Dylan Newton #Paranormal #Romance #Author #AmWriting

web photoToday it’s my pleasure to host multi-published paranormal romance author, Dylan Newton, who happens to be the current president of SSRA, chapter 225 of Romance Writers of America. I met Dylan, as well, at the same workshop where I met Loretta Rogers in August 2012. In fact, Dylan and I have a special bond. She was my very first critique partner, ever! It was at the Christmas party, Dec. 2012, where I won a raffle for a full manuscript critique of Gemini, from one of the published SSRA authors. I was so fortunate to get Dylan, because we both have paranormal elements in our novels, so I knew she’d resonate. The match was perfect. It was also a major impetus in me to finish Gemini. Dylan spent several weeks going through Gemini with a fine tooth comb. She didn’t hesitate to suggest changes or point out what didn’t work for her. 80% of her comments and suggestions were incorporated, so I know from first- hand experience it’s mandatory in your journey towards publication to take the advice of your critique partners and beta readers. The proof? Well, after listening, submitting, rewriting and a low amount of rejections, Gemini received a contract in May 2014 with Black Opal Books. And six months later, I received a second contract on the first submission with Aries. So one message that I’d like to convey before Dylan and I begin our chat, is that we practice what we preach. I’m very open about how I became a multi-published author this year with two novels coming out, and I’ll be picking Dylan’s brain, too.

 

Me: Dylan, I’m so thrilled you took time out of your busy schedule to chat with me. Everyone who reads my blog knows my paranormal elements in my novels with my psychic and clairvoyant characters, so please tell everyone, what made you decide on the paranormal romance genre as your focal point?

 

Dylan: Thanks so much for having me today, Ronnie! I’ve always loved anything paranormal—as a teen, I used to peruse the library stacks for books on ghost hauntings, Vlad the Impaler, and the Salem witch trials. (Sorta weird, I know—but hey, when you live in a small town, there’s only so much you can do for entertainment!) So writing paranormal isn’t that much of a stretch for me, in terms of my interests!

 

Me: I love your heroines. They’re smart and sassy. Your personality shines through them. So how about telling our readers what parts of you are in your characters?

 

Dylan: Aww, thanks! I happen to love my heroines, too, and it’s a big compliment that you enjoyed them. If there’s one thing that’ll make me throw a book against a wall, it’s a wimpy heroine. I was practically raised by a single mother and I believe there’s nobody on Earth as strong, tough and motivated as a woman raising kids on her own. Strong women who can stand on their own without a man is a theme you’ll see echoed in each of my heroines. Don’t get me wrong. My heroines love their man—but they’re attracted to men who are comfortable enough in their masculinity to appreciate and LOVE a powerful woman, if you know what I mean {*wink-wink*}. And how this relates to me personally? Well…let’s just say my husband of 22+ years is a fantastic R&D department for my steamier scenes. 😉

 

Me: How would you describe your writing style? Your development of plot, characters, setting?

 

Dylan: Ugh. I always feel inadequate answering development questions because I’m such a die-hard ‘panster’ in plotting and writing my novels. But I’ll take you through my painful process of maturing into a ‘Plan-ster’ which will be probably as close as I’ll get to The PLOTTING MECCA. 😉

 

My first published romance, “Despite the Ghosts,” was literally the direct result of NaNoWriMo, where you crunch out 50k words in 30 days of November, and your whole goal is to vomit words onto a page. Which I did. Profusely. That left me with a cool NaNo Winner’s badge, and a freaking mess of a novel that took me four months to finish, stitch together and revise, revise, revise until it was respectable. I vowed never to do it that way again.

 

Along came Any Witch Way, my novella that started out as a sexy Wiccan story of only 20k words. Until my editor saw it, and emailed me saying there wasn’t enough dark elements to the story—basically, I’d not really made it dangerous for my heroine, and she suggested adding in an incubus, or a demon that threatens my heroine and/or hero. That little suggestion (which was an excellent one, by the way—I wish you all to be so lucky as to have an outstanding editor as I’ve found at The Wild Rose Press!!) took me 5 months to incorporate and added another 24k words, with the end result a hefty 42k word book that is sexy, but also spooky as hell, with the plot and ticking clock that drives the reader forward in the book. Again, it was revisions that made it all happen!! perf5.000x8.000.indd

 

You’d think after the first 2 I’d have learned my ‘panster’ lessons, but no—Despite the Fangs ended up at 120k words—25k words too long for publication. And back to the revision drawing board I went. But I HAD learned a little because it didn’t take me as long to revise, and I’d been smart enough to ‘plan’ out much of the foreshadowing, so I didn’t have to go back and add much of that in the final product.

