Archive for the About the Author Category

Why I Write and What My Writing Offers You

Posted in About the Author, The Dragon Spawn Chronicles with tags , , , , on December 3, 2019 by Dawn Ross


I am inspired by hero stories. Not just superhero stories. I get a strong sense of hope when I read any story where a person struggles to do what is right despite the odds against them. After all, if they can win against all that, then I can overcome my own trials.

I had a rough childhood. I’m not going to whine about it, though, because it made me the person I am proud to be today. My trauma ultimately brought about my desire to write. It all began with my imagination. I didn’t feel as though I had any heroes in my life so I developed my own. I had an imaginary friend, of sorts. Not one that I could “see” or pretended to see. Not one that I told anyone about. She was my secret hero. Whenever something bad happened, I coped by imagining my hero saving me and getting revenge on those who hurt me.

As I got older, my heroes changed. They no longer struggled to save me. They struggled to save themselves. In my imagination, they went through trauma similar to mine but oftentimes even more harrowing. They were lucky enough to have people to help them along the way (I realized later that I did as well), and in a way that was more of a hand-up than it was a hand-out. Ultimately, it was my hero’s decision to take the good that was offered rather than push it away. It was my hero’s decision to grow from their hardship rather than wallow in self-pity. Life is hard, excruciating at times. But my hero fights on. And as I write, so do I.

Are you drawn to stories with a hero for a similar reason? The space-fantasy series I’m writing is just such a story. The most prominent character starts out as a young boy in book one. He has a critical and abusive father who wants his son to be as hard and ruthless as he is. Somehow, this boy must find the strength to be his own person and to be a good person at that. It doesn’t happen in just one story, though. Battling his past is a constant struggle. It doesn’t help that people keep reminding him of it. Having to fight other enemies compounds his efforts.

Hopefully, my story will inspire your own hope. If you’re pessimistic about all the terrible things that keep happening in this world, have hope that there are good people out there who truly do want to do good things. If you struggle with your own demons, have hope that with effort you can fight against them and win!

Yes, I’m Still Writing!

Posted in About the Author with tags , , , , , , on September 1, 2018 by Dawn Ross

Dragon Head

Wow, it has been a really long time since I’ve posted anything worthwhile. I bet you all thought I was abducted by aliens or something. I assure you that I’m still here and I’m still writing.

Some Changes I’ve Been Making

As you may have learned from earlier posts, I have been trying to create more tension between the various characters, especially for the two main characters, Jori and Hapker. I’ve been trying to deepen the plot and to add more suspense to each of the chapters. Lately, I’ve also been making a lot of name changes in an attempt to have the character names relate better the various Earth cultures. I’ve also realized how much some of my characters are too close to the Star Trek: The Next Generation characters. So I’ve been trying to change some of their characteristics and histories. Because of this parallel and because one of my editors insisted I make the crew members more militaristic, I’ve changed the dynamics of how the Alliance works. It is now called the Cooperative, by the way. And instead of one aspect of the Cooperative that was similar to the Federation of Star Trek, I’ve created two distinct aspects of the Cooperative: One that is more diplomatic and service-oriented in the form of the Prontaean Colonial Cooperative (PCC) and one that is more militaristic in the form of the Prontaean Galactic Force (PG-Force), both operating under the Prontaean Cooperative for Galactic Synergy & Security, aka PCGSS or PCgus. Since I don’t want a militaristic crew, Hapker is part of the PCC.

Why It’s Taking So Long

Can you believe this story was started four years ago in July, 2014? Each time I think it’s done, I realize it needs more work. Then there was the complete and utter bashing by a content editor in 2017 that disheartened me for many months. Now there is a better reason as to why it has been taking me so long to get this book published – family. When I started writing this book in 2014, it was just me, my husband, and my two dogs. Then in 2016, we became foster parents. We started out only fostering one child and for only short-term periods (called respite care). But in April of 2016, we agreed to foster two teenage kids and for a longer-term period. That period was only supposed to be a month, but then it turned into two, then four, then six. And the day before Christmas 2017, they asked us to adopt them. We said “Yes!”, of course. This was also the date we brought home a two-year-old boy we adopted from China. Even though we had the two teens for a while, our status from a two-person family to a five-person family officially changed on December 24th, 2017. And I couldn’t be happier!

As you can probably surmise, our lives have changed dramatically and I have very little time to work on my book. But never fear. I still find the occasional time. My teens are back in school and my two-year-old, who just turned three, still has nap times. So please subscribe and look for new posts. One way or another, I will continue to write and finish this book!


When Life Gets in the Way of Writing

Posted in About the Author with tags , , , , , , , on June 24, 2017 by Dawn Ross

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while. Sometimes life gets in the way and sometimes one just need to take a step back. In this case, it’s a little of both.

