Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Wenches of Words Wednesday: Nancy DiMauro

I’m excited to feature fellow Wench of Words, Nancy DiMauro, a wench of many talents including writing speculative fiction, on my blog today! Take it away, Nancy…

Welcome, Nancy, and thanks for coming out. Tell us about yourself.

I’m a mommy, writer, lawyer, and farmer. Wow, that’s a mouthful.

My condo-raised husband agreed to move out to the country with me 12 years ago (almost to the day) because living on a horse farm was my dream. So, we have two horses in our front yard, and two dogs, three hermit crabs and four cats in the house. My dear hubby has managed to resist the pleas for a partridge in a pear tree so far. But, he doesn’t realize I planted a pear tree this last spring. 

Anyway, I am lucky enough to have two boys (soon to be 14 and 12). I’ve been a practicing trial attorney since 1995, and in my free time, I write. Actually, I’m pretty regimented about when I write – between 9pm and 11pm 4-5 nights a week. After all, being a writer is one of my jobs.

Tell us about your book.

My newest release is Apollo Rising about Apollo’s quest to break Daphne’s curse and restore her to her true form. In seeking to enlist the aid he needs, Apollo bargains with Hades for Daphne’s soul. But the god of the underworld may demand too a high price. 

Here's the official BLURB:

Shot by a golden arrow, Apollo has only truly loved Daphne. He visits her each eclipse, and longs for reunion. He seeks the Fates’s advice and learns he may finally restore Daphne to her true water nymph form by enlisting other gods’ assistance.

If Apollo fails Daphne will be lost to him forever. To regain Daphne’s soul, Apollo must deal with the devil, King of the Underworld. Love-torn and treacherous, Hades would slay the pantheon to remain with his wife for the full year. Apollo’s quest might just give Hades the leverage he needs to do so.

Will Pheobus Apollo surrender the sun to try to reclaim love? Can he break Daphne’s curse or will his attempts destroy her forever? Will she still love him after millennia as a soulless tree? With the end of the quest see Apollo rising, or in sunset?

You can find Apollo Rising on Amazon.

Who is your favorite character from one of your books and why?

Has there ever been a question designed to cause more strife? It’s like asking which child is your favorite. I love them all. Vonna, from the Flashes of Life story in Paths Less Traveled, is probably my favorite to play with right now. While I have other characters with supernatural powers, Vonna’s ability to recover memories from the dead is pretty out there. Also, Vonna sees emotion as color so I’ve had to create a color wheel of emotion. That was really challenging. The other neat thing about Vonna is she’s living in a near future Washington, D.C. so I get to mix in politics with the vampires, psychics and weres. Oh my! Vonna’s talents also make her a target for anyone wanting to get away with murder.

What are you working on now?

I’m in different phases on three novels. I’m editing/ rewriting The King’s Falcon, which follows Falcon from Lightning Strikes in Paths Less Traveled. I’m hoping to turn that in for consideration by the end of the year. I’m almost done with the first draft an erotic romance called New Bohemia: Just One Night in which May has a favor to ask of her best friend and housemate, Pete. I’m outlining The Nocebo Effect, which follows Vonna as she tries to solve a string of murders that initially appeared to be natural deaths before the killer finds her.

Do you listen to music when you write, if so what?

I don’t listen to music, but I tend to have the TV on for background noise. I notice silence, but I can ignore the TV if I’ve seen the show before. So, my DVR gets a lot of play while I’m writing.
Which of your covers is your favorite?

Wow. That’s tough. Kelly Shorten did all the covers for my four Musa books. They are all really wonderful and tie in so well with the stories. Since I have to pick, I think the Shots at Redemption cover is my favorite. I love the ghost ship.

Check out the cover and blurb at Amazon, Musa Publishing, or Barnes and Noble.

Where do you find inspiration?

My family. My boys (all three of them) do and say the most outrageous things. My youngest son also loves telling stories so he and I will spend hours talking about worlds that only we can see.

Name 5 things that are on your desk right now?

Pictures of my boys as babies; The Describer’s Dictionary by David Grambs; The Character Naming Sourcebook by Sherrilyn Kenyon; a list of e-mails from Dave Farland’s Novel Rewriting workshop participants; and a stack of business cards I still need to scan into my contact list.

What is your biggest distraction when it comes to writing?

The need for sleep. Because I write so late in the day, there are times when I just can’t stay awake long enough to get the words on the page. I’ve learned just to give up and try again the next day.

When did you discover the need to write?

Back in high school. I’d been writing poetry for years, and wrote my first novel when I was a sophomore. Of that fan-fic novel, let’s just all be glad that the changes in technology since the 1980’s have made the story unrecoverable.

How do you handle writers’ block?

I don’t really believe in writers’ block. For me, when I hit a point I’m struggling to find the words, it generally means one of a few things. Usually, it means I haven’t taken the time I need to pre-write the scene. Because my keyboard time is limited, I spend a lot of time daydreaming scenes before they ever hit the page. The ones I struggle with are often the ones where I haven’t spent the time visualizing them first. I’ll log off for the day and imagine what I’m missing. It might take another day to get to the point where I can write the scene, but my high word count days are ones where I’ve been daydreaming a lot about the story.

Another reason I can’t write is because sometimes I need more research. In New Bohemia, I have a significant section of the story in the Swiss Alps. When it came time to write it, I realized my visualization of the area came solely from my memories of The Sound Of Music. So, not so good. I spent about two weeks researching locations, building construction, and most importantly snow rescue techniques. When I went back to the keyboard, the scenes were much easier.

The final reason I can’t get words on the page is exhaustion. My other jobs (mommy and lawyer) are demanding. Sometimes they take everything I have. When that happens I have to give into the inevitable and use my writing time for sleep.

Where can readers find you?

On my website and blog. I’m also on Facebook and Twitter.

I have to run now. Thank you for interviewing me, and thanks to everyone who took the time to read it. ~Nancy DiMauro


  1. LOL re the pear tree, Nancy. Now all you need is the partridge.

    I love your covers. I've been really admiring Apollo's rising. Such lovely colours and the contrast of the woman. Stunning.

  2. I have an urge to buy you a partridge for the holidays!! Makes me want to visit your lovely farm too. My family is selling my grandparents' farm which has been in the family for over a hundred years. It's heartbreaking, but necessary. I admit, I'm envious of your farm life!

  3. Oh yeah, that Shots at Redemtion cover is amazing! Congrats Nancy!!

  4. Thanks all. Yes, Matt has failed to notice the pear tree. He's at risk for the partridge now. Last animal I brought home was a present for him so it's HIS dog. Yea, right. But we got to keep the puppy so it works.

    Sorry to hear your family is selling the farm. Sara. That stinks. If you come to WFC 2013 in DC or at any time, come visit! The horses, puppies, kitties, hermit crabs (well, maybe not them) and the family would love to meet you.

    I've been amazingly fortunate with my covers. Kelly Shorten at Musa has done a fabulous job. She completely redid the Apollo Rising cover when we found a better image for Daphne too.

  5. I love the idea of living on a farm. Maybe one day. Though I can't believe you have the restraint to have so few animals. Knowing me, I'd have pigs, chickens and a cow!

  6. Thanks, Nancy - because of you, I can't get the song 'A Patridge in a Pear Tree' out of my head! Cheers to Eleni, Sara, Rita, and Amaleen for surfing by!