Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Author Interview with Donna Hatch

Donna Hatch used to be in my local writing group--before she became famous. That's my current claim to fame--knowing several fun and popular authors. Donna fits that group. She is friendly, personable, talented (she also plays the harp) and ready for a good time--and--not only does she work hard at her own writing, but she has taken on the challenge and blessing of mentoring a group of teenage writers.

Donna, tell us a little bit more about yourself.
I guess I should say right off the bat that I’m a certified loon. Not only am I an author, which means I hear voices in my head and my characters are more real to me than most “real” people, but I am also the mother of six children. And yes, I did that on purpose!

You have a new novel out, and it's a fantasy. Can you please tell us a little bit about Queen in Exile.
The last surviving member of her family, a princess must place her life, and the fate of her kingdom, into the hands of a trained killer. But accepting her destiny and her own dark powers will mean losing the man she loves.

Where does your inspiration come from?
Inspiration can come from anywhere, a song, a movie, a secondary character in another book. Sometimes I can’t trace where the story actually began, it often just starts as a seed of an idea and then expands. I’ve yet to have started a story based on a dream, though ;-) But for Queen in Exile in particular – this is going to sound super lame – (cringe) but I actually was inspired in part by a game of Dungeons and Dragons. Yes, I was one of those geeks who played that game. I’ve always been a fantasy reader, and I’m so glad technology is up to the level needed to produce a truly spectacular fantasy movie. The story itself for Queen in Exile came from somewhere in my heart, but the setting is more of a Tolkien-type world.

Some writers say that they have a story that has to be told, others say that the characters come to them and demand that their story be told… how does it work for you?
Both ways, I suppose. A character usually comes to me and tells me the main idea of their story, and then I go to work fleshing out both the plot and the characters. Once or twice, I’ve started with a concept, or a problem, and then found characters to deal with it. Really, my characters drive the story; the plot, or the problem, is just a hardship for them to overcome so that they can really grow and shine and ultimately triumph.

Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
Be persistent. Most people have dreams of writing a novel, but never finish one. Most people who finish a novel never submit it, and most who submit, give up after a few rejections.
What is your favorite thing about writing romance?
I love the happily ever after. If a book doesn’t have a good ending, I feel like I’ve wasted my time because I read to escape my problems. I want to know good always triumphs over evil and love conquers all, not be bummed because all was lost. I also love watching the romance unfold and, of course, the euphoria of falling in love.

Okay, now for some random but fun questions:

Favorite food? pasta

Favorite dessert? cheesecake

Jeans and T-shirt, or designer clothes? Um, how about designer jeans and T-shirts?

Guilty pleasure? Chocolate! Okay, anything sweet and decadent. I have an equal opportunity sweet tooth.

One word that describes you? cheerful

Favorite flower? Pink rose

Favorite sport? Does snorkeling count as a sport?

Thank you, Donna for joining us. You can find Donna’s book, Queen in Exile, at Amazon, Costco, any Deseret Bookstore, all Barnes & Noble, and Borders. If you don’t see it on the shelf, be sure to ask them to order it for you and they’ll ship it to you with free shipping.

Be sure to check out Donna's website: http://donnahatch.com/ and her blog: http://www.donnahatch.blogspot.com/
She has two published historical romance novels, one that I've reviewed, "The stranger She Married" and also "Guise of a Gentleman." I'm hoping to get a signed copy of her latest two books next month and I'll have them reviewed sometime after that.


Margaret said...

Great interview. Thanks for sharing Tina. I love Donna's books and am looking forward to owning my own copy of Queen of Exile as Fantasy is one of my favorite reads.

Joan Sowards said...

I'm sure Queen in Exile will be as wonderful as Donna's other novels. Looking forward to reading it.

Anne said...

I read this book and I loved it!! The heroine was likable and the hero was to die for!!!!! I recommend this book to anyone who likes fantasy, or to anyone who likes a good romance!