Monday, April 5, 2010

Author Interview: Bree Despain + Giveaway

Bree Despain

  • The Dark Divine
Find Bree Here: Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook

What made you start writing YA?

When I decided that I wanted to be an author, I knew I wanted to write for young people. I started out writing Middle Grade, but then in a class I was assigned to write the first chapter of a YA novel. As soon as I started writing it, I knew that YA was where my voice belonged. I’ve been writing YA ever since.

What's the best privilege of being an author?

I would definitely say it’s all the awesome people I get to meet, from readers, bloggers, other authors, and industry professionals. There are so many wonderful people I would have never met in a million years if it weren’t for my author career.

What was the most challenging thing about writing The Dark Divine? Easiest?

Writer’s block was the biggest challenge. It took me 4 years to write TDD—but that’s mostly because I had to put it away for 2 years in the middle of that because of writer’s block. (I blame pregnancy and having a newborn who didn’t know how to eat or sleep.) I worked on other projects in the meantime, but the day the ideas for TDD started coming back to me was one of the best days of my life.
The easiest part was always writing scenes between Daniel and Grace. I love it when they’re together.

How did the title The Dark Divine come to be?

The original title for the manuscript was DANIEL DIVINE but when people started reading it they assumed that Grace and Daniel were brother and sister—which made the first chapter seem really strange. Before I started subbing the book to agents, I came up with several different possible titles and had my critique group vote on them. They loved THE DARK DIVINE the best—and I was glad because that was my favorite title too.

Did you base any of your characters on anybody?

Daniel is vaguely based on three different guys I’ve known who disappeared from my life at different points.

Which character in The Dark Divine are you most like?

Grace and I have a similar family dynamic and upbringing, but I like to think of Grace as the stronger version of myself as a teenager. She says and does the things that I only thought about doing. Whenever I need to decide what Grace should do a in a certain situation, I think “what would I have done?” and then make Grace do the opposite. It’s kind of cathartic!

Is there a specific message in The Dark Divine you hope readers take from it?

I really wanted to explore what happens to the brother in the Prodigal Son parable who wasn’t able to forgive.

What's the most interesting thing a reader has said to you?

After my mom read TDD for the first time, she called me in tears to tell me how much she loved it . . . and then she said, “Wow. Your brain must be really disturbed.”

I took it as a compliment.

What's your advice to aspiring authors?

Great books aren’t written, they’re revised!

Seriously, learning how to self-edit and take criticism/feedback and use it to make a better story is the number one thing a writer needs to learn how to do if he/she wants to get published. Very few people can sell a first draft to a publisher, and even if you do that, you’ll still be required to revise. If you don’t have one already, get a critique group that will push you to become a better writer.

Please go to Bree’s blog, HERE for more information about The Dark Divine and Bree’s upcoming sequel The Lost Saint.


For the giveaway, I'm giving away 3 bottles of TDD nail polish. To make it an official giveaway, I'm throwing in a copy of The Dark Divine, will be shipped from Barnes & Noble, at my expanse. Fill out the form below, you do not need to answer the question anymore. Winners will be announced on April 15, 2010.


BookFanatic said...

Great Interview. I love reading about authors, their lives are so fascinating.

Thanks for the contest. =)

Elizabeth said...

book sounds really good

Bere said...

Fantastic interview, Dahlia! I love learning about authors.
I haven't read TDD yet but I can't wait. I've heard so many
great things on it.
Thank you so much for the contest, please count me in =)

angie said...

I have been wanting to read this book!!