In regards to life getting in the way, be assured that it’s nothing bad. As some of you may know, my husband and I foster kids. Generally, we only foster one at a time and one between the age of 6 and 12. A few months ago, though, we were talked into taking two teenagers, a brother and sister. We were told they were well-adjusted, well-mannered kids and this has turned out to be totally true. Still, parenting can be a busy job.

We are also in the process of adopting a two-year-old boy from China. The paperwork for this process has been a terrible headache. It’s not just a matter of filling out forms, but also a matter of gathering specific documents and making sure they are from the right sources, in the right format, with the correct information, with the right signatures, and with the right dates.


I can’t show you pics of our foster kids, but here’s the boy we’re in the process of adopting. We’re naming him Edward, or Eddie for short.

I had to take a step back from my writing and from blogging for other reasons as well. To put it simply, I just needed a break so that my mind could recharge. Not too long ago, I told you how I received feedback from a content editor. She pointed out several core story problems that I needed to work on. Although it was hard to swallow the criticism, I knew she was right. But I wasn’t entirely sure how to fix the problems.

That was back in March, 2017. Rather than ponder the problems right off, I took a few weeks off and completely stepped back from my novel. I binged on Netflix and read a few fantasy and sci-fi novels.

When I felt I had wasted enough time, I dived back in. And when I dived back in, I devoted almost all of my free time to the novel itself. I didn’t blog.

So where do things stand now? We still have our two teenagers so I still devote time to them. The adoption process is pretty much done and now we’re just waiting for the government organizations to get organized. I’ve found the time to ponder the story problems and have come up with some great ways to fix them. And now I’m in the process of rewriting parts of the novel. In fact, I believe I’m almost done.

Now that I’m back to writing and nearly finished with the rewrite, I figure it’s time to get back to blogging. This post is a rather boring and personal post, but hopefully next week I’ll be able to post something more useful for you. Any topic in particular that you’d like me to cover? Writing tips? Publishing tips? Editing tips? Or perhaps you just want to read a part of the rewrite? Feel free to comment below.

Broken Resolutions

Posted in About the Author, The Dukarian Legacy - Fantasy Novels with tags , , , on July 19, 2014 by Dawn Ross

So much for my promise to finish writing the Guardian of Destiny in 2014. And you may have noticed that I haven’t been posting once a week as promised either. I have to admit that much of the reason is due to procrastination. But I do have a few good excuses too. I’m going to tell you about those, then I’m going to tell you a little about my future plans.

Sometime in March, my mom was diagnosed with brain cancer. In light of that diagnosis, my mom decided she wanted to move from Missouri back home to Oregon. During that process, she spent a week at my house in Kansas. And during that time, my husband was offered a new job in Iowa. Things moved really fast from there. After spending time with my mom in Oregon, I began organizing home repairs. We had carpeting replaced, the wooden floors repaired, painting, mud jacking, and more.

We also had to look for a new place in Des Moines, pack, and organize the move. After that, we had to move in, unpack, and settle in. Until this month, I’ve barely had time to read a book, let alone write one.

My mom is not doing well health-wise. She is getting worse, but she is in amazingly good spirits. And she is in good hands in Oregon with my step-dad, sisters, and a good friend of hers.

Anyway, I think things have settled down enough that I can get back into writing and blogging. In fact, I have a great story idea. And the good news here is that I’m going to write it here on this blog. You’ll get to see it in the raw. Look for more details next week!

What about the Guardian of Destiny? Sorry, that is on the back burner for now. It’s the way of some of us artists. We get inspired by something and go into it full force. On the flip size, if we lose that inspiration our project gets set aside. I will, by no means, put Guardian of Destiny on a shelf to collect dust. I will work on it from time to time as the inspiration motivates me. But don’t count on it being finished any time soon. You might just like the new project I’m working on much more interesting.

2014 New Year’s Resolution – Get Back on Track with Writing

Posted in About the Author, Writing with tags , , , , , , on January 1, 2014 by Dawn Ross


It has been almost a year since I’ve posted something useful. I can’t believe a whole year has gone by since I’ve done any serious writing! And so it should be no surprise that my New Year’s Resolution is to start writing again. Before I tell you my 2014 writing plans, let me tell you why I haven’t written in so long.

Firstly, I wanted to finish the editing on my third book, “The Dragon & The Lion”. I meant to have it done at the beginning of 2013, but got distracted. As a result, I didn’t finish the editing until August.

The Dragon and the Lion by Dawn Ross

Available on Amazon as an ebook or paperback. Search dawn ross dukarian legacy on Amazon or click the book cover image above.

The second thing that distracted me from my writing is school. I have some college credits, but I never did get a degree. So here I am at age 40 and attending college once again. This past semester course included Accounting II and Business Law II, both of which required a lot of study.

You may know from my previous posts that I also run an online business for pet car safety supplies. You’d think running a website would be easy, but it’s not. If I want people to find my website amongst the millions of others out there, I have to work hard. So instead of writing a new book, I’ve been writing blog posts about dogs, writing articles, and networking in the dog blogosphere.

