Well, my name is Drako (pen name obviously) and I’m from St. Louis, Missouri. I’m a psychology major in college, just got my associate’s degree last year and working on a bachelors. I write paranormal fantasy erotic romance (mouthful, ain’t it?). I’ve been writing since fifth grade when I was assigned a short story and just loved writing and being creative. As an adult, I kind of write the type of romance I’d want in my life but definitely don’t get.
Tell us about your latest book.
The latest book I released is Blood Monarch. It’s a very different version of the most infamous vampire of all time, Dracula, who I refer to as Vlad. In my version, he is every bit as seductive as some might imagine him, and insanely powerful, yet a bit more humble and loyal, specifically to the god he serves. The book focuses on him finding his soul mate after long years of life and fighting to save another world, another kingdom.
What do you have coming out in the future?
Got a lot going on. Continuing my main series, the next book in it will be the Dragon’s Secrets, in which Vlad will return for a cameo of sorts. I also have a new series I’ve entitled the Coven, with the first book being named Bewitched Souls, and a third series called Journeys waiting on a publisher to put it out.
What genre do you enjoy writing the most and why?
My books are a blend of paranormal, fantasy, erotica, and LGBT. The reason is simple. I have a very lively imagination. I don’t much like living in the real world. But I like realism, so I don’t limit my characters to being straight or gay. I want them to be believable.
From where do you draw your inspiration?
Life in general.
Do you ever base your characters on real people in your life?
LOL, yes, as a matter of fact in the Dragon Hunters series, one of the major players is Brandon. His first boyfriend is based off a guy I went to high school with and his mate, Phil, is based off a friend of mine.
What authors inspire your writing?
Anne Rice inspires me the most, because she is so creative. Her writing isn’t concerned with society’s hang ups. She writes mesmerizing characters that are who they are and people love them. Sherilyn Kenyon was another inspiration to me because she has such a wonderful and long running series with no end in sight, so it inspires me to truly follow my creative path to its end because people can stay interested in a long series.
What kind of books do you like to read?
I like to read most books. I don’t tend to get into Christian fiction very much. Not my spiritual path personally so I sometimes find it hard to get into. I have read a few that are interesting, but those don’t sound preachy to me so I can simply appreciate the story.
How have your real life experiences influenced your writing?
Well, real life experiences give the inspiration for some of the scenes I write. Plus, that need for a little realism in a fantasy setting comes from the variety of people I surround myself with in life.
What do you like to do when you are not writing?
I’m a gamer, and I’m the nerdy kind. I still play Pokemon (don’t judge me, it’s fun and addictive and I grew up on it). I also watch wrestling. I take care of my godnieces, and I have been known to enjoy a drink or two. Oh, yeah, and there’s that day job I’m not the most fond of but gotta pay the bills.
What was your road to publishing like? Tell us about it.
Well, I self published my first book in 2012, the beginning of my Dragon Hunters series. Paid for that one, then found KDP and pulled it away to self publish through them and createspace. My books seemed to pick up a bit more speed when the third in the series was released. The fourth book seems to be the most popular. Only this past year did I try using an author house to publish, and that book hasn’t come out yet (not real happy about that either. I’m not a patient author). In a sense, I like self publishing best because at least I can stand by my plans to release a book. Cover design has been a struggle for me though. It’s expensive and I can’t find a simple affordable program that I can use to do it myself yet.
How did you come up with the title of your book?
Well, Vlad is a kind, and he drinks blood. Hints, Blood Monarch. Didn’t have to think that hard about his.
Is your book a stand alone or a series?
I haven’t found the secret to stand alone books yet. I always come up with characters that have multiple stories to tell, or have family and friends that have stories. All my books are part of a series so far.
Vax King is the Chosen of Hecate, the Heir of Mjolnir, and has no plans on a mate. When he's called on to enter Fae lands, he's surprised to find the legendary vampire there. Looking to aid the beautiful Fae, Anaya, and her soul mate, Galen, Vax must enter a world of sex of violence with only Vlad to accompany him. Here, there can be no denial, no hesitation. Only truth....and dominance.
A war is brewing in the Fae lands, as the fallen angels rise to lay claim to the power of their goddess, Verlaine and topple their higher brethren. Older than most, Vlad must accustom himself to having a soul mate, and use all his legendary power to stop the forces of darkness long believed to be controlled by him. A new kingdom is the prize, and none knows better than the famed Dracula that the secret to power lies in the blood.
Kinda prefer my own, really. But I read others. Long as the story is good I’ll read it.
Have you joined any writer’s groups?
Not really. Can’t seem to find a good active one.
Have you won any awards for your writing?
Not since high school. Haven’t exactly been entering any contests though so who knows what’ll happen in the future.
What is the hardest part of the writing process for you?
Editing. It is the devil!!!!
What is the easiest part of the writing process for you?
Coming up with the story
Which of your characters is your favorite and why?
I don’t have a favorite, really. I love most of them. I did have a period where I wanted Brandon and Phil to be conjured into the real world so that I could choke them for taking me on an emotional rollercoaster starting in the end of book two and continuing to book five, which was their book. (no, seriously, they were the hardest characters to get to pair up and they fought it every step of the way. That’s the life of an author though)
Who or what are your inspirations/influences?
Music inspires a lot for me. Sometimes a song dictates a whole book for me. But as far as who inspires me, my mother. There is nothing like having the unconditional support of your mom, and I’ve had it since I started writing.
What is your preferred writing environment?
I need noise. I cannot write in silence. My first several books were written almost entirely while I was at work (I work in a call center and we get plenty of downtime some days). When I’m home, I need the TV or music.
How would you describe your writing style?
I’m not sure. I think I’m pretty descriptive, especially in fight scenes. I see my story a certain way and I want my readers to see it exactly how I picture it.
Do you have a careful plan when plotting your stories or do you just go with the flow?
I go with the flow. Every single time I make a plan for a story, the characters take me another way.
With many publishing routes available today, which felt the most reliable to you when it came to the many choices?
Self-publishing. I don’t like missing deadlines to my fans because a publisher hasn’t done their job. It kind of irks my immortal soul to have built this story that I think is great and be stuck waiting on someone else to put it out.
When did you know you truly wanted to give writing a shot?
As far as publishing, I think I’ve always wanted to, but as a teenager it’s really hard to find a publisher. I wasn’t exactly Amelia Atwater-Rhodes. Self-publishing gave me my way to get my foot in the door.