Interview with DelSheree Gladden

Published 2019-08-03.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a small town in Northern New Mexico. New Mexico has a rich culture that has influenced my writing greatly. I grew up hearing stories of skinwalkers and dreamcatchers, and was surrounded by beautiful art like Navajo blankets and Kachinas. The mythology and art of New Mexico was a big inspiration for my series, Twin Souls Saga. My love of the mythical plays a big role in many of my other books as well.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest book, Wicked Hunger is the story of Vanessa and Zander Roth, two pretty screwed up teens. There problems aren’t the normal teenage drama, though. Both struggle to control a nearly inconsolable hunger for pain and suffering. Living a normal life is tough, but things only get worse when a strange new girl named Ivy shows up at school. She instantly rubs Vanessa the wrong way, but Zander is absolutely captivated by her. The problem is, Ivy incites both of their hunger, making it very dangerous to be around her. Vanessa thinks Ivy is up to no good. Zander thinks she’s pretty much perfect. One of them is right, and the wrong move may cost them their lives.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Originally, I tried the traditional publishing route because it was what I was familiar with. I didn't know very much about indie publishing. There were so few agents and publishers accepting new authors when I first started out that I decided to look into indie publishing more. I was surprised to find how accessible it was and how much it had changed. Readers are really getting behind indie publishing as well, which is great to see. I've published both indie and traditionally, and both avenues have benefits. What I love about indie is the control I have over the process. I can make sure my books are exactly how I want them to be.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
I knew I wanted to have my books on ebook stores like Apple iBooks, but it really just wasn't feasible for me to do it on my own. I love that Smashwords makes accessing more ebooks markets a streamlined, easy to use process. This is such an author friendly company. I can make coupons for promotions or free review copies with only a few clicks, and the yearly and weekly promotions they offer are great marketing tools.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love being able to share my ideas with readers and affect them in a positive way. It's so much fun to hear from my readers. It's not just about feeling good when someone tells me they loved one of my books. The satisfaction of knowing I was able to give them something that was entertaining and enjoyable is so rewarding for me.
What do your fans mean to you?
My fans are the reason I stay inspired and motivated. I get so excited when I get an email asking when my next book will be out. My fans push me to stay focused and make sure what I'm writing is up to the standard they expect. I feel like I have begun to build a certain amount of trust with my fans. I want to meet,and hopefully exceed their expectations when I publish a new book.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I work as a dental hygienist, so that keeps me busy, but I also love to sew and paint. My family and I enjoy being outdoors and we spend a lot of time hiking and camping in the Laplata Mountains.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Most of the books I read come from reviews requests through my book blog or as recommendations from friends. My friend Leah always knows what the hot new books are!
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson because I loved the complexity of his world and characters.
Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan because even through 15, thousand page, novelsI never got tired of reading his books.
The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede because Princess Cimorene is still one of my favorite heroines.
Dresden Files by Jim Butcher because his creativity captures my attention with every book.
Island of the Aunts by Eva Ibbotson because it was so delightfully intriguing, yet very thoughtful at the same time.
What are you working on next?
I am working on the sequel to Wicked Hunger, which will be titled, Wicked Power. This book will continue the story of Vanessa and Zander Roth as they explore the world of the Godlings and struggle to figure out who they should trust and what their power might cost them. I also have been working on a sequel to Escaping Fate, and a new series about an invisible boy.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Engaging with readers on social media and building a community instead of just a following.
Describe your desk
Covered in sticky notes and stacks of papers!
When did you first start writing?
As a teenager.
Who are your favorite authors?
Bandon Sanderson, Robert Jordan, Jim Butcher, Jana DeLeon, and so many more.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author or publisher.

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