Author Interview – Danielle Valdez – “Drag’nraidz” – “Surreal: Origins”, “Blarg: Resurrection” & “Dawn of new Beginnings” (Fantasy/Short Story Collections)

Howdy folks.

I’ve got an excellent treat for all of you Fantasy book lovers out there tonight.

But first, here is my usual Public Service Announcement to get out of the way before the main event.

Just a quick note before the fun and games start – I link to a lot of other articles in my posts, so WordPress users please check your spam folders and approve any links/pingbacks that you find from me to improve the visibility of your own posts, as well as mine, it’s a win win for us both 😀

Please give a warm welcome to author Danielle Valdez, as shares with us her writing journeys and we find out more about the origins of her fantasy books.

Have a fantastic time folks, happy reading and have a relaxing weekend 🙂


Hi there Danielle, thank you for joining us today to discuss with us your Fantasy books and writing experiences.

Let’s start first with your “Drag’nraidz” Short Story Collections – “Dawn of new Beginnings”, “Blarg: Resurrection” and “Surreal: Origins”. Please tell us more about their plots/unifying themes, along with what fantasy elements we will find in them and also what inspired you to write these particular stories.

So the best reading order would be to first read Surreal: Origins, then Blarg: Resurrection and then Dawn of New Beginnings. Each story will continue where the previous one left off.

The basis of the overall collection is to tell the story of Sue, an accountant that didn’t quite fit in with her work environment. She had a very typical and normal day job but she was a gamer and nerd at heart. One day, while at work, she finds that her escape from reality has somehow transferred into the real world. All the game monsters and powers were now real and not just for entertainment. Through the stories we will watch Sue, or as she likes to be called Surreal now that she has magical powers, grow and transform into a more courageous and confident person.

Throughout the stories the main element of fantasy will be the monsters and enemies the main characters will encounter, along with magic powers that one might find and use in most role playing video games.

I really wanted to start writing this story because the character is loosely based off me; I have a degree in accounting, and much like Sue, I didn’t quite fit into my work surroundings. I was the only one to enjoy video games, anime and anything that is typical to a nerd culture. To blow off mental steam, I would pretend that an Ogre, Orc or some really big foreign magical being would explode into my work place, and I could finally be confident in myself because no one else would know what to do.

Surreal Origins

If any of your Short Stories were to be made into films (or even a TV series), who would you cast in the lead roles?

Oh gosh. I haven’t thought about my stories being turned into films. I’m more of an anime junky, so I think I would rather it be turned into something like that.

What would you choose as your own personal mascot or spirit animal when it comes to you and your style of writing?

I’ve always considered myself a cat person, so perhaps any large cat would be my spirit animal. They can be ferocious when hunting but, they also know how to lounge about and take really nice naps in the sun. I suppose I’m rather similar in writing. When I am inspired to write, I can knock out several thousand words in one day, but on off-days, I tend to lounge and just relax.

What do you think most characterizes or defines your writing? Do you have any writing quirks or themes that constantly crop up in your stories?

I think fantasy is the common theme within the stories I write. I think I’m just one big person with my head in the clouds. I don’t like to be too connected to reality – news and other things. They are too depressing for me, but I can always find that a good medieval themed fantasy keeps me entertained and pretty happy.

What do you find the most difficult thing about writing? And what do you find the easiest?

I think that the hardest thing for me is to write every day. I know that as a writer, I need to exercise my skills and just keep trucking away, but it’s hard for me to continue a story if I haven’t been inspired to do so. On the flip side, once I am inspired and motivated; I find that the story just flows from my mind and fingers.

Blarg Resurrection

Who are some of the authors, musicians, poets and/or historical figures that inspire you?

I really like the works of William Shakespeare, Edgar Allen Poe and anything Anne Bishop. Anne Bishop’s ‘The Black Jewels Trilogy’ really could be the first real inspiration for me to write. I found that after I read her original trilogy, the stories in my mind would not stop until I wrote them down.

What sort of research do you do to write your books?

I do a lot of research. Sometimes it’s just playing games and learning the quirks and mechanics, since my short stories are largely video games based. Though I’ve found myself doing a lot of internet research for eras that I believe the monsters and other game based characters would come from. I’m always looking for ways to be accurate and entertaining.

Why do you write? What inspired you to become a writer?

I write because it’s freeing. Life is difficult, and there are so many things we have so little control over, that I needed something where I had control. I can make a world all of my own; can cause good or bad things to happen to characters simply because I feel like it. I write to help maintain stress from the uncontrollable. And I publish so I have a story to share with others, so we’re not alone, so we can read together.

What keeps you motivated during creative slumps? How do you deal with Writers Block?

The best part of being a self published author is that you can set your own timeline. I simply do not write on days that I feel mentally blocked or just not creatively inspired. I am a stay at home mom, so sometimes I have great ideas that I just don’t have the time to write down. On days that I don’t feel motivated to write, I try to brain storm or do more research on something that might be prevalent to another part of the story.

