Monday, October 11, 2010
Interview with Romance Author Danielle Thorne
Hello Danielle. Tell us about your new book, By Heart and Compass.
By Heart and Compass is a sweet romance novel about letting go of your fears and moving forward in life with courage to take on new adventures. It's set in a small town in central Georgia and then moves to sea off the coast of Antigua. Here's the cover blurb:
Your book sounds fascinating. Where did you get your inspiration for your novel?
I'm quite the daydreamer, but when stories pop into my imagination I do everything I can to research anything I haven't experienced. Since writing sea-themed fiction, I've received my scuba certification and spent some time traveling to different places in the Caribbean. I also like to choose interests for my characters that I am already familiar with—for example, in my sweet romance, Turtle Soup, I made my heroine a caterer and deli owner, because I love to cook and know my Southern cuisine. In By Heart and Compass, I chose genealogy for my bookish main character, because I am in fact, a genealogist. It's a wonderful way to share my passions with other people. I try to not just write what I know, but to write what I care about. And writing has given me the opportunity to care about a lot of new things.
I love the idea of writing what you care about. A reviewer wrote, "I especially like the sayings before each chapter. Read as a pirate would say it.” You must have done a lot of research. Tell me your thoughts about this.
In doing some research on Antigua, I came across a clever saying, "Spider and fly can't make bargain." I started researching West Indies proverbs (which have African roots) and found so many thoughtful ones, I decided to collect them and use them for chapter headings. Trying to decide which ones fit with the action in each chapter was a challenge, but they all worked out wonderfully. Actually, each chapter's proverb should be read with a Caribbean accent. But a pirate's voice would work just as well. They're very close!
Wow! That must have been a lot of work to find all the right quotes, but very rewarding at the end. What does your family think?
My family is very supportive of the long hours I put into writing. They haven't actually read all my books, but having four sons, that's understandable. Nothing makes me happier than when someone mentions they heard from one of my boys that I'm an author. I suppose the idea that I'm a romance writer must be a bit embarrassing for them but they've never questioned it and they are all very good listeners when Mom needs to vent.
That’s wonderful your boys care so much. Can you tell us something about the real you that we’ll never forget.
Wow, that's a tough one. How about the first saltwater dive I ever did after getting my scuba certification? I'd only been exposed to lakes and rock quarries, so when I made my first descent off the coast of Destin, Florida, and was surrounded by a school of barracuda, I had one of the most intense conversations with God I've ever had. The fish were all around me (very curious fellows), and they followed me all the way down the ninety foot descent. Then later they returned and followed me back up! I'm not scared of them anymore, but it's not a comfortable situation to be in if you've seen the teeth on those bad boys.
Oh my gosh! I can’t even imagine the fear I’d have being face to face with just one. I can just imagine your prayers and how wide your eyes must have been at the sight of them. Now we know the real you, the author who swims with barracudas!!!