Friday, August 21, 2015

WRITER 2 WRITER: An interview with author Barbara Doran

One of the most satisfying things for me about doing these interviews is the people I get to know. It's a pleasant surprise whenever I find I share interests with one of them. The questions I ask often bring me answers that have me saying, "Me too!" as I read through them. So it is with Barbara Doran. Her interview had a couple smiles in it for me, because everyone knows by now that my first love in reading or writing is fantasy. I am an enthusiastic researcher, with bookmarked files of Google searches, maps, Youtube videos—you name it and I've probably looked that up at one point. I cheered when I found out she's also a Terry Pratchett fan, and though I had to look it up to be sure, I recognized the 'clacks' code from GOING POSTAL. After all...

"A man is not dead while his name is still spoken."

I like to think that none of us writers will ever truly die, as long as there is someone out there reading our books. That's one of the reasons I do these interviews; to present to you another author whose books and short stories you should check out. So today it is Barbara Doran, who unabashedly writes what she loves, and puts her entire heart and soul into every page. You can feel the enthusiasm bubbling up in her interview as she shares with us here her love for writing. Don't just take my word for it though, read on and discover just what it is that makes her world go round. 


An interview with author

  • Hello Barbara! Would you tell us something about yourself and your writing?

Hi, Nancy! Glad to be here.

I've been addicted to words for most of my life. From the moment I learned how to read I started haunting libraries and bookstores and haven't left since. 

I started out in fanfiction, mostly for anime, with a few video game fics out there as well. I'm not going to blow my secret identity, of course, but sufficiently diligent investigators might find some of my work on the web.

  • Now from what I've seen, you have interests in several speculative/genre fiction areas. What is it about the high-adventure 'pulp' style writing that you find appealing?

'Pulp' style writing has an openness to it that I really enjoy. I've seen a few cross-genre books in mainstream work but there's a lot more opportunity to explore combinations of ideas in the pulps. You never know what to expect sometimes, and I love being able to try new ways of doing older things.

  • I suspect that like most authors, you're probably a voracious reader. What sort of books do you enjoy? Any favorite authors? Anything you just can't stand?

I mostly read SF, Fantasy and Mystery, with occasional horror thrown in. For the most part, my favorite place to be is Fantasy, though; especially when an author's world becomes as much a character as the people in their books.

Favorite authors include Terry Pratchett (GNU Pratchett), Andre Norton, Christie, Barbara Michaels/Elizabeth Peters, M.R. James…. I'm all over the board with who I like and the list could take up several paragraphs.

Things I can't stand… I suppose I'd rather stay away from dystopia settings. I'm also not really a fan of zombies, even though I do have a concept for a zombie-like story sitting at the back of my rather large stove of plots.

  • Voyeurs that we are, we want a window into your world. What would a typical Barbara Doran writing session look like?

That really depends on where I am in the process…

When I'm starting out, I'm generally throwing the characters into what I hope to be the initial situation. I'll be doing research on the internet for things like names and location. You might catch me with Google Maps up, trying to decide where things are happening. Or you might find me looking up YouTube videos to find actors who fit with a character's appearance so I can visualize what's going on.

Once I get going I can sit at the computer for hours typing. Thanks to NaNoWriMo, I've learned to write a lot in one day. Of course, this depends on where we are in the school year because during summer I have to take a break every so often to drag Tiger or Dragon or both off to their activities or to break up a fight between them when they get annoyed with each other. Right now school just started, so I'm looking forward to days of quiet.

When I've gotten a story written, you'll see me editing. This involves reading, re-reading and re-reading the story. Sometimes aloud. (Fortunately, I have a Text to Speech program, so I don't have to talk, myself.) I walk around and chat with my characters, try to fit things together and correct for plot points.

  • Outside of writing, do you have any other creative interests or hobbies?

I do some weaving, knitting and spinning. I also know how to make chain-maille and bead, though my eyesight and hands no longer permit me to handle the tools. In my other persona I run an art show for a local convention and I'm web-master for our local Weavers Guild.

  • What is new on the horizon for you? This is your spot to tout recent releases and tease about projects upcoming.

My book, "Claws of the Golden Dragon" came out with Airship 27 earlier this month and I'm currently contemplating a prequel to be written this NaNoWriMo.

I'm also working on a mainstream fantasy tentatively titled "The Storm Wolf and the Falcon" but that hasn't been picked up yet. Cross your fingers for me on that.

  • Any other amazing facts the world needs to know about Barbara Doran?

The name of my domain, Sum Ergo Scriptum, was a fortuitous accident. I'd intended the meaning of the phrase to simply be "I am, therefore I write", but my research assistant realized belatedly that 'scriptum' actually means an unfinished work. Which, I realized, was exactly correct. I'm not done and won't be for a very long time, I hope.

  • Where can we find your work, or follow along with your releases?

My book is available on Amazon HERE.
You can find me HEREor on Facebook HERE.

Thank you so much Barbara for sharing your writing with us!

No comments: