Sunday, 20 November 2011

Author Interview: Melissa Darnell

Melissa Darnell has written Crave.

1. What is your name, where were you born and where do you live now?
Hi!  My name’s Melissa Darnell.  I was born in California, grew up in East Texas, and have since lived in the following states…Louisiana, Alabama, Kentucky, West Virginia, Puerto Rico, Utah, Iowa, and South Dakota (where I currently live).

2. What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarise it in less than 20 words what would you say?
The Clann Series #1: Crave is a contemporary YA series featuring a forbidden romance between members of warring vampire and magically-gifted societies.

3. Are you a self-published / Indie author?
The publisher for my Clann Series is Harlequin Teen.  My cheerleading and dance nonfiction books are all self published at

4. Do you have plans for a new book? Is this book part of a series?
Crave is the first of 3 books in the Clann Series, with book #2: Covet due out in the fall of 2012 and book #3: Consume due out in 2013.  I also recently wrote an urban fantasy YA romance revolving around teens and illegal magic use called The Source.  And I have a YA conspiracy thriller and a contemporary YA Greek mythology story in the works as well.  So while I’m sticking with YA, the specific genres tend to range a bit in variety.  I don’t worry about genre too much when writing, as I prefer to go with the strongest story ideas that I have brewing in the back of my mind at any given time!  Whichever “pot” boils the quickest is the next title to be written.

5. Do you gift books to readers for book reviews?
Unfortunately my publisher doesn’t supply print copies to me for reviewers.  But digital review copies of Crave are available upon request at once you sign up as a reviewer and apply for a copy.

6. How did you come up with the cover? Who designed the cover of your book?
Harlequin Teen has an amazing art design crew who designed the covers for both the U.S. and Australian versions of Crave.  I honestly can’t tell which cover I love more, so I feel incredibly lucky that I didn’t have to choose and got both!

7. Have you ever read a book more than once? And if so what was it?
I’m one of those kinds of readers who like to reread books several times.  That is actually the true test of whether I keep a print copy or not…if I have read the book more than once all the way through, it stays on the family bookshelves.  Otherwise it gets donated to the local library.  Probably not surprising, my shelves are filled with mostly fellow paranormal romance authors’ works, including Christine Feehan’s Drake Sisters series, Anne Rice’s vampire books, and L.J. Smith’s Night World series.

8. Do you have any advice for other writers? And what’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
Getting published is a constant learning process.  My most recently learned lesson is all about revisions.  It’s easy to feel that revisions are a personal statement against you and your writing abilities, especially since the very essence of fiction writing is pouring your soul out onto the page!  But to your publishing team, your story is also a product that supports a business.  So when your publisher or agent suggests revisions, no matter what your first gut reaction is, just say “thank you, I will go over these suggestions and get back to you”.  If you need to rant and rave to your family or friends, get it out of your system.  Then get to work on those revisions!  They’re really not any kind of personal statement about you.  They’re just your publishing team’s attempts to shape up a product (your story) into something that will best meet the needs of the market and their customers (your future readers).  And while you might not understand or agree at first, in my experience every single revision suggestion I’ve ever received from my editor or agent has made my stories a hundred times better.   

9. Where can your readers follow you?

Readers can learn more about the Clann Series at, about me specifically at, and I love to interact with readers on Twitter at on Facebook at and on GoodReads at

Thankyou so much for taking the time to do this interview and allowing us a glimpse into your writing world!

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