Today I would like to introduce you to one of my good friends and fellow writers, Dominique Goodall!
Hi Dominique! Thanks for joining me today. To start off, tell us a bit about yourself.
Well...I'm 23 and from the UK, so that makes me British (though my heart longs for somewhere deep in the forests of Missouri, with wolves roaming and howling all around me). In case you haven't guessed, I'm also a wolf addict. I collect wolf stuff, trying to gain as much of it as I can - one of my aims is to break the Guinness World Record for having the most wolf stuff. I'm also an animal lover. I have a dog, two snakes and a hedgehog, though the house itself has a few more animals...just your ordinary ones, of course. I'm an avid reader, still managing to read almost a book a day while working on my novels and other bits.
Thanks Dominique, your animals sound like a lot of fun, and I imagine they serve as some great writing buddies and maybe even inspiration. I love hearing a bit about the lives of writers, since I think that plays a lot into what a writer chooses to write. In your opinion what makes your writing unique?
I write from the point of view of a creature that is often hated. I understand wolves, and try to make sure that although my characters speak, they also express themselves through body language, as they would in the wild. I also add a healthy dash of imagination - wolves and cats don't normally wage war as we do, nor would certain species become allies...but for the sake of my characters, I allowed it.
That really sounds interesting! Why do you think someone would enjoy reading your book?
If you are a fan of wolves, cougars, lynx...any creature that could be found in the wild, you will like this book. If you are a fan of Watership Down, you may even love it. Echoes of Winter is a wilder version, set in a dystopian setting of humans being less than in control. I've even had Echoes of Winter compared to Brian Jacque's Redwall series, though I was told it was better!
Wow, that is some great praise! I haven't read any of the Redwall books, but I am familiar with the works, and I am a huge fan of Watership Down. Now I am even more excited for readers to get their hands on your work. Is this type of novel what you stick to, or do you explore other things too? What genre and age group do you typically write for?
I write several things. I believe Echoes of Winter and the following books to be for more mature young adults, as there is a lot of violence in there that may upset a younger teen, which is the same as Torn, from my hellhound series. Power of the Song would be good for all young adults and upwards. I also write horror, paranormal and some very light erotica/romance.
Is there any particular reason that you write what you do?
It's the kind of books I love the best, so I'm writing for an age group I can really understand and relate to, though it may be a tad "long" for some people.
I think one of the greatest ways an author can connect with their readers is by writing about things they are passionate about. What made you decide to be a writer, and when was that?
I've always loved writing. I'd done it from a young age. I was only nine when I wrote/story-boarded my first story. I turned from writing stories to poetry and then back again not long afterwards. Since then I just played about with writing until very recently.
You mentioned earlier that you are an avid reader. What do you like to read?
Anything with shapeshifters tends to catch my attention. I love to see how people represent characters that I enjoy - though they have to be well-rounded.
Do you have any favorite authors?
Three, who I call my inspiration. William Horwood, author of The Wolves of Time in particular, David Clements-Davies who wrote The Sight and Fell and Tamora Pierce for her Wild Magic series.
Those are some great authors to look up to. How long have you been writing?
Fourteen years now . . . and now I feel old, thanks Heidi!
Haha, sorry Dominique! How old were you when you wrote your first book and how long did it take you?
I was 22, finishing it about five months before my 23rd birthday. The majority took me five months - that is to say 100,000 words in five months and I wrote two novellas in that time too.
That sounds like some dedicated writing! How long did you work on your story before you felt like it was ready for publishing?
I actually had a publisher before it was finished, so as soon as it was done, she had it - obviously via an editor in the first place.
That's fantastic! Did anything in particular inspire anything in your book?
A TV show about puppies in the womb. I know, totally unrelated - but absolutely perfect for this book and a massive inspiration.
Interesting! Inspiration for a good story can really come from just about anything, I think. What else are you working on right now?
What am I NOT working on? *groans then laughs* The sequel to Torn, Asunder. The sequel to Echoes of Winter, Spring Surrender. Through His Eyes, a paranormal twisted story and Power of the Song, another wolf fantasy.
You certainly are keeping busy! Good luck with each of those. Do you have any other published works besides Echoes of Winter?
I have some small pieces in anthologies...but watch Amazon, I'll be getting more there soon!
What advice would you give to other aspiring writers?
Keep on writing, even when you want to burn your manuscript. Even if YOU hate it, don't discard it! That's not the way to go!
I completely agree! Any advice for the editing process?
Go over your manuscript seven times with a fine-toothed comb. Make sure you get out each and every mistake you can before it reaches an editor.
Some more great advice! Now, it seems like you are pretty involved with your writing, but everybody needs a break at some point. What do you like to do when you aren't writing?
I train my dog, promote my writing, listen to music, sing and dance - I like to keep active.
Do you listen to music while you write? If so, what do you listen to?
I don't. It bugs me more than anything else - I have something light on in the background...a movie I've seen loads of time, etc.
Now as fun as it is being a writer, most kids don't dream of being an author. What did you want to be when you were little?
*shameface* I wanted to save the dinosaurs! SHHH! Don't laugh at me! I was four!!! When I realized at six they had already died out, I decided I wanted to work with animals themselves.
What a great goal, saving the dinosaurs! Thanks for ending this interview with a smile, and thank you so much for coming today! Also, thanks to everyone who is reading this interview. I hope you've enjoyed getting to know Dominique Goodall. Check back tomorrow for information on where you can get her book and keep up to date with what she is doing.
- Heidi Nicole Bird