The author on my guest list today is a beautiful lady I met on twitter. Just prior to our meeting, she was an honored guest on the https://www.facebook.com/TheMelissaCraigCharityParkersonShow that I had listened to a few days before. Most recent, she and I were tweeting for one another, as so many of us do, and it crossed my mind to ask if she would like to be featured in my author interviews series. After a “yes” and a few emails later, here we are. And here she is, Dionne Lister.
“About the Author”
– Hi Tracy. Thanks so much for the interview. I live in Sydney, Australia near the beach. I’m a mother of two (boys, aged 5 & 6) and I work part time doing editing and content writing. I’m also doing a part time creative writing degree, which I’m halfway through – whoopee!
How long have you been writing?
Since I was in primary school.
What was your life like before becoming an author?
I had a job as a professional person for 17 years. I would dress in a suit and visit houses to put a value on them, usually so they could borrow money from the bank. The job involved a lot of driving, although it was fun to have a sticky-beak into people’s houses. The downside is the fact that if the bank loses money (if the borrow defaults on their loan) the valuer can get sued.
Who or what inspired you to write?
I’ve always loved escaping into a book and at school one teacher called me a daydreamer—it was actually meant as an insult. Can you believe that? So I think I always just loved using my imagination and writing it down.
Do you have a specific writing style or genre?
I write epic fantasy and crime/thriller. I use descriptive writing styles for both, however my fantasy is softer. My crime stuff has a harder edge to it.
Tell me about your latest book? What’s it about?
Shadows of the Realm (The Circle of Talia)
I’ve recently released a book of suspenseful short stories, but my main baby is Shadows of the Realm. This is a fantasy adventure book with dragons and Realmists (they’re the dudes who do all the magic). The Circle, a group of Realmists, has been charged with defending their world, Talia, from an invasion from the Gormons. Two of the characters, Bronwyn and Blayke, are still finding their feet in the world and have a lot to learn before they can take their places in The Circle. There’s intrigue (King Edmund’s brother is a bit of a bastard, hmm, am I allowed to say that here?) and excitement, tears and laughter. Ok, now it sounds like Days of Our Lives.
What was your favorite part of the book to write?
The end, because I’d achieved what I set out to do.
What was the hardest part to write?
The first three chapters, because I had started so many books before and never made it past chapter three.
What do you find most rewarding in writing a book?
I love the process of writing, getting lost in the moment, I also love reading it back and having that moment of “Ooh, did I really write that?” and there’s the ultimate moment, when someone tells you what they loved about your book. You can’t beat connecting with people.
Do you have any other books complete or in progress?
Yes, I’ve just put out a book of suspenseful short stories – Dark Spaces, and I’m writing the second book in The Circle of Talia series. I also have five chapters of a crime/thriller novel done.
What are your future plans in regards to writing?
Just to keep on doing it and continue to improve.
Are you listed on the major social networks like facebook, twitter, goodreads, etc…
Oh dear, don’t get me started. If it wasn’t for those sites and the connections I’ve made, I wouldn’t have published anything. I’m @DionneLister on Twitter and my books are on Goodreads and you can look me up on facebook as Dionne Lister.
What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published writer?
Please study it, even if it’s a short course, you have no idea what you don’t know (trust me, I’m a good example). Practice makes you better, and if you can afford it, when you’ve written your book, get it edited!
Outside of writing, what is your most favorite thing to do and why?
I love surfing or drawing and painting. They give me a sense of freedom, happiness and fulfillment.
Anything else you would like to add for future fans and friends?
Thanks so much to everyone who’s supported me on my journey so far. There have been so many friends encouraging me when I’ve been a bit down, getting the word out about my books, or readers who’ve told me how much they enjoyed my work. I appreciate every single one of you. Without the fantastic community on Twitter and Facebook, I would just be a writer whose book was sitting in the computer waiting for a miracle.
Thanks Tracy, you are one of those awesome authors who supports other authors. Gives you a big hug and hands you a box of chocolates*. J
Thank you, Dionne! It was fun getting to know you better. I love your sense of humor and adventure. I cannot thank you enough for taking time to join my series and I look forward to chatting more in the near future. All my best to you and yours. Big hugs!