Dawn of new Beginninga

You have access to a time machine. What advice would you give to your younger self?

That’s a heavy question. I think “Don’t worry, everything will work out in the end,” is something that I would tell myself.

How do you spend your free time when you are not writing?

My free time is spent with my four year old son and husband. I enjoy watching my husband play his games while I relax and play with my son in the background. I also enjoy watching anime, reading, and playing my own video games.

Tell us more about your upcoming projects. Are you working on anything specific or have plans in the pipeline?

I do have another story that will continue the journey of Blarg and Surreal. I don’t have an exact date to when I will have it completed, but I am confident that I am nearly in the stages of editing.

Finally, are there any nuggets of wisdom that you can impart to other aspiring writers?

Everyone says “write what you know” but I feel that “write what you are passionate about “is better. I could write about accounting, but it’s not that thrilling. Also, write what you yourself would like to read. If you aren’t interested in it, how can someone else be?

And that’s a wrap! Thank you for joining us Danielle, we simply can’t wait to explore your magical worlds 🙂


Danielle Valdez

Danielle lives in Northern Kentucky. Her passion for reading came from an early age, nurtured by her grandmother. As she grew older, she began to imagine stories of her own.

She graduated college with a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting in 2009, and began her career in business. By 2017 she became a stay-at-home mom and was able to find time to write – her imagination fueled by her love of books,video games and fantasy.

You can connect with her via the following Social Media channels:-

Facebook:- Danielle Valdez – Author of Drag’nraidz (FB)
Goodreads:- Danielle Valdez (Goodreads Author)

You can buy her books here:-

Buy Drag’nraidz books by Danielle Valdez in the UK/Europe

Buy Drag’nraidz books by Danielle Valdez in the US/Rest of the World

If you too would like to be interviewed on my blog at TooFullToWrite and you have a book or a series of books that you would like us to chat about then fill out the Contact Me form here with your details and we can arrange a future interview slot.

Still want more? Well, fantasy worlds and universes offer parallel places to our own reality and we all want to find some common ground in the stories that we read, regardless of where the book, play of film is set. For more articles on the theme of ‘Parallel’ then check out these links by my fellow bloggers below:-

