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SPECIAL INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR TRACI MCDONALD

Interview with author: Traci McDonald

Welcome author Traci McDonald:

 

How did you find your publisher?

One of the great resources available to writers is Writer’s Digest. It has listings for all different kinds of sources for contests, web-I-nars, and upcoming conferences. Because I subscribe to Writers Digest on line, I saw a request for manuscripts to publish in Lieu of their launching a new e-book romance arm of Adams Media.
They asked for query letters about 50,000 word stories. They were looking for five different sub-genres: Suspenseful Romance, Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance, Historical Romance, and Paranormal Romance. They launched their first 25 novels on June 4, 2012 and have released five new titles every week since. They are still accepting manuscripts for these five genres and can be reached through crimsonromance.com or adamsmedia.com.

  What do you like about them?

They are very straightforward and honest. They make it clear exactly what interest they have in your work but are not trying to hold everything you write for the next five years hostage. If you eat to submit other work they will accept it, but you are not required to put all your work through them. They stayed in good contact with me, let me know what was happening with my book and were professional, but friendly, too.

 

Do you have any advice for writers looking to get their first works published?

Keep your eyes out for everything. That isn’t very specific but, you cannot decide you don’t write “That” when an opportunity comes up to submit. If it’s a short story train yourself to write one. If it sounds like too much work, do it anyway. There are always publishers of magazines, on-line magazines, short story anthologies, contests and all sorts of opportunities. You have to give it a shot. If you get rejected, learn more and try again whatever mistakes you make, find out how to fix them. You have to keep working on it, and you can’t be afraid to lose, or get rejected.

 

What is your favorite type of book to read and why?

My tastes in what I read are varied, but every type always has an element of romance. I love historical fiction, a good paranormal, Mysteries and who done it’s fun and anything I can learn from while I am reading it. The thing that holds my attention in a story though is the romance. The classic struggle to let your heart take risks feels just realistic enough to keep me living the fantasy. I know love exists in real life so I love to find it between the covers of books. Tell us a little about you: Traci McDonald lives and writes surrounded by the rich colors and natural wonders of Southern Utah. When she is not writing she spends her time reading, researching family history and enjoying the outdoors with her husband and three sons. Traci is a member of the Heritage Writers Guild, The Utah League of Writers and The Blue Ash Writer’s Group. A group of visually impaired author’s from all across the United States. Traci has been blind for 17 years and is also a member of The National Federation for the Blind, where she has published material For the State newsletter. She is the author of Killing Casanova, her debut novel available through Crimson Romance an affiliate of Adam’s Media…

 

  1. Tell us about your book. Killing Casanova is the story of Jake Caswell and Cassie Taylor. Jake has a reputation for being the town’s local Casanova. Sexy, charming and gorgeous, women literally line up for a chance to be with him. Most women…but not Cassie. Cassie has a bitter past experience with men like Jake and her physical blindness makes it difficult for her to see the man Jake wants her to see. Their journey through healing, and heartache teaches them both the difference between true love and attraction. Throw in a deadly fire; an unhappy meeting with a rattlesnake and you’ve got the suspense filled romance Killing Casanova.

 

When did you first start writing? What inspired you to start writing?

I think I started writing as soon as I could hold a pencil. When I was a little girl I wrote poetry, songs, and stories to entertain myself and my brothers and sisters. When I began to read the classics in High School my desire to be a writer was born. I entered and won competitions and used my love of books and words to fill my life in as many ways as I could. I wrote for my children, my family, and friends. About Five years ago I lost the function of my kidneys and was on Dialysis for two years before I got a Kidney transplant from my older brother. With more health and strength than I had enjoyed in over a decade, I began to write my stories and learn as much about being a writer as I could. To be a writer is a dream I have strived to live in whatever form I could find it. My good fortune over the last few years in having a portion of my health returned to me has been the inspiration for me to want to write and publish my work.

Have you ever gotten writers block or gotten stuck while writing? Do you have any tips for overcoming this?

I always have a story or an idea for a story floating around in my head. I currently have more than five partial or rough drafts of manuscripts that I am working on. If I get writers block about something I am working on I let it sit for a while and I go to another story. I don’t know if this is the right way to deal with writers block because it means you have partial work constantly fluctuating, but it works for me.

How did you come up with the title and the story idea?

