Hello! Welcome to Interview FoxSeat featuring author Daryl Banner
Daryl Banner is an author and composer who graduated from the University of Houston with a degree in Theater and Psychology. He writes new adult romance, M/M romance, post-apocalyptic fantasy, and dystopian.
When did you decide to become a writer? I first realized I wanted to be a storyteller when I wrote my first play that became a full production. I peeked through the curtains and saw how the audience reacted. I felt my work come to life. The transition from that experience to writing and publishing novels has cemented in my mind that this is what I’m meant to do.
How long does it usually take you to complete a book? Purely depends on the series. My romances can take me about a month to a month and a half to write. An installment to the Outlier series can take me a year, due to its complexity and length.
Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured? I tend to write more methodically during the day. At night is when I’m more creative, so if a decision needs to be made or I hit a wall, then I work at night.
Do you listen to music or watch TV/movie while you write? I like to listen to video game music while I write. I’m a huge gamer at heart, so it keeps me quite inspired while I go. I also listen to instrumental versions of alternative music I like. Rarely, I do listen to bands when I write, but it’s gotta be something that digs into my psyche and doesn’t pull me from my inner narrative. Nirvana is really good for that. So is Radiohead. Nine Inch Nails as well.
What have you written? I’m the author of the Beautiful Dead series, which is a post-apocalyptic fantasy adventure featuring a smart, rebellious female teenager – who happens to be undead. I’ve also written the College Obsession Romance Series, which includes Read My Lips, and Beneath The Skin (and I’m working on book three right now titled With These Hands). My other titles include M/M romance: The Brazen Boys series, as well as a standalone called Football Sundae. I’m also the author of the OUTLIER series, which is a dystopian saga with a vast score of characters set in the last remaining city on Earth as they fight to survive under an oppressive governing regime. In my college days, I wrote a lot of plays and poetry as well.
Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just seeing where an idea takes you? It really depends on the series. The Brazen Boys – due to their being standalone novellas – are started with a basic idea and (in the case of most of them) an ending, and then I just write them. The Beautiful Dead I “loosely” planned and then wrote it with the intention of surprising myself, as the main character Winter was somewhat hard to control; she had such a mind of her own. OUTLIER, due to its extreme complexity and magnitude of characters (both POV and non-POV characters), I had to plan it out chapter-to-chapter, but still reserved the right to make a split decision and surprise myself. There’s nothing more thrilling than breaking my own carefully-laid-out outlines mid-story.
Do you design your own book covers or have someone else? If you use someone else would you tell us who/website? I design all of my own book covers with the exception of my College Obsession Romance series, in which I hired Kari Ayasha from Cover To Cover Designs. She did an excellent job on those covers!
Any advice for aspiring authors? Never stop writing. Chase the inspiration. And be true to your characters; it’s your responsibility to tell their story, and you are *literally* the only person in the world who can do it.
What is the current book you are promoting? I am currently writing and teasing the third (standalone) novel in my College Obsession Romance series titled With These Hands.
What is one great lesson you have learned as a writer? I can answer this by mentioning my toughest criticism. I was given it right after publishing my very first book – that the character was unlikable, even hateful, and totally unrelatable. It was tough because so much of that character was based directly off of me, so it felt like a very personal criticism. But my greatest growth came – unknowingly – from handling that very criticism. I “listened” to it. I started to embrace the flaws in my characters, the shortcomings, the mistakes we make as human beings. When people fell in love with the flawed heroes and heroines in my later books, I felt like I was witnessing my own growth as a writer firsthand.
What do your readers mean to you? They mean the world to me. Without them, I’m just a guy in his room telling stories to himself. My readers are my friends. Even more than that, they’re my companions through these stories I tell.