Meet Darynda Jones!
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Darynda Jones has won numerous awards for her work including a prestigious Golden Heart®, a RITA®, and a Daphne du Maurier. As a born storyteller, she grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by, annoying man and beast alike. Darynda lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as New Mexico, with her husband and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys.
1. What is the number one thing Charlie asked Santa for when she was growing up?
A shiny new scythe.
Just kidding! She’s partial to machetes.
2. Firefly is one of the best Science Fiction shows ever. Are you a fan? If so, what is your favorite episode and why?
AM I EVER!!!
That show was amazing. Favorite episode? Hands down, Out of Gas. I simply love how they went back and forth in time, showing us how everyone got on the ship, how Zoe met Wash, how Kalie became the ship’s mechanic, and how Inara came to be a part of the gang. But the best part, the sheer genius of Joss Whedon, is how a salesman is trying to sell Mal a ship. He describes this ship through the entire episode, bragging about how reliable she is and how she’ll be with Mal until the day he dies, and then we are finally given a glimpse of that scene and we learn that the salesman wasn’t talking about the Firefly at all. He was trying to sell him another ship altogether, then Mal looks into the distance and sees her. Serenity. And the salesman, still talking about this other ship while Mal stares lovingly at Serenity, says, “Yes, sir, she’ll be with you until the day you die.” Cue dramatic death scene! I cry my heart out every time I see it.
3. How do you combat writers block: Paper, Scissors, or Rock?
You know, sometimes it takes all three, but I’d have to say most of the time it’s paper. I sit down and figure out what I’m doing wrong, because most of my own writer’s block comes from knowing deep inside something is wrong with my manuscript. Then come out the scissors and, if I’ve really screwed the pooch, a boulder or two.
4. The zombie apocalypse is upon us and you have to choose one sidekick to help you survive: Garrett, Cookie, Taft, Uncle Ubie, or Donovan?
Cookie and I could cry on each other’s shoulders, but that wouldn’t help us survive. Taft would just annoy me while I’d probably just want to jump Donovan. My ultimate death would be due to lack of attention. Garrett would be very skilled and handy as heck to have around, but again, lack of attention. I would have to go with Uncle Bob. I love that man. He is family. And I wouldn’t have that who ADD thing going with him around.
5. What is one scene or line from one of your favorite books or movies that has stayed with you as inspirational and/or damn funny?
It’s one that I love so much from a book by Jessa Slade. I want to say it was in her first book, Seduced by Shadows. One character says something like, “The end is nigh.” And another says, “It’s never nigh enough.” I love that! I love how she manipulated the language and message so playfully. It was a lesson to me, very much like the one I learned from Joss Whedon. Nothing is sacred. Convolute everything and never apologize.
6. If you could pick one item from Charlie’s closet to have for yourself what would it be?
Her collection of boots. Although she does have these Star Wars boxers I’d love to have.
7. National Novel Writing Month is a big deal for a lot of people. Since you have participated before, how do you think NaNoWriMo has helped your work? Has any of your NaNoWriMo work been published, or is your NaNoWriMo work just for fun? What is your advice for participants once NaNoWriMo is over?
I love NaNoWriMo! I participate every year but I’ve only won once. Not because I can’t write 50,000 words in 30 days, but because I have other deadlines that don’t always involve putting fresh words on paper, and those come first. I wrote Fourth Grave Beneath my Feet during NaNoWriMo, so yep! I’ve had one published.
My advice once it’s over is first, don’t beat yourself up if you didn’t win. I can write 10,000 words a day and I’ve only won once. It’s not always about getting words on paper. Whatever you have, don’t stop once it’s over. If your first draft is complete, get back on it. Edit. Polish. Layer in depth and emotion and description. Then get it out there! If you didn’t quite complete a first draft, do that first then see above for further instructions.
8. What is your favorite organization/cause to support and why?
There are so many that I love. If it involves animals in any way, I am so there. I belong to several animal rights organizations. But I am also very much about basic human rights. I love Amnesty International. They can be found here: http://www.amnesty.org. They do good things.
9. What is the most embarrassing thing a fan has ever asked you?
Oh, gosh. I just don’t get embarrassed that easily. I guess it would involve someone putting me on the spot with something I did in one of my books. Like one girl asked me (on Facebook) what was up with Charley’s unnatural and disturbing obsession with “the picture.” She was talking about a picture Charley has of Reyes when he was being abused by the man who raised him. I see nothing wrong with her keeping it. In fact, I think she would be all kinds of dumb if she got rid of it. It’s evidence of how Reyes was treated growing up. But some people don’t see it that way.
10. What is your favorite internet meme?
LOL, while I love eCards, I really like the whole meme with Ryan Gosling where he says things like, “Hey girl, you can start an uprising in my district any day.”
11. Can you please put “‘that’s what’ –she” (that’s what she said) as one of your next book’s funny quotes? Pretty please?
Ha! I totally should. Okay, I have it on my list.
12. What’s your favorite useless bit of trivia?
Any trivia about the SR-71 Blackbird fascinates me to no end. Also, the fact that it is impossible to lick your elbow is fun.
13. I am a notorious picky eater. What’s one food you find absolutely disgusting? In contrast, what is your favorite dessert?
You know those shows where they make people eat gross things? Yeah, I cannot watch those. I have a terrific gag reflex. I will not eat brains. I don’t care how much they taste like chicken. And my favorite dessert? Wow, so many to choose from. It is quite possibly cobbler of any kind, but it could be chocolate cake. Hard to say.
14. How did Charlie form her obsession with naming everything, and how does she remember all the names of stuff?
Well, Charley has a strange need to keep her mind busy at all times. Her ADD is out of control more often than not. I think naming everything just came to her one day to give her mind something to do. As for how I came up with it, the whole naming thing started when I wanted to name her Jeep after my car. I’ve been naming my cars for years and the one I had while writing First Grave was named Misery. I wanted to immortalize her, and that’s how it all started.
Charley remembers everything because her brain just works that way. I, on the other hand, have to look back to remember what I named things. It’s very frustrating. I really need to write them all down.
15. What is the sweetest thing your husband has ever done for you that just melted your heart?
My husband is kind of amazing. He cooks. He cleans. He makes me coffee. I think the sweetest thing he’s ever done happened when I was moving into my new office and I just didn’t have time to put my desk together and get things in order, so I was working out of my old office which was soon to become a bedroom. He did it for me, everything, when I was gone to a conference. I came back to a beautiful new office. He’s so great.