When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I probably knew from about the age of fourteen or so, as I started writing poetry then, but I spent a number of years believing I would be a singer. I made the conscious decision at age 19, when I reached a fork in the road: audition for the National Musical Theater Conservatory or focus my attention on the school newspaper and an internship at the Denver Post.
How long does it take you to write a book?
About a year for my multiple drafts, usually around three, not counting time spent working with beta readers and editors and making (some of) their suggested changes.
What do you think is the best way of publishing a book these days?
The best way? At least three to six months after absolute completion, including beta readers, editors, proofers, formatting, and design of a marketing plan. (In other words, your book should be absolutely ready to sell *before* you wait three months.) It doesn’t matter what venue or format, but too many writers are uploading to KDP and Smashwords without thinking, as soon as they finish the first draft. It does them, their books, and the indie industry a disservice.
When did you write your first book?
2009/2010. It turned into two books (at 400,000 words total), The Stolen Child and Concrete Loyalties.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Nothing. I am always writing. It is my only hobby.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
That I could write books. I was always afraid of fiction, though I have spent my life writing everything else.
How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
Royal Regard (available), La Déesse Noire: The Black Goddess (available for pre-order), The Stolen Child, Concrete Loyalties, Blind Tribute (under contract), Shipmate (novella WIP), ‘Tis Her Season (novella WIP, under contract for winter 2015). My favorite is the mainstream historical, Blind Tribute, which is about a Civil War newspaper reporter with divided loyalties.
Can you tell me and your readers something about your main characters?
In La Déesse Noire: The Black Goddess, my heroine, Kali Matai, is an Indian dancer and courtesan in London, surrounded by some men who love her and some who hate her, but none who are indifferent. I set out to write a character who constantly has to save herself and is well-equipped to do so, but who cannot find her HEA without making herself vulnerable. In general, particularly true with this book, I create deeply scarred characters in uncommon circumstances who overcome self-imposed barriers to reach their full potential.
Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
I hear from some readers, though I am only recently published, so still building a following. One thing I love is that a lot of people who don’t read romance, including a handful of “guy’s guys,” have told me they really like my books.
What are your favorite book genres in writing and reading? Why?
Historical, both mainstream and romance, most likely because I was raised with extensive knowledge of my own family history.
Now that you know a little about Mariana check out her next book which is available for pre-order.
Kali Matai, London’s most famed Indian dancer and courtesan, harbors a lifetime of secrets, as more lives than hers depend on it.
Sired by a British peer, born of a paramour to Indian royalty, she has been destined from birth to enthrall England’s most powerful noblemen—though she hadn’t counted on becoming their pawn. Finding herself under the control of ruthless men, who will not be moved by her legendary allure, she has no choice but to use her beauty toward their malicious and clandestine ends.
When those she holds most dear are placed in peril by backroom political dealings, she enlists some of the most formidable lords in England to thwart her enemies. But even with the help of the prominent gentlemen she has captivated, securing Kali’s freedom, her family, and the man she loves, will require her protectors stop at nothing to fulfill her desires.
Where To Find Mariana