Interview with Dorothy Booraem

When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
When I'm not writing I'm making commercials, web series and horror movies.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
My five favorite books are:
Pride and Prejudice - I love description, emotional and physical, and I love dialogue. P&P has a good amount of both, plus when I read it I always want to read it out loud and it makes me laugh
Ready Player One - all the things I love wrapped into one book: loner hero, close-future tech, 80's pop culture, worlds within worlds.
House With a Clock in Its Walls - one of the first scary books I ever read, amazing descriptions and whimsy
Gaudy Night - Dorothy Sayers book about Harriet Vane's coming to terms with who she and what she wants wrapped up in a murder mystery. Lots of life wisdom in this book, in terms of "how do I want to live my life" and "what kind of person am I and do I want to be".
Narnia The Dawn Treader - my favorite book from the Narnia series. I love the descriptions of the ship and the various quests. And the end is so strange and beautiful.
What do you read for pleasure?
Science fiction, murder mysteries and graphic novels
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in an old house out in the country in South Carolina. My mother loved true crime and murder mysteries. My father loved science fiction and opera. The house we lived in had been owned by a relative who had run a local funeral home. When we moved in there were caskets in the outbuilding and bottles of formaldehyde under the kitchen sink. Even though my childhood was happy and safe I was always aware of the violence and death that existed just outside that bubble. It fascinated and terrified me, which is probably why I make horror movies.
When did you first start writing?
I tried writing when I was younger but I didn't have the patience. I just wanted the quick injection of story. When I was in my 20's I started writing scripts and short stories. But it wasn't until I was in my 30's that I had the focus to write longer form stories.
What's the story behind your latest book?
It's the novelization of a web series that I wrote and directed - Heartless. One of my actor friends was in a web series I directed called On the Inside (www.ontheinsideshow.com). He had a supporting role but I thought he could easily be a lead. My creative partner Chad and I, plus a filmmaking friend Mike Johnson, came up with the story for Heartless and I wrote the script.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy in the moment of writing for me is the work of defining my inner movie with words, choosing the right words and patterns of words to clearly transfer what I'm seeing in my head to a reader. The other great joy is the hope/knowledge that readers have gotten lost in or brought to life the worlds that I've created. So many books in my life have honed who I am, my dreams, that I want to return the favor.
Who are your favorite authors?
A.S. Byatt, Jane Austen, Michael Crighton, Robert Heinlein, A. Conan Doyle, Susan Cooper (When the Dark Comes Rising), Malcom Gladwell, Dorothy Sayers.
What is your writing process?
My writing process is pretty simple. I write a synopsis of the entire story. Then I break it down into scenes or chapters. Then I go in and start writing from the top. If I hit a block, I skip ahead to something that comes easy. I write in tiny chunks of time - 15 to 20 minutes a day every day. I liken it to painting with one or two strokes. I just can't yet pull a story out of myself without getting super tired. Once the manuscript is finished, I go back in and write for longer, puzzling over the rough spots and working them and working them.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
One of the first stories I ever wrote was about a building that raised an abandoned child and watched it grow up. It was written in a very "fairy tale" style. It made my dad cry. Probably because it was so bad.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I don't remember the very first "story" I read. I remember picture books like Babar and the Big Tidy Up and Richard Scarey Books. But at some point I really started reading and then…oh then it was a massive tsunami of impactful stories - all the Narnia books, the Hobbit, Call it Courage, House with a Clock in it's Walls, Trixie Belden, Nancy Drew, Robert Heinlein, Raggedy Ann and Andy books,
What is your e-reading device of choice?
My Nook! I have an iPad and a Galaxy tablet but my Nook is paperback sized and has no glare on the screen. I love it. Except it's harder to lend people books when I read on the Nook.
Describe your desk
My desk is a shiny lime green laptop desk. I bought it before I even had a laptop because when I saw it in the store I felt happy.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I'm an indie filmmaker and I love to read. When I was a kid I enjoyed reading the novelization of my favorite movies (I still have a whole collection of them from Star Wars, E.T., Gremlins, Romancing the Stone and more). I make indie films because I like being a world creator. When we finished Heartless I had just skipped the second NaNoWriMo that I had promised myself I would do. I thought, why not write your own novelization and make it about Heartless. So I did.
What are you working on next?
I have a lot of scripts that I'm writing but I'm also working on synopses for three more novels. Not novelizations this time. These will be fully full on novels - sci-fi horror romance, possibly with graphic novel tie ins
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The knowledge that life is short.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Friends recommend books, that happens. But often I will buzz around reading samples in the genres I like and find new ebooks. The samples pretty much nail it.
How do you approach cover design?
Cover design, like movie poster design, is crucial for the marketing of story. I reach out to my graphic designer friends and ply them with alcohol and candy. I also pay them (although never what they are truly worth, which is like crates of gold). I look at the designs of other books I like and work hard to provide strong raw materials for the designers to work with.
Published 2015-07-26.
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Books by This Author

Heartless
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 49,860. Language: English. Published: May 1, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Contemporary
Meat hearts have no magic. Without a shadow heart to compress, harness and bend energy you’re screwed, magically speaking. Alex Crowley was born with a shadow heart. Now, thanks to his father, he’s heartless. For the past ten years he’s been searching for his father. Now he’s close to finding him. Alex’s plan is simple: Find his father. Get his heart back. Kill his father. What could go wrong?