Friday, June 27, 2014

TRACY GARRETT INTERVIEW


Tracy Garrett ~ Biography
Award-winning multi-published author Tracy Garrett has always loved to disappear into the pages of a book. An accomplished musician, Tracy merged her need for creativity, love of history, and passion for reading when she began writing western historical romance. First published in 2007, Tracy joined the Prairie Rose Publications in its inaugural anthology in 2013. She is a regular blogger on Petticoats and Pistols. Tracy resides in Missouri with her husband and their fuzzy kid, Wrigley. Find out more about Tracy and her books at www.TracyGarrett.com.


INTERVIEW

What is the most adventurous thing you’ve ever done? 
I’ve had all kinds of “adventures” in the 33 years my dh and I have been married. My mother would tell you its all his fault! lol  I learned to snow ski, tried water skiing (unsuccessfully), got certified to skipper a 50’ sailboat, learned to snorkel… Lately, we’ve taken up Cowboy Action Shooting, where we dress in clothing from the 1800s and shoot at steel targets. We have a blast and we’ve made some wonderful new friends.
What adventure would you like to have that you haven’t done yet if money and skill were no problem?
I want to ride in a race car! I don’t care to drive—I want to sit in front while we go faster than I’ve ever been, digging into turns and sliding up close to the wall. Someday…
Who are some of your favorite authors?  What commonality do you see in them? 
Nora Roberts, Christine Feehan, Lorraine Heath, Jo Davis, Addison Fox, Sarah MacLean—I could go on. They all create characters that are so real, I have to know what happens to them. Some of them I hate to leave behind when the book ends.
I believe color says something about a person’s personality.  What’s your favorite color?
Green—a deep, rich, teal.
If you could have a do-over life, what one thing would you do differently?  What would you do again?
I wouldn’t let myself gain the “freshman fifteen” pounds! As for the rest, I’d do it all again. I like where my life is, where I’ve been, what I’ve experienced.
What is your writing process from conception to finished MS?
I usually have the characters in mind first, and the major conflict—what’s keeping them apart. And I have a good idea how the final scene will go. Then I start writing and let them tell the story. I do a lot of revising and layering as the story unfolds and I get to know the characters better, of course, but the process works for me.
Are you a planner, panster or both?
I’m a pantser. I’ve tried plotting and I get so twisted up, I can’t make any progress. It isn’t worth the grief. I just write, rewrite, and repeat.
How did you research for your book?
The stories in Lassoing a Bride and Lassoing a Groom are set in River’s Bend, Missouri, a town I created on the far western edge of the state. I had to do some research on medicine and doctors in the 1850s for Lassoing a Bride; and on immigration through that area, particularly settlers from Germany, for both books. I love research!
What is your all-time favorite TV show?
Star Trek:  Next Generation (Bet you expected Gunsmoke or Bonanza—both of which I loved, too.)
How important do feel writing workshops are to any writer?
Vital! I always learn something from my colleagues. As a newbie, workshops helped me sort out where I was as a writer and what came next. As a published author, they’ve kept me in touch with an industry that is changing at light-speed.
If you could learn one new skill, fear and money no deterrent, what would it be?
To paint. I see something beautiful and I want to capture that image. My grandmother was a painter, but that skill seemed to skip me.
If you had a million dollars to donate to any one charity, what would it be?
Probably one of the groups in my community who help with food, rent, medical bills, etc. Life is tough and getting tougher for so many people. These people help make life a little bit easier and I want to help them keep doing it.
What advice would you like to give to an aspiring writer?
Never give up. If you want to write, do it, but learn your craft like a flutist learns to play or a painter to paint. Write every day, even if you don’t ever show it to anyone. Every word will make you a better writer.
Did anyone mentor you or help you along the way?  Please tell us about your mentor and what you feel they contributed to your writing career.
I’ve had several mentors, amazing, generous writers who read my early work, gave advice, told me when things stunk and when things worked. And helped me learn when to take advice and when to stick with my own vision. I absolutely wouldn’t be where I am without them.
What is the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Just write! Don’t worry about word count, about who’s going to buy it or read it. Just put words on paper.
If you could live anywhere in the world you wanted to, where would it be? (Language is no barrier)
On a small island in the Caribbean. I love sea air and salt water.
Where do you write? 
Anywhere, really. Mostly in my living room looking at the lake or in my writing cave—aka my office—where I have a large monitor and fewer distractions… like looking at the lake.
How much time do you devote to writing each week?  Do you have a day every week that you take off?
When I’m working on a book, I try to write 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week. The weekends are for my family. Unless I’m on deadline, then I write every spare moment.
What is a genre that you have not attempted that you would like to try?
Young Adult. I have a contemporary/paranormal story idea that I’ve started on a couple of times, but it hasn’t come together yet. But it will someday.
Is there anything you would like readers to know about you?
Besides being a published author, I’m a musician, too. I have the degrees to prove it! lol  I love music—making it, listening to it, discussing it… Music feeds my soul.
CONTEST!! Tracy will be giving away a digital copy of LASSOING A BRIDE to a commenter. Be sure to include your email address in your comment for a chance to win.


