Interview with Author Devika Fernando

My guest today is Devika Fernando.  Hello!  Welcome back to Writing in the Modern Age!  It’s such a pleasure to have you again.

Can you tell us a little bit about your book? When did it come out? Where can we get it?   

I released my debut novel When I see your Face in March, and it is available as an eBook on Amazon as well as Smashwords. It’s a contemporary romance novella that deals with domestic violence, second chances and discovering your real self as well as starting your own business. I have received requests to release it as a paperback and translate it into German, but to be honest, my next books are more important to me at the moment.

Is there anything that prompted your latest book? Something that inspired you?

Usually, anything can inspire me: a sentence I read, an item on the news, somebody else’s book blurb, a sentence that would make a great title…However, I find that visual prompts work the best. My novel Playing with Fire – the first in the 4 Elements of Love Series – was sparked by wonderful digital art I saw on, and some of my short stories were also inspired by pictures. My current work in progress, Kaleidoscope of Hopes, just popped into my head with its opening scene. I drew a bit of inspiration from Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre while writing.

Great!  So, when did you know you wanted to write?  Or has it always been a pastime of yours?

My parents have always told me that when I was tiny toddler, I used my crayons to fill the blank pages with scribbled lines of something like writing instead of just drawing pictures. So, I guess, I started early. LOL. I remember that at school, I was the only one who loved the writing assignments and who struggled with the upper word count limit. My first forays into writing were poems and then fantasy short stories. I started writing in earnest when I was a teenager, switching from my mother tongue German to English. Basically, I just always knew that I want to be a writer. It’s who I am.

Do you have any favorite authors?

Don’t ask me! It was hard enough when I had to name 15 authors that have influenced my writing in one of those Facebook tagging games! ;-) If somebody put a pistol against my temple, I’d settle for this Top 5: Anne Rice, Margaret Atwood, Michael Ondaatje, Arundhati Roy and Jane Austen.

LOL.  I agree.  That is hard to narrow down.

Do you write in a specific place?  Time of day?

My main job is being a freelance content writer for German customers, so most of the day is spent writing articles from the comfort of my home office. I usually turn to working on my stories from 5 to 7 in the afternoon. Saturdays and Sundays are great for creative writing because I don’t work that much.
Wow.  That sounds like a great system.

So, are there any words you'd like to impart to fellow writers?  Any advice?   

Sometimes I come across (aspiring) authors who are surprised that I read so much. That, in turn, surprises me, because I believe without reading, there’s no writing. My advice is that writers should read as much as they can – fiction and non-fiction, all the genres and literature types – because there is no limit to what you can learn from others.

You're right!  Reading is very important.  :)  

Readers, here is the blurb for When I See Your Face.

Cathy has had enough. Having run away from her abusive husband, she tries to pick up the broken pieces of her life in a remote village, focusing on her dream to start her own cake business. Finding true love is the last thing on her mind. When she comes face to face with a man who looks exactly like the one she is struggling to forget, life throws the biggest challenge yet at her: Should she give in to his charm and care or is history going to repeat itself?

Here is an excerpt. 

