**AUTHOR PEEK** Interview with DIANA LAYNE
Before we get started talking about your writing, tell us a little about yourself, where you’re from, what you do for a living (if you’re not a fulltime writer) what hobbies you have, etc. Whatever you’d like to share.
I’m a small-town Texas girl. I have six children ranging in ages from 8 – 30, 4 boys and 2 girls. I have always homeschooled my kids, and I’m on the last two now. I also have two terrific daughters-in-law and a 3 year old grandson and a newborn granddaughter. I’m in that sandwich generation with boomerang kids—because of life stuff, a couple of the older kids (and grandkids and spouse) have moved back home to finish up college, and last year because of health problems, my mother had to enter a nursing home. Hobbies? <laughs maniacally> Can cooking for the masses be considered a hobby? Even if I hate cooking…?
1. How did you get started writing?
I started writing almost as soon as I learned to write. It took me a lot of years to learn that you didn’t have to be special or magical to aspire to be a published author. I really wish I’d known that earlier.
2. What genre(s) do you write in and why?
I write romantic suspense and historical. Why? When I first started reading romances (Barbara Cartland) they were historical. Then Kathleen Woodiwiss came along. Plus, I love history. Except…the historical market tanked right after I got my first agent. About the same time I read Iris Johansen’s Ugly Duckling. I don’t know if that was one of the first romantic suspenses but it was a first for me and I loved it. I still write in both genres. I love the challenge.
3. What is your favorite part of writing?
My favorite part of writing is typing “The End.” I always start slow, build up speed by the middle and race to the ending. I’ve written enough novels to know that if the WIP gets harder for me, instead of easier, then I’ve messed up somewhere and I have to go back to the beginning and figure it out.
4. What is your least favorite part of writing?
Beginnings are always tough for me. I rewrite beginnings more than anything. I wish there were some foolproof way to know exactly where to start the story.
5. Where do you get the ideas for your stories?
I get ideas in the strangest places—a soccer game inspired THE GOOD DAUGHTER, which is a Mafia story. Go figure.
6. What is your typical day like?
Really, with me responsible for so many people, there is no “typical day”. My best writing time is in the afternoon. So ideally, I get up around 4 or 5 am, check email, read a little and exercise (I read on my treadmill, too). The youngest two kids wake up, we eat and they get started on their lessons. I then cook lunch, they finish their lessons, and I’m usually ready to write by 2 pm. I started cooking lunch because dinner time, as well as all the extracurricular activities like soccer and boy scouts in the evening, cut too much into my best writing time. Those who are not around for lunch warm up leftovers later. Right now, it’s the only way I can survive.
7. What is most difficult for you to write? Characters, conflict or emotions? Why?
It’s the characters who make me want to write, and I love writing conflict-never have a sagging middle because I just ramp up the conflict–so I would have to answer emotions. I’m very reserved, boring in real life, actually, so I have to dig deep to get to those emotions. My favorite trick is to write in first person, and then switch the scene to third once it’s written. Writing in first person forces me to be that character, and if I’m that character, then I don’t have to be my normal reserved self. Instead, I become that character. No, don’t haul me off to the funny farm. It’s exhausting, but it works for me!
8. Tell us about your next book & when is it being published?
My next book is TRUST NO ONE, which was my Golden Heart® final book. It’s about a former spy forced out of retirement when her sister begins an unsanctioned killing spree.
It’s a romantic suspense, too, and also the first book in my Vista Security series. THE GOOD DAUGHTER is a prequel to the series and I’ll be bringing the hero/heroine Dave and Marisa from THE GOOD DAUGHTER back in subsequent Vista Security books.
TRUST NO ONE will be released in June. Incidentally, I have a promo going that if or when you read THE GOOD DAUGHTER and leave me a review, if you’ll email me and tell me where you left the review, I’ll send you an electronic ARC of TRUST NO ONE! The details are here: ARC Giveaway (http://bit.ly/I1hGUb)
FMI about Diana Layne and her books:
THE GOOD DAUGHTER
Tales of The Scrimshaw Doll Series, a swashbuckling pirate tale with a hero as yummy as Capt Jack, a female pirate captain as tough as she is beautiful, a cursed gypsy doll, and betrayal as dark as the stormy seas!
BE SURE TO COME BACK to read an excerpt from Diana’s novel, THE GOOD DAUGHTER, on Wednesday’s Karen’s Killer Book Bench.