Friday, April 15, 2011

with Tessa Stockton

Welcome to the Barn Door Book Loft, Tessa!
What started you on your writing journey?

I’ve written sporadically over many years—have always had an interest in developing it into something more viable. Since I traveled a lot as a performing arts missionary, I didn’t have the time. Then within the organization I served with, Global Ministries, opportunities opened to contribute as a writer and eventually edit for their quarterly newsletter. It became part of my job. When that chapter of my life came to a close and I could focus on fictive writing endeavors, I started working on my first novel. At the same time, I also had involvement in political groups and took on a few writing and editing jobs in that circle, as well. But I could always envision becoming a novelist. In other words, I REALLY desired it! It took ten years of honing the craft and plenty of discouragement before I landed a publishing contract—but, with God’s time and my persistence joined together, I am currently celebrating the release of my debut novel.

What distracts you from writing the easiest?
Noise, especially when it’s produced by my rambunctious four-year-old.

What kind of books do you enjoy reading?
I really enjoy everything under sun, a regular book lover. From political intrigue and psychological thrillers to young adult and fantasy, from literary and modernist classics to human interest stories and poetry—there are very few books I don’t like.

Which character in your new release most interested you while you wrote?
While I wrote the story in first person from a southern woman’s POV, my “monster”, i.e., war criminal, interested me the most. “Carlos” is loosely based on a real life person. When I dove into the research way back when and read reports and news on that individual, I couldn’t help but ask the “What if?” I don’t know why, but I got this overwhelming sense that some people/situations are greatly misunderstood. One would have to read The Unforgivable to understand the heart of what I mean by that.

If you were a style of music, what style would you be?
World beat, or epic. Only because I’m a mix of so many things, have a great appreciation for other cultures, and I’ve been accused of being a bit over-the-top. Gee, did I just admit that?

What is your strangest habit?
I have regular conversations with my vacuum (which happens to be very argumentative) while doing housework. I’m not that concerned about it. I suppose if I start talking to it while it’s unplugged I might have to worry.

Are there things you put off doing because you dread them?
No, I have the opposite problem. I’m a type-A personality and can’t relax until everything gets done that I intended to do. I may dread them, but I have a tendency to attack those things head-on. Honestly, relaxation suffers. I could use more rest. The one thing I find difficult about working from home is when to turn it off. I may sense “when” to, but I struggle with actually following through on that. I think, “If I could just get this one more thing done…” I still have to learn how to strike a decent balance between work, play, and rest. I’m not there yet. It drives those around me nuts sometimes.

What's your favorite meal with family and friends?
While I like to cook and do so often, I’d rather go out to eat (okay, the secret’s out)—so those occasions would have to be my favorite. Thai food—anything with curry and vegetables—complete with a Thai iced tea really is delectable and most enjoyable amongst family and friends. However, my son won’t touch Thai with a ten-foot pole. So, if we’re talking real family mealtime where everyone’s happy, it’s pizza on Saturday nights with soda and movies—yeah, what he wants. I’m also a popcorn junkie and will relish a bowl with anyone, anytime! Warning, though, I like to sprinkle it with a healthy dose of cayenne.

Are there spiritual themes you like to write about?
No one is beyond redemption. My books are meant to bring spiritual comfort to those who battle an assortment of ethics.

Share a verse or Scripture passage with us that is special to you.
“For in him we live and move and have our being” Acts 17:28. No matter what you do or don’t do, God is there. There is just something so reassuring about that.

When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
The second book of the series is set in Colombia. I’m not at liberty to discuss much about it at this point. But I will share that I’m fascinated with the endless battle between political leftists and rightists, so you can expect the plot to touch on that like my debut does. At the same time, a reader will find the premise quite different from my first book, The Unforgivable. I’ll post news on my website as it comes. So if anyone is interested in the development they can either go to, or my Author Page on Facebook, “Tessa Stockton, Political Intrigue Novelist” where I probably give the most detailed up-to-date information on my writing and publishing progress.

You can purchase The Unforgivable from Amazon.

Tessa is giving away a copy of The Unforgivable. To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.


Jo said...

Great interview. Enjoyed hearing about you, Tessa. Please enter me in the drawing.


Linda said...

Getting to know you interview was terrific. Love your type A personality! Would love to be entered in your giveaway.

I'm also interested in your Columbia books!

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

lgm52 said...

Interesting sounds very intriguing. Would love to win it!

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a good read!

Joanne Sher said...

This does sound good. SOOO good. Please enter me :)

windycindy said...

What an interesting life that she led being a performing arts missionary!
Thanks, Cindi

Pam K. said...

I enjoyed the interview with Tessa. Reading an excerpt from "The Unforgivable" and watching the trailer whetted my interest for this book. I think it would be hard to put down. Please enter me in the giveaway.

Linda Kish said...

This sounds like an interesting story.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Lisa Lickel said...

This was a great book - a surprise pleasure to review (so let someone else have a chance to win).

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read this story :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Charlotte Kay said...

I am grateful to be included in this giveaway!
Many Blessings and Smiles:)
Charlotte Kay
charlovesmark at gmail dot com

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