Monday, March 28, 2011

Interview with Dellani Oakes

Quote of the week:  Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So ... get on your way. Dr. Seuss

It is my pleasure to interview Dellani Oakes today. She is a writer, teacher, Mary Kay consultant, mother of four and grandmother. She lives south of the Mason-Dixon line and loves to read good books. She also writes science fiction, historical fiction, contemporary romance and assorted articles. Dellani reveals even more in the interview. Thanks so much for answering my questions, Dellani. Here's what this talented lady and author has to say:

Bev: How and when did you decide to become a writer?

Dellani: I think writing selected me. I've told stories since I was little. I started by telling my mother about going to Rainbow School when I was 3 and my sister started school. I went from there to poems, eventually moving on to short stories and plays, finally to novels.

Bev: Where did you get the idea for your book INDIAN SUMMER?

Dellani: I was on a field trip with my eldest son when he was in 4th grade. Shepherding 15 fourth graders around St. Augustine in the rain might not seem very inspirational, but it got me thinking of all the stories that city had to tell.

Bev: You also have a Blog Talk Radio Show, Dellani’s Tea Time. How did you get started with this?

Dellani: Well, I have two shows, Dellani's Tea Time, which features children's authors & illustrators. My other show is What's Write for Me which is for authors of adult fiction & non-fiction. I was asked by April Robins and Jan Holiday to help Jan with her show as a co-host. When she had to step aside, April asked if I'd be willing to take over for her, I agreed. A second host also bowed out, so I got the second show by default. I haven't regretted a minute of it.

Bev: Tell us about your process. Do you outline or just let the story flow?

Dellani: I'm very much an organic author. I don't really outline anything, though I do keep careful notes. I've learned over time that my memory is not infallible. I'm always looking for new ways to keep myself organized. I generally begin with a starting sentence that gets stuck in my brain. The story flows from there.

Bev: What are you working on now?

Dellani: Wow, I'm working on so many projects, I don't really know where to begin. I woke about a week ago with an idea burning in my brain. I wrote frantically for 5 days & at the end of it, I had a fantastic story. I think it's one of the best things I've ever written. I'm in the after story slump at the moment, tapping away at various projects, hoping to find the inspiration to finish one.

Bev: Now for some fun questions: What were your favorite books when you were a kid? What do you read now?

Dellani: I had so many well loved books as a child. Outstanding would be AA Milne's Pooh books. "Where the Wild Things Are', 'Little Women' and the others by Louisa May Alcott, as well as all the 'Anne of Green Gables' books. I fell in love with those. As a teenager, I moved on to 'Wuthering Heights', 'Jane Eyre' and (my absolute favorite) 'Rebecca. I also devoured the Tolkien books and CS Lewis' 'Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe' series.

For years, I read mysteries and sci-f/ fantasy. Eventually, I added plays to that mix, since I was a theatre major in college. I read just about anything if it interests me. Admittedly, I'm not one for biographies or anything considered serious literature. I like my reading to take me away from the mundane here and now. Probably why I write predominantly romance.

Bev: What are your favorite movies/TV shows?

Dellani: Where do I start? I don't watch a lot of TV, though I do watch TV shows online. 'Bones', 'Burn Notice', 'Doctor Who' & 'Torchwood', 'Fringe', 'Dollhouse', 'Farscape' & 'Firefly' to name only a very few. Movies? Can't even begin to pick a favorite. I'm a movie junkie. I tend to prefer action movies with lots of martial arts & gunfire--'Matrix', 'Lord of the Rings', 'Die Hard', 'Serenity'.... I do like the occasional romantic comedy, but give me a buff hero with a big gun any day of the week.

Bev: What kind of music do you listen to?

Dellani: I listen to all kinds of music. I'm not a fan of rap, nor do I like twangy country music. I'll listen to just about anything else, with a strong preference for hard rock/ heavy metal.

Bev: If you could live in another time or place, when or where would you choose? Why?

Dellani: I don't think I'd like to go back in time. I like indoor plumbing and electricity. If I could go into the future, live in outer space, that would be cool.

Bev: How may your fans contact you: Blogs? Websites?

Dellani: My fans can contact me through Facebook. I also have two blogs that I post on regularly:;
 I also post twice a month on the publisher's website;

Bev: Do you have anything you’d like to add?

Dellani: My book, "Indian Summer" is available through the publisher:;

as well as;
 where it can be downloaded to Kindle. The publisher also has it in e-book form.

My second book, the first in my sci-fi adventure series, "The Lone Wolf" is due out soon from Second Wind.

Bev: Wow, you are a busy lady. Thanks again for stopping by to visit with us.


  1. I love the energy and enthusiasm radiating from Dellani. Terrific interview, Beverly!

    1. Thank you! I can't believe I'm finding this 3 years later! I'm not sure how I lost the link, but here I am!

  2. She is a lot of fun to talk with, Darby. I was on her show once.

    1. Thank you, Beverly! I've enjoyed our chats too. We'll have to get together again soon!

  3. Great interview! It was fun learning all about Dellani. Thanks for hosting her, Beverly.

  4. Dellani and Bev,

    Great interview! Thanks for taking the time to post it. Always fun hearing other writers and their processes. Hooray for no outline!

  5. Thanks, Susanne. Dellani is a great writer and I'm happy to know her.

  6. I agree, Kai. Yay for no outline.

    Thanks for stopping by.

  7. Great interview! Best of luck to Dellani. Her radio shows sound like a lot of fun, too.

  8. Hi Dellani! Glad you dropped by and I enjoyed the interview. Congratulations on your book and I can't wait to check it out!

  9. Hi Kelly,
    The show was fun. Dellani is a super hostess and keeps things rolling. :)

  10. Nice to see you here, LM. I'm sure Dellani appreciates your kind words.

  11. Great interview, ladies! I love the response to the process/outline query. Most of my poems begin with a line or phrase and I write around it.

  12. Thanks, Ruthi. I love to just let the words flow, too, without having to look at an outline.

  13. Thank you everyone for your wonderful comments and thank you Beverly for this great interview! I had completely lost it in my list of interviews. Here I am, years later, finding it.