Enough with the excuses! Even though I’m still going to school and still running my business, I fully intend to find the time to start writing again. I’m going to start with finishing a fantasy novel I started years ago. It is called “The Guardian of Destiny” and I’ve blogged about it before. In fact, the book is already a fifth of the way done. And I have the rest of the story clearly mapped out.

Guardian of Destiny

The Guardian of Destiny by Dawn Ross (work in progress)

While I finish writing “The Guardian of Destiny”, I am also going to write blog posts telling about my writing process. I am going to start from when I first came up with the idea for this book. Look for my first blog post on this process next Friday (the 10th). I hope to have a new blog post for you each following Friday after that.

So there you have it – my New Year’s Writing Resolution. Are you making any resolutions this year?

Where Have You Been?

Posted in About the Author, Book 3 - The Dragon and the Lion, The Dukarian Legacy - Fantasy Novels with tags , , on June 18, 2013 by Dawn Ross

“Where have you been?” I hear you all asking. I just had an email conversation with someone and directed them to this blog where I have some of my fantasy art posted. When I did that, I realized that I have not posted here in a very long time. I have a lot of excuses as to why I haven’t but I won’t bore you with all that. Let me just cut to the chase and say that I am still here. And I will have book three of the Dukarian Legacy published before the end of summer. I wish I could give a more definite date, but I have so much going on that it is difficult for me to stay on track. I only have 10 more chapters of the third book to edit. Then I need to design the book cover. And my final step will be to publish it on Amazon. Sign up for an email notification so that you can be alerted to my next post, where hopefully it will be to tell you The Dragon and the Lion is finally done!

More Miscellaneous Chatter from Dawn Ross

Posted in About the Author with tags , , , on February 25, 2012 by Dawn Ross

Well, it has been a busy week so I’m sorry I don’t have an organized post for you this Saturday. Instead, I am just going to tell you a bit on how things have been going.

Why has my week been busy? One of the main reasons is because I have been getting my taxes done. Because my online retail business is structured under a corporation and because there are so many different aspects of the business, I do have a professional tax service do my taxes. But it is still my job to organize and submit everything. Then, of course, there are blanks which the preparer points out and needs more information on. This year, he told me that I have to start doing payroll. Even though I am the only owner of the corporation stocks and the only employee, I have to pay myself. Sounds simple? It is not. Setting up payroll includes more federal paperwork and requires tax reporting and social security withholdings. I suppose I could try to figure it out myself, but business is picking up so I would prefer to focus on customer service and improving my websites than spending time trying to figure out all the crazy federal laws and reportings. So, I am hiring someone to do it for me. If anyone ever tells you that running a website is easy, they are lying or they don’t know what they are talking about. There are a lot of costs involved and a lot of projects that need to be done in order to get a website on the first page of Google, Yahoo!, and other search engines. Even after running websites for nearly six years, I still have projects I need to do. It is a never-ending job. Sometimes it makes me money, and sometimes it doesn’t.

I also had a medical procedure done mid-week. Don’t worry, it was nothing bad. It was elective but nothing like plastic surgery or anything. Hopefully in a few months I will be able to give you more information. For now, my lips are sealed!

Of the many projects I have been doing to make my retail websites better is to build sitemaps. I thought it would be easy. It was not. I’ve finally finished them for my website but not the others. What is a sitemap? It is not something I can easily explain so you may want to just Google it instead. I will tell you that there is more than one kind. There is an xml, html, and rss sitemap. I need one of each and creating each has its own set of procedures for setting up. Once they are set up, I have to submit them to Google and other search engines. I’m still not done.

The Third Dragon
I am proud to say that I finally finished getting a paperback version of my book on Amazon. You can find it at However, it is still not showing up in searches. You have to direct link to it in order to find it. I went back and forth with a bit, and have now sent an email to Hopefully I will find out what the deal is soon.

The Raven’s Fire
I am supposed to be editing book two, but obviously with taxes and doctors I have not been doing it. I should have spent my time in bed rest editing my book. Instead, I watched TV. I will tell you about that in a moment. I dread the editing process. I find that even though I know how my story will go, I get caught up in it and forget to look for editing opportunities. Thank goodness for professional editors.

Our local video store is going out of business so they are selling all their videos. I found a bunch of great ones I wanted including the TV series for Heroes. I watched the first three seasons but missed out on the fourth season. So, you guessed it, while I was getting bed rest this week I watched the full fourth season of Heroes. And I loved it! I am envious of all the twists and turns and little plots which my stories seem to lack. And I love all the characters. Even the most antagonistic character, Sylar, is a fantastic character. I’m not sure I felt he should have been redeemed. I wished Mohinder had been more involved in the story. They never showed whether he got back with his girl. Also, what ever happened to NIki’s son Micah? I don’t remember if something happened to him in season two or three. Perhaps I should buy seasons one through three as well.

Well, that is all I have for now. I will try to have a more organized post next Saturday. Have a good week!  🙂