Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Interview with Danielle D. Smith + giveaway

Join me, WildAboutBones, in welcoming paranormal, erotic paranormal and fantasy author Danielle D. Smith as we talk about her newest book, Demon's Slave.

Author Bio:
Danielle D. Smith was born in San Diego, California, USA. She was first published at age 29. In addition to being a writer of bestselling gritty angel-and-demon themed supernatural fantasy stories that have cracked the Amazon bestseller list and gained a dedicated cult following, she is an accomplished fine artist and illustrator whose visual work has appeared in various public, private, and gallery exhibitions and in national publications, and has studied everything from costuming to tattooing. Dani, as she is known by many who are close to her, lives in San Diego with a large number of books, indie flicks, and documentaries. Her novels appeal to dreamers, troublemakers, dark romantics, horn dogs, and general escapists. She is the proud owner of a beefcake husband, a beautiful new baby boy named Ryker, and several beautiful tattoos. She is hard at work juggling motherhood and working on the graphic novel versions of two of her books, Black Dog and Rebel Rose and Psyche's Gate.

WAB: Would you tell us a little about yourself?
Danielle: My name is Danielle, but you can call me Dani. I’m an author, artist, and illustrator hailing from sunny San Diego, California. I have published five books thus far in my career, four being released by Liquid Silver Books and Solstice Publishing, and the most recent, Demon’s Slave, has been released under my own publishing house name. My artworks have been featured in gallery and public art exhibitions and in national publications, including magazines, newspapers, and art journals, and I have studied all sorts of artistic disciplines, the most interesting being tattooing. I’m a tomboy at heart, and love jeans, wife beaters, Camel cigarettes, muscle cars, Harleys, and booze (though my tolerance is lower than it used to be…sighhhh). At the other end of the spectrum, I’m a wife and a mother. My husband is a tattooed beefcake with long curly dark hair and a Juris Doctorate (no, I’m not kidding). We just added a special addition to our little family, and I could not be happier: I gave birth to my first son, Ryker, this past November, and I love to dote on and cuddle the crap outta him. If you are ever in San Diego and you see a pale freckled chick in her early 30’s wearing a black “Make mine a Hornitos” tank, combat boots, low-cut jeans, and a demon horn knit cap, her arms and chest scrolled with tattoos, pushing a stroller containing the cutest little baby you’d ever see, you can bet that’s me. ;-)
WAB: I've seen the pictures on your blog and he is adorable. The YouTube videos of hubby changing diapers are hysterical.

WAB: What made you to decide to take Rose and Skriker into the BDSM arena with Demon’s Slave?
Danielle: My fans! I received requests via Facebook from a few of my most devoted readers, telling me that they would love a book specifically about Skriker and Rose’s sex life, rather than a paranormal hunt adventure with sex thrown in as part of the story. Naturally, BDSM made sense, since it would allow me to explore the dynamic of their unorthodox, “forbidden” relationship in an interesting and edgy way.
WAB: Check out my review of Demon's Slave below this post.

WAB: Are they going to stay there or just occasionally visit it in future books?
Danielle: You’ll likely see a bit of BDSM thrown in periodically in future adventures, but probably not as heavily as in Demon’s Slave. Skriker and Rose’s BDSM adventure truly needed its own book.
WAB: Variety is the spice of life. And I can't wait to read more.

WAB: What do you think readers will like best about Demon’s Slave?
Danielle: The hot, insanely daring sex! No, really…I’d have to guess that most readers will enjoy the relationship that the characters share. How deeply they love each other and how much each is willing to sacrifice for the other—that makes their sexual experiences that much steamier. As Skriker tells Rose, “It’s always better with your One and Only,” and I have to agree! I mean, the man has laid more pipe than that which can be found under New York City, so he’s gotta know!
WAB: LOL. Just ask him, he'll tell ya and tell ya frequently.

