MY INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR CHARLOTTE E. HART
What’s your name and what genre would you consider your books to be?
Hi. I’m Charlotte E Hart and I write Dark. That could be Dark Romance, Dark Suspense, Dark Thrilleresque, or most recently Dark Paranormal. Everything touches on places you might not want to go.
Tell me about your book. How did you come up with that (story, angle, idea)?
Ideas don’t come from anywhere for me but in my head. It’s a manic place that just speaks to me about things I hadn’t thought of before. I sit and start writing, wondering where I might go this time. It’s no more than that. The story unfolds as I progress along with the characters and whatever flow they choose to take me in.
How did you get interested in writing this particular genre (historical novels, mysteries, sci-fi, children’s books, etc.)?
I’m not sure I did become interested in writing on the edge of darkness and leading readers into it. I just wrote that way. Stories for me don’t have to be HEA or blissfully romantic. They simply need to take the reader somewhere, and for me that usually means somewhere they haven’t been before. I enjoy surprising the eyes reading the words. Or rather my characters do.
What kind of research did you do for this book?
I don’t really research unless it’s relevant to dialect, language, or a different country – landmarks etc. Albeit, if travel becomes relevant to a story I’ll happily get myself to that place to investigate.
Can you tell me about your Series?
The White Trilogy – Dark BDSM epic romance
The VDB Trilogy – As above (follow on) told from Mr Van Der Braacks POV
The Stained Duet – Dark Psychological BDSM Romance (hold on tight with that baby)
The Cane Series – Dark Mafia Romance
The Spiral – Thriller/Paranormal
Do you have a favorite book out of this series?
No. I love all my books for very different reasons.
What’s a typical working day like for you? When and where do you write? Do you set a daily writing goal?
Drop small person at school. Return. Do all the other things I need to do, and then write. I tend to start around 11am and finish for 2.30. I never really write at weekends or evenings unless I’m up against a deadline, and I try to aim for 3k words a day. It doesn’t always play out, but mostly it does.
Do you have a new book in the making and if so, what’s the name of your upcoming book?
I have several actually. One I’m Co writing with Rachel De Lune. It’ll be the 3rd book in The Cane Series – we don’t have a name yet, but it’s going to be epic. Cane is Dark Mafia Romance and we adore writing those boys and their stories.
I’m also very nearly finished a White/VDB crossover book. The White Trilogy was my first story and then that was followed by the VDB trilogy – same characters, different POV. It’s been some time since I’ve written all these characters, and I’ve never done all four POV at the same time, so I’m having a LOT of fun back in the BDSM world with their debauched little selves.
And I have another story part way done. I’m not entirely sure if it’ll be released under this name yet, but we’ll see. All should come in 2019. There are also at least 6 more wip’s open that are somewhere along their lines to completion.
Is there a genre that you’ve been wanting to experiment with?
I tend to mash my genres up if I fancy it. There are no rules in writing as far as I’m concerned. The Spiral was my first drive into Paranormal. It wasn’t supposed to be, but that’s where the characters took me. One of my current has a dystopian feel to it at the moment. We’ll see what it ends up like. So no, not particularly, but you never know where my next book is heading. I like that about writing, and I like surprising the reader, too.
What is the hardest part of writing for you?
Planning. I don’t plan. AT ALL. When writing with Rachel we need to plan and I loathe it. She doesn’t, in fact she loves it, and it’s a constant battle for her to keep me in check. I’m always wandering off down a different path, head in the words and not really caring where I’m going, and she’s like – “Errm – no!” And I sulk.
Still, it’s a learning curve for me. One I’m trying to get used to. Lol.
Oh, and beta readers. My team – known as the brutal bitches – are BRUTAL. They rip me apart. But that’s their job. Doesn’t mean I like it, though.
What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?
EVERY SINGLE BOOK I’VE WRITTEN. I never thought I is be a writer, never even considered it. It just happened and I couldn’t enjoy my life more because if it.
What’s the best thing about being an author?
Freedom to create new worlds with no restrictions. My words. My characters. My thoughts. It’s a pretty cool place to live in.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
No clue. As I said – no planning. I’d like to still be writing, though.
Have you always liked to write?
Nope. Started four years ago. Before that – never.
What writing advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Wow. There’s so much.
Don’t think you you know everything when you start – you don’t.
Writing the book is the easy bit. The rest? Much harder.
Make friends. And I don’t mean try to grab onto a big author. That’s naff. Don’t do it. We all watch new authors try to do that and groan. I mean make two or three good friends, at your level, and stick with them. You’ll need their encouragement and support. It is not easy in this world.
Be prepared to learn, make mistakes, and fall over. It’s part of the process to make you better. You won’t like it, but it does help.
Find a team of beta readers (people that read your books before publishing to tell you what it’s like). They need to shred your words to bits, not tell you what you want to hear. Friends will not tell you the truths you need to hear about your work.
A good beta team will.
Stay true to the story you want to write. It’s easy to turn the same story out as everyone else is doing, and you’ll probably make money that way, but, in the end, it’s you that creates your brand of story. If you’ve got a good head for it, make your stories different. Stand out in the crowd.
And laugh. Laugh at everything as much as you can. Honestly, all the social media, which you’ll need BTW, can be daunting and hard work. As is the writing. You’ll need to retain a good sense of humor to get you through everything.
If you didn’t like writing books, or weren’t any good at it, what would you like to do for a living?
Teach. I’m a teacher at heart.
Do you read reviews of your book(s)? Do you respond to them, good or bad? How do you deal with the bad?
I read them for about a week after release, trying to gain any insight I can from them – what the reader liked or didn’t – and then I stop and keep writing my other books. I never respond. Ever. Don’t do that if you you’re a new author, BTW. There will always be bad. It’s life. I deal with it and move on. You can’t please all of the people all of the time.
Can you give us a few tasty morsels from your work-in-progress?
Nope. You’ll have to track me down! Lol.
Feel free to join my reader group ‘Hart’s Darklings’ on facebook. They get all the goodies before anyone else.
Of all the characters you have created, which is your favourite and why?
I’m finding this so difficult to answer these days. It used to be easy because I’d run back to my first – Alexander White – but recently that’s changing. Not because I don’t still adore him, I do, but because all the others are so inspiring, too.
Blaine Jacobs – Phew. Too hot to handle. (Stained Duet)
Pascal Van Der Braack – fans self. OMG, I loved him. Still do. (VDB)
Jack Caldwell – so brooding. And what a story! (The Spiral)
The Cane Brothers – angry, forceful, gun slinging. (Cane)
What can I say? They’re ALL mesmerising in their own ways.
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
A bit of both. Depends if De Lune is forcing me to plan!
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I won’t write to mass market. It’s not in me. That might mean I lose sales, but to me I can’t write what I don’t love. And because I don’t plan, I don’t know where the stories going anyway. I also refuse to continuously give a HEA. Life isn’t like that, and so neither are my books.
What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?
I don’t think my author friends help me become a better writer. They help me stay sane and keep me focused maybe, but they don’t improve my writing. I , along with my beta team, try to do that. Friends, for me in this author world, are so important for many other reasons. Support. Meet ups. Rational thinking. Grounding. Idea swaps. Laughing. There are so many other reasons to need author friends.
If you were writing a book about your life, what would the title be?
What question have you always wanted to be asked in an interview? How would you answer that question?
Q- How do you pick your characters names?
A- I don’t. They do.
Where can your fans find you and follow??
Thank you for taking your time to do this interview ❤️