Interview with Diane Burke

» Posted on Mar 17, 2011 in Blog | Comments Off on Interview with Diane Burke

This week I’m hosting Debby Mayne with Sweet Baklava, Diane Burke with Double Identity, and Jill Eileen Smith with Bathsheba. If you want to enter the drawings, please leave a comment on one of the post during the week with your email address. I will not enter you without an email address (my way to contact you if you win). If you don’t want to leave an email address, another way you can enter is to email me at The drawings end Sunday (March 20th) evening.

Interview with Diane Burke:

1.What made you start writing?

When I was in my early twenties (many moons ago, LOL), I took an adult education class at the local high school that was titled “Writing for fun and profit.” It was either that or cake decorating and since I already had enough cake on my hips, I thought because I loved to read that it would be a really fun class. Three of my six homework assignments were later published as fillers in magazines. I became busy with life, raising children, working full time, going to college at the age of 40, and never gave serious thought to writing after that class but the seed was planted and finally bloomed years later.

2.How long have you been writing? When did you sell your first book?

I joined Volusia County Romance Writer’s, a local chapter of RWA, in July of 2001. At the time, I still wasn’t as serious about my writing as I should have been. For me, it was more of a hobby, a way to have some fun. The women in the chapter were fabulous and I made great friends. It took six years and the unexpected death of my husband to make me sit down and take stock of my life and decide what I truly wanted to do with the rest of it. When writing scored high in the top five, I entered the Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery and Suspense contest and won first place in the Inspirational Category in 2008. Steeple Hill
(known now as Love Inspired Books) bought that manuscript in 2009 and Midnight Caller was published in 2010.

3.How do you handle rejections?

I truly haven’t had any rejections so far. But that is NOT because my work is so terrific but probably more that I have been a coward over the years and didn’t put it out there to be rejected. Let’s face it—writing the same story for SIX YEARS tells you something, doesn’t it?

4.Why do you write?

In 2002, I would have said “I write as a hobby for fun.”
In 2011, I write because it fulfills a deep need in me. It gives me purpose and joy. I can’t imagine not writing. It has become a major part of who I am.

5.What would you be doing with your free time if you weren’t writing?

Reading. Reading. Reading. I absolutely love books. I love traveling to conferences and I love meeting other authors both published and unpublished.

6.What are you working on right now?

I am working on my fourth manuscript and plan to submit it shortly to Love Inspired Romantic Suspense

7.Do you put yourself into your books/characters?

Not literally. I have never been the target (thank you, Lord) of a serial killer or had to search for a missing family member or been chased by a bounty hunter. BUT emotion is a different story. Whether it is my villain feeling rage, anger, or rejection, or if it is my heroine feeling love, uncertainty, happiness or grief or even my heroes having trouble trusting after being hurt or feeling pressure to provide and protect against seemingly insurmountable obstacles, I have in one way or another experienced all those feelings in my lifetime and I’ve put every ounce of myself into those character’s feelings.

8.Tell us about the book you have out right now.

My current book, Double Identity, which hits the bookshelves this month, is the result of one question following another. What would happen if you went to bed one night as normally as every other night but when you awoke your entire world had changed? What if your father, your only living family, had disappeared? What if when you went to the police, you discovered that not just your father’s, but also your own identification records were false? As you tried to make sense of it all, what if someone tried to stop you from searching, even tried to kill you? Who could you turn to for help? What would you do? These are the questions that became the book Double Identity.

9.Do you have any advice for other writers?

Believe in yourself. Hang tough, it’s a long road. Work hard—and then work harder. Never stop learning your craft and striving to be better today than you were yesterday. And enjoy the journey.

10.How important is faith in your books?

I don’t like “preachy” books. I want to write real people with a genuine love of the Lord living real lives. But when I received a fan letter from a female soldier in Afghanistan telling me how terrified she was at night and how two sentences I had written in Midnight Caller reminded her that God was with her and no matter what happens to her over there, she would not be alone—that humbled me and brought me to tears. It reminded me that God is using my work in His own plan, for His own purposes. My faith and my respect for this important ministry is more important to me now than ever.

11.What themes do you like to write about?

Forgiveness and trust seem to crop up in all of my books to date.

12.What is your favorite book you’ve written and why?

I’d have to say my favorite book is the one I am currently working on. Why? Because I am continuing to try to learn my craft and grow as an author and I am hoping that it shows in my work and that each book is just a little bit better than the one before.

13.What is your writing schedule like?

Frantic. Unorganized. Snatch a couple of minutes here, an hour or two there, most Saturday mornings or afternoons. I sincerely wish I was more organized and disciplined. Thank the good Lord that most of my writing is done on scratch paper or jotted down in small notebooks or appears as scenes that dance in my head at stop lights or in grocery lines long before I hit the keyboard or I would never get any writing done.