WAB: Can you tell us a little bit about what’s next for Rose and Skriker?
Danielle: I don’t want to give too much away, but fans are going to be seeing some big BIG changes for their favorite mismatched paranormal couple. I will say that there will be a wedding in the next BD & RR Series novella when Skriker takes Rose to Sweden, his mother’s ancestral homeland. I am working hard on the second “fat” novel installation of the Psyche’s Gate Saga, “Nephil’s Curse”, which will follow Skriker, Rose, Alexius, and a cast of new characters (including my first werewolves) as they hunt for who killed Rose’s mother, Psyche. Many of my readers are guessing that there is going to be a baby born to the bad boy and his Nephil girl in the near future…but I ain’t tellin’! ;-)
WAB: Ooohhh werewolves. I heart me some werewolves whether they are the good guys or the bad guys.

WAB: If you had to choose between Rose and Skriker as your favorite character, which would you choose and why?
Danielle: Skrike, fo sho. The man is just too awesome. He’s the epitome of “fun” in my book (no pun intended), and he keeps the readers coming back for more. Call it arrogance, but Skriker is actually the character that is the most like me, which tends to surprise a lot of people. It makes him really easy to write. And I love drawing him—he’s crazy expressive. I’m working on the graphic novel version of Black Dog and Rebel Rose, and he is the most enjoyable character to draw comic book style. I think he’d be great to have a beer and a chat with.
WAB: Hhmm, sounds like a great future guest post.

WAB: What order should your books be read in?
Danielle: No specific order—each book can stand on its own. HOWEVER, if folks want to get to know Skriker and Rose from the start, they should read Black Dog and Rebel Rose first. And if they want the full backstory for each character, they should pick up Psyche’s Gate, which is about Rose’s parents, and In The Neon, which introduces Skriker’s parents. Technichally In The Neon is the earliest tale, taking place about four years before Psyche’s Gate does.
WAB: I am very anxious to read these after reading Demon's Slave

WAB: Do you have a process or any special rituals in your writing routine? And how has just having had your beautiful baby boy changed it?
Danielle: I write in a very clusterf**k manner, so the biggest rituals would not take place within the writing process itself, but in what goes on externally. I always have a beer, a whisky, or a diet soda within reach, and I usually smoke a cigarette or two before and after a writing session. If I get stuck and need to mull over my next steps, I take a shower. Yep, it’s strange, but true. For some reason, soaping up and rinsing off really helps—it’s like lightning strikes the most easily when I’m spacing out with shampoo in my hair.
After having my son, the biggest change would be that I need to take more notes so that I won’t forget anything if I get interrupted—having a newborn means you are on HIS schedule, not your own! Oh, and I don’t smoke in the house, EVER. If I need a Camel, I pop out onto my big balcony and chill there, well away from my lil’ bean.
WAB: Sounds like you need a personal recorder you can hang on your clothing next to the pacifier so you can record your thoughts as they come to you while taking care of your lil' bean.

WAB: What have you learned about the writing and publishing process as a result of having started your own publishing firm?
Danielle: That I have more control. Don’t get me wrong—I LOVE both of my publishers, and am thrilled that I landed them. I am very blessed, and most of my manuscripts will still be released through Solstice and/or LSB (or even a bigger publisher if anyone makes an offer), most notably the Psyche’s Gate Saga books. However, putting my own LLC name on some of my stories has allowed me to have enormous control over how the books are marketed, priced, and how much I receive royalty wise. Demon’s Slave hit the Amazon Bestseller list within 24 hours of being released—none of my other books did. I mean, Black Dog and Rebel Rose has a dedicated cult following, but sales were never Bestseller high. Since then, I have taken what I learned from that great triumph and passed it on to Solstice when they released the Black Dog and Rebel Rose Collection on Kindle. The result? The Collection (which includes BD & RR, Coyote Night, and In The Neon in an exclusive three-in-one set for the Amazon Kindle ONLY) also became an Amazon bestseller for the first 3 days of its release. I was very nervous about “self publishing” a book, since the indie publishing trend gets such a bad rap for having low quality product (and I usually would agree, as much as I hate to say it). Doing this on my own has taught me how much quality matters, and has made me a better writer. There is no traditional publisher to blame for bad editing, cover design, etc…it’s all on me, baby!
WAB: Congrats on hitting the Amazon Bestseller lists so soon. 

