VIRTUAL AUTHOR VISIT WITH DANA SKORNIA
Dana Skornia lives in Jacksonville, FL with her husband and two children, and this is her first venture into writing fiction. She wrote the book with her father, JL Broxson, who lives in Milton, FL, where Dana and most of her relatives are from. She and her father have always been interested in the family history and genealogy of the Broxson family, and he’s always told her stories of the many people who have graced their heritage and of the friends who made their lives interesting fodder for the book.
Blog URL: https://awinterssecrets.blogspot.com/
About A WINTER’S SECRETS
Publication date: January 2020
Publisher: Kindle Direct Publishing
Genre: Historical Fiction
This is a post-Civil War family saga, based loosely on the author’s ancestral heritage and other historical accounts of rural life in Florida after the slaves had been freed. The story follows the emotional journeys of each person involved in a love triangle and develops gracefully and powerfully as they adapt to each other, and come to terms with new family dynamics – for better or for worse. The plot has several interesting twists, a few tense moments where things could go either way, some emotional turmoil, and many kind deeds and encouraging moments.
A Winter’s Secrets has been submitted to Florida Writer’s Association Royal Palm Literary Awards Competition
Buy the book: A Winter’s Secrets
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-winters-secrets-jl-broxson/1136126633?ean=9781078779517
Interview with Dana Skornia
Why did you start writing —what triggered your writing?
Dad called me one day and asked if I had a novel in me, and I said I thought I did. He and I have always been interested in the histories of the people in our heritage and he’s told me many stories over the years about how he grew up, people he knew, and what their lives were like. We agreed that I’d record him telling about those stories, and I used them to create a fictional tale, using many of the circumstances but envisioning what might have been, and crafting a plot and story line around them.
What does the act of writing bring into your life? Why do you want to write?
In the beginning I had an audience of one, because the only person I was writing for was Dad. I wanted him to have a story that he would enjoy reading, one that would have meaning and relevance for the time and people that he grew up knowing, and would resonate with what he knew to be true about the era and the people who lived in the early 1900s. As I continued I hoped it would be one that anyone might enjoy, and I wanted to share the story with others.
How long did it take you to write your book? How many rewrites did it go through?
I sent chapters to Dad as I finished them, and it took a few re-writes of the first three or four chapters to really feel as though I had something worth continuing. Once I got started, though, I found that the characters didn’t always behave the way I thought they should, but they also became more real to me as I started fleshing them out and determining who they really were.
Is this your first book? Your first fiction book?
This is the first book I’ve ever tried to write, although many people have told me I need to write a book and I had a blog going for a few years when my children were younger. I enjoyed writing it and wish I could afford to do nothing but write, as I thoroughly enjoyed the process and feel like I’ve got a few more “novels” in me.
Tell us an interesting fact or hidden secret about one of the characters that we wouldn’t know by reading the book.
When my father was young he had an aunt that would tease him and call him little Lester Leroy, and Dad always found that a little funny and a little offensive at the same time, and I knew at the end I wanted to make him laugh, so I put the conversation between Bud and Annie in the book about naming the baby that. Also, when I describe the nativity play that the children put on at Christmas time, I made a reference to a play in years past where the angel was stuck in the tomb and couldn’t get out.
That actually happened to my husband Dallas when he was a teenager in a church play, where the wings he was wearing were too big to get through the opening of the “tomb” they had constructed on stage and from where he was supposed to emerge and sing a song. Unfortunately for him he had to stay hidden in the tomb and just sing the song from where he was stuck, and it’s something he’s laughed about ever since.