5-STAR Fantasy / Sci-Fi

Monday, April 24, 2017

Indie Author Interview: Anita Dickason

Indie Author Interview with Anita Dickason - Author of the Thriller & Suspense / Paranormal Sentinels of the Night.

Anita Dickason is a retired Dallas Police Officer. During—what she refers to as a phenomenal career—Anita served as a patrol officer, undercover narcotics officer, advanced accident investigator, and SWAT entry/sniper. She has launched another career: Author and Publisher. Anita designs book covers and provides manuscript services to help other authors publish their writings.

Interview with Anita Dickason

Author Anita Dickason
Author Anita Dickason
Alan Kealey (Indie Author News): What is your (writing) background?
Anita Dickason: For most of my career, it has been technical or business: educational courses, presentations, case reports, speeches, and such.

Who are your favorite writers, your favorite books, and who or what are your writing influences?
Mysteries, first and last. Add in the paranormal and I’m hooked. There are so many talented authors it’s difficult to choose one over another, but Heather Graham and Carla Neggers are at the top.

When did you first know that you wanted to be a writer?
In 2013, I conducted a reconstruction of a 1966 automobile accident that killed a key witness to the Kennedy assassination and wrote a book detailing the results of my research--JFK Assassination Eyewitness: Rush to Conspiracy. It was my first published work. I so enjoyed the experience I decided to try my hand at writing fiction and wrote a 500-word short story. I entered it in a contest, and much to my amazement won third place. That bit of encouragement was all it took.

"There are days when all I do is type."

Tell about your writing process. Do you have a writing routine?
There are days when all I do is type. Then I may go days, even weeks before starting again. For me, the rather erratic pace seems to work. It lets my characters and plot steep in my mind.

"The most difficult are multiple POVs"

What do you find easiest about writing? What is the hardest?

The plots are the easiest. With my law enforcement background, I have an endless supply. I have also discovered that writing has changed my perspective of the world around me. Events, people, and places become potential fodder for a new story, character, or location.
The most difficult are multiple POVs, the switching from character to character and even locations. I like the depth the technique adds to the interactions of the characters and the plot, but at times it can get a bit tricky. It’s easy to let small details get away from you. That’s why I always have a notepad beside my keyboard and make endless notes.

What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Developing the characters. I have always been intrigued by characters with unexpected skills—that extra ability for overcoming danger and adversity. Add in my infatuation with myths and legends of Native American Indians and Scottish and Irish folklore, and you have the backdrop for my characters.

Anita, please tell us a little about your Thriller/Suspense Novel: Sentinels of the Night.
This novel introduces a newly formed team of FBI agents: Code Name—Trackers. Considered the elite of the elite, each has a secret, an extra edge, that defies reason and logic. Cat Morgan is the first agent to be selected, unaware of the real reason she was offered the position. When she finds a body with a bizarre symbol carved on the forehead, she must deal with an antagonistic police chief, a corrupt politician, and uncertainties over her new team as she hunts down the killer. Stopping the killer will force her into an impossible decision, and Hunter’s very sanity will be tested.

Sentinels of the Night (Anita Dickason)
Click to Read an Excerpt

What inspired you to write the book?
I came across a 1900 translation of a Native American Indian ceremony by Alice C. Fletcher. When I read the phrase, “The night season is mine. I wake when others sleep. I can see in the darkness and discern coming danger,” I knew I had found my paranormal element, and that became the basis for the story.

Who do you see as your target audience?
My book will probably appeal to women more than men.

What makes your book special?
I believe it is my characters and the intricacy of the story.

"Write a few short stories."

Can you give some advice for other Authors regarding the writing process?
Write a few short stories. They can help hone your craft probably better than any other writing exercise. When you are limited to 500, 1500 words, or even 5000 words, every single one counts. It brings an awareness of overused words, clich├ęs, letting a sentence or paragraph ramble, and tightens the prose.

Are you working on another book project? Can you tell us a little about it?
Going Gone! is the next of the Tracker Novels. In this one, FBI Tracker Ryan Barr, the unit profiler, takes center stage as he teams with an ex-homicide detective turned private investigator, Kerry Branson. She finds a six-year-old boy running from a gunman on a lonely East Texas road and discovers he is the kidnapped son of a U.S. Senator. The action is non-stop as they uncover a plot to kidnap the children of the most influential politicians on Capitol Hill and brings together an unlikely group of individuals. Going Gone! will be released at the end of May.

Where do you see the book market in 5 or 10 years? Will there be only eBooks and will bookstores disappear like record stores disappeared?
Without a doubt, eBooks, are the wave of the future. I don’t believe, though, that printed books will totally disappear. I think there will always be a demand for them, but their availability will increasingly be limited to online sites. Print on Demand has pushed that option to the forefront. As for bookstores, we are already seeing the trend of stores closing their doors. Just a few months ago, a large chain in my region filed for bankruptcy and closed.

"[...] curling up in a chair with a book that I can hold in my hands"

What is your e-reading device of choice?
Don’t laugh, but I don’t have one. I am old school, and my idea of reading is curling up in a chair with a book that I can hold in my hands and turn paper pages. I downloaded the eBook apps on my computer, but the only time it’s used is to review the eBook version I set up for another author.

Do you write full-time or do you have a day job? When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?
I am a retired Dallas Police Officer. My retirement, however, didn’t last long. That first book, the reconstruction of a 1966 fatality accident, was not only the start of my writing career but also one in publishing and graphic designs. I started a new business; Mystic Circle Books & Designs, and provide manuscript services and design book covers. I work with other authors to help them publish their works and am loving every step of the process. I really don’t know which I enjoy more, working on my book or another author’s book. My current project is an illustrated children’s book for a local author.

How can readers connect with you?
I finally had to bow to the inevitable and now have a Twitter and Facebook account, though I am still learning how to navigate the labyrinth of social media. I also have a website. I would love to answer any questions someone might have or just to say hi. My email address is anita@anitadickason.com or I can be contacted at any of the following links:
Twitter - Facebook - Website

Thank you very much for the Interview, Anita.

About the Book Sentinels of the Night

Sentinels of the Night (Anita Dickason)
Click to Read an Excerpt
FBI Tracker Cat Morgan has an unusual talent, one she has successfully concealed, even from her fellow agents. That is—until she finds a body with a strange symbol carved on the forehead during a stop in Clinton, Mississippi and crosses paths with the town’s rugged police chief, Kevin Hunter.

Despite his instant attraction to the sexy agent, Kevin is suspicious of her presence at the crime scene and isn’t buying her dubious explanations. He wants her out of the investigation and out of his town.

The discovery of another mutilated body with the same symbol sends Cat back to Clinton, and this time she isn’t leaving. To stop the killer, Cat must find a way to overcome Kevin’s distrust and will face an impossible impasse—truth or lies.

But will either one matter, when the killer fixates on her for his next sacrifice?

- "Outstanding book! Great read and the words flow off the page. Enjoyed that it was not your typical crime drama, but that the author added in some paranormal and Native American elements. [...] you won't be disappointed!" - Reader Review

Link to the Book

Link to the Hardcover Sentinels of the Night on Amazon

Link to the Paperback Sentinels of the Night on Amazon

Link to the eBook Sentinels of the Night on Amazon

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