Darlene, what do you see as the pros and cons of writing a full-length novel versus a shorter novella?
In a full-length novel, you can develop character, theme, and plot in depth. It does take longer
A novella is a quick read for the reader—can usually be read in a single sitting. They take less time; and in self-publishing, the more I can keep my name in front of others, the higher my sales will go. That’s the theory, anyhow. I also write more novellas because my health is uncertain. If I get sick and fall behind, it’s easier for me to catch up.
I wish I had the safety net of a contract so I could take the time to develop a longer novel. I’m hoping to write mysteries next year but so far I’m not doing very well on that goal.
What is the most interesting (or unusual) thing you’ve done in the name of research for one of your projects?
For that first novella, Dressed in Scarlet, I “suffered” for my art by spending a night at the Brown Palace hotel in downtown Denver. The Brown Palace is the setting of the story, and I enjoyed the excuse to visit the luxury hotel.
The things we’ll do for our readers. :-) When you start a new book, do you tend to begin with a character and find her story, or do you have a story idea and discover who lives it out?
Generally I have a story idea and discover who lives it out. In fact, I usually get to know my characters well as I write their stories.
Reading fiction can be a way to escape reality for a while, but those stories can still teach some valuable lessons. What points do you hope readers take away from your books?
My tagline is “writing at the crossroads of love and grace.” The overriding lesson in my life is that God loves me. Period. And His grace will sustain me, no matter what happens. That fact works its way into most of my stories. In Jake and Becky’s story, Becky wonders why God brought her to Wyoming to marry a preacher—the one occupation she wants nothing to do with.
Can you tell us about any other projects you have in the works?
I’m working on Tobogganing for Two, from the Love’s Sporting Chance series, to be released in November. It’s inspired in part by Ethan Frome, in that the heroine’s sister was paralyzed in a toboggan ride. My heroine has been scared ever since.
In closing, what advice can you share with novice writers?
The first, basic, advice: read, read, read and write, write, write. The second is simply this: the key to becoming a good writer isn’t talent, it’s perseverance. Commit to writing each and every day.
Thanks again for visiting with us, Darlene! Visitors, if you’d like to keep up with Darlene and her projects, there are a few places you can connect with her online:
- Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/darlene.franklin.3
- Twitter handle: @darlenefranklin
- Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1030543.Darlene_Franklin
And don’t forget to enter our drawing for an e-book copy of Darlene’s latest novel, Jacob’s Christmas Dream! Either answer this question from Darlene in the comments section, or click the Rafflecopter entry form below. The winner will be announced on Friday.
If you lived in the 1800s, would you choose to be a mail order bride? Why or why not?