Thursday, March 5, 2020

Halcyon by C.L. Donley Genre: Contemporary Romance

  • Can you, for those who don't know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author? I’m a 30-something stay at home mom and have been writing romance for about two years now. I’ve always been a writer, but I always thought writing novels was too daunting. And then one day I realized that I was passionate about romance and it all clicked! I write contemporary romance with heroines of color, since I’m a heroine of color, haha. But they typically take place in small-town or suburban settings like the ones I grew up in.

  • How to find time to write as a parent? Well, my kids are in school now, which helps a lot. But keeping a household and writing full time is not easy. Ultimately it is nice to be able to escape from one into the other. If I’m stuck or tired of focusing on the daunting task of a book, I have plenty of other stuff piling up to do, and that typically does the trick of un-sticking me. I’m in no way disciplined, but when I’m focused on something, I won’t stop until it’s done. So I try to just go easy on myself and eat the elephant one bite at a time.

  • Do you write one book at a time or do you have several going at a time? I always tell myself I’m going to have several going at once, but that never happens. I do like to have at least one rough draft under my belt before I start a new one, so that there’s a buffer between me and that next deadline and I’m not psychologically overwhelmed by the process of churning out books.

  • Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want? I try to strike a balance. I’m doing a lot of standalones rather that books in a series, which everyone will tell you is not the strategy for “writing success.” And I’ve recently gotten a lot of feedback about my recent release The Book of Adam and Jo, and how my readers want to read more. Obviously, I know that would be a smart business move, but if I’m not feeling it, it just will not come out. And I’d hate to push through and just write something subpar. So I can’t say I’ll never do something, and I hate feeling like I’m ignoring the feedback of my readers, but I have to remember it was my instincts that turned a pretty controversial book into a beloved one in the first place. And ultimately I have to trust those instincts first.

The Halcyon program has only grown in respect and mystique over their now fifteen years of matchmaking. When I went through it six years ago, they were still boasting 100% success of all the participants. Single, usually hopeless, candidates leave the program as part of a couple. The foolproof methods Halcyon uses to guarantee a soulmate comes from a blend of technology, biology, psychology, and, of course, sex. Naturally, with its high price tag, extensive, invasive testing, and painstaking process, only serious participants make it through, and everyone found success. Until us. 

C.L. Donley is a future New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of multicultural and interracial romance, who believes romance novels that are impossible to put down are the only kind that should exist! Armed with a B.A. in English and M.A. in Writing, she is new to the romance game, having written her first novel, Amara's Calling, after discovering the romance genre in September 2017. Donley writes in a style she calls "romantic realism" that is sophisticated yet simple, grounded yet unaplogetically escapist, and character-driven rather than plot-driven. This style creates a unique, modern reading experience ideal for book club discussions, personal epiphanies, satisfying re-reads, and the occasional spiraling reviewer! Love it or hate it, fans and critics alike can't deny her talent, and always find themselves coming back for more! 
She loves hearing from readers and discussing her favorite parts of her own books, so feel free to indulge her. 

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