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Posts Tagged ‘Tracy Krauss’

Today my author interviewee is Tracy Krauss. Besides writing, Tracy teaches high school in British Columbia, Canada.

tracy-krauss-author-photoJANICE: Tracy, how long have you been writing and how did you come to it?

TRACY: I started writing seriously back in 1985 right after I had my first child. I composed a lot of stories in my mind before that time, but I used visual art as my main creative outlet. We lived in a very small house and, as most new mothers can tell you, “free” time was at a premium. During my daughter’s precious naptime, it became frustrating to get all my art supplies out only to have to clean up again. Instead, I borrowed my mother’s old typewriter and started putting some of those stories that were in my head onto paper. I was hooked. Thirty-two years later, I’m still tapping away.

JANICE: We know that writers love to read. What are you currently reading? Do you prefer digital or print?

TRACY: I’ve currently become enamored with two authors: April Gardner and Dana Pratola. Both write in the “edgy” style that I aspire to myself, yet still have a very strong Christian message. Plus, their stories are just plain spellbinding. I actually do most of my reading digitally these days. I like the way I can make the font as large as needed, I can buy and download books instantly, and it is just so easy to have an entire library at my fingertips! Sometimes with non-fiction, I will buy the print copy after I’ve already read the digital version so that I can go back and highlight it.

JANICE: Tell us a bit about yourself. What are some of your favorite things?

TRACY: Art Galleries really do it for me. It’s probably because drawing was my first love and I actually majored in visual art at university. Going to a gallery exhibit fills me with such a sense of euphoria – even when the subject matter isn’t necessarily pretty. I also have a large collection of handmade pottery mugs and I genuinely take pleasure in having my morning coffee in a different mug every day. Oh, and shoes. Yup. I’m a shoe person.

JANICE: I’ve seen some of your amazing shoes at writing conferences, so I can attest to the shoe fetish! What keeps you going in your writing career?

TRACY: There’s always another story to tell. It certainly isn’t the money, fame, or prestige since none of those things have materialized. I’ll admit that sometimes I hear that voice of discouragement in my head telling me to just give in – “Stop it already because you’re spending a lot of time and effort on something that isn’t having any real impact!” Then I get a nice email from a reader, or see a positive review and I think, “Don’t listen to that voice.” I genuinely feel called to write, so I guess it’s about obedience to the call, without caring what other people think. (Or what the negative ‘voice’ in my head says.)

JANICE: How is your faith reflected in your writing?

TRACY: My novels and short stories usually have a pretty blatant Christian theme or message although I try very hard not to preach. I did not come to Christ until I was an adult, so I think my work is “edgier” than a lot of Christian fiction, but I certainly don’t intend to offend anyone. One of the recurring themes in my work is the redemptive power of Christ, and my characters often have serious flaws that they need to work through. My NEIGHBOURS series is not quite as faith forward, but many of the characters are Christians and the sequel, KEEPING UP WITH THE NEIGHBOURS, ends with a stronger redemptive theme. I also write stage plays which are totally secular in nature. Most are parodies of classics like Shakespeare or fairy tales.  sallys-promo-copy

JANICE: What are some things you learned from your own writing?

TRACY: I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn! I’ve come a long way in thirty years, but still haven’t arrived. When I look at my first published books, for instance, I see so many things I’d like to change – things like too many adjectives, to name just one. It’s one advantage of today’s publishing world. Since I’ve gotten the rights back to my first three books I plan to republish them, fixing all the things that irritate me. However, it’s not as straightforward as that since there is always new material in my head that needs to get out and finding the time is an issue.

JANICE: I can understand the wish to change things in my first books. We live and learn. What is your ultimate writing goal?

TRACY: I suppose my ultimate goal is to be able to write full time. At this stage in my life that goal is not too far off since I hope to retire from teaching in the next five to six years anyway.

JANICE: Do you have some advice for beginning writers?

TRACY: Set goals for yourself but don’t have unrealistic expectations. Humility goes a long way in this business. Learn what you can from those that have gone before. Be a life-long learner and never stop pushing yourself to get better.

JANICE: Thanks, Tracy, for taking the time to visit with us today. Keep up the great work.

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