Saturday, October 10, 2015

Interview with author Dana Volney

Q ~ Can you tell us a bit about yourself? 
I live in Casper, Wyoming where I have a marketing consulting business, teach, and write romances. I’ve been involved in what has turned out to be an epic house painting experience this summer—hopefully before the snow flies my house will be fully scraped and painted!

Q ~ If you could go anywhere, real or imagined, where would it be and why? 
I have always loved traveling to experience new culture, witness the beauty of different surroundings, and try regional cuisine. It has been a dream of mine to travel around Europe, however, at the moment, I’d love to go to Gloucester, Massachusetts with my dad and tuna fish! We are both big fans of the show Wicked Tuna. I’m pretty sure the experience would be second to none!

Q ~ What is your favourite electronic gadget? 
My iPhone—I’ve had a cell phone since I was fifteen and it’s become a part of me I don’t like to leave behind (even if I’m not paying attention to it). My life is on that thing!

Q ~ Ebooks, paperbacks, or hardcovers? 
I read all three. In the past several years I have switched over mostly to ebooks, but I love it when I’m able to get a physical copy (especially when I’ve been able to have it signed)—there’s still something about holding a book in my hands that’s magical.

Q ~ What is your favourite genre to read? To write? 
I love contemporary romance as a whole. I read a lot from sweet to sexy, but I’m a big sucker for romantic suspense and the military heros/heroines. I started writing contemporary (and will continue with other books), with a little suspense here and there, but never fully crossed over to romantic suspense until Protecting the Prince.

Q ~ How do you think people perceive authors? 
My opinion might be skewed because I’ve always looked up to them—the worlds they build and the feelings they can evoke with their words is amazing and truly an art form. I think they should be perceived as awesome human beings (who happen to have made-up friends that they want to tell the world about).

Q ~ How did you begin writing?  Was there a single catalyst or a series of events? 
I was reading a lot of romance when I lived in Seattle and one day I thought “I can do this”—while my simplistic thinking was flawed (writing and finishing a manuscript is in no way easy), where I am now in my life and writing career is magnificent. Years after my epiphany, and after I moved back to Wyoming, my sister found an advanced writing class at our community college so I dove in and haven’t looked back.

Q ~ What’s the best thing that’s happened since you began writing? The worst? 
I think the best things about my writing journey, so far, are the people I’ve met who share my passion for writing and the satisfaction of doing what I love. I’m not sure I’ve had a worst experience, thankfully, besides this industry just being very tough.

Q ~ Do you have any writing rituals that you follow? What is your go-to snack while writing? 
I am a night owl—there is something about the quiet peacefulness that makes me feel less pressured and creative. I do my best writing then and I usually have the tv on or music playing, but there isn’t much more I need to get in the zone. I do character sheets differently each time, plot differently, and work in different places (office, couch, bed, or treadmill desk). Probably my ritual is changing it up! While I write, since it is usually late, I don’t eat a lot, but I do indulge in jolly ranchers, Werther’s Originals, and lemon drops throughout the night.

Q ~ Are you a plotter or a pantser? 
Pantser all the way, baby—and it isn’t an easy life! I try to plot, every time I start a new manuscript, and each time I just get so excited I start writing until I’ve caused myself too many problems I have to stop and think—what are they going to do to get out of this, where does this leave them to grow, why do they hate each other so much? Then the real work begins to take this world and these people and find the story. Sometimes that involves a lot of rewriting and sometimes it comes together fairly well on the first go. It works for me in the end and is more fun because then I experience the ups and downs with the characters as we go.

Q ~ What are your five favourite verbs to use during a love scene? 
Touched, gripped, slid, kissed, and bit.

Q ~ Can you tell us a little bit about your latest release, Protecting the Prince, and what inspired you to write it? 
It actually started as a play on Snow White and grew from there. I wanted Winter to be strong and kick-butt so I put her in a situation that would best bring out her personality and abilities and the story took off from there. I love the idea of a person being assigned to protect another and what that means at first and how it changes throughout the story as the characters fall in love.

Q ~ What is your process for choosing character names? 
Sometimes I chose a name I just plainly like and other times, and Protecting the Prince is one of them, I want names to have particular meanings. Since this story was originally a play on Snow White: Winter Wyn means snow and fairest in the land and Eliam Prince means prince of the nation. I was pretty specific in picking these names and I love them.

