I’d like to welcome YA fiction author D. A. Roach, who as it happens just released her latest book, Rarity, today. Check for the link at the end of the interview to get your copy!
IDI – I’m sure you’re busy with the release of your book so I truly appreciate the time you’ve taken to chat with me.
DAR – I’m happy to.
IDI – Who’s your target audience? What aspect of your writing do you feel targets that audience?
DAR – I mostly write books for late teens-30’s. My stories usually encompass that awkward transition between teen and adult. I, personally, grew up a lot emotionally in college. It’s an interesting time in life with so much change and insecurity…it;’s like giving an artist a blank canvas with paints in every color – the possibilities are endless to create an interesting story.
IDI – If you could meet one character from a book, who would it be and why?
DAR – Evan Mathews from The Breathing Series by Rebecca Donovan. He is the most supportive boyfriend ever created. Emma has some pretty deep and dark issues she is dealing with and Evan is the sun in her cloudy world – radiant, reliable, and comforting. The world would be a better place if we were all married to an Evan Mathews.
IDI – If you could give your main character a million dollars, how would he/she spend it?
DAR – My character (from my latest book, Rarity,) would give a portion to her mom’s bills (she adores her mom), some would be used for her college tuition, and the rest would go toward researching a cure for the rare disorder her boyfriend is diagnosed with.
IDI – How has your writing evolved from when you began as a writer to now?
DAR – My writing has changed a lot since becoming an author. People who have read all my books comment on how my writing has improved from book to book. I’m considering reworking my self-published titles and submitting them to the publishing company to see if they want to publish them. But it’s a dilemma, does the band KISS (2015) look at their first album (1973) and consider reworking it? If they are doing that I’d tell them to leave it be – it’s classic. But despite this argument, I will modify some of my previous self-pub stories to breathe new life into them.
IDI – Have you ever wanted to give up? What stopped you?
DAR – No, no quitting yet. I’m still learning.
IDI – What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about writing? How has this helped you as a writer?
DAR – Focus on the storytelling, don’t fixate on the errors. Editors can fix the errors or at least point them out to you.
IDI – What’s the best advice ever given to you, and by whom?
DAR – Honestly, it’s a quote, “Leap and the net will appear.” by American naturalist John Burroughs. It’s easy to worry and try to plan for everything but sometimes it’s best to take the leap and trust it will be alright.
IDI – What advice would you give to new/unpublished authors?
DAR – Only read the 4 & 5 star reviews, let them encourage you to write more rather than dwelling on the negative.
Also, seriously consider a traditional publisher. It’s raised my bar and helped me put more effort into my book and strive for the best. And I’ve met a ton of other authors which provides a great support system & a wealth of tips and information.
IDI – What do you do when you’re not writing?
DAR – Reading! I also advocate for a rare disorder, pull weeds, listen to music, and watch horror movies (Exorcist, The Ring, and The Shining are my favorites).
IDI – How important are your reading habits to your writing habits?
DAR – Reading is very influential to my writing. When I immerse myself in a story I am aware of how the author builds the characters. Do they take us through the daily mundane tasks to help us live in the character’s shoes? Do they use dialogue? How do they get us to care for the character? I also enjoy uncovering how an author starts their book. When someone walks into the bookstore and picks up a book, they look at the cover, title, read the book sleeve, and then start the first chapter. If the author does not get the story rolling quick enough, you lose a sale. So reading influences my writing by providing me with examples of what works…and what doesn’t.
IDI – Can you tell us three interesting things about you that you’re sure we don’t already know?
DAR – I was a retail pharmacist years ago and hated it.
I did not begin reading for pleasure until after college (my parents were immigrants from Lithuania and since reading in English was a challenge – we did not have many English language books.
I spent 10 days in Japan during high school as an exchange student, I lived with a Japanese family in the countryside it was an amazing culture and experience. I am still fb friends with the host girl who was my age.
IDI – Thank you so much for joining me today. I wish you the best of luck with your new release.
DAR – Thanks for having me.
To learn more about D. A. and her work, visit any of the following links:
Kathy Reinhart is the award-winning author of Lily White Lies and The Red Strokes