It’s Meet the Author Monday! Each week we meet a new author and get to know a little about them, their writing process, publishing experience, and tips for other writers. Today we’re talking to Danielle Orsino, author of Birth of the Fae: Thine Eyes of Mercy, Book Two.
About Danielle Orsino:
Danielle M. Orsino is a fantasy novelist whose lifelong vision to create whimsical realms that her readers can escape to. Her compelling word-weaving pays homage to a multitude of personal muses, from Chris Claremont and George Pérez (both famous comic book writers), to Anne Rice and Wonder Woman.
The creative spark of storytelling has been with Danielle ever since she was a child, but martial arts and her nursing career took center stage into adulthood. Then, on a day like any other, it was reignited during the most unexpected of moments: while treating one of her patients. Seeing that they longed for a distraction during their arduous treatments, the floodgates of inspiration soon burst forth. So, Danielle took it upon herself to tell them a story; a fantastical narrative that would leave the confines of that IV room’s walls and land upon a page. Before she knew it, what started as an imaginative tale to pass the time, turned into book, followed by an entire series: The Birth of Fae. This awe-inspiring series includes Locked out of Heaven (Book One), Thine Eyes of Mercy (Book Two), and From The Ashes (Book Three), all of which are published by 4 Horsemen Publications, Inc. And with an unwavering passion for cosplay and comics, it was a unanimous decision to place her on the cover of each book in all her Fae cosplay glory. The Birth of Fae also features Los, an affable chameleon dragon inspired by her fun-loving Yorkie named Carlos.
When writing wasn’t at the forefront of her mind, Danielle was a successful Martial Artist. Some of her achievements include “1999 World Martial Arts Hall of Fame Inductee”, “Female Martial Artist of the Year”, “WKA World Champion Silver Medalist 2008”, and numerous more. She has also garnered hundreds of martial art tournament wins, various other national and world titles, and features on big-name channels like TLC and CBS. She even had the rare opportunity to perform for former U.S. President Bill Clinton and collaborate alongside Vincent Lyn and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. From there, she pursued her Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology and Exercise Science, and she is now a Licensed Practical Nurse who focuses on Lyme disease research.
This “New Queen of the Fae’s” unmatched world-building and masterful Fae-origin retellings have led to an ever-growing queendom of “Fae-natics”. To begin embarking upon a quest in an epic world unlike any other, visit Danielle M. Orsino’s official website at http://www.BirthOfTheFae.com. You can also connect with her on Instagram (@BirthOfTheFae_Novel) and Twitter (@BirthOfTheFae).
“After summoning this world into existence through an imaginative force of will, Danielle has scoured every inch of the landscape several times over. Critics often praise a story’s world building by saying that it feels “lived in.” Well, the world of the Fae certainly seems like that because Danielle herself has happily lived there for years as she worked to put all of this together… My favorite part of this story is that it is gloriously depicted in vibrant images.”-Clete Barrett Smith, New York Times Bestselling Author of If We Were Giants, Aliens on Vacation series, and Magic Delivery
Queen Aurora, of the Court of Light Fae, and King Jarvok, of the Court of Dark Fae, are exhausted and battle-worn after centuries of fighting. The attrition has taken its toll upon their kin and power bases.
What happens when you have to give in to your enemy?
All wars eventually end, even magical ones. The Dark and Light Fae have set their elemental magick and weapons down, but, all is not quiet in the Veil…
King Jarvok was confident his army could win the war, but at what cost? It was time to act like a King, not a power hungry megalomaniac. That was his Creator’s role, not his. He reaches out to Queen Aurora, and the Treaty of Bodhicitta is signed.
The treaty promises the Fae will never spill each other’s blood again. Rules for their human worshippers are put into place. The Court of Dark must not interfere with humans in a malignant way, but they can act as gods and goddesses of atonement. The Court of Light can return to acting as advisors to the European royal families, as they have done for centuries.
However, Queen Aurora and King Jarvok will learn that while they were playing war games, their humans have changed and moved away from the old ways.
The two monarchs face unknown challenges in a world where Christianity, not paganism, is the new power.
Sometimes the devil you know is better than the one you do not.
Author Interview with Danielle Orsino:
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- What literary pilgrimages have you gone on?
I visited Lyndhurst Mansion and Tarrytown Castle when I started writing the series and used both as inspiration.
- What are common traps for aspiring writers?
Common traps, trying to write what is trendy or trying to please everyone, writing by committee.
- Does a big ego help or hurt writers?
I think an ego is needed to an extent, to have faith in your work and not get caught up in all the criticism because there is so much of it, but you cannot have an overinflated ego. You have to be balanced, have a sense of who you are as a writer, know when to ask for help, when to fight for an edit, when to back off and take the critique and then when to ignore the haters because at the end of the day you wrote a book and that’s pretty darn great.
- Did you ever consider writing under a pseudonym?
I was asked by bigger publishing companies to change my name to at the very least my initials because I am a woman writing fantasy, I refused.
- Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I try to stay as true to my characters as possible. Their voices guide me as I write. I do take my readers into consideration if there is a character that they would like to know more about or one that has struck a chord with them I will explore it. However, I stay on my path as much as possible.
- Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?
Each book is interconnected, but I do take into consideration that a reader may jump into the series at any given time and I want them to be able to without getting lost. I write each book to stand on its own but they are all connected with easter eggs for readers who have been following along building upon the world I have created picking up on the subtle hints and layers.
- What was an early experience where you learned that language had power?
The first time I cursed and I was punished for it, right there I learned language can get you in trouble but there must be another side to it as well.
- How do you balance making demands on the reader with taking care of the reader?
I cherish my readers so much, to me they are everything. It is the only reason I even think to go on goodreads or have a social media account, just so I can interact with them and hear what they have to say. I understand they wonder why I may time jump or not give them an answer right away, but they also don’t have to wait more than 6 months for a new release. My books are shorter, because I am conscious of their time commitment, and as I said they don’t have to wait too long to find out what’s going to happen next. I also leave notes at the end of each book to let them know the next one is one the way. I try to remind them I am right there with the reader acting as their tour guide. I don’t want them to feel lost. I am trying to establish a sense of trust.
- How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
Currently there are three books out with Book four scheduled for release on May 30th. Books five through eight are ready and I have just finished my first novella. Book nine is about twenty chapters in.
- What have you found is the best way to market your books?
Word of mouth on instagram and podcasts, but an anime sure would be nice!
- What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?
I am in a constant mode of researching, always looking for bits and pieces of information to add and learn.
- How do you select the names of your characters?
To be honest the characters name themselves, their personalities and situations do it. Sometimes the names are homages to people I know or heroes of mine. For example Szabo – a dragon you will meet in an upcoming novella is my neurologist who really wanted to be a dragon in the series. Los the dragon is my yorkie Carlos.
- Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
I do read reviews and I am trying to get better about processing them. I get rid of the very worst and the very best, from there I see what I am left with and try to find what will help me as an author.