Monday, April 19, 2010

Author Interview: LESLIE DICKEN

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls! Today we welcome to the blog Leslie Dicken, historical romance author of gothic fabulousness Beauty Tempts the Beast (now available in ebook & coming to print May 4th!). Welcome, Leslie! (Applause!)

What inspired you to write your current release?

My current release, BEAUTY TEMPTS THE BEAST, actually began as a writing-prompt. At the time, I was president of an online RWA Chapter and was trying to keep the loop interesting. So I asked members to write a small scene and include the phrase "I don't take kindly to strangers." I did the exercise as well and that lead to the entire book. It finalled in the 2006 Golden Heart as MARK OF THE MONSTER. I had so much fun writing this twist on a classic Gothic tale.

How important is the setting/world in your books?

For BEAUTY, the setting was extremely important. I needed the reader to feel the isolation of the manor and the noises and creepiness of it. There isn't a scene in that book that doesn't highlight the setting in some way.

What is the best advice you ever got as a writer? The worst? If you could go back in time and give your beginner-writer-self some advice, what would you say?

The best advise is the most basic: persevere. Honestly, giving up will get you nothing. If you want it badly enough, keep going. You may not get a huge book deal the first time out. Your path might take some detours, so keep options open and don't give up!

What is the most important thing you’ve learned since getting published? Are there any writing realities that have surprised you?

I've learned several things. Promotion takes a lot of time and energy. Pick and choose wisely to get the best return for your investment. Also, keep writing and don't put all your eggs in one basket. Sounds simple enough but I put so much energy into getting a single book published that it sucked away my creativity. I could have had other books out there. Instead in a span of few years, my booklist is short. It was a hard lesson to learn.

What’s next for you/what are you working on now?

I'm writing a Victorian steampunk titled THE IRON HEART where my hero and heroine have very different methods for capturing a Jack-the-Ripper like killer. It's been fun and challenging.

Thank you so much for visiting, Leslie, and giving us a peek at the inspiration behind Beauty Tempts the Beast!
Today one lucky winner will win a Leslie Dicken ebook, so comment, comment, comment, booklovers!

15 comments:

Kali said...

I love fresh twists on classic fairy tales! This is totally being added by list of books to buy.

Sherry said...

Sounds like a great book and I can't wait to read it. Your a new to me author and has been added to my to buy list.

sstrode@scrtc.com

elaing8 said...

Great interview. Sounds like an interesting book.

Sweet Vernal Zephyr said...

Combining fairy tales and historical romance are a great way to suck me. I get to learn something and enjoy myself at the same time!

Andrea Becraft said...

SOunds like a wonderful book!

thanks for blogging with us!

KELLY FITZPATRICK said...

Ah, yes...the path to publication is a bumpy, twisting road.

Leslie Dicken said...

Thanks everyone! Happy to answer any other questions you might have! :-)

Lisa said...

As usual, Leslie brings an original twist to the Gothic format. I loved Beauty Tempts The Beast

almadenannie said...

Loved Reading it and cant wait for the next one, girlfriend!!!

Carly said...

Now I really want to know how the "I don't take kindly to strangers" gets used. Great idea and awesome that the prompt expanded into a book for you!

Celine said...

I have actually read this book and I must say it's a page turner and one for a holiday read, moment to yourself read or those night where nothing is on TV but you still want something exciting. Great characters and an exciting storyline!

Nancy G said...

I love fairy tales for adults, they kind of bring out the inner child in me, remembering the original, and enjoying the new.

flchen1 said...

Leslie, this sounds lovely--adding it to the TBB! And congrats on trying a different genre next--I haven't had a chance to read steampunk yet, but am intrigued by the sounds of your story!

Cheri said...

This sounds like a great book. I can't wait to try it. I enjoyed hearing how you got the idea.

Karin said...

Your book sounds really interesting. I definitely enjoy gothic novels.