 

My proudest ‘PLAN-STER’ accomplishment is Piper’s Piping. My editor asked me to represent the paranormal line of The Wild Rose Press by coming up with a short story for their ’12 Brides of Christmas’ compilation. My job was to write a story set at Christmas, featuring a bride, using my day’s theme (11 Pipers Piping, and make it all end happily…but still be a dark paranormal. Sounds easy, right? NOT! I did plot Piper’s Piping from beginning to end and submitted a 2-page summary to my editor BEFORE writing (a first for me!). Not surprisingly, the writing went smoothly and the editing was a breeze. Also not surprisingly…it wasn’t as much fun in the creative process because I knew how this one ended!! 😉

 

Me: Wow! You certainly adjusted your process towards success, which is great, because many times authors won’t acclimate and the results are less than desirable, meaning no publication. One thing you helped me with is a pet peeve of publishers, especially with new authors, ‘head hopping.’ For me, I learned how to write as if I was the character. I go into such deep POV, experiencing their feelings as I’m writing, delving into their insanities since I write psychopathic characters. Delving into their insanities is healthier than creating my own. I’m finding when in this deep POV, the character won’t let you leave it to go into another ‘head.’ How would you explain to our readers what ‘head hopping’ is, how to avoid it and very importantly how to recognize it? I’m asking this because with a second novel, I became a better writer. And now that I mastered POV, in my first edits from my publisher on Gemini, I found four POV switches that I was now able to correct. So what should a writer look for so that they’d catch it the first time?

 

Dylan: LOL—I hear you on using your writing as therapy! And spotting POV shifts—also called ‘head hopping’—is hard to recognize when you are a new writer. Basically, POV issues arise when a writer ‘forgets’ whose eyes they are telling the story from, and accidentally ‘hops’ into another character’s head, or ‘hops’ into an omniscient voice, startling the reader. Here’s a basic example: all my stories (except Despite the Ghosts, which is alternating 1st person POV), are told in 3rd person from the heroine’s perspective (POV). You can only see what she sees, can only hear her thoughts. This would be an example of a POV mistake (I’m just making this dialogue up, here):

“Hike up your skirts and grow a pair,” Ari said, rolling her green eyes.

Mason’s lip twitched and he wanted to yell at her to listen. Instead, he said,

“My pair is more than adequate…as you well know.”

Since the book is from Ari’s POV, she can’t see her green eyes, so this would be a shift from her POV. You’d need to revise to take out ‘green’, then it would be in her POV. The second POV mistake would be when I briefly hopped into Mason’s head. Ari wouldn’t know Mason wanted to yell—she might guess it, based on body language or prior experience, but you’d need to revise to say something like–

Mason’s lip twitched. Ari knew he wanted to yell, but she gave him credit when he responded in an even tone. “My pair is more than adequate…as you well know.”

 

I was just as guilty of head-hopping until I had critique partners that pointed out POV shifts for me. As you said, Ronnie, with enough practice, you see them yourself!

 

Me: I know you have such a busy schedule. What events do you have planned? Any personal appearances? Any conferences where readers and fellow authors might want to meet up? What are you working on now and when can we look forwards to a new release?

 

Dylan: Yes! I’ve teamed up with some really talented TWRP authors who write shifter romances to throw a HUGE Facebook party from 7-9pm on Thursday, March 19 called, “In Like a Lion, Out Like a…SHIFTER” Party, and you are ALL OFFICIALLY INVITED—here’s the link: https://www.facebook.com/events/530554960417255

I’ll be personally giving away some sweet prizes, including a signed copy of “Despite the Fangs” and there are $50 gift cards, books and swag from all of the authors and our publisher. After that, I have some personal appearances, and will also be attending the RWA National Conference in NYC this year—I’d love to meet you all there for a drink!!

 

Me: Dylan, thank you so much. As a concluding question, I like to give readers something they could learn about traditional publishing. I learned from you the expression, “Google is our friend” and I say that all the time. What tips would you give to an aspiring author who wants to be traditionally published, that they could not find through a Google search?

 

Dylan: The best advice is not to give up! Write, Revise, Submit, REPEAT. That’s really what worked for me, and as I’ve had the pleasure of watching several authors in our local writing chapter go from unpublished to published, it’s the same advice that has worked for them. Thanks so much for having me today!!

 

Me: You are so welcome! My pleasure. Below you’ll learn some more about Dylan and where to find her awesome books!

