Release Celebration: HIS BY DESIGN by Dani Wade

His By Design coverToday, I’m honored to host the release of Ruby sister Dani Wade’s HIS BY DESIGN. This is Dani’s first release with Harlequin Desire. One of the perks of hosting a release is getting to read the book. Let me tell you, it is AMAZING. I read the first three chapters and had to force myself to put it down because other duties called. Then, when I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down.  Seriously When I read the end, I looked at the clock and was stunned to see 4:15 a.m. flashing at me. It has been a long time since I’ve stayed up all night reading. I loved that it grabbed me and didn’t let go.

After reading HIS BY DESIGN, I had a few questions for Dani. Before we get to those, here’s a blurb from the book.

He’s her boss. He’ll do what he wants with her 

Ziara Divan came from nothing and worked hard to earn her position at Atlanta’s most prestigious bridal fashion house. So when her new boss Sloan Creighton tries to seduce her in a power play, she’s not having it. She won’t climb the corporate ladder right into the boss’s bed…even if he’s irresistible. 

Sloan will have his way—in business and in pleasure. He’ll regain control of his father’s company, and he’ll have this woman—not necessarily in that order. But just as his plans fall into place, Ziara’s past threatens to tear them apart at the seams….

 ME:  Dani, I absolutely loved this story. The characters, the setting, the conflict, the heat…ooh la la. What made you decide on wedding gown designer for your setting? From your vivid description of fabrics and design, I’m wondering what type of design background you have.

DANI: Honestly, none.  :)  But at the time I was brainstorming this book, my husband had a cousin who interned with a famous designer in New York City. I called to ask her about the design industry and procedures for presenting designs to buyers, and she’s the one who told me there was a wedding gown industry based in Atlanta. I knew Ziara was tactile, sensual, and filled in the details from there.

ME:   Wow. I am impressed. I could’ve sworn you were going to say you’d taken some fashion courses. Another area in which you did a fabulous job was characterization. I don’t want get too detailed for obvious spoiler reasons, but Ziara’s conflict tugged at my heartstrings. I wanted to tell her she had no reason to feel ashamed. I felt for her, for what she’d endured and for how far she’d come. Can you give us some insight on what process you used to create your characters?   

DANI: I’ve never been a fan of character interviews and such. Over the years, I’ve paired down my character development to 3 things I need before I start writing, the rest I discover as I go.

First, I explore the goals, obstacles, conflicts, and emotional hang-ups of my characters. I don’t care what kind of car they drive YET, I want to dig into their psychy: what do they care about and how does it affect this story?

Then I need (2) a photo (this gives me a visual starting place for picturing them in the scenes, even though it may not be exact), and (3) his and her theme songs. Each of my characters has their own “music” that I listen to in order to slip into their heads. It helps me flesh out their feelings and actions, and reconnect when I have to set the writing aside for things like line edits.

As I said, the rest will flesh out during the actual writing.

ME:   I also like to have an image in mind for my characters. I don’t necessarily have theme songs for my characters, but I do listen to a created playlist. I guess in a way, I do choose songs that reflect the emotional aspect of the story.

Being a lover and frequent visitor of Vegas, I loved that aspect of your story. By introducing Patrick, you once again proved you are a master of increasing the stakes. He was the worst possible person for Sloan to involve in his scheme against Vivian.  When the story was at the beginning stages, did you know Patrick’s Vegas connection?

DANI: Oddly enough, I’ve never been to Vegas–but it sounds like a really cool place! I knew Patrick would be a costume designer, but I didn’t know where until I saw a segment on a TV show about a hookah lounge in Las Vegas. There’s actually a scene set there that was cut from the final book.

ME: If you ever get the chance, go to Vegas. Not everyone loves it, but you should at least experience it…once. One last question, plotter or pantser?

DANI: Plotter, most definitely. I love to explore the scene possibilities, highs and lows, and how I can wring emotion from my characters — I just do all that at the plotting stage.  :)  Then I flesh those ideas out during the draft and revision stages. That doesn’t mean the plot never changes, but I just can’t handle the stress of possibly writing myself into a corner and having to cut a chapter or two to fix it!

Congratulations, Dani, on your release! It truly is a wonderful read.  I wish for you many,  many sales.