WAB: What is/are your favorite type(s) of paranormal character(s) and why?
Danielle: Angels and demons, BAR NONE. I am truthfully sick of the vampire, werewolf, and shifter trend, especially in PNR and erotica. It’s just so overdone, and plots are just recycled over and over. I will be working some werewolves into future books, but they will be minor characters, and not all good. My vampires are all bad, and usually gross, the way they were in the old days. Nope, it’s all about angels and demons for me! We’re talking about universal Good and Evil here, people…you can’t get more powerful than that! And pairing an angel and a demon up romantically…well, it makes for a really interesting matchup, lemme tell ya!
WAB: And if Demon's Slave is any indication, you do it so well!

WAB: Who are some of your favorite authors and what are some of your favorite books? Which has made the biggest impact on your writing career?
Danielle: My favorite authors would include Stephen King, Clive Barker, China Mieville, Neil Gaiman, Camus, and Swedish author John Ajvide Lindqvist. The short list of my favorite books would be King’s “Dark Tower Series” (especially “The Gunsliger”), “IT”, and “Pet Sematary”, Mieville’s “King Rat” (a HUGE influence on my writing), Gaiman’s “American Gods”, Camus’ “The Plague” and “The Stranger”, and Lindqvist’s “Let The Right One In”. I also love classic lit such as “The Metamorphosis” and Goethe’s “Faust” (I actually gave my son the middle name “Faustus” after the main character in this book).

I’d have to say that China Mieville and Neil Gaiman have made the biggest impact on me as a writer—China’s weird fantasy style inspires me to push the envelope, and Neil’s work reminds me to keep it fresh and fun and to not get stale.
WAB: I adore Stephen King and Clive Barker (both his fantasy and horror) as well. To this day, I won't let my long hair anywhere near a drain because of King's It and my heart starts racing if an air bubble gurgles in the toilet when I'm hitting there again because of It. I also love that a good portion of both their books tend to be nice long books of 400+ pages and many 600+ pages.

WAB: Is there something you’d like to tell your fans, something no one ever asks you in an interview?
Danielle: I have only been with one man sexually in my lifetime (my hubby)…but I have been with more than one woman. Blunt enough for ya? ;-)
WAB: ROTFLMAO! Not a shy little thang, are you? Thank you for answering this in the spirit it was asked.

WAB: Can you tell us a little bit about what you’re working on next?
Danielle: The Black Dog and Rebel Rose graphic novel is a HUGE thing for me right now…the biggest non-corporate (*cough* NOT Marvel or DC *cough*) comic book pubs will be getting proposal packages. I am also hard at work on the next Psyche’s Gate Saga book, “Nephil’s Curse”, and on the first Skriker and Rose holiday adventure, “Ghosts of Winter”, due out in spring/summer 2012. (Who said you can’t have Christmas in July?)
WAB: Oh yeah! Gotta luv Christmas in July.

Fun Questions:
Boxers, briefs or commando for your hero? LMFAO!!! Boxers…only because Skrike is waaay too hung not to support the family jewels!
Thongs, bikini panties or boy shorts for your heroine? Thongs. Definitely thongs. Rose is lucky enough to have a perfect ass. Bitch.
Dog, cat or ferret person? BUNNY person!!! I miss my Netherland Dwarf. He was my non-human baby. ?
What’s the first book you remember reading? I remember Goodnight Moon and The Little Engine That Could.
What’s your favorite fairy tale? Beauty and the Beast. So f**king romantic. Sighhhh…I own a beautifully illustrated out-of-print translation from the original French tale, with pictures by watercolor painter Diane Goode. It is simply beautiful! Can’t wait to read it to my son.
What’s your favorite cartoon character? Cartman from “South Park” and Sterling from “Archer”.
What are you currently reading? “Primal Myths” by Barbara C. Sproul, and “Granta”, a literary collection from England showcasing essays by several prominent authors with unique and diverse writing styles.
What is your favorite movie and TV show? Fave TV shows: “The Walking Dead” and “Sons of Anarchy”. I used to love “Supernatural”, but it took a total dump this season, so Sam and Dean are on time out with me. Favorite movie: Too many to list. But a few top picks would include the Mad Max films, Predator, The Lost Boys, City of Lost Children, Let The Right One In, Angel-A, Phantom of the Opera, and Wings of Desire.
What character name have you been dying to use as new character, but haven’t found the right fit yet? Tatiana. It’s one of my favorite girl’s names. Might just toss it at a minor character one of these days, just to use it. ?

