I’ve got Terri Reed on my blog today. She was gracious enough to answer some interview questions for me as part of her virtual blog tour with Goddess Fish Promotions. Terri is giving away a $25.oo VISA Gift Card to one lucky commenter during her tour. The more comments, the higher your chances to win. Here’s a link where you can follow Terri’s tour.
Now here’s Terri —
What first got you interested in writing? What has kept you doing it?
As a child I loved to tell myself stories. I was always making up elaborate tales for my dolls and stuffed animals. Then in 8th grade I had a wonderful English teacher who introduced me to all the classics from Greek mythology to Shakespeare to Where the Red Fern Grows. My teacher encouraged my imagination and made me believe that I could be a storyteller. It took me until almost thirty to finally follow the dream that began back then.
I’ve kept at writing because once I started I found I was happier and more at peace in my life. When I’m not writing, I get antsy and a bit cranky.
Do you have the support of your family and friends? Has that support always been there, or has it changed since being published?
My family has been extremely supportive. My mother-in-law bought me my first electronic word processor, with my husband’s input, and gave it to me with the words, “Now start writing.” My friends have been very supportive as well. They always celebrate my successes as well as comfort me in my rejections. Has that support always been there, or has it changed since being published? I’m happy to say it been there from the beginning.
What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?
I have to have music playing while I’m writing. I used to play classical but I’ve found more upbeat music helps me to write faster. Strangest habit? Not sure it’s a habit, but I have found wearing a cervical collar while writing helps keep my neck and shoulder muscles from locking up while spending hours a day at the keyboard.
Is there anything you have to do before you start writing?
Not rituals or anything like that. I do usually brew myself some tea or grab a bottle of water to keep near by while writing. Some times I’ll keep a box of animal crackers or some other type of small cookies on my desk.
What advice would you give to a new writer?
Never stop learning; keep believing in yourself and publishers can’t buy your work if you don’t submit it.
What has been the biggest challenge of your career so far?
Keeping up with the promotional and social networking side of being a writer.
What are you working on now?
My current project is the sixth book in a continuity series for Love Inspired Suspense about an Irish family of cops living in a small Massachusetts town. A murder occurs in their community and one of their own is accused of the crime.
Tell us about your latest book.
The Innocent Witness, a July release from Love Inspired Suspense, is about the widow of a US Senator, accused of his murder by the police, targeted by the real assassin and on the run with her autistic son, the only witness to the murder. And the person standing between her and danger is an ex-Secret Service agent turned bodyguard, who isn’t sure of her innocence.
Just for Terri, how do you balance all the aspect of your books?
I do a great deal of pre-writing to flesh out the characters and keep track of the plot points. I use a wide variety of charts, from Deb Dixon’s Goal, Motivation and Conflict, Michael Hague’s Story Mastery, Dwight Swains Scene and Sequel, and Carolyn Greene’s Magic Conflict chart. So when I sit down to write I feel I know the story and the characters enough to tell their tale. How do you keep your books from being too ‘preachy’? For me the faith element is a part of the characters’ growth process and must have a purpose that furthers the progress of the story.
How can people find out more about you?
Readers can follow blogs that I’m a part of and can see upcoming titles at these web address:
Readers can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Here’s a blurb about The Innocent Witness —
Faith sustained Vivian Grant through her horrible childhood and loveless marriage, but how much more can she take? Her husband has been killed. Her autistic son is the only witness. And someone is twisting the evidence to place the blame on her. Viv has no one to trust—and danger is closing in.
A failed protection detail cost former Secret Service agent Anthony Carlucci his job—and his self-confidence. He’s not going to fail anyone under his care again. Anthony will risk anything to keep Viv and her son safe…including his heart.
Anthony scooped Mikey up. “Run! Go, go!”
They’d barely put two car lengths between them and the SUV before an explosion ripped through the air behind them. Nearby pedestrians screamed.
The concussion drove Viv to her hands and knees. She cried out at the bone-jarring impact. Her teeth snapped together, sending waves of pain through her head. Debris pelted her in a stinging rain and heat singed her skin. Her breath caught and held in her chest. The ringing in her ears muted the cacophony of noise from car alarms disturbed by the blast and the shouts from pedestrians. Acrid smoke filled the air and burned her lungs.
Frantic, she blinked back tears, her gaze wildly searching for Mikey and Anthony.
She found them a few feet away. She breathed out a moan of relief and pain. Anthony’s still body pinned a screaming, struggling Mikey to the ground. He seemed unscathed but scared as he flailed unsuccessfully, trying to get himself out from beneath the big body on top of him.
Compelled by an urgency she didn’t understand, she crawled on all fours to Anthony’s side. “It’s okay, baby. I’m here,” she murmured to Mikey to calm him as she touched Anthony’s cheek.
Blood from a gash on his forehead marred his handsome face. She laid her fingers against the side of his neck. She could barely detect a pulse. But it was there.
“Anthony! Wake up,” she uttered low in her throat as she tried to roll him off her son.
Feet pounded on the sidewalk, jerking her attention toward the people rushing up. She blinked with relief. Joe and Barb skidded to a halt beside her. Joe immediately eased Anthony off Mikey and rolled him onto his back.
Seeing Barb working to calm Mikey freed Viv to put her energy into her concern for Anthony. She sent up a silent plea, Lord, please, lethim be all right.
More about Terri —
Award winning, multipublished author Terri Reed discovered the wonderful world of fiction at an early age and declared she would one day write a book. Now she is fulfilling that dream and enjoys writing for Love Inspired. She is an active member of both Romance Writers of America and American Christian Fiction Writers. She resides in the Pacific Northwest with her college-sweetheart husband, two wonderful children, and an array of critters. When not writing, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, gardening and playing tennis.
You can write to Terri at P.O. Box 19555 Portland, OR 97280 or visit her online at www.loveinspiredauthors.com or email her at email@example.com or leave comments on http://ladiesofsuspense.blogspot.com/ or http://craftieladiesofromance.blogspot.com/