Thursday, February 7, 2013

Author spotlight shines down on Crime author Nina D'Angelo

Let me introduce an awesome Aussie Crime- fiction author who is on her way to making it big and leaving us behind...Nina D'Angelo.

The interrogation begins...

Tell us a little about yourself and how you became a writer.
I’m a freelance writer and photographer. I graduated from Deakin University with a Bachelors degree in Journalism and Public Relations. I’ve been working in the media since I was 18 – working for several music magazines before I briefly switched to PR in 2005. Not satisfied with my profession, I returned to freelance writing. Since I graduated from Deakin, I’ve written my own TV series, was a producer for a music show for three years, worked for several music magazines and have had my photography published in magazines worldwide.
I’ve always written creatively. From the moment I wrote my first story at the age of 6 (which was about the smurfs and eight pages long), I’ve written and never stopped. Right throughout University, I wrote creatively – for friends and for myself. I wrote a short story called The Perfect Crime for my Literature class and my lecturer told me I wrote in the same style as Tarrentino and I should look into writing professionally. At the time I laughed it off and thought he was joking.
A few years ago I started playing with the idea for a story and one night just started writing it. First it was a chapter and the next thing I knew it was 122,000 words and a novel. I never wrote the novel thinking, I want to get this published. I wrote it thinking. Okay, I need to write this – even if it’s just for me.

Are you an Indie author or traditionally published?
I’m an Indie writer, but further down the track I would like to be traditionally published.

How do your stories come to life, from fiction or fantasy?
My stories tend to pop into my head and come to life as I write them.

Are you a ‘go with the flow’ writer or do you have structure?
I’m very much a go with the flow writer to begin with, but they then tend to develop structure. For my second novel, Nowhere to Hide, I’ve been a little more structured. I’ve written chapter summaries for the next few chapters and I’ve also used dot points to write down what I want to happen.

Have you always wanted to be a writer or did you want to be something else?
I knew by the time I was 8, I wanted to be a writer. By the time I was 10 I decided I wanted to run my own magazine, but when I was 12 decided I wanted to be a Journalist. Deep down inside, I wanted to write fiction but it was kind of a secret dream I wasn’t ready to share with anyone. I started taking it more seriously after someone read a novel I wrote and said to me I had to get myself published.

What groups are you affiliated with and how have they helped you through your journey of publication?
I belong to quite a few writing groups on facebook – including Books Anonymous and The Writers Club – The Writers Club is amazing. It’s a group of people who love writing. Everyone has either had their novels published or are in the throes of publishing them. It’s supportive, a group that provides solid advice and just a nice place to share your writing and your dreams with.
I can vouch for that group.  I love everyone there. It is important to have a good support system and they are part of that. <3 their guts!

How much marketing do you involve yourself in and with the mass consumption of social media, does this play a part in your marketing choice?
As much as people hate to admit it, marketing is an important part of an author’s life. I’ve been heavily involved in marketing my novel. I have a degree in Public Relations and it’s helped me in so many different ways. A lot of my decisions come from my experience in PR but also my instincts. Social Media is a major tool an author should use for promoting themselves and marketing their book. I’ve used social media to get my name out there. If it weren’t for social media, I’m not sure as many people would be aware of the authors out there and that would be a shame. I’ve found so many wonderful authors through the likes of Goodreads or Facebook.
Social Media allows you to control how you want to be marketed and gives you the voice to do it. People slam it all the time and yes, there are also some bad aspects of it, but most the time it is a wonderful learning curve and tool to use.

Here’s a random one for you. If you could be one animal, which would it be and why?
I’d be an Eagle, mainly because I like the idea of being free and soaring high.
I can see you as an eagle. But how will you hold your coffee?

What would you say is your inspiration to write in general or writing a particular scene?
I actually love to listen to music when I write. It inspires me, keeps me motivated and it allows me to block our surrounding sounds. Music helps me get focused. I also find writing when I am emotional is brilliant. The emotion I feel spills onto the paper. Most the time though I get so wrapped up in my own writing, I lose myself in that world.
Music...worlds...losing ones self. I'm there with you on those. Maybe we escape?

