Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Interview & Spotlight ~ Author D.A. Roach





Q&A

1. Where is home for you? – 
Honestly, home is wherever my family is.


2. Do you have a day job outside of writing, and if so, what is it? – 
Mom/babysitter/volunteer at the elementary school

3. What is your favourite childhood book? – 
My fav childhood book is The Velveteen Rabbit. It’s such a sweet and tragic story and my first introduction to reading a book that made me cry but ended happily. I read it the other day to my son and now that I’m a writer, I truly appreciate how beautifully worded it is.

4. Has a book ever made you cry? If yes which – 
Yes, the Velveteen Rabbit was the first, but the one that made me ugly cry was Me Before You. I was in such a funk after reading that book – felt like my heart had been blasted into a million pieces.

5. What is your favourite Genre to read? & What are you currently reading? – 
I like a good love story, one that has a hurdle that you think the couple can’t possibly overcome and face together. It doesn’t matter what genre it’s in…paranormal, drama, YA, NA…as long as that “holy crap, there’s no way they’re relationship will survive this” moment happens, I’m good. I’m also a huge hockey fan so I’m reading the Cold Fury series right now, Roman’s story. It follows one of my favorite series styles, where one character is featured in each book and in the other books they become side characters, each character having their turn in the spotlight while helping progress the plot along.

6. When you're not writing what do you like to do in your down time? –
Watching hockey, listening to music, going to movies, and gardening.

7. Describe your life in five words? – 
Busy, chaotic, fun, challenging, fulfilling

Alright lets talk writing.....

8. What first inspired you to write? – 
I never would have thought I’d ever end up a writer. As a kid I loved art and was good at math and science so my parents urged me to become a pharmacist…and I did…and I hated it. I then went back to school and learned drafting/AutoCAD and I was good at it. I was asked to manage the continuing ed classes and teach some semester long classes…and I loved it. But then we moved home to Indiana and had kids. Life got busy with me being a mom. 
Fast forward to several years later...I’m at a dentist appointment, chatting with the hygienist. She asks where we will be vacationing in the summer and I tell her “Gatlinburg, TN”. I end up telling her a story about how my family, who didn’t have a lot of money, saved and went on our first vacation there. On the last day, my dad had a heart attack in our hotel in the middle of the night. My mom went to the hospital with my dad and left my brother and I, 2 young kids, alone in a hotel, promising to return by 10AM. Only, she didn’t, and we feared the worst. After a huge fight, we banned together to find a way to be with our parents at the hospital and ended up meeting an amazing stranger who offered to help us. Anyway, I told her the rest of the story, about and what happened and when I finished she sat back with her mouth wide open. 
She set down her tools and said, “You have to write the story down. People need to hear that story.” 
I told her that it had already been written up in the newspaper when it happened, but she insisted it be written in book form. And THAT is what encouraged me to write my first book. I used Createspace to put it together…it’s novice work but it was my beginning. The book is called Trusting Strangers. I had no intention of writing more, but people started messaging me, asking when my next story would come out. I’m honestly so honored and grateful the fans encouraged me to keep writing because I fell in love with it.

9. How do you come up with ideas for your stories? –  
I often start a story with a character. My characters and how they evolve are essential to my stories. I will look for pictures of people on the web that I imagine the character to look like, then I flesh out their back story and think about what I want to happen to them. 
In my latest book, Cross, I created a teen with the same rare and life-threatening disorder as my youngest son. The disorder causes him to be extremely fragile, prone to organ rupture and aortic dissection. Lifting more than 5 pounds or a collision could end his life. I see how careful he has to be day in and day out and I considered how living with that disorder and all the limitations would shape his decisions. What if one day that disorder disappeared, and he no longer had to be careful or worry that simple things could kill him? Cross was my chance to explore those ideas…with the help of some magic and dragons of course!

10. What kind of research do you do & how long do you spend researching before beginning a book? – 
I don’t research before I start a book, but I will stop and do a LOT of googling while writing…and editing. In my Demon Hunter series, my editor and I had a big debate about whether leather pants were appropriate for demon hunters to be wearing. She argued that they are difficult to get them to fit right and not very practical and I argued there are some that have some stretch to them. It was funny and a bit ridiculous, but she wanted to be sure what I wrote made sense.

11. Are you indie or traditionally published? – 
I am both self-published and with a small press. I haven’t sought out the “big 6” yet, but if they ever approached me, I might consider their offer. I’m not sure that’s my end goal. What matters most to me is entertaining people, inspiring others, and connecting with my readers. 

