Welcome to Word Obsession! Today I will be interviewing Dana Pratola on her new novel, The Covering, released today by White Rose Publishing. Congratulations, Dana, and thank you for being with us today.
WO: What is your novel, The Covering, about?
Dana: The Covering is about Tessa, a Christian woman who is called by God to stand in the gap for a man she’s never met. When she does meet Gunnar, she learns he’s arrogant, unsaved and hostile. But he’s also HOT! She can’t understand why God would toss her together with a man like him, knowing she would be attracted, so she wonders if it’s a trick of the enemy to make her stumble in her faith. Meanwhile, Gunnar is tormented by demonic visitations and looking for any way out. Killing himself might be the only way to end his miserable existence. But God has other plans.
WO: When did you first get the idea?
Dana: Truthfully about 5 years ago. I started it, then put it aside for a long time as I worked on other projects. When I finally got serious about it, it just came together.
WO: Who is your favorite character in The Covering, and why?
Dana: Wow. I’m supposed to say the faithful Christian woman, right? I’d have to say Gunnar. I love that he’s intense and driven. But aside from that, while Tessa definitely learns a lot about herself, he grows and changes the most and I love to see strong character development.
WO: If you had the opportunity to do it all over again, what would you do differently?
Dana: Finsh about 3 years sooner.
WO: Do you have plans for a sequel or another book?
Dana: There are characters in this book I would love to see tell their stories, but no sequels yet. As for other projects I have 4 books in the works.
WO: What has been the best and the worst sides of your publishing experience?
Dana: Seeing God work is the BEST. I know He put the desire in me to write, but He always intended it to be seen in order to be effective, and the way He worked it out is amazing to me. I don’t have a WORST. Maybe not getting enough free copies.
The Covering | Excerpt
“Your pastor says I’m marked for death.”
The abruptness of the announcement left her momentarily speechless and quite unsure she’d heard correctly. “What?”
“He thinks the devil’s trying to kill me.”
She looked closely for any sign of humor, but Gunnar didn’t have a sense of humor she was aware of. “Why does he think that?” she asked.
“I told you I have nightmares, right?” Tessa nodded. Gunnar ran his finger along the edge of his napkin. “Well it goes a little beyond that.”
Tessa listened, enthralled, as Gunnar described in terrifying detail what he suffered in the night. A few things made more sense – his hostility for one – and she now had a better grasp of what pushed him toward suicide. God, how had he coped so long with the torment?
“I’d say Pastor’s right,” Tessa said when he finished.
The waiter arrived with their plates then disappeared. “You said when you had the gun to your head,” she shivered inwardly, “it didn’t feel like you. It felt like you were being driven.” Gunnar met her eyes across the table. “I believe you were.”
“Demons, right?” he asked. Tessa inclined her head. “Can they do that?”
“They can’t pick up your gun and shoot you with it,” she said. “But they can be persuasive.”
“Yeah,” he grumbled.
Tessa glanced around the small room. To an eavesdropper the conversation would seem like mumbo jumbo and ordinarily she wouldn’t care if strangers thought her “out there” or weird, but she kept her voice low in consideration for Gunnar’s privacy.
“When was the last time you had one of those dreams?” she asked.
“It’s been a while. Thank God.” He made a sound exactly between a chuckle and a snicker. “I mean that.”
This time when Tessa reached for his hand he left it under hers, turning it upward to lightly grip her fingers. “But you don’t think it’s the end,” Tessa said.
He topped her thumb with his and rubbed gently. “It’s like they’re constantly hovering. Waiting for the right time.”
Tessa refused to acknowledge the chill that swept through her.
“I know when they come for me, I won’t be able to stop it,” Gunnar said. “And one of these times they’ll pull me back there and I won’t come out.”
Thank you for coming, everyone! I hope you enjoyed this sneak peek into what promises to be a wonderful romantic tale!