Interview: Lisa Darling

NRR: Can you share with us how you got started in writing?

LBD: I started writing in elementary school when we were given our first "creative writing" assignment. I put pen to paper for the first time in that manner and I just knew that was what I was going to do for the rest of my life.

NRR: How were you inspired to write The Heart Of War?

LBD: Actually, I was indulging myself in cruising the internet for pictures of one man in particular and I came across a photo of him I'd never seen before.  The image struck me like a bolt of lightning and in five minutes, I had a 500 page novel rolling around in my head screaming to get out.

NRR: What is your guilty pleasure?

LBD: Looking for those pictures!

NRR: Can you share with us some of your favorite authors/books?

LBD: My All-Time favorite author is Stephen King and my favorite book of his is "The Stand" followed very closely by "It".   Some of my other favorite novels are "Once is Not Enough" and "Valley of the Dolls" by Jacqueline Susann and "Dream Die First" by Harold Robbins.  I also really loved the "Flowers in the Attic" series by VC Andrews.

NRR: What was the most challenging part of writing The Heart Of War?

LBD: Keeping Ares in character without turning him into a completely overbearing brute or a mush-bucket.   He had to change and develop over the course of the story and go from one to the other but without any major extremes or he just wouldn't be likeable at all.

NRR: What is in your to be read pile?

LBD: I'm still trying to find time to read "Full Dark, No Stars".  I hardly ever get a minute to just sit never mind read anymore.

NRR: Can you share with us the storyline to The Heart Of War?

LBD: At its heart it's a romance, all of my stories are romances at their cores, but there's always much more to the story than that.  "The Heart of War" is about finding the hero within even when no one—including you—believes the hero is there in the first place.  It's about overcoming obstacles and rising up to the challenges of our rivals as we make our way through this world.
When we first meet Ares he's been in exile from Olympus for quite some time, most of the other Gods that once freely roamed this world are gone, and even though he keeps a stable of 8 women around him (and a handful of guards) he's really all alone in this world. That makes him very grumpy.  Then he meets Alena and things begin to change for him.  At first, she simply presents him with a puzzle; who is she, where did she come from, what does she want.  Once he realizes she's on the run from Cernunnos and might know something about the death of Artemis, Ares wants to use her so that he can get back to Olympus and reclaim his place.  Then he realizes, as much as he wants back what's his, he wants her more and he can't turn her over to the Olympians when they demand to have her.
That's where the fun really begins, the Olympians are so divinely dysfunctional that they're a hoot to work with and play around with.  We've got battling Gods and Druids and backstabbing Olympians and sex, lots and lots of sex.  Well, with Ares…can you blame me? He's HOT.

NRR: What advice can you give to aspiring authors?

LBD: Just keep doing what you're doing.  Write for yourself above all others.  Do not write for a market or a target audience and try to fit into someone else's prefabricated mold.  Write what pleases you, what makes you laugh, cry, or get worked up. In the end, if whatever you write doesn't make you laugh, cry, or whatever, it won't do it for anyone else either.

NRR: What can we expect to see from you next?

LBD: Next up on the plate is "Child of War" the sequel to "The Heart of War".  We plan on three novels in this series with Ares and Alena who are about to welcome their son, Raven, into the world.  The Olympians are not happy.  Should be a good ride.

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