I was listening to a song about a goodtime cowboy Casanova and there was a line from the song about Casanova being a snake with blue eyes. I remembered a time in my life when I would have fallen for that kind of a man; distracted by beautiful blue eyes. Thank Goodness I thought to myself. Blindness has saved me from guys like those.  Immediately I had an idea for a story about a man who could charm and capture any woman he wanted, until he meets a blind woman, who sees him for exactly what he is.

What was your favorite part to write and why?

My favorite scenes to write in any of my stories are the first kiss. I love creating the feelings, situations and dialogue that build sexual tension culminating in that kiss. The buildup is my favorite part, not even the actual kiss.

Describe your favorite writing spot have a laptop computer that is equipped with a special screen reading program for the blind.

I can set this laptop up anywhere and using a wireless keyboard, it will allow me to write from anywhere near it. My favorite spot changes. Sometimes it is outside when the weather isn’t hot. Sometimes it is near where I’m cooking. Sometimes it is just buried in the keyboard writing my heart out. I love to work where my other senses are teased. Good smells, good music, and good weather make up my favorite spots….

What made you decide to write a romance novel?

I find my tastes are drawn in all of my reading and writing towards romance. I do not even consider myself a romantic. I am not a girl who gets swept away by roses, or fancy dinners, or presents. It just sounds like a waste of money to me. I write romance because I believe in the power of love. I have been head over heels in love with my best friend for over 15 years and it still the best experience I have ever had. If I can tell stories about great love and let my reader’s bask in the joy of love for a while than I have given them a gift, and all the work is worth it.

Are you a re-reader or do you normally just read a book one time through?

I am a re-reader. I read and reread books for all different reasons. The first time is for the story, the subsequent times vary from: wanting to learn how the writer worked a scene, what was the Point of View, What are the details, and what can I learn.

 

 

 

Besides writing, what are some of your other hobbies?

I love to read, listen to music, talk, and learn. I am always interested in picking up information of any kind. I also play co-ed softball with my husband, Tandem bicycle ride and research family history.

Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers? If you wonder if you can write a book or being an author my advice to you is go find out. Learn how, Where, and what you need to do and go and do it. Every good writer wonders if they can do it, the great ones go and make it happen. You will have plenty of people who tell you how you can’t. Get used to making mistakes and learn how to correct they and you will overcome anything in your way.

Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans hope that you fell in love a little with my characters and your life was a little better for the few hours that you were reading the book? I am so grateful to people who still find the time to read and love a good story. Thank You for spending some time with Killing Casanova and come visit me at tracimcdonaldauthor@gmail.com or come read my blog Writing Blind at tracimcdonald.blogspot.com. I love to hear what readers and fans think and I always welcome suggestions or comments.

Are you a Windows or a Mac person?

I only use windows programs because my screen reading technology is set up for Windows

What would be one thing you would be lost without?

I would be lost without my faith in god… Life is never going to be smooth or easy. Without my faith that there is a greater being in charge of this mess us call life, I would just give up… Trials and problems and struggles will come and without the belief that I am alive and right here right now for a reason, I couldn’t keep going.

Describe your idea of ‘the best day ever’:

The best day ever would be spent on a warm beach, a slight breeze cooling the air and sand. I would sit with my laptop smelling tropical flowers, drinking fruity drinks and writing my heart out. I would have a good book on the sand beside me, my husband stretched out next to me, and my kids running and laughing along the water. That sounds perfect. Where can readers find out more about you and your books?

You can come visit me and leave a comment on my blog tracimcdonald.blogspot.com or send me an e-mail at tracimcdonaldauthor@gmail.com. You can also follow me on twitter tracimcauthor or I am on facebook at traci.mcdonald.505

About Just Reviews by:gabina49:

author educator book reviewer for authors reading and writing staff developer Book reviewer for manic readers, ijustfinished.com book pleasures and authors upon request blog tours on my blog and interviews with authors I am the author of five published books. I wrote three children's books in my Bertha Series and Two on Alzheimer's. Radio show talk host on Red River Radio/Blog Talk Radio Book Discussion with Fran Lewis the third Wed. of every month at one eastern. I interview 2 authors each month feature their latest releases. I review books for authors upon request and my latest book Sharp As A Tack or Scrambled Eggs Which Describes Your Brain? Is an E book, Kindle and on Xlibris.com Some of the proceeds from this last book will go to fund research in the area of Brain Traumatic Injury in memory of my sister Marcia who died in July.

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