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{March 4, 2014}   Two Part Interview-Danika D. Potts and Oliver Campbell Day Two

Here’s the second part of the interview I’ve been so lucky to have with Danika and Oliver Campbell.  I’ve really enjoyed getting to know how this dynamic writing team works.  My husband is constantly wanting us to write together, and I’ve been nervous about doing so.  After reading these answers, I’m going to certainly give it a go and see what happens.

Thank you both for visiting my blog.  It’s been wonderful getting to know you both.

danika

Interview Questions for Danika D. Potts

 1. Before we start talking about your latest book, why don’t you tell everyone a little bit about yourself?

I’m a writer from the Pacific Northwest, living in the Midwest now. I write fiction with my husband, Oliver Campbell, and I have more writing projects than I know what to do with. I have a two cats, some great friends, and I’m good for a couple of laughs now and again.

 2. When you’re not writing, what other things do you do in your spare time?

I read like it’s going out of style. I also Netflix binge quite regularly. I’m a glutton for content- film, tv, books, comics, I love all of it. Mostly, you’ll find me talking about story and structure with my husband. As nerdy as that sounds, it’s my favorite way to spend time.

 3. You co-write with your husband. Do you ever have conflicting ideas for your stories? If so, how do you work through them?

First, I want everyone to know that I’m incredibly fortunate to write with my husband. He’s a storytelling genius. He can see all the lines, you know? He can just get to the core of an idea so quickly, so cleanly, it’s dizzying. Second, I’m SO pompous, of course we have conflicting ideas. I like to get a little writing ego going now and again, and I have a tendency to want to fight for a story idea because I’ve been planning to write it forever. But the story comes first, and the rule is that everything on the page has to benefit the story. I’m learning to let go of those scenes I’m just dying to write unless they actually serve the narrative and not just my pride. Once I remembered that it’s not all about me- it’s about entertaining my audience, it started to really come together.

My husband has an incredible critical eye, and he’s as tough on his own ideas as he is on mine. It took me a bit to realize that he was just as quick to shoot down his own inventions if they didn’t make the story better. At first, It was tricky for me to separate my wife-self from my work-self. I basically had to set up a code-word to help me remember when to shut down my ego. Once that happened, we were writing like the wind blows, just beautiful word counts and thoughts meshing effortlessly. I love it.

 4. Describe yourself using only five words.

Adores robots, also accidentally funny.

 5. Are any of the stories you’ve written based on real life experiences?

There are elements of my life in stories, but there’s so much transformation involved, it’s hard to pinpoint one thing or another. I can say that there’s a lot of Oliver in Kathan (from the Twisted World), and that’s a big part of why I dig that character so much. Real life usually plants the seed, but what you see on the page has very little to do with who I am or how I live. Mostly, I’m a great thief of other’s experiences; I won’t hesitate to ask someone about their life and their story. I let those things rattle around for a while, turn them inside out and play with them, and then I find a way to flavor a character with those borrowed bits and pieces.

 6. What is the one book you can’t live without? Why?

Do you think you could ask a harder question? I’m a writer- you know that’s like asking “which breath is the breath you can’t live without?” I love books so intensely; it’s probably unhealthy. I can say that I read The Talisman by Stephen King and Peter Straub probably once a year. It’s one of those stories that feels like coming home.

 7. I find that I get distracted easily. How do you overcome distractions when writing?

It helps to be out of time, like, constantly behind. I absolutely cannot afford a distraction when we have a project underway. I know that I’m handling my business when Oliver has to remind me to take a break and reel it back in a bit. It’s also important to be very, very honest with yourself about your priorities. I know people who tell me how much they want to write, but can’t find an hour between all their favorite shows to get some words on the page. If you want to write MORE than you want to watch TV, then you’re going to make it happen. If you want to write more than you want to be distracted, you’ll make those words appear. If you don’t, that’s cool. Just be real with yourself. Stuff is going to come up and try to claim your attention. Is it more important than your dream? Are you sure? Be 100% sure before you let it steal your time.

 8. What is one piece of advice you can give first time authors that you wish you’d known when you started out in the industry?

Network. Network your butt off. Spend as much time as you can writing, finish everything you start (even if it’s terrible), and network like your life depends on it. Your livelihood certainly does.

 9. What is the hardest thing about being a writer?

This is the ugly truth, here. The hardest thing about being a writer is knowing that all the inspiration in the world counts for nothing if you don’t bust your ass and put the words on the page. Good ideas just don’t count compared to good discipline. It’s hard to realize that being creative is really secondary to being committed. I was in denial about that for a long time, but it’s also why I wasn’t completing projects.

 10. Why don’t you tell us a little about your latest work? Please feel free to provide a blurb and a snippet, along with the cover image.

Our latest work is The Twisted World Verse I: The Dusk Harbinger. 

TheTwistedWorldI

Kurt Kathan, the accidental king of Gwenaelle. A man who has everything that any adventurer could dream of having, and unsure of what to do with it.

Sadah Loc, the woman from the land draped in near perpetual darkness. A beautiful songstress who can no longer sing.

Piotr Carlyle, a rather unremarkable boy with a remarkable ability to change the world. Yet he has no desire to do so.

Strange phenomena known as Twists litter the world of Su Nobieta, taking common place things and morphing them into seemingly impossible realities.

Through chance, young Piotr is bestowed the power to undo the horrors that these Twists have wrought.

This is the journey of these three fated individuals, each deeply scarred by a harsh world.

They will uncover the secrets of the Twists, the nature of the Gods of creation, and most importantly, discover themselves.

Fun/Silly Questions

1. If you could go on vacation anywhere in the world, where would you go?

I would be in Tahiti, flopped out on the beach, drinking mai tais until the sun goes down.

 2. What is your favorite word?

Well, now it’s mai tais. Doesn’t that sound fabulous?

 3. What is your least favorite word?

Docile.

 4. What is your go to snack food?

Oh, Cheetos every time. I’ve moved through shame and right back into complete love for them.

 5. What is your guilty pleasure movie or book?

What a Way To Go, with Shirley MacLaine. I watch it every chance I get. It’s only a guilty pleasure because my husband HATES it. Louisa is one of the most original characters, and the whole film is amazing eye candy. So many costume changes, so much romance, it’s the silliest, best movie ever made.

 6. What is the last song you’ve had on repeat?

I’m the worst when it comes to music. I forget to listen to it for weeks at a time, so I just tag along for whatever anyone else is listening to.

Danika can be found on Amazon, Goodreads, Facebook, and WordPress.  You can find Danika and Oliver’s other release, Rabbit in the Road on Amazon.

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Reblogged this on Between him and her and commented:
Part 2 of our interview with Rebecca Poole, with Danika!



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