Author. Teacher. Coach. Counselor. Therapist. Mother. Wife. Friend. Daughter. Sister. Pet Mother. Human. Not in any particular order. Sometimes all at the same time.
Here is where I blog about writing and mental health, which, if you are a writer, you understand the connection. I also run an interview series featuring a variety of authors who talk about their books and the realities of publishing.
Friday, April 26, 2019
9 Questions with Tracy Ball
This week's featured author is Tracy Ball from West Virginia and her YA fantasy novel Dragonfly Dreams.
1. What message are you hoping people will receive when they read your book?
I have never published a book with a particular message in mind. My goal is to submerge the reader into an experience so real they hear whatever message they need. If there is an underlining message, it would be my tagline: Brave the danger. Dare to dream. And, love who you love.
2. Why did you write this book? (Please avoid saying “why does any writer write any
All of my story ideas come from some real-life person, place or thing. An event takes place (It could be as small as a conversation, or as big as world news) I find myself wondering ‘what if.’ If I’m still wondering in a few days, I put a person in that scenario and jot down what happens after or what got them there. If I am compelled to keep going, it’a story.
3. What has been the hardest part of the publishing process?
Marketing. I hate marketing. Of course, I want my books to sell, but I don’t write to sell. What I mean by that is, I don’t write formula and I don’t stick to one genre or style. While that makes my writing interesting (I think), it’s hard to build a loyal fanbase when I’m all over the place.
That’s not a knock or formula, genre, or style. Nor is it down-putting anyone who likes what they like. It’s just a fact, I spread out.
4. What has been the biggest (pleasant) surprise in your publishing journey?
Other authors. For every negative, backstabbing, dog-eat-dog mindset I have come across, there are at least five champions, willing to help or encourage. Writing is a lonely business. It’s nice to know there is a group of people who understand and share in any small success.
5. Would you write a sequel to your book? Why or why not?
I have one series in process- still unpublished. The Tiger & The Snake is a prequel for KAYOS. I wrote it because it was fun. I am often asked to write sequels which, I take as a compliment. I am not necessarily opposed to sequels but as a reader, I find them unsatisfying.
6. What author or book has influenced your writing?
Tolkien, G. Martin, SharonK. Penman, and Alex Haley. The combination gave me a rich history, alarger than life world and truth from every angle. Jennifer Blake’s Royal Seduction made me fall in love with overconfident men.
7. You are stranded on an island with only 3 books. What are their titles?
Lord of the Rings, Roots, and Harry Potter. Between the three of them, I’ll have plenty to read and dissect.
8. What is your philosophy about rejection?
My thought is who cares? It’s subjective. Besides, if you’re writing for approval, quit now. If an opinion can stop you, you should be stopped.
9. Do you have a day job? What is it?
I’m a grandmother. That’s four jobs in human years.