Danielle Thorne freelanced for online and print magazines from 1998 through 2001, adding reviewing and editing to her resume. She is the author of THE PRIVATEER, a 1729 historical about British privateering in the Caribbean and TURTLE SOUP, a sweet contemporary romance set between Atlanta and St. Thomas. Her new shipwreck adventure, BY HEART AND COMPASS, is available now. Her first Jane Austen-inspired Regency, JOSETTE, has been contracted by Whimsical Publications for Winter 2010.
Other work has appeared with Espresso Fiction, Every Day Fiction, Arts and Prose Magazine, Mississippi Crow, The Nantahala Review, StorySouth, Bookideas, The Mid-West Review, and more. She won an Honorable Mention in Writer’s Digest’s 2006 annual writing competition and won the 2008 Awe-Struck Short Novel Contest.
Danielle currently writes from south of Atlanta, Georgia. She was the 2009-2010 Co-Chair for the New Voices Competition for young writers, is active with online author groups such as Classic Romance Revival and EPIC, and moderates for The Sweetest Romance Authors at the Coffee Time Romance boards. Danielle reviews for online review sites and edits for two publishing houses and Romance Junkies. She lives with four sons and her husband, who is an air traffic controller. Together they enjoy travel and the outdoors, Marching Band competitions and BSA Scouting.
Tell us about BY HEART AND COMPASS in a few sentences.
BY HEART AND COMPASS is about stepping out of your comfort zone and truly following your heart. Whether it's love, trust or the opportunity to chase adventure, most people hold back because of that niggle of doubt that tells us dreams can't come true. In this adventure, Lacy Whitman finds an antique diary that hints at the location of a long lost shipwreck, and she has to gather her courage to face making a discovery that is more than just pages in a book. She also risks falling for a cynical yet vulnerable dive instructor. Life is all about taking chances and living, and that's what I like to write about.
How did you come to write this particular book?
I love Age of Sail fiction, and I thought it would be fun to do a modern day treasure
hunt for a pirate ship. Using the infamous ship I created in one of my earlier novels, THE
PRIVATEER, I was able to bring it into the present with two quirky lead characters who need a lot of faith and adventure in their lives.
Where and when is your novel set, and why did you make these specific choices?
BY HEART AND COMPASS is set between Georgia, in the southern U.S. and the Caribbean island of Antigua. I've traveled to the Caribbean several times, but have never been to Antigua. I chose the coast of this island for the setting though, because it fits geographically with the storyline. I love research, so it was a lot of fun finding out about the landscape and cuisine. I was already familiar with the history from some of my earlier studies.
What sort of displacement activities keep you from actually writing?
I waited many years for my family to mature before seriously pursuing publication, but having
family around me keeps me grounded. Writing is important, but it is secondary to being there for my husband and children, keeping my home in order and serving in the community. Besides being a wife and mother, I also work in the BSA, volunteer at school and do genealogy research. It's a juggling act but I've learned to do first what matters most, and what I enjoy and makes me happy, second.
How long does it normally take you to write a novel?
Historical manuscripts can take me up to a year with all of the research and editing. However, I find that I can work out a contemporary in about three months, including editing, so it's tempting to spend more time focusing on that genre, but history is what really makes me happy.
What are your inspirations?
To be known as a quality, romantic adventure author, both historically and in the contemporary
genre. My first Regency novel will be released this winter, and I'm looking forward to reader
response. The era is so well studied and familiar to general readers that it's quite an undertaking to familiarize oneself with all of the data. It's like another world, so one of my greatest aspirations is to have my work both in the Regency era and the Age of Sail well received by readers because I devote myself to research and getting things right. The fact that I am an American writer dipping into another culture can be intimidating, but my paternal line hails directly from the U.K. and so I feel it in my blood.
What are you writing now?
I have several projects on the backburner as currently I'm editing for two publishing houses, not to mention reviewing and doing self-promotion. A chapbook of my poetry will be released this winter along with the Regency. Since BY HEART AND COMPASS is a modern day sequel to one of my first novels, THE PRIVATEER, that book will be re-released this January by Desert Breeze Publishing. As far as actually writing, I'm looking forward to settling in and finishing a
contemporary romance about an Iraqi war veteran and an orphaned teenager.
Do you have a website or a blog that readers can visit?
I sure do. Readers are invited to visit my website and learn more about my books and myself at
www.daniellethorne.jimdo.com as well as follow my blog The Balanced Writer
(www.thebalancedwriter.blogspot.com). I love getting feedback so I hope to hear from some of you.
THE CUPID DIARIES
BY HEART AND COMPASS
JOSETTE; Winter 2010
SOUTHERN GIRL, YANKEE ROOTS; Winter 2010
THE PRIVATEER (Re-release); January 2011
Thank you for having me here today!