I first met Donna Galanti on Twitter and we’ve since had the opportunity to get to know each other a little bit better by following each other’s blogs and keeping track of one another on Facebook. But Donna is more than just a friendly face on social media; she is accomplished (holds a B.A. in English, has a background in marketing, and previously published a memoir, Letters from BootCamp via iUniverse) and is very well traveled.
Many of us hope and dream of one day visiting as many locations around the globe as Donna has lived (from England to Hawaii). She has dreamed of being a writer since the age of seven when she fell in love with the worlds of Narnia and Roald Dahl. Here’s the best part: Donna lived in England at the time, attending school in a magical castle where her imagination ran wild in an itchy uniform (bowling hat and tie included).
Donna now lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, son, and two crazy cats in an old farmhouse. It has lots of writing nooks, fireplaces and stink bugs, but she’s still wishing for a castle again. Aren’t we all?
This month, Donna debuts her paranormal suspense novel, A Human Element. How about a taste?
A Human Element:
One by one, Laura Armstrong’s friends and adoptive family members are being murdered, and despite her unique healing powers, she can do nothing to stop it. The savage killer haunts her dreams, tormenting her with the promise that she is next. Determined to find the killer, she follows her visions to the site of a crashed meteorite–her hometown. There, she meets Ben Fieldstone, who seeks answers about his parents’ death the night the meteorite struck. In a race to stop a mad man, they unravel a frightening secret that binds them together. But the killer’s desire to destroy Laura face-to-face leads to a showdown that puts Laura and Ben’s emotional relationship and Laura’s pure spirit to the test. With the killer closing in, Laura discovers her destiny is linked to his and she has two choices–redeem him or kill him.
A Human Element releases March 15th.
When you were a little girl, did you dream of one day writing a bestseller, or did you have something else in mind?
I don’t think I thought of it in ‘best seller’ terms but since I was about seven I knew I wanted to be a writer. That and an actress! I fantasized about my books being made into movies and I was the star.
Where do you find the inspiration for your stories?
I think I’m best answering where do I find inspiration. All my stories come to me as visions when I am alone and without distraction. These days, it’s on a long walk.
Who are a few of your favorite authors?
Dean Koontz. Bill Bryson. Stephen King. John Grisham. LaVyrle Spencer (need something light at times!).
The cover art for your book is amazing. Did you design it yourself?
Thanks so much! My publisher did it, Echelon Press. I told her the concept I wanted and she got it right on. Dean Koontz like.
Many writers imagine a celebrity or familiar face when developing their characters. Did you have anyone particular in mind when writing Laura and why?
I didn’t have a celebrity in mind but I created her as part of me and part of what I wished to be. She had the same childhood as me, growing up an only child on a mountain where she would roam the woods and climb trees to sing from.
Speaking of celebrities, who are you thinking of at this very moment?
Sigh….Daniel Craig. Just watched him the other night in Casino Royale for the 100th time. When it first came out I was a little crazed with him and that movie…rented it five times in a row On Demand. My husband damn near killed me.
Besides writing, what other hobbies do you enjoy?
Biking, kayaking (ahhh, down the Brandywine River, PA in the Fall) and hiking. My hubby and I did many long distance charity rides including the MS 150. Our son is doing his first one this summer.
You have lived all over the globe. Which of your hometown destinations is your favorite and why?
Cobham Surrey, England! It’s so historic and old and beautiful. We lived in the old caretaker’s house of this old grand estate called White Tops. It even came with a gardener. It was a place of days gone by where I’d walk down the country lane to school and feed horses along the way. Each day the fish man would bring kippers for breakfast and the milk man would drop glass bottles at our door…and clotted cream some days!
I wouldn’t be myself without asking about television – what are your four favorite television programs airing today?
I hardly have four shows I watch. I’m stuck in time and watch my old fave ones on Netflix. Just finished up the entire show of West Wing.
But here goes: Law & Order SVU and CSI. There are others I’d like to catch but haven’t found time to watch. The other two? Don’t laugh, but I love to watch Big Time Rush and the Wizards of Waverly Place with my son.
What is your favorite movie all-time?
OMG, it’s sooooo G-L-A-D-I-A-T-O-R. The story, brutal scenes, Russell Crowe, the tormented Maximus (I wanted to name my son Maximus but that got nixed), the music, the cinematography…did I mention Russell Crowe? Sigh…
What snacks do you order when at a movie theater?
I don’t! Really!
Lastly, you claim to make up songs to be silly. Would you like to share one with us now?
Oh, boy, you got me good! This is a song about my son when he was a toddler (he would die if he knew I gave you this! I have icky 9-year old boy ones now, but won’t share those – LOL).
Sung to ‘Here Comes Santa Claus’:
Here comes Mommy, Here comes Mommy
Right down Mommy Lane.
She snuggles and hugs
and kisses away the pain!
Give your mommy all your love
and all your boo-boo’s too
cause your mommy will keep you safe
and give you ice cream too!
Seriously, that may be the cutest song ever! You fully exceeded my expectations, Donna! Thank you!
Isn’t Donna great? Don’t worry – everyone can have a little more Donna…
LIKEherAuthor Facebook page for news and updates! Her blog/book tour runs March 19th through April 11th with book giveaways, more guest posts, interview fun, and a chance to win the big prize giveaway! So pop over to her blogto see thefull tour schedule. Remember to follow her on Twitter too.
Do you have a question for Donna? Have you been lucky enough to live anywhere special like Donna’s English home at White Tops? Do you have any “original” songs that you’d like to share with Donna, since she so generously shared “Here Comes Mommy” with us? I’d love to hear from you!
And one last thing: mark your calendars for the A Human Element e-book and paperback release, Thursday, March 15th.
Reviewers are saying…
“A HUMAN ELEMENT is an elegant and haunting first novel. Unrelenting, devious but full of heart. Highly recommended.” –Jonathan Maberry, New York Times best-selling author of ASSASSIN’S CODE and DEAD OF NIGHT
“A HUMAN ELEMENT is a haunting look at what it means to be human. It’s a suspenseful ride through life and love…and death, with a killer so evil you can’t help but be afraid. An excellent read.” –Janice Gable Bashman, author of WANTED UNDEAD OR ALIVE, nominated for a Bram Stoker Award.