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Until now, Danielle de Valera's been best known for her short stories, which have appeared in such diverse magazines as Penthouse, Aurealis and the Australian Women’s Weekly.
All in all, she's had a chequered career. She’s worked as a botanist, an editor, a cataloguer for the Queensland Department of Primary Industries Library and the John Oxley Library, and on the main floor of Arnott’s biscuit factory.
Although the 1st draft of her 1st novel (now titled A 20th Century Romance) was placed 2nd in the Australia-wide Xavier Society Literary Award for an unpublished novel, she abandoned writing for 25 years to raise her children, whom she raised alone.
She resumed writing in 1990, somewhat behind the eight-ball. With Louise Forster she won the Australia-New Zealand-wide Emma Darcy Award for Romance Manuscript of the Year 2000 with Found: One Lover.
Her first novel, A 20th Century Romance, was shortlisted for the Byron Bay Writers’ Festival Unpublished Manuscript Award in 2011, and for the UK’s Impress Prize in 2012, under the title Some Kind of Romantic.
A freelance manuscript assessor and fiction editor since 1992, she has won numerous awards for her gritty, streetwise short stories. MagnifiCat, a departure from this style, is her first published novel (see http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00H0ORWQY).
It will be followed in 2016 by Dropping Out, a collection of her short stories.
For more information on this author, see Smashwords iInterview..
About that Name
Danielle de Valera’s father claimed he was related to the controversial Irish politician Eamon de Valera on his mother’s side. But he told some tall tales in his time, and this is sure to be one of them. Born Danielle Ellis, she found that this name was replicated many times on the web. In searching for another under which to write, she first tried her mother's maiden name, Doyle, but there were a number of those, too. What to do? Then she remembered her father’s story and chose it as her writing name. But she feels any real connection is unlikely.