Award-winning author DiAnn Mills launched her career in 1998 with the publication of her first book. Currently she has fifty books in print and has sold 1.5 million copies.
DiAnn believes her readers should “Expect an Adventure.” She is a fiction writer who combines an adventuresome spirit with unforgettable characters to create action-packed novels.
Six of her titles have appeared on the CBA Bestseller List. Three of her books have won the distinction of Best Historical of the Year by Heartsong Presents. Five of her books have won placements through American Christian Fiction Writer’s Book of the Year Awards 2003 – 2008, and she is the recipient of the Inspirational Reader’s Choice award for 2005 and 2007. She was a Christy Awards finalist in 2008.
DiAnn is a founding board member for American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Inspirational Writers Alive, Romance Writers of America’s Faith, Hope and Love, and Advanced Writers and Speakers Association. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. DiAnn is also a mentor for Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writer’s Guild.
She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas. They have four adult sons and are active members of Metropolitan Baptist Church.To check out her website readers can go to www.diannmills.com
SKC: Welcome, DiAnn. What a great biography. I’m not certain if I’ve had the joy of having you here at A Pen for Your Thoughts before or not, but I’m anxious to hear about your newest book and what inspired you with this one.
DM: Danika Morales in Sworn to Protect is a Border Patrol Agent in McAllen, Texas. When news about an agent possibly leaking information to those involved in human and drug smuggling into the US, Danika sets out to prove her innocence. As she cautiously searches for who among the ranks could be the rogue, she is threatened. Who can she trust? And the one man who steals her heart could be the man who is trying to kill her.
My adult four sons one had a young man as a baby sitter who has made a career of the Border Patrol. I think keeping my sons in check was probably training ground. I’ve always been interested in the Border Patrol and the dangers involved in their chosen profession.
SKC: True experiences and the interests of our family members are all fantastic recipes for a great or potential book. I agree. How has your Christian background affected the style of writing you do?
DM: My stories have at least one character who solves his/her problems according to their faith. A Christian character reacts and responds to the happenings around him/her with this Christian worldview.
However - What is important to me is not what a Christian character says, but what he/she does to show their faith. Truth is a vital part of my stories.
SKC: I couldn't agree more. I know you stay extremely busy, DiAnn, but how disciplined are you each day with your writing schedule, and if you get off track how do you get back ON track?
DM: I’m disgustingly disciplined. I’m up before dawn, and I stop when my list and word count for the day is finished. I build into my word count for occasions when I need to get off track. Life is interruptions, so I try to be mindful of that!
SKC: A good lesson for all authors and aspiring ones as well. How often do you visit other authors’ blogs, and what do you learn from going about the web? Do you ever get distracted by the web, DiAnn?
DM: I do visit other author’s websites on occasions, but again, I want to be mindful of my time. And I’m part of several email loops. Cruising the web would be a treat after my work is completed. I post to twitter and check facebook early in the morning, then leave those posts alone. Email is the biggest distraction. That takes a huge amount of discipline to limit checking those juicy tidbits to a few times during the day.
SKC: I think every writer would agree with that. Writers go through some particular trials when it comes to their craft. What is one that gets to you the most and how do you deal with it?
DM: I don’t want my characters to be cookie cutters from previous novels. Let me stress that a little more: I refuse for my characters to resemble ones in previous books. Neither do I want to use the same plot angles. I know all of the plots have been written, but when I catch myself using similar circumstances, it infuriates me. If it’s not too late, then I’ll go back and change as much as I can.
SKC: A good point of help to all. What do you think is one of the most important things you have learned so far in your years of living about life since becoming a published writer?
DM: 1. Always be ready to help another sincere writer.
2. Always give the glory to God
3. Always make sure the current wip is better written than the previous book.
SDC: Three outstanding points. Now, tell us that one scripture that keeps you going each day. And then, since you are so kind to offer a copy of your book to one of our viewers, what is one of the first questions you want to ask an established writer when you meet them for the first time. Or to gain better understanding of your readers what do you like to ask them when you meet them face to face?
