Today I welcome author Daryn Cross to the blog. Her new book, It’s Magic, is published by Crescent Moon Books. Daryn has been kind enough to answer a few of my questions, and tomorrow you’ll be able to read an excerpt from this book right here.
Welcome Daryn. First up, we’d like to know a little about you. Where are you from?
I’m originally from Virginia, though I was actually born in North Carolina and lived there three times. My roots are in Central Virginia, however, Lynchburg to be specific. I have lived in Texas twice. Presently living outside Lubbock, I look out over cotton fields and my nearest neighbour is a mile away. I have to admit it’s hard to beat that big sky, which is clear the majority of the time. We don’t have a lot of rain or snow.
If you had to pick just one, which do you think is the most important in a good story: character, voice, or plot?
This is so hard to answer. They’re all integral to a successful endeavour. For me, I’d have to say character. If I don’t nail a likeable (or despicable, for the antagonist) character, then I’ve lost my reader. Readers will forgive many things if they fall in love with your characters. Of course, if I weave over hill and dale and have no pacing, well, they’ll pitch it then as well.
What inspired you to write your first book?
My first novel, CRAIG LEGACY, was co-written by Linda Campbell and me under the name Terry Campbell. I was the one who came up with the original premise of a woman who encounters a ghost in an old family mansion. He forces her back through time to save his life in 1864 Goochland, Virginia. The inspiration for the book was the house I lived in for three years, an old circa 1840s home made of bricks made right on the property of five hundred plus acres. CRAIG LEGACY is still for sale and you can find the details on the www.TerryCampbell.com website.
How did you come up with the title?
The title was based on the name of the hero, Benjamin Craig. He wants to leave a better legacy to his family than he was able to do. Killed before he had a chance to marry and have children or achieve his dreams of being a writer, he wants to rectify his past.
Tell me about your new release. I’ve heard good things about it and am dying to know details.
It’s about Santa matching difficult people in his off-season under his real name, Maxwell Magic. He matches one couple per year, and the two lovers in this book are Kasey Bell, a feminist writer and Guy McLane, a macho radio psychiatrist, who meet on a syndicated late night talk show (through Magic’s manipulations). They’re a huge hit, and the show host challenges them to a contest to prove which gender is the better sex.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
In my current book, IT’S MAGIC, a feel-good romantic fantasy, I want people to understand the moral: You get what you really want only by giving it away.
What do you do when your characters decide to do something you hadn’t planned on?
They do that all the time <VBG>. If I’m really into my characters and channelling their personalities, then I very often change my story line. My best ideas come during the creative process.
I actually wrote a poem about this very thing:
My characters are not too pleased,
With whom I’ve written them to be,
They’ve been grumbling, and they might
Form a union, go on strike.
At the end of this poem (won’t print the whole thing), I say:
The moral of this all you see,
Is let your story be set free,
Ask the people in your tale,
To write themselves, and you won’t fail.
It was a pleasure, Daryn. Don’t forget to check back here tomorrow for an excerpt from It’s Magic.
Can true love exist between a man who believes a woman is capable of sticking a shive in his heart while making love and a woman who is convinced men think with only one head? Maxwell Magic, an eccentric mysterious matchmaker swears it can and he’s the man to provide the stimulus to make it happen. Kasey Bell, feminist writer, and Guy McLane, radio’s famous chauvinistic psychiatrist, are his targets. Even with carefully executed plans, the road to true love is strewn with mishaps, mirth and money-hungry nighttime talk show hosts. Will Kasey and Guy risk their reputations by exposing secrets buried beneath layers of shame and self-doubt for a desperately needed big money pay-off? Or, will they claim what has evaded them their entire lives—a love that lasts forever?