Dana's Love of Writing
I grew up in Front Royal, VA in an age with no cable and no cell phones. In the age of Atari.
My closest neighbor was a cousin, a few years older than me, who lived down the street in what would amount to two blocks away had we lived in an area with blocks instead of just land and houses. Having moved from Northern VA, we called this 'The Country.'
During the summer, I had the choice to watch soap operas or read, I usually chose to read, but I must confess to loving One Life to Live and General Hospital.
These summers contributed to my life-long love of books. My almost hour-long bus ride to and from school, where I practiced the art of daydreaming, solidified my love of creating stories. Together, these created my desire to become a writer.
I'm still trying to find my niche. All of the advice I've read suggests building a brand, which means you need to pick a genre and stick with it, like Stephen King and horror. My problem is that the stories and characters that pop into my head don't understand this advice. They're all in there vying for a chance to be written on the page one day. Until I figure out which genre I'm better at, I'm going to continue to write what comes to me. Secretly, I hope to be able to avoid having to make a choice. I'd prefer to keep writing as many of my ideas as possible. I see each one as a gift. At this point, I can't imagine deciding not to open and exploring one of these ideas.
Young Adult Novel
Firebird is my self-published novel about Grace Peregrine, a teen, who unexpectedly grows wings and decides to look into her past to find out how this was possible. Along the way, she learns that she can accomplish more than she ever thought. I have a sequel and a prequel planned.
I decided to try my hand at a few shorter pieces. The Caravan follows the journey of ten-year-old Corey as he moves from a post-apocalyptic city to an ultra strict campground. Along the way, he learns that there is sometimes a fine line between good and bad, and safety and freedom.
The idea for The Painter came from a line in the awesome Matchbox 20 song Bent, which goes, "Could you paint me better off," and is basically what happens in the story. A man pays for a painter to fix his life, but nothing comes without a price. This is a bit of a morality tale. I'm in the editing process.