Wednesday 5 November 2014

7 Questions with #Author Kate Bracy (That Crazy Little Thing) #AmReading #WomensFic

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live?

I grew up in Northern New York, on the border with Ontario – not “upstate” as people say, but “Northern” – and it influenced me tremendously. The winters are harsh, the people are real, and there is a Canadian influence that I see in my worldview. We had to travel to many services (good healthcare, education, concerts, etc.) and it helped me understand the value of urban resources. I live in Washington State now, near Seattle. I appreciate the nearness of cultural riches, growing up so far from cities, but I also seek a place where there is a “small town” friendliness and a general willingness to know and help neighbors.

How did you develop your writing?

I developed my writing by writing at every opportunity by taking many, many classes; by reading many, many books on writing; and by being willing to hear painful critique. I think that combination has served me well, but none of it is easy. I also think it’s important to say that learning about writing can be a comfortable substitute for doing the actual work, so at some point you have to put on your big-girl panties and glue them to your chair. The only way to become a writer is to sit there and write.

Do you plan to publish more books?

I hope to publish more novels and probably some essay collections. In my ideal world I would publish one book a year. (And knit one sweater a year. And make one quilt a year. And take one course a year.) But I don’t live in an ideal world, so I hope no one is keeping track.

What else do you do to make money, other than write? It is rare today for writers to be full time…

I am a nurse. I’ve worked as a staff development coordinator, as I do now, and have also worked as a nurse-practitioner, a clinic supervisor, a psychiatric nurse and a medical writer.

What other jobs have you had in your life?

I’ve done lots of things that have nothing to do with writing except that, as Nora Ephron’s mom said, “It’s all copy.” I’ve been a babysitter, a line worker in a paper plate factory, a nurse’s aide at a large psychiatric hospital, a waitress in a pizza place, a secretary, a seamstress, and a high school English teacher. Whatever it took to stay employed, I did. Growing up in a small town, the choices were limited. Once I finished college, I had more options.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?

Right now I live on an island near Seattle. I have to say, I’m pretty happy here. I love the peace it offers, there is a strong writing community, the weather is moderate and it is close enough to the city to take in cultural events. While there are many places I’d like to visit, I’ll probably live here happily for a long time.

How do you write – lap top, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk?

Short answer: yes. Longer answer: it depends. Expanded answer: I write on the desktop computer whenever I can. I have a nice office with a view, and I’m comfortable at the desk and can save the files any way I like, and go back to them later. I use a laptop when I travel or go to classes – I like the portability of it, and the flexibility of what I can do with the material for sharing with others. I have notebooks that I keep near my bed and near my TV chair, so that I can jot down ideas and brief thoughts when they occur to me. Sometimes I take the laptop to a coffee house and write for hours.

I did the final edit on my novel in various coffee places on the island where I live. I also like to take a journal and hike to a quiet place and write. Especially when I’m puzzling through something emotional, this seems to help. So it really depends on where the urge strikes and what I am trying to get down and whether I will wake anyone up if I sit at my computer. I like all these ways of getting things down, but I prefer to do it directly to a computer so that I don’t have to transcribe. I’m not very reliable when it comes to transferring hand written material to electronic files, so much of that writing will be forever stuck in notebooks.

Winner of four independent publishing awards, including the IndieReader Discovery Award in Women's Fiction, this debut novel hits the mark for smart, discerning readers.

There's nothing about her life that doesn't need a little work, so Melanie Davis thinks of herself as a "fixer-upper." Her history with men leaves her gun shy; her teenaged daughter can't string two civil words together; her best friend Donna just found out she has a life-threatening illness. When Donna also reveals a decades-old secret that still haunts her, Melanie makes it her mission to solve the mystery and reunite Donna with a precious link to her past - before it's too late. 

Along the way Melanie discovers with startling clarity the pricelessness of love and friendship. With a finely-tuned emotional compass, Kate Bracy carries us through a trial-by-illness as funny as it is touching. Her narrator, Melanie, comes to realize the enduring power of love - between men and women, between mothers and daughters, between friends. Through her vivid, endearing characters Bracy creates a small-town world in northern New York where old loves rekindle, friendships prevail, and secret wounds are finally healed. This debut novel will leave you with an awakened heart and a strong urge to send postcards to all the people you love.

Buy Now @ Amazon & Smashwords
Genre - Women's Fiction
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
Connect with Kate Bracy through Facebook

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