Thank you so much, Dani, for taking the time out for us today. You are, as always, a blast to hang out with.

For more on Demon's Slave, check out my review below this post.

To get to know Rose and Striker a little better, check out Breaking All The Rules: An Intimate Interview With Skriker And Rose at http://www.theangelsgate.blogspot.com/2011/12/breaking-all-rules-intimate-interview.html (opens in a new window - don't forget to come back and enter the giveaway below)

Danielle can be found at:
Danielle's YouTube Channel (book trailers & more): http://www.youtube.com/user/DaniDSmith
Danielle's Official Art Site: http://www.wildwyrmart.com

Purchase Links:
For other retailers check out: http://www.danielledsmith.com/buybooks.html

January 17-21, 2012 (midnight)
Open Internationally
Dani is giving away an e-copy of Demon's Slave to one lucky winner.
By entering you are acknowledging you are over 18 years old (or the legal age limit in your state or country). Warning: contains explicit sex and BDSM sex which may be objectionable to some.
Leave a comment or question (including your email is not necessary since you will enter it in the Rafflecopter) for Danielle (something more substantial than just thanking her for the giveaway please) and
enter via the Rafflecopter below.
Add to Demon's Slave to your Goodreads.com "to read" list for an additional entry, see the Rafflecopter below for more.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Fun and informative interview. I enjoyed reading about your writing process. Does the shower work every time you get stuck? I can't wait to read more about Striker and Rose.

  3. This is one of my favorite series, it totally blows away the competition. Demon Slave can be stand alone but in order to get the utter hugeness of this book, a background on the dynamics between Skriker and Rose is helpful. I can't wait until the next book!

  4. I love bunnies too- please enter me into the giveaway

  5. Joanne: Yep, the shower works every time! My mother believes that I "channel" when I'm in the shower...probably something primordial, I dunno.

    Audra: Aren't bunnies the best?

    Wendy/Blue Shedevil: HEY MAMA! I WUV YOU!!! XOXOXOXOXOXO I want to fly out and adopt one of your wolfies some day. Name him Diablo and show my son how great wolfdogs are!!!

  6. Hi Dani,
    Great interview! I'll have to check out those YouTube vids of hubby & baby. Can't wait to read 'Demon's Slave'.

    Lea Ellen {night owl in IL}

  7. Rafflecopter never asked me for my email address, so how would you contact me if I won? (Other than I know Dani has my email address.)

    Lea Ellen {night owl in IL}

  8. LOL! Silly girls, no vids of MY hubby changing baby! Just vids of random dudes changing their babies that I found to be HI-LAR-I-OUS on YouTube! If you wanna se MY beefcake, check out my Facebook page and the photos folder. You'll see him sporting a Brisbane Lions jersey. ;-)

  9. This is a new author and series for me. I just finished The Dark Tower series by Stephen King. I agree with you on Supernatural TV show. I got alot of people I work with started on it a few years ago so we discuss at work. I am looking forward to checking out your books and hope I win Demon Slave. Thanks!

  10. love the art work!!! I am a big Supernatural fan and Being Human and Stephen King was my first horror read and it hooked me on the paranormal for life :)

  11. This book will blow your mind and a few other things. It is scorching and will move you in many ways. Mostly, it's 'Dirty Sexy'! LOL I loved it!

  12. Hi Dani
    Nice to see you around!
    Demom Slave sounds like an interesting read and I love our Skriker



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