 

Author Bio:

Dylan Newton was born and raised in a small town in Upstate New York where the local library was her favorite hang-out. Despite earning a degree in English Literature, Dylan spent more than a decade sidetracked by an executive position in corporate America where she swears she contracted testosterone poisoning. After leaving, she dedicated herself to more estrogen-rich passions, like motherhood, writing romance novels and her never-ending quest for the perfect date night.

 

Dylan married her high-school sweetheart and they are busy living out their own happily ever after in sunny Florida with their two incredible daughters.

 

Visit Dylan at www.DylanNewton.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/DylanNewtonAuthor

 

DESPITE THE FANGS Back Cover Copy:

 

Workaholic werewolves have such awesome perks.

 

Just ask Aribella Lupari, whose hectic schedule tracking missing people in the snowy Adirondacks allows her benefits humans can’t appreciate—wolves never return unopened wedding gifts, never gain weight from late night doughnut binges, and never worry over their encroaching uni-brow. For Ari, walking upright is overrated.

 

Then she tracks a hiker whose delectable scent calls to both halves of her werewolf self. Not only does Mason Gray look as good as he smells, he may be the only man who can love the beauty behind the beast. Ari should know better than to trust a human, especially after Mason blackmails her into tracking his kidnapped son. But her attraction for the mysterious single father has Ari ignoring her animal instincts.

 

Quick Blurb for DESPITE THE FANGS:

 

Dylan Newton’s, DESPITE THE FANGS, delivers the unexpected—a foul-mouthed, werewolf heroine with overactive follicles, a mysterious hero who’d do anything for his son, and a world that— for the time being— doesn’t know they exist.

 

Can the big, bad wolf live happily ever after, DESPITE THE FANGS?

 

Author Links for Despite the Fangs:

Dylan’s Website:

http://www.dylannewton.com/

Dylan’s Blog:

http://www.dylannewtonwrites.blogspot.com/

Pinterest:

http://pinterest.com/dylannewton1/boards/

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/DylanNewtonAuthor

Goodreads (for Despite the Fangs):

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22041792-despite-the-fangs

Amazon.com (Despite the Fangs):

http://www.amazon.com/Dylan-Newton/e/B00B4FE2CC

http://www.amazon.com/Despite-Fangs-Dylan-Newton/dp/1628303522/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1400265393&sr=8-7&keywords=dylan+newton

Wild Rose Press for Dylan Newton (all books):

http://www.wildrosepublishing.com/maincatalog_v151/index.php?main_page=index&manufacturers_id=762

 

REVIEWS:

DESPITE THE FANGS is an intense paranormal mystery. The revelation of the twists in the story make the reading all the more exciting. Ari and Mason are amazing characters who incite a tangle of emotions in the reader. I found the writing of Ms. Newton well worth the read. – 4 Cup-review. See more at: http://coffeetimeromance.com/BookReviews/despitethefangsbydylannewton.html#.U7KhXPldVmB

 

Despite the Fangs Excerpt:

“Aren’t you curious to know what I’ve decided to do with you?”

Mason turned his bronze gaze on her, and Ari’s pulse doubled even as she scoffed.

“Let’s see…either more dart gun practice with me as your target, or you’ve got some misguided fantasy that if I bite you, you’ll become a werewolf like me—”

Ari stopped speaking, but it was too late. Now her plan to protect Mason from knowing too much was shot to hell. She might as well parade around shouting, ‘I’m here. I’m were’. Get used to it!’

Mason grinned. “Two options I hadn’t considered. I don’t need target practice. However, a little biting might be nice.”

His words rolled over her like a pheromone-scented wave. Ari opened her mouth to reply, yet produced only an airy squeak. Mason’s eyes were doing that intense, dark glittering thing again—the look that made it difficult to concentrate. Or breathe.

With a gasp and a shudder, Ari managed a shaky laugh.

“Watch out. I’m not up to date on my shots.”

Mason voice danced along her spine as he leaned in.

“I like to live dangerously.”

 

Please feel free to leave comments and questions for Dylan. I’m sure she’d love to hear from you and respond. Here’s Dylan as President of Sunshine State Romance Authors! dylanIMG_1023dylanIMG_0981

And here’s Dylan and me, receiving a gift at our Christmas party for obtaining my second contract! Yay!

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Dylan is definitely a part of the Citrus County community. Here’s Dylan with another SSRA published author, Anna Small at a book signing. In fact for all of you readers out there who are local, you can come meet Dylan and I at the Read by Wednesday event at the Homosassa Library, Thursday, April 16th. 10 a.m. -2:30 p.m. Stop by! We’d love to chat! And tell us you read about this on our blog! That would make our day!dylanIMG_0621

 

 

 

The Sign Behind The Crime,

Ronnie

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