Tell me about how you came up with your title and cover?
I had a wonderful cover designer in the form of Scarlett Ruger from Scarlett Ruger designs. She really listened to what I wanted. I told her I wanted to show Los Angeles with blood over the Hollywood sign. This eventuated to Los Angeles with blood spatter on the title and also over the city with the background showing a killing moon (blood red moon). The title is also spattered in blood with shattered glass and a police strobe light. She came up with several different concepts before we landed on the cover I have now. She really worked hard to take my ideas and develop them onto paper and I think she nailed it.
I actually had the name about 3 pages into the novel. The name Nowhere to Run came from the fact my main character, Stephanie Carovella is being stalked by a serial killer who knows her every move and won’t stop until he ‘claims her’. He follows his victims and hunts them down until there is nowhere left for them to run. It’s also about my main character standing up for what she believes in and deciding she’s not going to be afraid anymore. She’s going to take him on and go down fighting.

Do you have any tips for other aspiring writers or authors out there?
Read and read widely. Reading helps strengthen your own writing. It’s also a good way to find out what’s hot right now and what’s been done.
Join writing groups and get to know fellow authors. Network. You’d be surprised at what you can learn just from talking to other authors. It’s also a great way to meet new people who are going through the same journey you’re going through, or who have been through the journey.
Keep writing. Even if you write a few lines of your novel a day, you’re writing it. If you don’t want to write your novel, write a blog entry or something else but write every day. It keeps your writing sharp and it gives you focus.
Lastly, don’t give up on your dreams. If your dream is to be an author, then do it. Make it happen. If people tell you you’re never going to amount to anything, ignore them. Only you will know deep down inside whether it can happen for you and if you’re determined and focused, it will happen.

So, I think we’ve gotten to know you a little now. How’s about we step it up a notch. Are you panicking? Lol. Do you have any dirty little secrets or confessions you’d like to share with us- what’s on the blog stays on the blog, right guys. (wink)
I’m an adrenaline junkie. I love doing crazy things. I’ve jumped out of a helicopter, skydived, bungee-jumped and para-glided 28,000 feet off the Austrian Alps.
Did I mention I’m afraid of heights?
Do you think it's the addiction to caffeine that boosts your adrenaline? I'm scared for you merely reading this. lol

Where’s your favourite place to write?
I love writing in my bedroom, preferably late at night. I put headphones on and write. I find it soothing and calming. It’s a bad habit to write in my bedroom and I need to get out of it, but at the moment it’s the only place I can get peace and quiet.

Tell us of your releases- where and when can we buy them?
Nowhere to Run is due out on February 14th. It will be available from Amazon, itunes, and Barnes and Noble. The paperback will be due out shortly after the ebook. I then plan on releasing Nowhere to Hide, the second novel in the Stephanie Carovella series in August 2013. The third book in the series, will be out 2014 and December 2013 will see book one of the Live and Let Die series.
In one word, how would you best describe yourself?

Now that we’re all friends, tell us your most embarrassing moment?
Most embarrassing moment was probably years ago when I went to interview a musician and he suggests drinks so we went out drinking. We got so drunk, we somehow staggered back to his hotel room and passed out on his bed together. I woke up the next morning embarrassed as hell. Got the interview and ended up getting a good friend out of it. We’re still friends ten years later.
Embarrassing with a HEA. That's well done!

Do you have any upcoming signings or author appearances you would like to share?
I have a blog tour between February 1st and February 15th, but other than that nothing at this time.

Is there anything else that you would like to share with us?
Keep your eyes peeled out for Nowhere to Run, due out on February 14th this year
whoop whoop! I'm cheering for it.

Here is Nowhere To Run blurb:
A dominatrix is murdered; her body displayed in a show of dominance. An actress is found dead beneath the Hollywood sign. There’s a murderer roaming the streets of Los Angeles and he’s having far too much fun to stop.
Stephanie Carovella is a woman of fire and ice. She left her career, her friends and her home town of LA but she couldn’t outrun the demons of her past. When she is lured back by the death of her best friend she enters a world where no one’s safe.
Can Stephanie find her friend’s killer or will she discover that she has nowhere to run?

To find out more about Nina and her books, here are her links:

Twitter: @janinedangelo


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