I am pleased to be interviewing romance author Teri Thackston, on my blog today. Teri is a native Texan, a practically-native Houstonian, and life-long lover of storytelling. Her award winning novels cover the spectrum of romance, from suspense to paranormal to historical.
Katie: You’ve been writing since at least 11 years of age. What motivated you back then, and what continues to motivate you to write?
Teri: I just love the act of storytelling, of creating characters and situations and then figuring out where they’ll take me. My sisters will tell you that, while children, I was always boring them with one story or another—but they all agree I’ve much improved with time!
Katie: Your latest book is a historical romance “The Salvation of Captain Ben Chandler.” Can you please give us an overview of this book?
Teri: It’s the sequel to my first historical romance “The Abduction of Miss Jenny Chandler”, but can be read as a stand-alone story. I just fell in love with Ben’s character while I was writing Jenny’s story. Here’s a short blurb:
“Rumors of her death have cost Clarity Breckenridge her home and her precious Arabian stallion Sir Robin. Civil War weary Captain Ben Chandler just wants to deliver the stallion he purchased – and which Clarity claims -- for his cousin in Texas. Thrown together by fate, held together by mutual attraction, they struggle together to outwit a killer who threatens both their plans.”
Katie: You write in so many different genres. What inspired this book to be a historical romance?
Teri: Ben was “born” in the previous book, so I just carried on.
Katie: What is your favorite genre, and why?
Teri: I love almost any genre of romance but if I could write only one, it would probably be paranormal. Nothing thrills me more than a really spooky ghost story. The first book grown-up book I remember reading was a Nancy Drew story “The Ghost of Blackwood Hall”. I guess that started my love for paranormal books, and I’ve been so thrilled that romance authors and readers started embracing that genre.
Katie: You have written several books. Were these all traditionally published, self-published, or in e-book format?
Teri: All are published in e-book format first and then eventually in print.
Katie: What inspired you to choose the e-book format for this book?
Teri: I read that Cerridwen Press was looking for authors in all genres of romance and thought I’d give them a try. They have been a dream to work with, and I’ve loved having my books come out in digital format within 3 to 6 months of acceptance. Everything is done online, which saves time – and trees!
Katie: Earlier this year, you were the Eppie winner for “Best Paranormal Romance.” How did you enter this contest, and what do you think tipped the scales for your book?
Teri: “Final Words” is one my proudest achievements in writing so far, so thanks for asking about it. EPIC (Electronically Published Internet Connection) is a group of writing professionals dedicated to the growth of the digital book industry. I had heard about their work and joined one of their loops. When I heard about the contest for published e-books, I decided to give it a try with my paranormal “Final Words”. I never dreamed I would win—okay, maybe I dreamed about it, but the competition was such high caliber. Comments I received afterward said the story was spooky and fast-paced and romantic…just what I hoped to achieve.
Katie: How much marketing and promotional work have you done for your books? What is your favorite tool? Your least favorite?
Teri: I have a website and a blog, and I’ve taken part in contests and online chats as well as bookstore signings. Although intimidated at first, I’ve found that the online chats are so much fun. It’s like going to a party where you don’t have to dress up and you can do laundry or dishes or anything you want while it’s going on. My least favorite is probably the task of trying to come up with interesting promotional items—it’s hard to think of things that people won’t just throw away. So far I’ve done magnets and excerpt booklets, but I’m always open to new ideas.
Katie: Can you give aspiring novelists three words of wisdom?
Teri: Stick With It! Honestly, perseverance is the key. As long as you keep writing, your writing will improve and you’ll make contacts—and lifelong friends!
Katie: Thanks, Teri for being a guest on my blog. “The Salvation of Captain Ben Chandler” will be available at www.cerridwenpress.com on September 10 as an ebook.