Award Winning Romance Writer
Donna: I’d like to offer a sweet, slick response and say I consider myself a polished and professional writer, but that would be a bold face lie (I’m chuckling as I type this and I hope my readers are, too). First and foremost, I’m a wife, mother, sister, aunt, loyal friend and avid volunteer who lends a hand, a strong back, a shoulder to lean on, a listening ear and anything else those I love might need. It just so happens that I was blessed with the ability to create characters and stories that readers have found entertaining, and I am appreciative of this gift of Muse (or amusing gift, as it most often turns out to be) that I’ve been given.
QBR: When did you first know that you wanted to write? What inspired you to start?
Donna: My husband deserves all the blame for this one! Most authors know from very early in their lives that they are destined to write. I came to writing through my love of reading. I’ve had my nose in a book since I was a kid. When my youngest child started school and I was considering taking a part-time job, my husband looked at the piles of books sitting around our house and said, “You’ve read enough of these; why don’t you try writing one?” I thought he was nuts! But he planted a seed that sprouted and grew.
QBR: How did you come up with the premise for The Merry-Go-Round?
Donna: At first, all I knew was that I wanted to write on the subject of divorce. But I wanted to create a divorce story that was different from what I had ever read in the past. I knew I wanted to begin with the actual divorce proceedings, and then I wanted to set my protagonist’s world spinning until she didn’t know which end was up. I can only hope I succeeded.
QBR: What is your creative process for determining the final title and cover for your novels?
Donna: I love the cover of The Merry-Go-Round! However, cover design is the very first thing a reader sees. And it is clear from my sales figures that my current cover isn’t wowing readers. So after a year of being an independent author, I’m finding that marketing and book cover design are not my strongest talents. It’s been suggested to me that The Merry-Go-Round needs a lighter, more amusing cover, so I am working with a professional illustrator and hope to have new cover art for the book soon.
QBR: Any advice to those who hold the dream of becoming an author?
Donna: Read. Read novels that have found critical acclaim and try to figure out why those books are a success. Read authors whose books have flopped and try to figure out why. Read books written by authors at various stages of their careers and see if you can perceive if/how the authors have grown in their craft. So much can be learned by reading the work of other authors.
QBR: Are you working on anything new that you'd like to share?
Donna: I am currently formatting the first eleven romance novels that I wrote for Harlequin/Silhouette. I wrote those books under the pen name of Donna Clayton and I’ve recently acquired the publication rights. These books are emotion-packed, sweet romances that are suitable for readers between the ages of 15 and 105. These books won awards for me and got my name on series best-seller lists. Some of my books are available for Kindle, Kobo, and other e-readers. Some are only available for Kindle. My titles: Mountain Laurel, Taking Love in Stride, The Merry-Go-Round, Return of the Runaway Bride, An Accidental Family, His Wife for a While, and Nanny and the Professor.
QBR: You’ve added some fun and very relevant quotes to the book. What are some of your favorites?
Donna: This is a book about one woman’s quest for a divorce, but it’s also the story of her life realization. Just like a merry-go-round, the tale spins into an unusual love story that’s filled with a wonderful, quirky cast of characters. I really had fun with the quotes at the beginning of each chapter. A couple of my favorites are:
“I got gaps. You got gaps. We fill each other’s gaps.” ~Rocky Balboa
Simple but sweet, and oh, so true! Couples fit together like puzzle pieces; where one party is lacking, the other ‘fills the gaps’. I have taken to using this quote in wedding and anniversary cards. People get a kick out of it.
“I love being married. It’s so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life.” ~Rita Rudner
Doesn’t this quote just make you smile? Every person who has spoken those vows knows how much work marriage takes, but sometimes you have to look at the humorous side of spending every day of your life with that one special person.
Donna's website/blog: www.DonnaFasano.com
Follow her on Twitter: www.Twitter.com/DonnaFaz
Follow her on Facebook: www.FaceBook.com/DonnaFasanoAuthor
**Comment below for a chance to win one of Donna's books. The author has offered to gift one Kindle book of the winner's choice.