Hello, I’m please to bring you this author interview with D.F. Hart today! Please see the questions and answers below!
1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)? I write under the pen name D.F. Hart, and I call Texas home.
2) What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?
My latest work is the third in my Vital Secrets series. It’s called List of Secrets, and the title goes live on August 7th. The genre is mystery/suspense.
3) What is the book about?
The short version is, there are deaths that occur that all seem to be natural or accidental, when in fact they are murders.
4) Where did you come up with the idea?
I’d been talking with my mom, who is my proofreader, and was telling her some ideas I had for the next book in series. She shared with me a very cool plot idea she’d had for years but not gotten around to writing, and then she floored me by asking me to write it! So, we collaborated. She gave the basics (main general plot idea and character names) and I worked it into the book that’s now available, adding some delicious sub-plots and plot twists along the way.
5) How long did it take you to write it?
About four months, I believe, from start to finish.
6) Did you learn anything from the project?
This novel was my first foray into collaboration; previously, what I’d written flowed straight from my head onto paper. Writing this one gave me unique insight into some tools I’d not previously used – such as mapping out a story arc ahead of beginning to write – that I will incorporate going forward, because they’re very useful.
7) Do you have an author website and/or blog?
I do, and that was another very cool thing to learn how to do on this self-publishing journey. You can find it at https://2ofharts.com/
8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?
A couple, actually.
First, don’t be afraid to fail. I don’t believe I’ve yet met or talked with one single author that’s ever said they 100% did everything right, right off the bat. There’s a learning curve involved, to be sure, particularly for the self-published. You might not do everything correct, or in the right order, at first. Learn from those times, allow yourself some grace and keep trying.
Second, follow your passion and believe in yourself, always. There may be days you’re not motivated to write, or research, or edit, or some of the other tasks that are part-and-parcel of being an author. Do them anyway. Keep moving. You’ll thank yourself later. BUT – With that, also practice good self-care. Maintain a healthy balance.
Lastly – Get on some of the review sites out there (Bookbub, Hidden Gems, NetGalley) and use them – As a READER. Two reasons why:
- It gets you very familiar with their processes, so that when the time comes to list YOUR books, you have an excellent feel of what to expect.
- It just might, as it did for me, open your horizon to other genres you aren’t aware of or fluent in, that you might want to read or to create works in.
RE: Cover Artists – I personally use Jennifer with Acapella Book Cover Design; she’s fabulous. Here’s the link to her site: http://www.acapellabookcoverdesign.com/
9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?
My preferences have historically been mystery/suspense/thrillers. As I’ve followed my own advice and used BB and HG as a reader, however, I’ve found that I also enjoy some steampunk, paranormal romance, and other genres that I might not have explored before.
I am definitely open to reading new authors and reviewing their work. As one myself, I understand the importance of ratings and reviews! Having said that, there’s been a very small number of occasions where something I have read did NOT get reviewed publicly at all – because I don’t believe in blasting one and two- star ratings at other authors in public. I wouldn’t want it done to me, so I don’t do it to others. If I opt not to review something, it’s because the story (in my opinion) is just so dissonant that I cannot in good conscience rate it three-star or higher. In those very rare instances, I’ve reached out to the author directly and privately to share my feedback/suggestions.
10) What is your favorite book of all time and why?
Wow, only one? That’s a tough one; I’ve quite the collection at home, most of which I’ve read multiple times.
If pressed, I would say “Eye of the Needle,” by Ken Follett. It’s a spy novel, yes, but so much more. Intricate weaving of the plot blanket, with multiple characters that are very well-designed and three-dimensional to the extent you feel you’re reading about real people. Perfect pacing to the story, no drag, but not so fast as to lose the reader. Historical fiction (it’s based in WWII), and one heck of a ‘what if’ scenario. Action, danger, intrigue, romance, you name it, this book has it all.
Above and beyond the story itself, interestingly enough “Eye of the Needle” was, I believe, the eleventh book Follett released – and his first worldwide best-seller. SO, the other thing I love about that book from an author standpoint is, it’s a very visceral reminder to not give up, keep working your craft, keep writing!
It could just be coincidence.
But Frank Zimmerman has seen too much over the years. He doesn’t believe in coincidences.
A drowned lawyer, a fatal car accident, a heart attack and a socialite’s lethal fall in front of a huge crowd all have his cop antennae pinging – hard.
It also could be revenge.
He digs for evidence to support his theory of a trail of bodies that lead into the past. But when he is sidelined it is second-generation detective Lizzie Zimmerman, along with his former partner Joe Wallace and FBI profiler Nathan Thomas, who will ultimately come face to face with the truth.
Can the mystery be solved before others die?
What’s going on? And who’s going to die next if Lizzie, Joe, and Nathan can’t figure it out in time?