7 Questions With Award Winning & Bestselling Author C.D. Gorri
C.D. Gorri is an award winning and bestselling author of steamy Paranormal Romance and Young Adult Urban Fantasy books. She is the creator of the Grazi Kelly Universe. A wife and busy mom of three, she always makes time to chat with her readers despite her busy writing schedule and the craziness of having a family that includes two dogs, one guinea pig, and a hedgehog!
C.D. adores writing paranormal romances featuring epic heroes and their sassy, curvy mates. The Shifters and other creatures in her universe always have a HEA ending where the focus is on love and the relationship between the main characters. Each series is stand alone, but as with most things, they’re better when read together.
For the ones of you who are new to my blog, I’m Esther Rabbit, writer, content creator for authors and massive nerd. If you’re interested to know all the tips & tricks surrounding the process From Writing To Publishing Your Novel, you’re only a click away. For writing and marketing tips consider subscribing to my YouTube Channel.
Are you a plotter or a pantser?
I have spent hours, days, maybe even years agonizing over my inability to follow a plot outline. Seriously. LOL. I begin most of my books with several hours of thought. Seriously, thinking about a book before I even start writing can take the most amount of time. I picture the characters, think about their unique personalities, and try to really get a feel for them before I ever open Word.
Once I have the bones of a basic outline down, I create a cover design for my book. I love working with images and have spent a lot of time designing my own covers and promotional posts and teasers. I have actually been designing covers as long as I have been writing and am growing a steady list of authors whose covers I also design. When it comes to starting a book the cover comes before the words, I guess I am just a visual person. It helps focus me.
After, I have the cover down, I begin the plotting process. The title, tagline, and description come first followed by a detailed list of my character’s looks and personality traits. Then I try and write a chapter by chapter outline of the progression of events as I want them to take place.
Here’s the rub, I always have every intention of following these detailed plot outline that I insist on making with each and every story, but once I start typing the characters have a way of changing on me. Sigh.
So, to answer the question, I think I might be a pantser disguised as a plotter!
How does a day in your author life look?
I have several projects going at once on any given day, but I always begin with a hello to my follower on social media. I think it is important to have a routine and to be present. I really feel like readers resonate with a strong and reliable presence. I want that, I crave that. My readers should know that I am here for them and I am available should they have questions or comments. I am always listening. Interacting with readers in my Facebook group, C.D Gorri’s Paranormal Pack is one of the highlights of my day.
After I finish updating social media and my blog, I get down to work! Music on or off, whatever it is I am making for dinner prepped and ready to go, the laptop comes out and I am ready to work. Usually, I like to type at my kitchen table, but that changes considering how I feel and who is home. I don’t mind background noise, but sometimes I do require quiet.
Right now, I am busy writing the next book in my Barvale Clan Tales, Polar Outbreak. It is scheduled to release this May. I am so excited every single time I dive back into this Bear Shifter Clan, and these Polar Bears are just the best!
I also have two new Wolf Shifter tales in the multi-author anthologies Hearts & Bite Marks available on Amazon and Dark Moon Falls Volume 2 available wide. Wolf Shifters will always be my first love, but since penning my first PNR book, Charley’s Christmas Wolf, I have written a myriad of supernatural creatures and I truly love each and every one.
Before I am done for the day, I try to schedule promotional posts, the most dreaded job any writer has to do! But it is a must and as my mom always said, you are your own biggest cheerleader. Getting the word out about your work is key to growing an audience and yeah, sometimes it is the most difficult part of an author’s job, but it is still part of the job. You know what I mean?
I try to stick to this routine daily. Even on Sundays. Writing is not something I can turn off, so if it means waking up at four in the morning just to get a few hours in before the kids get up, I do it gladly. When people ask me why I do that I have only one answer for them, I am a writer.
Tell us how you’d spend your time if you went on a date/adventure/meeting with your favorite fictional character.
If I spent the day with one of my characters I would love for it to be with Grazi Kelly. She is my very first heroine and the entire basis for the universe I write in, named after her the Grazi Kelly Universe. Grazi is very near and dear to my heart. She’d been whispering around in my head for years before I wrote her first story down. The title is Wolf Moon and it is Young Adult meets Urban Fantasy.
