Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Keta Diablo guest blogged here about her currently release Land of Falling Stars last Thursday, January 8th. As promised I've interviewed Keta about her writing and a bit about her personal life too for your enjoyment. Keta contacted me about reviewing one of her three erotic eBooks (Land of the Falling Stars, Dust Moonlight and Decadent Deceptions) so she could get the word out to readers about her lovely erotic historical and paranormal eBooks. I was sad that I could only chose just one of her eBooks to review because they all sounded so good especially after I read the really HOT excerpts. But I had to so I chose Land of the Falling Stars to review and I will be reviewing it here on the blog very soon so keep a watch out for it soon. Now for the interview you will all enjoy:


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Phoebe Jordan: When did you know that writing romance was going to be the thing that you would do with your life? Which author inspired you to start writing romance?


Keta Diablo: Not until about seven years ago. Laura London books from the 80’s inspired me—a husband and wife team who wrote under a pseudonym and I loved their style. Its purple prose in today’s market and probably wouldn’t be accepted, but oh, so descriptive. Many times while reading (alone) I laughed until I was in tears. If a writer can transport you “there” they win the blue ribbon with me.


Phoebe: Did you know what type of romance you wanted to write about or did you experiment with different genres before you chose the one that you felt was for you?


Keta: I began writing historical fiction (think Sara Donati the Wilderness series). And then branched out to romance and erotica.


Phoebe: What was the first fiction you ever wrote? And do you still have it with you?


Keta: The first series I wrote was under a pen name, historical fiction, and yes, I still have it, although the contract has run out. There has been some interest in this series, so who knows, you may see it again in 2009!


Phoebe: How much research do you have to do for your novels and did it take you a long time to gather that research?


Keta: If it’s historical, a lot of research is involved, not so much for fantasy. Readers are very astute and will call you on historical inaccuracies. Whereas, with fantasy they are a wee bit more tolerant. In fantasy, authors can build a make-believe world and strange, alien creatures. It’s expected and readers will suspend their disbelief for fantasy.


Phoebe: How did you come up with the concept for your latest novel and release Land of Falling Stars?


Keta: I’m a huge Civil War buff. I came across an article about cousins who lived in Georgia, were best friends, and yet fought against one another in the war. That sent me on a path of thinking...what if two men loved the same woman, they were best friends and yet one fought for the North the other for the South? And what if, one killed the other accidentally in battle? These sub-plots conjured a bucket load of conflict and in romance, conflict is a must. The more the better.


Phoebe: How did you come up with the concepts for your previous novels Dust and Moonlight and Decadent Deception?


Keta: Dust and Moonlight was my first fantasy. I had never written one before and some fellow authors asked me to write a short story for their anthology. Before it was released, the reviews were very positive. I pulled Dust and Moonlight from the anthology as soon as they found a replacement and lengthened it into a full length novel.


Decadent Deceptions was a novel I wrote for the 2008 Molly Contest (one of the top three contests in romance). I was thrilled to receive notification that I made the finals in the erotica category. After that, the story was placed quickly with Noble Romance.


Phoebe: Do you have a process of how you start to write your novels?


Keta: I admit I’m a “panster”, no outlines, no note cards. I plot the story in my head for months and when I’ve gone through every scene, every conversation between the characters, I sit down to write. The first scene I write might end up in the middle of the book, and often I work backwards. This seems to work for me and gives me free rein with the plot and the characters. It is rather unconventional, I think.


Phoebe: Which do you like best, writing a series or writing stand alone novels? How is writing each different for you?


Keta: Series are a huge undertaking and you must plan far ahead. Your secondary characters need to be strong enough to support a story of their own. And the plot has to be sustainable for long-term interest with your readers. Stand-alones are easier, yet must also be compelling. Competition out there is very stiff, so your writing and story, no matter whether they are stand-alones or series, must draw your reader in and hook them from the beginning.


Phoebe: What process did you have to go through to get your first book published and did it take you long?


Keta: I admit I was blessed and my first book was accepted. It was with a medium size e-publisher and I am very grateful for the opportunity. I’ve learned a lot along the way and am happy I started out on a low rung of the ladder. You can’t enjoy the peak of the mountain if there isn’t adversity and angst along the way.


Phoebe: How did you feel when you finally saw your first published book came out and how do you feel about your other novels being published?


Keta: Like every author I was thrilled. I write because I love it. It’s like breathing air. I can’t imagine not writing, not even if my books didn’t sell.


Phoebe: How do you handle your writing schedule and your personal life without going insane?


Keta: Personal life? Is this a trick question? I don’t have much of a personal life. I imagine you’d hear that from most authors. There are deadlines, commitments, promises you must keep. So my motto is: “Keep on trucking.” Sleep is elusive, entertainment is rare, and movies and television are almost non-existent. Are you sure you want to be a writer? I bet most readers think we travel around in limos and eat Godiva chocolates whenever we want. That’s so far from the truth. Most days, you’ll find me plugging away at the computer in my jammies with a cat sitting on my mouse and a dog curled up at my feet.


Phoebe: What do you do to relax after having spent a long while writing?


Keta: Sleep, read and...sleep.


Phoebe: Do you have any hobbies?


Keta: See above answer (lol). No, I love gardening and playing with my cat and dog. I’m an animal freak. My family tells me if I don’t stop rescuing them from the local animal shelter, I’ll have to get a “real” job. “What” I say, “I have a real job!”


Phoebe: Is there any advice that you would give to an aspiring romance writer that you wish someone had given you?


Keta: I did get some wonderful advice and I’ll pass it on to those who want to write: Persistence, patience and perseverance. Don’t listen to the naysayers and if anyone tells you to “get a real job” ditch them.


Phoebe: Is there any writing tips, research tips, promotion and marketing tips that you would give to an aspiring romance writer that you wish someone had given you?


Keta: Join every writing group you can, yahoo groups included that pertain to your genre. Immerse yourself with other social networks on writing, support your fellow authors and promote until your fingers shrivel up like dried potatoes. And remember this motto in your journey: Harm None.


Phoebe: Now for a question that I have been meaning to ask an author. Do you have a favorite genre you like to read? Who is your favorite author(s)?


Keta: I read mostly what I write, erotica, historical and fantasy. It’s imperative you know your market, what publishers are buying and try to be like Wayne Gretsky—don’t think about where you’re going, anticipate where that puck is going.

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful post, Phoebe. You are truly a rising star! Thank you so much for allowing me an interview. It was great fun.

    Best, Keta Diablo

    ReplyDelete

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About Me

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Phoebe Jordan
I'm a part-time aspiring romance novelist, book reviewer and blogger. I've always wanted to travel the world and learn everything I can about other countries. Learning the Italian language is one way of trying to make that dream come true. Traveling will help me with my writing because I'll be learning about the history of the U.S., Latin America, England, Italy, and Ireland, the countries I find so fascinating while reading the romance genre.
 
I read and review romance novels of almost every subgenre along with erotic romance, mystery, sci-fi/fantasy and young adult novels. You can find the reviews at my blogs, Talk About My Favorite Authors and Phoebe Jordan's Reviews. I’ve also started a live podcast show called TAMFA | Phoebe Jordan hosted on Blog Talk Radio. This show is dedicated to everything I love about romance and young adult novels. I love having romance and young adult authors live on my show to be interviewed and showcase their books.

I plan to write contemporary romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance, paranormal romance and young adult when I get my writing career started with help from Keta. I'm not sure what genre I'll write to begin with since I love to read so many different romance genres.
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