Lassoing a BrideNo Less Than Forever


Love always finds a way…

Doctor Franz Bittner is satisfied with his life as it is. He has a good practice in a place where he is respected, in spite of his German birth. He has good friends and enough income to provide with him a few comforts. A wife would only complicate things. Then a tiny blond stranger is pulled from the river and everything changes. With one smile she captures his attention—and steals his heart.

Rebekah Snow Redmann barely survived her abusive husband’s attack. Though she was given to him to pay her father’s debts, she’d rather die than go back.  Then she ends up in the care of the handsome local doctor and he stitches up more than her wounds—he mends her soul. With him, she discovers everything that she believes she can never have...a love that will last forever.

Excerpt
Rebekah Snow Redmann watched the hint of light outside the window blossom into a new day. For the first time in nearly four years, she didn’t have to hurry from bed before Reginald woke. No matter how many times he forced her to lie down beside him, she couldn’t stand bathing and dressing where he could see.
Smiling at the freedom, she stretched, only to cry out at the pain.
“Miss Snow, what is it?”
The doctor knocked once and strode into the room. His white shirt and dark blue vest looked fresh and clean, though she knew he’d been in and out of her room the whole night. The vest emphasized his broad shoulders and drew her eye to his trim waist. His dark brown hair was clean and combed away from his face, emphasizing his blade-straight nose and eyes the shade of chocolate. His mustache brushed his upper lip and curled around his mouth, making her wonder if it was a soft as it looked.
Self-conscious of her own appearance, Rebekah tugged the covers up to her chin and looked away. “I stretched my legs and arms. I guess I moved too much.”
Rebekah felt his hum of sympathy reverberate through her body. When was the last time anyone cared that she hurt?




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21 comments:

Sarah J. McNeal said...

Well, I guess I've heard it all now. I can't imagine wanting to ride shotgun in a race car dodging other cars, spinning and praying not to hit the wall--and liking it.
That was some amazing research you did in Lassoing a Bride. I read it and thought you had some German history in your family because you seemed so comfortable with those names and the doctor's medical practice.
I'm a huge Star Trek fan, too. I also like the movies, especially the last 2.
Thank you so much for allowing me to interview you, Tracy.

TracyG said...

Sarah, I never said anything about other cars! Just me and a driver--kind of a really fast chauffeur. lol

I'm glad you enjoyed No Less Than Forever! Those characters were just meant for each other. And I do have a lot of German in my background--my daddy was of German parents.

Thanks for the invitation to TRR, Sarah!

Kathleen Rice Adams said...

Tracy, your stories in LASSOING A BRIDE and LASSOING A GROOM are dynamite. I love the way the two are related, and I so admire your ability to pull off that bit of magic.

I'm so proud and happy to have gotten to know you as a Prairie Rose sister. I'll join you in that race car! :-D

HUGS!!!!

