For today’s blog, I’m going to try something new. My wonderful writing friend Dana Provo is debuting her first novel Bleeding Hearts with Clean Reads Publishing. To promote Dana and her great book, I wanted to share a little about what makes her tick.
Q–When did you first want to be a writer?
Dana– Honestly, I only started writing about 4 years ago. I had always wanted to write a story growing up, but I never thought I was smart enough or talented enough. Then after I started writing around the age of 23, I knew I loved it. It wasn’t until after I finished my first book, Under The Willow Tree, (not yet published) that I wanted to publish something. After I started writing Bleeding Hearts, I knew I found the genre I wanted to write in and knew this book would be a hit. So, that’s when I wanted to be a writer.
Q–Tell me a little bit about Under the Willow Tree and how you moved from that to Bleeding Hearts. What is this genre that you’ve called home, and what makes it home to you?
Dana– Under The Willow Tree is a young adult, fantasy. Willow, a 17 year old empath, is banished to the Islands of Cadeaux because she is ‘Special’. She molds her new life around helping other Specials adapt to island life. With the World Challenge on the horizon, she and her best friend, Basil prepare to compete. Only 100 will enter and four will remain. The Olendeae World Challenge is a race around the world that tests six attributes of the inhabitants of the Islands Of Cadeaux. This book is complete, but I am in the process of rewriting it.
I have always read YA growing up so I thought that was the way to go as far as starting to write, but I really wanted to write a romance with two different story lines. So, when I moved into my current apartment, I immediately came up with the idea for Bleeding Hearts.
I am such a romantic. I love reading romance, and writing it. All of my stories will have a romantic element because I truly think that’s what I’m meant to write and share with my readers.
Q–When you say you “came up with the idea” for Bleeding Hearts, how did that happen and tell me what is unique about it that will help it stand out.
Dana–I moved into my current apartment in April of 2015 and we have a state trooper in the building and I thought to myself, “if I were to ever get in trouble, I can go to him for help” then I met his fiancé and we are good friends. So my main character, Cami Lucks is based off of my friend and somewhat myself. I wanted to create a dark romance between a young woman who falls in love with the man who tries to kill her. I talked it over with my sister about writing a unique story line with two different plots; the present story after the attack and the past story of how she met her attacker.
Q–Are you telling the story in a nonlinear way, where you show the end and then go back and show how she ended up there? Why so dark? Will this be a pattern for future work?
Dana–Yes, the first chapter of Bleeding Hearts is considered the present and each following chapter Cami has a flashback of how she got there. They are both chronological, present runs from March to June and the flashbacks run from January to March. It’s very cool to read and experience both times in Cami’s life. At least I think so.
Q– Does your friend know that you are basing the character off of her?
Dana–I have mentioned Cami to my friend Stef and how I came to create her and she thinks it’s pretty cool.
Q– Why so dark? Will this be a pattern for future work?
Dana–Not every romance has a happy ending. There are people in the world that are not very nice and treat their girlfriends terribly. I wanted to show what that relationship looks like. Cami accepts a ride from a stranger. It was the biggest mistake she’s ever made in her life. What she does can happen in reality. So next time someone offers you a ride, make sure you know who they are.
In the sequel, Silent Hearts, there will be three POVs and two of those characters will have some sort of flashback story that will be written. I won’t tell you which characters I’m writing though.
Q–So you’ve mentioned a sequel, Silent Hearts, do you have any plans for anything else coming down the bend? Like, what’s your five year plan?
Dana–My five year plan has lots in store. There are actually two more books in the Bleeding Hearts series. Book two is now called Bleeding Alone and the last book will be called Bleeding Silence. I hope to have those out within the next two years. I also have another series I’m working on. The first book is called WHISPER and it’s a young adult SciFi which will be published by RRPI. I’m hoping that will be out by the end of 2018 but we will see.
Oh and there’s a few other projects I want to work on that are spin offs from Bleeding Hearts, but right now, they are just plans. I haven’t worked on them yet.
Me now—I’m so glad the Dana let me interview her and I hope that you will give her book a view and visit her release party and give her a like https://www.facebook.com/events/1233414473358329/