About the Author
Dean Amory, real name Edgard (Eddy) Adriaens, was born 21.09.1953 in the Flemish city of Aalst. After finishing high school, he worked at a few local SMEs as a correspondent and assistant (sales) executive. In 1986 he was recruited by Bacob Bank, and started as a relationship manager. After the bank’s merger with the Dexia Bank, he moved on to be an Electronic Banking Expertise Officer at Dexia, later renamed Belfius bank.
What inspires you to write romance books?
There is something endearing, fresh, compelling and innocent about young love that makes it irresistible. Stories about young love are open minded, unpretentious, have a strong sense of hope, and take us to a period in life where nothing is definitive yet: imagination still reigns and cynicism isn’t present yet.
The first cut is the deepest. Because romance is about a time in life when our life is filled with new emotions, new perspectives, new dreams and new experiences. Because they are new, they are felt more intense, and also the drama is more intense. At a young age, we still have this capacity to love unconditionally.
Every decision in this phase of life still has the potential of creating a totally different future. In considering the possible consequences of the main characters’ decisions, we enter a world with new morals and new choices that invite us to consider applying them to our own daily actions. Since the theme is universal, we can draw from what is happening in the story and learn from the characters’ behaviour and growth how to conquer problems in our own life.
Romance Stories are inspiring and empowering. Teens and young tweens are still at the outskirts of society. They aren’t really part of the system yet, which allows them to revolt and kick ass. As such, they remind us of our own ideals, which makes it easy to feel empathy for the characters and be empowered by them. Watching them grow and learn from their mistakes, makes us reconnect with our younger self, which makes the characters easy to root for.
The characters are easily relatable: we all experienced this period in our own life, which allows us to identify easily and communicate more openly, honestly and candidly with the main characters than is possible in most adult novels.
Romance stories are good adventures, because traditionally the hero and heroine fall in love very soon, but have to conquer a lot of opposition and go through a roller-coaster of experiences and emotions before finally finding love in each other’s arms. Like in real life, love stories usually have a clear plot, but there are a lot of uncertainties at the start, obstacles to overcome and misunderstandings to clear before the love is accomplished.
To some adults, reality is a disappointment. They want to experience true love and, live all these emotions and believe in a happily ever after, but often can’t. Reading about it is the next best thing and has the power to turn every day into a love story. Romance novels offer hope and feed optimism. There is nothing that makes you feel better than reading about people who become happy. You also know that any emerging problem can be easily solved by reading the story all the way to the end.
Tell us about how you write:
The question sounds simple enough. Yet there is no easy answer: A lot depends on the nature of the book that I have in mind.
If you visit my web shop at http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/Jaimelavie , you will find a great variety in the kind of works offered and each type of book requires a specific approach.
– I produce works in Dutch, English and Spanish. It goes without saying that books written in another language than my native, will require a different approach.
– Amongst the various works, there are compilations dealing with social and scientific subjects, collections of poems,
– There are collections of short stories,
– There are novels.
When talking about how to write a fiction novel, here are the steps I use:
1. Writing a fiction novel starts with an idea: What do I want to write about? This will typically be a subject that I have some knowledge about and that I am interested in sharing.
2. Next I need to have an interesting story about the topic. Each year, thousands of love stories are being published. If my topic is a love story: what makes it worth while? what makes it different from the other romance novels? Do I have a unique angle, a hook or a catching metaphor that readers will love to read about ?
3. How will my story develop? By now I have decided on my topic and I have a story in mind. It’s time now to draw up my itinerary.
Who are my main characters? What is their situation? What is their goal in this phase of their life? Who are the people they will meet on their voyage towards their goal? Do they have allies, enemies? What obstacles will they meet with? What resources do they have or can they acquire along the road?
At the start, this information need not be too elaborated. More details will be added as the project grows.
4. With the information from step 3 in mind, I write an outline and a table of contents. In the outline, I plan the important events per chapter. But again: all this is very provisionally. Just like in real life, I need a travel sheme with indication of important landmarks lest I’d stray; but once on the road I’m still free to allow a detour or even decide a change of direction.
5. I start writing. This is so evident, that it almost sounds easy to do. In reality, though my wife will warn me every now and then not to get obsessed with my writing, writing to me is a steeplechase with many hurdles: I have a full time job and I need to reserve time for family affairs. Also, writing is a creative act, which implies that it’s not really recommended to start writing when I’m too tired or the available timeframe is too limited.
6. Rereading is an important phase: With the writing process regularly interrupted, I need to reread a lot to bring myself back in the mood of the story and to avoid all contradictions.
Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
My characters are “living people”. I get to know them as good as possible. Being a very visual person, I first search for pictures of people that I can identify them with. On my way to work, or whenever time allows, I wonder what makes them tick, how they think, what they want and need, what makes them unhappy, what they are frustrated about, which elements are likely to cause frictions when they communicate with the other characters in the book, how they will respond to what is happening, etc …
I do a lot of inter-acting with my characters, without however actually making real conversations with them. They become members of my family, lovers, friends and colleagues but I don’t talk with them: the writing is my talking.
What advice would you give other writers?
Live consciously, mindfully, interested in how people are and what motivates them.
As much as possible: Read, Think, Analyse, Learn, Exercises.
Involve others: share your thoughts and writings, discuss about them.
Write. Write. Write.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
At the start, I didn’t feel the need to share my writings. All that I wanted was to have my writings and compilations printed, so that they wouldn’t get lost and I could read them myself. Within this context, the decision of a POD publisher was a logical consequence.
Soon I discovered that relatives and friends were interested in also having a copy of my books and that, occasionally somebody would order a copy from the Publisher’s Site. I discovered that, given a little bit of promotion, more books were purchased.
However, POD books are extremely expensive. This is not the right channel if you want to compete on the market. Also, chances of getting known to the larger public only by publishing POD books are almost nil. Exceptions of course do exist, but generally there is another story, unknown to the general public, behind their success.
If you are a new author, convinced of the quality of your writings, and you want to commercialise your work on a national or international level, I recommend you search for a good agent to introduce your works. However, bear in mind that over the past decade the publishing sector has seen it’s number of sales drop dramatically, while there has been a disproportional increase in the number of authors, resulting in long waiting lists and extremely tight selection criteria.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
The future is digital. I’m a member of a generation that cherishes printed books and I guess I will always prefer printed books. I’m afraid though, that the next generation has a completely different approach to books and that we will see the sales of printed books decline more from year to year.
What genres do you write:: social theme books, compilations, romance fiction, poems,
What formats are your books in: Both eBook and Print