TracyG said...

Kathleen! Another go-fast enthusiast! I knew I liked you. lol

Thanks for your kind words. I didn't start out with the intention of wrapping these two stories so closely together, but once I started, I couldn't write them any other way. Rebekah just had to be with Franz!

LorraineH said...

Terrific interviews with great questions. Learned some things about one of my favorite writers that I didn't know. Love your books, Tracy!

Allie Burton said...

Tracy, I didn't know you were a Trekkie! Love your writing and can't wait to read these two new stories. Allie

Cheryl Pierson said...

Tracy,

When I was a little girl, I used to love to watch car racing on tv. Back then, it was black and white, and the Indy 500 was the only one televised! LOL But I just loved it. My mom did not understand at all.

You've done a lot of very interesting things, and you're not finished yet!

I really enjoyed both stories in the summer anthologies. You are creating a whole little community with characters that we can relate to and remember from story to story, and I like that. Can't wait to see what you have in mind next!

I'm a Trekkie, but for the original series/characters/movies. I bought the entire series on DVD. LOL Now I'm wondering, what it is about The Next Gen that intrigues you so?

Wonderful interview! I always love learning more about my friends, and Sarah's interviews are just fantastic.

Hugs,
Cheryl

Kaye Spencer said...

Tracy,

I'm an original series Trekkie. I luv me some James T. Kirk. ;-

I have to confess that I'm just a smidgen envious, but even more in awe, of how you linked your two stories in the Lassoing a Groom and Lassoing a Bride anthologies.

Kirsten Arnold said...

Tracy,

I love your stories in both LASSOING A BRIDE and LASSOING A GROOM and of course I've always loved TOUCH OF TEXAS!

Riding in a race car would be SO cool! I hope you get to do that someday...and take me with you. :)

Tanya Hanson said...

Hi Tracy, always great to get to kno you better! We got our son in law six laps at a major race track for a Christmas gift--he's a race junkie--and wow, it really revved me up. I also don't like to drive in normal traffic but I'd LOVE to take that baby to 125 mph. However I think the rubber heat-suit thing they wear would get me too claustrophobic.

I can't wait to dig into your story. I am finishing up a Middle Grade story right now, then gonna indulge in some reading time! Best of luck, my friend.

Kristy McCaffrey said...

Hi Tracy,
I love Star Trek: TNG too!! Such a great series. And when you move to that Caribean Island, I'll join you.
Cheers!
Kristy

TracyG said...

Thanks, Allie! Yes, I got hooked on the old show AFTER I fell head over sandals for Jean Luc Picard. :)

TracyG said...

Hey, Cheryl. Technically that makes you a "trekker" - for the original show; as opposed to trekkie for Next Gen. I think it was the characters that drew me first. Then Roddenberry put the crew in so many interesting conflicts, plus added families/children--the show became like the soap operas my grandma watched. I had to watch to see what happened next.

TracyG said...

Oh, Kaye, thank you. I didn't plan to link those stories. But when the deputy carried Rebekah through the doctor's front door, I knew he wasn't going to let her get away. The challenge was providing enough details in both stories without giving either one away. I wanted readers to be able to read either story first.

TracyG said...

Hi, Kirsten! I'm glad to hear you enjoyed Touch of Texas. Being my first release, it will probably always be my favorite. :)

I'm hoping to ride in an open wheel Indy car--the kind I used to watch Mario Andretti drive.

TracyG said...

Tanya, as long as no one snaps a pic of me in that suit, I'll be fine. lol Thanks for stopping by.

TracyG said...

Kristy, I keep trying to convince my dh we should sell everything and buy an island down there. But he has to go and be all practical. lol

TracyG said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
TracyG said...

Lorraine Heath, I missed that you stopped by. Thanks for the kind words--they mean a lot from one of MY favorite authors! Thanks for stopping by.

TracyG said...

Allie Burton! You've won a copy of Lassoing a Bride! Congratulations.

Sarah J. McNeal said...

Congratulations Allie.