Introducing Dana Donovan

Posted on Dec 01 2009

danaDana Donovan grew up in New England where folklore and superstitions can mold a town’s history as much as its people. Since December is often such a busy month, I’m going to focus on Dana’s book of short stories, Death and Other Inconveniences. First off, let’s have Dana tell you about a few of them:

My inspiration for Bi’Dahji was a simple line that popped into my head: “It moved.” Just two simple words and I thought they would make a great first line for a story. Of course, the problem with coming up with the first two words of a short story is that you need another five-to-fifteen thousand deathwords to follow. With little more than a first sentence to go by, it is no wonder that Bi’Dahji took almost as long to write, as did all the other short stories in this collection together, but that’s the truth. Before those words, there was no such thing as a tewechi, peeket, subit or troller.

(Just a side note: Bi’Dahji is a real word. It is Navajo, and means , on the rim, as in mesa).

Although some stories barely seep from pinpricks in the brain, others bleed, indeed hemorrhage onto the page as quickly as I can write them. That was the case with Murder at the Depot, and unlike Bi’Dahji, I had nearly every element of the story in my head long before I sat down to write it. In fact, I probably walked around almost two years waiting to put it down on paper.


The Gemini Effect came to me just as I was starting to fall asleep one night. Oddly, I get many of my ideas at that time. I guess it is the time when my brain starts to shut down for the night and my dream engine starts to purr. Gemini came to me then and in a matter of minutes, I had the entire storyline down in my head. I did not even worry that I might forget it in the morning. It was just that clear to me. The names, of course, came later. Often, a character starts out with one name in a story, but then it changes later. Nearly all the character’s names in Bi’Dahji did that. Oh, and a trivia tidbit for you: the magic words spoken to start the Gemini effect (Nimige ceteff neithso) is simply a scrambled version of

Gemini effect this one. Ooh, spooky.

You can read some of the above-mentioned short stories and find links to Dana’s other books at


5 responses to “Introducing Dana Donovan”

  1. I love the title of your book. I’ve made myself a note to stop by your web page to read some of your short stories.

  2. Dana is a talented author that I have had the pleasure of getting to know. I haven’t read this book but I will definitely be adding it to my wish list!

  3. kathy stemke says:

    Very interesting post. Dana is mad creative like me. You can see he thinks out of the box. I like that.

  4. It’s great to meet a new member of our merry band.

    Dana – your book sounds very interesting. Do your stories have a touch of the supernatural about them? And do you prefer writing short stories to novels?


  5. Karen Cioffi says:

    Very interesting post. That’s funny how you started Bi’Dahji, with just two words!

    Great title!

    Thanks, Dana and Gayle.


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