1. Quote that brought back her smile – Prachi Acharya
2. A Comedy of Errors – LFLOP
3. parallel, a solar system haiku – Art Practitioner
4. Parallel – Bonkers Away!
5. A Crime of Beauty – coolpeppermint
6. This is Why Same-Sex Relation Was Sinful in Vedic India – The Male Factor
7. copypower – Parallel Lines
8. Copper Cranes – Mockingbird
9. Poncho hand-woven – Ana Studio Art
10. Daily Art – coolpeppermint – Nebulous Nebula
11. #Parallel – zeinswords
12. “Authentic Migrations.” – Expedition Overlanding Nomadic Adventures
13. Success Inspirers World – Parallel lines
14. Authentic Book Reviews – E. Denise Billups, Writer
15. Notes to Women – The Weekend
16. shame – Because we’re all satellites
17. Parallel Lines Of Sunlight – Mainline_Matter
18. from sand to stars – Peculiar Speed of the 5-7-5s
19. Why Her – Leigha Robbins
20. Review – The Wendigo by Algernon Blackwood – shivamt25
21. Word Prompt: Parallel – Confessions Of An Irish Procrastinator
22. You Choose – Written Thoughts
23. In my shoes… – Sliding Doors
24. Bits of empty nesting – Quaint Revival
25. Not Only Ears – Debbie Gravett
26. Reflection – A Journey
27. You’ve Got What It Takes… – Success Strategies
28. Why I did it? – Just be & Live
29. Nature vs. Nurture – Life is a Journey
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31. Scott Andrew Bailey – Parallel
32. Parallel World of Peace – dreamydamselblog
33. Ouch!! My back hurts!! – Parallel Universe?
34. A quick trip to Chadstone – Musings from Melbourne
35. FLUTTER OF COLORED WINGS – That Indian Girl in Sweden
36. A Parallel Love Story? – A VISIT WITH SANDRA
37. para||el – workings at play
38. Proscenium – Thunder From Down Under
39. Lost in Eternity – Stargazer
40. Fact – LanelWilson
41. Parallel Universe – Janette Bendle following her dreams
42. Musings Without Parallel – 1kindness2day
43. The Color of Santa Fe – Wind Kisses
44. Ten steps to becoming a better version of yourself – Pearls Global Impact
45. Just Another Daily Prompt: Parallel – Just Another Voice
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47. oceanic horizon – Full Frame Images
48. Unparalleled. (Story) – Yonder Worlds
49. Human brains are hardwired for rural landscapes – Wells Baum
50. Paradoxical Multiverse · A Life’s Page
51. D.J. Garcia, Gentleman & Scholar – Growing strong
52. Sascha Darlington’s Microcosm Explored – Parallel Universe
53. MIZ-ZOU: University of Missouri – All The Shoes I Wear
54. 3 Parallel Stories: The Handshake – Fingers to Sky
55. Parallel – Life As A Single Mom
56. 41&42 Parallel To Land – authoranonblog
57. Daily Prompts – Parallel – Netdancer’s Musings
58. Fluffy Pool – Ants on a Log [Repost]
59. Lac Mourier – Sgeoil
60. Stopdraggingthepanda – Parallel ( trigonometry)
61. Parallel Lives Into One – Beacons of Life
62. The best of 2017 – THE ABSTRACT MIND.
63. The Music Teacher – Ideas.Become.Words
64. Yoga – myspiritisalive
65. Change Your Frequency Change Your Life – Opinionated Head
66. Life is not sequential – On a mission
67. Parallel Universe – Crunchy Fusion
68. Parallel – thehouseofbailey
69. Strangers – The Noisy Confusion of Life
70. In a parallel universe – Virtual Veyot
71. Nothing Compares to You – The Mind of Nox
72. Walk with God – Running Together
73. Parllel – blog prompt – wide-eyed wanderer
74. Two Parallel Cultures. – Help from Heaven
75. Hell’s front lines (an acrostic) – Word Play … Poetry in Progress
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77. Parallel – I am a paradox.
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79. We Need To Talk About That Walking Dead Season 8 Finale… – Koffee Break
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82. Kindred Spirits – Asma
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84. A First Toasting (Banana Pancakes Pt 8) – The Unfinished Scripts
85. A Love Letter – Young Adult, Old Soul
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87. WHEN I THINK OF PARALLEL – Marilyn Armstrong – Serendipity – Seeking Intelligent Life On Earth
88. Askew in Ireland – One Way Ticket to America
89. In a Parallel Universe, I’m a Doodle – binneyblog
90. Sacrificial Chain Breaker – PARALLEL UNIVERSE
91. Strength To Hold On. Courage To Let Go. – Curious Cat
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93. Na’ama Yehuda – In Parallel
94. Heaven’s Sunshine – Sky and Water
95. #writephoto – The Maze – This, That, and The Other
96. Lesser Adjutant Storks – Don’t hold your breath
97. To Wear A Rainbow – parallel lives
98. So where is my Genie? – In my world
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100. Winning Woman Wednesday -Lakisha Chapman – Kissxd By Me
101. Parallel – LIZ CHARNES
102. Earthly Brain – 3 Quotes, 3 Days Challenge: Day 1
103. Tragically parallel – Blase’
104. bogpan – parallel worlds
105. You And I……. Trap – emotionsoflife2016
106. Innocent eyes – The opposite of parallel
107. Day & Night – Dream Desire Achieve
108. It’s Not Time Yet – HESTER’S PEARL
109. How can I? – Untamed
110. G.I.R.L – Love beyond infinity
111. A while ago – Some epiphanies
112. Parallel – response to daily prompt – The Bleeding Pencil
113. Forces Parallel. – Nicolas Heartmann
114. Parallel Track – My Writings: My Views
115. Parallel – Oh, border!
116. From Parallel to Perpendicular. – ampycom
117. The Philosophy of Kanye West – I Am Writing
118. The Home Of DJ Sung Mo Koo – “Can’t Knock The Hustle With Enemies All Around” by JAY-Z WITH MARY J. BLIGE Vs. GHOSTFACE KILLAH AND ADRIAN YOUNGE
119. sonja benskin mesher – 2014. sheep tracks
120. Parallel Love – Mighty Minds
121. Musings of a Random Mind – It All Started in the Garden of Eden
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123. Parallel – wordsareallihavesite
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126. Parallel – existicles
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135. Don’t Think About Elephants – A Unique Title For Me
136. bethlovesblue – Poem #19
137. collision – the river
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139. Copper Cranes – Drone On
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144. Mixture of the Two And That’s Normal – Whatever
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153. Curious Hart – Parallel and Polya
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155. Are We Original? – Sparkklingthoughts
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160. Ride Hard: Dinner Conversation – Redux Of Rex
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184. Parallel Light Resolves Conflicts – J. Wilder Bill
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186. Six-word story: Parallel – writingiswonderful
187. An Old-Fashioned Tale – The Two Sisters – Tales from the mind of Kristian
188. Post without parallel – Andrew Green’s Poems
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203. Parallel lives. – The Ederren
204. Secret – This Girl’s Got Curves
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206. Parallel World – Megha’s World
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210. Parallel – Inklings
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213. Frank Prem – the art of lines
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215. Cimmerian Sentiment – A Mood Killer – Part 16 – Marisol And Grady (NSFW)
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