September 06, 2021

#Interview with @cdugganbooks Author of Awakened

Synopsis: For fans of L.J.Smith's The Vampire Diaries, Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver, Tracy Wolff's Crave, and Becca Fitzpatrick's Hush Hush.

After losing her parents in an accident only she survived, Hannah is desperate for answers. Haunted by the events of that tragic night, she struggles to move on, yearning for some deeper truth about her loss.

But when it comes time to turn a new page and move cross country for college, she vows to leave the past behind. After all, Bellcliff University is a thousand miles away from the ghosts nipping at her heels.

Yet when Hannah accidentally awakens a handsome witch from a hidden cave near campus, she realizes he isn’t the only thing stirring out of slumber. Hannah has roused all magic…including the devil herself.

As if spells, curses, and college jitters weren’t enough, this witch claims to know Hannah from four centuries prior—and their connection is more than casual.

Thrust into a world of sorcery and monsters, Hannah must fight to keep the magic she’d unleashed from claiming a price far too steep for her to pay.


Where can readers follow you?

Facebook page: @cdugganbooks

Goodreads author page: @cdugganbooks

Twitter: @cdugganbooks

Instagram: @cdugganbooks

TikTok: @ciaradugganbooks


What is your name, where were you born and where do you live now?

My name is Ciara Duggan. I was born in Hartford, CT, and currently live in Middletown, CT with my husband and Australian Shepherd, Briar.

When did you first consider yourself as a "writer"?

I still find it difficult to consider myself a writer, but I am getting better at this. It is still ingrained in my brain that a writer is someone who solely writes for their career. I still have a day job and some side hustles, so maybe that’s why I still struggle calling myself a writer. I know that this is completely incorrect. I am a writer, and hopefully my debut novel coming out will give me the confidence to declare myself so. 

Do you work another job as well as your writing work?

Yes. I work in faculty support at Harvard University. I also work as an editor for Book Pipeline’s workshop services and a judge for their writing contests. 

Who is your publisher? or do you self-publish?

My publisher is the Parliament House Press.

How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?

The total process takes about four months. It usually takes me a couple weeks to outline the idea before starting the drafting process. Then, if I’m in a good routine, I can usually produce the first draft in 2.5 – 3 months. 

What can we expect from you in the future?  ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?

I will always love writing YA fantasy/paranormal romance. However, I also love writing thrillers/suspense stories. Right now, I primarily write young adult, but I definitely see me writing books for adults in the future as well. As a writer, I will never limit myself in terms of exploring other genres or general growth in my craft.

Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?

I write best first thing in the morning. Because I have a day job that starts at 8 am, I have to get up around 5/5:30 am if I want to get a solid writing session in before then. I typically write in silence. Music with lyrics or loud background noise tends to distract me. If I do want some ambient noise, I will use the Calm app for some background rain or waves, or some soft meditative music in the background. 

Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?

I try not to. Easier said than done, but I don’t feel as though it is productive for me. By the time reviews come out, the book is already set in stone and no further changes can be made. So if I receive a ton of reviews that hated a certain scene, character, or plotline, there’s nothing I can do about it. I have also learned that you can’t please everyone. There will be people who rave about your story, and others who call it the worst thing they’ve ever read. It is all subjective, and people have the right to share their honest opinions. I also feel that reviews are more for other readers, not for authors. 

What was the toughest/best review you have ever had?

Best: “I’ve read this three times already and can’t wait til my fourth.”

Worst: “A waste of time. Completely generic. Don’t bother.”

Do you basic plot/plan for your book, before you actually begin writing it out? Or do you let the writing flow and see where it takes the story?

I am definitely a plotter. In order for me to arrive at the page every day, I need to know where I’m going. Otherwise, I tend to lose momentum. However, I never lock myself in to my outline. If some other idea pops into my head while writing, and it works well for the character and stories, then I allow myself the freedom to stray from my outline. 

What do you do to unwind and relax? Do you have a hobby?

I love hiking. I spend so much time sitting inside at my computer, that hiking really allows me to get into nature and move my body. I find a lot of peace in it. I also have an addiction to reality tv. I love the housewives, below deck, the bachelor…I eat it all up. 

Do you think ebooks will ever totally replace printed books?

Never! Or, at least, I hope not. I think people like to hold a book in their hands… feel the pages between their fingertips. Swiping to turn a page will never replace that. Or maybe that’s just me. 


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 Disclaimer: "All opinions are 100% honest and my own."  Thanks to Goodreads and Amazon for the book cover, about the book, and author information. Buying via these links allows my site to get a % of the sale at no cost to you. 

FTC Guidelines: In accordance with FTC guidelines regarding endorsements and testimonials for bloggers, I would like my readers to know that many of the books I review are provided to me for free by the publisher or author of the book in exchange for an honest review. If am compensated for any reviews on this site I will state that post has been sponsored. 


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