Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Interview with Danele Rotharmel, Author of Time Tsunami

One of the things I love best about the publishing process with Prism Book Group is the sense of community between the authors. Each and every one has been extremely supportive of me, always willing to answer questions or offer encouragement. 

But Danele J. Rotharmel...well, she takes the cake. She’s one of the most thoughtful, selfless, and inspiring people I’ve ever met. It’s an honor to have her on my blog today.

Thanks so much for joining me, Danele! 

Thank you, Emily! I really enjoyed being here today! You are an incredible person, and I feel very blessed to know you!

Your debut novel, Time Tsunami, was just released on Friday and has already received tons of positive feedback. As a new author, I’m curious to know how the experience has been for you, and some of your writing secrets. What motivates you to write?

My motives have changed down through the years. When I was in school, I wrote because it was a BLAST! Writing stories was so much fun! And when I became ill, I wrote as a way to distract myself from extreme pain. Now, I want to write as a way to glorify God.

When I first became ill, I was so angry at God. I didn’t understand why I had to suffer. I yelled at God, I ignored Him, I even tried to deny His existence. But even though I was acting like a spoiled child, God continued to love me. He helped me. He gave me peace and restored my joy. I want to spend the rest of my life serving Him.   

What an amazing testimony and great use of your God-given talents! Some people would say there’s a wide gap between serving God and writing science fiction. I think some readers assume that Christian-themed books are “boring” by nature. (We, of course, know that’s not true!) So take us through your process a bit. Why did you choose to write about time travel?

Time Tsunami started out as a short story for a college creative writing class. I was a cadet teacher at the time, and I was wishing for a way to warn my students about pitfalls they might encounter. I have a quirky brain; so naturally, my wild imagination ran right to time travel.

Later, when I became ill, I had a box full of old stories that I could revamp into novels, but I chose Time Tsunami because of the time travel aspect. You see, I desperately wished that I could travel back through time and prevent myself from being poisoned by that faulty furnace. A simple $35 carbon monoxide detector would have saved me from years of suffering and pain. I used to fantasize about going back through time and placing a detector in my house.

It’s amazing how the human brain works, taking a difficult situation and turning it into a best-selling novel. As an avid reader myself, I always love to learn how authors come up with their stories. I’m also curious how other writers create their characters. What’s your strategy?

I like to think that my characters create themselves. I don’t want to just record what my characters did; I want to understand why they did it. As my imagination roams, I begin to know my characters inside and out. They become very real to me. One of the hardest parts about writing has been keeping some of my characters’ backstories to myself—I want to share every detail. But that would make my books WAY too long!

With such detailed backstories for your characters, it seems as if you’d never experience writer’s block. But being an author myself, I know better. ;) How do you handle it when it happens to you?

Writer’s block isn’t fun, and I think the best way to tackle it is by analyzing where it’s coming from. I tend to split the condition into three categories: mental, environmental, and tactical.

Mental writer’s block needs to be attacked head on. I usually get it when I doubt my abilities or when I’m not sure how to proceed with a scene. When this happens, I force myself to write even though I’m worried I’ll be cranking out junk. Some of my best passages have come from “tough-love” sessions.

Environmental writer’s block happens when I have cabin fever. In these cases, the best thing I can do is get outside and take a brisk walk. Looking at the blue sky will usually brush the cobwebs from my mind.

Tactical writer’s block comes when I’m forcing myself to concentrate on only one area of my book. I avoid this by making sure my stories revolve around several sets of characters—that way if I’m stuck in one area, the other areas are usually still flowing.

I like that - determine where the issue’s coming from so that you can address it directly. I might just have to try that myself! So, one last question for my readers who may not be familiar with everything that goes into getting a book published. What has been the most difficult part of the publishing process for you?

For me it’s been waiting. When I was in high school, I was voted the most optimistic in my class, but I was also voted the biggest procrastinator. I thought the “procrastination” title was extremely funny until I got to college and realized I needed to reform. When I do something, I tend to do it thoroughly.

When I decided to change, I reformed to the extent that I now tackle problems head on—no waiting—no dillydallying. I want to plow thorough every task and put it behind me. But you can’t do that when it comes to the publishing process. You have to work around other people’s busy schedules. Impatience is a killer. It’s much better to trust God with your life’s timetable.  

I completely understand the struggle to have patience. I think that’s the most difficult part of many Christians’ lives: learning to wait for God’s perfect timing. We want everything to happen when it’s convenient for us, even though we know God’s timing is flawless. Thanks again for joining my blog today, Danele, and for all the insight. I wish you continued success with your release! 

Thank you, Emily! I really enjoyed being here today! You are an incredible person, and I feel very blessed to know you!

For my readers, here’s a brief synopsis to whet your palette. Below the synopsis you’ll find links to buy the book and connect with Danele. Happy reading!

To stop a cruel serial killer, she must travel twenty-four years into the past…

Gil Montgomery, a cadet in the Temporal Counseling Program, can’t wait to pass her field exam and become a professional time surfer. The TEMCO program targets death-row offenders for time-based counseling while they’re children.  For her exam, Gil will travel twenty-four years into the past to counsel ten-year-old Danny Winston before he murders his abusive babysitter, Rick Olsen.  Preventing the stabbing should stop the chain of events leading to Danny’s eventual execution. Gil’s assignment seems simple until her adviser, Dr. William Ableman, learns that Rick is a serial killer targeting Danny’s mother. If Gil stays and protects the Winstons, she might not survive.

William wants the woman he loves to be pulled from the field, but if Gil fails to complete her assignment, it will unleash a Time Tsunami and destroy the timeline. As TEMCO undergoes an emergency lockdown, and Gil’s fellow cadets try to figure out what’s happening, Gil and William learn the importance of faith and the price of true love. Everyone’s fate is resting in Gil’s hands, but does she have the strength she needs to defeat a ruthless serial killer intent on annihilating everyone in his path?

Will she return from the deadly mission?

Buy the book:                                                                                
·         Amazon: http://amzn.to/234DFBS