DM: Jeremiah 20:9. But if I say, "I will not mention him or speak any more in his name," his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot.
Question for reflection to all writers: In meeting a new writer, I want to know where their heart is: how do they view their writing? In other words I want to know their passion for the craft of writing. Is it all about the writer or all about the reader.
Question for reflection to all readers: In meeting a new reader, I want to know what book they read of mine. This opens the door to find out more about them as a person. My goal is to build a relationship that’s steps beyond the page.
SDC: I appreciate your choice of questions and look forward to the answers that come in. It has been a pleasure having you here at A Pen for Your Thoughts, DiAnn. Tell us which book you are planning to share, and then be sure to let us know where we can find you and your books on the web.
DM: My newest release is Sworn to Protect, the 2nd book in the Call of Duty series, published by Tyndale. Release date is April 1, but I should have my books before then.
Readers can view the book trailer at www.diannmills.com. I’ll be hosting a facebook launch party soon with some great giveaways. And, please consider subscribing to my newsletter!
Thank you so much, Shirley, for this opportunity to give back to readers. I appreciate you!
THANK YOU TOO DIANN. I'VE HAD A GREAT TIME HAVING YOU HERE.
READERS/WRITERS. Check out the Reflective Questions above, and send in your responses. I look forward to drawing a winner in the next few days! Don't forget to add your e-mail address.
Congratulations to Linda Strawn of California! Be watching for your book and THANKS a million for following A Pen for Your Thoughts!
Thank you Shirley for sharing some of Ms. Mills thoughts. She truly believes in helping others. I am one of her attendees of her recent workshops.ReplyDelete
Come by my blog for a visit sometime. www.teatimeconsultants.blogspot.com
Thank you! I do believe in helping others!ReplyDelete
great interview. thanks. it's nice to meet DiAnn.ReplyDelete
I write but I am struggling. I'm not about to give up. Good question.
Unfortunately, I have never tried DiAnn work. :( I would love to try this one though! Thanks for the chance. :)ReplyDelete
Do you remember corresponding with me way back in November 2008? I was writing a novel about Christians who evangelize Muslims? I want to let the visitors to this blog know what a great encouragement you were to me.
Ready? The book sold last month! I’m wondering, are you concerned at all about the trend in CBA away from “Christian” fiction and toward clean “fiction?” Which I believe will eventually allow “Christian” fiction to be shelved with clean secular fiction in a few years? I am passionate about writing fiction with a conscience that has an internal story that reveals spiritual truth. Any thoughts on this?
I enjoyed your interview with DiAnn. As I ponder your question, I'm inclined to say it's all about the story. I get so caught up in it, and because I'm writing what God has called me to do, I know my words will benefit whomever might read them. Ultimately, my passion to write is all about God first, then the reader.
I have read the first book in the call to duty series and look forward to reading this one as well.ReplyDelete
You all are so encouraging. Writing is not easy; neither is it for the fainthearted. God has a purpose for your dreams and your craft. If only we'd listen!ReplyDelete
I read "Breach of Trust" and plan on reading more of DiAnn Mills books.ReplyDelete
I am so enjoying this party!ReplyDelete
Me too! This is great! I love hearing when the reader gets caught up in the story itself. That is so much to me what counts!ReplyDelete
Keep your comments coming in people! I can't wait to draw that name for DiAnn in a couple of days
I love your mystery/suspense the best, but that is my forte in books. I need to check out your other books.ReplyDelete
desertrose5173 at gmail dot com
It's Tuesday morning, and I'm reading a few new posts here. I so appreciate all of you!ReplyDelete
As an aspiring writer I appreciate what DiAnn had to say about being disciplined.Working on the internet and checking blogs, emails, etc can take up a lot of time. I need to remember that.ReplyDelete
Well, I have read quite a few of DiAnn's books but I have to say I have 2 very favorite ones. When the Lion Roars and When the Nile Runs Red. Not only was it filled with action, suspense and romance but it really touched my heart with what the people of Sudan deal with. When I think things are really bad I remember this series. It helps my perspective.