12. What is your main Genre of writing & would you ever be interested in writing other Genres? – 
Oh man, I’m all over the place. I try to keep my books YA because I believe if you keep it fairly clean, then teens and adults of all ages can enjoy the story you’ve crafted. I’ve tried to write sexy scenes and I can’t do it. I have no problem reading it but my cheeks burst into flames just from writing a kissing scene. I do love a challenge though and have written several horror shorts for the 13 series. I love horror but writing it is very different from other genres. The sentences are shorter to build suspense, and you have to be very descriptive to feel the fear building within your characters. It’s essential, especially since you can’t pull a jump scare in a horror book.

13. What is your most recent/up coming release? -
Cross!!!

Ray Cross wasn’t a hero; he could die too easily. But some things are worth risking death...


Ray Cross was born with a genetic disorder, resulting in a fragile body; his organs and blood vessels will rupture with any hard impact, so standing up to his best friend's controlling boyfriend could kill him.

Ray's life in Midland, MI gets decimated when his parents reveal they are not his real parents and his real father, a king from a secret land hidden in the far north of Canada, is dying and wishes to meet his son.

With his doctor and newly-met twin, Ray travels to the forgotten village of Yardis, where magic, myth, and corruption are abundant. But the longer Ray stays in the village learning the truth of his past and reconnecting with his father, King Vintras, the more he discovers an evil force threatening the king and his village.

But there’s more than the king and a village tied to Yardis and Ray. He finds friendship and more from a band of brothers who are part witch, dragon, and healer. With new alliances and new abilities, Ray wars with himself on playing it safe or risking it all to save the ones he loves.

Can Ray rise above his fragile disorder to become the hero for once in his life?
Google books: 

14. Do you ever base your characters, events or places on real people, events or places? –
Yes!!! In my Demon Hunters series, the gate the Demon Hunters cross from the Demon Realm into the Human Realm lies in the Blaylock Grove cemetery. The cemetery was based off on a real, abandoned and haunted cemetery that was 20 minutes from my house growing up. Kids at school always chattered about people going there in the night to do Satanic rituals and it scared the heck out of me. It also inspired me to use it as a setting for that story. After writing Between the Bleeding Willows (Book 1), I visited the cemetery for the first time and found not one stinkin’ willow tree on the cemetery property. There were plenty of pine trees but not a single willow. I considered asking my mom to drive out in the middle of the night and plant a few willow trees for me, but instead, we changed the name of the cemetery so we didn’t have to be precise, and to spare my mom the risk of being arrested.

15. Who has been your favourite character to write about so far? – Tyler from the Demon Hunters series. He’s my Frankenstein. He was supposed to be in just a single chapter in Between the Bleeding Willows, but I fell in love with his character and he took over the story. Tyler is a loveable character with a monster inside of him, threatening to take over. I wanted the reader to love and root for him, despite the monster within, just as I had for Frankenstein.

We're all interested in knowing???

16. What are you working on now? – 
Finishing Beneath a Sinister Moon, Book 3 Demon Hunters and then getting a story proposal ready for Carnival of Nightmares Anthology


 Lastly, it’s time for Seven quickies – you can only pick one answer!

Paper or ebook?

Ebook (my eyes suck)

Facebook or Instagram? 
Instagram (love the visuals)

Heels or flats?

Flats (comfort baby!)
  
Spring, Summer, Autumn/Fall or Winter 

Fall!!!!!!

Up early or sleep late?

Up early 

Salty or sweet?

Both at the same time!



Beard or clean-shaven? 
Clean shaven – I blame Olive Oyl…I used to walk around the house singing this as a kid: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNFsKcjjxZM

Check out more titles from Author D.A. Roach here at



Thank you D.A. Roach for taking the time & answering these questions


D.A. Roach is a USA Today Bestselling author who has been telling stories since she was a young girl in the suburbs of Chicago. D.A. did not find a love for books until after college. Her parents were immigrants from Lithuania and found tv and radio easier ways to hear stories so they did not do much reading or encourage it. But once she finished college and D.A. had free time, she discovered how amazing it was to get lost in a story.

D.A. is a full time mom and wife. When she is not doing domestic things (laundry, bills, etc) she is writing, reading, creating mixed media art, advocating for a rare disorder, and gardening. Oh, and she is ALWAYS listening to music. Her favorite authors include Rebecca Donovan, Richelle Mead, Larissa Ione, Stephanie Meyer, E.L. James, and Nicole Williams. Reading great works from authors like these has motivated D.A. to write her own stories. She hopes to make positive changes in the world with her art and writing.

“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.”
― George Bernard Shaw





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