Q ~ What characters did you find yourself especially drawn to and why? 
I find myself drawn to strong heroines. I love it when a lady has a back bone and the guts to stand by her opinion—right or wrong. They have a hard shell and have a ton of love to give. Winter and I were kindred spirits in this book and she’ll always be a favorite of mine.

Q ~ Do you have anything in the works at the moment? Care to give us a hint about it? 
I am working on book two in the Wyn Security series – Felix Ibarra’s story! It’s called Protecting his Heart. I can’t say a lot about it yet other than his past comes back to trouble his future (in the form of sexy Arabella).

Q ~ If you could give aspiring authors one piece of advice, what would it be? 
Always keep learning. Don’t give up if things don’t work out at first. Use the feedback or rejection as an opportunity to learn. Take classes, join groups, read craft books, but always keep learning. This industry is huge and ever changing—there’s always more to glean.

About the author:

Dana Volney lets her imagination roam free in Wyoming where she writes romances and helps local businesses succeed with her marketing consulting company. Surrounding herself with good friends and family, Dana thrives on moments and memories created with loved ones, especially while baking. Not possessing the natural ability to want to cook every day, she still enjoys watching culinary shows while eating take-out. It helps her to dream up sweet treats and sexy men. Dana is bold, adventurous and, by her own admission, good with plants, having kept a coral cactus alive for more than one year.

Find Dana Volney at , on Facebook at , on Twitter @VolneyVentures, and Goodreads at .

About Protecting the Prince:

Eliam Prince is finally where he wants to be in his late father's shipping enterprise: at the helm and ready to navigate. However, when a mysterious car tries to run him off the road on his first day as CEO, it's clear he needs a personal bodyguard--even if the idea annoys him to no end.

Winter Wyn has built a thriving personal security business after surviving a horrific tour in the Middle East. Eliam is just a routine middle-of-the-night call--until she arrives at his penthouse, where it's clear her strict policy of not mixing business and pleasure with her clients is in serious trouble. Keeping this man safe--from sabotage, blackmailers, assassins, and his own stubborn pride--isn't nearly as hard as protecting her own heart.

But as the stakes rise, Eliam and Winter have no choice but to break all the rules if they want to survive. Fans of Castle will love the sparks that fly on this most unlikely couple's journey to their happily ever after.

Sensuality Level: Sensual

Book Links

Enter to win in this fantastic giveaway with Dana Volney & Protecting the Prince.
1 lucky winner will receive an ecopy (epub, mobi, or pdf) of Protecting the Prince by Dana Volney.
Contest is open internationally, where applicable by law. 
Entries close at 11:59pm October 23/15. 
Winners will be drawn October 24/15. 
Winners will be notified via email to the email provided to the giveaway and will have 72h to claim their prize or another winner will be drawn.


  1. Gosh I really like the teaser. I agree with you on the cell phone like you my life is on there.

  2. Hi Connie, Thanks! I'm very excited to finally have Winter and Eliam's story out there :-) I have no idea what I'd do if I were to ever lose my cell phone...excuse me while I go back up everything on there now LOL ~Dana

  3. Great interview. I watch Wicked Tuna too. I can only imagine what it is like to catch a fish that big worth that kind of money.
    sherry @ fundinmental

    1. Thanks, Sherry! I'm obsessed! I think reeling one in would be much harder even then they make it look. But the dream lives on :)

  4. I have added it to my TBR list and look forward to reading it. Thank you for the opportunity.

    1. Great to hear, Jennifer! I truly hope you enjoy it :)

  5. Best of luck with the book, Dana! Thanks for hosting, Jonel -- hope I win!

  6. Great interview! I love getting a peek inside the mind of a writer. Thanks for the chance to win a copy, too!

  7. Added to my TBR list in Goodreads. Good luck!

  8. Sounds like a good book. Love strong heroines.

    1. Thank you! I love when two strong characters go head to head! :)

  9. Loved the interview. It's great to see that there are other authors out there who look at writing similar to the way I do. (fellow pantser who tries to plot - till my characters take over and tell me where they're going!) Sounds like an interesting book! Added to my 'to read' list.

    1. Thank you, Cindy! I think that not thinking too much about the story (at first anyway) is the best part about what I do - the excitment of the journey is where it's at for me. But then comes editing and a lot of coffee ;) Hope you enjoy Winter and Eliam!

  10. wonderful another new author for me to follow

  11. love the blurb. Sounds like an awesome book. Thanks for sharing with us today!

    1. Thank you, Rhonda! This is the first book in a series and I could not be happier about it!