Posted on March 6, 2023 at 8:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek
Today we're interviewing author Tammy L. Grace.
Grace is a USA Today bestselling author who entertains readers with perfect escapes in women’s fiction, clever whodunit mysteries, and sweet Christmas stories. She’s a huge dog lover and includes them in all her books, even writing from the dog’s point of view, using her pen name of Casey Wilson.
When Grace isn't working on a novel, she's spending time with family or supporting her addiction to books, tea, and chocolate. She makes her home in a small town in Nevada, with her husband and a very spoiled golden retriever.
SADYE: What experience in your past or general aspect of your life has most affected your writing?
TAMMY: I’m an only child and I grew up inventing friends and activities to keep myself entertained. I’ve always had an active imagination and loved escaping into the pages of a book.
For the longest time, I wanted to write, but didn’t have the time to focus on it in a meaningful way until I retired. I think coming up with stories, ideas, and characters has been a big part of my life and has helped me be able to craft novels.
Along with that, my dad has always been in law enforcement and many of his experiences and stories, including my time volunteering in that field, led me to write my mysteries.
SADYE: Which of your characters would you most and least like to trade places with?
TAMMY: I love so many of my characters and they really do feel like friends, so it’s hard to choose, but I would probably pick Izzy from Forever Home, a book in my Hometown Harbor series.
It’s set in the gorgeous islands off the coast of Washington, where I’d love to live and she’s a lawyer and also has the benefit of having a family that owns a winery in Yakima.
I don’t have a brother, but Izzy does have one who lives on the island, so I wouldn’t mind trying out her life.
As far as characters I’d least like to trade places with, it would be any of the murder victims in my Cooper Harrington detective novels.
These aren’t gory or graphic stories and more about the whodunit aspect of a murder mystery.
I enjoy all the recurring characters in these novels, especially my detective and his dog, but wouldn’t want to suffer the fate of my victims.
SADYE: What have been the most surprising, rewarding, and challenging parts of your writing career?
TAMMY: For me, the most surprising aspect of my writing career has been in finding and networking with other authors. For the most part, it is a very welcoming and supportive community.
One of the highlights I’ll never forget was meeting Debbie Macomber in person and giving her one of my novels. She was beyond lovely and even took the time to contact me after she read my book.
I would have never dreamed that could happen when I was reading her novels as a young wife and mother.
The most rewarding parts of writing come from hearing from readers and connecting with readers.
I’m fortunate to be a founding author in a fun Facebook group called My Book Friends. It’s a wonderful way to be able to chat with readers and get feedback from them on a regular basis.
By far the most challenging part of this business is the marketing aspects. There are so many books published, it can be difficult to get visibility and showcase my work to potential readers.
For me, writing the book is the easy part!
SADYE: What has been the most touching or memorable piece of reader feedback you’ve received?
TAMMY: I’ve received several notes from readers who have read my books as an escape when going through a difficult illness or when watching over a loved one in the hospital or a care center.
I am happy my work offered them a bit of rest and respite from a hard time in their life.
All of my books include dogs and I’ve had a few readers reach out to me after reading to let me know how much the books, especially those told from the dog’s point of view, touched them and reminded them of a dog that was the dog of their heart.
It’s always satisfying to know my work touched them in such an emotional way.
SADYE: What message or theme would you like readers to take away from your work?
TAMMY: Most of my novels are filled with relatable characters, some who feel like friends, and while they go through often difficult challenges, in the end the reader is left with a sense of hope.
Along with being an escape, I enjoy bringing readers an uplifting story with a hopeful outlook.
I mentioned I include dogs in my books and also like to highlight that unbreakable bond between humans and their most loyal companions.
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Categories: Author Interview