Tales of the Dragonfly

Award Winning Romance Suspense, Wounded Warrior Romance and New Adult Romance


๐Ÿ“š IN DEPTH โœ






ย julayn-almana-2

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Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?

Almana is an angel. She is from a world of order and power. Almana has the gift of sight and can see the future, but when World War III breaks out, destroying not only humans, but also the faith of her people, she finds that she has a new purpose. She must leave everything that she knows to try to save a teenage girl, Alexa, and guide her to save the world.

The name Almana means lonely or alone, and in leaving her home, she is just that. She is cursed to remain on Earth until the end of time. Although she loves and is loved by Alexa and her family, she mourns the loss of her own family and is left with having to make sense of unfamiliar feelings, very unangelic feelings, for Alexaโ€™s older brother, Cam.

What genre are your books and what draws you to this genre?

Almana is a young adult book, although it has been well received by all ages. Because the young adult genre is centered around teen characters, they are full of raw emotion. The characters are in constant inner turmoil, learning who they are, battling against conformity yet still trying to fit in, and of course, trying to be grown up without any life experience. I find that they evoke so much emotion.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?

I have heard and read that many successful writers use and outline, and although Iโ€™ve tried it, it just doesnโ€™t work for me. My writing is very organic. When I began writing Almana, I had no idea where it would go. I had a small idea and began writing. I wasnโ€™t even sure that it would end up being enough to become a short story. But as I began writing, the plot and characters took on a life of their own and will now be a trilogy.

Who designed your book cover?

The cover of a book is massively important. We all know the saying โ€œdonโ€™t judge a book by its coverโ€, but letโ€™s face it, we all do. When your book is sitting on a shelf, it needs to draw the potential reader’s attention. It needs to stand out and call their name. There are many great cover designers out there, and the prices range as wide as the variety of covers. I strongly recommend that writers use a professional. Designing a book cover is a true art that takes a lot of expertise in digital design and marketing.

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With all of that being said, I had a literal budget of $0 and was forced to design my own. It was a massive learning curve, and I had to learn several digital art programs in order to create Almanaโ€™s cover. I also (with the help of my husband) created my book trailer. The two projects took almost as long as writing Almanaโ€™s first draft. And, although my cover has received a lot of praise and even won a contest with Cover Wars, time is money. if you can afford even $50, itโ€™s well worth it!

Whatโ€™s more important: characters or plot?

This is a hard one. Honestly, I think both are of equal value. Good books have relatable characters that you can really get to know and feel like youโ€™ve made a connection. They also have a dynamic plot. The story needs to engage the reader. Neither can exist without the other. Iโ€™ve read some books with beautiful writing only closed the book with no attachment to any of the characters or no real sense of what it was about. I like to finish a book and wish that I could spend more time with my new friends in their world.

What were your goals and intentions in this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them?

My original goal was to just finish it. I didnโ€™t really even have plans for publication. When it was finally completed and so many people enjoyed it, I decided to give publishing a go. Unfortunately, publishing means spending a lot of time promoting. My new goal is to stop worrying about promoting and focus on completing Almanaโ€™s story. I hope to have the first draft of book two finished by the end of the year and released by March and book three out before the end of next year. Cross your fingers!

What inspires you?

Reading! Reading good YA books helps me to get into a creative flow. It helps me to reengage in the YA world/mind. Sometimes, if itโ€™s been a long stretch since I was last able to get some writing in, Iโ€™ll read a pivotal part in book one or go back and read the last chapter or two of what I last wrote. I find that it helps me reconnect with Aliโ€™s (Almana) character.

Whatโ€™s are the worst and best jobs youโ€™ve had?

My least favourite job ever was in telesales. I absolutely hated being in sales. It was the only job I had ever been fired from. I didnโ€™t even sell one thing!

Iโ€™ve had some pretty terrific jobs. Iโ€™ve been a preschool teacher, a nanny, a nursing aid, and a sonographer. I even found working in fast food restaurants as a kid fun. But I would have to say that my favourite job was running my own business. I had a business, A Childโ€™s Tale, organising dress up theme parties and tea parties. I would bring costumes to the parties, do make-up, face paint, weโ€™d dance, read, play games, make a craft, and I even had a little photo booth. Of course, I did all of this in character. I would dress as a Belle or Snow White, Tinkerbell, or a pirate. And it wasnโ€™t unusual to find me stopping of at Walmart or the grocery store on my way home from a party in costume. I absolutely loved it. Imagine getting paid to play dress-up!

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That telemarketing job you had? It doesn’t get any better, even if you’re good at sales.. A lot of my positions in the past have been glorified sales jobs and one of the most miserable and stressful jobs in the world!

Best of luck with your writing Jewel!ย tf