A former newspaper staff writer, Delia promised herself a novel for years, while raising her four children, working at various jobs and writing the occasional article, poem, or song. She fulfilled that promise when Vintage Romance Publishing released Goldeneyes in 2008. A Christian historical romance with a touch of the divine, Goldeneyes is set in the farm country of the author’s childhood, and therefore close to her heart. In 2010, White Rose Publishing released Yesterday’s Promise in electronic format. A children’s book will be available in December 2010.
Delia grew up in Weedpatch, a tiny agricultural community near Bakersfield, in California’s San Joaquin Valley. She and her husband Johnny recently transplanted from that area to Okmulgee County, Oklahoma.
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Destiny’s Dream, the first book in the Solomon’s Gate series, released Dec. 17 from White Rose Publishing:
Is a little respect too much to ask at a parent’s funeral?
Apparently it is for Destiny May. Her mother’s “going away party” is crashed by an unfamiliar and totally irreverent guest. Difficult to ignore, Clay Gallagher is built like a small mountain and far more vocal than is fitting for the occasion. When it turns out the annoying stranger is not even at the right funeral, Destiny demands retribution in the form of an escape from the day’s dreary proceedings.
From the beginning, their relationship has some kinks – starting with Destiny’s determination to found a Christian dating service in their conservative town of Castle Creek. A highly esteemed investment broker, Clay has little respect or patience for such a frivolous profession. But when Destiny is threatened by an anonymous caller who deeply resents her and what she does for a living, Clay makes it his business to keep the saucy redhead out of harm’s way.
Trouble is, spending time in her company weakens his defenses … and Cupid’s arrows are known to fly straight to the heart.
Available from White Rose Publishing and Amazon.
Yesterday’s Promise, from White Rose Publishing:
A missing bridegroom. A broken heart. Life will never be the same for Hannah Johns. With God’s help, she can make it on her own, but can she ever trust love again?
Brock is drawn to the beautiful lounge singer, but his shadowy past won’t set him free.
Can these two troubled hearts possibly find a future together?
Available from White Rose Publishing and Amazon
Goldeneyes, from Vinspire Publishing:
A man’s eyes are the windows to his soul … if he has one.
In the darkness of a Depression-era night, a man addicted to alcohol commits a heinous crime that impacts the lives of two entire families, and over two decades will pass before the horrible wrong begins to be made right.
Available at Vinspire Publishing and Amazon
Why did you become a writer…was it a dream of yours since you were younger or did the desire to write happen later in your life?
I’ve often wondered if I was born with a pencil in my hand. J I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love to write. As a very small child, I remember making up songs and scribbling my little ideas onto paper. After I won an essay contest in third grade, I knew I wanted to be a writer, and could rarely be found without a notebook and pen. I wrote songs, poems, little stories—even became the editor of a little newspaper for the parochial school I attended.
Do you tend to base your characters on real people or are they totally from your imagination?
They are composites of real people, with a little imagination thrown in to make them even more interesting. I like to people watch, and often take notes on the little idiosyncrasies and quirks I witness. Sometimes when I’m watching television, I’m busy jotting down quirky personality traits…funny expressions…unusual gestures and body language. It helps when I need to create a memorable character.
What was the most interesting research you had to do for any of your books?
I had lived in Bakersfield, California—three hours from Yosemite National Park—all my life, but had never been there. A friend of mine had recently moved to Oakhurst, not much over an hour from the Park, when I decided to set Yesterday’s Promise there. She insisted I come to her place and stay for a week. Reta became my tour guide of Yosemite, and even turned over her sweet little office and computer to me for the duration of my visit. And Yosemite itself…well, it definitely qualifies as interesting research!
Are you currently working on any new book projects?
I’m working on the third book in my Solomon’s Gate series – Gypsy’s Game. Book One, Destiny’s Dream, released December 17th. Kylie’s Kiss will be the second novel, followed by Gypsy’s Game. This series is based around a Christian dating agency called…yeah, you guessed it, Solomon’s Gate.
Who is your favorite contemporary author? Are you currently reading any contemporary novels?
I have a sizeable basket of to-be-read books. Since I write reviews for a couple of different publishing houses and several favorite author friends, books are never in short supply around my place. The biggest majority of them are inspirational fiction. However, it might surprise some of my readers to know that my favorite novels ever are Stephen King’s The Stand and Robert R. McCammon’s Swan Song. Whileneither of these books would in any way fit into the “inspirational” genre, both are absolutely unforgettable, epic novels of good vs. evil.
What’s your writing schedule like? When do you find time to write?
I’m blessed to be able to dedicate myself to writing. As an empty-nester, other than the occasional visits from my children and grandchildren—which I treasure--
I’m pretty much free to write all day every day if I choose to. I don’t do that, but I do spend a good portion of each day doing something writing related. Since August, I’ve finished Destiny’s Dream, written all of Kylie’s Kiss, and am over halfway through Gypsy’s Game. (These are all 60,000-word novels.) I’ve also written four chapters on a Christmas romance that came up unexpectedly, and compiled a collection of stories as a special project for Kindness Inc. Obviously, I spend more time in my office than out of it…
Do you have any writing idiosyncrasies?
I tend to act out my characters’ gestures. One might walk into my office at any given time and find me doing rather odd things while I sit at my desk. How else is a writer supposed to know how to describe what it looks like when a heroine widens her eyes to the size of quarters while lifting the back of her hand to her forehead and dropping her chin to her chest? I ask you!
What’s the most challenging aspect of writing for you? ~ POV issues; using too much passive voice and not enough active voice; trouble creating active and engaging dialogue; using too many similar words in starting sentences; or something else?
Creating conflict. I have to resist the urge to make things easy for my characters—the same way I always wanted to do for my kids. But children who never have to deal with problems themselves don’t develop into responsible adults. In the same way, too little conflict in a story makes for dull characters and uninteresting reading. The best writers advise deciding what would be the worst possible thing that could happen to your hero/heroine—and then making it happen. I’m still working on that. I also have to really watch myself or I’ll get stuck on a certain type of body language (like hiking the eyebrow) and way overuse it.
Delia, thank you for stopping by today; I enjoyed our conversation!
Tomorrow, you can get a special sneak peak at an excerpt from Delia’s new novel, Destiny’s Dream.