He bent and plucked a dandelion, holding it in front of her face.
“Make a wish and blow on this. Folklore has it that such wishes come true when they are carried away on the wind and are heard by fairies.”
There was a faint grin on his lips, but his tone was more serious than the suggestion warranted it.
She had so many wishes crowding together in her head, jostling for a place at the front of the queue.
“Am I supposed to say it out loud or is it best kept secret?”
“Make your wish silently. I have always believed that thoughts are more potent in their magic than the spoken word.”
She blinked. What kind of man had beliefs like that? How much was there to him to discover and revel in? How much more to make him so appealing that she could never find it in herself to resist him?
Drawing close to his hand, she closed her eyes. Frowning with concentration, she tried and tried to decide which wish to make. Sucking in a long breath, she opened her eyes again and blew hard at the fluffy white dandelion. Its seeds flew apart and sailed away on the air, like so many tiny parachutes carrying her wish to God knew where.
Straightening up, she looked after them with an almost painful longing.
“Do you think I’ll be lucky? Will the fairies listen to me?” she asked, working hard at keeping her tone casual, and not succeeding.
He smiled his crooked, charming smile that got to her each and every time.
“I would if I were a fairy.”
She heard the flirting in it and it felt like a caress to her.
“Don’t you think it’s my part to be the fairy?” she joked.
His smile widened and his eyes darkened.
“You’d make a wonderful fairy. I can just about imagine you in gauzy, loose clothes and diaphanous wings with flowers in your hair and bare feet, dancing lithely through the fields and making lone wanderers fall head over heels in love with you.”
His voice was a sensual growl deep in his throat. His fingers brushed over the pulse hammering at her throat and strayed sideways, lifting a strand of her hair and twirling it round his index finger.
With her heart beating in her mouth, she made an effort at lightening the mood.
“If you had ever seen me dance, you wouldn’t describe me as a lithe and graceful fairy. I am a clumsy wooden donkey with two left feet.”
“Maybe you’ve had the wrong partner all along,” he said, his voice full of meaning.
She swallowed.
“Maybe,” she conceded.
They looked into each other’s eyes for a long time, frozen in place, their minds full to the brim with possibilities and dreams and obstacles.

Author Bio  

Almost as soon as Devika Fernando could write, she imagined stories and poems. After finishing her education in Germany and returning to her roots in Sri Lanka, she got a chance to turn her passion into her profession. Having lived in Germany and in Sri Lanka with her husband has made her experience the best (and the worst) of two totally different worlds – something that influences her writing. Her trademark are sweet, yet deeply emotional romance stories where the characters actually fall in love instead of merely falling in lust. She draws inspiration from everyone and everything in life. Besides being a romance novel author, she works as a self-employed German web content writer, as a translator, and as a faithful servant to all the cats, dogs, fish and birds in her home. What she loves most about being an author is the chance to create new worlds and send her protagonists on a journey full of ups and downs that will leave them changed. When she’s not writing, she’s reading or thinking about writing.


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  1. Thanks a lot for featuring me again, Marie! The interview was fun and didn't take up too much time ;-)

  2. Anne Rice, Margaret Atwood, Michael Ondaatje, Arundhati Roy and Jane Austen.....I don't think I can argue with that - but can we sneak Shakespeare in,too? Great interview!

    1. Glad you approve, Téa! :-) I have to admit that I haven't read much by Shakespeare, although I love some of his poetry ("shall i compare thee to a summer's day... *happy sigh*).

  3. Nice interview, Devika, I'm looking forward to hearing more about your new stories.

    1. Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Christina! I'm quite excited about them and will pester you all with more teasers soon. :-)

  4. Great interview! Didn't know you were a writer! Keep it up Devica, your book sounds nice and will be downloading to read on the beach this summer!

    1. Oh, Roubalita, so nice of you to check out the interview. Thanks so much! A book at the beach, sounds like perfection. :-)

  5. I deduce you have a time warp machine. Work, Write AND Read? (And don't forget promoting) I look forward to a chance to read. I had hoped this month, but that doesn't look hopeful now. Can you tell me where to get a time warp machine? I truly need one.

    1. Haha, I wish, I wish... A time warp machine would be wonderful. Thanks for the support, Liza. I have your book "Worst Week Ever" on my never-ending reading list, too. I am eternally grateful because I can work from home AND do what I like.

  6. My first visit to Marie's blog..loved it. A good interview and some useful writing tips. Enjoyed knowing Devika Fernando. I look forward to coming back here Marie.

  7. Hey Devika--have you written anything in German? I so admire people who can write beautifully in a second language (Joseph Conrad anyone?). Also love Anne Rice & Jane Austen. M. S.


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