Tanya, thank you so much for visiting us today! I’m so excited to be able to help share in your new release of HIGHLAND FIRE [check out my rev here].
Your stories have brought smiles and laughter into my world along with taking me into a time and place that my soul yearns to be. The love and strength your characters hold within them is something that stays with me long after I’ve put the book down.
Will you share with us a little about who you are and what brought writing to your heart?
Tanya Anne Crosby: Leah, you’re so appreciated. Thank you. I can’t remember the precise moment when I knew I wanted to be a writer, but I can guess it was very early, based on the simple fact that at 12, all I wanted after getting my tonsils out—even more than ice cream—was my father’s typewriter. I spent my childhood with books, making up stories and imaginary friends, and I think it had a lot to do with the fact that I was a bit of a fish out of water. I came to the U.S. as a wee child, not understanding a word of English, and it took me quite a long time to “get my legs.” I can say this, though, I was never bored!
What drew you to medieval Scotland?
TAC: There’s something incredibly romantic about Scotland. In so many ways, we think of ourselves as the great melting pot, but in essence, Scotland did it before us. They are such an amalgamation of cultures and people—Gaels, Picts, Vikings, Norman-French and Bretons. And somehow they all converged upon an unlikely place for survival—the Scottish Highlands. The fact that not only survived, but managed to do it with zest is a testament to their inner strength and tenacity. What’s not to love about these folk?
Can you tell us a little about HIGHLAND FIRE and how Aiden and Lileas came to be?
TAC: I really wanted to write a story that captured the essence of early Scotland—a story that embraced the mystical elements of their culture, but which also accounts for some of our modern day beliefs—things readers can point to and say, aha, that’s where it comes from, I can relate. We think we’ve come so far in our enlightenment, but in so many ways, we’re just returning to our past. In essence, by choosing one of the most mysterious people in Scottish histories, I hoped to give readers a greater connection to a world long vanished. Of course, it’s fiction, and it’s my perspective, but I really get a sense of satisfaction when I finish a book and can almost feel my characters like a presence in the Universe. They are real to me!
When you write “The End” what do you experience? I’ve heard many authors describe it so many different ways. By the way, one of the things I enjoy about your books are we get glimpses of previous characters throughout your series. It’s never truly “The End”.
TAC: Well, I don’t actually write, “The End.” But as I get close to the end, I can really feel an incredible burst of energy and every writer will probably tell you the same. You begin to lose sleep, eating happens at your keyboard (sometimes sleeping too!), and then there is both a euphoria over typing the final words and an accompanying sense of loss that sometimes keeps me tweaking the story until someone finally pries my fingers off the keyboard. And thank you! As I said, these characters are very real to me, so it’s fun for me to revisit them as well. I’m glad it is for you too.
How many stories do you have planned for this series and will we see Lael getting her own? I felt a connection with that one…. I do believe I walked a similar path in a previous life… full of spunk and ready for battle. I have a love for blades myself.
TAC: Lael is next! Once Highland Fire is released, I’ll share the cover for the next book, tentatively titled “Highland Fury.” I loved writing Lael! She’s my inner badass! Right now, there are three books planned, but I can already foresee that it might be difficult to walk away, so we’ll see!
I love the way you fill your stories with the Old Ways. I feel they are an important part of Scotland’s history and its people. When you’re doing research, do you ever find the time has gotten away with you?
TAC: Absolutely! Research is one of the most incredible aspects of writing and I LOVE researching ancient Scotland. It’s one of my favorite eras in history, so it’s probably no wonder that it’s also one of my favorite eras to write.
You also write Contemporary Suspense. Can you tell us more about them and any other things you have in the works?
TAC: My contemporary suspense books are probably nothing like my historicals. They’ve been called Gothic, and have been compared to Hitchcock’s stories—which I’m thrilled and humbled by. But the one way they are very much like my historicals is that there is a tremendous focus on the people in my stories. Tell No Lies, which is due out in March by Kensington is part two of a story set in Charleston, SC. It revolves around a serial killer, but the story is more about three sisters and their estrangement and dysfunctional relationship with their now dead mother. In that story, I wanted to take preconceived notions about who people are, and how others perceive them. I wanted to give readers a glimpse of a deteriorating family, let them guess at what got them to where they are, and then literally pull the rug out from under everyone, so that everything they thought they knew was wrong – OK, maybe not everything.
I cannot wait to read this! Thanks so much for coming over to play!
GIVEAWAY: 1 signed print copy / 1 commenter!
AUTHOR BIO: Put a menu in front of me and I immediately don’t know what I want. Fried green tomatoes with grits? Yep, OK. Fish? Sounds good, too. OK, so what are you having? I’ll do that too. When it comes to shoes–forget it. I end up buying nothing because I can’t make up my mind. Thank God I have a husband who has great tastes, or my closet might be empty. I’m one of those people who suffers from acute ambivalence given too many choices, but when it comes to what I wanted to do with my life, I’ve known that decidedly since the age of 12–and probably long before that.
It all began once upon a time after a tonsillectomy, when the doc advised mom and dad they should reward me with anything I wanted (the key word here being anything). All I wanted was dad’s typewriter. I got it, of course–a black, sporty Olympia I immediately set out to wearing the letters off the keys. So here I am all these years later, with sixteen books under my belt and a new one on the way … still wearing the letters off keyboards … and loving every minute