Tuesday, March 29, 2016

#‎B2BCYCON Interview With Author Melina Druga

I have another Brain to Books Cyber Convention author feature. Remember, this great event for authors and readers alike is coming to Goodreads this April, on the 8th, 9th and 10th.

Be sure to check out all the details and pertinent links for the event here:

Now on with the main event, our Brain to Books author feature.
Today I have a great interview with Melina Druga, author of historical fiction.

Interview with Melina Druga

Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself.

I’ve been writing for decades, since third or fourth grade when I wrote my first novel, an historical-fiction piece about two sisters growing up in an 1840s canal town. I still have the manuscript; it was mostly dialogue, but writing has been my passion ever since.
Later in life, I pursued and obtained a bachelor of arts degree in English with the goal of becoming a novelist. I began my writing career as a reporter and a copy editor at a daily newspaper, all the while writing fiction whenever I had spare time and perfecting my craft. As a child, I believed every draft was a masterpiece but by studying the classics – and by learning copy-editing skills – I realized a great work of fiction takes pre-planning, editing and multiple drafts.
I’ve been self-employed since 2011 and in 2014, obtained a certificate in social media for journalists from Poynter News University.

Why did you decide to write in the historical fiction genre?

I think in some ways it chose me because of my lifelong love of both writing and history.  Historical fiction is a seamless blend of my two passions.  I love how it allows authors to present history to readers in an entertaining way while hopefully teaching them something.
Angel of Mercy is the first novel I wrote that I feel passionate enough to present to the public.

When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?

Third or fourth grade.

Can you tell us about your writing process? Where do your ideas originate? Do you have a certain writing routine?

My ideas originate very organically, often coming to me in a dream or while I’m focused on something else.  Angel of Mercy, for example, was inspired by the rock song “Mama” by My Chemical Romance. 
Before writing, I spend countless hours researching and outlining.  I write character bios and a detailed scene-by-scene list for the entire novel.
I burn the candle by both ends.  During the day I do work for clients as well as research, typing and editing for my projects.  I do any original writing, by hand, at night.

Do you have a favourite author, or writing inspiration?

My favorite author is Edith Wharton. I enjoy Wharton because she wrote about hypocrisy during Gilded Age New York City. Wharton was born in the 1860s and she grew up in New York high society, so she wrote based on first-hand experience and observation.

How do you research your books?

I’d done vast amounts reading over the years, both in books and online, as well as watching plenty of documentaries.
As for the reference books, even though they are part of my work, I don’t think of them as work. I geek out on that stuff. I enjoy learning something I never knew before, or learning more about a subject, especially when it relates to Angel of Mercy.

How did you become interested in World War One? 

It began with a dream I had as a teenager where I was a soldier being bayonetted to death. It was very real. My father said the uniforms I described could have been from World War One. Then I saw a PBS documentary called “The Great War and the Shaping of the 20th Century” about how the events of 1914-1918 still effect us today. I was hooked. It also was the first time battlefield photos made me cry. Only World War One photos have that effect on me.  I can’t explain why; it just does.

What’s your next project? Any upcoming book secrets you care to reveal?

Angel of Mercy is intended to be a series about one family.  I recently completed the rough draft of the next book, Those Left Behind, and the third book is in the planning stages.  I will beginning writing it in the next couple of weeks.  Once Angel of Mercy is published, I will beginning editing and rewriting Those Left Behind.
In addition, my next business book, Enterprising Women:  A Practical Guide to Starting Your First Business, will be available in May.

What do you like to do when you're not writing? Any hobbies?

I practice yoga daily.  I also enjoy photography, although I don’t get to pursue that hobby as much as I’d like.

Melina Druga is an author and freelance journalist.  She has been writing since childhood.  If writing can be called a decades-long passion, then history is a life-long passion that began when she was young and her mother read her the Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. She is most interested in the 19th and 20th century with a particular interest in 1890-1920. She is fascinated with the birth of the modern world, and appalled by the futility of World War One. 

For additional information on Melina and her books, please visit:

Book Blurbs:

Angel of MercyThe fateful decision to join the war effort during World War One turns one young woman's life upside-down and forces her to search for her own identity.  The book has an upcoming release date.

For more on Angel of Mercy: http://www.melinadruga.com/angel-of-mercy/

Enterprising Women:  A Practical Guide to Starting Your First Business is a basic step-by-step guide to planning your first business.  An indispensable guide for any woman who wants to go into business for herself.  The book has an upcoming release date.

The first book in the series, Enterprising Women: Practical Advice for First Time Entrepreneurs is available on:

I'd like to thank Melina Druga for stopping by today, and be sure to check out her virtual booth at the convention this April.

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