Monday, January 05, 2009

Intimate Monday with Anna Dennis

Anna, thank you so much for taking time to chat with me. I know my readers will enjoy getting to know you.

1. What is a typical writing day like for you? Anything but typical. I seize the opportunity to write whenever I can.
2. Do you need anything special to write? Quiet, music, a special place? Not necessarily, just motivation. Often times, I like to write in long-hand first, though.
3. What is the one thing about you that people would be surprised to know?That I wanted to be a newscaster when I was in high school.
4. What is your writing process? How does a novel begin for you? A lot of mental formulation. I go over the beginning, middle and end, over and over again in my head. Once it is relatively clear, then I begin writing.
5. Where did you grow up and do you think it has impacted/influenced your writing? I grew up in San Francisco, California a place rich in diversity, creativity and expensive rents, (Ha, ha, ha!) But it absolutley had an impact on my writing because half of what we write about is what we see, i.e., our experiences, conversations, etc.
6. Do you have siblings? And if so where do you fit into the mix? I have one sister and I'm the oldest.
7. If you could choose a profession other than writing, what would it be? Something deeper into the entertainment a radio personality or talk show host.
8. What is your definition of success? Being good at what you do and happy doing it.
9. Who did you share your first kiss with and when? My first real kiss was with my husband, then boyfriend, in 1984. Whew!
10. If you could have dinner with someone living or dead, who would it be with and what would you want to know? I envy those who attended the Last Supper with Jesus. There are so many questions about life, death, pain and suffering that I would ask. But, I would ultimately want to know what kind of job am I doing right now, here on earth.
11. Your favorite past time? Unquestionably, spending time with my husband and children.
12. What is your greatest fear? One day, not being able to spend time with my husband and children.
13. What writers have influenced you and in what way? Mary Morrison, E. Lynn Harris and J. California Cooper. But more than any of them, was Donna Hill. She creates rich characters and develops tasteful love scenes. She is a true romance writer. She is also very real and down-to-earth and always willing to help in any way she can to help writers grow in their craft.
14. What is one book that you would insist that everyone read? (other than your own) And why? The Bible, no other book will edify you the way it will.
15. Your favorite fictional character from someone else's book. My favorite character is Reese Delaware from Donna Hill's Intimate Betrayal. She was a strong, grounded, inspiring character.
16. Who is your favorite character from one of your novels? It is actually Veronica Webb, from the novel I'm currently working on. She's strong, confident and charismatic. I must say that my previous characters have not been as stong.
17. What do you want readers to take away from your work--other than being entertained? A closeness with the characters and a feeling of saying goodbye to a friend at the conclusion of the book.
18. Your favorite saying? When someone shows you who they are...believe them the first time. Oprah Winfrey
19. Your favorite curse word? I don't swear anymore, so I don't have one.
20 What is the best advice you've ever received? It was from my mom, "Friends are great, but don't mind spending time alone...because you will never disappoint yourself."
21. One thing that always pisses you off? Haters!
22. What are you currently working on and when can readers expect to see it? First, there's On The Line, a compilation with you and 17 other authors (I'm so excited!) that will be due out in January 2008. I can't wait to see the final product myself. Then, I'm not sure, it will either be Memories or the sequel to Who Will Hear My Screams. I think it depends on which one I finish first, but I anticipate mid-2008.
23. Where do you see yourself in five years and how do you plan to get there? With a nice book deal and a good relationship with a reputable publishing house. I don't think that's too much to ask.
24. If there was only one thing in the world that you could change what would it be? I would erase the word Cancer and have it be a disease that never existed.
25. If you had the chance to go back and do something over in your life, what would it be? I thought long and hard about this one and the answer truly is...nothing! I am blessed and I believe that it is both the good and the bad that brought to me to where I am today.

Now, tell us a bit about your current book on the shelves and why should readers buy it?

The Purest of Pain is truly a touching and real story that focuses on an upper class, married couple. They are having problems, but then 9/11 happens and that's where the story really takes off. Readers should buy it because 9/11 affected absolutely everyone and with each anniversary, continues to do so as well as remind us of how fragile life can be. That, is what I hope readers can take away from it. The book also serves as a memorium to those who lost their lives and continue to lose their lives as a result of that day.

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