A Conversation with Diane Bator

Sage has to deal with renovations, a fashion show, and a murder before she and Laken come unglued —All That Shines (Glitter Bay Mysteries) by @dibator

What inspired the idea for your book?

The second book was born from the first book, ALL THAT SPARKLES, but one of the new characters was inspired by someone I met.

What was the most surprising thing you learned in writing this book?

Characters can get snippy sometimes when someone rocks the boat! I think Sage Miller’s growth totally caught me off guard. I know characters go through an arc and things have changed by the end, but I think she’s the one character I’ve ever written who has changed the most.

If you were friends with a character in this book, what kinds of things would you do together? 

Sage loves yoga as well as being active when she’s not working in her vintage boutique. Hanging out with her would involve some sort of outdoor activity. I’d love to walk on the beach and chat with her and ride the trails along the ocean that she’s likely discovered.

How do you define success as an author?

Deep down, a part of me won’t feel successful until I can write all day and quit my day job! The dream we all dream of! The other part of success is getting letters and reviews from readers who loved a character or a storyline and it made some sort of impact on them.

Do you have any quirky writing rituals?

Not really. I can write anytime, anyplace, anyhow. I’ve written with crayons on napkins, while sitting in a doctor’s office, even while cooking dinner. Luckily, no pens were sacrificed to the spaghetti gods! All I need to write is an implement and something to drink! (usually water or coffee!)

What comes first for you — the plot or the characters?

Depends on the book. Some books I’ve started with a single character idea, others I’ve started with a “what if” idea. The Bookstore Lady came about because I moved to a small town and didn’t know anyone. I’d walk around town wondering “what if” I was on the run from ruthless killers? In All That Shines, I focused more on “what if” Sage and Laken moved their store into a bigger location and Laken went behind her sister’s back to hire help to make it perfect. I already had the characters from All That Sparkles.

Aside from writing or reading, what are your hobbies or interests?

I used to love doing counted cross-stitch and dragged it out again during Covid last summer. I also enjoy camping and hiking. For me, being outside provides a lot of inspiration both for books and for the soul. I’ve also spent a lot of time meditating and doing yoga this past year. They’ve both been great ways to calm my mind and body.

What advice would you give to a writer working on their first book?

Write what you want to read. Once you’ve written your book, read it through and do your own edits, then send it to someone you trust to give you an honest opinion and help you walk through to edit it. Finding a mentor who can help you with publishing and marketing is invaluable! Even if all you want is to write a story for yourself, no book is a waste of time.

What are you reading now?

Kenora Reinvented by Canadian author Hyacinthe M. Miller. I was fortunate to meet her right before lockdown last year and am loving her story and attention to detail.

What is your author spirit animal?

A gecko. Seriously! I have three on my office wall. Geckos represent the circling of life energy. They offer hope for rebuilding our lives, which I’ve had to do lately. Geckos are symbols of energy and represent the magic of the nature in its purest form.

What would the title of your autobiography be?

I’ve already started one in my mind. It’s called Learning to Breathe.

What would your dream library look like?

Big. Very, very big. And bright. It’s too hard to read in the dark!

If you could have lunch with 3 authors (past or present) who would they be and what do you think you would all talk about during lunch?

Sidney Sheldon, Karin Slaughter, and Stephen King. Could you imagine that conversation? The thrilling, gory, and macabre conversations could leave me sleepless for a week! But I’d love to hear about their writing styles and how they learned their craft. I’d also like to know who inspired them to write.

If you had your own talk show, what would the topic be and who would be your first guest(s)?

Oh wow. I used to daydream I’d be interviewed by Oprah and she’d ask me what made me want to write and how I defined success. That sort of thing. I love hearing other people’s stories in general of how they got started and what their dreams are. I would love to interview Bradley Cooper and Drew Barrymore. More just to meet them and have my own fan girl moment!!

Name three fun facts about you or your work.

1) I enjoy writing so much I don’t find the writing as much work as the marketing!
2) I actually worked as a receptionist in a karate school just like my character Gilda Wright.
3) I’m a lunatic in any office supply store. Paper and pens are my crack!

If you knew you could not fail, what would you do?

Write full time and live near the ocean or at least a very large lake! It would be great to have less to have to juggle!

When Sage Miller’s sister Laken decides to host a fashion show as a grand opening for the new location of Vintage Sage, she’s not amused. Even less so when she discovers her sister hired a Hollywood fashion designer to help. Not only does the designer show up in the middle of renovations, but he drags along his protégé.

Then she finds Sebastian Hayward III, dead in her store.

Suddenly it seems half of Los Angeles—all unwelcome guests from Laken’s past—appear in Vintage Sage seeking something Sebastian had in his possession. Sage has to deal with renovations, a fashion show, and a murder before she and Laken come unglued.

Buy Links: Amazon – B&N – Kobo 

Diane Bator is the author of several mystery novels—and series. She’s a member of Crime Writers of Canada, Sisters in Crime Toronto, International Thriller Writers and the Writers Union of Canada. When she’s not writing, she works in a small, professional theatre which will one day be subjected to immortality in a whole new series.

Author Links 

Website   Blog    Twitter    Facebook    Goodreads   Linkedin  Smashwords

BWL Publishing Inc   Amazon Author Page  

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