Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Please join me in welcoming Last Chance Author Tracey Cramer-Kelly to my blog today!
Okay, everyone is waiting impatiently to hear about your latest release: Tell us a bit about Last CHance Rescue.
Last Chance Rescue, a 2009 Indie Awards finalist, is about two people who must fight their own defenses to finally let down the walls that will allow them to rescue each other. It is a story about breath-taking search-and-rescue action and adventurous lives—and the heart that is behind it all.
Future sneak peek:
I’m currently working on my next novel, which is about an officer’s harrowing experience at the hand of terrorists, and his personal journey to learn what is truly worth fighting for, and what True Surrender means. In a fun twist, the main character in this novel is actually Last Chance heroine Jessie’s ex-husband!
Favorite reader comment
There are some great comments from some of the reviews of Last Chance Rescue, but the most fulfilling ones are when an ‘ordinary’ reader tells me a particular scene or character had special meaning to them. Here’s one:
“You got me at the Cindy/Chelsey rescue, not just a tear, my face was wet with tears reading it, I had to put the book down for a few minutes. (I cried one other time too, but forget where.)”
Why write romance
The overarching theme of "Last Chance Rescue" is how Brad is transformed over the course of the story. Yes, there is a relationship that turns into something more than friendship as the story progresses. And yes, Brad's changes are 'facilitated' by a remarkable woman...
Brad and Jessie start out as mere acquaintances, but by working on a search-and-rescue team, they are forced to learn to trust each other in ways that us 'ordinary folk' don't have to -- and they become fast friends. So you might say it's about how guys and girls can operate as friends, but it also brings into play the theme of being friends before lovers.
It’s romance but so much more: the Last Chance Rescue characters are multi-faceted, multi-challenged personalities, and the action is not only non-stop, but also true-to-life!
Personality and life experiences in writing?
I’ve had the fortune of meeting, working and playing with some very interesting people! I think everything I write is affected by what I’ve experienced. Yes, there’s a healthy dose of imagination and plenty of creative license, but a seed has to be sown somewhere, and for me it is often a ‘human’ interchange. I made the heroine of Last Chance Rescue (Jessie) an Iraq war veteran and gave her some of the qualities I saw in my fellow soldiers/medics (and perhaps myself).
My writing is heavily influenced by the time I spent in the military and by the medical training I received there. When I became a helicopter pilot, it opened new relationships with some amazing people—and Last Chance really came together after I did some ride-alongs with medevac and search-and-rescue.
My ‘writing time’ is from 9-11pm a couple times a week (after my kids are in bed) and a stolen hour at a café or coffee shop when I can swing it. I do my best work when it’s quiet and I have NO interruptions, but sometimes a change of scenery can help my level of inspiration. I prefer to be ‘in the zone’ (I don’t write for a living and don’t want to because I never want it to stop being fun).
I ride my motorcycle whenever possible!
Ideas come from?
For me, it starts with one scene—often from a dream. It grows from there until I have the makings of a story or novel in my head. I’ve tried making an outline but find that my characters sometimes take me in a different direction. I’ve learned not to fight that, but it means I usually write more than I need and end up cutting (on the up side, I have several additional stories I could work on!).
I try to write scenes with sexual tension rather than actual sex (usually) – which I find more difficult than an actual sex scene, but so much more powerful! I also like to place that tension in unexpected places or situations. Here is an example from Last Chance Rescue:
He sank to his bed when she went to the bathroom, not bothering to turn on the overhead light. He fumbled with the clasps on his leg brace for a few moments, then lay propped on his elbows—uncomfortable, exhausted and frustrated.
“You really don’t feel good, do you?” She was at his side.
He shook his head. He reached for the brace again, but she laid her hand on his.
“Let me,” she said softly.
Slowly he reclined.
One by one she released the clasps on his leg brace. She moved with slow deliberation, as if she were undressing him. When she’d removed the brace she let it fall to the floor, one hand still resting on his leg. She sat on the bed next to him and reached for the ankle zipper on his workout pants.
He couldn’t take his eyes from her as she unzipped his pants from his ankle to above his knee. He found himself wanting her touch…anticipating it…needing it.
She began a soft stoke from ankle to mid-calf.
Brad closed his eyes, allowing himself to fall into the sensation of her touch.
Unconsciously he tensed as she ran her hands up his leg toward his knee, but he made no attempt to move. Her feather-light strokes did not cause pain, as he had anticipated, but rather, a sensation like wind moving over his skin. He relaxed—falling into the deep exhaustion of the last few months…
Favorite dessert: anything with chocolate!
Favorite City: too many to choose one
Favorite Season: early fall
Type of hero/heroine: I love it when the girl gets to be the hero! But if it’s a guy, I like him to have a vulnerability about him.
I like books with complex, more adult characters (Nicolas Sparks comes to mind); I am particularly fascinated by how a male character may change/be changed by events/situations (a major theme in Last Chance Rescue as well). I like unusual settings, but not to the point of unbelievability (which is why I did ride-alongs with a medevac team before I finished writing Last Chance Rescue). My ‘pet peeve’ is a book with too much ‘headhopping’ (constantly changing points of view).
Who has influenced my writing
So many people! And often without knowing they are doing it!
In five years…
Well, what the heck, if you’re going to dream, why not dream big? I would like my next novel to be picked up by an agent and publisher and become ridiculously popular—to the point there’s a bidding war for the movie rights (to BOTH novels) and I finally get to produce a musical (in which I would do the singing). :-)
How long writing/want to be a writer
I wrote during high school but never with any intention of publishing. In college, my creative outlet was music (I sang in several bands and show choirs). Later I got into the beaded jewelry craze, but that phased out after my son was born (beads and toddlers don’t mix well). In the meantime, I would write when the muse struck me, and eventually I had a half-dozen novels (or, more specifically, parts and pieces of). There were stories inside me that just had to be told.
How many books have you written/published
Last Chance Rescue is my first! More to come!
What was easiest to write / hardest to write?
The easiest scene to write in Last Chance Rescue was Brad’s fall down the mountain (and subsequent rescue). The most difficult scenes were those that Quinn (the ‘antagonist’) was in!
Which comes first: story, character, setting?
For me it’s usually character.
If you weren’t writing…
I would be what I already am: a wife and mother (my children are 2 and 6), a daughter and a sister. A business owner (my husband and I own a motorcycle accessories business, www.LeaderMotorcycle.com). A pilot, a skier, a singer, a taiko drummer … in short, I wouldn’t trade the fullness of my real life for what is admittedly a full ‘fantasy’ life!
Visit me at
Webs site: www.LastChanceRescue.com
Thanks, Tracey, for joining us today. And let me remind everyone to follow the rest of the blog tour
and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates and contest information can be found here: http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2009/10/virtual-book-tour-last-chance-rescue.htm l.