Tuesday, June 14, 2022


I want to thank Darlene Rodriguez for taking the time for this interview!


Darlene is from Chelsea, Massachusetts. You can find her writing, daydreaming, reading, procrastinating, or singing her heart out. When she’s not working, she’s editing or thinking about writing. If not, she’s learning more about the craft of writing or graphic design.

She first put pen to paper at thirteen to express her thoughts, feelings, and wild imagination. Since then, writing has become her passion.  Fear may have held her back from pursuing an author career at a young age, but that hasn't stopped her from achieving her goals.

When and how did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I’ve known I wanted to be a writer since I was about eight or nine but it wasn’t until high school that I really started writing stories.


Did you have any influencing writers growing up?

I didn’t really have any influencing writers growing up. In fact, I wasn’t even really a reader. I watched tv and had an active and vivid imagination. My ideas came from the life I wanted to lead.


Are any of your characters based on people in real life?

All of my characters are based on traits I’ve gathered from various people in my life. They are collections of people.


Where do you draw your book inspirations from?

Sometimes the inspiration comes from dreams, observing people, and other forms of art.


Do you use have a basic outline when starting a new story or do you let the characters lead the way?

Usually, when I start a new story, I let the characters lead. 

I don’t always write in order. If a scene comes to me, I’ll write it and save it for later. 

On rare occasions, I make an outline of where I think the story should start and then I get deep into the whole character-building aspect.


When you are picturing the characters in your book, do you have a cheater photo for inspiration?

I don’t have a cheater photo. I usually have a few images of different people who look similar and use those to create a visual for a character.


Many people read as a form of escape and relaxation.  What is your favorite way to sit back and relax?

Can I have more than one way? There’s reading, writing, singing, and even creating aesthetic boards for characters and stories.


Who are your favorite current authors to read?

Shauna McDonnell, Traci Sek, Ashley Kay, Cynthia Rodriguez, Marlyn Love, Ariana Cane and Amy Alves are all the ones I can think of off the top of my head.


What are your favorite books by others?

Honestly, anything by the authors above. I cannot choose.


Do the locations in the stories have any meaning to you?

In my stories, the locations are usually based on my home state, which is Massachusetts and the homes are based on my moms' house.


Do you write in single or multiple POV?

I write in multiple POVs. Usually the two MCs.


What do you find to be your best research tool?

Google. Google is a friend to all.


Do you write under a pen name? Also, do you write under more than one name?

No, I do not.


What genre do you write and why is this your preference?


Love is universal and growing up, I had this obsession with the idea of what love was supposed to be. My idea of it has changed throughout the years, but there’s something special about love and romance. It brings a sense of hope that there is more to this life.


Tell me something about yourself outside of writing.  Jobs, accomplishments, family, quirky trait...what led to you being you?

I have short arms. It’s not really a quirky trait or anything, but I was born with a missing bone in both my arms. As a kid, I was picked on for it, which caused plenty of insecurities to emerge. But it made me treat people the way I wanted to be treated. 

I like to think that being different led me to writing because if I hadn’t felt excluded or different, I wouldn’t have felt the need to voice my ideas in the form of writing.


What advice would you give to an aspiring writer?

Never give up on your passion. 

If writing is what you love to do, always find some way to slip it into your day. Regardless of what others say, your passion will drive you and sometimes it’ll help others out too.


How do you deal and process negative book reviews?

I remind myself that my book isn’t for everyone. No one’s book is. But on those rare occasions that it does get to me, I think of it as a way to get better. Like if someone said it lacked description or something I can make a note to add more.


What is the most difficult part of your writing process?

Trusting myself. I question myself and what I am doing a lot. Sometimes I don’t like what I’m doing but I have to trust myself and my characters. 

We know what the story is about and where it’s supposed to go so I need to let myself just write.


What do you need in your writer’s space to keep you focused?

Sometimes I need silence. Most of the time if I’m not already focused with the ideas in my head, I’ll get distracted and during those times, silence is in order or for me to do other things and then get back to it.


What is your naughty indulgence as you are writing?

I have no idea how to answer this. Next question.


If you could spend a day with another popular author, whom would you choose?  And why?

A popular author? Umm… that’s hard. I don’t even know because I don’t really read from popular authors. 

I’d probably say Neil Gaiman because he has such great insights into the craft of writing.


What is your schedule like when you are writing?  Do you have a favorite writing snack or drink?

My writing schedule is chaotic. I usually try to write in the morning, after lunch, and/or after dinner. I don’t have kids so it’s easy for me to find the time. It’s just hard to push myself into the mindset to write. 

My favorite snack might be Oreos. I tend to just drink water.


Do you listen to music when you write – what kind of music is your favorite?

Not really. When I do, it’s music the character would listen to. My favorite kind of music is a little bit of everything to be honest.


Have pets ever gotten in the way of your writing?

If you mean my partner, yes lol. But no, I don’t have pets.


What is your kryptonite as a writer? What totally puts you off your game?

Noise. Even the smallest bit of noise, or if my partner is walking around while I’m trying to write and he comes into my area, I just can't.


Have you ever killed off a character that your readers loved?

Yes, I have killed off a character. Did I know if the readers loved them? Nope.


How do you celebrate after typing THE END?

I’ve only typed THE END once and I didn’t celebrate. I was like “Ok cool, now I have to edit this. Fuck.” I guess going out or eating something sweet counts.


I hope you enjoyed this interview!

Check out all my interviews & reviews for Darline Rodriguez!

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