Author Interview with Dora Gonzalez

I present to you all Dora Gonzalez!

1. What genre are your books?

I write in many genres, fantasy, science fiction, paranormal, and romance. Under my real name I mainly write fantasy and modern fantasy.

2. What draws you to this genre?

Fantasy has always been an extra bonus in the reading to escape, reading to entertain concept. Huge fan of magic, dragons, knights, and everything that is beyond the normal that is why I am a big fan of science fiction. Fantasy is just the easier of the two and you can get away with more.

3. What project are you working on at the moment?

I am currently working on book two of The Five Kingdoms of Severi series and wrapping up a fantasy/modern fantasy story under my alias, Estela Avery.

4. What’s it about?

Book Two of the series picks up about a month after The Five Kingdoms of Severi. The story continues with Edwin trying to recover what he lost and Alden unable to refuse helping him. New threats arise for our heroes and other main characters. Book Two promises to have a great reveal like the first one and I am thrilled to be writing it.
My other book, A Prince From Another World, written under my alias is about a young man who stumbles across a prince, you guessed it, from another world. He must find a way to get him back and fight off the evils trying to kill them both.
There are sword fights, magical creatures of lore, and magic in both stories.

5. Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is special?

Edwin starts off ordinary, or at least he was brought up that way, but he is far more than that. He is the last of the two remaining Royal Protector, beings of magic whose sole purpose is to protect their royal counterparts. His village is attacked and he is injured. Though driven with guilt and sadness of his parents’ death, he finds the courage to do what is right and wise. He soon discovers what makes him so special and the sacrifices he must make to save the Five Kingdoms of Severi.

6. Have you written anything else?

Yes, but unfortunately they all aren’t quite ready for publication. Some are in the mist of revision, editing, others still in their first drafts. The Five Kingdoms of Severi will be my first book that has been completed.

7. What are your ambitions for your writing career?

I love to write, don’t know how I took so long to do so or why I ever stopped. I hope to continue delivering stories others look forward to reading. I plan to wrap up The Five Kingdoms of Severi with four books, the last one being its prequel, completing A Prince From Another World with two books but leaving it open if I ever decide to return to the characters and worlds. There are many genres I want to write in, many ideas to explore, so here is to countless years of writing and publishing.

8. Which writers inspire you?

I have read countless books, many which inspire me years after I have last read them, but the ones that I always return to are those by Stephen King, Piers Anthony, R.A. Salvatore, and Brian Jacques. On the more romantic side I have to go with Nora Roberts.

9. When did you decide to become a writer? Why do you write?

I decided to pick up writing and see it through to the end no matter how many bad reviews I might get, how many disappointed comments, in January of 2012. That was the year I turned my fan fiction readying days into fan fiction writing ones and never looked back. Many writer’s blocks, a few bad reviews, and countless encouraging ones, I decided to write my own stories and The Five Kingdoms of Severi was born.
After two years, going to three, I continue to write for the same reasons I read. I love to discover new worlds, fall in love with characters and cheer them to victory. I write because I enjoy it, if others enjoy my works that gives me the courage and desire to write even more.

10. Do you have a special time or place to write?

No, I used to have a schedule but besides being a writer, I am also a cover illustrator and artist. I also record the audio to The Five Kingdoms of Severi series and dabble in any other artistic endeavor I can get my hands on. That leaves me to write when and where I can, it be early or late hours of the day, when my son is at school, asleep, or preoccupied with homework or playing.

11. Where do you get your inspiration?

I get my inspiration from all around me, the countless books I have read, the movies I love to watch, and day to day things that seem to spark an idea. I write all these tidbits down as prompts for when that idea starts to unravel into a story I have a reminder and a guide.

12. Do you work on an outline or do you prefer to see where the idea takes you?

I am a pantser all the way. I only start with the basic thoughts and what the ending will be. I know point A to point Z and fill in the rest along the way. There are times that some of those points get revised many times over or deleted all together.
I have tried outlines, but only very basic ones for several scenes or chapters when I seem to get stuck or at a loss to keep writing.

13. Do you ever get writer’s block? How do you overcome it?

Oh yes. I remember the first time I ever got writer’s block. I wrote nothing for almost two weeks. A bad comment in one of my stories zapped the desire and ability to write. I overcame writer’s block by following Dorothea Brande’s words of advice from her book Becoming A Writer. I thought about the scenes that were to follow day and night, while I ate, worked, and slept. I thought about it all the time until I couldn’t wait to write it down. Every time I find myself falling into writer’s block I pick up that book and read a few chapters and think of my unwritten scenes.

14. What is the hardest thing for you about writing?

Editing. I am thankful that I am not an editor. Punctuation, grammar, syntax has never been my strong suit, in fact it was the subject I least liked in high school. My sister once told me I held the record for the longest run on sentence. Good thing my writing has improved drastically these past two years.
Revising is another. I used to cling to each word I wrote and refused to delete it. Now, deleting entire scenes is done in a blink of an eye, at times by accident.

15. How do you market your books? Why did you choose this route?

I like holding cover reveals, book launch events, and blog interviews. I think word of mouth is the best way to get your book known and I love interacting with readers and authors alike. Why not make friends along with a reading audience?
That doesn’t mean I don’t partake in advertising and other marketing tools, I just enjoy these get stuck or at a loss to keep writing.

16. How much research do you do?

I really hate research only because I am scared to get it wrong. What if I research the wrong time period, or looked up the wrong item? Since I mainly write fiction and prefer to make up a large amount, the time spend on research isn’t as much as other authors.
I research various time periods concentration only on their attire, what they ate and drank, etc…things that will help make my world more believable and yet not restrain me. I base the rest on what I have seen or read in other books and shows.

17. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

Computer, I type very fast. Though I do tend to switch to longhand from time to time. I would say Computer 90% of the time and longhand 10%. Writing longhand is another great way to beat writer’s block.

18. What are some of your favorite books?

My two favorite books are Rulers of Darkness by Steven Spruill and Wings of a Falcon by Cynthia Voigt.

19. Are you currently reading any books?

Yes, I just finished Warriors of Camlann by Doug Goodman and Mer by Jade M. Phillips and am reading A Soldier’s Duty (Theirs Not to Reason Why) by Jean Johnson. All interesting books.

20. How can readers discover more about you and your work?

I tend to hang out on Facebook and have my own writing blog where I review books, do cover reveals, and post excerpts of my works. Would love to have you all stop by any of my hangouts or website. You can also find me over at my publisher’s website

Twitter: @van_maniac

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