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Grace Burrowes, best selling author ~~ Interview (part 2)

Q. Where/when do you first discover your characters?grace_scotts-view

GB. If I’m lucky, I hear them. I hear them grousing about their life situation, or wishing on a star. What I’m after with a character is an understanding of their defining trauma or wound (neglect can hurt like heck without qualifying as a trauma, though it IS a trauma), because then I know how to build them that cave they most fear to enter, wherein their treasure will lie. When a book is really singing to me, I’m usually writing about one of my defining traumas, though I often don’t realize that until the manuscript is done and edited.

My brother Dick once gave me some great advice for how to build a character arc: Make the character choose between the competing demands of honor. The lady or the tiger is interesting, because either door leads to death for the person choosing, but add dishonor to those stakes, and you have the makings of quite a yarn.

Q. What first inspired you to write your stories?

GB. I have always loved to write, even before I could write cursive. I’ve also always loved to read, and romance novels, which are a lot more complicated than they look (when done right), were my fiction of choice. In the courtroom I see a lot of miserable-ever-after endings, and that creates a need for somewhere that I can make life happily-ever-after. When my daughter moved out, I had time, emotional breathing room, and an unsatisfied creative urge all coming together. The books blossomed, and I feel like I’ve found the thing I love to do so much, I lose track of time and self when I’m doing it.

Q. What comes first to you? The Characters or the Situation? more »

Interview with Best Selling Author, Grace Burrowes (part 1)

 grace-burrowsigning-use-this-2TS. Grace Burrowes is in my top three favorite historical romance writers. Great plots, well developed characters and humor! She granted this interview and I am thrilled.  The glimpse into her writing world is unique and fascinating!

Q. Where do you write? Do you have a special room, shed, barn, special space for your writing?  Or tell us about your ‘dream’ work space.

GB. I write at my kitchen table, though I don’t take meals there. The set up is me in the writing chair, a cat in my lap, or two cats curled up on the heated throw that covers the left end of the table. Writer dawg is at my feet, and I use a remote keyboard, so my laptop screen can sit at the ergonomically ideal height. This is bliss, to write with my four-footed buddies around, amid the peace and quiet of my nest.

Q. Do you have any special rituals when you sit down to write? (a neat work space, sharpened #2 pencils, legal pad, cup of tea, glass of brandy, favorite pajamas, etc.)

GB. I start the day with one cup of jasmine green tea, with agave nectar and table cream—more bliss! I try to end a writing sessions with some trailers, or in the middle of a sentence, so my fingers will have something to do when I next put them on the keyboard. I also end the day reading over whatever I wrote that day, and when I get up, I set the alarm at least 30 minutes early, so I can stay in bed, drifting on the alpha waves and letting my happy-besomimagination nosh on the book. This is a lovely way to ease into the day, and usually means I start a writing session with some creative compression. A line of dialogue, a symbolic detail of setting, something will get me out of bed and down to the computer.

Q. Could you tell us something about yourself that we might not already know?

GB. The older I get, the happier I am—and the more passionate. I didn’t see this coming. more »