"A very talented writer, too, he brings so much amazing energy to the project. Even the way we’re writing the books is different," she explained. "We’ve created several groups on Facebook, where readers are welcome to come and watch the stories played out for them; once a story is done, it’s copied over and we polish and refine the story. It then goes to editing and covers, etc. Kayden McLeod is creating a very distinctive look for the entire series, and we plan a number of other releases soon in this set. Also, there will be a special sub-site created on my website soon, too–where you can learn more about the whole series. "
Denysé told me she's been writing as long as she can remember, but she's been writing professionally for the last eight years.
"I can remember writing my first essays and stories in about Grade Three, and getting gold stars for them – it was quite exciting to know that people would like to read something I’d created, and I think even when I abandoned the idea in my teens, some part of me still longed to be telling stories," she said. "I find them everywhere I look, and in everything I see and hear. It’s wonderful. I used to watch my favourite shows and then in my mind I’d continue on with what I’d watched, or invent new stories to enjoy. It was one of those 'new' stories that started me writing again at twenty-two, when I sat down and decided to put the new episode I’d dreamed onto the page…it began a twenty year 'apprenticeship' as a writer of fan fiction!"
Apart from her new Warrior series, Denysé is writing two more stories for Ellora's Cave—the prequel and sequel to Hide and Secret, her first story for EC which was released last year. She's also writing a genie story that she's having a lot of fun with. Her next major project is a new paranormal series—which might actually be YA, but she's still toying with that idea. Plus, there's another Western in the mix.
Since she started writing her own stuff, instead of the fanfic, she's never suffered from writer's block.
"I used to fear everything I wrote would be the last thing I could create, then a dam burst inside my brain, and I know I’ll never have enough time to tell all the stories that I want to tell," she told me. "I’ve got notebooks everywhere, files of research notes for things. Essentially, there’s a story for any mood, and over time I’ve reached a point where I can write anywhere, regardless of the distractions. I think when your imagination flags a little, you need to step back and relax; your life is telling you something, even if it’s as simple as 'now is the not the right time' so if you just focus on family and friends, and whatever else you love–the stories return when you’re ready to tell them. At least in my experience."
She has several writers, depending on her mood as well. If she wants to read exciting, sexy paranormals, she opens Lara Adrian, J.R. Ward, Nalini Singh, or Gena Showalter.
"They’re all winners on a huge scale," she assured me. "If I want straight-up romantic escape, I adore Lucy Monroe every time!! She never misses. Same with Linda Lael Miller. If I want mystery, it’s Anne Perry and her Victorian detectives, as well as Conan Doyle-- Sherlock Holmes has been my hero forever!! Fantasy leads me to Terry Brooks or George R.R. Martin. So, it’s all dictated by what the mind is craving at the time!"
For Denysé, good writing pays attention to detail and continuity—things that happen as a logical progression of the plot, not a need for sensationalism or shock. To be a successful story, it needs to engage the mind and heart of the reader.
"It doesn’t always have to be a brilliant one to be enjoyable and pleasant," she said. "So pay attention to the details, let your writing draw readers into a place where they escape and enjoy it, and if they’re smiling when they put your book down, it’s a good one! The technical aspects of writing are so flexible, you really need to focus more on story, content, and execution than the actual textbook rules you learn in school. Grammar and spelling and all that good stuff is important, but those things improve with use anyway. Tell a story that you love, and you can bet others will fall in love with it, too."
Characters will introduce themselves to Denysé as they are needed and usually leave an impression even if they are minor characters, but it's the plot that drives a story.
"It’s a balance, though, because even the most intriguing of plots can fall apart if you don’t have the right chemistry for your characters," she warned. "I like to lay out a story in point form, on paper, then have a look at it – often what happens is the action-reaction equation then develops the type of character needed to make the story work and move forward. Small things evolve and make themselves a part of the plot as you go; they emerge from the personalities of the characters themselves. So for me, seeing how the story will work out often tells me who I need to 'create' for the job at hand."
The characters often make their own suggestions and change the plan a little, she finds, but often it takes the form of introducing subplots and touches Denysé had not anticipated when she started writing.
When she's writing a short story, Denysé can often outline it in one paragraph, add the character names and begin writing. However, things are different with novels or world building.
"If you’re going to write a novel, or world-build, you have to be willing to sit down and make your rules," she explained. "So, very detailed outlines and blueprints for novels. I usually end up with a well-used file folder of immediate research notes, names, and character specific details. When my first fantasy novel was submitted, the proposal package was just over 100 pages, and it was done formally: 25-page detailed synopsis, short synopsis of 3 pages, three chapters of the book, query letter, and résumé. The book itself ran about 350 manuscript pages when it was done. You can’t do a book of that size if you don’t outline and plot well. Short stories can tell themselves in minutes, literally."
Finally, I asked, "What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?"
"I think the soundest advice any writer can embrace is that you have to let the story go sometimes and move on. None of us writes a perfect book so to think we can is the way to madness and to believe you have is the way to huge disappointment. Do the best job you can, get it out there, and move on to your next project. Each one will teach you something and improve your skill, but if you never leave the first one because you have to keep rewriting it, you’ll never know how far you can go with the talent you have. Listen to the advice editors offer; don’t fight them or justify your work. These are professional people; they know what works and sells, so listen when they take the time to offer you advice."
About the Author:
Find Denyse online at:
Authors Who Rock: http://authorswhorock.blogspot.com/
Sensual Treats Magazine: http://www.sensualtreats.webs.com
Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/Romance.and.Fantasy
Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/groups/RomanceFantasy/
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/author/denysebridger
Good Reads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4930595.Denyse_Bridger
Asher Elliot is lost in his own darkness when he first sees the tall warrior known to legend simply as The Slayer. Tortured by the deaths of his wife and children, this grieving warrior is nonetheless drawn to the timeless, cold being he witnesses at work. Like him, she deals in death and her justice is swift, sometimes messy, but always final. He follows her, watching, growing ever more captivated by her, until finally he must reach out to claim what his reawakened heart wants most…