduled for publication) I wrote on my computer. I wrote Darkness Dawns, the first book in my Immortal Guardians series, by hand in a spiral notebook. And Night Reigns, Book 2, I wrote on my Alphasmart NEO.
TQ: Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?
Dianne: I have so many favorites that encompass all genres of romance. Every writer who wrote a book I enjoyed inspired me simply by firing my imagination. Julie Garwood, Johanna Lindsey, Julia Quinn and Kinley MacGregor are amongst those authors who fueled my love of historicals. Karen Marie Moning enthralled me with her time-travels. Alexandra Ivy, Gena Showalter, Kresley Cole and Lindsay Sands are amongst the authors who made paranormal romance my favorite genre. Stephen King, however, influenced my writing the most. Every time I read one of his books, I learn more about writing. I firmly believe every aspiring writer should read his book On Writing. I found it extremely informative.
TQ: Are you a plotter or a pantser?
Dianne: As OC as I am when it comes to editing, one would think I would be a dedicated plotter. But I’m a pantser. I tried plotting . . . once. I spent several days creating an extremely detailed outline, then began to write. A week later, the plot derailed and took a new turn -- a better turn -- and I ended up grumbling over all the time I had wasted on an outline I wouldn’t use instead of just writing. Now, when I sit down to begin a new manuscript, instead of an outline, I usually have the beginning, then ending and two or three scenes in between already written in my head. Everything else emerges as I write.
TQ: What inspired you to write Darkness Dawns?
Dianne: First and foremost my love of paranormal romances, particularly vampire romances. I enjoy reading them so much that I wanted to create my own paranormal world. But I wanted to approach the vampire romance genre from a new perspective. The idea for this new slant actually arose from two manuscripts I wrote before Darkness Dawns: a medieval romance with paranormal elements and a time travel romance. Both featured women with special gifts bestowed upon them at birth by advanced DNA (though they didn’t know the source themselves). These women and their male counterparts -- referred to as gifted ones -- provided me with a way to differentiate between immortals and vampires in Darkness Dawns. In my Immortal Guardians series, vampirism is caused by a rare symbiotic virus. Immortals are gifted ones who have been infected and, thus, transformed by the virus. The corrupt vampires they hunt are ordinary humans who have been infected with it.
TQ: What sort of research did you do to create the world of the Immortal Guardians?
Dianne: Darkness Dawns actually required a wide variety of research. Roland and Marcus were both born in the Middle Ages, so I needed to familiarize myself with everything from common names to daily life to the politics of that time period to provide both characters with pasts and mannerisms that I thought would linger from their mortal life. Fortunately I had already do so for the manuscripts I mentioned above. I also had to learn more about viruses, how they work and the way our bodies respond to them. Additional research included military hand signals, weapons, vehicles, geographical locations and more.
TQ: Without giving anything away, what is/are your favorite scene(s) in Darkness Dawns?
Dianne: One is the scene that begins with Roland lounging on the steps leading up to the whirlpool tub while he watches Sarah blow-dry her hair and marvels over the warmth she has brought into his formerly barren existence. Another is the scene near the end in which a clearly agitated Roland is gearing up for battle and arms Sarah. And, finally, I love the climax of the novel. For obvious reasons I can’t tell you what happens, but Roland and Sarah both demonstrate such love, heroism and a willingness to sacrifice anything for each other that I just can’t resist it.
TQ: How many books are planned for the Immortal Guardians series? Will there be any short stories or novellas set in Immortal Guardians world?
Dianne: I haven’t decided on a finite number of books for the Immortal Guardians series, yet, but know that there will be at least four. As for short stories or novellas, I currently have one in mind that I would love to see appear in a paranormal romance anthology with some of my favorite authors. Others are sure to follow. :-)
TQ: What's next?
Dianne: Night Reigns, the second book in the Immortal Guardians series is scheduled for release in December. In it, Marcus’s increasingly erratic behavior draws unwanted concern from his immortal brethren. Cocky on the outside, grieving on the inside, he walks the edge and takes far too many risks. Hoping to divert him from this destructive path, Seth assigns Marcus a new Second (human assistant) . . . one who proves to be immensely distracting and turns his world upside down.
TQ: Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery
Dianne: Thank you so much for having me! I’m happy to be here!
Immortal Guardians 1
(February 1, 2011)
Once, Sarah Bingham’s biggest challenge was making her students pay attention in class. Now, after rescuing a wounded stranger, she’s landed in the middle of a battle between corrupt vampires and powerful immortals who also need blood to survive. Roland Warbrook is the most compelling man Sarah has ever laid hands on. But his desire for her is mingled with a hunger he can barely control…
In his nine centuries of immortal existence, no woman has tempted Roland as much as Sarah. But asking her to love him is impossible—when it means forfeiting the world she’s always known, and the life he would do anything to protect…
Night Reigns, Immortal Guardians 2, is presently slated for release in December 2011.
Darkness Dawns was declared a Top Pick in a 5-star review by The Romance Reviews, a Best Book in a 5+ star review by Long and Short Reviews and was given the Top Bite Award by Bitten by Paranormal Romance. It also received a 4 1/2 star review by RT Book Reviews and was chosen as Best of the Best in the Romance Writers of America Indiana Golden Opportunity contest. When she isn't writing, Dianne is active in the independent film industry and once even appeared onscreen as a machete-wielding maniac not unlike the vampires she so loves to create in her novels.
Blog - The Immortal Realm: http://dianneduvall.blogspot.com
Dianne is giving away a Kindle at her website! Go here for the rules.
What: One commenter will win a Mass Market Paperback of Darkness Dawns.
How: Leave a comment telling The Qwillery if you had an Immortal Guardian, what time period would he or she come from? Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.
You may receive additional entries by:
1) Being a Follower of The Qwillery.
2) Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.
3) Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.
There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.
Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.
Who & When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Wednesday, February 16, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.
*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*