Interview with Tracy Tegan

What's the story behind your latest book?
Snow is a prequel to my first book Absolutely Unforgivable.

There were some aspects to the Billy and Stacy love story that got left out of the original book. It dealt a lot with how Billy first came to fall in love with her and some secrets surrounding that. That’s really what got me started on writing this next part of their story and release it as a novella or companion piece of the original book.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I started my first book a couple of years ago. During this process I needed a break. I needed to step out of that box and freshen up my brain. It was then I sat down and wrote Absolutely Unforgivable. Having a background in marketing, I thought I would try the indie process and see how it goes. I have been pleasantly surprised.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords has been great for me because it allowed me expose my work to more potential readers.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I've been writing stories in my head for as long as I can remember. It's always been a great escape for me. It helps me get away from the stresses of the real world.
What do your fans mean to you?
It's such a weird concept to me to even think that I might have a single fan let alone more than one. Don't get me wrong, it's great if I do but I just can't imagine in a million years that being the case.
What are you working on next?
I am doing the revisions and edits for my first story Airabella Grace as well as finishing up another romance novel called Waiting For You. It's the story of a girl who fell on hard times. She lost her job unexpectedly and then an unusual opportunity comes her way. I've also been working on the next book in the Absolutely Unforgivable series. It is the next chapter of Stacy Keller's life.
Who are your favorite authors?
Of course who doesn't love authors like Stephanie Meyer and Suzanne Collins? In the romance genre I think Julie James is probably one of my favorites right now. She has a unique style of writing that is upbeat and sassy. I just love that.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Before I discovered book review blogs I would just Google, what's a great book like --- and then one day I found all of these great sites who write reviews for books. Now I tend to make my selection based on their reviews. Most of the blogs tend to rate all books as good or great so I don't really go off of their ratings, but instead I look at what specifically they had to say about the book. I look to see what it is they liked about the book and if that is typically something I might like then I add that book to my list to read.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I've been writing stories in my head since I was a child. I would lay in bed at night, close my eyes and bring to life some story about some fantasy world or some dreamy guy. While I'm not sure if it was my first story ever, I can remember in elementary school writing a story about a family of robot like things with big square heads called the bleep blop people. I know it's silly but I was in elementary school, so what do you expect? :-)
What is your writing process?
When I come up with a new story idea I create a new word document and write down everything I can think of about it. I jot down any and all notes that come to mind about that specific story. Sometimes I may have just a basic story while other times I may write down pages of character notes. Then I save it, put it away with all my other story ideas.

Then when I'm in a writing mood I'll look through the list of documents and open up the one that moves me and just start writing. Sometimes I re-read some notes I wrote down prior to taking a nap and then think about that story as I'm drifting off to sleep. I play out the scenes in my head and see if they feel real to me or not. If they don't when I wake up I fix them.
How do you approach cover design?
Coming from a marketing background I know how extremely important a great book cover is. A person can write the best story in the world but if the cover is horrible it just isn't going to move. Like it or not, people always judge a book by its cover. It's just a fact of life.

So when it comes time to write a new story, once I get really into it, more than say 10,000 words or so I get digging around for photos of what I think the main character(s) would look like. That also helps me in my writing process. Then I take those images and mock up a pre-cover or promotional flyer. I post that to my website or facebook page and get feedback from my friends or family. Then I turn that over with several images of the main character to my graphics artist guru friend who then makes my covers.
What do you read for pleasure?
I tend to like romance novels but there are a few in the YA genre that I have enjoyed as well. Big fan of Twilight, The Hunger Games, Harry Potter, and the Divergent series, but more often than not I'm reading romance.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I like reading books on my iPad.
Describe your desk
Well technically speaking it is a desk but I think anyone who actually seen it might call it a all out disaster area. I'm ashamed to admit it, but my desk really is a horrible mess and not the kind of I still know where everything is mess that you hear about.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma with the most amazing friends and family. They gave me the freedom to be me, whatever being me might have meant. At 8 years old I wrote my first computer program and just a few years later I was trying out to be a cheerleader. Where I grew up you weren't pigeon holed into some sort of category or stereotype. Just because you like things like computers didn't mean you couldn't also be sociable and popular.

I think having these freedoms to be whatever I wanted to be gave me the ability to have a limitless imagination. The characters I write are a lot like me in that they aren't bound by their circumstances. They can be whatever they want to be.
Published 2013-08-26.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.