My guest today is Miss Raven Dark. I met Raven in my Facebook group for NANO. In various threads Raven has expressed intelligent answers, not the typical smart alec, or flippant things that many answer in trivial fashion. She offers sound answers or comments. This caught my attention. Hopefully, she’ll capture yours as well.
- Welcome to Quotidiandose. Tell me a little about yourself.
I live with my fiancé of 12 years, and our cat (who thinks she’s a dog), in the friendliest place in Ontario, Canada. I swear, Hamiltonians are the most helpful, welcoming people. I struggle with mobility, so I spend most of my time writing, but I also love practicing cover-making for books (not well, but I’m getting better, lol), and editing for other authors.
- What genre do you write?
Erotic romance, usually with a BDSM element, or at least kink. Lately, I’ve been churning out books with contemporary settings, but sometimes fantasy or sci fi settings sneak in.
- How did you get started?
When I was 12, a teacher asked the class to write a short story. He drew five cartoonish type characters. All ones he made up, laminated them, and then put them up on the board. Then he told us to choose one, and base our story on our choice. One of the characters was this…interesting rat sort of creature in warrior’s clothes with a sword. I wrote a 5 page story about him, in which he had to save a princess, from a dragon, I think. The teacher read the story and when he was finished, he was so impressed, he read it to the class. After, he pulled me aside and quietly told me I needed to be a writer. Who was I to refuse? 😀
- It’s refreshing to hear some encouragement to be a writer. So often we hear you shouldn’t be a writer, or get a real job. Thank you for sharing that! What part of writing do you find to be the most difficult?
Definitely the editing. I think a lot of people would say writing blurbs or synopsises, and I do hate those. But while I always think I can’t write the next blurb for a book, it always ends up being almost easy. Editing on the other hand…*Shudder*. If I could pay someone else to do it, I would.
- Which is the easiest for you?
*Hehem* The sexy bits. LOL. The rest of the story I sometimes have to really fight with. Beginnings are like pulling teeth, and I always think my endings are a rush of suck. They turn out great in the end, but doing them is hell. The sexy parts, on the other hand, those just flow. I love a good banter scene between a strong alpha male and a smart-ass heroine, and the hotter the sexy times, the better and the easier to write.
- *nods agreement* What is your greatest fear?
Mold. Seriously, the stuff makes me squick. When I reach into the fridge and pull out something, if it has mold on it, I end up screaming and dropping it. Hubby gets a laugh out of it.
- What is your greatest regret?
Not studying writing much harder, sooner than I did. If I had started learning the mechanics of writing years earlier, I would probably be a successful author by now. Instead, I let the fears and self doubts eat away at me and hold me back. Which is why I’ve spent the last 4 years studying every writing book and blog I can get my hands on. And it’s why I have a book out today. 😀 😀 😀
- That is a very good point. So many aspiring authors, I won’t say aspiring writer because you either write or you don’t, but to be an author you have to have authored something. When it doesn’t just automatically “happen” for them, they give up. You’ll never accomplish anything if you give up. Which leads me to my next question,What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Finish. Yeah, that’s it. And that applies to anyone who wants to be successful at something. If I have a second regret, it’s that I spent so long worrying and doubting myself that it took me over 4 years to finally finish my first book. Once I finished that one, the second one, it’s sequel, was a lot easier. The more often you do it, the easier it gets, but you can’t edit a blank page, and you can’t fix a broken story if you don’t finish it. A great friend of mine once said, “The world doesn’t reward perfection, it rewards finishers.”
- Do you outline or are you a pantser?
I’m an obsessive plotter. I know a lot of writers like to say you have to pants, or you have to plot, but I believe a writer has to do what works for them. There is no right or wrong. For me, though, stories end up far too much of a mess, and much harder to fix unless I plot them out. In my case, this means being extremely organized. I’m hugely OCD, so I use a spreadsheet, plotting out each chapter, with a description of each scene, and any key details. Then I can see where the story is weak, or lacks conflict, where the holes are, and repair them before I start writing. It saves a lot of rewriting in the end. That said, I have to say, I envy people who can write without all that. People who can just sit down and the story flows out of them. I want that.
- You sound like me. I am rather OCD about my outlines. If I free write, and I do sometimes because it can be cathartic, I evaluate what I wrote as to whether I leave it in, throw it out, use it in a different story, deviate from the plan or what? There are times when the story just flows. That’s the case with my next one. Is there one book that you wish that you had written? (Not for the profits – but for the quality of the writing.)
Hands down, Bared to You, by Silvia Day. And, hard as this probably is to believe, it has nothing to do with the book being a global bestseller or whatever legendary status it’s at now. The woman writes beautifully and it’s easily my favorite book.
11. What’s next for you? What is on the workboard?
At the moment, I’ve got a lot going on, including writing up Part 3 of Teach Me, tentatively titled Bad Behavior. But I’m also working on the final edits for Unlawful Desire, the first book in my full length, erotic romance series. It’s BDSM, like my other work. Here’s a teaser for the series.
Sounds intriguing! While Raven finishes that one, take a look at her current ones!
“You came here for more than to drop off my bag, Professor, and you know it.”
A soft chuckle drifted up from him. Then he turned and stalked back up the steps, stopping so close she could feel the heat of him. He loomed darkly over her.
“Get inside, young lady.”
When she lifted her chin, he leaned in, so close his breath fanned her face. It smelled faintly of the peppermint gum he always had on his desk.
“It’s not safe for a girl like you to be out here at night. The big bad wolf might eat you.”
19 year old Jacy is a college girl with a wild and wicked streak. She’s always had a penchant for older men, so it’s no surprise she’d fantasize about being taken by her professor in every possible way. Then again, her imagination’s always gotten her into trouble.
When the sinfully gorgeous Mr. Wright shows up at her door one night, she’s sure she can tempt the brooding alpha male into taking control and claiming what he needs, but at what price?
He’ll give her a night she’ll never forget, but she’s been to this party before with disastrous results. Will their tryst be the best night of her life, or the worst mistake she’s ever made?
Class is in session, and Jacy is about to learn a hard lesson. After a wild night of passion together, her hot college professor Tyson Wright completely ignores her. Instead of wallowing in her sudden rejection, Jacy plots her revenge. What will she do when she discovers Tyson has a lesson for her, one she won’t soon forget?
As a young girl Raven Dark dreamed of being abducted by a savage alien warrior, whisked away by a brutal pirate, or rescued by a cape-bearing hero. When none of these men came to claim her, she brought them to life in her stories. Then twelve years ago she met the man of her dreams. He doesn’t wear a cape, fly a spaceship, or wield a sword, but sometimes she swears they’ve mind melded.
Raven lives with her dream man and their one cat that thinks she’s a dog in the Mundane world’s version of Ontario, Canada. When she isn’t working on her latest erotic romance novels and crafting interesting worlds in which to set them, she’s spending too much time with friends, feeding her Youtube addiction, or curled up on a couch watching favorite shows with her future husband.
I love to meet new friends and readers. You can find me at-
Amazon page – www.amazon.com/author/ravendark
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/authorravenclark
Twitter – https://twitter.com/RavenDarkAuthor
Website and blog – www.authorravendark.com
Thank you Raven for a lovely interview! Be sure to leave a comment for Raven today!
Write on my friends, write on!