Dani Wade astonished her local librarians as a teenager when she carried home ten books every week—aDani photond actually read them all. Now she writes her own characters, who clam­or for attention in the midst of the chaos that is her life. Residing in the Southern U.S. with a husband, two kids, two dogs and one grumpy cat, she stays busy until she can closet herself away with her characters once more.   


29 Responses to “Release Celebration: HIS BY DESIGN by Dani Wade”

  1. Dani Wade says:

    Thank you for hostessing me, June!!!! To me it isn’t an “official” release until I’ve shared it with my Ruby Sisters. :)

    And I wanted to let everyone know that I’m running a “Where in the world is my book?” contest on my blog for some great prizes! The deets are at !

    • June Love says:

      Dani, it was an honor. If you’re lucky, hosting releases means reading the book ahead of time. For someone who hasn’t had a chance to read much lately, reading your book made me realize how much I’ve missed it. The downside is when a book is as good as HIS BY DESIGN, I can’t put it down.

      I know you’ve traveled a long road to get here, and I’m so glad you never turned around and went back home. You fought for this, and you deserve the celebration. Congratulations!

  2. jbrayweber says:

    Great interview, ladies!

    Dani~ my characters also have theme songs. There is something about the beat, tone, words, and mood that really help shape my characters with clarity. It’s awesome to me that we share that bit of characterization.

    His By Design sounds wonderful! Congratulations on your release!


    • June Love says:

      Jenn, the character theme songs intrigue me. I write to music and my playlist is catered to the book I’ve never really assigned a song to a particular character. Now, you both have me thinking which song would fit my h/h. I better not spend all day on iTunes.

      • Dani Wade says:

        Oh, iTunes can be so addictive!!! A lot of times I listen to Pandora to find new music in the same genres I love, then go buy them specifically.

        Another use for the music is I can listen to it at my day job and keep myself close to the story, making notes, etc, throughout the day. Love it!

  3. Gretchen says:

    Congratulations of the release, Dani!! So excited for you :D

  4. Marilyn says:

    Congrats, Dani! It’s been my pleasure to be with you on this journey, and I was SO excited to find (and buy) your book night before last! I look forward to digging into it this weekend.

    • Dani Wade says:

      Marilyn, you’ve been such a huge source of support and encouragement! I just had to smile when I saw that very first picture of my book on a shelf–and it was from you! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

  5. Pouting here because I haven’t been able to get my hands on the paperback version yet, lol! I did download the ebook, but I want this in my greedy little hands. :) So happy for you, Dani! I too loved Ziara. She’s a character I related to, someone who has been for so long constrained by the opinions of others. Watching her break those bonds made for an awesome book. Congratulations!

    • June Love says:

      Ella, while Ziara could be any woman anywhere, she truly encompasses small-town southern, where gossip is a way of life. It can shape who a person becomes. I just love Ziara.

      • Dani Wade says:

        Thank y’all! Ziara is a heroine very close to my heart, and I’m very happy to know she’s resonating with readers. Ella, we’ve been down a long road together. Thank you for all of your encouragement and belief in me! *smooch*

  6. Congratulations, Dani!! Loved the interview, and the book sounds like something I’d really enjoy. Off to go check it out…

  7. Tamara Hogan says:

    Great interview, ladies, and Dani, congratulations on your release! Being a process geek, it’s always so interesting for me to read about how other writers develop their characters.

    • Dani Wade says:

      You’d think, having our own processes, we wouldn’t find others quite so interesting. But I’m fascinated by how authors bring their books to life!!!! Thanks so much, Tamara!

    • June Love says:

      Sometimes when hearing the process of other authors, something in my own process will click in a way that it hasn’t before. Or, I may try something different based on what I hear, just to see how it works for me. I find it all so interesting.

  8. Gwyn says:

    congratulations, Dani! May this be the first of many.

  9. Happy release day, Dani. I’m clicking my heels for many, many sales!

  10. Liz Talley says:

    Yay, congrats Dani! What a fabulous sounding book! And great interview, June. I love the idea of a wedding dress designer and it’s based in Atlanta. Great combination. Off to check it out now :)

    • June Love says:

      Thanks, Liz T. Some of your books have touched on those same small-town southern issues that shaped Dani’s heroine. Like I stated in an earlier comment, these heroines could be written in any region, but the two of you have heroines that could be the girl I sat beside in the first grade. Know what I mean?

  11. Rita Henuber says:

    Congrats Dani. Wishing you many sales. The cover is beautiful

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