On our adventure together I would really just love to talk to her, to ask her how she is feeling now that she knows she is a Werewolf with a great destiny, a mission if you like. Of course, her series is complete and available now wide, but I don’t want to give too much away.
I would ask her to tell me what she’s learned and what she has planned. I imagine I would be very glad to see her. Perhaps even offer her a big old mom-style hug and thank her for all she’s done for me.
What are some common stereotypes related to the genre(s) you’re writing in?
I have heard a lot of strange and condescending things from people when I tell them I write Paranormal Romance with a little YA/UF in the mix. People call it cute that I write that. People call it fluff or accuse me of having no substance. The truth is I don’t care what people say. I have learned to shrug it off. It’s not important what they think because it is my opinion and my audience that matter.
For me, Paranormal Romance is fantastic! In every sense. I love writing and reading larger than life males and their sassy mates. I love the bare chest covers and supernatural creatures. I love every damn thing about it. Especially because there are so many sub-genres within PNR. My favorite is rom-com. I like characters with smart mouths 😉.
Authors vs. Social Media. How do you approach the tools you have at your disposal?
I have heard many fellow authors moan and groan about the need to use social media to self-promote and there are definitely days where I feel the same. However, I try not to have many of them because in all honesty it is truly a wonderful thing. Social media and self-publishing platforms have given us all a voice and a place for it to be heard.
I’d be a fool not to learn to use the tools we have nowadays to the best of my ability to try and make my mark. I am in no way an expert, but I am learning more every day. Using social media takes dedication and commitment. I spend quite a lot of time preparing posts and creating images to use along with them. I can only hope my readers like my content and that they keep coming back to see what else I have for them.
How do you manage to juggle life and writing?
I love this question. Writing is a huge part of my life, but I am also a daughter, a sister, a wife, a mother and a friend. I have many hats that I have to juggle each day from the time I wake up until I go to bed. It’s not easy, but if it was, would it be worth it? That’s a question I often ask myself.
I’m not one of those lucky people where stuff just magically works itself out. LOL. Kudos to them, I truly wish I had some of their luck, but I am not afraid of hard work. I never have been.
Managing things is a necessity. There is no choice. My family mean everything to me and now that the kids are older, I feel like I can take the time I need to make a go of my writing career. So yeah, I’ve learned to juggle. Maybe I’ll get some clown shoes next, who knows. 😉
Just how much research is there behind a novel? Tell us how it looks behind the scenes.
This is another one of my absolute favorite questions, because deep down in the dark recesses of my heart lies an absolute nerd.
I love researching data for my books. I am something of an info junky really. Everything has meaning. My characters’ names, the settings and names of the towns, the titles, the music they listen to, nothing is left to chance. Being a writer means I get to decide how a character in my books got to be the way s/he is so in order to do that I have to spend a lot of time thinking about what kind of things shaped his/her life.
Because I write PNR, I also spend a lot of time researching animals, magic, myths, legends, that kind of thing. I set a lot of my book in my home state of New Jersey and recently featured one of our legends in one of my Purely Paranormal Pleasures books. Marked By The Devil is about a Jersey Devil Shifter who finds his mate. I have to tell you I loved researching the myths behind the infamous Devil. Most of the stuff in that book can be found in books about the legendary creature. I think I read four accounts before penning the tale.
The hero’s family is based on the woman who was said to have given birth to the Devil and he even bears the surname Leeds in the book. The heroine’s name is Stephanie Decatur, taken from the historical account of Commodore Stephen Decatur, a hero who fought in the American Revolutionary War and was quoted as having seen and taken a shot at the Jersey Devil himself!
That’s just an example of how I sue my research, but to get back to the original question, a ton of research goes into books. Even ones that are based in fantasy and the paranormal!
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And check out Lost in Amber: An Out Of This World Paranormal Romance if enjoy girl power, adventure & a toe-curling love story.
She just wanted to mope over her breakup but the universe had other plans for Zoey Mills.
Read the full blurb here.